Elder Dees w/Mission President-Pres. Cannon and his wife and Elder Dees first companion-Elder Kurtz

Elder Dees w/Mission President-Pres. Cannon and his wife and Elder Dees first companion-Elder Kurtz
Elder Dees w/President and Sister Cannon and first trainer / companion, Elder Kurtz

Monday, February 27, 2012

How Much You Wanna Bet I Can Throw A Football Over Them Mountains?

Here are the emails from the boys.  I'm proud of them.  


Hello Family and friends,
It’s Nick Dees and the weekly top Forty events from this week. Okay I don’t really have 40 things worth mentioning happen but I got quite a few.
Well this week went by really fast just as all the others have. Did a ton of teaching and stayed super busy and did a ton of service. This week we went again and picked up the bull calves (won't be doing that any more)  but I got kicked in the cheek by one when I was putting him up in the top of the trailer.  No bruise though! Also one of the mama hephers saw me picking up her calf and started freaking out and looked like she was ready to charge. I got quite a kick out of it ^___^. Chopped and split a ton of wood for an elderly man (who was away this week) so he wouldn’t have to climb the wood pile and split it himself. Also still paying for drinking so much otai (Oh-tie). Tongans know how to make good food but they also know how to clean out your system (; . We had Stake Conference yesterday and we had a member of the 70 come and it was really good. We got our new Stake President and our old one got his call to be a Mission President in the Provo Utah Mission. Other than that we have some investigators who we feel are really close to baptism and really hope they are before I leave the area ( if I get transferred ever ). Also this Thursday I go back to fruitland to get my tooth checked out to see if its time to put the post in yet. That’s all I can really think of.  Hope everyone back in FL is doing good. Take care!

Email conversation:
Elder Nicholas Dees:  That same guy said yeah we will be done by three because we had stuff to do, we didn’t get home until 6:40 and had dinner at 7. Dinner lived on a private street so the GPS didn’t know where to go so we got "directions" and by time we followed them we ended up in some guys crop field.  O.o whoops haha, that day we were so ticked but it happens. SD card-copy them to my little netbook there is PLENTY of space on there. I need the cards back soon. I'm about to fill this one up I have now. 

and the Otai is mango juice, shredded mango, coconut and other fruits all mixed together and fruit is a natural laxitive and in large amounts it cleans you out to da max!

Mom:  So is the guy a member or non-member that you all help out w.the bulls?

You are on a mission dear.  Learn to mature--prepare now and set aside the childish ways and then things will work great for you.  Learn from strong families out there.  I love you and I hope you know that.  I'll get the sd cards out soon  :)  I need a good pic of you, full length w/tag on for the map board in your room.  I need you to be a bit far off---you know, not to big or whatever. Do some of both.  I know your dad got you some sweaters (v-neck) that he was going to tell you about but he has been on the phone w/business.

Elder Nicholas Dees:  No, he is a recent convert that I baptized.  Coming out here I’m still the same person. I still have the spirit with me. I don’t let that stuff distract me. I know why I’m out here. To WORK and that’s what I do.
Email from Mom:

Hi Elder Dees'!

Forgive me but this will be a bit short.

I enjoy getting to hear from you two.  I'd love to hear you bear your testimonies sometime.  How are the studies coming?  Please use this time, daily, to enrich your minds with the effects of the atonement and restoration of the gospel.  That is the only way to teach.

This week has once again flown by.  Your dad has been very busy w/work and I guess the cleans are about to start full force.  I'm not ready but that doesn't count because it's that time of the year (spring break season). 

Your cousin Elder Bennett Maxwell got his reassignment till his visa is cleared to go to his Mexico Tijuana Mission. He's so excited about his mission.  Here is an excerpt of his email: "Ha I'm sure mom already told everyone, but I got temporarily reassigned to Colorado Springs! I'm way excited! Blake's house looks like its right outside the boundaries! Its a big mission and includes Oklahoma and a lot of Kansas too. So basically I prepared to go to one of the hottest cities in the world and I'm going to Colorado in the winter... Ha I will be needing some things like gloves, ear muffs or beanie, scarf, etc." 

