Monday, January 28, 2013


Well if you’re all wondering, I am still here in Tunja. Our district leader called last night and said that I was going to Cucuta and my compa got his visa......but it was a joke! I looked at my comp when he heard and he had a face of pure fear lol, he told me my face was the same because we both were really hoping and praying not to get changed. And we weren`t! Honestly this week has been AWESOME!!! And I`m not really sure why...maybe it`s been the sun (yeah its been about 70 degrees all week, and yes I have been using sunscreen) but honestly me and my companion are getting along soo awesomely well. We`re makin Jokes in the street and at home and it`s just been really super fun to be a missionary this week:) Before I get started I`m gonna tell you what happened at lunch on Saturday. Well we went to one of our favorite families , us 4. I walked in and they were making HOMEMADE HAMBURGERS!!! I said to the other gringo praise the good Lord for hamburgers and fries!!! So after the prayer I just went to town on my delicious burger. Then after about 30 seconds of chowing down my companion spilt his yellow juice all over his shirt and down to his pants!!! I was laughin so hard I just about choked on my half masticated gooey goodness lol (DAD: I did attempt the "do you have a drinking problem" joke in spanish but it doesn’t translate well) He was laughing too so I continued to give him crap lol...he went the whole day with a yellow stain on his shirt. But after it dried it was hardly noticeable.
Anyways, last week we went to Villa de Leyva and it is a really cool little tourist  town, my favorite was that it had real round rocks for the street. We went into some museums but the best part was the little stores. Have I ever told you guys that I am such a sucker for stuff that says 100% Colombiano?...well I am. So I bought a t shirt that says it and also a ruana, or commonly known as a poncho:) the poncho is made out of cotton or something and everyone here in Tunja wears them! so I just had to get one and yup you guessed it, it says 100% Colombiano too:) it was super duper cool!
Equally cool, or probably even more cool was what we did today. Since there wasn’t changes in our district we went to a little pueblo in our area called Samaca to take a tour of a members coal mines! It was super duper  awesome! haha we looked at where they cook the coal in super hot furnaces and then where the workers go down to work. Well I have to say I never ever want to be a coal miner. Because there was just this tiny opening in the earth and just a small little tunnel going down into darkness. We didn’t go down but I was not at all disappointed lol, a view from the outside is enough for me. Then we went up and over the mountain we were on and had a little picnic by a reservoir with a big dam. It was SOOOOOOO beautiful and I hope I can get the pictures from the 2nd half of the day cause my camera died lol. But we could see for MILES ALL AROUND US! It was the best most beautiful view that I have ever seen in my life so I hope that you guys can appreciate the beauty in the photos.
Well I want to end my letter with telling you guys that as the time goes by the mission just seems to get better and better:) Honestly I really am having the time of my life! Also I want to share one quote that I absolutely LOVE! Its from Shays letter. "I dont even know how to tell you how grateful I am that you are not here right now, because we just wouldn’t all be this happy" You don’t know just how happy this makes me!   It gives me an even greater feeling of peace that you guys are just doin great up there in Oregon:) I can’t even explain what a great blessing it is to have the best mom, dad and sister in the world! Oh and Shay are you taller? You look taller to me in the pic mom sent. Oh and are you going to Mexico next week? Honestly going off what Shay said, I would rather be here right now than with you guys in Mexico, there’s a time and a place for everything and this is where I`m meant to be right now. Plus when we go back to ol Mexico after I get done it`s gonna be SICK:) Okey Doke, well all the love in the world from the goofiest,  happiest 100% Colombian missionary Elder Crook! 
    till next week -Elder Crook 

