Monday, January 27, 2014

January 27 -20 weeks!

Hello my family!

It's been another crazy week that has flown by! I am still standing in amazement that my mission is going by so fast. In like 4 weeks (Transfers) I will have been out for 6 months =O That is crazy! I love being a missionary, even if visa waiting is a freakin pain in the neck. I haven't heard anything else yet, but I do know that there are now 6 Elders from my MTC district down there now. Four of them got their visas last week and ran into each other at the airport haha. I won't lie, that made me a little bit sad/jealous of them, but I know that mine is coming. I can feel it in my heart and know that my mission in Utah is almost complete. Until then, I'm going to keep being a rockstar because that is what Elder HD Colton Sanderson does best! (See how humble I am now?). 

Wish I could have been there to see grandpa, but I've sent him an email or two and am glad you guys have had fun! Matt and Mione sent me a package this week! I got 5 new ties for my birthday from them and they are awesome! Please tell them that I said thank you! We also had interviews with our mission president this past week and mine went pretty good. All they are is just the Mission President checking up on us to make sure that everything is going okay. He asked me, "Do you have any questions for me besides when your visa will be here?" And I looked and him and said, "President, you know just as well as I do that the experience I had a few weeks ago has caused me to know that I will never ask you when my visa is getting here. I know there is a plan for me, and you do too." He seemed pretty happy about that and said that he really means it when he says I'm a tremendous asset to this mission. 

Elder Day and I are having a blast and are on fire right now! We will probably be baptizing 5 people in the next 2 or 3 weeks and have many others who we are beginning to work with. We haven't made any progress with that lady's son yet, but that is a very long story. Short version: She pretty much overdosed on oxicotton on the day we were going to go to have the FHE. So, instead of that, she went to the hospital and we cleaned her house. It's been a rough time for her, but we are going back to see her tomorrow and have the FHE so please say a special prayer for them! 

That is crazy with all of the snow you guys got! We haven't had any for weeks, but are supposed to have a few storms hit this week! It will be nice having a car and a garage! I am loving the car, but think I'm getting lazy haha. I'm alright with that though because it means I'll gain more weight for Brazil!

Could you ask Chase if he knows a Mark Allred? He's supposedly some high-end JAG officer who is somewhere near DC. I figured I would know him if he were by us because he would go to our ward, but some people out here asked me if I knew him. Could you also send me Brother Kirkham's email if you get the chance? I want to ask him a question that I think he'll know the answer to because he told it to me a long time ago. Also (this is my random stuff paragraph) did BYU go into 3OT in basketball last week??? We went to lunch at a restaurant and they had SportCenter on so my eyes may have wandered every couple of seconds =) 

Funny story from Sacrament meeting (one of 4 Sacrament meetings yesterday), we were sitting there during the Sacrament and there was this little boy probably only a year or two old walking around. A little girl behind us looks at him and whispers, "Go back to your family" lol she was maybe only three or four and it was so funny! Another funny thing I heard in church was, "They say God only gives us what we can handle, I guess I'm a BA" Lol I love church in Utah!

Love you guys! 

Elder Sanderson

The ties from Matt and Mione 
This is Peanut he's crazy 
The "clean" Utah air 

*****he also forwarded an email from a missionary that was with him in the MTC who is already in Manaus. There had been a rat in their apartment they killed with a boot, they walk 12 miles to church, and at church yesterday that missionary's companion had traded a watch for a flashlight that was also a TASER! -lol!  Can't wait to hear HDs stories from Brazil.  :).  *****

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

January 20, 19 weeks

****from Tara:  He has a new mailing address and his birthday is in LESS than three weeks!  Please send him birthday wishes through the mail.  I want him to get a bunch of mail.  He would love it!  His new address is: 
Elder HD Sanderson
1566 Mountain View Blvd.
Woods Cross, UT 84087
Thanks everyone!!!! ******

Hello familia of mine!

Bountiful is the best place to serve in this mission! We are definitely living the high life and I am very grateful for it. The work in our area is beginning to explode too! We have a Bishop who I pretty much want to be our third companion haha. He was so excited when he told us his new mission plan that he was just about jumping up and down. He is exactly in line with what our mission president wants for the missionaries and it is fantastic! This has been a good week so far and my new companion is really cool. He's going home in two transfers so that's two comps in a row that are going home soon. It's weird to see the difference in them and me, but that's not always a bad thing either. 

I do remember Elder Gomez, he's a really cool guy! He left a few weeks before I did in the MTC. He was in the same game as me when I hurt my ankle lol. The Pokemon tournament looks like it was amazing and I'm sure you and Joe got matching t-shirts as souvenirs! 

