Monday, July 29, 2013

Elder Swalberg is in New Hampshire

Elder Swalberg is now in New Hampshire.  He left the MTC this morning at 3:30am, then they stopped at MTC-West (Wyview) - and Landon said he was on the bus waiting for those missionaries to load - right next to Zachary's apartment building.  We were able to talk to him this morning before he left Salt Lake City.  Stopped in Atlanta, then on up to New Hampshire, arriving 4:30 ET. 

He can receive email on his P-day...

Here is his postal address - care of the mission office
Elder Landon Swalberg
New Hampshire, Manchester Mission
2 Bedford  Farms Ste 208
Bedford, NH 03110-6525 

Friday, July 26, 2013

Friday July 26th, 2013 - Reassignment till Visa comes in!

Hey Family!
Questions/Notes from Mom & Dad email
1.  We never received your SD card did you send it?
2.  Any news on your re-assignment or visa?
3. Did you get the bag?  What are your thoughts? Will it work for you?
4. Did you get the button extenders from Missionary Mall?
5. We sent a care package with stamps, socks, and treats.  It should arrive on Saturday.
6. G &G Swalberg address ....  5541 S 235 E, Murray, UT 84107
7. G&G Landon address... P.O. Box 162, Ucon, ID  83454
8. How are YOU?
9. How is the language coming?
1. I was wondering about that! I had some problems with getting it in the mail on Friday so I didnt get it in the mail until Saturday evening (probably after the mail was picked up.) But I sure hope it comes soon. Send me a dear elder as soon as you get it! (NOTE: We received his letter w/ an SD Card - see photos at the bottom of this blog post)
2. YEAHHAHAHAHAHAH! I got my reassignment about 15 minutes ago! My whole district got them! I AM GOING TO THE "NEW HAMPSHIRE, MANCHESTER MISSION"!!!!! Crazy right?! I am so stocked! There are 4 of us going there. Both of my companions and one other Elder in our district! The other ones are going to River Side, California mission, One in New York, and 2 of them are leaving tomorrow morning at 9:30 to go to Salt Lake City South Mission! It is freakin crazy! I am so excited though. I leave Monday morning the 29th, from the Salt Lake City Arport at 7:10ish and go to a lay-over in Atlanta, GA, then to Manchester, NH and will arive about 4:30 PM. But yeah It doesnt say anything on my travel info about calling parents while we are there. But I will be able to ask my Branch Presidency on Sunday. I will be able to get online to send a quick email about it I am sure! (Note: see info his Mom sent him via email about his new assignment.)
3. I did get it!!!! I love it a lot! Thank you soooooo much! It holds all of my stuff so well! It helps a lot to carry my books and I feel like it will be great in the field! Thanks so much for ordering it!
4. And I got the button extenders too! Thanks, I just got them last night so I havent tried them yet, but they look like they will work great, Thanks for those too!
5.Oh thanks so much for the package! I look forward to it! :D (Hoping it gets there as promised by Saturday!!! or he will miss it leaving that early on Monday morning!)
6. & 7. Thanks for their addresses! I hope they know how hard it is to write letters to them and everyone else! I love them so much and love hearing from them, but it is so hard to get any letters out. But I should have time today or Sunday to write them both! I think of them so often and love them lots!
8. I am good! Thanks for asking! I feel kind of stressed when writing letters home, cause I feel so rushed and cant get everthing out that I want to! I wish I could tell you more and hopefully you will get my SD card soon so you can see a little more of what it was like here! But Im good! Time here goes so fast but yet so slow! Its weird but maybe you and Dad can understand. Days are long but weeks are short. And days here make me feel like I am bi-polar! I feel the highest of highs, and the lowest of lows all in about.....10 minutes! haha It can be really stressful, and also really peaceful and spiritual! It is such a weird experience! But I have  loved it and learned so much. Especially yesterday at the In Feild Orientation that we had yesterday. (I will write more about that after the questions.) But yeah I am doing good, I have grown so much in this last 6 weeks and have felt more in tune with the spirit than I ever have been in my whole life, and I know it will get even better when I am in the feild working with real investigators. But really over all I am doing so good! :) The MTC impresses me more and more each day I am here! It does so much for us missionaries!
9. The language... well it obviously needs work and I am by far not the best in our district but I am getting there! I can teach a lesson with no notes even in English now (as long as we have prepared and talked about it before hand.) Our last lesson was so cool. We taught an investigator named Ana that we have been teaching for a while and she has been struggling with getting an answer about the truth of the Book of Mormon and Joesph smith. So I thought it would be good to just read a chapter in the BOM with her and help her learn how to really study it. We also helped her understand that if she gained a testimony in the Book of Mormon then she would also gain a testimony of the Prophet Joesph Smith. So we read in Mosiah 2 and told her to stop whenever she saw something that she could apply to her and her new family. And we did the same. It was soo cool to see her pick out things in the book of mormon that she applied to her own life and we were able to bare testimony multiple times of the principles that were talked about. I really felt the spirit and I could tell she could too! And I did that all in Portugese! The gift of tounges I feel is not something you really notice until you look back on it. It really seems like you are the one responsible for saying everything but then you look back and see that there is no way I could have said all of that by myself like that. But yeah, I look forward to being able to study the language some more before I go out to Brazil and I know the Lord will continue to help me retain the things I have learned, but still pray for me! haha
Oh and so about this last week a little more! We got to Help the senior missionaries 2 now and that was pretty cool to meet them and get a break form class. hahaha But Pioneer day was on Wednesday and everything is closed! Holidays here suck! haha No mail, bookstore closed, barber is closed, and practicly everything else is closed too! haha But yeah we had to wait till yesterday evening to get mail! haha
So talking about yesterday we had our "In Feild oreintation" from 8am to 5pm and it was sooo great! I wish they could have all ward missionaries, ward miss leaders, and Bishops go through that whold trianing! I so wish missionaries implimented everything that was taught. Our missionaires must have slept through it or didnt care, becasue if they applied what they had learned here they would have been sooo much better at involving members in their lessons, their lessons wouldn't just include watching a movie with the members (thats what they did quite often when I was with them) and they would have had soooo much more success! The thing that I learned the most was that I am the servant of Lord and that is all I am doing here! I will tell my Bishop that :"my calling is to build the Kingdom of God and right now my kingdom is your ward, so that is all I have to do 24/7!" If the members aren't working with the missionaries, then I will get them to work with us! If the Ward Mission Leader is helping the members help us,,, I will help them help get to know what their calling is. All of this will be done with love of course, but I want to help them get into a system where missionary work is a big priority and be able to use us as much as possible. I am so ready for it! And I will start to do this in the New Hapshire, Manchaster Mission!
Well I will hopefully be able to get on later today too and see what you guys have replied. They give us more time becasue of our reassignments.
(Note: He did get on for a moment -  but nothing much more than sending his love, and that we will likely get to talk on the phone on Monday when he is at the airport in Salt Lake or in Atlanta)

