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Monday, August 31, 2015

August 31, 2015 Surprise!! (Again) I'm in Åarhus

Transfers just happened and I was on the train again. Back up to the northern kingdom! Yep, I'm headed to the beautiful city of Århus, the 2nd biggest in Denmark! I'm in a 4 man apartment and Ældste Sakurada is my companion. I've heard the best things about Aarhus and I have a really really good feeling about it. We're reopening the 2nd Elders Area which has been closed the last two transfers, being covered by the other elders. We're really excited and we have a ton to figure out and a lot of work to do so we can really crush it here. It's going to be a ton of fun! It's also a 7 week transfer so I'm guaranteed at least a little more time then in my last area!

Besides that, my last few days in Odense went really great! I--- has already begun sharing the gospel. She has maids that come and they noticed that there was something different about her, a happiness, that they hadn't seen before and complimented her on it. This of course being after her baptism, how awesome is that?! She started telling one of them about the church and trying to answer all of her questions and later she called us and asked if we could bring some pamphlets for her because, paraphrasing, they just explain all those big questions about death and life so easily! She's awesome! It was pretty sad saying goodbye but she's in good hands!

Well besides that nothing really major happened, just transfer craziness! 12 new missionaries come in tomorrow. Ældste Lee is training, Ælsdte Hartmann and Murphy are turn around training so they're training at 11 weeks in the land. Crazy! I'm also getting a mission brother because Ældste Bateman is training again!
That's about it! Love you all! I'm expecting big big things here! :)

Med Kærlig Hilsen,
Ældste McBride

Monday, August 24, 2015

August 24, 2015 En dejlige dåb

Hey familie guess what? I---'s baptism was awesome! more on that later! I'll try and answer all your questions first!

First off mom that sounds pretty much like your dream job! I hope that ends up being as perfect as it sounds! Also Cole sounds like he's just crushing it at Fremont he wrestles, playes football, swims, and plays water polo? Tell him if he's ever tired or worn out to just think about how buff he's going to be by the time I get home! Isaac way to go on the talk little man thats awesome! Dad as usual hogging the mic haha ;)

Question time:

1.  How do you like living in the city?  Is it a non-stop pace?  Do you love it or does it wear you out?   I love that you live in cities with Art in public spaces.  Do you see much of that, Sam?  Or is most of your public art graffiti?

The city isn't really big but there are a lot of different places to go which is nice, so we can mix up where we work, but for the past week there has been a festival on our street with concerts every night that are super loud so we've been running on very Little sleep haha but I love it!

2.  What do you have in your kitchens?  Do you have a toaster?  A blender?  A mixer?  A crock pot?  Would you want one?

This kitchen has a toaster and a microwave. None of that other fancy stuff. Actually I'm in need of measuring cups like maybe some of those collapsible ones or whatever because I've been estimating amounts for almost everything I bake but its been turning out ok anyway so thats pretty good! 

3.  Do you eat most of your meals at home?  How often do you get fed by members?  

Yep!  Most of the meals are at home but when members feed us they feed us a lot. It just depends on the week/if people are on vacation type of thing. We'll be at a bunch of members houses this week which will be really nice! My meal plan is basically chicken or beef on buns or tortillas, and then fried rice. I make really really awesome Nutella no bakes though (yes I'm bragging)

4.  What's your favorite thing you are studying right now?

I've been studying the life of Jesus Christ lately and its been really enlightening and I've been taking it really slow through the new testament so I can really chew stuff over.

Ok, this week I got to go on splits with a kid from Mountain View High School, yep that's right. John Smith Gardner. If thats not a Mountain View name, I don't know what is haha. He got to the land about 4 weeks ago so he's totally fresh. He's in my old district but serving up in Frederickshavn. He graduated just a couple months ago, pretty crazy. We had a lot of fun and a couple pretty good experiences. He knows and has a crush on Olivia Johnson.  I thought that was hilarious.  You'll have to tell Olivia hahahah.  Man funny stuff.  I basically just got to goof with him about Mountain View and play the "did you know so and so?" game. Super funny!  They were in town on unplanned splits because they were sleeping over before mission conference.

An area Seventy, President Dyches came and spoke to us and it was a pretty great learning experience. Still trying to figure out how to implement everything into our day to day work, but its getting there. It was really fun too because we were together as a whole mission, which meant I got to see the Aalborg missionaries again and the people from my MTC group!

I---'s baptism was on saturday!  At 73 years young she became a member of Jesu Kristi Kirke af Sidste Dages Hellige just 4 months after missionaries knocked on her door. She is amazing!  Just so so ready and loved everything we missionaries have taught her!  So back to back weekends I got to be a witness to a baptism.  I'm hoping that's not the only time I get to say that on my mission, but I've got to say it felt incredible!  Ældste Lee gave her the gift of the Holy Ghost yesterday and everything is just great. It was the finish of what I've called the young gun sprint, because things have been crazy the past two weeks trying to get everything together and a bunch of unforseen challenges popped up with putting together a baptismal service that got all cleared up basically the day before. It's been stressful and fast but we stumbled through the finish line and had a beautiful baptism!

