Monday, September 24, 2012

I think my brain just gets tired!

So I've been in Bulgaria for over a month now!

The language is coming along pretty well I can understand most of what people say but speaking is still a bit tough. I am pretty used to the schedule 6:30 comes way to early every morning but once I'm up its not too bad. The food is really good, we don't eat at members really ever.  I have once and that was with the elders from the other district when my comp was on splits or something.  It was good but they don't have a ton here and people just don't really invite people to their homes. The bread isn't really that special it's okay if you get it fresh from a bakers or something but otherwise its just bread. Doners are really good though, I haven't got time to describe them today but remind me next week!

I'm not positive, but I think this is a Doner.  It is a fast food in Bulgaria and it looks like something he would love.

This week was good Gardner was off to Blagovgrad for splits on Wednesday but otherwise it was pretty normal. We only street contact now, door knocking isn't super successful so we only do it when it's too cold for people to be out on the streets.  I found a few cool people this week and we got to meet with one and give him a Book of Mormon already so that was cool.  We should get to meet with some others and probably him again this week. We have a lot of investigators right now so we've got a lot of people to meet with which is nice.  It is nice not having to spend super long periods of time contacting because after a couple hours my Bulgarian seems to get worse I think my brain just gets tired!

But yeah that's about all for this week, Have an awesome week!

Love you all,
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Monday, September 17, 2012

That will come, I am sure of it!

This week nothing too exciting went on.  My companion, being a zone leader had to go to Pleven for splits, so I was with a different Elder here and that went well. This week he will probably be going to Blagovgrad too so I will probably get to serve with lots of different Elders while I am here but that is okay it is cool seeing how different people work and learn different things from different Elders!

I had a lot of time contacting this week although not a ton of success in finding new people, that is always tough but it is always the best finding someone who is interested and then being able to talk and discuss with them.  I have yet to have a second meeting show up but that will come, I am sure of it!

It has really started to cool off here, which is nice, and the last couple of days we have gotten a lot of rain! But yeah nothing too new or super special this week, the work is going well!

Lets see... for a little spiritual thought from my readings in Alma this week, especially the war chapters, I really liked how Moroni first prepared the people spiritually then he had them build the fortifications and I think that is especially relevant in our lives as we spiritually prepare ourselves we will be able to withstand and make it through spiritual trials but we will also be able to make it through physical trials because as we have faith in the Lord and are fixed in our minds to do what is right we will receive strength from the Lord to help us though the hard times. I have seen the Lords help in my life as I have had challenges - with no one listening or other people who just want to argue or mock us and I know that that help is there for everyone!

So yeah, have a super awesome week and remember to read the scriptures every day!!

Love you all,
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Monday, September 10, 2012

That's basically this week.

Ian (age 6)  gave wise advice to his missionary brothers this week, "I want to say one thing: Both of you - I hope you are having a good time and doing the things you are supposed to do. Austin - I hope you have a good time coming back and Christian - I hope you have a good time in Bulgaria and send us lots of good messages about what you are doing there."

Christian's response:

Okay Ian, here is a message about what I did this week in Bulgaria!

So it was a good week, we had a lot of contacting but it was a hard week in getting people's numbers and finding those who are interested. But I had a lot of really good conversations and it was good in helping my Bulgarian improve as well as helping me be better at answering hard questions I had a lot of those this week for some reason. But cool experience with that though, so one day after a long day of tons of contacting with no success and feeling like maybe I could have had a bit more success if I was better at answering questions, I was going to read some in the BoM and so I said a quick prayer to be able to find better answers to questions and just be a better missionary.  As I just started reading, I was able to find all the answers that I needed and that were giving me the hardest time! The scriptures are amazing and they can answer our questions and bring us comfort, whether we are missionaries or not. So yeah, that was cool.

We were going to go to the game on Friday with Sophi but the friend with the tickets ended up going to Greece because they had a long weekend for some holiday so we didn't get to go.  That was a bummer, especially since that night during language study I could hear the cheering from the stadium across the street. Oh well, maybe some other time.

So yeah, that's basically this week.  We had some good lessons although there was one afternoon my companion was sick so I just cleaned the apartment for a bit. It's strange how I feel like sometimes I just want to take a break or something but then when I can't do any work - all I want to do is work!  Two years is not that long, I plan on getting as much work done as I can!

Love you all, have an awesome week!
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Monday, September 3, 2012

This week has been good!

This week has been good, it's crazy though, it feels like I have been here forever but also like it was only yesterday that I wrote last.

The language is definitely improving I can understand more and speak a little bit better but like I seem to say a lot - there is still much more for me to learn.

This week I got to meet the rest of our investigators and they all are super awesome, we have some really solid investigators.  We had a good number of lessons this week, my first lesson that I set up with someone I contacted, didn't show but that's not too unusual.

We took some food to a баба (grandma or older lady)  this week and she was super nice.  She lives alone with her four cats.  She has a couple kids and grand kids but I could tell she was a bit lonely. We had asked about her family and she went into the other room and brought out these two, way thick, books of pictures of her her kids and other missionaries and such.  She has been a member for quite a bit, so we were there for a couple hours while she showed us the pictures and told us about them. She also read us a story from a book that her grand kids like and got some pictures with us.  ( I didn't have my camera but I will get a picture with her later)   That was way fun!

So my companion is way cool, he is super good at teaching and all and he is a good help for me in learning the language and keeping me involved in the lessons. He really, really loves vinegar though as well as spices.  Everything he cooks is just loaded with both of them, it doesn't taste bad but it's kind of like being punched in the mouth a lot when you are eating it. Our apartment is nice and good sized there is plenty of room for us.  The kitchen is pretty small, I wish the stove was a bit bigger but it is good enough. The bathroom is pretty sweet, it's like everything is tile and there is the shower attached to the sink and you basically shower around the sink and the toilet, so that is pretty neat.

I was kind of disappointed I didn't see the roaches last week but I've seen some around now, they aren't too impressive they are quite small, we luckily don't have any in our apartment though so it's all good.

The branch is really cool, we have some pretty cool members.  We are working with a recent convert , he is an engineer and he is so solid and awesome it is so much fun to teach him and work with him. Church was a lot better this week I wasn't nearly as tired and I could understand a bit more so that was good. Oh, one lady, I forget her name, she is super energetic though and way fun but while we were waiting at the church for one of our lessons (the no show) she was there cleaning and my companion, all the sudden, was like, "Hey, will you practice with him?"  So she pretended to be a stranger and I would have to stop her and all that jazz and she made me do it like a whole ton but she gave some really good advice too between each one, that was cool and pretty helpful but I definitely wasn't expecting that.

Oh and this week we were going to go to a soccer game, Levski vs Cherno moray, with one of our investigators Sophi (super solid investigator probably not baptized because mom is not super into her getting baptized), because her friend had some free tickets but then they didn't allow any fans at the game because at the last game the fans were so bad with fighting and other stuff that they had to be "punished" or something like that. So we didn't get to go but this week, at least I think it is this week, she also has tickets to Bulgaria vs. Italy so we should be going to that one!!

So yeah, that is whats up in Bulgaria right now, the work is going great and it is awesome to see how the Lord blesses us as we strive to be better, whether we are trying to be better missionaries or just better people. I know that He loves us all so much!!

Love to everyone!
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