Monday, April 8, 2013

Awesome General Conference! (April 2013)

[This week I asked Kyle a LOT of questions.  We happened to be online at the same time, so we e-mailed back and forth.  These are all the answers.]
Momma!  How was your week?  How was conference?!  Temple in Cedar City!!!!  I'm for sure going there now!!  We didn't have any baptisms cause it was conference weekend. But we got three lined up for next week.  All of our investigators are doing super well.  We are focusing on the ones with dates though.  
Today we didn't do much for p-day.  Just bought lots of food to snack on and pretty much drew all day.  We buy what we will need for the next day.  It's just a lot more convenient to grab a couple eggs for the morning, I think, then just bread for dinner.  The stores are pretty much just like your basic grocery store.  Just a little smaller.  We have a lunch with a member everyday, which they usually like to give us lots to eat. TONS of Rice.  Ha!  I drew Joseph Smith and a cool name thing for Brian.  
There's just me and Elder Flores in our apartment.  Our apartment has two stories. Both about the size of the TV room downstairs. We have a sink and a fridge and a place to do laundry. We wash all the dishes by hand.  We have a microwave and . . . we have a shower and a toilet.  The water is freezing!!  WOOHOO! I have a picture I will send you . . . when I figure it out.
We usually have to wash our clothes by hand, but there is a lady in our ward who needs help money wise, so she washes them for us.  We pay her and she washes our clothes. 
We have a missionary credit card. We get money put on it every two weeks. We usually go to an ATM and get it all out at once and keep it at the house. 
We don't knock on the doors.  Everyone has gates with their front doors open.  So you just walk up and say, "BUENAS" and they come.  The people are always nice.  They really like talking, too.  We usually do street contacts though.  Well.  We find them in the street then later go to their houses.  I wish the members gave us referrals.  We keep telling them over and over again to give us some, but it never happens.  We have tons of appointments during the day so we are always walking to peoples houses. We have an hour a day set apart for only finding new investigators. During this hour, yes, we just stop people and get their information so we can visit another day.
A regular day is . . . wake up at 6:30.  Pray.  Exercise.  Eat some breakfast.  Shower. Personal study. Companionship study.  For the first 12 weeks of your mission there is a program you have to do.  We do that after comp study.  It's just kind of a getting started kind of deal.  Then we go to lunch.  Then go to all of our appointments for the day. At the end of the day we buy some stuff for dinner and breakfast.  Then we have a planning session for the next day and then we usually have about an hour to ourselves.  Sometimes we just go to bed cause were so tired.  But a lot of the time I eat and read my scriptures.  And then we go to bed and get to do it all over again the next day!  HA!
Speaking of which.  The other day we had divisions.  That's where me and Elder Flores split up and he goes with the district leader for a day and I go with the district leaders companion.  It's kinda interesting being in a different area for a day.  I was glad to be back with Elder Flores.  Ha!
I still haven't gotten your package yet. We usually don't get packages until zone conferences. Which are every 3 months. So it's probably sitting in the office waiting for me (I hope!) So I don't think it's lost forever.
But nothing to crazy happened this week.  Except for awesome GENERAL CONFERENCE!  We got a couple of our investigators to go.  I'm so glad we did.  It's like an instant testimony finder!  So we have a couple more baptisms, I think!  Conference was awesome, as you all know.  I was so so fortunate enough to watch it in English along with two other gringos in our zone and Patricia (my first convert!). It was awesome talking to her again.  Conference here is like stake conference. They all gather at the stake center and watch it in the big room.  It was awesome!!  In between sessions us Elders didn't really have much to do, so we just went to the store, bought some food, and chilled at the church.  HA!  But anyways.  Life is still good here! Hope all is well there and I love you all!!!

- Elder Anderson

Monday, April 1, 2013

More About the Gunman

Have you heard the saying, Days turn into weeks and Weeks turn into days?? HA! Crazy it's already Monday again!  We had a pretty spectacular week here in Campo! Thunderstorms here are awesome!  So loud and crazy!  Ha the other day we made homemade popcorn.  Turned out pretty awesome!

First I'll talk about the gun guy from last week.  He had his gun in a little fanny pack and didn't pull it out all the way.  But I saw that it was fake, so I wasn't too nervous.  They tell us in these situations to just give the guy some money and then tell the president and you get reimbursed.  I'm not sure why he didn't take my money.  He had a glove on so he must not have felt it.  I didn't mind though!  The two guys were huge!  Once they started beating him up, out of nowhere like 10 more guys came out and helped.  The gunman was a little twig.  Maybe 20 years old.  I easily could have taken this guy.

