Los Angeles, California Mission
February 2010-February 2012
Monday, June 28, 2010
Map of the world at the MTC everyone takes a picture here pointing to their mission. The next picture is taken from the airplane as Ross flew into Los Angeles.
Hello, hello, hello! Mom I got your jam in the mail! It is so good! We ate all our bread with it. So I have half a jar of the best jam in the world and no bread to eat with it. Oh well. But thank you very much! As soon as we get another loaf of bread we are going to finish off the jam as fast as we can!
Thanks for the letter Alesha and Andrew! It's really good to hear from you both! Good luck to Andrew with his testing and jobs and everything. And nice try with the whole "the family is moving" gag. By the way, what are you going to name the baby? I'm glad to hear you are raising a jungle in your house. That makes me a proud brother. Turn on the blender, I hear fish like whirlpools.
This past week we had our final Zone Conference with our mission president and his wife. They will be leaving tomorrow, and President Baker will take the reigns. I am excited to meet him! It will be a change, but change is good! The work is going really well here in Los Angeles. There are a lot of baptisms here. Ever since President Blackburn came in 2007 the baptismal rate has been going up. Hopefully we can continue to increase as we get a new president.
Time is really starting to fly by. It seems like each week goes by faster than the one before. I've been away from home for a whole 4 months now. And Elder Tyler Larsen has been away for about 6 months! And now Cory will be starting his first month in 1 month! Haha and Cody doesn't start until August. It is really awesome to think of all the missionaries from my class that are serving right now. There are so many of us all over the world! I saw many of them while I was in the MTC too. When I think about it, it is pretty weird to the rest of the world for a 19 year old young man to go out and serve God for 2 years! It's pretty amazing how many missionaries are giving up regular life to give all their time to God. It's not easy. But it is very worth it.
Yes dad, we have to wear helmets when riding bikes. Too bad too. We do a lot of riding on the streets. I'm glad you looked up my area on Google earth. That is pretty amazing! We are right in the middle of city. Everywhere we go is straight city. The only open areas are parks. Small ones usually. The other day I saw the biggest openening I've ever seen in the city here. There was a small oilfield right in the middle of the city! There were a whole bunch of pump-jacks all over the place! The city of Los Angeles is like a little piece of each part of the world in one little spot. You can find basically any culture in the world here.
Mom, I made a couple pupusas the other day! One of the members had us over for dinner and she taught us how to make them. We took maiz (corn) batter and made it into a ball, then we put cheese stuff, meat, and refried beans in the middle of it. Then we worked them into pancake shaped things, and we cooked them like pancakes, then we put some sauce and cabbage salad stuff on them, and we ate them. SO good. You should look up how to make them on the internet. The Guatemalans love them like Americans love hamburgers. They are unhealthy like hamburgers too, so that is good!
I got a letter from Elder Larsen the other day! He sounds like he is doing well! I'll bet he is an expert at Portuguese by now.
I haven't been gaining any weight. I actually weigh about the same I did when I went into the MTC. I don't know how that works.
I hope camping went well for everybody! I haven't been camping in forever! Hopefully dad caught some fish! I'll bet Andrew had a really good time up there with all the family! And matching orange shirts! Oh man, I'll bet everybody on the mountain thought our family was a giant hunting brigade! Haha I want pictures! That sounds awesome! (this is the part when I do uncle Frank's voice imitation) I don't think he knows I do that. But it really sounds like him.
Hahahaha Emily got a job! Flipping burgers! I remember when we were little, mom and dad would always tell us "I want you to work when you are older, just not flipping burgers" haha. That's grand. Or as Alesha and I would say, "that makes my Adam's apple jiggle" hahahaha! Inside joke.
How is Lindsey doing? She's probably having a blast playing soccer all the time! I got to kick a soccer ball around today. It was really nice.
You wanted to know about my companion. Here you go. He is a Tongan. Spanish is his 3rd language (after Tongan and English). He is 21 years old, and is a former Assistant to the President. He really likes meat (Tongan attribute). We are very different from eachother, but we do the work and that is all that matters.
Yesterday Elder Hopotate and I had a baptism! It is a neat story: We have a recent convert that some other Elders baptized, and she referred a young boy . I've talked about him before in an e-mail. He is a 12 year old who has some serious struggles. He didn't seem to be progressing much at all, so we turned our attention to his mother. She is a very nice woman from Mexico. She has accepted everything we taught, and she has great faith. She works on some Sundays, but she comes to church when she can. She is a single mother with two kids from two different fathers. She really wanted us to help her son, and we tried really hard to help him. Her son, went to live with his uncle for a couple months, so hopefully he will be in better condition when he comes home. We baptized Gema last night at the church. She will be confirmed next Sunday! She is going to be a great member of the Church, and hopefully through her more people will come unto Christ through baptism.
I know this church is true. I know that Christ died for us, and that we can one day live with Him, and our Heavenly Father. The plan is perfect, all we need to do is follow it.
I love you all very much! Thank you for everything you have done for me. I will keep you in my prayers.