New Address as of 6/8/2015

Les Missionnaires
Elder Nick Martin
3, rue la Martine
21000 Dijon

Sunday, July 12, 2015

July 12, 2015 A note from the MOM.


Back in April 2015 our son was dealing with some of personal challenges. I just focused on getting his emails each week and supporting him. And I thought I would just update his blog later with the pictures and some of his comments. It's summer now and I have time to concentrate on his blog.

YIKES!!! 14 WEEKS have gone by!! I almost said "to heck with this". Of course I didn't. It's taken me the whole week to copy and paste and edit and save and check my home email and work email for his letters (emails). There are still issues with some of the pages that I couldn't fix. Like the white background when you copy and paste. Ahhh that drives me nuts.

Never put off for tomorrow what I should have done yesterday or today.  Or something like  I'm sorry to all for my lack of updating but here it is!!! I'm very excited to have accomplished feat because I'm expecting his next email tomorrow morning.  I hope summer is treating you well and remember to keep all the missionaries in your prayers.  Thank you, Nancy

ps I really miss him.

I am blessed to work for the high school and be a part of his high school graduation ceremony. June 2014

Week 36 July 6, 2015 Independence Day

Week 36 July 6, 2015
Independence Day! July 4, 1776!!!

This week was a pretty darn amazing week, if you ask me! Wednesday we had a rdv with ... and refined .... date for Saturday the 11th! Oh I am so happy!! XXX chose me to baptize...! I am very honored. This XXX is a very elect XXX. Even our new mission president expressed this. When Elder Douglas and I were talking to president brown about XXXX, president mentioned he felt a fire about XXX that he had never felt about an engagé in his life. We all agree that XXX is a very special XXX and that God has something special XXX!

So on Thursday and Friday, when we had this conference, we went to Switzerland! I have officially been to every country in the mission! And I absolutely love President and Sister Brown! They are the leaders for this mission. I feel that and am certain that the Lord has chosen them. It is a great love and I feel like President Brown and I will be working together more closely in the future.

Saturday we celebrated the Fourth of July with a part of my future family! The famille Paoletti had us over and cooked us meat American style. That family is probably the best family I have met here in Dijon. Elder Ghirelli was very correct about them. Oh and happy fourth!

Sunday was chill. Church was good, and XXX was interactive with the youth in the ward. And today we went around Dijon with XXX and did some shopping. He helped me pick out some jeans with some French style and I bought some scarves for my women haha ok my women are my family members, but still ;) and then we all ate lunch together and had a yummy kebab! They are actually pretty good!

I have a busy week this week. An exchange tomorrow, Thursday is district meeting, Friday we are going to Bienne Switzerland and blitzing there. And a baptism on Saturday!! Yay!!!! So that is my week! I will talk to you all later! Stay cool! 
Love,   Elder Martin :)  

I have enough change to make obama proud!

A super crazy rain storm that hit us out of nowhere. it was much needed!! it hasn’t cooled down in a few weeks!!! more than 90 for severe days!! oh man last night was the best night I have had in a while! so cool and fresh.
This is the family Paoletti. He is the cousin of the cousin of Julia, and she lived in Albi a long time ago and became an older sister in the church to  And their little bébé Alicia :) she is the cutest thing ever!! I would blow on her face and she would shake her head like she was a dog out the car window haha she is absolutely adorable! He is in the military and he let us come over and celebrate the 4th with a bbq! he said he loves fighting in battle with the Americans on his side haha this family is so great!

Week 35 June 29, 2015 The Dream

Week 35 June 29, 2015 
Good morning mom :)

So something crazy happened on the night between Saturday and Sunday. I had a dream and it was very particular. I was back in Pasco. I was with you and dad. We were in a very busy place and things were hectic and it almost seemed like neither you nor dad seemed to care that I was home. You weren't paying attention to me. Then I did something that was really off for me. I leaned over and kissed you on the cheek and you smiled really big.

So I am not a dream interpreter, but I think I am supposed to give you love today.

I really miss you. I really miss having you there for me and having a mom that loves me and will buy me little things to show that you were thinking of me. I miss you going to drive us to places. Here in France we have to walk or take a bus or a tram and it is a pain in the butt. But if I had you, I could be anywhere in a matter of minutes. I am thankful for the fun that we had together. The fun board games or card games that we played late into the night as a family. Here I am learning a new card game and I suck and I take it personally. Haha bad. I am learning how to not take things so personally so that the next time we play cards, we can just have fun and I will know that even if I lose, you still love me haha  I am thankful for your example to me in the church. It is always good to have somebody who would also go because it was the right thing to do, even when we didn't want to. And even though there are a lot of things that we all need working on, you have given me an example to fight back against life when it gets hard and that there is always a way back. I am thankful that you have fought so hard to keep this family together, even when there is contention and fighting. I have never really seen anyone fight harder to keep a family together than you have. I admire that. Maybe one day I will see what you see when I have a family of my own. But thank you for doing your best.

