Monday, December 1, 2014

Returning with Honor..

Sooo, I've been home for 2 weeks and 4 days and I still feel like I'll never get used to it. Return missionary life has its blissful moments; like being home with my family for Thanksgiving, watching my sister get married for time and all eternity in the temple, shopping with no time crunch, cuddling with my dog at night, listening to good songs you forgot about and enjoying texts and shapchats from a cute boy. Buttt, its also a really hard adjustment to go from doing the most important work you could ever do, to having nothing to do. You go from filling your entire day with appointments to teach and serve others to having no agenda, no responsibility, no schedule. When I first got back, I struggled feeling like I had no plan for my future, but everyday it gets better and I feel like I have been letting go of my anxiety to want to plan my future and letting God guide my plans. Its okay that I don't have everything figured out right now, even though every part of me feels like I should. If I only had to remember one thing I learned in the past 18 months, it's that God loves me. He loves you. He is aware of the details of our lives and what matters to us. He knows our desires and ambitions. He knows how many hairs are on our heads. Above all, He wants us to be happy! I know that His plan for our lives is the only one that leads us back to him and leads us to ultimate happiness. So why is it so hard for us to let go and trust him?

Coming home from my mission is the hardest thing I've ever done. When you leave for your mission, you expect it to be challenging, you expect to miss your family, you have a million people telling you how to prepare for the best 18 months. But theres no one to tell you how to prepare for the return, and I'm not sure if there really is a way to prepare for it. The day I came home was beautiful, I felt peace in my heart and a confirmation from the spirit that I had done my very best and that God was pleased with the work I had done. The plane ride seemed painfully long as the much anticpated moment of seeing my family approached. I remember hearing the pilot announce that we were in Sacramento and through the thick fog, I began to see hundreds of trees. I knew I was home. As I got off the plane, I started to cry with a flood of emotions. I pulled myself together and made my way quickly to the baggage claim. Only seconds later I was greeted with screams, shouts, hugs, laughs, tears and the most joyful reunion I could have ever imagined. The next 6 hours were kind of a blur as I felt like I was dreaming the whole time. Then it came time to meet my stake president to get released. I had done a great job of holding myself together until the moment he asked me to bear my testimony. How could I possibly find the words to describe how much I had learned or how much I grew to love the Lord during my time in Wisconsin. As I finished muttering the words of my heart through my tears, he asked me to stand and then he asked my mom to come remove my missionary name tag. THIS was the hardest part. I promise you, I've never wanted to hold onto something so much in my entire life as I did my name tag at that moment. I didn't want it to be over, I didn't want that part of me to die, I didn't want to return to being just "Karlie" again. Taking off my name tag was the hardest thing I've had to do, I miss it everyday. I miss the blessings and the closeness of the spirit that come with being a missionary. But the only constant thing in life is change. We need change to help us grow and be molded into the people God already knows we can become. I know God will continue to bless me, as well as all his children and that I can feel his spirit as I try my best to stay close to him. I know that my mission has forever changed me. I am a different person than the Karlie that left for Wisconsin last May. I am now Karlie Tanner, a daughter of God who knows her place in His eternal plan. I am so excited to live my life as a diciple of Jesus Christ. I will be forever grateful for my mission, for all the people I met who changed my life, for the unshakable testimony I gained that my Savior lives. I know that because of my mission, my decisions for the future are different, my goals are different, my actions are different. As hard as it is leaving Wisconsin, the place I have come to love so very much, I know this was all part of the plan for me and that Heavenly Father has something special waiting for my future too. I can't wait to find out what it is. :)

Monday, November 3, 2014

Happy 18 Months!

This week has been soooo much fun! I am really trying to make every day count and work as hard as I can and laugh the whole time too. It's been great!!! It's also been an emotional rollercoaster as I deal with different emotions of being so excited to come home and see you all and not wanting to leave this place I love so much and especially not wanting to take off my name tag. 

Monday was a fun pday! We went to take pictures at the lake with the Lenhards (the senior couple). They drove us there and then we drove around downtown milwaukee for a while. It was fun! Then we had FHE and dinner with the Kings! We had a whole lesson on baptism because their oldest son is almost 8 so we did a baptism prep lesson! It was fun! 
Tuesday we spent the morning trying to contact potentials and invite them to the trunk or treat and then Rissie took us to lunch! So yummy! We always have so much fun with her! Then we had district meeting and it was all about revelation thru prayer. It was pretty good! Then we spent the rest of the day walking and trying to contact people and having a couple lessons that fell thru. It was bitter cold outside and this sweet old lady chatted with us outside her house for like an hour! She lives in the house she grew up in and this lady was like 90 at least! Later on, we went to the Gatterers and they fed us and Brother Gatterer gave me a blessing. I was really struggling feeling sad about going home and the blessing was perfect! My blessing said how as I go home, people here will miss me very much but that Heavenly Father needs me at home right now. The whole blessing kept saying that He has been with me every step of the way and that he will never abandon me just because I wont be a missionary anymore. The blessing gave me counsel to study my scriptures, be faithful in my prayers and to go to temple often and then I will have nothing to fear. It was everything I needed and an incredible feeling of peace came to me. Although Im still sad about my mission ending, I know God has a great work for me to do at home. I know he will never forsake me or leave me as long as I strive to stay close to him. :) The Gatterers are the best. They dropped us off at a potentials house and we ended up staying there and having a lesson with him on his porch for like 40 minutes. We had waved the Gatterers on and we thought they left, we were just planning to walk home. But after we left the house, there they were waiting to give us a ride home. They are incredible people. Im so grateful for all they do for us! 


