Wow this is the 4th time ive tried to email, so sorry it may be a little cut or whatever, im starting to loose my patience with this computer! haha Thanks for the pics mom! Man my bro is a stud.. and Jenna lookin good, as always.
So tuesday was pretty wild. We got a call monday night telling us we have an emergency Zone Conference today..... ya im not sure what that means either. He pretty much talked about sin the whole time, so obviously our mission has problems.. but it was cool. We got 3 new rules and i saw Elder Stewart and stuff so it wasnt too bad. It was pretty funny actually. Most people were like, ´great, 3 new rules to break´ haha. Its kind of ridiculous but they were pretty funny rules. So mom, if you already bought a CTR ring, go ahead and send it, but if no, dont buy one. Ill explain later. So we got back to the house just starving after training because they didnt give us lunch so we ate and then went out to work.... or talk to our neighbor for 3 hours. haha my comp likes to talk to her and really she is way cool and we did teach her, but it was pretty ridiculous.
Wednesday i went running with elder Iverson in the morning. It was pretty cool, and yes Elder iverson is from Bountiful. He is pretty cool and is still confused a lot, but he is super goofy, i love having him here. After the morning, it was a pretty normal day.
Thursday was pretty normal.. lots of walking, talkin with some less actives that have some problems, which less actives is a huge problem in Brasil. And we got home late, which was pretty annoying. My comp is good and i love him, its just a little annoying when we dont always follow the rules, but i am thankful for a pretty good comp. I read tay´s blog and think about my first comp and other stuff and it could definitely be worse here, so i love it still.
Friday We went to Ana´s house and she never seems interested when we teach. But today she started praying and just started crying. That was pretty cool. I love to see when they are actually doing what we ask and you feel the spirit like that. I like this area too, because if we pass by a members house, depending on the member, almost always, and sometimes investigators too, will just give us a little snack, its awesome. I am never hungry, so i better start running more cuz im not liking it haha. But i eat a lot here.
Saturday There was a baptism so we went and invited lots of our investigators then literally ran to the baptism because we were late, and we ran for like a mile and a half. It was awkward running with bags and in church clothes, but hey... im in the middle of nowhere it feels like. So We had the baptism and that night i had a good talk with Elder Almeida. He is a stud. He is a good all around guy and works hard. I think my comp has some problems so i was advised to help him a little. He doesnt really love the pres and what not so I gotta help. Anyway he is a good guy.
Sunday we had church. And like other sundays, no investigators. It is kind of frustrating because all of your baptisms get cancelled when they dont show up, because they have to go twice... so its disappointing... but what can ya do. Later that day i heard someone blasting U2 and man it made my day. It was so good to here something other than Forró! (its a type of music) Then it rained super hard and we took cover in a little store...
so onto sunday night/monday morning.... At like 2 AM i was sleeping and my comp taps me on the arm. He was sitting on the floor and was saying he wasnt feeling good. He was throwing up and had horrible diarrhea. I got up and he had no energy so i carried him over close to the bathroom. I gave him a little food and he just threw it all up. I woke up Elder Almeida and me and him gave my comp a blessing. After the blessing they both said he needs to go to the hospital. so Almeida and Iverson went to get a taxi. They showed up and my comp was so weak that i had to get him dressed and carry him out to the car. We got to the hospital and i carried him in and onto a bed. They came in and gave him an IV to feel better. like 30 sec later I walked out in the hall with Elder Iverson and he just collapsed! I helped him up and he said ´Elder Smoot its happening again!´ So i helped him down to the ground and he just passed out. it was soooo wierd! But i picked him back up and onto a wheelchair and into the same room as Elder Braga and he got an iv too. so the two of them were chillin there with IVs and me and Almeida were like ´what is this!´ But it all turned out good and Iverson and almeida left at like 4 am and walked a mile and a half home. And i left at about 6 30 with Elder Braga and we had to walk home too because there were no taxis there.... So it was an eventful morning! When we got home, i realized i didnt grab keys on the way out! So i had to ask the neighbor to jump the fence into our backyard to wake up the other elders to get in. The rest of the day weve been sleeping and what not. Im still pretty tired, but it was pretty dang exciting! Everyone is good now and we are off and going.