A few Photos.... 
 Here is what our Vegitarian likes to eat there.... apparently he drinks a lot of BYU creamery Chocolate milk....
 One of his instructors (Bro James)
 Topically relevant language study...
 MTC District out in front of the Temple
 They had a fun 4th of July evening... they watched 17 Miracles, then went outside to see the fireworks over the BYU Stadium...
 Elder Gardner, Elder Swalberg, Elder Woodall - their MTC tri-companionship... wearing their virtue ties...
 Good Photo of Elder Swalberg...
 Sister Kelci Fry (Jubilee friend), Sister Megan Patterson (Colony Friend), & Elder Swalberg
Elder Lewis, Elder Swalberg, and Elder Fillmore - his roommates
 Letter Writing at the MTC... the timer counts down for their hour limit... makes you wonder how many of these there are...
 Their room... lots of stuff... little room... Hmmmm... Quiz for those who know him well...which one is Elder Swalberg's bunk?
 Studying language...
 Lots of Missionaries coming out of the Marriott Center from a devotional...


Sunday, July 21, 2013

Friday, July 19th, 2013

Thanks for the Dear Elders with all of my friends mission updates! Its so awesome to hear how they are all doing! Especially cause there is not much time to write so many people!

And thanks for you dear elder you wrote too!

Its sad to hear about the Honda! Dad wrote me too and told me the story too. What a miracle though! But what is the verdict? You said it "gave up the ghost" and Dad wrote that you will probably get it fixed. I will miss that car, squeaks and all if it really dies by the time I get back. hahaha

And that is too bad Moroni had to come home for that! Is he doing alright? And does he get to go back out into the field once he heals up? Tell him Hi back for me and that I miss him tons! I can't wait to see him again!

