You don't get to complain about rain when your son is living in England. ;)
This week had it's own challenges just as every week does but it went by really quickly! So many aspects of what we do are the same each day and the things that aren't the same are so interesting that it makes the time pass by so quickly! Something that always helps me put it into perspective if I'm feeling down about the future is that a mission only lasts about 100 weeks. That's super short. I have to agree with dad, tithing settlement seem not very long ago at all.
On Thursday we had interviews with President Millar and it was the first time I had talked to him for more than a few minutes. The first thing he said when we sat down was "I'm so glad to have an EMT in the field!". It was really good to hear that. He then shared with me some stories about his time being a surgeon and crazy things he did to keep patients alive. The interview was really good and it was nice to get to know President Millar more and for him to get to know me as well!
I have to say that we weren't able to meet with Mark this week unfortunately. He is very busy and had to cancel the appointment we had set up for Wednesday. But the positive side is that I feel very confident that we, or other missionaries, will be able to meet with him soon. He was still very interested and enthusiastic when he cancelled the appointment. It's only been a week so I don't feel very worried about it. We had 2 very good lessons with Bob but not everything went perfectly. On Thursday we taught him in a member's home about the word of wisdom. Bear in mind that he has been coming to church for ages and has been taught all of the lessons numerous times. The lesson went very well and he committed to live the word of wisdom after we provided alternatives to drinking tea. On Friday we went over to teach him and his wife about temples and eternal marriage. Before we began the lesson he came out of his kitchen with a mug of tea! Immediately he said that he would begin keeping his commitment after he gets back from a trip out of country this coming week. It was the first time he's committed to live the word of wisdom in 2 years and he broke it the next day! Ahhhhhhh! He even told us a story about how he quit smoking and taking a pain medication he had been taking for a year both on the same day and has never looked back since. But he couldn't give up tea for a day?
Now I know where I get the "wimpyness" and vivid imagination. It reminded me a lot when you were talking about the devil living in the storage room about when we lived in that house. I was convinced that the boogyman lived in Karen Peterson's basement and would get you if you went down there at night. Even though we've lived in our house for 10 years and I still used to start running once I got halfway up the starts because I didn't like thinking about a dark empty room being behind me.
I'm so glad to hear that everyone is doing well. I'm confident that everyone will be okay while I am on my mission. In the two blessings that I've had since I've been here both have mentioned that I don't need to worry about your safety while I'm away. Does that make you feel comfortable? It's definitely helped me a ton. I still worry about Oscar from time to time though...
I try to email my friends every week but especially those that are on missions are just as busy as I am and I don't really blame them if they don't reply. From what I've heard our mission gets a little bit of an extension on email time. I haven't talked to Dillon yet and it's funny that you mention him because I've thought about him as well. I don't doubt at all that he is still eagerly working towards his mission, but I do want to share some of my experiences with him or get into contact in general.
While I am not yet completely adjusted to missionary life it definitely feels more normal. But during this last week I seemed to be feeling all of the adversities that I could possibly be feeling all at once. Again it was on Friday I was having a hard time. All day I had a hard time feeling ANYTHING. I felt like no matter what I did I couldn't escape this numb and questioning feeling fogging up my whole day. It was something that I'd never felt before and was one of the most frustrating things I've ever dealt with. It's gotten much better since then but I'm really learning the importance of study time and constantly building up my testimony. We're under attack in a spiritual sense all the time and as missionaries it's even more than usual. I know that this gospel is true without doubts but my testimony could always be stronger. That's something I'm going to focus on this week, effective study and bearing testimony often.
Every week I love England more! The more I get to know people and the country, the more I feel that his is exactly where I need to be right now.
I saved the best (or worst) for last. I know you want pictures badly so I grabbed the ones I wanted to show you the most.
Cameron and Mom will like the first one. I found a Tardis and it's actually used to make police calls.
The second one is the high street in a part of our area called Boscombe. It's a pretty dodgy area but it's the best place to go street contacting. In Christchurch itself there are tons of old people who are either strongly atheist or super loyal to the CofE but a lot of younger people live in Boscombe and are willing to stop and talk to us. Most of our Potentials are from Boscombe.
The third one is our little district in Christchurch. Me, Elder Poulino, Sister Dunlop (Australia), and Sister Stuart (Salt Lake).
The last one is correlation with our ward mission leader on saturday mornings. We usually have it at the chapel but we had pancakes at one of the bishop's councilors house instead. The WML is the one to the right of Elder Poulino. He's super funny. Ice cream on pancakes is something common over here. Fresh banana with vanilla ice cream on top of a warm pancake is literally the best thing ever. You have to try it.
The jacket was the jacket I was suggested the most and it's a ton warmer than it looks. It was also the most conservative one they had believe it or not.
(It looks like I can only send 1 picture at a time so the others are on their way.)