Wednesday was SUPER EXCITING!!!!!! So in the morning, during studies, President called us and said we might be getting a sister from temple square to come with us. (they do 3 months of their mission in another mission to experience normal mission life) He said he still wasn't sure because he wanted to interview them first. Well the night before, Sister Askerlund had a dream! So we overheard that 3 temple square sisters were coming but we had no clue we might get one of them. So sister A had a dream that there was a raffle for the temple square sisters and then he pulled out a paper and announced "Sister tanner and sister askerlund get the asian girl from china" ahahaha. So we were cracking up about that and then President called us about a possibility of getting one and then we ended up getting a 3rd companion from CHINA!!!! Sister Wu! Shes hilarious!!!!! We love her and she keeps us laughing with all the details of things we have to explain to her because she is still learning english. Shes been out about a year but doesnt really know how to do normal missionary work because temple square is so different, so shes learning but its been sooo fun! Anyway, wednesday we had a great lesson with our investigator T. We taught her the plan of salvation and she loved it! Hopefully we can get her progressing soon! Then later, we had the TRUNK OR TREAT!!! It was sooo much fun! Our less active family, the "T"s came! They haven't been in the church building in over 10 years and they came and had a blast reconnecting with so many members they knew from before! We dressed up as nerds! It was so much fun! Sister Wu felt really overwhelmed because she didnt even know what halloween was and then she met all of our members in one night. Haha Poor girl was exhausted!
Thursday we had appointments most of the day! We had lunch with a less active, "H" and she was hilarious! Love her! Then Brother R met us there after we ate lunch to home teach her. We had to explain the difference between "stocking" and "stalking" to Sister Wu! Lol. We laughed about it all day long! We walked all day long and met some pretty crazy people along the way! Gotta love dirty stallis! Then we had #tacoandtalkthursday at the Dominguez! YAY! It was so much fun! They want me to come be their nanny after my mission! Heck yes! I love the Dominguez family so much! 
Friday it SNOWED!!!!!! We woke up and it had snowed and then it kept snowing a little bit throughout the day!!! We weekly planned for forever. Then we had a lesson with "C" and Sister Wu just laughs about how crazy people are here. Sister Cutler brought over some extra blankets for her too because she isnt used to the cold! Then we met some cool people on the street and then later on, we went to the Bostons for dinner! The Newmans were there too and he told us the long story of how he got a date with his wife. Lol. He drew a whole picture about it. They are so funny! 
Saturday was my 18 months!!! Yay! We had a lesson with an older less active lady in the morning and we went thru boxes of pictures and journals to help her find info for her family history! It was so fun! Then we had a bunch of appointments the rest of the day! We were on a bus, headed to go get lunch and we met the coolest people ever! Miracle bus ride! We met J and M! M is a recent convert, got baptized in AZ and went inactive about a year ago. her boyfriend, J is interested in the church and Michelle wants to start coming back! YAY! They are the coolest people ever! They even texted us the rest of the day being so excited to come to church. They ended up not being able to come, but we are going to meet with them this week! :) 

Sunday was fast and testimony meeting. Such a great sunday!!! I bore my testimony about how much I love Wisconsin and our ward and how much my mission has changed me. I feel like West Allis ward is my home ward now. It will be weird not to be here. During church, we set up an appointment with this member's friend "A" whos come to church twice now. After church, Sister Stewart came out with us and we contacted a couple less active ladies in the ward. Then we had dinner at the Wilsons with the Bostons! Brother Wilson was asking me how our meetings are compared to other wards. It meant a lot that my opinion mattered to him! 

I cannot believe I will only get to email you all one more time before I see your beautiful faces. I am going to work harder than I've ever worked in my life this next week. So much to be done! I love my calling and I love the people here. I know that Heavenly Father loves us so much! I know that our Savior lives and helps us though everything! Ether 12:8 and Romans 8:38-39

Some quotes of the week:

"There is nothing more powerful than the arm of love that can be put around those who are struggling" -M Russell Ballard

"Even the helpless victim of a hopeless situation, facing a fate he cannot change, may rise above himself, may grow beyond himself. He may turn personal tragedy into triumph." 

I love you!!!!!! Have a great week! See you all in 10 days!!! <3
love always,
Sister Karlie Marie Tanner <3

Monday, October 27, 2014

The Greatest Investment

Hello my beautiful family! I can't believe you will only hear from me 2 more times after today before I will see you again! Time is passing way to quickly for me! 

Monday was a fun pday. We ended up spending a bus ride to the mall teaching this man of the plan of salvation and of God's love for him because his wife died years ago and he's still struggling with it. It was a great lesson. Then we hungout at the mall for a while and just window shopped and had fun together. I love when I have companions I feel like we can hangout on pday and that we are having fun together as friends! Its the best! We had dinner at the "D"s and that was great. And then we had a lesson with Sister T (a less active and her daughters who arent members) and the "W"s came with us. Bro W was her bishop when she was active and she loves him! It was a wonderful lesson with her. The "W"s invited her back to church and she said she wants to come back, thats her goal! Her daughters haven't been baptized either. They are an amazing family and the "W"s made all the difference for them. :) The daughters made us necklaces while we were there too! :) Then we went to see Sister "B" and J was at her house! Love it! 

