Wednesday, July 22, 2015

many sons!

And a nice husband! And good child-bearing years!

Our teacher Sister Chartrand has been in kind of a funny mood lately, which leads to her more frequently remembering little tidbits about Russian culture. So the above wishes, and many more, are things that nice Russian grannies will probably tell me a lot. I look forward to it. Speaking of babushki, I skyped with a real genuine Russian granny this week! It was pretty fun, and hard to figure out what she was saying. She actually lives in a city that is in my mission, so I might meet her again!

Other than random culture things (Sister Chartrand also taught us to sing Katyusha, so look it up if you have an internet because Russian songs are pretty awesome) our teachers are drilling more grammar into us, which is fun. No, really though. Especially with the "No one taught me this and I didn't use it right until the eighth month of my mission, be grateful" corollaries. Also since sister Chartrand is an editing minor and gets pretty excited about grammar ( example: the day we learned the words for "whither", "hither", and "thither", which you have to use in Russian to be correct) it's just all-around really enjoyable. Another example: "So, words that end with o-s-t-ь are always feminine, and words that end with a-r-ь are always masculine. Like... знахарь, 'witch doctor'" (silence because we have no idea how to respond to that).

Early Monday morning the district of three elders going to Peterburg left, which was sad, and also made me realize that I get landed in Russia pretty soon! A week and a half! And we're the most senior Russian missionaries here. We get our travel plans on Friday. Weird. It's so funny how close it's possible to get to people in six and a half weeks. Sometimes I think I've known the sisters in my district all my life. 

Sometime in the past week I was talking to one of the new elders in the other zone. He was telling me about how he only knew about four words in Russian:
"but I want to know another word. Do you know the word for 'gun'?"
"uh, no, but I know how to say 'weapons of war'"
"well, then tell me"
so I did. Missionary life is weird.

Be happy with the stuff you do and if the stuff you do doesn't do that, find other things that do make you happy. Make other people happy. Focus less on yourself. If you don't know what's going to make you happy, talk to some missionaries, they might know.

There's a picture from last Wednesday night, of our district with Sister Allred, who left the following day to go visit Ukraine and the Baltics. I'm not sure that us holding her was entirely mozhno, but it's cute.

I love you all. Have an excellent week! Go do things that uplift!

Sister Nielsen

Editor's note: A couple weeks ago I stated that I was fairly sure real Russians do not say "spoky noky" to mean "night-night", but it has come to my attention that some young children in Russian actually do. Go figure.

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