We have a lot to do here at the house.  
What did you want me to do w/the sd cards?  I can't load one of them due to lack of room on the computer.  I would love some regular pictures of you.  In suit especially.     

The Voyles will be leaving at the end of this week.  Madison will be pretty sad for a while.

We have been getting a few new families in the ward recently.  We have grown!  I need to do missionary work.  ANY suggestions?  

Brother Shaun Roedels parents are here for a visit.  They are the members you met out there Nicholas. 

How are the investigators coming along?  Elder John Dees-how is the Zone Leader coming along?  Our missionaries here work hard.  They are good boys.  

I see you are on Elder John Dees.  

I'll be watching for you too Elder Nicholas Dees.

I love you.  We pray for you both. 

I love our Savior Jesus Christ and need to study and read more to so that I can become a better person.  

Relief Society is coming along ok.  Lots of sisters in the ward.  Some returning from being less-active so that is always a joy to see!!!!

Love,  Your mother!! --- who loves you both!!!!

Monday, February 20, 2012


Email from Elder Nicholas Dees:   
Feb 20, 2012 - 6:14 PM
ELDER NICHOLAS DEES - Basketball on P'day.

No caption needed.

Elder Nicholas Dees:  Hello

Dad:  Dear Elder Nicholas Dees,  Well it's about time, lol.   What's going on?  

Elder Nicholas Dees:  hey not much just been hard to find a members home to email at and no places are open since its Presidents Day.

Dad:  I was just reviewing my Seminary Lesson for tomorrow before it gets too late.  There's so much to prepare each day. Wow, I don't know how Sister Hewett did it, or any of the Seminary Teachers.  It's a great calling, but also very demanding.  

What did you all do today?  John's P’day is tomorrow, due to the holiday.

Elder Nicholas Dees:  Everything is going pretty good out here. We went and played football today and ate at a tongan families house for lunch.

Dad: NO INJURIES while playing football?  AMAZING !!!!  We've had a lot of rain and more tomorrow through Thursday.  But warm weather.  72 degrees.  NICE.

It's not even been a Winter here.  

Elder Nicholas Dees:  no injuries! It snowed a little today but didn’t stick sadly,  -_____- thanks a ton for the package though! 

Dad:  You're welcome for the package.  We love you and are so glad that you are serving a mission.  It's the best thing you could be doing with your time right now.  Besides, what's everyone else doing, nothing!  Maybe some school and work, but really, what are they doing?  Anyway, what size shoe did you end up buying?  

Elder Nicholas Dees:  I got a size 11. I like how they feel so I don’t need anymore at the moment.

Weekly email from mom: 
Hi Son(s),

Weeks are rolling along.  It's nearing the end of February and I haven't completed things I was striving for!!  aaarrrrrhhhh.  How is the month of February for you two?  You do know there is only 29 days in this month.  Well actually this year has that extra day--Leap Day (29th).  So if anyone says they want to get baptized on FEB 30th---don't fall for it.  Hahaha.  

Yesterday morning I took Uncle Glade and Cousin Wade to the airport.  We were so tired.  We had an eating getting together at moms on Saturday around 6:30 and visited for a while and then Glade, Wade, Uncle Gary-(William) and I worked all through the night up on Aunt Pat's home in Bristol.  Worked till about 6 - 6:30 am Eastern, went to nap at mom's till 9:30 am then off to PC for the airport. Kinda sluggish today.  However, I still made it to Relief Society. Wade had been renting the house to the missionaries.  Silly boys had put holes in the walls.  You two better not be doing/destroying property that way!!!!....  Everyone has made it home and gotta catch up on the sleep.  

I visited w/a Sister H. after Relief Society yesterday.  She is a recent convert.  She shared her conversion story and it was most interesting how she has various relatives that are preachers yet she never felt that is where she wanted to be baptized.  Needless to say her relatives are disappointed in her choice but she keeps the faith. Keep sharing the gospel boys.  There are those who are LOOKING / SEARCHING for the truth.  Don't give up on mankind.  We as humans have deity in us and we long to know our parents - earthly and heavenly.  Keep knocking on doors.

