Monday, January 31, 2011

Insomnia is a beautiful thing

Hello everybody, here's the low down of what's going on and how fast the week is going and the transfers are flying by. so monday was just a crazy day and we got everything done that we needed to get done, and it seems like there is never enough time to do everything, i wonder if that ever changes....

Tuesday was a day where we just had so much to do and hardly any time again to do anything. with district mtg. a lesson with sis Simmons, and meeting a less active member and setting up a time with her for friday where we could read the scriptures with her.  Then a neat experience with the campus elders getting someone a bike who really needs it. so it was really cool. dinner with a really cool member and the Spanish elders. so that was tuesday and a little bit about the meeting with sis simmons is that she had to move it to the next day and we were then going to help her teach her friend. so we were super excited about that.  which then leads us to Wednesday.

We do our usual routine with doing service at the McD's house and sorting a lot of bottle tabs. so that was neat. then after lunch going and visiting with Sis Simmons and her friend, who is a lady who is in her 60's African American a little bit larger and can speak in tongues, so that was an interesting experience when she started all of a sudden because gospel music was playing and then she started speaking and I was fine with it but Hibbert and Hammond were having a really hard time keeping a straight face, which was funny, Hibbert had to excuse himself out of the room to get his composure back. so that was probably the highlight of the day,

Thursday, service at the capitol and having a visit with some recent converts and less active visits that day.  The Harris' was a lot of fun and we discussed a little about the priesthood and what it means and read a chapter with them and it really reminded me of the whole waking up at the crack of dawn to read scriptures with everyone in the morning and how i miss that now. So that's kind of what happened there, we then had a visit with Roslyn and had a fun time just chatting and getting the info of her son playing soccer and how the coach doesn't know how it's played. but learned from the internet. so we kind of were voluntold to help out with soccer.  We then had a great time with a member taking us out to southern BBQ which we are definitely doing when i get back, because nothing tastes better than some smoked ribs that have been a simmerin' for the last 8+ hours, then adding some sweet BBQ sause. ummm... definitely a treat. then some night visits

Friday the day of weekly planning but we were invited to play some disc golf with a less active which was really cool and i realize that i'm not good at Disc Golf. but we had a lot of fun. so we then after lunch had a great lesson with a less active who was just having a hard time and we were able to help her just put God first in her life and she'll be able to move through her other problems, and we all started doing a scripture application so this week was charity which was found in Moroni 7 and a very good good lesson.  Then we headed down to Woodville, a little town where a few member live and were teaching a 7 year old right before he's baptized and also his older siblings, which is a really neat experience. and the fact that it's really not that difficult to understand that we are here to become better than who we once were. so that's the cool thing about friday.

Saturday we just did service pretty much all day putting up a really easy clothes line and also just doing odd jobs. In fact we were in our shirts and ties when we knocked on a less active, part member home where he needed help pulling up a floor and moving a toilet and getting him ready to put some tile in the bathroom, So we got him to the point where he just needed to put down the glue and from there set them down. This was all spontaneous and random and in our ties and everything.  I felt very accomplished because i knew how to do pretty much all of it, thanks dad. We also had a huge meal that night where i actually almost wanted to throw up because i ate so much, much like thanksgiving, but eating too much is a bad idea.

Sunday was kind of just a slow day were we just did our routine and saw a lot of people or tried too, it was hard because most of  them weren't home. at least the ones who weren't at church.

well that takes us to today, and so far nothing really exciting has happened other than the fact that we got to play roller hockey this morning. so that's my life in a week, and i'm not getting transferred probably for a while. so i'm excited about that.

other than that my life is pretty boring.


Elder Gillespie

Jan you are growing up so fast and i can't even believe it, it's really weird to think that you are taking care of three young kids and a husband. and getting your own place and everything. pretty dang cool. and i'll try to come down when i can.

Jethrobyn. that story is so funny, and it sounds like lincoln's pooping problem hasn't changed much since he was a kid. man it sounds like a blast there. and sophie's scream was so cute and funny. i loved it, and who knows soon you'll be able to just take the kids to the park without any problems.

Thad. your life sounds miserable but i think you're taking out all of the other fun parts that you've done and the fact that BKE is still the coolest part in Logan.

