Monday, December 23, 2013

email: Well, things can't get worse than this week...

I GET TO TALK TO THE FAMILY IN TWO DAYS! I cannot wait to see everyone and see how things are going! This is my last Christmas in the mission field! It is kinda crazy to think about that right now. I saw the trunky count down timer you have on my blog. Good one! That is super clever haha. Alright, ready for my interesting week? Let’s go!

Monday was an okay Pday. I got my haircut and then took a nap before we went and emailed at the library in the early afternoon. We then shopped and worked out then met Anita at the mall to get some stuff for the Elders. I love being able to spend time with her. She got Elder Anderson a Nike jacket that he seriously wears all day every day. It made his Christmas and I am so thankful for Anita for being generous and doing that for him. We then went to dinner and came home after we got OYMs because Anderson got some news from his family that really got him upset. When we came home that night, we didn't take the bikes up, we just left them at the bottom of our stairs at our apartment and locked them up there. It was a rough night and I was helping him through it all and so we both weren't in the right state of mind that night. And it sure as heck paid off...

We woke up Tuesday morning and we walked out to go get on the bikes to ride when we looked below the stairs and the bikes were gone... FETCH! So we got on our Shanks' ponies and took off to go see Ivan. We had to walk all say because we had no way to get around. Needless to say, I was super tired and my feet were on fire. Good times. We walked to go see Tom again and see how he is doing. He isn't progressing just yet but we are going to keep on him to try and get that going. We had dinner with the H*** family which was nice and then we went to go see Cale. He is progressing really nicely and he is making huge changes. We got him on track to stop smoking so hopefully that will happen later that week (which it did!). Funny story during that lesson. I went to commit Cale to live the Word of Wisdom that we were teaching and I said the Law of Chasity instead... Dangit! That's what happens when you're super doped up on cold meds haha. We then had another situation go down with my companion that night... He got some news from his recent convert in Hemet about his blood brother and how things are not going well for him. To make a long story short, we ended up yelling at each other and trying to make peace. We eventually did and things are good. I've come to realize that I am the kind of man to not take recognition for the things I do. Elder Anderson told me that he prayed for me specifically to be comps and that he looks up to me and wants to be just like me. That floored me because I didn't realize how much of an impact I was making on him. The Lord knows what He is doing for sure!

We were still on our Shanks' ponies on Wednesday so we walked to our potential blessing to find that it fell through... But we did get to meet these super nice JDub (Jehovah’s Witness) ladies out tracting too! We shared scripture and we talked about our missions and our beliefs. They even offered to drive us home because they asked about our bike situation and they felt sorry for what happened haha. We didn't get in though so we walked home. We then did a service project for the community and all the local kids. A non-profit organization is going to give a thousand kids a present so they can have a Christmas. The missionaries help every year and today we helped sort presents and get things ready for Saturday. However, after the project, I got super sick with what I think was a super bad sinus infection so that knocked me out for the rest of the night... We had Bakers dropped off to us and so we had dinner but it was a rough night for me. We did however, get a bike for Elder Anderson so we are back on the bikes again!

Thursday was another rough day too because I was feeling terrible... I slept almost all morning and then when we were about to go out to go make some visits... It starts to rain! Just my luck... Riding in the rain and feeling miserable is not fun. It was some sure big wife points though! We got our OYMs and then had dinner with the C**** that night. They are an awesome family; this was the first time we got to eat with them. Brother C**** has an interesting family... Come to find out, all of them are in the medicinal marijuana business. Whoops! After dinner, we had our lesson with Cale and we taught about the Law of Chasity and tithing. He is on track to still hopefully get baptized this weekend! Keep him in your prayers that we can make that happen for him family! On Friday morning, we drove to Corona to have multi-zone conference with President Smart and the AP's. It was super good but super long. Towards the end, I was trying real hard to stay focused but then my meds ran out and I tanked... I felt terrible towards the end of the meeting and I couldn't do anything about it. I had to give my outgoing testimony too and that was bittersweet. It’s crazy to think I only have a few months left... It went way too fast. However, it was good to see old mission buddies there and catch up with them. Anita stopped by the apartment to drop off a pie and I looked like death... I slept through dinner and then went off to a lesson with Allison and her family. Allison got all made up for us and I think that is interesting... Oh well haha. Their kids are super fun and I love going over there to see them.

Saturday was the big day! We got to help with the toy drive and giving out the toys to the kids. I started by helping ushering kids into the door to going in front of the kids teaching them the wave and singing songs with them. It was super fun! No one was stepping up to get things organized so I did it myself. I guess that's something Dad taught me to do. I could hear him say "quit standing there with your teeth in your mouth and go get it done!" We taught the kids "popcorn popping on the Christmas tree" and "once there was a snowman"! It was super fun. By the end of it the second group, I had no voice. The poor Sisters I was working with didn't have a loud voice like I do so I kinda took over the show... Whoops! Good thing they know the words because I had forgotten them all! After the project, I came home to sleep some more because I was still feeling terrible and then we went out to make visits. I had the worst experience with Eddy on Saturday night. When we saw him, we could tell there was something wrong with him. He was super high and I think on meth. We kept hugging us and he ended up kissing me on the cheek which I about decked him when he did that. There was the most evil feeling at his home and I hated it. I just wanted to run. There was a man sitting in his garage with the door half open so I couldn't see his face but I could see him turned at me with his hand together in his lap staring at me through the garage door. There was a meth pipe in the garage and Eddy was tweaking super bad. It was the worst feeling ever... We then went to Tom's again and invited him to church and to read then off to Cale's. Cale is done smoking! He's done it and it’s super awesome. We invited him to church so hopefully he'll come.

We made our church visits Sunday morning and we got Cale to come to church! We ended up having Cale, Melissa and Jean Johnson come to church. That's the most investigators at church this ward has had in a long time! Cale went home after sacrament but Jean stayed for the second hour and Melissa stayed all three. It was a good Christmas program and there was some good talent there. I taught the youth Sunday school and that was a ton of fun. Melissa, the bishop's daughter's friend that is investigating, was answering more questions than the young men! Those boys... But I guess there was some drama win the investigator class with a member so that was interesting. We then came home and slept some more because we're trying to get feeling better and then we went off to the S**** family for dinner. I love that family so much! I sat with JuJu, the 5 year old, and had dinner with him. We taught the Restoration with the rubix cube and then got our OYMs and called it a night. It was a good way to end a crummy week! Gotta make the best of any situation and just smile back :).

I love y’all and can't wait to see y’all in a few days! Tomorrow is the Christmas party and I get to see everyone one last time before I leave! Plus I am performing at the talent show at the party so that'll be good! Love all of y’all and we will talk soon!

Elder Tonini

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