Monday, December 8, 2014

District Nerf War

This week was fun, and it flew by too.
Monday- We had a nerf war for our district P-Day and that was really fun and relaxing. To end the night we had dinner at the Dawbins which was the Fish Tacos and Pina Coladas. We challenged them to pass out 10 "He is the Gift" cards before our next visit and they did it!!!

District P-day Nerf War
Fish tacos and Pina coladas

Tuesday- We went with our ward mission leader brother walker out to visit 2 less-active ladies in our ward. The first one was sister durgin who has physical problems which stop her from coming to church. We talked to her about the importance of having goals in our lives. Because living without goals won't help you progress as fast as you would like. Her goal is to get to the temple! Good goal. The next lady we visited was 45 minutes away (and still in our area). Sister Hutchins. We taught about using the footnotes in the scriptures and their purpose for being there. It was cool to see the gears turning in her head and how she slowly picked up on how to use them. It was super awesome to see her go from no knowledge of them to the ablility to teach other about them. Then for dinner Brother Walker's wife made us a super good turkey pot pie with a turkey they raised themselves

Wednesday- We had interviews with our Mission President.  I got to talk with him about the area and questions/concerns I had. He also informed me that I will be staying in Gardiner with my trainee Elder Sholer. And we will no longer be in a car share because they are closing the Augusta Elders Area. So that means we will have the car full time and we take over half of their area and all the people they teach. So that will be an interesting transition. That starts on Dec 17th. We also have to help them clean up their apartment because it's being closed. That apartment has been a missionary apartment for 7 years.  Imagine how trashy it is, then multiply that by 2 and that's what theirs looks like... So much junk! At the end of the day we went over to the Veregge family and had a really good sit down scripture reading with them. Families are so much stronger when you take the time to sit down together and talk, and they get even STRONGER when you talk about the scriptures. We are hoping to help the Veregge family (who haven't been to church in over 2 years) to get back to church because they want to, not because we tell them to.

Thursday- We helped out at the Johnson Hall and talked to Grace, the main volunteer woman who is in charge of everything. She loves the missionaries and enjoys whenever we come by to help out. She may want to learn more about Jesus Christ in the future. We're taking it easy on her because she "isn't religious". After that we helped the public library out with their upcoming book sale. We sorted and stacked and divided books for a good 2 hours... Doing that just makes me want to sit down after my mission and just read all day!! We also met with Grechen and Allison, our Rastafarian investigators. They aren't progressing atm but they still want us to keep coming by. So we hope they will continue wanting to meet with us.

Friday- We got tons and tons of proselytizing materials from the Augusta Elders Apartment so we spent a good amount of time organizing those and somehow and someway, in the jumble of things there was a condom in the box that had all the stuff. So that was quite funny and disturbing. It went straight into the trash! That night there was a community Art Walk in downtown Gardiner and tons of people were outside. We planned 2 hours of street contacting and we handed out 17 "He is the Gift" cards!!!  It was AMAZING!!! We actually felt like real missionaries out sharing the gospel with everyone haha! That never happens out here in New England. We have a solid potential investigator from that too named John.

Saturday- We went over to the P***** house. Here is all who lives in the house.
Tiffany & Rusty P******
12-Cooper, 11-Ashley, 8-Lindsey, 6-Megan, 4-Madeline.
We were able to read the first 3 chapters of the Book of Mormon with him which is pretty huge because he does not believe in reading anything else besides the Bible. So we talked with him about it and he is figuring out whether it's actually God's word or not. We told him that no man can tell you whether it's from God or not. You have to ask him in faith. It says it all throughout the bible to do that. Specifically James 1:5.
The ward christmas party was this day and it was fantastic. Best food and set up I've ever seen for a Christmas Party. The P**** came to it also! They really enjoyed it and 2 of their daughters even went up and sang with the primary when they sang in front of everyone. The 2 girls had no idea what the words were so they just tried their best and mouthed it. So cute. (Those girls softened my heart to not wanting only boys when I have kids of my own)

Here's a video from last week's visit with the Alpacas

Sunday- A former investigator named Delsa Mock who is originally from South Africa called us up and asked us to help her unload a washing machine from their car. It was like 15 degrees outside and we were literally moving this gigantic washing machine on ice and my companion is not the buffest elder haha; 125 pounds of pretty boy. So that was quite interesting and tough. It builds character is what I kept telling myself. After a long day of fasting, which I actually enjoyed, Sister Tarbox fed us Steak Tenderloin!!! So good! That was a great way to end the week.

Sister Tarbox is the best!

I'm enjoying my time out here in Maine and trying my best to make the most out of my last winter here on my mission... Even though it's freezing cold outside.
Enjoy the sunshine for me!!!

