Sunday, December 29, 2013

December 16

There's a lot going on it sounds like. It's cool that Adam can teach people Portuguese.

I guess I hadn't mentioned, It's snowing. We got a foot of it the other day, but it's different. It's what believe it's what snowboarders refer to as champagne snow. It's super powdery. This morning I took a cup of piping hot water, and tossed the water in the air and saw it turn to snow. That was cool :)

So I've noticed that there tend to be a lot of older lady's that like to do a lot of talking. We had dinner with one this week, but she didn't just let her mouth run, said some profound things. She talked about how the Prophets aren't perfect so we shouldn't expect them to be. She also talked about the analogy of the red ball in 'Shaken Faith Syndrome'. She pretty much taught us the lesson that night.

It's good to hear an experienced Elder teach. We went on trade offs this week, and I got paired with our district leader. We had a lesson with an investigator who is atheist/agnostic and from our visits before I knew he was going to ask some challenging questions. I took a lot of mental notes on how Elder Bass responded to the questions he had. He had so many, we practically taught the Plan of Salvation.

Our ward has a Christmas party this Friday. They had robes, and stuff where people could dress like they were in Bethlehem. In the gym they had stands set up where it looked like you were in the market, and People brought dried fruits, dates, bread, cactus, papaya, and some other fun stuff to try out. Then Elder Bell took part in the children's nativity, he was Samuel the Lamanite. Instead of shooting arrows, the kids threw crumpled us pieces of paper at him, but they were actually hitting him.

Right now we're teaching a guy who's dating a less active member, so we're giving him the discussions. Right now his main problem is our claim that we are the only true complete church to him sounds like we're telling other church'es that they are wrong. Which I thought was kinda funny because the church he goes to doesn't claim to be the true church, so I guess for some people that would make it true & that our church isn't true because we say that it is. We're sure he'll come around eventually.

I hope you guys enjoy the Holiday season, and that you aren't getting too stressed. Also that Adam does well with his History final.

Love you guys,
Elder Candland

December 9

Yes we're getting snow. And it's only getting colder It got to 11degrees one day. And it's not like Washington where the air is dry. It's still kinda humid, which means we get cold the instant we walk outside.

Elder Palmer and I had a finding miracle this past week. It was one of the coldest day's we've had finding. We knocked into a home where the owner would've invited us in, but his wife was sleeping, so he told us to come back in 30-60 minutes. So we went knocking it little longer and came back, and the owner had us come in. It turns out he had actually had a thought come into his mind that morning that we'd be coming, and his wife has a brother that is serving a mission in Vegas. From our conversation with them we could tell they didn't know much about the church, but the husband had been thinking that he needs to make some changes in his life. We're planning to see them this Wednesday at dinner. I'm hoping all goes well with that.

We had trade offs this week. I got paired with a fresh new Elder from Canada. He doesn't have an accent. But what's funny is his companion, during the pledge he'll tell him "Put your hand over heart!" "Good, now say the Pledge of Allegiance!" Then he'll say "I don't know the words."

K, my companion & the Other Elders are telling me to hurry up. We're still trying to make time today to go to Brawners (Bronners?) It's apparently the worlds largest Christmas store. I'm excited :) I'll take pictures.

Also we got haircuts this morning

Elder Candland

December 2

It's going to take time for sure to get to know all the members. There are still family's in the ward I haven't had appointments yet. But the more I get to know the people, the more welcome I feel.

A couple days ago we door-knocked into some crazy liberal. When we told him who we were, he affiliated us with some guy in Texas who apparently committed rape or something, Warren Jeff. We told him that he's not affiliated with us, that he's from the FLDS church. He wouldn't have it, he told us it's still part of your religion. Then he got into a big thing with telling us how much he know about politics, and was convinced he knew more about our religion than we did. Then he told us we are very closed minded. But saying that all religion is the same and is bad, we figured he was more close minded than anything. After about a half hour we walked off and told him "Have a nice day."

Wednesday we went on Blitz with the Zone Leaders. They're both awesome, Elder Mc.Graw especially. He's the most genuinely loving Elder I've met, and is always willing to put forth his best work. There's a lot I could learn from serving with him, and there was some things I did learn from the few hours we worked together.

SO Thanksgiving. Our Mission President told us that we should proselyte that day. In our minds we thought, everyone we meet is going to hate the Missionaries for disturbing them when they're trying to prepare for their Thanksgiving, or watching to turkey-bowl. The roads were Icy so we couldn't ride bikes. (We're supposed to get a call from one of the Mission Leaders to tell us to stop, but it hasn't come yet.) So we walked in the snow to get to some streets. And to our surprise just about everyone was happy talking to us. And we actually had a couple people interested in having us come back.
For the 1st course [2:00] we went to a Mexican family who fed us a pretty good thanksgiving. Not everything was homemade but I enjoyed it. For the 2nd course [4:00] we went to a family that loves to feed the missionaries. I had a hard time eating much, so they sent us home with plenty of leftovers, which I'm grateful for, means I can spend less money grocery shopping. And we enjoyed our time there, the couple is fun when you get a chance to talk with them.

Sorry I didn't get a picture yet. But we are getting haircuts today, and I'm planning to use my companions camera to take the picture. For a christmas tree here, we have a felt Christmas tree we have on our wall, Elder Palmer got. Also I noticed a tiny Christmas tree in our laundry/microwave room.

Love you guys, enjoy the holiday season.
Elder Candland

Friday, November 29, 2013

November 25

When I pictured Saginaw being a city I imagined there being skyscrapers, and tons of office buildings. But I guess city in Michigan just means tons of housing. There is plenty of places to shop and eat. And today for Pday we're going to visit a mall here.

It's interesting, I haven't had the traditional companionship yet. I do have 1 companion (Elder Palmer), but this ward has 2 sets of missionaries. So we share a vehicle, and usually we go to dinner/lunch appointments together. We're also spending Pday together, which should be fun. (The Saginaw2 Elders are Elder Bell & Elder White)

Since we share a car, we have to swap it with the bikes each week. So this week Elder Palmer & I rode bikes. The weather here is getting colder & colder. I'm warm if I wear enough layers. My face gets really cold though. It feels like I'm riding with an ice pack on my face. Pretty soon they're going to tell us to stop riding bikes so we can still talk to people. And so we don't slip on ice.

