Sunday, November 29, 2015

A great week!

Dear Family,

So, we are on our way home from Brookes. We had our H/V teaching training there. We were planning to attend all of our meetings there but last night we got a text from one of the elders there asking us to pick up some medication for him. Up until about 6 months ago you could get almost any medication except for narcotics without a prescription but then they passed a law that you  needed a prescription. Sister Lemmon, our mission nurse, said they do that periodically here, so in Brooke’s they follow the law – at least that one. But in Narra only one of the drug stores does. So anyway, we got the text after the stores were closed and we figured they would open about 8am so we decided we would stay in Narra for Sacrament meeting and then head or Brookes. Turns out the store opens at 6am so we could have made it, but, we didn’t know. Oh well, it was good to attend in Narra.
The cooking class was fun! Everyone loves the Spudnuts! And they had a lot of fun making them.  They talked about starting a spudnut business. I don’t know if it is just me, but they seem better here to me. They definitely raise better, but maybe that is because of the heat and humidity. Anyway, it was fun. We had a good visit with the Manralls.They are struggling because they had harvested their rice and then we got all that rain so it didn’t dry properly so it is damaged which means they will get a lot lower price for it. It’s hard because for those who just planted the rain was good, but or those that just harvested it was detrimental, and there are a lot of people who just harvested. Everywhere we go there is rice out drying. Dad said there was a pretty good turn out at the weeding activity Saturday afternoon. We will weed again next week – the RS gets to help this time – and then I think they plan to plant the first weekend in December because the 28th is district conference.. I sure hope so. The gardening has not gone as we had hoped, but there does seem to be some interest now.
Our training in Brooke’s’ went pretty well. It is so hard for the members to sit through another 1 ½ hours after just finishing 3 hours of meetings, but so far they have been really good. They participate well and don’t seem to bothered that they have to stay for ANOTHER MEETING! I can’t remember if I explained this to you, but we had planned on doing it every Saturday, a different branch  each week. Our first was in Aborlan and there were 2 people that showed up, about 45 minutes late. The district president lives in that branch and he came later. He said he thought we should just do it on Sunday after meetings because people can’t afford to travel twice in one week. So we thought we could have a luncheon after the training. We thought that would make the members more willing to stay. But the branches don’t have the money and the district won’t cover it so… But the turn out so far has been pretty good.

This  coming week appears, at least at this point, to be a little slower, which is really good because we have got to get things done in the apartment – deep cleaning, organizing, etc.

Dad had a little bit of a scare last week. He found a LIVE scorpion under one of the gas cans outside.We leave our walking shoes outside and he leaves a couple of other pairs of shoes out that he can just slip  into. We decided we better start checking them carefully before putting them on. We have seen several around, not on our property, and they have all been dead so we haven’t worried about it too much. We will be more careful. This was smaller than the one we sent a picture of, but still pretty good size compared to the ones we’ve seen in the US.

Now it is Tuesday and we are home from our District Meeting. It was really good! We got a new district leader last transfer but this is the first DM we have been able to attend since then. Elder Bolnick is really great! He is a convert of only 2 years. He is the only member in his family. He is from the US and we haven’t really heard his story, but we know that he was living with a friend in Utah before he came on his mission. I think he said he moved there when he was 16. He is really dedicated and works hard. We have met some really, really incredible missionaries here. Some from the US and some from the Philippines or other countries. There have been quite a few that are the only member in their family. Elder Jim said that his grandma beat him when he got baptized, but it was ok because he knew it was true. It is a pleasure working with them.

We found out a that one of our referrals is actually being taught! They have been to church once or twice. That is pretty exciting for us! I think they are the first ones that have come to church. A lot of times the people here will say yes, they would like to hear the message and the missionaries can visit them but when the missionaries text them they either don’t respond or tell them they are busy or whatever. Or they let them come once or twice and then tell them they are not interested. So, we are hoping this goes somewhere. Our mission goal for December is to have a White Christmas – 2 baptisms from each companionship on December 26th. After Christmas, but still would be awesome. We wont be here but we are trying to do more OYM’s and will fast for this goal.

The rest of the week will be busy! Appointment with President Bunquin, our new BP, visits with Narra C and the Gattuds tomorrow. Thursday we will take the Atkinsons to do apartment inspections in Brookes, Cabar, Quezon and Rizal. Friday will be prep for the training on Sunday and things here. Saturday Dad has meetings in the morning and then we will have the service project. Sunday we get to stay in Narra for church since our HT/VT training is here, and it is the Primary program. I’m excited about that. We missed it last year because we had to go to Rizal. On Monday the elders want to do an activity here – donuts and a movie. I think it has become a tradition! That’s ok. It is fun to have them and we won’t be here much longer. We love it here, and we really love the people, but we CANNOT WAIT TO GO HOME!!!! We are so excited!!

Well, it continues to rain here. We are in another rainy season. How is the weather there? Well, we have only received guesses from the Drysdales about what we saw a few weeks ago that we hadn’t seen the whole time we have been here. So, I will give you one more week to submit your guesses. Good Luck!!!

Well, better run. There’s always something to be done. We hope you are all doing well and staying healthy!
We love you all SO VERY MUCH!!! And miss you more than you can know!!! We are so looking forward to our reunion!

Grandpa and Grandma,

Dad and Mom or Sir and maam – that’s what the kids call us

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