Beetle, you worry too much just keep doing what your suppose to and you'll find out that everything is going to work out and that you really don't need to worry too much about anything. don't get stuck in the drama your to cool for that.

a delicious meal provided by Hammond

a foggy day in Tallahassee

the man van

the state capitol both old and new 

an old christmas pic

Monday, January 24, 2011



how is everyone doing? from the reports that I've gotten it sounds like everything is going well with skiing, moving, working, traveling, teaching, temple-ing, studying, photographing, etc. and it sounds like everyone is enjoying the rather brisk and frigid month of January. I've also heard that it's been the most snow since who knows how long, so that must really be a relief with the drought thing.

well that's probably too much from the whole outsider's perspective. so I'll tell a little bit about what's going on here in Tally town. We had our first zone conference with much appreciation from president and also the entire zone, they all participated and really helped everyone come closer together and want to do so much better. In fact we (Hammond Hibbert and myself) were the lead of zone conference and we did our presentation with the need to be more proactive with our own individual area's and also our companions and ourselves. So that was a really neat thing that we were able to do with the entire zone. We also had a neat little introduction where instead of saying where you were from and how long you had been out and all that fun stuff, we introduced the other person. so it got them thinking more about the other people instead of themselves which we kind of got from "remember the titans".   So we had a really fun time with zone conference and that day.  so that was really cool.  With that finished we went back to the routine of service at the Ronald McDonald house and cleaned up that place a little bit and also we tried to get everything else moving forward. So the next day we were doing service at the state capitol, where we are getting more and more trained on what the state capitol is, that is the historic state capitol, so we are helping them get ready for their big up coming school frenzy where all the little kids come in as part of their schooling. Well anyway, it was a fun day with that. We got invited actually to come over to teach a little kid who's getting ready for baptism that day too, and that was a fun day so i felt happy that we were able to help out that family and get more of the spirit into their home. It keeps reminding me how much we need to do that with everyone, not just us but for me my nieces and nephews. So that's what I'm excited for. Thursday also we went and taught a less active member and also brought a friend, which was so cool and then she just started testifying about the Book of Mormon and all that goodness and she committed to come to church this coming week so that's really cool.

so Friday comes and we weekly plan and get everything ready for the upcoming week. Now we know what we are doing for the up coming week and it's amazing that we only have like a week before transfers comes up so that's really weird for me to think about because life is coming closer and closer and it's just really weird to think about......  anyways. Saturday came and we got to play some basketball, which is on a wood court, the only one I've seen since I left the MTC. which is such a difference than any other church, it's all carpet. And from what I was told I did really well, I was just having fun and it was really relaxing,  Which leads to yesterday, Sunday which was a great day we had some great lessons and learned quite a bit with everything going on, it was nice to just sit back and listen and learn from what others were teaching and to get a different perspective. so i was pretty happy about all of that.

But the highlight of the week was being able to talk with and teach Megan.  She was really into the lesson and she just started asking questions like "what are the 10 commandments, could we look over those" and "where did we come from" just the questions that you always hear but never like a golden investigator. which has been such a change from the who eternal investigators. one which we are working with. her lesson was just so good it's just to hard to describe. so just let it be said that i was very happy after the whole thing.

This week has just been so good. i can't quite describe it all.

That's about it here on the gulf side of the world.

Elder Gillespie

Thad sorry I haven't really written you back and thank you for your emails it sounds like your doing really well, keep up the good work.

Robyn, sweet sweet pics definitely going to have to get some framed, could you send a couple out here? with the mountains and snow? and of course you guys too.

Jan i appreciate the invite and i hope you accomplish your goals.  My little bit of advice stay away from fried foods. they are tasty but terrible for you.

Mom i know exactly how you feel about the whole thing about the weeks never changing just the outside temperature does. but I'm so glad and grateful for your love and concern about me and all that. I'll be home soon just don't count down too quick.

Dad sounds like an adventure don't get hurt and keep those kids in line and i can't believe that they are already getting their eagles already, and Shumway is going on a mission?!? where to? who's next? and when do they go?

