Monday, April 25, 2011


Hello everyone. Here is a big update of what's been going on here in the City of Tallahassee. first this week we picked up Elder Hammond's parents on Thursday and had a wonderful time while we were with them and it was really neat to just spend some time with them and it really just felt like it was just another ward family that wanted to be apart of our life so it was really cool. and they were really nice to us and brought stuff that was really Utah-ish for example Fry Sauce and Cinnabears which were both made in Utah. So that was cool, but I'm jumping ahead of the story, Tuesday we had Zone Conference which was the last zone conference for 5 missionaries in our zone. which was weird to see, because I've seen them my entire mission and now they are going home, so it's just been a little weird to see them go. and that day Drew Sussman was Interviewed for his baptism which was really cool to see and he passed with flying colors. So for that night we had dinner at this Japanese fusion place called Kiku. and i got a couple of rolls which were pretty good and than other people couldn't finish theirs so i had to help them out. in fact two members came to eat with us, one was a less active member and we have just been really trying to help him come back to church but he's really doing it all by himself which is a huge blessing in his own life and really neat experience to have. The other member is a really strong member who will help us out as much as he can, which is a lot. and we try to help him out in the same way.  That night we went on splits and i went with the active member while the other guys did their studies  which was really good for both of us.

Wednesday. which was a normal day for us, Hammond just started to pack that day and make sure everything was going to fit. and then just saying goodbyes for Hammond. so that was really cool to have with elder Hammond saying his goodbyes.

Thursday was basically doing service at the capitol and then leaving to pick up the parents at the airport. which Elder Hammond was really nervous about and it was really cool to see just kind of what it'll be like at the airport just the opposite way.  It made me a bit trunky I'll be honest. but that night we just took the Parents around Tallahassee and saw a little bit of both major campuses FSU and FAMU. then had dinner with the bishop of the ward, with everyone, the english set me, Hibbert, Hammond and his parents, and then Spanish, which is 4 guys. so that would be intimidating to anyone who is supposed to feed 7 missionaries and 2 adults and then your own family. but everyone got enough and the bishop and his family really enjoyed talking to Hammond's parentals. and then we had to take the parents to the mission home where they would be staying but not with elder hammond...? but it was interesting because apparently I'm the only one in our companionship who paid attention on how to get to everywhere. so the Hammond's had no idea because they don't live here, so it was just interesting, we got lost and then we met back up and everything was good.  then had a wonderful night.

Friday we had a great day with just me and Elder Hibbert and went to do our work, and had a great time doing it. i really got to know elder Hibbert a lot more and found out that he is definitely a one on one type of guy so this being the first time with just being with him since we first got together i found out what's been going on in his life so that was really cool and then that morning we finished getting everything we needed for Drew's baptism. and got everything ready for that so it was a really fun time we had and had a great time with a member for dinner and just had some Grilled Cheese sandwiches which was really nice to have a little break with eating really fancy meals. and that night again we had a Yoga night which i found out i really do enjoy and love to just do that. and then that night we found out what was going on with transfers this time. It was surprising, pretty much all of Tallahassee is being flipped and the old guys that have been here are leaving, including myself. yup after 6 wonderful months here I'm going to the lovely town of Chipley, now if that sounds familiar well that's because it is, i was there about 14-15 months ago. and that was quite the experience for me last time. so this time is going to be just as fun. and Elder Hibbert is also leaving after 7 and half months he's heading to Bristol/Hosford. and they are white washing this area with two of the finest missionaries. but again it's white washing so that's not so fun. so now we have to say goodbye as well to everyone in this area, an area which I've really grown to love and it's going to be hard to leave. 

Saturday we had the baptism for Drew which was really cool and really nice to have and see before we left, then sent Elder Hammond off on his way to the rest of the mission and it was really sad but good to see that he's not afraid to be moving forward. So I'm more ready for the next area I'm going to.  Then to finish off that day we helped a member clear his back yard of nasty little bushes and shrubs, then had dinner with him so it was really fun to get back into the whole chopping out crap. so i had a wonderful time.

Then Sunday where we had a great time at Easter Sunday with so many people coming to church, well it seems like it because they are redoing the floor in the Gym and putting in a wood floor but right now we can't walk on it because they are trying to let it get use to the weather. so for the last two weeks we been packed in there like sardines, which feels really tight but really nice, kind of like family so it's getting people out of their comfort zones and letting them talk to each other.  we actually had a lot of people come this week which was really cool but also sad because again we are leaving and can't help them keep coming. but it's their choice anyways.

