Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Eve 2009

Man, this has been such a crazy day. It's a P-day on Christmas Eve, which is legit. Minus not being able to go to the temple, it's pretty low key. I've got my laundry done and I'm just writing emails, now. I wish I had more time than half an hour cause there's so much that I want to say and I feel like I'm always being pressed for time. Such is life here at the MTC. I always feel like there aren't enough hours in the day to get all my reading and PMG stuff done. Oh, P.S. did I mention that I'm attempting to read the Spanish Book of Mormon in 30 days? Another Elder in my district and I are doing it together, so it really helps that there's moral support for each of us.
This has been a super rough week for me. I've had to deal with so much crap, I don't even know where to begin. Last Friday I just had a terrible day. So I'm really good friends with Elder Huff right? Yeah, so we've had both of our teachers talk to us about how we need to keep our relationship appropriate. No big deal. Besides, he has a girlfriend and we're just friends. So our DL thinks he needs to get in on it and he talks to Huff and he's just like you both are going to get sent home because what you're doing is inappropriate and I'm over here going "What the heck are we doing that's so bad?" Yeah, so needless to say, E. Nilsson has got it out for me. Every time I talk to him I feel like a piece of crap and like I'm a bad missionary. Like I'm not worthy to be here. So it's a little stressful. So anyways, Nilsson thinks he needs to go talk to our Branch President about it and President Estes was talked to both Huff and I about how he knows we're here for the right reasons and so we're all good. But then my coordinating sister comes and talks to me more about it yesterday. Personally, I'm just done hearing about this. And how inappropriate the things we do are. I don't know how people can figure these things out when I ALWAYS have my companions with me and he always has his companion with him. UGH.
Anyways, the Lord blesses and he makes it all better. I'm glad to hear that everyone is feeling better.
And I'm just glad that I'm not there to get it. I've been blessed and haven't been sick since I've been here, so that's great. A cough here or there, but nothing that'll land me in quarantine. I'm glad Erin made it home okay. Sounds like she had quite the adventure home.
And that sucks about Lori. I would hate knowing that I'd for sure have breast cancer. Eeks. Man, it's pretty stressful. I can't even imagine.

Aww, poor Amy. She's so sweet. I hope that she's doing better now that she's been able to vent. I know how that is. I'm so glad that I have Hna. Pechin here for me. There's some days where she just keeps me from exploding. I can't even imagine the MTC without her. Even though she loves Obama and is totally a liberal, it's okay, because we have the gospel in common and that's what matters.
So I went to the bookstore and bought a tape recorder so I can send tapes home and then you can listen to my pretty voice. Haha. Even though they'll all probably be old stories and stuff you've already heard, it's just fun hearing it from a voice and not reading it over an email. So I'm halfway done with my first one and I'll be sending it along shortly.BAH!
Roland and Christi getting engaged. Yikes. That's all I have to say. I just...yikes. And that pageant. Wow.
You'll have to let me know what the balance in my account is because I lost my receipt from the other day when I used my debit card and so I'm not quite sure what the balance in it is...but it's okay because I'm not using it anyways. I've used it once since I've been here. I'm just not starting to get low on cash. And I've been here for over a month.

Man, so I got a letter from Aaron Allsop last week. It was awesome! I just about fell out of my chair when my DL handed me this huge envelope. Haha. It was great. And funny story. So Mike Stoehr told me to look for this guy from Hawaii that was going to my mission and speaking Spanish. So Elder Kakazu comes up to me the other day with a pass along card that says 'Sister Sammi Pleshek' and it's in Mike's handwriting. I just start laughing and he's like Do you know an Elder Stoehr? It was so funny. And Kakazu is like this 5 foot nothing little Hawaiian dude. He's just so funny. He was kind of shocked when I freaked out a little bit.

I did get your package and Clint's and I LOVED THEM BOTH!!! Made my day with all that MINT CANDY!!!! I did open up a few of the presents, but I saved some. Man, I'm definitely loving Grandma Kay's pajamas. They're nuts! :-D So Grandma Kay though. I love it.
Oh, when you give Erin her present tonight tell her I love her and I'm sorry I didn't get her card out before Christmas. But, I'm sure she'll love what I got her. Haha. It's interesting to read yours and Clare's and Erin's emails all in one day. I wish I had more time to write them, but I don't. I'll just write them letters tomorrow. Besides, they'll read this anyways.
Well, I love you all. The gospel is so correct and true and I love being a missionary! It's the best occupation I could ask for! I love learning new things and getting to know my Savior through his Atonement and all the other things that I'm studying. He's the reason for the season and I'm so lucky that I have this opportunity to be here in the MTC for this once in a lifetime opportunity. I miss you all and I miss being with you right now, but I owe this much to my Savior and Redeemer. After all He's done for me, this is the least I can do for him.Merry CHRISTmas!!!!
Hermana Pleshek
P.S. Dad, all the elders in my zone live in Addison Pratt! WOOT WOOT!

Hand written letter 12-17-09

Dear Home,
Happy P-Day!! I love P-days because I get to write letters and wear sweatpants and do my laundry. Here are some more names from the temple. I won't send some for a couple weeks because the temple is closed for the next few weeks. BOO!! And I'm not sure when this'll be in the mail, but alas, I'm writing.
The temple was great tonight, as always. I love the temple. :)

But, send me the Christmas letter. And P.S. besides the fact that the fire alarm went off Saturday morning at 12:00 a.m., it's all good. Okay so story with that.

