Tuesday, August 27, 2013

MTC-Week 3

I have a missionary leaving for DC South tomorrow! His madre is all over missionarymoms.com (I think that is the site...). We found out there are currently 6 or 4 mandarin speaking missionaries at DC South and that another Chinese branch is being opened! HOOPAH! I also found out we are in the area for the whole time WITH CARS! Ehehehe NOICE!

Okay, so here is the story of the week.... Shaker bottles.
One day after a fine day at the gym, I filled up my shaker bottle with water when, to my dismay, I discovered I DID NOT HAVE MY WIRE WHISK BALL INSIDE! GASP! EGAD! EUREKA! OH THE HORROR!
I proceeded to shake up the contents (creatine, whey, and breakfast essential)... to my surprise, it came out exactly as it would have if I used the wire ball,.....
Well, now I know. Speaking of whey protein, I heard that someone did a cover of Wicked's "You're Gonna be Popular".... It is called "You're gonna be muscular". Why, for all that is good in this world, WHY HAVE I NEVER HEARD OF IT?! UGH.
Okay next up on the list.... the handicapped elders. Those elders are so great. Seriously. They serve as full time missionaries at the MTC! The one on crutches asked me if I knew a Gary Valentine.... I flipped. I replied "... YOU KNOW MY DAD?"
"He's a missionary going to Saint George!"
"Oh okay! Never mind haha"

Every time I see them we talk about you Dad!
Okay so I am fallin asleep all over the place. I just can't stay awake during class. It is ridiculous. I really wish they would give us more time to sleep. They talked about how getting enough sleep is essential to stress management. PFFT WELL, GEE, THANKS GUYS. DO YOU WANT US TO SLEEP DURING STUDY SESSION A, OR STUDY SESSION B, C, D, AND F?!
Seriously. Gah.
I don't know if my body is just a lazy piece of meat or something, but I swear if I don't get a solid 8.5 hrs of sleep a night I am shot that day.
So from now on, I am going to sleep during choir (YES DURING CHOIR WHEN PEOPLE ARE SINGING AROUND ME-- I AM THAT GOOD), during personal fitness time on fridays (... it has come to that point...) and on sacred, precious P-days.

Alright, I do not have much else to report....
My companion and I are planning on rocking our investigator's socks off tonight.
It's gonna happen.
Alright boys and gals, grown ups and all, keep rockin the casba.
I will write again next week! PEACE!

Elder Valentine

Pictures from MTC-Week 3

 I found Elder Morales! (childhood friend)
 Sister Marissa Hart! (college buddy)
 These elders are seriously the best...Ehehe "Hey, look!  It is Gary Valentine's son!" (Yeup, they know yer name, Dad)
Pull open your For the Strength of Youth pamphlet. Go to the dating section. I found him-- THE FACE OF MORMON DATING. Elder Sweten. In my zone. Win!
 The boys of the hood are always hard.
 Mah seeeesters!
 Did  I mention I found Captain America?  And that he is my gym buddy?  And that he calls me Mr. February?
The sanctuary.  I love it.  So empty. So goooood.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Days feel like Weeks, and Weeks feel like Days-Week 2 at the MTC

Days feel like weeks, and weeks feel like days.

I have never typed a more true statement than the one above. Okay so let's start with my companion, shall we?

Meet Elder Johnson.

He has played piano for 13 years. To the extent of his knowledge, Pokemon is a card collection that kids owned at his elementary school. He has only seen one PG-13 movie, and that was about glaciers. It was rated pg13 because global warming is a "controversial subject."
He thinks kissing (I'm not talking about passionate stuff-- I mean basic, level 1 stuff) is disgusting. Mushy I love you stuff falls in the same nasty category.
Weight lifting is an abomination and long slow cardio is king.
Eating a lot of food is disgusting.
He is very sassy.
Meat should not be consumed that much.
(Did you read that? DID YOU READ THAT!?)
Boy oh boy, we are true opposites.
We get along just swell though. I feel bad sometimes because he is literally okay with almost everything I want to do. I end up controlling the schedule, pretty much. I told him he is free to express his opinion whenever he wants though! He just doesn't have opinions, I guess haha.
The guy is flippin hilarious.
The ladies love him. His sass power level goes OVER 9000 when they are around! Then when they leave, he goes back to his quiet non super sassy mode. He is starting to open up and be more comfortable around me though!
(I would not rather have any other companion, despite our differences)
Okay, moving on.
On the way to the laundry room, something crazy happened.
I saw a guy.
Not just any guy.
A tall guy. A familiar guy.
I stopped in my tracks and stared at him for a second. I was about to walk away, but then I felt I should pop the question... "Hey, do you know a guy named Clayton?"
He stood there dumbfounded.
"Um... That's me." I looked at me for a bit, confused.
"Do you know who I am?"
I grinned.
His eyes grew huge and his smile stretched from ear to ear. He then pretty much tackled me and squeezed the crap out of me.

