Current Address

Elder Jordan Carlson

Send emails to: with ELDER JORDAN CARLSON as the subject line. The mission home will print the email and send it to Jordan.

Monday, August 13, 2012

The Last Email

Dear Family,
Well this is probably my last email.... I'm going to be going to the mission home early monday morning, but there is a chance that while I'm there hanging out for 10 hours I might be able to use the office computers or something... we will see. The only reason I would do it is to tell you some sort of detail.  We will see.

I don't really know what to tell you guys... pretty normal week. I'm here with Elder Cannon now.  He is a pretty funny guy, we get along well. He actually is from Houston Texas, really really close to where we sold alarms. We were attending a ward in Houston that is in his stake. Also he went to BYU and he lived in Heritage and lived in Maeser building! The exact same building as me just a year after! It's pretty funny. Anyway a little about him is he has a black belt in Taekwondo. Oh yes, I have been trying my best not to irritate him.... I don't want to go home with a bunch of bruises - haha. 

Anyway, I'm having trouble finding anything for you, dad, and whitney.  I got something for Spencer and Cameron.  We will see what I find for you guys, really Uruguay doesn't have that many cool gifts, most of the gift items here are things from China that you could find something way better and cheaper in America, but hey, I could get you all Mate but that would be lame because I hear most Americans don't like Mate.  I am going to bring some home to try but I doubt I will like it.

So this week now that I think about it some pretty cool things happened.  Elder Davies parents came from Oregon to pick him up. They took us out to eat on Wednesday at this restaurant near by. It was really good. It was fun to talk to them and see their new iPhone ahha also they have a video camera with a built in projector.  I hadn't heard anything about that while I was here.

Then on Sunday we ate with a family and their inlaws and Elder Davies and his parents.  It was hilarious and also very delicious.  Most of the family could speak at least some english, except for the dad.  Also I made a huge double batch of brownies with chunks of a chocolate bar- delicioius.  We ate them with ice cream and dulce de leche. 

I'm glad that I got a new comp for these last two weeks just because I feel a greater responsiblilty to work hard and help him have a good start in this area. It's going to be a really good experience for Elder Cannon.  He hasn't been senior comp yet and being with a "Corto plazo" a non missionary, missionary is going to really push him to take control.  He is going to be with a willing 17, or 18 year old member boy from Uruguay. A lot of times they volunteer to do this if they are preparing for a mission.  We will see how it goes.

Anyway thats about all for now!

See you guys in a bit.

Elder Carlson

Monday, August 6, 2012

Change Calls

Hi Family,
The only news I really have for this week is that we got change calls yesterday! 
We were thinking that Elder Alvey was just going to stay and kill me and then be with a temporary missionary for the other few weeks that I'm gone. Turns out that's not the plan now. Elder Alvey is leaving to be with Elder Francis my first oro and I'm getting Elder Cannon. He is fairly old, has like a year and poquito in the mission. Should be good, I think it will help me to keep working hard, a little new animo....

Elder Davies is dying, his parents are going to be here tomorrow. They are going to take us out to dinner on Wednesday. It should be fun. 

Tepanyaki when I get home? Yes. Maybe not on the way home from the airport but definitely the first day.... it will be like 2:30 in the afternoon, maybe it would be better to go for dinner, but whatever is easier for you guys! 

Anyway I think that's about all I'm going to write for this week.... 

ps... Is there anything specific that you guys want me to get you from Uruguay? 

pps. We are going to have this zone barbaque today, courtesy of this guy named Tio Pocho, he is a restaurant owner that we always buy from. He is going to cook 22 pounds of meat for us, thats 10 kilos! Its going to be fun! Also side note, the Hermana Armstrong is really focused on making us have better manners and clean the houses and stuff like that, it should be interesting.  For example, today we weren't allowed to leave until we cleaned everything! It doesn't bug me I havent had a problem with being clean really.

Elder Carlson

Monday, July 30, 2012

Monday July 30, 2012

Dear Family,
Wow, my fingers are super cold, its hard to type with cold fingers.....

First in response.... I already knew the story about Stephanie Nielson because the church did a "Mormon message" about her, its really good, its called "My new Life" I think.... I have only ever seen it in spanish.  Mi nueva vida.  Anyway I bet its a good book, her story is a very inspirational one, I have used the video in many lessons.

Thanks for the travel info, I was under the impresssion that I was leaving at  9AM not 9PM so that makes things  a lot easier, way shorter layovers as well.

That is really cool about the Terry's... I didn't remember that at they served a mission in Uruguay!  But that will be really neat talking to them! You should ask them if they want me to bring them anything from Uruguay! 

Also I can't wait to see the new balcony, that will be cool, is it going to have stairs again or no? 

I hope everything is going well in school preparation for you, mom and for school at BYU for Whitney. 

It's cold down here but it has been really nice weather, I think it has rained way less than normal. Probably a bad thing for the country in general but for the missionaries it's great news!

