Thursday, February 27, 2014

onward and upward

We were on our way to an appointment and ended up arriving about 15 minutes early.  As we were driving into his neighborhood I started looking at the roofs of the houses and saw one with two satellites. It's not that we can't knock any door but it came to my head that we should look for satellites and so we did! (Two satellites generally indicates Spanish channels) We knocked the door a few times and nobody came down and we started to head back to the car and just go a few minutes early to the appointment... BUT I got the impression that we needed to keep knocking and stop being lazy so we headed towards the house next door. As we were walking down the dark road I suddenly turned and pointed to an empty looking old farm house on a scarce lot.. I said to my companion. "THAT HOUSE!" and the moment I said it, the light on the side of the house turned on! 
We swapped a couple of "Did you see that?" and "Yes!! Did YOU see that?" and then just stared at each other for a moment before we rushed to the front porch. We knocked and a woman came to the front door, we introduced ourselves.. trying to sound as less awkward and casual as we could and ended up just telling her what happened! As we did her eyes got pretty big, and we continued to share who we were and why we were there. Well we have a returning appointment with them tonight. Her, her husband, and their five children! Finding families..

Oh.. and we found another family of 5 the Alex Boye way.. we are meeting with them on Tuesday!! 

So things are going really well here in New Brunswick. It reminds me so much of my first two transfers in Morristown because I am back in a car and the areas look a lot a like! Things are going really well here and this mission is a blast! 

Onward and Upward!

Hermana Schwendiman 

Thursday, February 20, 2014


I had an experience last week that I want to share. 7 1/2 months ago I started to work in Union City. My first appointment there was with a part member/less active/investigator family. The Deleons. The dad served a mission, got married but were separated shortly after. He had three kids with another woman and they have been together for 17 years... but not married. One of their three boys was baptized about a year ago so we worked with this family as much as we could. They wanted to get married and the wife wanted to get baptized but he was still married to another woman.. That kind of creates a problem. So for 7 1/2 months we worked, prayed, fasted, worked some more, prayed some more so that they would be able to get the divorce papers in and that she would actually sign them (he had a huge fear that she would just rip them up and the time and money would just go down the drain).
Well Monday night, my last night in Union City we went over there so that I could say goodbye. As I started to walk out the door the father stopped me and said they had something for me. So the mom started digging through the shelf in the closet. She pulled out a little box out of a plastic bag and when she opened the box it took me a couple seconds to recognize what it was. There were three rings. An engagement ring and their wedding bands... He told me he didn't want me to leave thinking that everything he said was just talk. Then proceeded to tell me that he sent the divorce papers and that even if she denied it that they would be able to investigate and they would be able to obtain the divorce. That is the best gift I could have received on my last night in that area.. Especially when one of the boys added that "...then we will be able to be sealed in the temple!!" 
Well I am now in a new apartment and not feeling like I was on a rrrreeeaaalllyyyy long exchange for two weeks or couch grashing. Well lets be honest... I have a bed now!! So things are looking up! Other than the fact that we are moving apartments in another two weeks.. I have to admit.. I am getting pretty good at moving every three weeks!!
 I know that I am serving in a place called New Brunswick and it's more south of New Jersey (because we are zone 9 out of 12) but after transfer conference my super cool new companion and I jumped in the car and she drove us home. So... I have NO IDEA where I am in New Jersay... Time to pull out a map!
So the new comp. She is from Idaho! Which means... That I have YET to have a companion from "the factory." That's what they call Utah.. Her name is Hermana Haddock and is pretty awesome!! We are going to have the best transfer ever... (she's the first companion that is willing to run with me!!) and I will talk to you all on Monday!! Hope you all know that I know that the church is true, the book is blue.. and IM A MORMON!!
Hermana Schwendiman

Monday, February 10, 2014


What a week! 
So within a week, I had me trainee and trainer go home. Sister Millward has been in the hospital for the past two weeks and this past week, she finally escaped and ran home. By ran home I mean she was wheeled onto an airplane by her mom and they were flown home. They still don't know what she has or what's going on.. but it's a good thing she is home. AND Sister Acosta. She said that she basically hasn't left her moms hospital room since she got home... That girl. I guess I should be calling both of them by their first names now... That's gross.
We were going to go on exchanges this week with the Sister Training Leaders and they asked us what our goals were.. we sent them back a very simple answer.. "make it to week 6" Well long story short... exchanges were cancelled because one of the Sisters ended up in the hospital for the second time that week... Something fishy is going around right now and I don't like it!! Needless to say.. We made it to week 6!!! ha That's the first picture there.. our "WE MADE IT!" picture! So proud of our little triangle. 
Victor... Our little Cuban hope that we were holding onto.. Well we had an appointment with him this last week and it started out great. Keeping commitments, reading the scriptures.. doing great.. and that's about where the good things stopped. An eerie feeling came into the room and.. long story short, it turned creepy. Well after he wouldn't stop looking at our legs.. we scadaddled pronto!! Such a bummer. (Don't worry dad... nothing to worry about!!!) But it doesn't look like we'll be seeing much of him any more. We might try and have the elders teach him but that's that.
Jairo.. Still doing alright. He seems to be improving from his wall of faith crumbling on him. Well we're going to see him tonight and that's awesome!! We're celebrating the little accomplishments right now!! 

