Tuesday, November 26, 2013

"Elder Cottam's Devil".....

 We've been waiting to hear about Tyson's sleep walking.  
He does it a lot.  
We told him to warn his companions about it, but he didn't.  
POOR Elder Fincher!! 

Hey Family and Friends!
  I hope everything is going well for you guys! My mission is so much fun. Spreading the Gospel is one of the most rewarding things you can do. I love bringing the Spirit to someone.  I love when I explain the Gospel to someone and it just makes sense!  Thanks for all the support! You guys build me up! I love all the letters/ emails!

  The missionary work is going great! It's a little slow right now, but that's how it is when you open an area. We are having some really good lessons with a couple people. I love it! I love sharing the Gospel. I'm having a blast!
  Day to day life as a missionary... hmmm.... I don't think we ever have a normal day. haha. But it's always fun. Elder Fincher and I have so much fun together.  We have so much in common. We've been talking about all the "new stuff" that has come out while he has been gone and it's pretty funny to hear what he knows.  I want to know about the things that I'm missing. But it doesn't matter, it's good for me to be away from the world for a couple years. Crazy world!

  So, last week was pretty fun. Elder Fincher had his 21st birthday on the 22nd. It's funny how old everyone is here. So many missionaries are in there 20's, and they just call me the baby of the family. haha. I love still being 18... I still got my life ahead of me... Just Kidding. Anyways, we had a blast for his birthday. We went to this Italian Grill in Marion and had an awesome lunch! My birthday present to him was buying lunch.  It's so hard to look around for real gifts while on my mission. So if you guys get gifts from me, I want to apologize for the poor quality of the gifts. haha. I hope my letters warm your heart and do the job. Then we went to dinner at a member's house and we had hamburgers with fries. I really am in Kentucky! The members were so sweet to us and they baked Elder Fincher a birthday cake! I also texted everyone in our district and told them to call him and scream and sing happy birthday.... haha!  He wasn't too happy about that, but I know that he felt good about everyone thinking about him. He was totally happy throughout the day and I felt good that I did my job.

  Now I have to tell you about my sleep walking... hahaha... I guess I do it more then I think. Most of the time I get up and I go around the house and Elder Fincher says that I walk funny and I mumble a lot! Some of the stories he tells me, I don't believe, but I don't have a lot of evidence against him. haha. So, this one time, I woke him up by yelling, "Why did ya take the last one?!" then I fell back to sleep and mumbled something. Then Elder Fincher said that he woke up and I wasn't in my bed... then he hears me come out of the bathroom and I started to walk towards him and he held out his hand cause he thought I would attack him or fall on him... haha, then I just stared at him and he told me that I had no "Light" in my face... whatever that means! So, I continued to stare at him and then I sat down on my bed and put my shoes on... haha... Crazy stuff. We both call it "Elder Cottam's Devil" haha... Another time he said that he woke up when he heard are front door close. I guess I locked the screen door and the normal door, then walked away in a weird walk... hahaha. I don't think that I left the house, I've never done that, but I don't know why I was looking outside.  That was the start of last week. The past couple days I've been sleeping "normal". I haven't been sleep walking. I haven't done it since I had a dream about President Monson. In my dream I was talking to him, then he gave me a hug, and then it kind of faded off... haha is that crazy or what?
  I hope you guys enjoyed this email. I know that I enjoyed writing it! I am having so much fun on my mission! Thanks for everything!! I love you guys so much! I miss you with all my heart!
-Love Elder Cottam

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Tornado warning......

