Friday, September 30, 2016

Blog # whatever

Well, I have kinda had an eventful week. And I've been in the mission for 2 weeks, only 102 to go LOL! Sorry this is super long too.

        To start off, my Prep Day is on Mondays now, if you weren't aware. P-Days here in Riverside are really chill. We usually just go to a Building and play ball or board games or whatever we can do that's fun. we usually email for an 1 1/2 hours or so, then grocery shop and do anything else that's needed before we get back to work at 6pm.

         So ill start with something crazy that happened to me this week, My bike got stolen! it was taken we think on Tuesday, but who really knows. we had it up on our balcony on the second floor, and someone took it. Like really?? I'm actually not that heart broken about it, and i hope whoever stole it needed it more than i did. Being without a bike really inst a problem for me right now, because we are full time car for this area. The bummer though is that i never got to ride good ol Gloria before she was kidnapped. R.I.P (of course I had to name my bike).

          On the brighter side, Elder Patterson and I put 5 people on date for baptism this Week! God is good! 4 of the five, are part of the Penunuri family. The father of that family is a less active, and actually called the missionaries to help him turn his life around to where it was before. So as the rest of his family is preparing to be Baptized, he is preparing to be ready to be able to baptize them! Our other one is a girl named Toni, that we met on accident ( I may have wrote about our meeting last blog, but my memory is horrible haha). Anyways, she and the Penunuri's are set to be baptized this October!

          I am thoroughly enjoying my time as a missionary. It can be so fun and uplifting, but it can also be super difficult, and has already become the hardest time in my life. Adjusting to the mission life was somewhat of a challenge. in the MTC i was never as exhausted as i am right now, so i usually try to get everything done when we get home for the day so i can get to sleep early. Sleep is something that I'm not sure even exists anymore. It feels like you close your eyes, and the next second the alarm is going off. That is the worst felling EVER. I also haven't worked out once since Ive gotten here, but I've been trying to eat real light for breakfast and lunch, because Hispanics give you so much on your plate for dinner, a blessing and a curse... 

      So, as far as my Spanish is concerned, its coming along real well. I still suck, and I'm going to continue to suck for a good while. I;m able to comprehend more now, but i can only really get the message they are trying to put across, and sometimes they speak so fast I'm totally clueless. its especially hard sometimes when I'm talking to someone across their yard, and they speak so softly i can barely even hear what they're saying, Elder Patterson has to help me with those haha. However, last night we were contacting a bit before we went back home. I started to contact a man in English, but he only knew Spanish. it was so dark, id didn't know if he was Mexican or a tan white guy. Anyways, i switched to Spanish and started to talk to him, he turned me down, but when i was finished, Elder Patterson was impressed, he said it was a really good contact. See my Spanish is going somewhere, I guess.

        We also ran into some super High black women last night, it was a really weird experience. We were just walking back to the car and one of them called us out and ran across the street. One of them knew who we were, because some came by her house and she would feed them and make them do her yard work and laundry haha. She said she quit taking discussions because she likes to do the dirty deed (for lack of another word) whenever she likes to, i have no clue why she wanted to tell us that haha. the other one just liked to talk to us, and ask us random questions. Elder Patt gave them our card and number ( i honestly don't know why he did) and we might end up teaching them. if we do, expect an interesting blog.

See ya next week!

Elder Brad Bailey

1st week in!

Well this week has been pretty great so far! I'm finally out of the MTC, and here in Riverside California! This one is a long one to, i dont expect anyone to read it all lolol!

      I Arrived here on last Tuesday. I had to wake up at 3:40am to get ready and get to the airport that day. It was not fun... i didn't go to sleep till 12:50ish lol. I mean come on, it was my last day in the MTC, it would be the last time i would be able see and talk to a lot of people for 2 years. Anyways, at the airport, i was worrying hard about my baggage weight. i don't know how, but i somehow got 10 more pounds on each bag after arriving at the MTC. They weighed in at 50 and 51 pounds at the airport, and i didn't have to pay for any overage fees, phew! Also i got to call family before i left, and i cant believe i was close to crying! I dint really ever fell homesick, but something just gets to you when you get to talk to your mom finally after 6 weeks.
      Many others and i arrived in the Ontario Airport in CA at about 10:40ish. Mission president Mullen was there to receive us. We left and headed to the Mission home building, and i had to endure 5 hours of Orientation, gross i know. i was super bored, and i just spoke Spanish to the Elder beside me, because he was from Mexico. But later that night we had dinner there and after wards i was given a Trainer, Elder Patterson. The funny part about this was, i already knew who he was, because his girlfriend was in my MTC district! She talked about him all the time, and i even email him in from the MTC once, just for S's(ships) and G's. Kinda Crazy huh?

