Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Well, yesterday was a day of firsts for me. In all of my other areas we did everything based off of references. This new area is without a single reference. So yesterday I knocked on doors for the first real time in my mission, and I counted. We did 109 doors. I don’t know if that is like a ton or very few because I have never done it before. But hey!
I am currently in Nova Aldeota; however, transfers are this weekend and we will see what happens! I could go anywhere, or stay here for a very long time. This could be a weird one because, sometimes you get a feeling, but since everything has been so weird, we have no idea!!!
Well, I think my companion has been out just one more transfer than I have. I think it is actually only a month. He is the stiffest Brazilian I have met yet, which is good, but sometimes he takes it a little too far, so it is like “just calm down”. For example, our area is hard, people here really do not want us, and there are some defined reasons as to why. But he seems to take the area not baptizing to be his fault. But he just needs to relax a bit, and I think he would do much better. But we shall see!
I have not received your package yet.  I probably won’t get it for a month and a half to two months. Sometimes it is quicker but really there is no rhyme or reason to the timing of mail here. Basically it gets here when someone feels like it.
I just saw the computer design for the new Rome Temple!!! That is so cool!! That means our Fortaleza temple is right around the corner!!!
 The other day I was really missing band! I was feeling like I wanted to compete again so bad!!!

Well, this week I am down to 80 centavos... about 45-50 cents in the US. Our money that was supposed to fall in our accounts today... hasn’t fallen... so, until it does I don’t have money!!! haha it is pretty funny!!!

I am still getting over my cold, but I will get there. I wish I could go duck hunting!!!

Logan better write me... I am closing on my 8 months and have only one letter from him... That is a little disappointing! Logan needs to write me more. You need to write me more Logan!!! Don’t think I still can’t get people to force you to write me from 10000 miles away!!!!
By the way, I am reading some books right now that are really opening my mind to a lot of things I have never thought of before, which I find rather exciting!!!

I love you all so much!! Bye!!! Until next week!!!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

October 18, 2010

Well, this week has been a fantastic week of thrills but no teaching. I was involved in an emergency transfer because 4 Americans that have been in “the field” in the US for about 5 months got their visas and they sent them here. So with two weeks in the transfer left, I and my new companion got sent to almost the biggest area in our mission, to re-open it. We only got to teach a total of 3 lessons this past week. So basically it has been very stressful. Because of everything I have been living on about 5 US dollars or 10 Reais. And today I had to borrow money from my companion. I blow through money a lot now because Elder Roza, my new companion, is the reference secretary which means we take a bus ride into the office everyday, where I get to do secretary work and what not. Some days I use up to 8 Reais just on busses.

Well I am at the point where I just need a little more language, and I am off and running. I see my dad everyday and he says when I speak I don’t sound like an American and that I have already ridded myself of the accent. “Dad” is the term used for your trainer. Elder Lima, my trainer, is my “dad”, and he is now the financial secretary so I get to see him everyday at the office! He says I am almost perfect, but that is definitely not true. But I am doing fine. And, it does help to now be with a native.

OH OH OH!!!! Do you know what today is??? 7 months, I am now starting to be considered old!!!

Health wise, I am about as worn out as I can be. I am sick and I’ve had a cold for over a week and a half, and the whole stress of the new area is kind of a killer. I am out of musinex, but at this point by the time you could send it and by the time it arrived, it would be like here, your Christmas gift is medicine!!! I can survive without it for a while.

I wish the best of luck to Spencer and Brenna and I really hope they get their visas!!!!!! 2 of the missionaries that just arrived have spent about 3-4 months in Nebraska...... haha.

I heard about BYU’s football team... It is a downright shame!!! I guess it is a good thing I am not there!!!

What I would give to shoot a gun!!! Man... I can’t wait to duck hunt again!!!! man!!!

Well, everything here just keeps going! I hope everything goes well for all of you this week!!! Love you all!!! Até próximo vez!

Monday, October 11, 2010

With the information we got, its official, I am 50 minutes older than Elder Way!!! Ha-ha

Well, let’s see what’s new. I have been battling a cold for the last few days. The other day we had the zone leaders over to do a baptismal interview for us and we had just gotten back from lunch, and let’s just say it is very different to have a cold in the heat.... but basically we walked into our house and I just fell on the bed and fell asleep, where I stayed while Elder Way and Elder Slagle went to the interview. So needless to say, I am down to my last musinex (sp) pill tonight... so yep.

We had two baptisms this week. One of which was amazing!!! Her name is Isadora. She is one of the smartest people I have ever met here. She has very little time so every piece of her life is planned out. And she studies everything out. So she has been studying about the church for about one or two months.  She finally decided to be baptized this past week!!! Her friend who had been helping us did the baptizing. It was fantastic. I also baptized a girl yesterday, so that was fun trying to speak while being sick.

I have yet to use any pass along cards! Ha-ha.  We use them as book marks for the people during lessons. Problem is, here so many things are handed out that it would be thrown away in an instant.  For example, when you stop at a light, people run down the street and shove ads for the local store through the window. So, I think it might just be considered another piece of paper!

That is exciting news about Cameron!!!  I’m glad to hear that he is also headed to a warm place.  As far as Brenna and Spencer go, I was assuming they were going to be starting at Provo... Most everyone is now... which is rather sad, but it has created a surge of Brazilians to go out right now. Who is next to get a call that I know about?

