Sunday, July 28, 2013

Me pigging out with all the food that the Skousens sent me yuuuummmm I'm getting so fat
 Sister H with a massive cookie next to her face. Also from the Skousens. They are the greatest.
 What we do all day every day. Fill up the board with massive amounts of Korean and over load our brain.
Me kong-bu ing it up (studying)


Okay what the heck its been almost 6 weeks and it's almost time for me to get my travel plans and GO TO KOREA. seriously don't get me wrong I love the MTC but seriously I want to be in Korea already. I try to be as happy as I can here but my happiness will go up times a million and forever when I get to Korea. Except I know I will scared out of my miiiiind so pray for me.
Couple shoutous first:
Shoutout to Sister Lori Bell to being literally the greatest best friend I could ever ask for and I know we're not supposed to compare but on a spiritual level I will never ever reach her because she is amazing and so inspiring and I am so lucky to be her friend and I just love her so much
Shoutout to Dad for being from Blanding (more on that later) and to having THE COOLEST MISSIONARIES EVER I WISH I WAS GOING TO YOUR MISSION jk I love Korean more than Chinese
Shoutout to Mom for being the best mom ever and I love you so much and I love seeing your pictures and your nametags on because I love that we're serving together
Shoutout to the Skousens for being literally the greatest family on the face of the earth besides mine of course...:)) but seriously I love them because they sent me a massive care package with delicious snacks and such cute letters and I just loved them to death it made my day a million gazillion times better
Shoutout to Corrine Barlow for being an answer to prayer when she sent me a care package. I'm not sure what her address is but just make sure she knows that I love her sooo much and her package meant so much to me.
Shoutout to Kelly for allowing me to live life back at Camarillo through her letters. They make me laugh/cry every time I love them so much and I love that you write so much that's it's like ten letters and my district is like woooow and i'm like yeah that's right my sister loves me no big deal
Shoutout the Jacob for writing the best letters ever and making me laugh so hard and making me smile and uplifting me every day
Shoutout to Kaari for sending the cutest pictures of Georgia eveeeeeer I love them but hate them at the same time because I miss her so much
Shoutout to Krissy for her hilarious emails and everytime I want to smile I think about your letter about Karboochie (RIP)
I LOVE MY FAMILY SO MUCH YOU ALL ARE HEAVEN SENT. I taught a lesson this week on the Plan of Salvation and I memorized Families Can Be Together Forever and I recited it to her during the lesson and seriously every day I'm reminded how much I love you and how grateful I am that I get to share eternity with you!!!! Honestly leaving my family behind is the greatest sacrifice for me. If I could see you every day serving a mission would be a piece of caaaake. So pray for me that I won't love you as much...? Jkkk I'm doing better on homesickness. I try to use it to motivate me and work harder to bring families together because I know how truly happy people can be because my family makes me so happy!!
Funny stories of the week: Sister Hales one of the sisters sleep talks all the time and one day at like 6 in the morning right before we were all about to get up we here her scream WHO'S FOR DINNER?? We all started busting up laughing and it was a great way to start the day. I'm laughing just thinking about it. Oh also fart in Korean is bahn goo but none of the elders knows what it means so all throughout the day all the sisters ask each other if they farted because no one else knows what it means and we always die laughing. Seriously thank goodness I can be a weirdo around them because I would die if couldn't.
