Thursday, December 25, 2014

Why yes, you can. I guess 'tis better to tell me BEFORE...Written 12/1/2014

Today my companion and I went to the National Arboretum. Your first thought is probably, "What's an Arboretum?" The answer is, a botanical garden devoted to trees. It was really nice and a lot cooler than I thought it would be. The grounds are really beautiful and spacious. You'd love to take photos for hours in there. I can't imagine what the place looks like in spring. Their are a lot of grounds and my companion and I walked a ton of it but probably only saw half at best. My companion and I both want to go back there. I think you'd all like it. Also, for whatever reason, the National Arboretum has the original sandstone columns from the Capitol Building before one of the big expansions. They were also cool to go see there. We had to walk a long way to get there and a long way to get back (we walked to the metros but they are rather far from there). DC never ceases to amaze me. 

I do use Facebook still, not everyday but it's mostly messaging people. I don't really post anything. With Christmas coming up you might see me post a few things.

I'm pretty sure that the Eyring's leave in January but I'm not sure. I don't think that there will be any shift in the amount of music. Sister Cooke is also an avid music lover and the Visitors' Center has always been known for its musical performances.

There currently is no snow on the ground. It melted pretty fast on Wednesday and very little stuck. It's pretty cold but you bundle up and get used to it. Today is super nice with the high in the 60s. Which is a nice break since the high for the last week hasn't been above the lower 40s. Winter is starting to get into swing here but we'll see how long it takes.

We are 100% allowed to use public transportation but, unless it's a long distance, it's normally faster on bike. We do use public transportation to get to the Visitor's Center or sometimes downtown. We can walk or bike, but in the city, bike is usually the most effective. We'll see what we do if we get a lot of snow. 

On Monday my companion and I went with 2 other missionaries in our district to the American Portrait/American Art Museum and walked around there for a while. It was a nice museum and it had a lot of cool art there. In the evening we went and visited 4 families in our area after an appointment cancelled.
Tuesday we had a service project at the DC Convention Center by Mount Vernon Square. We helped prepare some of the food for the feed the hungry Thanksgiving dinner there. My companion and I were in the bakery group. We cut all the pies for the event, unpacked and organized danishes, and emptied mashed potatoes boxes into giant containers.  We also helped put some of the serving materials in the giant hall for the event. It was a really nice service that took up most of the day. In the evening, most of our district went to a member's home for a giant dinner. We had the English Elders in our district with us and it was very entertaining having them with us and seeing their reactions to all the food. It was a great night and it was fun visiting with the less-active member.  

Wednesday was the Temple Trip for our mission. It was a great time and I enjoyed the temple. As we came out we saw that it was snowing and the snow had accumulated a little on the ground. It was the first snow of the season here. We visited a few homes in the late afternoon when we got back to our area. We taught our recently baptized 11-year old the Restoration again for his new member lesson. He is doing really well.

Thursday was Thanksgiving and it was a non-proselyting day here. We were only allowed to go out to our Thanksgiving meals at a member's home. Our appointment we had was a 6pm; so we had most of the day to ourselves. The weather was really nice and we went out to Georgetown to walk around the Connecticut and Ohio Canal there. It was really pretty and close to the Potomac River. I really enjoyed our walk we had for a little bit. We ate our Thanksgiving dinner at a les-active/part-member family's home. it was a great night and very fun. I was glad they invited us (we didn't have to schedule it) and it was fun being with them. We had Turkey, Puerto Rican potato salad (with apples in it), Puerto Rican rice (Orange with turkey, steak, and egg in it with vegetables). I was first offered some coca-cola and then offered wine to drink but opted for a ginger ale instead.

Friday it snowed again a little but nothing stuck. You wouldn't even know it snowed this last week because their is nothing on the ground. In the evening, we went to mutual and had a short lesson for them and then we played soccer for a while followed by volleyball.

Saturday we went and visited three less-active members and invited them all to church. It was nice seeing them again because it had been a while. 

Sunday was a nice day. The missionaries sang in the Branch (2-The Spirit of God) and it was uhh...well, we tried. For lunch we went over to the Branch Mission Leader's home (Hermano Chaico, not Zapata). And in the evening we went over to the VC and taught 3 members. We also caught a glimpse of the Lights for Festival of Lights and it looks awesome.

