Tuesday, September 27, 2016

September 27, 2016 - She Left The MTC Today!!!

At 1:39pm today I received a text from an unknown phone number with a Utah area code. Judging by the message, I believe it to be from the one and only Sister Milligan. It said:

Hey, momma!!! I made it here to the mission safely!! The train was awesome! Also, Clayton's mom dropped off a gift for me here at the mission office!! I have a picture of it! Love you all bunches!!!!!!!!!!

No picture followed. We will assume the picture is on her camera, not on the phone she borrowed to send the text. Clayton is a friend of hers from OU. His parents live in the mission Zandi is now serving in! Small world.

At 8:21pm today I received a text from another unknown phone number with a Utah area code. This was not sent by Sister Milligan, but it was sent from someone who had seen her! It said:

Sister Milligan,
Your daughter has been assigned to our stake which is the West Jordan, Westbrook Stake. She is a wonderful missionary and we are happy and excited to have her here.

A picture followed!!! Can you see her name tag??!!!! We are assuming this is her new companion.

September 20, 2016 - One Week Left...WHAT?

Okay, wow. This week has flown by. And we now have our travel itinerary! So here is how it works:

We meet at the Travel Office at 7:50 next Tuesday morning.
At 8:50 our FrontRunner train departs.
Six stops and 48 minutes later, we get off at the Murray Central Station.
I am assuming that the Mission President will meet us there. It just tells us to get off. Scary. It will all work out, I'm sure!


About the pictures...

I didn't have any cash on me when we went to the bookstore, so I didn't get the SD Card Reader. Sister Harvey, my companion got one, and said that we could share it until we got me one. But she left it. So now you have to wait another week. I'm sorry. It's okay though. You just won't get any photos while I'm actually at the MTC.

Oh yeah, that's another thing. My P-Day is Tuesday, but we are leaving next Tuesday morning. So I don't know if I will be able to email (or do laundry) at the Mission Home, or what... So you might not get another email for two weeks. Who knows?

So, you know how last Sunday we got our devotional from Elder Ballard? Well that Tuesday we got to here from Elder Cook! Two of the Twelve in two devotionals! This last Sunday was a District President and his wife from here in the Provo MTC. And not gonna lie, it was better than the two Apostles that preceded them. Well, Sister Mehr's was! President Mehr's was good too. Just not as good.

So right before the fireside, I started thinking again about how all these other missionaries are going to exotic, foreign places speaking different languages and I am going to Utah. I knew within ten seconds of reading my call that this mission is where I am meant to go, so that is not the issue. When I told people, one literally said: "Utah, Zandi? Really?" and that got me a little upset. Because why would someone get called to Utah? I started feeling that perhaps missionaries that aren't as good get sent to Utah missions, and since that is where I am meant to be, that perhaps that made me not as important or effective as those that get called to other places.

So I started having those feelings again right before Sister Mehr got up to talk. And then she started talking about the blessings of not being chosen. About how sometimes we feel over-looked, or not good enough because we are not called to do certain things. Then she talked about Holland's Lift Where You Stand talk from 2012. And then she shared this wonderful story about the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, which she had been a part of for years. They were performing on a stage where there was not enough room to seat all of the choir and the orchestra, so they split the choir in half. Half of the choir was in their uniforms, on the stage, on display. The other half wore whatever Sunday clothes they wanted, and stood in a large tent behind the stage, not visible at all. It was those in the tent that everyone heard. The choir on stage lip-synced, while those not in view of the audience were miked and were sharing their voices.

This just really stuck out to me, because I feel like no one cares about Utah missions, but we are going to do a lot of good here, if not by converting people, by strengthening the testimonies of those in the church that are struggling. It was awesome! So that is why her talk was the best one yet. It was for me. So it was cool to hear from Elders Ballard and Cook, but the Lord knew what I needed to hear before I did.

Alright. That was enough sap for me.  The Questions await!

What did you learn this week?

Read the three large paragraphs above. That's what I learned. I also learned my travel schedule. See the beginning of this email for that.

What did you share this week?

Um... my testimony in a lot of lessons... I don't know...

What did you teach this week?

Well, we taught the Plan of Salvation to our TRC "investigator" and she totally applied it to herself without any prompting. In her prayer at the end she even prayed that someone would find her grandpa and teach him in the spirit world. It was the neatest thing!

