Tuesday, December 28, 2010

December 27 2010

<<Editor’s Note: We got to talk with Richard on Christmas Eve.  It was very nice to speak with him.  Richard’s comments about Hope was because she was in AZ attending her grandmother’s funeral.>>

photo Christmas Dinner

Elder Brickey, Elder Mackelprang, Brother Ravonsheed

Hello Y'all!

:P Dad, other than Leah's crazy pictures of everything, you're the only one to have written me this week. Talk about depressing. Today has been a very bad P-day. Since we have to take the English Elders to do their laundry, and do ours at the same time. It's just a plain time drain. It's irritating that all we managed to get done is shopping and finally emails, with the libraries being closed this week. :( So I really, really hope that we figure out some time saving ways to get our laundry done faster... because this is just ridiculous. We're still not done with laundry, and we're using a LOT of miles to get it done... *sigh* at least in Fairfield we were pretty much 1/2 way done with laundry by 8AM in the morning, but together we'll find a way to make everything pan out.

I've seen on news-clippings that the entire east coast got plastered with snow. I'm sure you've been enjoying it all. I hope Mom has been enjoying the the warm Arizona weather! :) She’ll enjoy getting some of the Arizona sunshine she misses during these winter months.

Leah must have sent me like 20 pictures today, I was kind of blown away when I saw her name dominating the screen when I opened up my email today, it was a nice change to the few emails I usually get each week. By the way, Sayonara Leah! Have fun in Idaho! :)

I'm sure Jenna is loving her kindle. I wonder if she'll ever prefer that over real books though.

I'm also sure that Joshua's ecstatic about getting a gecko. I feel that those would make awesome pets. :P

I'm not sure I can forgive you for buying an Ipad Dad... but we'll see what you do with it ;-).

Christmas. It was a fun morning. I slept in until 7:30AM; I know, I'm crazy right? Elder Brickey (my new comp) had been up a little while earlier and had already gone through all of his gifts. :) He had more of the Christmas spirit in him I guess. He got a lot of professional artwork from his brother in the form of pass-along cards / bookmarks. It's some pretty impressive stuff. I enjoyed all of the little snacks, and things I got from the Christmas package. It was really nice. I especially liked those Christmas Bark things. The new shirts fit like a charm. They are _SOOO_ nice! I love it! I've received several Christmas cards from the ward members back home, and from various relatives. So it's been nice, but I especially enjoyed a special letter from my waiting girlfriend Kayla Swesen. I got some pictures a good letter, with a humorous RM dating application. Words cannot do it justice to describe it, so... I'll leave it at that. Later that Christmas day we went to visit our investigators for tamales... but wouldn't you know it; we got dogged. On Christmas. So we went up to Santa Rosa and spent the majority of the day in Santa Rosa with a more "Americanized" Spanish family for most of the day. We came back to Rohnert park for an appointment later that afternoon, but we got dogged on that one too. We then had dinner with the Gaecominis family, who is an English family in the Rohnert Park 2nd ward along with the other Elders. It was a very nice dinner, with lots of laughs, and good food. So yeah. That's my Christmas for this year.

I love you all, and I hope that you enjoy your holidays and vacations as we look forward to this new year. In which I'm coming home. Weird thought isn't it?

I know this church is true, I know that Joseph Smith saw what he said he saw. He really saw God the Father, and Jesus Christ. I know that the Book of Mormon is the word of God, and that we can come closer to Him by doing all the small little things that we say in Primary: Saying our prayers, Reading the scriptures, and going to church. the diligence we have to these steps will in great measure affect how our faith strengthens or weakens in the long run.

Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year,

Elder Mackelprang

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

‘Twas The Week Before Christmas...


:) Christmas is PDAY this week, so it's another wacky week for again. With transfers tomorrow too! I'm staying here. *sigh of relief* I'm getting a younger missionary named Elder Bricky. I hear he's solid and a hard worker, so we should have a good time and get some more stuff done.

Yesterday we finally managed to bring to pass the baptism of Antonio Murga, and his Sister Soladie. They have just been really hard to work with, since we've had trouble keeping contact with them, and getting everything arranged on-time. I'm glad we were finally able to make it happen. Other than that though, things have continued to be slow. It seems like the yearly winter Latino migration has begun, until the rain and chill runs off, and the vineyards open up work again. However, there are Latino families that are still here somewhere. So your prayers to help me find them would be greatly appreciated.

***Super Important*** I'll be making my phone call from a members phone on Christmas Eve at 5pm in Cali. So if I'm still up-to-date with the time change that would be about 7-8PM your time. That should give us an ~1.5hrs to talk. I'll probably be at that members house late since they're feeding us dinner, and all Latinos celebrate Christmas at midnight the 24th. We'll be back before then, but we'll enjoy ourselves with our members. 