Wooooooh I love ya'll! Have an (word other than awesome because I overuse that like crazy) week!


Ældste McBride

Happy Baptism Day, I---!

Monday, August 17, 2015

August 17, 2015 Sorry About the Late Letter

Ok here is the real letter! Yesterday we spent all day traveling to København to take a language test to prove we're ok to stay in Denmark. It was super easy but it took forever to use public transport to get there and back and it kind of just shot our P day! So because of that we only got on email for like 15 minutes and all I was able to was read everything before we had to take off! So we're writing today to make up for it! 

It is so awesome to see Cole and Isaac head off to school. Cole looks about 1000 times cooler than I did starting 7th grade! He's going to have an awesome awesome time. Isaac just looks like his usual goofball self hahaha! I feel like now that they're back in school they should probably have time to write their big brothers! right? yes i think so ;) That read a thon sounds crazy, I don't think I have the attention span to do that! 

Anyway today was just a little bit up and down and all over the place but I'll share the big stuff. On Friday we were doing service and Ældste Lee stepped on a nail. It went all the way through the sole of his shoe and into his foot. The guy whose house we were at drove us to the hospital and after an hour an half wait Æ Lee got well taken care of but its still hurting him everytime he takes a step whcih is really lame. So since that day we've had a lot of time inside which means a lot of time trying to figure out anything to do. I organized just about everything I own, put up some decorations around the apartment, went through the whole area book, finished Jesus the Christ, and read a bunch of scriptures. So ya the rest of friday was inside, Saturday was in Aalborg, Sunday was inside except church, and Monday was in København. It's just really boring as a missionary not having anything to do and its way worse because my companion is in pain but we still have to do stuff and ya I dont know! But Aalborg was so so so so so great!

We traveled up there and I got to see so many people that I've really missed! The most important being of course, ---! She was all smiles and it was so awesome to see her take this giant step. ---, who baptized her, was also just grinning ear to ear. I also got to see my dad, Ældste Bateman, my godfather Æ Hafen and his son Æ Hartmann. We have so much fun when we're all together! My time with them last transfer was just awesome and to be able to reunite for such a great reason was seriously the best thing ever! It was a really special day and there was a wonderful spirit throughout the whole thing! 

I'm going to include a bunch of pictures right now, so hopefully that makes up for the lack of content in this letter haha, but I love ya'll so much!

Ældste McBride

This is the young guns just chilling
This is one of the giant, beautiful brick churches that are literally right outside our apartment! 
This is a weird statue right by the train station in Odense.
There are very strange statues basically all over the place here pretty funny stuff!
And this is another awesome building and part of the flower festival that happened this weekend!
There was this giant flower festival and there were tons and tons of flowers and flower structures
and stuff all over everywhere Pretty crazy!
That is this epic map we put together! (not pretty but very helpful)

Monday, August 10, 2015

August 10, 2015 Q&A and All About Those Little Victories

1.  What are your current addresses?  Do you get mail at your apartments?  I almost bought some postcards, but then realized I didn't know where to mail them.  And do packages always need to go through the mission office?  Are there always taxes on yours, Max?

We do get letters to the appt. packages should be sent the mission office though so I don't have to pick em up at the post office. I don't have any idea how the taxes work but I know a sister in my last district had to pay to pick the package up from the post office.

2.  How is the language coming along?  Are you feeling more comfortable conversing?  Do you have to use Spanish all the time, Sam?

I'm getting much better at Danish but not at the rate I want too. We don't have very many opportunities right now to have long relaxed convos with danes and ask questions/ get help but reading/listening in Danish is going really well and when I speak its much more fluid but still I need more Words or better yet more Danes to tell me how a Dane would say something, expressions/which Words, pronunciation that kind of thing. Its a miracle because Æ Lee and I haven't had very many times where we couldn't commuincate with people since we've been together.

3.  Where do you go to write letters?  Is it always the same place?  Can you print things or do you just read them?

We usually write in the library but I can usually print stuff in the church once the printer works again. usually I just read and have to write down anything important.

4.  Do you need anything?  How are your clothes holding up?  Your shoes?  Do your feet hurt?

Nope I don't really need anything. My clothes are bare too big for me now hahaha. The Eccos are doing well but I think I need to polish the tips a little.  I dont know anything about shoe care but my feet don't really hurt. We're on bikes like almost 3 hours a day so I don't walk a lot.

5.  Where are my pictures???  I need more Pictures.

Hahaha sorry I haven't been so good here in Odense but I did send you a ton in Aalborg!

