Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Week 8: Artigas- Paying to Email, Supporting Less Active Members, and Brazilian Cowboy Belts...

Elder Nelson to Mom:

Things are going good. I don't have any problems. Last p-day, I cut myself on the overhead metal fan but Im all healed up now. Other than bug bites, Im fine. I got a couple blisters, but I made sure not to pop them and Im
pretty sure they've all gone away now. 

Somedays I get to ride a bike which sucks, because the bikes are like 30 years old and haven't been maintained in years. So once a week, we ride bikes to find people in Tamandua. My area is out in the sticks. There is the main road which is paved and like two other paved roads but everything else is gravel and dirt. 

The people are super nice. I think for the rest of the month we have lunch appointments with members. The food is hit or miss. It is either really good or pretty bland. However I can pretty much eat anything now regardless of taste because I'm just that hungry. Every Sunday we eat with the stake president and his family on the condition that one of the four of us brings dessert. So if you have any good dessert recipes that you think I could do in Uruguay, that would be nice to have. Hermana Taylor has done our laundry a couple times so I haven't had to do laundry since leaving the CCM, but one of my white shirts and grey pants are pretty dirty from biking through puddles.  Yeah, I get enough to eat. For these past two Mondays, we have gone to Brazil to eat at buffets. This time we went to a different buffet which was slightly cheaper but the quality wasn't as good.  Anyways it is kind of cool that last week I was in 3 different countries within a week timespan. 

Best thing is just the opportunity to learn about the Gospel every day. It is truly a blessing to learn more everyday to better help other people with their struggles. The worst part is just not knowing the language. I feel bad for my companion because he does all the talking. I want to talk more during lessons, but whenever I talk the people just get confused. Therefore I just kind of have to be content with speaking 5 lines a lesson and letting him do all the work. I don't know how my Spanish will improve if I never get the opportunity to speak, but we will see how much better my Spanish is after this 12 week period of training. He has trained once before, and apparently his other kid turned out really good so I guess this is just an area I need to be patient in and hopefully everything works out for me in the end. 

(The cost to email) It depends on the place to email. Last time it was like 60 pesos which is like 3 US dollars. Yeah I think I have enough money. I have like 80 US dollars stashed on me. I sent the Pogue family's check to President Smith to cash because I found it in my blue suit pocket. Haven't tried dropbox yet because Ive been trying to catch up on emails. I just pay for time on the machine to email so I just pay whatever 90 minutes costs. Yeah you can send mail. I took a picture of the mail instructions so Ill send it to you. Yeah other missionaries have gotten mail. Last week I got a letter from Brother Merrill of the high council for the month of January. I finally found all your guy's notes assuming you each wrote 12. I found your last one in my left butt pocket of my blue suit pants this Sunday.  

That sucks about the (leaking) house, but Im praying for you guys daily. Wow I cant believe she (Kelly Weir-Day) got married and is happy, but good for her. That's crazy that you guys are potentially only 6 months away from adopting Abby. The temple in Uruguay is the same setup as the Fresno one. Congrats on both of you getting new phones. Maybe it is a good thing dad went with the financially responsible decision and didn't go all out. (for the iPhone 6 plus, which basically looks like you're talking on a lunch tray) Did Josh get a phone? We have a really old Nokia phone. iPhones aren't that popular down here. It is all windows and android phones. I love
you, and if I have more time Ill try sending pictures or emailing more but still have 9 emails I need to view.

Elder Nelson to Dad:
I'll try to send some (pictures) but I've been behind on emails and focusing on that rather than sending pictures. Haha, Im not worried about anything when I come home. The missionary term for someone who always worries about home or constantly talks about home is "TRUNKY". Which means like you already have your trunks or bags `packed and are ready to head home. 

This week was super fast. I honestly feel like I was emailing you guys 2 days ago. I'm slightly bummed we don't have anyone in the near future getting baptized but we are reactivating a lot of people. The attendance before was 70, and it have been about 100 for two weeks now. So not the success I was imagining, but I supposed this is what the Lord wants me doing right now. 

Thats awesome to give Angie a smart phone. I think that will be good for her to have something of her own like that that wasn't once her sisters or anything like that. 

Yeah we (all four companions living in the house) get along great. We jam out to music every night and we all bought leather cowboy belts in Brazil which are pretty sweet. Not sure where they all served, but I know Finlay served in one area for 8 months that only had 15 people going to church. 

It is cool being right across from the church and I always see it when Im walking in our area. It is just like a bright pillar inviting people to come to Christ. We don't proselyte in Brazil, but some missionaries do. I hope I don't have to, because they all speak Portuguese which is different from Spanish and seeming I haven't even learned Spanish yet, that would be another pretty difficult transition. But I'll serve wherever the Lord sends me. 

Elder Finlay makes an awesome chocolate milkshake. The have milk here in plastic bags so we partially freeze it and then throw it in the blender with two bananas and coco powder. Its better than a Sonic Blast I swear, or maybe the heat is just getting to my head :P 

We have a lot of investigators that just need to get married so they can be baptized. We might get to baptize a 10 year old whose whole family are members but we want to make sure his whole family is supportive, so they all don't go inactive again. 

I heard Tadhg was working on his papers which is super exciting. Hey let Josh know not all missionaries are perfect. I learned that today. There are a lot of missionaries that struggle and the key seems to be becoming more converted to the Gospel. As my testimony as grown, my desire to do anything  that could be considered unholy has significantly diminished and I look for an opportunity to avoid situations that I cant feel the Spirit in. Thanks for the kind words Dad. I love you. Keep taking care of your health, so you can serve our family. Send my love to everyone and Ill talk with you all next week...

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