I love you.
Thank you for writing such beautiful letters every week. They are so rejuvenating and sustaining!!
Mom, I'm worried about Bonnie! I will be praying! I'm so excited for Joe in his trumpet exploits and Coby in baseball and Ben in scuba. Those dudes are the best. Your Sunday jams sound so fun! I'm kind of jealous that I'm missing the stage of our family in which we get to hang out with Dad more. :( It's okay. A year and a half is not that long.
Oh! I'm wearing my Sandholtz Zion ring. Love it. It fits perfectly. :)
This week we got our online language instruction software switched from Brazilian to Continental Portuguese. And man alive -- it's SO DIFFERENT. Or at least seems to be so. The grammar is exactly the same, but there are just all these awesome quirks about how you pronounce things in Portugal. For instance, the Brazilian pronunciation of "de que" is basically just like how you'd say it in Spanish except the "de" is pronounced like the letter G. But in Portugal, they basically don't say these words at all. They just make the sound of the consonant at the beginning of the word, so you almost miss it if you're not listening closely. So "de que" is like beat-boxing. barely a d sound, barely a k sound. COOL, huh? Also, they squish their pronouns into words as if they're not there. So "ajuda-nos" is basically pronounced as if it's spelled "ajudans". It makes it harder to understand when you're listening to it. Sorry. Boring. But I love it. Today we are getting a new teacher who served in Portugal. So excited!
I can't believe I am leaving for Portugal in 2.5 weeks. WHAT!?
I found a pianist!!! I was SOOO spoiled in the BYU school of music. I was used to having great musicians at my beck and call. It's taken three weeks of very cheerful persistence to find a pianist to try out for a musical number with me. Weird, right? Everyone was either too busy or not able to play the music. But it is such a treat to have my violin here. (Thank you thank you Mom!!) I love love love it when I get to play.
Sister Duke continues to be the best companion ever. I came SO close to peeing my pants at least 4 times this week. One time during gym we were running across the MTC courtyard-ish place (lots of missionaries around) and she started to sprint ahead of me. Then, when she was running about 10 feet in front of me, she turned over her shoulder and shouted, "STOP FOLLOWING ME!!!", as if I was some random creepo chasing her across the MTC. I just about died. She's struggling with Portuguese, but this week she hit a turning point where she has started using her vocab to construct random sentences all the time. It kills me. We were running around the field and you know how there's all that construction on 9th east? She pointed to the construction and said, (you have to imagine this in a kind of sarcastic voice) "Eu sei que tu es um trabalhor construccione". Something about the vocal inflection just kills me. I swear I'm going to have a 6-pack by the time I leave the MTC just from laughing so dang hard.
My camera broke. :0 I think it was retribution for using more than my allotted time last week to send you pictures. ;) I'm going to see if I can fix it, but if not I'll maybe just get one in Portugal? Your thoughts?
Guess what I love here? Relief Society. There are so many powerful women here, and when we sing hymns all together in Relief Society it gives me the chills every time. I am so glad I get to be on a mission at this time. Sister Duke and I have gotten to know a bunch of the sisters in our zone and there are so many amazing, admirable women of God here serving missions. I love to envision the next generation being raised by this army of solid RM women. So rad.
List of things I don't miss:
Color Me Mine
Facebook (at ALL)
thinking about myself all the time
going to bed late at night
But I do miss just talking to you guys. I love you all the way. Twice. Infinity. No callbacks.