Monday, November 21, 2016

Week 15 - Philadelphia Temple!

Hey guys this week was awesome!!๐Ÿ˜‹ Mostly because of Saturday but here ya go๐Ÿ’

Monday- Monday was a long day because it wasn't P-Day like it normally is but I will still able to send a few emails. We walked around a lotttt without a ton of luck but we taught one less active lesson at least. We were walking by the Library and we starting walking near this one guy with a really bad limp and he was like "Hey Elders" so we were shocked at first but then we started talking to him and it turns out that he's a member! He moved here from Florida a while back when he got in a really bad car accident and hasn't been in contact with the church since but we found him! God puts people in our paths! That night we went to Dinner at Bishop's house and they taught me how to make a grilled cheese sandwich the right way๐Ÿ˜ it was really good so I will have to show you guys one day. That's it for Monday๐Ÿ’

Tuesday- On Tuesday we had exchanges with the Zone Leaders again so I stayed here with Lebanon and my companion went to Harrisburg for the day. So Elder Furniss came with me and we had a decent day. We were walking down the street that morning and this lady pulled over in the middle of traffic and yelled to us so we came over and she said she is a less active and that she's been really humbled lately and needs to come back to church. She's not from around here originally so she asked us for the address of the church so I gave it to her! She was in tears talking to us through the car window. It was a testimony builder for me just seeing again how God puts people in our paths AGAIN. We have been running into people all over. We walked a lot again and tried some people and then we got Brother Boyd to come out with us to talk to some more people so we were able to set up some later appointments. That night we had a mock chapel tour so we had some ward members come out and we all worked on that together. But when we got to the church the security alarm started going off so we went to try and shut it off but in the process of trying to turn it off, we set off every single alarm in the church hahaha fire alarm, carbon monoxide alarm, intruder alarm etc. So it was absolute madness and then the phone in the church started ringing with people calling to see if stuff was actually wrong so I answered it and it was a voice recording and I was like "Yeah we're all good here, how are you?" and they weren't listening to me so I threw the phone back up on the holder, hung it up and said "Boring Conversation anyway" (Star Wars quote) ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ Elder Furniss caught the quote so he was dying hahaha it was really funny with all the alarms and everything going off and everything and our ward mission leader was there too and he was laughing. Anyways, eventually we got it shut off and we had our mock tour and it worked out really well! That night Elder Furniss and I got to meet with one of our recent referrals named Skylar. She is 17 and she's really cool, I explained who we are and stuff she was super interested so we said up an appointment with her for Sunday! So yeah!

Wednesday- On Wednesday we had District meeting so Elder Ibarra came back and we had our meeting with the Zone Leaders. It was good but nothing significant. After that we did puzzles and I finally finished a puzzle!! The puzzle ladies were so proud of me and one of them gave me a pop-tart ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‹ After that we decided to go and try several former investigators on the other side of town but none of them answered! So Elder Ibarra looked at me and said "well let's see your tracting skills" haha then he said "your training isn't complete until I see you tract" ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ so he started knocking on doors showing me "how it’s done" then told me it was my turn. And on my first door the girl that answered listened to me and gladly accepted a Book of Mormon! So Elder Ibarra was like "Beginner's luck" hahaha but it wasn't๐Ÿ˜ That night the zone leader I was on exchanges with called me and told me how impressed he was! He said "you know your area super well and you make everybody feel comfortable during lessons and stuff, like you really know how to talk to people!" and then he said "if I didn't know any better I would've assumed that you've been out for like 20 months." So that was a nice compliment but that's it for Wednesday๐Ÿ’

Thursday- Thursday was a good day for lessons! We started off the day translating for the Marriage counselor again๐Ÿ˜‚ it's really awkward. However, the marriage counselor seems fairly interested in what we do and how cool would it be if we ended up baptizing the marriage counselor that we were translating for hahaha anyways after that we taught/visited the nursing home crew! Sister Bord and Robert Reich, they are both doing alright. I think we are going to visit them on Thanksgiving because they are lonely. Then that night we taught Modesto and that went well and then we taught the Thomas's! They are a family that has been less active for 12 years and I feel like they are so close to coming back, so we are really trying with them!