So we go to bed at 10:30 like normal and I had a super hard time going to sleep and so I finally get to sleep and AHH!! The fire alarm starts going off. And not just like the little baby alarm, but the one that someone pulls when there's a real fire. So, we all freak out and I like pop out of bed. And I smelled smoke. EWW!! So we're all just like what the heck? So we evacuate to the gym and we sit there for a 1/2 hour, waiting to see what happens. Apparently there wasn't a real fire, just some problems that were in the basement make it go off. And so he tells us that there's bad news. The sprinklers ....big pause ...... didn't go off so there'll be people coming in and out of our building all night long. It was sort of funny since we were all out of it. and it was funny cause it took at least another 1-2 hours to get to sleep. But, we're all okay. Then that same day, I'm cleaning the athrooms as part of my service project. So, I'm cleaning the mirrors and SMACK!! I hit my head super hard on the sprinkler! (I was on the counter standing since the mirrors are far away.) anywho, that bruise is just starting to go away.

But, P-Day is over and once again, I'll probably write on Christmas Eve, since that's my next P-day. And again on Christmas. I love you all. I love this work! It's so great! The Lord has blessed me and I know His hand is in everything.
Hermana Pleshek
P.S. Feliz Navidad!!!

Friday, December 18, 2009

New Pictures!

All the Sisters in the zone.
Breakfast on our preparation day.

Elder Bradley Duncan and me in a super awkward pose.

My companions and me at the temple sign.

Just a random picture. I stole Elder's Ballard's Christmas chain.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

December 17, 2009

Your email made me really happy this morning! I love it when it's super long! It just makes my little girl heart flutter. I've also been here for just over 4 weeks and that's great. Only 6 more to go. I'm here for 10 weeks, on the dot. I leave the 26th. And also, I don't get to call home on Christmas, which is lame, but anyways.

Yeah! I love going to the temple because it's so great! I'm going to get a bunch more done today and send them out once again. P.S., did you get my memory stick with the temple names? OH MY GOSH!!!! That's nuts about Gramma Kay and George. Oh my goodness, I can't believe that. What a nutso! I can't believe that people do that. It is just ridiculous. Oh man, I can't even imagine that, especially since he never really says anything and then...yeah.

Oh, do you have any other t-shirts you want to send? well, nevermind. I guess I don't really need them. Yeah...don't worry about it. But those trouser socks sound LEGIT!!!! I want some! Any color will do. I'm just digging that cause it's super. And I hope that it works good in Washington. Oh, any update on the boots? Because it'll be better if I have at least some closed toed top shoes. Does that make sense? Entonces...

Oh, President Barrett is so cute! It just make my heart happy to see him every day in the MTC. They have a huge thing with all the mission presidents all over the world, so I get to see him every day when I go to lunch and any other meal!!! YAY!!! It's great! But I love him and Sister Barrett. They're just the sweetest people! And I know that he cares about me. Haha, no I'm not concerned with marrying any young man right now or anything about any young man right now.

Thanks for keeping me updated on the social aspects of the stake. But it's great. Oh man, what's up with all these people getting married? Haha. It's all good, I'm so glad I'm not married. I wouldn't rather be doing anything else besides serving the Lord in the MTC right now. YES!!!!
That's cool about Erin getting that driver from West Bend. OH GOOD!!! When is she coming home then? I haven't heard from her and I was going to write her, but I didn't know if she was home, because I'm writing Jodi to her home address. Speaking of which, I wrote her and told her that she needs to get her life in order and stop worrying about getting married. Every letter I've gotten from her has had something in it about getting married or engaged and I just don't want to hear about that. It just seems like she's spending too much time and energy worrying about something she's not remotely ready for.

Anyways. SEND ME PICTURES!!! I dont' have a lot and I want more. Especially of Adam and Cami. I have ones from Halloween, but that's about it. And I'm just yeah. As far as the pictures for my plaque go, just go with the one that I submitted for my mission papers or whatever. Just one where I look good. That'll do.

Oh man, Mom. I just love being a missionary! It's the greatest calling in the world and I wish that everyone could be a missionary! The Lord blesses us so much and He's so mindful of what we do. This work is so great and I can't wait to finish up here in the MTC and get out to the field so I can share the message of this restored gospel to the world! It's a message everyone should want to hear because it's of complete joy and greatness!!!! I love it here and I couldn't think of a place I'd rather be! :-D Anyways, I love it here. The church is true, the book is blue. And when we know what we do, what on earth could matter more?
I LOVE YOU. I can't wait to hear from you once again.
Hermana Pleshek

Thursday, December 10, 2009

December 10, 2009

Alright, this is going to be a quick email as I have dinner in about 8 minutes. But we'll see how it goes. Alright, to answer your two questions: I put all my stuff in the closet and if she doesn't find it, well, I don't know what to tell her. It's all in there and I made sure of it well before I left. I didn't have a manual or anything, I just had a black binder. Retta never gave me a manual, so yeah. As far as my tithing goes I found some here but I just voided out the checks and stuff, so it was about 150.00 so if you want to just take that and give it to the Bishop out of my savings, or whatever, please do so. I just forgot. Which isn't unusual for me.

How did the dinner with Gramma Kay go? Did she like Kansas? Oh Thomas. Well, he has his own card coming in the mail. I'm sending it out tomorrow, so he can look forward to that. And I'll be sending the 8 names we did today. The elders in my district didn't come with us last week, so it was just us girls. But, we're meeting from now on to go to the temple, so they'll get done a lot faster. WOOHOO!! Speaking of the temple, I just got back and it's freezing. I can now start to feel my legs again. But it was such a great experience for me. I felt the Spirit so strongly while sitting in the Celestial room and I just loved it!!! I can't wait to go back next week!!!

Oh, P.S. I'm just going to be sending my memory card home to you soon, so don't worry about scanning the pictures in. I want to make a movie so that you can have it on Christmas and then watch it when you get my stick. I have my old one, so it's no problem. Although I don't want you to delete any of the pictures off. Just look at them, save them, post them, whatever and just send my thing back.
That's cool about all the Vengenderen kids. I'll bet that was fun!!! Yeah, that's kind of a bummer that they don't have any clothes to wear or won't wear. Sad.

