Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Just Try to Rain on Our Parade...

Naperville missionaries with the ward mission leader and his family.

This week in Naperville, we taught George the word of wisdom, but President Fenn had to deal with a missionary crisis that came up, so unfortunately he had to bail last-minute, even though he was still planning on it a few hours beforehand. Fingers crossed, he's coming out tomorrow with us though! George committed to living the word of wisdom for a week, which isn't hard for him, with the exception of coffee. We taught Mack this week about the Plan of Salvation, and it's great teaching him, but he asks a lot of really deep questions that are hard for us to answer, so we're trying to see if President Fenn can come see him with us tomorrow as well to answer some of his questions.

On the downside this week, my bike tire popped (it's okay, I changed the tire yesterday and we're good to go again) which meant we had to walk everywhere for a few days. #FullBikeProblems  We also came across a lot of people this week that wanted to bash, I don't know what the deal was with that, but there were more than I've met on my entire mission just in a few days.

On the other hand, for Memorial Day yesterday, there was a parade in Naperville (even though it was pouring rain), so we went downtown and street contacted for several hours, and we were able to hand out a ton of pass-along cards and find a few potential investigators! Cool miracle for the week: we were walking in the middle of a crosswalk of a busy intersection on Friday, and a guy stopped at the stoplight asked us if we were Mormons. We replied that we were, and he said that he has a special place in his heart for missionaries because his sister married a returned missionary. We got his contact info (all of this happening while the light is still red for him), so hopefully we'll be able to teach him in the future!

To be honest, I can't even remember the song we sang last week for choir, it wasn't a song that I'd heard before. We got to water the plants at the church again, and we did some good service this week helping the Steele family with their garden. We also did some service helping an older sister in the ward move some boxes. Service is my fav!

Well, I love you all a ton, thanks for the weekly updates on the 801.

Elder Dallas Anderson

Monday, May 18, 2015

Sowing the Seeds in Chicago

Hey to the 801!

We had transfers this week, and I'm teaming up with Elder Limary, who's from Sacramento, California. He just finished training, but he's an awesome missionary, and I love working with him! We get along really well, I'm excited to work with him this transfer!

For our week, we did some service watering the plants at the church again, the plants are looking so fresh. We also helped a member, Brother Hacking till and plant his garden, so we were definitely on the service grind this week. Besides service, we sang in the choir, probably butchering the song, because we only got one run-through as practice before we sang it in sacrament meeting. Brockbank and I will start a choir when we get home, LOL.

Teaching wise, we taught George twice this week, but President Fenn couldn't come because he had forgotten a prior commitment that he had made with his son. BUT, he said that he'll be there on Tuesday, and the third time will definitely be the charm! Elder Limary and I tore it up on the bikes this week, talking to everybody we saw. We met four new potential investigators, and taught two lessons just as we were out and about. We gave a woman a mormon.org card, and in return, she gave us a card to the restaurant that she works at for a free appetizer or dessert, so you could say the Lord provides. Hook-ups!

On the funny side, one guy told us that he was going to call the cops on us, another guy told us that we're going to hell, and another car drove by us and yelled, "I LOVE MORMONS!" Also, President Boswell, one of my favorite members of the whole mission, made an Instagram account that you should go check out: "naperstakeprez." There's a familiar face on that account, so hit him with that swift follow!

Anyways, I love you all, thanks for the emails and for the support. I'd be more than happy to answer any questions that you have or take special pics if that's what you're interested in. Hit me up!

Much love from Chi-Town,
Elder Dallas Anderson

Did you know Elder Dallas could play tennis? Neither did we. #NewSkillsNewThrills

The Elder D Exposé

*Apologies for the delayed post: After her Mother's Day conversation, Elder Dallas' mom was too busy smiling to get around to updating this blog*

Elder Dallas shows off his "garbage" mission phone.

On Mother’s Day, we were so lucky to talk to Elder Dallas online! There were a few hiccups at first: the technology elders forgot to unlock FaceTime on the iPads. (Forgot?! On Mother’s Day?!) But we proceeded to Plan B, and are happy to share all the answers to questions you didn’t know you had about the Chicago West Mission.

Where does Elder Dallas live?
The Naperville apartment is one worth coveting; it’s in a complex of a few hundred apartments. The Elders are on the first floor (convenient for their bikes), and each tower has 7 floors. The apartment is fairly new and very nice; there’s a fully equipped gym available for use, much to Elder D’s delight. The elders live across the hall from a friendly guy named Mack and his wife. He hasn’t had any discussions yet, but Mack joined the elders at church on Mother’s Day!

What does Elder Dallas eat?
Cereal and PB&Js in the apartment. Every day. No exceptions. “You can’t make a faster, cheaper meal. Plus, there's hardly any cleanup.”

