Brett's apartment mailing address:

3712 Howard Dr. Apt # 18
McAllen, TX

Brett's mission office address:

Texas McAllen Mission
Attn: Elder Brett Mecham
200 West La Vista Ave.
McAllen, TX 78501

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Merry Christmas everybody!
This is how Christmas day went:
We woke up at 6:30 sharp on Christmas morning with Elder Dickson yelling merry christmas, trying to get me to wake up and get out of bed. The only reason I was reluctant to get out was because I'm on top bunk and getting out of it is such a pain. It's usually too early for me to realize what I'm doing and I jump out and basically face plant because there isn't enough energy in my legs. I've actually avoided that bad habit though so there is no need for concern. Anyway, we all got out of bed and woke up Elder Wallace and Elder Seamons in the other room so they could come over and join us. (All of our Christmas presents were under the tree in our room) We then all huddled in a circle and took turns opening presents. It was sooo fun. We all talked about our Christmas traditions and it was fun to compare how we all did things. Most of us liked taking turns, opening one at a time so we could all watch, but Elder Dickson just wanted to open them all up as fast as he could.
By raise of hands, we decided that we were going to take it slow and enjoy it. Sorry Elder Dickson. We actually skipped breakfast because we were enjoying ourselves too much. After opening, and playing, with our presents, we went to the gymnasium for the MTC talent show. Wow, was that amazing or what. There definitely ain't no lack of musical talent when you have over 2000 Mormon missionaries all in one building. There was originally supposed to be only 16-20 acts but because they could not turn down any of those that tried out, there were 44 acts and it lasted almost 3 hours! It was soooo good though! It's too hard to describe. People sang solos, played the guitar, the piano, violin, eukelele (yukelele, eukalale, yoo-kah-LAY-lee...) and there were a lot of districts that peformed altogether and did something funny. It was great.
After that, we had our big Christmas dinner which was great. We were all sure appreciative for all those that worked on Christmas day. After that, we went back to the gymnasium and Elder Russell M. Nelson spoke to us! He was tremendous. It's always awesome when an Apostle is there. After the devotional, we all went back to our residences and ate our sack dinner and had the chance to write letters, write in our journals, or just relax. We played with our christmas toys...obviously. We then had one last devotional at 7 and two actors performed a simplified version of A Christmas Carol and it was absolutely tremendous. There were only 2 actors but they did such a good job. They had awesome costumes and sound effects which made it great. And what was really neat was that Elder Nelson was there too. Even though he was only asked to come and speak at the afternoon devotional, he and his wife decided to stay for the entire day and spend Christmas day with all of us missionaries. What an honor. And actually, they ended up staying until the next morning too because he spoke to all of the Elders in a combined Priesthood meeting. Pretty lucky eh?
Well, I think that about sums about my Christmas day. On Christmas eve we had a devotional too and the MTC presidency took turns speaking. They made it REALLY fun though. One of the funnest things we did was sing the 12 Days of Christmas, MTC style. Check this out, and sing it to the regular tune. It's hilarious when you have a couple thousand missionaries singing it.
On the first day of Christmas the MTC gave me: A rock solid testimony.
On the second day of Christmas the MTC gave me, Two haircuts free, and a rock solid testimony.
On the third day of Christmas the MTC gave me, Three new companions, Two haircuts free and a rock solid testimony.
On the fourth day of Christmas the MTC gave me, Four Chocolate milks, three new companions, two haircuts free, and a rock solid testimony.
On the fifth day of Christmas the MTC gave me, Fiiiiiive Hourrsss ooffff Gyyyymmmmm! Four Chocolate milks, three new companions, two haircuts free, and a rock solid testimony.Four Chocolate milks, three new companions, two haircuts free, and a rock solid testimony.
The rest go as followed:
6:30 wake-up. 7 lukewarm showers. 8 hours of rest. 9 vaccinations. 10 more commandments. 11 loads of laundry. 12 hours of class.
It was an absolute riot. But besides all the fun stuff we did, we really focused on the birth of our Savior. We spent much of the month of December doing that and it was really great. It was the main topic for all of our devotionals and Elder Nelson spoke about it when he was here and did a great job.
Thanks for all your letters and packages! Mallory, I wanted to write you a separate letter because I thought your stories were absolutely hilarious! I told my roommates about the gingerbread house you made and the story about the boss with the beard and how he slowly shaved parts of it off throughout the day. hahahaha that was sooo funny. My roommates cracked up.
And thanks mom and dad for the packages! I have too many toys and candy than I can handle. Now I know why missionaries gain weight. I'll start running during gym now. I'm just too addicted to basketball and volleyball.
Well, It sounds like you all had a great Christmas! Sorry I couldn't call, but I hope you enjoyed the tape of me and my district singing. Oh, and guess what! I just found out about a half hour ago that I am being reassigned. My visa hasn't come in yet. But because there are no general authorities in right now this week, they won't receive the reassignment papers until next wednesday, but I'll find out by next Thursday or Friday where I am going. She said it will probably be in Utah because they think my Visa should come in real soon. Ahh, I have under a minute.
Love you all! Thanks for everything!
Elder Brett A. Mecham