Tuesday we had district meeting and it was all about the law of chastity. The elders made it super awkward, which was weird. Theres one elder in our district whos super shy and awkward but he's hilarious! After, we went to try to contact a bunch of potentials and investigators without much luck. We had a lesson with an investigator and then later we went to "T"s because someone was picking us all up for Recipe group. Her boyfriend's friend Joe was at her house and he had met with missionaries like 20 years ago and he asked us lots of questions. He used to live right by Prairie du Chien too so it was fun to talk to someone who knows that area. So then we went to Recipe group and it was so fun! I love everyone in our ward! 

Wednesday we went Visiting teaching with Sister "W". We had lots of success getting in with lots of less actives! We even got a referral from one less active's daughter who wants us to start teaching her boyfriend! Yay! Then we went to our lesson with "D" and brought Sister W but "D" kinda dropped us! :( He told all his family and friends he was so excited to get baptized in our church and they all attacked him with anti stuff and told him they would disown him or not be his friend if he joined.. So he still wants to meet with us but he said he doesnt want to commit to joining right now. SADNESS! So then Sister W took us out for lunch at Qdoba! I love her! Then we went around contacting a bunch of people and had some lessons and then later we had dinner at the "G"s! I love them!!! Coolest couple ever! We had a yummy dinner and Bro G is hilarious! We were driving by Kopps and one of the flavors was 'Mint Chip' and he was like "YUCKO" because he doesnt like it so then for the rest of the night we were saying "YUCKO" to everything. Then we had to all drop off Bro G at the church for his meetings and then sis G was going to give us a ride somewhere but then once we got to the church, the Activity Days leaders asked us to stay and fellowship with their activity they were having. They were having a multi ward Mother Daughter Tea Party. SO CUTE! So we got to stay and talk to a lot of people from other wards and see Sister Dominguez and so it was way fun!

Thursday we woke up and had 3 missed calls during the middle of the night from "bob fox" and all his voicemails were like "Hey this is bob fox and I want to learn more about the church. Love you girls" We had no clue who this guy was and didnt remember meeting him! And then we kept trying to call him back and no answer! Then we had an awesome lesson with Sarah "L"! I taught her back when I was here last time. She's great and knows its true so we are just trying to get her back into learning and coming to church. Then we met this cool guy "T" on the bus. After we came home and did some weekly planning then went with Sarah W to do visiting teaching with her! Then we went to contact some part members and we got rained on. Drenched from head to toe! Haha. While we were walking in the rain, we were talking about something and Sister Askerlund told me that I love people like Christ does. So sweet, right. Shes the best comp! Then sister M picked us up for dinner and took us out to TGIFridays. My first time there. It was a blast! Sister M's roomate came with and they both spent forever telling me about their adjustments after their missions. Then we went to get the best flavor ever at Kopps. Never Enough Chocolate. I will be ordering and shipping that home for my wedding. Its the best! Haha. 

Friday we were headed to a lesson at the library and we missed our first bus so had to wait for the next one. Then on the next bus, we ran into Bob Fox! He was like, "girls, its bob fox" What the heck! We don't even remember meeting him but I guess we gave him a card on the bus last week! Haha. So were gonna meet with him this coming week! Then we got off the bus and ran into "To" again. So amazing how the Lord's timing works! Then we had a great lesson with "Ti", the less active. He's stuggling with everything in his life but learning so much from the Bom. Then we had a lesson with an investigator! She knew the whole gospel of jesus christ without us even telling her! Haha. Shes hilarious. Then we visited the "L"s during lunch, they are the senior couple that lives right by us but helps out a different ward. Then we went to dinner with the "D"s. They are a crack up! Bro D was foretelling the people we are going to marry. Haha. Then we went to see our investigator "K" and shes sooo cool. Shes 18 and just converted to Buddism. She really wants to learn and read the Book of mormon though. Then the Kenosha sisters switched with us and we were off to Kenosha for exchanges.

Saturday I spent the day in kenosha. It was so great. We had correlation meeting over a conference call but it was still fun to talk to Bro Casper and hear everything thats going on there. Sister Reed didn't tell anyone I was coming so that I could surprise people. It was wonderful! We got to see Christina and Shannon. And then we went and saw the "G"s. Only one Sister was home but it was sooooo good to see her. They are having a really rough trial right now and so it was good to see her and cry with her about everything thats going on. Then we went to lunch with "M" at Huhot. SO yummy! Then we went to help "R" clean out a room upstairs that she needed help with and it was so fun to surprise her! We scrubbed walls for hours! It was exahusting but it looks a lot better! Then on our way out of town, we surprised Sister F at her work. She saw us and screamed!!! Haha, I felt bad because she was like helping customers but it was hilarious! Overall, such a great day in Kenosha. I miss everyone there so much!