Okay so more on me being grateful that dad is from Blanding. So GUESS WHO HAS THEIR FIRST BAPTISM TOMORROW? That would be our district. Holllaaaaa. So I told you that we taught a real investigator in TRC? Yeah well she's getting baptized tomorrow and we all get to go. SO COOL I CAN'T WAIT. Anyway we had to get permission and my district lovingly chose me to be spokesperson. They told me to start fake crying and I was sweating from nervousness, but I knew that if the Lord wanted us to go we would. So we ended up having to ask Pres. Hacking one of the counselors in the MTC Presidency and I walk in and he's like Blickenstaff are your parents mission presidents? And I was like yeah they're serving in Taiwan! And he's like your dad is from Blanding right? and I was one has ever heard of Blanding. EVER. and he was like oh I grew up there I think your Aunty Mary was like a year younger than me. IN MY HEAD I WAS FREAKING OUT. It was the coolest thing ever and then he gave us permission to go to the baptism and I was like THANK YOU HEAVENLY FATHER. Okay that may not seem like that big of a deal but it was like a miracle to my district and such a tender mercy from the Lord.
So yeah I'm getting better with sickness. I still have massive amounts of snot in my nose and all the elders make fun of me when I blow my nose in class but it needs to be done. Last Saturday was the worst day ever. So I was trying to push through it and we taught out lesson and afterwards my teacher was like you need to go back to the residence and sleep. And of course I started bawling my eyes out I don't even know why. But I felt so weak and pathetic and like I was being a horrible missionary and that this dumb cold was distracting me from doing my best and it was bad I was like sobbing it was like when Georgia cries too hard and then for a while she makes those gasping sounds yeah I haven't had that happen to me like ever and now of all times it was happening. But I prayed my heart out because I knew that that was atl that I could do at that point. I didn't even know what I needed to pray for I was just praying. And all the sudden the words Peace, Be Still came into my mind and I knew that the Lord was with me. I knew that I would be okay. That He was there to comfort me and lift me up. That He was there when I felt weak. He was there. And that's all that matters. The Lord is always there to help us and comfort us and love us. Another lesson that I learned is that we don't always need to feel His love to know that He loves us. There are so many other ways that He shows us He loves us. I feel His love through my amazing teachers. I feel His love when I read the scriptures and know that they are true and know that they strengthen me. I feel His love when I am happy and when I count my blessings. I feel His love when I read letters from my family or receive packages from my friends. We have to recognize the ways that he rescues us every day. Because He does. I know He does.
Alma 5 is a ridiculous amazing chapter. In there it says that souls are illuminated by the light of the everlasting word. When Christ is in our countenance, His light will shine. How amazing is it that we have this gospel. That we have His everlasting word. That as we study the scriptures, our souls are illuminated. That we come close to Christ and His light shines forth from us. The scriptures are a source of power that is unlike anything else in the entire world. When I stand before Christ and God at the last day what do I want to be able to say to Him? What do I want Him to say to me? I want to know Him and I want Him to know me. I want to be able to say that I did my best that I served my best that I loved my best that I obeyed my best. I want Him to call me His daughter and tell me that I am like Him that He is proud of me and that He loves me. At choir this week the director talked about how we have all been saved for the last days. Which means that before we were sent to earth in the great council we were chosen about 1 out of 100,000 people to come to earth at this time when he knew it would be the hardest when Satan would be fighting the hardest. As we go throughout our day are the other 99,999 watching us saying wow this is why she was chosen to go down this is why the Lord has put her on the earth at this time. The angels of heaven are walking beside us. I know they are. I am so priviliged to live right now and to be serving him right now. I love the gospel with all my heart and I love the scriptures. I love that you all find strength from them too. Never forget what they teach you and what you learn from the Spirit.
I love you all wish I could hug and kiss you!!
Sister Blickenstaff