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Dec 21 2010

Hello family!
I can't believe it's almost Christmas. I'm about to send out my gift to ya'll, but I'm nervous as to when it will arrive to you. I know it's going to take a loooong time. Every day there are a billions of packages arriving to the MTC and millions going out. Hopefully you get the packages before March or somethin'. I can't wait for you to get them! I'm really excited about it. Maybe you already know, because there is only so much I can do, but nevertheless I'm really excited.
How have the Holidays been so far? It's been amazing here at the MTC. There's over a foot of snow right now and it's absolutely beautiful. It's pretty warm outside and now that the snow stopped coming down, it looks like it's already starting to melt. There better be snow for Christmas! Can you believe that Christmas is in 4 days? I remember December used to go by soooo slow! And now I'm hoping that it slows down because it's going by too fast. Can you believe I've been here 7 weeks? I'm leaving soon!!! That is if I get my Visa. So I wrote a letter to you all this morning and I'm putting it in the package and now I am basically saying everything over again. Oh well. Anyway, I haven't heard anything about my Visa yet so I'm not sure what is going to happen with me. One, I'll stay here at the MTC for a couple extra weeks or so. Two, I'll be reassigned to somewhere else in the United States. Three, I'll get my visa right on time and leave like I'm supposed to. I think number three would be the weirdest. Elder Wallace, Elder Dickson, and I have sort of planned on staying here at the MTC longer and it would be weird to leave on time. Well, I guess we'll just have to wait and see! No matter what happens, I'll be happy.
TRC was phenomenal again. I don't really want to get into the details but we had an older man and "he was Jewish" and the lesson went great. It's really fun to look back at our first and second lessons we taught and then compare it to our last couple. It's crazy how fast everyone picks up on the language and the things they can do in such a short period of time. Maybe it's because we have special help.
I have 13:24 left. I can't think of much else to say though. I guess that's better than sweating to send off an email.
Elder Wallace is feeding me KitKats as I write this email. I can't afford to take my fingers off the keyboard. Even though I have much more time than usual.
So tonight we have another Fireside and we're hoping it's an apostle! Although, we have a bunch of devotionals and firesides on Chirstmas and Christmas Eve so maybe we'll have one then. Maybe the prophet? That would be the coolest thing ever. I'm so glad I'm here for the Holidays.
Well, I'm doing great. My companion is doing great. My district is doing great. Things are just pretty awesome here at the MTC. I wish I could describe it better. I can't wait to start sending emails once I'm in Monterrey.
Have a fantastic, Merry Christmas and a happy new year! Thanks for the emails and the love. Ya'll are the best!
Love, Elder Brett

