Tuesday, February 24, 2015

I spent my birthday at the same house 2 years in a row!

Yes, that is NEGATIVE 15 degrees...
It snowed again 3 times this week. All of the 3 times it added about another 6 inches to the already 3.5ft of snow. The snowbanks on the side of the roads are getting really high and its tough to make turns onto the main roads because of how tall the snowbanks are.
He's pretending to surf the snow bank...

Well here's my week!
Monday- Just a normal P-day, Got to workout with a member of our ward, and got free subway because another member of our ward is awesome and owns 4 of them and then I exchanged into Topsham my first area for Tuesday and part of Wednesday.
Shoveling snow builds strong muscles!

Tuesday (MY BIRTHDAY!)- I was on exchange this day with Elder Penverne (He's French) and it was probably the best day in a LONG TIME! Not just because it was my birthday, but because of how productive our missionary day was. I started out the day doing service at a homeless soup kitchen and was in charge of getting all the dirty dishes off of the tables so they could eat more. I was nick named the dirty man haha. I got talking with another volunteer and he was an IT Manager for a small company up here in Maine and I told him that my dad is one and my brother is a computer programmer and we went off talking about that stuff for a while. He was a great man and it was cool being able to relate to him because of what I learned from my Dad and brother Timmy. Then we had lunch at the Youland's and we needed a male 18 years or older for a lesson with a single woman and we weren't able to find anyone and then boom, Tony Youland, who is not a member of our church volunteered to come out with us to this lesson!
Elder Dahlberg and Tony Youland

It was really awesome! and that just about made my birthday right there! I could have ended the day on that note but it just kept going. We had a lesson at the Derr's house and oddly enough a year ago on this exact day I was at their house for dinner. So I spent my birthday at the same house 2 years in a row! That is rare! And a blessing! George Derr talked about his desire to stop smoking and we are working with him to set some goals and have plans to be clean in 2015! Then they surprised me with a chocolate on chocolate cake which is my favorite! I love surprises!!! That was a good day for me, even though I wasn't bursting out with presents and money, (which I could care less about) Luke 12:13-31

Happy Birthday from the Derr family

Wednesday- I taught district meeting and on this day I had to get my teeth cleaned because the dental hygienist only had this day open. So I learned how to floss and brush my teeth effectively and efficiently.  The best part of this day was at the end of the day when we had an interview with our Bishop. We sat down for an hour talking about missionary work and we just had a marvelous meeting. I really felt the spirit in that meeting with Bishop and we talked about a lot of things. He talked to us about how important a mission is for building a great foundation for the young generation. He said there is NOTHING in the entire world that would be better than what we are doing at this moment. That was really good to hear. I agree with him too, I already know I cannot repay how much I have learned about life and myself in this time here on my mission in the frozen land of New England.

Thursday- We helped Rusty P**** go  and cut wood for his family. We went out to their land outside of the city and we helped FALL a tree! It was awesome hearing it crack and fall to the ground and then the earth shaking a tad bit once the tree smashes into the ground. It was fun. We worked hard too. LOTS of LUGGING LOGS!!! I also gave the P**** kids some candy from my birthday present and they loved it! I got a picture of them too! (For you mom!)
He worked so hard that he broke his ax...

Little party favors from the package we sent him...

Friday- We had dinner and a FHE lesson with a Less-Active family named the Fischers! The mom, Vicky is the only member and her boyfriend and 3 kids are not members of the church. So we shared a great lesson with them and I guess we did a good job because they wanted us back as soon as possible! We committed them to come to church and that we would get them a ride. They accepted! We also helped at the Food Co-op below our apartment and we work alongside a guy named Alex who is Jewish and we asked him to prepare a short lesson for us and he taught us about the law of Consecration and tithing in the Jewish faith. We told him we do the same thing, by donating 10% of our income to God's kingdom on earth. (the church)
He still loves to snuggle with the doggies

Getting the food co-op ready downstairs from their apartment

Saturday- We brought an awesome member named Brother Maschino out teaching with us and we visited a lady named Sherry who is interested in learning more about the history behind the Book of Mormon. She loves the old american continent with all the native american tribes and such. So that went really well. I also read in Matthew 7 about the wise man who built his house upon a rock and I really liked that story. It's so true. Where is your house built? or being built for that matter?

Sunday- Church wasn't cancelled even though it snowed throughout the night and we got about 3 inches. Also the Fischer's ride cancelled on them so we completely expected them to not come, but they did anyways! We still don't know how they got there and back but they came!!! That was awesome!!!!!!!!!!