That great to hear Taylor is going to Navarro, that will be so much easier! Thats like an hour and a half of his day saved right there just with driving! Give Taylor lots of love during the semester though, that sounds like a stressful schedule he has on his plate. I know he can do it though. He is one smart cookie! ;D Is he wanting to do anymore spanish?

What a great weekend it sounds like you had with the Scott and Brenda! I have a feeling that in a few more years, (all of us out of the house), you will be doing a lot more trips with them like that! haha I sure hope you guys get to, because you so deserve it! One thing I have noticed here is how glad I am that you and dad raised me the way you did! Just the simple things like cleaning up after myself, knowing how to iron my clothes, shine my shoes, sow on a button, ect. There are plenty of elders who didn't do many of these until now. And I am proud of what you taught me! You guys are amazing!

I am so happy to hear about the wonderful things that are happening at home with missionary work. What a great goal to make to have a missionary experience! I know that they will come and you will be blessed by it! And also so cool about the challenge to bring non members to the P. L. activity! Keep up the great work! There is much work to be done in the Lords kingdom!

Also I am glad that Megan sent that home! I can't get any pictures to send. The computers here are so restricted that it makes it hard to do much on them. But like I said I will send my SD card home!
(Here is the photo:)

I sure miss Burke and Gavin and the rest of my Sorensen Family! Tell them all hi for me and I will try to write them soon! Just let them know how busy I am! Its sucks I cant write everyone I want to. But it keeps me focused! And its weird cause I see James Warner ALL THE TIME. He just a few rooms down in our Residence Hall, and he goes to meals and Gym time at the same time as our district too! So yeah I think the sorensens a lot haha.

Okay so your questions! Dad had some of the same ones so I wont repeat them:

 Q1.  You'd mentioned you were going to be released as district leader.  What were some of your responsibilities while serving as a district leader?
1. Yeah I was released Sunday, and Elder Sanders was called to be our new district leader. He is doing a great job, a little more bold and stern than I am but thats what our district needs quite often! haha As district leader I always picked up mail after Lunch and Dinner, I had to interview one person from each companionship each week, to see how my district was doing as a whole and then report to the Zone leaders, I went to branch council every Sunday to talk about our concerns in our districts. We now have a pretty large branch, 96 members! Its kind of cool. But I also lead any district meetings we had such as on tuesday after devotional we would discuss what we learned and I would lead and facilitate the discussion. And lead our district prayer every night and assigned out a quick devotional that have at night. And the unfortunate job of telling the Elders when they needed to be a little more mature or stop doing something, but I was able to do it with out being a dictator.

Q2.  Have you had to go to the MTC barber yet?  Are you needing any more hair gel?
2. Yeah it was last week that I got my hair cut. It was the shortest I have had it in a while! lol But I think thats why you thought I looked under weight because my hair was so short on the sides, Austin is right though, I have donuts and choco milk every morning and a bagel! haha I am eating well. I actually checked my weight today with a couple of Elders today and I am maybe a pound or 2 less than what I was when I left, so I am still good! haha
But on the hair gel, I have one more thing of gel left. I am glad I brought that extra gel. It might be nice to have one more before I leave here, and I could also use some more white athletic socks. They actually dont have any in the bookstore. The ones that I have at home would be fine. It just might be nice to have 2 more pair.

Q3.  How many teachers do you have each?  Do you always meet in the same room? 
3. I have 2 teachers Irmão James and Irmã Danderfeild. They are both super great! Some days we have 2 sessions of class with each one of them (3 hours long) and sometimes just one of them. They are also our fake investigators but they are great actors and hold their character very well! And yeah we meet in the same room all the time. We keep all of our language books and what not in there and do our individual study (personal BOM reading, language study, ect.) It is like our second home with our Residence Hall.

Q4. How are your "investigators" doing?  I like that aspect of having investigators to teach in the MTC.  We did not have that when I was in the MTC.
4. My investigators are doing great! One is named Hino and he is a 45  year old man that is pretty sick and lives alone, but has been really accepting of the message. So much so that after inviting him to come to church he learned everything we hadn't taught him yet all on his own. And had no problems with anything. He knows everything is true and wants to be baptised sooooo bad! He told us in his last lesson that he wanted to be baptised tomorrow but had to explain that our District leader would need to interview him and then we would help him be baptised as soon as possible. We were so suprised but happy too! haha
Our other investigator is named Ana. She has committed to a date to be baptised and came to church last week. She is catholic but loves her new family (she is 25) and want to know the truth.
But yeah it is really cool to have these investigators here because it makes it seem so real and lets us make mistakes and it not be a big deal. Then we learn from our mistakes and do better the next time. And you can still feel the spirit when we teach and testify. It is so great!