Dec 14 2010

It is Tuesday once again! The fourteenth of December. Christmas is getting closer and closer. Is it just me or is that really hard to believe? Wasn't it just November 3rd and I was walking into the MTC with a bewildered expression on my face? It sure feels like it. Wow.
Well, I had a pretty awesome week. My TRC experience was fantastic. Elder Dickson and I are getting better and better. We taught the first lesson and didn't even really use our lesson plan at all. We're not memorizing it, but just remembering it much better and teaching it with much more fluidity. It's exciting. Along with the lessons, we are practicing talking about the weather, work and school, food, and other various topics that we will have to know when in Mexico.
Got some scary news. Yesterday evening, three elders moved into the room next door and I was confused because missionaries come in on Wednesdays. Turns out, they were in New Mexico, Arizona, and Utah for the last 5 months waiting for their visas. AHHHHHH. Well, I guess I'd rather be sent somewhere in the states while I wait, rather than stay longer in the MTC. Although, if they feel like the visas will be arriving soon, they will just keep you in the MTC for a couple weeks or so. So I guess I'd prefer the latter. I am soooo excited for Mexico though. I can't remember if I told ya'll or not but the other week, I met 2 elders that were going to Monterrey East. Turns out, their district has 8 people in it; 4 going to Monterrey East and 4 going to Monterrey West. And here my district has 8 people in it and not ONE person is going to the same area. We are the misfit district, although, we are the best district in the entire MTC!! Have I properly expressed my love and appreciation for my district? I don't think I actually could. I'm glad you all have pictures now so you can put faces to everyone.
Thanks for the dearElders! Sorry I don't have time to respond to everything in them, but just know that I love hearing everything! And I love having a hard copy of it. We always get the letters after we finish planning at night and it's the most exciting thing to read them when we get back to our rooms.
I also have some sad news. I won't be able to call home for Christmas. I guess that makes sense though because there are a bajillion people here at the MTC and there is no way they could have everyone call home. BUT...I came up with a really good idea for a Christmas present, and the rest of my district approved my idea. I can't wait!
Well, I hope everything is going great! I think about you all every night. Not much during the day because I am so busy doing a lot of great things, but I think you understand. I love you all so much and I am so grateful that I am able to write every week! Hope you are all enjoying the holidays! I sure am. I don't think there is a better place to be for Christmas than at the MTC. I'm pretty lucky.
Thanks again for everything!
Con amor,
Elder Brett

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Has it really been an entire week?? It has honestly felt like it's been one long long DAY since last Tuesday. We finish our planning at 9:30 and head back to our dorms, and after I change out of my clothes and sit down at my desk, it's already 10:15. It's crazy. And then by 10:30 I'm in bed with lights out and about a minute or two later, my alarm is going off and it's 6:15 a.m. Ahhhhhh.
But in all honesty, I am getting plenty of sleep and I have tons of energy each day. The days are long, and really short at the same time. There are so many things that I want to do each day but there just doesn't seem like there is enough time. I've been focusing a lot more on doctrinal studies during personal time and that's been a big help to me. I love having the oppurtunity to devote so much time to scripture study. It's so much better and worthwhile than just reading a couple chapters at night. One of my teachers, Hermano Painter, is incredibly knowledgable and everytime we have questions, we ask him and he always seems to have the answer. He just got back from his mission a couple months ago too. My other teacher, Hermano Dangerfield, is totally awesome too. He focuses more on the language study.
The TRC went pretty well this week. This was the situation: We were new missionaries to the area and we were scheduled to meet with some investigators, a husband and wife. They were moving though so we had to go there and offer to help them move. (This was to help us with home/family vocabulary) After helping them move their furniture and appliances (little laminated pieces of paper), we started to teach them about the Plan of Salvation. Although, we ended up asking them questions about their Book of Mormon reading and their daily prayers. After discussing this for a while, we finished our visit with the Palabra de Sabiduria (Word of Wisdom). They were asking a lot of questions and it was great practice for Elder Dickson and I to be able to listen to their questions and answer them. My other experiences at the TRC were much easier because it consisted mostly of just teaching from our lesson plan. This time, we had to answer whatever questions they had, so it really tested our knowledge of the language. I asked them what we could do to help them keep the PdS and they were like, "I don't know. What can we do?" And I didn't know what to say at first but I ended up saying, "Pues, usted puede poner su te en la basura." They both started laughing really hard. Not at me though! With me, because it was funny. I told them, "well, you can put your tea in the garbage." And, I pointed to the garbage can when I said it. The investigators were Alexandria and Cesar, and they were both totally awesome people. After we finished our lesson, they asked where we were going on our missions, and her uncle is a stake president in Tampico and she has some family in Monterrey. She was totally excited that we were both going to Mexico.
I'm trying to think of what else to say. Other than the TRC, it's just been a lot of classroom instruction and personal study time.
Creo que voy a hablar mas en espanol en mis emails. Es dificil en la computadora porque no hay simbolos y las palabras les parecen extrano. Y, necesito mas tiempo para saber como escribirlos.
Tengo menos de un minuto!!
I love you all a ton! Thanks for all your letters, packages, and massive amounts of goodies! My companion, roommates, and I are all very grateful!
Con amor,
Elder Brett