Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Well, last week I got to Skype my family! It was a great day. So, it started out with a night on Christmas Eve. We went to the Larsen’s house with Elder Harper and the assistants and ate a TON of snow crab legs...thanks Larsen family! Then we played a couple games and went home. In the morning, we did studies like normal. For companionship study, I think we ended up making Christmas cards for bishops. We went to the Larsen’s for breakfast, and I couldn't eat! I wasn't sure why; I don’t think I was nervous. I just couldn't sit still. I was so excited to see my family! Then we talked for a while with a few technical difficulties, but it was great. I got to see Emma laugh a few times, and my mom smiling so much, so it made me happy. We talked a lot about things that needed to be talked about like signing up for school, summer plans and things like that, but as soon as I hung up and realized that was my last call. I was so so trunky. I have never really felt that way, but for some reason I just had no desire to really do anything. Realizing that the next time I would see them was at the airport made me sick to my stomach.

We then went to an assisted living place to sing to some of the people that stay there. I was not in the mood at all. But I learned, once again, the importance of service. Only about half of our zone showed up (the Hispanic ones showed up, the white ones didn’t. Just increases my love for Hispanic people). We started to sing and visit with the people there, and after about 20 minutes, I had a big smile, and I didn't feel trunky or unmotivated at all. One woman told us that we made her whole day, and she started to cry she was so happy to see us. Me and one other elder stayed behind and talked to her about life for a while, and everyone else moved on to keep singing. SOoo, just like that, the trunkiness was gone! I was back to normal and forgot about going home and have been loving missionary work more than before ever since.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Christmas Eve!

Well this will probably be a short letter just to make sure we have stuff to talk about tomorrow. I’m not too exciting so I won't have much to say more than things about my area. We have been doing lots and lots of finding this week. And we just need your prayers and miracles to happen. WE are working hard and being as effective as we can. This area is all about relying on members and having them invite their friends so if they don't invite we don't have much to do since nothing usually happens when we just show up at doors, that's just the way it works in this type of area. We have been having fun together though...more about elder Coronado. He was born in Mexico, in Reynosa Tamaulipas. When he was nine he moved to McAllen (spa), TX and when he was 13 his siblings and mom and him were baptized. His dad hasn't yet so pray hard for him! He likes to make people laugh and his family is the main reason he came on his mission so they would be blessed. He is a great missionary; he really loves people and wants to just serve wherever he possibly can. I was his zone leader a long time ago in Ogden and then we lived together in Monte vista and now serving together, it's been fun. Our stake president is still awesome. Whenever we have a meeting with him we leave just feeling great and happy. He is very motivated and wants to double baptisms in the stake this next year so we need to go to work! WE are hoping the New Year will bring lots of excited members to do missionary work because right now they are all busy with the business that Christmas tends to bring. We are going to eat crab tonight so we are very happy. WE spent comp study tomorrow writing cards for bishops and wml's which is hard because then we feel like we need to do that for the relief society presidents, and then you can't leave out the counselors. But then the elder quorum will feel left out. It goes on and on but we settled with just those two groups and hoped it will suffice (also we didn’t have enough cards or time for that many people). We will try to be as effective as possible tomorrow but I have no idea what to do all day. At one point we are taking our zone to an assisted living place to sing to the people leaving there. I have to go pick up my watch today and I am scared of how much it will have cost to get it fixed. The knob had come off getting caught on a door handle I was walking by. So I took it in and the guy told me it would take ten days to fix it and I said ok call me and left my number. After a month I called to ask and he didn't know the progress so had to call me back and let me know later that it would still be another week. I can finally pick it up. People can sometimes take advantage because we were missionaries but I was still unhappy with the service so on the last phone call I asked him "Can I give you some feedback, sir?" I suggested more communication with customers especially after making a promise of ten days. He wasn't happy with the feedback I could tell but I did it in the nicest way possible in case he is a non-member or offended member but I don't even know how to handle that as a missionary. We have to drive through Riverdale today. It will be AWFUL. Everyone is talking about how bad the traffic has been. What used to be a ten-minute drive will be 40 minutes.ughhhh I wish we could wait but pday is pday. Ok well talk to you tomorrow family! Love you

Elder Bassett

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

They got baptized!