All Smiles,
Elder Dahlberg

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Pre-Thanksgiving storm drops one foot of snow...

Beautiful Autumn Leaves...
Also beautiful Winter Snow...

So the snow is officially here to stay and won't be leaving until May. So, rather than hate it, I'm loving it.  I throw at least 1 snowball at my companion every day! There are also chunks of ice on the ground and as we are walking sometimes we try and kick it in between their legs to make a goal and if they score you have to do 5 push ups when you get home. :) Elder Sholer's been doing a lot of push ups!

Monday the 24th- Besides emailing all of you folks, we had a nerf war at the church where we turned all the lights off in the gym and ran around shooting each other. It reminded me of how much I don't want to have to do that for real, like the military does... That night we went to a member's home and the 13 year old boy there kept telling these terrible jokes about dead babies. That's apparently what all the kids do now is tell dead baby jokes....

Chef's at work...
Moose chili...  bet you never had that before!!

Tuesday- We helped out at the Johnson Hall, we got to decorate their little Christmas Tree which got me excited for the Christmas Season. It was funny because we decorated it before Thanksgiving....  That night we had dinner at a Less-Actives home who was going to host an annual pie night on the night before Thanksgiving so we helped her and the family bake pies.

Wednesday- This was the day the huge snow storm came. It started at 12 PM and didn't stop until 12 AM. The snow just kept coming and coming and coming. It was the really wet and sticky snow, which is perfect for snowballs. Because of the storm all of our plans got cancelled and the pie night never happened. Our cars were grounded and we couldn't leave our apartment because our Ward Mission Leader told us to stay indoors. So we were with the Augusta Elders in our apartment for the night. That was like a sleepover haha. It was fun. We went outside and shoveled even though we weren't supposed to....

Thursday- THANKSGIVING DAY! The day started at Bishops where we had a fairly small Thanksgiving dinner. It's the first time there were no left overs. After that it was about 4 pm and Elder Sholer and I had nothing to do and no one to see. We were a bit confused because we didn't know where to go and at this point in the day I was starting to get thoughts of how this is going to be the worst Thanksgiving ever. So Elder Sholer and I said a prayer asking for guidance in who to see. We came up with stopping by a Nonmember family , The Peters, that we helped move/not move a week ago. We walked on over there and they invited us in and they had just gotten home and were about to have their Thanksgiving dinner so we were able to have it with them. This was a really good dinner, and there were left overs haha. We then talked to them and they invited us to their small farm in South Gardiner the next day.

Friday- We went with the Peters to their small farm that had a 600 pound pig named Miss Piggy and 2 alpacas and 2 sheep and 10 piglets.  It was fun feeding the animals and breaking the ice on top of the well to get water for the animals. We trudged through snow a foot and a half deep and helped get his truck unstuck. We went back to their house and had lunch with them then had a Bible study on Genesis because they are very Christian and wanted us to read with them. They told us as we were about to finish the Bible study that they had prayed to the Lord asking for guidance and for some way to learn more about Him. And they said we came by a couple days after to help... Some people might say that's a coincidence, but I totally think otherwise.
Come here, Alpaca!


Boy, they sure eat like pigs....

Saturday- We helped the Cotnoir family in our ward out with wood and we cut and split and stacked and hauled their wood for 3 hours and finished all that they had. There was snow all over the place and that just made things harder and more difficult which is why it took 3 hours. Then we weekly planned which is always fun! Then we had dinner at the Dawbins. They made us breakfast for dinner and it was so good. I love when people ask what you haven't had in forever because I always know what to say. We watched the new Church produced Christmas video called "He is the Gift."  It was really well made and I encourage anyone reading this to check it out if you haven't already seen it.

Sunday- The roads were covered in a thin sheet of ice which made it impossible to drive in a straight line, so our Bishop cancelled church. I was going to speak at church and it got cancelled so that kind of stunk... We had invited the Peters to church and they were looking forward to coming. We immediately remembered that we didn't have their phone number so we walked out on the ice, practically ice skated to their house and told them church was cancelled. They are awesome and by the time we got there they had already called the church and already got the info that church was cancelled. So we stayed at their house for a little bit and read more out of the Bible because it was to dangerous for us to go outside to the frozen wasteland. Rusty, the dad gave us a ride home and I asked him if he had ever read the Book of Mormon and he said no and accepted one to read. I told him to read the introduction because that will explain almost anything and answers all of the Frequently Asked Questions for first time readers. After that we went to the Tarbox's for dinner and by this time the roads were unfrozen. They told us that they will be moving right after Christmas and that really put a damper on the day because they are such an awesome family!  I'm going to miss them. They will be moving to Grenora, North Dakota.