Monday- We had interviews with President Stoker and it was fantastic! before my mission I thought I would hate interviews but it was awesome!!!! I enjoy them so much!
Elder Redford learning how to sew...

Well that's my update on the week!

All Smiles,
Elder Dahlberg

From Feb. 16th "There are thousands of ways to find success but none of them work unless you do"

Maine is treating me well! This week we didn't have a huge dumping of snow in my area.  Southern New England got loaded with snow but we didn't up here in Maine. Although we still have 3 ft snow peaks all over the place and the sidewalks are literally trenches of snow. When it snows out here, the way to get rid of it fast is to spread a salt and dirt mixture in the roads so that the cars can grip the roads and not slide around. So when the snow plows come through they are always pushing this slushy brown snow around and its not appetizing at all...

Tuesday- We went out with the Bishop of our ward to visit some Less-Active members and it went really well. I have a really good relationship with our Bishop and we get along so well, mostly because I think we have the same thought process. We both think alike so therefore we are already similar in that aspect. For our dinner we went over to a Less-Active members home , the Curtis's and before we went there I was feeling a bit under the weather so I took a short nap to recuperate and right after my nap I said a prayer to help me feel good and that we can have an effective visit at the members house. I felt impressed to tell Elder Redford that we should teach them about patriarchal blessings even though we had already made a lesson plan for them earlier on that day. So I shrugged off that prompting and walked outside the room and Elder Redford had an Ensign open and it was opened to a page about patriarchal blessings and I immediately was like okay so that's no coincidence. So we taught them about Patriarchal blessings and we could tell they needed to hear it because they both hadn't read theirs in YEARS! So that was a cool little story. On my mission I have tons of those, I just have trouble remembering them to tell you every week. That's why I keep a daily journal!

Wednesday- After teaching district meeting and the Elder-Sisters' super good burrito lunch with home made banana bread, I went on an exchange with Elder McCain from Nebraska. We got along SO WELL! Almost too well. It reminded me all over again of being in high school with Taylor Dean. I also realized it's harder to do great missionary work when you get along super well with a missionary. But that could be false, who knows. But we did do some service at the Johnson Hall and the volunteer coordinator, Grace, actually read some of the Book of Mormon! We gave her one 3 weeks ago and she told us she would read some of it and tell us what she thought. She wants to talk about it some more so we hope we can do that this week.
Elders Dahlberg & McCain

OK, so that's a little bit creepy...

Good thing this house has blue shutters or it would get lost...

Thursday- We got called on 3 different occasions to help people shovel their homes and their roofs. So Elder McCain and I went and did that for a good chunk of the day. We also got to have a good lesson with Peggy Lane and we brought a member of the ward who is leaving on February 18th to Macon, Georgia on his mission. After the exchange, the moment Elder Redford and I were back to being companions, we sat down in the car and he immediately gave me a big hug and said thank you for being my companion. haha that was a cool moment. Because Elder Redford was having trouble with the elder he was on exchange with and he likes me much more as a companion. So that was a cool moment for me.

Then we went down to Manchester, New Hampshire for a new missionary training meeting.  We even got to sleep in the room that the General Authorities usually sleep in.

Friday- We had an all day long meeting this day and it was really good. I want to share one quote that I really liked that was said in the meeting.
"There are thousands of ways to find success but none of them work unless you do"

Drew said this Elder looked like he could be President some day...

Saturday- This was a PDP day. (Pretty-Dang-Productive)  We stopped by a nice lady we tracted into one day and she wanted to meet up again so we will be meeting her this week on Thursday. We also stopped by a couple that we met a month ago and we shared a valentines message with them and they really enjoyed it and actually want us to come back again. They are Dennis and Ellen H*****. They are baptist and firm in their beliefs but are open minded and want to hear what we have to say. Than we had a FHE at the P***** home where they actually conducted it and made assignments while we shared a lesson on forgiveness and it was such a great lesson!!!!

Sunday- Church was cancelled and we knew it was because of a big storm that was coming our way. We didn't get much snow but the winds were in the 40 mph range and it was hitting our apartment really hard. It was really cool listening to the wind and all the sounds it made. We were able to have dinner at a members house and one their daughters had her boyfriend over and we taught about finding faith in Christ and he actually has been interested in it. So we were able to set up a day where we could teach him about Jesus Christ and his effect in our lives. We will be doing that on Friday.