Monday, January 21, 2013

Oops We Did it Again

Well the Garcia Silver kids showed us all of the movies that they had made on their dads phone and it really inspired me to come up with a little song about our baptism! Here it goes, “ Oops we did it again....baptized one more...what else is in store...oh baby baby oops! Haha Alex and Mateo will have to sing that in their best Britney Spears voice!
Alright well first I’ll talk about the awesome day we had with Moises and Melinda! First off,  we went out with Mateo for a little while in the morning. We had a great lesson about the Book of Mormon and how we can receive answers through the Holy Ghost. I asked Mateo to give the opening prayer and he did wonderfully in spanish. Then about halfway through I asked him if he had ever had any experiences where the Holy Ghost had helped him. He had me translate this time but he told the best little story, and then just wanted to keep talking after he finished which was great! Haha then I asked my kid if he could do some street contacts (which whenever he’s with me he always gets kinda scared still) but this time with Mateo he just went up to everybody and started talking! It was great lol. Then we went to lunch and ate some fried chicken with them and it was just really great:) It made me really happy to see them and they were soo nice:) Give them big hugs from me please! 
Then we had our baptism this Saturday! It was soo great and he was so prepared and excited.  It made me really happy to see him happy and excited. He even said that he wanted to receive the priesthood so the Sunday after, he received the Aaronic priesthood and became a priest. He’s 24 years old and everyone was talking to him about serving a mission and all that stuff, and I was just like “Guys! give him a break, he just got baptized and this is all new to him, don’t overwhelm him lol.” But I haven’t talked to him about a mission yet, I just want to see him at church every week participating and that would make me happy. But man, I kinda got used to having baptisms in Bogota so I took them for granted. But this time I just soaked everything up and the best part of the service was his testimony, there were tears in his eyes and he just couldn’t describe how he felt, it made me super happy! Also he has really good friends in the ward and they are a great support:) 
Thanks for your letter mom:) I’m glad you know how much I love you guys and how much I really am learning and growing. Haha so Thursday, we had a really tough day, the lessons fell through...all of them! and we didn’t have anything else to do but contact. So we went to a new area that we had never contacted before and something new happened. The neighborhood “wanna be police” came up looking all high and mighty and asked us what we were doing, I didn’t lose anytime and started to talk to him about who we are and why we are here and if he would be interested and all that jazz. He was not at all and was actually pretty rude to us. I asked him if there was a rule against what we were doing and he said no. So we went back to tracting and he followed us which was really annoying. After a few more doors that didn’t open because of the police guy, I started saying that we had brought a friend along with us.  He didn’t like that lol and told the people to not listen. Anyways after our failed door attempts he wouldn’t leave us, so we left knowing that this wasn’t productive. My companion was really down in the dumps cause he had never had a day like this or had to deal with really stupid people, so I bought us some fresh bread and told him what I told you guys in the letter. That all the principles that we teach apply to us too. And we have to apply them in our own lives. It actually turned out to be a great bonding day lol. Anyways I just wanted to share that with you and tell ya that I really really love you!
Pa, the transfers are this Sunday, but I’m 100 percent sure that I’m staying here with my kid cause he hasn’t got his visa yet. This next change that we have is going to be 8 weeks instead of 6 because  of the changes in the MTC to 2 and 6 weeks. So I will be a father for 14 good ol weeks! Usually it’s only 12. Then if Elder Escobar gets his visa,  I’ll be here for more time.  I actually might have more than 6 months in this area when I leave, but I don’t really mind because I love it here, and it’s a lot more rewarding when people want to listen:) Haha also president told us all that whoever beats him in a push up contest will win the premium Andelin....whatever that is. But you know that I always get real excited for these kinds of competitions! I honestly want to kick the crap out of my ol man president in a push up contest. And it does make me work harder in the mornings lol. haha today I wrote him and told him to let me know when this will happen cause Elder Crook is freaking READY. TO. GO. BABY! Haha I’ll have to let you know how that goes and describe every sweet detail of victory over the president. Oh and an interesting sidenote; the first yoshimira aftermarket pipe I’ve seen here, I saw on a scooter! At first I was DISGUSTED lol but then I remembered we are kind of a scooter family now so maybe you could do that to Shays? I think that would be pretty SICK! 
Shay... Que pena que me voy a regresar después de tu terminas con el colegio, pero sigue adelante con el español!! I love you lots sweetie and if you ever want anything else here from Colombia just write me and I’ll buy it! Let me know how your running is going and I want to hear more stories of smokin Monica Anderson ok:) 
Alright so this last part is for LEXI!!!!! that is soooooooo awesome that your going to PERU:) I’m super happy for yeah! and you definitely have to write me! My other stinking cousin Colton wont, so write me and send me pictures of Peru:) Are you going to lima MTC or do you know yet? hope to hear from you soon! Love you lots!! 
Darn I’m out of time but I’m going to send you a few pics of our p day today. We went to villa de leyva like Moises and Melinda instructed me. It’s really beautiful, tell you about it next week, sorry dad, I should have taken the typing class and then you would have got to hear, but NEXT WEEK lol.  