Monday, January 17, 2011

Cars and the map

So what's new on my side of the world well that is a hard one for me to think of because it  seems all the same. So I'll do my best to give y'all the best update, first and for most we finished our map!!! which is quite an undertaking and I'll show a picture of before and after. that has been one of the biggest things that we have done this week, so about 400 stickers later we have the map placed and everyone that we know in the ward. so I felt accomplished especially with the help of my bro's we had a system where we just had one number one cut and one place. we all did a little of both. so that was pretty neat. umm.... other things this week let me think.... oh yeah so we also have a van which had a antifreeze leak. which had been going on for a while, so anyways we had to spend most of the day in another town just to get the part and to get someone who wouldn't take advantage of our church and also be reasonable so enough about that we had to drive about 20 to the next town which was Quincy Florida and so that was really neat but also unproductive but productive in the same instance. so now we have a "new" car and a map to look at so we can drive around. life is good.

the other really neat thing is that we were really able to connect with each other and get things rolling and we found out that we all have the same desire for this zone to change from what it once was into what it really can become so that was the best part is that we now have a plan of all the things that we want to accomplish and we have started to really change around the whole ward to get more involved with us and hopefully with that we will be able to change everyone else in the zone so that they can become better individuals and also to become the people that is needed right now. so that's what we are working with, and our big push right now for the zone is to go back to the basics which is really found in the first chapter in Preach My Gospel, and the need to follow the spirit in what we are doing, and not looking beyond what our mark is, doing what we are suppose to do without being asked. so that's kind of what we are trying to convey with our zone right now. and that's the hard thing with us, and tomorrow we'll find out if it works.

After looking through my planner I found that we had splitz with the the High Priests and that was really cool we were really able to help them find out who lives where and what they want, the people we visited, and surprisingly a lot of those we visited didn't really want to do much with the church. which is really sad but we are trying to help them out so they will come back eventually. ummm....

so really cool thing on Sunday. we were in gospel principals and we were teaching and then we had someone new come in and was just wondering what is going on and why we aren't using bible, and instead of using the gospel principals book. so elder Hammond came to the rescue and took her and started explaining everything and that was very distracting for me, and they eventually took her out while i was left to teach gospel principals with 4 other people. and it turned out to be a really good lesson. So after Sunday school it was sacrament meeting and i took a seat that i normally do and it was cool i was waiting for the other guys to show up and i waited and waited and waited so the sacrament is being passed still I don't know where they were and what's going on so i was confused. After the sacrament they showed up with Megan the person that was in our class and they sat by her the rest of the time, so this entire time i was a bit confused about what was going on, sacrament ends and i get to actually talk to those guys and i found out that she was just a girl who woke up that morning and decided to come to church and ours was the closest one to her so that's what happened.  When she came into our class she was still very confused and that's when Hammond came in and then Hibbert to seal the deal, along with our ward mission leader. So i was very impressed not only did our class have a sweet message about our heavenly family but also my bro's got to teach an investigator who felt the spirit tell her to come to church. very cool.

the other story of the week along with Megan was Wesley he's been talking to the missionaries for a while and keeps asking to be baptized and to get the holy ghost but he never really comes to church, i think he's just a little scared with getting out and driving to church, so on Saturday we went over and told him that If he wants to get baptized he needs to come to church for the next three weeks and yesterday he didn't show up or at least he didn't sit by us.  so we are working with him but he doesn't really seem committed.  I just don't know we'll find out more later.

Other neat thing this week was being invited to hear a member talk to an AA meeting where he told a little about his conversion and about his life and getting rid of his drinking problem.  So i was really impressed.

Well that about covers the highlights with this week, next week is going to be pretty sweet.

I love you guys enjoy your holiday.

dad it sounds like your a busy bee. and i hear that the whole fireplace has been working hard, since i haven't been there to build a lot of the fires at night.

mom Keep up the good work and make sure your happy and keep working with the youth you are making a huge difference in their lives, i hope you know that.

Jethroybn the kids are just growing up way to quickly and i can't believe that Lincoln is talking so well.

and Congrats to Zach, keep up the good work.


Elder Matthew Gillespie

Momo's Pizza

the MAP

the finding on the roster

plotting on the map

the finished map

Monday, January 10, 2011

Wearing Thin?

Hello everybody and it's story time with Crazy Uncle Matt!!!

so this last week has been very interesting, and pretty long at least that what it feels like. so lets start from the beginning, a very good place to start.

