June 5

Hey mom and dad so this week has been a crazy one. We had a pretty normal week. Lots of finding, especially on the uni campus. It’s really weird proselyting in a polo shirt. Other than that it has been crazy. Elder Hartman and I and the Farrers went down to Katherine for trade offs with Elder Atkinson and Hammond. They have a branch of about 5 people and teach all aboriginal. Other than that it has been really normal. We are teaching two people, Eric from china and John who is half cast aboriginal.

Brent – Sounds like you are having more of an aboriginal experience in Darwin. That is cool. Mom found pictures of your visit to Katherine and the baptism on Facebook. She is creeping you. Do you have any pictures to send?  I want a picture of you in the Polo Shirt!

Krista – It is great to hear from you. Did everything work out with the Khakis? I’m glad you have some people to teach. I just got home from a fireside about mission prep for the priests and laurels. Our sister missionaries and the bishop spoke. They all did a great job  talking about the practical things for mission prep and the spiritual and emotional challenges. They also spoke about how different a mission actually is to what they thought it would be but how it is hard but very rewarding. What would you say is different about mission like than you imagined?

Tommy – I thought when i came on the mission all we would be doing was teaching and finding would be easy

Brent – It is easy to go finding, harder to catch a quality investigator. What are some of the big differences you are noticing in Darwin vs Adelaide?

Krista – I’m sure everyone learns that lesson. I think you are working really hard. I have learned that throwing a big party is not a good idea before the missionary leaves and that I am so grateful for everyone that helps my child in his mission and from home. I have also learned that it is hard to type an email to a missionary while Jake is busy trying to get you to repeat everything he says:)!!!! That picture of you and Elder Ivory makes me smile. I remember the pictures you sent of him in the MTC and it seems like he always had that great smile there too.  Do you need to buy any more pants this week?

Tommy – darwin is harder to find a quality invetsigator because they are very laid back up here but super easy to find. adelaide is the opposite  no i have plenty of pants and yeah he loves the work

Krista – Well, we will pray that your investigators stick to it. Tell me  a little bit about them. What a blessing it is to have a companion who loves the work.  And what a neat opportunity to go to Katherine. I saw the Farrer’s picture of a river you were checking out for a baptism. Do you not have to worry about crocs?

Tommy – the uni is cool because nobody recognizes us as missionaries so they just talk to us as friends. yeah so thats in katherine and there are heaps of crocs there so we were checking if the water is good for a baptism next week

Brent – So Drew willingly volunteered to sing in a youth ensemble for the next Moroni Quest fireside. I got the email asking if he wanted to join. Was sure he would say no but he said yes to weekly practices until the end of June. Who is that kid. Guess I don’t know my son that well.

Tommy – eric is from hong kong and is awesome but he is going back to china for a month. and john is half cast and really committed but work takes him out to the mines – he said yes because there will be girls there im betting 10$ on that

Krista – That’s interesting. Are there a lot of mines near Darwin? Is it kind of like working on the oil rigs here in Alberta? Is the University year opposite to ours here? They must have their big break around November/ December????

Brent – Good guess but you are down $10. It is an all boy ensemble. But he may actually not know that. He just left so we shall see.

Tommy – yeah they have a lot of gold mines out bush. and eah its like living in calgary and doing a week on a week off at the oil rigs. they do 10 weeks straight here and then 2-3 off and repeat all year

Krista – How was MLC training this week?  What did you learn? What do you want to apply or imporve?

Tommy – we focussed on member work. it has been a slow process in this mission but is coming along

Krista – I think what a blessing that would be. I’m sure there would be lots of inactive members to work with like anywhere in the church. It seems so much more personal as I think about family members and friends who have left the church and how happy I would be if they would speak to the missionaries.

Tommy – yeah its something the mission is really focussing on

Krista – I love that! I think you also told me that you are talking to investigators about their family history. i still remember how we both commented on that part of your patriarchal blessing… who knew! Now that you have been in your district a couple of weeks, tell me some strengths of some of your missionaries.

Tommy – yeah who knew about family history eh?

Brent – Tell me how you use Family History with investigators

Tommy – we usually share a family history pass along cards with them and share familysearch.org

Brent – Nice! I think your epic story is checking out a river for baptisms to see if there are crocs. Awesome. All I worried about was drunks.

Tommy – haha probably as dangerous as the croc

Krista – As you know I have a real testimony of family history and how it can soften people’s hearts. I was listening to president Eyring’s talk from General Conference and it was all about that.   Still want to know more about your district than their names. Tell me their best qualities!

Tommy –

elder arnaud is from tahiti and he is always keen to do the work

elder mattie is from mission bc and he is a really good singer

sister angoy is from philipines and is the happiest person i know

sister purvis is from utah and extremely talented finder

Brent – Add in‎ Tommy D and Elder Ivoreee and you have a powerhouse district!

