Monday, June 24, 2013

Charlotte's Baptism

June 24, 2013

Dear Family:

Hey! Well we have had a good week. I freaking baptized somebody! So that was cool. anyways I will hurry and break down my week for ya so I don't run out of time. The ZL's are timing us now on how long we are on the computer so they will make me stop in the middle of my letter if I don't finish (which now I don't appreciate)
Charlotte's Baptism

So Monday! Monday was good, we lost some good Elders and got some new ones. The guy that replaced Elder Albright is Elder Wood. He came out a transfer ahead of me. He is from somewhere close to Draper but I can't remember where. He is cool we get along well. P-day was good as usual. I only had like one noteworthy event. After we ate dinner we were out talking to people getting our OYM's for the day. It was almost 9 so we were just on our way home. As we were waiting to cross the street this old man rolls up on a scooter thing on the other side of the street. That isn't abnormal, that probably happens pretty much every time I cross a street cuz there are tons of old people here who can't drive anymore and they ride scooters. This guy looked like a carnival though ha. His scooter was covered with lights, all different colors. When we crossed the street once he got close to us he popped a wheelie and yelled whoo hoo! It was pretty funny. I still have no idea how he did it. Those three wheeled scooters aren't that light and they don't have any horsepower.

Elder Albright and Elder Wood

Tuesday was our district meeting with our new district. Elder Moyer is our DL and I am excited for that. He is a Spanish Elder so all exchanges we get to go to Spanish land. That night we had a different dinner. The Relief Society had a dinner at the church so that is where our dinner was. It turned out to be a salad dinner, so we ate a lot of salad.

Wednesday was Charlotte's baptismal interview. I wasn't worried about it at all. I had already gone through it with her. We showed up at the church for it because I was expecting to have to be like 15 minute long interview and then we would teach her a lesson. Elder Moyer ended up taking a whole hour to do the interview, so I was getting kinda worried. He just ended up taking it way too seriously. But we still got to have a lesson with her after. That night Jessie canceled on us and Sam said he had some questions for us so we went over there. He had decided that he wasn't going to go on his mission anymore. So we didn't really know what to teach him, but as always the spirit provided. We ended up having a awesome lesson where the spirit guided us and at the end Sam is now still going on his mission. Satan had been working on him pretty hard, so we helped him realize that and keep working towards his mission. As of right now I think Sam and I will leave Hemet at the same time. The end of the transfer is at like the 1st day of august or last of July and he leaves august 5th.
We think this is in Honor of our Family Theme of
"Two Scoops" which apparently Kellog's has stolen

Thursday we had our usual lessons plus a good one with Char (not Charlotte). We haven't had as many meetings as we should have after her baptism because she has been gone to soft ball and pickle ball tournaments. I did realize something on Thursday. Not a day goes by that I don't think about Lisa (Wood). The reason is, because every day at some point I have to pop my toes! I never ever did that until she would pop them, and now they get popped ever day ha.

Friday was normal, nothing noteworthy.

Saturday I finally got your letter ha. Thank you for making me a blog, that is cool. Send me a link when it is done so I can send it to some people (and I might check it out if the ZL's aren't looking haha:) That is weird that Sharee has her license. So what exactly is she driving? Did she learn how to drive stick? That is cool you got to drive those cars. I still can't figure out if that was for Dad or for Brett haha. It sounded like Brett was car shopping, but those are the cars Dad wanted to buy haha. If something actually happens with one of those cars though, remember what I said, "Stick Shift" ha. So I got to baptize Charlotte. That was really cool. I was kinda worried because I have never done it before. That wasn't my real worry though, she is kinda bottom heavy and Bro Boyd told me to expect it to be pretty much dead weight when I brought her back up. When we got to the church the font was supposed to be filled because Diamond Valley had a baptism. Turned out it was a kid, so we filled it up some more. When I went to baptize her, it was a lot different than I thought. She kinda floated and I had to pretty much push her down in that water. I felt bad cuz I didn't want to freak her out. Luckily nobody else noticed it was all just one fluid motion. After that we had a awesome lesson with a lady named Jody I talked to in front of her house. She understood it all and it was awesome! She was really excited to get baptized. The only problem is she is in the middle of moving to South Dakota and will be gone by Tuesday. That kinda sucked, but I have been pretty successful at getting other people really good investigators.