Yes I'm doing well. I don't have any issues or complaints. The blow by blow, (still probably not up to your standards) White House Tour. 

On the mourn of Friday, the twenty-first day of the eleventh in the two thousandth and fourteenth year of our Lord and Savior the missionaries of the Washington DC North Mission woke with energy and vigor as a visit to the White House nigh had arrived. Our story begins in a fancy apartment where the Spanish Elders live whom cover Mount Pleasant. The West Elders readied and buttoned their suit coats as the District arrived to make forward their journey. A hop on the Metro, a line change, and a few stops away they waited in anticipation. They emerged from the Metro at McFergerson Square. A pleasant walk through the plaza named L'Efant and there loomed in front the house that was white. A block and a half from Hamilton Place the mission gathered in front of the White House Visitor Center. They all arrived before 8:15am and chatted a little. Then all they lined up in alphabetical order, by last name of course. They marched to the side of the Visitors' Entrance and walked into the gardens where then then waited. Two ID checks, a dog in a box that sniffs, and  a metal detector; they finally were in. No cameras, no backpacks, no bags, no anything really. They entered inside the Executive Mansion. A self-guided tour as you walk through the hallways. Each room and hall and plenty of guards, all quite very friendly. On the bottom floor they only could look into the Library, Vermeil Room, and China Room of the White House. The Library consists of only American authors; decorated furniture of the federal period. The Vermeil room has an extensive collection of gilded Silver with portraits of recent First Ladies. The China room displays pieces of china and glass used by the presidents. Afterwards, up the stairs they went into the East room on the state floor. 'Tis the largest room in the White House used for receptions, ceremonies, and other events. Currently it has displays some Native American tapestries and clothing gifted to the Obamas. Also a famous portrait of Washington Decorates the Hall. The Blue Room is an ocular room where one president was married. It is decorated in Blue and has a breathtaking view of the gardens and balcony. The Red and Green Rooms are well decorated with plenty of portraits and artwork and much furniture. Each decorated in their respective color. The Dinning room can fit plenty of guests and has only one piece of artwork; a portrait of Abraham Lincoln gifted from his family with the request that it be the only artwork in the room it is displayed in. At the End is the Main Entrance, where the most recent presidents' portraits stand. The Staircase to the living areas also are located there. The portrait of JFK praying is the only permanent portrait in the area. A unused Grand Piano also graces the area. The missionaries then proceeded to leave where cameras are permitted and they took their two photos. Then they left back to their respective areas after a short regrouping at the White House Visitor Center. 

Yesterday Peruvian food was first Cirviche (raw fish "cooked" with lemon) which is quite tasty. The second plate was rice with hard-boiled egg, and (please ignore spelling) papa de la Juancallina (potato with a sauce over it) that is one of my favorite dishes. We drank Chicha Morada (boil purple corn filter it out and add pineapple and apple juice and a lot of sugar, then repeat several times). I also quite enjoy this drink. That kind of meal doesn't phase me in the least bit anymore and reminds me of Germantown.

Elder Braden Dahl

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Salutations del Distrito...Written 11-24-2014

Written 11-24-2014
I hope that you had a good week. This last Friday we, as a mission went to the White House. Two ID checks, a dog sniff, and a metal detector later we were in the White House. It was cool being able to go in and say that I've been inside now. It's interesting and very pretty inside. It's also cool seeing the grounds from the inside. It was a fun morning and I'm glad that I could go inside. They have all the normal furniture inside and a couple gifts to the White House on display. [Can you find Elder Braden Dahl in the photo below...if not, answer is revealed at the bottom of this post.]
11/21/2014 Washington D.C. North Mission visits the White House

Don't jump the gun on me yet I haven't been out a year till Thursday (but I guess I will be home in less than a year but it's too far out to be thinking about that). I'm glad that you have been having a fun and busy week. Hopefully you are feeling a lot better and that everyone enjoys Thanksgiving Break.