Friday- Friday went by pretty quick. We started the day trying to visit a couple less actives and then we went to help Brother Alva. At Brother Alva's we picked his entire Collard Green garden and vacuumed froze them for winter. His iguanas eat them๐Ÿ˜‚ so that's why. We made pancakes at his house too and they were surprisingly good. That night we had dinner with the Fishers and that was amazing๐Ÿ˜‹ they always take great care of us I love them!!

Saturday- Okay Saturday was straight amazing!!! It could not have gone better!! I gotta say, Pittsburgh was cool but Philadelphia was even cooler hahaha.

Okay so they picked us up at 6 and we were early for the temple session so we went to the Rocky Steps/Statue before as well as the outside of the famous art museum(which is where the Rocky Steps are). 

The Philadelphia marathon was the same morning and it started right by the art museum so navigating our way through that was crazy, there were so many people! But we were able to see the Rocky memorial before the temple so we were ahead of schedule. 

The temple was beautiful. ๐Ÿ˜There's lots of US history art throughout the wholetemple and the session was really good!! 

We got done with the session and taking pictures and stuff around 11 and then we went to one of the original Philly cheese steak sandwich places! (No one really knows which one is actually the original) but this one was really cool and most people think it is the original๐Ÿ’ 

Lots of famous athletes and celebrities have been there and they had lots of their signatures and stuff on the walls so it's pretty well known. 

After that we went to Liberty Bell and Independence Hall. ๐Ÿ”” 

It was cool to learn more about both of those places as well as everything else around them! There’s so much history in Philadelphia. 

Oh and btw the weather was absolutely perfect! It was like 65 degrees all day so that made everything more pleasant. 

After Liberty Bell and Independence Hall we went to Redding market. This place was nuts. It's like the Diagon Alley of food for Amish people and tourists๐Ÿ˜‚ you couldn't have possibly squeezed more people in there. I got some really good Amish ice cream and donuts though๐Ÿ˜‹ 

After that we started walking down town again and the Anti-Trump Protest came through right then!!! ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ IT WAS INSANE! It was so big! 

They were screaming and their voices echoed off the sides of the buildings so it was extra loud. It was so funny cause they were so mad and their chants were even more funny. It was great. 

And then there was this guy dressed up as Jesus and he was trying to calm them all down and he was hilarious. His voice sounded like the chicken from Surfs Up๐Ÿ˜‚ we walked up to him and he was like "Mormonssss my people!” So we gave him a pass along card, which was a picture of Jesus๐Ÿ˜‚ Then we took a selfie with him. 

After that we walked over to Dilworth Park where there's an ice skating rink and shops and stuff. Then Jesus showed up there too and started riding the carousel and it was pretty funny with his robe flying behind him and stuff and he was yelling telling everyone that their sins were forgiven. Totally blasphemous but funny to watch.

After that we went to a few more stores and took some more pictures then we left to get back on the freeway. 

Then we stopped at King of Prussia which is one of the biggest malls in the world. We got Chick-Fil-A there because it's one of the few locations around us๐Ÿ˜‚ then we drove home! 

So it was perfect, I couldn't have asked for a better day. In conclusion, Philadelphia is crazy! There’s so much going on there haha I want to go back for sure but idk if I will on my mission. 

I owe it all to the Boyd's though, they are awesome! They had the perfect day planned for us and it didn’t disappoint๐Ÿ˜

Sunday- Nothing special on Sunday. We had all of our normal meetings and stuff and then after church we visited a couple new Less actives, both of which claimed to have health issues. After that we went to dinner at the Henson's house. It was really nice, and then we went and taught Skylar. The lesson went super good and her mom sat in and listened to us too so we have 2 new investigators! Everything going on in their lives right now seems to be pushing them to want to learn more about religion and stuff. We were able to answer all of their questions too. I chose to do our lesson was on the Plan of Salvation because she mentioned that she had been struggling with the death of some loved ones and it was perfect! They both seemed really receptive and content with what we taught and excited to learn more. I look forward to teaching them again!

That's it for my week!! I have lots of pictures to send home! I love and miss you guys tons!!

