Current Mission Address

Elder Dane Edward Eskildsen
Brazil Santa Maria Mission
Caixa Postal 0339

Centro Quarai-RS 97560-000

(updated 1/13)

Monday, February 25, 2013

January and Febuary 2013

January 20, 2013  Wow Jarin is 8 already?! I thought he was like 6 still. Dang thats pretty crazy. I got the family calander this last week and everyone seems to have changed a little bit. I havent however gotten your Christmas letter. It should be here today. Ill have to go and see. Thats good to hear that the meetings this last sunday were good. Its also crazy to think that Joel Crowther is back already. If he is back that means that Michael Casper Dyrel Whitby and Blake Nelson are back already as well. Thats pretty crazy to think about. Time passes by so quickly during the mission.
I have not yet been transferred, but later this day I will probably find out where I will be going later today. When I do I will be sure to send you and email.

The work went slow this week. As hard as we tried to mark appointments and to find new investigators we were not let in to hardly any houses. And the one house that did let us in wasnt able to mark a specific return date for us. Therefore we didnt really find any new investigators. Yet Alex and Josiele went to church on Sunday. Alex cancelled all work apointments he had etc, so that he could go to church and he loved it. He said without a doubt he is going to go next week. We are planning on baptizing him next month. Vivianne wasnt able to go to church yesterday and she also still hasnt given that husband of hers the boot. She has a very strong desire to be baptized but the guy wont get out of there and he wont marry her. Its difficult. We have another couple that we found that seem to be some of the elect. They are very interested in the message and want to go to church etc. They always ask all kinds of questions. We even got somehow to the topic of marriage and they said taht they have no problem getting married legally to be baptized. They are praying and reading the BOM to get an answer. As soon as they go to church I know they will be even more excited about the Feb. 23 baptismal date that we set for them. ( Thier names are Roberto and Leticia BTW)

It got SUPER hot here for a couple days and many times seemed to be threatening to rain but never did. Therefore it stayed incredibly humid. I hope I get sent to someplace a bit less humid than Santa maria. I would love to have a little bit of that cold you all are feeling there in the states. I love you all and hope your week is great!

-Elder Eskildsen
January 27, 2013  Yea the Fire in Santa Maria has been all over the news and EVERYONE has been talking about it. It really has been a huge tragedy. As of now I dont know of anyone who was caught in the fire, but our investigator didnt go to church there in Santa Maria ( I was told by my old comp) because he had to help identify bodies of some of his friends that were there. Yea Santa Maria has a ton of students and colleges and so that is why there were so many young people from many different cities there.
The new area has been really good. It is about 5 and a half or six hours away from Santa Maria, and wow is it a lot different. Not only did the accent change a lot, but as we are on the border of Uruguay there is a lot of Portunhol that is spoken. We are even allowed to go to Uruguay on P-day so this morning we went over to Artigas to buy some cheap American import Items (Pringles deodorant: (for other missionaries) and tabasco sauce. The city I am in: Quaraí is a pretty podunk town in the middle of pretty much nothing. There are 22,000 inhabitants and no real reason for anyone to come here. It is also one of the hottest areas on the mission and I am being blessed by the relatively mild climate, althogh the inside of our house reaches a general 90 degrees at all times. This city is, by percentage, the city with most members of the church, for there are 1300-1800 (number not confirmed) members here. The sad thing is is that although it once flourished the city has decreased to 3 branches, one (my branch) having a frequency of 80-90 and the other two with a frequency of less than 40 members. The situation is grim for the other two branches. I got here and luckily was recompensed for the loss of the good investigators that I had in Santa Maria. There is an incredibly elect family that we are teaching here that are going to be married and baptized by the 16th of February. They will be the first complete family baptized in the city for a VERY long time. We also have several other prospects for baptism next month. The members have been getting excited latelybecause of the success that the branch is having lately and so we are definitely going to work well with the members. You can imagine that I have so many things to talk about the new area etc, but I have trouble putting my thoughts together sometimes. I am really liking this new area. Yes I am still district leader and have been blessed immensely for only having one other companionship in my district. Its pretty tranquil. It is also nice to work with Elder Moroni again. (Yes dying is the term that we use, and fortunately I wont be dying for another several months. and you dont have to worry, the 6th of August is my DEFINITE return date, because if I return in the next transfer I wouldnt make it back for college. Also from what I had been told the area authorities here in Brazil are making it very very hard for a missionary to get an extension.).
It is crazy to think that things are getting so different there at home. Marriages, missions and all kinds of other things. Also I am excited to find out that Rachel will be going to BYU with me.
There are a whole lot of ag planes that I have seen flying around here in this city. Seeing as the city is small, rural, and very involved in agriculture that is to be expected. I will try to find out where the closest ag strip is and try to pay a visit.
I already sent home the drivers liscense extension, It was severaly weeks ago that I sent it, so it should not take to long for it to get there. Prehaps it would be necessary to send another one....
Also I have had very little (almost no) time to practice piano, but after a cumulated hour of practice I can now play abide with me tis eventide with both hands. many others I can play with the left and the righthand but not at the same time. I will practice when I get home.
Well i hope you are all doing well in the states, and I love you all!
-Elder Eskildsen

