Monday, July 27, 2015

Week 4 Update

Hey Everyone!

It's crazy how fast the week flew by!  This past week we found a couple more people to teach.  We had a couple of training meetings also.  On Thursday we went to the mission offices for a training in the morning for all the new missionaries.  Then we had to stay for another session because they had second-transfer training, which includes my companion.  So for the hour in between we went to downtown Bellevue and just talked to people there, which was super fun!  Hopefully one of these days I'll get called to serve in Bellevue or downtown Seattle.

Elder Follett and I have been trying to come up with more creative ways to find people to teach.  On Saturday we went to the park and were going to find people to play ultimate frisbee with but, of course, it rained so nobody was there.  We did end up running into one person who had a little poodle the size of my hand, so that was fun, and she seems pretty interested, so we'll teach her this week!

While we were tracting the other day we ran into these Hispanic kids who just followed us around and knocked on doors for us.  That was super fun, now every time we go to those apartments they come up to us and ask us for more of the pamphlets we hand out to people.

Yesterday I had the chance to speak in sacrament meeting about family history.  It was a hard topic for me but I think it went well.  I also had to teach in second hour about the sacrament and the Sabbath day, so I had a lot on my plate but everything worked out well.

It finally did start to rain.  All the locals tell me it will be like this until next June.


Tidbits from other e-mails:

What was hard about the family history topic?
Just that I don't know anything about it. haha I've never really had experience with it, not too much at least.  I said in my talk that when I received the topic I wished I could have called you because you know so much more about it than I do.

Re:  kids he mentions in e-mail above
Yeah, the kids are fun.  Just wish their parents spoke better English.  We went over to Fernando's and his mom wanted us to pray for her aunt.  We did at the door and that was a good experience.  We referred the family to the spanish elders.

Re:  box Grandma Rose sent
Yeah, I did get Granma's box!  Lots of good food in there.  I got it at the zone meeting Friday so it was super awesome.

How many miles can you put on the car?
900 Miles, unless we win the car inspection at transfers and the "gold plates", then you get an extra 100 miles.  The mile limit depends on the area.  I think we are at 700 or something, maybe less, and it gets reset this week.  . . . I think it is based off how clean the car is.  Elder Follett loves cars so we keep it pretty nice.  Last p-day we waxed it. haha

Re:  Bella using a retainer as a chew toy
I can't believe the dog could get up to the table!!  Has she grown?  Thank goodness the new retainer wasn't too spendy.  I miss having Bella around!

Monday, July 20, 2015

Week 3 - First Bothell Area Update

My first week in Seattle went well!  I'm serving in Bothell which is pretty cool.  Most of the people here are Muslim and we don't have too many people to teach so we've been trying to find some people.  It's been unusually hot here this summer but luckily we have a car so it's all good.  My trainer has only been out for six weeks himself so he's pretty new like me, but he says you really get the hang of things after a few weeks.  His goal for me is to have me training someone new next transfer, but I'd rather get moved around so I can experience a different area!

The food here is pretty good.  I can't believe I never tried sushi before now!  We've had it a lot because there's this awesome sushi place right by our apartment.  I'm starting to get used to the missionary schedule, the only thing I probably need more experience with is teaching lessons!  Hopefully we'll have better luck finding people these next couple of days.

We had a chance to do some yard work for a couple members on Friday, which was fun.  One of the people we are teaching named DJ wants to play tennis with us at some point so that'll be fun to learn.

Miss you all!


Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Arrived in Seattle

They're letting me e-mail a little today because they originally planned for us to have more time yesterday to talk to home.

My companion is Elder Follett and he's pretty cool.  I'm serving in Bothell North Creek, which is the northernmost part of the Seattle mission and we have a car.  I got here late in the day yesterday so we only really talked with one person who was just baptized and we went home.  Today we have a lot more planned and people to see.

It's kind of stressful but hopefully it gets easier!!  This area has been good with baptisms lately, my trainer has only been here for 6 weeks and has had 4 baptisms already and one is scheduled for the 25th.  We are going to visit with that person in a couple of hours.  It's hard for me to know where everyone is in their progression because they've been being taught and I'm just jumping in.

We only get fed by members on Sunday and Monday nights here because they believe that the 5-7 time frame is prime for knocking doors because people are home, so I don't have to worry about gaining too much weight.  We just went shopping and I bought a bunch of produce and some mac n cheese and spaghetti to get me through the week.  I'll get another p-day on Monday so it feels like I've had a lot of opportunity to talk to home these past few days, which is awesome!!  It was great to call home from the airport.

These are some more pictures from the MTC and the Provo temple.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Week 2

Everyone says the second week here flies by and it definitely does!

Sunday was really long with a bunch of meetings for zone leaders.  The days here are long but the we weeks do fly by.  This week we picked up a couple of "investigators" named Stephen and Jonathan.  They were both super awesome, every time we visited with Jonathan he would show us some of his DJ music.  Stephen was really into sports so it was easy for us to talk to him, and he kept us updated on how the US was doing in soccer!!  Both of them were awesome, we even got Stephen to commit to baptism.