BRONCOS ARE SUPER BOWL BOUND!!!!!! I might just ask my mission president if I can watch it =D I might not be able to do anything until February 3rd haha. I can't believe that they go the year I'm going to be not watching tv. I've watchied tv for 20 years and they go the year I change my ways...The things I give up for the Lord =p lol. 

It has been a really good week like I said, we should have 3 or 4 baptisms coming up and I have one that I'm going to in my last area on Saturday! It was a lady and her daughter who we were teaching and I'm so excited for them! We have been working with a family in our area who is trying to come back. The mom is super excited, but her son says that is is anti-mormon. He has never been interested in the church, but after she met us she told him about me and sent us this text that night, I'll change their names just in case they wouldn't want me to share, "John has never been open to the lds church...i told him about you HD and Dayo (she likes first names and that's my companion's nickname). He really wants to meet you. Especially HD. You're great Dayo but when you get released in will be snatched up. Something about HD softened his heart. Not only that, but gave him a desire to know more. Life is amazing" I know that there is a reason that I'm here. Maybe it's for "John", but whatever the case, I'll do everything that the Lord would have me do so that I can help him come closer to Christ. 

Love you guys! 

Elder Sanderson

P.s. I would clarify that I'm not actually in Brazil yet. Everybody thinks I'm going there like tomorrow. 

****a second email titled "extra stuff I didn't think I was going to have time to tell you"**** 

That was a long subject title...oh well!

See if Grandma Chelle knows the Spencer Family. They are from Rigby and said that they know the Allgoods! It was pretty crazy, but we ate dinner with them a few nights ago. I also met a Sister Missionary named Tempest. I just thought I'd share that with you because it's an awesome name! 

We're also working with a returning member named Becky who is in a biker club, has a tattoo sleeve and cuts our hair for free. She is really cool and should be getting sealed to her kids at the end of the year! Times like that make me wish I was staying here lol. 

Just a couple of things I thought I'd add. Love ya!

Elder Sanderson 


Reminded him of home :)

***From Tara:  looks like he is in a nice place, I was lucky to be online the same time he was and we got to go back and forth for a minute. They have a car which he loves, he doesn't want anything specific before he heads to Brazil except for a mosquito net --I am ordering that this week-- he doesn't have a departure date yet but his visa has def been finalized it may take a few weeks to get all his papers together the church will let him know, and all else is good.  He is happy and excited for Brazil :)**** 

Saturday, January 18, 2014


Got mail from our missionary today.  He is doing well, getting used to the cold and has gained 10-15 lbs in tbe last six weeks.  He hasn't gained that much weight tang fast EVER!  We have been really hoping he would gain weight before Brazil since they get really sick when they get there and get acclimated to the food and water.  Most missionaries lose 15ish pounds when they get there and he definitely didn't have it to lose.  Now he does and just in the nick of time it seems.  Hope the new pants I got him for his birthday will fit him.  :) 
Here is his new address for the next few weeks!!!!  :). I'll let you know when he goes to Brazil! 
Elder HD Sanderson

Monday, January 13, 2014

January 13th ---18 weeks!

Hey there family o mine,
So to get this out of the way quick: I've been transferred again! Going back to Bountiful but in a different area.
whew..glad i got that off my chest. I was getting really nervous that I would serve in one area for more than 6 weeks =p
This week was an amazing week! I can't even describe it all in words, but I'm gonna try.
     Monday was definitely a rough day. I just couldn't quite understand why I was still here, why I move around so much, and what Heavenly Father needs me to do to get to Brazil. I was feeling frustrated, discouraged, and kind of alone. I went about the rest of the day just like any other day and made sure to keep that from effecting my work. Tuesday, we had a Zone Conference in Bountiful that I'd really been looking forward to! We had the opportunity to hear from 8 stake presidents during the conference and it was awesome! 
     One of the Stake Presidents has been called to serve as a mission president in Brazil. He told us that, and I immediately began to think of Brazil. Shortly after, President Hansen stood up and decided to tell us that after looking at our faces and praying a lot, he knew where many of us were going to get transferred to. I just wanted to be in an area for more than 6 weeks. Is that too much to ask? (apparently it is, since i got transferred haha) 
     As I was thinking that, I had a memory from a very long time ago pop into my head. When we were on Pioneer Trek back in 2010, Sister Strasburg told me that I was a Renaissance Man. She said that meant that I'm pretty good at anything I do, even if I'm not perfect in any of them. She said it a lot nicer than it sounds. That thought popped into my head, and the Holy Ghost just about made my heart catch fire. I realized that I can still be a good missionary even if I serve in many areas or if I don't go to Brazil just yet. My mindset before had been, "man it would be nice to be in one area for like 6 months, then I'd be such a good missionary!" But that's not what it takes for me to be an instrument in the Lord's Hands. 
I felt so much peace and love from my Heavenly Father that words can never describe, but I could feel His arms around me as I sat there in that Zone Conference. I knew in my heart that I am going to give Him everything I've got no matter where I go. I didn't care about transfers and I don't care when I get to Brazil. In time, I'll get there, but in the Lord's time, not mine and I'm okay with that. So, when I got transferred, it didn't bother me at all! I can't wait for Bountiful because it's where the Lord needs me to find His sheep!
     Keeping along with that, the next time you see Sister Bonnett or Sister Utzinger, give them a hug for me. The same day I got yours and Haylee's letters, I got letters from them. They were exactly what I needed to read in order to top off such an amazing experience.
The rest of the week has been pretty uneventful compared to that!
Tell everyone I said hello and that I will write you with my new address ASAP!
Elder Sanderson 