Feb 4, 2013    Wow that is so crazy that Kylie is already going on the mission. I am probably going to be very surprised when I get back by all of the people that went on missions. Yea Im sure she will see Coleman at least a few times.

I really wish that I could have been there to go through the temple with Katelyn for the first time. I got her wedding announcement on the 1st. It got here really fast. It wassent out the 23rd and I got it the first. I think it is the letter that has gotten to me the fastest of any other here on the mission. I also already got the calander and the Christmas card. It has acually been a while. I have been procrastinating my letter writing a bit, but here in a while I wil have many letters to send to many people. Busy busy busy.

They still play football in the US? I almost forgot that existed. I am incredebly aware of Soccer however. I am in a place that simple does not allow me to forget about it. But I am starting to like it a bit more.

Im sure the missionaries loved the pizza. I would like pizza for lunch every once in a while. At least here it is always nice to have something a little more simple like a sandwich or pizza or something instead of RICE haha. We have ate alot of rice here. I am not a huge fan at the moment. The food here is pretty much the same. There arent a whole lot of differences other than the fact that the food is more simple because the area is a little bit poorer, but that is not truly a bad thing. The people here seem to like a lot of spices and salt on thier food, which I am fine with. I have found myself liking food a lot stronger than when I was at home. The people in this area are much more open and hospitable than my last ward. I am already having more success here in this area than in the last few areas I was in notwithstanding the fac that this city is one of te ´´holes´´ of te missiion.

The spanish isnt difficult at all. Actually I have been able to articulate well in spanish due to the fact that I rememver a little from aunt Lisas class (yes Aunt Lisa, I retained quite a bit it seems) and due to the fact taht the two languages are so similar. REading spanish is easy.To Speak it is moderately difficult. To understand the Uruguians is pretty dand hard. But when they speak slow I can get what they are saying. Mexican spanish is much easier to understand.

Its good to hear the house is coming along well.Our week went quite well. We had the zone conference which was great, and I saw Elder Welch (as depicted in the picture attached) and talked to him quite a bit. It was quite hot this week, but I was truly blessed that the weather cooled down a bit when the day for fasting came. IT was still hot but It stayed just under 100 degrees which was truly a blessing. my testimony of fasting was strengthened the last few days. We spent most of Saturday talking to investigators that havent got to church for a while. Some for a year and some for three months. WE left great messages there and 4 of those peeople went to church yesterday which was an incredible blessing, because the visits on saturday were with the intent of cutting them and leaving thier names in the area book. We also have that family that we will baptize here in a few weeks that are going well. We will get them married ASAP and the baptism is scheduled for the 16th. WE currently have 5 dates marked for baptism 4 from the family and one of a young lady we are teaching.