-Elder Carter Nelson





Week 14 - Presidential Election and a visit from Elder Stevenson

Hey guys! Here is my week, a few of the days are kinda slow so I apologize if this week's email isn't as good as my other ones๐Ÿ˜‚

Monday- On Monday we woke up at 5:15 and took a bus at 6 to a members house to do crossfit at the Boyd's house! Sister Boyd is a crossfire instructor. It was a good workout and actually made me pretty sore๐Ÿ’ After that we did our studies in the sisters car outside of their apartment until 10 then we all went to Harrisburg to meet up with the rest of the zone! In Harrisburg we played basketball for a couple hours and hung out with everyone then we all went to a trampoline park called Get Air. It was fun! But it wasn't as much fun as Low's in Provo. After that we went to a mall in Harrisburg for another couple hours then we drove back to the Boyd's for dinner๐Ÿ˜‹ The Boyd's are so great haha so that's how we finished our night!
Tuesday- Election Day!! Tuesday was crazy! I've never seen the city so alive. Everybody was out voting and stuff but at the same time EVERYONE answered their door! Haha so it all worked out for us. We live right across from the Town Hall building and it was packed all day with people voting. All the streets were super busy as well. We had a list of less actives and a former investigator that we visited in the morning and they all answered and we set up follow up appointments with all of them! And we got ahold of Carlos so we set up an appointment with him! ....So there was this one guy from the DR who's door we had knocked several times without any luck a few weeks ago and so we kind of stopped trying him. But then later in the day on Tuesday we were walking down the street and I instantly felt like we should go try his house again and I told my companion and he was like "okay if you want" and he answered!! We found him!!๐Ÿ˜ So we taught him a little bit about the restoration and the first vision. It went really well, he might be moving back to the DR so we might have to turn him over to the missionaries there but at least he wants to learn๐Ÿ™† After that we went on a team up lesson with our ward mission leader's son to one of our other less actives and that went good too. I was talking to him a little bit and it turns out that he's a DJ!!๐ŸŽถ He does like the exact same thing that I do! So we talked about that a lot of the night because we had dinner at their house as well๐Ÿ˜‹ After dinner we went on splits with some of the men with the ward for their Home Teaching and between all of us we technically got 4 lessons taught with members present ha so that looks really good on our numbers! Then Trump won! Which really shocked me honestly, I didn’t actually think he'd ever win๐Ÿ˜‚! The whole thing is crazy. 
Not even the missionaries were spared the frenzy of election 2016

Wednesday- Wednesday was pretty slow because it was raining all day but we still got some lessons in. We started the morning by teaching Carlos, it was good to be teaching him again and we had a good lesson with him. After that we visited Robert in the nursing home and he was really grateful for our visit. So we shared a short lesson/thought with him as well. Then we did puzzles with the puzzle ladies but we didn't have a lot of time with them because they had a board meeting in the puzzle room. The puzzles ladies weren't too happy about that. After that we went to Book of Mormon class at the church.

Thursday- Thursday was reallllyyyy slow. We only had one lesson with Modesto, which was good but nothing too significant. I love visiting him, it's just frustrating that he can't do much because of his health. He knows that everything we teach him is true but he can't go to church because of health issues. He just needs that transplant but he's pretty low on the transplant list because he's "stable" whereas lots of other people with similar conditions aren't. After Modesto we found a couple more less actives and set up appointments with them๐Ÿ’ we biked all overrrr, I think we biked over 8 miles through the city in less than hour. So I slept pretty good that night๐Ÿ˜‚ so you know when you're watching a scary movie and the family in the movie moves to a house in the middle of the woods by themselves and you're like why would they do that?? Well here in PA that's how all the houses are๐Ÿ˜‚ If you don't live in the city or a suburban neighborhood then you live out in the woods by yourself. Kinda funny I guess. 

