Here's part of Elder Crockett's first letter home:
The first week here has been nothing I expected but really really good. I guess I never really thought what to expect of the MTC but its really fun. We started on Wednesday when I got here just jumping straight into our teacher only speaking spanish for several hours straight and surprisingly there was very little I didn't understand. We had a testimony meeting with just our district in english and that was really cool to see why everyone was here getting ready to go out on a mission. Our district is 12 elders, half of us are going to Tijuana, 3 are going to Tacoma Washington, 2 to Mexico City East, and one to San Antonio. All of the guys are really cool and I'm learning lots from all of them. My companion, Elder Solorzano is from San Diego and is pretty good at spanish. His parents spoke spanish to him growing up but he was always too stubborn to respond in English so he understands everything but doesn't know a lot of the words he needs to speak spanish. So far we have taught 3 lessons to our "investigador" Carly, and they have all gone pretty well concidering that we have to teach it all in Spanish. Its really cool to see the progress that we have all made in just one week and how much influence and help Heavenly Father gives us when we ask for his help and are trying to learn something to serve him. Out of our district, I think that our companionship has the language down the best. Elder Solorzano has a really good accent and sounds like a mexican, and I somehow remember (not somehow, its the Lord helping me) lots of vocab from high school.
So far here I've seen Micah, Caleb Stepanik from the Andover ward, Jessica Brox (a girl I worked at valleyfair with), Zach Sabin (the guy from my ward going to Indianapolis), and Trevor Shaffer. It was really fun to see people I knew and to get a chance to talk to them for a little bit.
While the MTC is fun most of the time, its really draining because I wake up at 6:10 everyday (so that I can beat the rush of elders trying to shower, especially since there are only 2 showers that put out hot water and even those turn ice cold whenever someone flushes a toilet), have class all day long and then go to sleep at 10:30. Our personal study and language study was really hard at first because there is absolutely no supervision and its 12 guys in a small room, which pretty much equals zero focus. Despite those study times being unproductive the first couple of days, we are improving........
One thing that I've really been thinking about since I got here was exact obedience. I had never before really felt a desire to follow all the little rules at school and such, but I've really been thinking about it and wanting to follow every rule exactly. I think this is because I've realized how much help I want to be able to get from Heavenly Father, and I know I can only recieve all the help He is willing to give me if I follow all of the rules that he has set out. In 1st Samuel 15:22 (i think that is the reference) it says "obedience is always better than sacrifice." I've been thinking about Micah's letter and how he talked about when break the rules, even if they are little ones, that we don't love God as much as we should. I've really been trying to follow everything that I know I need to be doing, and as I have been trying to do it I know that I'm being blessed because I have been able to learn and remember things so much quicker here in regards to the language and scriptures than I ever have before.
(p.s from Jacqueline- I added the photos he sent to the side bar)