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DJ with his new washer

DJ with his new washer
Piedra Alta, Uruguay

Ramon's Baptism

Ramon's Baptism

DJ and new Companion Elder Craynor

DJ and new Companion Elder Craynor

Monday, April 26, 2010

Week 16

WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!
Monday, April 26, 2010 6:28 PM
Hello fam fam fam family!!!

It`s another week here in good ole Uruguay! can I get a woop woop baller?? Thank you.

Anyways, I`m super stoked that you guys sent some boot things...you have no idea. I`m like having a party inside my brain right now. Woo! I haven`t received them yet, but it does sometimes take a while to get from the office to the zone leaders home. I`m excited. I also received the card from Dad with the pics...sweet times. Also letters 13,14,15 with the card thingy. Woop! Also an email from Bernie. That`s cool and a letter from Grandma and a letter from my roommate Ben! He got his mission call to Frankfurt Germany and leaves June 23rd. It`s super exciting. Also my friend from my ward last semester who is here in the mission with me is actually in my zone so I’ll get to see him every week at district meetings. Sauce.

Speaking of district meetings, they were switched to Mondays and then pday was extended to include the rest of the day (we used to leave at 6 to work). Thus I can open my mail right away but that means an extra week for response on my end because I can`t send them out until the next Monday. Cool beans though.

So my new comp is awesome . Yes he`s from Oregon and before the mission, he played O-line for Oregon State. He`s huge. He`s about 315 pounds and a couple inches taller than me. His feet are size 17. Heavenly Father sure knows how to bless us. My biggest anxiety down here was clothes really, but now I have somebody who has the same problems finding shoes and whatnot to ask different questions. I guess his parents had to send him a pair of shoes somewhere along the way...I suppose you guys will have to do the same eventually, but all is good now. I glued my shoes using pretty much super glue (it`s novopren) and so far so good. It`s sweet. but yeah, comp is sweet. He is laidback like I am so we get along really well, and I have high hopes for success this change (hopefully 2). We set a couple of baptismal dates as goals more or less last week, but at least there are goals. We also found some really good potentials. My biggest fear is that we won`t have enough time to visit everybody as frequently as we want/hope to. Our area is huge. I have a feeling that this change is going to fly by.

Hey there is a new address to send stuff to, here it is:

Elder David Joshua Thornton
Uruguay Montevideo Mission
Dalmiro Costa 4635BIS
C.P. 11400
Montevideo Uruguay

Something like that above. Basically the first two lines are the same and then the middle part changes. So yeah. Send letters and packages here. :)

Oh, so also my comp has been out for almost 19 months...he goes home in October. He`s on his 4th pair of shoes I think, so that might give you some idea. He speaks pretty good Spanish too. He is an anomaly in his family as both of his parents are short and huge...like his Dad is 5`4 and his Mom 5`0 or something, but they are wide. My comp is just huge.

I have no need of anything this week, except for a box of small envelopes would be nice whenever you send the next package out. I don`t know how easy it is to get envelopes down here and I`m conserving right now.

We had a little rain last night but it`s been pretty nice. On change days, it is just a huge mall really and we just pretty much take over a small part of it with luggage and missionaries and stuff. We got there last week at like 8 or something and left at 3. So we have time to just hang out as missionaries and do shopping, email, eat, and whatever we feel like.

Glad to hear that things are going well back at home. I think I`ll be ok for jackets and warmth and whatnot...things should be alright. luckily, I don`t tend to get cold as easily as others do. Glad you have apricots. that`s always good. I`ve had peaches here a couple of times like we have back home,the canned ones. It`s nice.

Things are going well here. I`m having a good time at least. Although I`ve decided that it`s going to take some serious self control to not spend all my college money on American things when I get back. ;) Nah, just kidding, but sometimes I do just want a nice box of macaroni and cheese or some small Reese`s. Oh well, the sacrifices we make for blessings. :D

Have a great week all. I`ll be back again in no time.

Love always,

DJ

PS Congrats to Angela and Trevor
PSS Oops! I forgot a funny story. There are a lot of animals around here. Anyways, we were at a house clapping the other day and there was a sheep. So Elder Nomani went to play and the sheep wanted to avoid him. Elder Nomani was stepping on his rope and the sheep decided that jumping would be a good way to avoid him. Hence, the sheep took a jump and cratered himself into a ditch. seriously...cratered. It was the funniest thing I`ve seen in a while. He didn`t realize that a) Elder Nomani was on his rope and that b) his foot was caught in the rope. HAHAHAHAHAHAHHAAHHAHAHAHAHAHA....dumb sheep. I also saw a dog faceplant when it slipped on a wet bridge. good stuff. peace

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Week 15

aupa

Tuesday, April 20, 2010 11:56 AM

hello family who lives in Colorado.