      Well this last week here in Riverside have been kinda rough at times, but not too rough. I had to help give a blessing in Spanish, the night i arrived... . Totally was a great experience tho.
       My first area here is actually right in the heart of Riverside. There are many, many Hispanics here. But i love the people, they are so nice, even when they aren't interested in our message. Side note: we don't go door to door here, we street contact 100%) Anyway, Hispanics are way nicer than white people haha. Everyone else here are just really rude to ya. I don't know why! Also, comprehending Spanish is pretty hard right now. i can put together the message they are saying, but i can only pick out words right now, its like i cant process them fast enough to understand at the moment. Elder Patterson does most of the talking, because sometimes they talk so fast I'm just lost. Yesterday though, we met up with this guy named Geronomi, and he spoke 200MPH. neither of us could understand what he was talking about. He slurred all everything he said, it barely sounded like Spanish... .

     We get feed here really nicely. Every night we have a dinner appointment, and the food is delicious! Authentic Mexican food maybe the death of me. I definitely will gain alot of weight on this mission, but hopefully i can even it out with some exercise, i guess we will see.

     Another cool experience happened yesterday. We were out looking for a Referral and we knocked on the wrong door. However, a young woman named tony opened up (she spoke English) , and absolutely loved our message and video we showed her. It was a video about Jesus Christ and his atonement, and after i said a prayer to end our little meeting she had tears in her eyes. The Spirit Definitely touch her. She invited us to come back this week!

     Last thing, and i know this is super long, but if you made it down here, you loyal, hahaha. Anyways, we attend a baptism yesterday for 2 young girls. Elder Patterson and i had to give a presentation on The Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, all in spanish to the ward. I wasnt nervous until i saw our mission president was there. However the presentation went really well! President Mullen and his wife, the Stake president, and the sister missionaries, came up and Told me i did sooooo great, and my spanish was super good to be out for only a week. Elder Pat. just stood there and was like, "Hey what about me! i've come a long way too!" Jelly much? HAHA.

Hope you all are doing well!

Elder Bailey

Letter from the Mission president!

Dear Brother and Sister Bailey,

We are so grateful to have Elder Bradley Homer Bailey join us here in the California Riverside Mission! It was exciting to meet him at the airport. I had the opportunity to interview your missionary and we were able to hear his testimony before having dinner together. We have been impressed with his testimony and desire to serve. It has been a privilege to get to know him.

Elder Bailey is now hard at work in his new area, the MT. RUBIDOUX Zone with his companion Elder Daniel James Patterson.

Preparation day is Monday; most missionaries choose to email their family on that day. We encourage you to write or email weekly as well. Thank you for keeping your letters positive, uplifting and encouraging Elder Bailey to work hard and take advantage of the time spent here in doing the work of the Lord.

As we visited with him, this is what he said about his family: "They are so loving! Some of the coolest people you would ever know.  My father and my mother are some of the greatest examples I have!"  He is most excited about being able to bring others unto Christ in their language.

We look forward to a wonderful experience together with your missionary.  Thank you for preparing one worthy to serve.  May God continue to bless you.


John H. Mullen, President

Last week in the MTC!


    I hope everyone is doing well. this week is my last week in the MTC. Finally! However I am a tiny bit sad to leave though. My district and I have grown pretty close, we have become a family. We will be leaving for our missions next Tuesday early in the morning. Since its on a Tuesday, that means i wont get P-day that day, oh well. Hopefully it wont be too long until i get my next one, but why worry now, that's next week's probs.

    Sometimes, it feels like i didn't have a life before this. I forget about how the outside world is! I've been in a classroom all day everyday for 6 weeks! I also probably lost the little bit of tan i got from life guarding, but i cant tell. But on the bright side, I think I can get my farmers tan back in Riverside, since its always sunny and in the 90's F. And when I come back, you might as well call me Jose, because i'll be pretty much Hispanic. well I'm only guessing hahaha! A sister in my district has her boyfriend serving in my exact mission, and he looks pretty tan, so my hopes are up xD.

     I got like the best package in the mail this last week. it had Beef jerky, chips and queso, Cinnamon rolls, and a bunch of candy. I've been really craving junk, and it hit the spot. I've got the best mom in the world for reals. Love you Mom!

     One thing I'm super grateful is that I've got a friend here from TN! One of my best friends, Elder Edgerton, is here, even living on the same floor as me! He's headed to Ghana! I always talk every night, its pretty much necessary for my sanity. Yesterday was his birthday, so I had him over and we ate chips and queso,  t'was lit! I rarely call him Elder Edgerton tho, Its so much more natural to call him Brent, hahaha.
       I cant express it to you how hard they stress not calling your companion or any other missionary by anything other than Elder ______ or Sister______. Its easier for me to just call them by last name, but our teachers will stop, and ask " Quien?"(who?), until we call them Elder or Sister. ITS SO ANNOYING.

     One thing I'm not grateful for, is that I've gained almost 10 pounds here... . its not that the food is super great here, but they have unlimited ice cream. I cant resist ice cream, its my one weakness. I wont give you an exact amount of how much I eat, but I eat a lot lolol. 

     learning a new language is hard, even if you have studied it before. Every time I think I'm doing better and that I'm comprehending a lot, there is always something that proves me wrong haha! I understand a good amount though, and I can teach in Spanish, but it can still be super difficult sometimes. Over my course here in the MTC, I've taught a good amount of native Spanish speakers. during the lessons, I've been able to understand and teach, and others I have not. I have really been humbled by my Spanish experiences here. I'm no where near fluent, but the Lord definitely blesses me with help with this language.