Well sorry i dont have more time! Love you guys and have a great week!
I cant beleive its already P day again. This week had some changes, but it was good. I like it when the week goes fast, its pretty cool.
Last tuesday we did some good work, i still feel like we could do more, but it was good. But the exciting thing is that at 10 pm we were all just sitting, talking, getting ready for bed and what not, and we get a call. We here that there is an emergency transfer and the Elder Magalhães is leaving in the morning at 6 am. I gotta say you have to be on your toes in this mission! the transfers are completely random sometimes, but its pretty exciting.
Wednesday we went to the transfer at 6 to watch him leave and then later the new comp of Elder Almeida arrived... Elder Iverson. Anyway later we had some good lessons and it wasnt a bad day.
Thursday... HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM! did you get the video? haha good stuff. The day started off slow... as usual the afternoon right after lunch everyone is sleeping and/or eating... so its hard sometimes. Anyway we ended up stopping at this one house that had a bird sitting out and talked to them for a while. After about 4 o clock is when things pick up a little more. So it started slow, but by the end of the night, we didnt have time to do all of our visits, it was nice.
Friday started off really rough again. All of our appointments werent home right after lunch and we had a reference that just told us more or less where it was. So we had to ask like 4 houses to figure out who it was. Turns out it was this girl that talked to the missionaries like 10 years ago and likes to hear the lessons, so that was a help to our day. Anyway her name is Valdelice. Also that night some missionaries came from Teresina (because our district is part of teresina) and they were doing a split and doing a baptismal interview. Turns out one was a Brasilian that arrived with me and was in my room in the CTM. So that was cool to see him again. And they brought my package from the Andersons for me! That book was pretty cool! Tell them thanks for me.
Saturday we were going to lunch, and the new American started to feel pretty bad. He had a stomach ache and everything, which is pretty normal here haha. But we were going to lunch and the other two said we have seperate lunch today, or that two people will give us lunch today. So they had me go with elder Iverson to a house that was a little closer in case he had more problems we could get home faster. It was wierd but really cool because he doesnt speak or understand a lot yet because he was in Texas for 2 months so i had to do all of the talking and conversing. Anyway we went home for a little bit to wait for the other two and it just started pownding rain! Anyway it finally stopped and later that day the other elders had another baptism and it was cool because when it was raining i was studying with elder iverson to give a talk at the baptism and he did pretty good so it was cool. Good day.
Sunday there was nothing real exciting.. Just church and an amazing lunch which was nice. I am so thankful for the blessing of being able to speak pretty good and understand most everything now. I remember when i was like Elder Iverson... its hard. But i have been tryin to help him and make it easier for him and he is learning fast. He studies hard and is really obedient so im sure it will come.
Today was pretty cool. We just shoppedand stuff but I bought some soccer shoes to play around in and helped Elder Iverson get some stuff. Since ive already tried a lot of the food i could show him what is good and not good to buy haha its pretty cool.
Well just another Happy Birthday mom! And now tomorow, HAPPY BIRTHDAY TALIA! The years just keep passin and with out even realizing it we are gettin old! I always remember wanting to grow up, but when you grow up, you just want to stay young!
I can only think of a couple more things that would be sweet in a package.. 1st- Pepto Bismol. Its a quick fix and it helps a lot. and i help a lot of other people with it too. 2nd- if you can, i would love some cereal. Some Captain crunch, or a fruity pebbles or something... it would be nice. So if you cant dont worry, but just ideas.
Campo Maior has been pretty awesome so far! the ward is like a family and i like the members a lot. I get fed a lot of food from the members at lunch and all and havent been hungry at all! I am starting to have a little gut actually its ridiculous. the weather has been pretty chilly lately. I have to keep the fan really low or ill wake up really cold. The house is pretty nice, it has some spiders and bugs and all, but a lot less then most of the houses here. I just sleep with the net now, thanks Rex Family! The other american bought one today too, he was sick of the bugs at night. and i just sleep in the bed. I use the hammocks to take naps and stuff on p day and at night, but i like the bed with net thing. It is kinda wierd to use... but it works so why not?