I am here in Uruguay sending messages of greetings via this thing they call the internet. Sweet times. Anyways, this past week was pretty good, I suppose. The weeks and days kind of just blur together...that`s what happens when it`s the same routine day after day. Anyways, Elder Apaza is getting transferred and my new comp is Elder Nomani...I haven`t met him yet as I`m currently at the huge bus station/mall/whoopie doo with a ton of missionaries. We all meet here and then break off for our various destinations. The other two elders in my house did not get changed. Anyways Elder Nomani, from what I`ve heard, is taller than I am by a substantial margin and from Samoa. He is awesome everybody says so I`m excited to meet him and start. We have a couple families that have a very good potential to be baptized so we hope to set some dates within the next week or so and give them a goal to progress towards.

Okay so this past week has been filled with water. Tuesday night at about 8:00, it started raining and didn`t stop until 3:00 Thursday afternoon...and then rained periodically throughout Thursday evening. On the plus side, my rain jacket is awesome with a capital boo yah. It`s amazing and all of the water just flows right off of it. Consequently, my entire upper body was warm and dry (thanks to the other jacket I bought). From my knees down, I was completely drenched and I pretty much walked around in puddles of water all day in my shoes...and I kind of have a tiny fear with regards to wet feet all day but it hasn`t been a problem. I`m beginning to think about boots...they said they were optional and could be bought down here, neither of which are really true. I haven`t decided yet how necessary boots are, but I`m thinking it might be nice to have some. The thing is that days of rain result in me putting wet shoes on day after day because it makes no sense to get both pairs of shoes wet, so I use the same wet pair day after day.

And speaking of rain, I think it gave me a cold. so consequently I have/had a ridiculous hard time breathing...shallow breaths and my resting heart rate is somewhere around 80 or 90, as opposed to 55-60 like usual. It`s getting better though.

Now it`s just about 304% humidity with clear skies. I woke up last night so wet and sweaty that I could have wrung out my clothes and produced enough water to satisfy all of Africa...it was horrible, so yeah.

Anyways, I got some mail...I got the letter #12 with the case, thank you, as well as 3 letters from Grams...they finally caught up to me, 2 dear elder letters from Bishop and a letter from Cy. Oh and a postcard from Dad.

That`s cool about Travis. Glad he`s doing well. and Grandma did tell me about Brennan. that`s cool.

There`s not much to write about this week...it was mostly filled with rain, humidity and hard breathing, but it`s getting better. It`s kind of hard to believe that one change is gone.

Have a great week. Next week it`ll be on Monday again. Only on Tuesdays every 6 weeks during transfers.

Love always,

DJ



P.S. My new comp is great. He`s about 2 inches taller than me and huge. He played football for Oregon State. Anyways, peace out until next week.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Week 14

Monday, April 12, 2010 4:57 PM

Hello all,

How is everybody in the good ole northern hemisphere? Doing well I hope. I have no idea what the southern cross looks like for certain but I`m pretty sure I know what it is. There is a big "cross" looking thing that is pretty much the brightest stars in the sky. So yeah, that`s pretty cool.

Yes, I am healthy. I have adapted to the smoke I think, and it no longer gives me problems unless it is really heavily concentrated and even then it is not too bad.

Let`s see, investigators...we`re actually teaching two families right now. A younger couple with 4 kids, they seem really interested and if we can get them to church, I think they`ll be baptized. We`ll see though. And the other is an older couple (no kids at home). They are a reference from the branch president and they are golden. We taught them twice last week (the first time on Tuesday) and they already attended church (yesterday)...so I`m hoping that they will get baptized. I think that they definitely have been prepared...we`ll see. We have a couple of other really good investigators who have a potential to be baptized if we can get them to keep commitments, so time will tell with those. But yeah, we`ve got some good investigators and we also teach a lot of recent converts and less actives. This area had, in the past, some issues with missionaries baptizing for numbers and not for souls so there is a fairly large number of people who got baptized to promptly go inactive. Not good. That`s the proselyting side of things here...pretty much.

Thanks for the sending the packages. I`ll get them some time in August, I think. Nah, jk, but seriously I don`t know when they`ll arrive, but good stuff anyways. Next week is transfers...we`ll find out next Sunday night who is getting transferred (or if we`ll all be staying). More than likely, I will not be getting transferred, but you never know.

