Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Happy Halloween!!!

Hello my family! 

I loved your pumpkins. They are so cute! :) All of them are very original and creative! I am emailing way late today because this morning I had to go to the dentist....:( I am grateful I have them but at the same time...the news they always tell me seems to not be so great! I have to get another root canal on my other front tooth. Dr. Lecheminant told me that the other tooth that he did seems to be healing well but that my other one isn't looking so hot. It hasn't been feeling super hot either, so that explains why. He said he believes the nerve is totally dead. He is going to take care of it next Monday. He said he would just use the rest of what is on my insurance for the year and then they would cover the rest. He is so nice. 

A busy week is what we had and what we have ahead. It is time again for zone meeting. I thought we just barely had it. A few great things happened this week. We had zone meeting and it was great! I love all the things I learn. I got to see sister chapel. She is so neat! I love her a lot. She gives good mom hugs too. I told her that we had to take a picture just in case we weren't able to take one later. You can see my new shoes in it too! Heavenly Father totally loves me because of His awesomeness in finding those shoes! :)

We went to the S. Family's home. I taught the girls piano and then after we were talking to Hermana Aurora and her husband Vladamir. They are such a wonderful family! We were asking him about his feelings about the church and God. He expressed some things and at the end we bore our testimonies and they said that we could begin teaching them the lessons and that we could continue coming. I am really excited. 

We finally got back in with Timeteo and Rosa. He has read and studied a lot. He has some super intense and in depth questions. I have learned a lot as I have studied for him and rosa these last few days. I can imagine the awesome Sunday school teacher he will be once he converts! :) 

A really awesome experience happened to us while we were on exchanges. Hermana Draper was here visiting with me and we had only one appointment that was scheduled the whole day. We had a  lot of time to make lots of great contacts. It was a great day and we found some new investigators and new potentials to teach but we had plans to go visit this other family and I felt reminded of a thought i had received the night before. We went over to visit the Cantu Family. Erma was leaving right as we were walking up. She invited us to come in. We talked with her and then Eli came in. He is 16 and so sweet! We were just visiting with them and then we shared the message. Erma opened up a ton to us and she told us of a bunch of things she felt she was struggling with. Eli went to say something and then stopped. I asked him what he was going to say and then he opened up and began talking to us. It was so special. We committed them to reading and praying. Eli was very determined and said..Yes, I promise I'll read every day. When we were leaving they were really happy that we came. I felt so bad because I gave Erma a big hug and then Eli with arms wide open comes to hug me and I just blurt out..."AHHH I can't hug you!" :D He just looked at me really confused with his arms still out, I said "you are a boy and a big boy. I can't hug boys. I know you are little and like my brother but you are too big." I felt so awkward. I mean I am already awkward as it is and then dump on that 14+ months of missionary awkwardness! haha :) I think i might have made him feel bad but I told him I loved him and that when I came back to houston I would give him a hug! haha It always happens to me. I just get all weird when things like that happen and it is just funny afterward. It was a special little miracle that they opened up to us and then said they would read! Love them.

Well, I know it has been another week but I still love my little life here in Houston Texas. I still love being called "misionera" and "hermanita". I still love the hyspanic culture and all the people i am teaching. I still love tacos, arroz y frijolitos. I still love the scriptures and the gospel more than ever. I still love the mission and all the things I am learning. I still love PB & Js. But most of all I STILL LOVE YOU ALL TONS! :) and I still miss you as well.

Keep doing what you know to be right and true. Do things that will make you happy and are the most important in the eternal perspective. Keep reading the scriptures. In the meantime, i will keep being me in Houston and finding the tens of thousands and helping them accept this wonderful gospel. 

Remember who you are and to whom you belong to.

<3 <3 <3 Hermana Rife <3 <3 <3

Ps. Thanks so much for sending those shirts.  You are sooo sweet! Best. Ever. Sorry for not being specific. Love you all. have a great week!

"Cute Sister Chapel" and Kynsie
Not sure who this wonderful lady is in the mission but Kynsie tells us that she HAD to get a picture with her at this zone conference ...just in case she didn't have another chance to get one with her.  (That must mean she is coming home soon and that means I am getting super excited!  :D )   Kynsie also added that she gives good Mom hugs!!! 

Monday, October 21, 2013

A little news from your missionary

Hello my dear family!

