Here is her group email that she sent..
Hey everyone!! Crazy crazy week this week!
Ok, for New Years we ended up having to just be together as a zone because our mission president didn't want us out doing other things cuz it's to dangerous. So, we got together as a zone, played tornado, and watched How to Train Your Dragon 2!! (Yes, Ammon, I knew you would like to hear that :)) But yes! Aw man it was so good. So yes, New Years was super fun and then the next day we had return and report which was AMAZING. It was for all the new missionaries who came in 6 weeks ago. It was a super inspiring and uplifting meeting, where part of it our trainers went in one room and we stayed in the other and we all just got to complain about our companions for like 20 mins and then say some good things about them. Honestly, I really didn't have anything bad to say. My trainer Hna McMillan is AWESOME. She is literally an angel sent from above. Some of the things I was hearing I was just sitting there like, "wow, I am so grateful, that would be so rough." But, we all learn in different ways I guess. I know the Lord must know I have too tender of a heart for some of that stuff. The missionaries in our mission are amazing, though, and so is our President. He really makes it so much fun! Ha after the meeting we all went into the gym and pres wanted to play a quick game of tornado so all us missionaries got in on it too, it was fun.
OH and I also got facebook this past week! I got a new one because I could take a long time to explain to you why but it is just better to do that for missionary purposes. So, my name is Hermana-Mariah Riddle on it, and yes you are all allowed to friend me haha :)
Ok, so a few take-home things I wanted to share with you all from the return and report meeting we had.
7 P's-"Proper Prior Planning Positively Prevents Poor Performance." Just ponder that one. :)
And another thing to meditate on, a quote from President Benson that I just LOVE. "When we put God first, ALL other things fall into their proper place OR drop out of our lives." Most of the time it is hard to try and determine what we need to add to our lives and what we need to get rid of in order to have the most fulfilling experience we can have on this earth. But it is that simple! Put God first, and everything will just fall into place. I love that.
The past few weeks I have also been playing the piano for primary which is SUPER fun. I love it. Seriously, like every week I am so stoked to go in there it reminds me of the calling I had back home a bit before I left as the primary pianist. The kids are SO CUTE. But it's rough because as missionaries you're not really allowed to like pick them up and all those sorts of things just to avoid legal problems coming up on the church's name. Which is fine, I understand. But definitely coming back to visit this area after my mission :)
Well, I love you all and hope your days are going great!! I'd love to hear from some of you I haven't heard from in a while just to check up on how you are doing!!
Always remember to SMILE!! :)
Ok, so I didn't really take that many pictures this week, BUT. This one is from a little café we went to that a member gave us a giftcard to called Potbelly. I dunno if they have them out in the Western United States but it's actually pretty good!! :)
Transfers were on the 8th of January and Mariah and her companion didn't have to go to the transfer meeting because they are staying together for at least another 6 weeks while Mariah finishes her training. Yay..I am so glad that she gets to stay in the same area for now because they have about 5 investigators that are progressing toward baptism. She said that they have a lot of other investigators that they are teaching as well. What a blessing it is for her to be teaching as much as she is. Also, as you can tell from the above letter that she and her companion get along so well. I am so happy that they get to stay together. Who wouldn't get along with Mariah though??
Mariah said that this with this last transfer they were probably going to be shutting down some areas because they don't have as many people coming out to the mission and some are going home. So, she mentioned that some of the missionaries might get transferred over to the English part of the mission for a while. Some of the missionaries have gone back and forth from English to Spanish. She is not moving to English at this time though. Next transfers are on the 19th of February.
I asked Mariah how far people have to travel to church in DC and she said that there are quite a few church buildings around. Of course it is nothing like Utah, but she said that in her area she thinks that the furthest that the English speaking people would have to travel would be about 15 minutes to get to their chapel. But, because the Spanish ward covers the whole stake she says that some people have to travel about 45 minutes to church. Wow!! We are so blessed here in Utah. We really have no clue! Mariah said that her church starts at 2:00 PM and so by the time they really get out of the building its around 5:30 and dark. CRAZY!!
Well, I have so much more to share but I will share it on another post from this new week. For now, here are some of the pics that were on her SD card that she sent home:)
FROM THE MTC
FROM WASHINGTON DC
Not sure why the spacing is so funky in the last pics from DC but oh well..you get the gist. The picture where she is kneeling on the ground with all of the stuff in front of her shows all of the stuff that she received for Christmas from everyone! I just have to say...THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU for all of your support! Thanks to those who sent money, cards and packages to her for Christmas. She feels extremely blessed to have such amazing family and friends and so do we:)