So now I'm going back to the Chipley area and I'm going to miss Tally town but i know that this is where I'm suppose to be, and it's really cool that I'll get to see so many wonderful people. and the address hasn't changed

774 Hoyt Street apt 8
Chipley Florida 32428

See you soon and love to hear the updates of what's going on.


Elder Gillespie

the three amigos going home

food that we've eaten here.

Drew's baptism

a family i'll miss

Monday, April 18, 2011

"Mormons would make great Baptists"

Hello everybody!

It's so good to hear from all those who wrote, and I'm glad you're all doing well. This week has seemed like a blur, but I'll try to hit all the major things that happened this week.

so Monday we had dinner with a member who's son has befriended a great guy who goes to school with him, and is really interested about church and what it is all about. Clark is his name and he's originally from Taiwan, and Loves how the school system is set up here and really isn't worrying about getting through the next set of hoops. He's even come several times without being asked to come, which is really cool the hard thing though is that he's only a freshman which means his parents might not be willing to let him get baptized. but we'll still teach him and it'll work out. so that was really a cool thing/miracle that happened on that lovely Monday.

Tuesday was a pretty normal day with district meeting and a lesson with miss. Surly Ann Simmons. and we were able to have president Campbell come with us, he's a member of the stake presidency who lives in our ward, and i think might be assigned to her for home teaching. well either way it was really cool to have him there and interesting to see his power through his humility and service to others. this is the president who we report to every Tuesday about how the zone is doing and how they are working together, and who they have seen as far as less-active's. so it's really cool and important to report to him about this stuff. so yeah that's really cool, and then to top everything off. we had dinner with Drew Sussman who came up to us after General Conference and was like yeah I'm ready for this whole conversion thing again and I'm ready to be baptized.  so dinner with him was fantastic, and i really got to know him better, and he's just such a cool guy who wants to just do the right thing, and it's cool to see how he was prepared even before he came to us, like he was telling his dad that he was converting and his dad already thought that he had converted, and he told us a couple of other people in church were the same way, they just assumed that he was already a member. so that was really cool, and that finished the night

Wednesday...., Wednesday was good, we had a great time with Bonnie and trying to help her with her situation, and it seems like she's getting a hold of it and has come up with a plan and is continuing to do the small things which are going to make up the biggest difference. For instance she's starting to realize that just being around certain people are making her act in ways that she doesn't want to act, and by just staying away she's not going to have those problems. then that night we thought about going to the Parks for dinner, but as you would have guessed there was a mis-communication and we ended up not having dinner there that night but the next night so we had a little fiasco but low and behold it worked out for the best.

Thor's Day  the day of days where everything just falls through. and all the back up plans do too. We ended up talking to a Korean veteran who is a deacon at his church, and a very nice man who really is a true christian just trying to be the best he can and helping others where he can. it was refreshing that is for sure.  not to bash on anyone but to just talk about how life once was and how important a belief in god is. and told us that Mormons would make great baptists, and then that night we had a great dinner and little lesson with the Parks with the "puzzle" of the plan of salvation and i think that they are starting to get it more. 

Friday, we had an interesting morning with a Less active member, Kyle Sweat. who recently had a girlfriend who dumped him and has been trying to become better, and get back into the basics, isn't it amazing how much power comes from doing the little things over and over again. and how it seems that all the problems that happen are just realigned to show each of us what the most important things are. so we helped him quit worrying about the things that he couldn't control and just focus on the things that he could control and get him closer to God.  we had dinner with some wonderful members who are just so nice to us that i almost feel out of place because i shouldn't be with them because they are so nice. and they've got the best accents too. and then we played a game with a less active coming back to church, and it's this wonderful game called Quelf. it's definitely fun and a lot like curses except different and really fun.

S-A-T-U-R-D-A-Y. we went to a baptism of the Spanish guys and it was really neat to see, three little kids get baptized, funny story so Elder Hibbert did the interview's for them and the little girl told him that she wanted him to do her baptism, which kind of threw everyone for a loop because they thought one of the Spanish guys would have done it. but it's her special day. so we went and had a great time then had a little tail gate party because the garnet and gold game was going on and some members asked us to come along and it was really cool to have that opportunity, and it was much different than what looked like the Blue and White game. we finished with a great little dinner with Sis Lanigan, someone who we have been working with and is trying to get her family more involved in church, and we had Elder Hammond's favorite meal, Lasagna which was really good. then we just headed home after a fun filled day.

