Friday, October 26, 2012

Esta Bien!

Some gifts we got from some elders in our zone who left for Florida
This week pretty much flew by and it wasn't even that busy. It was just a normal week, but it was probably because I finally have everything down as far as planning and using my study time effectively which helps a ton. Thursdays are the best because those are the days we have gym first thing in the morning, then service, then TRC (where we go teach church members in Spanish). It sounds weird, but service actually isn't that bad. We just go to another residence hall do things like take out trash and wash windows. It's especially fun if I have Elder Clement around because he's always in a good mood and has a smile on his face no matter what.
Me and Elder Aiono who is waiting for his visa so he can go to Peru
on our weekly Sunday walk to the temple
The Crew - Our weekly Sunday walk to the temple

Some random guy who wanted to take a picture with me
on our weekly Sunday walk to the temple
The TRC this week was the best so far too, because I can tell there's a huge difference between what I can understand and say compared to last week. I'm getting really confident in my Spanish which might have actually been a bad thing because we kinda have just been having good conversations with the people rather than actually do what we are there to do which is teach about the doctrine. Before all we were doing was shoving doctrine down their throats too (mostly because it was pretty much all we knew how to say) so it looks like we need to find a good middle ground.
I like to think my comp and I are doing better. We are studying and praying together more and are open with each other (maybe a little too open). We have this ongoing argument about how much scripture we use in our lessons because he pretty much wants to just read for half a hour and I want to actually teach it in my own words so they can understand it better. Don't worry though, we'll figure it out.
We got our first snow yesterday! I was so surprised when I saw that it was actually sticking too. I don't think I have ever seen snow in October before. I would have got a picture, but it melted by noon. I'll get it next time!
In our Sunday devotional last week one of the speakers said that missionary applications jumped to 471% and went from 70 a week to like 5,000. THAT'S NUTS! They are going to make a lot of changes around here so they can fit everybody. I'm so excited for all of the new missionaries who get to headline this huge change. Keep up the good work! They say that our group of missionaries will be the first who train the newbies out in the field. Pretty exciting! I still have one month more to go though!
Thank you all so much for all your letters and support. I love it!
Hasta Luego!
                   Elder Shurtliff
The sign says:  This lawn area is CLOSED for the season.Do NOT come in here for ANY reason. The lawn is not growing and you are wearing it out. THIS MEANS YOU! Be Obedient!!!
This is the famous Tree at the MTC that everyone tells you to smell and they closed it off with the ultimate guilt trip. BUMMER

Friday, October 19, 2012

Buenos Dias Everyone!

This week has been pretty much nothing compared to last week, but still really busy. The Spanish is still coming along really well and I'm getting more comfortable with it so I don't just memorize phrases instead of teaching by the Spirit. It's hard planning a lesson and then know that it never goes according to plan, because you never know what the investigator is going to say and what you feel what you need to teach them. They have really been getting on us about planning lately which is definitely not my style. I usually never plan everything out, but now I see how important it is to plan, what to study, and how is what I'm learning going to help my investigators. Our first district leader (Elder Albert) just left to the MTC in Peru for his mission in Cuzco, Peru (Emperor's New Groove) and we had a Elder from our district (Elder Livingston) get transferred to Portland, Oregon English speaking. So we just have eight guys in our district now.
Thanks everyone for your letters! It's kindof ridiculously funny how desperate missionaries are for letters. It seriously makes our day so much better and I like to make my District jealous of how much love I'm getting so send as much as you can! And I also want to hear from you of course!
I like to think me and my companion are getting better at working together. It's hard, but it's just something I have to learn from. A surprisingly hard thing to do is just to LOVE EVERYBODY no matter what they do just like our big brother (JesuCristo) does. Cause if I can't love my companion then I can't love the people I'm trying to teach, right?
I don't know why everyone keeps asking about the food here, but it's pretty good for being a cafeteria buffet. A lot of Elders in my district are gaining weight like crazy, but I try to keep it healthy. Just a couple days ago we played basketball for gym and we weighed ourselves before and after and I lost a pound! haha oh and if you didn't already know that I choke on food sometimes (no big deal) and it happened for the first time in the cafeteria and my friend Elder Neff tried to to do the Heimlich on me while I was still sitting even though I told them I was good. Usually I would just run to the bathroom and wait til it passes, but I couldn't exactly do that with my companion chained to my hip so I just had to sit there and wait until I was good. Haha don't worry about me though. I only shared that story cause it was funny not traumatizing.
Anyways...I miss you all! Enjoy the nice cool autumn weather! It's getting pretty chilly.
       Elder Shurtliff

Friday, October 12, 2012

MTC, Tres Semana

Hola everyone!