Everything was said in Spanish, but I understood everything because the only thing he was saying was DAME SU DINERO.  Pretty easy to pick up.  Especially when he was trying to get it.  We kinda just stood there in amazement as he was getting beat up.  This happens in video games and movies . . . not in real life!  Ha.

We didn't tell the mission president because nothing happened to us.  But we waited around for the cops.  I don't know how, but this kid got up and was all up in our faces because he thought we knew the guys who stole his motorcycle.  There were lots of people there by then, so nothing got too crazy.  It happened at about 7:00 at night.  Right after it was dark.  It was actually right by the church.  We had a meeting there and were waiting for the jeep to take us back to Campo. 

I was pretty calm through the whole thing.  If he would have started something, I would have punished him.  It hasn't really affected us too much because these things just always happen.  It's usually not a good idea to try beating someone up because almost always they have a group of buddies watching to make sure things go smoothly.
We had a sweet fast to help us find new investigators.  It's hard fasting cause all of our investigators offer juice.  Ha we had to turn it down like four times!  But it's okay.  We have an investigator named Henry.  He is like your ideal investigator.  Loved the restoration. Loved the Book of Mormon.  And he is coming to conference with us next week.  I think conference is live . . . I'm not sure. We're just going to the stake center which is about a half hour away to watch it.  
We have another investigator named Rosio.  She is so cool!  Single mother with two kids.  Today we bought her a hymn book and a complete Book of Mormon/Doctrine and Covenants!  It was so cool to see her face when she received it!!  Just another example that I really need to be more thankful for the things that I have. 
Personal study is probably my favorite part of the day!  It's for an hour in the morning.  Right now I'm in Alma.  Alma the younger is such an awesome man!  I wanna be like him.  He teaches with such power!  Like in chapter 5.  Perfect!!
Testimony meetings here are awesome!  There is never a silent moment.  EVERYONE wants to share!  And this week they just got back from the temple in Bogota.  The temple is about 12 hours away.  They were gone for four days and it's a pretty big chunk of change, so usually not the whole family goes.  They are so so thankful and it made me realize how much I take the temple for granted.  
The way computer time works here is kinda like . . . the houses are pretty small, but everyone has some sort of shop.  So yeah, we are in an internet cafe type deal.  There are about eight computers in here.  We have an hour.  We do it at the end of the day because we're all dressed up and at 6:00 we gotta go out to work again.
We had some sweet burgers for lunch.  They put beef, chicken, and all sorts of mess up in there. SO GOOD!  Also, when they have refreshments they go all out.  Ha not just your basic cookies and stuff.  We're talking sandwiches and soda! HA so good.  We didn't have a baptism this week, but it's okay.  
Another thing. Check this out for personal revelation.  Not too long ago I was reading in D&C 31.  I substituted my name for Thomas.  AND IT'S AWESOME! Give it a try!
But anyways.  Love ya Momma!! And until next week!!
Pero esta bien!  Mucho amor Mamma!!  Hasta proxima semana!

- Elder Anderson 

Monday, March 25, 2013

Fruit Looks Like Brains! (And Story of a Gunman)


Always such a pleasure to talk to you!  Mondays are superb.  I kinda realized I'm not very good at answering the questions you ask . . . So here ya go!  HA!  We eat three weird fruits here.  They are called Mora, Lulo, and Maracuya.  Ha wait til you see the inside of a Maracuya.  It looks like brains!  But it's all super good.  We make juice with them a lot.  
We had one more baptism this week.  Her name is Rosa.  I don't know her story because she already had a baptism date when I got here.  But we are teaching her son tonight, so hopefully we can baptize him, too.
We meet in a normal church building, but it's in a pretty dangerous part of the neighborhood.  It's just in a ghetto part of the city.  But the church is right next to the highway so nothing bad is going to happen.  DON'T WORRY!!  But none the less.  I think there are more people in this ward than we have in Fairview.  And with new people constantly being added!  Ha!
Today was awesome! We went and played soccer with the ward.  Ha the ward parties here are so much fun!  Everyone dancing and eating some food, and chit chatting a little bit!  And soccer is so intense! But I was able to keep up just fine!  I got super crazy bad burned though.  OUCH. 
So I spilled on my pants a while back and had to wash them.  They got all stretched out, so I had a guy fix them.  They're pretty super skinny now!  HAHA!  But I like them.  Also Brian's suit pants were way big for me.  So I had him fix those, too.  Super skinny as well!  I look good though!  I got a haircut today also!  I am working on getting this photo situation settled so ya´ll can see my pretty face! HAHA.
But anyways.  Nothing too much more has happened.  Just your basic lesson teaching and learning more Spanish everyday!  Much love to you and everyone!  I hope all is still going well!  