What is your favorite thing about the MTC?

I think I would have to say the teachers. We have the best ones: Brother Ales and Brother Anderson. They rock!!

What is the goofiest thing your companion has done?

She snorts when she laughs too hard, so we have been working hard to make her do so. Sister Fossum is up to fourteen, I am at five, and Sister Turner is at one. Good times.

What is the goofiest thing YOU have done?

This is a great story that I will have to shorten for the sake of time. So this morning we were getting up early to got to the temple. And a wasp decided that this room was it's home. So it started flying around and dive-bombing things. It was terrifying. It finally chills out on the light, so we make our great escape. When we came back it was nowhere to be found. It felt like a horror movie.

The wasp lulled us into a false sense of security, letting us think it was gone, when THERE IT WAS AGAIN!!!! FLYING AROUND LIKE A MANIAC!!!!!!!!! So we freaked out, as can be expected. It settled down on the light again, but we didn't want to leave and have it disappear again, so Sister Fossum, Sister Turner and I made a daring effort to destroy Lucifer the Wasp. It is actually a movie now. We filmed it. It's a trilogy. Here's the summary:

Part one:
Us insulting the wasp, telling it to "get thee hence" and whatnot.

Part two:
I stole the water bottle from the ironing board out in the hallway as my sword, took my towel as my shield, and sprayed at the evil beast, trying to get it out. But, cliffhanger, it didn't go anywhere, just stuck there.

Part Three:
Sister Turner gets a broom from the cleaning closet. And wacks the wasp off of the ceiling. Then viciously strikes the ground it lay on. Before stomping on it and throwing its mangled corpse in the trashcan. This whole time I was backup with the bottle, in case it got angry.

It was a great experience.

What is the best thing your companion has done?

Try and get the SD Card Reader so that I could send you all pictures.

What is the best thing YOU have done?
I would have to say... make people laugh? I guess...

What are you looking forward to in the next week?

Not getting attacked by wasps, and singing Hope of Israel at the devotional tonight

What are you looking forward to when you leave for Salt Lake City?

Being able to exercise in the morning instead of in the middle of the day and having to shower at weird times.

What is something fun/funny that your district does/has done?

We have to sing the musical number next week in sacrament meeting because we are the departing district. The first time we sang A Child's Prayer was just before a class, not for any reason. We decided that since we sounded good, we should sing that song. But the second time we tried to sing it - the first practice - it sounded soooooooo bad that we couldn't stop laughing. It was that bad.

What do you need us to send you before you head off to Salt Lake City?

Nothing, I think I'm good!

Do you speak mostly Utahan now or do you still speak in English? (Remember I'm trying to replace Finnish questions!)

I pretty much speak English, but the two Utah natives help us to pick up nuances of the language.

What is your favorite English phrase?

"Get Thee Hence!"

Unasked Question: Was the sketchy vent a Narnia Hole?

Yes! But there was nothing in it... I have pictures that I will show you next time. Unfortunately, We were informed by our Branch President that we can't put anything in them. So no fun adventures. Sad day.

Okay, That's all the time I have! Love you all bunches!

~Sister Milligan

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

September 13, 2016 - The First

Welcome to the start of Emails with Sister Zandi Milligan.

It's gonna be exciting. Hold on.

So, this week has been hectic!! First off, did you get the picture of me and my mission office? I found it at last!! It is always disappearing. My aunt took the picture, (mom please send it to me because I want a copy of it too) so I will try and send it to those who haven't seen it yet. It is beautiful. More flowers in front than I was expecting. (So, the Tardis was not outside her mission home. Apparently, it IS the mission home. Sorry for the confusion. ;) ~Mom)

I made it here to the MTC safely on Wednesday afternoon, and got to meet the BEST DISTRICT at the MTC. I will try and convey how fun these people are:

We have two more people in our district than originally intended because of Visa issues. We call them the Scots because they are going to the Scotland/Ireland mission. They are both from here in Utah. One of them is our District leader!. The rest of us are all going to Utah - the Elders to Orem and the Sisters to SLC West (my companionship) and SLC South (our roommates). But what makes that really funny is that we are all from southern states: Oklahoma, Texas, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Florida, North Carolina, and Canada. Wait what? Oh, yeah. There is a Canadian. But the rest are from the South. It's a blast!