That's my week!!! Hope you enjoyed it as much as I did! Love you all and hope to hear about your weeks!!!

All Smiles,
Elder Dahlberg 

Saturday, February 14, 2015

While we complain of hot winds and dry skin, New England is having one Wicked Winter!!

Well, most of you may or may not know, My parents just celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary and decided to spend a week out in Hawaii as a celebration. I took it as more of a slap in the face because they went on the snowiest week Maine has seen in YEARS! During that week that they enjoyed sunshine and bliss we got roughly 3 and a half feet of snow and freezing temperatures. Haha its a pretty cool contrast that i just wanted to tell everyone.

This past week in my mission we set a goal to pass out at least one book of Mormon each day and we were able to do one every day except one. The only one day we couldn't was the day that Elder Redford, my companion had a really bad migraine and actually threw up because of how much pain was coming from it. He gets wicked bad migraines because he injured his neck one time while doing something in gymnastics.

I wont do a report day by day this week because i want to talk about some of the people we are currently working with.

The one big one we have is the P***** family. Rusty and Tiffany are the parents and There are 5 kids all under the age of 13. oldest is a boy and 4 younger girls. Their house is always full of energy and dancing and fighting and yelling and just craziness. We got information from the bishop that Rusty's dad is/was a member of our church. We haven't made contact with him yet but that was something cool to hear about. We weren't able to meet up with this family this week to do the Family Home Evening that we had planned but we did stop by Sunday night to share a short lesson about the importance of staying above the worlds influences and the ways to do that are reading the scriptures, praying, and attending church. This is a really awesome family that is very Christian in their beliefs.

Another one is a Less-Active lady named Peggy Lane. She has lived in Maine her whole life and is going through a tough time because her son just shot someone last week and a friend of hers just had her house burn down. She is divorced and her 30 yr old daughter who has a 8 month old baby still lives at home. We have been working with peggy lane for the whole time that i have been here and she is making a huge turnaround in her life. She hadn't been to church in over 4 years until last Sunday when she came and actually stayed for the full 3 hours. The next visit we had with her, you could see the light of God in her eyes. You could see that she partook of the Sacrament and did what it says. to "remember Jesus Christ" and his sacrifice for every one of us. Peggy is now focusing on trying to come back to church because she wants the blessings of God in her life. As do we all. I hope at least... Well Peggy and I get along really well because we both love the ocean and can talk about it forever, she also is a very loving woman. She takes in animals that have been abused and gives them a royal treatment for the last months of their lives.

Fred H**** is a 86 year old man that we found while tracting 3 weeks ago. He is meeting with us because he enjoys our visits as well as he wants to hear our beliefs. He is a very open minded guy and he is the pure example of charity. he loves everyone, even though they may have scammed him or burned him somewhere down the road. He is a funny man too. Reminds me of talking to Grandpa Dahlberg! Fred loves to read and surprised us by reading more of  the Book of Mormon than we had asked him too!

Those are the 3 that i wanted to cover this week. Those are our big 3 as of right now.

As for what we did this past week, we didn't have a single day where we didn't have our snow shovels in our hands. We helped every one and anyone shovel their yards and walk ways. We try to serve all mankind despite our differences. I was given an awesome present for Christmas which was electric heated gloves that my uncle Mark gave me. Those things work like a charm!!! Although my hands get cold when the battery dies, i love them so much! THEY ARE A LIFE SAVER!!!!

Ill finish with a cool quote that i learned a while back

"How can you be a life saver when you look like all the other swimmers on the beach?" Think about it, be yourself and bloom where your planted!

My birthday is on the 17th and I will be turning 20 years old!!!  I won't be a stupid teenager anymore! I have to be responsible!!!!

haha well i love you all and hope you have as good of a week as i will.

Here is how much snow came down on us.... and that is me roof raking. Yes there was so much snow that i had to rake it off of the roof or else it will collapse. 

A delicious breakfast made by Elder Dahlberg

P-day---Doing their laundry at the Dawbin's home

Elder Redford is a gymnast.  Whoa!  Unbelievable!!
It's either the P-90 X3 DVDs or all that shoveling snow... or BOTH!!

All Smiles, Elder Dahlberg

Guess What??  More snow coming... LOTS more...  He's in the 15-20" zone...