Thank you for your emails! It was great to hear what you have been up to. Thanks for sending me all those photos too! Steinia and Alex & Justin and his wife, they looked so cute! 

Thank you so much for the package! I loved it! :) Mom you know me way too well with all the treats. I think you can read my mind or something. I can finally start having PB and J's again. I have been buying honey and spreading out my jam so that it lasts me longer. I think i might be good for the rest of my mission! I am so excited! :D Thanks for sending it. ***side note*** Thanks for sending the tanks too. I actually was hoping for a shirt because a few of my shirts are a little see through and the tank won't cover. So I might send them home or bring them home with me. thank you though. I just don't want to open them because I won't use them. Maybe Kendra will use them.) 

It was fun to see Brother Leseberg and Elizabeth. He called me by my name and it felt so foreign to me. 

This week has been good. It has been busier than normal but it is great.  We have had about 6 or 7 set citas every day. In many ways it is wonderful because we are teaching a lot but i feel like we are running all over the place at times. It is better to have a good balance so that Satan doesn't get us going so fast that we miss opportunities to serve and help others along with finding the truly prepared people. 

Olivia is a l.a. in our ward, she is such a beautiful woman! I love her a ton. We have been visiting with her since I came to bear creek. We are teaching her brother JR as of last week. He has such a tender heart. Both of them have gone through a lot in their life but they are such strong people. Last week, we talked to Jr and we ended up teaching him a few times. we felt strong to teach him the word of wisdom and he broke all his cigs in half and threw them away. He has been going strong ever since. He hasn't picked one up even though he has wanted too. Yesterday, He and Olivia came to church. It was great to have them there. I feel like Jr has such a humble heart and that he wants to do what is right and is willing to make the needed changes in his life to get there. 

I am having the chance to play for the primary program and in sacrament more. It is nice. I am also teaching a part member family's children lessons. I feel like the fathers heart is being softened. They are a super solid family and I feel like we have a few part member families who are going to be accepting the gospel soon. It is so wonderful! 

This week we had the chance to go to the temple. Love it. We are going to be going hopefully this weekend as well with Ana and maybe carlos and the youth to do baptisms. It will be so awesome to go. I am excited for them! 

I am so grateful for the experiences that I am having and for all the things I am learning. I know that Heavenly Father loves each of us and that He is involved in the details of our lives. My dear friend and former companion, told me this today... <"No experience or trial goes unwasted" In Doctrine and Covenants it mentions when The Lord told Joseph smith that all he was going through at that time, afflictions and sufferings would be to give him experience and that it would be for thy(his) gain.>

It really is true. Sometimes in our life, we don't understand why things are happening but we have to learn and remember to just rely on the Lord, but everything we have in Him and we will come out stronger from it. We have to remember to see things or attempt to see them from His perspective and what there is in store for us. :)

I love you all a lot! I hope you are still reading and praying and doing great things. Have an amazing week! I'll be here off finding the tens of thousands! Remember who you are and to whom you belong too.

Love, Hermana Rife

pictures just old shoes and me emailing! temple and american flag at the temple. I love america. Hermana hill doesn't. my goal...convert her into a prideful american!  whooo hoo. :D 

I will be probably be spending a little bit of money on my card today. I need to buy some new black flats. I haven't had any since july and the pair that i have been wearing since last year is getting pretty beat up. I just thought I would let you know so that you would know. I also bought another journal from the temple because I am almost done with my other one. It was 15 dollars. 

Kynsie and her old worn out shoes!  :)

Kynsie emailing!  

On exchanges with Hermana Anderson 
" We ate corn on a stick with all the chili and delicious things there could be."
"It doesn't get more Hispanic than that!!!  It was delish!"  :D

Beautiful Houston Temple
"This week we had the chance to go to the temple.  Love it."

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

The Mission Life is a Beautiful Life

Hello Family! Thank you for your email and for the special fathers blessing. I haven't read it yet because I am sure that I will begin to cry and so I think it is just better if I read it later. 

Some days I am just filled with a joy that I can't express for the beautiful blessings I am receiving on my mission. I can't express what is happening here. It is something that is so personal to every missionary. A mission changes people in different ways and it really brings you to understand why we are here on this earth and what we need to do to find joy. I know it sounds so cliche but i don't know how to express it differently. 