- Elder Anderson

[This next e-mail is what Kyle wrote to Brian today!]

Dude. Plain weeks are boring. But I gotta tell you a story of what happened yesterday. But don't tell mom. We almost got robbed. Freaking. We were waiting for the jeep to come and this kid pulls up on his motorcycle. Comes up to us, pulls a gun out and tells us to give him our money. We said we didn't have any. But I had some in my pocket. Freaking kid reaches in my pocket. Grabs my money. Lets go of it like he didn't even feel it and then just keeps telling us to give it to him. We emptied out backpacks and everything. Freaking this is where it gets crazy man! Two guys came out of nowhere and started talking to him. I thought they were just going to tell him to leave but NO! They freaking grabbed him from off his motorcycle and beat the freaking tar out of him. Right there in front of me and Elder Flores. I mean. This is what you see in the movies and video games. Not right in front of your face! They knocked him out, stole his motorcylce, asked if we were ok, and were to never be seen again. Freaking wow! Crazy stuff man. Angels exist!

- Elder Anderson

Monday, March 18, 2013

70 Pushups and three baptisms!

It's good to hear everything is good!  Things are good here, too!!! We had three baptisms on Saturday.  Ana, Camilo, and Estavan.  Camilo and Estavan are brothers.  Ana is 50... Something.  HA!  I baptized Camilo!  Didn't even mess up!  It was awesome!  The Spirit is so strong!  Also when they get confirmed the next day.

My companion knows English pretty sweet so it helps me learn Spanish!  We can communicate in both languages so that's pretty awesome!  Sometimes I have a hard time understanding investigators cause they slur the words.  But for the most part it's coming!

Yesterday after church we got pounded by the rain! It was so awesome!!!!!!!!!!  The streets were flooding up, but it's cool because they have these huge vent things that drain all the water!  Crazy cool.  We're probably gunna get hit again tonight!!

So there is this thing called CAPTAIN MORONI.  It's a thing where if you baptize more then 10 people in 3 months you get it.  Me and Elder Flores are totally going to do it!  First transfer!  HA!

Oh YEAH.  Does the bank know I'm in Colombia? Cause I don't wanna try getting money out and have the cops come after me!
[I asked Kyle about some pictures I saw on the mission blog of elders and the mission president doing push-ups.]  I did a bunch of pushups.  Like . . . 70 I think.  I can't remember.  HA!  But we wrote down how many we can do no matter what.  Then a new goal.  And then how much we actually did.  I put down 35 pushups, no matter what, and 50 for my goal.  Totally smashed it doing 70!  HAHA!  But anyways.  It is significant to our goals for our investigators.  So we made goals of how many investigators we are going to get no matter what. That's what the compromisos is.

 But anyways.  Today was kinda a boring day.  We took a taxi across town to the office to get something for Elder Flores.  Then it was back to the apartment to.... Sleep.  HA! It's days like today where I feel fat.  Cause I get so bored so I just eat.  But then the rest of the week I know I'm skinny again. HAHA! 

That's awesome about RHETT!!!!!! [His friend, Rhett Bird, got his mission call to Spain!  He leaves July 24, 2013!]  I'm so freaking happy right now!!! YES!  I wanna write him so hook me up with his e-mail.  I can write Abdiel, too.  The rules are write Momma first.  Then President.  And if I have time after (which I always do)  I can write friends.  So yeah!

But anyways.  Nothing to much more has happened.. So until next WEEK!

Much love to all of you!

- Elder Anderson

Monday, March 11, 2013

Transferred to Campo

Take it easy on the cars!!!  [We hit a deer while driving to work in the Manti Temple on Saturday morning.  I told Kyle to obey the rules, even the speed limit].  And so far I'm obeying all the rules with exactness!   (I think.)

I'm excited to hear about how Alex will do [Kyle's cousin, Alex Larsen, is going to Milwaukee, Wisconsin, to serve his mission.  He'll be speaking Hmong].  He will do great!  I heard some people speaking Hmong when I was in the MTC in Provo and it's a weird language.  But it would be cool to learn!

Yeah, I've been in 2 car accidents [Kyle told Brian about the accidents last week, but not me, so I asked him about them].  I didn't say anything about them because they were so so so tiny.  We just bumped into the sides of the other cars.  Driving here is crazy!!! No lines on the roads.  It's pretty scary at times, but pretty cool.