Elder Palmer has been out 3 months. He's gained 25 lbs from all the meals missionaries are fed, and from biking and getting built legs.

At about 4:00 each morning I hear Elder Palmer talk in his sleep. The stuff he says is mostly prayers or lessons. This morning I decided to talk back. We had a bit of a conversation :)

Yesterday we ate lunch at 3:00. We had Spaghetti, garlic bread, salad, and Ice cream for desert. Our next appointment was at 5:00. We had Spaghetti, garlic bread, salad, and Ice cream for desert. Oh, and cake. We were all so full by the time we left.

We're actually getting fed 2 Thanksgiving dinners. Both families from what I hear are okay chefs, and one of them makes mexican food, so that'll be interesting.

We have a huge ward. Well compared to the Branch I came from. Meals I'm sure you can tell aren't a problem here. We get plenty of leftovers, so I don't really have to worry about buying food.

I hope you guys enjoy thanksgiving together. I would be jealous of Adam, but he's not getting smoked turkey this year.

I lost the charger for my camera. I thought maybe I'd find it after packing everything in Alma. But I guess I'm going to need to buy one. Once I get a charger I'll start sending you pictures.

Love you guys,
Elder Candland

November 18

Susan is really nice. The missionaries have taught her since before my trainer got here, and for an investigator to be visiting that long is pretty rare. She's took the things we've taught seriously, and if she gets an answer to her prayers I have no doubt she'll be baptized.
But yeah I'm going to Saginaw. If you look up the town, it's one of the bigger citys in Michigan, which means it's also one of the many dangerous citys in Michigan. It's pretty ghetto from what I hear, but it's OK. The missionaries there are known as "The Jesus People." Also I hear the ward has some amazing members. So I'm not worried, so long as we get back to our apartment before it gets dark.

I told my companion, "Yeah, my dad got a PS4 from work, no big deal or anything."
It seems like  I came to a new world out here, and my world back home is moving along without me. There's this new Disney movie I've never heard about I saw a picture of at Wal-Mart. I guess that's part of a missionaries life. It's kinda weird.

We learned a lot from Elder Christoffel Golden Jr. at half mission training. We had a few other talks given by our mission leaders, but the majority of the meeting was given by him. There was a lot of inspired things he said, I filled about 3 papers front & back with notes. Nearly everything pertained to me. We had a while where the missionaries could ask him questions, and he had some amazing answers to each of them.

One thing he told us was to "Take care of today, and tomorrow will take care of itself." He counseled us a lot on how to deal with the stress of being a missionary. He also said as a missionary he didn't know if he was depressed because he worked all day & crashed in bed as soon as it was time, so there was no time to think about his feelings. I'm going to look over my notes again in the future, It was a great meeting.

We planned a service project at Susan's, where we invited members to come and rake her yard. To our surprise we collected many loads weighing a couple 100 lbs each. Members brought leaf blowers, and we hauled the leafs on a tarp to front of her yard. (The town owns a truck that comes by and gathers the piles of leaves on the edge of peoples yards.) The leaves piled to 2-3 ft and stretched all the way across her yard. There were a lot of leaves.
After the activity she invited us to have lunch with her, and she ordered pizza for us. She's great.

One more thing. This week we met a lady door knocking, who invited us in because of the cold. (1st time that's happened to me) She explained that our timing was great, because she left the Catholic church and is looking for another one. We set a time we could meet with her, and she has her phone out & is putting it in her calendar. I'm excited for Elder Louis to teach her, it'll be great I'm sure.

Rylee must be on the other end of the gene-pool with soccer, because I played goalie with my companions & I suck. It's good to hear that from her coach, I'm interested to see what she does when she goes on to high school.

I hope everything's  going great. I'm keeping you in my prayers. and I'll talk to you next week & let you know how I'm liking the new area.

Elder Candland

November 4

Sorry to hear about Grandpa. Elder Louis got news a little while ago that a couple of  his relatives passed away. He said if he was home it would be difficult, but being out here where we constantly learn of the spirit world, he took comfort in knowing that they are in a better place. I can say the same for Grampa. It is sad to not have him here with us, but I'm glad to know he's enjoying missionary service, and being where the Lord would have him. It will be great to see him again when the time comes.

We had one member, who recently moved in and is a recent convert, come to church with her husband. He sounds very interested, and didn't hesitate to accept the invitation to be baptized. We're excited to work with him.

We had interviews with President Hess, which we all enjoyed. I love talking with him. From what I hear his President when he was a missionary was Boyd K. Packer. I think it's a great blessing to have him as a mission leader.
The interview went awesome. He helped me with every problem I had, and it was a very spiritual interview.  It gave me a boost of energy to do missionary work. I'll miss him when he's released.

The Branch had their Halloween activity this Saturday, and we were encouraged to come. Unfortunately we didn't have any nonmembers there, but it was a success for our tiny branch. We had plenty of people show up. Elder Louis took a cooking class and one of the requirements was to know how to boil hot dogs exactly, so of course he did that.
Our ward Halloween parties were some of my favorite activities we had. It wouldn't be fair to compare them to the Branch's party.

We had a return appointment with some guy who grew up in Flint Michigan, which is known for how ghetto it is. He told us a little about his rough life, but he would talk & talk. We didn't have much time to finish the lesson so we asked if we could come back later. Sounds like he has some questions and is interested in hearing more from us. One of his friends was there and we're pretty sure he has Sleep Apnea. We was out, and he had some intense snoring. His head would bob every time he took a breath.

It was a pretty average week, not much else happened.
We are excepting one of us to get called to another area, by the end of this transfer, which is next Saturday. We're excepted Elder Oler to leave, although something tells me I'm leaving.

I'm glad to hear Shaini finally had her endowments! I'm sure you guys had a good time, especially since you got to go with a friend. It's cool that girl was there too. The other day we were just talking about how the church makes the world so small.

I would highly encourage Shaini to become familiar with the mission schedule, and to come to the MTC ready to take notes. There's a lot they want you to know the first day, and it can be overwhelming when you haven't adjusted to the schedule.

