Monday, August 31, 2015

Week 9

Our first week into transfers went really well!  I was super stressed at first, knowing that I have a lot more responsibility now in training, but I feel like I've grown a lot more as a missionary because of it!  I've been more in tune with the spirit, I've received a lot more promptings on what to do, I'm not really worried about anything out here anymore, and I've been a lot better at teaching.

We had a lot of cool experiences when we were looking for more people to teach.  One lady just walked up to us and told us we should come talk to her family at their lemonade stand!  We talked to them for about 40 minutes.  They gave us cookies and her husband gave me a book he wrote about the Bible.  Then there was another guy who was just sitting in his driveway and had a lot of questions for us.  One of his friends used to be Mormon so he knew a good amount about our church.  We are going to go back and see both of them later this week!

Saturday morning we got to be witnesses for a kid's baptism from the ward.  When we got home there was a crazy storm!  The wind knocked over trees all over the roads, there was a lot of smashed cars in the parking lots.  We helped people clean up some of the mess and then we went out and taught a couple of investigators.  Our power was out until the next day and we got soaked in the rain!  It's been nice to have the rain though.  Since the power was out, nobody was in their houses because they were all in their cars listening to the Seahawks game, so I had a good chance to talk sports with some people!

Hope you all have a good week!


Other tidbits:

I asked about people they are teaching:  The granddaughter to the ward member is named Stephanie and we taught her last night.  She is committed to read 1 Nephi.  The guy who just walked into the stake center is Justin, we are still teaching him, just not this past week.  He was pretty sick but we have an appointment Tuesday.  We got him a copy of the Book of Mormon in Tamil and he said he'd read it.  He said he prays a lot already, so that is good!  There are two people we are teaching that were here when I started.  Brenda is one of them,  she's in her 50s and takes care of her grandkids.  She wants them to grow up in a church.  She's been really busy with her daughter's wedding and stuff but that's all over now.  The other is Sharon.  First time I met her we talked for 2 hours.

re:  new companion/training:  Elder Skelton doesn't have driving privileges but he doesn't want to drive anyway.  The training part came to me really easily.  I don't even think about it anymore.  My first day I spent my personal study time planning what we could talk about for the next two hours but teaching is just easy for me now.  They had me teach Gospel Doctrine again too, and it's just easy.  I don't worry about it.  We get along pretty well.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Week 8 - 1st Transfer - Staying in Bothell - Trainer Now

Hey Everyone!

So this week I had the chance to go to the Seattle Temple!  It was a perfect day.  We went with two recent converts and did baptisms.  They both loved it and it was just a great experience for them.  Our ward missionary came with us also, he's been great about helping us try to get people in the ward involved with missionary work.  It's a lot more effective to work through the members than it is to knock on doors.

We've also been working with the son of the sister on the left.  He's 19 so we get along pretty well.  We've really just been hanging out with him and playing basketball, but he's agreed to take the lessons from us!  We are really excited for him, he's probably the coolest person I've met in Seattle so far.

Yesterday was tranfers!  I got a call the night before from the zone leaders saying that I was staying and Elder Follett was leaving.  I miss him!  The morning of transfers I got a call from one of the APs letting me know that I would be a trainer!  Apparently President thinks I learned enough to train a new missionary after just 6 weeks of being here.  Technically the training period is supposed to be 12 weeks, but I'm really excited for the opportunity to learn better how to teach.  As a trainee I was taught a good amount of lessons but Elder Follett really did the bulk of it.  This is going to be a huge change for me and I'm stocked to start taking the leads in teaching.

My trainee's name is Elder Skelton.  He's fresh out of high school and he was in marching band just like me!  He's from Utah and pretty nice.  He has a strong desire to learn and I know I have a lot to learn from him too!
I didn't get to mail home on Monday because they like to move preparation day to Tuesdays during transfers, I'm not so sure why, but it didn't even matter because transfers lasted until 7pm.  So we're just doing e-mail and shopping today and then we'll be back to work.  I think usually transfers are supposed to end a lot earlier but we had a group of 29 come in, and each of those missionaries has to meet with President and Sister Schofield.  While they were doing that, I was in a first-time trainer class, so it was a long day!

Love you all and thanks for the support!

Other Tidbits:
re:  Washington Fires - We had a decent amount of smoke here 3 days ago!  Its been gone ever since though.

re:  Driving the car since he is the senior companion now - YUP I got the sweet new car!!  I'm worried I'm going to get lost sometimes.  I didn't pay attention to directions as much as I probably should have.  I got us home from the mission office OK and that is what I was most worried about.

re:  Bella getting leftover pork strips from Grandma's purse - I'm trying not to laugh hard in the middle of the library at that!  LOL

re:  boxes on transfer week - A box!! No, not yet!  They hold packages on transfer week because they don't want to send them to the wrong place.  I'll probably get it Friday!!

re:  breakfast - I used to make smoothies for breakfast.  I would put banana, some vanilla yogurt, milk and some protein that I bought in there and it was pretty good.  I learned how to make a great egg sandwich from Elder Follett.  He puts cream cheese on it.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Week 7

This week went really well!  My companion had a gift card to Red Robin so we went there and I got bottomless root beer floats for just $5.  The mugs were huge so I only got through four!  Later that night we ate with an investigator who cooked us lamb and rice, and it was really good.  I was pretty stuffed that day.
Our car was recalled this week and we now drive a 2013 Ford Fusion!  It's definitely an upgrade from the last car.  We just got done waxing it a couple of hours ago.  It is looking pretty sweet!!
It finally rained here!!  Elder Follett and I were so stoked, we went out and just knocked doors for a while.  People were a lot nicer just because they felt bad for us being out in the rain, but we loved it!

