Editor's Note: The Shaw Family (Paul, Julie, Erica and Madeline) has recently made a life changing decision. We will be moving to the Salt Lake City area in 2012 and will be settled there by the time Katie returns from her mission. This email is her response to receiving that news.
Okay, your news that you sent in your email was alot to take in. I won't lie, I did start crying. Texas will always be home to me, but I know that it must have been a really difficult decision to make, and as hard as it will be, you will see blessings from it. Funny story-- so we email here at the church, and I read the news that you were moving to Utah out loud to the 4 other missionaries here in Tampere-- 3 of whom are from Utah. I started crying and the Utahn missionaries all started cheering and said "Welcome to Zion, Sister Shaw!" Haha. It's a lot to take in right now, and I'm honestly not sure what to think. But I know the Lord has great things in store for our family.
Well, things continue to move right along here in Tampere! Sisar Brailsford and I were joined this week by Sisar Nelson. She arrived in the country last week, and we are so excited to have her here with us! She is from Virginia, but has been studying at Utah State University-- so we have all 3 major Utah universities represented in our companionship right now! It's kind of crazy, I feel like I'm still a new missionary here, and I'm already training! (Luckilly, with the help of Sisar Brailsford :))
Haha, my mind is still kind of racing right now, and I will talk to you all on Sunday, so in closing I will leave you this spiritual thought/experience from this past week. So, in a previous week's letter I sent to my mission president, I was telling him about how I was just going through a really hard time. He sent this advice to me: "Please learn to laugh when things get difficult. That talent will stand you in good stead over a life with children. Look for the miracles and the influence of the spirit each day and write down what you notice. The Lord is watching over you!" So that happened a few weeks ago.
Then this past week, we went to Helsinki for a trainer's meeting and to pick up our new companion. As the new group of missionaries walked into the room, one of the sisters stuck out to me and I felt like she was going to be our new companion. Then, at lunch, President Rawlings sat next to me and whispered into my ear: "that sister sitting on the far end of the table over there is your new companion." It was the same sister I felt like it would be! I told him that, and he replied "See, you need to be writing things like that down!" That is something I'm still coming to learn. We witness so many miracles around us each day, and if we don't take the time to notice and write them down, we will likely forget them. But as we do write them down, we will see that the Lord is with us.
I LOVE YOU ALL!!!