Oh, one more thing. I don't know how I forgot to mention this, but we got word that by the beginning of next year, missionaries in this mission will EACH have their own iPad mini! It's going to have Pretty much anything on, our planners, our area books, the gospel library, morman messages, anything else on, and anything else a missionary would need.

I hope everyone's doing well, and enjoying the shorter days. It felt pretty good to get that extra hour of sleep last morning.

We went to a restaurant with a family. We all took pictures with the giant chicken they had out front

Cops & Doughnuts (this is a picture of me in front of Michigan's original Cop's & Doughnuts. There's a reason why they're famous out here. their doughnuts are heavenly)

Gettn' cold (here's us 3 getting ready to head out into the cold)

Have a good week!

Elder Candland

October 28

Thanks for the package, we enjoyed the candy, and we actually wrapped some in Pillsbury biscuit dough, & deep fried it. I'm also liking the granola, I had no idea it was homemade, it's good. And thanks for sending those shirts & the pocket watch. I remembered I had one, I just didn't say anything because I was so worried I left that at one of the hotels.

I don't think I mentioned, but one of our best investigators who's a divorced mom in her early 50's I made a plate of cookies for, she said that in the 8 years she's lived in the neighborhood no one has brought her treats. She thanked me, and said that was really sweet and gave me a hug. Which isn't a big deal, but she hugged me again before sacrament meeting when I gave my talk. Elder Oler thinks she has a soft spot for me. We've made a good relationship with her, in a way she's kinda like our aunt.

My talk by the way went pretty well. I talked about scripture study. I had a lot of great quotes from apostles & scriptures. One of them was from a message on by D Todd Christofferson titled Daily Bread. I did get a little stage fright, like always, and so with me and the other speakers, we fell short 10 minutes which turned out fine, because the branch canceller was prepared to add a Few comments.

This week we went on trade offs with the zone leaders. They're both awesome missionaries. Elder Louis & I had a chance to go Proselyte on CMU campus. There are so many students just walking around from place to place. For a little while I struggled to talk to people. It was similar to how Adam was walking down the streets in Brazil. Except we were in a trio, and we could talk to other people as long as we were in sight. Eventually I convinced myself to go out and talk to the first person I see. I told myself I got nothing to loose if I make a mistake, or if they aren't interested, I could talk to the next person I see.

Yesterday, as we were finding in an apartment complex, we saw one guy who looked pretty drunk struggling to walk straight. A few seconds later I hear a something and I see the man fall face first in a rock bed right above the curb. Elder Louis inspected him and gave him a couple of band aids. He fell a second time, this time on a car. Elder Louis then helped him walk to his girlfriend's. And after a little bit he said "I don't need help walking." I can't think of anyone I met more out of it than he was.
That day of finding went well, we found 3 people who said we could come back.

Since it's starting to get darker earlier we've decided to ask members if we could visit when It got to the point where everyone's not interested in hearing us because they were getting to bed. So this Sunday we went to one of the family's in the branch. They're one of the 3 family's in the ward, and all the kids love having us over.

One more thing, Preston met a Tre Candland in Mesa. He wanted me to ask you if you guys knew her, or of any relatives down there.

Love you guys,
Elder Candland

October 21

It's crazy how rapidly the weather here changes. They say it has snowed on Halloween in the past.

One of the members took us to get the giant banana split again, this time we had the family & a German foreran exchange student help out. While we were there one of the kids played 'What Does The Fox Say' on her iPhone. The 3 of us couldn't get that song out of our heads since then.

This week we were going to meet with one of our top investigators at 'Tim Horton's' where she works, but she wasn't there. I did get some amazing pumkin white hot chocolate though.
The Investigator has been receiving a lot of anti from her friends, and her husband doesn't like us either. But she doesn't accept what they have to say, she just comes to us if she has any concerns. She also wants her sons to be just like us when they grow up, so she has them part of the discussion.

We went on trade offs this week and door knocked for 3-4 hours in the rain. When it was dark, It was really nice to come to a warm apartment and have little Caesars, I hadn't ate much that day so it was amazing. Also we all stepped on the scale, I ended up weighing 178 lbs! That motivated me to be cautious of what I eat.

I got my stiches out! Now I have to be more careful, since there isn't much holding the cut together. It has been doing a lot better though, and it's not a pain to walk around with. I got the cut right above the tendon of my big tow in the middle of my left foot.

The three of us kinda decided jimmy johns is the best place for fast food. There's an old lady we visit each week and she almost always orders that for us. She's a hoot. The first time I met her I thought she was just an old cranky lady, but now I know that she's not crabby at all, and she loves the missionaries.

We met Darnel, the big black guy, he told us about his conversion. He grew up in a shady neighborhood where he had an abusive father, that actually killed his older brother. And from he told us, his mother protected him from a lot of the things that went on in Chicago. When he grew up, he met a member, and had no interest in the church. He was going through a tough time, he didn't know which direction to take in life, and he prayed for an answer and he saw a book open to the word Shepherd. Since then he saw the word several times. then he saw the missionaries at the member's house, and one of the missionaries' names was Elder Shepherd. They offered Darnel a blessing. During the blessing it seemed that Elder Shepherd knew his thoughts, and he felt the spirit completely overwhelm him, like someone poured a bucket of warm water over him. Since then, he met with the missionaries and got baptized, and later received his endowments. Now he's a ward missionaries, and he gives us rides to church & to meet with a family that lives far out.

Love you guys,
Elder Candland

Sunday, October 20, 2013

October 14

We drove by an apartment complex we hadn't been to, so we decide to go proselyte there. When we started we see an old man wave to us from his back door, so we talk to him, & he invited us inside. He told us this story about how his fiancé took him to a party and he dumped her because she was drinking and doing other Christ like stuff. He also told us he did go to our branch. He asked for a Book of Mormon and then told us his name. Elder Oler had a red-flag pop up. His name is in our phone as Mike Bacon (anti do not answer) So Elder Oler made sure we got out of there fast, & explained that Mike was an excommunicated member who invites missionaries in his home, asks for Book of Mormons, & burns them.