Tommy – we got to go love you talk to you next week

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May 28

hey mom and dad!

so this has been a cool week mostly because of wildlife. we see heaps of animals around here. for example last night after our dinner appointment we came outside and there were like 10 tree frogs on our bikes so we were playing with them for a bit. it is really hot up here with humidity. 33 is nice but not when your biking in a shirt and tie. so mom do you remember how i told you some missionarries are on the charles darwin university campus? well thats us. the farrrers buy us polo shirts and khakis that we wear onto campus. we also wear khakis while proselyting up here because the humidity would destroy our pants. i have yet to see any crocs (elder ivory says they arent that common). its cool to be back with elder ivory because i get to see how much he has grown. And another cool thing is one of the elders in my district is from mission bc. (elder mattie) – oh and its not a small branch. its bigger than most wards in adelaide. (150 members) – so the mission buys me khakis

Krista – Mission BC… that is cool. Is he your age? you were probably babies together in the same Stake

Tommy – and yeah we are getting along well. ad our ditrict is great – yeah he’s 19

Krista – Ok… tell me about Elder Ivory and your flat. How are the Farrers? They seem great. She posted something about a flat inspection where 5/6 flats passed and the last flat was maybe … well not so clean Tell me, i have a sneaking suspicion that was maybe you 🙂 Do your old mom a favor and win that cleaning crocodile one time while you are in Darwin! Well that surprises me about the branch size. That is good, you will have lots of members to meet. I will have to check your account for you to buy Khakis. I don’t know how much money is in there right now. Maybe  get a statement and I will put more money in tomorrow. Or if you need to shop today I can run over and put in money when we are done chatting. How is Elder Ivory? Are you getting along? How is your district? Do you have any investigators? Have you been to the University yet?

Tommy – oh ye of little faith…… we passed. our flat is really small and we get lizards in it all the time. the farrers are awesome. sister farrer is sister parker’s sister – not many investigators but yeah we go to the uni twice a week

Krista – Oh… that makes me so happy. I was making your brother’s clean today because I was worried I hadn’t taught my boys anything about cleaning! You are the BEST! What a kid! Benny would be so thrilled about the tree frogs. You will have to send him a picture. That is cool about the lizards… are they annoying or still kind of fun? When you go to the Uni do you teach in a room or do you contact around the buildings?  I asked the Wilson’s about how we get packages to you now and it seems like we still send them to Adelaide and then either the Parker’s bring them or they mail them on. So we will see. I’m really hoping you will get to celebrate Canada Day. Tell me about your area. Is it like a suburb? Are there more aboriginal Australians in Darwin?

Tommy – you still send the packages to adelaide and they mail them to us. yeah so they are nice becuase they eat all the bugs so we let them in our flat. and we just walk around the buildings talking to people and then teach lessons at tables or in the student lounge

Krista – Do you know any of the other missionaries in Darwin? I can imagine that once you are in Darwin you don’t just stay for one transfer. What are your plans for the rest of your PDay? Are there interesting things you want to see?

Tommy – not really they are all new to me. we are probably gonna go to the mall today

Krista – How many Elders and Sisters do you have in your district? Who are they? Do you train every week?

Tommy – I train every week and we have two sets of elders and one set of sisters

Krista – That sounds great. You said you had a dinner appointment. How is the branch? I know you have only been one week but did you meet anyone interesting?

Tommy – not really but we meet a lot of american marines around darwin. (american naval base)

Krista – I’m surprised, I would have never have guessed there was a base there. So Drew has his semi final rugby game tomorrow. As long as they beat Wisewood they will go to provincials. This year provincials are in Edmonton. If they are going I think Dad and I are going to try and take a day off work and go to see them play . It will feel weird to go to Edmonton and have to stay in a hotel instead of Grandma and Grandpa Dickson’s.  Dad is at ASLC, the weather is nice and he is taking 20 kids so he should have a lot of fun. He was picking up licorice to throw at kids on the bus… memories!  We have Joseph and Porter here right now. There is an epic lego game going on in the basement. I don’t even want to think about how much thee will be to clean when they are done. Grace Matthews spoke in church today. She is getting ready to go on a mission in the fall. She is a neat kid.  Oh… what about the tag?

Tommy – she is going on a mission?! thats awesome! yeah and darwin has heaps of historical ww2 stuff. it was bombed by the japanese in the war.

Krista – Yes! I was surprised. There was no note just the tag. Do you get new ones? Is it a tradition to send tags home? The tag is sitting on our mantle right beside the picture of you that is on your mission plaque at the church

Tommy – no i just ordered two new badges from the office so i figured i would send it home

Krista – There are some interesting things about dressing for an Australia Adelaide mission. Sister Parker posted some pictures of a trip out bush where everyone is wearing bush boots because that red dirt gets everywhere. Who knew!

Tommy – yeah you get some big differences from nt to sa

Brent – Hey buddy, sitting in the opening ceremonies of ASLC. They had a million dignitaries. Very painful. How are you!!!!

Krista – I was glad to get it.  the same day I also got a thank you letter from Sister Sennett. i had sent a card when Elder Sennet died and it was really thoughtful of her to send a reply. It was an Australia day in the mail! What did you end up doing with your paintings? Are you hauling them with you?

