Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Finally some snow

On January 23rd at 9:15 am Alaskan time the almost 3 month curse of no snow was finally broken and it snowed!! I was so happy! I don't know what's been going on but the weather this winter has just been crazy! One day it'll be -10 then the next it will be 40 above. They started putting up signs on stores and restaurants billboards saying "Lost Snow if found return to AK" Haha! I took some pictures that I'll send to you next week but I left my camera back at the apartment.

Well I'm glad that Kate's quite the little cleaner and organizer! It looks like all of the brainwashing you did to us by making us chant "Cleaning and Organizing and Being Good Kids!!" over and over again actually worked! She probably is just so used to having a dirt floor that everything on a hardwood floor just sticks out to her! Is she adjusting pretty well? How's her accent? Does she still speak like a Vanuatuan? On a different note, I'm so glad that the Utes finally have a decent basketball team!! You should definitely send me some updates or a copy of their schedule and all of the teams they've played.

So just a couple of quick little stories... When I was up in Fairbanks my first transfer up there we were visiting an older lady in our ward who was starting to get just a little bit a dementia so we would go and check up on her periodically. One time while we were there her daughter and grand-daughter from Chugiak (by Eagle River) were there. They were super nice and really interested so we invited them to church and then started to teach them. They were only up there for about a week so it didn't end up going very far but before they left I gave them a card with my name on it and number. We then called the missionaries down in Eagle River and told them about them. Well fast forward 7 months and last week we were able to go to their baptism! It was by far the most spiritual baptism I was able to go to. It was so cool to see all of the different people that God had put in their path to make sure that they made it. He really wanted them! In her testimony she started out by telling everyone of the card that I gave her 7 months ago that she still had and how after that the road was paved for everything to fall into place. It really built up my testimony that although we might not be able to convert everyone, we can at least plant some seeds that can grow in the future. I love the quote that talks about how each apple tree has to begin as a seed, and because of the one seed numberless apples are reaped!

To answer a few other questions real quick... the ward I'm in in great! yes I'm still training Sister Wright's nephew so that's fun! The darkness is fading pretty quick and it's getting lighter and lighter each day so I'm definitely a fan of that! With the boundary split we still struggling a little bit to find people to teach but that's alright because I'm gonna find them!

Love you guys!

-Elder Brown

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Kick Ball

Hello Family!

Well the week has finally come! You had all better take a bunch of pictures to send me of when she get's back! I can't believe that she's getting home so late that day... she'll probably be the only missionary coming down the escalator that's for sure. Ben's turning into quite the little baller! He sent me a video of him dribbling in the kitchen (you never let me do that) and he's pretty good! I can't wait to go to his games when I get back! Man I was the worst brother ever before. But that's alright because the Atonement's real and people can change! :)

This week was pretty alright! Most of the week was spent transitioning all of our investigators into their new ward so all went pretty good! Well almost... when we showed up and one of our investigators houses this week with the new missionaries he kicked them out and made them leave... I think we got everything taken care of but pray for him.

Ok I have a funny quick little story! So a few weeks ago we got a media referral from someone named Kek Bol (pronounced Kick Ball) saying that he wanted a bible. Well in the past I've had a lot of bad experiences with people requesting Bibles because usually they do something really weird or they just want to bash with you. Well anyway to be honest I thought that someone was going to open the door and yell 'KICK BALL!" and then kick us someone that wouldn't be pleasant. So we walked up to the door pretty hesitantly and standing far enough from the door that we could react if anything happened. The door opened and it ended up being this awesome guy from the Sudan in Africa. He's 16 and he was looking for something in his life so he wanted us to come over and talk to him. Ever since we've been teaching him and this week we finally got him out to church and got to meet his parents. They're awesome and are really promising! They're a family of 10 so that would be so cool if we were able to start teaching all of them. Even though things have been going the greatest lately the Lord's still blessing us with people to teach and keeping us busy!

Well 2 days remaining till D-Day.... Let me know how it goes!!

Love you guys!

-Elder Brown

Monday, January 5, 2015

Boundary Changes

What in the...? Bella likes the cat?? I NEVER saw that one coming. Do you remember when Sarah brought home that cat that she bought off of the street and we were trying to get the dog used to it (i'm not sure if it was max or bella) but the dog would just freak out so we had to give her away? Haha I loved that kitty! Oh goodness and the countdown for Kate is finally in the single digits.. That's' so crazy! From the pictures you sent me of her it looks like she's lost so much weight! I don't know if I could have eaten all those things she has to... Heck I can't even believe that she did it! I bet she's going to be so different when you see her next week!

Well last night we had a stake meeting in Anchorage that turned our whole world upside down. They re-aligned boundaries which affected our ward a whole bunch,. In all honesty about 7 out of every 10 people that we work with are now in a different ward... So things are going to be a little bit different now! Everyone that we had on date to be baptized for this months was switched into the other ward so that was a big bummer! I'm not really too sure what we're going to do but we'll find a way to make things work out! Something i've learned is that when things don't go the way you want them to go you can either sit around and complain about it or you can simply "Arise for the dust" be man and do something about it. After the changes were made I went and read the story in the Book of Mormon where Lehi and his family were traveling in the wilderness and Nephi's steel bow broke. Laman, Lemuel, and even Lehi stopped and were complaining about their circumstances but Nephi saw what needed to be done and simple went out and did it. There'll probably be a lot of long cold days tracting in the snow but hey what doesn't kill you makes you stronger right?? haha! :) It'll be an adventure and I'm glad that the Lord has put his trust in us to rise to the challenge! This last week the weather has been really weird... On New Years Even it was up around 40 and everything melted but then a few days ago the temp dropped again and now we're back down in the negatives! 
New Years Eve was a party! We had to be in the apartment at 7 so we don't get in trouble with anything so Elder Jensen and I just played a few games of Monopoly, cracked open a bottle of Martinellis sparkling cider and then went to bed early. We're quite the party animals. 
Elder Jensen is doing really good and is changing so fast! One of my favorite things about training is that you get to see your companion make a huge transformation in the three months that you get with him. I think it's by far the time that you get to grow the most on your mission. 

Well we're going to go play some basketball so I'll talk to you guys next week!

Love ya!

-Elder Brown

December Pictures

So I know we talked just a few days ago but I just wanted to send a couple of quick pictures!

Picture 1 - This Saturday I got to go to Ashley's temple sealing.... It was so great! I got to teach her in my first area in Kenai so it was so cool to see someone that you've worked with get married in the temple! It was the first time I had seen a sealing so it was awesome! 

Picture 2 - Tracting in an Alaskan Christmas Winter Wonderland!