It's not quite as busy now that conference and all the first week orientation stuff is over. Let's see, we typically have 3 different 3-hour blocks of study per day. Two of those are with teachers (Brother Read and Brother Henry) who are both really cool returned missionaries. Then our third block is personal, companion, and more language study (so much language study.) But my Portuguese is improving so fast. I'm pretty sure I've learned more Portuguese in 2 weeks here than I did Spanish in 3 years at school!
I've incorporated 20 - 30 minutes of family history study as part of my personal study which has been really really cool. On Thursday I started Dorris Dale Hyer's history and it was so interesting! I was reading for 45 minutes before I checked my watch and realized I only had 15 minutes to read my scriptures! I finished that on Sunday and I really enjoyed it. His entire life was one centered on missionary work which was really interesting and I learned so much. I can't wait to someday have the opportunity to talk with him and hear some more of his stories. I'm now in the middle of Lindsay M. Rawlins which is really cool and also a little more lengthy, :) but I've never been this excited about my family history before.
I read through my Patriarchal blessing again last week carefully pondering about each phrase and paragraph. Something I had always just read over was that I have the gift of teaching, which intrigued me because I had never really thought of myself as a teacher. As a missionary I'm hoping and praying that I can practice and improve this gift as much as possible. I've never felt particularly talented in my life. I was always jealous of those who are musically and artistically talented (in fact I still am.) But we all have different strengths and weaknesses and I'm starting to find some of mine. I hope to improve and use these strengths as much as possible to help the people I will be teaching and those around me.
On Sunday the BYU men's choir sang for us which was nice, and the Sunday before that, Vocal Point came and sang which was actually really cool. Normally devotionals are not concerts but recently they have been which has been fun. :) Tuesday we did have Elder Gong of the Seventy speak to us which was really good.
Last Sunday I went to the MTC choir practice with two guys in my district because I didn't want to take a nap with everyone else, and was surprised to find that I actually really had a lot of fun. I'm definitely going to go every week. Maybe I'll actually really learn a few singing techniques. A few days ago at lunch 5 of us elders were humming and whistling Pokemon and Zelda songs. That was pretty funny.
I pretty much play volleyball every day during gym which is fun. I wish I could have been there to hear Lauren sing, I'm sure she did amazing. I love you all so much. I hope you all know how blessed I feel to have all of you in my life.