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Me at the temple
Me being super cute with the other sisters in my district
Me and Sister H
She is half Korean and I love her!

hi i'm dying of pneumonia and a tumor and my brain is going to fall out of my ear

so yeah that's basically how I feel right now. I woke up the other day with a really sore throat and was like oh crap it's coming. So basically I want to kill myself because I cannot breathe/I cough every five seconds. Woke up last night with a raging headache and I was sweating like a pig wanting to kill myself. So pray for me. Also I have this weird lump in my armpit and I'm pretty sure it's not a zit or an ingrown hair so I think it's a tumor and I'm dying of cancer. Jk but I'm probably going to have it checked out....also my brain hurts partly because of my sickness and partly because I am trying to speak this crazy language. In class I'm like yeah I can totally do this I'm doing well and then the new Korean missionaries came in and I'm like yeah def cannot speak the same language you that will be super fun. But I love learning right now even if it's horrible in reality. Some funny things first. We learned how to tell time this week which is like ridiculous because they have two sets of numbers so for the hours you use the Korean set and for minutes you use the Chinese set. So annoying and unnecessary but whatevs I still love Korean people. Anyways the way you say 12 in Korean sounds like your dooshee aka you get the picture hahahaha. Oh also they have this screen in the cafeteria that always has missionaries names on it that need to go to the front desk and one day there was this missionary whose middle name was Victor Hugo. What the heck?!?! Who would do that to their child except dad? Oh also during one of our lessons this week I was trying to say sorry to the investigator and I accidentally said you are my prisoner so that was cool. Korean is awesome. Also had to teach the law of chastity this week so that was super fun.
Some lessons I learned. This week was rough concerning homesickness but I learned something on Sunday that really helped. In our leadership training meeting we were talking about helping other missionaries with any problems they had like homesickness and an elder shared his experience that was an answer to prayer. He said that whenever he gets sad about family he thinks about why he's going on a mission. He said that everything in the gospel brings joy to families and he's been able to experience that his whole life and will for eternity. He wants to go out and serve to bring families closer to God so that they can have the same happiness that he has with his family. And I feel the same way. All my happiness has basically come from my family and the gospel. The two most important things in my life. And to think that people can't have that same happiness because they don't have the gospel motivates me to be the best missionary that I can.
Also watched the Testaments on Sunday and it's the greatest movie!!! Some parts are super cheeseball and I totally forgot that we got papanwa from that movie ahhahaa died laughing but the end where Christ comes is so powerful. Of course I was an embarrassing sister missionary and crying my eyes out by the end. I do not know what has gotten into me but I am a cry baby sister missionary. Anywaaaays I'll just share my thoughts from that night. During the movie I just kept thinking why Christ? Why did He have to suffer for me? As unworthy as I am and as worthy as He is why did He have to go through all that pain and suffering? And it's because now I can be healed through him. All my sorrow, gried, heartache, and my struggles can be healed through Christ's atoning sacrifice. I don't even think we realize the magnitude of that blessing. When I feel like I'm suffering I need to think of Christ's Atonement. He suffered for me so that burdens could be lightened, so that I could be happy and free. If I am not striving to be happy and be the best follow of Christ that I can than I am not honoring His Atonement, the most important thing that has ever been done in the history of mankind. He took upon my trials that I can be spiritually alive. I am on the Lord's side and as long as I am He will always be with me.
We also learned a great lesson on love this week. 1 John chapter 4 is a greeeat chapter. I'm trying to study in the Bible more and I love what I'm learning. In 1 John it says that we love him because he first loved us. When we love more, we get closer to God and we are able to love others in greater capacity. Love is the power to do good and to be good. As a missionary (aka all of you because you are all member missionaries!) it's so important to learn to love those you serve and those you serve with. Because if we love God we will love his children. Powerful that it says if we love not our brother and say that we love God that we are liars. We must serve with love and desire. Some people have never felt love before and I have the privilege of teaching them about God's love and loving them as a missionary and as a child of God. Love is so powerful and sometimes it's the hardest thing to do. But if we pray to have charity and pray to love others, God will help us I know He will. I know He hears our prayers. Always.
Love you tons wish I could hug and kiss you all!!
Sister Blickenstaff

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Me and a friend in the cafeteria
My district on our temple walk
A bunch of sisters from my zone, I love them all they are awesome
 The "han guk sa ram" aka Korean people in our district. They stayed for two weeks and left on Monday, we were so sad!
It's literally 100 degrees outside but somehow gets to like negative 30 degrees in our classroom every day
We always make fun of this elder for shaking this girls hand really seductively so I wanted to immortalize his hand shake. His hands are actually very soft....hahaha