LOVE YOU TONS!!!!! - Elder Crook

I Love Greenies! 1-14-13

Well alrighty, I’ve had just about the same kind of  week as you guys lol, just kind of boring and not doing anything else but working. We did have a meeting with the president with all the Elders that are training in the zone which was fun and another zone meeting apart from that. So just kind of a lot of traveling and sleeping on the busses. So honestly, I’m  sorry if this letter is short. I just don’t have lots of things to say lol. haha Oh dad,  let me tell you something! It’s a little secret! I scheduled two lunches yesterday! haha I’m a boss at doing that lol! haha and the second lunch we had was supposed to be for us 4, but they had to leave to  help someone in the ward so we ate their helping too;) haha I think my poor comp has put on a few pounds lol. He was a softy to begin with but now he has a little more cushion. Oh that reminds me, Josh has been in the mission offices as a secretary ever since I’ve been here in Tunja, So I’m sure you can imagine him now lol! He’s just a big ol rolly polly! He told me though that they had started running, so he thinks he’s losing a few pounds! For me well yeah I eat a lot.  Yesterday I left the hermanas house feeling like I was about to explode lol. BUT I get up and do a pretty extensive work out regimen;) well for what I can do, which is just a lot of push ups and crunches. There’s a guy in the ward that welds so he’s fixing my pull up bar and he’s gonna make me a dumbell too if I can find something that weighs a lot. Ya, we finally decided that the gym pass was just too expensive even though president authorized it. 
Anyways I think I’ll tell you guys about some of the the goofy things that have been going on (things are always super fun when you’re either being trained or the trainer. First thing is; he is the absolute nicest kid I have ever met. He’s just a big teddy bear and has so much love for everybody it just weirds me out sometimes. Like sometimes I just tell him hey man! stop buying me food! It makes me feel weird lol. But I’m getting used to it and we are really kicking butt here! Also you know me I’m a teaser, and he’s a tender hearted guy that has tender kind of feelings lol. So we always give each other a quick missionary hug or Bro hug before we leave the house. It’s usually a quick hand slap and a tap of the back, but the first few times he just hugged me for a while and afterwards I told him bro Im your comp not your girlfriend, joking obviously, not that I wasn’t weirded out – I was just being goofy.  I don’t think he liked that too much. Also I always have rib poked/leg squeezed/clavicle crushed all of my comps, just to screw around, he doesn’t like that either lol. So I’ve just found my groove with getting along with him and NO lol I haven’t raised my voice anymore lol. Also the last thing is that he is petrified of dogs lol. Everytime he sees one he tells me we need to go another way, and we do lol. But this week I guess the dogs can just smell or see his fear lol cause they have come  in packs barking at us. The first time he was a few steps behind me and when they came he just stopped and couldn’t move cause he was so scared and started yelling NO ME DEJAS NO ME DEJAS! or don’t leave me please! Just don’t leave me behind. So I went back and got him lol. The other few times we have been walking side by side and they have jumped out and barked at us, he just clung to me the whole time lol, I’m just like you gotta just keep walking compa, they’re not gonna do anything (while trying my very best not to bust out laughing, but I don’t think he noticed he was too focused on the dogs) haha I haven’t had this many dog encounters in my whole mission except for with him lol. 
Anyways those are my stories for the week, dad I have been using the boots once in a while, and mom, to the richer people education is important but to the poorer people here it’s not that big of an emphasis, just like everywhere else I’m sure. OH and we should be having a baptism this Saturday! Im really hoping everything goes well because we have been working our tails off and it would be awesome to see someone get baptized! Well we didn’t do that much today,  just played basketball, we had some member kids come to play with us and it was fun. We kill the latinos in basketball just as bad as they kill us in soccer lol.  It was a nice change cause I’ve been getting wooped up on in soccer for the last like 5 months lol. But I am hoping to burn a disk of all of my photos to send with Melinda and Moises so I hope that will make up for my short letter today. LOVE YOU ALL!!!!!!

