March 30, 2011

Week 2 - Provo MTC

Here's our second email from Alexis.  She's leaving for the Guatemala MTC next Tuesday evening.  We'll post her new address as soon as we know it. 

Hi Family-
I have like 25 minutes so I will type super fast.  My companion is having issues with her email so we have to take care of that today.  We just got back from the temple.  We do the 10 o'clock session.  It was good.  I was a little tired, but nice to be there.  Anyway, the week here was great.  I am looking forward to conference.  We get to watch the YW broadcast while the Elders are at priesthood session.  I can't believe I will be in Guatemala in less than a week.
A couple people have mentioned how great it will be when we are welcomed home by the Lord and he says "Well Done Thou Good and Faithful Servant".  It will be sweet.  It makes me excited and happy to think about hearing that song when I come home to 30th Ward.  I just have to be the best missionary I can be so that I can be worthy of that expression.  It is becoming more exciting as we learn and teach more and anticipate teaching real people.  Yesterday we taught quite a bit of the first lesson to a man that was pretending to be an investigator.  I thought I did pretty well with the spanish and all.  I still have lots to learn but it is coming.  I bore my testimony in spanish on Sunday for fast and testimony meeting.  It was kind of an expectation, but not everyone did.  I can pray and bear my testimony in spanish as well as contact people and schedule appointments so I am doing pretty well.
Some funny things I have noticed:  One of the elders drinks fanta for breakfast some days.  I guess it is practically as good as OJ.  : ) There is a sister who sings in the shower and is actually pretty good.  She asks for requests and sings stuff from Phantom and Disney stuff. 
Well, the schedule has been pretty much the same as last week. On Monday we had a health and safety meeting that we needed to go to before we leave.  It was pretty informative but a lot is common sense.  The senior missionary doctor that gave it was funny and very blunt, but he told the sisters that they are better missionaries than the elders and that he told the boys in the singles ward he was bishop of to always marry the returned missionary girls. 
We had the devotional last night.  It was James M. Dunn and his wife.  He is an emeritus seventy and seemed really familiar but I couldn't place him.  He talked about finding and loving the people we serve.
I saw Kelsey's friend this morning at the cafeteria.  The food is still good and we have papa johns on fridays.  Also we have ice cream today and sunday.  Super cool.  I am doing fantastico.  I am having my final Hep A shot tomorrow.  Hopefully I will see Chessy's aunt there again.
I have like 2 minutes left.  I am doing well and the time is going by faster.  I know this is where I am supposed to be.  Thanks for being so awesome! 
I know the gospel is true and thats all that matters!
Hermana Alexis

March 23, 2011

Week 1 - Provo MTC

Here's our first email from Alexis: 

I have like 24 more minutes so I will type real fast. 
So the schedule at the MTC is kind of crazy.  We are busy busy busy.  We get up at 6:30 and go to bed at 10:30.  We usually get back to our room at 9:30 and at 10:15 there is quiet time to read letters, write in journal, and pray.  We have gym everyday except pday and Sunday.  The time varies sometimes before breakfast, sometimes in the afternoon, and sometimes at night.  The rest of the time we study by ourselves or with our companion(1 hour each).  We have teachers some of the time and the rest is up to us.  We eat breakfast at 8:15, lunch at 1, and dinner at 6.  The food is real good.  Much better than the Club Dining facility at BYU-H.  There are lots of choices.  I walk about 1.5 miles around the indoor track (10 laps per mile) during gym.  Sometimes I take flashcards to study, or just take a break.
I only have one companion now.  Hma Nelson moved up to the intermediate level class and got a new companion and moved rooms.  There are 3 other girls in our room going to Arcadia CA spanish speaking.  I have the top bunk.  My companion Hma Sutherland is from Twin Falls, ID and is going to my mission. Hma Nelson is going to Honduras like 4 of the elders in my district. The other two elders are going to Chile.  The 3 sisters are going to Guatemala.  My companion is the oldest of 9 and her youngest brother is 5 months old.  We contacted in spanish yesterday and then taught lesson 1 in spanish.  I thought we did pretty well.  I have lots to learn but it is going well.  I really like having Brett Puterbaugh as one of my teachers since he knows more about me and being a twin. He was in our social dance class at BYU-H.  He remembered that I am the blue girl.  We had a sub for the end of last week because they had their baby a girl (Savea or Alia)  My other teacher is Hmo Roberts and he got back 9 months ago from Fresno, Ca spanish speaking obviously.  He is really great too.
We got lots of stuff and books and a filter waterbottle.  One of the teachers said that he put dr. pepper in it and it came out as water.  So that will be fantastic in Nicaragua. 
Like Chelsea said, time is very weird, here.  It seems like it has gone by fast to be already a week, but then some days seem long, and it seems like longer since I have seen you.  Even on Sunday, they keep us busy.  We study, watch the spoken word, have Relief Society, Sacrament Meeting, a fireside, and then watch church movies (Legacy this week).  It is still a break to not be studying all the time.  We had a great devotional last night.  President Costa from the Seventy spoke with his wife.  They are from Brazil and had great messages.  She was great and said things that she would say to us if she were our mother, so that was nice.  Today we studied and went to the temple.  We just got back.  Then, lunch and laundry and a prep time. We still have class after dinner.   
I am doing well here.  I miss you a lot but I know that this will be great.  I have like 4 minutes left before this closes.  I have a stronger testimony each day and my spanish is improving too.  The district is great! We get along well and I feel like the responsible mother of the group.  Thanks so much, you are all great examples to me.  Well I want to get this sent.  LOVE YOU TONS! 
Alexis (Hermana Cottam)

March 21, 2011

1st Letter from Hermana Cottam!!!

We were very happy to get a letter in the mail today!  It was great to hear from Alexis and we are looking forward to her email on Wednesday!  Here's what she said: 

Hola Mi Familia,
Just finishing up my second day at the MTC.  They keep us real busy.  My companion was on my flight yesterday.  Well, it has been a good experience so far.  We taught a lesson in Espanol today which went ok (actually pretty well).  I have a lot to learn in the Spanish department but Hermana Nelson took 5 years so that is helpful.  We have had good practice teaching experiences.  I am really excited to get to Nicaragua and teach real people!  I know the gospel is true!  Miss you tons, but doing great!  Thanks for all you do for me!
Hermana Cottam

March 16, 2011

Off to the MTC!

We dropped Alexis off this morning at 5:15 a.m. for her flight to Salt Lake.  Grandma & Grandpa Harvey picked her up and will take her to Provo.  She reports to the MTC at 12:45 p.m.  We are all excited for her!