Monday evening my companion and I went over to our Elder's Quorum President's home and visited with him for a while and had a late dinner. He is an awesome guy and he has a pretty heavy load here in the [Mount Pleasant] branch. It was nice being able to visit with him.

Tuesday we had a lesson with one of our investigators that went well. She only had a short amount of time but she appreciated our visit. We also visited with one of our less-active members and invited them to attend the stake conference on Sunday.

Wednesday one of the members called us and said be here in an hour I have an investigator for you. We went over and taught a lady the Restoration. She was interested but is a more reserved towards the church. It was a nice lesson and hopefully we'll see her more often. We met with one of our members and had a nice lesson with him as well. My companion and I went over to a less-active member's home and invited to them to the coming Festival of Lights this December.

Friday we visited a lot of people. We first went over to a less-active's house and invited them to come to church and Festival of Lights. We then went over to our recently baptized member's home and visited with him and his mother. We shared with them a nice message and started all the lessons again. We went by another less-active home and invited them to the Festival of Lights. We also met with a member that is about to go on his mission and visited with him for a while. My companion and I played soccer in the evening for mutual.

Saturday we visited with a less-active older lady and she fell recently and hurt her arm. She was glad we came by to visit and we set up a return appointment this week. We also visited our investigator with a baptismal date and we were planning out some of the logistics of their baptism.

Sunday was Stake conference which was really nice. After the conference we had a member come out with us for he rest of the night. We visited a investigator and a few members and it went really well. I'm the evening we had a great lesson with another of our investigators of the Book of Mormon.

I'm glad to hear you are doing well and I hope you have a great week. I hope that you have a fun week and Happy Thanksgiving!

Love, Elder Braden Dahl

Elder Braden Dahl is just to the left of the girl in the green. He is 3rd row.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Fall Happenings at the Dahl Apartment in DC...Written 11-17-2014

Written 11-17-2014 

I hope things are going well for you. It's been fun seeing some of your photos on Facebook from your trip to Tahoe and hanging out with the family this last week. I'm glad to hear that everyone is having lots of fun. It was fun seeing some of the photos that you guys had on Facebook. Brother #2, I saw a few pictures of choir tour and it certainly looked like you had a lot of fun. I'm glad to hear you are doing well and keep up all the good things that you are doing.

Today is pretty rainy and still pretty cold. My companion and I walked around Georgetown in the rain and saw the Old Stone House which is the oldest standing building in DC. We also walked and enjoyed the view and saw some cool shops and a very old cemetery. Afterwards, we headed over to the Botanic Gardens. They has some natural carved models of some of the building, museums, and monuments around the National Mall. It was fun going through there again because it's been a while. My companion enjoyed the cacti the most inside the giant greenhouse. I enjoyed seeing all the weird fruits and flowers from some of the plants inside. Plus it was great to go into a greenhouse with desert and jungle ecosystems when it's 40 degrees outside and rainy.

Elder Larry S Kacher
A lot of trees have lost most of their leaves here but still many trees have their leaves in their fall colors. The weather out here is getting colder. Our highs are in the 40s now with lows in the 20s. No snow here yet but they keep sawing it will snow any day now. I'll have to wait and see but it's not too bad right now. I have had to dawn a bit of my winter gear while riding around in DC but so far so good.

Wednesday Elder Larry S Kacher (Second Quorum of the Seventy) came and visited our Mission. We had something similar to a Zone Conference with him almost all day. He spoke to us for the majority of the meeting and it went very well. Those who spoke gave some great talks and it was a wonderful day. In the evening my companion and I went over to the 11-year old's home and visited with him for a bit. He is doing great right now and excited that he was baptized.

Thursday as well we had a meeting with Elder Kacher and all the Branch, Ward, and Stake Councils in our mission. It was another great meeting and it really helped all of us get a better idea of how each council is supposed to function at its maximum.

Friday we had a surprise exchange with the Assistants to the President (APs) and one of them came out with my companion and I. We went and did a lot of GQs [General Questions] at Columbia Heights. Afterwards, we went and had 2 lessons with 2 of our less-active members and we invited them to church. They APs had to leave in the early afternoon but my companion and I continued to visit some of the people in our area.