Kyle and Elder Flores
My new companion is Elder Flores!  He is a super awesome dude!  Our area is called Ceibas 2.  We live in a city called Campo.  Its pretty small . . . compared to Cali.  But it has a lot of farm land and cows, which is good to see again.  Brings me right back to home!  Our area consists of a lot of small towns put together.  It's kinda like Sanpete is setup, with about six miles in between each town.  So we spend a lot of time on the bus, which I don't like.  It's super super crowded.  BUT!  It will be good once I know Spanish a lot better because I will have a lot of teaching opportunities.  All the houses here are really small.  They are about the size of the basement family room.  But my apartment has two floors, so it's two of those.  Probably a little smaller.  My bed is pretty hard actually.  Ha!  I wake up feeling like an old man because my back hurts. BUT!  If the pioneers could do it, so can this guy!

We can't drink the water.  We have to boil it.  I think I'm getting a little skinnier because you can see my dimples pretty good now.  But not too much.  I eat a lot of bread because it's super cheap and it's super good!  I bought a jersey and some glasses today.  That's pretty awesome.

We have two baptisms set up.  Camilo and his brother Estavan.  They are 12 and 14 years old.  We are all really excited about it!! Me and Camilo are buds.  It's awesome!

You don't need to worry about me coming home, momma [I asked Kyle if he's still happy].  This is too awesome and I love it too much already! I mean, of course, I miss you and everyone, but, you know, I need to be here.

Keep on keeping on!  Be safe!  I love you!  Until next week!!!

- Elder Anderson

[Kyle's e-mail to Todd today]

It's good that things are busy [with woodworking]! It's about time you got to work! Haha!  Sorry I can't be there helping you.  But I think I would rather be here instead.  I really hope that thing works with this guy [working with a man to build furniture]!  What a great opportunity!  
I haven't really heard anything more about the strikes, but yeah, I got transferred!  My new comp is Elder Flores.  I make fun of him because that's flowers in English.  Ha! We are already good buds. And we make a crazy good team! We have a baptism this Saturday with a little kid named Camilo.  We are already buds, too.  We are all crazy excited for Saturday!
But anyways.  Mom told me about the car.  What's up with that?!?!  But anyways.  I hope all is still going well.  Much love to ya!
- Elder Anderson

Monday, March 4, 2013

Eat Like Champions!

Hey Momma! HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!  Geez.  You and dad are just so lucky that I got to e-mail both of you on your birthdays!  Ha!  Hope it has been a good one!
We lose so much weight because estamos siempre sudoroso!!  HA!  We are always sweaty.  The members feed us like champions!  And we usually just have cereal and whatever else for breakfast and dinner.  We eat tons of rice. And meat. And Beans. And fried bananas. I like the bananas a lot.   And actually everything is just really good.  I think I might be losing a little bit of weight because I work out every morning and then sweat all day.  I think my face is looking skinnier.  But I won't know until 22 more months! HA!  
But anyways.  Not much has happened this week.  We confirmed three baptism dates, so that's good. We got another new companion though, so I'm in a trio again.  His name is Elder Jones from California.  He is pretty cool.  
We went up to a place called Three Crosses today.  That was awesome! Sweet view of Cali (it's up on the side of the mountain), and just totally beautiful.  The ride up and down was super scary because we took a really crappy bus up the mountain that was really steep.  But we lived, so everything is okay!  After that we went and bought some snacks and cards and went to the church with our zone and played.  It was pretty fun!  We spent the rest of the day cleaning the apartment and what not.  Nothing too serious happened this week.  
Any more details about your weeks? I would love to hear! HA!  But anyways.  Love ya much! 

- Elder Anderson

Monday, February 25, 2013

First Baptism!!!

Hello Anderson Family!!!

That's awesome to hear that you had another good week!  I had an absolutely amazing week as well!! Lots of teaching! But I love it! I can speak the language pretty well. But I have a hard time understanding people cause they talk so fast!  But it's okay.  It's still coming.
My first transfer is on Wednesday.  I already know who my companion will be and he is a cool guy.  He will be a good trainer.  Ha!
But anyways.  THIS WEEK WE HAD MY FIRST BAPTISM!  We taught Patricia once more and she was Baptized this Saturday!!!!!!!!!  :) Such an awesome experience. 
Elder Menendez, Patricia, Kyle, Elder Yapura
But anyways.  Other than that . . . I don't really have much more to write about.  It's good to hear that everyone is doing well. It's crazy to think that by the time I get back Ridge will be walking around and Luke will be talking like a champion!

Sunset in Cali - Typical Kyle Photograph!
Oh yeah. Elder Yapura.  He went home yesterday.  So it's only me and Elder Menendez for a couple days.  
Elders Anderson, Yapura, Menendez
Did I already say I washed my clothes by hand? That's quite the experience.  Ha!  But anyways.  Much love to all of you!

- Elder Anderson