Sunday. the big event of the day was cooking Indian food with a member and it was really neat, i was the grill master and i apparently did a good job with it. but this brought me back to the old days of Panama City Beach where we would eat Indian food every Thursday for lunch. and low and behold this tasted so much better and it also had the same type of seasonings, and I never knew how long it takes to really put on a feast but i can say it was a lot of fun.  so that's the week in sound bytes.

Love you all

Elder Gillespie

Dad your spring break sounds like nothing like it does down here. but i like yours much better, bobcats, cement breaking, wiring, all really fun to do. and also sounds a lot like Utah,

Mom i knew something was different about Florida compared with Utah, and now i know that it's the flowers, we've seen all the daffodils bloom and then are done, and now it's getting a lot more like summer, with not a lot of flowers but more heat. but the snow pack seems amazing and something that i know Hammond is going to be really happy about, he was concerned about not being able to ski for 3 years. but looks like that's not going to happen. make sure to take a picture of timp with all that snow if it's a new record might as well be in photographic form. it's so cool that Greg and Jolyn are in Utah now, defiantly a bonus and so cool to hear all the cousins coming together to work.

Jethrobyn... being sick sucks but it's really good that you were able to have it land on a vacation break with Jethro. keep up the good work and i know that the kids are going to be so much fun, especially little Sophia talking to herself, priceless. and having so much fun with the rest of the family. 

Beetle. your right boys are poops, but you can still be different and be cool at the same time and it's ok to break the mold, and don't be stressin' you'll be happy with a cali boy soon enough... haha...

Love ya all.

Elder Gillespie

Baptism of the three Spanish children

Cookin' on Sunday

Monday, April 11, 2011

Tree Limbs and Softball

Life here is going really well and thank you again for the letters, it really makes life a lot easier and to answer your questions mom, we didn't fix the drains till Wednesday this last week, i did get burned but not too bad, and we also used grocery bags to make ourselves gloves to wear, unfortunately I'm still healing up from that experience, but don't worry I'm doing fine.

So what makes today different than any other day? well today is a day where we can change the world one little bit at a time, for the better. but lets review this last week and find out how we all worked together to change the world. and here's a few of my stories.

so Monday night was such a cool night, we had such a cool storm come through with lightning and thundering and rain and all these wonderful things come and happen that night especially right around 2-3 in the morning, and i slept through all of it... bummer i know. but what my comps said is that it was just such a wonderful experience to see lightning going off, like every three seconds, for that entire period. so anyways we wake up the next morning with a frantic call from a member telling us that we need to come over and help them out because a tree had fallen on their roof. so we get ready and head out to help them, and as we pull up we don't really see any problems or anything like that, so they invite us in and we are told that we need to move one entire room out, because the roof was going to collapses, we hurried like little rabbits going in and out of the master bed room getting everything out as fast as we could, the ceiling didn't look to bad at the beginning, so we got everything we could out of that place. which we felt very successful for doing, than they took us out to see what had really happened, so we turned the corner and we see this oak tree that is no doubt one of the bigger trees in the area which had been pulled up out of the ground and then fell on the house, which looked pretty dang cool.

 so that was Tuesday in a nutshell we also saw this nice widow of the ward and she also had a tree fall on her roof, but just a little hole that was only about 2 feet by 4feet, which she should be getting it fixed soon. so that was the really cool thing about this whole storm that happened, Monday night,

Wednesday, was a day of fixing things, so last week i told you of the adventure of the sulfuric acid, and what can happen to drains if you use, said sulfuric acid. so by this time i was just getting so sick of not being able to use the drain that i decided to just fix it myself, which i was a bit surprised that i could do, but i got everything that i needed to fix the problem. we waited so long because the land lords were supposed to send some people to fix it, which they never did. so we got the parts and fixed the problem. i now feel more and more like a plumber.  that day we also had a wonderful time with Bonnie and helped her get back on to reading and praying, which is the best things for our spiritual selves. and then a fantastic time eating more ribs than a man could handle, which is becoming more and more of a favorite in my book, with some of the funnest members they have three kids who are just themselves around us and happy that we come over, kind of like big brothers to them. so that was really cool to eat with them.