Backlogged from Feb. 3rd MORE SNOW (Postponed P-day from Monday to Tuesday)

Well there were 3 HUGE snow storms that hit us pretty hard. each one added 1-2 ft of snow on top of each other. This whole week has consisted of getting up, looking outside and seeing it crazy windy outside with snow going every direction, and it being freezing cold outside. On top of that our heat stopped working and so did our hot water and that happened right during the biggest storm named Juno. So this whole week i only got to shower 3 times due to no hot water. (its fixed now BTW) So that was quite the adventure.

Monday still w/ Elder Sholer - We shopped and stocked up on some food for the upcoming storm that hit on Tuesday named Juno. As well on this day we found a new investigator that we tracted into named Fred. He is 86 years old and interested in what we are doing while being out on our missions. He enjoys talking about Jesus Christ, which is awesome!! Not alot of people like doing that.

Tuesday still w/Elder Sholer- This was the big storm day! JUNO! We couldnt see 5 feet out of our windows because of how white it was outside and how windy it was. Snow was flying upward/ sideways/ inside out/ and backwards! Blizzards are awesome!!! We were urged over and over again to just stay inside but this was a once in a lifetime opportunity for me because im not planning on ever being back in a place where it can get this snowy and cold haha. SO Elder Sholer and i went walking out in it. We had to use our plastic snow shovels to block our faces from the wind so our faces didnt get frozen to pieces by the -20 degree wind that was going at 40+mph. We walked to the P**** and had dinner there with them. Walking home at 8:30PM was the most fun because no one was out and the roads were desolate. So i told Elder Sholer to sit on my snow shovel and i pushed him down a hill as if he were sledding.

Wednesday still w/Elder Sholer- We didnt do district meeting because we were still recuperating from the Juno blizzard. But we went and shoveled out some people and did it all voluntarily. I heard a really cool quote. "The best good deed is one done in secret and found out by accident" I feel like we do that pretty often and i hope that who we do it to really needed it. We had Elder Sholer's last dinner over at the Dawbins where we had Crepe's! Yummy stuff!!!

Thursday- This day we drove all the way down to Manchester New hampshire to drop off Elder Sholer, who is now in Lyndon Vermont and I got my new companion Elder Redford!
Elder Matthew Redford, is from Pocatello Idaho and is 18 years old. He is a mixed martial arts fighter, level 9 gymnist, #1 ranked welder in Idaho, and is a mormon. haha. He is a stud muffin of a kid. He has been through alot in his life but he pushed through it with conviction and strength. We get along great, even though we both like to be the ones to get the job done! We are both the type of people to act and not be acted upon. So we are working on finding the middle ground so we can become super efficient missionaries!

Friday- This day we got another 1ft of snow that kept falling all day long. After our 3 hour weekly planning we went to Fred's house and we planned on reading the introduction to the Book of Mormon with him and we read it with him. Only to hear him say, "I already read this and all the stuff after this, im in 1 nephi 11 can we start reading from there?" Hearing that just about knocked me off my socks because i have almost never had anyone actually keep the commitment of reading it after we leave. So we read from where he was. After that we went to the P**** for a dinner and then a Family Home Evening. We are trying to establish family home evenings with them on Friday nights because that is when everything is calm and non eventful. So we did it and the coolest part was when we were all singing I am a child of God and Rusty looked at one of his daughters and you could see the joy in his face. His eyes got all shiny and you could tell this was a special moment for him. That was a really cool experience to see.

Saturday- One of the things we did this day was stop by Raymond, a 86 year old man in a retirement home and talked with him. There was another man in the room named Phil who we also talked with. We soon found out he had 4 strokes and now is on the recovery side of it. He used to be a professional Guitarist and traveled all over playing and teaching for 35 years. Now he cant move his fingers on his hand that he uses to play his guitar. We left him with some pictures of Jesus Christ and talked about why Jesus is important in our lives and how He can help us through our trials.

Sunday- Elder Redford went up and bore his testimony and introduced himself with was the best thing he could have done because the family sitting in front of us just about lost it when he said he is from Pocatello, Idaho. Turned out that they pretty much knew each other and have all the same friends and stuff. Its a small world after all!!! We tracted some more this day and the first 2 doors didnt even let us open our mouths. They saw us and our nametags and walked to the door and told us to go away. I could see some disappointment in Elder Redfords face but we kept going. The next door actually let us in the house to get warm and ended up wanting us to come by again, Not to learn about our Church but to converse with each other about Jesus Christ and his Atonement. Which is what our purpose is as missionaries!!! Pretty cool!!!!

