Monday, November 17, 2014

Il fait neige...

Bonjour ma belle mère,

So Dad's finally home! How exciting! Thank you for all the updates especially with the Dawgs as well. I can't believe how much is happening down there right now- with all the changes and everything. It's just kinda surreal to hear about it all when I'm up here, really just in a completely different realm. I am so grateful for all the help that y'all have received since the accident- I am amazed every time I check my email.

For us, this week we have been trying to get ready for winter as best as we can. I just bought some boots- those things are dang expensive- and now I just need gloves and I'm good to go. We are getting winter tires on our car tomorrow as well. Right now, it's snowing like crazy- well at least in my opinion it is. It has snowed on and off these past few days in the mornings, but it has always melted away as the day went on. But now it's really coming down heavy. The people here don't pay any mind to it- in fact, a lot of them hate it, haha. But me, everywhere we go I want to just make a snowball and throw it at somebody or start making a snow angel. Seriously, the city is so beautiful when it's covered in snow. As for pictures, I hate to disappoint, but I don't have any snow ones yet. Craignez-pas, I will take some this next week if it continues to snow like this.

On Tuesday we had a meeting with all the missionaries in my transfer and our trainers with the mission president. It went well and was nice to see everybody- Hattaway and I are determined to be companions with each other at some point. He also is trying to adjust to the cold here- so I'm glad I'm not the only one. For English class this past week I taught them some southern phrases and expressions- you can bet they loved that...or maybe it was just me that loved it. We have really developed a strong relationship with some of the members here- they are wonderful. They have such great stories and such great testimonies, it really is incredible. The Africans and Haitians LOVE to feed us too- and you cannot say "no" to those people. Oftentimes I feel like that kid off of Matilda who gets forced to eat that chocolate cake, haha. Geraldine cut the biggest slice of cake for me the other day... Don't worry, I still weigh the same though...unless our scale is broken. No but really I am keeping constant.

Also, next week our p day is on Tuesday due to Zone Conference- just a heads up so there are no "freak outs" when you don't get an email next Monday.

This week we are committing Geraldine and her two daughters to a baptismal date. I am so excited for that. Her husband was supposed to go to the Church in Nigeria yesterday, so we are gonna do a follow up with that. Seriously, I love these people so much. It's just so easy to genuinely care for people when you are sharing this Gospel with them.

We have also been practicing in the choir for the flash mob that is happening in a few weeks. The Christmas songs really are so great to sing in French, and it really is starting to feel like Christmas time here- this year will be my first white Christmas- about dang time.

I have been studying a couple talks from Elder Bednar that talk about the Atonement. We always think about the Atonement and its healing power, but oftentimes we overlook its enabling and strengthening power. Really, it's such a beautiful thing. And it is something I have had to rely on being out here. The work isn't always easy, but I find so much strength from my personal studies and I find the most joy when I continue to work hard and focus. Really, that applies to every aspect of life. Hard Work- there really is no other substitute for that. And as we pray for the desire and do our best- that's when the enabling and strengthening power comes in. Man, it's a beautiful process.

I hope y'all continue to stay warm down in the freezing south... Dad, keep doing those Wii exercises! Don't let Ryan beat you down too bad. Have a great week! I'll talk to y'all on Tuesday!

Love,

Elder Cody Warren Ritz

Helping out for a homeless shelter

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