Saturday one of our roommates was with us for the majority of the day. We all went to the Visitors' Center so I could have a short practice of "Nearer My God to Thee" that we would be performing on Sunday at the Visitors' Center for "Why I Believe" as the special musical number. We had an English class with one of our investigators and it went really well and we invited him to come to church this Sunday.

Sunday was the recently baptized 11 year old's confirmation. I confirmed him in Sacrament Meeting and he is now a member of the Church. He was super excited and it was so great to see him so happy. Two of the other Elders in our branch had a baptism yesterday as well and we stayed for the baptismal service. In the evening, we went to "Why I Believe" where the had Dennis Pitta, one of the football players for the Baltimore Ravens come and speak to us. He gave an excellent talk and the theater was overflowing. It was a great and very spiritual night. I was part of the special musical number and we sang "Nearer My God to Thee" again.

Dennis and Mataya Pitta. Dennis, played football for Brigham Young University and took two years off to serve a mission in the Dominican Republic. He currently plays for the Baltimore Ravens.
He and his wife, Mataya, a dancer, were married in 2008.

Nearer My God to Thee - Performed 11-9-20104 & 11-16-2014 at the 
Washington D.C. Visitors' Center

I hope that you have a great week and that all continues to go well. Have a lot of fun and I love you tons.

Dear Youngest Brother, It sounds like you had a really fun week. You're so lucky to be doing so many fun things. I'm glad to hear Nathaniel, that you likes garlic fries. My favorite fries out here are from Z-Burger. Their seasoned fries then dipped in Z-Sauce (fry sauce and seasoning) are super good. Mom would die though from the burger I get there. I like sautéed mushrooms, lettuce, grilled onions, green peppers, A-1 Sauce, and sometimes pickles on the burger. I've changed a little bit in my tastes now.

I hope you have a fun time with the cousins, grandma, and grandpa. Have a great week.

[Mom wrote him right back...Grandma W says, "He never even ate a burger at home!....Let alone all that stuff on it! I can't believe that kid! I hope he doesn't change when he gets home..." I say "ditto!" As far as changing when you get home, she means that you actually eat all these foods still. ;) Love, Mom]

[Braden's response:] If you think that's a big deal you missed me a ton of turkey this week with stuffing. Also the Ham and Cheese sandwiches with mayo, mustard, pickles, ketchup, tomatoes, pickles; Or the Chicken Salad Sandwiches I have every week. Let alone the pastas. Fried yuca with mild sauce and a little bit of the spicy is SUPER good.

Haha, he's [youngest brother] probably dying. I eat a lot out of things out here now.

Love, Elder Braden Dahl

Busy, Busy, Busy!...Written 11/10/2014

Written 11/10/2014
This week was really great and really busy. Monday we were packed before, during, and after P-Day. I had a practice at the Visitors' Center, we had to give a blessing, teach an English Class, visit the Elder's Quorum President, and visit a less active. Plus we had one of our roommates with us until the evening. It was a little stressful but a rather successful day.
Practicing our song at the Washington D.C. Visitors' Center
This last Tuesday, my companion and I met a less-active member that we had not previously known. We shared a short message with her and we hope that we will be able to visit with her more in the future. We also were able to meet with another less-active in the evening along with an investigator.

Wednesday we had our Zone Training Meeting which took up our morning. It was a really good meeting and I learned a lot of things and we had a ton of announcements as we are approaching Festival of Lights here which will be at the Washington D.C. Temple and Visitors' Center. We met with the 11-year old boy we've been teaching in the afternoon and worked on the final touches of the baptism with him. We invited his mother to attend the service and explained to the boy what was going to happen.

On Thursday we had another English Class we taught to one of our investigators and it went really well. He is from Peru but has lived in Spain for many years now.

Friday we had lunch as a district from some food a member gave us. After we had lunch together, my companion and I went out to go visit some of the people in our area. We visited a couple members and less-active members and then we had a lesson with one of our progressing investigators.

Saturday we went out 'finding' to try and find some more investigators. We found a few potentials and we hope that they will make the decision to progress in the gospel. We also had a lesson with a progressing investigator about the Book of Mormon. The lesson went really well and we helped them understand more about the Book of Mormon but now it is up to them to ask if the book is true.

