Monday, January 19, 2009

Jan 19th 2009

Hey everyone!I LOVE getting letters from everyone and hearing about what is all going on! Linda, Wyatt, Laura, and Cheryl I love getting your letters but I do not have an address to respond to them at. If you could give me an address to write back to i promise I will! :DSo it has been going well here at the MTC. I am finally really starting to get used to the schedule. Spanish is coming along really well! I am finally really starting to understand most of the grammar and conjugations and be able to form my own sentences(up to about a week ago it was only memorized phrases we really knew) also we practice translating sentences all the time and we know how to do all the right things to conjugate it from English to Spanish. I can carry on a 15 minute conversation now all on my own! :D It’s been really fun speaking in a language I really did not know much about 2 and a half weeks ago. Sometimes we all decide not to speak ANY English for 24-48 hours at a time( my who group does this which is about 12 people, but we cannot speak English to anyone) It really helps us to realize how much Spanish we really know, we can all communicate pretty well actually. I mean it’s really broken Spanish, but we understand each other ha-ha. Our classes are pretty much ALL in Spanish too. Our teachers don’t speak English much at all, even when we are learning about gospel stuff. We have learned a ton about teaching the gospel as well. We teach the big parts of the lessons in English right now, so we learn how to teach in English first and then Spanish. Teaching the gospel has been way way different than just knowing it. My testimony has grown SO much over these past 3 weeks! I feel like I am truly coming to understand my purpose as a missionary and why I am here. I also feel much more determined to make the most of my two years. As Uncle David told me, I really ONLY have two years so I need to do all I can to make the most of it. I also have loved all of the comfort and help I KNOW I receive from my heavenly father each and every day! 2 years used to seem like a long time, but it feels so much shorter every day! It’s weird feeling like I have SO much to learn all the time, but I know that if I put my all into it, the Lord will make up the rest. This has been a very humbling experience all ready and love having the opportunity for the Lord to shape me into some one that can truly help spread His gospel. Oh and also we were taking phone calls and chats in the referral center the other day and I realized what an AMAZING site is!! It has everything our church believes in a whole bunch of cool video clips. I really like the one by Steve young about myths of the Mormon Church. It’s only 10 minutes and definitely worth watching! It’s just a very informational site, you should take a look at it! :DThe companion and I are becoming much better at teaching with each other and with the spirit. Getting along with another 19 year old guy for 24 hours each day is never easy but we work on it a lot and it really has helped me to grow a ton, and especially to be a lot less stubborn! HAHA ;)Hope everything is going okay back at home and with everyone off at school! I LOVE hearing from you and it is way easy with so please write! :)I love you all so very much and could not have had this opportunity without all of your examples in my life and the support you give me!Love, Your Elder,Andrew

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Jan 12th 2009

Hey everyone!So another week down! This one went by much faster than the last. It still hasbeen crazy hard! We are just learning so much and trying to learn an entirelanguage! It definitely is hard feeling like I always have so very much to do! Ihave been able to pick up on a lot of spanish tho, it is very nice to have beenin an area where I have heard a lot of it so I am way better off at speaking itthan some of the guys. Spanish is just a way better language than english thohaha. Its true tho, im a very logical person and it really makes a lot moresense the way they order there sentences and speak it. We have been practicingtalking a lot and everyweek we have to go to the teaching resource center and"teach" a fake investigator. This week we have to talk to 3 differentppl in spanish for 5 minutes and then teach a 35 minute lesson in english. Itwent really well. My companion struggles with the language a lot so I was theone speaking most of the time during the spanish part. It was actually a lot offun to be communicating in an entirely new language that I really startedlearning a week a go! Nuts huh?! My companion and I are way different, but we have been getting along muchbetter and we are able to help each other a lot. Sometimes he is just what Ineed when I am having a hard time and is a big help to me! He is a nice guy! ILOVE all of the guys in my zone and district tho! I have made so many friendsthat I know I am going to continue to be friends with after the mission as well!Some go to BYU and some at UVU and some are just from around here. Its been WAYhard, but we have been having some fun too! Its nice that we all are kinda goingtho this togther and know how we all are feeling so we can help each other outmore. the days are still way long but they are going by quicker now. im kindagetting used to the schedule now too which is nice. it is just way intense. weare up and doing a ton of things 16 hours a day with no naps... which is sadbecuase i love naps haha. we stay real busy tho so i never seem to get tootried.the past few days have been really hard but last night me had an amaingdevotional bu richard heaton. he talked about forgetting ourselves and justdevoting ourselves to the lord and everything that he wants to accomplish. healso tlaked a lot about including the lord in every decision we make. it wasjust really good to realize that i am not here for my self. i am here for myfriends, for spencer, for trevor, for danielle, for mom and dad, i am here forall of my extended family, and my best friend, i am here for the people ofchihuahua, and first and foremost i am here for my father in heaven who hasblessed me with so much. it was just a great realization to get over myself andto allow my self to serve in the fullest. i was an outstanding devotional. it has been rough and very hard but i know i need to be here and in the longrun two years is not very long at all. it should be easy to give so little timeof my life compared to all that i have been blessed with. thank you so much for all of the love and support that you all send. i reallyappreciate it and respond to as quick as i can. i love you so much. -Elder Davidson