My companions had an idea to go back & tell him we know who he is, & ask why he would burn book of Mormons. He told us his wife told him to, then one us pretty much called him to repentance. We told members of our experience, & found out he has harmed some missionaries, & that something is wrong with him mentally.
The other excommunicated member I've talked about, the one who's been coming to church, finally got baptized. Everything went well, except the water in the font was a greenish brown. This is the 2nd baptism I've attended as a missionary, and my 1st baptism for a returning member.

I hope everyone else is doing well, I miss all of you, and I keep you in my prayers as well.
Elder Candland
P.S. In a couple weeks I'll be giving a talk on Scripture Study in the branch. Which I'm excited about because I can learn how to have better study's.

October 7

We thought for sure Elder Oler was leaving this transfer, we heard they were going to break up all trio's. But as it turns out the 3 of us are all staying in the Ithica branch. I would've been happy with wherever they would've placed me, but at least now I get to continue to work with our investigators who are getting closer to baptism.
The one investigator who brought us to the non-denominational church came, with her daughter, to our branch this Sunday and watched the Sunday morning session with us. She said she wanted to applaud when each speaker was done. She's awesome; she's shown the most potential out of any of our investigators. She believes the book of Mormon to be true, and she wants to go to a church that is more reverent than hers.
This week we decided to go proselyting in town 20-30 minutes out of where we live, since nearly every street has been knocked here. There we met Tracy. When we introduced ourselves to Tracy she invited us inside, and we proceeded to give her the fist lesson. When we talked about the book of Mormon she told us she had been told that it was Satan's book, but that she wanted to know for herself if it was something she should read. And after praying she received an answer that she should. She also told us that she hadn't found the time to read it, so we invited her to read 3 Nephi 11. Before and after she offered a prayer she told us she could feel the spirit present, and I felt it too. We noticed as we were leaving the trailer home that Tracy was already reading! I don't think I've so far ever met someone as prepared as she was.

We tried visiting with her again, but unfortunately she wasn't home. Her husband was there, and he was nice to us, and told us that Tracy was in jail :/ She got caught driving with a suspended license, fortunately it's not like she committed a serious crime, so I'm sure we'll see her sometime soon.
I enjoyed conference, I was fortunate to see all sessions. The priesthood session was good. Monson was pretty comical when he talked about the bad home teacher. I also enjoyed Holland's talk on depression, and Uchtdorf's talk on staying active in the church. I think that one would be great for a lot of our investigators to hear. There was a lot that was mentioned, I would love to listen to them again sometime soon.
In one of my earlier email's I mentioned an investigator that went to college. Well she was in town for a bit so had a chance to meet with her again. We ate dinner with her at some pizza place, and so we didn't get a chance to teach her another lesson. From what it sounds like things are going good with her.
I hope everyone is doing well with work & school, and that you enjoy your week.
Elder Candland

September 30

This week we went to a non-denominational church. We have an investigator, who shows a lot of interest in our church, who made a deal with us that if we went to her church she'd come to ours. So she's coming to a session of general conference at church with us.
The church has it's similarities to ours, but overall it seemed a lot different. Before the service I noticed a few things, they have a café in the building, there's a drum set & keyboard on the stands. And their podium's a little different, they carry a microphone, and they didn't have a box of tissues next to the podium. Also primary isn't called primary, it's called super church, and the room has a picture of Christ with a big SJC on his chest.

The talks they have I think are structured differently than ours. The theme they had was endurance, about how the adversary would try to make things difficult for us to endure, but that we should recognize that & not give in to temptation. Overall, the feelings that I took away from the meeting were how grateful I am to belong to the LDS church.
I forgot to mention last Sunday, the branch councilor & the elders corm president weren't at church, and the Branch President had to leave, so our senior companion, Elder Older, conducted the rest of the meeting.
This Sunday, was the primary kids program, which went well. That day we had a lot of people attend the meeting. Then during the 3rd hour, my companions and I were asked to talk a little about what kind of support we like to get from home.
We volunteered to play music for patients at the local hospital, so after church we met up at the hospital with a couple of girls from the young women to sing hymns with us, and a little guitar. Elder Oler & I didn't have a lot of time to prepare & were out of practice, so we only played a couple of songs on the guitar before we decided to go a-cappella. It was a good experience, there was a few people that actually mouthed some of the lyrics, and one old lady who was crying. We're going to start doing this every other Sunday.
Transfers are this weekend, and they say they're going to split up all the trios, so we're expecting Elder Oler to leave so it'll be just Elder Louis & I. Speaking of him, we're actually going to the fire dept. today and doing some firemen drills/ workouts & washing one of the tankers.
Have a great week, and I'll pray for shaini, I have high hopes that Nintendo will hire her. And I'll be excited to hear what she and Kelsey think of their temple experience.
Elder Candland

September 23

I did get both packages, thanks :) I was happy to get my coat, excited when I saw ipod and speakers!
My companions were happy for me. And speaking of which, I remember when Elder Louis first came to our place, he brought 3 full suitcases & 2 full boxes of stuff he got on his mission. He has so much stuff! He can afford a lot too since he's getting paid back home for being a fireman. I want to say he gets $5,000 a month.
I do remember shaini talking about watching power puff girls with Rye. That's neat, I'm sure she's having a lot of memories of that show come back to her. Yeah, hopefully she can get something to do for work.
On Pday we went bowling, Elder Oler took bowling class's, so of course he took first. Elder Louis took last & I was 2nd. For some reason I would get a strike pretty much every 2 or 3 rounds, and every other the ball went into the gutter.
We went to President Belles's house again this week. We had a small talent show there. I brought my chocolate chip cookies, Elder Oler named of the winners NBLA championchips of the past 20 years, and Elder Louis did that thing from Hawaii where they twirl a stick on fire.
We had trade off this week, which was also on the same day as my birthday. Elder Louis and I took one of the zone leaders back to our place for a day. We did service and got to wash a fire truck.
Then we had zone training, and that was pretty awesome. We had some great talks given by President Hess, Sister Hess, and the assistants.