Tommy – they are in the vault in adelaide. and far out dignitaries suck

Brent – Just read your first letter. Proselytize on Darwin campus sounds really cool. Have you seen any kangaroos? I’m still hoping for the kangaroo punch.

Tommy – yeah we see wallibies sometimes but since we are in the suburbs not so much

Krista – Oh who knew there was a mission vault? I am learning so much. Drew is doing some makeup Seminary assignments right now… sound familiar? He is not too happy with me.

Tommy – haha sad life

Brent – Probably not as cool punching a wallabee. This opening ceremony is a little long. Mama Mcgreggs says hi.

Krista – I am forcing him to finish them in case he ever wants to go to the States for University. Not likely but we’re covering our bases. It’s graduation season here. Centennial’s grad was this weekend and I saw things from Dallin’s grad on Facebook. I guess no matter how much we fight it  you all grow up!

Tommy – tell mama magreggs i say hi too wallabies are small but there are heaps

Brent –  I had a cool discussion with a bunch of advisors. They were asking about you. Got to explain about missions, how you get called etc. It was good. I’m being a member missionary.

Tommy – yeah eventually i guess – which advisers?

Krista – I’m not sure punching wildlife is a great plan. I have been watching Australian Border Patrol shows ( yes mocking inserted here) and let’s just say those Australian officlas don’t mess around! I will be excited to see pictures of your new place and Darwin. What a change! Is your area as big as your Adelaide areas. Do you have to bike far?

Tommy – dad can you send any more photos of our aslc and any more training ideas. they are helping so much, really engaging

Laura McGregor – Hey Tommy…mama McGregs here.  Missing you here at ASLC. Hope you are having a great time. Use lots of sunscreen!

XO

Brent- Wisewood, two Airdrie schools, small schools near Lloudminster, Drumheller.

Tommy – thank you! and yeah its just as big but we cover what is called lee point so its super far

Brent – I will find some stuff for next week. Why do u want ASLC pics? I can send activities.

Tommy – awesome well tell them i say hi – idk i just want some pictures of us hosting it – companions always ask about it but it never really works just to just explain – hey om and dad i gotta go ill talk to you next week. love yous

Brent – I will send pics and ideas. No problem. It brings back great memories of you at ASLC last year. You made an impact on some of these advisors!

 

 

 

 

Tommy is transferred to Darwin!

Fun fact: Getting transferred from Adelaide to Darwin is the same distance as Calgary to Houston.  Yes Tommy flew.

Hey Mom and Dad so sorry about the late email. So transfers happened and I got shipped to Darwin! I’m the Palmerston district leader in Darwin and my new companion is…… Elder Ivory!(They were together in the MTC)  We are in an area called Malak. So Elder Miague is still in Evandale and his new companion is Elder Hobby. Other than that it has been a pretty normal week. It’s really freaking hot here though. 90% humidity and 30 degrees (there’s the weather report for grandpas). We are doing great and it should be a really good transfer.

so I don’t think I will need a winter jacket

Feb 27 – Tommy is on the Move!!

Hey Mom and Dad,

We had two new investigators this week. First we had Dimitri. He is half chinese half russian and is really interested in the Book of Mormon so we gave him a copy and he tried to give us money to donate to the church. He seems like He will be pretty solid. Our other one is name Rod Ventura (thinking to myself his name should be ace) and He isnt as solid but was willing to listen to our message. The big news though is that sisters are moving into the trott park area! So there will be two companionships’ in the ward, aberfoyle elders and trott park sisters. The biggest news this week though is I am being transferred! I am going up to Evandale (right by the mission office) and I will be district leader and training a new missionary. I’m gonna miss this ward a lot. But I’m excited to have the opprotunity to train. So ill be in the same ward as President and Sister Parker and the assistants. It should be a fun adventure!

love ya

elder dickson

Brent –

Trainer and District Leader. What a great opportunity. But maybe no bikes. Will you lose all that fitness?

Krista – Wow, that is so cool. Evandale??? What zone is that in? What is the name of the elder you will be training? Where is he from. That shows a lot of confidence in you. I’m proud of you – What ward does that put you in?

Tommy – that will put me in firle ward and i am still in a biking area and i dont know who im training until wednesday and thats in firle zone

Krista- Ok… cool, does the missionary just arrive on Wednesday then? When does that mean you move? Today? Do you know anything about the apartment?

Brent – Oh good. Wouldn’t want you to loose that fitness!  ‎Are you still close to the ocean or far away? Training is an awesome responsibility. You set the tone for their mission. Love them a lot and out them to work. I trained 3 missionaries. It was a great experience.

Tommy – I am far from the ocean 😦 but im close to the city. and ill move today and the new missionaries arrive on wednesday. I know nothing about the area because im being flushed in, they flushed the entire happy valley ward . elder angelo is going to an area called semaphore (firle zone) elder martin is going to golden grove (modbury) and elder atkinson is going to victor harbour – oh and elder punou is going out bush!

