Monday, September 30, 2013

The Fast and the Forty = Mission Accomplished!

Well, emailing back and forth doesn't seem to be working out too well still, but at least Mom, Dad and big sis each got a nice email from Elder Sed today. He is doing well! His mission Grandpa lives in the same apartment with him now. For those not fluent in "mission lingo," Mission Grandpa = the trainer of Elder Sed's trainer.
To Mama:
My week went by normal it seemed. Not too fast, not too slow. It will look really different without the big mushroom (pine tree) in our yard haha.
I got to see two primary programs too. They didn't seem as good as ours did though. The kids weren't funny so that was different haha.
I did get your letter with my SD card. Thank you for sending me a letter. I like letters. I also got the insurance card too so I can use that if I ever need to. Hopefully I won't anymore.
I am still in Ellensburg with Elder R. He is my trainer and this will be the last transfer with him. I am kinda happy about that. We kinda butt heads on some stuff, and he likes to focus on the things I do wrong which kinda annoys me sometimes. We get along most of the time, though. Elder P got transferred to Kennewick and we got Elder C. I like him a lot. We have a lot of fun. He is my grandpa out in the mission field but he has only been out for 9 months. I allways call him grandpa though haha. With all the new Elders that came in they made a new zone in the mission. It will be exciting to see what else happens with the mission.
The bronchitis I had is almost gone. I feel much better than I did before. I just have the usual cough that stays around after its gone for a couple weeks.
The members are feeding me well. We have dinners a couple times a week so I get some variety of foods there which is nice. I don't really get to see President Ware very much. Only like once a transfer. I email him weekly though. I don't know if I need anything at the moment from home.
It sounds like things are going good at home. That's great. Things are going good here. We met the goal of 40 new investigators as a zone so that is awesome.
To Dad:

That is a cool story about your job. (They had visitors from Africa!) It would be awesome to work with the church. That talk at the care center I bet was really good. (A story of Michelangelo and his angel sculpture--he saw the angel in the marble and carved "until he set it free.") It sounded like it would have been cool to hear. That is really the purpose of life. Heavenly Father loves us so much that He wants us to be like Him. All we have to do is follow the Savior, and we can. That is what my purpose as a missionary is. To invite people to follow Him.
Sounds like it was a good week in college sports. How close is it to the world series? I literally said "oh my gosh!" when I found out WX beat BHS again. That sucks soooo much! It better not start a losing streak.
Thank you for taking care of my bike. Did it start up ok? It should have, if it didn't.
I bet the yard will look really good with a maple tree instead of the mushroom haha. That tree was ugly but it kinda grew on me haha. A maple will look much better though I am sure. Don't have too much fun cutting it up haha. At least its right next to the curb so you don't have to haul the branches up the hill.
I really have grown up a lot. I still like to have fun though. Its fun to tease some of the other elders. They like to be really serious so I try to keep the fun still. Elder C and I are accomplices. The other day we tied a door shut with ties and that was funny haha. That is one story I have for when I get home.
This week we got a media referral for a college student named Paeton. We went and taught her and we had a great lesson. I got her to pray at the end of the lesson, and I committed her to baptism the first meeting! It was awesome she said she would. The other day I had a weird experience too. We were tracting and we came to this Indian guy's home. He opened the door and let us in. He walked us to the back door and led us into his back yard, then he went back in and just left us. A couple minutes later he came out  and was wondering why we weren't fixing his outlet yet. He thought we were electricians! I think he was a little high though, because his house smelled like marihuana (that stuff is legal in Washington so we smell it all the time). He didn't speak good English either so it was kinda interesting.
I am getting to know a lot of the Elders in our zone. It will be interesting to go down to zone p-day and meet the new ones. I like the ZL's and the AP's. I don't really know the AP's that well yet. Elder C is the DL and I already talked about him. He is my grandpa in the mission too so I always tease him that he is my grandpa and I call him grandpa too.
I study the scriptures and Preach My Gospel everyday. I have started to re-read the Book of Mormon. I love the read the Book of Mormon. I learn a lot when I pray before and after I read. I would challenge all you guys to pray as a family before and after you read the Book of Mormon at night. You learn so much more and can feel the spirit stronger when you do. That might be something you guys can try as a family. Just a thought haha.
Well this week was great and thank you for all you do for me. I love you guys a lot. Talk to you later!
Love, Elder Sedlacek

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

A visit to the doctor

This is the birthday cake made by the other Elders in Jake's apartment from the mix and frosting I sent in his birthday package. They did it up right! They even got the right number of candles. :)

Here's Elder Sed cutting in to the amazing cake. He looks amazing himself!! I miss him so much.