I love you mom and I hope you have better week than I did. I hope that you feel the love of God and you see His and in all things and aspects of your life. I love you so much, mom, and I hope that you know that.

I get to go to Switzerland this Thursday and Friday and member has invited us over for the Fourth of July. We get our new mission president this week too. A lot of change going on right now. It stresses me out. I still don't know what's going on. 

If I could get you a scarf, what color would you like? I love you mom! You're awesome! :)

Elder Martin :)

*a note from me, the Mom.  That Saturday there was a family disagreement, argument, a heated exchange of text and words. A lot of hurt feelings. Mike and I were just so extremely hurt and sad. Our hearts were aching for our children. As I was typing an email to him, he was sending me this email. He truly came to give me some love. He is growing so much! I love this Elder Nick Martin!!
This is an arch in Besançon that was built in 175 ad... also called the black gate

We really need to see this Ville. This town is prettier than Dijon if you want my humble opinion! this is Parc Darcy in Dijon close to our apartment
I am very proud of my American flag :) even put a light on it like in the museums
And me!

Week 34 June 22, 2015 Good Bye Mission President

Week 34   June 22, 2015

Hello! I am doing well! This week has been alright. Not too bad, but nothing special. It was a really good weekend though. It starts on Friday! We had a conference to send off our mission president. He is a good guy and everyone will miss him. But the thing that made me the happiest was being with all of the missionaries. They were very nice to me and actually seemed interested in me! I don't want to sound selfish, but it made me feel loved with all the attention I got. It really made me happy. On Saturday, my zone came to our apartment to blitz our ville. This means that we had 12 missionaries in the city of Dijon going around doing missionary work. We got collectively 104 conversations with people, 17 lessons taught, 4 rendezvous fixed, and several other numbers for potential investigators. Not only that, but we bonded and came closer together as a family. I absolutely love my zone! These missionaries are some of the best that I have been around. I enjoy their love and am happy that we get to serve together! The climax of the day was when I got to engage our investigator to baptism! The date is set for the 1st of August and we are all super excited!

On Sunday I really enjoyed church. It felt good to take the sacrament and to feel clean, and to feel the power of the Lord working in me to make me a better person. I actually got to pass the sacrament on Sunday. It had been the first time in about three years. It was very good for me to do that. It made me feel special and needed. I was able to distribute the means by which these people could also become clean once more and enjoy the power of the Lord in their lives as well. I don't really know if words can describe it. But it is something that I miss dearly. 

I accidentally deleted the other email, oops! Haha but I have this one. It is a beautiful day here :) not too hot nor cold. And me and Elder Douglas are very good together so that makes it all good too. I am worried about these college girls, though. I am hoping that they all leave to go back home now that school is done..... I actually fixed a night with a high school girl to go and teach her family. I thought she was a mom because of the way her younger sister and brother were flocking behind her hahaha she was 17.... I am trying to work with an Irish! She is staying with one of the member families here and I absolutely love her accent! Oh man! Something about Ireland! Haha

Well I get to go to Switzerland a few times this transfer so I will try to get some chocolate for everyone and some mustard too! I know I won't have much use for the mustard, but I might eat a lot of chocolate haha I actually found a mustard that I liked. We might have had a miracle!

Well I love everyone and I hope that you all have a good week! I love you all!

Elder Martin :)
Four guys on one bed... It's ok! It's France!
President and Sister Roney are leaving  :,(  They will be missed....

Week 33 June 15, 2015 Dijon is Beautiful

Week 33  June 15, 2015

I really.... Don't know what to think... I am so stressed.... I feel out of place here. I have this sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach like something is wrong and I don't know what it is..... 

So that is where I am mentally. Physically, it is beautiful in Dijon. The town is really old and it is pretty sick to see all of these buildings that have seen so much. The weather here is a lot fresher than down south. Thank goodness. I can walk outside and not be covered in sweat. But it down poured on us today and left us soaking. The apartment is really nice, too. It is a very nice apartment. Big enough for four missionaries.