Krista- So do you stay with another companionship until Wednesday? Do you know who? In your apartment or theirs?

Brent – So you have a busy day. I’m assuming you have another missionary to hang with until Wednesday. So no more ocean shots for a while. I’m excited for you.

Tommy – I have no clue until i get there at 2pm

Krista- That’s an adventure! Take a few pictures. How do you know all about the other Elders like Elder Punou? Do you email them? How exciting to get a new missionary. Is the area by the mission home in the suburbs still? You said it was closer to the city. You have been to the mission home a couple of times . Is the area quite different from Aberfoyle/Trott?

Tommy – yes the area is alot more apartments and more like students. and we do a mission wide onference call where they announce where everyone is moving

Brent – We used to call each other after to find out what is up. The letter to transfer would arrive same day for everyone. Not sure we were supposed to do that.

Tommy – haha yeah probably not

Krista – Oh that is cool! It is neat to figure out where everyone is going. It must make you feel more connected. I always look at Sister Parker’s blog and see the new missionary training. It will be strange to see you as the trainer and not the trainee. So in your mission is a district usually 3 companionships? and then 3 districts in a zone?Watching the Oscars red carpet… must be getting old don’t really care about the dresses anymore!

Tommy – well it all depends on the zone, in firle there are three districts and in my district there are three companionships including mine.

Joseph (cousin) – Hey its Joseph the flames have a playoff spot. In my basketball I got to the final and lost but someone on my team broke there best players ankles

Taylor (better looking cousin) – Hey. How are things doing? Surprise you are talking to Taylor.  I heard that you are now are now a district leader.  I am happy for you. Is there anything that I should know from the last time we talked?

Tommy – nah there really isnt anything too new that has happened just hot all the time (im getting sick of summer) and come on taylor they dont say how are you doing in aiustralia they say “how ya goin?” – Joseph what spot are the flames in?

Taylor – Taylor here I am sad to here that. It just snowed again today in Calgary so you got something to look forward to when you get back. School is going okay. There isn’t anything new for me, other then the fact that I am in the shadow of my sister with math as she got a 100% on her final exam so that is fun.

Brent – 7th place. And the Steed’s have left the house

Tommy – why are you guys at my house right now anyways? – oh ok

Krista – They were picking Benny up for the eternal cousins switch. I don’t think Joseph can be happy unless he has someone to hang out with. Taylor would have been happy to sit here and email but there was considerable pressure from Joseph because they have a short window before Ben has to go to Stake priesthood. So the assistants and the Parkers are in your ward. Are there any other Elders or sisters in your ward?

Brent – They came to pick up Ben to party so we had them send a few words. Surprise, Joseph didn’t have a lot of patience.

Tommy – yes i will have the morialta elders and firle sisters (both in my district)

Krista – Wow that’s a lot of missionaries for one ward. It must be an area that has a little more teaching but probably not as many dinner appointments. You’ll have to get out those cooking skills! Does someone come to pick you up today? Are you packed already? Do the sisters move into your apartment? Better do some cleaning 🙂

Tommy – yes we are completely packed so we are getting picked up by victor harbour and taken to transfers. and yeah dont worry the assistants called ahead of time to make sure it was clean

Krista – That cracks me up! Well this will be exciting and  waiting a couple more days will be interesting. How many new missionaries are coming this transfer?

Tommy – 8-11 depending on visas

Krista – Hmmm… is there a possibility that your elder won’t arrive. That seems like a lot of missionaries. That is like when you arrived. I don’t think there has been another group since that was that big

Tommy – yeah i dont know i guess we will find out

Brent – That is a lot of new missionaries. Just think one lucky fellow gets a elder with great Leadership skills but poor taste in hockey teams.

Tommy – wow….. taking a shot at the flames  – are the oilers in the playoffs?

Brent – Right on they are. Second place in their division. Pretty sure they will make it but not sure how far they will go. Think the Flamers will make it too as a wildcard.

Tommy – whos the best player on the oilers right now that made the difference?

Krista – I’ll be curious to see where your companion is from. You might get your first American! Drew is busy making cookes right now. He is a bit of a whirlwind in the kitchen! Let’s just say there will be some mess to clean up… kind of like his mom!

Brent – Connor McDavid is leading the league in scoring his second year. Way more assists than goals – Cam Talbot their goalie is top 5 in the league.

Tommy – so he actually is ridiculous

Brent – So do you have a special training program or just do what everyone else does?

Tommy – we do the 12 week program. its the same as everyone else except we have trainings that are also given by president and the assistants

Brent- Could be a little different from 1989? What are some of the things you have greenies do?

Tommy – its just teaching them preach my gospel and how to do the basics of missionary work. lots of roleplays and practice

Krista – So does that mean you get your greenie for a guaranteed 2 transfers?

Brent -I was not the biggest fan of role play. You are a better Elder than me!   Saw Ibaka play his first Raptors game Friday. He looks good.

Tommy – not necessarily we will see if i get to finish his training  – I hate roleplays too and sweet how does the team look?