Mission Delicacies - we think this is a cracker with Ketchup

Sunday was normal. Mom, a young women in our ward gave a talk and talked about doing PROS. We got a new investigator on Sunday. That isn't anything that out of the normal, that happens all the time. The cool thing about this one is she is actually going to get baptized. Every time we have baptized our best investigators I get worried about having another one to baptize. But because we have been being obedient the Lord gives us another one right after! Then we had the broadcast. I really enjoyed that. I don't exactly know about all that internet stuff, and I don't know how effective it will be, but I don't think I have to worry about it for a while anyways. I did however love everything about the ward doing missionary work! Our ward needs some warm bodies and a kick in the butt, but they will get it done. We ended up being late for dinner because of it but that was ok because our dinners brother in law showed up, and he is a LDS apologetic. His name is Gary Bailey and I think his website is knowapologetics. blog or something like that. oh p.s. our dinner was from Bro Coleman's Portuguese Mission and it is called feijoada so that was good. well I gotta go, I am over time haha, love ya!
Elder Wood
Finally!  A street sign that means something


Monday, June 17, 2013

The Mission Splits into More Missions

June 17, 2013

 Dear Family:

So this week was really good, but kinda crazy.

Monday was a good p-day as always. We found this really cheap golf course and went golfing for 11 bucks. That was really fun! But now I am eating mack and cheese for lunch the rest of the month haha, jk I have better food than that. Elder Spencer gave me a bunch of his food because he is getting transferred so I am good. Then after that we were pretty sweaty cuz it was hot. Elder Feist and I got dropped off at our place so we could shower and head to our dinner. Our water was out again, so we went to dinner pretty stinky and stuff. We also didn't shave because we didn't have water (I could have used my electric one, but it was a good excuse to get away with it ha). Our dinner we had outside cuz Sister Hulse's husband wasn't back from running the girls camping stuff to Big Bear for Young Women’s Camp, but it was really good.

Tuesday we had our last district meeting with my old district. After we took pictures and stuff, (I have a bunch of pictures from the last weeks I need to send but I keep running out of time to send them, I will try and do better ha :) After that we went and taught Charlotte and got her baptism date set for sure. She is getting baptized on the 22nd, so that is really exciting. I am pretty pumped for that. We also went and taught somebody Elder Feist found on exchanges. She is from Church of Christ. She has a son who is American Sign Language (ASL), so we might end up just calling the ASL missionaries and having them come and teach them.

Wednesday we went to Riverside for Trainer/Trainee meeting. It was really good as always, as things are with President Smart. It was also good to get to see some of my missionary friends. We met this lady named Cheryl. She invited us in and fed us some soup even though we told her not to. I was kinda freaked out at first because of the house and dog. Her dog was super nasty looking like it hadn't eaten in a long time, but she said it is just super old and eats like a pig. Anyways even though I was pretty freaked out her soup was pretty good. We taught her a little bit and we are excited to teach her more.

Thursday we had exchanges and the DL went to my area with Elder Feist, so I went to Park Hill ward. There are some interesting people over there. That is the more getto place where I got proposed to. We had clean check from the senior companionship in our area. Elder and Sister Morgan from Panquitch. They are really cool, and they know the Coopers. Since I wasn't at my place I got to just sit and talk to Elder Morgan the whole time. We had a really good talk and I really enjoyed it. He asked me if I know Arvel Beckstead from Talmage. I said I didn't think I would meet anybody on my mission that knew where Talmage is! I don't remember who Arvel is but I said I’m sure my grandpa does, but that it sounded familiar. Also somehow in the conversation I found out Sister Morgan’s maiden name is Foy. I told her I knew some Foys in Altamont! She was pretty surprised. She was wondering if you (mom and dad) could give me some background like where the family is from and great grandparents and stuff. I asked if they were from Duchesne if that would help put the puzzle together (cuz Mike is from Duchesne right?) She said she doesn't really know where any of the Foys are or much of her family I guess, so she would really like to know if they would be related. Then that day was just kinda weird because of the area. Anyways at the end of the night, we ended up getting them a new investigator. Her name is.. well crap I forgot. It starts with an "M". Anyways she is 16 and friends with somebody in the ward. We taught her the first lesson and she blew me away with how smart about religion and how prepared she is. The Lord prepped her really well and she accepted the first lesson really well. Also it was inspired that I was on exchanges that day to teach her. I'm not saying anything bad about the Elders in her ward but I think I was able to answer some questions and get her started because of experiences I have had. Now she is going to have a new elder in her ward and from what I have heard he will do really well at taking over.