On Wednesday, Elder Hymas and I introduced ourselves to the two new districts and then gave them a tour.  It's funny how one week ago we were in their shoes.  Later that night we had an eating contest and my companion had four meals, which was pretty impressive for 30 minutes!!

Most of the days here we spend our mornings teaching investigators and then the afternoons and evenings in class.  We learn a lot but it's pretty tiring.  Luckily we get gym time every day.

On Friday we watched President Packer's funeral in the middle of the day.  There were some good talks and it was fun to hear about his sense of humor!

We fly to Seattle at 7:30 am on Tuesday, so we'll be up pretty early.  I'm really excited to get to the city and start teaching!  It's crazy to think a week from now I'll be doing some real teaching.

Miss you guys!


The top 4 Elders on the right are going to Seattle.  The Sister with a white tag served a mission in Mexico and teaches 1 of his classes.  The others missionaries in the picture are headed to New Hampshire.

His schedule at the MTC.

Other tidbits from e-mailing back and forth:
How many are in your class?  There are 9 of us, 6 Elders and 3 Sisters.  4 of us Elders are going to Seattle together ad the rest are going to the New Hampshire Manchester mission.

What time does your day start?  I wake up at 6:30 and we usually don't have anything until breakfast at 7:30, so we spend that time just studying personally or showering or preparing a lesson for our investigators.  We met with Jonathan after breakfast, had gym time, and then would meet with Stephen after lunch.  Those first few hours are pretty good.  Then we went to class which was great because I learned how to better present lessons.  At the end of the day we go back to our room and get ready for bed.  Some nights a member from the branch presidency will come and talk with us about Sacrament Meeting prep and Priesthood.

What do you have to do for Sacrament Meeting?  Basically, every missionary is supposed to prepare a 5 minute talk on whatever the meeting topic is.  Tomorrow will be the Atonement.  Only 2 are supposed to speak but I feel like there will be more.  Last week we didn't have to do anything because it was testimony meeting but I did have to teach a little bit in Priesthood about giving blessings.

Can you skip lunch and stay at the gym longer?  No.  They are really strict on going at our scheduled time because they don't want the gym to get too crowded.

You said last week you were ready for Seattle, do you feel more prepared now?  I feel like I definitely needed this week.  Last week I learned the basics but this week we learned how to use the Spirit in the lessons so that really mattered a lot more and I feel like you can only learn that with experience.

Found he is more like his father than I realized talking about the plane trip there.  I was super thirsty the whole time!  I think they came through with the water and I didn't realize it was free and then I fell asleep the next time they did it.

Is the food living up to your expectations?  The food is good but it sits weird in my stomach, maybe it's because I just eat too much.  I haven't been hungry since I got here.  I checked my weight and it's about the same.  Must be the gym that keeps it neutral.  I'm sure I won't eat this much next week though.

Responding to Becca's e-mail with her ACT and SAT scores, camp and MTC departure.  A 27!!! That's so awesome!! Upper 20s is great but yeah, if you can take it again, why not.  haha, but that's so great!!

I'm glad you had fun at camp; the twins sounded like they really enjoyed it.  Archery was always my favorite thing at camp, so that's pretty awesome!

We have to leave the MTC at 3am or something crazy like that, so I'll be getting to Seattle really early.  I'm definitely excited to go.  

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Week 1

Hey Everyone,

Well I've been here for three full days now and am starting to get the hang of things.  My first plane rides went really smoothly, I slept off and on through it, getting to the MTC was really weird but I've gotten used to wearing church clothes all the time and getting up early.

My roommates are all really cool!  My companion's name is Elder Hymas from Nevada.  We were both called as zone leaders on just our second day and that will take effect on Sunday, so that's pretty awesome!  Four of us in the room will be going to Seattle and the other two are going to New Hampshire.

Right now we are working a lot on preparing lessons based on what we think our investigators need.  The only person we are teaching right now is Andre, and last night we taught him how to pray and it was pretty cool to watch him do that and definitely feel the spirit.  Next wee we add two more investigators to our list so we will be pretty busy preparing a bunch of lessons.  It's awesome to have some of these lessons down already, I feel pretty ready to go to Seattle right now.  After the second day it honestly felt like it had already been a week!  The days are long here but now we are starting to get gym time which is a nice break from the classroom.

Later tonight we are going to go to the parking lot and watch the fireworks at the stadium so that will be pretty cool!  One bummer is that the temple is actually closed for the two weeks that I am here, but we'll still get to go walk there and take pictures.

I love and miss you guys!


Other tidbits responding to e-mails I sent him:

 We just finished lunch and before that we played ball and worked out in the gym.

What types of classes do you take there?  We talk a lot about prayer and teaching by the spirit.

Are your investigators at the MTC real or acting?  Yesterday our investigator was just our teacher, but next week we have a couple of guys named Stephen and Jonathan who may or may not be real.  They don't tell us but I'm sure one of them is legit at least.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Elder Robb

He is officially Elder Robb.  He was set apart as a full-time missionary last night by the Stake President.
He left this morning and is already in Salt Lake waiting for his shuttle to the MTC.  Hopefully he has connected with other missionaries while waiting.