July 15, 2013
Things are going much better in Colorado. I'm getting into the lifestyle, and the days just ruuuuuntooogether. There's a lot going on!
We had exchanges on Thursday, and I was with the District Leader, Elder Beuhecker. Not my favorite thing. I had to go to their apartment, so I had to sleep in someone else's bed and use their towel and bring over all of my toiletries and clothes. I didn't end up bringing the right kind of clothes and... blah. Also, the work in the area I exchanged in is not going nearly as well as where Elder Curth and I are serving. But it was just for one day and now I'm back where I belong!
I think I may have grown since I left on my mission, because on Wednesday night I asked Jimmer how tall he was and he said 6'2" or maybe 6'1" without his shoes on. We compared heights, and I was about as tall with my shoes on as he was without his. He said I was probably about 6'0". I don't know if that's true or not, but we can just keep hoping! But anyway, Jimmer Fredette's parents-in-law live in our ward, so he and his wife came over to dinner when we ate at their house on Wednesday. Jimmer and Whitney live in Highlands Ranch (during the off-season). Jimmer also came to church in our ward yesterday because his and Brother Wonnacott's (his father-in-law's) wives were out of town. He's a cool guy. I told him when he goes back to Sacramento (to play for the Kings) he has to ask the elders in his ward if they know me, because there was a whole district in my zone at the MTC that was going to Sacramento.
On Saturday night we went over to the Holmes' for dinner. They just had a son return from his mission in Mexico and are sending one out on Wednesday to serve in Brazil. They invited all of their close non-member friends over for dinner and a lesson with the missionaries! So the two aforementioned sons, Elder Curth and I taught the first lesson, the lesson of the Restoration. There were twelve people there!! It was a good lesson, and the Spirit was there.
We have a few notable investigators progressing towards baptism soon. One is Danielle. Her husband is a member who has been inactive for a long time. He has two sons (5ish and 7) from another marriage (shared custody). The younger one is named Peyton. The older one, Xander (that's a guess on the spelling; it's pronounced "Zander") is super, super smart! We asked someone to read a scripture and he was so excited! We were a little apprehensive, it being the scriptures and all, and he being seven... But he jumped in and whipped right past words like 'repentant' and 'whosoever' without missing a beat! He's so cool. He loves the lessons, and any time we visit them he asks, "What lesson are we learning today? I want another lesson!" Anywhoo, the father, Bernie, knows a ton about the church, and his wife Danielle is really receptive and kind. They have two sons together: Wayne, who is about Isac's age, and Sterling, who is just a couple of months old. Wayne is so funny!! He loves it when the missionaries shake his hand or give him a fist bump! And Sterling always looks up at you and then gets this surprised look. Haha! Danielle is getting baptized a couple of weeks after they get married in October. She's totally committed to it, they just have to be married first. Bernie is going to baptize her, and then about a month or so later, Xander. They already feel like an active LDS family!
Another progressing investigator is Myrna. She's about 72, I think, and probably 4'6". She's really nice, and active in the bell choir in her Lutheran church. One of her big reservations about getting baptized is having to leave the bell choir! Her late daughter was married to an active member of the church who's in our ward. (Her daughter was also an active member).
We went to a farewell party for Travis Oldham (oldum) a while ago. He's going to Tai Chung, Taiwan! The exact same mission his brother went to!! He has a friend named Nicola who is an investigator. Nicola is 18 and just graduated. For the sake of picturing her, she has boy-short hair. We taught her a lesson last week, and she is so receptive and excited about all of the new things she is learning! She came to church for Travis' farewell two weeks ago, and then came to all three hours yesterday with his mom! She said, "It just keeps getting cooler!" I can see her getting married in the temple someday. It was so cool at church, because the speakers in sacrament meeting seemed to be hand-picked for her. They were all members of the singles' ward, and one was an 18-year-old recent convert who is a girl!! The Lord is in the smallest details of the Church. They talked about how the singles' ward has helped them remain active.
Those are our three that we anticipate getting baptized soon!
So! I will try to remember and answer some of your questions.
Elder Curth is from Ohio. And no, he is not trunky! He's been a trainer almost his entire mission, so he knows what he's doing, and on some level, I think he knows the significance of his influence on me. That could be one reason he's not trunky, but he's also just a really good missionary.
It's just me and Elder Curth in the apartment!
We do our emailing at the Family History Center at one of the ward buildings.
We have a car! We cover two wards right now, but rumor has it they will be splitting our two wards into two areas with this next transfer in August, which means I will need a bike. But guess what!! My companion is going home next transfer, and won't need his bike! He said he would sell it and all of the accessories to me for $250. I don't know if you put money back on my card, but you should. I didn't really lose my wallet that first day, I just misplaced it for about an hour.
We have dinner appointments EVERY night. A few nights ago, I was tortured when the bishop MADE me eat two ice cream sandwiches. I don't know how Elder Curth isn't fat. He eats at least three times as much as me. Last night we had Hawaiian haystacks! The brother served in the Japan East Mission from '70-'72. He says "Onu" to Dad... But HEY!! I met someone who served in the Osaka Japan Mission!!! A brother in the ward from Canada served there a few years after Dad left. I thought you would like to hear that, Dad.
We eat lunch at our apartment. I bought a 12-pack of off-brand mac and cheese, but it was disgusting!!! So I got Kraft. Once in a while, like after weekly district meetings, we will go out for lunch. And yes, I have cereal for breakfast. Special K fruits and yogurt, or Malt-o-meal Mini Wheats, Cheerios, or Cinnamon Toast Cruch. They give us each a credit card with $139 per month. And they reimbursed me for the baggage fee I had to pay to fly to Denver.
It's been raining here a lot recently, which is ironic because they told us when we got here that the state was in a drought. But everyone assures me they've had more rain in the past two weeks than in the last four months. I don't like it when other people drive, so I can't wait until I'm the assigned driver. Or we're on bikes. D&C 61:3! That's one thing that makes me not feel too bad about the idea of being on bikes.
Way cool that you're loving the play, Dad! Hale is my second home! You look great in costume in that picture. Keep it up and enjoy it! Also, both of you keep it up with the gym! We worked out last Monday, and I was sore for a super long time. My left arm was hurting, so I kept stretching it, and it hurt worse and worse, so I stopped stretching it and used my shoulder bag (scriptures) as a sling for a couple of days. Now it's better! By the way, I carry that shoulder bag everywhere.
I'm sure I'm forgetting something!! But thank you thank you for the letters and packages! They mean the world and a half! Kai sent be a big package with a bunch of stuff, including a tie she made! It's a cool, teal, paisley one.
I will certainly try my very best to write to everyone who writes me and sends me things. It means SO much to me!
But in case it takes me some time,
Please thank Libby a bushel for the toffee! The night before we left the MTC, there were a bunch of Elders from another district over at our apartment, and we shared snacks and stuff. They loved the toffee, and someone asked me then next day if I had more! I did, so I gave him some.
Same with the zucchini bread! MAN that stuff is good!
Thank Allison Macpherson for the sweet letter, and tell her I will write her back as soon as I can. Tell her it means a lot!
Thanks Brandon and Marissa for the letters, I will certainly write you, too!
Thanks Isac, for the awesome picture!!
Thank you so much for the song and the picture, Carrie!!
I love you all and wish you the best with all that's going on in life! You are in my prayers!
P.S. I will try to send some pictures, but I make no promises this week. I forgot my cord. QUACK!
A Thought from Mom:
"That which we persist in doing becomes easier to do; not that the nature of the thing has changed, but that our power to do has increased."
--A favorite saying of President Heber J. Grant