Wednesday, February 17, 2010

First Letter to Family-Feb 11, 2010

Dear Fam,
Well today is P-day, technically my 3rd one if you count the day I arrived. This marks 2 weeks already of my mission. This letter is a reply to Mom's lovely Valentine's letter which I received 2 days ago, and to April's and Dad's letters which I received today (1 week, not bad). I haven't emailed you yet today so this letter may repeat some stuff I've already told you, or will tell you. I'm not exactly sure how mail works. We put our letters in the white box, but I don't know when exactly they send them out. I've written one letter already to the sisters of the house so hopefully they have received that one. Mom and Dad have some similar questions so I'll try to answer them all. As for April, congrats on being the last one awake on the emergency preparedness day. :) I'm doing ok with spanish. There are a few who have learned some in school and are getting it a little better, and then there are some who aren't grasping it at all... well a little bit. I feel like I don't get it, but when I think about it and look back I realize I'm understanding it more and I am learning some stuff. One of the teachers forced us to teach her lesson 1 in spanish without anything to look off of, and although very basically, it was amazing how much we knew and could teach, so it is coming, but I'm definitely grateful I have 7 more weeks. :) The food is really good actually. I get plenty of meat. Had steak already. Lots of spinach, but it's not bad. Had some cow tongue, and usually there's always something different, so we don't eat the same stuff over and over again. I'm not sure if you already know, but I was called as District leader and already it's proving to be an interesting challenge. I'm already having to deal with some missionaries who are just not grasping the picture, just having difficulties with reverence and pride, not sure how to deal with it, but I'm working with President George and some teachers. I need to break out and take charge I guess, not be too passive. We'll see how things go. I do know Stacy Earl and I'm excited for her and her decision. And I've most definitely been feeling the Savior's love for me. The blessing of having the Spirit with you every day if you allow is amazing. I don't know if I've felt it so much before. I've been taught so much already and my testimony grows more and more each day. I'm glad to hear Lucky is doing well and will survive. :) I think the candy ball thing is neat, when do I get to eat one? :) I finished all the gummy bears and Grandma's cookies already, and we do get ice cream every once and awhile. We've had soda a couple of times. And cake once for President George's Bday, but it's amazing how much I am craving candy, not sure why, and I can't chew my gum I brought, gum isn't allowed... Oh well... That's cool about the blog. I hoped something like that would happen, so thanks :) I actually got a letter from Macy today as well. I haven't read it yet, but it looks like it was sent through "Dear Elder", so that's pretty cool. I'm glad to hear the money thing is starting to work out. I pray pretty much every day to bless my family, and I'm so grateful to hear you're praying for me. I've felt your love somehow several times already here and am truly blessed. I've read through your testimonies quite a few times already too and I love it. My average schedule is as follows: 6:30 wake up, shower, prep, etc.. then 7:00 breakfast, 8 = personal study, 9=companion study, then we have class at 10 grammar and gospel stuff, at 11:15 we have lunch. Then more class 12:30-2:30, then "PAC" which is language study on our own for an hour, then physical activity at 3:30 till 4:30-ish, usually we play frisbee or soccer, sometimes other stuff. Then class again from 7:00-9:00, then a half hour of prep for the next day, then we get ready for bed, and get to sleep by 10:30... YAY! Exciting!? Lot's of class, but it's not really that bad. The exceptions of course are P-day where we have "prep-time" from lunch till dinner where we write some letters and email and whatever else we feel like we need to do. And Sundays are my favorite, No spanish! and it's a lot of meetings, but they're always good meetings and the Spirit's really strong. So there's a look at my day basically. I hope Daniel's schedule works out well, don't let him get too stressed, it's not fun. There's about 35 Elders here right now, and new ones come every 3 weeks and some leave every 3 weeks, pretty cool how small it is, the intimacy of it all. And another cool thing we do here is go proseliting! REAL PROSELITING! in the surrounding area. Even though we can't really speak spanish, we get to go out and teach. I've gone once already for 2 hours, this saturday will be another 2 hours, then every Saturday after it's 7 hours! It's a big eye opener but very good to get to know what I'm gonna be doing for the next 2 years. The 1st week was extremely slow! And very hard, this second week however has gone by faster, and has been a lot less stressful, just getting used to it. And I've been told by the 5 weekers and 8 weekers that the middle 3 weeks fly by the fastest, and the last 3 still are fast, but you feel like you learn the most these last few weeks. I love listening to the missionaries that have been here longer, gives me encouragement. Well this letter's long enough and I need to wrap it up til next time, plus in half an hour I'll be emailing you and might say some of this stuff again. Anyway, here's a little spanish, my testimony= yo se que esta iglesia es verdadera, yo se que Dios nos ama, y Jesucristo nos ama, yo testifico Jose Smith es un profeta de Dios, y el libro de Mormon es la parabla de Dios, Oigo estas cosas en el nombre de Jesucristo Amen. -Elder Hancock-

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