Friday was pretty boring and nothing too noteworthy plus I am out of time!

Saturday was freaking awesome! We had a big meeting with all the Missionaries in Moreno Valley. I wish I had more time to give details but it was really spiritual. The chapel was completely full with missionaries and it was a neat experience. When we sang I think was my favorite. The elder playing the organ was really good and played more than just the regular. Plus he cranked it and with all the people it reminded me of All State Choir. I am still in my same area with Elder Feist, which is what I wanted to have happen. I didn't want to leave the mission. Elder Sparks is going to Murrieta so he will be in the Carlsbad mission. A bunch of other people are going to the Redlands mission. We are losing a good chunk of our mission. It was really hard for Pres and Sister Smart to send that many missionaries away at once. Pres gave the closing prayer. It was probably the coolest prayer I have ever experienced. The spirit was there really strong, and he really surprised me in it with some of the things he said. The coolest thing was that he gave all of us a blessing with the keys of a Mission President, that to me is almost like getting one from an apostle. Then we got to go in the gym and take pictures with all of our friends and stuff. I got to see Elder Allen. He is going home tomorrow ha. I am sad to see him go, but he is really happy. Later that day our ward had a pot luck and washed cars. So we sat in the foyer with our food and kept walking back in the gym to get more food.

Sunday was good as usual. We met with Charlotte again to finish some lessons and get her baptism organized. She wants Elder Feist and I both to speak. She asked me to do the baptism and I am super excited! Elder Feist is doing the confirmation so that is cool too. Anyways gotta go, I’m out of time! Love ya!
Elder Wood

Zone Conference

Elder Baltadez?, Elder Sparks, Elder Wood and Elder Beeston
From Right Elder Wood, Elder Allen and some of his Trainees

Monday, June 10, 2013

Driving a Car

June 10, 2013
Dear Family:

So this has been a long but exciting week. We had Chase (our mini missionary) with us from last Saturday (the 1st) until yesterday (the 9th). Elder Feist and I really liked him and it was a good experience for all of us. Chase is really excited to go on his mission now. But before I get into my letter to much I am going to reply to your last letter. Mom I think that is pretty much the only time I have had a bloody nose. I had one really mild one the other day, but it really hasn't been a problem. It seems like the new program you are using in young women's is really cool. I like how they use roll play and stuff in it. The girls will learn a lot. Dad this has nothing to do with your last letter but I came up with a new snowboarding lunch technique that you and everybody should try out and let me know how it goes. For lunch I bought a dollar instant potato packets. They are called "Idahoan Potatoes" and they are at Wal-Mart. Probably Swasey's too. Anyways one day I decided to not get any dishes dirty except for my fork and just boil some water and pour right into the packet and it worked! I had to dig at the corners a little bit with my fork but I think with the hot water at the resort it might just work. And it makes quite a bit too. Anyways food for thought until next winter. Brett that is pretty sweet about your new job, I hope the move and everything goes well for you. Jason I remember Myckel Beorchia. That is crazy you have the job in the room next to her. I thought you had to be like a grad student for that or something. The lady that worked there before actually used to live in Randalett I think. Maybe just Fort Duchesne, I don't remember. All I remember is I thought it was really close to where Lisa's parents live.

So Monday was just normal p-day festivities. I don't remember if it was last p-day or the one before that but we came back to the church and sort of golfed/drove. We had those yellow fake golf balls that don't fly as far as golf balls. We were still hitting it almost out of the parking lot though ha. That was fun, but when some members saw us I don't think they liked it haha. But we were being careful and not messing up the grass.