Monday, January 5, 2009

Most recent e-mail from Andrew to his family

My Family! So obviously my pdays are monday! And those are the days I get to read and write emails. I have a TIMED 30 minutes so make sure not to make them too long or else I wont have too much time to write back. I would love actual letters tho! I can read those anytime, and you could just email them to danielle and have her print them and mail them for free through BYU. Oh and I have sent a letter home last thursday and sent one today for spencer! Happy birthday spencer!Anyways,So far so good. The days have been very very long and I feel like I have been here forever and a half! I think thats why I have not recieved any letters from anyone but Larissa yet. It does take a while for things to get here tho, especially becuase it has been snowing so much lately, im sure danielle has told you about it. My companions name is Ryan Hillary and is a cool guy. We are WAY different so it has been interesting working together and getting along. He is from Sandy Utah and its been interesting getting along ha ha. There are a ton of way cool guys in my district and in my zone so it has been fun getting to know them. My companion also went to BYU this last semester and we even had a class togther, but we had never even seen each other before. So we have to be up at 6:30 and then in class by 7 every day! Then we are in class pretty much ALL day, literally, with the exception of 3 30-45 minute meals each day. I have been learning a ton tho, I already have taught the first lesson with my companion(in english) and have learned to pray and to bear my testimony in spanish already. All of church on sunday is in spanish and the teachers almost always speak in spanish. Our zone also has a rule that we are not allowed to speak english in the dinning hall, which became in effect today(we had a few days before they inforced it on the new guys) It has just been amazing to learn the gospel like never before. After taking 5 religion classes I thought it would not be to much more but it really is. I am beginning to understand so much more! Its hard feeling like I have a million and one things to do ALL the time, but I will definitely write back if anyone writes me. We are also only allowed to go to the temple on pdays and sundays and other than that we have to be in the MTC. Its not like it used to be dad :D So on sat we finally had our first gym which was a lot of fun! I fianally got to play basketball and there were some really competitve games going. We usually get gym everyday, just the first week we have oprientation so much we have no time for gym.The first few days were really sad and really hard to get used to being up for 17 hours a day and to be working hard most of the time. I also struggled to sleep a lot my first couple nights, but its been getting better. So the food is identical to the food in the cannon center! So i feel right at home with that haha. It been good food and I have been really watching what I eat so i dont gain weight while I am here. We really only get 1 hour of excersise a day so I have been tring not to eat very much. :)It also has been weird with no phone! I am just getting used to not reaching for it when I am free or each night to call and tell you some stories. Today was the best day so far, and it was nice to have some free time for once so we could actually get to talk to my roommates and guys in the district and get to know them a little bit better. I just got my pictures into the lab today so i will get them back on thursday and will mail them then. I only have a few but ill try to take more. I also had to get 2 shots that cost like 80$ when I first check in, so mom, if you could add about 80$ to my debit card I could finally pay for them, thanks mom!Thanks so much for all of your love and support I cant not wait tohear from you! please write! I love you! Love you