Tuesday, July 29, 2014

28 July 2014 "I laugh at my trials from past!!! The Devil must be frustrated!!!"

Hola mis amigos!
    This week has definitely been interesting and these text options are really making me happy.  First off, we thought that we had bed bugs because we were waking up with a bunch of bug bites and we did not have them when we went to bed.   We went through this for 3 days until we decided to talk to Sister Shumway (our Mission President's wife). She told us to call an exterminator.  So we called this guy and he comes by 4 days after we call him.  He searches the bedding and all the furniture and could not find anything.  We then went and bought bug bombs from Walmart.  We spent almost the whole week at a members house just to get told to buy bug bombs.
     The good news is that we no longer have bugs biting us in the middle of the night.  We also have clean suits and ties and new pillows.  I guess it was a good thing.  Kinda expensive, with the dry cleaning bill, but all is well in Aurora.
     On Saturday, we were riding our bikes because we ran out of miles.  We rode to a less-active member's house and my companions tire went flat.  The same tire that we patched 3 days prior.   We later found out that the patch melted in the 95 degree weather.   So..we have forgotten about patches and walked to Walmart (a good 2 miles) to buy a new tube.   As it turns out, the tube he needs is something special that Walmart does not carry.  The closest bike store is 28 miles away.  This week will be interesting until we can get a member who works in Springfield to pick up a bike tube!!!
      Sunday night we had a barbecue with the Wilden Family.  They had family from Bloomfield, New Mexico visiting them. Turns out that they live on the same street as Rod and Melanie McGee, a good family friend of ours!  We talked and caught up a little on what's going on.   It definitely is a small world!! 
      This week has been crazy.  Somehow we managed to still teach a lot of people and get them progressing.  We had 5 investigators at church and 2 less actives attend.  It was pretty incredible.   I love the life I live.   Heavenly Father has definitely blessed me with a sense of humor.   I love my Mission and I don't think that will ever change.  No matter the trials, I have to laugh when I think of all that has happened this week.

                                         Elder Caldwell
     "A hero is no braver than an ordinary man, but he is braver five minutes longer."  Ralph Waldo Emerson
Elder Caldwell at a BBQ on 27 July 2014

Monday, July 21, 2014

21 July 2014 "I love the kind and wonderful people in this world..."

 Hello fellow earthlings!
      This week was fantastic!  The beginning of the week was all just getting Elder McReynolds out and packed. He is going to be a Zone Leader.  I love Transfer weeks!  They are so much fun, haha, even the anticipation is funny.  I have Elder Holyoak as my companion now.  He is an amazing red headed Elder.  I am so blessed to be with someone with so many of the same interests as me.
      We did a lot of tracting and street-contacting or "OTMing" as we call it here. I have seen some pretty crazy things, like we saw a car that was covered in 70,000 pennies!  A full 400 LBs of pennies on this car. We talked to the owner and were able to take pictures of it. 

 After this man drove off though we were able to talk to the people at the farmers market.  We cleared up some misconseptions of the Mormon church. I loved being able to talk to them and they were happy to talk with us.  They even gave us free veggies for the service we provided.  I think we ought to stop by there again.  They also taught us a little about the Amish. (There are A LOT of Amish in this area.) 
We were riding our bikes to an appointment when some random man stopped his car and rolled down his window.   When he did, he handed us $20 and told us that he had promised previously that he would give some money to us the next time he saw us riding bikes,for lunch.  SCORE!! 
I love this place!  I have been here for 3 months and by the end of this transfer it will be 4.5. I hope I have the opportunity to make this a 6 month area for me.

I love the kind and wonderful people in this world, who are just here to help us out all the time, it is truely amazing.
                        Love Elder Caldwell

Monday, July 14, 2014

14 July 2014 "I love this area."

To all who follow this blog.  Elder Caldwell did not send an email last week.  This was the first week he missed.  We received snail mail on Thursday letting us know that he was okay.  His companion, Elder McReynolds, had some health issues and collapsed at the local Walmart.  Elder Caldwell has been given the opportunity to be a "caregiver companion" and stated that not many missionaries can say they have pushed their companion around in a wheelchair.  You can check that off the bucket list!

Here is his email for this week:

Hola Everyone
     This last few weeks have been intense.  I was unable to email last week.  My companion was sick and passed out in Walmart.  He is doing better now and we are back out doing the Lord's work.
     I was able to get some priests from the ward together.  One watched over Elder McReynolds while I went out and did some tracting with the other. We had one guy answer the door naked (not to worry that's nothing out of the ordinary when tracting in North Town). Also it is not out of the ordinary to see things like McDonalds and Taxidermy combined.  HMMMMMM.....

     We drove on Route 66 and saw a cow on some random house rooftop.

 Welcome to Aurora Missouri!  If you think your neighbors are crazy come here and you will see. I love this Area!  It is a beast and the people we meet are a little looney but that's the best part. 
     We went to one of our investigators houses, he proceeded to tell us he was not feeling well and to come in and we will talk. He grabbed some nasty mayo, macaroni, bologna, and some jalapeno concoction out of his fridge. I am not sure what looked nastier, sitting there watching him throw up (a flood of barf) or looking at that horrible thing he made and ate. 
     It has been an odd week, what can I say?  We have been running all week doing crazy things, and we actually met a man who never got into Religion. Sounds not too exciting.....but hey, its quite the crazy thing here in the bible belt. 
     Transfer calls were on Saturday I will be staying in Aurora for another transfer....WOOOHOOO!!!! 

    Much Love,
     Elder Caldwell

First pair of mission shoes...laid to rest in Aurora, MO!!
Interesting milestone hit today:
500 days til Elder Caldwell come home!!