Q5.  When do you find out your reassignment, if your visa does not come through?  I wonder if you will be able to call from the airport.
5. Well here is what I have heard. Nothing is set in stone or official but from what I have learned form other Elders that were going to Brazil too. So not very many people are getting their visas, but there are those few that do. Last Monday a district left and all of them received reassignments except for one who got his visa. Another district that just got here had 3 elders that got theirs and will be leaving in a couple days to go to the Brazil MTC. But anyway with that said we should get our reassignments by next Friday! We could still get our visas too, but I am almost certain I will be receiving a reassignment. But I am so excited for that. I know that if I go somewhere else first then that is where I need to teach someone. And from what I hear I will probably be able to call home once when I transfer or go striaght to Brazil! I am hoping for it! :)

Q6.  If you are reassigned - are their areas in the US with a high concentration of Portuguese speaking people?
6. And it wont be a portugese speaking area. We will just teach in English but will just be studying Portugese as much as we can on our own while we are there. Everyone says that you arent there longer than about 1 transfer before you get your visa. So only 6 weeks.

Q7.  Is your transfer date July 29 or July 30?
7. Well it says July 30, BUT it really depends one what is says on my reassignment travel plans or brazil travel plans. Because I really could leave the 29 (Monday) or the 30 (Tuesday).  Missionaries that are leaving usually leave on Monday but quite often a few others from the disctrict leave on Mondays too. So yeah!

Sorry that took so long, Dad hopefully that answers everything you wanted to know too because I am running really low on time. I will send home a little package with my SD card an a letter that will describe my week a little better.

 - Elder Swalberg

Monday, July 15, 2013

Friday July 12, 2013 - received in postal mail w/ a letter to Taylor

Hey- so my emails were kind of all over the place.  Sorry about that but I actually feel really stressed during that 1 hour because I have so much to say and I don’t have enough time to say it.  But I wanted to mention a couple other things that I forgot.  

Our devotionals are super amazing, especially this last Tuesday!  It was by a former 70 member.  He talked about how to recognize and use the spirit and how to seek personal revelation.  It was really amazing.  Even though I was REALLY tired that day I didn’t nod off for a second.  They have Tuesday evening devotionals around 7:00 in the Marriot Center, and they record it.  So, I wanted to know if you could find them anywhere because they are so good!

Oh- and a week and half ago, I was off campus with my companion (Elder Gardner) because he was seeing a doctor for his knee that he thought he messed up after playing soccer.  But while we were there the Hassels saw me in the waiting room and came over and said “hi”.  They say, “hi” to the rest of the family too.  It was cool to see them out of the blue like that.  My companion is fine now by the way.

Anyway, just thought I would send this with Taylor’s letter.

Love you guys! :)  Miss you all!
Elder Swalberg

Friday, July 12, 2013

[This week we had sent a number of  questions, and we even had a bit of emailing back and forth... we figured this was the best way to represent his letter for the week...]

From Mom:

Hi, Elder Swalberg!

I hope I can catch you online during your P-day on Friday!

Here are a few questions I have for you:

1. What do you do during exercise time?

2. How much time do you get for P-day?

3. How many elders share the same room with you?

4. How are you enjoying the food?

5. How are your clothes? Do we need to make any changes? I still need to order the button extenders for your shirts we bought from missionary mall.

6. Did you get the CTR ring?

7. Have you been able to buy a good bag/backpack.

8. Would you like me to continue sending Jacob, Dakota, Kelsey and Kelsey's missionary letters through

Landon’s response:

1. our district does football (brazilian style..,soccer)! We get Gym time almost every day. We are going out to play some more "football" at like 2:30 today. Our district owns the game! of course we dont keep score, but we still know we dominate! ;p hahaha

2. Well P-day is from when we get up till dinner which is at 5:00. I get up at 6:15 every morning just to get in the shower with out a huge line, and today I got up at the same time so I could actually get a washer! There are so many missionaries here that everything has a line! Its crazy!

