Monday, December 6, 2010


Well this last week has been a little crazy as far as the weather goes. On tuesday it snowed all morning, probably a good 6 inches or so. then right as we made our way outside to start contacting and what not.. it turned to rain? pretty heavy rain too. So that was pretty cold because we hadn't prepared for the rain (because it was too cold) and we were far from home when it started. so we got wet. but then, the rain turned to freezing rain. meaning that we were freezing. Luckily i broke out the boots that day, so atleast my feet were dry. at dinner we came in and got dry and ready to go back out for the night. and then the temperature dropped. so the ground turned from 6 inches of snow, to 4 inches of slush, then all of that slush froze solid into weird shapes. It's kinda hard to walk on... i've fallen twice. the next day it got down to -20 degrees celcius.. which is something like... i forgot. you can convert it. i believe -15 C is -5 F though. but yeah... it was pretty cold. nose hairs freeze instantly. it stayed that cold for a day or two and then the rest of the week got warmer and was right around -10 C. On sunday it sleeted and filled in all the weird ruts the frozen sluch created, so its now a lot easier to walk without dying.
So i said last week that i'd tell more about elder swainston. and well, nothing else interesting really happened this week, so i will do that now. I'm very much enjoying serving with elder swainston again. He's from utah (Of course) and was a football player in highschool. He's somewhat simular to owen. which is why i like him. He's very organized and our apartment is kept VERY clean. which is awesome. I'm realizing how slobby elder crookston and i were. In fact today i'm on exchanges with elder crookston in his new area.... and it's a pig sty. I cant wait to get back to my nice clean apartment on the south side of town. Also, elder swainston is quite the good cook. if we had some good sausauge, his speghetti would rival yours mom. well, not really rival, its just very simular. though, i think i may have forgotten the taste... its been too long! so yes, i am now well fed and quite happy. The only complaint i have about elder swainston is that he cooks and then tries to do all the dishes. If he's doin the cooking, i should atleast do the dishes. but he's too quick. I try really hard to try to serve him just to try to keep up, but its impossible. But i think that's why i enjoy working with him so much. I WANT to serve him, because he does so much for me. other elders... i didnt want to serve... because they never did anything for me, but MORE they never did much for themselves.
Also he's kind of a quieter fella. which means i actually have time to try to talk in lessons and to get used to speaking russian. as a result my russian learning has been picking up. I'd say i've gone up a rung or two on this latter. But, it's a pretty tall ladder. I've got A LOT to learn. President continues to tell me i need to be a master of the language so that i can be one of his leaders in the next month or so. dang. i'm scared. because in july 20-30 elders go home.... and we're apparently gettting 5. There is a lot of.... growing opportunities for me ahead. oh boy.
Investigators. our way good investigator that has a baptismal date in a 2 weeks... isnt really progressing. his girlfriend called and said that he was no longer interested and didnt like coming to our church when he came. but, we've heard that from her before, and it was a lie then... i we think its a lie now. i finally got ahold of him and he said he was still interested, but its just hard because he works all the time, and he girlfriend isnt for it. so he's kinda on the back burner for now.
our other investigator with a baptismal date.. well she was supposed to get baptized last saturday. so i dont think that will happen. She hasn't answered any of our calls, but she does still talk to one of the members. from what i can tell, she's interested and believes, its just not a priority right now.
And then theres our 9 yr old investigator. her family is 'less active' but they've been 3 out of the last 5 sundays. well the mother and the girl. we've had really good lessons with their whole family and they know the doctrine well... they just dont apply it. faith without action. at our last meeting with them we asked them to have a goal for baptism for the girl, and the gril got really excited. she really wants to get baptised! but her mother is affraid that they arent ready as a family for her to be baptized. She says she that it isnt good for her to get baptized right now if they arent going to be active. We're trying to help them understand that setting goals isnt for people that are ready to achieve them. but rather, goals help us to prepare to be ready. if we were ready right now, we wouldnt need a goal. we'd simply do it.
I'm learning a lot about stretching myself to help me grow. I'm not ready to speak russian to people with so much at stake for them... but i'm here, i'm speaking... and that is the ONLY way i'll ever be ready. when i started cross country i surely wasnt ready to run 3 miles. but the only way i became good at it was running 3 miles. makes sesnse in my head.
well, thats all the time i have for this week. I love you all and hope all is well!
Elder Ellis

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