Friday- On Friday we helped Brother Alva again. We washed all of his cars and he was really appreciative of that! He bought us pizza at one of the local shops and it was really good๐Ÿ• While we were there, an old guy showed up because Brother Alva has been fixing his car. Anyways the old guy was sitting in his truck waiting for Brother Alva so I went up to talk to him and he told me to come sit in the truck with him because it was cold out. So I did and we had a funny conversation๐Ÿ˜‚ he asked me where I was from and stuff then we started talking about Veterans because it was Veterans Day and he told me how he served in Paris, France. He said it was a non stop party for him for 3 years at the base in Paris while everyone else was in Vietnam haha he was like "those French girls mannnn *loud whistle* I'll never forget them. They don't have any morals though" ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ I was laughing pretty hard because it was this 80 year old saying it. He offered me some chew and I politely accepted hahahaha jk I said no but then I talked to him about what missions were and why we do them and stuff so yeah idk I thought that was kinda funny. He was super nice and it turns out that he's a multi millionaire but he sure didn't look like it lol.   After we were done at Brother Alva's, we taught a less active then went to dinner at 5 guys with a family in the ward. That night my companion and I walked around downtown talking to people and stuff. We talked in accents all night hahaha. I was working on my New Jersey accent and he was working on his Australian accent. Obviously mine was better because there's actually people with New Jersey accents around here so I can pick it up from them๐Ÿ˜‚ We also taught the guy from the DR again that night and extended an invitation to give his friend a Book of Mormon and he was excited about it! It was super funny though because we were talking in our accents then when he answered the door we like instantly we switched to Spanish๐Ÿ˜‚ you had to be there I guess.

Saturday- On Saturday we woke up at 5 AM to drive to Altoona for our apostle visit with Elder Stevenson! The whole mission got together in Altoona for this conference. Along with Elder Stevenson were Elder Holstrum of the Presidency of the Seventy and Elder Coons. We got to
shake all of their hands and meet them. Elder Stevenson gave an awesome talk/training! He's definitely my new favorite apostle. The spirit was really strong when he bore his testimony. He grew up with our Mission president so he spent the first couple minutes making fun of President Johnson and he had the whole room laughing pretty hard๐Ÿ˜‚ so yeah, Elder Stevenson is amazing! Elder Holstrum was a really good speaker as well. During the conference they showed us the 2016 Christmas Mormon message video and its soooo good. The initiative this year is called #LightTheWorld and usually I think these things are kinda lame but this one is cool! I can't wait until the video comes out so you can all watch it. ๐ŸŽ„ After the conference one of the APs came up and started talking to me, he was like "Elder Nelson, everyone just tells me that you're the coolest and that it's always a party with you" and I was like “Really? I've only been here like 2 months" then he said "well I guess word gets around quick" haha so that was cool! Then we drove to State College for lunch. Penn State would be a very distracting place to serve๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ there are a lotttt of kids there and even though it's almost winter, they don't wear much hahaha. After that we drove back home. We taught Modesto again that night and had a another good lesson with him. He asked us what happens if we don't get home by 9 and we told him that we turn into pumpkins hahaha he like jumped in his chair and said "well we don't want that" ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ that was it for Saturday!

Sunday- Sunday was nothing crazy. We woke up early and went to Ward council and then went to church. In Elders quorum they gave us some more prototype candy from Hershey that should come out next month. It's called Hershey's Cookie Layer Crunch and it's really good๐Ÿ˜ so if you see it at the store soon then you should good it! After church we read with Anil at DQ for a little bit. Then we went to the Nelson’s house for dinner. Their family is crazier than ours ha. The mom (Kristen Nelson) is cool though, she reminds me of Jan Fausett. After that we went with the sisters to visit a family that has been struggling lately. We visited them for a couple hours then we got home and planned for the week.

My temple//Philly trip is this coming Saturday so we are moving our P-Day to Saturday. We are sending some emails today because we aren’t going to Email on Saturday so I will tell you all about my Philly trip next Monday.

Ok, well that's about it for this week! We helped a family with a garage sale a few weeks ago and here are some pictures of us "helping!" Haha.

 Anyways I love and miss you guys a lot๐Ÿ’™

Oh yeah, that garage sale was hoppin'! 

Sporting the ever-popular "gothic vampire missionary" look
Why are they getting rid of this perfectly good pogo stick. I mean, really? This thing still works great! 

Oh, Dearest Skateboard, I have missed you so!