Sunday was the primary program at church. Always my favorite sundays! The kids are so cute! Bishop talked about how these are the future leaders of the church! It was a great sunday! After church, we met some guy across the street and invited him to the trunk or treat this coming week! Yay! Then we went out contacting less actives with the RS pres. We got ahold of some people. Then we came home, had lunch and studies and then walked to our dinner appointment. It was a couple miles away so my ankle was killing me by the time we got there. But we had a fun time. Then we walked to "J"s house and brought chocolate for her mom who just got in a car accident. It was great to get to know her and help her a little around her house. She broke her hips and shes still trying to walk around. It was a great sunday!

Overall, I love my life everyday. I love getting to help people feel God's love and serve his children. This truely is the greatest experience I've ever had. I am getting sad, not wanting to leave this place and people I've grown to love so much but I know God has plans for me back home as well.

Thank you all for your amazing support and love. I love you so much and can't wait to see you so soon! 

"You will come to know that what appears today to be a sacrifice will prove instead to be the greatest investment you will ever make."
- Gordon B Hinckley

Love, Sister Karlie Tanner

Monday, October 20, 2014

"We Lived After The Manner Of Happiness"

It's been such an amazing week here in Stallis. I am just so happy every single day. I wake up every morning and just thank Heavenly Father for sending me back to West Allis and that I get to be with so many people I love everyday. I really am the happiest I've ever been in my life!

Monday we had a fun pday and we just went shopping at Target and the mall. It was the pday before Sister Askerlund's birthday so she had some money and I had fun helping her pick out some clothes and stuff. It was super fun! Then we had dinner at the "A"s. They are a new family that moved into our ward like 2 months ago from Texas. They are fun and we had a great time with them! Then we got caught in the rain and looked like drown rats and ended up missing our connecting bus to get home, so we walked a long ways home but it was fun! 
Tuesday I got Kristen & Mav's announcement! YAY!!!!!!! Made my whole day! :) Then we had a really busy day full of appointments, which is so good! We didnt even have to ride the bus once the whole day! We had a lesson with our investigator "T" in the morning and "SW" came with us. They loved each other and hearing "SW" bear her testimony always makes me so happy. Then she took us  to lunch bunch with the relief society sisters. It was really good. Then we went to help a less active member clean up her house and get some things ready for her baby. Shes like almost 9 months pregnant! Then we went to have a lesson with "T" whos a recent convert that just got baptized a couple months ago. Shes amazing and we are helping her work toward going to the temple for baptisms soon. During the lesson, she kept saying how much I remind her of Sister King! Because Sister King taught her. Ah! I love and miss Sister King so much! Then we had dinner with "R"! Shes the best! She took us to this cute restaurant in downtown milwaukee called Lulus and they had GF stuff! It was soo yummy! "R" is the cutest and we always have so much fun with her. Then we raced to "F" and had a lesson with him and a family came and they are perfect for "F"! It's crazy how you can see the difference in him when he reads the book of mormon and when he doesn't. You can literally see the difference it makes in his life. The book of mormon changes us!! Then we went with the family to see this girl they home teach. We kept joking with them that they are going to be mission presidents someday because they are so amazing and a great example of magnifying your calling. I love them!

Wednesday we had another crazy busy and fun day. Me and Sister Askerlund have so much fun together and we laugh all day long! I love her!  We had some hilarious lessons in the morning with crazy recent converts and less actives. Hahaha. Then we visited a couple of our investigators and visited the older couple whos son died in the texas chainsaw massacre thing. We visited them to tell them about an older investigator that lives in their complex that we want them to fellowship and then they ended up telling sister A all about their son who died and stuff. Weridest story ever. Later, we went to the "B"s for dinner. They are the most hilarious people ever and we had a blast with them. We are trying to teach all their friends and family! After dinner, we walked like 2 miles to try to contact this less active we felt like we should see. She's never home so we were nervous we were wasting time walking all the way to see her and miracle happened... She was home!!! And we set up an appointment with her for tonight and we are going to bring the brother that was the bishop when she was active because she loves him! So we are super excited. She has 2 daughter both of age to be baptized that arent so we want to start teaching them! Overall it was a great day!