Whenever I hear the missionaries talk about President Hess, it makes me love him more. He's a pretty awesome guy, I'll be sad when He leaves later this year.
At the end of my birthday, I decided to make cake in a cup, with what was available in the apartment. I don't think I remember the proportions that well, because the cake turned out as the same consistency as the plastic wrapped cheese (the plubber cheese). Elder Louis and Elder Web (the Zone leader) sung happy birthday to me and we ate one of the cakes, and decided that was enough. Then we played with the other cake and watched it bounce.

It's weird not being a teen anymore.

Well, I didn't plan to have anything fantastic for breakfast, because I didn't do any shopping ahead of time. But I thought about it, & we had the ingredients to make pancakes, and that sounded better than cheerios. So I fallowed a recipe that came from a cookbook in the apartment. And what I didn't realize was that the recipe said to put the pan cakes on a baking sheet in the oven, which explained why the recipe was weird. So we ended up with crepes, and we did have frozen strawberries & a bottle of whip cream, so it turned out better than I expected.
Good for Grandpa, I've been keeping him in my prayers as well as Grandma, so it's good to hear that he's doing well.
I am stoked for general conference! I'll be a lot more interested when watching it this year for sure, even though I don't get to stay home in my PJ's :)
Yeah, Dad mentioned you guys spending time with the Mounts, sounds fun. Austin and I have been talking to each other; we loved spending our summers together at Ensign ranch, we had a lot of memories there :)
And also, I mentioned this to Kortney, but we don't get Skype in this mission :/ I can only call you up on the phone. But like I told her I will send a picture of myself on that Day.
But, who knows. Maybe when we get our new Mission President, he'll allow it.

 Anyway, I hope you guys have a great week :) I'll keep you guys in my prayers, & I'll pray for Shaini to get a job soon.
K, I'll talk to you next week.
Elder Candland

September 16

It's starting to really cool down; I don't think we'll have any more blazing hot weather, not until next summer.
Last week we were looking over the area map to see where we should proselyte, without saying anything my companions had the same idea of going to an apartment complex. There was definitely some revelation there. We met 4 people who asked us to return, which was awesome. We hadn't had that many in that short of a time, or in one day.

Also while we were there, we talked to some guy at his door step, and I glance over & see some guy in a dark grim reaper cloak & a red devil mask. He took a few steps and stared at us. I didn't say anything, I pretended nothing happened and returned my attention to the man at the door. Then when we left, we talked about it. Elder Louis saw it, but unfortunately Elder Oler missed it. He was a little upset. We also met a man at a door who lifted his shirt up to show us his tattoo. We asked him what it was, and he explained that he worships Satan. He wasn't interested to say the least.

This week we had at the Branch President's home, finally. He's pretty busy, so I haven't had much of a chance to get to know his family. They're pretty awesome. All the kids love to talk, the parents are both awesome and love to talk to. They live on some nice property out in the middle of a corn field, so they do some farming. You'd like them mom :)
I'll keep praying for Grandpa, hopefully he'll keep progressing. I'll keep praying for you guys as well, hopefully Shaini makes enough money, and hopefully Adam does well at UVU. I'll pray for you and Dad as well. I'm sure you'll be busy even with 2 kids short, and 1 working.
Elder Candland

Thursday, September 12, 2013

September 9

We do get thunder storms occasionally. They just come and go, it usually happens when it's dumping outside. There was one night we drove back to our house that we kept seeing a lot of flashes & maybe a couple lightning bolts.

I haven't been to the temple since before I left :( I wont get to go, unless a convert asks me to come. There isn't a temple in the area, the closest one is in Detroit. I would like to, but it may be a while.

During companion exchanges, Elder Louis & I ate at this famous bakery called Cops & Doughnuts. Their doughnuts are pretty amazing.

We also helped this guy there herd some cows. It was actually kinda fun. I didn't really get to pet a cow, cuz they'd always run away from you. I actually used my track skills so I could chase ahead of the small herd of cows and box them in towards the gate. It almost worked, but they didn't go were I has hoping they would.
During that transfer we also saw a lot of Amish. They dress like Amish, and they don't own anything that runs on electricity, but they do go shopping in town and eat at McDonald's. 

We just got haircuts again. I got mine shorter this time, I want it to last a little longer.

Elder Oler and I were in midland last week, and while we were there, Elder Oler got a T-shirt that says "don't kill my vibe" which is from some song. And I got a lion shirt, which I got in memory of Preston, because it's something he would wear.

Last week I forgot, but I wanted to congratulate Shaini on her calling. So congratulations Shaini, I hope you'll enjoy you're experience there, & that you'll get make bank working at Nintendo so you can pay for it.

Hope this school year starts off well, and that you enjoy all the constant activities!

Elder Candland

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

September 3

Since yesterday was labor-day the library was closed, so my companions and I are emailing now.
We drove into Lansing to drop off Elder Lutz at the mission home, and on the way we stopped by this place called the MBC and got some gourmet burgers.

Afterward, Elder Older introduced me to some of his favorite people that he knew from when he served there. One of them lives in the same ward as the Allan's when they lived there. Then a bunch of missionaries came to Lansing to do trade offs and we picked up Elder Louis and brought him back to our home.

He said he was sick, so for a few days we stayed nearly the whole day in the house.

When Elder Louis settled into the area, and felt comfortable we moved back into our regular schedule.
I guess I'm known by the other missionaries as the cook. I bake cookies a lot, it's a good way get people to like the missionaries. And also I made french toast one day.

On P-day we went to a member's home and showed Elder Louis the fire trucks at the station. So that was fun I think, I'm sure elder Louis enjoyed it.

Now that the school year is starting we're probably going to see a lot of college students. We actually found a few already door knocking. They're so easy to talk to, especially that Asian kid. He was very nice & honest about himself, but unfortunately he wasn't interested in having us come back, which was a bummer. Asians are always awesome, they're always open to listening, and most times they've said they're interested to having the discussions.

My favorite scripture is Alma 37:6 There was a scripture that Adam showed me that's similar to this one. I think he even suggested it as my plaque scripture. If he remembers that one I'd like to hear it, and I may even use it.

Alright, last thing worth mentioning. Elder Louis is a decent beat-boxer and can rap some. Him and his last companion made this awesome rap about missionary work; Elder Louis rapped while his companion beat-boxed. He showed it to me on his camera.

