Tuesday, May 29, 2012

 Hello again everybody!

Life in the missionary world is moving on, this week was alright with
our efforts in our area; sometimes Free Agency can be really
irritating tho, mainly when people cancel appointments or do not show
up. At times like that tho, we can at least realize we did our part :)
Our recent convert, Paul, is now out of the hosptial officially, yay!
He was at church last sunday and is doing awesome. Our other
investigators are coming along as well, we are in the process of
formulating lessons for them and seeing which members will be able to
accompany us to lessons. Since we are in a trio right now, we have to
take caution not to overwhelm anyone either, four people talking to
you, asking questions can be a little over bearing sometimes; people
have described it as being interrogated, we will be sure not to do
that :)

As some of ya'll have been talking about Soccer in the e-mails to me,
I reflected on how awesome those years were. I can still remember the
first team I was on and our team name "the Green Beans." Man we were
so awesome. I remember there was one time, I think it was dads
birthday, where ya'll came in a limo and picked me up after a game,
man that was fun. Those are days never to be forgotten indeed. It was
always great to hear dad yelling from the sidelines and giving his two
cents on plays - even tho he did not really know what he was talking
about half the time ;) I always had great support thro those years, I
could always count on my family being there at the games and cheering
our team on. I would like to get back into Soccer, but I am still not
sure if I want to really go competitive or not, but that will be
decided later :)

One thing I have been doing for the last few weeks now is writing in
cursive, or at least trying to. It is a lost art, but ever so much fun
to do. Olex gave me the idea origionally, he started to write his
letters to me in cursive, which look amazing now by the way. One thing
I did tho, while writing in this new, unique style was praying to
Heavenly Father one night to help my penmanship improve. The next
morning, for a few mintues, I wrote flawlessly, it was amazing. It was
a testimony builder to me that even those little things in life, when
they become important to us, they become important to Heavenly Father.
I do know that he does help us with little things like that in life if
we allow him to.

Transfers are this week, not sure if I will be leaving or staying. I
percieve I will be leaving, but who knows!

Thank you again everybody! I love you!

1.  Who is Dan Jones? (I looked it up on google - kind of a lot of
them - with Joseph Smith or does he live now?

Dan Jones is one the greatest missionaries in this dispensation. He
would loudly go out, stand on a soap box, and proclaim the gospel,
which is why I called it my "Dan Jones" moment. Hopefully that makes
sense. He lived around the time of Joseph Smith, one of the first
missionaries to leave; he served in Whales for a while.

2.  If you HAD to make a guess where  you are going next week - where
would it be?  Just a guess - I know you don't know.

I would say Fairbanks, why I do not know, but that is only place I can
imagine myself going at the moment. The Elder up there, Elder Na'a,
would be a blast to serve with also, we have served around each other
throughout our missions and get along great. We are hoping to serve
together at point :)

3.  Did you get all the packages we sent?  The Rugby shirt?  Coconut?
Your companion that played rugby I'm sure knows the So. African
Springboks - ask him.  (They are big rivals)

Yes, I got them all and thank you so much for them, they are awesome!
Yes, he does know So. Africa, he LOVES rugby, it is huge in Australia.

4.  What and who will you miss the most when you are transferred? Why?

One of the first things I tend to miss is my companion - which is
common with most missionaries. For whatever reason, whether you two
got along or not, you always feel a sense of yearning to have them
back the first few days the transfer is going on. When I left
Whitehorse, I missed the members dearly, I loved it there; I have
loved pretty much every where I have served on my mission and all of
my companions tho too :)

5.  Is there anything you need right now?  Meds?  More shirts?  Socks?
 Etc.  Did you get your new scriptures?

No, nothing at the moment, life is grand here! :) I actually got a
brand new pair of scriptures from Sis. Campbell, one of the Senior
couples who works in the office, for finishing the Book of Mormon in
three months; I finished it in a month, it was great :) so I do not
need to buy a new pair anymore :)

6.  I am assuming you are still in a three some - is that right?  How
has than been going?  Is it much harder than 2 of you?

Yes, still a trio right now. It has been going awesome, loving it
actually, Elder Fina'i is a blast to be with, Yellow personality for
sure :) there are many things that make serving in a trio interesting,
it was a ton harder when I was training the two missionaries at the
same time, that was difficult...but not this trio is actually really

7.  Did you know an Elder Williams that just went home from Alaska?
He was a friend of someone here - he just wanted us to ask.

Yes I do, he is awesome too! Great missionary, hard worker. I did not
serve around him that much, but I knew him pretty well.

