Monday, December 28, 2015

Xandaman update! Week 19

-(Talk show intro music)
-Hello, and welcome to this weeks episode of.... Mission life!  My
name is Rusty bagelface, and I will be your host this evening. Today
we are going to be talking with Elder Wylie about his week up in
Belgrade Montana. So, elder Wylie. Tell us about your week.
-Well, I guess to start off, we are in a trio now.
-You what?
-Ya, we're in a tripanionship.
-Oh wow, what did you do to be put into a trial, haha? (Crowd laugh)
-Haha, some people would call it a trial, but we work well together
and get along, so it's actually really fun.
-Okay, I see. So who is the third elder then? Tell us about him.
-His name is elder potter, and...
-I assume his first name is Harry, correct? Haha (crowd laugh)
-Haha, no, but you're not the first to say that this week. Anyways, he
was serving in three forks and ennis until his companion had to, you
know, take care of some things, so elder potter came and joined us
here in Belgrade.
-Three forks and Ennis, huh? Those are like an hour apart.
-Ya, they sure are. His area is as big as some big city missions.
-Are you still covering those areas as well as Belgrade?
-Not Ennis, but we have been over to Three forks. We are also going
there this Wednesday. 
-Oh, okay.
-The apartment is super small though.
-Really?
-Ya, its like the size of a large shed.
-Oh wow.
-But it's pretty nice. I'm excited to stay there for a night.
-Ya, that'll be fun. So how was Christmas for you guys?
-Ah, it was fun. We saw a moose!
-No way! Really?
-Ya, it was big. We chased it around the middle school....
-You chased it!? Isn't that illegal?
-Haha, we didn't really chase it, we just followed it so we could take
pictures of it. It was pretty big.
-Ya, I bet. That's a pretty sweet Christmas present.
-It sure was. We also had some good food with members both on
Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.
-Oh ya?
-Ya, first we went to the Adams and had pizza and wings, which is
their Christmas Eve tradition.
-That's ... Not a bad one.
-Ya, and then we went to the Felkins for three hours.
-Three hours huh?
-Ya, we got stuck playing monopoly. We probably shouldn't have stayed
so long, but it was good, including the food.
-Ya, I guess whatever happens happens right!
-Yep.
-What about Christmas Day?
-We ate at the Williams for breakfast, and the Glushkos for dinner.
They were both delicious.
-That's good.
-Yes. And we opened our presents together too. Mostly candy, and a few
other useful/comfort items. But the best was skype calling my family.
-Oh ya, you get to do that. How was that?
-It was great! It was pretty weird though.
-How so?
-Right before I was gonna call, I got nervous and went to the bathroom, haha
-Hahaha
-Then I saw they called a couple of times while I was in, so I just
called them back.
-oh ok.
-But anyway, it was great to see my family. I haven't seen them for 4
and 1/2 months! I also got to see my cousin who got home from her
mission in Florida a couple weeks ago.
-Oh, cool!
-Ya. She gave me some good advice from 'preach my gospel' that I needed.
-and what's that?
-I need to be confident in Christ, not only in my own skills and abilities.
-That's very good.
-It sure is. It was also fun to see my new niece.
-Aw, ya that would be nice.
-But otherwise, Christmas was great.
-That's good to hear. Anything else you want to mention?
-Well, Saturday night, we spent about 2 hours bouncing from house to
house trying to get into a home to share a message, but nobody was
available!
-Aw man.
-Ya, it was a little frustrating. But finally, we visited some
members, the Iversons, who let us in, let us share a message, and
showed us their unfinished basement we are going to help them finish!
-That's great!
-Ya, I'm excited to paint and put some tile in.
-Haha, sounds like fun. Well, thank you for sharing a little about
your week. Before we let elder Wylie go, I'm gonna ask him to bear his
testimony. Is that okay?
-Definitely.
-Ok, great. Go ahead.
-Well, I just gotta say, my mission so far has been a great
experience. I have grown a lot and I'm still learning and having so
many great experiences to help me become who I need to become. That's
definitely something I have come to learn. The gospel of Jesus Christ
is not there just to help us Overcome, but to Become. Heavenly Father
loves us, so he created the plan of salvation so we can all have the
opportunity to Become. To Become something greater does take a lot of
overcoming. That is the purpose of our trials and obstacles. To be
able to overcome anything, however, we need to first be placed in a
situation where there is room for improvement. The Savior is the key
that gives us the ability in this earthly life to improve. Because of
him, we can live again, we can repent and be forgiven and clean, we
can have hope, we can Become.
 I know this is Heavenly Father and Christ's gospel. This is His kingdom on the earth. We are his sons and daughters whom he loves very much, enough to give his son to us, to
die and suffer for us. What an amazing gift that we must take
advantage of each day, each week to Become who we really are. In the
name of Jesus Christ, amen.
-Thank you so much elder Wylie. And thank you all for tuning in this
week. Until next time, folks! (Cheesy smile and wave)

May the spirit be with you
Elder Wylie


Monday, December 21, 2015




Xandaman Update! Week 18

Ice on the road is sketchy! Last Tuesday we had a big Christmas zone
conference in Billings. Everyone in Bozeman, billings, and the Wyoming
stakes came up, and it was a blast. However, it was a long drive
because we drove an average of 35-40 mph the whole 130 miles. It was
slick, especially a day after a big snow storm, but president went
through with it.