So after email on Monday, we finished and had dinner with a member and had a family home evening with them so that was really cool. we got  to dress up as scripture characters. which was so cool and i really feel bad for you guys trying to keep your kids under control with company over. well anyways the next morning was an early one. we had Zone Leader Councils which was in Crestview Florida, and it's about the middle of the mission so it's about a 2.5 hour drive over there, but of course those that know me and road trips don't usually get along so we had to stop a few times just to let nature's call, be answered. so it ended up being 3 hours mostly because we drove past the exit and had to add an extra 20 miles to the trip, 10 up and 10 back to find the next exit. so after all of that we had a really good time there and learned a lot from not only president but from everybody, which was so cool because i had either served with or around most of them that were there. so really nice to get to know everyone there again. That took most of the day which was a lot of fun to be apart of so I was really happy with all of that and we got home pretty late, and visited a family that we've decided to call our grandma family. Just a little lady that's 93 and only looks like she's in her 70's so it such an interesting experience to be with her.

Which leads us to Wednesday. that was a pretty average day for us and we tried to do a lot of good but we found out that the people that we want to teach always live on the opposite sides of our areas, and the traffic has gotten a lot worse because now people are here for school so a lot more people. so we had a lot of fun with that.

Thursday, Thursday, Thursday that was the day that everything fell through and we were just trying to come up with something to do, which happens more often than not. but we had a lot of fun that night, and we found a little hole in the wall of a restaurant which has an XL pizza which is about.... Huge. it's called Momo's pizza and it's really neat to see a pizza that it's slices could feed a small nation just from one. so we thought for a while and we decided to get ourselves a XL and that night the three of us were able to barely get half of it down. and it's amazing so definitely a place that is worth getting while anyone is here in Tallahassee. (Hint hint) and as a companionship we are trying to find all of the good places to eat so there is going to be a list by the time I'm done that I'll know is good.

With that day done and over it leads us to Friday where we got a little bit inspired with what we need to do to get this place back up to tip top shape. which consisted of getting a wall map that we were able to get some copies from the library and that night we hung it up it's hard to explain but I'll do my best.  So we got a book that is a map book that separates the city and the county into numbers of the map and from there each page is a number and we took all the maps that are in our area and made copies of that so we could then use it to find where people live and also group them together so we and others after us can find them very easily and so we can then just work in one area the entire time and not drive back and forth and be stuck in a car, or we could be contacting a lot more. so that whole little experience of putting a map together was quite a little feat for us.

So with Friday closing and a map finished we went to bed. Saturday was the day of the Man! so in the morning we had breakfast with the Spanish missionaries and we all made food.  We had pancakes, and lumberjack breakfast full of eggs, sausage, cheese, peppers, seasoning, and the list goes on from there, we then all pack together in the car and head over for some service for an awesome member, where we did 5 oil jobs to trucks, and I mean trucks, so we got all our hands covered in oil and dirt and all sorts of goodness, then finished with that and headed over to another service where we got to play with real shovels and moved some dirt and plants, planted a tulip garden and other sorts of stuff. So by the time that was finished my fingernails were black and gritty and manly, i even got some of the callouses back on my hand.  So it's the day of the man. we had dinner with President Jensen and it was really neat we told him of our master plan to get things rolling forward and he seems really excited about the whole thing so i was also really happy about that. in fact all of us were. so some good things were definitely going to happen here which I'm excited to see happen, and i think that we are going to be a companionship for a while. so that night we started rearranging furniture to make it feel more like a home rather than just a place to stay, so we are happy.

so Sunday wake up and we are determined to get in with the ward because we can place dots all day on a board but that's not going to help us do anything if we don't know who to visit. so we are committed to get in with the whole leadership and help them out where ever we can so we made the effort to get to ward council which i think really helped them see that we are here to help and see through there problems that they think that we can fix. so we have been pretty successful with that with a list from most of the auxiliaries, so that was neat.  That night we were able to go through our roster and find  out where they live so we can now start plotting where they live and all sorts of things. so that was really time consuming and boring but we got it done in about 2 hours which is really quite amazing. seeing as we have 31 pages on our roster. so we did it quick.

which leads us to today. this morning was a mini transfer, we have a lot a Brazilians who don't know what they are going to do until they get a visa so president wants them now in companionships with each other so they can continue to learn and also get to be missionaries instead of the third wheel, so this morning we were told that we needed to be there at 7:30 but of course they didn't leave till almost 9 so all of us weren't too happy about the whole thing.  The worst part is that they just tell us like 5 minutes before hand what's going to happen or they just show up late so that's the downer to that. Well anyway, this week in a nutshell has been pretty good.