Tuesday for some reason Pres couldn't come to do interviews until Wednesday so we switched the exchange with the ZL's to Tuesday. So I got to drive a day early! but I didn't get to go spend the night cuz we didn't exchange until Tuesday morning. Driving was a blast fyi. I kinda miss it ha. I had a pretty awesome day. We had district meeting that morning and it ended up being super funny. The other Spanish Eelders were asking everybody's advice on one of their investigators. What happened was they have this kid investigator and he is 16. For some reason he can't keep out of Juvy. Anyways he has had a girlfriend for the last couple years and he just got her pregnant. The guy doesn't really have anywhere to live so he is living with his pregnant girlfriend's parents. The parents really like him a lot, and told him that they want to adopt him. So he is asking the Elders for advice. They are having a hard time knowing how to help him. They can either tell the two 16 years olds to get married (not sure it is the best but probably better) or he can have the parents adopt him. The problem with that is he will have had a baby with his sister... which doesn't sound so good when people ask about your baby and you tell them you are brother and sister (legally?). The kid is really excited about getting adopted because right now he is going through all sorts of craziness with foster parents and he wants really bad to get out of that program unless he gets married, adopted, or turns 18. To top it all off the pregnant girl was recently paralyzed. Not that it is part of the story, I just thought it was interesting. Anyways moral of the story is! Bad situations make the strangest stories! Later that day we talked to a guy who plays the accordion. That was really cool. I could actually talk to him because he spoke both Spanish and English. He ended up letting me try playing it and it was pretty sick.

Wednesday we did President interviews. It was really cool cuz the President and I had a pretty good talk. In the middle a lizard got into the room we were in from outside. Then the rest of the day was busy. We had meetings with probably all the most intense lessons of the week all in one day. We taught Susan because I finally talked her into letting us meet with her again. That got a little bit frustrating for me just because she agrees with everything we say, but is just having a hard time with one or two stupid things. Also it was a pain that she has some dumb translation of the bible. Ya know like the kind where they make it easier for people to read it by talking out the old English type stuff? Anyways she knows sort of our organization of the church to the extent she knows about the 70. In her bible in Luke it reads that there are 72 instead of 70 and that always bugged her but I didn't ever find the scripture cuz I thought that was stupid. Anyways it was nice to have Chase there cuz while Feist and I were teaching he looked up different scriptures like the one about the 70 while we were teaching. Then we had Charlotte Cross who is always a good lesson. I like all the questions she asks because she is involved and I want to learn more. Then we finally got in a lesson with Tamra cuz she always ditches and we put her on date. That night I went to Ruth and Jessie's house with Bro Hulse with Elder Feist and Chase went and did other stuff. That ended up being a super awesome super spiritual lesson, and really long ha. At first I spent a lot of time on Jessie cuz she is getting her patriarchal blessing Sunday (yesterday). Also we are going to teach her baby daddy so we were getting that figured out. Then after all of that I wanted to help out her mom and I had a good scripture in mind I think it was 3 Nephi 13 like the very end of the chapter. Anyways just to help her build faith and go to church and stuff. Anyways that ended up really hitting Jessie hard because of an answer she got to a prayer that morning about just keeping on going and working towards being active and not worrying about other things so much. The spirit was way way strong there and I am still mad at myself for not having Chase there to experience how amazing missionary work can be.

Thursday we had exchanges with our district leader but I stayed this time and Elder Feist went to Park Hill Ward. We had our day our planned out and then I got a call from the ward and they needed me to go help somebody move after lunch that just had surgery on his arm. They are a super awesome couple. Unfortunately they just got broken into, thus the move. Anyways that took a good part of the day. It was fun though cuz the Reeves are awesome and I got to ride in their sick raptor. It pulled the trailer well. but it was a lot more fun when we dropped the trailer and he got on it. That thing was pretty fast. He also had a sick bike. It was a Yamaha Stryker 1323. I think anyways. Whatever it was it looked awesome. he wants to buy a Road Star from some friend in Orange County because he loves how they ride.

Friday was temple trip so it was bomb! Elder Feist forgot his recommend haha... but they searched his name and let him in. We rode with Elders Kelly and Albright so that was fun. The guy who drove us from their ward took us all to big boy and bought us burgers. He also took us to CTR books. There are some cool and useful books there for missionaries if anybody ever wants to buy me some ha. Later that day I went to go talk to a lady and she started talking to me first. I guess she has a son on a mission somewhere and she went and got us all gift card to eat at Chipotle.