3. Well there are 6 beds (3 bunk beds) in each room and it is seriously smaller than Austin or Taylors room. But as I will tell you more about, one of the Elders, Elder Houston, that we had in our district for 2 weeeks left so we now have 5 people in our room, but I still have to make sure it stays clean every once and a while or there is no room to walk around. I miss my own space! haha But ill get used to it, I already am actually.

4. The food is great, there is always something for me to eat and still eat vegetarian. There is always fruit and veggies out. And as I said in Austins letter that a sent a couple days ago, I always have donuts and chocolate milk for breakfast! lol

5. My clothes are great! I think I will buy a couple new white sock from the bookstore. They have a great book store. We could have missed everything and pretty much bought it here. lol But I actually havent worn all my pants yet, just so I dont have to wash so many, and they dont get that dirty. But the 2 pair that we got from Khols are a little big and baggy but they work. Everything else is great, including the shoes. I have been waring them both in.

6. Yes I got it, but seriously within 2 days it broke. lol It has that metal part in the middle and the little weldings keeping it together broke and so now it comes apart. I am stil waring it but its annoying that the middle part slides out when ever I take it off. But its whatever. Its not the most important thing in the world.

7. No they have like 3 options at the bookstore, and I havent felt the nessesity to get one right away. I definately want some kind of shoulder bag/belt strap on it. The one like Scott Anderson had would be so perfect. But maybe Ill find one there in Brazil or my reassignment.

8. And yes! please do! Its great to get those! Thank you so much! I loved hearing about them! Its so hard to keep up with them here. I really hope it gets easier to communicate to people outside the MTC becasue I just feel so rushed when ever I write anyone. And especially on the computer!

Oh but on any of your dear elders or letters please continue to put the date on them! It helps me know when it was actually written. The dear elders can be kind of confusing.

Thanks for asking me the questions it helps me know what to talk about becasue I am so rushed when I am writting you all.

I will send another email with my update of the week now. :)

-Elder Swalberg

From Mom:

Thanks for your responses!

I'm sorry about the rings...maybe we ought to just buy you a good, sturdy, regular one.

I guess this is the first time you are having to share a room....I’m glad you are getting use to it already....

I will try to remember to put the dates on the dear elder letters. The week I was at YW camp I got a letter forwarded from all the missionary mom's. Those are the ones I sent. I just got another from Bonnie. That is the other one I just sent.

Everyone continues to ask about how you are doing! They are all praying for you and for the visas in Brazil to come through.

I love you so much!!!!


Landon’s response:

Mom, yeah maybe that would be a good idea. apparently all the ones I pick just don’t want to work. But if it’s too much of a hassle really don’t worry about it!

Okay well I appreciate it and all the letters you all send me!

It looks like I won’t be able to get much of a typical email sent out casue I am running out of time but I hope you will be able to get enough out of these emails to update my blog and send to people. I will try to mention a few other things in a minute.

In response to Mom’s dear elder letter:

I’m glad Taylor and Austin are having such a great time this summer!

I am soooo excited for Austin and his patriarchal blessing! Tell him to write me after he gets it! It so cool to read my patriarchal blessing now that I’m on my mission! One night my whole room pulled ours out and read over ours (to ourselves) and then just commented how there is some cool stuff talking about us on our missions!

Way to go on your missionary experience! Keep it up, I know our family can be better member missionaries. I know I will be so much better as a member missionary when I get home! ANd I know how helpful those pamphlets are! They are especially great when we are teaching in a different language because they explain things so well when our Portuguese is not so great! But yeah, use them!

I have loved hearing about your experience with girls camp! I am so glad it has gone so well! You such an incredible leader!

ANd I love your idea about teaching the girls how to teach that first lesson! That will help them so much and I can testify that practicing teaching (if done with real desire to get better) that the fear of talking to people about it will go away! Even in a different language the fear of teaching it goes away after practicing!

I love having our practice investigators! A little about them: Both have committed to baptism (they act really well and in character too, so we really feel like they are real people btw)

and one has even set a date of the day before we leave to be baptized! It makes me so happy to teach them and it is so incredible to see how much I can speak the language when I go in there!

But also about Elder Houston, who left our district this week, was reassigned so we are now back to a tri-companionship. But he was reassignment to Houston, Texas! haha Crazy right! lol But yeah EVERYONE going to Brazil is getting a reassignment. We are essentially just waiting to hear where we will be going in the states now. We will probably find out the Thursday before we leave the MTC. Sooooo JUly 25ish. But yeah I will keep you updated! Others are going to Kansas, Alabama, Texas, Colorado, and a few other states. But yeah.