Everyone got to sing and some got to bear testimony about the
atonement on their mission. The atonement is so infinite and powerful.
Take advantage of it: it's for you!

The second part of the conference was made up of a few different
things. We got a good lunch, that's for sure. They also showed a slide
show of pictures of all the missionaries during Christmas in the past.
Some of them were pretty funny. Then they showed a sweet rap video
about the restoration that one of the former assistants made with some
other missionaries. It was really cool. It got me excited to use my
talents to share the gospel.

Then, the most unexpected happened. President Wadsworth ran into the
gym yelling and waving his arms saying, "guess what? Have you heard?
Santa is coming!" Then he made us sing loudly so 'Santa could hear
us'. Santa and one of his elves came in and we got to take crazy
pictures with them (the assistants dressed up). It was funny.

Even though they weren't interested in the gospel, we had a few nice
giving people this week. One was this older couple that are raising
their grandson and granddaughter. They have been through a lot, but
when we visited them, they gave us milk and cookies! Another lady last
night said, 'I'll tell you right now, I'm not interested. But do you
want some cookies?'. It was super nice. I appreciate those people a
lot.

Ward Christmas parties are pretty great, even up here. They aren't too
different really. Good food, music, and lots of people to talk to. The
funny thing is, we got to perform in the first ward's Christmas party!
Elder Christensen signed us four up to sing, and it was fun. I actually
laid down the beat for the other three :)

Last night, we actually took our little quartet to the streets.
Caroling is pretty fun! For some reason it was a little scarier then
teaching on the doorstep :) One of the houses we stopped at, the
Mclaughlins, really liked our music. Later, they called us back to
have hot chocolate because we looked cold! They are so sweet. We got
to sit down and get to know them pretty good. They are such a great
family!

It's really amazing when you use the talents God has given you to
proclaim the gospel. It's also important to remember that it's the
Lords work. We were walking through the park to go visit a couple of
people, and I felt like we needed to pray for more guidance. When I
did, I had the thought that we needed to follow promptings. A moment
later, elder Schneider said, 'I feel like we need to follow
promptings'! I knew instantly that was our answer. We talked to a lot
more people that day because of it.

The Holy Ghost is truly there. God truly loves each of you. Use your
talents to share the gospel! It's really fun. Keep moving forward, as
will I. Thank you for everything!

Elder Smiley (rusty)

May the spirit be with you

Monday, December 14, 2015

Xandaman update! Week 17

Don't put chocolate in your suit pocket. Even if it's brown. Elder
Schneider got it out pretty good, but he'll probably have to dry clean
it :) Also, use milk with hot chocolate, not water! It's so much
better.

This week has been pretty great, full of good experiences and good
people. We had a little exchange on Tuesday. I got to stay in my area
and elder stone came with me. He's a really cool guy. We talked about
cool ideas and helped each other grow. He's the one that beat boxes
and plays the drums. I taught him a new beat boxing noise :) He has
great potential to be an apostle one day, as we all say here.

We were at the library the other day and it started hailing really
hard. Elder Schneider was pumped to take the recycling out in the
hail, so we did. We felt like warriors :)

Two mentionable members this week. The first is brother Teters. He's a
single handyman that likes sandwiches. We've gotten rides and food
with him a bunch. He got us some pickle barrel sandwiches the other
day. He showed us some pictures of his handiwork and old mission and
hunting pictures. He's really funny, is pretty laid back and likes to
mess around with everyone.

The second member is brother Glushko. He's a recent convert with a
hilarious personality. We ate at his house on Saturday after he got
back from a overnight camp out with the scouts. He was tired, but we
had a good meal and lesson with him. They are really good people.

We had some cool inspiration this week. Yesterday we were driving
around a neighborhood before dinner, and I had a thought to knock on a
certain couple houses. The first house, we were talking to a lady, and
we heard her husbands voice in the background, 'We don't believe in
it, thanks!'. The next house however was the cool one. We started
talking to her and I thought I recognized her. Soon enough, she said,
'I think I've met you guys before', and it clicked. We found her at
the park two months before and couldn't find her again. I'm glad we
stopped to knock on her door.

