July 23, 2009

Calvin continues...

For a few weeks in a row he emailed on Mondays between 4 and 5 am our time. (7 hours later London time).
We didn't get one last Monday - darn it! But our family life of Missionary mail experiences/issues the past 34 months (and 21 more to go) has taught us not to worry; that their routines change almost as much as ours! Then later that day we found a short, fun letter from him in our mailbox!

But late this evening I noticed a reply from him in my inbox that he'd sent early this morning...

How are things? Hopefully well.

Sad story: The other day, a couple young girls (maybe 13 or 14) asked us if we had any cigarettes. Everyone starts things younger here, in spite of laws. Lot's of single mothers and things, too.

Less sad: The other day, I made something almost like Arroz con Leche. [Rice Pudding] Elder Call (another elder in the flat) had cooked some rice, but wasn't going to eat it all. I took some, put some milk on it (or, more milk, technically, as he was eating it with milk), put cinnamon and sugar and stirred it up. Arroz con leche obviously is more than that, but it tasted similar. Which brings me to my question: Will you send me the recipe (electronically, or physically) for your Arroz con Leche?

A related question: Will you send me the green recipe box that I bought for my mission? And also the recipes for Spinach Pie, and whatever else was there? And also some Mrs. Dash? If not, that's cool. Thanks! :¬)

Our washer is cool, 'cause it's also a dryer. Not a very good dryer, but it dries (or, it tries.) <= [P0€trY] Papá: What kind of training were you doing in SLC? Have you used the iPod for audio books yet?
Mom: Busy as usual, it seems. How are the vending machines? Is Josie more diligent? When should I expect that questionnaire?
Josie: What's new? Remember when you said you'd write? I do. It was just after I rebuked you all because you never wrote. Wanna know what else? You haven't really written since. You have one week to write something cool, like your favorite scripture, or the party you organized, or the song you learned to play on the guitar. :¬) Mostly I'm joking.
Carmen: Are you still alive? I get emails from your email address, so I assume you are, but you don't tell me what you're doing. You should learn to make cake. Find a Good Eats about Cake on YouTube or something.
Maya: Hi. You should write in your journal. Mom sent me something you wrote about spring break, and it's very good. Just get a pen you like to use and use it. You'll love writing when you get into the habit. It's very fun, and it'll be your favorite if you start now. I promise. And I want to know what happened while I was gone. That's your job, okay? Good.
Ashton: You're a Bear, huh? In c-c-c-c-cub scouts! You did some cooking, init? (Here in England, a lot of people say, "I'nit?". It's short for "Isn't it?", and it means, "Huh?", like "You did some cooking, huh?") You should make Mom teach you how to make Arroz con Leche, too, and tell her to teach you Spinach Pie.

Hey, this thing about sometimes having P-day on Thursday happens every moves (so every 6 weeks); I should email on Thursday or Friday for those weeks (Friday because, if I'm transferred, I'll be moving on Thursday).

Thanks. Love. Bye.


July 20, 2009

Have i mentioned lately that i LOVE being in YW??

Young Women
Blessings of Camp

Camp graphic

When young women return home from participating in camp, they can have an improved understanding of their identity and of their relationship with Heavenly Father —an understanding similar to Moses’ after his experience on the mountaintop (see Moses 1:1 – 25)

This understanding will lead young women to:

  • Continue to seek the companionship of the Holy Ghost: “For his Spirit hath not altogether withdrawn from me.” (Moses 1:15)
  • Resist temptation and make righteous choices: “I can judge between thee [Satan] and God” (v.15)
  • Pray: “I will not cease to call upon God” (v. 18)
  • Be worthy of the direction and companionship of the Holy Ghost: “Being filled with the Holy Ghost” (v. 24).
  • Rely on the Savior’s strengthening power: “Thou shalt be made stronger” (v. 25).

July 06, 2009

more from Great Britain

Today (P-day) at 4:30 am Mtn time 11:30 am London time, Calvin wrote:

Okay, for the rest of my trip:
My companion, Elder Komulainen, came with the office elders to the airport. When I met up with them, Elder K snapped a photo. I'll try to get that from him. We got in the van, and went to the mission office, on the grounds of the London Temple. During the drive, I got somewhat startled once when the Elder in the passenger seat (the left front) turned around to talk to me. I was like, "eyes on the road, driver!", but he wasn't driving.
Oh, ~ The letter you got was from President Swinton, right? He left last week, so now we have President Shamo. He's cool, too. I'm glad you got those pictures, though. President Swinton is probably back in Salt Lake looking for clients, now. He's a lawyer.**
Anyway, the day I got there was something called a Temple Conference. They don't happen often, I'm told. It's similar to a Zone Conference, but at the temple. Just recently, the London Temple got a Visitor's Center (the only one in Europe, according to reports), so President Swinton taught us there. Then we did a session, and had lunch at the temple cafeteria (very good food) then President & Sister Swinton taught a good-bye-type lesson. The zone leaders told some "Pres' Dawg" stories about things President Swinton did, and afterwards we went home. I live very near the Thames river. Google my address sometime. Tell Josie to, with the kids, or Carmen or Maya, if Josie's out. Oh, and write a snail mail letter to me, too, if you can. Just one as a family.

To answer your other questions:
  • Elder Komulainen--to whom I am guessing Papá is referring by "Elder Alvar Aalto"--does not speak Chinese beyond "ni hao" ("hello"). Just Finish and English.
  • The area I'm in now ("Welling"; Google it, if you like) there are not a ton of Chinese-speakers. There are lots of people from Nigeria and other African countries. Also, Indian, Nepalese, and "Chav"-- (poor white type), very like the low-life white type in Utah ... it's sad. But it's okay. (I meant to send you a picture today of the Book of Mormon shelf we have with tons of languages but I forgot the cord to connect my camera, so I'll send those next week).
  • There are about 160 missionaries. About 7 Mandarin, as far as I've been told. I've only seen 4, (all at the Temple Conference). ~ There are at least 2 assigned spanish elders. There are elders from Finland, Spain, Denmark, Germany, the U.S., England, and I think I've met one from Poland. One just went home from Romania. There's another from there, too, I think. But as far as assignments go, I've only heard of English, Spanish, and Mandarin (which is pronounced /man-duh-REEN/ out here).

Yeah, have everyone write notes for the medicine box. Have them write them now, so they'll be done when you send the medicine. Mailing a lot of letters would be too expensive, of course, so send all you can in the packages.
I'm sure you've already thought of all that, though, so, whatever.

One min left. Love, ecmj

Oh, p.s. Tell Carmen and Maya to take the time to capitalize when they email the King of Convention, the Grammar Guru, the one and only me. :¬P Thanks. Bye.

** Sure-ease thought: Good thing he left Provo abruptly 2 weeks early ~ Because that put him there in time for the "Changing of the Guards" as far as mission presidents go, as well as that temple conf -which both would be good opening experiences for Calvin.