Haha, of course Dad talked to President Belnap. And I'm glad I don't need a bike! Just more money I get to save!!! WOOHOO! Oh man, the blog. How's that going by the way? And if you have Dawna's address, could you get that to me? That would be fantastic.
Oh I'm sure he'll find out a lot about me if he reads that. :-D

Oh, can you send my pomegranite lotion, too. It's so blasted dry out here and I didn't bring a lot of lotion, just a tiny bit, and I want some more. That would be AWESOME! I don't think I need anything else. My suitcase won't be too heavy. I still had room to spare and I'm using my shampoo and conditioner, so it'll be great. There's also some stuff I might want to send back home that I haven't been using. Oh, and did I leave my belt in your suitcase? Send that too. I need a belt! On p-days anyways. Well, my white skirt and red skirt had to have the slits sewn down a bit. Well, not HAD to, but I wanted them to because they were a little higher than I wanted and it was just not appropriate for the Elders to have to see that I have a slit higher than it should be.

OH yes! I'm excited for my blessing to come! I want it really bad.

That's cool that you've got the family history fever! I loved having it when I had my class. Oh, P.S. it's super cold here, so I'm glad that I have that scarf!

On Tuesday, Claudio R.M. Costa came and gave our devotional. IT WAS SO GREAT!!! He's such an amazing speaker and I loved it!!! It was just absolutely fantastic, I can't express to you how great it was. And once again, the Spirit is felt.

It's felt every day I'm hear and I absolutely love it. I've learned how to love so much from being here. Elder Nilsson in my district was just not being a very nice kid - not sure if I told you this or not - but I've just learned to love everyone and that people are different and we're all children of a loving Heavenly Father who doesn't make mistakes when it comes to people. So, it's a great step. My companions think I bring unity to the district and if I wasn't here, then we wouldn't be as unified and wouldn't help at all. So, it's great and I love it.

Oh man, I have so much to say but it's one of those things where you have the chance, and don't remember what you wanted. Anyways, I better finish up here. I've fallen so far behind, there aren't enough hours in the day to do everything I need to do. AHHH!!!! But, I love you all!!!!
I'm loving a mission and everyone needs to serve because it's the greatest! I'm so glad I chose this because it's beyond anything I could imagine. I love the Savior and am loving this Christmas season where it's all about HIM and serving HIM. Which, I'm more than willing to do! After all, He is my Savior and the Redeemer of the world.
Have a great night! I'll write again soon!
Hermana Pleshek

Monday, December 7, 2009

Pictures from the MTC

Here's my district!
My zone leaders. Elder Stevenson from Australia and Elder Hamilton from San Jose.

My companions. Hermana Christensen y Hermana Pechin.

Hermana Pechin, Oaken, Hymas, Christensen and I all "holding our own" with the Polys! :)

Thursday, December 3, 2009

December 3, 2009

Dear Family,
This computer is not very good, so I'll probably send this one and then another one since it's got a lame keyboard. But anyways, I've just finished up my second week here and technically, it's my third week. WAHOO!!! This week has been crazy! It's gone by so fast and I can't believe it. WOW! So, things here are good. My Spanish is quickly getting better, and it's just a matter of practicing. Oh boy. But, it's good. I sent out letters today. Dad, HAPPY BIRTHDAY. I've got a great birthday card for you that you will like. Haha. Well, it's not great, but you know what? It's okay. Well, the end of this email. I'll email again in a minute or two. Love you.

Alright, sorry about that. Stupid computers here in the laundry room. Well, its' been a pretty productive day here in my FIRST official p-day. Last week didn't count because we didn't really get to do anything good since it was Thanksgiving. Well, we did good things, but it wasn't a real p-day.

So here's a few things that I need. I need a couple more pairs of socks. Yeah, that would be great. And some face wash and a washcloth/baby towel or something. Because I totally forgot that. And, I don't know if I need anything else. Maybe some nylons. Ones that run. Not knee highs or tights. Nylons. Haha. Yes, I've learned the distinction. But tights would be okay too. And I am in the process of buying more skirts because I need more and some of them are just nuts. Anyways, it's all good.

So, I've had some more rifts with my companions this week. It's been so crazy. Apparently my comp H. Christensen went through almost the same thing that I did with Brett, which she's having a really hard time with it whereas mine comes and goes. But, basically we're all here because we didn't want to get married at the time.

I've got 4 Elders form my zone leaving on Monday and I'm sad. But we also got a bunch of new missionaries yesterday. Not in our zone, but just in general. It was hilarious thinking that was me two weeks ago. I don't even remember that at all. If it wasn't written down in my journal, then I wouldn't remember it at all. Oh so anyways, my comp H. Christensen needs to be taken in small doses!!! But, we're comps and we have to be by each other all the time. I MISS MY OWN SPACE. I think that's going to be the hardest thing for me.

Alright, now I can finally finish up this email. It's been a crazy day.
Okay first off, I need you to call Casey in my phone and get her address. Make sure it's Casey Love and not just Casey. Umm, that would be great.
Well, I'm glad to hear that things are going super great at home. This week has been crazy, like I said. Elder Holland came and gave us a devotional on Thanksgiving and it was GREAT!!! Sister Cheryl Lant came and gave our devotional on Tuesday and that was awesome, too. She compared us to the Strippling Warriors and that's pretty accurate considering there are 2,200+ of us here at the MTC right now. But she's such a good speaker. Both of them are. Sister Holland is so genuine. She got up to speak with tears rolling down her face and left with them, too. She's so cute.

