Beautiful Russia!

Beautiful Russia!

Our great friend, Roma made dinner for us!

Our great friend, Roma made dinner for us!

Elder Rasmussen is very excited to see real food!

Elder Rasmussen is very excited to see real food!

Companion and friend, Elder Jake Rasmussen

Companion and friend, Elder Jake Rasmussen

Trifecta's Last Time In Estonia

Trifecta's Last Time In Estonia

With my wonderful friend, Faik.

With my wonderful friend, Faik.

Sunrise, at One P.M.

Sunrise, at One P.M.

Petrozadovsk District

Petrozadovsk District

Lake at Petrozavodsk

Lake at Petrozavodsk

North Zone Conference Nov. 2011

North Zone Conference Nov. 2011

Thanksgiving Dinner 2011

Thanksgiving Dinner 2011

First Zone Conference with President Clark

First Zone Conference with President Clark

Neva River Fall 2011

Neva River Fall 2011

Visa trip, Oct 1st 2011

Visa trip, Oct 1st 2011

Oh my aching jaw...

Oh my aching jaw...

Hermitage Museum on P-day!

Hermitage Museum on P-day!

Me, Svetlana and Elder Loskutov

Me, Svetlana and Elder Loskutov

Birthday lunch with Kostya

Birthday lunch with Kostya

My friend, Grisha

My friend, Grisha

Service for Babushka

Service for Babushka

MTC Missionaries in Estonia

MTC Missionaries in Estonia

Waiting in Estonia...

Waiting in Estonia...

Visit from Elder Russell M. Nelson

Visit from Elder Russell M. Nelson

Elders Larsen and Anthony

Elders Larsen and Anthony

Our MTC teacher surprise visit!

Our MTC teacher surprise visit!

Podvodov family gave powerful talks!

Podvodov family gave powerful talks!
Pskov, Russia Branch

Vyborg Castle

Vyborg Castle

St Olaf's Castle Where We Do Service Work

St Olaf's Castle Where We Do Service Work

Beautiful Vyborg on the Sea of Finland

Beautiful Vyborg on the Sea of Finland

Vyborg

Vyborg

Misty day in Kaliningrad

Misty day in Kaliningrad

Kaliningrad District May 2010

Kaliningrad District May 2010

Russian MTC Group

Russian MTC Group

Russian MTC Zone at Provo Temple

Russian MTC Zone at Provo Temple

09 August 2011

Love to see people wanting to follow the Lord.

Wow. It was a really busy week this week, but that is a good thing. It was really fun.

Last week for P-day we went bowling with Aleksander, a new convert, and Vova, one of the investigators here. It was really fun, as I love bowling, and it was funny to see both of them bowl a little bit because they both had only been once or twice. Aleksander was actually pretty good though. It was the last time I will probably see Vova on my mission, too as he moved to Rostov this week for school... It always seems that the good investigators leave or I have to leave their area... But the Lord has a plan for them and for me, and I know that, so everything will work out for the better.

Friday we were in Kaliningrad, and I was on a split with Elder Ul'yanov from Samara, Russia. He's a funny Elder... he's got a strong testimony and has really good people skills. Its also fun to serve with him because he knows a lot of Russian slang and he uses it, so it helps us better understand what people are saying to us on the street.


While in Kaliningrad, I did a baptismal interview for a girl who has been investigating for the last 3 months and really wants to be baptized. She never has drank or smoked or anything of the sort, and she lives a very righteous lifestyle. She said that she always felt that was the right way to live, and she is glad that she found the church, were there are others who have her same values. That's my favorite thing to see on my mission~ people wanting to follow the Lord! It was a very spiritual experience for me. 
Elder Ul'yanov had another interview that night, so the only thing that we did on our split were interviews and contacting, but that's a lot of success in and of itself.

Saturday we had an early flight home, but our flight was late and we got back to our apartment finally at 4 or so, so we didn't really have much time to find meetings.  While in the airport, we met a guy who needed help with Russian. He was a business man from Germany, and spoke perfect English. Really nice guy. So far everyone that I've met from Germany is really nice. When we got home,  We ended up doing service for one of the members in our branch. We helped to install some carpet in his house... I've noticed that a lot of the service I've done on my mission requires something for building a house...

Sunday we actually had a meal at someone's house!!! That rarely happens! It's only happened with me one other time on my mission that I can think of, especially because for a long time we had a no eating with anyone rule. We ate at the house of one of the councilors in the District Presidency, the Leostrins. Really fun family with 3 little kids and they know the Gospel really well. They are helping us any way they can. I felt very comfortable with them. 

Monday we had a split with Sesteretsk after district meeting and I was with Elder Way again. We met with some less actives that we've been meeting with and had some pretty good meetings. Oh and I have an accomplishment. I can say that I made up my own recipe for a cake! Orange Cake. :)

Tuesday we switched back to normal companions and jumped on a train to Petrozavodsk at night, so we arrived in Petro on Wednesday morning. I was on a split there with Elder Gillet, who is going home next week. That's weird... He was in my first district when I came to Russia! He is still working strong though, good missionary.  We had a meeting with an investigator and a family with a daughter preparing to go on a mission. That night, we had a train ride back to Petro so Elder Anthony and I left and got on a bus at about 10:30... Then we had one of the most shocking experiences ever. There were 2 girls on the bus who heard us speaking English, and lets just say that they tried to get us to do some bad stuff with them. Now we see why missionaries have a curfew! We had to be out at that time of night to catch our train, but now I know what they mean by "The Holy Ghost goes to bed at 10:30"  We just ignored them of course!

Today for P-day we are going back to The Hermitage with a bunch of Elders, so I'll be able to see a little more there... That place probably takes a week to see everything! So cool! I haven't gotten my package yet if it has come, because we haven't had any time to go into the office. Transfers are next week though, so I'll have to at least be there for Zone Training Meeting. I think that I'll stay, but Elder Anthony will have to leave and go train some new Elder. We have 8 new ones coming in. We now will get transfer calls Saturday, so I'll know in a couple days.

Thanks for the pictures of K.B. and My Millie girl! They made me a little trunky to be honest. BP sent me some pictures and he got really skinny! Holy cow. I'll send you the pictures.

Can't wait to see the back yard want I get home and tell dad that I'll be ready for the hunt with him! ha ha

Well, as usual, I ran out of time. I need to go.

Love ya and miss ya back home! Take care of yourselves!!
Love, Blake


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