I have been District Leader for like 3 1/2 weeks and will be probably released next week. But I felt like I have done the best I can.

Sorry I have to go I wish I could tell you more but I can’t.

From Dad -

Dear Landon -
Hope you are having a great p-day! Keeping close tabs on my email today while at work for when you get online.

How is 100% Portugese going in classes?

Austin received your letter yesterday - he read us the part of the letter that was not personal. Great to see your handwriting.

Thinking about you lots, knowing you are having a growing in so many ways - likely so much you are not realizing it.

FYI - your last paycheck from Northlake came in = $92.63.

Do you want us to pay the $9.26 in Tithing for you?

Love -

Landon’s resonse:

It is a good p-day! Thanks.

Its actually really good. I am understanding so much more now, its so great! The speaking is coming a little better too, its just the verb conjugation that is the hardest for me right now. But my language goal for the next week is to really work on that and especially my iregular verbs!

Oh good! Im glad it is there! I am writing a letter to Taylor today and hopefully it will be sent by tonight maybe tomorrow. I wish I had more time to talk to you all. Just know that I if I werent so busy you would all get a letter everyday from me!

Oh hey! Thats right! Thanks for noticing that! Yeah if you could do that, that would be great! Thanks so much.

So about your dear elder letter you sent me:

[Dad comment: asked how much computer time they have on P-Day ]
I get about 1 hour on the computer they have a little countdown timer for you on the computer like right now it says I have 25 more minutes but you can still go past it and it doesnt kick you off. Our first zone leaders said they went over a lot too, but just adviced not to go over too far, casue yeah they cant really manage it all...just too many missionaries! We are getting on average 800 in every wednesday plus whatever senior missionaries come in on Mondays. And There are only like 300 to 400 missionaries going out every week. I have already seen a huge increase since I have been here! We ate breakfast with the MTC secretary once and he said there are only 300 missionaries over at wyview and that they cant expand it until they get more cafeteria space! But on the main campus there are over 3500 missionaries!

But yeah I have time to write hand written letters sometimes before I go to bed but that time goes by really fast. It either I chose to write a letter/journal or read a little bit in the scriptures and then its lights out.

But yeah if I wright handwritten letters it would be great to have those put on my blog! Thanks!

[Dad comment: work been very busy - long hours]

 Sorry to hear about work! :/ That stinks! You are seriously amazing though Dad. I Have always been so imppressed with how much you work and still stay mentally okay! I pray you and the family every night and I will pray for you at work.

Oh by the way My companion Elder Gardner reminds me so much of you! He is a big football player, but has some of your same personalities! Like one time we got on the topic of politics and he went off on one of the same kind of conservative rants just like you do! haha Then ALL the time he bites his nails like you and a few other things. ITs kind of funny! He is great though.

[Dad comment: Mentioned I am speaking in a Spanish ward later this month...] Awesome to hear about the speaking assignment this sunday! I know you will do well! I actually might have to speak portugese! They call on 2 people in our branch to speak during church, but we have to all prepare a talk becuase that is how they do it. So we will see. haha

and I like your portugese pun! haha I like it! I miss your puns all the time! haha
[Dad comment: Here is the pun... works in Spanish or Portugese...
When starting a letter, there are several common salutation words used to start the letter, most common in English is "Dear..."  In Spanish you could use: "Querido...", "Amado...", "Muy senor mio" (Dear sir), etc.... 

so... which greeting is preferred for a Statistician?  
ESTIMADO  (translated it is Esteemed or Estimated) LOL!!!!   ]

From DAD:

Awesome - your Mom sent some great questions.

I remember getting up early to get a washer on Pday too!
Did Elder Houston get re-assigned or go to Brazil? what is generally happening with Brazil missionaries?
Are you back in a threesome companionship?
On the CTR Ring... maybe we should just get you one of the cheap primary ones LOL. I'll call Deseret book and find out what we can do to replace it and let you know - very sad...
Will keep watch on your bank acct and keep it at $300 even with bookstore. right now it is at $393 with your last Northlake paychk (sent email to you this am on that.)

I looked around online for the shoulder bags with a waist belt - looks like popular with photographers. Let us know if you want us to send one to you if we find one like Scott's.

Love ya bud... feel closer to you right now, even though the physical distance is the same.... Ok - sending this so you might catch before you have to get off the PC.