Sunday was the Baptism.
As a baptism always is, it was a little stressful. But by the time the service started everything was in order. We had the program put together and most of the members branch attended the baptismal service. My companion baptized him and I will be confirming him next week. It was super great and a wonderful service. We were so excited that he made the decision to be baptized and is trying to live a good life. We are excited to see and hear about his further progress in the church. It is super awesome to have a baptism here and we are hoping that we can have a few more baptisms coming soon. Right after the baptismal service however, we had to bolt to the Visitors' Center so I could perform in the Night of Music and Inspiration. That also was a fun event with many wonderful performances. It was hard singing because they forgot to turn on the feedback mic, so we couldn't hear each other. We only sound good if we can hear each other but 'es la vida.' I think we're performing that song again next Sunday again at the Why I Believe Fireside, but I'm not sure. I'll send the music home in a send stuff home package I'm planning on getting out some time this month. [Mom asked how much we practiced before that night...] We practiced every Friday for a month and once on a Monday. We kinda practice on our own during our free time throughout the week. We also had a member bring his friend to church yesterday and we were able to meet with him and he was able to attend the baptism!

"Nearer My God to Thee" Night of Music & Inspiration Nov. 9, 2014 
Elders Ortega, Dahl, Rushforth, Hansen, Peterson, Fuller, Jamias,Sorensen, Fisher

I'm glad to hear that you had a good week. It seems like you've been really busy lately. I'm pretty sure I forgot to mention to you but last week during our transfer meeting we had the opportunity to watch Meet the Mormons at the Visitors' Center. It was a really good movie and I really liked it.

Today we went downtown. Our roommates and us biked around Jefferson Island (where the Jefferson Memorial is) and saw the nice fall colors along with the Potomac River. We also passed by the George Mason Memorial on the island. Then we went over to the Holocaust museum again. Afterwards, we went over to the Air and Space Museum. It was a nice day and fun to go see some of the fall sights.


Elder Braden Dahl

Capture the Vision

We are all in this together. With fellow ward members and missionaries, we plan and pray and help one another. Please keep the full-time missionaries in your thoughts and prayers. Trust them with your family and friends. The Lord trusts them and has called them to teach and bless those who seek Him.
Elder Neil L. Andersen

But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance…

John 14:26

The Lord invites us to discover, ponder, search, and evaluate, and thereby come to a personal knowledge of the truth.

Fall is Here...Written 11-3-2014

Written 11/3/2014

I hope that you've had a great week. Everything here has been going well but it's getting a lot colder here now. Autumn is in full swing and all the leaves have changed color and it's getting windy around here. I love you lots and have a great coming week.

This week has been quite the awesome one.
And it came to pass that we lived after the manner of happiness. (2 Nephi 5:27) Find out what makes us so happy we jump for joy and happiness! Visit or give me a message!
Y aconteció que vivimos de una manera feliz. (2 Nefi 5:27) Averiguar de porque nos saltamos de gozo y felicidad! Vaya a o mandarme un mensaje!
*Elder Braden Dahl is 4th from the right with the windbreaker jacket on.*
On Wednesday we had a lesson with our 11 year old investigator and his mother. My companion and I went in after a lot of prayers and a fast. We explained to her that he has already received all the lessons and that he already knows the principles of the gospel. We asked her to let him be baptized sooner than his 12th birthday in April and she agreed to our request. She told us that he can be baptized on the 9th of November. He was more than excited and so was his grandma who is a member. Since then we have began working on his baptismal program. We also had another lesson with one of our other investigators about coming to church that went really well.

Thursday was also an awesome day. A member gave us a referral and said of we had some extra time we could go and pass by that day. We had a little extra time and we decided to go over. We met two people there both are older ladies from Él Salvador. They are interested in learning about our church. We taught them the message of the Restoration and invited them to come to church. They were both great and one of the ladies came to church this last Sunday!

On Saturday we met a referral from one of our members who was born in Peru but lived for many years in Spain. He was interested in English Classes but also has a lot of interest in the Church and what our beliefs are. He is a nice guy who has a ton of potential. We also had a lesson with one of our long-time investigators and made a lot of progress figuring out what doe, of her doubts are.

