Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Happy New Year from the Netherlands

Dec 29, 2014

Hi Everyone!

Thank you so much for the email and for the pictures! It sounds like you had a great Kerstmas with the hele familie (entire family). Cierra looks really happy and Kasey looks content with the bone she got. It was so great to be able to talk with all of you, and I really enjoyed seeing everyone. I had a really good week and it snowed two days ago for the first time! It's getting really cold now. New Year’s is almost here! Are you guys doing anything for New Year’s? Are you still on vacation from school? We have interviews on New Year’s Eve and then we have to go straight home to our apartments. We can look at vuurwerken (fireworks) from our window but we're not allowed outside. We have already seen and heard a bunch of fireworks and they're really loud here. It’s normal to see the fireworks, like the ones on the Fourth of July, around here. Every one lights them off and they're so loud! I'm so happy to hear that you had a great Christmas with the familie. Tell everyone I say, “Hi” and that I love them! That’s so awesome that Cierra gets to go to Italy so soon! Send lots of pics, Ci! Say, “Hi” to any missionaries you might see when you're there! Tot volgende week! Love you guys! Also we went caroling in Den Haag! It was loads of fun and the people loved it. We hopped on the train with the zusters and went to Den Haag and met our zone in the station. We went in the middle of the busy centrum and began to sing Christmas hymns and fun Christmas songs. It was a little awkward at first but then people began singing with us and taking pictures with us and taking videos of us. It was really fun and we spread some Christmas spirit. 

Groetjes, Jeremy

Fijne Feestdagen!

Dec 22, 2014


This has been a really great week and Christmas is coming up so fast! The Christmas spirit is really strong, and we went caroling the other night with the zusters. Dutch people don't really know what caroling is and a few of them didn't know how to react, but some of the people we visited loved it. The zusters made them cookies and one of the people we visit weekly, who is an older guy, loved it. He opened the door and we started singing and he was dancing and had the biggest smile. He can't make it to church because of health issues but has a sterk (strong) testimony. He's awesome. We also talked to Canadians on the train ride to Almere today and it was cool. We heard them speaking English and we asked them where they were from and we started talking to them. It was awesome to talk to people from Canada!

It's good to hear that Kasey is doing well. Pet her for me. Dogs live so long in the Netherlands. Whenever we ask people how old their dog is they always tell us that they're 14 or 16 years old. Send me a picture of the tree! I saw the video about Christmas and I love it. We share it with less actives members and pretty much everyone. It's called Hij is het Geschenk. He is the Gift. I really like what Kaylee is doing in her mission, by doing what Christ would do. What are you doing for Kerst (Christmas)? We had an awesome ward party last night and the members decorated the chapel and some people performed a musical number. There was a cool slideshow with scriptures and bible videos. It was really festive and we sang Christmas hymns and the koor (choir), which we are in, sang a musical number. It was a lot of fun and the ward members are great. You should watch all the bible videos, they're really good. I love you guys and I can't wait to talk to you!!! Have a great Christmas week and a Happy New Year! Fijne feestdagen!


Happy Christmas, Almost!

Dec 15, 2014

Hallo Eidereen!

This has been a really great week and it sounds like you are all doing really well. I'm so happy to hear about all of the things you guys are doing and happy to hear that Kasey is doing well with only three toes on one paw now. :) I'm still in Lelystad, but Elder Warner got transferred to Heerenveen up north. My new collega is Elder Steenblik, and he is awesome. The language is still tough but I'm praying for help from Heavenly Father. I know that I’ll be able to teach through the Spirit and do what God wants me to do.

There is a ton of Christmas stuff outside right now and a lot of festivities in the Centrum. There's a Christmas market in the Lelystad centrum and they play Christmas music all day. We have to contact a ton and it's a little scary not being able to turn to Elder Warner if I don't understand someone. Elder Steenblik's Dutch is pretty good but I'm going to have to start speaking better Dutch. It's a little stressful taking over a city, but I love it here. There's a new greeny zuster in Lelystad, but Zuster Adams is still here. Zuster Adams has been here since I was a greeny in Lelystad. I didn't go back to Belgium yet because the trip was moved tot (until) later. The cookies look great! Did you all make cookies? Did Dad make a Grinch cookie? I saw the picture of Kaylee! She has a huge poofy coat! I'll send more pictures next week. We are emailing in Almere today with no USB ports. You can make me a Skype account so we can talk on Christmas, but I'll find out more about it this week and let you know.