We also had a night where two lessons fell through, and we were
sitting anxiously at home trying to figure out things. We decided,
instead of giving up and staying home to get a ride out to the river
rock neighborhood and contact some people. We set up a lesson with a
new recent convert and, as we were walking up the street, talked to an
amazingly open minded lady. She basically said, 'why do you guys get
such a bad rap?', 'I would be more open to Mormonism than most
people', and 'I will definitely read and pray about the Book of
Mormon.'! We were so exited! I really hope she comes through. We will
see this week.

We also were able to sit down with Jacob and Shena. They have a little
family of their own, and they are super open to talk to us too! We
basically taught a whole lesson with them which we didn't plan on. I'm
excited for them too. I hope their busy schedule doesn't affect their
progress too much.

Church was pretty packed on Sunday and I'm sure it will be next week
too. We got to meet the famous Dexter Jarrett! He returned from his
mission in Korea Friday night. His parents were so excited for him,
since he is their only child. He wants to come out with the
missionaries still. It was weird to see a missionary come home. I
still have twenty months until that's me. I'm grateful for all the
support I get from all of you: family and friends both.
I'm so happy to see the progress and changes I am making. I'm becoming
more bold and confident in what I do.

Thanks for everything!
Elder Wylie


May the spirit be with you

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Xandaman Update! Week 16

Where did the snow go? It got above 40 this past week! It seems that
Montana weather is pretty weird too, compared to Utah. 

We got to do some good service this week. We loaded a couple cords of wood into a
trailer with brother guptill and brother archer. I kept almost
dropping pieces of wood on everyone's toes :) Then we did some random
stuff at the library. We moved boxes of books, tied ribbons on paper
mitts, and moved chairs downstairs. We had to 'perform surgery' on the
book sale tables to get to the closet of chairs. It was fun.

I slipped on ice a couple of times. The first time, we were walking up
to a door in the dark, and Elder Schneider stepped on what looked like
an edge of a walk and almost slipped. As I started chuckling at him, I
stepped on the same spot and just about went to the ground! The second
time, elder Schneider was hiding behind a light pole, and I went to
give him a lift kick with my foot, but the ice blew my plan! It was
pretty funny.

We went to the Wheatleys for dinner, and later for a lesson, and the
little girl, Sarah, drew us a picture of a giraffe. I'll send an image
of it. Her little sister, violet, calls us the Olders :)

We met and taught a family that moved up here from Hurricane Utah.
They are a really fun blended family that have a lot of fun with each
other and anyone who visits. We also met an awesome humble guy, Dana,
who loves to serve others and will feed anyone who walks in his door.
He loves to just talk to anyone. We have good hopes for him.

We got a Montana Christmas going on up here at the Guptills house. We
got lights strung across mounted antlers and a mini tree all set up.
We're helping people feel the real Christmas spirit :) Go watch the
new Christmas video on Christmas.mormon.org. It really portrays why
Christ is the center of our lives, even if we don't know it. He is the
reason we celebrate and get together. Don't forget to thank Him and
give Him a gift this year :)

Keep looking out for each other and serving each other, and especially
spending time with each other. It goes a long way. Thanks for all your
support :)

Older Wylie


May the spirit be with you
Rudolph's replacement

Montana Christmas apartment
Tree from home


Monday, November 30, 2015

Xandaman update! Week 15

From the frozen diaries of a defrosting elder:

When 20 degrees feels warm, you know you are in a winter wonderland.
It got down to zero when we were out a couple times tracting and
contacting this week. It has been quite an adventure :) We met a good
potential named Katie  but we met her funny kids first. The
notable one was this little black kid that came up to me and punched
me in the crotch! It was pretty funny.


Our unique adventure last Tuesday was at the Community Cafe. It's a
cool little business where you come and eat food, then donate what you
can. Elder Schneider and I got to scoop the food onto the plates. It
was quite fun! Pictures will come for that.


The next morning we slept through our alarm (I'm convinced it didn't
go off, or else I turned it off in my half-asleep phase) and came out
to a flat tire. It was a rough start to a day, but we got it sorted
out.


We got to partake of three different turkeys on thanksgiving day.
First at the Adams. They are a great family. Then at the Camerons.
They are one of my favorite older couples in the Ward. They support us
a lot. Their son joined us as well. Lastly, after a nap, we ate with
brother Bennett. Cody wasn't there, so we haven't been able to catch
up with him yet. We surely will soon.


We had fun pulling each other on the dolley and hauling book sale
books upstairs at the library. The two librarian ladies got a kick out
of it :) You can't take everything too seriously, or else it gets
boring. Make hard/boring jobs fun!


During the opening hymn in sacrament meeting yesterday, they
realized there was only one deacon and no priests for the sacrament.
Elder Schneider and I got sent up to help pass, but he got tapped out,
so I got to do it. It felt good to help with that sacred ordinance
once again in a different Ward.