8.  Is it light there 24/7 yet?  How is that?  Can you sleep?  Is it
hard to adapt to?

Not quite, but close. The Summer solstace is coming up here in about
three weeks, meaning that we are going to start losing light little by

9.  Now you have been in Anchorage for quite a while what you say you
like and don't like about it?  I know it is a big city in Alaskan
standards - but do you like it? Why or why not?

I do not mind it, I like being around a lot of missionaries, but not
the influence of them if that makes sense. The city style of
missionary work where it is go-go-go is still a little difficult for
me to adjust to, because I like to take things at my own pace, which
tends to be a little slower. I like how it has taught me diligence in
missionary work; there are people here who need to hear the gospel and
it is up to us to share it with them.

10. What was you biggest "ah-ha" moment this week - or month?
Something you learned - or something that hit you deeper than before.

When we were taking a hike yesterday for preparation day. As we were
going, I took a moment to look out and gaze over the beautiful scene
that Alaska has to offer. It made me wonder how Heavenly Father's eye
is so presice that His eye is on the sparrow. I have no idea how He
keeps track of all of us, but He does and it is awesome :)

 -Elder Hartman1

Monday, May 21, 2012

Hello everybody!

Well, things are going great up here in Alaska; the weather is awesome
right now! Just have to say that. It has been a solid 50 degrees here,
man it just feels like heaven! I cannot, however, imagine over 60,
that is way too hot, no thank you. I remember being back home and when
it would get down to 70 it was uncomfortable for me, now I shake at
the thought of it :)

Due to some early moving around in the mission, we now have another
member in our companionship, we are in a trio now and the new Elder's
name is Elder Fina'i. Travis will like him, he is from Melbourne,
Australia, not sure if his mission covered that or not, but he has the
awesome accent and everything :) He is Samoan, born in New Zealand,
lived in Samoa for a little bit, then grew up in Australia, played
rugby the whole time as well. He is the oldest of eleven kids. He will
be with us until the end of the transfer.

Since transfers are coming up, my mind has been drawn as to what will
happen (I said that pretty poetically, that was kool) I am hoping I
will be transferred out of Anchorage, not because I do not like the
area or companions I am currently with right now, on the contrary I
love both of them, I just want to see and experience more of Alaska as
a missionary. If you think about it, the whole time I have served my
mission I have been in Anchorage and Whitehorse for a little bit. One
of the main reasons I have been in Anchorage for so long tho is
because President told me during interviews that it is the closest we
can get up here to normal missionary work. Outside of Anchorage you
are pretty much in small towns or bush areas, it is a really unique
mission. I do not have a preference where I want to go, just wherever
the Lord wants me to, but I got a good vibe from President during
interviews (we had interviews on Saturday) that I will be leaving
Anchorage this upcoming transfer.

Elder Fina'i asked me last night 'how has the Book of Mormon changed
your life?' I thought for a little bit and replied 'it told me how to
live it.' So many blessings and valuable teachings come from reading
the Book of Mormon, I love it. One of my favorite parts of the day is
personal study, I absolutely love studying, I never thought I would
like it as much as I do now - back home I was not the biggest fan of
it. It is a great book, I love it.

I had a Dan Jones experience the other week. We were stopped at a
railroad crossing, due to a train going by. As we sat there, I looked
and tried to see when the end of the train was coming up so I could
anticipate how long before it would pass and we would be able to cross
and get to our next appointment. I looked down the tracks and could
not see the end of the train approaching, thus giving me the
assumption that we were going to be there for a decent amount of time.
I sat there pondering about fun missionary stories and how I would
like to do something bold on my mission, something different to
proclaim the gospel. We were on a two lane road, filled with cars
around us, also waiting to pass the tracks. I realized that everyone
was, in a way, trapped in there cars, like us and had to wait and that
this would be a perfect opportunity to proclaim the gospel. I got the
idea to read from the Book of Mormon, out loud and walk in between the
cars up and down the lane. Elder Butler told me to read from 3 Ne. 11,
a chapter that talks solely about Jesus Christ. I grabbed a copy of
the Book of Mormon, said a prayer, and stepped out of the car and
began to read out loud while walking up and down the lane, where the
white lines are so I could walk in between everyone. Man could I feel
their stares, everyone was looking at me. At first, I was really
uncomfortable, but the further I read, the easier and more calm I
became. It was not much, but it was something. It was a great way to
use time wisely :) that is the cool story I have for the week. If
Terra, or any of my awesome bro-in-laws, have cool Dan Jones stories,
I would love to hear them :)

Love ya'll, have a great week!

