Monday, December 1, 2014

To Die Will Be an Awfully Big Adventure...

Dear Friends and Family,

To begin my letter today, I would like to use the lyrics to a few songs that have been on my mind lately. Okay? Let's start!

"Indiana, Indiana we bid thee farewell! We're going to the mountains of Utah to dwell." - to the tune of Ye Elders of Israel

"I'll be home for Christmas, you can count on me! Please have snow and mistletoe and presents by the tree!"

"If I die young..." (if you aren't familiar with missionary terms, when missionaries go home, we often call it "dying" because a mission is almost a whole different life for us. Also reference the title of this letter.)

"I'm coming home, coming home, tell the world I'm coming home..."

If you don't recognize any or all of these songs, it's okay, don't worry. They're just fun!

We are all going home. This is not even close to all of us, though.

President jumped in our Trio picture! So did Sister Gil, apparently


So it's been a really good week. We got invited to a specialized training this week. We had no idea why, so we referred to it as the "super secret specialized training". It wasn't really super secret, it turned out to be a trainer/trainee meeting that they do every transfer. Really, the only mystery is why we were invited. Even now, a week later, I don't know why we were there. But it's totally okay with me, I love those meetings! AND we did get a super secret viewing of the new He is the Gift video that the Church put out for Christmas. So that was super exciting! 
We taught Ethan, he is doing so good, he's started reading his scriptures every single day, and I'm so proud of him! It's really hard for a 10 year old to do that, but he's been doing it every day for 2 weeks now! And he's definitely going to be a great missionary someday.

Thanksgiving was so much fun! I know it sounds funny, probably, but I love holidays on the mission. It is really so much fun. It's definitely different than being at home, but it's fun! We get to spend time with a family here, and they always do fun things. And we get to socialize and talk to them. This year, because we live so close to so many other missionaries, the Senior missionaries put on a dessert party for everyone. All kinds of people were there. President and Sister Cleveland, some recent converts in the Carmel ward, the Assistants, all the Seniors, almost our entire district.... It was so fun! I really enjoyed it! I am so glad I got to finish my mission here!

We basically had the best District Meeting ever on Friday. The Elders had dragged in the couches and chairs from the foyers into the cultural hall and set them up right in front of the baptismal font. Then they turned off a lot of the lights so the brightest lights were in the font itself. It was the coolest District Meeting location ever. And I got to share my testimony and all that fun stuff... It was so good. I'm going to miss District Meeting, they're one of my favorite meetings! Right behind Transfers and Interviews.

I had my Departure Interview with President Cleveland on Friday after District Meeting. It was pretty good, we talked about some miracles from my mission. And he told me that I need to make sure I read the Book of Mormon for 5 minutes every day. So all y'all need to hold me accountable to that! Check up with me!

Sister Steadman, the mission nurse, invited us over for dinner. And after dinner we got to help her put up her Christmas tree and decorate it. It was great, since that's always what we do the day after Thanksgiving at home. So we still got to do it here! And her tree was COVERED with stuff by the time we were done. So I think we did good!

On Saturday we actually had time to see people and to talk to people. We got to teach two people about He is the Gift! I really love that video. Unfortunately, we didn't actually get to watch it with either of them. But one of those people was going on and on about her "adopted grandson" Damien. As in the same Damien from the Glee Project. So maybe she'll hook me up. I'm definitely keeping my fingers crossed!

We had a fun Sisters Training with the Sisters in the area, too. That was fun! A nice break from all the other meetings we had this week. We seriously didn't have really any time to teach anyone because of all this stuff that just kept popping up out of nowhere! We actually got a lot done, compared to the time we had, though! So I'm proud of us!

We taught Sam yesterday and had an awesome lesson! I know that she has a testimony. She kept talking about how the stuff we were teaching her, which was the Plan of Salvation, is exactly the same stuff that she has learned through her life! So basically, she already knew it was true. She had all kinds of comparisons to her Buddhist background, the only real difference was adding God and Jesus Christ into the equation. And I think she already believes that too. I love Sam so much! She is 16, but she knows a lot, she's learned a lot! 

Well. Looks like that's about all I have. So I guess I'll see you all soon!

Mission Accomplished.