Tuesday, July 30, 2013

First Week in the Mission Field!


 So I actually only have like 30-40 minutes to email, which means that I can't even read all of your emails and that means I am writing this email before I read any because I'm worried I'm not gonna have enough time to even send out an email!!! SO STRESSFUL. oh and real quick all the stuff you sent to the mission home/office I dont get that until this Thursday so that will be nice.  
Well family i've been in Netherlands for about 5 days now and well its been....... well lets just say I'm glad I'm not back on day 1. I have been called to work in the Rotterdam South area. My trainer is Elder Alfaro, he is mexican. He speaks 4 langauges and English is his worst language, lucky me right.. But yea its been a new experience that is for sure. Rotterdam is known as the Ghetto of Netherlands, which it definitely is. SUPER SUPER GHETTO as in nothing like the movie "The Best Two Years".  My trainer has never served here sooo we are always lost and since we are both new we dont know a single person here. oooh and did I metion that they are some of the most stubborn people i've ever met? Well yah they are. hahah so lets just say I'm getting extremely humbled right now. I think the dogs here speak better Dutch then me, which is not a good thing, and I have found myself on several occasions completely lost with just about every single thing I am doing. We have 0 investigators, 0 potential investigators, and we have taught 0 lessons... soo yea Europe is AWESOME.
Yea so how are you guys? (still havent read any of your emails yet and probably wont be able to until next week....awesome.)
hahha sorry for the bummer news its just been rough thats for sure. The lord is really humbling me and putting me in my place I guess. I will tell you all that I had my first rainstorm here on thursday and we got stuck in the rain for about two and a half hours... and me being a newbi didnt have my rain jacket and I was in a shortsleeve shirt... yah I looked like I just got out of a swimming pool.
Sorry for such a short email! I love you guys though. Seriously fam I miss you guys like crazy and love you guys so much. I am always thinking about you and praying for you guys. Not a minute goes by in which I'm not thinkin about little Henry or little Nora and all of you. I hope you all can feel my prayers. love you guys.
-Elder Cook
Ps: my new address is:

                      Elder Cook
                      Plotinusstraat #48
                      3076 NS Rotterdam
I would love some letters!

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Finally Days in the ZOO Week 6

 Well I'm officially done with the ZOO as of about 2 hours ago! We just got out of our last 10 hour class session and what an incredible experience it was. No more sitting in class, no more fake investigators, and NO MORE ZOO FOOD! (okay I still have one more day of food blahhhhhh). But yea fam I am practically D.O.N.E. -that spells done. FINALLLLLLLYYY!
     With all jokes set aside though, the MTC was a great experience. It's honestly amazing just how strong the spirit is here -if any of you have thought about it.... Gods army is here. This is where his army holds its ground, ITS LIKE THE PEARL HARBOR OF THE PACIFIC OCEAN! crazzzzyyyyyy. The things I have learned here are going to be so beneficial out in the field, seriously everything that I have learned here/ the person I have already became is so humbling. The dutch I have picked up the past 6 weeks is comparable to going through a whole football season worth of experience I feel like. ITS AMAZING! hahah even though I know I'm gonna get so humbled (AGAIN) once I get out there on Tuesday morning. All of my credit comes from the Lord duhh, but I must say that my teacher....... HOLY COW he was awesome! Not even kidding saying goodbye to him tonight was just like saying goodbye to you guys all over again. There was a lot of tears, but so much joy and excitement at the same time. I'm telling you all right now that he was not my teacher by coincidence and that is all. He helped me through so many trails and he seriously has gotten me so excited to get out into the field! He showed us a video tonight on youtube (yes we broke the rules....shhhhhh) called "Missionary Work and The Atonement". I highly encourage you all to watch this video asap, it made a huge impact on me and my attitude I am going to take to the Mission Field. 

so yea thats when I found out the news about Henry.....
LOVE YOU ALL! Talk to you all on Monday! so EXCITED!!
        -Elder Cook

My reaction when I saw pics of HENRY....(after the tears)

Bergs first night here on Wednesday
As you can tell my teacher and I had such a close relationship!




