Monday, January 27, 2014

No Sales Tax at Vons!

I discovered last week that when I use my/our Safeway Rewards card at Vons, it recognizes me belonging to Oregon and it forgoes the sales tax! We found this out because we've run out of MSF (which will be reloaded this Friday, thank goodness), and so we decided to buy rice with what we had left. Still working on that whole "budget" thing.

Last week, I ripped another set of pants. Did I email about the first ones I ripped? Maybe I only put that in the audio journal. First ones ripped getting into the car, these ones ripped while moving boxes. Both ripped right on the seam, which leads me to believe that the seam was bad. They were both the nice black ones we got from Kohls. First ones I got fixed and strengthened, and I'll do the same with the other ones when MSF gets reloaded. We have a cleaner around here who gives a 10% discount to missionaries. It's nice.

Your little package arrived safe and sound. UNO might be fun, and the other churchy card game looks interesting. It's like a variation of the card game "Golf" that we like to play.

It's awesome that Katherine was accepted at BYU-I, too! SVU sounds pretty cool, though. And William's joining the Cadets?! That'll be fun. Make sure he gets video of himself being pepper sprayed. He can laugh at it later.

It really does sound busy up there, which sounds nicer than here. This area is just dead, but we're hoping to be able to teach a family starting this week! This guy's name is Ernie, and he and his family (especially the kids!) can't wait to learn more about Jesus! Besides that bit of good news, all we get are dropped appointments by everyone. We had four drop in one day! No fun. Dawn always cancels, Renola has pneumonia, Teddy is working on the Super Bowl, etc...

It's going to be awesome for everyone now that dad has a new job! It'll be really exciting! It's amazing seeing the blessing that come from supporting missionary work. And they'll only continue!

At the same time that your package arrived, the quilt that everyone's been working on also arrived! I'll attach a couple pictures, and I'd appreciate it if you could forward them to Grandma and Grandpa! I'm sure they'd love to see it in use! (note to readers....Dallin's grandma had a massive stroke right before Dallin left on his mission.  She and Dallin's grandpa are avid quilters and were working on a quilt for Dallin to take on his mission.  Dallin's aunts pieced it together, grandpa quilted it, and an aunt did the binding and sent it to Dallin in the mission field).

That's really it for this week. I'm waiting for some responses to some letters I sent out, but it's been a couple weeks since I sent them.

Loving you all from afar,

~Elder Dallin DeFord

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

This Message is a Day Late.......

The library was closed yesterday due to MLK Jr Day, so we're emailing a day late. 

The bottles (The Missionary's Health Potion, The Missionary's Manna Potion, The Missionary's Spirit Potion) are just decoration. They had sparkling apple cider in them, then I took the labels off, filled them with Gatorade, and then put the labels on them. I'm getting more ties because missionaries trade ties! It's what we do at the end of a transfer. I could trade 1 nicer tie for 3 ties of a bit less value and be happy, but I just need room to put them up.

That's awesome news about dad's possible job opportunity! It'd be awesome if he got the job. I hope the dental is good, as the canine that Brother Seare didn't fix (which I hoped he would at our last appointment) will likely need to be repaired/resurfaced while I'm out here. It's fine for the most part right now. Just sensitive to chocolate. Speaking of dental, will you want me to get a dental checkup every 6 months? It'd be tough because I technically don't have a dentist down here, but our resident medical person can point us in good directions. I've heard rumors that some will do it free for missionaries.

That's great news for Katherine! And Orson Scott Card? That's freaking awesome! He is one of my favorite authors. And that scholarship is huge! Even though it's not all paid, that's a good chunk of money we're not paying.

I recommended to one of our Less Active members that he look into a sales position at Sleep Number. Philip seems to like it so much, and this member, Steve, reaaaaly wants out of his used car sales job, so I made the suggestion to him and he said he'll look into it.

I'm glad that Grandma's recovery continues to go well for the most part. I'm sure she'll pull through in the end! It may be frustrating at times, but the Lord puts us through trials to test our patience and faith. (Mosiah 23: 21-22)

21 Nevertheless the Lord seeth fit to achasten his people; yea, he trieth their bpatience and their faith.
 22 Nevertheless—whosoever putteth his atrust in him the same shall be blifted up at the last day. Yea, and thus it was with this people.
The floor looks pretty good! And it's nice having a picture of the dogs. If possible, could you send a small photo album with pictures of the family and pets and whatnot? It's not something big to have, but it'd be nice so my companions can see where I come from. 

The only people I get letters from are Jenny and Sheldon's family and the Mabey kids.

