Monday has quickly become our favorite day of the week as that is the day we get an email from Ethan! For his entire mission thus far, since he's been in Texas, his emails have arrived anywhere between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m., so I have that in the back of my mind as I go throughout the day. It's always SO great to hear from him and hear how he's doing! And sometimes receive photos as well. So, today, when we hadn't heard from Ethan by about 2 p.m., that was curious. Then 3 p.m. passed, then 4 p.m. passed...moving a little past "curious" to "concerning" (to this mom, anyway). A little bit after 5 p.m., we finally heard from him! His companion had been pretty sick all day and Ethan was working with the mission office on getting him to the doctor, helping to take care of him, etc., thus the delay. (We hope all is going well!) In his email, Ethan shared the news that he's being transferred -- moving tomorrow, actually. He's going to be living and working in Flour Bluff, Texas, in the Corpus Christi area. It's about three hours from where he's been serving in McAllen since July 15th. He's been in the same area and ward for the past six months, and it will be difficult for him to leave the people he's come to love. This is part of the life of an LDS Missionary. New adventures and experiences await, and new people to love and serve! How fitting for the new year. He said he's really excited that he'll still be in a bike area: "YES -- bike areas are the best, I love them -- and it helps me not blow up from the food, ha-ha!" Lots of great cooks in the Texas McAllen Mission who are so kind to feed the missionaries!
Here's a map of where Elder Christiansen will be living and working now -- Flour Bluff is just south of the Naval Station:
Here's Ethan's letter, December 30, 2013 -- he's referring to our Christmas skype call (so awesome!); a visit after Christmas from our dear friends, the Biens, from West Lafayette; and the MIT: Mormon Invitational Tournament (basketball), that Andrew played in over the holidays:
December 30, 2013
Yea it was super awesome talking to y’all too! Sorry I'm on so late; Elder Merica has been super sick so I've been talking to Sister Maluenda all day getting him to the doctor and stuff. Also I got the call on Sunday morning and I am getting transferred up to Corpus Christi! I can't believe it. I've been about 10 minutes away from Mexico for six months, and now I’m going to almost the top of the mission! It was sad saying goodbye to all the members I have gotten close to, but it's just a part of the mission. My new area is called Flour Bluff and I heard it's on an island, but that might not be true. I have no idea. I’m excited though! Other than that nothing really too big has happened this week. We don't have a lot of time to email today. On New Year’s Eve we all come in at 6 p.m. and we are going to be watching either Mulan or Finding Nemo, so I’m way excited for that! Oh, and I saw that play at a pizza place were Auburn beat Alabama on the field goal attempt…what!?!...I couldn't believe what I was seeing, that was crazy! But it's all good. That's cool about the frijoles (ha-ha that's beans in Spanish and I’m talking about the Biens). That's cool about the MIT, too. I love you guys so much family!