Sister M. Smith (redhead) is on her mission in Japan.  This is a part of her letter to home.  I think you will enjoy it.
"This week was amazing.... and then more amazing! I wish I could describe all of the miracles I am seeing! I will start with maybe one of my favorite ones of my mission so far. We went to go visit an elderly woman who has some interest in learning about church. It was cold and rainy and dark and Ishiyama Shimai and I were unquestionably exhausted. But we knew that we needed to go visit her. When we got there, her granddaughter that she is taking care of while her mom is away answered the door. Her granddaughter is about 14. (for church buffs, I instantly thought of Joseph Smith) She said her grandmother was busy cooking dinner and couldnt answer. my heart sank. I was standing in a cold dark doorway in the middle of Japan feeling as if there might be no reason to be here. But I remembered how my companion and I both felt very strongly that we should be there, but what for? The young girl instantly started asking us questions about why we wanted to see her grandma. She nearly jumped when I started talking in Japanese to her. We explained about how we are missionaries and our purpose. She looked more shocked. She almost started crying. I was really confused and Ishiyama Shimai asked if she was okay. Then she goes into a bit of story about how she used to go to a church with her friend but for one reason or another had to stop. We invited her to come to our English Class and she got permission from her grandma. We showed her the church building. It was amazing how much she knows. She has come to activities and has grown really attached to us and the young women. I feel like she is my little sister. She is full of energy and loves to talk about everything she is thinking. I love her so much. It is really cool. I have never had a little sister before."

How are you all doing?  How are the companionships working out?  You do write in your journals don't you?  Uncle Glade and Gary just mentioned the other night that they hope they can find their mission stuff somewhere at Grandma's.  They have been off their missions for probably 20 yrs or so and they still have wonderful memories of sharing the gospel.   Enjoy your missions.  Work hard so you have no regrets.  Set the playing aside and be mature in the work you are called to do.  

My visiting sisters came by this morning and Sister Hewett had made me a copy of The Family Proclamation w/you children on it.  I LOVE IT.  Gotta find a frame for it.  I attached it so you could see it.  

Elder Bennett Maxwell sounds great.  He said the language (Spanish) is coming along really well.  However, he is due to leave the MTC but they have been told that they aren't allowed into Mexico at this time so they will be reassigned.  He said he is to receive another "call" next Thursday.  He's kinda excited.

Aunt Gina says Elder Ryan Snyder is doing well.  I still haven't written him.

Elder Nicholas Dees:

Yes, Uncle Glade knew Elder Barnes well.
Uncle Glade has a flipper too!  When he showed me I told him his nephew, Nicholas, is going to love it!  :)
We got your pkg.  THANKS.  It was nice to see pics. of you and your area and comps.   I haven't looked at one of the sd cards because I don't have room on this computer or something like that.  I'll try again. Is that a full court basketball court?  Did you want me to erase the cards or save these and get you some new cards?  Just wondering.  Real photographers say to just buy new cards and keep the old ones for safe keeping.  Let me know what you want to do.
Thanks for the steps to a happier family.  I wish we could do it.  :(
Madison seems to like the Roxy belt.  Of course I like the chocolates.  Just don't need them.  :(  
The chicken---kinda funny.  At least it will match w/his screaming monkey:). 
Cousin Wade gave you an old tie.  I'll have it cleaned and send it out some time. 
dddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddd----oops,i fell asleep ;)

Pretty neat about you getting to see Elder M. Russell Ballard.  Hope you learned some things so that the meeting was successful!

Did you get your pkg w/tie holders, $10, etc.????

I loved the pics of you on the tractor.  Thank the members who made those for you.  I love them.  Is that a skinny tie you had on and are those allowed?

Keep the rules son.

Elder John Dees:  

Well---what's the BYU verdict?  Maggie McKinney (Kevin McCoys sister-in-law) got into Provo and Sue Clements grandson got into Provo.  After his mom told me he had a 28 on his ACT / SAT I can see why he got in! Anyway- I hope you did.....but if you didn't life will be ok.  I'm really pulling for you.  PS.  Uncle Glade just told me last night that Merinda did not get into BYU-Provo but did get into BYU-I.  I can't believe it!  She's pretty book smart so that blows my mind.  

Did you get your small pkg yet.  Nothing in it really ---except maybe $10.  not much but get a little something.

