Well, my second full week here is over and I've got lots to tell so here goes!
Finland is great. It's the most beautiful place on earth! I'm in a very big city and it reminds me a lot of New York. We ride buses everywhere and everyone rides bikes (except us). That sometimes makes it hard to contact because they're on a bike, but that's okay! Finland has no public restrooms or drinking fountains anywhere which I thought was really weird. But although Jyväskylä is a big city, there is nature and forests everywhere. We run across the bridge or around the lake each morning for workout. (The lake is called Jyväsjärvi go look it up) and it's so beautiful! It's definitely started getting pretty cold already. Cardigans are a must everyday and I've broken out my medium sized coat a couple times. I've also been caught out in the rain a couple times and showed up to Dinner Appointments completely drenched so I'm definitely learning!
So Since they added another companionship of sisters in Jyväskylä this transfer, our area is pretty new. There aren't a lot of members and our ward boundaries are HUGE! So it takes a long time to ride the bus out to visit them all and that sucks up a lot of our day, but that's okay, it's worth it. The members who are active though are wonderful. They want to help us and give us rides or stuff like that whenever they can so that helps a lot.
So my trainer is Sisar Ballif. She's from California and this is her last transfer so her Finnish is way good. We're learning a lot from her. We study a ton everyday. 2 hours of companionship study, one hour of personal, one hour of language, and anything else we need to get done that day. And it still doesn't feel like enough!
Oh And I don't know if I ever mentioned that transfers have been changed to every NINE weeks. I haven't heard of another mission doing that yet so that's pretty new/weird. So I'm basically guaranteed to be here in Jyväkylä through Thanksgiving and probably until Christmas so I can finnish up my training.
Well one cool thing our companionship does is we have a conference countdown in our apartment. We are so excited for conference! We take a chain off each day and read a previous conference talk each day and it's just awesome. We recently read The Tongue of Angels by Holland. Highly recommend.
Well the family sounds like they're doing well! Cart Racing and swimming and everything sounds awesome! I've gotten the letters that were sent way before I got to Finland on like the first day I got here and then I got Mom's card/pictures and Melissa's Dear Elder on Saturday so thank you so much! It takes about a week, but the mail is pretty reliable. Especially if you send it directly to my apartment address. However, if it's close to the end of a transfer or something, just send it to the mission office and I'll get it just as fast.
I was glad to hear about everyone's fun time in Wyoming! And about the storytelling festival! It sounds like something I'd enjoy. Kinda reminded me of the Melodramas in Blanding and how no matter how cheesey, they make me laugh every time.
Courtney! I didn't know you were putting your papers in! Congrats! Let me know if you have any questions!
Brianne-Congrats on getting some braces soon! I better see some pictures! And stop accidentally getting hurt okay??
Oh and I'm glad all the indexing is coming along well! You'll be done way before Sept 19th at this rate!
Mom-So the house is basically all put together now? Do I get to see a picture anytime soon! I'm probably imagining it totally wrong... And no, mom, we don't get to use the sauna :( We just end up using it as a storage closet for our suitcases and stuff.
Rhett- Your finnish is sounding great! I'm so impressed every week with what you come up with! Keep up the great work!
Savanna-glad to hear school is going well!
Allyson-School sounds great! And that's so fun you ran into an old friend! Small world!
Dad-Take care of those missionaries! What goes around comes around!
Camille-Can't wait for your letters! And I wanna hear about DYW!
Melissa-Well I pray for you and Joseph and Lydia and Hyrum all the time! Stay healthy!
Well, I'm out of time for today! I love you all so much! Thanks for all the love and support I feel everyday! Whenever I try to contact someone on the street I always bring up families (everyone loves talking about their families) and then I whip out a picture of you all and it's just so awesome! The church is true and I'm excited to keep up this work! p.s. if any of you feel up to the challenge, go translate this:
Onneksi Olkoon! Sina voit lukea Sumoea! Ja Oikeasti, Ajatellen että minä voisin kirjoittaa kaikkin tämän kirjen Suomeksi, mutta sitten sina et voi ymartta.
Minä rakastan ja kaipaan teitä!!
Waiting for the Mail