I did get both packages, and a present from grandma and grandpa, and post cards from Pres. Maxwell, the Everetts, (yours), and Uncle Kenny's. So it's been nice having more mail than usual.

I really do miss the Neighborhood activity night of caroling it was always awesome to be able to go out and sing, and harmonize... it's really a lacking gift in the world...

Leah! Congratulations! Graduation! you definitely must be excited to be going to BYU-I! You'll be that much closer to Matthew in Colorado! ;-) Your mail will get to him faster that's for sure. 

The Weather here has finally gone to the wet and chilly side. It'll probably be that way for the next couple of months... :P At least in NC the sun came out a little more often between days of rain/sleet/ and snow.

That's about everything that's been going on, so I'll bring you up-to-date with what happens next week, next time.

I know that this church is true, and that my Savior lives! The Book of Mormon is the word of God, and will bless our lives if we read from it.


Your missionary,

Elder Mackelprang

Sunday, December 19, 2010




Funny how they happened to come at the same time, huh? Who'd a thought. I'm sure it's a double whammy for receiving cards and stuff. :P

Christmas time is here! I still don't know if I'll be here for Christmas. Since transfers happen on Dec 21st (I know it sucks). It may be that President will surprise me again and transfer me after one transfer here in Rohnert Park. Because of that I don't know when phone calls are going to be. I'll let you know next week as we figure out what's going on with transfers. I really hope that I get to stay. It's a lovely place here.

I hope you feel better Jenna! 

Ben Everett starting his mission papers -- I knew that this day would come, but I forgot that it would be this soon. I was just thinking a few days ago about when he'd do that. Keep me posted. I really want to write him, so hopefully I wont be spending all of my real P-day (temple trip p-day) this Friday on cleaning our apartment. You have no idea how hard I would laugh if Ben got called here, and to Spanish, and if I trained him... that really would be funny. We'd get to know each other a whole lot better.

You guys would be jealous of the weather here. It's a continuous  55-60 degree weather __All__Day__Long__.  I hope I don't get too soft from being out here.

Sounds like you need another pair of hands to finish your house projects again! :P I'll see what I can do about that. I'll think about it for another 10 months. ;-)    

The ward parties here have been fun, and many of them wouldn't have happened without our help. :P It's funny what we missionaries do in the background of things. 

Dad, I don't think I've ever been to Magianno's so maybe we'll go there someday.

Well, it's a short P-day today, but I'm really excited for the _ALL_ mission conference this Wednesday (yep Leah's birthday) :) that will be fun. The 1st all mission conference ever in my time here, and probably my last. I love you all and I hope you have a fantastic Christmas.


Your missionary,

Elder Mackelprang

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Christmas Season Has Begun!

We got two emails from Elder Mackelprang this week:

Hey Mom!

:) This week has been awesome! and to make you guys happier this week I have some surprise pictures! I wish I could send some of these as Christmas cards, but alas I have no extra money whatsoever :P. It really is tough to live off just a missionary budget. I'm really looking forward to watching movies, (and maybe some games) on the projector in the theater room!! That should be fun. I'm glad that you're feeling better. It's officially been a year since I've come out to California! Weird!! :S 10 months to go, you can count them on your hands!

Enjoy!! Have a fantastic Christmas! (Let me know about what traditions/ activities you guys are doing for Christmas!)

Love your son,


Hello All!

This week has continued to be slow, but it's slowly but surely improving. Hopefully, we can continue that trend through Christmas, but we'll see how it goes. This next week should be full and productive, but next week is FULL of stuff to do with the all-mission conference (1st one since I've been here) temple trip, and several baptisms on the weekend. It will be nice to have so many highlights before transfers that week.

I'm missing the snow, but I'm sure I'll get more than my fill when I go back to BYU during the winter semester, and it's crazy to see how much Josh has grown... :P 10 more months we'll see who's the stronger one right Josh?

We've helped several members move, and had a Christmas party this past Saturday! That was fun, we had 6 piñatas and LOTS of tamales. :) I was very happy. I did get a chance to swing at the piñatas, but the blindfold was too good this time. ;) I didn't break it.

The picture with the Santa clause is kind of funny because, we didn't realize until we tried getting our picture with him that he was drunk, _way_ drunk. He was still coherent, but it was also messing with his head a little bit. He was a nice guy being a Santa in front of his own house, so I give him props. 

Umm... I'm working on singing another song in sacrament meeting, but this time it'll be in Spanish, and it'll be a duet with one of the Spanish members. It should be fun! I hope that I also get a chance to be apart of the ward choir, even if we only sing one song.

