Last Thursday was probably the longest day here in the MTC. Not only did I have to wake up at 530 just to do laundry, but that laundry session took about 2.5-3 hours just because of how busy it was. I also had thought since there would obviously be no one else to do laundry that early, I decided to take ALL my white shirts to wash which took up a third machine. So that was quite fun! Definitely a Thanksgiving I won't forget. After we finally got done with Laundry we had to hurry back to the room, get ready, laundry put away, then go hustle to get in line for the devotional with the General Authority. It was worth the rush because we got to listen to Elder Holland talk. He is such a powerful speaker that just hits ya right in the ol' ticker. He talked about being grateful for all the opportunities we have and that we don't get it how much we take for granted which is definitely true. All the time I was fasting keep in mind so I definitely realized how much I really took for granted. I am glad I fasted that whole day. It made it much more special to me and for the reasons why I fasted. But anyways, after the devotional we had some time to relax until our humanitarian project where we made and sent education and healt/sanitation packets to Mali to the OUELESSEBOGOU project or whatever. It was really fun but they were playing some really funny music that made it seem like we were little elves in a workshop. Which we kind of were. It was weird but for a good cause right? right. The rest of the day we just had some down time to write briefly but mostly we had some more devotionals/programs that consisted of more mtc speakers and music numbers. A few that stood out what a fiddle melody that turned into clapping and a hootinany. the other one that stood out was singing 'to grandmothers house we go' as well as a live reinactment from the mtc presidency of the first thanksgiving. I wish I took more pictures of that. But finally after that we got to watch the movie 17 miracles which is about the Willey Martin handcart company crossing the plains. It was a very good movie and I recommend it to those who haven't seen it. Overall, it was a very long, tiring, thanksgiving day that definitely made me thankful for all that I took for granted. The next day, Friday, I was so starving and exhausted from the previous days fast. But it went on as usual, having lunch with my teachers and joking in armenian, learning the first vision in armenian which i can now recite fully in lessons, and district leader interviews. Those interviews were the last ones I had as a Zone Leader and was kind of bitter sweet because of the great Elders I had gotten to know. Oh well.
Saturday our new teacher Sister Crawford started teaching finally and it was a good change of view from the other teachers. And as usual, Saturday mostly consisted of our weekly planning which of course consisted of going over our goals as a district which we have been kind of slacking on. Not that we haven't been working but because we just.... we just have beeen slacking on those goals to speak every day in armenian and such. Sunday I was finally released as a Zone leader and had to say some good bye's to the English district that I first welcomed to go to Canada and kennewick washington. I'll miss those elders. Although, I did get some sweet ties from them!! I have found out I am quite the tie trader and all the elders on my floor at some of the trades I pull off. I think i'm at 40+ ties at the moment where a few weeks ago I barely had 30. And I konw everyone may think there is no need for that many ties, but when you are a misssionary and have to wear a suit every day, ties are your personality in an article of clothing. And for those who have served would understand. Monday I had an interesting lesson with our investigator Artour. He raised the question of 'why are we judged' which was totallly unexpected to our planned lesson. And considering that answer is hard to say in english, we failed to answer it in our lesson but had him read up on it and try and figure it out. I should probably get used to now knowing questions to those more difficult questions. Not that that was a tough one to answer, but it was just unexpected and I didn't know how to anwswer in armenian.
Also monday, Sister Nelson in our district broke her thumb playing volleyball which really sucked. But thankfully she found out that it won't affect when she will be leaving for Armenia which is good. Our district really is just accident prone. Sarafian with his knee, Wood with his dying nerve in his leg, and now Sister Nelson with her thumb. better hope I'm not next! (knock on wood). Tuesday was particularly exciting because on our way to gym after we had finished service and were about to leave our building, there was a big commotion in a room down the hall and lo and behold, there was a mouse in one of the rooms with about 10 elders trying to catch it. It was nuts. this little mouse scurrying around the room was causing everyones voices to go up a few octives in their screams. No worries though, we safely and with no harm to the mouse, which we named stuart, caught him and released him outside. thought about keeping him as a pet but that is against the rules unfortunately :/ bummer.
Also on Tuesday we were assigned new investigators because of our new teacher joining us! Our new investigators name is Susanna and has a daughter who was recently baptized. Not sure when we teach her first but I'm excited to have more work to do which may sound weird but i think the funnest part is actually teaching which is why i'm excited for the field. Wednesday we had a lesson with Samvel and it went really well! we taught him about joseph smith and told him about the first vision and whatnot. it was a really strong lesson and he understood it well. He accepted the commitment to read the whole BOM. Hopefully he really does but so far he has been good about reading. he does it for his family which is really special to see.
Also wednesday, we got the new elders that are going to greece, guam, honolulu. All really sweet missions! the group we leave with are the guam and honolulu elders. which is weird to think we won't get to see a full group again.
That is really all i have to write about this week, like I said, it has been so repetitive and same old that that is all that is really new. I'm sure these next few weeks will pick up with the acquired work-load and us getting our flight plans and such next friday! Pretty soon I'll be writing from California! Can't wait. I love you all and hope to hear from you soon. Keep on keeping on!
Elder Tanner C. DeBry