We did a service project on Thanksgiving, too and that was a lot of fun. We colored picture books and put together some form of 24 kit/emergency kit, thing.
But, things are going good. I'm moving along with the language which helps. And I got two new skirts today which probably weren't the best idea, but they're great and I love them and they'll last me my whole mission. I had to send two of my other skirts in to be altered. And something exciting! I FINALLY GOT PICTURES!!! I got pictures printed off, so I'll send a few home before I send my memory card and the finished temple names we did today.

Oh yeah, we just got back from the temple and it was amazing! It was so cute to see my elders all in white. It was great!

Speaking of I'm kind of irritated with the Elders in my zone right now because most of them think that I'm out here to get married and I'm like REALLY?! You honestly think if I was going to look for a husband I'd be here?! Where all the boys are off limits? I don't think so. But it's just kind of saddening for me because they think I flirt with everyone, when in reality, it's just me being nice and myself. I wouldn't under any circumstances flirt with any of the elders here. Most of them are younger than me and I see them as you know, my little cute elders. It's like how I see Cami. I just love them all and want to take care of them and make sure that nothing bad happens and do anything I can. But apparently, that's flirting. So, beesh.
Anyways, I don't really know what else I can talk about. Not a whole lot goes on here besides learning and stuff. It was a crazy p-day and I have dinner in about 7 minutes. Which is about what I have left of my time on here.

Ahh, my room is great. My laundry is good. I have one more garment top than bottom. The Spirit is great. I'm in the MTC choir, which is AMAZING!!!! I'm sick of the food, but it's all I've got, so I deal. Well, I only get sick of it when there's nothing that looks or sounds good to eat. Umm, I just got a new coordinating sister and I'm meeting with her tonight to do a little interview. I'm amazed at how many interviews I have each week. It's nuts.I give all these Elders here credit. Now that I know what kind of thing the MTC is, especially with those who are learning a foreign language, I give them HUGE credit. It's not an easy task to be here. Satan works hard and he's working on me and my companions. And I can't even imagine what it would be like, being 19. I know that I wouldn't have been able to handle it. Well, I could have if I would have had to, but I didn't. And I came here by choice. So I give full credit and I have respect for all the missionaries. Especially the ones that had a hard time on the mission.
Oh, P.S. printer is down right now at the MTC, so if anyone has sent me anything, I haven't gotten it. Man, I can't believe how nuts my day has been. Tell Tom that I love him and tell Cami she's a socko! And B too. He's so stinking cute, I just miss his cute chubby little face.
Oh, I don't have my patriarchal blessing, so send it please! And lots of pictures! Lots and lots!!! Well, I'm done here. I'm going to eat some good food and such. I love you all so much and THANK YOU for everything you do!!!
Hermana Pleshek

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thanksgiving Day Letter

Dear familia,
Well, it's officially been a week and a day since I came to the MTC. WOOHOO!! But, it's been a great time. When I showed up, I was slightly overwhelmed because they were making us go every which way, but once we got settled and into the swing of things, it was great. We've just been keeping hecka busy and all sorts of good things. Lots of great devotionals and talks.
I've got two companions, so I am in a trio! It's really fun. My companions are Hermana Lara Christensen and Hermana Rebecca Jo Pechin [said like Peach-in]. Hermana Christensen is from Highland and Hermana Pechin is from Orem/Logan. They're great and I just love them. We have a lot of fun together, although they aren't the girls that I would have put myself with. But we have a ton of fun together and they are great. And even though are personalities are different and I have to exercise my patience, it's great and I know that I'll be blessed and we're all together for a reason.

My district and my zone are AMAZING!!! I couldn't have asked for a better district or zone. My ZLs are great! Elder Hamilton is from San Jose and Elder Stevenson is from Austrailia. Needless to say, I enjoy talking to Elder Stevenson. He and I are good buddies! :-D But, it's all well and good. My district is awesome, too. My DL is Elder Davis and he's from Vegas. He does a really good job with us, as he's 26 and we're all between 19 and 21. But, it's awesome. My favorite elder in my district tested out and I'm sad about that because he's my comic relief and he and I are a lot alike, but it's okay. I still get to see him. And I have to send him a cup for his birthday...which isn't til August, so it's all well and good. But he's great.

So, my roommates are HILARIOUS!! Hermana Wolfgram is going to Washington, except she's going to Seattle. Hermana Veazy is going to California, and Hermana Passentino is going to Clint's mission - NY NY North. But they're so fun and I love going back to the dorms after the long day to get some laughs in. They just make me laugh so hard, I love it.
I actually did test out of my class on Tuesday. And I passed and they told me I should be in a more advanced class than I'm in. But they haven't talked to me yet. But I'm not sure if I want to go or not. I have a choice and I'm praying about it and I'm hoping I find an answer today in one of our two devotionals or something like that. I'm all down with where Heavenly Father wants me to go.