The elders in the district do get pizza together every once in a while, and Giardano’s continues to be the absolute favorite. Unlike his area in Kankakee, Naperville does have some fast food establishments, but his missionary budget prefers the PB&Js.
(See also, “What does Elder Dallas like about Chicago” below.)

The elders are invited for dinner at member homes about 3 times a week. He’s discovered a lot of new foods, and we’re happy to note he likes most of them! (Jalapeños – yes! Catfish – still no!) A challenge for many member families here is that the husband usually works in the city and doesn’t get home until past the missionary dinner hour, and the elders can’t go in a home unless there’s a man 18 years or older. (Funny side note: a kind sister in the ward took pity on the elders during a downpour. Because she was the only one home, they had to get comfortable in her garage until the storm passed.)

Does Elder Dallas still have swag?
As if you need to ask. He acquired yet another pair of D-Rose socks; this pair with a glow-in-the-dark logo. 

How does Elder Dallas get around?
He and his companion are on bikes right now. Elder Dallas has expressed concern many times he thinks he’s getting fat. When we questioned how this was possible if he was working out every morning and riding bikes all day, we learned that Naperville is supposedly the smallest mission area in the world – less than a mile in any direction. We told him to start taking the long way to all his discussions. Plus a lap.

What does Elder Dallas like about the Chicago West mission?
1. Giordano’s pizza. Chicago dogs. And he has discovered a love for Italian beef sandwiches at Portillo’s.

2. He really loves the people, and has especially fond memories of his first area in Kankakee. He appreciates all the support from terrific members.

What does Elder Dallas NOT like about the Chicago West mission?
What was a huge plus going in is now a minus. The Chicago West missionaries were part of the beta test for using iPads. Now that iPads are an official program, and even though they've been using them for months, the Chicago missionaries have to go through the program training with everybody else. Elder D is required to watch all the instructional videos, like 20 minutes on “here’s how to add an appointment to the calendar.” He really can’t wait for the training videos to be done.

Does Elder Dallas want to live in Chicago someday?
Probably not. Although he really, really loves it there, he learned that the property taxes are so high, many people pay more in taxes than they do on their mortgage. #GottaMakeHisFortuneFirst

What is Elder Dallas’ favorite missionary job?
He really loves being a trainer. He likes “breaking in the new guy.” Plus, training companionships get some bonus study time and go to extra training meetings, which he likes.

President Fenn told Dallas he was going to train another new missionary this round of transfers, but Elder Dallas found out just the day before that the elder he was to be paired with decided to leave the MTC and go home. His new companion isn’t brand new, but just one transfer old, so that’s still pretty good.

What has Elder Dallas learned?
How to talk to people! He can talk to pretty much anybody now.

Does Elder Dallas know your friends in Naperville?
So far, not the names we’ve been sending to him. It turns out there are 6 wards in Naperville. He only serves in the Naperville 1st Ward.

Is Elder Dallas Chicago’s best missionary?
Probably. But we do know he’s the World’s Okayest Son.

Still have questions? Submit them directly to Elder Dallas at danderson@myldsmail.net or email them to his mother who is still smiling ear to ear from seeing him on Mother’s Day.

Much love from ChiTown!

Monday, May 4, 2015

Ask the Elder!

Family, friends and fans of Elder Dallas:

We are looking forward to having a call with Elder Anderson this Sunday! Although he wishes he could talk with everyone, here's the next closest thing. 

If you'd like, please send ONE question and/or one greeting that we can share with him over the phone. We'll take note of his responses and turn them into a post. Be creative, he'd love to hear your personality come out in your question/comment.

Thanks for your support of this and every missionary! Wishing you a happy Mother's Day weekend!

Prayers Please, for George and Robert

Hey from Chi-Town!

It was a slower week this week, definitely containing its ups and downs. Five of the potential investigators that we had given copies of the Book of Mormon to dropped us for various reasons, Robert, our miracle investigator from last week, has gone into hiding, and we haven't been able to make any contact with him, and we didn't find anyone in all of our tracting and street contacting this week, so that was a bummer. 

On the upside, we taught George twice this week, and he's got a solid understanding of the Book of Mormon. We were also able to set up a return appointment with him for Thursday, and President Fenn is coming to the lesson with us to help clear up some of the concerns that George has about the Godhead and the priesthood.

We got soaked on our bikes again last night after dinner at the Boswell's house, but it was fine! This week it's supposed to rain every single day but one, so that will definitely make things interesting for us on the bikes. I'm sure we'll still look fly anyway!

Last week when we played soccer for our zone conference, don't worry, I didn't show everybody up. I only had two bicycle kicks and three scorpions. So I kept the skills low key.

Anyways, that was about it for this week, nothing too crazy. I'm so excited to talk to you all on Sunday, I can't wait to see all of your faces! Let me know what questions anybody has to answer!

I can't wait to talk to you all on Sunday!
Elder Dallas Anderson