Week 13 - Halloween and Service

I picked a turkey for my weekly emoji because it's November already! It was kind of hard week because we felt super unproductive but it wasn't really our fault. People have started to break the news to me that Lebanon is a really hard area. I guess President has sent a lot of his best missionaries here without much luck. The members of the ward are aware of it too. The ward is really strong but when it comes to finding investigators, there hasn't been a lot of success. We were getting a ride home from a member last night and he was asking us about our week and we told him that it was a little slow and that we were bummed about it and he was like "yeah quite honestly this area is really rough, we haven't had a convert baptism in quite a while." ๐Ÿ˜… Then my companion told me that he hasn't had this struggle in any of his other areas. So everyone was hiding the truth from me all along but I refuse to accept it. There's no way that there are no potential investigators here so I guess we just have to keep trying. However, my companion and I are killing the rest of the zone when it comes to Less Active lessons taught because we do so much reactivation. Most of the companionships get between 10-15 lessons a month and we got 29 this last month. So at least we have that going for us hahaha sorry for this rant, here is my week----

Weekly planning -- it's serious business
Monday- Monday was Halloween and we didn't really do anything. No one in the mission had any miles to come and get us because it was the last day of the month so we just stayed here. We went shopping for a little bit around town at some thrift shops and stuff and then we went to dinner with some members. We got wings with them which are always good๐Ÿ˜‹ that night I slept terrible and I have no idea why, I felt sick all night and I woke up super confused about where I was and I had like 4 bad dreams ha it was bad. So those types of nights are never fun.

Tuesday- Tuesday actually was pretty good despite my rough night haha. We had district meeting in the morning then we taught Modesto and his friend Jose in the afternoon. We taught them about the Word of Wisdom and they both accepted it and said they would live it! Modesto can't really break it because of his current health conditions but Jose is going to work on his coffee consumption!๐Ÿ˜‚ Being from Puerto Rico, drinking was a big part of their life when they were younger but they don't do it anymore so that made the lesson easier. Modesto and Jose have been friends since they were 17 and Jose takes care of Modesto every day and takes him to all of his doctors appointments and everything. If that's not real friendship then I don't know what is. After that we visited Sister Bord and that was good as well! She always appreciates our visits. I showed her my new iPad case because she would always give me crap about my old one because it was dirty and I didn't clean it and she just gave me more crap for my new one!๐Ÿ˜‚ She was like "you can't just buy a new one because you don't want to clean the old one! Are you gonna do the same thing with your wife when she's old? Huh? Are you just gonna buy yourself a new woman?"๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ she always gives me a hard time and teases me but I tease her too so it's okay haha. She told me that I always make her day whenever we come so that made me feel good๐Ÿ˜Œ That night we had to ride our bikes to the ESL class again at the church and whenever we have to do that we made it a tradition that we go to dinner afterwards. So we went to dinner at this little Sports Grill and bar downtown because they had a sandwich special with the World Series and it was really good๐Ÿ˜ and we got to watch a little bit of the game and they had some basketball games on too so it all worked out.

Wednesday- Todo Servicio. Wednesday was all service, we woke up and helped Brother Alva for a few hours around his yard and house. Then we went and helped the Hernandez family put up cement posts in their yard for the rest of the day. My back was done after that, working with cement is absolutely terrible. I got to introduced to some new Spanish though! Like some new words that have to do with construction, yards, tools etc. so that was good. Then we had dinner with them and it was finally some authentic homemade Mexican food๐Ÿ˜‹ it was really good. It was good to spend time with Brother Hernandez because he has been less active for several years, the rest of the family goes but he doesn't. We are helping them again next week as well. That night we walked around downtown and tried to talk to people without a ton of luck. 

Thursday- On Thursday we visited Lloyd and gave him a small lesson, we still aren't sure how to help him. He's an obese, single, endowed, inactive, lonely man who can't work because he's physically unable. He's stays home, watches movies and eats. How do we help him? He knows the church is true and occasionally he attends church but he just doesn't have much hope for himself. ๐Ÿ˜• It's really sad. After that we visited the Puzzle Ladies, even the non-member ladies get excited when we come now๐Ÿ˜‚ they all give us snacks and stuff and ask us questions it's funny. That night one of our important teaching appointments canceled on us ๐Ÿ™„It was the Thomas family.  We had been planning for it all week so that really bummed us out. We decided to just go walk the streets and we found one guy from Puerto Rice sitting on his porch and we started talking to him and he seemed interested in us and luckily I had a Spanish Book of Mormon in my bag so I gave that to him and we got his number so hopefully we can set something up with him! 