This is the praying mantis that is a "guest" in the Elders' apartment, since they "can't have pets." Elder Sed says he can't believe it's still alive.

Monday 9/23/13 Email

The weather has been NICE this week. It's just cool enough to not be hot, but not too cold.

I went to the doctor down in Kennewick for my cough. I have bronchitis and swollen sinuses. I am doing good, though. I got a couple samples of an antibiotic but I don't remember the name of it.

It is really important that we pray everyday for missionary experiences. That is one thing we are challenging the members up here to do for 21 days. We call it the 21 Day Challenge. They read the scriptures with missionary work in mind, and then pray for missionary experiences. Trust me, the Lord will give you them if you ask. I have seen it bunches of times already.

It would be awesome if you guys did buy a cabin sometime--hunting land!! I'm glad you had fun and Craig and Shannon's cabin. It sounds like a good time.

Our investigator Jim drives a truck as you know, and he is really busy til Christmas, so he can't be baptized until after Christmas. There isn't a good chance of me still being here in Ellensburg by then, but it could happen. It really sucks though because he is sooooooo ready!  He was really excited, and then his work got crazy. He works two jobs.

We haven't met the 40 new investigators goal yet, but we have reached 28. Almost there! I know we can make it though. With God, nothing is impossible. We as a zone just put our faith in God and trust Him that it will work out, if we do our job.

I went to a member's house yesterday who are really big hunters. They have 4 Labradors, 3 whites and 1 black. They looked so much like Duke and Molly! It was fun to be able to pet them and pretend they were Duke and Molly haha. The dogs were so funny. They live on a big ranch, so the dogs just run around, swim and play in the mud. It was fun to watch them. I love Labs!

Well, I am doing good up here in Ellensburg WaRshington (everyone up here pronounces Washington as WaRshington). I hope you guys are doing good too! I love you guys!

Elder Sedlacek

Monday, September 16, 2013

Elder Sedlacek's Birthday and The Fast & the Forty

Happy Birthday, Elder Sed! Sadly, it was not a very good day for emailing back and forth. For some reason, the connection was veeeeerrrrrrryyyyyy slow. But I'll still count my blessings: I heard from him, he's doing great, he's having a good birthday, and he got his birthday package. All in all, it's a win.

Elder Sed: How is it going Mama! I am doing good. I still have a cough which I am tired of. I have had a good morning. The other elders made the cake for me last night {a red velvet cake mix I put in his package, along with frosting and candles}. I wanted to make it myself but they wouldn't let me. We are going to have a party after we get shopping done. After the party, we are having a zone p-day and going to a cabin to hang out and play games. It should be fun. I got the package on Friday and I opened it then. I like everything in it. Thank you very much! The package I got from Ann had some goodies and notes. Grandpa H threw in a visa gift card. I can email back and forth now.

One thing I need is a copy of the new insurance card, and if you could please laminate it but you don't have to. Do whatever is easier for you. I just need one because they want us to use the family's if we have it before the church's, so if you could send a copy of it that would be awesome Mama. 

Mom: Awesome! You will have fun. As long as someone baked you a cake, I don't care if it was the other Elders. :) Do you think your coat will work out okay?

Elder Sed: Yes, my coat will work out perfect. Thank you for sending it.

After a loooonnnnng time.....

Elder Sed: It doesn't seem that we could email back and forth very much today. I am doing good and am focusing on finding new people to teach. It's a lot of walking, tracting, and just talking to people which is fun if it isn't 100 degrees outside! We found two new investigators this week which is exciting. I hope they keep with it. I hope you guys are doing good at home. I am doing good here. I love you guys. I sent some more info back to the other email so hopefully you can read that. I have to go now, but I love you guys. Talk to you later!

In response to an email Jeff sent him:

I am doing good, but still have a cough. This week in zone meeting, we set a goal for finding 40 new investigators by the end of the month. We called it The Fast and The Forty, because we fasted as a zone yesterday in hopes of the goal. It was cool because Elder R and I went and found two new investigators that night. It was really awesome. Right now, we are really focusing on finding new people to teach because a lot of people are moving in and out and we have lost some 'gators. The work should really pick up with school starting on the 25th. The students are starting to move back, which is awesome. 

That is great that D.H. got some playing time and Bountiful won. I heard the result of the Utah game yesterday from people talking. It's too bad they couldn't finish it off. It would be awesome if they won it.