I cant think of much else to say other than that I need more refills for my Zebra F-301 pens. If you get tem make sure that they are of the ´´fine point´´ style. Thanks. I love you and appreciate all that you do for me.

-Elder Eskildsen

P.S. MY comp Elder Moroni is applying for the ELC program (elglish language Center) and we are probably going to be roomates after the mission. We have been talking about him going to stay with us a little bit after I get home of the mission to work a little bit and to get used to the US before heading off to school. I dont know how it works to let a foreigner work in agriculture, but what do you think of the idea dad?

Feb 17, 2013 I have a SOUND BYTE to send to you all today! That may explain a bit about how my week was. But yea last week we actually had 8 people at sacrament meeting. This week was 12. A little more on that in the voice recording. It was early morning when I recorded so I think my voice is a little odd.
I would have really liked to be at the stake conference this last week. But here we are going to have a marriage and 3 baptisms on Wednesday! We are super excited and the branch is SUPER stoked, because it has been a long time that such a GOOD family has been baptized in the entire city.
Tell Katelyn Congratulations for me! It is super cool that she found someone good and all but she should have waited for me to see her wedding! haha but Im happy for her.
Thats super cool that Mark has been here. It is a little agricultural town so Im sure it must have been here that he went. Did he ever end up going to church here? Maybe the members know him. But the members dont really remember much of people that pass through here, despite its small size and low influx of people. Im sure here would be a good place for the church to put property, because things like land are much cheaper here.
The new house is amazing. More on that in the voice recording.
I sent a letter to Chelsea today. I am sure it will get to her soon seeing as she is practically my neighbor. Also I sent a letter to Kelli Marie and to Mikaela. I will send a letter to respond to Grandma and Grandpa Eskildsen, but I need to know if they are going to be in Kennewick or in Arizona. Do you know?
At this moment I dont think I need help with the housing, but I will see.
I hope you are all doing well and I love you!
-Elder Eskildsen
Feb 25, 2013  Dont worry you didnt spoil it for me. I already saw it when Rachel told me. I got super excited when I found out! She is definitely going to love it there at BYU! I know it. So now that you have two progenie attending the same institution of higher education, which automobile may we take? Will we get to take the pilot up to Provo?
That little party of Rachels sounded pretty cool, even if she was crying a little bit before. Rachel wont have to worry about the dating life. I am sure there will be all kinds of my ex mission buddies there that will want to talk with her haha. We will see.

Mail gets sent to my city that I am in (Quaraí) with that address I gave you. If I am transferred (which I was not. Transfers were today. I will stay another 6 weeks here probably). In the case of a transfer, everything will be sent to me by the elders in the city I have left. Also I am going to need probably just 1 more axe hairgel , the same yellow labelled one as always and some more floss picks. That is pretty much the limit of what I will need until the end. Also dont be alarmed by the amount of money being taken out of my personal account. Because of supplies for the new house I had to dip into the ´´dollar´´ account. But all of the 150 dollars or so that I took out will be reimbursed here in a few weeks. Nothing to worry about.

Our hosue is all settled into, and it is awesome. It is quite a nice house and we are living alone, which makes it much quieter and easier to keep clean. That is the life. We also live in our area now and much closer to EVERYTHING. What a beauty.

My mission wont change at all, but it was nice to know about the new mission president. I will only spend one transfer with him.

It has been raining quite a bit here which has made it quite nice. The temp has cooled a lot which is releiving. It is supposd to heat up again.

The baptisms and the marriage were anazing! There were 130 people there! That made the experince even more special for the family!

We have had quite a bit of success this week and we are going to probably have more baptisms in the near future. This week was super stressful. Hre are some pics!

-Love you and hope you are all doing well!

-Elder Eskildsen

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