That's the week I had. I am grateful for all we were able to do and everyone we were able to help. On December 3rd we are having interviews with our mission president and then on the 6th we are having our ward Christmas Party. We have invited tons of nonmembers to it so we hope the turnout goes well. Thanks for all the pictures you sent me! I always enjoy seeing pictures. Stay warm out there in San Diego! (That's not too hard to do...)

All Smiles 
Elder Dahlberg


HAPPY SOON TO BE THANKSGIVING! For Thanksgiving the only plans we have are to go to our bishop's house at 1 pm for the classic Thanksgiving meal. I'm grateful that we at least have someone that wants us over so I'm excited for that. I know that's the biggest question people ask so I felt like telling you right at the start. Now for last week's adventures.

     Monday- Not a ton happened this day, only thing was we got picked up by the assistants to the president and that means I got to hang out with Elder Lund my trainer for the 4 hour drive to Manchester New Hampshire for a meeting.
     Tuesday- This was the day we had New missionary and Trainers meeting. They pretty much guided us on being effective trainers and servants of the Lord. So after that we got back into the car again and the AP's took us home. That was probably the last that I will see Elder Lund while he is still Elder. On December 17th he flies home and becomes Taylor Lund! CRAZY!

Mission trainer family:  Grandpa, Dad, Son

Pictures from the President's Board...  Drew and all his companions so far

We love polka dots!  

     Wednesday- This was a kind of a tough day for me because we had District meeting and I was kind of tired of sitting on my butt because the past 2 days were just me on my butt getting spiritually fed... So my thoughts drifted off to the news about Mike Somaru. (Side note... One of his friends died, not in a good way...)  I got a little bent out of shape and even cried a little but I'm back on my feet after talking with the District Leaders about it. President Stoker even messaged me and gave me an uplifting message.
     After that we met up with a lady named Peggy Lane who doesn't have a filter on her mouth so as you can guess whenever she opens her mouth,  expect to cringe a little haha. She is nice and we talked to her about the Law(r) of chastity because she had a ton of questions concerning it.... So that was a little awkward but the best way to teach that lesson is to not beat around the bush and just give it to em straight. For dinner we were invited over to another lady's house named Sister Armstrong. While talking to her when dinner was being cooked, she quickly got up and ran to the kitchen and some not so pleasant words came out and in the mix of that was "I BURNT THE SPAGHETTI!!" haha. Elder Sholer and I just looked at each other and laughed our heads off because of the rarity of this occasion.

     Thursday- We do service at the public library on Thursdays and we moved boxes upstairs for them. In their basement is a family history library and I talked to the historian about me possibly having ancestors that are buried here in Gardiner and she looked it up and Vwuala, (I had to keep that one as he spelled it...) I did. She couldn't find their exact location but she will get back to me on that when we come again. She was a really nice lady named Dawn.

     We met up with another family name the Veregge's who we will start working with a lot more. They need a lot of help.  Basically there is a single mom who has 4 kids all with different mental disabilities. So Sister Veregge is looking for guidance and help as she goes through this tough part of her life. She is older 60's and is kind of fed up with the kids because before them she had like 10 others. So she has been a mother her entire life and is just about to break.

     Friday- We went out with our WML (Ward Mission Leader) to visit some less actives on the ward list and happened to stop by Peggy Lane again and we addressed more of her concerns/excuses as to why she is doing the things she is doing. It is really tough to share the gospel with someone who knows the truthfulness of it and has no desire to live it and receive the blessing that come from it. The Gospel of Jesus Christ brings so much happiness and joy into your life, all you need to do is live according to the principles in it and apply them in your daily life. People don't apply.... sadly.. I have seen that all too often in my life. They complain about their current circumstance and want it to become better but won't get up and do something about it.  They just wait for something or someone to fix it for them, which won't happen....

     Saturday- Best part of the day was while we were out tracting and we see a U-haul. So as a missionary seeing a U-haul is like being stranded on an island and seeing a plane off in the distance coming to rescue you! We were so excited to go over and help them out. Turned out that it was a family that was leaving but suddenly got a call that they would be staying so they needed our help unpacking the U-haul they already previously packed. This family was interested in our kindness and even said they would come to church and to the ward Christmas party on Dec. 6th. We will stop by again and see how they are doing but that was really awesome to help them. Nice/outgoing people like them are rare to find.  We walked a good part of the day and it was probably 10 degrees with windchill outside. But the sun was shining...... It's so weird how that works out here....

     Sunday- Well no one that we committed to come to church came... including Gretchen and the Veregge's and Peggy Lane and the random family and multiple others that fell through. It's a bummer seeing no results from your efforts. At the end of church though one of the Veregge's showed up to church and wanted us to come over. So we did and for some reason they needed to plant bulbs in the frozen ground outside. So we used the tools they had, An axe and a hand drill to plant bulbs into the frozen clay/dirt ground... haha it was quite hilarious. We talked to one of the daughters named Lily about God and she is 18 and fighting what we teach. She wants to believe in a God but says she will only believe if she sees. We talked all about faith but she didn't want to have any of that.

