How are ya family? I hope everything is going well for you! It sounds like you have had a good week. John, I hear good things about your ribs..., I am going to need to try those. Also, happy birthday, John!!. Also, mom Katie is getting married? You haven't said anything about that. This winter in Samara was not that cold. Probably not the worst in a hundred years. And yay! my pictures are back! Have fun looking at them. As far as people to talk to in Utah.... I don't know. whoever you see tell them hi from me. Take some pictures send them to me. And tell people I like hearing from them. letters are welcome:)
This week seemed to fly. I don't really know what happened. Tuesday morning we got on a train to Orenburg. It was the first day train I had been on but it was good I was able to get caught up in my journal. The coupe they bought us was way nice to! I was about to try and describe why..., but it seems too hard. I promise I took pictures and I will show you. promise. Anyway we got to Orenburg and I did an exchange with Sister Upshaw. It was fun to work with her again and back in Orenburg. Way fun. We had a lesson with 2 members that were baptized less than a year ago. they are both around 90 years old but fire crackers. It was really fun to see them. We talked with them about the word of wisdom. They don't love giving up their tea and wine. Good lesson though. We also had a lesson with a 25 year old girl. She stopped them on the street earlier in the week because she wants to learn English. All she knows about missionaries is that usually we are from America and we speak English. She is so cool! We talked a little about our message and what we do here. She believes in god but she said she doesn't really know how to worship him or what she should do with that belief. Hopefully good things will happen. We came home on Thursday planned and then we went and chalked in the evening. We drew a picture of dispensations of the prophets and asked people, "If there was a prophet on the earth today, what would you ask him?" It sparked some really good conversations but we didn't get any meetings from it. Oh! on Monday we were supposed to meet with Sasha but he stood us up. I texted him earlier and he said he was coming and then he never showed up and then turned his phone off. I wouldn't be so annoyed by it if he wasn't so good! He loves coming to church, he loves reading the Book of Mormon, he has already said he wants to serve a mission. he is way cool. he just is terrible at answering the phone. We will work with him though. I talked to him on the phone on Saturday and he said he was coming to church but he didn't come to that either. Grrr. We should be meeting with him on Tuesday. Cross your fingers and toes! Pray! On Saturday we had sport which was way fun. It was way muddy though. It has been raining really often lately so we were pretty muddy. Fun though. On the way to sport we were on the bus and there was a lady that got on with her teenage son. For some reason it took me forever to talk to her but I finally asked her where to get off. Her son got off at an earlier bus stop and so I asked her if her son likes playing soccer. She said that he did. I told her where we play and gave her and invitation to church. I thought that IF she told her son he wouldn't come until next week. but after we finished playing frisbee (we play frisbee for an hour and then soccer for an hour) he was there! just waiting a little ways off. It was so cool! He had a good time so he should be coming back next week. He lives in the elders area so they will be working with him, but his mom knew who we were and still told her son to come play with us. Saturday evening was a fireside with President Sartori and Sister Sartori. They are leaving this week so they had a fireside for the members in Samara. Yesterday as we were working on the street trying to find people it was one of those days where no one wanted to talk to us. Nothing really happened but we talked to everyone we saw. I felt good about our efforts at the end of the day.
Our branch president is really cool. He has been watching the work of salvation broadcast over and over with us and is really trying to implement it. He is going to the temple this week with his son who leaves for his mission to Australia in less than a month, but before he left he gave us some "homework". He is trying to fill our schedules so we won't waste time looking for people ourselves. He is so good! I love him. I love his whole family actually. They just get it. They understand what it means to be a disciple of Christ. Also, this week
President Schwab will be getting here! I can't believe it. That means it is going to be August! Well, I think that is about it. I love you all so much!