Monday, November 28, 2016

Week 7: Q&A Session with Holly!!

What is your new area and your new address?
Area is Long Beach North and the address is actually just the address of the mission home 6500 E Atherton St Long Beach California 90815 I think that’s the zip code. If not I’m sure you can find it online.

What is companion’s name and where is he from?
My companion is named Elder Urbina and he’s so cool. He’s 17 months in and speaks native Spanish but also English. Hess super cool and loves basketball and all so that’s great! He's from Spanish Fork Utah too.

How’s your apartment?
Our apartment is super small and probably the smallest I’ll ever get but it works well for us! We enjoy it!

What was your ward like?
Our ward was pretty cool, all in Spanish so idk how much i understood but it was so spiritually strong! It was crazy!

How’s the weather in Ca?
The weather in CA is hot and cold at nights! And the past two days it’s rained which is really rare for Cali supposedly so that was cool!

Did you get your bike and all accessories?
I got the bike and everything all ready but we have a car so that doesn’t really matter, yet.

How was your mission President-does he have all his family there with him?
The mission President is really cool! His wife’s here but idk about anyone else!

What is 1 thing you love so far?
I love my companion! He's so funny and we work together really well!

What is 1 thing that was hard this week?
One thing that was hard was definitely the Spanish, everyone here speaks Spanish and interpreting it is so difficult for me

Did you get to have a Thanksgiving meal?
Yeah we actually had 2 thanksgiving meals and had 3 planned but were so full we couldn’t do another!

How’s the Spanish now you are in the real world?
The Spanish is tough like i said but everyone says my Spanish speaking is already really good so i guess that’s a plus

What is 1 thing you learned about your mission?
I learned that my mission doesn’t have too many baptisms so that’s interesting just because the Spanish population isn’t as high as I thought

Week 7 - North Long Beach Area!! My First Week in the Field!

I’m in Long Beach!!

The first day I got here we had interviews with the mission President then got with our new companions!! My trainer is Elder Urbina! He’s super cool and native Spanish speaker! I’ll definitely learn so much from him! After we got our trainers we got in our CAR (whoop whoop) and instantly went out proselyting and had dinner with the Manriquez family!! We had some soup which was really good! And then had Hamburgers and cake!! It was really great! After my trainer asked me to give the spiritual thought... in Spanish! I was so nervous. But I opened up to my favorite scripture in Jacob 2: 18-19 and taught how important it is to search for the kingdom of god! I was nervous but i did it all in Spanish and pretty well i guess! Then we went our knocking doors and contacting and inviting people to watch the new Light the World video on! It was fun but now i realize how much Spanish i really need to learn... a lot. At 9 we went back and unpacked and got everything ready for the next 6 weeks!

The next morning we woke up and went and ran around a park for 30 mins, came home and showered and got ready for the day! We had one hour of personal study, companion study, district meeting for 2 hours and then language study for another hour! We picked up my bike which looks good! And then we did 2 hours of service for a local Hospice Center and made condolence cards for families with members who passed away. Its fun, everyone in there is so funny and always laughing and making jokes. After we went down into the Land of Los Alamitos and yes i saw the high school. We went around trying to get into some referrals houses but didn’t get anything but talked to a Catholic lady on the street and gave her our message. After that though we came back and had dinner. We then went on splits with the elders’ quorum and got put with a really cool guy so we went and basically home taught a divorced mother! And that concluded our night!

So that is basically a typical day here in CA but I’ve met a lot of great families and I am starting to get accustomed to the missionary life! I’m sure things will start to pick up here this week and so on! I miss everyone dearly and can’t wait to hear from all of you! My address is 6500 E Atherton St Long Beach California 90815 for anyone wanting to send mail! I have a lot of other stories but I’ll have to save them for next time or through mail! Miss and love you all!

Elder Gilmour

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Week 7: Arrived in California Long Beach!!!!

Hello family!! I made it to Long Beach and have met the Mission President and many other missionaries!! They're so great! After I'm done with this I'll be heading out to get ready to go out and teach for a bit tonight! How fun!! I'm pretty nervous because it sounds like I'm in a Spanish Area so all Spanish for me! I'm very excited though. I'll get to meet my companion and get settled in! P-day is Monday so I won't be able to write till then!! Everyone here loves it and i'm sure i will too! I love you all and hope you all have a great week! I'll make sure to write everything in my journal from here on out so I don't forget anything important! Love you, wish me luck!!

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Week 6: Ultima Semana!! (Last week in English)

¡Hola familia! ¿Comó estan? this week flew by pretty fast and not too much has happened so ill let you in on the details!

Today we packed all of our stuff up for when we leave! Talk about crazy! Then after we got done packing we went and played basketball for two hours and of course we played volleyball in honor of the Jags winning three straight!! So something cool that happened this week with basketball though was that i dunked in a game two handed! and then i slammed one down one handed pretty strong! the other companions were going nuts! so i guess all the walking we do here has paid off!! it was crazy! also for our gym times all week, we've been playing soccer and were going to play cage soccer after were done here too! I got them hooked on it ;) so its been a great day so far!

