Monday, January 10, 2011
Thank you so much for your Robert Frost poems. Mmmmm. I miss literature. It's been nice to read things like Jesus the Christ. The language is so heavy, and it's like reading a challenging novel. My english is going down the drain still though. The other day I wrote a letter and after I reread it I realized I used the incorrect "there" and the incorrect "our." Ahhhhhhh. I hear thats a sign though, that you're getting better at Tagalog. Sanaaaa [crosses fingers]. This morning, Nanay Luming came over and cooked Tilapia in banana leaves on our grill with Sister De Fiesta, and I did the laundry in the back--all by myself! :) Nanay asked me if this was my first area. I told her yes, and she said it's like I've been here longer. Maybe it's because she saw me doing the laundry right for once (I can finally make the squishing sound with my hands now that all of the natives make when they do their laundry.), maybe its because I can actually understand her Tagalog now, or maybe its because my skin is darker now. Who knows? But it gave me some encouragement that I'm making some progression. It's hard to see it in yourself when you're in the middle of it.
Masaya na masaya ako na nan dito sa mundo si little Brynlee!!!!! Tell Nathan and Lindsay congratulations for me!! Also, I almost started bawling in this little computer shop because of what happened to that poor lady and family in the room next to you. I cannot imagine the horror that that family must've felt. (My first impression was: I need to teach them the plan of salvation).
Some mornings I wake up and think, "Oh yeah, I'm still in the Philippines." Its funny how its still surreal to me at times. Where is home?? I have many moments where I see the beautiful landscape or when we get out of a good, good lesson, and I take a deep breath and think, "I am loving this so much."
Your package is here. It's at the mission home right now and we are going to get it after we email. All of the Christmas packages have been taking a while--especially the bigger ones--because the post office has been partying for the past few weeks. The postal system is funny that way. There's a lady who works in the post office in Naguilian who is supposed to be there from 9-4 every week day. But she's not. When Sister De Fiesta and I see her walking around the neighborhood--when we catch her somewhere--we give her our mail and payment right then and there. Sometimes we just push our mail under her door with a few pesos and cross our fingers that they'll get to where we want them to go. Mail that comes to the mission office though is pretty well taken care of. Sister Breese works hard to get us our mail. So don't worry about sending packages.
Sister De Fiesta says things like "shucks" and "yucks." I'm picking it up.
So, these past few weeks we've been struggling getting our investigators to come to church and we've had no baptismal dates. Sister De Fiesta and I have been evaluating ourselves like crazy. We keep asking: what are we doing wrong? But we've come to the conclusion that Heavenly Father is just saying, "Daughters, it's not enough this time. Do a little bit more." So, we've made a goal to have six baptismal dates by the end of this cycle. In Alma 17:3, because of much fasting and much prayer, the Sons of Mosiah taugh with power and authority from God and had much success. We've made a plan to fast every sunday for them, and to make more detailed lesson plans--with scriptures and questions. [Also when we teach, we've been switching off more and more.] Yesterday, before church, at 7am, we went to go pick up five of our investigators. None of them wantedto/could come, except for one. Also, last night, while we were still fasting, we extended an early baptismal date to a woman in our first lesson with her, and she accepted. I know that it is because of our extended efforts that we have attained these two precious numbers--one at church, and one with date. As we counted our KI's for the week, we remembered the scripture that talks about how one soul is great in the sight of God. Sister De Fiesta and I joked that we should fast every day, and by the end of the cycle our rib cages will show and we'll have larger cheekbones, but lots of investigators with dates to be baptized.
My favorite food here that I hope I can learn to make some day: ginataan. OMG.
Oh yeah, and I went on splits with Sister Webre this week. We got three OYM's and a lesson in the three hours we had to work together during Sister De Fiesta's training. Yayyy. It was really fun.
My time is up. Ang pagmamahal ay puwedeng ibigay! Sorry, I can’t write too much this time.
I love you all very much!
PS: Picture: Landscape, Cleaning Time, The big stuffed animal I'm hugging is a gift to Sister de Fiesta from a guy she doesn't like. IT's comfy, so i sleep with it.