Thursday was Sister Askerlund's 23rd birthday!!! I tried to make her birthday really special, so I decorated our apartment with leftover decorations that were left behind from my birthday and other random stuff. We did some weekly planning and then a member she was close to in Madison came and took us to lunch and FroYo. So much fun! Then we went to Kopps with Sister D later and then we went to visit Sister M (a less active) she said her husband mentioned that he wants to get sealed in the temple and wants to start working toward that. SO exciting!!! Then we rode our bikes around and contacted some other people and met some cool people on the street and then we had dinner at El Beso with Sister S. Best food ever. I cant wait to bring you guys to this restaurant! It was such a fun day and the members made Sister A's birthday really special and fun! 
Friday we had zone training meeting and so it took us all morning to bus and walk to the church building but we met this really cool girl on the bus and gave her a book of mormon! Then during ZTM, we got to watch #meetthemormons AHHHH!!! I loved it! We were balling our eyes out! My favorite part was the missionary mom and the candy bomber guy. It was so good and I just wanted to watch it over again! Is it coming by you guys? You should seriously bring everyone to go see it. It really does a great job of not being preachy but showing who we are as people and that we live normal lives but we are mormon too. It was a great meeting. I also got to see sister reed and a bunch of other missionary friends from kenosha and surrounding areas. Then we helped Sister C clean out the nursery at church. She just got called as nursery leader and toys and stuff havent been cleaned in like 10 years so we helped her with that and then we had dinner at their house. We had another miracle on friday! While we were waiting for the bus, Sister B's friends drove by and honked, smiled and waved! Normally people like hide from us when they see us, but they said hi! We love them! 
Saturday was SWEETEST DAY <3. (Sweetest day is a holiday celebrated in 11 states in the Midwest. It is similar to Valentine's day.) We had a lesson with Tonya in the morning but on the bus toward her house, we met "N" the mormon. A less active that lives right by our apartment!!! He just moved to West Allis and said he got baptized when he was a kid but his parents didnt join so he never went much after he got baptized. I love finding hidden less actives! So we are going to start meeting with him! He said he wants to find good friends here too because he doesnt know anyone. Then we had a lesson with the YSA sisters. They were teaching this girl who is 17 so they handed her off to us. She is so cute! Our lesson went really good and she told us how she dresses modestly because she just doesnt feel right if she wears revealing stuff. WHO DOES THAT OTHER THAN MEMBERS? Shes so cool! We are going to try to teach her whole family! Then we had a church tour with our investigator "D", who we just met like my first day back here. The Muskego lakes sisters were having a baptism, so we had him come so he could watch the baptism too. President Cutler was there and sat by Doug and talked to him the whole time! President like took him under his wing! It was great! The spirit was so strong during the baptism and "D" loved it and loved getting to know people! Afterward, we took him on a tour of the church and we ended by the baptism font again and testified of the restored priesthood power by which we do baptisms and we commited him to be baptized on November 29th! He has such a sincere heart and loves the gospel. He said he couldnt make it to church the next day but that he would plan on being at church every sunday after! It was amazing. Sister M is the best for coming with us and testifying as well. So Saturday was an extra sweet day for us! :)

Sunday was a great day too. The "D" family came to church so we sat by them all 3 hours. :) Sister D is the most amazing person ever. I love her so much! Also, the "M"s came to church and she brought her less active brother who was super fun and was making comments in church and stuff. Then after church, Sister A had me fit my dress so she can hem it! YAY! Then we went to visit "J", whos sister B's niece, "J" and I had dinner with her so many times last time I was here and she lives right by us so we went to say hi and had a whole lesson with her. She is the cutest freshman girl ever! She said she's going to start reading the book of mormon and wants to have dinner with us again at the "B"s. :) Then we had dinner at the "D"s and it was crazy fun as usual. Their kids are so much fun and the food was amazing! After dinner, we had a lesson with "T" and she was just cracking jokes about how tired we look. :/ Haha. Then after her lesson, we RAN like 5 blocks to catch the bus and made it in perfect timing. The Lord loves us!!!

So many exciting things are happening here! I love everyday of my life and I am truely truely happy! I read this article on of a talk Elder Holland gave to students at BYUI and it's called "Happiness is a Quest" You should look it up! I know that we choose to be happy and that we find happiness as we live the gospel and serve others. 

"Above all else, ultimate happiness, true peace and anything even remotely close to scriptural joy are found first, foremost and forever in living the gospel of Jesus Christ."

"Most times happiness comes to us as when we least expect it, when we are busy doing something else. Happiness is almost always a by-product of some other endeavor."

"God expects a willing mind in the quest for happiness and peace as well. Put your head into this. All of this takes effort. It's a battle, but a battle for happiness is worth waging."

I know that the reason I am happy everyday is because I am living the gospel of Jesus Christ and that my everyday is focused to help others find the gospel. In serving others and doing the Lord's work, I have found true happiness that no where else in the world can offer. Theres so many things in the world offering instant happiness or some remedy to cover people's sorrow and pain. I know that nothing else can work. Theres no other source for true happiness other than the gospel. I am so grateful for my happiness. A happiness that wont come and go because of other people or because of my situation, but a lasting happiness because I have hope and help through my Savior and because I know who I am because of him. :) 

I love you all so much and I pray that each of you can find moments of happiness and peace each day. :) :) :)

Have the best week ever!
Sister Karlie Marie Tanner

Monday, October 13, 2014

Back To Stallis She Goes!

Well its been the best week ever coming back to good ol' Stallis. I LOVE this ward and this place. My new companion, Sister Askerlund is amazing too. Shes a powerhouse missionary and works so hard! I love her! So many miracles have happened this week and everyday I am just sooo happy! 1 MONTH FROM TODAY I WILL SEE YOU ALL!!!!!! I can't believe how fast its coming and that my last month is already here. 

Monday was the funnest last pday in Kenosha. I was freaking out the whole day after finding out I was coming back to West Allis. The elders were like, "You totally pulled strings. Who did you talk to?" I just talked to the lord! haha. We went bowling with all the elders from our ward and it was so fun! Then we went to chinese for dinner with the "C"s. Then we went to the "Z"s to help them with family history and say goodbye. It was really hard to say goodbye to them. I love them so much. The daughter drew me this beautiful picture of me and sister reed as princess missionaries by the temple. Shes so talented and it meant so much to me. 