Jim, one of our investigators, really wants to get baptized so that will be great. As I said before, we are focusing on finding so that means a lot of tracting and OYMs. It is good though. It can suck at times when it's really hot. They say the winter will suck up in Cle Elum. It will be hard to get up there because it can snow 13 feet in a night. Crazy! In Ellensburg, they say the winter isn't that bad but the wind just kills you. Hopefully I won't be here when it gets super cold, but I'm sure I will stay warm. Thank you for sending my coat. 

I wish I could see the colors change! I love that time of year. I probably won't get to see much of that here. It's the "never green" side of the "evergreen" state haha.

Tell Nicole congrats on her half marathon. She is crazy haha. I would never do that. 

I am doing great up here in Ellensburg and I love you all!

Elder Sedlacek  

Monday, September 9, 2013

Sedlaceks in Kennewick?

Today's email session with Elder Sedlacek was interesting. At first it was great, and then I started getting a few coming through two and three times....and then his final email came through at 2:15--about two hours after I knew he would have left the library. Strange happenings with the connection today!

Elder Sedlacek: What's up Mama! I am doing good except that I have been sick all week and it sucks. I am tired of it. I called Sister Ware (mission president's wife) and talked to her. She told me to buy some tussin DM, so I did and I tried it but it hasn't really done anything. I just feel like crap all the time. This week wasn't the best. It's kinda hard being sick and having to do stuff still. We have had a couple of pretty solid investigators move away this week, so that also stinks. 

Mom: I am so sorry you are sick! Have you gotten some Emergen-C or some vitamin C tablets? I think it would help. Don't worry about your investigators moving away. At the least, you have planted a seed that they may remember later, or else they may look up the missionaries in their new area and keep going. 

Elder Sedlacek: That is cool about the house painting and you are welcome for the [James Taylor/MoTab] tickets. That is cool that you got good tickets, too. You guys deserved them. It would be nice if you sent up my black coat from last winter. It will be cheaper to do that then try to buy a new one up here. I'm glad you went to the Blue Lemon. That place smells good from when I have walked past it before. I want to go there sometimes. I also want to see some pics of the house. It sounds like it looks nice. [I sent some in reply.] That looks really nice!

Mom: Okay, I will send up your black coat from last year. Do you need gloves? Which of your investigators moved away?

Elder Sedlacek: Okay, that will be great. I don't need gloves right now but if I do I can buy some crappy ones from the dollar store or something. The 'gator that moved away was a student named Kaitlin. She was awesome, and she was progressing really well. I think she is going to look for the missionaries where she moved to. I am sure that she really will.

Mom: Then I am sure she will, too. Everyone is coming over tonight for my birthday. I told them if they wanted to include anything in your birthday package, to bring it and I will put it in. So you should get a good package at the end of the week haha. Something to look forward to! I also talked to Elder T yesterday, one of the Elders assigned to our Stake. He is from Kennewick! In fact, he said he's front right smack in the middle of Kennewick. He gives you his best and said to look up his family if you get assigned to Kennewick.

Elder Sedlacek: I hope you will have a great birthday party by yourself haha. I'm gone, so we can't share for once. I am sure it will an awesome package. You guys are the best! That is cool that Elder T is from Kennewick. I will have to look for them if I ever get the chance.

Oh guess what? I had an interesting thing happen the other day. We were tracting, and we knocked on a door, and a guy opened the door, read my tag, and said, "So you're a Sedlacek?" and he said our name perfectly. Turns out he knows some Sedlaceks back in Kennewick. We are probably related somehow. 

Mom: Sedlaceks in Kennewick? That is awesome. We are the only ones in Utah, but there are lots in Nebraska. Interesting that there are some in your mission. 

Elder Sedlacek: Yeah, "Sedlaceks in Kennewick?" that is what I thought too haha. The guy even said I look really similar to them. Maybe he is crazy, but maybe there are Sedlaceks in Kennewick. I want to meet them if there is! 

{The following is in answer to an email Jeff sent Elder Sedlacek}

Teaching college students is hard because they move around a lot. We had another pretty solid investigator move this week. Hopefully, she will continue to have the lessons. We taught Jim this week and he really wants to get baptized. He has almost quit smoking. He is sooo close! We are also teaching a woman named Kayla. She is going through a rough time right now with her family. She is doing alright with the commitments, but needs to follow them a little better. She has a hard time reading and praying on her own. Other than that, we have done a lot of tracting trying to find new investigators. It is really something I don't like doing when I am sick. 
That is awesome about the Utes. I hope they do a lot better this year than last year. Keep me updated on the scores. You're doing good at that but keep doing it. I love to hear the updates.
There really aren't orchards up here in Ellensburg. It's hay fields, and yep, the farmers are working on getting it all dried and bailed. I bet the fruit [from our fruit trees] was yummy. I always liked the peaches and nectarines.
I have to go now. I love you guys! Keep writing me letters and emails. It's nice to receive both. You guys are an awesome support to me. 

