Monday, September 17, 2012

September 17, 2012

Today in Japan is a holiday in celebration of old people. Or something like that. So there is this old folks home that we go to about once a week and I am OBSESSED with these people. They are ANGELS. Every time we come they treat us like celebrities and thank us like 100 times for coming and for coming to their country and for learning their language and so forth. It is so tender. They always ask us if we have boyfriends and then tell us to marry a Japanese man. Actually everyone tells me to marry a Japanese man. Then they always ask us to sing hymns to them. They like Love at Home a lot. They always hum along even when they don't know the song at all. AND every time we come they see us to the door. All of them. Even the 99 year old grandma with her walker. Then they wave to us and tell us to come back soon until they can't see us anymore. They are all sooo funny and interesting! This picture is one we took today with them. I love Japanese people.

Okay so last week we were housing (going door to door) and we went to this one house and no one answered and it sounded like there was a shower on inside the house (yes the houses are small and the walls are paper thin so that you can hear if they are in the shower or pretty much doing anything). Anyway they didn't come to the door so we left and about 30 minutes or so later we came back. I had my companion ring the doorbell so she could do the talking and get some practice in. She rang the door bell thing (I guess you should know most homes in Japan have intercom speaker things with cameras on them) and the man on the other side started speaking really fast in Japanese and my companion said thank you and then we started walking away. I was wondering how my companion understood so well to know what to say back so I asked her if she understood what he said. She was like yeah I understood so of course I was like, okay what did he say? And she was like I don't know exactly what it was but he said he wasn't interested in hearing our message, that he is Buddhist or something. I laughed and then informed her that what he really said was that he had just gotten out of the bath and he is still naked. HAHAHAHAhahahaha We both laughed real hard at that one.
Life is good, it is starting to get cooler. Soon I will send a picture of my tanline on my feet from my shoes. I am so proud of it. My companion eats her toast with butter and slices of bananas on it. And she drinks more milk in a day then I do in a week.
That's all!!!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

September 11, 2012

hilsener familie!!!!! (Greetings family!!) again, Danish
So for pday this week we had Zone pday and we all went to an island called Enoshima. It is the only island that we as missionaries can go on in our mission. It was awesome. I LOVED being by the ocean and feeling the fresh sea breeze. So the first attached picture is of our zone on a random bridge on the island. There are a lot of red bridges here.. Can't tell you why. 

Picture number 2 is a picture of my companion and I in front of the ocean. That's as close as we got! Don't doubt I wanted to jump in! 

Picture number 3: you know you are a missionary in Japan when you find yourself cleaning a shrine to ancestors in a less active's home. That's the kind of service I did this week!

So on Sunday one of the young women in our ward brought her friend and so we got to teach her friend during Sunday School time. We taught her a lesson about the Restoration of Christ's church and it was AMAZING. Every time I teach that lesson it reconfirms to me that we are a part of the restored church of our Savior and Redeemer Jesus Christ. That we have the keys to exhaltation. That ROCKS. Anyway, the spirit was really strong and I loved testifying to her that she found the answer to all the questions she has been wondering about what her purpose is here in this life. She is an angel I love her!
And before I go because I don't have much time, surprise surprise I know..., fun fact about my companion! (I think I am gonna have those every week for the next little while, she is SO interesting, I just sit and ask her questions like all day I love it) My companion can count the amount of times she has been to McDonald's in her life on two hands. Yep. True statement.
Anyway... Have a great week!!!!

Monday, September 3, 2012

September 3, 2012

Hej!!!!!! (that's hello in Danish)
Yep you read it right! My companion is full on from Denmark! Luckily she speaks English. She is 21 years old, she likes puppies, plays the flute, speaks 3 languages and is working on Japanese as her 4th, has 8 people in her family, hates peanut butter (yeah I'm still confused about that one), accidentally pushed the emergency button at the bathroom in the train station today (that was funny), and she is an angel and a half. Her name is Sister Champenois and she is a Mormon. (if you got that reference, you're a nerd, and we are friends.) We have had many adventures this week as I have started to help her adjust her to missionary life in Japan. (even though I feel like I got to Japan 2 seconds ago)  It was a week of many firsts. My first time training (obvi), her first time being in Japan, drinking mugicha (wheat tea that EVERYONE drinks here, don't worry we're allowed to drink it), eating natto, using chopsticks, sending a text message (yep, true.), and a lot of other things I can't think of. But seriously I have learned SO MUCH in just these few days we have been companions. Champenois shimai has SO much FIRE for the work and love for the people. I have been humbled so much and I know I will continue to be humbled again and again. I am grateful for that opportunity. Training makes you realize your weaknesses and strengths all at the same time. I also feel like I am learning a lot about motherhood. Who would have known a mission would be so good to learn how to be a mom?! haha
So this week we went and visited a family in our ward named the Koyamagishi family. I am obsessed with them. They are hilarious and we were talking about how much English they know and the Dad was like, all I know is "you're nose hairs are sticking out" and then he laughed and said he loves saying it to the Elders because they always cover their face and run to the bathroom. It was really funny. Maybe you had to be there.. haha ANYwayzzzz, they have two little boys who are ADORABLE. We went and had dinner with them and then had a lesson about how we can prepare to go on a mission by putting on the whole armor of God. The little boys were so excited about going on a mission and showed me their little piggy bank of about 30 dollars that they have saved up. When we asked them what we need to do to prepare for a mission one of them was like, uhhhh learn how to iron? and the other was like, uhhh be able to wash dishes by yourself? it was sooooo cute!!!!!!!!! I just love seeing the future of the church and how their parents are doing their best to raise their kids right. There might be some pretty weird slash different stuff about Japan but the church and the gospel and the moral values that parents want to teach their children are definitely the same. I love that!
Okay so the pictures explanation:
Picture number one is of my companion and I right after we became companions at the mission office in front of "the bush" where everyone gets their picture taken when they enter the mission. This is the day when I went to pick her up from the mission office.

Picture number two is of my companion's first night in Japan taken like 10 seconds before we went to bed. As you'll notice I have a robe on. Some things never change.

Picture number three is of my FIRST CAPRI SUN IN OVER A YEAR. I literally almost died. And that is an understatement. There is a military missionary senior couple in our district that have access to the military base so they brought these to District Meeting. They are angels from above!!! Which brings me to my next point: Happy Labor Day!!!

Today for p-day we celebrated Labor Day by going to the military base and having a barbeque with the English Military branch. It was delicious. ANY chance I get to have a nice hamburger, a chocolate chip cookie, and loud Americans, I relish in.
Welp, that was my week! I love this work! It's the best!
p.s. good news, one of our investigators who is this old man that we met housing, got new teeth!!!! We went to teach him a lesson yesterday and he opened the door and without even thinking I said "he has teeth!!!!" hahaha I was so surprised! Usually he has none so it was quite the change. My companion thought that was rather funny... okaylikebye