sister julia mae anderson… MY sister, now a sister to everyone. Sister Missionary!
Back when she got her call it felt like we had all the time in the world… 18 weeks ago, one wedding and holiday season later and she is off and it flew by!
she's so ready, and SOO full of excitement and the spirit to get out in the field! Her farewell was last sunday, she bore deep testimony of the atonement and her belief in changing to become like Christ, so truly beautiful.
Getting her off was a bit of an adventure itself…
One week before she left: visa, passport, all travel needed essentials arrived and she was set, yay!
Monday night our family went out to our "last" dinner together for a while and enjoyed some Habit Burger (our fav) then went back to our house where the stake president joined us and we held the most beautiful meeting and ju was officially set apart as a full time missionary for the church of jesus christ of latter day saints! What a cool thing!
Tuesday morning I left school early to rush home to spend those last couple hours with my sister before we took her to the airport. She was packing up last minute must-haves and trying to stuff photos in any extra space she had in her suit case, we laughed so hard, and couldn't believe she was finally leaving! We were about to head out and mom got a text informing her of julia's flight being delayed. Sweet! We had time for one more "last" lunch together, we all went to Plates and Palettes, ran a few more errands, and to make a long story short… her flight got SO delayed to the point where she missed her connecting flight from San Francisco to New Zealand. There weren't any more flights to get her there until the next day! So…. after julia had said goodbye to her house and "drove down her street for the last time," we brought her back home with us. We were pretty excited to get one more day with her, but she was distraught and trying so hard to be so strong!
Ju finally made it on an airplane to Los Angeles Wednesday night after a day of pedicures, and "one for reals last lunch together" at Zupas! ;) We hung out with her in the airport for a little over an hour until she absolutely had to get through security and to her terminal.
I'm gonna MISS HER SO MUCH. Goodbye was so so bitter-sweet. I think I had more nervous/excited butterflies than she even did. But of course about half an hour before she had to go she tells us,
"Guys don't feel bad if I don't cry when I say goodbye to you, okay? I really love and i'll miss you but I don't feel sad about this."
haha pretty sure we all made up for the crying.
She was able to call my mom Thursday afternoon (Friday morning in New Zealand) and let her know she had arrived safely! Oh joyous news! Her MTC president's wife greeted her with hugs and her mission tag, fed her breakfast and Julia was so excited to be there.
For anyone who is interested I will be keeping a blog of pictures and emails that Julia sends home while she is out on her adventure.
You can find it HERE: sisterjuliaanderson.blogspot.com -sister in new zealand