Tuesday, July 16, 2013


DAD HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! I hope you all give dad a couple birthday hugs for me, I wrote you a letter Pops and sent it off yesterday so im hoping you get it today. ps.. try not to fall on my dang road bike! I'm gonna have to kick your neck off!
Sooo let me first start out by saying I got your guys love this past week! Trav and Shaunna sent me an awesome package with some much needed love from my girlfriend (bugs) and some homemade pumpkin chocolate chip bread..ahhhh it was soo good!!!!!  Mom and Candace I love your letters, I can always count on getting dear elders from you so thank you. Gosh I love getting mail... its like better then McDonalds breakfast after midnight!!! Jake and Brooke, lil jimmy is coming out soon! he is gonna be such a stud, I just know it! Candace and Nora I got tons of pics from mom and ahhhhhh I miss you guys! well I miss the whole family! but something about babies just get me! hahah
Well fam it was just another week here in the good'ol Zoo. As I wrote earlier this week I got my flight plans! I will be leaving from the Zoo at around 7:45 am to the SLC airport this Monday (July 22). I AM SO EXCITED! I'm really hoping I do have a layover for a bit so that way i'll be able to chat with ya'll MORE! Remember that Thursday is probably the last day you could send me a letter soo after that send them to the Nederlands!! Be ready for a phone call in the morning for sure! I will be hosting again this Wednesday so I'm gonna be looking for Nate and there is no doubt in my mind that I'm gonna host him. I'm so excited to see him!
So since this is mine and my districts last week here we have been having a lot of fun! There are times where I find myself acting like a 2 year old with them. For example: everytime we are walking to or from class I just randomly will yell "PAR CORE" and then jump/roll/climb/look like an idiot, over one of the picnic tables... yeah guys dont worry I'm still my weird awesome self! I can never tell if my district is laughing with me or at me... probably both but whatever!
Also the past week we had the opportunity to skype with people living in the Nederlands and also participating in TRC's with natives from Nederland. They are all such loving people and every time I talk/teach them my love for the Nederland people grows. Speaking of TRC though we had the opportunity to teach Sister Windmill again, she is the Lady that emailed you Mom the last time we taught her. Family I can tell you all that it was the most spiritual moment I have had while teaching someone thus far. We were teaching her about the BvM and I was bearing my testimony... next thing I know BAM tears were coming out of not only Her eyes, but mine as well. (yeah sometimes I cry guys) It was so amazing. The spirit was so strong. Oooh and did I mention that it was all in Dutch.... every lesson I teach, every time I talk with my teacher, and every hour I spend in my classroom I am speaking Dutch. Well attempting to speak it.... haha. So my confidence as a missionary and the language is growing, although I know that it will most likely slap me in the face next week... but its okay because "COME WHAT MAY AND LOVE IT". I am so excited to begin my mission.

 On Sunday we got the amazing opportunity to watch the movie Testaments for the third time since being here...... amazing right? but actually it was amazing for me. Yeah I talk about the mtc being a "zoo" (which it is) and all.. but it really is a spritual place. The Testaments movie got me for the first time on Sunday. I know I'm sounding like a totally goon and you probably want to hear me talk about something else, but Christ is amazing. Seriously my testimony has grown so much since being here. Sure there are hard times or rough patches and yes I do know that the hardest part of my mission has yet to begin, but I really do have a strong testimony now family. The Lord works in mysterious ways and I know that he is blessing each one of you constantly everyday. Just last night I had an Elder ask me about my scars on my side (the ones from the Swenson's cabin like 5 years ago) and it just got me thinking about how the Lord not only saved the most beautiful girl in the world (chloe) that day, but also me. Like I said earlier the Lord works in mysterious ways. He has a plan for all of us individually and will always be there for us.
I love being a missionary fam and I love all of you so much! Remember that not an HOUR goes by in which I dont think about ya'll. You guys are my motivation when times get tough and I couldnt be more proud to have the "Cook" name on my nametag. I LOVE YOU ALL.
         Elder Cook
Belgium HERE I COME!!
Nederlands HERE WE COME!

My District!

The Elders......(Elder Pouwers in the back bent over)

The Zusterssssssssss (for you Mom) 