I really liked the story that Kaylee sent and it really helps. I really like D&C 42:6 too! I love you guys so much! Have a great week and Happy Christmas almost! I didn't realize how close Christmas was. Remember that Christ is the first gift of Christmas :) Also I've found that prayers really are an amazing gift. When we pray we communicate with God and He wants us to. He really does hear our prayers and answers them in the best way. We may not see the answer right away or recognize it, but God always does what is best for us. He knows us better than anyone and loves us. We are his children and he wants us to have peace and joy in this life. Love you guys!

Transfer Calls

Dec 8, 2014

Hi Familie!

Wow thank you so much for that e-mail. You guys are receiving so many blessings right now. I love you so much and tell everyone in the ward that I'm really thankful to them and that they're awesome. I'm so happy that Aunt Ro got to go to the Stake Christmas concert. I love our family so much. I got the Christmas package you sent! Andddddd TRANSFER CALLS! I'm staying in Lelystad and Elder Warner is leaving to go up north to Friesland. Elder Steenblick is going to be my new collega and he is only one transfer ahead of me. I don't know how we’re going to be able to buy bread haha. I heard he's a great missionary and 6'5'' haha. I'm going to have to rely on the Lord to learn how to speak Dutch. It's very traditional to get chocolate letters during Sinterklaas. We have about 10 and are going to give them away during district meeting haha. Happy Birthday Mama!!!! How old are you? Just kidding. Elder Warner was sick this week and was throwing up but he's better now. Tell everyone I love them! Love you guys!!!!!!!!! Also Elder Warner thinks you guys are awesome and loves your conversion story. We didn't watch a Disney movie yet. We do that on Christmas day. Love you! Doei!

Monday, December 1, 2014

Zone Conference

Decmeber 1, 2014

Hi Familie!

It’s been such a good week and transfers are coming up. Elder Warner and I are going to get split up, but we don’t know where we’re going yet. I’ll probably stay in Lelystad and Elder Warner will probably get sent somewhere else. You guys all sound pretty busy and it’s great to hear about your Thanksgiving Day.

I saw the picture of our front yard. There’s so many trees and so much snow! It hasn’t snowed here yet but I think it will this year. It’s always cloudy and it’s getting a lot colder now. We went over to the De Graaf’s and had a Thanksgiving dinner and decorated for Christmas. It was sooo fun. They had Bing Crosby and Elvis, and 50´s Christmas music playing. This Sunday, I taught Gospel Principles class about the Gift of the Holy Ghost, and blessed the sacrament in Dutch. It went well. 

Zone Conference was great this week and Elder Moreira came. He’s one of the Seventy and he was awesome. He’s from Portugal and he was so funny. He came and said the apostles told him to tell the European missions to have more faith and obedience and he had a great message. He didn’t slam us or anything and he delivered his message really well with a lot of love. Haha, he also talked about how he met his wife after his mission and it was really funny. He’s a really animated guy and his English isn’t the best, but he still got the message through. He said he walked up to her and the first thing he said was, “I’m going to marry you because I love you. Go home tonight and pray about it and say my name in your prayer.” He said the next day he talked to her, he asked her if she got her answer and he said, “You don’t have to tell me your answer because I already know. We have an appointment tonight.” It was so funny when he told us, and it all related back to his message somehow. He had just got off his mission and so he asked her on a date using missionary terms. He was a really funny and spiritual guy.

We’ve been contacting a ton of people in the Centrum, because everyone is out Christmas shopping. There’s two days of Christmas here because the second day, everyone is passed out from drinking too much. We’ll probably spend our time at members houses and we get to watch a Disney movie! So awesome. I love you guys so much! And I got my Christmas package. Thank you guys!!! Love you!

Happy Thanksgiving!

November 24, 2014

You made Stamppot!!!! I love it, it's delicious. You guys are awesome! We had an awesome week. A member had us over for Thanksgiving who is originally from Idaho. I don't know how she ended up here in Nederland but there was so much food. There was a ton of Turkey and mashed potatoes and deliciousness and they sent us home with a ton of food here. Her husband is not a member of the Church, but he's still a cool guy. Caleb is training a greeny and he's on his last or second to last transfer now. I emailed Kaylee last week and this week. I'm so happy you guys celebrated Grandpa's birthday and all got together. The De Graaf’s are going to have us over this Vrijdag and we're going to set up a bunch of Christmas decorations and a tree! I'ts going to be so fun and gezelig. Gezelig is a word they use a lot here, but there's no English word for it. It kind of means cozy and relaxed, and chill, and fun. It also depends on the context you use it in. I'm going to Belgium this week again to finalize legality stuff and it should pretty fun. You guys don't have to send me those soundtracks but it would be nice :) Also, it would be great if you could send some cool instrumental hymns.