Brent – They traded away Sullinger to Phoenix for PJ Tucker. ‎Good utility player. It will take a bit of time to jell. The had a big win against Boston Friday. Boston is playing really well. I don’t think anyone will be able to stop the Warriors this year.

Krista – I’m glad you are staying close for now because your birthday package will reach you. Hopefully in time.! What will you miss about your old area?

Tommy – I will miss the members and we have a youth in the ward that we play basketball with who is a huge fan of okc so he hates durant

Brent – Understandable. But I don’t blame Durrant. He was a free agent. Rugby starts March 13. Pretty sure we will be inside and at the Soccer Center. Not as warm as last spring.

Tommy – I have to go now, ill let you know about my new trainee and area next week love ya!

Krista – Love you… we’re very proud! Be good to that greenie. Somewhere is a mom praying he gets a good trainer

Feb 20, 2017 – Happy Family Day

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Hey Mom and Dad,

So these four days have been pretty uneventful. It has rained the past two days and has been “cold” as elder angelo calls it. (21 degrees) So we called our referral and she picked up we said it was the missionaries and she instantly hung up. I guess we are just being tested in our faith. nothing super interesting in happy valley ward. Just loving the members! They love our companionship and request to have us over for dinner. I’m gonna be really sad when I leave this ward., They have basically become my family. This week we have just been doing a lot of finding and unfortunately to no avail. The flood gates will open eventually though! Oh and funny story so this week we biked to the very top of our area (seacliff) and we locked up our bikes and went finding. When we came back to the bikes my tire was flat so since nobody could pick us up we had to walk 8 km from sea cliff to the flat uphill pushing our bikes. Lots of fun but a good chance to see the ocean view. Thats my week
love ya
Elder Dickson
hey hey hows the last few days been?
Brent – ‎So you can go crazy eating at members houses because you work it off on the bikes! Guess you don’t have tire repair kits with you. Nothing too exciting here. Jake is obsessed with slamming doors. Makes him super popular in our house.
Krista –  Oh goodness… I guess there is balance in all things… tough missionary work but a great ward.! i guess you just have to keep working and serving and hope that some people are touched.