I was thinking about what you said about changes. It is so true, before the mission i don't think I handled change very well. I am not saying that I am pro, but something happened this transfer. I always get a little nervous. It wasn't so much that I was scared but just nervous of the unknown. One day I was thinking about it a bit and I felt a thought come into my head and it just made sense. "Why are you nervous, it always works out to be exactly what you need" It is very true. The principle of Proverbs 3:5-6 became very real to me. "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths." We don't need to fear anything about the future because we need to realize that if we are living worthy lives, Heavenly Father will direct our paths. He knows exactly what we need and what will happen. I look forward to having changes because just like you said...it is a time when you can re-evaluate and start fresh. I think that is why there is so much opportunity for growing because there are lots of moments of change. 

I was finishing my email and I forgot that I didn't even tell you about my new companion. Her name is Hermana Hill and she is from farmington utah but has lived a lot of different places. I am training her. She is super super sweet. I like her a lot! I am learning a lot from her like always. I am grateful for this chance to train because it keeps us really busy. Hopefully she will do okay jumping into doing all of these exchanges as well as adjusting to the mission. 

Carlos: Yesterday, Carlos received the priesthood. He is now ordained as a priest. We went and visited him last night and he expressed his thoughts about how he feels. He is so happy and feels many blessings of the gospel. He is so pure. Hermana Knappen and I felt that we should invite him to pray to see if he should serve a mission. Last night Hermana Hill and I asked him if he had ever thought about it. He expressed with a big smile, that yes, and that He would love to be a missionary. It was a beautiful moment as we felt the spirit together and asked him if he would begin praying about it. He expressed his desires to share the gospel with his family as he returns home in a month. We ended with a prayer and as we prayed, I asked Heavenly Father to prepare his family to receive the gospel. I could just see in my mind and feel the spirit and watching carlos teaching his family and them all listening. I love that families can be together and that they are coming together in this gospel.

Stephanie: Do you remember stephanie long? The sister who referred herself? Well we finally got in with her again. We talked with her about what she had been reading in the book of mormon and the other questions she had. She asked about if we had a study guide to help her understand the book of mormon better or what our suggestions were for learning we told her that she should listen to the missionaries. She was like okay. When can you come over. We are finally going to be able to get the sisters in. She is so special and going to get baptized. I think people are giving her a bit of slack for what she is studying but she explained to us that if you want to know the truth you have to go to the source and she felt strongly that this is what Heavenly Father wants for her. I love her! 

English as my 2nd language: While I didn't have a companion. Hermana Cardona-Paul was my companion. She is an english sister but speaks some spanish. We were together until our new companions came. We taught a few people in english. We went to contact a referral but they weren't home. We decided to do "five a clock rounds" we knock the five houses surrounding the referral house to see if anyone else is prepared. The first house let us in. We began teaching Brittney, Brandon and Deelante. We taught the Restoration and man...it was a powerful lesson. We spoke about the power that Jesus Christ has in our lives and how because of Him we have hope and motivation to live on in this life. At the end of a wonderful lesson, they accepted another appointment and asked if they could add us on facebook. haha  :D but also asked a bit more about missionary work. Deeante told me..so you said you speak spanish too? i said yes. He said but you are american? I told him yes. He continued to tell me. "For the first 8 minutes of the lesson i was just watching you thinking...she is american...why did she speak spanish first? You have a accent in english and I thought that Spanish was your first language.." I was thinking GREAT! I know I can't pray in english and I stumble over lots of my words and kind of speak weird but I didn't think it was that bad! haha :) it was a funny story.

As for the package...I could really use some more jam. haha :D I think why the last one didn't make it was because it was in a carry on. If it isn't in a carry on. I don't think they will take it. They just took the other one because it wasn't in the suit case. They wouldn't take it if it was in a suitcase because shampoo bottles have more than 8 oz. :D soooo maybe you can ask her if she is going to put it in her carry on or suitcase? :) Really the only thing I have been trying to look for is a white undershirt. They don't really have shade shirts or anything like that her. I don't know if you could find one that is cheap. If not it is okay but I could use a white shade shirt. Probably size med. I appreciate you doing all that you do for me! I am doing really good though. 

I love you all so much. I am thankful for your love and concern and prayers. You are the BeST! seriously. Take care and I'll talk to you soon. Sorry that I didn't send letters last week. I wrote them but i didn't quite get around to getting them in the mail box. It was a busy week.