My clothes are fine and still in great condition. Havent had any problems. and i did get that hair product from Tal. Thanks a lot. I use it when the sun is shining hard and man it smells really good. I still havent seen tammys package, but ill keep you updated. The jump rope is good and i think the Elder Iverson wants to start running in the morning! Finally. So that should be cool. My comp is still sleepin, but at least he is cool. Ill try to influence him a little more, maybe send me an airhorn? haha that would be so funny.
Well I was studying the conference talks this week and i really liked the talk of Bishop Richard C. Edgley- Faith, the choice is yours. I think its cool that we dont always control what happens in life, but we always control how we react. So above everything, always choose faith and choose to be happy. Like in Ether 12:6 we dont gain a testimony until after the trial of our faith.
I better get going so have an awesome week! Love you all,
Boa Tarde todo mundo! Como esta as coisas? Bom? Beleza.
Tuesday i started workin out with the jump rope. It was pretty sweet. I felt pretty stupid at first, but after a weeks practice i think im gettin the hang of it! Also this day we met Maria de lurdez. I guess her sons were baptised and were less actives. We took the list and started visiting people now his mom is taking the lessons.... One problem. She has got to go to Church! pretty common problem it looks like.
Wednesday we had a District meeting in the morning, which is pretty good. Its funny here because there are a few members that like to come and listen to our meeting sometimes.Also we taught Eliane again. When we teach her, she seems like she is doing so well. Asking questions about the Book of Mormon and everything... So the lessons are going good with her.
Thursday We went to maria de Lurdez again and also found Ana. It was funny because we had an incorrect address and we ended up finding Ana. We went there twice and first time she seemed really mad at us for taking her time and the second she was accepting the lesson and stuff, so it was cool to see the change. but again... go to Church! And Later that day i learned something really cool! I learned that my water proof shoes work great! up until the water goes above the shoe haha. We were walkin in this low water, but its always that one step to step in a spot a little too deep... Game Over.
Friday i had a split with Elder Almeida. He is a stud. He was baptized just over 2 years ago and now hes on the mission teaching other people. he has such a strong testimony and it was cool to teach with him. Those pics with the turtle and the bird were this day. We have a member at this house and her mom isnt a member so we went and taught her and saw her cool pets. Anyway, we marked a baptism, and we were working in my area, and things were lookin pretty good. We talked to a few members and how they need to give us references to work efficiently. So it was a good day.
Saturday we talked with Geani. she is a type of person that she beleives bits and peices of all of the religions. She has a huge problem with smoking. So we´ll see what we can do there. Also we talked with Liliane. So Eliane, Liliane, and Michaele are all friends. We have been teaching them all and they commited to go to church on sunday... but they didnt. Its tough sometimes, but we´ll keep working.
Sunday was the normal church, but for some reason my comp was a little unhappy, which isnt normal. he is a goofy dude so it was obvious somethin was up. So i guess he spends a lot of time talkin to girls. We have this really cool neighbor, she is about 20, and i see him talkin to her sometimes, and ive talked with her too. And i think there was something going on that the members were starting to talk that he was flirting with girls and stuff. Anyway he sits by girls at church too, but now he doesnt sit by anyone. Anyway i guess i need to watch out for my comp. he was a little mad because he doesnt see a problem with it, but ya i dont know. What do i do? Things are still pretty good though.
today we played basketball in the morning. Its really funny. Everyone loves to challenge the American! haha. Its pretty fun.
Well I guess thats about it. I was really thinking about repentance this week. We teach about it a lot. I decided that there really is nothing we can do about the past, but learn from it. There are so many regrets in life, so many things we should have done, so many things we shouldnt have, but its all made good through repentance. Its pretty cool. Also, there was a little 13 yr old girl that died on a motor cycle this past week... or the other week i dont remember, but i am so thankful for the plan of salvation.