Saturday was normal as usual. Plus we helped with that move again. This time we took the Diamond Valley Elders because that is where they are moving to (Elders Tonini and Hawkins).

Sunday I went over to Susan's house and woke her up for church. She came though! Also Charlotte Cross was there too. Chase left us at like 6:30, so that was sad, I really liked him. it was kinda funny, he asked about advice on a girlfriend he had for the like last three years (he is a Senior next year). I told him about my experience and how awesome my Senior year ended up being and all the benefits of not having one ha (well maybe just a relationship? I dunno if mine was exactly a gf haha:). E. Feist supported me in that, cuz he had a similar experience. Pretty much we told him how much fun we had without, how much more our parents trusted us, how many more friends we made, and everything. He agrees and I think he is going to make his Senior year a lot better for himself now.

Well next week should be cool. Wednesday I get to go to Riverside for Trainer/Trainee meeting. Saturday we get to go to Moreno Valley for transfers. Normally we just do phone calls but after next week we will have 6 zones instead of 12. So there is going to be a lot of craziness and people won't see their mission friends and stuff and all the phone calls that were going to happen and everything.  Pres decided just to have a meeting that starts at 9 this will probably be like 2 hours long. Even though our mission will be halved almost we are still going to hold the number of 200 missionaries, so some wards will be doubling up and Elder or Elder/Sister combo. It'll be interesting. I shouldn't have to worry about moving this transfer cuz I am a trainer. You train somebody for 12 weeks, and it's will only be 6 weeks. but hey, anything could happen. So just so your aware maybe next week send stuff to the mission office instead of my address in case of a move. Even if I move missions they will know where to send it. Or you can wait to get my e-mail, but if I move it won't do me any good, because I won't know my physical address to give you until I get a letter from the mission office. But that shouldn't be a problem, I don't think I will move this transfer. Anyways I am over time and should get going! Love you all tons!
Elder Wood

Monday, June 3, 2013

Mini Missionary

Dear Family:

Well this has a good week! No mom I don't have a car, it just happened out that our ride for p-day got all messed up that day. But I just found out I get to drive on Wednesday!! We have exchanges with the ZL's and I am going to their area but with the elder that can’t drive anymore because he got in a crash. I am pretty excited! ha, which is dumb cuz it shouldn't be that big of a deal but I am freaking out ha. It is probably kinda like how I loved driving and getting my license was like my life goal at a time so I guess you could say I have missed it. I have a pretty exciting week ahead of me.

We have president interviews tomorrow morning. Wednesday exchanges I get to drive at, Thursday we have more exchanges because we are going with our DL. Friday is temple trip to Redlands, so pretty much I have a week where I don't do the regular schedule. We also got a mini missionary this last Saturday night, so we will have an extra guy with us all week. His name is Chase, and he is from Norco. Norco is called horse town USA. They don't have sidewalks there, they have horse trails. Kinda cool. Norco is right by Corona if that helps anybody out. Brett let me know what is happening with the job. Going to Pleasant Grove would be cool, plus it sounded like a bomb job. E. Sparks is from PG and he loves it there. He said there are some way nice apartments behind Macy's you could look at. Sharee, for music I figured out the easiest way to do it. Put a bunch of music on a flash-drive and then send me the flash-drive. That will work well. Then I can just burn the cd's here. I have acquired a little bit of music. I seamlessly created an underground missionary cartel that traffics music. I have two cd’s from the piano guys, I have the new Philip Phillips cd (haven't listened to it yet so I dunno if its approved), two cd's from Josh Groban, 2 from Jackie Evancho, the Lower Lights, Lindsey Sterling, Inception soundtrack, Transformers soundtrack, Paul Cardall, Vocal Point "Lead thou Me On", 2 Cellos, Orchestra version of Super Smash Brothers soundtrack, the Inside Out CDs we have at the house, and everything our older brothers left in the cd case. I want to acquire enough to listen to that I don't get sick of the music like Brett says I will, cuz he is right. I only listen to some cd's like once a week to keep me from wearing them out. Also I might be buying an iPod from E Moyer. He has an iPod 160gig that the headphone jack went out. He wouldn't let me fix it for him, I was going to do it for free. So now I am trying to buy it and fix it. We will see though, so I would have plenty of room on that. So I am looking for anything you will send me. Check out the orchestra version of Skrillex, find some Disney, some Classical, Movie soundtracks, acoustic stuff, anything you can think of. If you aren't sure if I should have it, just send it and then I will just either make a cd or delete it depending on if it is ok or not. They are pretty lax here. I guess Christmas here is awesome cuz you can pretty much listen to all the good popular stuff just because it is Christmas music. So whenever you get to that it is cool, I would rather you spent a little more time and sent more music than trying to send it right away. Thanks! :)