Dallin H. Oaks came to our devotional on Tuesday and it was excellent!! He and Sister Oaks are just so great. I love their personalities. They talked about the mantle of a missionary and it was just so awesome! We sang Called to Serve as our opening hymn, and I just felt the Spirit so much. It was so great! I just started crying and it was a testimony again to me that I'm where I'm supposed to be at and doing what I'm supposed to be doing.Oh, P.S. Sorry it took so long to email. Our P-days are on Thursdays and so we didn't get one last week and this week is kind of cut short because of Thanksgiving. So we really are getting the short end of the stick. Boo. But, it's all well and good. We're blessed for our obedience.
Everything here is great. I did laundry this morning and that took a little longer than I would have wanted. I'm also determined that I will come back with huge bags under my eyes because of all the waking up at 5:45 or 6:00 a.m. stuff I'm doing. And even though I go to bed when I'm supposed to, it just doesn't seem quite enough sleep. And I can't believe that I was staying up til midnight and getting up at 6 when I was at home, getting ready to go to work. Maybe it's because I wasn't always on the go or I could take a nap? I don't know. It's okay though, because we'll be alright. It's the Lord's work and we're just the instruments in His hands. I only hope that I can do all that He asks of me and that I can have the suffiecient knowledge when I leave here. Technically, this is my second week in. They go by weeks on Sundays and not Wednesdays. So even though I've only been here for a week, according to the MTC, I've been here for 2. I can't believe that, though. It's nuts!!!
I love how small of a world it is here. I've seen Bradley Duncan all the time. He's so funny. And I think it's hilarious that I see him here. He's going to Canada Winnepeg mission. Oh and yes, he says hi to the family. Haha. Even though I'm sure you're just rolling your eyes, Mom, and saying something to the effect of 'why does he say hi? He doesn't even talk to us'. Anyways, just a formality I guess.
So, we have gym class every week and it's great. I play volleyball every single day and I love it. When I first started playing, I met this Elder named Elder Stone and he's from Burley. And he knows Lance and Liz. Another Hermana in my zone knows Liz, too. It's so funny. I just love all these little connections I'm making with everyone. Anyways, back to volleyball. So I play volleyball and I usually play on the newbie's court because it's not as intense as all the kids jump serving and what not on the other court. Anyways, so I was playing on the good court on Tuesday because the other court hadn't started up and these Tongan and Samoan elders come up to me and I'm scared. Because they're huge and I'm just this little white girl. Anyways, they were like 'Hey Hermana, you're so good.' I was just like, oh thanks. And then yesterday, they came up to me and were like Hermana, are you going to play with us today? I was like heck yes!!! So, I was the only girl on the court and I did awesome! They were so great! And so now they all come and talk to me all the time. It's so funny.
On Sunday, we get to take temple walks, which we get to leave campus and go on a walk up to the temple. Well, I was taking pictures with my coordinating sisters [they're like Zone Leaders for the girls] and all these Tongan missionaries came up to us - at least 8 of them and were just like PICTURES WITH THE AMERICAN GIRLS!!! It was hilarious. I loved it. I'll send pictures when I actually get a chance to make some. But, it's just great. I love it here!
Oh, so I have this Elder in my district named Elder Ballard and he's SO FUNNY! I just love him. I'm seriously going to shrink him down, and carry him in my pocket everywhere I go for the rest of my life. He's so funny, though. I have a picture with him to of me hitting him with a stick. It's great. But, he does say Hi Heidi. See? He's just so cute.
So, funny story. My coordinating sister, Hermana Hymas [haha, yes, what a last name!] is from South Jordan and graduated the same year that Brett did. And she knows him. And it's totally funny. And then another Elder in my district, Elder Meldrum, knows Blake. It's crazy. Oh speaking of which, can you send me his address? I forgot to get it when I left and I really want to write Brett a letter.
So, I have 7 minutes left and I've run out of things to say. So I'll tell you another story. So, my comps and I were walking back from lunch yesterday and it's been really hard for me to get out of the habit of saying 'y tu' after someone asks me how I'm doing. The tu form in Spanish is you, but it's informal and as missionaries, we're going to be using the usted form instead of the tu form. Anyways, so we're walking back to class and this elder asks me how I'm doing. I told him I was good and so the first time since I've been here, I remember to say 'y usted' and the elder I was passing by. So he doesn't say anything and then I hear him yell 'it's "y tu"' And I just yelled back to him 'You don't know me! It's y usted!' But it was really funny. Guess you had to be there.
Well, my time is winding down and we've got a devotional to go to. But I love you all. I'm so excited to be here and to do this work! It's such a great work and I wish more people would take advantage of the great opportunity that we as members have to be missionaries. It's so important to be a member missionary and have referrals because it's from every 2 referrals, 1 of them gets baptized. Those are the statistics. And don't we all want our brothers and sisters to know of this gospel and have everlasting happiness that only our Heavenly Father can bring? I SURE DO! But, I know this gospel is true with all my heart and I'm so excited to give my all to Heavenly Father. He sure does love us so much and blesses our lives every single day! I love this church and my full time calling as a missionary of the Lord. I love you all and I can't wait to hear from you soon!!!! :-D is such a great tool to use! Yo se que Jose Smith fue un profeta y Thomas S. Monson es un profeta, hoy. Yo se que el Libro de Mormon es verdadero! En el nombre de Jesucristo, Amen.
Hermana Pleshek

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

First Letter from MTC

Hola Madre,
Yo necessito...haha. I need the dates of when I got my Hep A shots. If you don't send those, I'll have to pay $59.00 for one and I would need two. Personally, I am NOT down with paying $120 for shots. She never had Hep A shots so she's out of luck there.

Things are going great here! I'm loving it! Even though it is the 2nd day. My comps are sweet! I'm in a trio--it's way cool. My comp, Hermana Christensen is from Highland and Hermana Pechin is from Orem. Both awesome! My district is cool too. Funny, funny Elders. My Spanish is coming along great! I can hear my testimony in Spanish and a lot is coming back to me.

Despite the crazy rules here, things are great! I've only got lost a couple times! :) We had newe missionary orientation yesterday and the whole MTC presidency talked to us! Awesome! Actually Elizabeth Smart went in the same day as me! And Bradley Duncan too.

I've felt the Spirit here so strong! We had some mock teaching experiences as a group of new missionaries and it was so cool. Also, while I was bearing my testimony in Spanish, I felt it so strong. I love this place. They said most likely we will have our P-days on Thursday.

Well, I've go to finish this becasue class will start soon and I've got to get this out.

Sammi bears her testimony in Spanish and I can only tell you that she knows Jesus Christ lives. Joseph Smith was a prophet and Thomas S. Monson is a prophet today. She says the Book of Mormon is true and translated through Joseph Smith. It is exactly what I, as her mom was hoping to hear.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

MTC address

Here is the address to write to Sammi at the MTC.