Tuesday we ran around like chickens with our heads cut off trying to see everyone and saying bye to everyone. I was able to see almost everyone except the "G"s because they had to go to illinois for a family emergency. We went to HuHot and saw so many friends! We did a fun testimony meeting for our message and we were all in tears! I love the "B"s so much! Going to miss them tons! It was a great last day! :( I miss Kenosha sooo much! I found out our stake conference will be the last sunday of my mission so I cant wait to see everyone there! :)
Wednesday was transfers! Its a miracle I got all my stuff packed, I downsized a lot too! We had to hang around transfer point for a while until someone was able to give us a ride home. It was fun to chat and talk to some of my friends. Then we got to West Allis and went to work! We went to visit Sister "D" and it was sooooo good to see her. Shes my favorite person ever! She kept telling me she thinks the reason im back is for her and I love her so much! We found a ton of new investigators and walked everywhere. We met some crazies too, it wouldnt be west allis without them! 

Thursday we did weekly planning and then we went out to contact people. Sister Askerlund got really sick and we were walking and so were like, man I wish someone could give us a ride. and then Sister "G" drove up by us and offered a ride! It was great! So then we went home and sister askerlund slept for the rest of the evening. She was really sick. :/ But, Bishop called and gave us a refferal for this lady who walked into the family history center at church and wants to learn more about the church. That was great!!!

Friday was a great day! We had a lesson with this less active, and he's hilarious. He wants to dicuss his studies like in depth but hes hilarious too. Then we bused it down to Chik-fila and met SW for lunch. Shes doing soo good and told us all about how shes planning to get her endowments out on her 1 year date of her baptism. I am so excited. She said #powerofthesarahs prayed me back to west allis. I love her! Then we went to contact the referral from Bishop. She is this 90 year old lady who investigated the church like 40 plus years ago after driving thru salt lake and seeing the temple. Well I guess saturday she just happened to turn on tv and watched all of conference! She kept telling us how she really really wants a doctrine and covenants and pearl of great price! Like how the heck does she even know about those! Lol. So we spent the first like 30 minutes with her thinking shes the most prepared person in the entire world and that shes going to get baptized in 3 weeks! Later that evening, we went to the "A"s for dinner and then we carved pumpkins with them!! Yay! It was so fun and im slightly really proud of the pumpkin I carved! :) It was sooo good to see the "A"s again too! I love them!

Saturday we had a bunch of appointments and so we rode bikes!!! I havent ridden a bike in like 10 years but I did great! No falling or crashing and I was in a skirt! I can offically do anything now! Haha. We had a lesson with this guy we met on the street on wednesday and he's so prepared. He wants to get baptized! After our lesson, he was like, Im gonna have to go on facebook and tell all my mormon friends that i've now accepted the mormon beliefs. Haha! Then we went to see Sister "B"! I kept trying to surprise people that I was back but everyone had found out already! Then in the evening, we wanted to go to Kopps and we bused it down there and met the coolest girl, Shayleese on the bus. We talked to her the whole way there, gave her a book of mormon and shes so cool! I know we were supposed to meet her! So we were walking to Kopps and it was already like 8:20 and there were no buses going to get us home before 9 and so i was like, "We are going to walk into kopps and someone will be there that can give us a ride" I had total faith! So we walked into Kopps, and the "G"s were there!!!!! We could hardly believe it! So we got Kopps and got home on time!!! The church is true! 

Sunday was amazing!!! Everyone was so excited to see me and I felt so welcomed back to the ward. I really felt like I was coming home! I bore my testimony that Heavenly Father loves me because he sent me back to my West Allis. :) All the members attacked the dinner calendar and filled it up for the week. It made me feel so loved! Church was amazing as always and it was great to meet some new people and recent converts I havent met. Then we came home, had studies and then we had dinner at the "W"s. So fun! They are my favorite! We had such a fun dinner! Then we went around trying to contact some potentials and getting ahold of people. It was a great day. I am just so happy to be back.

I found a quote the other day that said, "Dont count the days, make the days count" and thats what I am doing! 

I LOVE YOU ALL SOOOO MUCH! Have the best week ever! Thank you for your love and prayers always! :)

Sister Karlie Marie Tanner

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Farewell Kenosha

Sister Tanner's blog post last week highlighted her trip back to West Allis on an exchange. At the time she thought that would be her last visit there. Little did she know what was about to be in store for the rest of her Mission. 
"Exciting news!!!! I'm getting transferred to... drumrolll....
WEST ALLIS for the last 5 weeks of my mission. I am so excited to go back to this special place! 
This week has been filled with miracles and fun laughs. I LOVE Kenosha and it's going to be hard for me to leave. My heart is so full of love for the people here. I can't wait to bring you all back here. I feel like I've become a much better missionary here. I've accomplished things I never knew were possible and the Lord has helped me stretch and grow and become the missionary he needed me to be. I'm so excited to take what I've learned here and apply it back in West Allis! :)

Monday was a fun pday! I finished my BYU application and felt a huge relief from that! Then we went to the church and played sports with just the missionaries in our ward. I guess all the other missionaries got mad because the Zone leaders asked them to park their cars the right way so they all got mad and left. But, we were happy because it was super fun with just the 3 sets! We are all best friends! Then we had dinner and FHE at the "Z"s and the "G"s came too. For the lesson, we helped them with their family history. It was sooo fun and "J" was getting so into it! Wish I had that fire when I was her age!

