Monday, June 30, 2014

An Explanation!

Thanks for the emails!

I had a really good week! And this week looks even better. I get to meet the new mission president and his wife on Friday. That should be really cool. I am really grateful for President and Sister Peterson and the way they were able to start me off on my mission.
Well, my stomach problems are gone now. I think it was just from a lot of stress and the weather changing. It went from burning hot everyday all day to hot and lots of rain in what seems like overnight. Super weird.

The other problem is none of our investigators have really been progressing but last week we managed to find some good new investigators as well as get a bunch more to church. Our weekly numbers last night were awesome. Now I just need to focus on my teaching skills. Ha-ha it was a lot harder then I originally thought to be able to teach in a different language. But yesterday I really started to see how well I am getting at Tagalog! :) It feels really good to be able to speak to someone, fully understand them, and have them fully understand me too ha-ha.

Many of you asked about the man dying in our lesson that I mentioned a while back. Here is an explanation! So ya, like 2 weeks ago a man literally died in our lesson. My poor companion... only in the mission for like 2 weeks and a man dies! I just did a lot of laughing! ha-ha. We were teaching a man just on his porch. We could see another guy watching TV in the house. He was old but he was still alive. We asked him if he wanted to join our lesson and he said no he didn't feel that great. Turns out he was 95, and half way through the lessons another guy comes out and says "Tatay your dad just died". Elder Mesina went white and I was trying to figure out if he meant what he said or if it was just a Filipino saying ha-ha. Well we didn't end that lessons with a prayer if you know what I mean. But we did return and had a great lesson about the Plan of Salvation! :) So ya crazy ha-ha. Later me and Elder Mesina were talking and we both said we thought "hmm, wouldn't it be bad if that guy died while we taught". I testify that revelation is real.

Love you lots! Have a great Canada day!

Elder Nielson

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Finally Got My BIrthday Present!! YAY!!

Don't worry about me lol I probably shouldn't have told you that I was not feeling well - haha. Well, I am super happy that you are all really happy haha. The house and yard looks great in the pictures! Can't wait to see all the changes that happen when I get back - lol.

So first off your last paragraph is exactly what President Peterson's final talk was about. I think they normally do a big family workshop for the missionaries leaving the mission but they gave it to all of us for his last workshop. I had a good week. We had pretty good numbers (19 lessons and 41 OYMs) our only problem was referrals, but this week I made sure we had some good dinner appointments lined up so we can get some nice referrals. This area really doesn't like to feed the missionaries. I think it was because there was a lot of crappy missionaries here before us! Oh well now we're getting fed.

Also, they only gave Elder Mesina 5700 peso in the mission home and he got here on the 4th! They give all the other missionaries 8000 for the whole month so ya, he has no money haha. We eat rice and noodles for just about every meal. He has to live the next 7 days on nothing but 300 pesos - about the equivalent of $7... not cool ha-ha.

Well I am really getting sick of these P-days haha. They're not really relaxing at all haha. I wake up and go play basketball till like 9, come back to my apartment and handwash my clothes till 11, clean the house until 12, eat out and go and buy groceries and stuff for the week, get back at 3, email at 3:45-5, then go have personal study till 6, after 6 back to work... Not relaxing at all and I don't really have any time to do anything fun other then basketball. And now all the kids are back in school and everyone else plays at night so it is just me and Elder Mesina shooting around - kawawa naman (unfortunate turn). I have some beautiful mountains around me that I would really love to go and hike up one day but I got no time lol.

  Well I am feeling better. I think it was just a bad burst of a lot of stress. I even got bad acne for a couple of days!! ... Well I am back to normal again so hopefully I will stay that way for a while.

I will try to prepare a nice long letter in tagalog for you next week. Maybe a letter to the ward or something like that. But I can't just whip something up right now ha-ha.

I sent a lovely photo of me in my nice new team Canada shirt for Canada day. Yes - I finally got my birthday present!! Thanks! It only took 4 months to get here! 2 1/2 months late for my birthday - better ship my Christmas parcel now!! :)

Well love you lots and I hope you have a great week.

Elder Nielson
 Happy Canada Day!! My new birthday present Olympic t-shirt! Thanks Mom!! Perfect timing!
 Me and Elder Mesina
Rambutan fruit tree!

Monday, June 16, 2014

The most random letter ever!!

Well thank you all for the emails. I always love hearing from you :).

I didn't even know you were buying a Ukulele - that's pretty cool... I hear they are pretty easy to learn ha-ha. What color is it? Send me a picture!

Sending good luck to my sisters on their final exams! ha-ha. They sound like lots of fun I think. I hope this next week goes good for you both! Love you lots.

I am starting to get those bad stomach cramps as pains again... That really sucks. It's only one more thing to add to my plate lol. My district has been getting sick a lot lately so that's not good either. Oh well I will deal with it I guess.

We went shopping today and got a ton of stuff. I am so glad to be companions with a Filipino because he knows how to use the market properly! ha-ha.

