How are you all doing? I hope that you have all had an amazing week! It sounds like you have all been very busy with the new little pup! I am glad to hear that she is keeping you on your toes. I have heard some frustration but I haven't heard anyone call her Kujo yet so things must not be too bad. [Editor's note: Oh, I have called her Kujo and worse--trust me! Teresa says: "Mike, Dakota needs a little friend. Let's get a puppy." Puppy arrives. Next day Teresa says: "Oh, by the way, I am leaving next week for Israel. I will be gone 8 days. Enjoy Kujo...I mean Ellie."]
Mom, you are probably off riding a horse in Jordan or standing in the tomb of Christ. I am so jealous of your amazing adventure!! I hope that you are all having an amazing time. Also tell Carol to try not to steal any earrings this trip! Tell everyone that I say hello and please take a lot of pictures for me!
Dad, How are you holding up? I am so excited that you are in the bishopric still but sad to see the old one go! You will have a blast and I think that those kids love you! They have really needed you and mom and you are the best man for the job. I am glad that Kota is starting to warm up to little Ellie and I don't even mind hearing about the piddle patch! I have told everyone about my little princess dog back home.
Brynn, congrats on your new calling. It sounds like you are the new big pinecone (that is how they say big cheese here) in the ward. A lot of the food here is great but you would have serious problems with the meat here. They don't know what lean meet is. I only had one big fall this week but I only came out with one bruise so it wasn't too bad.
Chase and Ashley, How are things going for you? Have you been able to find a new job in Provo? I hope that things are going well for you and that school is fun. How are you liking your personal finance class? You will have to tell Pro. Marsh I say hi!
So there have been some interesting turns that have come this week. We set a goal as a zone for 6 baptismal dates this week. As a mission we were able to get 4 the week before so we made a really high goal. Sister Mov and I were not expecting to contribute too much because we have had to pass all of our progressing investigators because they have either all moved out of our area or we found out that they didn't live in our area in the first place. We have started calling this our Bob transfer because all of our investigators are Bobooshky (grandmothers). Anyway we have this less active family that we have been working with since I got here and they haven't really come to church a lot. We called them to set up an appointment and the dad asked if we could come over and teach his neighbor this week. Of course we agreed and called him the next day. We went over and taught her the first lesson and she loved it. We gave her a Book of Mormon with a bunch of pamplets. We went back over to teach her again on Saturday thinking if the spirit was right we might give her a date. When we went back, she had read everything that we had given her and we had a great lesson. At the end of the lesson both of us had the feeling that we should wait until after church the next day, but then she said, "hey does your church baptize?." Sister Movchanyuk answered yes and asked if she wanted to be baptized. She said of course. The next day at church she went up to the Bishop and told him that she was going to be baptized and we set a date for the 6th of Feb. I was super excited and she is super awesome! I am excited to work with her! This area has really been prepared by the Lord and I think that the temple has brought an amazing spirit especially to the ward!
We had interviews with President this last week and he hinted that both Sister Movchanyuk and I will be staying in this area for a 4th transfer. She is going home in March and next transfer will be her last transfer. We will see what happens though, transfers aren't until the first week in February so we have some time.
We got a phone call from the Assistants this morning and I will be going down to Odessa this week with President and another sister from this area. We will leave Wednesday night and take a train and arrive Thursday morning. Sister Walker is down there so hopefully we will be able to work together for the weekend! I will at least get to see her so I am way excited. I also keep hearing all of these amazing stories about Odessa so I am really excited to get to go. We will be coming back Sunday morning so I will spend most of the week down there. When we received the call I felt really bad being happy because both of us really wanted to go! I am way excited though!!
The rest of the week has been the same. It is still freezing and the windows on all of the buses are so frozen that you can't tell where you are and your face freezes while you are waiting for the bus to come. It is a lot of fun haha!! Russian is coming, I am starting to really understand more which is really nice but right when I think I am getting it everything goes into Ukrainian and I feel fresh out of the MTC again, that is the real frustrating part. It has also been hard because our study keeps getting interrupted and I haven't felt like I have had a full study in about 2 weeks, it really slows down the language. I am starting to speak a little mixed languages because I say what I hear and it isn't always Russian. So I will say a Russian word with Ukrainian word endings and sometimes a Russian sentence with a random Ukrainian word. I will be surprised if anyone understands me soon.
Well I should get going I love you all dearly and hope that all is well!! Have a great week, good luck with the dogs, and I will talk to you when I get back from Odessa :D.