Also, I have now seen all of my friends that are here right now - Elder Jason Draper, Elder Gabe Scott, and Elder Hayden Taylor - at least twice! It has been so fun! Hayden and I got a picture on our Sunday walk, so that was cool. More on that later!

We had our first devotional this Sunday. I was really bummed out because Elder Christofferson spoke on Tuesday right before we got here, so we had resigned ourselves to probably not seeing a member of the Twelve (since Jason has been here seven weeks and had only seen two). But we got in and it was M. Russell Ballard!!!!!!!!!!!! SO COOL!!! I was in the choir practice (for the Tuesday devotional) so I got to be in the actual hall! Apparently the sisters in my district and I all made screen time when they panned over the audience. A little embarrassing to come back inside and everyone tell us that! But is was sooooooooo good!!

And that's all the original content I have...

What have you learned this week?

Um... A lot... I'm trying to think of something specific to say... I guess that the only way that a lesson can be a failure is one where the spirit is not felt.

What have you shared this week?

My bandaids and moleskin. Blisters abound. But bandaids save the day!

What have you taught this week?

Mostly about God's love for us and the importance of praying to feel that love.

Who is your companion? Where is she from? How many siblings does she have? What's her blood type and mother's maiden name? ;)

My companion is the lovely Sister Harvey from Georgia. She has five siblings. I asked her the other questions and she just laughed. Sorry, this attempt was a bust. Maybe with my next one we'll have more luck.

The other sisters in our district are just as awesome! Sister Fossum is especially awesome! She's from Texas physically, but her heart is from Arizona, which is also where Sister Turner is from! All three are wonderful and make me laugh almost as much as a certain Sister Green!

Who is your district leader?

Elder Demille from Utah (I can't remember where) going to the Scotland Ireland Mission

How many are in your district?

Originally planned to be 10, but now twelve. And they all rock!

What is your favorite food/dessert in the cafeteria?

Hmm... I think I would have to say the cookies. They are so good. I love them. I have yet to find any popcorn.

How many pictures have you taken? Can you send us any? Do you need an SD Card reader? I have one that I forgot to give you, I think...

I have taken a few pictures on our temple walk on Sunday, including one of me and Hayden (and our companions because mission rules), one of my district, one of the sisters in our zone that all arrived on Wednesday, and I think one of me and Sis. Harvey... I will be able to send them to you next week because I do need an SD card reader, but I'll probably just buy one here (missionary discount is the bomb). In that time span I will take more pictures!

Is there anything you wish you brought with you that I can send?

YES!!! I forgot to get my personal progress bookmarks out of my other scriptures! They are in the closet in my old room upstairs. But that's all I can think of.

Is there anything you would like sent for fun?

Well, I am going to track down the other vending machines to see if I can find any microwave popcorn. That is the only thing I can think of right now. Popcorn.

Do you have Narnia Holes in your room???!!!! (Narnia Holes are little hiding places filled with small things from other missionaries that have spent their MTC time in that room.)

Okay, about that. I think that I found one in the vent above my bed because one side is very suspiciously held on with scotch tape. Very sketchy. Or scotchy, I guess. I have been meaning to look in with my flashlight but haven't yet. I'll take a picture and let you know the verdict in my next email.

How long are you in the MTC?

I am in here until either Tuesday or Wednesday the 27th or 28th. Also!! You know how we get that little card "signed" by Thomas S. Monson saying that we are missionaries? Well, there is the start date and end date, and my end date on that is listed as February 13th, 2018! We all got shortchanged three whole weeks!

Well, that's all I got...


Sister Milligan (That's still weird to say)

Sunday, September 11, 2016

September 7, 2016 - Arrived Safely At The MTC

Hi everyone!! I am allowed to get on here to tell you that I made it here safely! Yup, that's it. Bye!!

Yes, that's all she wrote. Still waiting to find out her P-day. Must be Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday. Mom

September 6, 2016 - The Day Before The MTC

Thanks to our wonderful Bountiful family, Zandi was able to tour her mission a bit the day before entering the MTC. Strangely enough, she found the Tardis...At the mission home! I think we can safely say she will find like-minded people serving in her mission with her.