Thank you for taking care of my trombone!!! I definitely want to use it again!!!

Did I mention that in my area there is a marching band?!?!? They are very, very small but they have like a full drum line and more trombones than any other instrument. They even have a color guard! So that is a rather neat thing to hear them all out practicing! Oh!!! And they have uniforms and everything. I’ve never been able to catch a performance or anything. They remind me of Skyview and their uniforms.

Duck hunting!!!!! I want to go duck hunting and fishing!!! And Logan actually can go??? He doesn’t have band???

So basically, Elder Way, and I think the zone leaders as well, are convinced that I am going to go senior next transfer. So basically that is a huge, huge, huge step. One that, to be honest, is at this point not very enticing... but you do what you have to.

Well, I love you all and can’t wait till next week!!! Love ya!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Well, conference was, well, conference. It is done the same here as it is there just the voices are all changed due to the translation. They run it all live so we watched from 1-3 then 5-7. But we had three companionships at our building for conference, 4 Americans and 2 Brazilians.  We got the key to the Family History Center and watched it live over the internet in English. The only thing we did not watch live was Priesthood because it started at like 9 p.m..., which is when we have to get home so we just watched it the following morning for study time. So, it was the 4 Americans in an air conditioned room so it was very, very nice.

It is interesting how people notice different things in conference. Like we all noticed that it was full of warnings, enough so that we thought something big was going to happen. And President Monson was acting a little funny. He is starting to look very tired which is too bad. But we noticed the few political directed statements. Especially with the whole Prop 8 thing. Which, by the way, dad, I do like how nothing political has ever been mentioned by you........ haha. But we get our fill in from plenty of other people.

Elder Way and I are getting along fine!!! Which, by the way, I need to know the exact time I was born... because we have the exact birthday. So we need to know who is actually older! haha.

We actually have our first baptism of the transfer tonight..... Yes, kind of weird on a Monday night, but it needs to be done. So... we are going to.

So, remember those problems we were having that I’ve mentioned in my earlier letters. Well, they were one of the reasons for Elder Deffense going to another area. But they are now hitting me. Elder Deffense and I made some choices, choices to follow the rules, which resulted in the punishment of some missionaries, and even the sending of some missionaries to other missions. All coming from, and starting at a family in one of our two wards. So, half the ward hates us and the other half doesn’t. When this family found out what we had done, they began to spread rumors about how we were forcing them to do things and what not. I get verbally abused every time I am around this member who is the cause of all these problems. I am called names, I am lied about, I am spoken of behind my back, and I am even hated. Every level of leadership knows of the problems. But last night, well over the last two days after conference sessions, when this member was around, I tried to speak with them to simply be nice and this is when the ridicule began.  So, I simply called President that night and explained to him that the area in fact was still causing problems, and he reassured me that I am to take the insults as a compliment because I do not break rules like this member would like. He told me that this is happening because there is someone in this ward that I am to find and Satan is working overtime here because he doesn’t want this person to be found.

So, we, or at least I am going to work twice as hard, because it was made a promise to me that there is someone powerful that I am to find.

So basically, that is the week. Numbers were weak due to conference and the elections they had here on Sunday. But it will be a good week ahead.

Thank you for taking care of my trombone!!!! One thing I am really, really looking forward to is being able to play again!!!! We listen to many instrumental pieces here so it has me wanting to play!!!

I love you all!!! Have a good week!!!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Well, like I said last week, I am now with Elder Way. He is really helping me with everything. He said by the end of this transfer I will go Senior, unless I stay with him. But right now we are really working our area hard. It has had a lot of troubles in the past so we are here to turn it around! Everything is changing. The area is changing, I’m changing, and it is going to change a lot of things. The days are just going faster and faster.

This past week has been really stressful for me, because I have been Senior for the week. So I was stressed about having people for us to teach, not getting us lost, making it all work. Fortunately, I never got us lost. But basically we cut everyone we were teaching before. So it is like we are starting over, but that means we have the most elect of all the people. Every night last week I would sit at my deck and just go over everyone I knew, everyone we had ever taught.  Some nights I would sit there from 9:15 until 10:20 just trying to figure everything out. But we are slowly getting into the hang of things. But I have survived my week as Senior.  It was fantastic!

So, it’s my understanding that a lot of the Americans waiting to come to Brasil might have to go somewhere else.  I really do hope that Spencer, Brenna and Adam get into the country.  They have lowered the age for missions here to 18 so they could get more missionaries, and right now there is going to be a surge in December.  Between the two wards that we cover, we had 4 or 5 people that met with the Bishop about a week after that announcement came, so a ton of Brazilians will be going out soon.

It is nice to hear about everybody, the mission calls, the weddings, etc… I wish the best of luck to all of you no matter what direction you are heading, as long as it’s a good direction!!!

It’s too bad I missed Layton’s visit to Oregon.  Why did he have to visit while I wasn’t there???  Man, I would have loved to talk to him!!!  Oh well!!!

Somebody better be taking care of my trombone!!! I still plan to use it!!!!

So how is the fishing and duck season? How is my puppy?

That is about it for this week!!! I really miss you all! and Love you all so much!!! Until next week!!!