10:34 AM Marcie 2 Comments

There is a tradition here in the Colombia Cali mission that began long before the Prince era. Whenever there are missionaries finishing their mission, they come to the mission home for a lunch with our family and the office crew. Then they go around and tell us what they will miss and what they will not miss about their mission.

I feel it's only appropriate that I share a few of mine since I recently ended my time in the Colombia Cali mission.

What I will miss:

The office crew. These guys are so hilarious I can't get over it, and they know more English than they let on. I love how they call my mom "mom" in English. I love hearing their English "horror stories" of how scared they get when they have to call the parents of the North American missionaries who are going home, and they panic because they can't understand what they are saying when they start speaking too fast - hello, that is the story of my LIFE in Colombia. Elder "Alfo" Alfaro says the weirdest things in English like "we are not alone" and I die laughing - who is teaching him these things? P.S. whoever taught Elder Gallo the word "feisty," thank you. I also love that they are obsessed with the song Love Story meets Viva la Vida by Jon Schmidt. They begged me to play it for them, and you should have seen them dancing. I love when they come to our house and have ice cream, brownies, cookies, and pizza parties. Yes, pretty much whenever food is involved. It breaks my heart that I might never see them again.

How green it is here. I am obsessed with green. I think when I lived in Virginia I took it for granted because when I moved to Utah it pained me to live in the desert. Colombia is like Virginia on steroids. We're talking massive, never ending Andes mountain range, and I have never seen such beautiful scenery. It is breathtaking. It was so frustrating that no matter how hard I tried to take pictures, they never captured the beauty of Colombia.

Arequipe. Okay, why do we not have Arequipe in America. That stuff is golden. I love it almost as much as peanut butter. I would put it on ice cream, sandwiches, and brownies all the live long day if we had it.

Crepes & Waffles. Let me tell you, my friends. I have eaten at that restaurant three times now, and it is amazing as it sounds. We're talking dinner crepes, dessert crepes, dessert waffles, and entire dessert BOOK - not menu - with ice cream masterpieces. Someone please call Bogotá and tell them to come to America.

My parents. I don't know if any of you have left your parents for 3 years, but I am not looking forward to it. I already miss them terribly. I don't want to grow up. I don't know how to take care of adult things like cars and money. I feel like I have been thrown into the real world, and the worst part is that I don't have my mommy or daddy a phone call away. And that is all I will say because I want to cry every time I think about it.

What I will not miss:
Getting stared at by everyone who sees me, the language barrier, fearing for my life every time we drive in Cali, people telling me I look like I'm fourteen, not knowing what I'm eating, lack of cell phone/communication with friends in America, fear of getting Dengue every time I have a mosquito bite, possible cold showers, waking up at 3 AM to travel, and the fear of accidentally drinking unfiltered water via brushing my teeth or showering and dying.

My last night in Colombia I was treated to a song by the office crew. Of course, they were trying to make me cry, but it was still precious. I love them. I love Colombia. I miss it.


when words fail, music speaks

8:37 AM Marcie 0 Comments

Today I am grateful that music isn't written in Spanish or English, and that I can play piano at whatever conference, fireside, baptism, or meeting that I attend, and everyone understands me. Sure, I can't speak your language, but I can play a mean musical number.

On Saturday we attended a baptism of a woman who had her severely handicapped brother with her. He walked around, shouted, and was a bit of a distraction. But whenever music started playing, he tapped right along to the beat in perfect rhythm. It's almost as if the music transcended his handicap, spoke to him, and he understood it perfectly. Music, my friends, is a wonderful thing. 

On a lighter note, I stumbled upon this gem today, recorded over a year ago. 
Were we talented or what?


anorexia, day one

4:47 PM Marcie 3 Comments

List of things I've eaten so far today:



 All my besties would be so proud. 
If I can keep this up I'll lose 3 pounds in no time.


every member's a missionary

10:15 PM Marcie 0 Comments

Although I'm not planning on serving a mission for our church, I am experiencing a mission. I have lived in the mission home, met 165 missionaries, inspected missionaries' apartments with the zone leaders, attended zone conferences and trainings, met investigators, and even put in my two cents about upcoming transfers. I've seen a new country and culture for the first time and have eaten questionable food. I know exactly which missionaries call my parents and whine to them, those who have been in some sticky situations, and those who are sick. I know which are obeying the rules and which are, well, most certainly not. Sometimes I feel like I know more about these missionaries and their issues than their parents know.

There was something special about last week. We had zone conference here in Cali with four zones. Like usual, the meeting started with some lucky Latin missionaries being chosen to give testimonies or short talks in English. The meeting was instantly flooded with the spirit as more and more volunteers lined up to give simple testimonies and express their love for the Lord in a language that is foreign and hard for them. That is certainly something that we understand!

That night, we were invited to a baptism. The elders asked me to accompany them for a special musical number, and let me tell you, there is something about the power with which the missionaries sing that gets me every time - even if I did have to play on a junky keyboard with no pedal (plink, plink, plink).

On Sunday, our office elders planned a family night at our house for about eight of their investigators. I was right smack dab in the middle of missionary work. I sat there in awe as my friends taught the restoration of the gospel and the importance of living prophets and apostles, and the spirit filled the room. I even participated - in Spanish, mind you. WOW they are good. I am so impressed with these elders! It was a really special experience. It made me realize how lucky I am to have been born into this gospel and to know so many wonderful missionaries around the world right now doing that very same thing.

To top it off, this week we were in Armenia, Manizales, and Pereira for zone conferences. While el presidente was in interviews, my mom and I decided to walk around Manizales. We were approached by a police man, and while we worried about what he could possibly want, we were pleasantly surprised when he said, "Where are you from? I want to practice my English." This sweet man offered to give us a tour of the Monumento a los Colonizadores in the best English he could manage. When he asked what my mom's nametag was, we found ourselves explaining the differences between our church and other churches, and I had my first opportunity to share the gospel! I am so glad to be a part of this church!

 At some of the conferences I have been pressured into giving my testimony in Spanish. My response used to be, "but I'm not a missionary!" I've been quickly out-ruled as they remind me that "every member is a missionary!"
I guess that's true. 
I am such a missionary. and I love it.


everyone has a rebellious phase... or two

5:48 PM Marcie 0 Comments

Who is this brunette wonder, you ask? 
Your favorite mission mom, Hermana Prince!

She survived her first trip to the Salón de Belleza and still looks beautiful,
even if her hair did end up a "poco más oscuro" than planned.

The two of us went on a little outing today, and she was feeling a little rebellious.
She decided to go "incognito."
Pants instead of a skirt
Dyed hair
She almost didn't wear her name tag.

Okay, so maybe it didn't last very long.
Besides, it's hard to disguise the fact that she is a wonderful mission mom.
I suppose everyone needs a little rebellion in their lives. 
For me, it was when I was 15.

However, I take this as an okay to have a rebellious stage (or moment) when I'm in my fifties. 
Look out world!