Off finding the tens of thousands! Remember who you are and to whom you belong to. 
Hermana Rife

Hermana Knappen and Kynsie at Tutti Frutti on their last day together.

Kynsie's new companion, Hermana Hill 

Casper and Kynsie
"Halloween...I love you!"
"I thought he was cute so I took a picture with him."

Monday, October 7, 2013

Fall is in the Air...

Hello Family! I hope all is well! I don't have much time today soo i am sorry that this is going to be short. We have a bunch of stuff to do today and so I am on a tight schedule. I appreciate the time you took to write me! :) 

Highlights of the Week:

Conference: Oh my goodness. I loved conference soooo much! It was the best thing ever. When it was over I was super pumped to go out and do missionary work. I love the gospel. It is so inspiring. Anyone who listens to the messages will gain a testimony of the importance of living prophets and apostles, as well as furthered revelation. I know that those men and women are called of God to give us the revelation and guidance that we need in our lives. Do you have your "game plan" I know there are lots of mormons in utah but there are people that we need to be strengthening and uplifting. 

Last night we got some surprising news. This week is transfers but we received calls last night instead of tuesday night. Hermana Knappen is going to be transferred. I will be receiving a new companion tomorrow morning. I don't know if I will be training or what will be going on. Sooo until next week. I will miss Hermana Knappen but Heavenly Father knows what He needs done.

This week, I have learned a lot about the atonement. I am so grateful for the Atonement of Jesus Christ and for the power that it has to lift me and change me and help me repent. I also am grateful for the plan of salvation and for the perfect plan of God. He has prepared the way. We have to do all in our power to obey so that we can live worthily of the spirit and have His guidance to direct our paths for good. 

We are seeing progression in our dear friends whom we are teaching. We are trying to help them understand the importance of this message. We are trying to help them understand the purpose of this life and realize that the decisions they make will effect their future. Just like we heard so many times yesterday and saturday. Eugenio, Elisa, and Alfonzo came to conference yesterday. They liked it. They have some great questions. They will be going back to Mexico at the end of this month. We are praying for a miracle but we are also well aware that it is not our timing. If it does by chance happen to be our timing then that will be a wonderful blessing. 

Honestly about Hawaii....I have no idea what I am going to for sure do for school or work. I am kind of in a denial/don't want to think about it stage. From what I feel. I think I am going to start school in the fall. Or maybe summer semester. I don't think it will be until fall. I also am not sure what I will be doing for work. I feel like June will work out fine for me. I can just tell whoever I will be working for that I will need time off when I interview for the job. I am not sure what I will be doing. Sorry I am not much help. 

Here is a few pictures. One with the elders in our ward! elder stanford is leaving. His grandparents live in our ward i believe. That is what he told me. They wrote him and told him. 

That thing I ate is from honduras and is called a leeche. Hermana Alcantara told us that it is the fruit from the tree in lehi's dream. :) 

I love you a lot. Remember who you are and to whom you belong to. Off finding the tens of thousands

Love hermana rife

Hermana Rife and Hermana Knappen
(Kynsie didn't tell us who these other people are...I'm assuming perhaps a family they are working with.)

Something she ate called a Leeche from Honduras

She said that Hermana Alcantara told them that it is the fruit from the tree in Lehi's dream!  :)

"The Elders in our ward!"  

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Adios Septiembre y Hola Octubre (Email from Monday, Sept. 30, 2013)

Hola mi familia bella,

como estan? Que Tal si escribo una carta en espanol? Como se siente sobre eso? Espero que esta bien porque voy a hacer lo...:)

It sounds like your week flew just like mine. I am glad you are all staying involved in good activities.  It makes me happy to hear. I can't believe that mila is so big like that. I was like who is that little girl? I was really looking at her and then i saw kinley and read your letter and realized that it had to be mila. I don't think i am even going to recognize her. wow. I got kylee's letter. I loved it thank you! I also FINALLY heard from Coulton. Glad he isn't dead. haha :) It was fun to hear from him. I don't think getting letters will ever get old. its just the best every time! :)  

Alicia: I LOVE her. She is so great. We have had a few really good lessons with her. We were talking to her and she was explaining to us why she didn't want to get close to a church because she felt that they were impure. We had already taught her the restoration and so I was not sure if she got it. We reviewed it a little again. She was like....OHHH so when I am chatting with Heavenly Father I need to ask him about this one? She told us okay. I'll do it. She reads the book of mormon and asks all the questions she has. I love teaching her because we can be straight up with her. We can tell her it exactly how it is and she really just wants to know everything she can. She is so great. She is planning on coming to general conference with us this next week. 

