Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Turning Nineteen in the MTC

Hey Everyone!

How's everyone doing? It feels like I just had p-day but here we go again. It was another pretty good week especially my b-day. First I'll just try and go day by day, so let’s start with after last p-day. First Elder Keller and I had a lesson teaching Bro. Olsen about the plan of salvation and just totally knocked it out of the park. He was so into it and wanting to learn more and loved how we showed we cared for him. Then we found out some bad news. Brother Phan our other teacher got fired for not scheduling for a sub one day while he was on his honeymoon :( pretty sad. He was so awesome and it stinks to have to see him go. We all sent him an email to him last week but he didn't respond. So we really don't know how he is doing.

So, we have like this chip clip where we like to stick it on each other’s shirts and see how long we can get them not to notice it is on them and it’s just been an ongoing game with the Elders in our district. Then, I took it to a whole nother level and clipped Bro. Olsen and everyone in the class was laughing so hard because of what I did; he couldn't teach and Sister Jackson ended up telling him it was on him, but still it was pretty legendary.

On to Thursday, we now have Bro. Thrap who is our new teacher replacing Bro. Phan who is actually also way awesome so at least we got someone new that we all really like. I got to be the investigator for demonstrating teaching in front of the class again which was pretty fun. I love being an investigator because you can just be whoever you want! Then we had class with Bro. Ols and he is so cool pretty much gave us an awesome shoutout for being so good; if you can believe that. While the Sisters taught him, Elder Smith and Vance taught Elder Keller and I as investigators. After that we read the BoM as a class and we read Alma 48 and it is just way fun to all read it together and share thoughts and learn and feel the spirit together. 

Thursday was pretty good Bro. Olsen was sick from eating leftovers from Costa Vida and we were like no wonder because you chose Vida or Cafe Rio…Rookie Mistake. We learned how to share scriptures more effectively in our lesson which has been a huge help so far. Bro. Booth went to dinner with us again on Friday and was subbing for Bro. Thrap and we learned some new language stuff and culture which is always awesome.

Elder Crump and I have been making it a goal to stretch out every night so we can get better at sitting criss-cross-applesauce since we find that when sitting on the floor for lessons we can't walk after because it hurts so bad, it's a work in progress. We can't Asian squat yet either without holding onto something or destroying our knees so we are still figuring that one out. 

Saturday was TRC and we had a sub Bro. Shipley. We have officially had every single Thai teacher here, which is pretty cool we've experienced all of them. We had TRC and we taught these 2 RM's but I can't remember their names. It was so cool it was our first 40 minute TRC lesson. I don't know why but length of lessons has never been a problem. We can just go forever. It's partly because our Thai is horrible ha-ha and we take forever to spit things out but still it's really coming along. After our awesome lesson Bro Booth started helping us memorize that First vision in Thai and after yesterday I officially have half of it down. We will finish it by Saturday.

As for Sunday we got released, me as DL and the ZL’s; so now my Sundays will be more relaxed which is nice no more meetings ha-ha. Elder Keller is the new DL. Then we had Priesthood Meeting and Elder Keller and I taught for 10 minutes about the atonement to our whole zone which was pretty cool. Crazy to do those things in English now. Then at the devotional we had the most awesome experience. Sister Jackson in our district also had 2 twin sisters that are younger than her in the MTC; they just left in the last 2 days, but the musical number for the whole MTC was performed by them! They played the one song from 17 Miracles and they did such an amazing job. Crazy to have three sisters together on missions in the MTC at the same time. Be hard to handle as parents, I'd think. We watched the “Character of Christ” by Bednar again. If you haven't watched that yet, check it out!

So Monday I bought Jesus the Christ and will start reading that. It seems pretty awesome and I just bought it one my MTC card since I had like 20+ dollars I decided I should start using it. We had some deeper doctrinal questions during class on Monday and everyone in our district was really into it but Elder Smith and me. We are pretty easy going when it comes to that stuff because we just feel like it doesn't matter and we don't have a problem wondering about it. I love Elder Smith he is so funny!

I also went to the Health Clinic to figure out my tooth and she’s calls you on the phone Mom while I am sitting right there and I could hear your voice, which was way cool! I was sitting with Elder Crump and he said to me just yell, Hi Mom ha-ha, but I didn't. I got a dentist appointment the next day at 9:45. This leads into Tuesday which was my B-day! So first we had class at 8 where Elder Keller and I taught Bro. Thrap and we taught him the plan of salvation and it went way well just like Bro. Olsen’s lesson which was sweet. Then it was time to go to the dentist. Lets gooo…going to the real world which was way sweet seeing real people ha-ha. We went into the dentist office and real music was playing and I was like this is the greatest thing ever, but if they numb my mouth or say I can't eat I'm going to be, lit! Luckily I didn't have to get my mouth numbed or any restrictions from eating so I was pretty stoked about that. I was a nice get away to be honest. My tooth is all good now, just my retainer is a little weird but it will fix itself I'm pretty sure.

I decided to switch it up from playing b-ball in gym and played some volleyball. I've still got it, that's all I got to say. Those Jr. High days are paying off ha-ha. I was having a blast because I was the only one jumping up, throwing down some spikes which was sweet! Except my shoulder is a bit sore ha-ha. Then we had our Devo which was alright, but we had a review after and I came up with the coolest analogy about missionary work and basketball so I'll tell you the general gist of it. So you have 5 players on the court and only 1 sub. You've got Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ, the Holy Ghost, BoM, and you. You've got you're one sub, your companion. You've got the Godhead and the BoM that never get tired and whenever you get tired you can sub out with your companion to get so rest and jump back in the game. I compared it to playing a game where you teach your lessons and score points by how things go and like committing them to baptism it is like hitting a three pointer going into half time ha-ha. Then you are like playing with Satan and trying to score more points than he does to finally win the game. You also have all your friends and family, who are your fans, cheering you on the whole way. Also, all the teachers over the years are your coaches who have been preparing you for this your whole life. I thought it was cool, but that pretty much it.

Tell Grandma Watkins and Grandma Berlin, thanks for the packages the zucchini bread and cake so awesome! You guys are the greatest. Also tell everyone thanks for the birthday wishes especially Grandpa Watkins. I wish I could write you all but I just don't have time. Elder Crump gave me a card which was way awesome and hilarious. He's such a great friend.

Elder Smith got me the greatest birthday gift ever. So ever since we got here I'd make sister jokes every once and  while just to tease Elder Smith so he goes ahead and tells his mom to tell his sister Tori to write me a birthday letter ha-ha. Honestly the funniest most creative letter ever. I read it out loud in our room and we were all dying of laughter it was so funny! So shoutout to Tori for giving us a great laugh and something we will always remember. She also gave me some candy and money which is so funny I don't know why, but I'm not complaining, it was pretty awesome. She's a nice sister to help out Elder Smith. Elder Smith and I are creating some hilarious memories especially with our late night chats because we can't fall asleep, but everyone else does, so we just talk, which is way awesome. I love Elder Smith and his family is pretty sweet, so I thank all of them! That was really about it for this week. Feels like this is a way long letter so enjoy! 

Love Elder Watkins

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