Thursday, October 11, 2012

2nd week! 10/8/2012

Hey Family!

Sounds like everyone had a good week! Congrats Mom on another marathon, that is pretty amazing! And congratulate coop on doing so well in soccer. So Brook has a singing solo in her choir? That is really cool. What song is it? She is already excited for Halloween? What is she going to dress up as? Tell Mary to stick swim out, it is super rough (like all things worthwhile) at times but it will be well worth it.

So Hawaii this week? For 10 days, that’s so exciting. I am a little bit jealous, but we will have similar weather! I do kind of miss being able to swim though, that’s the part I am really jealous of. Is it all on the big island? Or are you traveling between?

So we right at these little shops that have computers in them, they are all over the place here because nobody has computers. They cost about 6 pesos an hour which is almost nothing. We get as much time to write as we plan for, still not a lot but I think about an hour. Plus today we can in and printed our letters first, then went and played football and read them on the way there then came back to write. So we have plenty of time.

As for handwritten letters and packages, I am not really sure how it works; I have not seen any sort of post office or anything like that here. I know that all of our letters and packages are sent to the mission home in Leon. Our zone leaders travel there once a month for meetings and they pick up everything for the zone there. So writing handwritten letters would be really, really tuff. I am sure I will figure out a way to send a package home at some point.

As for what is happening here. This week was super, super fast. One funny thing that happened was we were eating at a member’s house and the first thing we ate was this really sketchy looking meat in some sort of green sauce. It looked bad but you eat it anyway. I was about halfway through this really kind of slimy squishy meet, which was okay it didn't have a lot of flavor, and my companion asked what kind of meet it was (something I really didn't want to know) She wouldn't tell us. We finished the plate, and she proceeded to tell us it was langua in Spanish, or cow tongue in English. So I can now say i have eaten cow tongue, and who knows what else because I am always too afraid to ask...

We still didn't find a new apartment. So we are looking, but I like living with the other elders, other than the time we lose traveling. The language has also been frustrating this week but I know it takes time. I am also getting really tan! But just on my arms and face. I am going to have some really funny tan lines when I come back. And I am losing weight, my belt is already feeling loose, but I think it’s about time for a new one anyway!

We also traveled to a part of our area, it’s a town outside of Irapuato about 40 minutes, it is called Abasolo. There is a small branch there, about 30 but only 6 or 7 are active. We worked with one of the 2 priesthood holders that is active. He lived the United States for 20 years so he spoke English which was kind of cool! We started 4 new investigators there, 1 of which I think has some real potential. And we are working on reactivating there as well.

I learned I am in an area that has been kind of dead for a few months because there was an elder who didn't want to be here for a long time and kind of hurt our reputation in the ward and area. But we have been working hard to rebuild. So it’s started kind of slow but we got a bunch of referrals this week and i really think we will be able to get a good work going here!

Then to end the week we had conference, which was amazing! I hope you all had the chance to watch all the sessions, if not go online and watch them. We had our family of 6 that is investigating come to the first session of conference. They loved it, the mom was taking notes and all the talks were on baptism and missionary work, perfect! They have a baptismal date for the 20th of October. 4 of them!
I got to watch the sessions in English! 4 of the 10 missionaries in our area are American so that was nice we all watched together. I don’t think I would like it if the voices on the prophets were changed, plus I would have only understood a little bit. I am stoked they changed the age for missionaries. I don’t think it will affect the elders that much but I think there will be so many more sisters that will go on missions. I have been thinking of all the people that could now go, it’s crazy! Mom told me Shayne is thinking about going.

There were so many good things said in conference. The more I listen to the prophets the more i gain a testimony of them. There words and testimonies are so powerful. All of their messages are so inspired. I wish we could have conference once a month! I always feel so uplifted and motivated during and after conference. I challenge you all to go back and read or watch a few of your favorite talks again; every time you do you will learn from it. I particularly liked elder Bednar’s talk in the Sunday afternoon session. I would take one third of a page of notes on each talk usually, the ones that I thought were really good half a page. I took an entire page of notes on his talk and feel like I didn't get it all and couldn't keep up. I am looking forward to reading them again!

I love you all! Have a great week!

Elder Utley

P.S. If you want to send a package at some point it doesn't need to be soon but I would love any sort of American food or candy (chocolate, they don’t eat a lot of chocolate here). Unlike the MTC I am definitely losing weight here and I already miss food from home a little. Although, the food here is super good.

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