This week is all about improving our teaching skills and Spanish speaking, so its been pretty hard! especially since its our last week and you know how teenagers are! we love to slack off! but we haven't done that too much! It was sad though because we're the only people left in our district because all the others have left already! so it was sad to say goodbye to those guys knowing our time was coming up. so that was hard.

The food here is still wrecking people left and right. My companion got an infection in his throat and stomach this week so we've been at the doctor quite a bit this week! thankfully i haven't had the same experiences. Last week we also had 100 people who got food poisoning, so that was crazy too. Im ready for american food again.

Other than that not much has happened this week! just getting ready to head out in Tuesday morning at 2:30 in the morning! No sleep for this guy! It's also weird because my companion who's going to the same mission as me, has a different flight plan and schedule than I do, so looks like ill be alone for a bit!

Anyways, that's about the gist of my week! Getting close to mission time! How awesome! Oh and btw... HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM!!! i totally forgot to tell you last week! I hope it was great! anyways the next time ill be writing will probably be the day before i leave which is Monday so ill let you all know how it goes! Love you all!

Elder Gilmour

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Week 5 - Wow its going way too fast!!

Wow, week 5 has started and my Mexico experience is rapidly coming to an end. Very sad. I love it here! Anyways this week has flown by and i cant believe how much i think im progressing! The spanish is coming along pretty well! Also my teaching skills are getting significantly better! Yesterday my companion and I taught a lesson to our progressing investigator (our teacher) and after we felt so incredibly great about it and we taught the plan of salvation. During the lesson, our investigator asked what sin was and we explained the commandments and the other commandments we have as members of the LDS church. He was shocked but we had a few scriptures to help him understand better. After we read some verses we talked about the Atonement and how through Christ we are able to be cleansed of our sins. I then pulled out John 3:16-17 and read those and our investigator was close to tears. We wrapped up with our testimonies and with a prayer and after we were out we knew we felt the spirit. it was so strong. But later that day, our teacher Hermano Trujhillo, who is an incredibly amazing guy who just got of his mission, called me and my companion over and told us how amazingly proud he was of us for the lesson we gave and that he thought he was a real investigator at the time because he wanted to get baptized again!! how cool!! It was the best experience ive had here yet!

Also yesterday my companion and i went on splits for gym time so me and another one of my house mates went and played cage soccer! Man i can not tell you how much i miss the game! but the crazy thing is that i havent lost any of my skill. I know that the lord is blessing me. But we played with some of the other district guys and they loved it so were going out again today! I love soccer!

Earlier we were talking about missionary plaques and i had no clue what one was! So i guess everywhere in the west coast they make plaques for missionaries with their missionary scripture on it and where there going! I thought this was pretty cool and i think Dad should start in up in Iowa! It´d be pretty cool!

We did find out Trump is President and i think we all freaked out in joy because Clinton is not President! It was pretty funny!

Last night, heres the funny part of my letter! Last night the two rooms of us guys in the district had tie trading time. But this was no "Oh lets trade ties" it was almost an auction for the coolest ties in the rooms! it was so funny! one of my roommates who is so funny, has a tie that everyone wants! so when we were just wrapping up, he pulls out the tie and everyone went nuts trying to make offers for the tie! it was so funny! then being the person he is, he doesnt make a trade and goes to bed! Just to tease us all!! It was so funny! So now its a tradition every night to make trades. I ended up getting 3 new ties last night and only traded two! i got a cool red and black one, a kind of blueish green one with a pocket square and a super cool blue one with little orange dots which is so cool! it was so much fun!

Im really progressing and enjoying my time here! we have a lot of fun together. Its crazy. I hope everyones doing well and enjoying these weekly rundowns! I love hearing about everyones weeks so please feel free to write whenever! Love you all!!!

Elder Gilmour

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Week 4 - ¡Hola familia!

¡Hola familia! ¿Comó estan? Dang this week was crazy but I have to share one thing I forgot last week! last week my companion and I gave away our first Book of Mormon!! My companion was pretty scared so I did a lot of the talking (in Spanish!) and it was a great feeling! We just gave it to one of the construction workers and he has family in Texas who are members and has been waiting to receive a book! Anyways that was great! The Spanish is coming good but the foods not! just kidding its not too bad! I've learned more Spanish in 5 weeks than i did in 4 years of high school! crazy! We also went to the temple today again and it was another great experience! We teach lessons to investigators almost everyday and they're all going really good! Our teachers are amazing and are really patient with our broken Spanish! I know the gospel is blessing my life and the other day in the back of my Book of Mormon I read a quote that Dad had written down quite awhile ago and it was from Ezra Taft Benson and said something about how the adversary will try much harder to tempt you, the closer you come to God! and I guess I never really noticed it till now but I appreciate it! I was looking forward to some Krispy Kremes though ;) but your Halloween candy gift was great! except  ate it all in like 2 days... oops. The other day we also had the pleasure to have Presidente Castañera in our class! He's the MTC director and its very rare to have him come into classes so that was cool! Anyways, it feels like I've known my class for years! We're all so used to each other! It's great! My time is going really well and I miss you all! ¡Yo se amo mucho! Hablaremos luego!!

Elder Gilmour

These are pictures with my Latino fellow missionaries who left for the mission field today!!!