Love Elder Gillespie

Fambly keep up the good work i know that everything is going to be alright, also tell Zach congrats from me and to keep on truckin'

Monday, January 3, 2011

New Years. . . New Life

Hello everyone now it's time for the update from the kid out east.

well since our last little comments of last week we have been working our legs off. which i have really enjoyed, and the coolest thing about being in this three some is that we all want to work, one's got the plan, one's got the knowledge to get there, and the other just wants to make everyone happy. so to put it in a better light we are getting a long so well that it's not even funny, it's like we can complete each others sentences and keep the work going forward, so I'm really happy right now.

so some stories of the week,

this last Wednesday we were able to go to the Ronald McDonald house where we did a list that the ladies had for us to do, one of which was to use a leaf blower to get rid of all the leaves and junk that had accumulated in the front walk ways and the parking lots. so i decided that i was going to take the job, which might of been a poor choice, not only did i start to lose my hearing but it took me about 2 hours to complete the whole job, but on the other hand i was able to exercise not only my hands and legs but my forearms as well which is always fun to do.  Later that day we were also trying to get our car fixed because it's got a leaky tube. so it'll get fixed this week and our man van is going to be awesome.

other service this week we helped in the old historic state capitol where we helped take down all the Christmas decorations that were put up, mostly garland and big old bows that were attached to the garland. and the people that actually work there said that it takes them like 3 days to put it up and we were able to take it all down in a matter of three hours. so we felt pretty accomplished about what we did.

an amazing thing that happens when missionaries don't fear is that things get done the way that they are suppose to and a lot quicker than those that are nervous, and I'll be honest that i once was a very nervous and scared missionary but i think now that I'm a lot more confident than i once was, but that leads us to what i studied today, it doesn't matter how much you have confidence in yourself you should put your confidence in the Lord and let him work through us to find his children that we are supposed to help him get back to him, which means that missionaries are nothing, but in the same vein we are something, the only thing that we have is that we have a choice and that's either, God or not, that's what it can be broken down into, something that everyone has to learn at some point. but we don't always remember it all the time so we need to be reminded more than once. I'm glad i have that chance now to learn what i would of had a much harder time back home.

so another story is that we were able to meet with an inactive who wants to come back, and he's got quite a story, apparently he was a sniper for the marines, and their training is nuts. like they have to shoot a target the size of a quarter at a distance of a half mile in 4 stances, standing, kneeling, laying, and upside down hanging by a tree limb. so he's a bit intense so we're going to try not to get him mad. but a very intense man who is back on track with what needs to happen. which I'm glad to be a part of. so things are going well with us.

so other stories than that, well we had a great time in sacrament meeting where an investigator that other missionaries had been working with came and sat by us and seems really interested in getting into the church so we are going to get thing rolling the right way with him. he was even asking about what the temple feels like so i think that it's going to be awesome. he's just a nice man to be around.

well I'm kind of out of stories except for the fact that i don't know if I've told you but now I'm covering the entire 4th ward of Tallahassee instead of it being split north and south. so it's been an interesting change to have from sticking to the south side of town to covering a lot more. so it's been really neat to have more freedom to work.

I haven't got a lot more to say

I miss you guys, thank you for your prayers and concern for me. I hope you had a wonderful time with your holidays and i hope that a couple of the new year resolutions are still going on and what a wonderful time it is for all of us to make a little bit of a change in all of our lives.


Elder Gillespie

jethroybn, thad, emily. that was an awesome letter I'm glad that you were able to combine and write that it made it so much more interesting to see how you all had different opinions and how they we all combined doing something together.

Mom your awesome keep it up also don't walk to church unless you actually have boots. because it sounds like your having a lot of snow. so  definitely invest in some boots.

Dad i don't quite get the whole tunnel in the attic thing is it on the west wall and does it go down into the part above the garage where you can see, above the quityourbellakin sign?  It's sad to see all those ward members starting to get ready to go back home.  i hope everything else is going well though.

Ben G. your great I'm glad you keep me updated on how great the mountain west really is so it's cool to see that even your family is growing up so fast too. i can't believe that it's been 3 months since Eliza was born, time is just moving too fast. so it'll be fun when we all get back together.

Also Congrats to Sunny for being cousin of the year. kudo's to you!