1.  What are you doing for p-day this week - and what did you do last
week?  I sure hope you are doing some serious playing!  Remember all
work and no play makes a dull boy....

We are not quite sure yet, usually we play some basketball for the
activities, but we are trying to go on hikes right now, do something
different. Since the weather is a lot nicer, we are able to do more
things outside, hopefully we get some football in or something, I
would love to just play outside - especially Soccer, oh how I miss
that sport....but the plans for today are looking like basketball for
a little bit, then a hike, or just something outside :)

2.  What is your greatest stress in being a zone leader?  What do  you
do about it?

In all honesty, is it not all that stressful, but I think that is due
to our awesome zone, they are super easy, all of them obedient and
just little problems arise. I would say the biggest stress would be
consistently doing exchanges every week. I am not sure how many
missionaries like exchanges, but most are not too big of fans of them.

3.  Now that you have out for a 3/4 of your mission what would you say
is your favorite thing to do on your mission?

Testify of Christ hands down. Nothing brings greater joy then to have
the authority and power to testify of Him. It feels good, you are
doing your part on bringing souls closer to him, and best of all, it
is rewarding, maybe not in outward results, but always inward you feel
great about yourself :)

4.  Now with your new good eating habits - if you could have any meal
you wanted what would it be?  Complete with drink and dessert.

Oh man......well if I had to choose healthy I would say: salad - no
dressing - with cut pieces of chicken breast, some fruit - preferably
bananas and oranges, strawberries too, I like pretty much all fruit
:), and probably some pasta perhaps? You know how bad I am at coming
up with things on the spot, oh and no desert, because that is a
healthy meal; water to drink :). Now an unhealthy meal would consist
of....you know what I really do not know, but it would have a desert
at the end, either apple pie or brownies, both with ice cream, man
that would be good...

5.  What would you consider your greatest life skill you have learned
on your mission?

You know how I am at evaluating myself.....I would say it would be
diligence, forgetting myself and going to work. A mission has taught
me one of the greatest and most valuable traits anyone can ever learn
and that is hard work. I will always be grateful for learning this
invaluable trait. At times, I have had to really push and press on in
order to not get discouraged. I found the greatest anti-depressant for
any missionary, hands down, is work. Before my mission, I was a little
scared of hard work, as I am sure you know, but now, I have really
come to truly value it.

6.  Next Monday is a holiday there I believe - Memorial Day - does
that mean you can't email next Monday and what will you be doing since
it is a holiday?

Most likely yes, but I am not 100% sure on it. If I do not e-mail then
you know why :)

7.  Looking back on the past 17 months of your mission - what would
say was your favorite time?  What was your least favorite time?

My favorite time was while I was serving in Whitehorse. Reason being
is because I was completely focused on the work; I was not distracted
by other missionaries and their influence; I was Senior companion, in
no leadership position so that made it a ton easier to focus on it;
most of all, I found myself out there, I was tested and tried and
greatly refined thro the whole process, and now here I am as a result.
The least favorite time is whenever I am disobedient, like we read in
Alma: 'Wickedness never was happiness,' how true that statement is. It
is NEVER fun being disobedient.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Happy Mother's Day

First off, I want it known that I proclaimed to the world, before I
die, that I love my mom. I love her very much, I always have and I
always will. Seeing you yesterday mom was the greatest gift ever. I am
working on a preset for you right now that might take me a bit, but I
will get it none the less. It was great to see how nothing has really
changed with ya'll, when you and dad started arguing over Skype it
felt just like home, joy filled my bosom to hear you two going at it
:) Both of you looked really good too might I add! I just hope I have
changed for the better in some way. It was nice to get those
compliments from you tho, even tho I acted like I was brushing it off
(like I usually do) I was listening the whole time and I really
appreciate it. The greatest thing about having you for a mom is that
there was never a time in my life where I did not feel your love. Even
the times when I fell short or slipped up a bit, I always knew that
you loved it, and it was great :) Now, be it remembered I am not
saying all of this to get back up to 'Golden Child' status, I could
care less about that in all honestly, I am saying this because I have
not said it enough to you! I love you so much mom and am so grateful
to have you in my life. This does not mean in any way that I do not
love my amazing sisters as well, I could go on for pages about ya'll,
but this is something long over due. Yesterday in Sacrament meeting,
they had a lot of young men talk and majority of them talked about the
stripling warriors. It is a great story of young men, who had never
before seen battle, took up swords and sheilds and went and fought
against seasoned soldiers and won. The best scripture is when the
stripling warriors say "we doubt not, our mother's knew it" they put
their trust completely in their mothers because they knew that mom is
always right. That is something I try to help young men know, is to
always listen to their mothers because they are always right. That was
one thing that was hard for me to learn when I first came out, was how
mom was right on literally everything, even the things I knew I was
right on, she ended up being right. I could write a novel (maybe I
will ;)) about how awesome my mom is, but I am restricted on time. I
love you mom!! Thank you for everything!