Thursday. was the day that i turned 18 months. which i must admit feels really weird like i would never get to this point, i just thought i would always be one of the youngin's and that i wouldn't ever leave the mission. kind of weird to say but i realize that life comes quick. that day we did trade offs for the night with tally 2nd ward, and i went with them and had such a great time with them and getting to know them better and also visiting a member who lives in our area but the rest of the family lives in 2nd wards. also 2nd ward knows them better because that's where they go to church, but i went to see what they are like and see if we could get teaching over there. we saw this really cool perspective on how big the universe is and then how small quarks and other objects are and the space in between.  so over all really cool to see, and really said to me that there shouldn't be any doubt of the reality of god.
that night the other guys were talking to this guy who came up to us and asked to be baptized and try this "conversion thing again" so we set a date for him to get baptized on Friday the 22 and then confirmed on 24th of April, a little bit of a cool simile.

Friday we went and did our weekly planning at the top of the state capitol building which is the tallest building in Tallahassee and where we can actually see. so that was really cool to see and they didn't have any cool storms so that was a bummer. but neat to see everything else. and we then had a great lesson with the parks, and it was just really cool to see them watch a little bit of conference and i think that really helped them out, and Sophia says that she'll get baptized but she doesn't feel ready yet. but we'll keep working with them, they are just so cool to visit.

Saturday we had a stake softball tournament which was really cool and Bonnie showed up which we were really excited about, and I'll say I'm not good at softball, it's been to long since i picked up a glove and ball, I'm very glad that they didn't hit the ball to me at all, but with that I'll say it was really hot when we were playing. something that i didn't enjoy at all. and after that we got a call to move somebody, so we went and helped another person move, this week. and that was even more miserable. but in reality it wasn't that bad it just was getting really hot and that's something I'm not use to, at least not yet.

then Sunday it was just a really nice day to relax a little bit and get life going again. just another good Sunday.

that's my contribution to society this week, and wait till next week with more of updates from TALLY TOWN!!!

Ben G. that is definitely an awesome quilt that you got and kudos to you Toni that looks like quite the undertaking, and Ben the blue and white game looked more like white was winning than blue or green...

Jethro. I'm glad that you enjoy my writing and i hope i haven't lost who i am in my writing but I'm glad you can still see me for me. that makes me happy. and you are crazy with all your projects and getting things moving, it incredible.

Robyn i loved the picture of the kids. that's really cool that you let them do that, and I'm glad to hear that Lincoln still has his morals up but really, it's kind of weird to think that he's scared of chairs... how bad was his fall? well anyways keep up the good work and spring will be here in no time.

some where out there, there is a city....

the missionary crew. tally 4th and Spanish

the big old oak tree.

Monday, April 4, 2011

H2SO4 and conference

And Away We GO!!!

so this week has been kind of crazy and i'll let this be a quite a bit of a update.

Monday we spent most of the day helping out other missionaries move apartments which was just across the complex. I had the other opportunity to actually help out another missionary Elder Muldiar who is going to India for his mission but he's waiting for a visa to let him get there. so we went to the doctor to get his foot fixed, which told him to go get some X-rays when they told him that they couldn't find anything wrong with him, and they just told him to get a lace brace for his ankle. I find it funny how little the American people know what they need to do to get better again. (thank you mom) and that was they overall update that day of Monday.

Tuesday! now what makes Tuesday great.... well to make it more clear, what isn't great about Tuesday?
so enough of the riddles Tuesday we had Z.L.C. or Zone Leader Conference, a Little bit about that is put this way:

In a mission they are broken up in to large areas called Zones. and here in this mission we have 6 zones,  so 12+ missionaries and assistants to the president and the mission president. Also we had a few more members join us this time, like sisters, greenies and a couple of  middle of the road missionaries, so an entire spectrum of the mission all giving council on what the mission should be like in the up coming weeks. and what was talked about the most in that conference, was planning and setting realistic goals. so that's what's going to be taught this up coming Zone Conference.

Wednesday, i never feel inclined.... so Wednesday was a rainy day so we tried to find things to do which didn't require us to go outside.   We did a lot of things that needed to get done and we were really productive that day as well, cool thing about this day in particular is that the members out here are really nice to us, so much so that they will take us out for dinner, and this night we went to a Japanese hibachi grill, somewhere i hadn't been to and that was quite a little show that they put on for us a high recommendation if you can spend a bit of cash.

Thursday, It's a holiday.... so we had quite a bit going on that day, first with the historic capitol which was pretty neat and it was kind of a slow day, except for the fact that there were like 100+ people going in and out at a time... all right maybe that was a little bit too much of a claim, but there was a lot of things going on that day.   After that we went to visit miss Shirley Ann Simmons and Ruby and Pat... well that didn't quite work out as planned because we have no idea where Pat ran off to, seeing as how she now has a baptismal date... or B.C.D.  We had a great little lesson and it went like a normal lesson would go with a prayer, seeing where they have read and then going off of what they read to what we were going to talk about, and usually reading a chapter in the Book of Mormon and applying what is being said.  Then finishing with a commitment to read, pray and come to church, which will help anyone come closer to Christ especially through the Book of Mormon and through sincere prayer and taking of the sacrament. So that's our lesson with Miss Simmons and company.