Local graffiti 
Friday- On Friday we started the day trying to teach Carlos but it didn't work. We haven't been able to get in contact with him much since the whole marriage counseling thing. I think he might be embarrassed about that whole situation and maybe he thinks that learning about the church isn't helping him as much as he thought it would regarding his relationship. Idk. But it's kind of a difficult situation for us because he was one of our only investigators๐Ÿ™ After that we got picked up to go help our Elders Quorum President with some service and it felt like a complete waste of time๐Ÿ˜… he's a really slowwww worker. It took us 3 hours to get 2 pieces of dry wall on the ceiling. We were really frustrated, an active member of the ward does not need that much of the missionaries time to help him with a job that can be done by one person. Anywaysss that night we had dinner with some members then walked around downtown trying to talk to people without any luck.

Saturday- Mas servicio. On Friday we went back to Brother Alvas and it was actually good for him. We cut his dogs hair, power washed his driveway, organized his shed etc. Then he took us out to Lunch and I got a Reuben sandwich and it was amazing๐Ÿ˜‹ haha then we visited Modesto again and read with him in the Book of Mormon. He mentioned that he feels really bad about how he was when we was a kid because they were raised on the streets in Puerto Rico and got with a bunch of girls and other stuff like that. Then in English he was like, "And I know you guys aren't like that, well.....maybe Nelson is" HAHAHA it was pretty funny ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ we were all laughing. I swear all the people we teach tease me all the time lol but I dish it back out so it's all good. Jose was wearing a USC jacket and I told him that my dad went to that school and he was like "¿Inserio? ¿Su papa fue a este escuela? (Your dad went to this school?) and I said yes then he said yeah I went to the University of Southern Catholics too๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ haha I was like yeah that's not what that jacket is but sure! It was funny because it was clearly a University of Southern California jacket with a Trojan head and everything hahaha ohhh Puerto Ricans. After Modesto we went to the Boyd's house for dinner and games and that was a party as always. They are so good to us and WE ARE GOING TO PHILADELPHIA WITH THEM ON THE 19TH!! We are gonna go to the temple and go to the Rocky statue and liberty bell and everything. I'm super excited๐Ÿ˜‹ 

Life is Sweet when you are serving the Lord!! 
Sunday- Sunday we had church and Ward council and some other meetings then we visited Sister Bord again. She was confused because we had just seen us a few days before but she needs the visits. We shared a story with her and helped her organize her room a little bit. She asked us if she gave us something last time, and I said "No, the only thing you gave me was a hard time for my new case." Then she started laughing๐Ÿ˜‚ I like making her laugh because it just looks like her smile is stuck in place lol. After that we visited Anil at DQ as always. We had a good little lesson with him then we biked back home. Biking while fasting is awful, just throwin that out there. Then we went to the Franklins house for dinner and a game. They made breakfast burritos and cinnamon rolls so that was a good way to break our fast๐Ÿ˜ then we played a game with them. Their sons love me, they kept taking my name tag off and putting it on and they kept trying to take off my tie haha on the drive home Brother Franklin said "you must have brothers at home huh?" I was like yeah๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ and they are 3 years apart too just like Spencer and Bryce. Then last night we had weekly Planning.

Scripture of the week: 2 Nephi 12:13 - All things point that God is real⭐️ 

Other cool thing- Elder Stevenson from the quorum of the 12 Apostles is coming to speak to our mission this Saturday! So that should be cool๐Ÿ˜‹

Alright that's my week! I will go respond to your other emails throughout the day❤️ Love and miss you guys tons ๐Ÿ’•

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Week 12 - Officially 3 Months!! (August 2 - November 2)

Hey guys here's my week๐Ÿ’™

Monday- We started our P-Day by going down to the Goodwill and buying some girls shirts because my companion makes ties out of them๐Ÿ˜‚ he tears the fabric up then sews it back together into a tie, It's pretty cool actually. After that we took a bus to Walmart and met up with the sisters to do our shopping. It was our last day with one of the sisters in our district because she went home the next day๐Ÿ˜Ÿ she was funny and way cool! She's the Polynesian one in the pictures. So we spent the day with them. We went to some random old Indian sites around the outside of Hershey for a little bit and then we went bowling!๐ŸŽณ After that we went to dinner with a great family, they have ten million kids(9) all under the age of 15 and all of them are way cool!๐Ÿ˜‚ On the way home from their house it was pitch black everywhere because they kinda live out by themselves but if you look to the East towards Phili and New York you can see the light pollution from the cities. It looks like the moon should be coming up but it's not there๐Ÿ˜ฑ it's just the light from those big cities so that was kinda crazy. That night we visited EJ, the old African American lady which is always pretty funny, she can never believe how young I am. 
Her:“Now, how old are you again?" 
Me: "Still 18" 
Her:”You mean to tell me that you're 18 and you're already out seeing the world!? So so young out in the big world..." 
Haha it's fun to talk to her๐Ÿ˜‚ she just needs to go to church!! 