Tuesday was a busy running around day. We had to drop off some things to some members and rushed to make it to a member's birthday lunch they invited us to. Then we had district meeting. Our last one of the transfer. Afterward, we had an amazing lesson with our investigator "R" at a  (part members) house. It was so good! The elders are teaching the husband who is also not a member, but the wife is. During the lesson, the wife's brother bore his testimony of the book of mormon and it was so powerful. She really wants to find peace and understanding in life. It was probably one of the most powerful lessons on my mission. The spirit was so strong! Then we had dinner with Sister Boston. LOVE HER. She's seriously my favorite! Then we had a whole evening of appointments. We went over the baptism interview questions with "R" and it helped us know what struggles she's still having and how we can help her. Then "M" came out with us to contact some people and she helped us facebook stalk a less active and get an appointment with her. YAY! This is why missionaries need facebook. lol. Coming soon.

Wednesday morning we went to breakfast with this girl "J". I met her at the Shalom center (where we volunteer) a couple months ago and we just clicked! Shes hilarious and looks for me every time at Shalom. So I told her I might be leaving soon so we should get together. It was so fun! We taught her about the Book of mormon and she wants to learn more about it. After we left, we were like, "Teach people not lessons to the max" It was a very different than the normal lessons we have, but it was everything she needed. Then we had to go save the Bishops storehouse people and let them in the church building. Then we did some weekly planning and then went to visit a bunch of investigators and recent converts. Later, we had dinner at the "P"s. Its always a bunch of fun there! Then we were supposed to have an exchange but the sisters we were gonna exchange with were really sick, so they cancelled. :/
Thursday was Pebble's 3rd birthday! Happy Birthday pebs!!! We had a good day of miracles. We tracted a street with no success and we were getting frustrated and then we went to contact some potentials and newer investigators and a miracle happened!!! We went to this one house, thinking it was a certain potential, but they had moved and we met "A". She's one of those people you feel like you've been friends for years after talking for 5 minutes. Anyway, she just moved to Kenosha, looking for a church and she's amazing! She totally wanted to watch conference and read the book of mormon. We said a prayer with her and during the prayer, I felt a prompting to invite her to be baptized. So afterward, I just did. Super bold. Lol. She said YES! We didn't set a date with her yet but we will this week! That was a goal I had on my mission too was to invite someone to be baptized in our first contact with them. The lord provides a way for us to accomplish our goals! Then we brought the "G"s pumpkins! Yay! Then we drove up to milwaukee and got dinner at the new chik-fila! AH! It was so fun! Then we went to visit some of the sisters we are over and then we went to spend the night at muskego sisters house. 

Friday was MLC. Great meeting!!! As a council, we all decided to read the Book of mormon together as a mission and to finish by Christmas as our gift to the savior. We all decided this would help unify our mission and help us focus on Christ. Im so excited for this, even though i wont be here for all of it, im going to continue to do it! We had a guest speaker guy come and showed us this powerpoint of all his drawings of the entire book of mormon in 30 minutes. He's crazy good and it all made so much sense! Then we traveled for hours to get back home and then we had dinner with the "P"s for Brother P's birthday! We sang him Amazing Grace! 

Saturday we got the transfer text and I was super sad, then we went to watch conference at the church. Our new investigator wasn't able to come but she still is interested! In between sessions, we had a halloween lunch with Sister Voas. She's amazing! I love her to death! Then during 2nd session, "R" brought a friend from work, who I guess has previously met with Sisters. The friend said she loved conference and wants to learn more. "R"s concerns and questions were totally discussed in the session she watched! After that, we went to see a less active. Then we went to visit people and sing for them too. I'm gonna miss them! 

Sunday we went to the "C"s for breakfast, correlation meeting, and to watch conference. It was soooo fun. Their family is hilarious and we had a blast with all the elders too. On our way home from the county, my GPS took us a werid way and we ended up crossing the border!!! AHH! We were freaking out and called President and he was like, "Well your tiwi should have told you that you were leaving the boundries but thank you for repenting quickly" LOL. It was funny though because we had no clue we were even close! Then we went to Sister Bostons for the 2nd session. Then we had dinner with "KB" and her entire extended family. It was sooo fun! Conference was amazing and so many of my questions were answered! I feel so much peace about the future! :) I love conference! I didnt want it to end! Everyone send me your favorite talk and why! I love that so many talks focused on following the prophet and strengthening our testimonies.

I LOVE THIS PLACE and I'm so sad to leave Kenosha but I'm so excited to go back to Stallis. :)  WEST ALLIS!!!!!!! I'm going back to Stallis!!!!!!!!! AH! I am so excited and shocked!!!! I know the Lord still has something for me to accomplish there and I am so happy to be staying in this stake and be able to come back to Kenosha on one last exchange. I'm SOO excited! :) Thank you for your prayers and love. I love you all soooo soooo much! Have the best week ever!!! :)"

love always,
Sister Karlie Tanner

5 weeks until I see you all again! :)

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

A Trip Back To "STALLIS"

Wow, it's already almost October! I guess I never thought this month would approach! Time is going by faster and faster by the day, I know I say this every week but it's true! It's been a great week here in Kenosha. I LOVE this place and wish I could end my mission here!