That night we also had a great time set up with splits and we were going to go with a ward member Bro Rew. Well before that we had a little bit of a backed up sink, so being smart I thought of getting some drain cleaner to get rid of all the crap that's in the sinks. which both bathroom sinks are connected to. So I got what seemed to be the most potent type of drain opener that I could find. So i got Liquid Lightning Drain Opener, and it's got a nice little ring to it. so it says to open a drain i need to pour 16 oz. of this stuff down into the drain and then wait 15 minutes while it works. so I pour it in one of the sinks and then head over to the other and pour the other half into the drain. By the time the bottle is empty the sink is starting to smoke or steam or something that was hot and had a little kind of white vapor to it coming back up. So we really start reading the bottle and we find out that we are supposed to put water in the drain before putting the liquid lightning in.... ummm..... we also read that it's made with "Virgin Sulfuric Acid".... so i think that we should just flush the stuff out by now it's been a little while... so we fill up some containers of cold water to flush this stuff down the drain. so by the time we get this ready and start pouring we see that the liquid lightning is running out on to the floor of the bathroom. so i pour a little bit of water down the drain and of course the pipes are now leaking.... so we head over to the other bathroom and find similar results... by this time we get a call from Bro Rew saying that he's going to be there in about 20 to 30 minutes... ummm..... so right now we have sulfuric acid on the floor of the bathroom eating away at anything it comes in contact with, and we've got about 20 minutes to get not just one bathroom in "order" but two... so we had an extra towel which was thrown on the pile of the purpley colored water that was draining out of the P-trap of the bathroom sink, and still flowing out. so we had to find some more things to pick up this stuff. so we started using paper towels, and that was working really well... when i got called into the other one to see that the towel that we had been using was literally being eaten away because of this stuff. so what did my chemistry class teach me about this type of stuff.... add more water, my reasoning is that it would make the concentration a lot less. if we had a lot more water, and making it not eating up everything it touches. so we did that and got most of everything working back in order when Bro. Rew showed up, but we were still just getting everything cleaned up, and we got everything to a position where we could leave, so we went out and had a wonderful time with him finding people on the roster and seeing other people. all in all a really good time. so at the end of that night we went back into the apartment that smelt a lot like Yellowstone.  and i couldn't let that drain beat me so i spent the next hour trying everything i could to get it back into shape and get that nasty smell of sulfur out of the house. so that was Thursday

Friday so the day of Thursday we get a phone call saying that transfers is happening this week.... ok.... because we were moving 9 Brazilians out of Florida to Brazil. and we also were told that the companionship that we helped move on Monday, were leaving to fill in the spots that had been where the Brazilians were staying at. So that day started at the crack of dawn getting everything from the FSU elders, the ones we moved, into our car and then on to the transfer van to get them off to where they needed to be. So most of the day was doing errands for sister Jensen who was stressing out about this whole situation for which i feel for her. think about trying to feed 9 missionaries for the next 3 days so it's more like feeding 18 people for a week. so that was hopefully helpful for her to get the mission home in order. then we actually had to leave early to get to a dinner appointment and a lesson that night with a part member family, which outline is very similar to Sis. Simmons and Company. and that was such an amazing experience just seeing the growth that the Park family has made, it just makes me smile.

Saturday probably a missionaries favorite day at least this Saturday, because your entire day is planned. and the talks were amazing and defintely a theme of understanding and being worthy to keep the priesthood, and listening to the spirit, and improving oneself through the gospel and what it teaches. Saturday was spent all day at the church.

While Sunday we went and had conference with a senior missionary couple, the Cox's they have been described as far as our companionship as the grandparents of the mission, oh so loving and cute and funny. They just make any day better. So we had dinner with them and they even made scones.... I know weird, but then again i don't know if I told them about our little tradition. So overall really cool and then said goodbye to the Brazilians, one of  which was another Timpview-ite. Harrison Richards in fact next door neighbor to Elder Hammond, Small World. well that's about it for the whole week thing.

This morning we had a great time at the roller hockey rink, where I actually felt somewhat comfortable on. So that's about it for the day.


Elder Gillespie