Merry Christmas Family,
It was really good to get all of your letters (we can pick mail up everyday, but it doesn't deliver on Sunday or the end of Saturday and we can only open it at night).
The packages were awesome (although I don't know if I have as much confidence in the USPS as you guys to send a pomegranate). I also got one with a card ambiguously signed from "The Family" (Omega Man?) with creamed honey and cinnamon rolls and some good stuff. That one was cool too. Now I have a lot of honey and probably enough treats for the rest of the MTC. We partied hard with the stuff you sent me for like 20 minutes and then threw all the party stuff away.
I will be here for 6 weeks no matter what I do (unless I get sent home). Also, Josh is writing a book called "Harry Potter y la Piedra filosofal", that's what I was talking about Dad.
That alarm clock is working alright, but the first two days it reset after the alarm went off, but it has been fine since.
I was wondering if Josh could also write a song called something like "The American Way: Do a Half-Baked Job". I just have the idea for the approximate title.
Also, for my next birthday, could you include a package of heavy duty gallon bags, I don't think I really need it yet, but perhaps I can buy it in mexico, so never mind. I will tell you when I get there if I still want that.
I realized that straight is the path and narrow the gate or whatever isn't really about not very many people making it into heaven, but actually I decided it is about that some things you absolutely have to do (like baptism and such) and so that is the narrowness of it, not like people are falling off.
I don't get any sun during gym because it is either late at night or early in the morning. Also, running isn't fun because we just get to run in a big circle around the parking lot and I hate running in the cold.
Reading Josh's book is hard because any Spanish letters become question marks and dearelder seems to randomly print stuff occasionally, which makes it hard to put things together.
Also, I wanted to remind you to print all my e-mails and keep them for me in a binder or something. Also, make sure not to lose the pictures I send you so I can delete them if it gets full (although I am not sure if that will work, because it is being pretty stupid)
I am amazed that anyone liked that video, because I looked like a total rook. I also am kind of a sloppy missionary, because I decided that if I am going to wear a suit, I am not going to iron my shirts (which look better than when I took them out of the bag anyways)
Josh, find out when Patrick Hammer gets here, so I can make sure to see him if its at the same time, if you could.
Also, I had the question of whether people who don't eat any animal eat marshmallows or jello at all or very much? Does it make them sick?
There isn't really much time to shower here, especially on some days, but it happens somehow.
It has been snowy and rainy here a couple times, but usually pretty nice.
They had pho here once, but it was really awful. An asian cafeteria girl played some sort of instrument during it, but just like the food, they put her away before long, because we always eat last of all the zones. It is kind of annoying.
They give us filter bottles here, but we won't be able to get them for a couple of weeks because they sent all of ours to the Philippines, that is okay though.
They have soup here a lot and so they have pretty good minestrone sometimes and they've had white chicken chilli and clam chowder, which are all decent. Also they have killer chicken noodle soup which is like the peak of soup that you can mass produce, similar to the soup mom makes, but not nearly as good. Still, I like it.
Someone told me the cake was good enough that it was cake for people who don't like cake. Falso.
This week it was really hard to keep some of the rules. Like specifically, we have to stay in the classroom and plan until 9:25, even if we're done, so we just waste a bunch of time, usually, instead of going home and showering. But, after struggling with that you need to obey the Commandments of the Lord and then thinking about how everyone here is always saying you shouldn't waste the Lord's time, so why should we not go home, I finally just decided that the leaders are the lord's servants, and so now we just mess around and talk, and it is dumb, but oh well.
One elder's mom sent him a Chia pet and it is supposed to take 6 weeks to be done, so we will know when it is close by how long its hair gets.
Do you know any cardio-type exercises I can do in an apartment besides jumping jacks, which hurt my ankles?
I think I had a dream about puffed rice balls, maybe. Also, I ate some oreos andd then discovered they are each others antithesis. In that puffed rice balls don't make your teeth black and they actually don't make you feel sick afterwards.
My right buttock is always the one that gets injured when I run, and then I sometimes can't walk. But I don't think it is ever the left. What is wrong with me? Also, my upper small of my back hurts all the time, I think it might be from sitting at a desk, but I am not sure.
One elder in my district had some cheap scriptures spiral bound at Kinko's. I thnk I might do that when I get back or if I lose my scriptures.
We aren't teaching Antonio anymore, but we got invited to a pretend lunch at his house, so that would hypothetically be nice. Our teacher that was playing him told us that he was a real investigator and that after 6 months he finally got baptized and now has a testimony of the Book of Mormon and Joseph Smith. So anything can happen, but that is really cool.
I don't know if I will get my visa. Two others elders in my district are going to Las Vegas soon to get theirs and some of the older missionaries never got theirs before they left. But then again one missionary just got his and he sent his stuff in when he got here, so you never know I guess.
My companion asked how Christ could have begun a new dispensation if John the Baptist and Nephi at the same time had the priesthood, but I think it depends on your definition of the dispensation and apostasy. It is unclear if they had all the keys in America. And apostasy doesn't always have to be complete apostasy either, it can be with just one person. Additionally, one elder said his book of mormon teacher said it was a return to the higher law. Also Preach my Gospel says a dispensation is a period headed by prophetic responsibility, so even you could say we've had a bunch of smaller dispensations in this last one. I am satisfied with that though, but he thinks he's found the unanswerable question.
In England they say Z, "zed" not "zee"...Crazy, huh? Also, they call it hoovering, not vaccuuming.
I sleep pretty well here usually. Sometimes I am a little cold and last night I didn't sleep well, but it was okay.
One elder was jokingly trying to convince my companion that America was better and my companion (which I think this was all in good humor, both of them) said that his last name was Lopez and that he couldn't be American. It is pretty messed up. Like he doesn't even know what America is about.
According to this sometimes pretty irritating missionary whose dad and brother in law went to colorado, they eat rocky mountain oysters there all the time because "it is a nice meal to serve to Missionaries". I have tried to tell people like 15 times that they half of the times were probably doing it partly to mess with them unless they were in a ranch-like rural area, but no one listens. They think that we eat them all the time everywhere in Colorado. He also said when we were singing Put Your Shoulder to the Wheel in Spanish during our planning time (not planning, but not going home either). That he hated to be that kid, but that these hymns were sacred and that we should keep that in mind. It is like the least sacred hymn I can't think of this instant, and it says with energy. Also, I am usually the stubborn one. We were just singing it really loud and having fun, but oh well.
Here's one for dad that I heard in a talk: Substitute "meetings" for "things" in the 13th Article of Faith. In the same talk I also heard that wickedness never was happiness also goes the other way around that righteousness never was misery, and I like that.
It is cloudy here today.
I really like reading all your letters. Good luck at Hairspray, Ben. Congratulations again, Matt and Lindsay (sorry you had to wait so long . Thanks for you letter too, Dad (you always have good stuff to say), I always really like reading them all. Good to know htat you will eventually write me, Josh.
I am probably going to try to send some pictures just to mom, because it will only let me send them one at a time and I don't have much e-mail time left. She can put them on the blog maybe.
Love you guys!