Monday was pday! We just hung out and walked around these cute shops by the lake. It was relaxing! We had dinner with the "T"s and they are so fun! Then we visited the "G"s and read with them about when Christ blessed the children in the Book of Mormon. "B"s less active 15 yr old cousin read with us and he was super into it! He even said the closing prayer! This is huge progress!! 
Tuesday we had lunch with Sister V. I absolutely LOVE her! We can all stay with her when we come back to visit. Then we had district meeting. It was different but pretty good. Then we did exchanges with Racine sisters and Sister Asper came with me to Kenosha. It was weird being companions again after a year!  We've both changed and grown a lot. It was a fun day with her. She told me about a lot of the disobedience problems in her district with other missionaries so I had to help her gain confidence to continue to be obedient even when the other missionaries try to make it the cool thing to not be obedient. So frustrating! But we had a lesson with the "P" family and taught the Plan of Salvation and set baptism dates with all of them for October 25th. :) They are all so excited and their only concern was getting their hair wet! haha. Then we had dinner with Sister "B". Love her so much! Then we had a bunch of other appointments for the night. It was a really great day.
Wednesday we saw a bunch of people! We had lunch with the "F"s. They are so funny. We had a really good lesson about keeping our covenants and continuing to try when we aren't perfect. Then we exchanged back and we headed out to the country to visit some people out there before our dinner appointment. We stopped by the ward mission leader's house because we are never "just in the neighborhood" so the one time we were we had to stop by. Sister "C" is hilarious and my favorite person ever! We had a blast chatting with her and she invited us to have a conference party and watch conference at their house for one last hooray before I get transferred! Yay I'm excited! Then later we had institute and it was Sister Z's first time teaching and she did amazing! I love institute! Wish I had one to go to while I was at FIDM! 
Thursday we had weekly planning and we had a mini freakout because we were planning for the last full month of our missions. SO WEIRD! But we were able to get ahold of a lot of people which was super good! Then we had a lesson with the "P"s. We brought a young woman with us because she goes to school with one of the daughters. She is amazing! She has such a strong testimony and is such a great example to me! Wish more girls were like her! She's our best friend in Young womens! The lesson went great! The "P"s really want to come to church but don't have a car or a way there, so that's a struggle. Then we had dinner with the "T"s and then headed off for Milwaukee to do an exchange with West Allis. I stayed in West Allis with Sister Silva. As soon as I got there I found out they are teaching this girl that I taught while I was there but kinda fell off the map. I had a dream about her like 2 days before exchanges and I was gonna tell them to try calling her but they are already teaching her again. How great is that? :)

Friday was an amazing day in "Stallis". I love it! We had a couple appointments in the morning with some less actives and then we went walking to contact potentials and street contact. We were able to talk to so many people and get a lot of great contacts and new investigators for them! We also ran into a lot of people telling us we were going to hell and that we were brainwashed. Haha. For every great solid new investigator, there was 2 revilers. Haha. Then we met up with Sarah W and had a lesson with her. She's doing sooo good. She just got her patriarchal blessing! She told us how her blessing talks about her helping the "undesired" and she was just so happy because she wants to go into Social work and she was like, "the guy would have had no way of knowing that!" Her testimony is so strong and she told us all about how she started dating some guy who tried to drift her away from church and then God told her she was getting off the path, so she broke up with him and headed back for the straight and narrow. She's doing great! I love her so much! She said she's going to camp out at the airport the day I fly out! haha. Then we met up with the RS president in West Allis, and we all had dinner together! We had a blast laughing and talking about old times. It was a perfect last exchange in West Allis even though Im secretly hoping they send me back there! 

Saturday we had correlation and then I asked for a blessing because my ankle has been killing me from running everyday. So I got a great blessing that was full of how much Heavenly Father is proud of me and he's grateful for the work I've done in this area. The blessing said HF is mindful of my needs and my families needs. :) It was very comforting! Afterward, we went to a member who's a foot doctor and he gave me a wrap and said to get it checked out after I get home. Then we had a couple lessons then it was RS Super Saturday and we took some fun classes on organization, family finances and hairstyling and sign language. During the finances one, the guy told me how to get out of debt! It was great! Then during the hairstyling one, the YW wanted me to teach them how to do my "perfect bun" Lol. Love the Young woman!  Then the ward put on a nice dinner for us all and then it was the broadcast. The Broadcast was amazing!!! I loved Uchtdorf's talk! All my questions I wrote down were answered and I am so excited for this weekend!!!
Sunday was amazing. President and Sister Cutler were visiting our ward and speaking in sacrament meeting. Our song went really well (even though me and sister reed both caught colds and weren't feeling very well) many people told us how much it touched them and how well we did. During 3rd hour, they had a combined YM/YW and President had all of us missionaries on a panel and asked us questions and stuff about missionary life and we had to answer them. It was super fun and got the youth involved. I love President!!! Also, President Mortimer from the Stake presidency was there and afterward, he came to speak to us and told us how much he felt the spirit from us and how he wishes our group of 6 missionaries in our ward could stay there for our whole missions. He thanked us for being so unified and amazing missionaries. That meant a lot to us! It was a great sunday!!!

I love you all sooo very much! Thank you for your support and prayers in my behalf. My mission is the best thing that has happened in my life and I am so glad the Lord sent me here to Kenosha. I love this town and I love the people here. They will be my friends forever. :) I hope you all have a wonderful day and enjoy watching conference! I will find comfort in knowing we are all watching our prophet and apostles at the same time. :) Also, tell Pebbles happy birthday for me this week! I love and miss all of you!!! See you in 6 short weeks!

Sister Karlie Marie Tanner <3