K, see you later. Love,
Elder D. Candland

Monday, September 2, 2013

August 26

Oh man, this week was crazy.

So Elder Lutz (companion) was very lucky, no, very blessed; his visa came through & he's heading to Brazil Belo Horizonte today. We're meeting with the mission president & he'll have a new companion. Since we're taking him Elder Oler wants to take me around Lansing for a while & show me the cool places there & his favorite people. One of them has multiple personality disorder, so some days show fully accepts the gospel, & others she get upset about the littlest things. There's also an Arab guy we're seeing who Knows the gospel is true. But unfortunately can't get baptized, because if he does his family will kill him. Which sucks.

So we spent the last few days seeing our favorite people so Elder Lutz could get a picture with them.

K, time for a crazy story. So there's this investigator, who at one point was a member, now she's getting her live back together & coming to church. We had dinner at her place, she sowed my pants I ripped a few weeks ago, and we decide to change the lesson last minute. We decide to give her the stop smoking program, so we run back to our house & got the materials & came back. The lesson went great, she's fully committed & she's been good the last 4 days. Anyway we leave the front door & hear this crackling noise. Elder Lutz thought it was fireworks. Then we realize it's coming from a giant tree in her front yard. I see the branch hanging over her house, so without thinking I stretched my hands up to catch it & hopefully spare some of her roof, it seemed small & light enough. Turning back my companions see a branch from the base of the tree fall on top of me & I disappear. The branch knocked me down, & I land fortunately on my back-pack.

We estimated the branch weighed >1,000 lb's. After I realize what happened I said I'm ok. I came between two branches that could have seriously injured me. My companions, & some guy across the street came to me. The guy asked if I was ok & I said yes. After talking to me he asked my companions if I seemed ok, he said I seemed a little disoriented, & my companions replied "No, that's just Elder Candland." We call our mission president & drive to intense care for a check up. No serious injury, just a sore shoulder I needed to ice occasionally.

During our last visits with one of the members we ate at cafe. The member ordered us a banana split, witch consisted of a banana, and 1&1/2 gallons of Neapolitan ice cream. The member was telling us how none of the past missionaries have been able to finish it. He almost seemed disappointed when we did finish it. I felt so gross afterward.

Anyway, I better wrap this up so we can get to Lansing.

I'll get back to you next week!
Elder D. Candland

August 19

The weeks seem to get shorter as they come.

As a companionship we've found plenty of potential investigators. And right now we have 3-5 Investigators that have shown some promise. The most promising investigator moved to some college, so the missionaries there get finish giving her the discussions, which is fine so long as she invites me to her baptism. Kidding, but it would be nice.

During trade offs I was companions with a pretty cool missionary named Elder Hefner. He's a pretty nice guy, we talked a lot during that hour car trip to his apartment. He loves Batman, and Marvel. He's got a switchblade shaped like the bat'r'ang. Also he's really into Halo, so once I told him what dad does he said "That's awesome!" & gave me a high-five.

A few days ago my companions and I had a bar curl contest, Elder Lutz won. To him it seemed the bar was half as heavy. I got to a point were I could not possibly go any further, even when I used my body to bring the bar up. Today my arms are super stiff, I could hardly extend them out all the way this morning. It's good though, it Feels like I'm getting Stronger!

I didn't think about it that much but I've learned a ton of gospel doctrine from being on a mission and talking to me companions, especially the senior companion.

I'm sure there's more to talk about, but I think this is good for now.

I thought I might add that the 2013 edition of the LDS Scriptures have been released, I would love to get a set for my birthday.

And I you need other Ideas, our mission president has approved Hymns, Mo tab, EFY music, and classical music.

Elder D. Candland

August 12

That's cool, sounds like everyone's happy.

Off the top of my head I can't think of any super interesting stories. Although that one black guy with dreads, we got to know him more. When he's in a good mood he's really funny, especially when he's talking about his cats & how they get along. He's also a pretty good artist. I'm not super fond of his work, but he does have a couple of paintings I would like to send you pictures of.

The weather's been pretty nice, it's been pretty mild, at least compared to when I fist got here.

One of the members of our branch gave us 3 Elders a box of 30 candy bars, and another box of 20 packaged cookies. We thanked her. But after a few days I decided we needed to put the junk upstairs, where we hardly ever go. But that didn't stop us from going up and grabbing some more. Fortunately we made it last 2 weeks .

The Elders and I have been getting a lot of Investigators from door knocking. Those people asked US to come back so we can teach them. I love when people do that :)

I met someone at the door & her 8 year old let me hold baby iguana. It reminded me of Jake, except it didn't look so fat & lazy. Hopefully when we go back we can see him be feed.
Alright, talk to you next week.
Elder Candland

August 5

Dang, sounds like you guys had fun, unfortunately the only time I wake up at night is when I have to pull the covers over the sheets cuz the A.C. makes the room so cold. So far I haven't experienced getting dripped on over night.

During our today we went Golfing. I think Michigan is the perfect place to go golfing. It's mostly plains with bumps and small hills, and it's got tree's that are spreed out. We did it early in the morning, so it was slightly foggy, the sun was coming up, and there was dew on the grass, It was pretty.

Here's a couple of pics. the 1st is a picture of Elder Lutz, holding a picture of me, holding a picture of Elder Lutz, holding a picture of me, holding a picture of Elder Luts.

The 2nd is our studying place. It's gotten pretty cluttered, I still haven't figured out where a good place would be to put all my stuff.