My new comp is Elder Douglas. We have been getting along just wonderfully. He is a gamer and so we have been talking about games and his sense of humor is a lot like mine. We have had a lot of fun! He is a really good guy!

We taught a really cool friend of the church on Friday. We gave him a blessing and he had a very spiritual experience. So spiritual, that he knows without a shadow of a doubt that he wants to be baptized. He is golden. His name is Pierre and is 16. Keep him in your prayers!

The members here have been very warm and welcoming. On Sunday, I was asked just five minutes before sacrament meeting if I could introduce myself and bear my testimony. That was normal. Then they continued and asked if I could give a little message on a topic of my choosing since one of the speakers didn't show. That caught me by surprise. I didn't know what to share! Elder Douglas said, "Just share what you have been studying!" Well my studies have been in the general conference of April, 1971 and that's not in French haha so I prayed really hard and felt inspired to talk about the family. I felt the Spirit strongly and so did the members. It was good. One member came up to me after sacrament and said that I made him cry and that I am his son now and welcome anytime into his home. That made me happy that I could be used in the Hands of the Lord like that.

So that was kinda my week. I will let you go. Pray for me. Please. I miss you terribly. I love you so much.     Elder Martin

Me and Elder Douglas
These cathedrals are just massive!!!
This is the main road with all the shops and old buildings. It’s really cool.
This is just a side road.

Week 32 June 8, 2015 Transfer and Re-Transfer

Week 32   June 8, 2015

Good morning to my family back in the states and good afternoon to my family here in France. The events that have passed this last week are too large too large to share with everyone multiple times, so I will do a large email for everyone to read. (Encores je sais que vous parlez angles aussi mais c'est le seul message je vais envoyer en anglais. Toutes les restes don't en frainçais. S'il vous plais, traduisez le message pour les enfants)

Most of the events took place over the weekend, starting with transfer calls. At first I was supposed to go to Vitrolles. It is a small branche next to Marseille. I was so excited when I got the call because Julie H. lives there and she is a wonderful friend of mine! I have heard nothing but good things about her and I was looking forward to spending six weeks (minimum) as part of her family. Then I got another call from President with a change of plans. It was "brought to the attention" of president that "Julia visits Julie all the time in Vitrolles" and therefore I was moved to Dijon... I was infuriated!!! How could this be?? I was leaving my family and going to somewhere that I knew somebody and then I was transferred again to somewhere completely unknown and new to me.... Without anyone.... All alone.... I fell to my knees and wept... I begged God for forgiveness... I didn't know what I did, but I thought I was being punished and I was so saddened.... I felt all alone.... Then, as clear as day, I heard a voice saying to me "My son. What have you done? You do not need to be sorry. I am doing this for you. This is My plan." At
that point I received an assurance that all was well and indeed I would be taken care of and that I AM in the hands of the Lord.

Saturday we went and played boules with Céleste and Mathias and Elena and Sam and I had such a fun time! Merci, Elena! Vous êtes le meilleur :) et, oui! I LOVE ELENA ;) hahaha

Then my last Sunday at the ward of Cannes.... Oh, I dreaded this day.... I was leaving my family.... The place that had taken care of me and given me love and given me a home. Gosh.... I cry now just thinking of them.... Thinking of you. Words cannot describe what you have done for me or the love I have for you. Eternal. I think that would be the best word. We are an eternal family and will be forever, through good times and bad. I know I will always have a home. The testimony I offered was minimal when compared to my feelings....It touched everyone, though. I am so amazed at the way I was able to touch lives. I don't know how, but I did, and I will thank God every day for this amazing gift he has given me.  At the end of the meeting, all of the youth flocked to me. Fr. Perez came and hugged me and made me cry and then I had to talk to all the
beautiful jêune fille with tears in my eyes haha oh those girls are amazing haha and then all of mes garçons ;) haha the youth are where my heart and love lies. They are who I will miss the most. 

Then there was the baptism of Hugo. I was able to participate as a witness and to confirm him a member of the church. Talk about a feeling of responsibility that rests upon your shoulders as a
priesthood bearer.

We spent the rest of the evening at the house of the family of Laurent G. We were graced by Gaël and his mother and also Olivier and his family. Those will be my last memories of Cannes. Bouncing on the trampoline with some of the most beautiful and innocent girls I have ever known, getting thrown around by the boys, and seeing a truly happy family soaking wet as they chased each other around the yard with water bottles, Elena, getting me wet.

Then I went home and wept.