Samantha Sue Pleshek

MTC Mailbox # 349

WA-KENN 0111

2005 N 900 E

Provo, UT 84604-1793

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Christlike Attritbutes

I just wanted to post my talk - sheerly for my own personal journaling stuff that will be happening on here. It's on chapter 6 of Preach My Gospel and if you want to read it, that's fine. There are things in there that I talked about that weren't written down, but here's the general idea.

I got asked to talk on chapter 6 of Preach My Gospel which is all about developing Christlike attributes. As I’ve been studying this chapter, three things have stuck out in my mind. The first thing is that Christlike attributes are gifts from God. And in order to receive them, we must use our agency wisely. We have to:
1. Ask Heavenly Father to help us develop these attributes
2. Recognize our weaknesses
3. Be willing and anxious to improve ourselves
The second thought that impressed me is that because of the Restoration, we can become like Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. And the third is that who we are is as important as what we do. That’s the one point that hit me the most. Who we are is as important as what we do. Actions speak louder that words and so I asked myself if I was showing my co-workers, my family, the Young Women in my ward that I help teach, and everyone around me that I have these attributes. Preach My Gospel mentions 10 attributes of Christ that are important. They are faith, hope, charity, love, virtue, knowledge, patience, humility, diligence, and obedience. I just want to touch on a few of these attributes today that have given me experience in my life.
The minute I got this assignment, I thought of Bishop Burton’s talk “Let Virtue Garnish Your Thoughts” from the Sunday morning session of this last General Conference. He mentioned many “-ity” words that to me are most definitely Christlike characteristics. He says: “Virtuous traits form the foundation of a Christian life and are the outward manifestation of the inner man. The spelling in English of many individual virtues concludes with the letters ity: integrity, humility, charity, spirituality, accountability, civility, fidelity, and the list goes on and on. Relying on literary license, I refer to the virtues ending in ity as the “ity” virtues. “Ity” is a suffix that means quality, state, or degree of being.” Preach My Gospel says that “virtuous people are clean and pure spiritually. They live worthy of a temple recommend.” When I was 9, my parents got me this – I guess we’ll call it my mini temple recommend. It’s got the Salt Lake City temple on it and in the corner it says “Begin the Journey”. I’m not sure where this came from and I’m sure I only got it because of the pretty picture on the front. On the back it says: I, the undersigned, commit to:
-Uphold the Word of Wisdom at all times
-Keep myself morally clean and chaste
-Be honest with others and myself
-Provide frequent service to those in need
-Willingly obey the law of tithing
-Attend my church meetings and activities
-Strive to uphold all other commandments of God
-Gain forgiveness often by repentance through the Atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ
I signed this card as a future recommend holder and my mom signed as the witness. Now, I didn’t carry this mini temple recommend around with me. It got lost and found time after time in my room. I found it again the night after I had gotten my assignment to talk. I didn’t even know I still had it. And even though I hadn’t thought of it when I was 9, this future recommend was an example of virtue as well as the current temple recommend I carry with me today.
Other Christlike attributes that have impacted my life are those of charity and love. Moroni 7:47 says: “But charity is the pure love of Christ, and it endureth forever; and whoso is found possessed of it at the last day, it shall be well with him.” Matthew 22:36-39 states “Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.” Charity and love go hand and hand. Jesus demonstrates that as He washes the disciples feet in John chapter 13. I was only a newborn when I had my first experience with love and charity. A lady in my ward had had a miscarriage shortly after I was born. My mom went over to her house to take her a meal and she left me in the car, not knowing if a baby would be exactly what she would want to see. After bringing the meal in, the woman asked where I was. My mom told her that I was out in the car and she was asked to bring me in. After holding me for an hours and hours, she handed me back to my mom and said that was exactly what she needed. To this day, this woman and I share a very special bond and friendship. I’ve learned from her example charity and love. I’ve learned how to be a better person and the value of someone. I’ve learned the pure love of Christ through her. She has and always will have a special place in my heart.

One of my favorite stories in the whole Book of Mormon is about Helaman and the Strippling Warriors. The 2000 young men that were part of Helaman’s army were so obedient that it saved their lives when they went to battle. Not only were they obedient to what they had been taught by their mothers, but by what their captain and Heavenly Father directed. I’ve learned obedience is a necessary aspect to receiving personal revelation. When I was in Idaho in January, I was all signed up for school. I had my classes set and was hoping my financial aid would come through for me. As I was checking into my apartment, my cousins came up with the great idea that instead of living in Rexburg, I should take a break from school, move to Idaho Falls to work and save up money. I thought that I wasn’t going to get my financial aid, so this sounded like a pretty good idea to me – especially since I wasn’t sure what I wanted to go to school for. I had to decide fast since I had a certain time period to back out of my contract. My cousin and I had hammered out all the details and so I called my parents to get an opinion. My mom told me that I could do what I want, but that I should ultimately pray and fast that Sunday to see what was right. I had every intention of moving to Idaho Falls until that Sunday. I felt that I wouldn’t spiritually grow in Idaho Falls and that I should stay in Rexburg. I ended up staying and I’m glad I did because it was in Rexburg where I first got the idea and impression that I wanted to go on a mission.
My last and final attribute I want to talk about is knowledge. We’re always told that knowledge is the only thing we get to take with us into the next life. And not just knowledge of the scriptures and the gospel, but secular knowledge. The things we learn at home and in school. I learned at home that even when Dad does it, you should not stick your fingers in the blender because they will get cut and bleed. A lot. I learned that when I was about 8 or 9. I learned that Mom will find out when you and your sister color your little brother. I also learned Mom’s are tricky and will find out the things the things you do when you know that she wouldn’t like it or probably wouldn’t approve of. And thanks to Elder Neil Anderson’s talk in the October 2008 Conference, I learned that I know enough. I know enough to be a missionary and thanks to the MTC, I’ll be able to learn even more! Elder Anderson talks about when he was a young guy and was embarking on his mission adventure. He says: “I felt very inadequate and unprepared. I remember praying, “Heavenly Father, how can I serve a mission when I know so little?” I believed in the Church, but I felt my spiritual knowledge was very limited. As I prayed, the feeling came: “You don’t know everything, but you know enough!” That reassurance gave me the courage to take the next step into the mission field.” There have been times during the last month where I’ve felt like Elder Anderson – inadequate and unprepared. I’ve felt discouraged and sadness, but the Lord knows exactly how I feel and what I need. He’s sent those people into my life to help me overcome those feelings that Satan would have me feel. He’s inspired my friends to tell me things that I need to hear. He’s sent the Spirit to comfort me. And since fear and faith cannot co-exist together, it’s the faith I have in my Father in Heaven that got me through those trials and will get my through my future trials.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


