"the best two years and the hardest two years"

Aloha Mom! 

I hope your cruise is going well, sounds fun! How is Natalie feeling about missing out on another trip to Hawaii? Where is she staying at for the week? Can you send me Laurel's address and the other cousins in Idaho as well? I sent a letter to our house with some letters for those in Rexburg, can you forward them for me? Thanks! How long is your cruise? Can't wait to hear about and see pictures. I haven't gotten the Easter Box, I actually haven't gotten mail or anything for like 3 weeks or so. All our letters and stuff go to the mission office and then once a month we get them from the Zone Leaders cause they pick them up. So I think I will get the package and letters at the beginning of this next month. Thanks I am way excited! And for other recipes, not sure. I am just trying to try new things because what I make for my self is really the only variety I receive. I don't mind the food here at all but I like variety too. And ya I can email family members and my mission president. I have an hour each week to e-mail.

I forgot to tell you a few things that happened at the CTM. One morning I woke up and tried to open my glasses to put them on and they snapped in the middle! I put some tape around them and looked like Harry Potter, which was awesome, but it didn't work so well so I am just using my back up pair. I tried to take them to get fixed but they said they couldn't do it. I think because they are a special metal or something so they couldn't solder them. It's all good though! Also I lost like 10 pounds at the CTM. So put that down for my weight in the Losers program. I was about 182 when I left I think!

This week we had a baptism! My first baptism ever and it was in Portuguese! She was a young primary aged girl named Beatriz. She reminds me of Nat a little cause sometimes she is shy and doesn't talk but sometimes she is not. One time we went over there with the primary president and her and her other young cousins (One is baptized) had set out chairs in a circle and were reading the Book of Mormon and waiting for us. So cool! They seem very excited about the gospel and her cousin wants to get baptized too. We are going to try and work with their families too because although they have each other, family is very important in growing in the gospel. It is so cool to see people interested in the church, accept your message and be baptized!

We are working a lot with another lady to try and help her quit smoking. We brought the Bishop to a lesson with us and he talked about his conversion. Our Bishop is awesome. 4 years ago he used to smoke and drink and everything under the sun. He is now a Bishop sealed to his family and his children are active in the Church. It was nice to have him there and share stories of his experience and conversion. The lady we are teaching has continued to smoke but I think she is doing better. We are going over there tonight to see how everything is going and see how we can help. She has two sons that were recently baptized. They are really awesome. We are trying to work with the whole family. It is ideal if they whole family can become engaged and help each other grow in the Gospel.

Other than that we have been doing a lot of street contacts. We have a few refferals we have this week which is great. The young men in the ward are helpful and I am beginning to understand more about what is going on! We are going to try to start an English class. We hear it works very well in finding people to teach and so we are going to try and organize something this week.

On Saturday while we were setting up for the Baptism, I helped bring a wagon over some hedges. The Relief Society brought a wagon into the cultural hall for an activity! To get it in there they had to turn it on it's side and scoot it through the doors, through the chapel, and into the cultural hall! It was pretty crazy! I was laughing though. Pretty cool. People are relaxed here and they like to have fun and smile.

Well I am still trying to figure a lot out but I am beginning to see how a mission is the best two years and the hardest two years. I felt so happy for Beatriz to be baptized. I know the gospel will bless her life so much because it has with mine. I can tell the joy she had even from before her baptism til after she was baptized and received the Holy Ghost. I also know that it is hard to see people who won't accept our message. Because I know it will help them so much but they choose not to and we can't do much about it. It is hard when this happens but I know I must not get discouraged but find those who will receive our message and help them change their lives and enjoy the blessings of the Gospel. No one is beyond the reach of the Gospel if they will but have faith, repent, be baptized, receive the Holy Ghost, and endure to the end. The gospel is simple. It is the way for happiness in this life and forever. I am grateful for the knowledge of the Gospel that I have. The knowledge that I know it is true. Thanks for everything! I hope you all are having fun! Can't wait to hear about your trip! 

I love you and miss you all! We get to skype May 13th!

Your favorite son,

Elder Isaac Theodore-able Smith

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