EEA: Well we had another good lesson with them and then they came to church this week. They loved church. Eugenio didn't come but Elisa and Alfonzo did. Hopefully we can keep helping them. Hno Estrada came with us because he used to play in a band and he was a member. I think it is just little by little with them. Even though it is super working our patience sometimes. :D It will happen. we shall keep our faith! They are progressing and they love it but it is just slow. Thanks for the D&C 39 dad. I really liked it. We are going to use some of the principles found in that section for one of the lessons.

We are still working on finding more people to teach. We have a few really great potentials that we have citas with this week! There are prepared people. We have had many experiences when we have felt it and when the people we are talking to are looking for the gospel. One lady that is coming to church every week her name is Marta. She is so cute! The english sisters are teaching her but she is coming to our ward because it works better for her schedule. She does speak spanish too. She told us how she has felt a lot of doors being opened as she has been coming. She said that she feels God working in her life and she feels that her path is aligning with his. She never misses and she is super full of great questions and going to listen to conference this next week. We love her!

The weird meat: Well. I have eaten some weird stuff on my mission. We ate at this members house this week and Hermana Knappen and I thought we might die. :D I have no idea what we ate but it looked nasty and it was some type of beef but who knows what part of the cow it was. :D It was in like this ball and was black and all chunky. it was sitting in a bowl of beans with rice. Hermana Knappen's looked like all these Octupus legs but the same color and all goopey. I just looked at her and said...Don't ask what it is. :D. Better to not know until after. It was interesting going down but it was funny. Some of the things I eat. I can't imagine if i am still as picky as before. I know i am being strengthened in eating those things too...

The ants: Hermana Knappen HATES ants. We have always had these random ants coming from part of the carpet. We always make sure that we don't have food out but sometimes they just creep up. they are going to do some extermination project in our apartment but who knows when. They have been really bad this week. She had this cereal box and all of a sudden throughout the week I would hear the box slamming all over in the kitchen. she is in the kitchen jumping around like ahhhhh I hate ants. They are So gross. Saying all sorts of stuff. haha :D last night I was on the phone with Israel arranging something for this week and Hermana knappen all of a sudden is like AHHHHh and the Box came out. Israel is like laughing and says...What is going on over there? I hear all these sounds of smacking and hitting? I told him about the ants and he like like yelling NOOOOO NOOO LES MATAN! No, No don't kill them! haha :D He was like those poor little ants, they are helpless. It was so funny. We are getting ready to hang up and he says. Tell hermana knappen to not kill the poor little ants. haha :D She just got the vaccum and started to suck them up instead of giving them the smackdown! It is super funny. Maybe it is a "have to be there moment" but it is super funny. I love her. :D

This weekend for the conference I got to see a ton of people from Oakcrest. It was soo special! I loved it. Daniel, Tirsa, Chris, John and Princess all came. It was such a blessing to see them. I love that family! :) I got to see Christina, Hermana Crandall, the Cascos, all the Garcia/Calderon Family, Hermana Arredondo and many more. Oakcrest has a special place in my heart. I really enjoyed the conference. I loved how they talked about how important our covenants are and what it means to keep them. It is very true.

Well...I hope you all have a beautiful week! I love you all so much! I am praying for you. I hope all of your doctor's appointments go well. Be Healthy! Thank you for your love and support. It helps me so much. I know this is the Church of Jesus Christ. I know that The atonement is real and that we need to be working on feeling its cleansing, healing, and strengthening power in our lives daily. I know that through the Atonement we can overcome challenges and become the people that God wants us to be and the people that he knows we can be. 

Lots of Love! Remember who you are and to whom you belong too. Off finding the 10s of 1000s

<3 Hermana Rife

Hermana Knappen trying her skills at getting rid of the ants! 

The cereal box didn't do the best job sooo...

Out came the vacuum!!!

Hermana Knappen HATES Ants!!!

Kynsie on a train car
(I think on exchanges in Katy!)

With the Rodrigous family

Hermana Rife and Hermana Tanner

Three cute Hermanas!
Kynsie, Paola and Hermana Crandall