Life's good. 

Anyway on to some happier moments.. 
This month as a zone we are doing a certain book of mormon challenge.. The challenge where you ALWAYS have a book of mormon in your hands at all times! The first week was hard, unintentionally putting it down and then realizing you don't have it. But it's getting better! The other day I have a little bit of an ice age moment. You know the squirrel at the beginning and his acorn? Well yesterday one of the sisters went to grab mine off of my lap to show me a scripture and before it even got all the way off my lap, I unconsciously snatched it back! I am really starting to see the book of mormon differently... ha ha Sometimes it's hard to tie your shoes, or make lunch... but it's a neat feeling to wake up in the middle of the night and the first though is "WHERE IS IT?" Yes I even sleep with that thing.. 
Like I said before, like is good! I am happy despite anything/everything that happens. And I know that that only comes from living the gospel. It's true. It all is. And it's just that simple! 
I had a friend in the mission tell me one sentence this week and it replanted my feet in the work. (You know, they do say you become the most trunky when your trainer goes home. What do they say about when your trainer AND trainee go home?? ha ha) But he said, "This is the Lords work Sister Schwendiman." No matter how "uprooted" we might feel sometimes or how easy it is to think about what WE want or what WE think but that's so wrong. I'm not here for me and I'm just a-doin what he's a-asking.

Hey I hope you all know how much I love you and how much I love my mission. There's never a dull moment and I wouldn't want it any other way!! #fortheadventure #andchrist 

Onward and Upward

Hermana Schwendiman 

We MADE it!
The two other Alta Hawks #gohawks in my zone.  Alta pride never stops.

Monday, February 3, 2014

facts and opinions

Well the weekly update. It's all about facts and opinions..

Fact #1 Sister Acosta went home this week
Opinion #1 Sometimes the mission is hard and we have to make decisions. A couple doctors suggested she go home, tuesday she made the decision, wedesday she had her flight information and I think that she is going to be fine. Man, I miss that little Mexican though!

Fact #2 I live 10 minutes from where the superbowl was last night
opinion#2 the broncos should have won.

Fact #3 I am now serving in a trio. I work in the same ward and we just cover the two area's now. 
Opinioin#3 It's really strange to go from training for 6 months to being in a trio. But the good news is that we are really busy and have A LOT of work to do. 

Fact #4 Someone on the street yesterday called us aliens.
Opinion #4 I've hear worse! But it still made me laugh, and its right up there with the feeling of being the last little duckling in the line as we walk down the narrow sidewalks. 

Fact #5 Sister Acosta and I met a man named Victor on monday and now he has a baptismal date
Opinion #5 Mercy is powerful

Fact #6 It hasn't stopped snowing since last night and there is a foot of snow on the ground right now. No sign of stopping! The power just went out in the library! 
Opinion #6 life's good :)

Fact #7 The bishop told me this week that I've been here long enough (7 months) that he was thinking about just calling me as relief society president
Opinion#7 well.. It might be short lived. I wouldn't be surprised to stay one more transfer but I'm preeeety sure I'm out. (President hinted some things, plus we have interviews this week so I'm gunna get it outta him!!)

Fact #8 Jairo relapsed and is not doing well...
Opinion #8 He's going to be okay!! 

Fact #9 They took our car away... We had to drive to Morristown on thursday for Sister Acosta's last interview and President asked us to leave it there.. The Assistants had to drive us home. 
Fact #9 Well it was fun to have a car for a couple days and really was convenient for the time that we had it. Lots of running around to do. It's still weird to ride in a car with elders... 

Fact # 10 It's Feb 3
Opinion #10 Last week, EASILY, felt like a month ago.. Even a couple days ago... woooooweeeee! 

SNOW DAY!  All the latinos are terrified of snow and NO ONE came to our activity but as we waited...
we played in the snow!
We're just awesome... Zone leaders, district leader, #Ucrew
District picture! ... I'm really not that big... they're THAT small.