Tuesday was interesting. We got up that morning and did some service. When we got back to shower and change and stuff our water was out, so E Kelly and E. Albright came and got us so we could shower. Had a good day, taught a few lessons and stuff.

Wednesday we picked up a new investigator. I decided to go to this one and just talk to people before lunch and visit a referral from the ZL's. The referrals name was Greyling. He is a really cool guy. He make like r&b gospel music. He is like about 50 years old. We ended up teaching a lesson and he was feeling the spirit a lot. I could see goose bumps on his arms ha. At one point he was sentenced to life in jail I guess and now he is totally trying to make a turn around in his life. He got humbled pretty bad, he ended up losing his fiancé and some other things. Right after that we had lunch and then we had a meeting with Charlotte Cross. She has a lot of questions but she is definitely progressing in the gospel. Hopefully she is our baptism for this month. She is set up for the 22nd. Also I got a letter from Susan again on Wednesday. Thank you!! The rest of the day after that was pretty regular.

Thursday wasn't too busy, just a usual day. Robert and Laura normally meet with us then but they just moved to San Jacinto so we got their info and sent it to E Kelly and E Albright. Also we met with Roy Brown and we had a fun lesson as always there.

Friday was kinda crazy. We spent from 7 until like 2 or 2:30 building this tin shed thing. Elder Feist, Elder Kelly, Elder Albright me, and Bro. Boyd built it. There is this lady in the ward that is a hoarder and the ward pretty much came in and shipped everything away except what went in the house and in the shed. Mountains of stuff came out of there. The shed was quite the project because there was like no room to build it. If we had room on any of the sides and if it was on level cement it would have taken a couple hours maybe with all of us. Instead we build a wooden foundation and the shed got pushed everywhere cuz to get on the side of it you had to slide it across the foundation. It was fun but it was a lot of work. I should have taken a picture, I might still get back there one of these days just to see how much stuff they got out of her back yard. That night we were biking home after a lesson and got to see some fireworks. They had them for graduation. They didn't run for more than like a minute though. And the finale was like 10 seconds. Nothing compared to Longhorn Days fireworks! I tried to get my camera out for a pic, but the show was too short. I guess it is tradition to do fireworks for graduation here so that is why they did it. Also I got a letter from Grandma Rachel. Thanks!

Saturday we had zone meeting. After that we picked up two new investigators. We went to the Greylings for a lesson but he was asleep or something. There were two kids about my age hanging out in his garage though. So we went and talked to them which turned into a lesson. Ones names is Ashton, and the others I don't remember because it was different and I didn't get his number. We sat down on some chairs in the garage and they started asking us questions which turned into a lesson. They just got in Hemet two days before we met them. They moved from LA to here because they wanted to get a fresh start. We had a good lesson and they wanted to come to church on Sunday. Sunday we saved them a seat and everything because they seemed adamant about it. They didn't show which I was kinda expecting. We ran into them later in the day Sunday and I guess what happened was they were almost to the church and they saw Bro Hulse walking with his kids to church. They turned around cuz he thought it was just the parents that dressed up and their kids dressed up scared him off. We told them the day before people would be dressed like that and to come anyways. Oh well, they know now ha. It ended up being kinda funny. That night we were laying in bed when we got the call that our mini was there, so we went out and got him and his stuff and then crashed.

Sunday at church we had somebody walk in we might be picking up as an investigator too. I made friends with him and he wants to come to church next week and then meet with us after. His name is Thomas. Also at church I was thinking about what Dalan said about Jason and his influence in Huston was still there with some of the missionaries he trained and I thought that was pretty cool.

Well I am running out of time! Talk to you later! Love ya tons! Elder Wood
P.S. sorry, not the best or longest letter. Next week will be a good one though!