That's a cool story from Bishop Moore! We'd be doing different things in our area if there was anything to do besides knock. No possibility of being on a busy street sidewalk. It's all houses. How about some stories from you and Dad? Honestly, those would be cool stories. Just misc. mission stories from both of you. Put them in email and I could print them here. Actually, anything you send me I can print.

This past week has been a dead week. Tuesday was transfers, and Elder Patterson (from the other companionship in our ward) left the area. He's gone to Valencia 2nd, and has actually just gotten his Visa for Brazil! Took 9 months, but he's got it finally. He'll head to Brazil after this transfer, I think. Elder Hudson (his now ex-companion) gained TWO companions, so he's in a trio. Their names are Elders Smith and Nordgran. They've been on bed rest all week because Elder Nordgran got a concussion right before transfers. He's fine now, though. Besides that, our entire district is the same.

Yesterday we went to Subway for lunch (using up our gift cards), and we sat next to a guy who recognized who we were are knew our purpose. It didn't lead to anything, and he wasn't a member. In the few seconds that he sat there, he made sure we realized that we're representatives of Christ and commended us for it. We then cleared up his confusion about the LDS Church and Mormons being different things, which they aren't, of course.

Thanks! Love and miss you all!

~Elder DeFord

Monday, January 13, 2014

I'm Staying Here!

We got transfer calls on Saturday, and I'm staying here with Elder Argyle in the same area for the next transfer. Woo-hoo!

Not much happened this past week. Both exchanges that were scheduled to happen did not happen. First one with the Zone Leaders didn't happen because we had a meeting with our bishop that they didn't want to interrupt. Very considerate of them. The second one with the the District Leader, Elder Thomas, didn't happen as Elder Argyle hurt his ankle and was physically unable to work for the day. 

On Friday we were looking for a potential investigator named Bill that we found a couple weeks ago, but we had forgotten to write down which street he was on. All we had was a house number and a rough idea of where he lived. Looking about on different streets, we happened upon a man shooting a pellet gun in his yard. He was pretty awesome and we talked to him for a while. He said that in a couple weeks we could come back and share a spiritual message, as he would love it if his kids got to know Jesus. He just doesn't want it to be by the Catholics. He despises them. He said that if any church this day had it right, it'd be the Mormons. He's really prepared to hear the Gospel, and is very in tune with the Spirit! It's amazing how the Lord prepares people to hear our message. 

After that run-in, we visited the Evans and one of Brother Evans' kids' scooters smacked Elder Argyle in the ankle, and for the past bit it's been swollen and bruised. Hurts him quite a bit. Hopefully it'll go down and get better soon. It'd be bad if he cracked the bone. 

From memory, I'm not sure if much else has been happening. I've been doing the audio blogs and will be sending them home this week. There's quite a few, and maybe you could make a SoundCloud account and put them on there? There's a lot more happening and in more detail than I put in these emails, as I can't remember everything when I type these up; I only really remember major events.

Anywho, I think that's all for now. In another email I'm going to put pictures of the stickers on the bottles. They look great!

~Elder Dallin DeFord

Monday, January 6, 2014

Here Come the Exchanges...

We had another exchange this weekend. Went with the district leader. It was alright. We taught one lesson at the door, and gave out three copies of the Book of Mormon! It was a really good exchange. I was with Elder Nielson, who's the district leader's companion, and this Saturday we have another exchange with them, this time me being with Elder Thomas, the actual district leader. Then this Tuesday, we have exchanges with the Zone Leaders. It's kind of ridiculous, going on all these exchanges. It's really only supposed to be one or two a transfer.

Besides all the exchanges, nothing happened last week. All of our appointments fell through. All the appointments were with the same lady, and she missed all three appointments we had set up. Hopefully this week will be better.

At the end of exchanges on Saturday, us two companionships went to something the other ward calls Pancake Saturday. It's just done with one family who feeds the missionaries every Saturday. But this family is crazy! It's a couple who's last name I'll withhold as per email policy. Turns out the husband used to be a criminal, way off the deep end. Violence, drugs, everything. He and his wife were drug addicts for years. They're clean now, and have been for I think 3 years. The husband had to get permission from the First Presidency to be accepted into the church. It's really interesting. The couple are very funny, and I hope I get to interact with them more. They're the kind of couple I want my wife and I to act like when we're their age. Withholding the drug and violent past, of course.

This is the last week of my first transfer. I'll know Saturday if I'm staying or leaving. Technically, I'm supposed to stay with Elder Argyle here for another transfer as I'm being trained, but you never know.

Love you all,
Elder Dallin DeFord