Hello from the Colorado, Colorado Springs Mission

Sunday, October 5, 2014

What a Great Birthday!

 Hello from the Colorado, Colorado Springs Mission
Mount Evans Lake

This was another great week in the mission.  Somehow, our meal coordinator found out my birthday and notified all of the families who had signed up for dinner this week.  So every night they sang happy birthday to me and made really awesome desserts!  It was fantastic.  I got Grandma & Grandpa's package Thursday afternoon and am so excited to eat the homemade jam!  I have soooo much candy it's ridiculous!  My candy drawer in my desk is no longer big enough!

So, on Thursday, we spent the morning studying and then we taught one of our investigators about more Commandments (i.e. prayer, reading scriptures, following the prophet, Fasting).  He is so stoked about being baptized this week.  As long as everything works out, we will have it on this Friday.  Later that night he went with us to a member’s home for a lesson.  We watched the hour long Restoration movie and had pumpkin pie!  And they bought me a pair of really awesome snow gloves.  We had so much fun that night!  It was a great way to spend my birthday.

Then, it happened.  I got put on exchanges with Elder Walton.  He has to be the most socially awkward/clueless person I've yet to meet on my mission.  He is a genuinely nice person and can be pretty funny.  Anyways, our service Friday evening was to stain a members deck, which I've had lots of practice from staining our fences (Thanks Dad!).  I was working on one section while he was working on another.  When I caught up to where he was at, I looked at my progress and was thoroughly impressed.  I turned to look at his side and was in horror at the atrocity I saw.  It looked like someone had taken a deer and slaughtered it all over the deck, the house, concrete, her landscaping.  I almost screamed!  I felt so bad for how it looked.  Not even a minute later she came over to check on our progress.  There was absolutely nothing I could do.  I could tell she wasn't pleased, but she didn't say much.  I just kept apologizing.  I guess I should have taken charge a little more (Later I got the situation appeased and she thinks its funny now).  

Upper Black Lake
So, Saturday was the big day this week.  We helped a member move from our ward into a home in the neighboring ward, and went over to the stake center to start prepping for the baptism.  Exchanges were finally over!  We filled the font and got all the chairs set up, the young girl was so excited she couldn't stop jumping!  All of the sizes for the jumpsuits for me to wear in the font ranged from XL - 4XL.  Luckily they had one on the women's side that was smaller and fit better (they're unisex anyways).  We took some pictures and started the program.  I was a little nervous about baptizing her, but I knew it was going to be o.k.  It became time for the ordinance and I helped her get into the font.  I was showing her how she should have her hands and she just started trying to dunk herself into the water.  I was holding her up by my arm trying to tell her "Wait, I have to say a prayer first!"  Everyone watching chuckled a little, but I said the prayer and everything went smoothly!  Her mom was crying and I just really felt the spirit in that room.  I went back into the changing room to change and after a while my companion came in to say "Hurry up!  You're the last one and we've been waiting on you for 6 primary songs!"  I guess she changed really fast and everyone thought I was spending time fixing my hair hahaha.  The young girl got up at the end of her baptism and wanted to thank everyone for coming and helping her get baptized, it was the sweetest thing.  To top off a wonderful day, the family in our ward who does the "Hot Sauce" challenge, their son's birthday was the day after mine, so they signed up for dinner to take us both out for a birthday dinner.  Their son chose the restaurant Tucano's.  It's a Brazilian restaurant that was fantastic it's all you can eat, and the side dishes are buffet style, but servers come to your table and have a bunch of different types of meat on skewers and slide some onto your plate. I had Sirloin, filet mignon, turkey wrapped in bacon, briscuit, wings, sausages, roasted pineapple w/ brown sugar, and even chicken hearts!  It was such an awesome dinner!  We had so much fun talking and laughing with them that evening and afterwards they had homemade pumpkin pie and derby pie (like a cookie pie).  We were so full afterwards that I couldn't laugh without feeling like I was going to puke.  It was a completely fulfilling week, and I know this week is going to be the same.  I love you all so much!  I am having a wonderful time and hope you are all doing the same.  I love hearing your funny stories for the week.  
Stanley Canyon

Here are my top 5 moments.

1. Staining the deck (wasn't funny at the time, but it's funny now)

2. The young girl trying to baptize herself before we were ready.

3. Dinner at Tucano's.  Both their sons were making funny noises.  The 14 year old sounded like a squealing pig, and the 10 year old sounded like a baby that was crying incessantly.  It freaked one of our servers out!

4. The investigator who might be baptized this week, out of fun, likes to debate with my companion on commandments and quote Book of Mormon scriptures to mess with him.  It's funny to watch.

5. This week while playing capture the flag (Colorado Springs Zone vs. Fountain Zone) an elder and a sister were running at each other trying to tag each other and they slammed their heads together.  She split her chin open and had to go to a prompt care, and he almost passed out.  They keep making fun of each other now.

God is Great!

Elder Gillingwater

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