Well that's all I could muster up this week, Enjoy the sunshine for me!!!!

All Smiles,
Elder Dahlberg

How much wood would a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood? (From Nov. 17th)

     Lots of info!  I received word from the zone leaders that we will be getting iPads in our mission! So they will be rolling out in the first quarter of 2015. So probably by the end of March. Supposedly all north american missions should be getting them around the same time so we will see how that all works out...
Monday the 10th to Sunday the 16th
     Mon- Other than the basic P-day activities we went to dinner at a less active members home and she asked those classic questions of how long have you been out and what are you doing after your mission. I feel like I want to tell you my answer for what I'm doing after my mission. So what I tell people may or may not be new to you. I want to go to Miramar community college but at the same time try for a sponsorship in bodyboarding.  I will be going to competitions and seeing what I've got compared to the rest of SoCal.  I want to chase my dream of becoming sponsored in some type of sport. I am honestly going to do it. I know I will fail at times but it's not about failing, it's about what you're going to learn from it. It's not a failure if you learn from it.

     Tuesday- We cooked for the veterans since it was veterans day. We helped the Cub Scouts at the local American Legion and we also talked to a lot of veterans. The one I talked to the most was from England and chaplain for the fire department. He was chippery as most English people are. I like em haha. We also did the big wood stacking and splitting service project at a members house. I got down and dirty and if you can see my companion did also...... (psych! ) You couldn't find one speck of dirt on that kid! I'm gunna break him in to working you just watch! To finish the night we had dinner at a Less-actives house who promised they would come to church but didn't.... But we won't give up on him. (R**** A***** is his name)

     Wednesday- We had an exchange that day and Elder Sholer had his first moment of being away from his Daddy (me, I'm considered his daddy because I'm training him) While on Exchange we were able to meet with an investigator of ours who hasn't made contact in forever. Her name is Rosemary and she is concerned with our church because she doesn't feel it meets her needs. We asked her if she had ever prayed to know if Joseph smith was a prophet and she kind of shrugged. The reason why we asked that is because if Joseph Smith truly saw God and Jesus Christ in the Sacred Grove then this truly is the Lord's Church. And praying to God to ask him if that really happened is a way we can know for ourselves.

     Thursday- We lifted tons of books in the public library for their upcoming book sale. That really put my muscles to work haha. This is why we exercise every morning at 6:30. For dinner we were invited over to a members home whose son named Vee is waiting for his mission call.  It will be here in a week or so. So all that excitement is in the air.  I can remember those days. (starting to feel old...)

     Friday- We helped out at the food pantry and tons of people were grateful for our service there. One lady that I helped was blind so I got to lead her through the line and tell her all about each food and which one is which. She told me she like carrots because it helps her eyes haha! She also had a sense of humor which made picking out food go so much smoother. We street contacted this day and no one was outside because it was freezing. We walked a lot and looked for people to talk to and didn't get 1 person to stop and talk to us... WINTER IS HERE! It also snowed this day which didn't help our street contacting.

     Saturday- We decided to go tracting to improve our finding efforts. We tracted into our first door and the lady received us so well! I wish everyone would greet us like she did. So welcoming and nice. She didn't want to hear about us at that moment but we know in a couple weeks we can stop by again and she will want us over. We gave her the Restoration DVD to watch. This is the day that I realized that I need some good gloves pronto. haha My hands were so numb. I am going to carry a golf ball with me everywhere I go so I can knock on the doors with that rather than my knuckle. We also split more wood that day too. The wood splitting/stacking procrastinators are starting to worry about their wood getting ruined in the snow!

     Sunday- We only had sacrament meeting because the church was too cold to meet in for longer than 1 hour. The heater broke over the past couple days and so no heat was able to be sent throughout the building. This week was really cold haha. This was the first time I have ever had to sit right smack dab next to my companion with my hands under my butt to keep warm. And that was inside the chapel in the church building! After church we went over to Gretchen's house where we talked a lot about Joseph Smith and the First vision and how the book of Mormon is the keystone of our religion. Gretchen's sister Allison who had previously told us she is not religious at all started asking us questions and we ended up picking her up as a new investigator. We have plans to go over on Friday of this next week to talk to her more.

Something not mentioned in the letter. Tonight Elder Sholer and I are going down to Manchester New Hampshire for new missionary training.  And Elder lund who is going home next month is coming to pick us up at 4:30 today. I'm so excited!

All Smiles
Elder Dahlberg