Monday, January 30, 2012

Week 2 in Sterling Park

Well this past week went pretty well, not super eventful by any means though. We had a hard time having many lessons because out of our three current investigators one has been in Florida all week, one is moving out of our area, and then the third one we got to meet with twice haha. So we did a lot of just knocking on doors. We found some old note cards from early 2010 labeled "Mofecting" which originally I was like what the heck? But we've deciphered it to mean "more effective tracting" with the help of some other missionaries haha. So what it was was almost every street in our area and the results they had when knocking on the doors on each street, and it was labeled into 4 basic categories: NI (not interested), CB (Come back again), blank (not home), and SP (Spanish). So with it being from almost two years ago it wasn't super useful but we did mark down everybody that was interested enough that they wanted the missionaries to come back. So we did a lot of stopping by them this week as well and we found 1 new lady to teach out of it! So that was pretty nice haha. But as we continue to just get out there and work we will see some more success hopefully. We have been blessed with some much more fortunate weather this week though, hardly any rain and no more freezing rain! So that was definitely good. I got a call from president Albright telling me about making sure to keep our evenings open on Thursday and Friday of next week for when Granny and Pa come into town though! That will be awesome! So hopefully we will have some great stories from this upcoming week that I can include in my email next Monday haha. It's also very exciting to hear about Mitch and Sonya's baby coming the end of next month! I'm sure Granny and Pa will be glad that they will be back in time to be there for it haha. I hope all is well with everyone and know that I miss all of you guys!

Monday, January 23, 2012

From an email to Mom

Haha yea I'm not a huge fan of moving, I think that's just you haha. But Sterling seems like it's a great place so far, and hopefully I'll be heading back to McLean for a couple of baptisms pretty soon too. The Campell family (the ones who had missionaries coming for like 7 years but not teaching) were really sad to see me go though :( they gave me a hat from Boston (where they are from) and gave me all their numbers and their address. They said I was their favorite missionary who had ever come over, even more than the ones they still keep in contact with! I had no idea I had made such an impact on them, but man they are an awesome family. I told them that I'd come back and visit them with my family after my mission and they said they would absolutely love to meet you guys. They took a picture of me and Elder Hanson signing their sons ceiling and put it up on their facebook I think haha. I guess they have all their friends sign the ceiling but we were the first two missionaries to make it up there. The gospel is really going to help them out so much and it has already. They came to church again with us (2nd time in the past 7 years) and I left them with the commitment to just read the Book of Mormon, and they promised me they would, so hopefully that will really impact them. But man I'm already almost out of time! :( I'll update you more next week! I miss and love you guys!

Sterling Park VA

Well here I am at the Library in Sterling Park VA! It's quite a change from being in McLean haha. It's one of the smallest areas in the mission so we're on bike and it is also the poorest area of the mission (McLean was one of the top 3 wealthiest haha). So it's a pretty big change haha. But so far it's been great! It's weird coming into an area where they've already got people being taught and progressing though haha, but the people we are meeting with seem to be moving along great! My new companion is Elder Johnson from Sugarland, Texas. He's a really great guy and so far we seem to get along really well. He goes home next transfer though so he is a little bit "trunky" (mission slang for ready to be done and get home haha) but not as much as most missionaries that far along in their mission. He just is really tired of knocking on doors haha. That's something I think we will be doing quite a bit this transfer though because there are only 3 people who are currently being taught here haha. We mostly walk everywhere so I've been putting those gloves to good use haha, It's to slick for the bikes because we got our first snow this week in a long time haha. Also, a complete first for me, I experienced "Freezing Rain" this week, which I guess happens alot here but what it is is like a border between hail and rain to where it comes down as liquid but as soon at it hits the ground or anything it instantly freezes haha. It makes everything very very slick. The freezing rain and the snow both happened in one day though, so that was pretty crazy. It started out in the morning with about 2 inches of snow, just enough to cover everything, then changed to the freezing rain which made a layer of ice over all of the snow and anything that the snow had already melted off of haha. It really gave a lot of peoples cars some major troubles. I found out that my shoes from the missionary mall are great for walking on ice though, the traction on them is amazing haha. I'll be sending home my SD card today with pictures of everything so you
guys can see the new apartment and all the snow and my new companion and everything. Our apartment was a total dump by the way, but it has two bathrooms so we don't have to wait for showers in the morning so thats nice haha. But man my bathroom hadn't been cleaned for quite a long time and man it was foul! It was worse that even any public bathroom I'd used before! I didn't know that was even possible haha
but I got it cleaned up a ton now. It's still not too clean though haha but I'mm working on it. I'll throw in a picture of that too haha. Well I hope all is well back west, in Russia, and down in the south!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Christmas Conference 12/15

McLean Zone singing With Wondering Awe

Elder Gronning with a few of his MTC friends.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Excited to see Granny & Pa!