Okay what the how is it already July. Do you realize I've been here for almost a month?! Time fliiiiiies it's crazy. Soon enough I'll be home which is nice because I'll see you all but sad because I'll probably love the Korean people more than you and want to stay there gllll ;o;o;o;o;o;o (jake ;o;o;o;o) hahaha
okay so this week was awesome. Every Friday night we do this TRC thing where we teach members little lessons and last week was our first week. It was kind of nervewracking but it turned out awesome. And we actually taught a real investigator whaaaat it was crazy and she's getting baptized what uuup. Jk we had nothing to do with it. But she did say that she thought I was really pretty and looked really happy and that Korean people would love me and that my Korean rocked. Okay seriously I miss emoticons...anyways I need to brag to my family who are the only people who care. But don't worry I'm still humble. Every thing I'm blessed with is because Heavenly Father is the greatest. I miss you all so much and I try not to think about it because I know that I'll get super sad. But then I remember that we sacrifice for what we love the most. And that's the gospel. I'm willing to sacrifice because I know that this gospel is the greatest thing on the earth and everyone should have the chance to receive it. I can one hundred million percent say that I would not be on a mission if I did not know for a surety that this gospel is true. There is like no way. But because I do know with every fiber of my being that this is the Lord's church and the Lord's gospel, I want to share that with everyone and I am SO excited to share it with the people of Korea. Seriously I just want to be there already. Watch out family I'm going to come back obsessed with everything Korea so brace yourselves. I'm already starting to love the people and the culture. Ps Kris if you don't adopt a Korean baby in the near future so that I can teach it Korean and it will be my best friend then I will be very angry. But I'll still love you. But seriously do it.
Let's see I played basketball with some of the sisters this week. I know. Me. Basketball. Seems impossible. I was pretty much the worst one since they all played in high school. So it was fun for me but probably horrendous for them. I'm obsessed with MTC's cookies. THEY ARE THE MOST DELICIOUS THING IN THE WHOLE WORLD EVER. Also got told that I look like Hilary Duff for the secondish time in my life. I was like thank you...? It just threw me back to the time when I told Kell someone told me I looked like Haylie Duff and she told me that wasn't a compliment :(((((
So we teach progressive investigators and those lessons have been going really well. We committed both of them to baptism what uuup and that's like the greatest feeling ever even though we know it's fake. So I can't even imagine how amazing it was be when I committ real investigators to baptism. Being able to bear my testimony even if it is in simple Korean is amazing. Our teacher mentioned that it's the one thing that's unique to us and no one can ever take it away. And it doesn't matter how simple it is because it's whatever we know and whatever we believe. So one of our investigators is a girl who has a baby and lives with her boyfriend and she was saying how she didn't want her baby to grow up and wonder where her father is but that she talked to her boyfriend and he didn't want to get married. Or something like she was speaking Korean so I really have no idea if that's what she said but I'm pretty sure that's the case. The first lesson we brought it up and basically me and my companions just stared at her because we literally didn't know how to respond plus we barely speak Korean so we just went on with our lesson. After I was like what on earth can we teach her that will help her with that situation because we can't just be like well force your boyfriend to marry you...? come to church and find a husband...? So i was studying and thinking about it like all the time and I got the impression that we should teach her about having faith that the Lord can help us with whatever our needs our. So I studied a lot about faith in Preach My Gospel and in the scriptures and it was amazing I learned a lot. The scriptures are life savors family and I love them so so so so much. So make sure you study them every day! In a devotional recently whoever was talking talked about how when you read the Book of Mormon there's a serious power that will flow into our live. And it's so true. As missionaries we are supposed to teach that the Book of Mormon answers the questions of the soul. And I have a strong testimony of that. Any question we ever have, we will be able to find an answer in the scriptures. And it might not be explicit like you won't find a verse that says Yea, you are supposed to have another child in your family but the scriptures will bring the Spirit into your life and the Spirit has the ability to enlighten your mind. So read the scriptures! Anyway study on faith--some awesome scriptures--Mormon 9:21, Moroni 7:33, Mark 9:23. I loved studying about having faith because it taught me so much. In our lesson we asked her if she knew how to have faith. I would challenge you guys to ask yourself that. How do you have faith and how do you show your faith? How do you have hope? What do you hope for? Why do you have hope? Faith is a principle of power and it's different than believing.
Oh funny story so because we don't really understand a lot of what goes on in our lessons our teacher Brother Wade likes to say funny things that we don't understand so mostly they're just funny to him. So we asked him what his hobbies were and then he asked us and the only thing I could think of to say was that I like to eat and he started laughing and was spitting out all this Korean verbage and I was just half smiling half awkwardly laughing and nodding my head because I had no clue as to what he was saying. Later he told me that he was like oh we should have a rice eating contest and see how many bowls of rice you eat and I was just nodding my head and saying nay over and over which means yes. So basically I looked like an idiot. Classic.
Anyway I love you tons!!
Sister Blick
Ps Jake the mail people are getting pretty angry that you keep putting Booch Blickenstaff. They keep writing me notes telling me to tell my friends to put my real name. Which I realized if I told you that you'd probably get a kick out of that and keep putting Booch but I don't want to get in trouble!! So put my real name you fetcher. Love youuuuu