Elders Ibarra and Nelson with their friend, Anil
Tuesday- Tuesday was pretty normal, we had studies then taught Carlos. He is doing really good with accepting the gospel and stuff and he reads and prays. After we taught him we went to this  Mexican restaurant and it was super good! It was authentic too, they made the tortillas right in front of us. I got the tacos Al Pastor and they were delicious but they were kinda small๐Ÿ˜• but we were excited that we finally found good Mexican food over in the East! After that we taught Modesto who is still doing awesome in everything except his health๐Ÿ™ƒ he needs prayers!! And a transplant!! But he is fun to teach especially with Spanish because he's easy to understand and he accepts everything we tell him! One of their friends was there while we were teaching Modesto and we kind of got in an argument with him because he was telling us that everyone who is part of a religion that worships Christ will be saved and stuff which I guess is kinda of true to a certain extent but we went back and forth in a friendly argument and eventually we gave him a Book of Mormon and told him to read it and he took it willingly so it all worked out๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ After that we had our ESL class but we didn't have a ride to the church so we sat in our apartment for a second having a conversation about it and this is how it went- 

Me-"Well if we don't go to the ESL class then we are being disobedient because we aren't magnifying our calling because Bishop asked us to go and attend every week."
Companion-"This is true." 
Me-"But if we ride our bikes there in the pitch black without lights and reflectors and something happens to us then what?"
Companion-"President Johnson would probably call it a safety hazard."
Me-"So that's being disobedient too right?"
Companion-"Yeah we are totally set up for failure"๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ 
YOU JUST CANT WIN AS A MISSIONARY hahaha it's a joke sometimes 

Anyways, we did end up going and we had to skip dinner hour but we decided that we were going to get wings at the sports bar downtown afterwards so that was our motivation to go๐Ÿ˜‚ the bike ride to the church was actually beautiful though because it was right at Sunset๐ŸŒ… then after ESL class we had to ride home and it was pitch black!!! You could barely see your hand in front of your face, it was the same road that we walked home on last week but this time we were on bikes. There are some huge hills and we were going down them in the complete dark and it was so fun hahaha I was looking up at the stars(which are amazing out there) and just saying like I hope I don't wreck hahaha it was honestly like a ride at Disneyland. So it was totally worth it and it was totally a safety hazard. But we got our wings afterwards and the World Series and opening night of the NBA were on at the restaurant oops๐Ÿ˜ 

Wednesday- Okay so get this, after studies we went to the house of another investigator and translated for a marriage counselor!! Hahahaha it was soooo awkward๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚there were tears and stuff. My companion did most of the translating because if I had done it then a lot of stuff would've been lost in translation. Lol but I understood everything that was going on and I could've done a sketchy translation but my companion was far more qualified especially for something like this ha. But at the end of the session we gave the Marriage counselor a Book of Mormon and she totally accepted it! She was impressed that we were willing and able to translate for them haha so it was quite the experience! After that we visited Lloyd and a couple other less actives, they are all kinda hopeless but we help them feel the spirit and read their scriptures at least๐Ÿ™ƒ then we did puzzles with the puzzle ladies and caught up on all the gossip. That night we went to the ward trunk or treat and helped run booths and stuff but it was fun and we got 2 investigators and 3 or 4 less actives there! It was a fun night though. I got a Halloween package from Kam today too which was amazing๐Ÿ˜ so that made my day even better ๐Ÿ™†