This week has been full of lasts for me. I just worked my last day at the Fiber and tomorrow is my last day at Old Navy. And as I'm going through all these lasts, I can't help but think about how I'm spending my 'last days'. I'm not doing anything too spectacular. Monday, I got a flu shot and went and saw my cousin Lauren and their new cat, Ike. I also went and watched Andrew play basketball. Tuesday I worked, took a nap, watched 2 hours of the Tyra show, and watched the Biggest Loser. I also fell asleep talking to Matt. Today, I worked at the Fiber, spent some time with my niece and nephew and watched ANTM with my sister. I work tomorrow and get my swine flu shot on Friday. I'm swimming with my family on Saturday and going on a date with Clare. I'm sure that most of the other time I spend this week will just be like any other week at home. 18 months is a long time, but I'm not dying by any means, so I guess right now, it isn't a goodbye. It's a see ya later. I'm excited for this new, hard, crazy experience I have ahead of me. I'm scared, yes. But I know this is something I can do. And I have every confidence that I'll be blessed extremely by this service. I guess at this point I'm concerned with what I'm going to pack, what the last movie I'm going to watch at home will be, and how on earth am I going to give up my phone?!

Friday, October 30, 2009

My Missionaries.

I had the opportunity today to attend a special Zone Conference/Mission tour. Elder Bruce C. Hafen was there to speak to the Appleton/Green Bay/Wausau zones. And it was absolutely fantastic and had me thinking about all the missionaries in my life that have influenced me. Whether it was in the past 12 hours or the past 21 years, each one of these missionaries and many more have helped me.
Here's my dad. My first missionary influence. Because of him and his missionary experiences, (can't forget his song, either) I learned service. I've always been exposed to having 'missionary moments' and things like that with him. Not only was my dad a missionary then, but he's been a missionary now and has been my whole life. He's always spreading the gospel wherever he goes. Whether he's on the phone with a Customer Service rep from Dell, or someone he'll meet on an airplane, he's been a great example.a> Dawna Jensen. She was a sister missionary in my area for a long time. Probably longer than she wanted, but I was grateful for her. She was such a great influence for me at my young age of 13. I couldn't have asked for a better friend than her. She was always so willing to help me in whatever I was doing. She showed me how AWESOME sister missionaries are and was the perfect example for me. I can't stress how great she was! The impression she instilled in my mind is just not expressable. She's my favorite and THEE best sister missionary ever!
Jenny McGraw. What can I say? This woman is full of pure joy and selflessness. She's just so happy and is more than willing to serve. I love reading her letters and seeing her strength. She's taught me a lot about being adequate and relying on the Lord. The people of England are certainly blessed to have her there with them for 18 months.
Elder Wilkins and Elder Yates were the missionaries in my area after I got home after my first year of college. Because of my nutso track, I didn't have a lot of friends and they became some of my best. They also were just a fantastic companionship to watch. They gave so much service and had a great knowledge of the gospel. Their testimonies were absolutely amazing, in addition to their incredible understandment of the Atonement.
Elder Stoker and Elder Valentine. Yes, that lady in the picture isn't Elder Valentine, but I didn't have one of him. Haha. But these two Elders played a part in my preparations for a mission. They were there when I opened my mission call and even though they were late, I refused to open it unless they were there. They challanged me each week with new studies and I'd have to report to them. They taught me so much about accepting others and helping each other through difficult situations.
My cousin Alex. He was the first person that I ever had to send out on a mission. And even though we're cousins, I was definitely emotionally attached to him. He was my best friend. And his example to serve a mission was so great. And even though I miss him like crazy, I've just seen the immense growing that he's done in California. It's so impressive how much he's changed. For the better, of course. I just am so proud of him!
Ryan Corob. Ryan and I met in college through my cousin Lauren. And Ryan and I haven't even known each other for a year, but he's affected me more than I ever expected. Ryan just left the MTC and is serving in Slovenia. He, along with Jenny, just have showed me how important relying on the Lord is. Ryan has such great endurance even though things are hard for him. He isn't giving up. He's still determined to be a great missionary.
The Barretts. I cannot say enough great things about these wonderful, amazing people. They truly are inspired and have been called of God. I know that my life has been blessed by having them here. My life has been changed because of them. I will never be the same because of them. What great missionaries these people are! I absolutely love them and will forever cherish their wise counsel and wisdom that they've provided me with. Oh yes, and Todd's great too! :-)
Elder Bruce C. Hafen. Today at the Zone Conference, he taught me so many new principles that I'd never thought of before. Not only about missionary work and the outlook on that, but about the Atonement and the Restoration. I know some people think he's out of touch and doesn't know what he's talking about, but they are sorely mistaken. This man has EVERY idea and knows what he's talking about. The spirit he brings is unmistakeable. He's truly been called of God to bless the our lives.

Monday, October 26, 2009

The Stages of Feelings.