We had a good week, we found quite a few new investigators, but I am still worried because it's possible that some of them won't progress very quickly so we are still focusing on finding. I did two intercambios, companion changes, this week. Oh ya the weird thing about this week is that the group ahead of me is finishing their missions this week, and elder Davies the elder in my house that is finishing, his parents are coming to pick him up so they are going to come and take us out to dinner on Saturday, should be fun. Elder Davies is a good guy. he is from Oregon.

I have some great news about my very first convert, Richard Vargas from Florida. Well he moved out of Florida and I lost all contact with him. When I was back in Florida for the second time I didn't ever get to see him and he was inactive so I never saw him in church.  Anyway, Elder CastaƱeda the elder that was here with elder davies one change ago got transfered to Rio Branco up in the north of our mission and he wrote Elder Davies a letter and he mentioned that my convert Richard was living in Rio Branco and is going to his ward there! I was super happy, I was actually thinking about him the otjher day because I saw a guy that looked like him, it made me really happy and I can't wait to get to talk to him and stuff when I finish!

Honestly I can't think of very much to say..... I hope everything's good! 

Elder Carlson

Monday, July 23, 2012

The News Mom's Been Dying to Hear

Dear Family,
That is super scary about the gun guy in Colorado, also it's even more scary because I have a really good friend from BYU that is from Aurora Colorado. He just finished his mission a month or so ago, His name is Michael Funk, I really hope he is ok, but thats terrible, I bet he has to know some people that were affected. 

Anyway on a happier note, everything is going good here, there are very few whack jobs that go killing people here, honestly there isn't even really gang problems either, it is a pretty safe country. 

Alrighty here is the news that mom is dying to hear....

I leave Uruguay around 9:00 am on Monday August 20 and I arrive Tuesday the 21 at like 1:30 pm.  I stop in Miami and Dallas and have tons of lay overs of course.... oh well. I should be getting the paper with all the details soon, if not today.... if i get it today i will send it to you a little later.

Besides that I do have a quick question for mom....

Is there anything specific that you want me to do with the following items....
  • My sheets ( I have a set that I used for less than a month so they are in great condition)
  • My coat (the one I got at MR Mac, I don't know if there is someone in the ward that might need it, like a future missionary ? It's in fairly good condition)
  • Sleeping bag 
  • Towels
  • Shirts
Honestly all of my stuff is in pretty good condition except my slacks and my shoes...I am giving one of my suits to an old companion, and i  already have promised away most of my footware, but i was just wondering. if there isn't anything specific, I will just give it away to people here probably

Anyway apart from that everything is going great. Pretty uneventful week. We are really putting all of our focus and effort on finding new investigators through contacts and through members. We had some pretty good experiences with some members yesterday and we are hoping that we  will get some fruits from it shortly. It's super hard for one reason because this is the smallest area that I have been in and I have been here the most time so I have already knocked all the doors many times, thankfully I haven't talked to all the people though, there are just some people that must be hiding and we have to go find them.  It's just a lot less entertaining knocking the same doors over and over again.

I am going to have to cut this email short.

I love you guys

Elder Carlson!

Monday, July 16, 2012


Dear Family,

I like the photo of Spencer and Hannah, haha Spencer looks like a little kid because he actually shaved his face! 

Oh ya so it looks like either I will be flying home tuesday the 21 in the morning or 20th in the evening but they are supposedly going to confirm the plans with me today so we will see.

Thats great about whitney´s talk, I actually would have liked to give a few more talks while I was here. There are some areas where the missionaries have to do everything and end up talking every week in sacrament meeting, and then there are some functioning wards that they never ask the missionaries to talk, and this is one of them.  I have never talked in this area, they did ask some of the other missionareis though.  I bet I might give a talk though before I leave.

Anyway everything is going great.... I dont remember if I told you guys about Gladys, She is a lady that we found last week doing contacts, apparently she is a former investigator and even has some missionary facebook friends.  She seems like she is a really good person, we just need to find the way to help her actually take the steps that are going to bring her even more happiness and closer to God. She has come to church in the past and said that every time she felt peace and joy, but then she told us that she's just not the type of person to go to church every week.  I asked her what she meant by that, anyway she kinda reallized that that was a silly answer and that she can be happy and peacful everytime she goes to church if she will just come.  We will see how it goes.

Right now we are just working to find new people, we had found a few but they really arent going to progress so we just need to have the faith to keep looking.

Lately I have been thinking a lot about family life and what it is that makes a sucessful family.  A ton of things have been calling my attention in my studies about it. Also in discussions with my comps, It's so crazy the difference that reading, praying and going to church makes in the life of investigators, members, and my own life. That is one thing I really know for a fact is true.   If we read and pray everyday the Lord will bless us and we will have a happier more productive, purer life. I think that is one of the main differences in my pre mission life and mission life. Also I am making a big effort to develop christ like attributes in this last month.  We will see how it has gone when i get back :)

Anyway that's all for now.