Elder Hartman1

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Families Are Forever

EDITOR'S NOTE: Not sure why the margins are extending to the 
side bar so the lay out for this post is funky. Sorry.) 
Hello everybody!
I got the awesome package and it was delectable, the treats 
were great, thank you all so very much :)
First off, congrats Bree and Chris on your big day! I am so 
happy for you and am glad to hear it was a success, I will 
bet ya'll are very happy - both the fact that the wedding was 
a success and that it is also over with too! ;) I wore the 
tie and everything. I thought about
ya'll as much as I could on Tuesday; I was on exchanges that 
day so I was busy working the new trainee to death ;) 
like horses, you gotta 'break them in.'
By ways for the update on the baptism and such, he is still 
in the hospital, they are thinking he will be in there for 
about three to six weeks, yikes. The Bishop said to go 
ahead with the confirmation
however, so we will confirm him in the hospital 
sometime this week. I
will let ya'll know probably on Sunday actually, 
that is really weird
to think I am calling ya'll already - for the last time.
This week was just a lot of hard work really, not a whole lot
happened. We have been trying to contact less actives every day 
and knocking doors. Perhaps our faith just needs 
some work, or we are in need of refining right now. Either way, 
I assure you that we are
working hard and putting our shoulder to the wheel.
I wish to share with ya'll a journal entry that I 
wrote on May 1st, 2012, the day of Bree's wedding, 
I will not share everything I wrote
in it, just my favorite part because this was 
one of those entries where the Spirit wrote it, not me:
"The lesson at the member's house was awesome! It went so well! 
talked about temples and what a blessing they are. 
Man, I wish I could talk as well as I do in lessons; 
everything I say flows as smooth as
silk and I can articulate everything. 
The lesson really touched ----,
I could tell, she was liking what we were saying. 
It is the best feeling when you have the spirit 
working through you, He (the Holy Ghost)
truly is the ultimate and true teacher, not us. 
Being able to testify
about the temples was amazing, I loved it. 
At one point in the lesson
I testified 'the best realization I have come 
to on my mission is
knowing that I can be with my family after this life - forever.
spirit wrote this entry. I love my mission so much. 
I love it. It is
true, the gospel is true and Jesus is the Christ 
and he lives!'"
That is the best realization that I have come to on my 
mission (and
there are many believe me) that I can be with all
of my family for
time and eternity, not just this life here on earth. 
It brings me the
greatest comfort knowing that it will not be the end 
when we pass on.
I am so grateful for the Plan of Salvation, it shows 
me just how much
Heavenly Father loves each and everyone of us. 
We will be able to live
with each other and Him (Heavenly Father) and 
Jesus Christ forever and
inherit a fullness of joy. I do not think I 
will ever be grateful
enough to know that.
Anyways, thank you everyone for your love and prayers, 
they are what
keep me going throughout the days. It will be great to 
talk with ya'll
in a few days, I am looking forward to it. Until then, 
Ofa lahi atu!
(I love you very much in Tongan).
-Elder Hartman1

Friday, May 4, 2012


Well, the baptism was a success, but the confirmation was not. The
investigator had a fever of 105 and still came to be baptized! Not a
lot of people would do that I tell you what. We visited him in the
hospital afterwards and gave him a blessing (he went straight to the
hospital after the baptism) all opposition was against us before the
baptism, ask me about it next week and I will tell you because I have
no time, again, to e-mail, I was too busy e-mailing everyone personal
e-mails :)

We have a bright future for our zone, we are feeling confident that we
can surpass our goals that we set and are feeling really good about it
right now. We have exchanges planned for tonight, hopefully all goes

I got all of the pictures of everyone getting ready for the wedding;
know that I am super jealous, but am very happy for everyone at the
same time - especially Bree.

Anyways, I am out of time, I love you all and thank you so much again,
my e-mail next week will be better - even tho that is what I said last
week haha ;)