Okay time out, lemme tell you the story behind Clayton.
My roommate was Clayton-- we were seriously best buds. He did not have a facebook, however, so after we left EFY we lost contact of each other.
I have been searching for this kid for YEARS. Twitter, google plus, facebook, instagram, you name it.
The only guy who kept popping up was that cocky dude from Tarzan (I didn't bother friend requesting him because he is such a tool... those poor gorillas).
Yet, I could never find him.
Here he was! It was seriously such a blessing. His family just moved into my mission area too, so I will be able to see them!
He then turned around to his companion.
"This is--"
"Haha yeah I know who this is."
I was kind of confused. How did Clayton's companion know who I was?
I asked Clayton and he told me he pulled out his bag that he used for EFY to pack for the mission three weeks ago, and he found a card.
I bought a card for Clayton and wrote inside of it how great of a friend he was and how much I loved the guy. I hid it in his bag right before he left.
Okay, back to the present.
He told his companion all about the letter and everything! So his companion knew all about me!
Anyway, moving on.
I can't think of much else to report... we were so sad when our new "investigator" moved to China. He taught US a chinese lesson once. Such a great teacher.
Now we have two new investigators.... HAVE AT YE!
Okay so I do not have much else to report...
I will send you all an email next week!
DEAR ELDER ME PEOPLE.  I love getting those!
Thank you so much to those who have dear eldered me!  You all should be getting a letter soon! :)
P.S.  I also ran into Maryann a ton this week! Soooo my companion and I got a little left behind at the temple and we ran into Maryann's district... PHOTO OPPORTUNITY! Apparently, during the five minutes I used to take some photos with Maryann, my branch president was looking all over for me because he didn't want to start his surprise devotional without me.... Oops. I hope he doesn't find out why haha....

I hope my companion doesn't get too bothered by my unusual circumstances hahahahahaha.

He says he doesn't mind, so is all good :)

Take care folks! I will write you all when I can! :)

Kel meets EFY Roommate at MTC


Week 2 at the MTC!

OUR FIRST (not real) INVESTIGATOR!  Jiong DiXiong!  We love him.
This is the district pointing to the map!  39F!  THE BEST DISTRICT EVERRRR!
My companion and I hokeying the hallways for service... Easiest. Job. Ever. So easy, it was painfully boring.
 Ran into Garrett Harding at the temple!
 My companion and I at the temple!
We got bored waiting for the devotional on Tuesday at the Marriott Center so we decided to break out the photo shooting....I don't think that Elder Caldwell got the idea hahahaha.
Elder Johnson and I waiting in line to get to the devotional on Sunday night!  IT WAS SO CROWDED!
 SOOO MANY MISSIONARIES! We were on the way back from the Marriott Center! We flooded the sidewalks!

The average breakfast of an average Elder Valentine.  Anyone want to give me a calorie estimate?
I have been dubbed Elder Egg, due to my insane consumption of eggs. I find it an absolute HONOR! One of the sisters in our district (Sister Palmer-- the brunette who wears glasses) is bomb at drawing. I am so jealous.
This is the computer lab! We use this to record us speaking the language and compare it to how it is supposed to sound.

 My parents understand and are looking out for me.
 Kel runs into Maryann at the temple!
 Kel, Maryann, and companions at the MTC map.
Elder Valentine and Elder Johnson at the map.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

August 13, 2013


Thank you so much for the letters!  It is awesome getting one every day!  Oh, I am the district leader now!  I am understanding 90% of everything.  My whole district considers me as the second teacher.  Cool, huh?

I got two letters from Maryann!  She sent them before I got into the MTC, so they were just chilling in the mailbox.

Cool story!  Everyone has been telling us that the first two days are terribly long and SUCKETH!  They weren't bad whatsoever!  I LOVE CHINESE!  I'd HATE being a Spanish missionary (sorry!).

We taught our first real investigator today!  My comp. and I did the best out of our district (he still doesn't understand a lick of it, but he does memorize phrases and words well). 

I gotta go to bed now!  My companion is my height and weighs a whopping 40 pounds less!  He loves LONG DISTANCE SLOW RUNNING! (Yuck.  I made a deal with him.  Choir for gym.  He is so easy going he would have let me have gym anyway.)