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Monday, July 8, 2013

Sneaky Sisters

 Blickenstaff girls were always a sneaky bunch...
Lately a couple of them have been seen lurking around the temple at a certain time on a certain day...
and Ooooops who did they run into???
Imagine that!!!
Cutest girls ever
I'm jealous :)
Me and a really good friend, she went to the Philippines
Red, white, and blue for the Fourth of July!
My Korean teacher
Our district "sa rang ham ni da"-ing

Jul 5

anyong kajokeeee!
ps oh sek means awkward. greatest dono (vocab) of my life.
okay remember when Heavenly Father is the greatest man who ever leeeeeved???? okay that was probably disrepspectful but seriously i am soooooo ridiculously blessed by him. i´ll talk more about that later though.
some funny stuff first. so korean is an awesome ridiculous language and you have to be SO careful about pronunciations or else your screwed. like missionary is sone kyo sa but if you say sahn kyo sa which is surprisingly easy to mix up because the korean alphabet is insane than you´re saying we are prositutes of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. hahahahaha Korean is crazy. also during one of the lessons one of the elders was trying to introduce his family and he was like my family is a big family. i have five pieces of paper hahahahah. died laughing. i´ll try to think of more funny things but i have to type uber fast because it took like ten minutes reading moms condensed email. by the way this keyboard is so dumb and i can´t find the quotation marks. but there should def be quotes around condensed. ps i still love your dear elders. everyone hates me still. keep up the good work.
on to some good stuff that´s happened. the temple is the greatest thing that ever existed. I went last Friday after I emailed you guys and I just needed comfort and Heavenly Father definitly blessed me with that sooooo much. Even though I was going through for someone else I was reminded of the covenants I had made with Heavenly Father to consecrate my life to Him and be willing to sacrifice. It was so peaceful and EXACTLY what I needed to get me through the week. So go to the temple because it´s amaing and we are so beyond blessed to have them across the world. Found out that I get to go every transfer to the temple in Seoul. AMAZING except I realized that I might have to do things in Korean aaaand started freaking out.....oh well the Lord will bless me.
You guys Heavenly Father is blessing me soooo much. I love it here. Remember when I hated my life last week and you could probably all tell? oh seeeehk. (aaaawkward) Well now I´ve grown up and the Lord has taught me a lot and I love life and wish you could all experience this with me.
My teacher said something really cool to me last week that I forgot to share with you. So we read in Mosiah part of King Benjamin´s address I think and it talks about how we are nothing like we are lower than the dust of the earth. ps i always thought that was funny because he´s like always remember your own worthlessness and nothingness and i thought oh cool i will thanks. anyway my teacher was saying that compared to God and Christ we are nothing. But in their eyes we are EVERYTHING. And how true that is. That is so powerful to me. Because even though at times I feel small and insignificant, I know that the Heavenly Father I am strong and great and significant in His eyes. And that´s what I love about this gospel is that it teaches us that. We mean something to God. I´m not just another girl, another missionary. I am Caitlin to Him. He knows me and He loves me. And that´s awesome!!
Okay so I got called as Sister Training Leader whaaat uuuup. JK more like the Lord wants to teach me how to have charity and love other people besides my selfish self. But I am so grateful for this calling and know that it will probably help me more than it will help the sisters I serve. But I get to interview and give tours to the Korean newbies this Wednesday and I´m so excited!! If there´s any lesson to learn in life it´s how to love other people. Because once you start doing that you start to see them how Christ sees them. Plus it´s only the greatest commandment that Christ gave. Besides loving Him of course.
