Tuesday, January 11, 2011

3 January 2011

I'M ALL PACKED! It feels so weird... I feel like I'm gone already and it is kind of hard. I have been saying goodbye to people and it is slightly depressing. Last night was rough. We had an amazing day tracting and also teaching after church. I felt super productive, and then when we went in to plan it was rough. I realized that I had just completed my last proselyting day, since today is p-day and tomorrow I will be chillin' and going to the temple. I was so down and out. I was talking to my new companion (Elder Lee from Bakersfield, CA) and telling him to take advantage of the time he has. I almost cried last night.

Well it is going to quite odd to leave a place where 25 degrees is warm... Y'all are all gonna have coats on and I'm gonna wanna strip down hahaha. The last snowstorm has taken forever to melt off the roads... we just saw a car that got tipped on its side on the way up here. I am so glad we have a set of good tires now.

Grant is so ready for baptism. We also have another baptism set up for February. It is sad to see all the work going on, but I have some work to do in CA now. I gotta get some friends who we can get to church when I get home.

There's a lot of sad people since I'm leaving... A lot of people look at me as an extra son it seems. It is sad tho to see people cry and all. lol Well I guess its life. I have a couple cool presents I'll have to show ya and stuff...

I'll see ya in a couple days. I can't wait to give you guys all big hugs, but It will be sad to leave this place and people that I love so much.

My mission has been the greatest experience of my life. I have learned so much about myself and I am super happy to have had this opportunity. I thank all of you that have helped support me in doing something I love. I cant wait to continue to share with people how much god loves us. I know that Christ is my savior and he loves me and has gotten me through a lot of hard times. I know the the book of Mormon is God's word and that he can enrich our lives if we simply read from it. I love all the leadership opportunities I have had and all the experiences that have helped me learn.

I love you guys and I'll see ya in less than two (days that is).

Elder Thomas Stevenson

Sunday, January 2, 2011

27 December 2010

Hey everyone.

It was so awesome to talk to y'all on Christmas. Today I did get the package. The bread and brownies are kind of hard, but it was exciting to get. They wrote on the box that they received it on the 17th.

Yesterday we had an excellent Christmas present. We went down to Aurora and Elder Guenther got to confirm someone he taught previously. The mission president is a bit more lax on that than the last. I was supposed to baptize someone in Highlands Ranch when I was in Lakewood (which is about half the distance of yesterdays adventure) and President Christison told me no. I thought it was odd, but I am glad my companion got this opportunity even if mine was denied me. The changes going on in the mission are phenomenal and exciting. I really think that with how things are going and how the caliber of new missionaries has improved that amazing things are about to happen here in Colorado.
Tomorrow I get Elder Mikkola up here with me and Elder Guenther. He is a bit ridiculous now. That's the missionary that I retrained in Buena Vista and he is now our Zone Leader and has turned into a very weird individual. Its only for a day though. Then both of our new companions are coming from out west, and we do have an appointment in the afternoon with Grant (the guy who's getting baptized) so that should make up for it too. I hope we get a cool missionary who is a good teacher and a personable person.

I am pretty excited to be able to see everyone again... It feels like its been forever and I feel like I really don't know anyone from back home anymore. Colorado feels so much like home now that I don't know how I'm gonna cope with the return to CA. The political and economical state of CA is kind of troubling. It will be slightly interesting to see if I can even get a job, but I think it will be fun to be back in school and try new things.

I cannot believe how quickly the time has gone, or the fan club I've developed. It seems as though everyone wants us to come over and there almost isn't enough time in the day. I love how a mission makes you perpetually tired. I swear teaching is so spiritually draining that it makes me want to fall asleep all the time. Christmas was an awesome day. The book I got is called "divine signatures" by Lund and I have started to read it. It seems like it will be a great book to use for examples in teaching.