Um, Elder Apaza has been out just shy of 13 months. He passed his 1 year mark while I was here. He joined the church about 4 years ago. And half of his family is in the church. Other than that I don`t know much. Really, I just know that he is really trying to learn English so that he can get a job when he returns home. (a good job). He told me that there aren`t too many jobs available in Peru. So yeah.

Also, we had interviews today with President. He`s awesome, so yeah. good times.

That`s all for the email I think. Glad everything is going well at home. Next week Pday is on Tuesday I believe because of changes. Just fyi. Have a great week. Thanks for sending stuff (even though it`s still in transit). Say hi to all.

Love Always,


DJ

Monday, April 5, 2010

Week 13

word up family,

Another week gone by and a good week it was. For the first time in my life I watched all 5 sessions of conference and it was awesome with a capital sauce. I think it`s the missionary spirit or something but I was super excited for conference. They broadcasted it at the stake center about 30 minutes to an hour away depending on how many stops the bus makes. and by direction from the area presidency or something, they always have an English room. So there were the 12 English missionaries in our zone of 20 in there. Just as a quick side note, I see the zone leaders every Tuesday at the very least for district meetings, because we meet together as a zone before breaking into districts. Anyways, conference was awesome. We would eat, study or go do contacts in between sessions. The two overarching themes were definitely the Savior and the family. There was some super good stuff. I loved the Saturday session a lot because it started off with Elders Perry and Christofferson and then finished with the 1-2 punch of Elder Bednar and Elder Holland. They`re my two favorites I think, even though I love all of them. so yeah, I took 14 and a half pages in my little journal (the one from the MTC). Good stuff.

Um, no cars here, and no we don`t get rides. Not a problem. Each day I can understand a little bit more and depending upon how much I actually focus, I get more or less out of each conversation. Yes, weather is cooling down which is not good for laundry. Today it is fairly chilly, windy, kinda humid, and mostly cloudy...not very conducive for drying clothes outside. Fail. As far as lessons, we teach recent converts and less actives in addition to investigators. We teach a fair amount of lessons each week, but I feel like we could be doing more.

I feel kind of sorry for my companion. His parents are both dead and he is the oldest. He is trying to learn English so that he can get a job when he returns home and help his 6 younger siblings.

Anyhoo, the church building for Sundays is about 15 minutes walking away from my house...not too bad at all. No we do not do splits with the members, or have not yet.

Yes Easter is down here. They have huevos de pascua or easter eggs like us. I don`t know too much about the whole thing, but it doesn`t seem all that different from us.

That`s really cool that Patrick and Chris got to go to the session (at the Conference Center). I thought of you guys as I was watching priesthood and at various other times during conference. Sauce. Oh, mail. yeah, I got a letter from Grams, Aunt Margaret, #11 from you, Nana`s letter, and a letter from Cy. Good times.

So did you see the Sunday morning session...if so, you remember the story that Pres. Monson told about the boy James and his unwavering faith. remember the picture they showed of him in the hospital room...yeah his brother, Kyle? I know him. He was in the MTC for 3 weeks with me and is currently in my mission. weird huh. One of the guys who came out right before me and who is in my district was like "whoa that`s Elder gurr" when the picture was on the screen. Bonanza tires.

So this next part I have been meaning to tell you since I got here, but there is an email dedicated for missionaries in this mission. Anybody can send an email to this address with my name as the subject. They`ll print it off and give it to me. Anyways the address is urumontemission@gmail.com Remember that my name goes as the subject. Elder David J. Thornton will be fine.

I hope Patrick is feeling better. Tell him I got his email and note from Kyle. Thanks a ton. I`ll be expecting a letter in probably 2 weeks then. I think it takes about 3 to get here.

So quick funny story and then I`m off like a wedding dress. :P Anyways, Cy`s letter had all of 34 cents of stamps on it. I haven`t a clue on this planet how that letter managed to get to me. I`m fairly certain that that letter wouldn`t even make it in the US. Isn`t the stamp price like 44 cents or something retarded. So yeah, I don`t know how he managed to send a letter with 3 sheets of paper across the world for 34 cents. Don`t ask. I don`t understand. but it`s a good story and it made me giggle (tee hee hee).

Cheese and butterflies. Hope this next week goes well. You`ll hear from me again next week . chiste (spanish, look it up). Peace out all. Till next week comes. Word.


Love always,

DJ