We ended with dinner and pie at the Jarretts. They are super giddy
about their son coming home next week from his mission in Korea.                      


We've seen a few bad accidents on the highway since the roads have
held ice on them. Something I've thought about a little bit is how
tragedy turns people to God. We had a former investigator call and ask
us to pray for her son who had been in an accident. She said, 'I'm a
strong believer in prayer'. I'm glad that experience turned her toward
God instead of away, since that is their purpose. I hope we get a
second chance with her to really show her what God is all about.


The gospel is literally the way. Christ actually died and suffered for
us. God is legit. Don't forget that and get to know Him better this
week. He has the power.
This is the defrosting elder, out.

May the spirit be with you

Serving at the cafe

Elder Wylie got a new snow hat at the Thrift Store!

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Xandaman update! Week 14

If I have another slice of pizza, I might turn into pizza! During
preparation day last week, we got pizza. Then we got more the next
three days for dinner. Too much, but it was good.


I guess me and elder Schneider got the ball and chain here in Belgrade
for another few weeks! I'm kinda glad because now we can keep working
with the great people we have found in the last couple weeks. Cody
isn't getting baptized this week though. We don't know exactly what's
going on, but he got talked out of coming to church or something.
Hopefully we can get his concerns straightened out. We did find an
amazing investigator (Actually three of them). Jesi, Amanda, and Monte
seem to be very interested and open to the gospel. Jesi was on the
edge of her seat when we were teaching her. She had a whole bunch of
questions and is really excited to know more. We're super excited for
them! There are a couple of others that seem to be good prospect, but I'll

tell you about them if they turn up good.

We played a dumb game at the Turners house last night called Mexican
horse race. It's dumb because it goes until you figure out the joke.
It's hilarious when you are on the other side of it though.


I can't believe how not cold it has been, especially today. I'm in
short sleeves! On the cold days, our car magically became a drifter ;)
The church parking lot was like an ice skating rink. Too fun!


Otherwise, the work is moving forth. It's an amazing experience to be
out here. This time of my life has only been dreamed of for a long
time. Now that I'm in it, it's the most exciting time I've ever been
in. Missionary work is the most important work. It doesn't take much,
but it takes looking out for each other and serving. It breaks my
heart to meet less active families that have great faith but have felt
like they have been ignored. Don't let that happen where you are! Look
out for everyone in need, no matter their appearance or circumstance.
We are all children of the most high God. He loves us all individually
so much. Share the love! Thank you for everything!
Elder Xandaman

May the spirit be with you

Monday, November 16, 2015

Xandaman update! Week 13

The snow is coming down today! It melted away through last week, but
now it's back.


There has been some pretty slow times this week. It's sometimes
painful when you don't have anything planned on a given night. But we
pressed forward in prayer and kept trying.


Some random highlights from the week: last night we got a surprise
thanksgiving dinner! We just called a member of our ward about
something and he invited us over. It was pretty good. We didn't eat as
much as we could have because we were saving room for some food at an
investigators house. But when we showed up, the investigator canceled
on us :( At least we got some food.


We also got to shelve children's books at the library. It sure does
take some effort to recite the alphabet in your head so many times,
haha.


Another investigator we are working with does fencing with his family!
They showed us their clothes, swords and helmets. Their passion for it
was pretty great.


The first ward elders lost their phone least night. It fell out onto a
members driveway and someone ran over it. This morning walking out of
the church after around-the-world, a kid from seminary had found their
phone and gave it back to them. It works fine gratefully!


I guess primary programs are going on all over the place. We got to
watch ours Sunday. Kids are pretty funny. Kids waving, crying,
dancing and speaking in the mic loudly every time. They are always
good and enjoyable.


Cody is so solid, still! His example is quite faith building. He told
his coworkers he is taking Sundays off now so he can go to church. He
reads the Book of Mormon every day. He just understands everything
very well and believes in it. I'm so excited for him! I hope I'll be
here though. Transfers are next week!


We had a great zone meeting last week, along with president/zone
leader interviews. There were some great principles taught and a great
spirit felt. Two things that I learned and are very important to me
are one, faith and desire is first, then skills come. Two, be the same
wherever you are. It's important to exercise your faith every day so
it grows. Desire comes from experiencing and feeling how great God
really is and how his commandments really work.


Being the same everywhere is important. People should be able to trust
you whether you are with them or not. We should have the integrity to
be good people around others or alone. I am trying to become more like
that.


The last big thing I learned this past week is how love solves many
problems. If someone is bugging you, if you don't know what to say, if
you want to help someone, just love them, and you are covered. Your
service will be meaningful, your words uplifting, and enemies will be
stuffed(defeated). Genuine care for people solves a lot of problems.
I love you all and thank you for everything!


Elder Why Lee


May the spirit be with you


Montana sunsets are incredible