Well you guys have a great week... next week is my last letter and it will be so soon that I get to see ya. :P


20 December 2010

It is quite odd to think that I only get to email you twice after today. It's going to be an interesting couple weeks. I'm finally starting to feel better too... just after I recovered from strep I picked up the common cold that's been going around. Its been an eventful time for me. I think the devil doesn't want me to finish my mission strong. I don't know why else all these roadblocks would arise. We have so many cool things going on right now too. We are teaching a new referral that we just committed to baptism that is so ready for the gospel. He is a resource officer for one of the local high schools, and has had exposure to the church by that medium, and also used to date a member of the congregation. The way the spirit felt at the lesson and the way his prayer went at the close tell me that he is ready. The openness in conversation as well as the searching questions seem to be pretty good indications as well. But we'll let you know how our appointment tonight goes when I call on Saturday.

I cant believe that two weeks from wednesday I will be at home with you guys. I'm kinda scared for tuesday of that week since I will be the only one with an exit interview and at the dinner with the mission president. Oh well though. By the way I have a district meeting tomorrow and will be meeting up with Carrie then at a more central location. So she may be able to fit my bike box and a luggage piece she said, which will be very nice.

I sent a nice letter regarding the employment outlook for Facilities Services to the management there today. So we will see what happens with that. It would be nice to work there again, low stress, controllable hours, and a decent pay nonetheless. That would be the ideal situation, but I kind of doubt there will be openings. Other jobs may require a car. Speaking of which, have you thought about getting a new car and passing the Sonata down to me? Idk just a suggestion, but you may have other plans and that's ok.

So starting next tuesday, at transfers, I will have a new companion. There will be three of us for the last week, which will be kind of nice to arrange to visit people in previous areas on my last couple days, because they can stay together and as long as I'm with a priesthood holder it will be ok. Cassidy Grigg said he didn't have any pictures with Eliza from when they were near each other. He said that he's not much of a picture taker, but he did take pictures of tourist attractions. If she does want some of those, I could have him send some. We will be at his house when we call on Saturday, so that will be a simple accomplishment.

So how is Eliza coping with being home? I think it might be easier to cope with than being perpetually sick, but I am starting to feel better. I will be a weird adjustment. So the Stake President wants me to wait a day to be released?? Looks like I have to wait an extra day to have a hot date. lol That's going to be an odd adjustment too. Oh well. So are Alex and Eliza still talking? Whats the deal-io with them? hmmmmmm what else to talk about.

I don't know what else to tell you. You want to hear stories, but its all the same old same old for me, so the stories don't seem exciting to tell. So if you guys end up getting a phone before I come home for me...all the android powered phones are pretty sweet, but not pressuring into anything. lol Well thanks for everything. The only book information I have as of yet is pasted below from one of my professors. Hopefully we can find it for cheaper online. Well we'll talk to you guys on Saturday.

Love ya tons,

Sunday, December 19, 2010

13 December 2010

Hey guys,
This week has been getting better all the time. We also have had a ton of contacts contact us back and found a family in staples when I was using the restroom my first night out. They approached us and told us they used to meet with the missionaries, they love our church and they are considering joining. We have potential to have 7 new investigators this week with how things are looking.

So its weird to think that I'll be home three weeks from wednesday and Eliza will be home on Friday. I think I'm just going to suck it up as far as the medical bills offer from the guy out here. I will do fine. My companion doesnt have an adequate suit and his dad is out of work. This same gentleman is taking us to the city today to buy him a suit. That will be a great thing for him, and I really dont need help that much. I can make things work. Tell Grandma and Grandpa I say thanks for the money... that will be a big help.

I am looking forward to the holidays. I get steak and potatoes for my birthday dinner from a pretty cool family out here. We also are having a going home party with some members and people I've taught out here at the home of a professional chef. This guy makes amazing food and has cook for the president and a few different celebreties too. He is making pork chops with a spicy raspberry sauce and any sides he wants for the dinner. I'm excited for that.

Well I love you guys... I cant wait until Christmas when we can talk and also until I can see ya guys again in the new year. I love ya tons. This church is God's church, and he is looking out for me. I realize that we have to have ups and downs, but I have noticed, most especially on my mission, after the hard times comes the most success. We are looking forward to a successful last few weeks of my mission. I love you guys, and I hope that life is good.