Sunday we had 4 investigators attend church with us. It was an awesome time seeing all of them their for fast and testimony meeting. After Sacrament meeting our 11 year old investigator had his baptismal interview and passed! We are very hopeful and prayerful that his baptism will go off without a hitch.

Christmas? I'm not thinking about Christmas right now. I'm having a hard time thinking of anything I need or want. Some things I came up with after my 30 minutes of meditation are light gloves (I have a heavy deep winter pair and I have bike gloves without fingertips, it gets cold here but it's not always dawn the deep winter but you still want something covering all your hand), and I still can't think of anything...I can't just think of anything off the top of my head. I don't do well with these kind of questions. Give me a week and I'll try to think of something else.

To answer your other question; I get money each month for all our expenses (ie not for rent, utilities, public transportation fees, etc that are handled by the Mission Office)

Love, Elder Braden Dahl

Fall at the LDS Washington D.C. Temple
Elder Braden Dahl and his companion having fun taking pictures at the Washington D.C. Temple

Monday, November 17, 2014

Written 10-27-2014

I'm glad to hear from you this week. This P-Day we went to the Museum of Natural history and explored around it again seeing all the things they have there from mummies to diamonds and everything in between.

It was fun to go and see again. We also stopped by the Smithsonian Castle and saw the few things they have there again.

Being on bike isn't bad right now weather wise. It's getting cooler now but it's just light jacket weather some days. It's starting to rain a lot more again. The few trees in DC are changing colors now but it's easier to see autumn by the temple where it's less concrete jungle. Winter is supposed to be coming soon and rumor has it that it's supposed to be a really hard winter.
Smithsonian Castle
Hola mi querido madre (Hello my dear mother),
Tuesday was our Temple Trip. It was a great time there and I am continuing to bring some of the names of the people I have found.

We are still working with Family History for our members and we hope to see more success. Most Hispanics here don't find ancestors or records but instead put it stories and pictures for future generations due to the lack of records.

Wednesday we went to a less-active member's home for dinner with my district [see Q&A #2] and we seemed to eat our hearts out. It was also cool because we ate with real silver silver wear. It was a great time visiting her and we had a wonderful lesson with her about church attendance. We had a wonderful time seeing her.

This week we were able to give some service. On Friday we helped set up for another wedding reception for a couple hours at the end of the day. We only went for about 20 minutes of the reception because we were so busy Saturday though. Saturday, Elder Crosswhite and I changed a tire for a lady on the side of the road with a flat tire [see Q&A #1]. It was a cool little service to give and it definitely made her day.

Also, Saturday and Sunday we went with some members to the Hispanic Heritage Nights [see Q&A #3] and saw some dances and heard songs and talks from people form all over Latin America. Every single country in Latin America that speaks Spanish (+Brazil) was represented by at least one person there in the audience. They were some really fun nights to go and see the things performed. The first thing everyone from Gaithersburg asked me, and I quote "Are they feeding you in your area?!" (I wish I could say I was joking but no seriously, it wasn't hello, or a handshake, or whatever other salutation). I guess biking around the city has paid off. It's still lots of fun and I enjoy doing it.
End of Transfer Photo of Our District...Elder A at the podium and the rest of us pretending to be asleep or bored
at his dissertation...Mount Pleasant West District - October 2014
Braden is "asleep" 3rd from the left
As for transfers, I will be staying with Elder Crosswhite in Mount Pleasant West. So at least 6 more weeks or being here! I'm excited to see what the next transfer has in store for me.


Elder Braden Dahl

P.S. So we're going to the White House as a mission. [Mom had to send some info so he can apply to go. They have to supply their social security number and some info to the Secret Service to be able to go. Public tour requests must be submitted through each individual's Member of Congress. The approval process takes between 21 days to 6 months. So it's kind of a big deal!]

Since we know that Braden writes us on Mondays, sometimes, I can get right on when he writes us. I quickly shot him 3 questions to which he quickly replied...

Q & A:
#1 Mom: Have you ever changed a tire before? Did you come out clean like Jamie Hyneman or dirty like Adam Savage?