It sounds like you are doing lots of biking and walking… you sure haven’t had much luck with bikes. Are you learning to fix them?
Tommy – yeah thats one thing i regret i didnt know how to do was to fix bikes. but ive taught myself
Krista – I’m sure you are learning lots of practical things as well as spiritual things. How is your household knowledge holding up?
Brent – You should see my form in a scrum now. I would have made an awesome loose Head!
Tommy – household knowledge? – loosey as they call it – so are you going to be coaching the forwards?
Krista – Can you clean and cook? Broken any more windows???
Brent – ‎I also got better at going north south rather than side to side in touch rugby.
Tommy – yes i can clean and cook mom and nope no wrestling between us. and yeah that confused me the most dad was the lack of side to side. took me a while to learn but chambers smashed it into me
Brent – ‎I am doing forwards for juniors and working with Chambers who is doing the Sr forwards. The goal is to practice together as much as possible. Planning on learning a lot from him.
Tommy – ok who is going to coach the backs?
Brent – ‎The clinic was really good. Led by a coach from Thirsk and one from Rundle. Gave great coaching technique. But I am sore today. ‎By the time you get home I might look like I know what I am doing.   Chmilar does juniors. Not sure about senior backs yet.
Krista – I’m glad you’re doing well. Can you believe you have been out 6 months????  That’s so exciting! Grandpa is telling me details about New Zealand geography. Is all of Adelaide as hilly as your area?
Tommy – ok thats gonna be good – no adelaide is very flat except for my area – i put some photos in the drive, youll have to show grandpa the spider one. it was about the size of half my hand
Brent – ‎So glad you get the hills! If you have to walk 8 km at least it is by the ocean.
Krista – So where in the Philippines is Elder Angelo from? City? Rural? What part of the country?
Tommy – hes from manila and yeah look at the photos i got dad
Brent – ‎So what kind of numbers do you have to report. We used to have to report contacts and teaching appointments.
Tommy – we report 1) baptisms and confirmations 2) baptismal dates 3) investigators at sacrament 4) new investigators
Brent – That sounds pretty good. We counted every person we talked to while finding. Sometimes I found we were more worried about the numbers than the person.
Tommy – yeah we have to count that but we dont report that to salt lake
Brent – Keep the pictures coming. They are lots of fun to share.
Krista – Grandpa and I just looked at the photos…. I’m not impressed by the spider!!!!!!! But the view pictures are super cool. Is that the area you were talking about where the bike broke down? I also liked the tag pictures and the picture of the smiley face dinner. Whose idea was that?
Tommy – tag pictures were me and thats elder angleo’s birthday dinner
Brent – So there were only 3 out of 17 priests at church today. Drew seemed kind of confused. Jake is now saying your name in his room. Maybe he senses we are emailing.
Krista – I love it! Did you make the smiley face food for him? He looks like such a nice boy. Every time I see him he is smiling. No wonder the ward likes the two of you. you are a big social guy and make friends easily and it looks like he is easy to get along with. it’s your old volleyball bag… he has adopted it! Dad is going to be so jealous of the ocean view pictures. They are very beautiful!
Brent – ‎So next week is pi.k tshirts day. The fashion show was impressive. This year the shirts are grey with hot pink lettering that says “Dude Be Nice”. Got the idea from a shirt at CSLC last fall.
Tommy – do you have a picture of them?
Brent -I’ll send you pictures next week. The Pink shirt day is wednesday. Not sure what else we will do this semester. Last year ASLC kept us busy.
Krista -That’s cool! Uncle Shane’s family is down in Provo at Maddie’s recital.  It is a big deal and Maddie has worked really hard for it
Tommy – yeah grandma sent me photos of it
Krista – That’s good! Not sure you are going to get any pictures of recitals from our family anytime soon… Maybe I will just take a picture of Drew working at Treehouse 🙂
Tommy – haha thats a recital i guess
Krista – SIster Parker had a great picture  of your Zone she just posted. You are on the end with Elder Ivory. It’s fun to see those missionaries that you went through the MTC with.
Tommy – how has leadership been this year? whats the coolest thing you did?
Brent – ‎It is different this year without the conference. I would say the pep rally was awesome. I also liked Coyote Week. The funniest day was Are you smarter than Trump. Fischer was dressed as Trump and competed with students on stuff like who could build the best wall. ‎This week I am going to Shaw and MidSun to teach their Gr 9 Leadership classes. Gotta recruit for next year. I have fun doing it.
Tommy – so do you go for a day and just teach? or is it a workshop?
Brent – ‎I just go when they have their class. I show some pictures and do some fun activities with them to get them to take the course next year. Between that and the feeder conference last November and I should get enough.
Tommy – are a lot of grade 10s signing up for leadership?
Krista – So how have the new mission “rules” applied to you? Have you changed your schedule at all? Are you keeping the same hours?
Brent – We had four classes this year. Two each semester. They each have 35-40 kids. The most we had before was 3 classes. Keeps getting bigger.
Tommy – so far they havent implemente them yet, they will start next transfer (monday)
Krista – Hmmm… interesting. Remind me again what will change
Tommy – just the times of different things and we will get an extra hour of sleep and longer p-days
Brent – So transfers… think you are on the move or staying put? Always fun to speculate.
Krista – Right… now I remember. By the next time we talk to you, you should know whether you are staying put or moving. It will be interesting!
Tommy – i think im gonna move because i have been in the ward i was “born” in for 6 months
Brent – ‎I vote for the outback. I want you on a walkabout! Maybe then you can punch a kangaroo!
Tommy – im quite determined to punch a kangaroo
Krista – We can’t wait to hear. Either way would be great. A new adventure or you get to stay with people you love. Win either way
Tommy – seriously win win
Krista – Oh please… the last thing we need is to hear about the missionary arrested in Australia for assaulting wildlife!
Brent – That would make Drew proud.
Tommy – rocky 6 elder dickson vs. kangaroo
Krista – Great! Just like “Fist Fight” but the Australian version!
Brent – ‎If someone questions you just say “I’m Canadian, how it going eh?”. They will give you the Canadian pass 🙂
Tommy – ill just tell them that my divine mission was to fight this kangaroo
Krista – OH that will be a great missionary tool for the church! I can see the media now!
Brent – I have never been more proud. Have you had any more Yankee rootbeers?
Tommy – no it makes me feel sick to drink them then ride the bike – i have to go i love ya bye

Jan 9, 2017

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This post has a Youtube video – if you are just reading by email you need to go to the website to view the video

Hey Mom and Dad,

This four days have been an interesting one. On Friday we got hit with a massive heatwave. We were out proselyting in 42 degree weather. Everybody’s house we knocked on felt so sorry for us and gave us some nice cold water. I was sweating buckets, it was ridiculous. Saturdays heat wasn’t as bad. It was only 39 degrees. But we had a good lesson with a man named Andrew. Andrew is a nice man who is married to a member. He is an older gentleman who knows a lot about religious history so he is hard to teach. But he has a bunch of shrines in his house so I dont know if he even knows the ten commandments. Yesterday we had a good day.  We also sang at a multi stake missionary fireside. Elder Punou, Martin and I and a few others sang “come follow me”. We brought Sister Parker to tears. MISSION ACCOMPLISHED. Other than that is been pretty uneventful.

Krista -Oh Oh…. I hope you are going to survive at least another week with your companions… As long as you can get the not so nice stuff out in the journal and then try to see the best for the rest of the day you are doing great!  I’m not surprised that you had Sister Parker in tears. That singing at Christmas was a killer for me. How nice that you have companions who are good singers.  Our weather is about as opposite as can be… ! 42… WOW I suppose if you kept being invited in that was a little bit of a blessing.

Brent – 42! Maybe I am not so jealous

Tommy – The weather is ridiculous, it was 36 degrees in our flat even with the a/c on full blast

Krista -Oh my goodness… that has got to be hard on my little Canadian boy!!!  Do your Australian and New Zealand companions manage better in the heat? Are you still teaching Cliff and the boys?