Ok thats it for the question/answer session! Your summer vacation sounds ridiculously fun just random adventures all the time! That is so great that you saw Alex I used to read his blog all the time the three months before I left, he really had the right spirit out there! But I gotta say the line "it wasn't so hard to teach and baptize" was pretty funny reading it from this side hahah. I've been out for almost 4 months and will be going to my first baptism this Saturday! The next two weeks are going to be so crazy fun! We have zone training this Thursday in a city called Fredericia and than on Saturday I get to visit Aalborg! Then next Monday and Wednesday we'll be in København for our language test and then a mission conference with the whole mission except Iceland and then that Saturday will be I---'s Dåb! It's going to be an exciting couple of weeks! It will be the first time the mission is all together in about a year!

Besides that we've had a great week. There was a day where we made baby steps with almost all of our potential people and I fixed my bike without any problems. That day came after a pretty long day the day before, its pretty crazy how hot and cold stuff can be out here. We meet with this handicapped member named T---. He's pretty much my hero. He sought out the missionaries himself a while ago and basically he just spiritually charges us twice a week. This last week he said he had a dream about him visiting our families in the US and all of us sitting around the table and him blessing the food. He sends his love to all of you. He's so amazing! I'll try and get a picture with him here soon and I'm going to show him some of the pics of yall here soon!

Thats about it over here! Learning a lot! Loving it!

Med Kærlig Hilsen
Ældste McBride 

Pictures didn't come thru :(

Monday, August 3, 2015

August 3, 2015 Young Guns Off with a Bang!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAD!! I really don't think there's a way for me to send ya anything but just know I'll by you some awesome pastries someday when we visit Denmark! I'm writing from this awesome music library in the middle of Odense so its a very Andy McBride environment! There's just vinyls everywhere, temptation is strong. I hope you had a rocking birthday! Love ya!

Ældste Lee and I have had an excellent first week together. The missionary that I'm replacing here worked really hard with Æ Lee so the area was already in great shape! I was very worried I'd go to a stuck kind of area and have to try and kick it into gear again but thats not the case. We've been finding a lot and have had some decent success at the doors trying to find people who are searching. I mean who could deny these young, attractive boys (just kidding a lot of people can still deny us hahaa)  What was your door approach dad? We've been polishing and polishing our technique and it really does effect success but I always need more ideas! We've also been clearing out any "fluff" from the area which didn't have a lot to start with. I hate fluff, if you're not careful you could spend days stopping by people that are never home/ not interested who talked to missionaries years and years ago. I've adopted the feeling since Aalborg that if I'm going to deal with random stuff its going to be my stuff not like someones from 3 years ago. It's probably a Little hardcore but its just so much better when you feel like what you're doing is your own. It changes the attitude of the Work, everything is jus tmore exciting and effective that way!

There's a woman named I--- who had just decided to be baptized like two days before I got here and so I showed up and have been helping more with the logistics of the whole thing rather than the actual conversion. Just like figuring out what still needs to be taught/done so she can be ready for the day of her baptism which is coming up later this month.  She's so great there is just a sweet spirit every time we meet with her and I'm just lucky to be a part of it. I wasn't a part of finding her or really a lot of teaching but it'll be my responsibility to really get her Integrated in the Ward as a new member which I'm so excited for! The Island of Fyn has two Wards and 12 missionaries and is just on fire with missionary Work its really exciting.

Ældste Lee and I have been learning a ton together. We think we got put together because we need to grow up really fast because the mission is getting crazy crazy young. There's like 27 new missionaries or something coming in over the next two transfers which means we'll be old here really soon. Our Danish skills have really had to step up with out any much older comp safety net and just handling ourselves out here has been an awesome experience! We're pretty committed to learning as much as we can this transfer which is only 5 weeks instead of 6. We're treating it as like a sprint to be ready in case one of us has to train soon. Its been super fun! Mom we need recipes that are simple and take less than an hour to make! Without Æ Bateman as head chef my cooking skills have dropped hahah.

We had a great experience earlier this week. We were out stopping by someone and just as we were getting back on our bikes this old lady yelled to us from her driveway asking if we wanted some soda so of course we followed her right away! As soon as the soda Cans were in our hands it started raining like crazy hard and so we sat under this canopy chatting with this woman drinking soda. She wasn't interested at all in the gospel but loved giving us tips on how we could better use body language and stuff when we're knocking on doors. We finished our sodas and it stopped raining so we biked home totally dry. It felt kind of like God saying "don't worry buddy I got you, have a soda and a chat instead of a cold, wet ride home." It was just awesome!

Anyways I love all of you and I hope you adjust back to real life from paradise real quick!

Ældste McBride

P.S. my camera ran out of battery so no pics :(
P.P.S We live right on the gå gade so you should look that up!