Elder Braden Dahl: No I haven't, I was like Jaime Hyneman. Elder Crosswhite more like Adam Savage.

#2 Mom: I can't believe the whole district went to eat at 1 persons home! Spanish food? Or what did you eat?
Elder Braden Dahl: Chilean food-some, beef, pork, lots of fruits, cheese and crackers, Jello, ice cream and a ton of other food. We were stuffed.

#3 Mom: What is Hispanic Heritage Night? Was it in Gaithersburg? And you saw members from your old area there?
Elder Braden Dahl: at the VC [Washington D.C. Temple Visitor's Center]

Monday, November 10, 2014

Fall, Rain, Wedding Reception, "Why I Believe" Fireside and Racing Around the National Mall...Written 10-20-2014

Written 10/20/2014

Fall is in full swing. Yesterday the high was 53 degrees here. The leaves are starting to turn here and everyone's worried because we are supposed to have a really hard winter coming. In the city it's harder to notice a lot of trees but you can definitely see some red, brown, yellow, and orange in the leaves.

This week has been really nice. Wednesday a huge storm came through here and there were tornado warnings and flood warnings for the beginning of the day. My companion and I got completely drenched while biking that day. I've never been able to pour water out of my shoes before. It was a bit of an adventure but nevertheless, the work will continue.

NOT Braden's actual shoes but
wanted to give you a visual...
Pouring water out of his shoes!
Friday we went to the Visitors' Center to practice for a group song I'm going to be in coming in November. The music is not terribly difficult but there are a lot of parts and I'm jumping all around on parts. It should sound pretty good though when it's performed. That evening we also went to the opening of the Young Single Adult Center and the Old Chapel. The senior couple in charge invited a bunch of missionaries to help out with the barbecue they were having. We helped out for a while and brought some of our members over there. They brought a few friends so now we have a couple referrals from it. We had to leave a little early though because we had an appointment later in the evening. 
The bride getting ready to
throw her bouquet.

Saturday was nice and busy for us. We went with the other Elders to a lunch appointment and then headed over to the church to open it up for a wedding reception. We then headed out and taught for a bit and then went over to a service for a member who needed some help moving some things. We then went over in the evening to the wedding reception. A family in our area was sealed and they wanted us to stop by. We went over for a little bit and congratulated them and got a lot of food. It was great knowing that they are sealed for time and all eternity with their son. We are very excited for them.
Celebrating with MARTINELLI'S Sparkling Cider
Elder C & Elder Dahl Celebrate 20 Lessons this week while at a wedding reception
for a family in their area, Mount Pleasant West.

On Sunday we went to church it was very nice. We went to "Why I Believe" at the Visitors' Center where 2 recent convert/former pastors of another faith spoke. They were very good speakers and they had great testimonies.
Deseret News: Former priest, pastor share their journey to Mormon faith

Zone Activity-10/20/2014
Sunrise Photos from Lincoln Memorial
The National Mall is really cool. You can spend years there and never see all of it. The Holocaust Museum is similar to LA but not identical. There are a lot of cool places to see but there is a lot of walking. From the Capitol to the Lincoln Memorial it's about 2 miles. Plus not everything is perfectly next to the National Mall lawn. A lot of people bike around or go on a Segway tour (but you can't go into the museums with a Segway and you can lock up your bike or use Capitol Bikeshare. It's an amazing place and I have the luck of being here for a while. Honestly, it's a super blast and I'm mentally making a list of the best places to go for the time we have.

Zone Activity-10/20/2014
Amazing Race @ The National Mall

I hope that you enjoyed your week. Today was our Zone Activity and we took Sunrise photos from the Lincoln Memorial. We then did an "Amazing Race" going around the memorials on the National Mall. Luckily I knew where all of the places were around the mall. It was really fun and a great activity. My companion and I then went down to the Ripley International Center, the Sackler Gallery, and The National Gallery of African Art which are all mostly underground and connected to one another. It was cool seeing some of the carved ivory tusks but nothing was a super wow. We went back to stop by the ghetto Chinese shops with our roommates and then we went and played soccer with some kids at the field by us. I hope you have a great week.