Tommy – They manage way better than i do, but i am pretty decent, and yes but slowly and surely

Krista – By the time you come back to Canada you will be like Sister Gilson’s son who served in Sydney. She said he hasn’t felt like he was warm since. Are the other areas in your mission that hot? Darwin or  Mildura or Alice Springs? What is coming up for Pday today?

Brent – I guess that will take care of any weight gain from the MTC. I saw Joel Patterson at the game last night. He asked about you. He is upgrading classes. He goes March 1 to Portugal. He says he is ready to go.

Tommy – The heat wave only hit Adelaide but Alice is ridiculously hot right now and Darwin is always 30 degrees or above all year round … oh we are finally going to all you can eat pizza hut

Krista – Oh funny story… Grandpa and the Steed girls had a Pride and Prejudice sleepover this weekend. 6 hours of Mr. Darcy…. KFC… Oreos and a Kilogram of Bacon…. Drew said it sounded like it was almost worth it  for the treats but that he would just play on his IPAD . I told him he had to pay the video price and he was no longer that keen!  All you can eat pizza sounds like a good change from constant noodles! Do you still get good dinner appointments? Grady Trim was sitting in front of us in Sacrament and he was drawing Ninja Turtles and it made me think of you

Brent – Remember Canadian bacon is Ham. I figured you will be the meats man.  Packers 38- Giants 13. Happy Dad Sad Drew

Tommy – oh I forgot to tell you kfc is soooooo much better here than in Canada. Australians are crazy for kfc so their quality is better. Yes we get lots of dinner appointments thanks to super missionary mom Sue Chambers

Krista – That’s great… where does she have a child serving? Is she one of the ward missionaries?

Tommy – She doesnt have a kid serving, She is just basically our mom in the ward. Always makes sure we are eating our veggies

Krista – I’m glad you have several moms to nag you in my absence. Between Sister Parker and Sister Chambers and I’m sure some of the other senior missionaries it sounds like you are looked after. Do you see any of the other senior missionaries? Tell me a little about them

Tommy – oh mom can you ask teigan to send me those photos he took of us on the hikes in waterton? … We dont ever see them because we are farther away from the mission home.

Brent – Are you going to show people what a real mountain looks like?

Krista – Yes… I forgot about that. I have to talk to Teigan anyway so I will text him. I am loving the pictures and videos in your drive… I will love to hear the stories behind some of them … Were you still here when there was that bear attack on Forum?

Brent – I think Benny and I need to do the three peak hikes in Waterton this summer. He wants to and you inspired me.

Tommy – no I wasnt, what happened? … those hikes are fun i regret no doing them earlier

Krista – A guy was hiking the ridge I want to say… not completely sure where he was but was attacked by a Grizzly and they had to take him out through the Waterton side… just looked up the new report it was the third week in September and I remember thinking that you and Taylor and Teigan had just been hiking that and I was thinking how bad the visibility was that day… you might not have even been able to see a bear!

Brent – Uncle Dave just texted over to see if we were eating pie. Specifically Drew and humble pie with the Giants loss. What a loving uncle.

Krista – Isn’t it great to see how much we love and support one another!

Tommy – thats the uncle dave i remember

Brent – Your Colts didn’t even get a sniff of the playoffs so I guess we all suffer somewhere.

Krista – A true test of teaching basic doctrine and the power of the Spirit. I taught a lesson today about the atonement and there was a great quote from PResident PAcker that talks about how there are lots of “branches” in the church but that they have to be connected to the root of the Atonement  “[The Atonement of Jesus Christ] is the very root of Christian doctrine. You may know much about the gospel as it branches out from there, but if you only know the branches and those branches do not touch that root, if they have been cut free from that truth, there will be no life nor substance nor redemption in them” (in Conference Report, Apr. 1977, 80; or Ensign, May 1977, 56).

Tommy – nice quote

Brent – Mom made veggie and fruit packages for the boys to take to lunch. I suggested bacon bags but mom said no.

Krista – I love both of those… Here is my other favorite quote from the lesson. It can be challenging to teach basic doctrine that feels like we all know but Brother Matthews and Sister Elford who are both converts spoke about what a revelation those doctrines were to them and about how taht attracted them to the church and they felt the truth of that message . A great testimony of missionary work!  President Ezra Taft Benson said, “We may never understand nor comprehend in mortality how He accomplished what He did, but we must not fail to understand why he did what He did.  All that He did was prompted by His unselfish, infinite love for us.”  (Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, p. 15)  

Krista – Do you have any district or zone meetings this week? When will you find out about transfers?

Tommy – we have district meeting tomorrow and we will find out about transfers on sunday

Krista – So I’m a little confused how many elders in district 10??? and then 20 in zone?

Brent – Hopefully there is air conditioning. We don’t want your whole zone to melt. If you are really heat suffering just slowly say I Am Canadian

Tommy – There are three districts in our zone we have five elders and two sisters in our district. our district has us, the zone leaders and the sisters

Krista – Dad just saw the root beer video and he was happy!