Well, it's getting down to the wire now. On Wednesday, it'll be 3 weeks til I report to the MTC. And I can't begin to describe the feelings I'm having. I'm feeling so many different feelings that I never thought I'd have. This whole process for me has just been a rollercoaster of feelings.
I remember back on July 16th when I decided that I was going to go on a mission. That experience with President Barrett was and is such a sacred one. Those feelings of peace and comfort from my Heavenly Father were so overwhelming. I'd never felt like that before. I remember thinking that I wanted to be on a mission that instant after I'd talked to President Barrett. What an inspired man he is. My life is only blessed to have him be such an influential part of my young adult life.
After my papers were submitted on August 2nd, it seemed so surreal to me that this was actually happening. I couldn't believe it - it just didn't seem real. Especially after my interview with my dad. Once again, those feelings of a loving Heavenly Father came swirling back. And at that instant, I knew once again that this was the right thing for me at this point in my life. I was so ready to go conquer the world. To go teach the the people of the world that the restored gospel is on the earth again. To bless my spirit brothers and sisters with the happiness and joy the gospel brings.
When that call was opened on August 16 - just one short month after my decision was made to serve a mission - it was all real to me. I remember holding that call, my hands just shaking. I was holding a letter from the Prophet who had received revelation from God to let me go serve HIS children. He's putting his faith and trust in me to help His children. Woah. What a great responsibility that is. The realization as I was opening that big, white envelope was that this was it. There was no turning back. I was going to do this. I was going to leave my family for 18 months to serve the Lord faithfully. That's when I started to get nervous.
The months have just ticked by and I've been trying to prepare for this great adventure ahead of me. I've heard that those are the hardest months between opening the call and reporting. I was lucky it is just a mere 3 months. Any longer I'm afraid would be too long for me. The hardest thing for me hasn't been the temptations or anything like that. It's been the feelings of inadequacy. The feelings that I'm not prepared enough. I don't know enough about the gospel. Or scriptures. My amazing Father in Heaven knows just what I need though. He inspires my missionaries what they need to write to me in letters. He knows that I needed to read Neil L. Anderson's talk 'You Know Enough'.
And now as I'm under a month, I've just been sheer nerves and excitement. Nervous because I want to do fantastic and I want to learn all I can and be fluent in Spanish. I want to learn everything possible at the MTC and learn it perfect to a t. I'm so excited to embark on this new adventure in my life.
I've just seen a girl that I was in the Youth Program with just come back from her mission to Arizona. I just read a blog entry from Dawna [a sister missionary that served in Wisconsin when I was in jr. high] talking about the end of her mission. And it just makes me sad. Knowing that I'm going to have to leave those amazing people I will grow to love. Those people that were my family for 18 months of my life.
But, despite all the feelings, I'm just taking it day by day and getting more and more excited as the days go by. I'm ready to go and do!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

One Month.

And counting! Exactly one month from today, I will be reporting to the MTC. I can hardly believe it and as I'm getting more and more excited as the days go by, I'm also getting more nervous, too. Oy vey.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Opening the Call...

Last evening I opened my call in front of a bunch of my family and friends. So, here's a video of me actually opening my mission call. [Feel free to laugh at the fact that I couldn't even say the name of my mission. That's what happens when you don't read it before you start trying to say it.]

It meant a whole lot to me that my friends and family came to support me.
My family.
The Gourleys.
Lauren Hoffman.
Sara Oba.
Jodi Taylor.
Jenni Hoffman.
Ram, Ann, and Destinee Hoffman.
The Haffners.
Candi McGregor.
Nicole and Sam Fuller.
Christi Jefferson.
Breanne Davis.
Alex Lindner.
Amy Jensen.
Pat and Diane's family.
Elder Stoker and Elder Valentine.
Rex and Lanell Thorne.
Tracy Thorne.
Jeff and Kristin Maki.
Danielle Redding.
Megan Bradford [via messanger].
Brett Griffiths [via messanger].
The Likes family [via phone].
Stefanie Hoffman [via phone].

I'm so sorry if I forgot anyone. It's hard trying to remember all those people! I still love you!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

It's Here!

I've always thought that I've had bad timing. With everything. School, boys, etc. And this Thursday proved to be no exception. My family and I were going down to Nauvoo because my first roommate was getting married and I wanted to go. Having gotten my endowments taken out in St. Paul on Wednesday, I was actually able to go in. But anyways, we left for Nauvoo at 5 a.m. Thursday morning. Clare and the kids spent the night and in the morning, went to get the mail. And do you know what came? A big, white envelope addressed to Sister Samantha Sue Pleshek. She called me and told me and I absolutely freaked out! I wanted to turn around immediately and go open it. I even made her get on the webcam and show me the envelope that I've been waiting so long to have.

So, I've been carrying the call around with me all day since I've gotten home this evening. And it still remains unopen. I'm opening it tomorrow at 4:30, right before the YSA fireside at our house. I'm beyond exciting and the envelope will probably sleep with me in my bed tonight. Sorry for all of those who have been waiting to're just going to have to wait a little bit longer. And trust me, it can't be killing you as much as it's killing me.

Here it is!

Me in front of the first MTC in Nauvoo

Sunday, August 2, 2009

They're In!

Dad submitted my papers to Salt Lake Headquarters this evening. I should be getting my call sometime in the next few weeks! I'm pumped! I'm hoping that I'll have my call by the time I go to Tamara's wedding. I want to go through the temple in Nauvoo, so I hope I have it by then. But anyways, I couldn't be more excited to take the next step in my life.
All that's left now is to get my call.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Paper work is done!

I had my physical today for my papers and I passed! I have to go in on Friday to get my tuberculosis test checked out, but other than that, everything went fantastic! I was in and out. And I even did good while I got my blood taken.

Next I have my interviews with Bishop and Dad. The hardest part. But, I am excited because I get to turn in my papers in 13 days! Oh yay!