This last week has been really tiring, but soooooo great. The Provo Temple was really fun to go to with my district. We did initiatories which I wasn't really used to, but it was so peaceful.

 General Conference of course was awesome! It was my favorite conference probably because it was the first time I really listened to the whole thing. It was cool watching it in the big conference center with all the rest of  the missionaries. We were told to have a couple of questions that we wanted answered before and mine got answered easy thanks to Elder Holland's talk about truly being converted to Christ. No wonder he's my favorite apostle! Throughout the whole conference I was getting goose bumps which I like to call "Ghost Bumps" haha I loved it.
My Wall of Wizzum full of quotes from conference
My whole desk
We also had Chad Lewis (played football for BYU and the Eagles) come and talk to us which was awesome. Not to mention THE ONE AND ONLY David A. Bednar (another one of my favorites) came to talk to us on Tuesday about how to get the most out of General Conference. It was crazy awesome!

I'm doing just as good as always. The Spanish is coming really fast and I'm always so grateful for my awesome teachers and district. Our first investigator we taught turned out to be our second teacher and so now we are being taught by someone we were supposed to think was a real investigator that only spoke Spanish. It was so weird at first, but I love it now.
Saying goodbye to my zone leaders
Saying goodbye to a missionary going to New Jersey
Elder Fullmer's glasses look so much better on me (SARAH)
We also did are first visit to the TRC yesterday where we taught volunteers that are already members in Spanish. It was really fun because there was absolutely no pressure if we messed up. It taught us to be that relaxed and keep that same attitude in all of our lessons. That's the thing we really focused on this week. Just acting like yourself and getting to know them so they will trust you.

Well I'm probably pushing my computer time so that's all for now. Thanks for all your letters! ADIOS!

       Elder Shurtliff
Our nightly SWOLE session
Our district's chips and salsa "campfire"

Friday, October 5, 2012


Things are doing really well in the CCM. The language is coming along and I don't want to brag, because missionaries shouldn't be prideful, BUT my district is DA BEST.

In just a week we are all saying prayers, bearing our testimonies, and committed our first investigator totally in Espanol. We have an awesome teacher named Hermano Stoddard who is always happy and helps us see how important our purpose is as missionaries. By the second day we already had our purpose memorized in Spanish and we recite it everyday in classe. It's, "Invitar a las personas a venir a Cristo al ayudarlas a que reciban el Evangelio Restaurado mediante la fe en JusuCristo y Su Expiacion, el arrepentimiento, el bautismo, la reciban el Espiritu Santo, y el presverar hasta el fin." (or something like that) Everything we learn reflects right back to helping others come unto Christ. I'm getting used to the MTC life and days are going a lot faster. Our district always looks up to, "Gettin' Swole" during gym time (Natalie) and we all tend to talk in a Mexican accent even in English.
My companion can be a pain sometimes (or all the time) but it's really helping me out with my patience. It's a challenge for sure.

It's also hard just to stop addressing Elders and Hermanas as guys and dudes, putting hands in our pockets, and to try not to talk about movies. (We quote a Will Ferrell, Adam Sandler, or Jim Carrey movie everyday)

Other than that I'm having a blast even though I'm exhausted all the time and learning how to work. I'm really looking forward to going to the Provo temple for my first time today for our P-day.

After Provo I will have been to 9 different temples. GET ON MY LEVEL. I also have been waiting to write letters to everyone cause we can only write them on our P-day (Fridays). I'll try to get to as many of you I can. Please, por favor, write me muchas! I don't know how Dear Elder works, but getting those and other letters make my days so much better.
Remember it's: MTC Mailbox #284
                       MEX-MER 1126
                       2005 N. 900 E.
                       Provo, UT 84604

I miss you all! - Elder Shurtliff

Monday, October 1, 2012

I'd Write a Letter

Hi Adam's friends- his mom here. I just wanted to let you know how you can communicate with Adam. You can write and send things to him at:

Elder Adam Shurtliff 
MTC Box # 284
MEX-MER 1126
2005 North 900 East
Provo, UT  84604-1793

Another way to contact him is through It is a free service. Go to the website and create an account. You simply type your letter and they print it and send it to him the very same day. Unfortunately, he cannot respond accordingly. but the advantage to this system is that he immediately has your letter. Another cool thing about this service is that you will still be able to use it once Adam is in Mexico. Free. No stamps. They use the church's pouch mail system. You can also use the church's pouch mail to send handwritten letters. The rules are strict. Let me know if you are interested in it and I will send you the details.