Dear Mom-
Things are going well here as you could probably tell from my email haha. But man I'm really torn about being transferred. Right when things were starting to go so awesome here too! Me and Elder Hanson have gotten along great though. He's a really great guy. He's the kinda guy I could see myself staying friends with after the mission is over haha. Man I can't wait to see Granny and Pa though! That's going to be so awesome!
I finished reading the new testament this week by the way! It was really great, I'm really getting to know the scriptures alot better and now I'm going to start reading through the Book of Mormon another time. Thanks for all of your support and help though mom, love you and miss you and the whole family.

Dang I am being transferred!

Sorry for the lack of emails last week.We got caught up in some really heavy snow and couldn't make it down to the library. Man I found out last night that I'm being transferred though, Elder Hanson is going to be training a new missionary so that means that I'm off to somewhere new. It should be good though, but I feel like I just barely got comfortable here haha. The Lord has need of me somewhere else and needs the new missionary here though for one reason or another so it'll all work out haha. No more snow since this past Monday though, but man it's cold! Humid cold is a lot different from our dry cold out west too, it sort of leaves a chill in your bones that takes awhile of being warm to get out haha. But I've been staying pretty nice and warm so it's all good. We had a very successful week this past week. We had a personal record of three investigators with us at sacrament meeting on Sunday and we found four new people to teach in 2 days! Plus all of the people we have been teaching pretty consistently have really starting progressing well and keeping commitments so that's sweet too. It's really a bummer that I have to leave it at such an awesome time. The new missionary will really be coming into a great area though. But man it's crazy to think that technically I'm not a greeny anymore though! My 2 transfers of training is up and I'm considered just a regular old missionary now haha. Hopefully I don't end up like my trainer though with how his companions have gone. He goes home this next transfer and throughout his entire mission he has only ever stayed with a companion for more than one transfer twice! That's really crazy haha. So far I'm looking like I could head the same direction though, 2 transfers and 2 companions haha. It's crazy to think that there's only 16 transfers total in my two years and I'm already finished with 2 of them! Time flies as long as we stay busy it seems haha. But for this upcoming week if anyone sends out any letters or anything just make sure to send them out to the mission home so they don't get stuck at the McLean 2nd apartment haha. I'd love to hear from you guys!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012


Mclean Zone Conference

Nov 17th Return & Report

Quick Note this week

Hey Mom thanks for the white shirts! They are great! Man we had crazy snow yesterday so in all of our travels around to the stores and stuff we got stuck in a lot of traffic and didn't get to make it to the computers :( We have to send in our weekly numbers of lessons and stuff to our mission president every week though so we took just a couple minutes to come and send those to him real quick. So I don't really have enough time to send out an email to everyone this week :( but I just wanted to let you know I'm okay and everything so you wouldn't be worried when you didn't get an email from me haha. Tell everyone I'll be able to give a nice and detailed update next Tuesday (Library is closed Monday again for MLK day). I'll be able to write back in a little more detail then too haha. I love and miss you guys lots.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Happy New Year!

Happy new year to everyone! Our libraries were closed again yesterday for the holiday so emails got pushed to Tuesday once again haha. This past week has gone pretty well but nothing too big has happened. Probably;y the highlight of the week was getting to take the Campbell family up to the festival of lights at the Temple Visitors Center this past Thursday. They really loved it, it was a really sweet experience for sure. New years eve went pretty well too. We had a zone conference Saturday night where we all got together and watched Kung Fu Panda 2 at the stake center and played some cards and stuff, it was a pretty good time. Man it was a rough weekend though. We had dinner with a member this past Friday and she made us spaghetti, the sauce tasted pretty funny though so Elder Hanson didn't really touch it but I decided to power on through it and ended up with some very gnarly food poisoning all weekend. Man that was no fun at all! I'm not sure if I've ever had food poisoning before but man it was rough! I think it's pretty safe to say it's all behind me now though, I'm feeling quite a bit better. We've got some great lessons planned for this upcoming week though so that should be great. I'll definitely let you guys know how everything goes.