Elder Carlson

Monday, July 9, 2012

President Armstrong

Dear Family,
Good news about our mold situation....
I started talking to members about mold and a sister in our ward went off on how she hates mold and told us a thing you can buy to prevent mold.  It's basically a disposable dehumidifier.  It's a special powder that sits in a bucket and absorbs humidity, we bought it that very day and it seems to be working well, I washed all my ties that had mold with diluted bleach and pretty much all the mold came out. With my suit I just brushed off all the mold.   I didn't want to get it wet and now nothing has come back so I think it's working. You can tell that inside the closet it's less humid because before every morning I would go into the room and the window would be covered in condensation so I would wipe it up and put my towel out to dry to take that water out of the room. Now there isn't any condensation forming.

Today we are going to go crazy on our mold killing. I cleaned all the mold in the kitchen, it worked really well, Today we are going clean the ceiling of our room, I think it will help. Right now the moldiest room is our bedroom then the bathroom then the little space between our room and the bedroom, I hope to be able to clean them all. Its going to be a little difficult because we have high ceilings.

Ya, so we had two conferences with President Armstrong this week, one for the missionaries in my zone and the other for our stake and stake leaders. We also had personal interviews with Pte Armstrong. He seems like a really good guy.  I think he's going to be really different than Pte Da Silva, but I think it will still be really good. So in my interview I asked him again about the return date and he was like oh ya thats fine you just need to coordinate it all with the assistants. So I think I will be calling today to talk to them and figure out everything. I am thinking the 21 would be a good day to fly home on, you can give me your opinion if you would like but I am going to try to get all the details done this week so your opinion might not get taken into account. But if you feel like there is a significantly better day just let me know.

Now that we are on a super trunky topic, I might as well keep it going.... Could you please send me another bank account screenshot so I can know how much money I have to spend on candy and other fun stuff to bring home?

I think that is it for the trunky questions.... Now that I think about it I was wondering why mom hasn't started giving me a countdown of days.... but you still don't know when I'm coming home so you cant! haha

Anyway this week was good, it was better weather but a lot colder, but at least there was sun. It probably helped the mold situation as well.

In the conference we talked about some good stuff, President Armstrong has been thinking a lot about what to do here, he made a pretty big emphasis on baptizing and helping the converts get to the temple in a year. I'm not going to lie,  before with Da Silva it's not like we weren't try to help converts get to the temple but Baptism was definitely the bigger focus. But it's good I think. Obviously Pte Armstrong is called of God, I just hope our missionaries don't get confused.  We are really good at doing one thing at a time.  We start messing it up when we have to do more than one.   About 7 months ago Elder Foster of the Seventy came and gave us a big presentation about working with the members so the members do the missionary work and so we are just there to support and train the members and teach.  His point was that theoretically all of the "finding" should be done by the members.   We started to try and apply what he taught us and as a mission we dive bombed in the number of baptisms!   That was definitely not the goal. I think we just need to keep focusing on baptism and and at the same time give more attention to the converts so they can get to the temple. There is a saying in spanish, I dont think we use it in English, walk and chew gum at the same time.... we will see how it goes. 

Anyway I think that's about all.

Oh yes, we had a mini 4th of July celebration. I made potato salad and we grilled steaks on a little grill we brought in the fireplace inside our house because it was raining outside and freezing cold..... It was really yummy....  :)

Elder Carlson

Monday, July 2, 2012

Moldy Clothes - Please Help!

Dear Family,
So this week was pretty good. I got to talk to the new mission president yesterday.  I called him up to see if I could do my temple recommend interview because mine is almost expired and to talk to him about my return date. He said he would probably be coming around with in the next couple of weeks to have interviews with each elder. I explained the situation with the coming home in time for school and he responded really differently than President da Silva.  He just kinda took it like it was my decision. So I probably will be coming home in time to start Fall semester at BYU and that means I would be home for Spencer's wedding too.  He said...I just dont know what we would do to fill your spot with your companion... I explained what they have done in the past and he said, "alright we will work it out, today is like my 2nd day so i still don't know how to do everything." He sounds like a really good guy, He asked me where I was from and some other stuff, seems like he will be a good president.  I still don't know the exact date but I will let you know as soon as I know.

One question I have: is there any way to prevent mold from growing on clothing? Our new house has a downside, it's really humid so all the walls are growing mold and now my clothing as well. It makes me so mad because I dont know a  way to prevent it. We are going to go at the walls today cleaning with bleach. maybe do a little research to see if there is a prevention methods for clothing or rooms or walls or something....

We have found some pretty good investigators recently but the thing we are more excited about is the work that some of the members are doing with some friends they have.  There are a couple of members that have people that are ready to hear the gospel so we hopefully will be able to put some stuff in motion this week.  The only bad thing is that the members are always kinda go slow and you have to be pushing them along but it always gives better results.

That sounds interesting about Girls Camp, I'm glad it was a good experience anyway...
I had no idea Phil was getting married, that's great!

I think that's about all I have to say for this week. It was been rainy and humid and kinda cold the last few days.... Oh ya I have an Australian living in our house- that's different. They have a bunch of funny words.... Oatmeal isn't oatmeal its Musely, and sweatpants are trackpants or trackydacks for short. A bunch of funny stuff like that....

Also shout out to Andy Chapman,  thank you for the letter and the update about the guys, all very interesting. We will have to see how everything plays out with our little gang.

Anyway.... that's all for now!

Elder Carlson