Oh this past Sunday I was asked to play the piano for sacrament and to accompany a musical number that I had approximately 3 hours to learn the music. Holy poop I was so stressed. But I know that Heavenly Father gave me that talent and that I should be willing to share it. I just prayed that my piano playing wouldn´t drive away the Spirit and it turned out great! Just another little way that Heavenly Father blessed me this week. So we´ve started teaching progressing investigators which is basically our teachers pretend to be investigators but it´s surprisingly real and scary. But I LOVE LOVE LOVE teaching. The Spirit is amazing and I just want to teach everyone in the whole world how they can be happy through the gospel and reading the Book of Mormon and praying to God and getting answers. Ugh it´s just so amazing!!
I´ll share a cool experience about teaching. So yesterday we taught one of our investigators and we taught him about the Book of Mormon, how the gospel blesses families because he´s 40 and has a family, and then about prayer. So i was talking about how the gospel blesses families and I talked about our families experience with Courtney passing away and how we were so sad but that the Book of Mormon taught us that through Christ little children receive salvation and that we knew she was in heaven and that we would see her again. I bore with my whole heart that I knew the Book of Mormon would bless his family and that if he would read it it would bring him happiness and that he would come to know that it was true. Then we taught him about prayer and I told him that I knew Heavenly Father wanted to hear from him and God would answer his prayers. And he was like really? how? which sounds super cool in Korean. it´s like chin-chai-oh? oh-doh-kay? anyway besides the point. I was like you´ll God loves you and wants to help you and you´ll be able to feel His Spirit. Ps I love Korean but it sucks not being able to say everything you want to. anyways we taught him how to pray and asked him to say the closing prayer and he said he would. In the prayer He prayed for my little sister and I lost it. Yeah the tears came rolling down it was embarrassing. But the Spirit was sooo strong. After the prayer I choked out that I knew prayer would bless his life. Probably in the wrong grammar forms because I couldn´t think properly but it was just an amazing experience.
Some quick things that I´ve learned from devotionals and such.
Matthew Richardson of the Sunday School presidencey came to talk to us and he was awesome. But he said that Heavenly Father sees something in me that I can become. And I loved that. Heavenly Father doesn´t see us for the mistakes we make or the imperfect person we are now but he sees us for who I can become. He sees me for the missionary I can become, for the mother I can become, He sees me as his daughter.
Read your patriarchal blessings. I love mine to death and read it all the time. It´s amazing.
Oh funny thing I we have some Korean sisters and I was talking to them one night and asking if I was saying something right in Korean and I started speaking to them and they started laughing at me. I was so embarrassed I was like what do I sound bad?? And she was like no you just sound so tired!! Apart from making fun of me they are so sweet. Seriously out of all the Asian countries I am sooooo happy I got called to Korea. Sorry muzzy and pops. But Korea is the best...gllll.
Oh another funny thing. kawee aka what we call Kaari, means scissors. Just thought you´d enjoy that thought. Okay that´s all for now I love you all!!
Sister Blick
Some good scriptures to read when you get the chance
Jacob 3:1-2
Mosiah 4
2 Nephi 31