We had a Priesthood leadership meeting at our stake conference this weekend and it was completely focused on missionary work and how to make the ward more effective with inviting, retaining, and reactivating. I think it was really good. Oh and my reactivation/completed family baptism is doing great. The family is super active, they give us referrals, they pay their tithing every month, the dad (my reactivation) is now a Sunday school teacher, and now the mom ( the lady I baptized) is the new second counselor in the primary ha-ha. They are incredible and they have their sights on going to the Temple!

Well, this morning I ate an entire pineapple for breakfast! It was delicious! A guy just wheeled a cart full of giant pineapples by our apartment and because they only cost about $0.50 each, I bought one ha-ha. I have been eating rice every meal for the lasts 2 weeks so it is nice to have some variety with the rice! I would say I hate rice by now, but I have to say it kinda grows on you. It doesn't taste that bad but it does give you a nice fat belly if you don't work out. Lot's of Filipinos here have a really fat belly lol.

Oh and I had a lesson this week and a guy died in it. So that was interesting. I hope that doesn't mean my teaching sucks ha-ha.

Well, I am super grateful for you guys back home. I hope you have a great week and I love you all lots!

Elder Nielson
 Where's Waldo?
 Here he is! And he is gigantic!
Zone Conference

Monday, June 9, 2014

My first week as Trainer and District Leader!

Ok first off I will answer your questions! ha-ha My new companion's name is Elder Mesina. He is from Capas Tarlac Philippines. We get along just fine ha-ha. I haven't run into any problems with him yet. He is very obedient and plans to stay that way, which is great. We both love basketball which is great. Now I know what to do on P-day ha-ha. He has so far been a great help with cooking and cleaning, in fact he has been better then me at that! ha-ha. He went to  the Manila MTC for 2 weeks and ya - he knows Tagalog which is great!

My language skills are pretty good, but I am not fluent in regular speech yet, which is sad... But at least I understand and can teach pretty much everything in the lessons. We are trying really hard to progress our investigators out here. We are having some problems with them not going to church. Almost all of our investigators are really great and very interested in what we have to teach. I just want them to come to church! I don't count anyone as progressing if they don't come to church so it is very frustrating for me.

I saw the photos of the parade! It looks really cold. It rains a fair amount here everyday and it isn't even the rainy season yet. Well, you all look very beautiful in your hoodies and jackets in the wind and rain! ha-ha (I haven't seen one of those in just about 6 months ha-ha - as in a jacket or a hoodie). I can't wait to see Parker and those little Gibb girls after my mission. They look pretty fun!

Sounds like your life is a ton of fun Kenzie!!! That's a very tight exam study schedule! Don't worry, I survived it once already ha-ha. I can't believe that the school year is over and done with ha-ha. It goes a lot faster when you don't have homework I guess :P. Good luck to both Kenzie and Tori on your final exams!

Oh well. Hope everything is going great for all of you out there. Thanks so much for keeping me informed :). I love you all lots!

Elder Nielson
 An old picture of my zone in Batangas City!
Elder Tupou and I with some pretty cool sister missionaries! Our District in San Pablo before transfer day.
 Just another day in paradise!
 Elder Tupou pushing a tree over.
 Some wee little fish for dinner! Yum!
 My new apartment in San Pablo! This is my desk! And closet! :)
 Where I sleep!! A little cramped!
 Our deck with a view! And our clothes dryer!
 Fresh from the market! Gonna make some delicious supper!
 Some PD day fun in Batangas! (Old picture)

Monday, June 2, 2014

District Leader and Trainer - A little bit overwhelming!! :)

This week was okay other then it was full of meetings... It sounds like next week will be the same. It is nice to live only 10 minutes away from the place where the mission holds their meetings. That way we don't need to spend any money on our travel. So some news from the mission. We have a new AP (Assistant to the President), I am going to be a DL/Trainer (District Leader) and my area is set up nicely for a few good baptisms, I think. Hopefully I can make this training a great experience for my new companion. I will be the trainer I always wanted. My guess is that I am training a Filipino but there are 3 foreigners coming in. I can't wait to really show him the vision of what it really means to be a missionary. A Preach my Gospel Missionary pala. I think President Peterson will make Elder Tupou Zone Leader this transfer but we don't know anything yet. I was watching those District video's (missionary training videos on and I just realized that I am not having the same mission experience as those missionaries had... I want that, but first I need a companion that is on board. Hopefully my new companion will be. Oh well, not every mission is the same. Well, those are my feelings.

Well, I am glad that everything is warming up Mom. It sounds like you guys are making lots of trip out to the Hat these days.

When does Kenzie start her job? I can't wait till she starts that up!

Actually I have been pretty healthy since I got here. No problems with heartburn at all! Must be the lack of stress!! :)

Also one of my the Filipino Elders who was a good friend of mine left the mission today. We saw him and President Peterson walking down the sidewalk with his bags as they left the mission home. He was my batch mate. He was a magician back home. I think he might of left for his girlfriend ... very sad.

Well I love you guys a lot keep up the good work back at home :) I am sorry that I wasn't able to send any photos this week. I forgot my cable back at home...I hope that your week just goes great. Remember to always be missionaries.

PS - Remember it is more fun in the Philippines, especially when your son speaks Tagalog! ha-ha!

Elder Nielson