Oh my gosh. I just deleted my whole e-mail on accident! So this may be a little shorter. So sorry.
Hi! Can you believe I've been out for six MONTHS this week. Six months!! I do what I just did two more times and I'm done. Weirdy. Time is very strange on a mission. James remember when you said "The days feel like weeks and the weeks feels like days"? Well, seriously. I can't think of a different way to describe the way time is going for me as a missionary.
This last week was really good! Tuesday or Wednesday we taught Doyle and he is doing so well! He will be baptized next month. He didn't come to church yesterday which was so frustrating because we talked about church so much just the night before at our lesson. He will get there though. I am the happiest when I am teaching I realized. It was like this with James and it is like this again with Doyle. Also me and Sister Cochran have been using the concept of gratitude in our lessons a LOT (seeing as it was Thanksgiving. Why not use it, right?) And we've been trying to be more grateful and it has been just so cool. I know I've talked about it before, but being grateful really will change your life. It will make you happy. I have been so happy this week and it's because I was trying to be grateful. And it is Christmas season. So nice.
Thursday was great! I wondered if I would be sad because it was my first holiday away but I wasn't sad. I try not to think about how home looks with snow and what you all were doing etc. I had such a good day! We studied in the morning because I , like, can't function without studies in the morning. And then we went to the church and played nerf wars (the chapel was off limits no worries). I kind of understand how James and Jony love to play Halo because nerf wars were so fun. We played a game called President (which my team lost EVERY time.) and we played a game called Bomb. We had the cell phones in different rooms and the goal was to get to the room and turn on the bomb and blow up their base. So fun. We won that one. We played that until our lunch at 3 oclock and then had thanksgiving with the Heinzes. It was DELICIOUS. They had a cajun turkey. It was different. But they had mashed potatoes and green been caserole and stuffing and I was in HEAVEN. Then we went up to the Corbins and just visited with them for a while. Then we went back to the church and had nerf wars until the end of the night - until 9 oclock!! It was crazy. I loved it and I was just brimming with gratitude all day long.
Saturday it rained all day long and it is now freezing here. We went tracting and I saw a scorpion! I took a picture of it all poised to attack but the picture didn't turn out, so I will send it but it may be lame. I loved it because it was gloomy and cold and listening to Christmas music was better. I just find it hard to listen to christmas music while it is 80 degrees outside. I realized this week that it is my first and last christmas as a missionary. Crazy.
Yesterday was a great day. We tracted and ran into a nutso pentecostal man. He was old and literally was yelling (not because he was angry just because he was nuts) for like 30 minutes he would not let us leave his porch. I almost died. Then at night we had dinner with the Chapmans (they are awesome. He served a mission in pocatello and is so cool. we love to talk to him about missionary stuff because he has the funniest stories) and then went to see one of my favorite less-actives Red Drye. Oh my gosh he is cool. His wife still will not speak to us, but he is the best. We talked about repentance with him.
This week will be really cool because of the nativity! Our church does this cool thing where they have all of these nativities set up in the gym and it is advertised throughout the community. I will have to send pictures, mom you will love it!! But becuase of that, we can't play basketball for the whole month of December (not that I'm heartbroken about that) but we are in Atascocita e-mailing so we can go to the gym here and the Elders can play to their heart's content.
I am really happy. Dad I was reading that talk you sent me that you gave at stake conference and my e-mail that I sent home and I see how much I've grown and changed in the past six months. I hope yall have been blessed by my service as a missionary because I have really been blessed by it. I am so thankful.
Dad, thank you for your letter this week! It sounds like everything is good at home! I was thinking about your new job and what is it exactly that you are doing all day long? Selling things? Or coordinating sales? Can you explain it to me?
Mommy, how are you? Did you have a good week? I hope you're doing good. YOUR BIRTHDAY IS THIS WEEK! What are yall doing for your birthday? Something HUGE I hope!! I wish I was there to celebrate- the big 3-0 right? :] How is everything going for you?
James, hello??? How are you? I bet you are busy with finals and etc. But I bet you could use a break and write to me about your life. And give me some advice. I miss your advice. :] Did you guys all decorate your planners in your missino? cause it's a huge thing here, everyone decorates their planners.
Jonny, how is senior year and how is basketball? I bet you will get more playing time if you write me a letter. That's generally how it works, I've heard.
Well, I love yall. Transfers are next week and I really don't want to leave Kingwood right before Christmas. Just pray that the Lord's will will be done, mmkay? I can live with whatever that is. It is always what's best for me.
I'm one third of the way done with my mission. It is already such a blessing. How can I improve? Tell me things I should do to be better :]
I love you all. I love this gospel, I really do. I love the Savior so much and I am so excited to talk about Him all month long. He is the reason this is such a beautiful time of year. Even though I'm no snow and not a ton of fun parties, I will be so happy. I will be serving closely beside the Man whose birth we celebrate. I just love him. I have always loved the part of O Holy Night where it says "Fall on your knees" the most. To me, that explains how I should approach our Savior. Fall on your knees.
Get into the Christmas spirit. Serve someone. Be happy. Be nice to some random somewhere. We have the greatest reason to be happy.