I saw Elder Fordham's mom FB the other day.  She said Elder Fordham broke his hand last p'day but after a few days of consultation it doesn't seem he will need surgery.  Yeah!  She said he has had four injurys so far, three due to basketball on p'days and the other playing a kids game on a p-day!  She said he is in the Coeur d'Alene, Idaho area training a new missionary right now.  

I had been needing to mail a pkg to Sis J Ranes and finally called to get a current address but only left a message.  She finally called me back but just had to leave a message.  She said she has/had the flu.   I see Patrick get on FB every blue moon but I just tell him hi or something.  
Let her know we love her.  I'll get that pkg off tomorrow. 

Guess I'll close.

I pray constantly for you two and your comps and all missionaries.  Be true to the faith.  I love you both.  Say your prayers.


Monday, February 13, 2012


February 13, 2012 11:42:00 AM

Humpty Dumpty

Lets just say it really hasn’t been my week haha. I seemed to have hit my head a lot but it did me no good considering I feel even more stupid since I did it so much! Didn’t get a lot of teaching done due to tons of service. We went and picked up bull calves again and I almost got kicked in the mouth by one. We were stopping by a member’s house and one of their dogs escaped. I went and caught him and was trying to pull him back, the stupid thing was so strong it pulled me right into this iron bar so my head has a HUGE lump in it now and I hit my head on their cages numerous times and to top it all off, my favorite suit got a small rip on the jacket and I stepped in dog crap. I was ready to strangle some hounds! Other than that we got to see M Russell Ballard on Saturday! He came and talked to the entire mission and I got to see some of my favorite comps from the MTC.  It was awesome! And that’s pretty much it!

Mom:  Hi Son, I just sent the big email.  Is your head ok????  So now you have a rip in your suit?  Take a pic. Do you need to take it to a cleaners and have it fixed???  OH SO GLAD you did not get kicked in the mouth!!!!  We don't need that son.  You don't need that either--it would be painful.

What a great event to get to hear Elder M Russell Ballard and get to see some of your MTC comps.  I'm thrilled you got to have that experience.....and that you seemed to enjoy it.

When you say service be more specific.  Are you all having a lot of snow?

Elder Nicholas Dees:  We haven’t had snow in forever I’m pretty bummed ):

Can you send my red vans, my other shoes got trashed, my ray ban sunglasses, they are in the top drawer of my night stand in a case, if not check the bottom drawer.  (: . Also send me those tie racks and send something for Elder Valk as well. His mom always sends me stuff in his packages, so send a nice tie or something for him. Also when you see Uncle Glade ask him about Elder Barnes.  He was in my residence at the MTC and his first transfer was in Declo and he said he went over there a ton and really liked Uncle Glade!

Mom:  I will send Elder Valk something.   Do you have any pics to send?   I'll ask Uncle Glade about Elder Barnes.  Did you already tell me where Elder Valk is from?  Are the red vans appropriate?  Answer my other questions in the other email please.  :)

Elder Nicholas Dees:  Elder Valk is from Oakdale, California. His mom just sends small things like candy so just do the same with him. Also send me some cash. Some places charge like 3 bucks if you don’t have cash due to it being out in the middle of nowhere. 

Mom:  I found your glasses and red vans. 

What is the plan about a bike?

Don't you get some cash from your monthly allotment?

Elder Nicholas Dees:  

 No, we get a credit card and there isn’t an atm around, but I still don’t need a bike just yet but I didn’t know john still had plans for it and I will need one soon I’m sure.

Mom: ok so no rush on the bike?  

Elder Nicholas Dees:  Send my shoes, sunglasses, tie racks, my blue and pink Breathe Carolina shirt and money and candy. Bike is no issue right now. And anything else you can think of that I might need!
Mom:  ok honey, I'll get that stuff sent off today.  I'll go see if I can find that t-shirt.  Do you have a way to send me a pic of you right now.  I'd love to see a pic of you!  :)  Will you be sending the sd card soon?  Does it have some of the bulls pictures on it?
I do so very love you Elder Nicholas Dees.  :)

Love, Mom

Elder Nicholas Dees:  yeah I’m mailing the memory card home tomorrow. I have a package to send home.