               -Elder Crook

Monday, January 7, 2013

Starting the New Year Right... Well, Sort of....

You guys are freaking skiing studs! Man after all those runs Shay, who knows maybe I`ll get back and you`ll be the one whizzing past me, throwing the snowballs and making ME crash. Then spraying snow on me and laughing your head off. We`ll just have to see about that;) I still think I dare to go faster than you though! Honestly that looks like sooooo much fun! I`m really glad you guys had a blast and didn`t get hurt and were in good enough shape to do all those runs! We`ll have to go with Andreasens again and me and Skyler will give you a run for your money lol. Anyways I FINALLY got a letter from that dirty dawg Gage. It was about 1 and a half sentences, but what more can you expect from that kid lol. But yeah he said the same thing to me dad, that it was super sick. And he said that there`s tons of chicas lol. It`s funny cause I also told him that about a year ago when I wrote a letter to him from BYU. But anyways I`m sure glad you guys have had a fun break and I really enjoyed the pictures! What in like a month from now you guys will be in Mexico? Gotta send me pics from there too.
Weelll this week was pretty fun, we went to this place called Puente de Boyaca last p-day. A puente is a bridge. It was all lighted and stuff and was super cool! It reminded me of Shore Acres but Shore Acres is a lot cooler I think. It just has more lights. But the real story starts when we tried to leave. We got there in bus (it`s not that far like 20 min in bus) and then we just thought we could catch a bus back. Wrong! there were no busses going back to Tunja so we pretty much had a problem. After about an hour a bus came, and all of us ran to try to stop it waving our arms around like monkeys but it didnt stop! Then out of nowhere a white van stopped and a good citizen asked if we needed a ride. Well YEAH! so we got a ride back in a small white van that is used to do smaller travels, but to our good fortune he didn’t make us pay either! So that was another sweet adventure! haha I`ll have to get the pics from Elder Larsens camera and send them to you guys! Well after that it was just another normal work week. Except for the 1st we did have 2 lunches:) haha the first was some really goood soup stuff with rice and she served each of us like 3 bowls, then we went to another members who cooked a WHOLE turkey for us and made mashed potatoes. It was sooo good! I was surprised at how after I got in the groove how much I could eat! haha better watch out Dad, you`d better get on those exercises if you still wanna pull off the pinky pin! I`m packin on the pounds baby!! WOOHHHOOO! Anyways so the weekend comes and my companion is starting to get a little sick he says. I just thought he was being kind of a wuss, so we worked like there was nothing wrong. Then Sunday rolls around and I tell him we have to get ready early to go to our meetings that were supposed to start up this year. But he spent the whole morning in the bathroom. So at around 7:30 I got a little ticked and maybe yelled a little....just maybe (wonder where I learned that from PA;) anyways that got his butt going, but I guess he just couldn`t make it to church so we stopped at the other elders house and he went straight to the bathroom again. At this point I knew that he was sick but I told him that we had to at least go to sacrament meeting (I also might have told him that he wasn`t in priests quorum anymore and to suck it up...but who knows.) But we didn’t end up going to church (I didnt know missionaries could skip church lol) and I spent the longest day of my life in the other missionaries house eating there food, watching the same movies, and I actually cleaned their house, yup I was that bored!
Well I don`t have that much time left but I want to tell mom how much I love her:) and if you haven`t already heard the song,  look up “Give it all to Him” from the efy 2012 edition. I love it! cause it talks about a missionary and his mom:)

-Elder Crook