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Rodeo Week in Ellensburg = 300,000 extra people to teach

Here is a separate email Elder Sedlacek sent to his Dad.

Dear Dad,

This week up in Ellensburg was rodeo week. I don't know if you happended to see ESPN this Saturday and see the bull riding, but it was supposedly on. It is crazy though! They said like 300,000 more people were up here in Ellensburg and I believe it. We talked to sooo many, but most were not interested. That is cool about Kelsey. I am sure she is a great missionary.
Hearing about college and NFL football will never make me homesick. I love hearing about the scores. That is good that you got new tires and fixed up old blue {the car that's been through Nicole, Jake, and now Jared}. That car is a trooper. It just keeps going, which is good.
For my b-day I would like some ties for a start. I am kinda getting sick of the ones I have. I don't really know what else but I will keep thinking about it and let you know. And yep, you're old. I always tease Elder P for being old, but you on the other hand are old haha. Just kidding. You're awesome. I hope you have lots of "fun" doing all that fun stuff around the house.
Pres Ware said the other day that he is 99.9% sure we will be part of the technology mission stuff so maybe with your new job you will get to hear the insight. I hope you do good with your new job and love it. It would be cool to work for the church. Well, I love you and look up to you. You're awesome dad!

Elder Sedlacek

Ellensburg: so many ducks & no hunting allowed.

Photo sent by President Ware last week.

Elder Sed: Mom, I am able to email today. We went to the church so I can email. That is good everything is going good for you guys! And Nicole better not get married while I am gone. I got to be there to interview the guy, to make sure he's not a flake. It's funny you say something about how it's been a month. I was just thinking about that like 20 minutes ago. It literally seems like it's been two weeks and two years at the same time. It is awesome though, because I love to teach people the gospel and see the spirit work in them. I like to know what is going on at home. It's great to hear everything that is going on.

Mom: Awesome! How are you doing? I am glad you are enjoying your mission so much. What are you going to do today? Do you need anything?

Elder Sed: Well, thank you mother. Today for p-day we are going to hang out in Ellensburg and maybe go to the fair which is in town with the rodeo. In fact, the rodeo was on tv on Saturday. Maybe you saw it? I could use a wall USB charger for my ipod and a double male aux cord for it so that I can play it in the car. After my interview with Pres Ware on Wednesday, he took a pic of me with him because he thought I looked so good haha. Did you get the picture? What did he say with it if you did get it?

Mom: Oh yes!! We did get a pic of you and Pres Ware. Should I send it in this email? I will attach it so you can see. You do look really, really good and really happy. Everyone said that when they saw it. Holly said you look like you feel right at home. Pres Ware said, "Elder Sedlacek is excited telling me all about his first two weeks in Selah. He is immersed in the work and smiling big!" So, Selah? Are you in that town too?

Elder Sed: Our zone is based in Selah. We go down there for big meetings and some p-days. He is an awesome president! I like him a lot. He is so loving, too. He is a lot like President Dester was.

Mom: Well, now I know why he said Selah. I wondered if you were based there. I'm glad you love President Ware. So, you told Dad you have summer cold. Do you need any Emergen-C? What would you like for your b-day besides ties?

Elder Sed: Emergen-C would be nice. It sucks being sick. I had some things written down that I wanted but I can't remember any of them so I'll have to write you today and get you the list. There is just so much stuff to remember out here that I forget some sometimes haha. Thank you for all the packages. I have an awesome family. Something I forgot to tell Dad and Jared is that there are sooooo many ducks and geese up here! It's so tempting haha. They really like the climate and all the fields so they just hang out all the time!

Mom: Dad says he knew there were lots of ducks and geese up there. He says, "Wait until the migration starts!" haha

Elder Sed: It drives me crazy. They fly so low everywhere and they are huge! Can you check on my account? I just always want there to be money in there in case I need it.

Mom: I will keep an eye on your money haha.

Elder Sed: Are you using any of the money to send the packages?

Mom: Nope, not taking any of your money. Have you needed to use any?

Elder Sed: Yeah, I have used a little bit. I am also planning to buy a shirt from every area I serve in too, so I am planning to go shopping today. I got the idea from Elder P. He is doing that too, and then once I get back make a quilt out of the shirts or something. It just seemed like a good idea to me, and a cool way to remember the different areas I will serve in.

Mom: That is a great idea! You should definitely get a shirt you like from each area.

Elder Sed: Well, I have to get going. I love you guys and I will talk to you later. Thank you for all you do for me. You guys are the haha.