Tuesday, July 9, 2013


Fam BAM,
Holy cow you all have no idea how much i loved reading some of your emails just barely and the letters i have received this week! Family you all are amazing and i mean that.
Soooo lets start off with anwering the good'ol questions.... well MA and Candace i got ya'lls packages and they were AWESOME! seriously it was a fun 4th of July here in the zoo because of those packages. -pictures will be coming. My fourth of July was sooooo AWESOME..like we had to stay inside the fence the whole time and I mean the firewords were exciting, but it was more exciting to see normal people and normal life!!! there was like 300 "normal" people that were right across the street from the Zoo so they were actaully more entertaining than the fireworks. Landon Coles got here on Wednesday so I went and visted him the other night. I never see Christian Earl or Pat or Landon really at all because we are all on different schedules. Gym time.. I play basketball mostly but I usually have gym time at like 6:30 in the morning, so its more like i'm just sleep walking when im on the court... but I do hit the gym hard on p-days gettin swull and all. Momma I got pleanty of stamps.. I actaully have like 213468 billion of them so no worries there and that is awesome that my TRC lady wrote you! she was so nice.   Dad whats this I hear about you finally getting Jake to golf? and im glad that the whole family gets into golf right when i leave... geez thanks guys! oooooooooooooooohhhhh and CHLOE WHATS THIS I HEAR ABOUT BOYS COMING OVER NOW???? (dont forget our promise) you better let them know that i know "bad, very bad" people in the 801 hood and I will make their high school exprience awful if they dont take care of you and also know that I have people watching over you little schmoe tang!!
Yes I will be hosting this week, as in tomorrow, and most likely next week so i will definintely see Nate and hopefully Parker! I will be there watching all these missionaries saying goodbye to there famlies tomorrow, Im not sure if it is gonna be a good thing or not because I already know that its gonna make me think of when I had to say goodbye to you all. blahhhhhhhhh
Now time for the exciting part.. GUYS THE ZOO THIS WEEK WAS good. haha but speaking of families... on Sunday we did our temple walk and one of my favorite Elders from our district ran into his family!!!! he is from texas and his whole family was driving from Texas to Canada and decided to just pass by the MTC and well as fate would have it, they ran into each other! it was so awesome to see his fam and him unite again. He is the oldest of 8 so he had a lot a little siblings which was awesome! (mom dont get any ideas of coming down here on a Sunday). So yea this sunday was fast sunday and it actually went extremely well. Yea I was really hungry, but i fasted for a purpose and i felt the Lord help me through it. This week has actaully been a pretty good week. I am starting to get the language down pretty well, at least I think so, but now when ever I teach I no longer take a note pad in or anything. -just me, my dutch scriptures, and my dutch preach my gospel. I am able to sit and lead about a 40 min lesson all in dutch which I think is pretty cool.  Also this week has actually been super spiritual one for me as well. I had a super spiritual experience with my teacher that ended with both of us in tears. (my teacher is awesome)  I wrote Jake about it so you can ask him, but I just wanted to let all of you know that I am here for a reason. There is not an hour that goes by in which I dont think about you all and how much I miss you, but I KNOW that this is where I am supposed to be.
Looking ahead to the future... I GET MY TRAVEL PLANS ON FRIDAY YA'LL!!! Fam you have no idea how excited I am to not only get those, but also get out of the MTC and into the "legit" missionary stuff! This also means that I will be calling you all on the phone in exactly 13 days!! I am so excited to talk to  you all. You all have to let me know if I can talk to you or whatever because i WANT TO SOOO BAD!! I neeed that phone momma! but not until next week!
This quote that Candace gave me is one of my favorite:
           "Being a family means you are a part of something very wonderful. It means you will love and be loved for the rest of your life. NO MATTER WHAT" -unknown
 Family know that I love each and everyone of you SOOOO MUCH. My testimony grows each and every day I am out here. There seriously isnt one HOUR that goes by in which I am not thinking about you all. I pray for each one of you individually every night, meal time, and the morning. I love you guys so much and so does the Lord. Stay Strong fam and know that in 13 days I will be talking to yall on the telephone!
       "Enjoy to the End"
-Elder Cook
ps. yes I will be getting on later today to put on pictures and stuff so probably around 9 am and then throughout the day also. If you wanna chat get on around then! LOVE YALL

Fourth of July pics! 
Me in my missionary attire with ma dutch BvM (Jake check out the tie)
Landon and I on his first night
Our District's Fourth of July party.... looks wild huh?? (That is the chips and salsa you sent me momma!)
Just some fun in class!
My DISTRICT (All such studs)
My District on our Temple walk! Just chillllin!
Look up what this means in Dutch.... Prettttttty coooooool!! Its from our TRC
Christian and I at Sunday Temple walks
Saying goodbye to Elder Barker (the other week)

Well fam im sorry for all the miscommunication with chating, but i think its time for me to go now. I hope i get some letters this week.. deeey are da bessssssssst! I LOVE YOU GUYS and the next email you guys get will have my travel plans...... CRAZZZYYY! i love you guys, you guys are my motivation to keep pushing on. Just knowning that i have the "Cook" family name and the Lords name on my nametag is amazing,i get to represent the two things i love most in this world. I am so grateful to be apart of our family and the Lords. Alma 29:9- "an instrument in the hands of the Lord" L.O.V.E. U. G.U.Y.S.
-Elder Cook
ALMA 29:9