Sunday, December 12, 2010

29 November 2010

Hey guys,

I love you a ton. We've been getting dumped on with snow lately, but when you have a good car with good tires it never really matters. The problem is people are too cheap to get the proper tires and then we find ourselves pushing them out of a ditch. hahaha

So this week has been very good. It is fun to have so many people talk about us in so many good ways. There is a Part-Member family named the Rizzos. The husband is a non-member who has really been turned off to missionaries in the past. We are visiting them and doing service for his parents who are in their 80s. We had lunch with his parents today and they told us that when they visited with him he said that we are the best missionaries he's ever seen and he loves having us around. We have dinner with their family in Friday, and I really think that there is some huge potential there.

Teresa is back in town and we are excited to work more with her. One of the ladies we recently baptized, her son will be visiting for the holidays for about 10 days and wants to be baptized. We already taught him and he's attended church enough so all we'll need to do is some refreshers and talk to him about why he wants to do it, but thats in the near future too.

Thanksgiving was ridiculous. We had 3 dinners and I felt extremely fat afterwards. I'm up to 190 again. I cant gain more. I wont allow it. We also played football in the morning. It was way fun besides the fact that my comp got hit high and low and has massive back pain now. But altogether it was an amazing day.

I love living where we do, but I am so excited to see you guys. I am also excited to see that they are finally working on the 5 names program. Our ward mission leader is just making himself heard in the weekly meetings and stuff is starting to happen. He has been awesome since he started to understand his job a bit. It has become a pleasure to work with him.

We just had a missionary come home a few weeks early from the rome italy mission for medical reasons. His name is Cassidy Grigg and he knows Liza. Their family is amazing. It is where we called from on Mothers day and where I'll be calling from on Christmas. I love how close their whole family is and how much they take care of eachother it is really a great thing to see.

Well I dont know too much more of what you want to hear about. Life just seems kind of the same now, and nothing is really new to me, so its hard to convey new information to you. I am excited for the Christmas season. I have helped set up a few trees already and am excited to do more. That has to be the best part of Christmas. I hope you all have a great week, and cant wait to hear from you again.

Love Ya,

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

22 Nov 2010

I have to write quick. This week our P-day is Thursday for the Holiday, but we still email on Monday. I am down in Golden because we had a district meeting and got our brakes cleaned out. It was making a horrible screeching noise last night and I knew it was either a wear indicator or a rock in there. It was a rock lodged behind the rear-right rotor. They cleaned out the brakes and it drives amazing.

Well life is good. It's funny you talk about obedience in Gospel Principles. We had that lesson a week ago and it was the study topic a part-member family we are working with had selected for their weekly family scripture study. Every gospel principles lesson seems to be inspired for the Malcolms. My mission President challenged me to have two more baptisms by the end of my mission and I think that Teresa is for sure going to be one of them.

Other than that we have gotten a bit of snow, but been safe and I've been enjoying my time up here in Evergreen. I really hope all is well down there. I can't help but think about home, but just know that I am still working hard. I am enjoying my mission more so now than at any other point in time out here. It is amazing to experience the love of our savior and the love that people around us have for us, and the love and concern we grow to have for them.

Well I guess I should probably hit the road running, but I will try to send you more info some other time. Take care, I love you and we'll see ya very very soon. :)

Love ya,

18 November 2010

Hey you guys,

Sorry I didn't email yesterday. News flash our P-days are now on Monday. I was at the lake yesterday with some non-members and a part-member-family most the day. It was pretty awesome. We had a fun time and a productive evening.

By the way I am staying up in Evergreen. It is such an amazing place to be. I love the people out here and it is a great place to be and I am excited for the end of my mission. The President told me he's leaving me here on the stipulation that I get 2 more baptisms. I can easily see that happening. I think Teresa ( the cousin of a girl we just baptized and she has a member husband) has our highest potential right now.

I don't know what else to talk about right now, and I probably have to go. I'm just over visiting someone right now and probably shouldn't be on here too long. Just wanted to make sure you guys know I'm alive and things are good. The snow is amazing too. I love this area, I seriously want to move up here. Well I will talk to you guys soon and hopefully you have an amazing week.

Love ya,