Mom:  Hi son---I just remembered--I wanted to thank you for changing your mormon.org profile.  It is more enjoyable to read.
Mom.  Ps.  I share it w/others.

Elder Nicholas Dees:  ok thanks, gotta go - bye!

********    ***********     ***********

Email from Mom:Mon.

Hi Sons!

How are you both?  I enjoy reading your emails over and over.  You delight me w/your missionary work in your areas.  We have had a recent baptism in our ward.  Shirley H has really enjoyed learning about the gospel.  She is friends w/Bro. Williams who is a fairly recent convert of maybe a couple of years now but he loves sharing the gospel.  The sister missionaries here announced in Relief Society yesterday that if we come across anyone interested in the church that they would do a "church tour" w/them.  I told one of the sisters that you do those as well.  This is transfer time for our missionaries.  I think the sisters will stay put and one of the elders will be transferred and we will get in a new "greenie" from the MTC.  Do you both remember those days? heehee   We have the Elders coming for supper on Thursday.  Probably will do chicken parmeissan w/noodles, broccoli and salad and Chocolate Dessert/pie..  We'll see. 

We will have a missionary coming home next week (Wed).  An Elder Tolbert that no one has met because his family moved here while he was out on his mission.

Your dad stays busy w/phone calls/reservations.  People still go on vacations so that is nice.  Lucky them.  

Elder Nicholas Dees:

I'd love to hear more from you via email.  Your emails are short and even shorter after I edit them..  I suppose with Elder Anderson gone though you have been more at ease w/the teaching and finding process.  Are you reading and studying so you can teach well?  Do you have your personal prayers to work through the gospel learning?  I have full confidence in your abilities to learn about the church and teachings of Jesus Christ.  It will serve you well to use this time to study and teach what you know. 

How are your investigators coming along?  How is Elder Valk doing?

As you know/guessed I haven't sent the pkg...been extremely lazy but will send it for sure TODAY, so do you need anything in particular?????  I haven't found any fun ties yet either.  If you have sent the sd card/pkg I haven't received it either.  :(  I long for some pictures of you and those you are teaching/baptizing. 

I hope you are keeping the rules. 

Uncle Glade and cousin Wade Gause flew down Saturday to work on Aunt Pats home there in Bristol.  They will be here for a week.

The car lights may have just had water in the lines somewhere. or there is a short in the switch where I turn them on.  Hope we can figure it out soon.  I really need to clean the car.  Do you keep your mission car clean on the inside and out?  

So, about a bike.  We won't be able to talk to John till later.  He doesn't get on till after you.  I'm thinking he is going to want to keep his bike (for home and college) so the best thing to do is to just get you a bike out there.  That way you can get what you want, what fits and we don't have to pay shipping.  Surely there is somewhere in Boise to get one.  What do you think?  When you get one, go ahead and get all the equipment....safety lights, good, good helmet, water cage, extra tube...whatever you will need.  That way it's just one final cost.  Let me know what you think!!!

Elder John Dees:

So, I hope the baptism is still on the go for the 18th.  How are the other investigators coming along?  Pretty neat that you mentioned that 6 investigators showed up last week!  You haven't had any signs of "lice" have you?  Anytime someone mentions it it makes my head itch as well-----like just now.  scratch, scratch, scratch.

We went to Seaside Yard sale and didn't get a thing.  Madison and Gabi went and they go a few new clothes from the Dejavue place.  It was cold but doable.  We have finally had a little cold snap.  I doubt it will last to long.

I thought I'd try to lose some weight but have gained.  I'm hopeless.  Nicholas said he is trimming up---exercising and getting the MTC weight off. 

As you probably read in Nicholas's email stuff he was wondering if you needed your bike anymore---since you are a Zone Leader.  He was wanting to see if you would have it shipped to him.  Are you wanting to keep your bike?  If so, we can have him (Nicholas) pick up a bike there in his area.  I'll even get on Craigslist in a minute and see what they have to offer in his area.

I see Elder Nicholas Dees just got on.  

Love to you both.


Monday, February 6, 2012


2/6/12  11:39 AM
Heard from our boys/Elders today.  Things are good.  Thanks for your prayers and support and letters.  It's been a while since I've included their mailing addresses for those who want to drop a note so see below.