This week has shown me the importance of "Living Where Your Feet Are." Had I not lived every moment with my family here in Cannes, I would have no memories. And, since we all must depart at sometime, whether to another sector or to another life, we must live life to the fullest because you can't change back time. I will never get those moments back, but at least I have a family that loves me. I have left my impression and you have, too. I want you to know that I LOVE YOU SO MUCH!!!!!! I thank God every day for you! I will come back next year with my parents, and when I do, you better be ready to party!! Haha ;)

Je vous aime! Vous me mounquez!!! Priez pour moi. Il n'est pas facile. Mais avec Dieu et vous, je peux le faire.
Avec amour,     Elder Nick Martin :)
She is 13, but she is still pretty amazing! I love her to death!! This is Elena G :) her little sister is Stella and her dad is the one behind her dressed as an Indian for the cowboy night!!

My feet in the water for the first time and probably the last. 

My Friends!
Courtesy of Elder Ghirelli :) at Eden Roc
My friends, When the sun sets, without fail, it will raise again.
**I just love this picture!

Week 31 June 1, 2015 French Mother's day

Week 31   June 1, 2015

Wow.... You said you were going to go to bed like three or four times in there and kept on going haha so Happy Mother's Day again haha I sang yesterday with the young women's for the mothers. Well all the missionaries sang. I wasn't alone. And on Saturday there was a Cowboy Night! Oh my gosh, it was the cutest thing ever to see all these French people dressed up as Cowboys and Indians and try to line dance. Their cowboy meal was hotdogs and some chili haha but when we went out of the party to go home, one of the teenage boys came up to the car window and said "wait! We need to bisou!" (That is the way that the French greet and say goodbye. It's that little kiss thing on the cheeks.) and he "bisou"ed me right in front of all the girls and then there was one girl who said in English, "I am jealous! I want to bisou him!" Hahaha it was the funniest thing ever! 

The ward is really my family now. They have taken me in and have loved me and I really don't want to leave. It is more possible for me to leave because I have been here for four transfers (6 months) and I don't want to leave. I mean I want to because the work here has killed me, but I have put my everything into this ward and into this work and it has become my home and my family and I don't want to leave.... I am glad that I have made a family here because now I definitely have a reason to return after the mission, and when you come with me, you will see what the ward thinks of me. It will be so great! So happy will be the reunion. I'm looking forward to it already! I have to get emails!!!

That is so awesome that the missionaries are teaching in our house!! Oh my gosh! I wish I could be there to help out! Haha that makes me happy! I am glad they are having success! I know that our ward is very hard to be a missionary in. Tell me more about the people they are teaching!!

I got an email from Julia's dad haha it is super awesome :) it makes me so happy! He likes me, which is good!  ;) 

Well I am off! I have some other people to write to. I hope that you have a wonderful week and I will get to you next Monday (maybe a day later if I have to move very far) and tell you whether I stay or have gone!

I love you so much mom! You're the best mom that I could ever want! Julia all the time tells me about how "cool" you look. She really loves you. You have become a second mother to her. Remember that you are doing a lot of good for those that are around you :)

Elder Martin :)

Week 30 May 28, 2015 Sun Beats Down on Us

Week 30   May 28, 2015

It has been an interesting week to say the least! We had a meeting on Monday which is why I couldn't email then. But better late than never I guess! I will try to figure out a way to send more pictures.

Gosh I am tired. The sun beats down hard and it is only May. I will need to start drinking more water I bought some vitamin c the other day! Hahahaha oh I am stupid.... I popped it open and threw a pill in my mouth. It exploded. I started choking.... Apparently you were supposed to put these pills in water to let them dissolve... Hahaha let's say that the next time, the pill tasted a lot better.

So I wrote something really nice to dad. It is very powerful and personal, so you can read it there, but not everyone else.

We have been trying to do a lot of less active work here. Now I wish I had been a better home teacher. I don't remember if I said this, but we have about 35 less actives and 11 actives. The main reason why the branch in Antibes isn't open yet is because there is really only one member that does any work in the sector. I brought it up at ward council and I hope there will be some action, but we will have to lead it. Thankfully we got a member from the other sector say he would work with us. That's good. I talked to him later and he expressed the same sadness that I feel towards the inactivity of the members in Antibes.

So my voice of warning is to do your home teaching and be their friend. Don't just go once a month. That is minimal. Christ didn't just do the bare minimum. He defended below all. The least you could do is stop by two or three times from your way home from work and check up on your families and show them that you care, and show them that God still cares. If you have not yet watched the new Mormon message "LIFT" yet, I highly recommend it.