Second email: 
Haha i probably forgot the best news!
Heavenly Father saw how well I accepted His love and support and how willing I now am to follow His plan for me. After the Zone Conference, I received a call from the Mission Office! They said that my application is now officially finalized and that I can probably expect to be in Brazil by February 8th!!!!!!

*******Tara here: WOW Brazil!!!!!  can you believe he forgot to tell us that in the first email??  Lol well sort of Joe sent him an email and he replied to him first and told him he was going.  I am glad he remembered to send it to me too!  Lol :) **************

Here are some pictures he sent:
at the family history center

The Salt Lake Temple
They are at Leatherby's -an amazing ice cream place- and they had to eat two sundae's to earn their crowns :)
His favorite water glass :)

Monday, January 6, 2014

January 6, 2014 17 weeks

*****note from Tara: he sounds down this week :( not fun to read when you are a mom.  If you read this please include him in your prayers and ask that he be lifted up and that he will be reminded that The Lord has a plan and is mindful of him.  Thanks everyone!!! Also if you have a minute send him a note!  His address is on the right. If you have kiddos have them draw a picture or can be anything!  Even if you don't know him well a simple hello would make his day and I would be forever grateful!!! ******

Sounds like you guys have had a good 2014 so far! I'm doing good as always, but I am ready for Brazil. I'm getting tired of Utah and of the way that visa-waiters are treated. The Lord is definitely in charge of this work, but I am ready for Brazil. I am tired of just waiting and having people ask me every day when I'm going to get my visa. The good news is that 50 missionaries are supposed to be going into my mission in like 2 weeks so hopefully I'm one of them! It's hard being a visa-waiter because we are supposed to be just like everyone else, but that's not how we're treated. My mission President is always telling me that I'm a Salt Lake City Missionary, but then I just get to listen to how visa waiters don't get any of the privileges that the others get. I'm also trying to figure out how missionaries say they love their mission presidents. I don't mean that as in I don't love mine, but I never even talk to him either. How do you love somebody you don't really know?

It is still really cold here and we are always excited when the temperature hits the 30s. We usually say, "Man it's warm today" haha and that's not a good thing! I would suggest that you always just have two missionaries over. The chance that we get to be with other missionaries is few and far between. The chance of the missionaries focusing on you instead of themselves is even smaller when they're all together. I'm glad the one from Mesa is good though! Ask him if he knows a Sister LeSoeur (something like that). She is from Mesa and is serving in this mission. 

New years was fun! We were in at 5, but got to watch "It's a wonderful life", Emperor's new groove, and up! It felt weird to just sit around and do nothing, but it was fun! We were able to tie as many things into the Gospel/missionary work as possible. In the Emperor's New Groove when he walks up to all the other llamas and they just walk away from him after he smiles and waves, I made the comment, "Hey, that's just like when missionaries ask members for referrals!" And then in Up when the dogs tie up the boy and they say, "Scream all you want small mailman, none of your other mailman friends can hear you" Elder Cooper and I now say that anytime we don't get any mail (which is most days haha). 

So yeah, that's life. We should have 3 baptisms next transfer so i had better not get transferred out! Transfers arenext Tuesday so I will let you know Monday where I'm going or if I'm staying. Hopefully it will say, "Elder Sanderson: Brazil"

Love you guys!

Elder Sanderson 

*****I am also sure that he is treated fine :) he just doesn't feel like he belongs there -kind of like the scence from Elf when Buddy is wandering around the city with his head down feeling like he doesn't belong anywhere. :) love that boy and I know The Lord knows him too.****.