I will respond to your letters when I can!  Keep the Dear Elders coming!  THEY ROCK!  Cheers!  Love, Kelley

Monday, August 12, 2013

FIRST WEEK WAPPAH! August 12, 2013

Okay sorry I had to send two emails with pictures... There is a limit on how many pictures I can have per email. WEAK, RIGHT!?
I will now begin to describe my many adventures (or lack, thereof) of my first week.
Do I have your attention?
Tai hao le! (Excellent!)
Alright so this week was not NEARLY as bad as all the old MTC veterans told me it would be. Yeah, I have studied more than I have ever in my life, but believe it or not, IT WAS NOT TORTURE. Studying Chinese is ACTUALLY FUN! Who knew, right?! I love the language! I can't imagine being a Portuguese or Spanish elder. Chinese is just too cool, ya know? Alright so my district... There is a picture of us in the attached images somewhere... We have three sisters (a tri companionship) and 6 elders. My companion is Elder Johnson. We are the most OPPOSITE people you could think of! We get along fantastically though! He is extremely quiet and meek. I love him. Oh did I mention he is a cardio bunny? Yeah, so we go to the gym and he hits the bikes while I hit the weights. We have only been able to go once though... We will be able to go much more this week!
Okay so there was this incredible talk, Character of Christ, which YOU ALL NEED TO SEE! It is by David Bednar. I highly highly recommend it (yeah, this is coming from a kid who DETESTS watching talks soooo.... it means a bunch that I am saying it is so flippin awesome).
The food is awesome. Seriously. I get about two plates of meat, one plate of vegetables, one plate of carbs, and two glasses of milk at every meal. (For breakfast this morning, I had 8 eggs, a whole wheat bagel, two pieces of sausage, a little bit of potatoes-- just a little bit for flavor-- and three cups of milk. Yeah baby, yeah!)
I eat the most by far out of the whole district! (Should I be proud of that? Because I am.)
I am well taken care of here.
Alright sooo my investigator sessions? AWESOME! My language is flowing back to me like I got thrown into the Niagara Falls of language. The Chinese gods have smiled upon me this week.
Mrs. Fisher would be proud.
(Oh PS could you send me her email pweeaase? She is the Chinese teacher at Saugus High)
I understood about 85% of my investigator during the first session, and 95% during the second. We taught him how to pray (he said the prayer-- Booyah) and got him to commit to read the introduction. My companion and I feel like Chinese STUD MUFFINS. (Uh, stud rice rolls?)
Power hour, baby.
I ran into a few people I know! Most of them are from college, so I don't think you'd know any of them (not that I remember their names anyway...)
I ran into Maryann! Took some pictures. That was pretty sweet.
Oh, coolest thing ever.... She taught me the best thing.
Oi means hello in Portuguese.
Is that not the coolest thing EVER?
Chinese is still cooler though, just sayin.
Okay party people, I must be going now!
I love those! I WILL WRITE YOU BACK!
Thank you for all the love and support!
See ya next week!

Pictures from FIRST WEEK WAPPAH!

PDay with companion!

Elder Valentine with MTC companion, Elder Johnson 
 MTC District

Kel meets Maryanne

Kelley runs into Maryann (his girlfriend) at the MTC.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

August 10, 2013

Dear Home:

Familia!  Okay, so the MTC...my companion is really quiet.  We get a long GREAT.  Well, I like him a lot.  I don't know if he thinks I am too loud or overbearing though.  Ha Ha.

I am seriously TEARING IT UP HERE.  The Valentine name is getting around already!  We were doing a  mass-joint visit with an investigator.  Everyone was stumped on what to say because this lady was confounding them with  philosophy.  I raised my hand and KICKED HER PHILOSOPHY BUTT (in a nice way) and she agreed to read and pray and take a step in faith.  Afterward, the director asked her what thoughts she had on how the conversation went.  She pointed to me and said, "I really liked what this Elder said.  He knows what he's doing."  (Other missionaries were trying to tell her our faith and she told us she didn't care about Mormon faith--I simply told her it doesn't matter what the label is on the information we are showing her.  I invited her to take a leap of faith with us and read the things which were taught and pray with us to know if these things were true.  I told her she had absolutely nothing to lose.  She then agreed.  WINNER.)

As I was walking out, people were saying stuff like, "That Elder Valentine is a beast."  He He He.

Oh, I also won the last scenerio too.  (There were 50+ missionaries is there).  The Valentine name will be famous yet! 

My companion does not know a lick of Chinese.  I am teaching him all I know.  He is, in a way, my son.  I feel as if I am training him in the ways of awesomeness.  He and I have agreed to run the MTC.  We will dominate.

I am enjoying the MTC!  Erm, last night I had a sick feeling in my stomach about being here for 2 years.  I just need to make it to Sunday, I guess.

I ran into Maryann!  We took some cute pictures.

My P-Day is Monday!  I will tell you who my branch leader is when he is called today!  I love you all!  DEAR ELDER MEEEE!



Elder Valentine

Entering the MTC

Kel and sister, Sophie, right before entering the MTC. 
This is Sophie, Kel, and Aunt Lori right before he entered the MTC.  Aunt Lori was kind enough to pick Kel up from the Salt Lake Airport and bring him to Provo so that Sophie could see him before he entered.  They all had a great time going to lunch and hanging out at Lori's house.  August 7, 2013

Burbank Airport

The fam dropping Kel off at the Burbank Airport for his new adventure!  From L to R:  Suzanne, Gary, Kel, Marianne, Rachel  Keltner (cousin), and Scott.  He is so excited!