Brent – Does it actually taste like A&W

Tommy – no its not as good but its close

Brent – So Jake just turned on the big ceiling fan again. Just what you need with -20C outside. Close is still good. I ha one rootbeer in 2 years and Tim mailed it from Scotland.

Tommy – you can get mug root beer in asian stores but no a&w and yay ceiling fans

Krista – That’s interesting. I guess you never know what you will miss. What else can’t you get?

Tommy – sour cream and onion chips, banana peppers, normal hot dogs … I have to go now, I love you guys bye

 

 

 

 

October 16, 2016

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Hey Mom and Dad,

Yeah I see all the pictures dad sends me and I really appreciate it. All the other elders are laughing at Benny’s halloween costume. The boys we are teaching are being baptized on november the 4th and they are making huge progress. It’s amazing to see how accepting they are of everything we teach! Little miracle this week, we felt prompted to go buy some candy for one of our recent converts and so as we walked into the store there was Ethan and Tyson! We hadnt been able to see them for almost a week and we ran into them. We caught up and set a time to come back and teach. We met this family this week that are just the golden investigators. We stopped by their house and their son Alfy (4 years old) dragged us in the door. Their uncle also wants to join in on the lessons. The poutine went great! Elder Larson (district leader) is hooked and asked me to make it again. Elder Touma is being transfered and Elder Johnson is gonna be training so I wont be the new one in the flat anymore! And yes Mom I made the gravy from a base. The storm was absolutely unreal. There are so many trees that have been blown over. No I havent seen any big spiders yet. It’s been too cold for the snakes and spiders so far.
Krista -That’s great about your investigators. How wonderful to have a baptism within the first couple of months of being in Australia. Tell me about your Golden investigators. Who is in the family? Are you still teaching the woman with the autistic son?

When I get Benny dressed up in the costume I will send a picture. it remains to be seen if he can move around in it. Are you keeping your coat then…? you don’t need to buy one? Are transfers next week?

Tommy – the family is hannah (mom) I cant remeber the dads name and three kids. Every time we stop by Alfy always drags us around the house showing us stuff. We dont know them too well but are going to see them this week. I’ll tell you mom there a reason im in happy valley ward. Yesterday a family in our ward found out that their 4 year old son has autism. I was able to talk to them and comfort them and tell them all about it. We havent been able to see the other family with autism due to us being busy but we will this week.

Krista – I’m glad you are in the right place.  It is great that you know how to relate to those families. I remember how that feels to get a new diagnosis. The first while it is like your whole world is turned upside down.  I spent a lot of time crying. All of the plans you had change and you have to start planning a very different life. It’s like being in mourning for a while. But there is great hope and comfort in the gospel and in family and friends. It sounds like you are keeping busy with teaching and conferences. Was zone conference this week?

Brent – Do you like the website. Do you want any changes?  I saw the pictures on your mission mom’s website of your zone conference. The sloppy joes look good.

Tommy – oh they were freaking heavenly, I had 4 and the website looks awesome

Brent – Super exciting to teach those brothers. I baptized a 13 year old whose parents were members but had gone inactive for a while. That is so great. 59 minutecookie dough fundraiser this week. Drew, Isabelle, Taylor, and Grace are all fighting over the Steeds.

Tommy – haha let them know that grandparents are the suckers and there are only so many Steeds that will buy

Brent – They are selling loaves and cake decorating stuff too. Very exciting. Home taught McCues today. I gave the message today and they pretty much ignored me. I didn’t have the mouse book. They are picky.

Tommy – oh rookie mistake dad – I need a mouse book when I teach these kids – we have a family in our ward that is so hyper and they love to fight the missionaries. I could use something like that

Brent – If you are good maybe you will get one sent your way. Funny how I can get 90 kids quiet in a gym but got killed by 5 McCues. Hopefully it goes well with Stevens next week. They don’t need the mouse.

Tommy – haha we arent allowed to use a mouse book anyways. Do you guys know any good object lessons?

Brent – Be patient. You are a big deal to them. Picture them as missionaries one day. Can’t be any tougher than daily life in the cabins in Waterton.

Tommy – haha yeah they are nothing compared to lukes groin punches

Brent – We need to get Mom on Pinterest. She will find some good ideas for you. McCues were talking about the candy shirt this summer. We can thank Pinterest for that! Are you getting many dinner appointments?  We used to have breakfast, big meal 2-4, then snack at night. Almost no dinner appointments ever.

Tommy – we have one dinner appt this week with our investigating family but its usually 2-3 a week

Brent – We listened to LeGrand Curtis’s talk from priesthood for scriptures tonight. Great talk about the Book of Mormon. He told the story about the church being illegal in Ghana. I taught and baptized a man in Sweden from Ghana whose family lost their home at that time. He was the only nonmember in his family. His name is Eddie. Wonder where he is now and if he is active.

Tommy – my favourite talk is a tie between Mark W. Basset or David A. Bednar

That’s all for this week everyone