Well keep it real and ill talk to ya sooner or later.
So im getting to know the area a little more and meeting people and this week was a lot more exciting then last week!
Last tuesdayi just remember we set up a baptismal date with a girl named eliane. She is really cool, about 27 and was married but got divorced and has a kid. She really eats up about everything we teach her, and the first time we taught she accepted to be baptised, so i hope it continues good, but a lot of the times it is what we like to call snakes. A snake is a girl that kind of does what the missionaries say because we are boys and she is girl... get it? So i am hoping it isnt a situation like that, but it is looking pretty good so far and normally they dont accept baptism if they are a snake. Anyway, we were walkin down the street and i almost stepped on this giant iguana. First i saw its tail and thought it was a snake, but then i saw the body. I mean it was probobly one of the biggest iguanas ive seen yet.
Wednesday Elder Almeida went to Teresina for training for 2 days so we had elder Magalhães with us. It rained hard that day and there was some really cool lighting. The lightning here lights up the whole sky i like it a lot.Also there was a crazy part of the day we were walking across this field and all of the sudden stuff started flying past our heads! I couldnt tell if it was someone with a sling shot or a BB gun, but it was pretty intense and i couldnt see where it came from, but obviously we were protected haha.
Thursday.... we walked to the end of the world and back. Sometimes i feel like we just walk forever. Some houses can take about an hour walking just to get there. So some days, like thursday, i was really tired so the long walk took forever. But it turned out to be a pretty good day.
Friday guess what??? Elder Almeida came back from Teresina with all 4 of my Packages! and with that was 5 letters. JACKPOT. Man i never new how cool it was to receive packages and letters haha but it was awesome. It was a basic day after that, but it made it a whole lot better. All of the presents were awesome! I will use the Plan of Salvation puzzle and the candy was sweet. I am trying to jump rope too... but i havent done it more than 30 sec yet.
Saturday it rained a ton again.... I am thinking about buying an umbrella haha.... just maybe. But it was an awesome day and even was the birthday of Eliane (our investigator) and so we passed there to wish her a happy birthday and she like gave us food and stuff. It was pretty awesome not gonna lie! But i will be honest. So far my problem hasnt been eating to little, but eating too much. I am always full, but there is always food to eat so i eat it... but its better then not enough!
Sunday... We get to church a little late, ya my comp slept in, and we go into class. I sit down next to the Branch pres and he says, ´are you ready for your talk´ i was like what! your joking! he said ´i dont beleive it´ I guess Almeida forgot to tell me! So i spent the time in class preparing a talk about missionary work. Luckily we had class before sacrament meeting! It actually turned out super good! the one i did in parnaiba was really not that good, even though i had time to prepare. I feel like when i get up to give a talk in portuguese, it is way better if i just have ideas and rely on the spirit to help me. It really was a gift of the spirit! I felt like i spoke clearl y and got out all of the thoughts i wanted to and even talked for almost 10 min. Its crazy! I never would have thought i could do this. But thats not the end of the day. After church, we went to lunch as usual. This time in a members house, her name is Glenia. I showed her my pictures, really common to do with members here, and she showed me hers of old missionaries that passed through and other things. I was flipping through and guess what? there was Elder Washburn! haha it was pretty cool. She showed me a notebook she kept with little letters from the missionaries and i saw his little letter for her and man it was pretty cool. Turns out quite a few people in the area remember him. So that was an exciting day.
Today, as you see in some of the pics, we went to this little museum on the edge of the town and it had that red bridge thing over the road. I love how the missionaries like to do stuff here. This morning we played basketball and then went to the mini museum after. My last area we went to internet, grocery shopping, then home. this is way better!
So a little more about my comp. He is from São Paulo and he owns a factory that does aerosal cans. He is a good missionary... but he loves to sleep in! I have to admit it is pretty hard when i see him sleep in. I always get up, but sometimes after i eat i lay back down for a little. I feel like we have been a little lazy, but it is getting better. It really is way better still though. After my first two transfers, i am still lovin life here! Elder Almeida is a stud and he is from Bahia. He is pretty big and good at soccer. Elder Magalhães loves basketball and is a tall white brasilian... pretty uncommon. But he is cool too and he is from São Paulo.
btw. thanks for the videos last week they were awesome!