I think I'm getting used to missionary routine even more, compared to the last two weeks, this week has slowed down. In a good way though, I don't feel too overwhelmed any more. I'm getting comfortable with the area.
There have been so many people who don't give us an opportunity to explain who we are, they usually tells us, "we already go to church." or just say "not interested." We had one person who opened a door and closed it without saying anything.
A lot of people here are interesting. We went to the trailer park yesterday, and met one lady who didn't have any idea to stop talking. She was talking about how her trash can fall and injured her, or how she can't trust her neighbors cuz they stole some of her stuff, or how she thought some people in the park were aliens, and something about Obama. I can't remember everything, but whenever our senior companion took that a split second opportunity to say something, she would just keep rambling. Eventually we started walking away from her and said "Well have a good night" but that didn't stop her. I can't remember how the monologue discussion ended, but the Elders & I, and someone from across the street thought it was pretty funny.
There are people here though with better sense. We had the opportunity to help this old lady do yard work for a couple hours. She only knows the Mormons from BYU TV. It was a good expirience, It left a good impression on her, and we ate lunch outside, so we got to talk to her for a bit, she seemed really nice.
Alright, I think my companions are ready for lunch, I am too. So I'll wrap it up. I'll talk to you next week.
Elder Candland

July 29

So as far as how much stuff has happened since my fist day here, things have slowed down. I'm really getting used to the area. I do miss seeing hills and mountains, out here everything's flat aside from the trees and housing. It's cooled off so much compared to when I fist got here, there's a lot of overcast now, and it rains occasionally. It's awesome.

We've got one person who's committed to come to church, and a couple others we have high hopes for.

I can't think of much else that's happened. Elder Buckley, and I have been emailing each other, he's enjoying his mission it sounds like. [note: this is probably why this email is so short]
I'll try to come up with more stuff to email this next week.
K, talk to you next Monday.

Elder Candland

July 22

Alright, so there's a lot to write so I'm going to use my journal. Get ready.
So at the MTC we listened to some return missionaries who were pretty great & funny. One of them was from France, so he joked a lot about it. We play Volley ball as a district every time we have gym, & it's always a good time, & we usually get a good laugh.
Thanks for the cupcakes again, those were great.
Last day at the MTC we woke up really early, got on a bus to the airport. The airport wasn't super big but it was still pretty nice. The airport in Detroit was the one I said was giant, it had train going through it. The AC on the second plane wasn't working, so my face was dripping before I got into Lansing. The airport was pretty small.
We met the Mission President and his assistant missionaries, they were all really nice. Later that day we went to a college campus and shared a message with people walking around. I tried to say something and have input, but for the most part I was watching the Senior missionary's example, which was great.
Lansing, in mid summer, is very hot & humid, I'm not trying to complain, but just to give you an idea, I think the only time I wasn't completely sweaty was when I was inside a building with AC.
I'm Serving In Alma & Ithaca. It's a pretty poor place, compared to what I'm used to. The economy isn't doing so well, I don't see a lot of great places to work, I have yet to see an office building. Most of the houses I see look like they're 40-60 years old, although I have seen some nice places to live. There's a Wal-Mart near our place, and a few good restaurants.
I have a Senior companion, and another companion who's waiting for his visa so he can go to Brazil. The Senior companion, Elder Oler, has had a year of experience, his prayers are funny. he say's things like, "That lesson was awesome, that family is awesome. I'm sure they got a lot out of it." There was one time he said "Were grateful for the dinner we ate, it was delicious, please bless that it will nourish our bodies & will not get fat from it, so we can look good."
The other companion, Elder Luts, seems like he's shy but he likes to talk. Him & Elder Older love to talk about football & basketball, and their favorite rappers/ rap songs.
We have a house we're staying in. At first I felt disappointed in it, because it was old, but now I'm grateful to have it. There's plenty of room, and we have all the necessities, except for a dish washer. The moment you walk into the kitchen you smell macaroni noodles, except they're old and gross, Adam & Lars know what I'm talking about. Oh, and the weird thing is there's an upstairs, but you need to walk outside to get to it, so pretty much we never use it.
Our study desk looks like a place for the mafia to hang out, or a place to solve a mystery case on a typewriter & hearing private-eye style monologue.

We finally installed the AC unit in our room, it's so nice. We can finally sleep without sweating it out over our sheets at night.
Side note, there's Fireflies here. I haven't ever seen them in person so that's cool. I swat one in our room and got green glow in the dark stuff on my shoe.
One more thing I'll mention, the water is slightly rusty, so we bought a water purifying pitcher. I've got pictures of that.
K, the last thing I'll talk about it the people I've met. Darnel is this convert who's this big black guy with dreadlocks. At first he intimidated me, but I realize now he's a nice guy with a big laugh. He's so cool.
Then there's this couple who just got married, the Bojanen's, who are in there late 50's. They just bought a place to live, which used to be a catholic church, so it's pretty big and pretty old fashioned and awesome. Sister Bojanen was a children's psychologist, so she's had some sad/great stories. Dean is a Geophysicist, his job is to find places underground where his company can collect oil, he's shown us maps & stuff, it's pretty neat. Those two make a great couple, and they're both pretty humble.
There's this guy named Joe we met. He honestly the kindest man I've met in the area, He's a great guy. Which is too bad because he's an inactive member. He looks Arab, although he says he's Italian.
Alright last one; I forget the name of the family, but the parents, and their 2 daughters when geo-cashing with us & Darnel. That was fun, not much more to say about that.
Alright, I think I got through all the good stuff. K, I'll be back with more next week.
Elder Candland

July 15

I'm doing laundry right now, so I have just enough time to send a quick message.
I've been learning a lot about becoming a missionary, there's a lot I didn't consider when I teach Investigators/less-active members.

We've had a lot of good speakers. Some were really funny, other's had great stories, & we had one talk given by a member of the 70, I could tell the talk was given by revelation, it taught me how I should be saying my prayers & listening to the spirit.

The Elders in my district are pretty funny.
Elder Raun is the giant in our group, he's very calm & mellow, but often he'll say something that makes our district laugh. His companion, Elder Wheelright, is mellow too, I think he has a minor disability based on the way he talks, but he can say some things that make us realize he's pretty smart.

