Monday, 10 November 2014

Happy November!

Dear Everyone,

November is upon us here in England. It's getting colder and darker and wetter each day but that's ok. We just need to get better at time usage. I'm going to try to do a bit of missionary alphabet here-we'll see how far I can get. I don't have a lot of time today though so here goes:

Cliff, a referral from Brother Limacher who we're hoping to teach soon
Elder Houghton (me)
Fonseca, Elder-an Elder in Walsall A from Cape Verde, a small island off the coast of North Africa. His celebrity Look Alike is President Obama.
G. The last initial of a couple that moved into the ward recently and they're having us for dinner on Thursday
Hiltons, Elder and Sister-the Senior Couple assigned to Walsall from St. George. They're the best!
Job, a really cool college student we met. He's super busy though so it's hard to set up to meet with him. He seems way solid though. Hopefully it works out.
Kim, a wonderful recent convert lady we're working with along with her husband. It's tricky for them getting to church but they're really nice people and things are going well.
Limacher, Brother-our Ward Mission Leader who is moving out over the next two weeks. We're way sad to see him go.
Marvin, this cool black buy we met and will hopefully be teaching tomorrow if it holds.
New Investigators-the people we're looking for every day but they're doing a good job hiding from us at this point
Strupp, Elder-the new Elder in Walsall
Tukuafu, Elder-my companion. He's great and he's from Tonga and we're still together
Walsall, Wednesbury, Willenhall, Wolverhampton, Wednesfield, Woodsetton-area names around and in the case of the first two, in our ward boundary. There are lots of W's for some reason...

I'll try to fill in the rest next week maybe. It's been a better week this past one. Transfers happened and I stayed in Walsall B. We are really needing more people to teach but they are super hard to find right now. Things are getting going though. Also, good things are happening with Less Active People we're working with even if it's slow.

I hope all is well wherever you may be!
Elder Houghton

P.S. Because there's no Thanksgiving here, the stores and streets have gone straight to Christmas. It's odd missing out on a holiday.

Saturday, 8 November 2014

Craving Pumpkin Soup

From 27 October 2014
Houghton Family Tradition:  Pumpkin Soup on Halloween
Excerpts from Elder Houghton's report last week:

I'm craving Pumpkin soup as we speak. People are so confused about how we eat pumpkin pie. We'll see if the one American in the ward invites us over for Thanksgiving-often the Americans in a ward do that for their missionaries but we had none in Coventry and only one here...

We still have a hole in the ceiling from the leak and bathroom cork tiles that are warped like crazy-->can't shut the door properly and the tub leaks we think through the hole into the kitchen. Also, the light switching cord in the bathroom is wigging out and we don't have a functioning/clean toaster still plus the vacuum is fused to the wall and the floor is sloped. It's not the best place to live and more issues keep cropping up but we're alive and I'm not complaining.

I really do wish that I could zap some of the moisture from here over to you. I know if would be greatly appreciated on both sides. It hasn't been super wet lately but it's the constant threat and occasional downpour that are the issues. Drizzles are awful as well actually.

The axle or spindle (not sure what to call it) on the back wheel of my bike snapped on Thursday. I had to go get that replaced by the wonderful missionary-friendly bike shop people and I also bought a new pair of trousers plus a scarf and some slippers today (that should be all to keep me going through the winter!-the slippers are a must btw when you get home for lunch with soaked feet and trousers).

Things have been going this week. I was pretty discouraged toward the beginning of the week-way. Fortunately, I've got an always smiling companion in Elder Tukuafu. Most of the time that's a good thing. It's been really difficult to find anyone to teach lately. As it says in Preach My Gospel, Nothing happens in missionary work until you find someone to teach. It's true. To be fair, we are teaching quite a few less active members and recent converts and we are teaching a cool African guy and may be teaching the teenage girl eternigators (eternal investigators-an all too common breed of Alligator found in England) who aren't really eternigators yet. We shall see how it goes. We do have some good things to do this week-just not much that will likely increase our teaching pool (service, workover to help our Zone Leaders one of whom is stuck in the flat after an appendectomy, etc. etc.).

Things are going ok today. Sometimes, it's a roller coaster but I'm trying. It's always tough for me as well when I hit a time landmark (right now being between my 6 month left mark and my 18 month done mark). Also, transfers are coming up. Not sure at all what will happen. I've not been thinking about it much-probably the best I've done with thinking about transfers in my whole mission actually.

We did have a good District Meeting this past week. I decided that I didn't want to do all the training like I normally do (call it revelation!) so I split it up into four chunks and had each other team do 1/4 of it. It was great. They were supposed to each take 15 minutes and it only went 1:20 which is way better than I had feared it would be. The greatest success was with a missionary who has been dealing with a lot of challenges lately.  This Elder gave some pretty good training actually and stepped up quite well to the responsibility he was given. It was good. Hopefully I can help him have more of those types of experiences!

Lots of Love not sure I'm going to manage a blog email as we're way crunched on time today. Thanks for everything and the prayers. They are greatly appreciated!

Elder Houghton