Hey Family & Friends!
  It was an interesting week with a lot of craziness. haha. Our ward got super nervous for a tornado warning they received from the news. They also thought there would be an ice storm. haha. So, they canceled Church on Sunday and Elder Fincher an I had to stay inside for most of the day. It turned out to be nothing. There was a flash rain storm for a couple minutes and the sirens went off a couple times, but other than that, it wasn't that bad. I got to write a ton of letters to you guys, so it was a pretty productive day for me. haha. The areas around us got a little bit of the crazy tornadoes, but I haven't heard of anything too bad. But then again, I'm a missionary and I miss a lot of the news. haha. Oh well.
  Elder Fincher and I are doing really well together and we are making a lot of progress in Marion. We haven't been placing nearly the amount we placed in the first transfer, but we have been getting a lot of really good second visits.
  The branch gave us a really nice "Thanksgiving" dinner on Saturday. There were a lot of people there and we brought two investigators with us. They had a great time and I did as well. I'm not really sure why they did it so early, but I can't complain. haha.
  Well I'm sorry that I don't have a ton to talk about. I'm still loving the missionary life. It is so much fun. I love sharing the Gospel with the people of Marion. The work is really moving forward. I love and miss you guys so much! I'll see ya soon.
-Love Elder Cottam

 Elder Cottam met up with his companion and some of the sister missionaries from the MTC.

 Elder Cottam in the "Pimped" out van.

 Secret Handshake?!

This is Elder Cottam's new companion Elder Fincher!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

My mission is the best. Yep....that sums it up!

Hey Friends and Family!
  My mission is the best. Yep...that sums it up... haha... To start off, I want to say sorry for not writing any of you on MondayMonday was Veterans Day and the libraries were closed. I was going to write you on Tuesday, but we had a big Zone Conference. So...that's why I'm writing you TODAY. haha. I don't know what I'll write in this email because I have so much to share with you guys, but I'll try my best. (_Here we go_) (AKA Mike Dunning quote) (Probably the greatest convert in the world!!)
  Anyways, I just want everyone to know that I am having so much fun on my mission. I love every single second. The Spirit is amazing. I love teaching about the Spirit and I love the fact that I'm surrounded by so many wonderful missionaries. They have so much happiness in their life and they LOVE and LIVE the gospel each and everyday. They have taught me so much. This Gospel has brought me so much happiness. I LOVE and LIVE the gospel each and everyday. I LOVE IT! I am learning so much. These people in Kentucky and Tennessee are truly remarkable people. I love them with all my heart. Especially President and Sister Anderson. They have so much love. They have such strong faith and they are so funny! Especially President Anderson. haha. You CANNOT have a bad day when you're around these people. You just can't! haha. Sister Anderson is a sweetheart. Everyone loves her. It's impossible NOT to love her. Mission life is fantastic. Happiness comes with perspective. (Mormon 7:7) (Favorite Scripture!!)
  Last week we had transfers. Elder Fisher was called to Mayfield, Kentucky (not very far away). President Anderson said that he has been doing a fantastic job with training new missionaries. (I TOTALLY AGREE). So, President Anderson gave me Elder Fincher to do the rest of my "training" haha. I was sad that Elder Fisher had to go, but I am loving Elder Fincher. He is so funny and he is completely obedient. We are doing so well together and we learn from each other each and everyday.
Elder Fincher (I see what you did there President Anderson. haha.)
-From New Mexico
-Loves Dirt Bikes
-He turns 21 really soon. 
(By the way, Elder Fisher is older than Brady. When I found out, I was blown away!! haha.)
-About 6' 3"
-Wants to go into Massage Therapy or Food Nutrition (I don't know why, but my companions have similarities to Brady. haha.)
-Likes spicy food
-Loves movies
-Has helped me realize that you miss a lot of stuff when your gone. haha. I listed a bunch of popular movies that he has never seen. haha. I knew it was going to happen. I just don't know what I'm missing. haha.
-This is his last transfer!! In missionary terms: "I'm killing off my Step-Dad"
Missionary Terms (haha. I just had to explain)
-Dad (First Trainer) (Usually trains you for the full 12 weeks of "training")
-Step-Dad (Only if your Dad leaves you, like me...)
-Killing (If you are with someone and that transfer, they go home)
-Brother (If your Dad trains another.) (I have about 3 Brothers and 2 Step-Brothers. haha.)
-Step-Brother (If your Step-Dad trains another missionary)
-Cousin (Don't ASK!) (haha. Just Kidding.)
Don't you LOVE the missionary terms. haha. Yeah I know...this is the work of a bunch of bored missionaries. haha. You gotta love it!
  Anyways... I don't even know how that happened. Oh well... Elder Fincher is fantastic. Elder Fincher has helped me out with a lot of things. I was sick and tired of eating bad things and I wanted to learn more about healthier foods. So, Elder Fincher has helped me understand the basics of eating better. It's really easy too. Small and simple changes have really helped! I don't know how to describe the changes, but I know that it is helping a bunch! I will still eat dessert and stuff. haha. I couldn't live without that!
  This past week has been mainly transfers and getting Elder Fincher acquainted with Marion. Marion is so much fun. We are teaching a bunch of people and we have 2 really good progressing investigators. They are so close!! I am so happy with how the lessons have been going with them. They are reading the Book of Mormon, they are praying, and they are learning from the Spirit. One of our progressing investigators is coming to church. I love it!
  Well that's all for today. I will tell you more next week. Thanks for all the support! Thanks for all the love. Thanks for all the letters and emails. Please be patient with me in responding. I am trying my best. I love you guys. I miss you so much.
-Love Elder Cottam

