Monday, September 23, 2013

September 23, 2013

Dear Family!

It sounds like you all had a great week!  It sounds like things are also all going great, which is good to hear!  My week has been pretty good, this week was the most rainy, so it is definitely cooler and I guess more Swedish-like weather.  Things are still mostly green because of all the moisture, but there are a lot of leaves falling and a lot scattered on sidewalks and lawns.  I am learning how to cook a little more as I am here.  The problem is I'm not picky at all so I feel bad if I cook something boring like noodles or eggs, so I think our current arrangement is great because I get to eat a little variety and kinda see how to cook stuff without ruining it.  I actually haven't seen the nickelharp yet.  The day they ran into him we were on splits so I was in the Utby area just a little north of Göteborg.  Oh and the ward I am in is called the Västra Frölunda ward, and the way the areas in the mission are set up is that each area is just in a ward.  Other news about our area is that we are very likely to be splitting up our area with some new missionaries, so hopefully that will be cool because it takes awhile to travel places by bus and stuff so I think that having additional missionaries should really help the area so we don't have to travel as much.  

The language is coming still, but I can tell it is a lot better!  Honestly the hard part isn't too much speaking it, even though it is a little difficult because I don't know all the words, but understanding what people are saying with their accent is the really hard part.  I've noticed a big difference of what I can understand this week and that is great.  Another funny thing is that I try to really focus on what people are saying and I get nervous or something and miss it all.  So the best way is to actually just sit back and not focus too much on the words that they are saying.  It was really cool to notice I was understanding what everyone was talking about just without really concentrating on everything they were saying! Hopefully this all makes sense!  It really is awesome to finally be able to talk to people in church in Swedish and on the phone and stuff!

That is so cool that Abby got her patriarchal blessing.  Those things are seriously the neatest things.  I do use mine a lot, especially if I'm ever feeling down!  There is a part of mine that talks only about my mission, and I realized that never again after this part of my life would that part of the blessing be a future blessing and that I probably should be reading it everyday to remember what I need to do to gain those blessings while I am here!

That is so great that the Utes won!  Äldste Allsop is also a Ute fan and we prayed for the prophet's team to win! haha.  That game is nearly always a close one and it sounds like it was an exciting one where Utah won!  That is great that Michigan won, but they need to get there act together a little bit!  It sounds like every game so far they make some pretty big mistakes that make the games a lot closer!  I am sad that Utah State lost!  I wore my Utah State shorts a few times during the week and it might have helped.  In reality it is still pretty cool that they played so well against the mighty USC!  

Jake! That sounds like a sweet camping trip you had to the Uintas!  It always seems like the fishing is supposed to be really great but then it isn't so nice when you get there.  I am just remembering our trip with Stuart to the Uintas last summer.  How is your foot doing?  You sound like your normal tough self stepping on nails in the dark in freezing temperatures!  I guess you made it home ok though so I guess it wasn't too bad! 

That is good to hear Mom you got to go to the temple!  I only got to go to the temple once in the MTC because it was closed for cleaning nearly the whole time, and then we are pretty far from the Stockholm temple so we haven't been able to go yet.  We are actually closer to the Copenhagen temple and are going to try to go with our ward in a few weeks.  

Thanks for the talks dad and Mom I will look up that talks and print it out too!  They both sound like great talks. Good to hear that dad is still his ridiculously hard working self.

The touch of the master's hand is such a wonderful story, I really like that one and completely agree with what you were saying dad!  Also it can be really hard not to look logically at church things!  Sometimes people say that they are willing to change once they know. The only problem with this is that it requires no faith!  That is something that I think I have learned a little about, you need to show Heavenly Father that you hope that these things are right, and you are willing to act on that hope that you have.

Well this is pretty much my week:

Last p-day I am not sure if I said what we did or not but we went to Kungsbaka which is a city south of Göteborg and went to an outlet mall and shopped around with the missionaries from Jönköping (which you say Yinshipping basically) and from Trollhätten.  It was cool, I had an asian buffet for lunch and bought a sweet looking backpack from adidas. 

On Wednesday the sister missionaries on basically all of the west side of Sweden had a training thing with President and Sister Newell in our chapel.  So we with the Utby elders helped to get pizza and drinks and salads for all of them and then we also set up everything and Sister Newell said we could have pizzas and stuff so it was a great time.  Wednesday night I also gave a blessing to a sick little baby and she is doing just great now!

Thursday we decided to make a strawberry cake during weekly planning.  The cake mix expired July 2008 and we didn't have any oil so we threw in some butter and then it took forever to bake but it was delicious.  I wonder when that cake mix was purchased because I would imagine it lasts for a while before it expires and it expired more than five years ago....haha.

Friday we met with a slightly crazy guy whose apartment stunk so bad because he smokes a ton.  He also had like 80 candles all lit and was telling us that is where he prays or something.  How we met him was that he called us and his name in the phone was Richie (crazy).  So we answered it and then met with him last week in town and he seemed like a pretty normal guy in his 50's. Then we went to his house and after our discussion with him decided he was a little crazy.  I think though he could be baptized, the hardest thing will be getting him to stop smoking, I don't think he thinks he can.  Also when we were talking with him he told us that they were trying to make him a document that certifies he is no longer like mentally unstable or something, so we will see where we go with him!

Friday we also did Insanity with the Elder's quorum and then right after played indoor hockey with the YSA's (basically the singles ward activity but they don't have singles wards here) so we were a little sore after.  On Saturday we went with a member to get some wood from some guys forest with a less active guy, so that went well and we were hauling wood all around for a while.  We are getting good exercise! 

Sunday was pretty uneventful too, the whole week was a little bit less adventurous I guess and we think it might be because last weeks stuff get getting scheduled and taking our weekly planning time so we didn't really get to do it!  Anyway I can't think of anything else I wanted to tell you about!  I guess you guys might like to know that everyone here can speak pretty good english but they all speak swedish! 

It's great to get to hear from all of you!  Have another good one and I miss you all and love you all!  Estee I almost forgot to say how cool it is that you got to ride a horse!  I have never ridden a horse!  I bet Wilber is a nice horse to ride. Let me know if I can do anything!


Äldste Ward

PS Mom those Utah cookies look so good!  I want one just because they look so cool!  Great job supporting the Utes!

PSS Attached is a picture of the cake we made!

Strawberry cake (pretty sure it's his first cake ever) :)

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