Last night we had a new member and missionary fireside.  We have one every month and it's where recent converts to the Church get up and share their experiences, and then our mission president speaks.  It's really awesome!  We had people speak Korean, Spanish and French.  Some missionaries would translate for them.  It was really great and motivational!

Not too much else went on this week.  We've just been continuing teaching the people we've been working with for the past month.  Transfers are next week, so we'll see if I'm here next time I write!  I'd be pretty surprised if they move me out of this area though!  We did get one new person to teach, someone just walked into the stake center and spoke with the stake president about taking lessons from us, so we're definitely looking forward to that this week!!

Elder Robb

Other Tidbits:

re:  Becca getting a job - I'm so happy to hear Becca got the job!  She told me the whole process took 4 hours (dropping off the application to being hired) and that's pretty unheard of.  I know she'll be really good there, she is friendly and that's the most important thing.

re:  Steph tweet was shared with him "It's 1:35am and my mom is cooking bacon . . ."  I was cooking it for a salad we were taking the next day - That's awesome haha I miss your cooking!!

Monday, August 10, 2015

Week 6

Last week we had the chance to go on exchanges and I got paired with our District Leader!  It was awesome; we had a lot of success.  We were just out knocking doors when we ran into a woman who had just got off work.  We sat down at her front door and taught her and her two young kids about Jesus.  She gave us some lemon bread and vitamin water and told us we made her day!

My companion used to work at Jimmy Johns so we went there last week and he was super excited.  It was my first time and it was pretty good!

On Thursday we planned to not use the car all day, but we were feeling kind of lazy after a few miles of walking.  Well apparently we left the lights on overnight so our battery was dead and we ended up walking the whole day anyways!!  It work out though, walking made it so that we could have good conversations with the people we met on the street.  It also lead us to tract in a neighborhood that we definitely wouldn't have done otherwise.  The last door that we knocked on had a guy who said that he had been praying for us to come by.  He said he had goosebumps when he opened the door!  It was really a cool experience and it's funny to think it probably never would have happened if we didn't leave the headlights on.

Yesterday at church a member brought her granddaughter to us and said that she's interested in taking lessons from us!  We've been teaching a lot more lessons recently and our schedule is starting to fill up pretty quickly so we feel like our work has paid off.  We're really excited!

My favorite thing about the mission is study time.  Maybe that's a little selfish given that it only helps me and my spirituality but I learn a lot every day.  I read at least 10 pages out of the Bible and a few from the BoM every morning.  I had to set that quota for myself because I had trouble staying awake during it sometimes. haha  I just got to Leviticus 8 where they talk about the priesthood robes and such, I never knew all of that was in the Bible!!!  When I just stumbled across it, that was really cool.

Another favorite thing about the mission is eating dinner with the members on Sunday and Monday nights.  It's really fun to get to know the members and learn about the different cultures and backgrounds they come from!  It's also super fun when they have lots of kids!

Whenever people ask me where I'm from and I say New York, they always tell me I have a little bit of an accent!  I'm always so shocked to hear that.  Sometimes people tell me I look like Shia Labeouf, too.  I've never heard that until I moved here.  Oh and we're officially "regulars" at the Dairy Queen!

Oh and before I forget, we were knocking doors and I saw an RPI jersey hanging on the wall in someone's house!!  Unfortunately they weren't interested in church stuff but it made for good conversation.  I never expected someone to have one of those here and he was really surprised I knew what it was.

Pretty great week!  Miss you guys!


Monday, August 3, 2015

Week 5 - No Official Update

Ben ran out of time to write his weekly update to e-mailing back and forth with me and his dad (and I'm guessing answering other e-mails).  He did send some pictures this week of his apartment, the sushi he is loving and the view of Mt. Baker (according to his companion, Rad thinks differently) from his plane.  Stephanie noted the weights in the last picture he said they are 20# weights so he is happy.

Tidbits from our e-mails:

I asked how the alarm clock is working out for him - The alarm clock does well at waking him.  He said, "I set it for 6:31 so that over the course of 2 years I'll get an extra 12-1/2 hours of sleep."

New Mission President - "One rule that already changed is that we are now allowed to hang out with other missionaries in our zone on pday.  It used to be that we could only be with our companion.  President Schofield is really nice.  He was a judge though so he can be serious."

Investigators - We probably have 5.  I feel good about Patrick.  He's from Africa and really friendly."

Today - "We are going to Jimmy Johns and then shopping.  I don't know if any other missionaries are playing ball this week but we might do that.

Weeding we did this morning - "WOW that's a lot of weeding, should have got the missionaries to help. haha  We've been doing a little bit of service because there's an older family in our ward who needs help like that.  We weeded and put in a new sprinkler system for them.  It's probably going to rain for the next 9 months but people here are worried about their lawns not being green.