Remember that I love you and I am extremely thankful for your prayers. My soul is stirred when I think of all that you do for me. "No greater love hath any man than he who lays down his life for his friends." Thank you for your sacrifice for me. I love you eternally.
Love,    Elder Martin :)

Week 30 May 25, 2015 Putting on some Armour of the Lord

Week 30   May 27, 2015

hey! so I am sorry I have not gotten to email you. We had a zone meeting on Monday and we are just now getting to the emails. If you have not sent the package yet, do not send it. I am not sure that I will be staying in Antibes, so do not send until I give the go ahead.

I just want you to know I love you all!! talk to you soon. Just sending pictures right now! love you!

This was at a less actives house haha he has a huge collection of swords, armor, and weapons

This is one of me and Elder Rellaford at Eden Roc where I finally found a heart roc for mom :) we got kicked off the beach though because that was where all of the stars were having the after party of the film festival haha who knew??

Week 29 May 18, 2015 Gelato on the Rivera and Cannes Film Festival

Week 29   May 18, 2015

Yes this week was better, I would say! I ate some gelato for you :) I will send the picture on Wednesday because I don’t have any of my picture stuff with me right now. I also bought you an official key chain of the Cannes Film Festival! I have been able to go these past few days. it is a really cool experience!! just like being in Hollywood!! so thrilling and... oh man words don’t even describe it! there is nothing else in life like it! so cool! but I haven’t personally seen any stars and I really don’t have a chance, either... we are pretty far away and there are a lot of crazies in the good spots! oh man haha but it so cool!

We have been getting a lot of sun recently and it is really great :) well halfway great. I like being darkened, but man I have a horrible tan.... right at the elbow and then half way up the neck because of the collar.... talk about ugly haha then again I am not going to be going around without a shirt, so I guess nobody will ever know! and I will come back during the winter when everyone has lost their summer tans! it will all be ok haha but gosh I am so tired.... the sun drains you, that's for sure.... 

I have found a really big project to see if I can’t work on! I want to try to get the name of the church out into the public eye, in a good way. I have a guy who has connections with the city and some nonprofit organizations here in town and I want to try to get a giant service project for us to happen. I will have to be the one to start this because the members in my sector drag their feet. I hope they will get on board, because it would work so much better if the church members here did this and continued doing this. (we have about 35 less actives and about 11 active members in my sector.) but this has excited me and I am pumped and I hope that I can get the permission from the right people to do this!!

well I really miss you though... I have thought more about you all more recently then I ever have... I even have dreamed about you guys. I really miss you... I love you a lot! I will talk to you later!!

Elder Martin :)
This is me eating the gelato :)

Just some STAGED walking.

Week 28 May 11, 2015 Elder's Birthday, Mother's Day & Mom's Birthday

Week 28   May 11, 2015

Haha you ended your email too soon!!! I don’t know what Dexter did!! haha but I am assuming when somebody jumped into the pool, he went wild haha

Happy Birthday :) I love you!!

So how was having the whole family over? good I hope!!

This week was alright. nothing special, nothing big. I did some service and I got to eat a lot of cake and I got to Skype!! That was the best part, I think :) I really miss you guys.... I am having a hard time right now, without you.... I have a robot companion and he is cold.... and freaking awkward.... it stresses me out and today I had to take a pill to stop the acid in my stomach... I think I might have an ulcer.... But yeah.... That is life, I guess....

I really miss having somebody cook for me.... That is really nice. But I have been making some really good meals with chicken and rice or pasta. I have impressed myself often! if you have the right seasonings, you can do anything I guess!

So I bought a blanket today. It is a lot thinner than the giant comforters they have in all the apartments. I will see if that helps me sleep in the heat so I can get some more rest. It was a really cool blanket! huge and it looks like the field of blue on the American flag :) I was like "oh yeah!"Murica!" haha so it should help me! it has the American spirit in it!!

I went to Nice on an exchange and I got to visit this group of Philipino Friends (see photo)! It was just like being in the big bang theory TV show haha they are all drs and in school and working in the universities! they are so witty and I felt right at home! I was there joking and laughing with them :) made me smile so much! just like being with the gang before the mission :) There was Jethro, Kate, Jasmine, Emanuel, Ricky, Elder Wilits, and another guy. This was a really good night!

Well, I am out of time!! talk to you later! I love you!!

Big Bang Theory Doctors
Elder Martin