We have mission conference this week and a member of the 70 is coming. Can't wait! I love Christmas and the whole Christmas season. The mission is going great and Naomi is getting baptized on 7th Dec!!! Love you guys so much and I really liked the quote you sent this week. Christian is a member who Elder Warner reactivated a transfer before me and he's a really cool kid. He goes on a lot of joint teaches with us and is with us almost every day. He may serve a mission, but I’m not sure. He's in university right now, and school here is a bit different. He has to wait until he finishes certain semesters. It would be awesome if he went. Are you reading a Corrie ten boom book? She's a really good author. Happy holiday season and I love you familie!

The Best Mission in the World

Hi Familie!!!

Everything sounds really awesome at home! I'm so happy for Cierra and she's awesome. Sounds like every one is staying busy. You chose Nederland for the Missionary Month activity!!!! It's the best mission in the world. I love it here so much and life is good. Europe is really great with languages. A lot of people know English because of school and because of Hollywood. Almost everyone here can speak at least three languages and I'm definitely going to give my kids early language lessons and only speak to them in Dutch. Andddddd you should invite the Elders over more because Sisters get way more dinner appointments than Elders do. Just letting you know. :) I talked to Caleb this week and he only has two transfers left! It's crazy! I also got new missionary tags that say Elder De Wit on them. Know it's a real Dutch name. I think I may have seen the De Wit statue while I was in Den Haag!

We got to go see Sinterklaas sail in on Zaterdag and it was so cool! I'm definitely going to bring my kids to see it. It was so fun and there were a ton of people there. It was kind of like Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. Most people celebrate Sinterklaas on 5 Dec. On 25 Dec is when actual Christmas is, and people recognize it as the day when Christ was born. However, there are not many religious people here. There are a few Catholics, Protestants, and people who go to the Pillar.

I really love it here. I've been reading a lot in the Book of Mormon, and my testimony in Christ has grown so much because of it. I know that Christ died and atoned for all of our sins. Every unfair thing in the world, and everything, can be made right through the atonement. It's also so important to have the Spirit with you at all times. There’s a really good quote in one of President Uchtdorf’s talks. “The more you trust and rely on the Spirit, the greater your capacity to create." I love that quote. Corrie ten Boem is awesome. There's also an awesome quote from her which I have in my journal and I love to read "Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God". 

Love you guys sooo much!!!! Groetjes,

- Jeremy

Two Christmases

November 10, 2014

Hey Familie!

You've had an awesome week! Sounds like you had a fun Halloween. Will Kasey be able to walk after her toe is amputated?? I really liked the inspiring words you sent me. The horse meat I had was cut really thin, but it was pretty good.

I've had a really good week and we've been knocking on a ton of doors. Lelystad is still a new city and there is a lot of development in the outskirts of the town. We bike there a lot. We biked to a new neighborhood and two people who were walking outside said, “Hi” to us! It was cool. The weather here is getting a bit colder and everyone is getting ready for Sinterklaas. There's a bunch of Christmas lights up in the Centrum. We are going to the Lelystad Harbour to see Sinterklaas sail in. It's a really cultural thing and sounds really fun. There's basically two Christmases here. There's one in the beginning of December where kids get small presents and every one parties, and the other one is the actual Christmas. It's supposed to be centered around Christ, but people here party and get presents. New Years Eve here sounds like it’s going to be awesome, but missionaries have to be back in their apartments by four o’clock. There's a ton of fireworks all night.

The work here is going well and Elder Warner and I talk to a bunch of people about the Gospel. We talked with a philosophical guy the other day and it's interesting to see all the points of views everyone has. He already has a BvM. He hadn't read it yet. He said that he would, and he'll call us if he has any questions. Love you guys! Have a good week! I'll send some pictures next week. We're e-mailing in Almere right now in the biblioteek and there are no usb ports in the computers here, so we can't send pictures. Love you guys!