December 28th 2010
So this week’s email might not be as long as emails in the past. I apologize for that.
Christmas was great. I have to say that it is definitely different being on a mission for Christmas but it’s not as bad as I had anticipated. After we talked to you on the phone at the Robert's house we stayed there for a while and had some good lunch with them. It was fun and then my companion volunteered us to do the dishes, I told him to speak for himself from now on. After the Robert's we went over to Bishop Jenkins, in the Ione ward. We had spent some time with them on the night of Thanksgiving and they really enjoyed it so they called us on Christmas Eve and told us if we had time on Christmas to come by and visit with them. We went over there and we had a real fun time. We visited for a little while and then played some pool. Sister Jenkins thought it would be a good idea to take some pictures and send them to our moms. I guess she was right about that idea. Then we took off and went to dinner at the Chronis family. It was really good but we had to take off early because Rudy and his family were having us over for a bon fire and to have some treats and stuff. It was pouring rain so we weren't sure if it was going to happen but we went over anyways and no one was home... so we went over to Brother Gonzales' house. He lets us come over when we don't have anything better to do.
On Sunday we had a good day. This 18 year old kid gave an amazing talk! It was about missionary work and it was super good. After church we talked to this kid who had been coming for 6 months but was a nonmember. We asked him if he would be interested in the lessons and he said he thinks he would so we will be teaching him now. I think me and him will get along good. We played the same positions on football and he wrestles so we have a few things in common. Then we taught a lady named Tara. After that we just visited some random people for the night then had dinner at the Skujins. It was super fun. They are an older couple with kids that are all grown up. The youngest were in their mid to late twenties. It was a lot of fun and I feel like we all really connected. I guess I like hanging around with people that age because of having older siblings as well as freaking old cousins. It was fun though. Then we went home.
Yesterday was a weird day. Elder Brantley knew pretty sure he was leaving so we went and said bye to a few people. We met with some old guy who is less active and his house made me smell like cigarettes the rest of the day. Then we went over to the Chronis' house. They said they were slaughtering one of their cows and that we could come watch. We got there about an hour after they shot it and it was hanging up on a fork lift by its back legs and they were sawing it in half. One of the daughters shot it and they said it took her a couple of tries cuz she wasn't a good shot. They said the first shot was to wound it, second was to wound it some more and the third was self-defense and it gave the death blow. We got some good pictures and then we went and had lunch... how appetizing. The rest of the day was kind of bum. We saw some people and tracted. We had dinner with the Uhris. They are super cool converts of about 4 years. Since their baptism they have been sealed in the temple and are super strong members. We had a real fun time with them. They are way cool. Then we went and taught Rudy and Dusty and their son Tristen, the rest of the kids weren't home. We talked about obedience to the commandments and then about random gospel topics answering some of their questions. We realized Tristan won't be baptized on the 31 because we haven’t taught him everything but we are shooting for the 8th for Rudy and Tristen. Then we got our transfer calls. Elder Brantley is leaving to go follow-up train in Stockton. He is excited for that. I am staying and my new companion will be Elder Byrum. He is a really cool guy. I met him at our temple day a few weeks ago. Him and Elder Buttars are super good friends so we all hung out a lot. He is going to be the district leader. I'm not going to be a senior companion just yet. President said he thinks I’m ready but that according to circumstances, we needed a district leader and this made the most sense. It makes sense and honestly I don't even care cuz that’s less stuff I have to worry and stress about. But Elder Byrum is awesome and I think we will get a long great and have a lot of fun. Well I'm out of time for today. I wish the best for all this upcoming New Year. May God bless you all.
Love, Elder Tyler Pete Arnett