Monday the 2nd of February- We were supposed to have P-day this day but the snow storm decided other wise. It snowed again all day and put another 15 inches of snow on the ground. So the whole day we went around helping people shovel and we found 2 potential investigators from it. At one point in shoveling i had to remind myself of how this is my last winter here and that i wont see snow for a while when i get back home. But that thought was hard to hold onto as my fingers were so frozen to the point of not being able to feel the keys in my pocket, my snot was frozen to my upper lip, my toes felt like stumps, and i was tired from being out in the -30 degree weather with the wind blowing right into our faces. It sucked but it was worth it. Looking back on it im proud of myself for going out and doing it and it will all be good memories that i will cherish.

This past week was FULL of Snow and terribly cold weather and windy conditions. But i pushed through it and let my light shine.  Matthew 5:14-16.

This was the snowiest week on record in the past couple of years!!!! SO MUCH SNOW THERE JUST ISNT ANYWHERE TO PUT IT!!!

P.S. there is more to come also!!!

All Smiles,
Elder Dahlberg

Backlogged from Jan 26th Juno Storm on it's way...

So there is big news out here in New England. A HUGE Storm named Juno (when a storm has a name you know that its going to be awesome!) is going to be coming this week lasting from Monday night to Wednesday morning. Its going to be a huge blizzard that will cover the entire New England region. I'm really excited to witness my first blizzard and i hope it has no mercy and just lets us have it! I will take good videos and ill try and get some before and after pictures. We went to Walmart and stocked up on water and food so don't worry about that. We have like 10 people who told us if we are in trouble call them and they will hop to it and help us. So we are in good hands. :)
As for what we will do during the storm.... I'm not exactly sure because going out and shoveling will be pointless. We might just walk around outside depending on the severity of the storm. I really have no idea what to expect! haha im still just a Cali boy out in Maine!

The big news is that im going to be staying in Gardiner Maine again for at least another 6-12 weeks because im also Training a brand spanking new missionary again. I just finished training Elder Sholer and now on Thursday i will get my new companion who is fresh from the Missionary Training Center. I feel honored to train again because in the mission, not every missionary gets to train and not every missionary gets to train twice. So that just makes me feel good knowing that im doing a good job!

This past week i got to go on exchange again in Topsham and got to see sister youland! She pampered me with chicken salad with grapes on croissants and let me keep the left overs which didn't last another day. We helped Tony (her nonmember husband) paint the ceiling of the dining room and being there felt almost the same as when i left a year ago. It felt good to be back. Tony made me feel honored when he for the first time ever asked questions about the church! I was astonished when he asked me the questions and i was very happy to tell him the answers. I love that man! He reminds me a lot of my Dad. They have the same sense of humor.

After that we stopped by Janet Perez, the Colombian lady and she was so happy to see me and if felt good being back in her house as well.  She of course cooked us up some great food and we had a great talk about what she has been up to and her upcoming benefit dinner to help needy people in Nicaragua.

Wednesday we had dinner with a Nonmember family named the W***** that are now our new investigators. There is Randy, the father, Shelly, the mom, and 5 kids. They are a nice family and we hope to bring them closer to Jesus Christ. (That's always our hope as missionaries haha)

Thursday we got taken out to Texas Roadhouse for steaks and i felt like i got to celebrate my brother Timmy's birthday a day early. That was really cool. At this restaurant you get unlimited peanuts and you throw the shells on the floor just as if you were in Texas!!!

This week we had a couple lessons with the P***** family. We shared a lesson talking about the story in the book of mormon and how it all points to Christ. Than we gave Rusty an ensign to read the most recent talk by the prophet to the whole world, Thomas S. Monson. He talked about setting the rudder to your "spiritual boat" straight and make sure your course is set on God and no where else.

The P***** didn't come to church and neither did any of the Less-Active members that we work with. Stunk because we tried hard this week. But im not down on myself because i know that my efforts aren't to make sure they come to church. my efforts are to bring them closer to Christ.

I have to go but i want to leave with a really cool quote i learned this week.
"You can count the number of seeds in an apple, but you cant count the number of apples that come from a seed."

I'm not out here to see all the effects of my missionary labors. I'm out here to plant seeds and help people. And i love it!

Thanks everyone for all the emails. I got so many this week! thanks thanks thanks!

Oh and include my new trainee companion in your prayers because the first couple days/ weeks out in the mission field are really hard. Physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Thank you

Elder sholer and i found a toilet train! I mean come on! If you saw a bunch of toilets in a line like that you would want to take pictures with it!

All Smiles,
Elder Dahlberg!!!!