Thursday- Well studies started normal today but then the unthinkable happened. Okay I'll put it into perspective. So there I am feasting upon the words of Christ and then I see something out of the corner of my eye, at first I thought it was a giant fly but then when I looked closer I realized it was a frickin mouse!!!๐Ÿญ it starred right at me for a sec and then it picked me up with its mind powers and shook me like a doll!! (Monster's Inc.)(Despite being on a mission, I'm still on fire with the Disney quotes) hahaha anyways within seconds my companion and I were on our hands and knees mid study time trying to hit it with a shoe but it was just too fantastic.(Megamind, yeah I know it's not Disney) So the Devil's mouse got away but we set up some mouse traps around the apartment. After that we had District meeting and we have 2 new sisters in our district and they are definitely going to take some getting used too. ๐Ÿ˜… Later that day we walked and rode our bikes all over the place visiting people and it was freezing and pouring rain. On one of the bike rides I was getting soaked and my tires kept flipping dirty water up into my face and I was so mad but I had no one to be mad at haha like it was no ones fault. That adidas windbreaker has been saving my life though because of how water proof it is. It's not cold enough to wear my huge coat yet and I can't ride my bike with it so the adidas one has been perfect. 

Friday- Studies were good today! I read the True Millennials talk that mom sent me by President Nelson and I read Safety for the Soul by Elder Holland. Both were really good! I recommend them๐Ÿ™† Friday was freezing cold so I probably made 3 different cups of hot chocolate throughout the day. Overtime our apartment has accumulated several different types of hot chocolate in the cupboards so I have been trying them all๐Ÿ˜‹ After studies we visited a couple less actives then we got a call from the elders Quorum president asking us to help him with some service. We weren't really sure if he liked us or not so we were glad that he asked for our help! He picked us up in his GTO and went 100 mph on a few different stretches of road and you could tell he was trying show off but it was fun hahaha We helped him haul 70 huge pieces of drywall to his basement and it was quite the project. He was winded after the first few so my companion and I did most of them. Afterwards he was really grateful and asked us if we needed anything around our apartment and stuff so it was good that we were able to strengthen our relationship with him. We had dinner that night with the Fischers! They are back in town and of course spoiled us as usual with a great dinner. Then we visited the Hernandez family and finally caught Brother Hernandez  so we set up an appointment to help them next week.

Carter found this in a local shop! I think it's pretty accurate!
Saturday- We helped Brother Alva today and got a lot done around his house again! We helped him for quite a while so we didn't have much time the rest of the day. That night after dinner we walked around the city trying to talk to people and hand out Book of Mormons and stuff. We were walking down a dark alley and there was a soda machine and I told my companion to buy a Mtn Dew because he likes them so we started going through our bags looking for quarters to buy one. We found enough spare change and he bought one then seconds later we ran into this guy who we had met earlier this month but we didn't have a Book of Mormon to give him at that time but this time we did! So we gave him one and if we had been any earlier then we would've missed him because he got out of a taxi right in front of us. So basically the Mtn Dew was inspired because if we hadn't have taken the time to buy one then we would've missed that guy. The funny thing is that afterwards we couldn't even figure out why we stopped and bought one hahaha we were like why did we spend money on that?๐Ÿ˜‚ we have like 3 at home?? But we are just gonna say that it was a craving from the spirit lolol

Sunday- Sunday was just like most. We woke up and had Missionary Correlation meeting then Ward council and then church. Everything was good and we had a good 5th Sunday combined meeting. After church we did some team up visits with the ward mission leader then had lunch. Then we taught our friend Anil at DQ then we got a call from Sister Orta telling us that no one took her the sacrament so we called Bishop and he just asked if we could go do it so we rode our bikes alllll the way across the city to give it to her. They were very grateful though! Then right as we stepped outside it started POURING๐Ÿ’ฆ☔️ We got absolutely drenched, like we couldn't have possibly gotten any more wet on our bike ride home. Every single part of us was soaked and our bags were soaked, everything was soaked except our iPads๐Ÿ˜ God was watching over us I guess haha kind of. But thankfully our next appointment was dinner so we had time to clean up and change. Then we had Dinner at the Gehrings house which is the nicest thing on earth and the meal was just as good. Then we finished the night with Weekly planning.

Scripture of the week: 2 Nephi 27:28 - Lebanon will be a fruitful field! ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ maybe not the Lebanon that I'm in but ya never know ๐Ÿ™†

Anyways that's my week, thanks for all your emails I will go back and respond to them! I will have plenty of time to email today because we are just hanging around the apartment because our whole zone is out of miles so no one can come pick us up๐Ÿ˜Ÿ so write me tons!๐Ÿ˜‚ I'll just be taking naps and stuff haha love and miss you guys!!!๐Ÿ’•

-Elder Nelson