Love ya!


Landon’s response:

But quickly Dad,

The bank account stuff sounds great and about the shoulder bag with a belt strap would be great! If you find one like Scotts then yeah I would love that! I have a small Preach My Gospel and my scriptures that I would want to be able to fit in it. But seriously Scott’s bag looked perfect. So yeah if you find one...Sweet!

Thanks so much! I will try to write a hand written letter soon! I love you guys sooooo much!

-Elder Swalberg

From Mom:

Oh...also....Austin has kept your voice on his voice mail. I didn't realize this until I tried to get a hold of him the other day and I hear your voice. It made my day. I called back a gain just to hear it again!

I was also wondering if you feel like the 2 years of Spanish and the 3 years of Latin have helped you with the language much.

Okay....again....I love you so much and am so proud of you. I am strengthened each time I hear from you. I know Heavenly Father is too!


Landon’s Response:

Oh thats funny! Hope he is liking the phone./

And Yeah it is a little bit especially casue the conjugation stuff make more sense because of it! But I wish I remembered more! haha

But yeah got to go!

LOVE you so much! Hope I gave you guys enough info today, even if it was really scattered! lol

-Elder Swalberg

Monday, July 8, 2013

Friday - July 5th, 2013

Hey, so Im now into my second week and it is flying by! There is always so much to do! Last Friday I was able to go to the temple and it was so great. My companion forgot his temple recommend though so we had to walk all the way back to our room in the very hot afternoon! But it only made the session even more relaxing! Sadly from now on we wont be able to go to the temple on our pdays because they are remodeling/ cleaning it for the next month or so. But Im just glad I could go there once! Mom or Dad, I sure miss going to the temple every week with either of you!
The devotionals on Tuesdays are awesome too! Our first one was the best, I forgot to tell you about it. I think her name was Janice Perry. But she has written like 20 something songs in the childrens song book and they are all the good ones: I feel my saviors love, Army of Heleman, (and sisters in zion), I love to see the temple, ect. She had all sing a medly of her songs (that we all knew so well) during the devotional, and it was so cool! And also she had us sing a remake of the EFY medly (cause its a combination of both of her songs) and changed some of the words to apply to us as missionaries! It was soooo cool! I love her now!
Oh so our first normal Sunday was this last week. I had meeting for our Branch council and received a little bit of training from the branch pres. for all our our district leaders. And sacrament meeting was partially in Portuguese and part english but this Sunday will be fast Sunday so we will actually have it in all in English! I am so happy! haha It will be nice. But everyone says make it to Sunday and you will be okay, but Sudays are BUSY! But still good! I take a lot of notes on Sudays with all of the talks we hear!
Oh Mom! Guess who is in my Branch/ Zone? Elder Poulson! We were talking in our residence hall and noticed we were both from Texas and so I asked him if he was part of the Jubilee and then he said "yeah, in fact my mom was like running a lot of it!" Then I said, " No way! My mom was too!" So I looked at his name tag and then it all clicked. haha Then it clicked why he looked familiar! haha Its pretty cool though. He was called to give a talk last week in church in portugese. He did a great job!
I have also seen Megan Patterson from the Sorensens ward. She is in the same class room building as me. I have a picture of us together from last night that I will try to send. I also saw Kelci Fry yesterday.
I got to teach a lot of lessons this week! We have 2 new "investigators" that we are practicing on. We are slowly getting better! My companion and I almost have our purpose and the first vision memorized in Portuguese. I am struggling a lot but that is just part of the process! My companion picks it up easier than I do, but I see that as a blessing as he is able to help me out when I need it! All the prayers are felt, and know they are helping!
Last night we got to watch the fireworks and watch a movie "17 miracles" which was really fun but it made us get to bed a lot later and I was actually getting tired at 10:00! Crazy right. But it was still pretty cool!
There are so many missionaries here though, it is crazy! I have a few pictures of all of us missionaries walking to the Marriot Center for devotional. It is pretty cool to see! There are 800 missionaries coming in every Wednesday and there are more an more missionaries not even getting a reassignment or their visa after their MTC time is up. So they are just staying here! It is so packed! I actually have to leave this computer casue others need this room so I will send pictures in a minute.
-Elder Swalberg
[He sent a followup email that he could not get pictures to send... and he had to get off the computer, as there were other missionaries waiting for a turn...  hopefully next week]