Love, Elder Braden Dahl
 Ripley Center
Ripley Center

Smithsonian National Museumof African Art
Freer / Sackler The Smithsonian's
Museums of Asian Art

Monday, October 13, 2014

Musical Number-I Believe in Christ (Creo en Cristo; ¡El es mi Rey!)

Written 10/13/2014
This week has been really nice. As always, my companion and I are trying to stay busy and work hard in our area. 

We spent a lot of time in the Stake Center in Kensington this week for music practice for me. Yesterday was "Night of Music and Inspiration" in Spanish at the Visitors' Center. I was in a group singing a 6-part, a cappella version of "I Believe in Christ" (of course in Spanish). All of us performing were from all over the mission and it was a hard time for us practicing together on a rather difficult piece of music. Of course, you have already heard the piece and hopefully it was ok. We had one investigator and four members go to the performance so we were excited for the attendance we brought out.

Wednesday we had the privilege of watching some of the lunar eclipse that happened here at 7am. We all went up on our roof at 6am and played some sports watching as the moon became a vivid red. The sun starting coming up so by peak eclipse time at 7 the moon was nigh impossible to see. It was still a fun morning for us.
Photo Credit: Kevin Ambrose

Photo Credit: Randy Taylor
Wednesday my companion and I also had exchanges and I was with Elder A for the day still in my area. We had a few appointments cancel on us but we still had a good number of lessons from going around finding people. We also were able to take a member out with us for a couple hours of the day; which really helped us have the spirit and teach powerfully.

We also had interviews with President Cooke on Saturday at the Stake Center. The interviews went well and were enjoyable.
Autumn Fields at Capitol Arboretum by Nichole Pretty 
I'm glad you enjoyed the photos that I took. It covers a wider timetable but they were certainly fun to take. Don't worry though because I'm still taking pictures and still enjoying seeing what the area has to offer. We are now approaching fall. Some trees are beginning to loose their vivid green color and start the changing of color. It also is starting to get colder again. I've had to put on a windbreaker a few times this week. It's also starting to rain more but not as hard as the summer thunderstorms.

Nature's Beauty with Sculpture by Patricia Vesey
The area we live in is North West. I'm not sure what area we are exactly in. Mount Pleasant's a little west of us and Columbia Height's is a little south of us. 

We still are teaching a lot and working hard. We are hoping to have another great week. I hope that you have a great week. I love you lots.

Love,Elder Braden Dahl

P.S. I think Dad asked me when transfers are; they're the 29th of October.


I'm glad to hear that everything is going well overall. I hope everything continues to go well and that nothing is too crazy.

Our area is going well. We have a few good investigators that are progressing. We are trying to find some more people to teach right now. The city is just a lot of hard work trying to keep members active and to get less-active members to come to church. There never seems to be a dull moment.

This Sunday was the Primary Program which was really nice. The primary here is nothing size wise compared to Roseville 2nd, they fit in about two rows on the side. It was still a really nice program and it was fun hearing them all sing. Our investigator actually was in the program and gave a short one minute talk. It was a good time and the classes afterwards were also great.

I guess you already know and have heard "Creo en Cristo", the song I sang last night at the Visitors' Center. The number was really fun to do but ridiculously difficult. It was the Eclipse version of the song and we translated it out. It wasn't great but it was the first time all of us singing together and we had 2 weeks to put it together. Of course during mike checks they balanced it all out and then during the performance the mike I was on was blaring and turned way up. It was still fun to perform and I enjoyed performing.

One thing I forgot to mention was today we went over to the ghetto Chinese shops on the east side of DC. It's not somewhere I'd ever even think of taking Mom but they have little shops packed with all kinds of stuff from knives to shoes, watches to toys. Everything is straight from China and the shop owners barely speak English. It's all super cheap things but cash only. It's pretty close to a metro stop. Around the metro is pretty nice but suddenly about a block and a half away it's pretty ghetto. I might bring you and maybe my oldest brother over there; just don't have too much on you. It was cool to go and check out. It's always cool seeing all the great diversity around here and seeing some of the interesting things around.

Love, Elder Braden Dahl