So Elder harper will be leaving me. We got leadership calls on saturday telling us what leadership positions we would have but not where or who with. So on saturday elder harper was called to be told he was going to be a district leader. Elder Coronado got called to be a zone leader so I was really really hoping it was with me. I had talked to the assistants earlier in the week they called to ask me for some feedback for transfers and I had suggested he go with me and was really hoping it would happen and I guess they prayed about it and it did happen! We found out monday (yesterday) at the lealdership training we always have right before a transfer. SO yesterday's training went well. We just kind of had a discussion for most of the time about some new standards of excellence. THe standards of excellence were changed for the mission and they are much much lower. This is so that everyone feels like it's doable and once people hit it we will re evaluate and adjust it to make it higher. Then the zone leaders went to the chapel and we got envelopes passed out with the tranfer news for our zones. So our zone is getting two other areas and losing sisters (so no more sisters in our zone..only zone in the mission like that). We will have one english district and one all spanish district! That'll be awesome since elder coronado and I are both spanish missionaries so we can help them out a lot too. I am pretty excited about our zone this coming transfer. Today we had tranfser breakfast and announced everything and there were a lot of unexpected changes so people were pretty surprised. THe kristiansen family got baptized this weekend! Early in the week we brought niklas to see the font so he could decide and a couple days later, thursday, they called and said he wanted to get baptized with his family so we got him interviewed and the four of them were baptized saturday and confirmed sunday! I confirmed the two boys and elder harper confirmed finn and kristina. THe service was good, we were very packed in the font room and a lot of people were supporting them it was exctiing. After the baptism finn just couldn't stop crying because of the good feeling he felt. It was a happy time. We had asked them if they wanted to get up at theend to share their feelings a couple days ahead of time and they said no way but we asked them to come up anyway and put them on the spot and they did great. They told everyone how grateful they were for their support and how good they felt. THey had been fasting as a family that day so when we asked anders how he felt he said hungry. Other than that things have been pretty normal. We taught gavin a couple times and he has been struggling to get his reading done so we are going to start texting him to remind him because he says he just forgets about it so I can definitely understand that especially as a kid. Well there is not much to report on this week..merry early christmas!
Elder bassett

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Merry almost Christmas

WELL, this week I forgot to take any email notes on what to write home about, so I am drawing a blank already.

The Kristiansen’s are doing well. Pray really hard this week, and if we are blessed then Nicklas will be baptized with his family. The language barrier is tough, and he has no desire right now.

Theresa is still good on her date, but she doesn't know how she feels about coffee. Her husband will not stop drinking it (he is a member) even if we promised it would improve his health. It's sad to see how much they need it; no wonder it is against the word of wisdom!!!

Joshua was set to get baptized this coming Sunday as of last Saturday night. He lives with his anti grandparents but was going to spend the night with his parents to go to church with them. Somehow that didn't happen, and it looks like he is backing out now because of his grandma. I don't get it; his grandma watched her daughter and son-in-law change their lives, quit drinking, smoking, and fighting, they go to church every week, serve others during the week and are happy. And the grandma still won't let her grandson do this...even if she doesn't believe, how can she not see that this is the greatest thing that has ever happened to them. It is pretty ridiculous. The worst part is his parents have custody, but Joshua wants to live with his grandma, because she will give him a ride to school, buy him things, and he doesn't have to have any chores. So for a 14 year old, it is an easy choice to live with grandma and just not get baptized if that makes her happy.

A few other people have dropped off the list. We started teaching the son of a recent convert. His name is O'Ryan, and he is the craziest eight year old I have ever met. He has SUCH a short attention span. He forgets things within five seconds after you say them so it will be tough to teach him. I am not sure how we are going to do it. So last Friday, president called and said we were doing the Spanish training the following Monday, and he wanted Elder Martinez and I to train for 45 minutes on teaching skills. So the two of us got together. It took us about 1 and a half hours to decide what we were going to train on, but we agreed on asking questions in order to help people have more real intent with their commitments, like the way that Jesus Christ did with Peter.