Elder Olderoid is the shortest of our group, when he wants to be he can be a spaz, he can get us laughing by some of his comments & just some of the noises he makes & things he'll do. His companion, Elder Rhodes, people say they look very similar, like they could be cousins. He's a pretty nice guy, and he knows how to communicate well even though I don't hear him a whole lot. From the stories he's told us though, he's gotten himself in trouble.
Alright I'll get back to you in a sec, I'm pretty sure my laundry's done drying
K, I'm back. So I told you about everyone in our room. We're all in the same district, there is 6 of us including me and my companion. He's Elder Taylor, He's a very talkative guy, he thought it was funny when he welcomed new missionaries, cuz he would raise his hands and yell "Welcome To The MTC!" He's also pretty athletic, he's done a lot of sports. He's also kinda odd. He's raised on a farm, I think, because he raised horses & so he knows a lot about them. He also had a mullet before he became a missionary. And he does one of the best Gollum impersonations I've ever heard.
So that's who my friends are in the MTC. We'll be leaving the MTC 3:30 AM Wed morning, and we'll be on the plane by 7:30 AM
I'll talk to you then.
Elder [Dallin] Candland

The picture is my district in the MTC. The Elder sticking his tongue out is my old companion.  Elder Raun (dark blue PJ's) brought those PJ's, we call them flying squirrel suits, and our district thought they were awesome. So his mom was really nice and asked Elder Raun for measurements from everyone in that picture. And then less than a week later we all got squirrel suits!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Adam Candland: May 20: Last entry from Brasil.

[Note: Adam returns home at 10:30 on Thursday]

I´m pretty dang anxious to just get this over with. I´m excited and sad, and would love it if today were already Thursday because I don´t look forward to trying to sleep these next few nights, trying to do something all day as a missionary at home where I can´t do anything fun with my siblings, then stay awake long enough to be released. I´m stressed about college, about finding a job, about getting my baggage all taken care of, and a ton of other stuff I´ll have to worry about.

Anyway, this last week we´ve been working hard. We didn´t manage to baptize anyone this transfer, which is a huge bummer. Our entire zone of 7 areas baptized 1 person this transfer. That is absolutely ridiculous. Anyway, out of our zone, we have about 8 baptismal dates marked only too. 3 of those my companion and I marked.

I don´t really know what I want to eat. I´ll be starving around lunch time. If you guys want, I´d be glad to cook something my first day back. I don´t have any meals in mind that are SO good that I have to eat it that day. But some day I want some mexican food, and also some teriyaki.

I took a few more pictures to show. I´ll send those home now.Here in São Paulo, sometimes you´re looking for a house number, but you can´t find it. Sometimes you´re looking for a house, and where it should be, it isn´t.

Okay... this is pretty messed up. I almost feel like I did that day I got my dear john. Just a little calmer and not nauseous. Alright. Until Thursday. I´ll talk to you then.
-Elder Candland 

May 13

Alright, we´re short on time today. I´ll try and get those pictures sent to you guys.

For my guitar... I don´t know what to do. I don´t have a hard case. I scored a cheap cover for free and stuck with it. It may depend on how I can fit everything in my suitcases too. I´m looking good so far, but there is still that last bag in the mission office full of stuff that I can´t even remember. It´s all going to be decided on may 22nd.

Here´s my dictionary.

Here´s the tarantula from Sunday night.

Here´s a dog that followed us into our house and decided that my backpack was a bed.

10 days...

-Elder Candland 

May 6

Well let me get the complaints out of the way. I´m pretty disappointed with this area. We´re working hard, yet we can´t find anyone who is interested in hearing about the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ. I´m at the pique of my mission, using all of my experience, and I´m having the most difficult time I have ever had with finding people to listen to us. Saturdays are particularly frustrating. This last Saturday we had a ton of appointments marked with several people, and every - single - one fell through. It wasn´t even 4 o´clock and I already felt like throwing my name tag on the ground and start yelling in English. No one here understands commitment. They say that we can pass by at a specific hour of the day, and then when we show up, they´re not even home. I just don´t get it. We tell them that God has called a prophet, just as he always has done, and that we have proof that he was called of God, and we promise that they can have a happier family and that they can receive a witness from God himself that this is true. And they treat it as nothing.

Okay, I think I´m fine now. Anyway, as for Eastern: I don´t have a clue. I´m not really receiving much revelation on such topics at this moment. I just fasted that things will be prepared so that I can jump back into my life without many problems. That´s the best I have for now. I can try praying about Eastern this week.

I got my last package. We made the brownies today, but they were still cooling off when we left. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed reading letters from the rest of the kids. I don´t ever hear from them, an it was kind of a reminder that they´re still real people. To be honest, Kortney sounds like quite a handful these days from the way she wrote in her letter. Good luck with that one when she hits 16.

Anyway, it´s all good for Mother´s Day. Speaking of which, I was asked to give a talk on. 

Oh, and could you take a look at baggage stuff for me. I need to remember the maximum weight, and I need to know if a guitar constitutes a carry-on item. If not, I´m not sure how that´s getting home.

Alright, talk to you guys on Sunday.
-Elder Candland 

April 29

Well, things have improved. As for that brother who was upset about us messing up the lunch schedule (and even though it was just one more ridiculous excuse to not keep the covenants he´d made with the Lord), we wrote a letter apologizing for the problems we caused. Anyway, we ate lunch with him on Saturday and it was fine, though he told us that we didn´t need to leave a message because he already knew all of the messages as if there was a list of messages for the missionaries to memorize. We´re clean of that problem now. He can´t say that because of the missionaries he doesn´t attend church, though only health problems are an actual excuse to not go to church.

Aside from him, we´re just doing our best to treat the members as best as we can, calling every day beforehand to confirm our lunch appointments, accommodating their schedules, etc. The ward is treating us better, but I still don´t really like the ward. It´s really ``dry´´ you might say. It lacks some strong/normal members to carry it. I´m hoping to baptize some good converts to help this ward out.

To answer mom´s question from last week, I was using the exercise bar quite a bit, but these last few weeks I´ve kind of stopped. I need to go these last 3 weeks nonstop. I´ve kind of lost hope in coming home as skinny as I left, but it´s pretty tough. We walk for hours in the Brazilian heat, and I still put on weight. 

Well, until now, the work here is going a little too slow for me. I´m really trying to pick it up, but we´re having a hard time finding people who are looking for the truth and are willing to do what it takes to follow it. We´ve taught a lot of first lessons this week, but few people really wanted to hear more at another time. We just need to throw in our nets and pull in as many people as we can find until one or two prepared people show up.

I like the goal for the kids. It´s something Dallin will use on his mission. Keeping the house clean really helps keep God´s presence  , which helps to plan, receive inspiration, etc.

Anyway, that´s it for this week.

-Elder Candland