Elder Keith is now in Portland! He called yesterday from the airport and sounded great. He was so sad leave the friends he made while in the MTC, but he is ready to be out in the mission field. Here is the e-mail he sent to the family. Followed by some pictures!
What is happening to my life right now?! I leave the MTC in three days and I will be teaching in Portland before I know it! I leave the MTC at 3:30 AM...obviously someone in the travel office hates missionaries and wants to watch as our lives crumble so early in the morning! These past six weeks and flown by so fast! I remember being dropped off like it was yesterday. Seriously, I remember almost every detail and it's crazy to think that six weeks has come and gone!
We had to wrap up teaching with our investigators this week. Oscar, who is by far one of my favorite investigators, accepted our invitation to be baptized and has continued going to church with his wife and is keeping the commitments we are extending to him! It was so amazing to ask teach him over the past month or so. Watching him grow and progress spiritually and develop a greater relationship with Heavenly Father was amazing and we obviously did something right because 'dat foo is gettin' baptized! Shoo!
The weather has been a complete dream these past couple of days so we've been able to practice contacting people outside and what an awesome exercise that has been. Being outside and walking up to people and getting to know them in that atmosphere is really going to help once we get out of these sacred prison gates!
I got THE package this week too! I've been deprived of Coke with caffeine these past six weeks and then suddenly I got a package from Amanda that had two bottles of coke. Let me tell you how amazing that Coke was. We had a party the other night. As I drank that Coke, I felt as though I was floating on a cloud of dreams that was carrying me through life. We really don't realize how great things are until we have them ripped from our possession and they are teased in front of our eyes. What kind of joke is Caffeine-Free Coke anyway?
Our stay at the MTC has been filled with so many blessings! This past Tuesday, M. Russell Ballard came to speak to us for the Devotional and it was amazing! We have had two apostles come and speak to us on three different occasions! Not to mention the numerous Seventies that came to speak to us, and that one guy who lost American Idol...what's his name?....David Archuletta or something? Yeah, we've been pretty lucky!
Yesterday we had our In-Field Orientation. This seminar started at 8:00 in the morning and went until 5:30 in the evening. That 9 1/2 hour day consisted of sitting and listening to how to be a better missionary and learning how to properly plan and make contacts and teach and blah blah blah. Basically, it was the last six weeks shoved into 9 1/2 hours. Because of yesterday, I am almost out of Excedrin. Everyone had such raging headaches by the end of it...but it was fine....everything was fine! :)
I'm really going to miss my companion. We have such a fun time together. We keep joking around that one of us needs to swap missions and ask the Mission President to assign us as companions for our entire mission! We have figured out the groove of working together and our lessons are BOMB! We have a lot of fun together and laugh so much! I don't think I've laughed as hard as I have here in my life. We all have such great relationships and it's going to be sad to say goodbye in a couple days. But I know that we all will be reunited in just a short amount of time speaking in our sexy language, talking about everyone and no one will even know. They're all going to be such great missionaries and I'm excited for all of them!
Hermana Curnow, the solo sister in our district, has a blog that she wanted me to mention in my messages home! http://hermanacurnow.blogspot.com/ is the name of her blog. Elder Gonzalez also has a blog! It's http://elderraulgonzalez.blogspot.com/ so look it up and follow is tubular adventures out in Argentina!
Not much else is happening! We have to pack up all our junk and get ready to go! I can't believe that it's already time to go! The next time you all hear from me I will be in Portland! This is so exciting! I can't wait to go out and teach a bunch of people and help them receive the gospel! I know what I am doing is true and the things I am teaching are true as well and I can't wait for people, like our investigator Oscar and the grouch Jorge, to understand and know for themselves that what we are teaching to them is true! This experience has been totally rufus and I have only just begun! I'm so excited!
I love you all and can't wait to hear from you! Keep on keeping on! Remember to release the negativity and let it shine, shine, shine! Stay golden you wonderful people!
Love you all!
Evidence of Tanner, being his goofy self.
Well, that's all for this week. As soon as I have Elder Keith's address in Oregon I will update! Don't hesitate to send him some snail mail. He loves mail!
Send your prayers to Elder Keith as well! Here comes the real fun!