So my bug zapper broke... first it was just a problem with the button, but i think it was a problem with certain people in my house spraying water on it to make it spark! But no worries. I just went and bout another one of 11 reais in the Carvalho market. It is recharchable and pretty powerful. I use it a lot haha.
The work here is moving, but i feel like it could be moving faster. I feel sometimes like we are a little lazy, but its kind of how the missions been so far. A little disappointing numbers and what not... but ill pull through here soon enough and get this goin hopefully. I still feel pretty new in the mission and i am still learning a lot.
So my district is us 4 and 2 sisters who are in Altos. So its pretty small but i like it. Our zone is one with people in teresina. I am still not really sure how the branch works... like if they are part of a district or whatever. If i ever find out i will let you know.
Dad thats awesome you have so much going on with work! It helps a lot to keep busy with things, even though the stress is no fun. I pray that things go well for you and that you continue to enjoy work, because for me its important to enjoy the work.
So i guess you didnt get that map showing more or less where our house is located? We live pretty close to the Bus station and the church...
About Joseph Smith... Really there is tons and tons of material on him mom. Basically what we say about him is that he was a young man that had doubts about religions and he wanted to know the purpose of his life on earth. He did his part by searching out all of the churches and reading in the bible and read that scripture in James 1:5. He read, pondered, then prayed, and God responede, because he prayed with faith. So basically Joseph Smith was prepared by God to be a prophet and restore the gospel. The last two paragraphs of the introduction of the Book of Mormon are really cool too. That basically if we read, ponder and praysincerely, we will know that Jesus Christ is our savior and Redember, Joseph Smith is a true prophet, and that The Church of Jesus Christ is true... Im not really sure what else to share! Just read some material and it helps a lot!
And Happy Birthday T. Austin! Man i miss that kid so much. I did get an email from Laurie so i will send a quite note for him. Man i cant beleive we are getting so old! I swore i would never be a grown man... but look whats happening... darn.
Well the days are goin by pretty fast! P days come and go like nothin! Hope you have an awesome week and keep up the good work.
Alright so Last monday i just packed in the afternoon to get ready to leave, because i was leaving for Campo Maior at 8 30 am.
Tuesday we were waiting for our ride to come, and he didn come. We didnt have credit on our phone so we couldnt call to remind him! I was for sure going to be late, but then another member called and we asked him to call this other member to come pick us up. It was honestly a miracle. I was pulling in a little late but the bus was just about ready to go and i threw all my stuff on and took off. I was all kind of in a rush, but that bus ride was seriously heaven. Imagine one of those nice, big traveling busses for seriously like 7 people. I could choose any row, the air conditioning was on and it was A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. I was a little hungry, but it stops in like 3 cities before i arrived. A person came on selling corn, and so i bought one, which was like 1 real and 50 cents. It tasted so good. He sprays this salt/butter juice on it and man it was sooooo good. It reminded me of Nacho Libre.. kinda... not really. Anyway it was like 4 hours of traveling in heaven. I slept for about an hour and a half, and played with the rubix cube my comp gave me for christmas and just relaxed.. and yes i traveled alone. So i got there and sat on the bench at the bus station when a member came over and started talkin to me. I sat there talking to him for about an hour while the Elders were at lunch. (There are 4 Elders in Campo Maior and only one branch, but it is pretty close to Teresina, and yes Teresina is hotter) So the other Elders finally showed up, and before i came here, i heard a little about my new comp, Elder Braga. He is part Japonese, so he looks japonese and speaks really good english. Anyway, he traded tags with a member to make me think it was the other guy! It was so funny. The other guy is a member and he did a split with us all day, with Elder Bragas tag. I really didnt know much about my comp, so i did have doubts for a while and i thought it was the member, but i kind of knew all along. And later that night they finally traded. Anyway after i dropped my stuff at the house we went to visit people and what not. This place is cool. Its more of the trails and stuff and its more of a jungle area. Not that its like the jungle, but its more of the trails and dirt roads and trees and rivers and stuff like i expected before the mission.
