Sunday, December 1, 2013


I hope you all are doing well. I have not been keeping in touch with many of you and I apologize for that. I hope you all will consider my posts a personal message to you (Ya right). But, I must admit that I am a bad friend and I often get too busy and don't even respond to your emails or even know what is going on in your lives. This fast life gets to us all and we seem to be running all day failing to enjoy the beauty around us. I wish we could go back to the time before technology where we had to physically visit with someone instead of writing a post and expecting that it will let the other person know we are thinking of them. 

Even though we don't celebrate thanksgiving, I have been focusing on my blessings this month and remembering all that Heavenly Father has given me.  When I joined the church my life completely changed. All my focus changed and my very being changed. And I discovered that life, even though very hard at times, can be enjoyed. A famous Arabic writer, Najeeb Mahfooz, said: "The greatest degree of happiness results when we find someone who really loves us for who we are, and even loves us despite of who we are." (thanks Wisam for sharing that) Regardless of what we go through in life we can find happiness because the greatest being in the universe, God, loves us. And not only does He love us, but He is our Father. I am so grateful for that knowledge. 

Last week, some of the visitors' center couples and sisters cooked a thanksgiving meal for us. It was really good food and they did a wonderful job at decorating so we felt very special. Below are some pictures.

We had some Christmas decorations in storage and we took it out the other day and realized that we have so much stuff. We decorated the office and it looks really nice. Below are some pictures. My office then sister Cates' office:

I also got a small (real) Christmas tree. It is the smallest tree I ever saw (10 inches or so), but it was so cute I could not resist. So, it already feels like Christmas. 

Although I am very home sick and wish I could be in Bethlehem during Christmas, I am grateful to be here serving. We will get many chances to serve during December and it will be wonderful.
We have a couple who will be coming to serve in the office. Sister Cates and I will be training them. I hope to get everything organized and documented before I leave so that whoever does my job will be able to have notes on everything.

I have not posted this before, but a month ago my mission president asked me to extend my mission. I really wanted to stay because I am so happy here. However, after some thought I decided I need to go home to be with my mom. I have less than 2 months left and I know that December will go really fast because of the holidays.  I have been thinking about what to do after my mission and I actually have no idea. I think it is alright to not know, and to just go home to be with my family for a while before my next step. But, I am considering many options among which is to go back to my old job (although that will definitely be my last option). I will keep you posted.


  1. Thank you Sahar for all your very personalized posts -- I feel like they're all for me :)
    Thank you for your sisterly friendship, for your example, for your testimony, and for making me want to be a better example, increase my testimony, and be a better friend. I'm sorry my hope of coming out to see you during your mission didn't come to be.
    I'm happy to see you're in full swing of the Christmas spirit, with your cute little Christmas tree, too! I brought out our boxes of decorations, and now our living room is decorated . . . with boxes. Ha ha ha. Hopefully this week we'll get to open them up and dust off our lights, tinsel, etc., and make our house a little more festive. :)
    We love you, and wish you joy as you celebrate the season of the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. And may your mother be blessed as she awaits your return home.
    Alofa tele, Tiare

  2. Thanks for sharing a glimpse at your life in the Office . . . from your own working space to the Mail Room to Wicked (which I loved too), to Thanksgiving and Christmas. I hope your mother is doing well. I'm sure she's thrilled that 2 months are almost over . . . while the Office is already in mourning. Happy Holidays!

  3. Sahar, I am sending you Bill & Cheryl Porter from my ward. They reported yesterday. They are so excited to meet you. I can't believe your time is almost up. I love you!! Question for you - can you tell me any traditions or foods that Christians in Bethlehem do on Christmas? Ward party Friday... Jenn

  4. Thanks for the update. I wondered when you would be getting off your mission. It seems you have been there longer than a year. I guess not....or was your mission for 18 months?