This was a very eventful week, and most of it had to with apples.
It's definitely fall. We helped the Christleys make apple butter, we cored and peeled and cut the apples and then put em in to bake! It smells so good while it's cooking! Then on Saturday we helped them make apple cider which was LOADS of fun, the perfect Autumnal activity, I highly recommend we buy a cider press. :) Or make one! Theirs was actually homemade! I will send a comprehensive picture report on the process.
This week was Elder Porter's week to take over every planning and teaching situation! He did great. He has more to learn! But so does everyone else. President Russell challenged Elder Porter to hand out 2 Book of Mormons this week. We hadn't had much success with that here (a very small community with quite a few churches, most people have been trained by their pastors what to say), so we went tracting a lot, but we hadn't passed any out until Saturday we met a Hispanic family who were Catholic and couldn't read English, we told them we would be back with a Spanish one (we have a whole box) and they said they would take it. We didn't get over there on Sunday for reasons I will name later. Elder Porter's a little disappointed we didn't meet our goal, but I told him that the point of goals isn't to reach your goal, it's to make you stretch. And we did! We worked harder at finding than we would have otherwise.
Todd and Victoria are a great young couple with a few kids, but they're not married yet. They're a little rough around the edges, but they're just really good people. You can see kind of a light in their eyes. They're a little hard to pin down, but we just dropped by early in the week and they were there. Todd has quit his job which will make it easier to get in to teach them, but now he needs a job. So when we dropped by they were glad to see us and asked if we wanted to have a lesson then, (Elder Porter was a little uncomfortable because we didn't have anything prepared, but! We need to be ready to teach when we find and find when we teach! So we read 3 Nephi 18 with them, talked about prayer, and challenged them to pray in their families! It's cool because they have very little religious backing or education, but they really want to understand the things in the scriptures and they recognize the Spirit it brings.
We helped an older couple in the ward paint their house, and got pizza in return-always a fair trade.
Wednesday night we went with the single young man who actually attends every meeting to clean up fallen apples at an elderly member's home. We went in pros which was a bad idea, messy rotten apple gunk on your favorite leather shoes is not a good combination... and afterwards we went back to the church and learned how to tie paracord! So now I have a nice rainbow bracelet.
We weren't able to teach the Stockers, but their little baby was sick, she didn't sleep for two days and neither did her parents. They asked us on Saturday to come and give her a blessing even thoughj at that point she was doing a lot better, so we got the Bishop to give us a ride down there (because we're out of miles and it's in Cali), and I had the sniffles so I didn't want to touch the baby (I put my hands on top). It was realy nice. They were very appreciative. We're planning on watching one of the conference sessions with them.
So Saturday I was sniffling and sneezing, but I wasn't the one who was sick the next day. Sunday morning Elder Porter woke up at 3 am with the flu. He was not doing well. I gave him a blessing before church, but during Sacrament we sat in the foyer so he could run to the bathroom every five minutes. I had to talk to a few people after they got out, so people kind of clustered around Elder Porter commenting on how terrible he looked, how he was probably dying, and ho he should just go home and sleep. So that 's what happened. I had great intentions of cleaning the whole apartment and reading a ton in the Book of Mormon (we're reading it as a mission before the end of the year), but I didn't accomplish much before I fell asleep on a chair. It's too boring just sitting around. Luckily we had an ex army medic in the ward who gave us some advice and brought soup and propel for mi compy, and another member brought us dinner, so it was good. I had to drag him out for....
Bro. Christleys Baptism!!!!!! It went so well. He was just so happy. And everything became so complete now that they're fully members of the church and are now looking towards the temple. I was a little bit nervous as usual, but he went under great, he made sure to hold his beard down. The talks were really good, I picked the hymns, but I was very touched by my selection (cough cough not prideful), especially when we sang I Feel My Savior's Love, because it was just what the Christleys have covenanted to do, "He knows I will follow him, Give all my life to him." The only downer was that Elder Porter was still a zombie. Josh didn't really want him in the confirmation circle on behalf of his zombie-ism, but I knew he would rather be in it, so I insisted. I had him stand on my right side so his hand would be on my shoulder and I put my hand on top of everyone elses and had Elder Porter put his hand on mine so we wouldn't infect anyone else. For refreshments the Christleys brought brownies and cider, which was a huge hit. We got to take a full jar home! :D
This morning Sister Collins, who's kind of a matriarch of the ward, gave me a piano lesson! She gives them free to missionaries. It was fun. I'll be a pro by the time I go home! Though it may be the only lesson I get from her (transfers are a week from today, just a heads up).
And lastly but not leastly, Elder Kleinman called this morning to tell me the Red Yellow Green report had come in, and I'm a red driver, which means I can't drive again for the rest of my mission. I was so happy. Aren't you proud of me? To give you some context, when you get enough Tiwi violations your score goes from green to yellow. The first time this happens you are given a warning. That happened in White City on my birthday. A huffy Elder Rout called to tell me happy birthday and stop driving so bumpy. Miles driven without violations improve your score and get you out of the yellow zone. A second yellow violation comes with a driving probation of about 45 days. This happened in Brookings on the long stretches of windy coastal road and probably had something to do with me being transferred to Santa Clara 6th, an all bike area. So when I got a car again in Lakeview I was determined to drive my best! I did great the first two or so months, but then they decided to switch our cars and I got stuck with what I believe is a demonic hypersensitive tiwi. On the way back from a Zone Conference in Medford the GPS took us down a windy back country road with very sharp corners. These corners had suggestions for lower speed limits but I had never payed much attention to those, so pretty much ever time I turned a corner I heard, "Aggressive Driving". It was bad. So Elder Kleinman warned me I needed to shape up my act, and I tried, but stupid little things kept happening (stupid little things usually equaled deer), and finally I came to my third yellow violation which puts you down to red which means you struck out. Now! To make it even better, almost a year ago we had a month where the whole mission was green drivers, no one was in the yellow. This had never happened before! In any mission! Salt Lake was shocked! For Zone Training the Kleinmans provided green frosted sugar cookies for every missionary in the mission! Furthermore, I cannot imagine the vehicle departments shock as month after month, the whole mission stayed green. We had to be the poster child for missionary driving worldwide. And every month we got green cinnamon rolls, brownies, muffins, whatever they could come up with. All that kept up until.... This morning. I single handedly broke the roll we were on. Now I will go down in infamy (at least in Elder Kleinman's books) till the end of time. But I'm honestly so relieved to not drive any more! :D
Anyways that was a long rant, but I like our mission culture. It's the best.
So it was a great week! I hope yours was too!