I have a strong suspicion that the countdown began much earlier! Elliott answered several of my questions in this letter, but I asked more. Still wondering which General Conference address touched his heart the most, among other things. If you have a minute or two send him some love. He is still at the Provo MTC, mailbox 82. You can send a quick note for free via dearelder.com or send one by snailmail. Find the address on this blog's first post.
OCTOBER 9, 2012
So, 13 days until departure. I think. We get travel plans this Thursday (so pumped. hoping for Korean Air). Anyways, if the abruptness of this sentence is any indicator, I'm really looking forward to getting them; that will make Korea feel that much more like a real place that we're going to.
This last week was rather crazy. Starting with getting the news about Mason (BTW, one of the people in my district is going to Aneheim, Korean Speaking... one Elder Hogge). Unfortunate about the accident, but he's and the other man involved have been in my prayers (so much so, I figured I should probably figure out how to ask in Korean). But it's good to hear that Mason is doing better. I'm glad he was able to receive a priesthood blessing (another fact that motivated me to learn how to give a priesthood blessing in Korean. It might not be obvious, but my language study plan has changed quite a bit). Here's some news that he might find fairly exciting. During conference, I ran into one Elder Quinn Neilson. That was a bit of a shocker; it's been rather crazy thinking about how many people I've run into here at the MTC that I know. It's been really nice though.
Mom and dad, thanks for the pie package yesterday (I have no idea what Dad's email was about... I clearly recieved a pie yesterday from DearElder, courtesy of two benevolent parents; maybe dad is taking up Korean? I don't know...). And mom, thanks much for the elaborate description of Vera's birthday party. I could vividly imagine the look on Vera's face when everyone was singing Happy Birthday Dear Vera (...we sang happy birthday yesterday to one of the sisters in our district. In Korean. I don't think I'll ever sing it in English again =P). And how she responed to the elephant pillow. I laughed when I read that.
So, I'll respond to Mom's many questions. First off, I'm feeling fine. Sinus infection is gone completely (back to my regular stuffy nose. I'll spare you the details), and the pink-eye is a thing of the past (though, I'm always on the look out. Long story short, these last two months haven't been good for my contacts. In August, one lens tore, and pink-eye last month.... fortunately, that all happened within a month of each other.... and I have my glasses again, so if worse comes to worse, I can manage). However, the last two days, it's felt like there's been something in my eye, but my eye hasn't been red, pink, or any other color besides white. I'll run some saline solution through it again today (wearing glasses right now, seeing if it would clear up... maybe I just need a good cry to flush it out? I might ask Elder Bowman to punch me in the nose =P)
As for the sleep, I'm in bed at 10:30 (sometimes a little later, but not because I'm messing around... saying prayers. White handboook says it's alright if you're praying past 10:30, but to try not to make it a habit... I'm donig all within my power to be meeting this standard, but alas, everybody has their agency... we'll leave it at that. Cryptic, yet oddly accurate). And then the other companionship still wakes up at 5:30 (...not super thrilled about this, mostly because I usually can't get back to sleep. I'm running off of a little less of 7 hours of sleep every night). I talked to them about some sort of compromise, and I'm usually able to sleep-in (not really, I'm up when I'm supposed to be when this event occurs) to 6:30 some days. Bonus, the other companionship is getting quieter every morning. Which I have thanked them for. So sleep situation is improving.
Eating right... I'm eating as right as one can in the MTC - the food is all super heavy, so it just sits all day. I'm making sure to drink plenty of fluids and juices, and eating green vegetables and fruit at every meal. I'm not over-eating, and I eat only until I'm full. There are some pretty good meals here; the soups are usually good (barring the loaded baked potato. I tried it once, it tasted like bacon grease. That was a let down), the salads are great (sometimes they have a super weird dressing), and the bagels are awesome (I <3 Jalepeno bagels). I also am rather fond of the tater tots here. I love tater tots. I've been trying to get my fill of them these last few weeks. But I digress...
So, I'm running low on time, I've got one more topic to cover, and then I'll send home another wonderful hand-written letter....
Exercise. I love soccer. I wish I played it more in high school. I wish we had more evening gym times. Elder Bowman and I usually go to one of the indoor gyms when we have morning gym... he stretches (he was a dancer if you recall), and I usually ride one of the bikes and read a book (like Our Search for Happiness... almost done with that bad boy). I could be exercising more, but I always give 110% during soccer.
Anywho, time is up. I love you all, and I love receiving letters. Thanks much for all your prayers and support in my behalf.