DEER PARK, WA  99006


Email from Elder Nicholas Dees:


Staying here in Marsing and Homedale again! 6 month area! Everything is already going great.  The other (third) companion got sent to Jerome so now it is just back to me and my bro Elder Valk. Things are already looking promising this transfer. We got about 8 referrals yesterday when people found out Valk and I were staying together.  I can't believe that at the end of this transfer I will have been out 6 months! It honestly feels like home there at the Russell’s house. Joe L. took us out to eat at Golden Coral to celebrate me staying again and he said we will be going out again at the end of this next transfer! That’s all that’s new here!

Email conversation between Elder Nicholas Dees and mom:
Mom:  Hi son,
Loved your email.  I guess you are working hard.  I'm sorry the other Elder was difficult. Make sure you don't be a comp like that.  I'd sure love pictures of you and Elder Valk and well just pictures in general.  Still haven't received a jump drive w/pics. ........  still waiting :)
Wow that is wonderful that you all have 8 new referrals.  Our missionaries here would luv that!!!
When you can, write me more of what you do, and the feelings you feel to be a missionary.  HOWEVER I am thrilled you seem to love your mission and that your are sharing the gospel so that is WONDERFUL NEWS!!!!
Is there anything you need?  I'll be sending the pkg this week w/tie rack.
People always ask how you boys are doing.  I'm thrilled to get to say,  WONDERFUL!!!!
I love you,
Oh the dims on the car have quit working   Any suggestions?
Love, Mom

Elder N Dees:  the low beams? On the car get Michael to look at them and check all the connections.  Are you sure you didn't just fail to flip the switch all the way?  If you can't figure it out, pull the bumper off and put on the old headlights (:

Mom:  Well , your dad said he is discussing the low beam situation w/you so I won't continue w/that. 
I worked at the election polls last Tuesday.  Worked by a guy and after small conversation he asked me if I was Mormon.  I said yes.  He said he was Mormon too. He joined when he was 25.   He just hasn't been active about 40 yrs. He was married in the Wash DC Temple. Been to all the church history sites.  At some point has divorced and has since remarried someone else.  But interestingly enough he still says he is Mormon in his heart.  Who knows, maybe he'll return one day.  He mentioned to me that it is so great that I have two boys out on missions.  So thanks for serving and do it worthily.  
Still--is there anything you need me to send?  I was going to send something “Valentiney”.
Please answer these questions!
I think about you and pray for you many times a day.
How is your tooth coming along?  What is the next step?
Are you good w/staying in that area again?
Love, mom

Elder N Dees:  Yeah me and dad are discussing low beams siteeeeation.  For V-day package how about money, ties (funny and Serious) and tie racks (: I’ll be mailing a package home with stuff including memory card here pretty soon so don't worry. My title is referring to a tv show that in an episode made fun of star wars when Luke drinks this blue drink, they jokingly call it blue milk haha

Mom:  oh great--I'll look forward to the pkg.  :)
Are ya'll dealing w/snow?  Be so careful.
The weather here is so beautiful.
You should write a letter to the ward.

Elder N Dees:  yeah we have had some snow, this one member wants to take me and Elder Valk sledding in McCall.
Also the first time I drove in snow I slid through about 5 stop signs because I wasn’t used to it haha

Mom:  oh honey---not haha---you have to RESPECT the dangerous ice and snow.  It is not a movie or play thing!!!  Nicholas, Elder Dees, please be careful.  please.
The sledding can be fun but make sure you do not do it around trees or other items.  Things can go bad real quick.  

Elder N Dees:  I know it was on back roads I was practicing and getting the feel for it before I went out on the real roads and it would be her family (husband, son and her) that’s where Ill be burning my tie at 6 months.  They are such a tight family! Also I have 2 other elders from my mtc district here with me so we will burn them together!

Mom:  oh, aren't ya'll discouraged from burning ties, shirts, etc.?
If you like that "tight" family then see what makes it work and commit to be like that so you can have a wonderful family.  It can really happen.  I so long for that.  It can happen as you see w/that family!
I love you.

Elder N Dees:  This one lady is annoying me so gotta go.  She is crazy and she is here every Monday!!!!!!!! AGGGGGHHHHHH