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Ik weet dat de Kerk waar is. (Dutch) Week 3


      Its another wonderful P-Day here in the good'ol Provo Zoo! Today we might try to be rebellious by walking to the mailbox 6 times instead of only 5 times, then maybe walk to the fence line and watch the free world be normal... its a pretty amazing (the free world). 
haha well what can i say?? let me start out as usual by making an attempt to answer all of ya'lls questions.  First off: sheets- momma i have absolutely NO IDEA what to do about sheets... haha im thinkin your gonna wanna send some to the Mission Home because there is no way they are gonna fit into my bags. Second: I got your packages.. AND LOVED THEM (mom and candace) they seriously were so awesome! Thrid: Momma yes i am using the blanket that Lisa gave me, that is all i use because the i ain't using NO GROSS mtc stuff! oooh and i am using wiscombs pillow case. Everytime i get into bed i feel like i have a little bit of home with me! Fourth: havent used any money. At the MTC were given 6 bucks a week so i just use that usually. Fifth: Yea send me ma skinny ties!! more ties the better. LOOK GOOD, "FEEL GOOD, BAPTIZE GOOD". Sixth: in my group we will be having 28 new missionaries traveling to Naderlands throughout the course of 2 days tho i think. I get my travel plans not this friday, but next so i'll let you know! Lastly: my 4th of July plans... well we get the once in a life time opportunity to walk to the edge of the fence line (like animals) and watch the fireworks from that stupid, ugly, gross BYU stadium.
I hope I answered all your questions...if not well... feel free to write me :)
Let me first start of by saying Chloe Shmoe i am so proud of you and your soccer games this week! i wrote you back yesterday so you should get a letter today i think. Jake bra, well get on chat and we'll talk. Um Candace you are freakin AWESOME and those pics/ videos of Nora-OMG. she is walking! that is crazy. Give her a big kiss for me today. Carly your letters/picture memories are my fav! You should know that yesterday our whole district got in the shower and out of no where just burst into the song "SWEET CAROLINE" that song was our song! haha. Dad im sorry big man, im sorry for leaving you with all girls. But change your attitude! haha remember its not "endure" to the end... its ENJOY to the end! Enjoy it because it ain't gonna last forever. Momma... well anything i type here wouldnt even explain or justify the love i have for you while im out here. You are so amazing Mom.
Soooo family my week was super chill, not sketch at all! I am being super strong as i keep a positive attitude at all times! i actaully just got assigned District Leader for my district which means i am in charge of 10 missionaries (6 Elders and 4 Zusters)  until we leave this Zoo. Yesterday/ Sunday night i said goodbye to James for the second time.. it was alright. Not gonna lie i miss seeing him everyday here, but it just got me more excited to get out of here and off to Naderlands. The language is comin along pretty well i would say, meaning i dont feel to overwhelmed anymore when my teachers only speak Dutch. Im still sitting inside a classroom with no windows about 10 hours a day so when you guys talk about this soo called "hot weather" it sounds like your speaking a whole different language and overwhelming. My district is awesome. Literally everyday we just mess around, i mean we get a lot of work done... but sometimes i just like to have a good'ol time (pictures will be coming).
I cant believe its already been 3 weeks and that i only have 3 more weeks left being here! like i said above i get my flight/travel plans not this friday but the next which is super exciting! I have learned to much from only being here 3 weeks and am excited to learn more throughout the next 3 weeks!
              My spirtual thought: Joshua 1:9 (if you dont know this one well then GO LOOK IT UP) - "Be strong....good courage...be not afraid, either be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest."    Family not only do i know that the Lord is with me, but i know that the Lord is with each one of you. If any of you are in need of anything know that ya i am just a letter away, but the Lord is just a prayer away.  Even tho i am far away from you all, i am still with you guys each and every single day. I feel your love everyday and i hope and pray that you all feel the love i have towards you guys. I LOVE YOU SO MUCH FAM!
-Elder Jason Cook
                                        Ett3- "ENJOY to the End"
ps. the provo Temple is close now for the rest of the time i am here... so looks like i'll be doing A LOT of emailing today! haha i'll be getting back on around 9:30 so if you wanna chat get on! and if your not ready by 
then or out of bed (carly) i'll be getting on a lot throughout the whole day.

This weeks scripture Joshua 1:9
These two pics are of us on our way to the Temple last Tuesday for our last session right after I finished emailing with ya'll!
Picture #2
Welcome to my District..... we work hard.
Welcome Elder Patrick Palau!