Just a Note from Elder Cottam's Mom:  
As of November 11th, Elder Cottam has been out for 2 months!  
Only 22 more to go!

Saturday, November 9, 2013


Tyson had a very busy Monday, so we didn't get an email.  
We got a letter instead on Thursday.  Here it is.  
He had a very big change this week.  

Hey Family,
  Well, I am writing you guys a letter because we're having a transfer breakfast today.  I will still email you if I can, but I won't get much time today.  This week has been pretty crazy. I've been through one complete transfer.  There are 16 transfers total, so I only have to go through it 15 more times. Well, I have some important news to share with you before I talk about my week.  Since this is the end of the transfer, President  Anderson tells us if we are staying in the same area or going to a new one.  Well, Elder Fisher and I though we would stay together because I'm still training and we just opened Marion.  We were wrong... Elder Fisher is leaving me!  I am staying in Marion and getting a new trainer.  My new companion's name is Elder Fincher.  Very similar name.  haha.  He also looks similar. haha.  This will be his last transfer.  I hope I like him.  I've only heard good things about him.  I'm super excited. 

  Ethan's baptism was amazing!!  The spirit was so strong.  I could feel Heavenly Father's love for Ethan.  We both felt so much peace,  I was so grateful that he chose me to baptize him.  It meant the world to me.  Now it wasn't the perfect baptism (I had to shove him completely under), but the Holy Ghost testified of the truth.  I wish you guys could of been there.  But I felt your love and prayers. 

  For the past 2 weeks, Elder Fisher and I have been church "hopping".  We went to 3 different churches.  We have been going to their Bible Study.  We want to try to gain a friendship with them.  We didn't want them to feel like we hated them.  The bible studies have been different, but I am learning more about the bible.  I'm also seeing why we can't have "modern English/modern language" bibles.  It creates confusion between which translation is correct.  The vocabulary is so important.  Making sure we have the correct translation is so important.  I have found it very interesting, while I've been coming to bible studies, how many different copies or translations of the bible they have throughout their church.  I don't mean to mock or disagree with other churches.  I love them.  They are good people and they truly love Christ.  I love hearing their testimonies. 

  Regular missionary life.  What is regular missionary life?  haha.  Each day is a miracle and exciting in it's own way.  I love being a missionary.  I love the gospel.  I love being a servant of the Lord.   I love wearing the missionary name tag.  Each night we plan out the next day and I've realize every single day is different but unique. 

Subject Change- President and Sister Anderson are amazing! They are so nice to us.  They do so much for us.  I feel their love everyday.  They would do anything for us.  President Anderson is so funny.  He will jump into any game we are playing.  He tells the best jokes.  We always have the best time when we are around them. 

  For p-day today we played Frisbee with a ward member at Cadiz park.  So much fun!  We also went to an antique shop.  So fun.  We did this because we have an Elder who is leaving today.  :( 

  Well, I've got to go.  I miss you guys and love you so much.  Thank you for all the letters, email, and packages.  I love them so much.  Especially the packages.  I hope you enjoyed this crazy letter of mine. haha.  Love you and miss you. Thanks for everything. 

Love always.
Elder Cottam

Some random pictures.  
That is not Tyson's new companion.  That is the Elder that is going home.