The church is true! (by the way, Dad, for Gospel Studies each morning, we usually study something from Preach My Gospel)

I love you all and I'm glad things are going great back home!


Your missionary,

Elder Richard Mackelprang


Sunday, December 5, 2010

Last Thanksgiving

Hello again!

Thanksgiving has come and gone! My last one on the mission! :S Weird! It was a great day! But a terrible week for lessons! :(

We only got a grand total of 4 lessons this week! our usual is about 13. We had at least 9 people cancel on us... so we were happy to have a mid-week P-day! It was a day where I could write letters, and I did write some, and I got some sent off in the mail last Friday, so they should be coming soon. You guys will be getting the baptism picture soon. I'm not in it because I wasn't able to go... but oh well.

Some more of my investigators got baptized last Saturday! Not all 3 of them, but one of them did, and another one will this coming Saturday, and hopefully the last of them will get baptized soon. As for other activities, I got to play tackle football (yes, full tackle). That was fun, no one got hurt, but there were some pretty crazy hits. My knee started acting up while we were playing soccer a little while after, but it's improving quite a bit. We had quite a few missionaries in our apartment for Lunch, and then we had 2 Thanksgiving dinners, Mexicano-style! I love how they flavor their turkey, and meat! It's better than most turkeys I've ever had. So yeah, it was a LOT of food... :P I better start working out harder now. ;)

That's Thanksgiving in-a-nutshell. However, last Saturday, I got to attend my first Mexican Wedding... Oh man! :D Talk about wild, and awesome! It wasn't too bad since we were in the church building for the wedding, but I was really impressed at how good it was, and how cheap it was too. ~$1,500 for everything. We helped put up some decorations, and that's where our dinner was since the entire branch was there for the wedding. It was great, and a great motivator to me to get more into shape so that I can do some dancing when I get home! I think I have a waltz already waiting for me. ;-) So yeah... that's about it. Studying has been good. Nothing spectacularly mind-blowing, but it's funny how the simplest things are really the most sophisticated sometimes. We just recently got the Ensign, and I've been reading through it this week, and I'm reminded on how amazing some of those Conference talks were. I recommend you read them again.

Well I'm glad everyone had a fantastic Thanksgiving, and I hope everyone continues to do well.

Love your Missionary,

Elder Richard Mackelprang

Thanksgiving Week

Well... There's not really anything to note about what's happened this week. It's starting to rain more and more frequently, and it's finally starting to turn chilly. It'll be nice once this weather finally starts moving on, and then I can probably send home my rain jacket about Mid-March. An umbrella should be able to take care of me from that point on. We have a baptism of a 12 year old kid this Sunday! We taught him all of the lessons in about 30 minutes. I wonder if that's a record? :) We also have another awesome investigator that we hope will be ready to be baptized in December. She just needs to sit down and talk with her family, which she's planning to do on Dec 4th (it's a big challenge for her) her name's Alex.

Yeah... this week should be more fun with Thanksgiving, and some other surprises. I'll let you know more in my letter this week, and next Monday.

So to answer your ?'s:

  1. Yep as you should be able to tell with the address I sent you guys last week I'm in an apartment. No new pictures yet, but I'll get some, it's nothing really excited though. Rohnert Park is an awesome area, it's a little lacking of Spanish people. They're very hard to find, and most of them speak perfect English anyways, so it's a work in progress.
  2. The chapel is about ~3 miles away from the apartment.
  3. I did get a copy of the picture from the baptism in my last area that I'm sending home to you guys of the baptism last week, I'll be sending it home to you guys here shortly.
  4. Thanksgiving is a P-day for us, so today is technically cut a little short. We'll be playing Soccer, and Football for the Turkey bowl, and we have several meals planned with members. So it should be a nice relaxing day. I would've enjoyed going to Aunt Marsha's house, but the plans for Thanksgiving were already laid down when I got here.
  5. There's not really much to say about Elder Coburn, he's a funny goofy guy. He loves the work and the area, and we're working hard. The area can be a tough nut to crack sometimes, but it's a good area. The members here have a very crazy sense of humor. They are probably more light-hearted than most of the other areas that I've been to.
  6. The pants and the shoes that you sent from the Missionary Mall work and fit perfectly. Thanks. If they need any hemming or changing, I know some members who will be willing to help out. She's rather good at sewing.

I love you all, and I hope everything's going well,

Happy Thanksgiving!

Elder Mackelprang

Note that this is a moderated blog - Elder Mackelprang neither reads or (directly) writes to this blog. This is done by his father.