Saturday night, it started to snow really badly, and president decided to not let the north half of the mission drive down to the training, so we just did the south half. We are lucky President Hiers cares about us so much. So this Wednesday, we are driving to Cache Valley to train the north half of the Spanish missionaries. We were also going to go to the temple today, but the pass up to Logan is snowy, so president asked us not to go; oh well. We are going to go bowling with the Kristiansen’s instead.

Well, I don't think much else has happened this week. Sorry I have been bad about taking pictures. Everything is snowy and cold. Yesterday it was negative two degrees when we drove to the gym, so that is pretty awful.

On Sunday, we went to a ton of ward councils, so we saw a lot of members, so that increased our visibility which our stake president is a big fan of. Other than that, we are still trying very hard to find new people, but it is not easy. Kind of just doing what we can and praying for miracles to fall in our lap. There are obviously lots of nonmembers but not ones that haven't been invited in the past couple months. Hopefully, something will change soon.

BUT…things are good. I am working still on being more grateful. I work on things for like two days, and then forget I am working on them. Last night, we shoveled snow, and I couldn't feel my chin when we are done; it is so cold. I do not like the cold right now, but once summer comes, I am sure I will want it back. I went on exchanges with Elder Cable last week, and it was 10 degrees outside. He wasn't wearing a jacket and wanted to turn the air conditioner on, because he thinks it feels good to be freezing cold. I eventually just started to slap his hand away and wouldn't let him touch it; I was going to be warm while we drove. I am not sick, so that is good news.

Love you all!!!! Merry almost Christmas!
Elder Bassett

PS This is from a conversation with one of our investigators:
Sister Kristiansen: What are you up to today

Elder Bassett: Haha; we are emailing our family…my mom said to tell you hi!

Sister Kristiansen: That is so kind of her. Tell her back that we are so happy about having you in our life. You two really know how the change people’s life to the better.

Elder Bassett (to us): Mom, they are the family I was always praying for…they really, really love us! Their entire countenance has changed since we started teaching them. They are the best…so much happier now. We are like their best friends. We get to their house and jump on the couch, put our feet up, and the kids run over to play with photo booth on our ipad, and we joke around like family. It is fun; we love them.

From Mom: That is so sweet. Thank you for sharing it with us. I'm so happy. I am off to go visit teaching but so glad I 'talked' to you before I left!  Can't wait to read your email. And beg your companion for a picture for your mom. Or just lots of you and the K family. 

From Elder Bassett: Sorry, I will do my very best for more pictures next week.

From Mom: Love you anyway! Really have to go now! Late!

From Elder Bassett: Can someone email me an update on Grandpa Gene?

From Mom: Hi. I'm with grandpa right now!  He got checked into the hospital again last night for a little pneumonia, and they are trying to figure out what's wrong. He's telling me naughty jokes and says he's fine, because his sense of humor is still good.

From Elder Bassett: Good to hear he is still joking around. He should get a short note from me in a couple days. Thanks for the package for my companions. I don't know what I was supposed to do with all of it, but I kept two ties and gave the other two to them. They were just too great. I guess I'm seflish. Thanks though!

From Mom: Haha. You're so bad!  You can keep the ties for now, but after you open your present on Christmas, give those to them or someone else that needs them. Haha. 

From Elder Bassett: OK I already wore the red one yesterday. There was no instructions in the box; it's not my fault! I am bringing them by the office today.

From Mom: I'm just teasing. It is my fault.  I mailed everything and got home and found the instructions for your package, and the card for Loretta's package that said who it was from. Are there any pictures this week?  I'm talking to grandpa and haven't scrolled through all my emails. 

From Elder Bassett: daang you sent just kidding too late...I gave all four ties away. That's ok, I have plenty and sorry no picture last week or this week. It just never comes up, and I don't have a companion that likes to take pictures.