Wednesday we visited lots of people again and even in the morning we played a little basketball right next to that lake that dad had a picture of the area. Anyway pretty basic day.
Thursday we talked to some of the same people, and its cool here. I feel like our investigators are really progressing and we will get some baptisms this time through. The people are really cool here and i love it. My favorite part is that there is no drama in the house. I felt so bad for elder Robertson when i left, he was pretty disappointed. But everyone here acts like men and we take care of business and i love it. I really didnt realize how ridiculous it was back there until i was here. I am loving it here. And that night we went to a lakeside restaurant to eat pizza. They threw in some food in the lake, and guess what? There are piranna here! Its pretty cool. I think we might go fish them some p day in the future. And there was an aligator! I sent a pic, but it was really dark. He isnt super big like the one dad saw in New Orleans, but he was about 4-5 ft long.
Friday was an interesting new years eve. Everyone was partying and it reminded me of good ole parties at home... just a lot less drinking at home haha. But the people are cool here and i went to bed early, but set my clock to see the last few minutes of the year. I woke up anyways with all the fireworks going off. People shoot fireworks regularly here, but there was a lot going off. So it wasnt super exciting but it was cool.
Saturday was a tough day to teach. Everyone was all hungover from the day before, or just sleeping because they partyed all night. So we really didnt have much until about 4 o clock in the afternoon because everyone was sleeping or gone. Anyway the other Elders had 2 baptisms at 5 so we went to see that. It is nice to see that people are actually getting baptized here. They have, and i think we have too, a few baptisms lined up every week. I hope we can get one this week, but the next week is looking good for sure.
Sunday we went to church, as usual, and its a cool church. Yes its technically a house church, but i love it, and probably more then the chapel i had in Parnaiba. Its really cool and i love the members here. Anyway all of the elders, we bore our testimonies and it was cool. I felt so blessed that when i feel the spirit, i can speak so clear and get out what i want to say. It really is gifts of the spirit, and i felt it a little bit when bearing my testimony. Lots of people came up after and basically said, oh you sound brazilian. But it really isnt me doing it, because i have had other times where i hardly spoke at all, and i realize that it was a blessing of the lord. So realize the lords hand in everything, i see that he likes to give more blessings if you do that.
Today, i wish i took a pic, but we went way out to the end of the area and played soccer with a bunch of brazilians. It was so cool! It was this random field in the middle of a big pasture type field it looked like, and it was fun. The brazilians liked to pick on the one american out there haha it was sweet. I might buy some soccer shoes if we keep playin because in tennis shoes was kinda hard to play in. But it was awesome. The other elders in the house are Elder Almeida(Strong soccer player and District Leader) and Elder Magalhães (tall white brasilian that likes basketball). Anyway it is pretty sweet.
So just some funny random stuff. First is that if you want to have a barbeque, you dont just go to wal mart to buy the meat. you have two options. First there is places with huge slabs of the ribs of cow, kind of like we used to have at grandpa drapers, but grosser looking. Or, and i kind of saw this once, you kill the pig in the backyard. we were walkin down this dirt road and all of a sudden i look over and this pig is just screamin and this guy is standin above the pig, but there was a screen thing so i couldnt see exactly, but it was obvious what was going on. Anyway its pretty crazy. And i found this stuff kind of like Cream of Wheat and i love it so much. They made it in the CTM and finally i found something close and even a little better.
As you found out, my comp is have Japenese and is literally a Genius (given because he is asian) I guess he owns a business that him and his friend started and its basically selling areosale cans. (dont know how to spell that) His parents are chemists or something so they make what goes inside, but he started working on this and other things when he was like 12. Its pretty impressive!
Anyway i forgot your questions so i will send this real fast and get to your questions. The house here is a lot smaller then what i had, but its all good because i like this place a lot.