Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Birthday in Bong Choen

So yesterday, I was in priesthood meeting during church and having a really hard time understanding even the topic of the lesson. Sometimes the 6:30 am wake up calls everyday make church really hard to focus! Anyway, all of the sudden brother Lee raised his hand and and started talking about Stevenson 감독님(Bishop Stevenson) and I almost said something out loud right then, like "hey!! I know him!!!". I held myself back till after priesthood and then told him that we were really good family friends with the Stevensons and that I visited him a long time ago when he was mission president in Japan. Brother Lee works for the church in the Asia North offices, so he worked really closely with Gary while he was Asia north president. He had tons of good things to say about him and said I was lucky to know him so well.

I had an awesome Birthday here! I can't believe I am 20, sort of in denial. Thank you for all the birthday wishes. I opened my packages yesterday and was surprised Mom sent so much good stuff! I figured it would be just lots of candy and stuff but she sent a funfetti cake mix which tasted so good! They have cake mix here, but they do not have funfetti cake mix so it was definitely a treat. My favorite gift of all would have to be my "world's greatest missionary" mug. It's the one thing I asked for and I don't really know why. I think it's so funny, but I will probably use it everyday for the rest of my mission. The celebration was pretty low key, just me and my companion at the end of the day making the cake then singing me happy birthday, (I thought it was really weird that I sang happy birthday to myself but I totally did) We then ate cake and went to bed. The second best gift came from the sister missionaries in my ward. They got me this icy cool gel pad patch thing that is designed to be worn on your forehead in order to cool you off on a hot day. You just gotta love Asia sometimes. (see picture.) We're gonna celebrate today by hitting up some shopping. Some of you know that I'm sort of a girl when it comes to shopping, so our recent convert Richard told us about some really good outlets we're going to today. I think we will also hit up McDonalds for some double bulgogi burger action. It should be a fun day. Oh, but its pouring rain right now just like it has everyday this month, so thats the only slight damper. With my recent birthday packages, I've created my own treat drawer just like home, hah.

So before the mission, I always talked in my sleep. Well apparently, according to my companion, Korean has slipped into my sleep talking! He says that I say common missionary phrases in my sleep all the time. The funny thing is that I've heard him do it too!

As for a quick update on the area, things are going good! We picked up two new investigators this week who are both college students. They both seem to have a lot of genuine interest about our church so I'm excited about them. I don't know why, but before my mission I thought that I'd never really teach college aged kids. I pictured just families and maybe teenagers and adults, but most of our investigators right now our college students! It's awesome because they always are super willing to learn and really responsive, but sometimes just see it as a history or culture lesson and have a hard time applying it to themselves. We are working with Brother Kim or his english name "Usher" right now and progressing well. We had the chance to attend a baptism in another ward Saturday with him and it was really good. I think you can be really clear and simple in explaining about baptism but it still kind of seems like this weird idea to them until they actually witness for themselves what it is.
Well, I'm 20. I guess that is a pretty big deal, especially when you are the worlds greatest missionary. Thanks for all the love and support and prayers!

From 봉천 with love.
Elder Nixon

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