    So every Sunday, we get to watch church films for the last hour before we have to go back to our residences. This last Sunday, my companion and i decided to watch Joseph Smith: The Prophet of the Restoration. If anyone wants to know about the restoration, or who Joseph smith was and what he did, that film is a great thing to watch! I had seen it before, but watching it again rejuvenated me, and hyped me up for the work I'm getting ready to do right now! It was so tear jerking at some points. What he, his family and the early church members went through, its so heart breaking.
     Everyone, I know that Joseph smith was called of God to be a prophet. I testify that he did see God, our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior. I know that the Book of Mormon is true, and that it was translated through the power of god by Joseph smith. Its all true, I know it!

     So something pretty funny happened this week. The Sister's residence building was infested by Bats! Apparently, one sister woke up with a bat on her neck, like what!? Anyway, they all had to move to a residence building all the way on the other side of campus. Us Elders had to help move their luggage, so we got out of class, which was so awesome. Me and and some other elders were talking about this, and if we found bats, there would be no way we would tell someone about it. It would be pretty dope to live with bats!!!! We could keep them as pets, how freaking cool would that be?!

Alright guys, I hope y'all are doing well! till next time.

Elder Bailey

Elders and Laxitives

So, even though 18-22 year old men are set apart as missionaries, that doesn't necessarily mean they act like it all the time. Don't get me wrong, we are mature and grown up when we need to, but we are all still teenagers here. However, there are some that try to leave their personality behind, and i don't understand them! you don't have to become a robot to be a good missionary, you can still have fun and be yourself!

The weeks now are going by fast, and sometimes it feels like just yesterday I was typing an email to all you guys back home. i think its because we stay busy all the time, I'm just glad they don't go by slow. That would be torture.

Well on to the reason i titled this "Elders and Laxatives". Well it was probably Wednesday or Thursday night of last week, and a bunch of us were just hanging out in another elder's room. Somehow, we got to playing what are the odds.... . for those who don't know about that game, 2 or more people pick a range of numbers,according to a dare,  and then both say a number at the same time. those participating must decide whether they want the consequence if they choose the same number or if the numbers add up to the max of the range. pretty simple and dumb game, but super funny! So, someone had a couple bars of chocolate laxatives. someone suggested playing what are the odds, and if you lost, you had to eat laxatives.... hmmm dumb right? i didn't get in on this, i knew id lose with my rotten luck. So as i watched, the rest of the elders played. 2 elders lost a game 1 out of 50, and it was pretty hilarious tbh. We had a member of the presidency there in the lounge area of our residence, and we were trying to shut them up so we didn't get in trouble, because the weren't happy at all hahaha! they had to eat 2 pieces of the laxatives. the next victims, had to eat 2 as well. And then, a certain elder, Elder Larson, lost in a 1-10. He had to eat 4!!! let me just tell you guys, I was laughing so hard when he lost! the next day, he was not having much fun at all. We were practicing Spanish and all of a sudden he turns to his companion, Elder Leishman, and says  "i gotta go, now!" He quickly asked our teacher if he could leave, and bolted out of the room. Too funny.

So here's my weekly Spanish update:

its going really well! i can see myself improving, and its super exciting! However, i was told its gonna take my 6 weeks in the field to understand most of what anyone says. idk how it will be for me, because i feel like i catch and understand a lot of whats said by the people we teach here in the MTC, however i will say sometimes i don't catch anything at all, so i guess we will see! I had a pretty cool Spanish experience yesterday! So our teacher plays a character, an investigator from his own mission, and we have to teach him as he is that person. Well, me and my companion, elder Honda, went to teach him. As i was teaching him about The Restoration, and the Spanish just flowed right out of my mouth, it was so cool! thats what 4 weeks of Spanish will do for ya. But its definitely not just me though, the Lord helps me with it a lot! Also we got a new TRC investigator(just an investigator that's not an employee). He was supposed to be one of the meanest and rudest guy their. However when we came in, he was just on a laptop watching Hispanic music videos, and he was really friendly towards us for the most part hahaha. We were really able to talk to him and get him to open up a little with us, it was such a great experience. Just after one meeting with him, i already felt love for him. This mission has changed me so much...

Well one of the worst things has happened to me and the other elders in our room that can ever happen in theMTC. We got 2 new room mates... :( . When i found out i was so mad. For the past 3 weeks, I've had 2 closets and extra room under my bed for whatever i want, but they ruined my life of luxury. However, they have proved to be worthy of my presence, so i haven't run them off yet. hehe.

Also, ive gotten pretty ingenious here in the MTC. We have to unwind somehow after our long days of studying, and we only get an hour for exercise, so i bought some roles of masking tape and pushed all the furniture in the lounge to one wall so i could make made a four square court. We get a raquet ball to use and the entire zone participates. its lit.

Well i think that's all for this week, I love and miss everyone of y'all in TN. Feel free to email me! I Need interaction with the outside world! 

See ya!

Elder Bailey