Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Nama berita! (The News!)

Tell Brenda and Papa I say happy birthday!
This week we have a baptism! It's for V, one of my favorite people ever. He's hilarious. He already has a white shirt and tie for after he's baptised and becomes "new V." haha
So this week I've been studying a lot about opposition, at first by accident and latter by choice. I've just been reading over and over Opposition in All Things by Oaks. The first time I read it I stopped right after I read that "we progress by making choices." What? Yes! I loved it because it's so true. Only through choice can we progress! I may have accidentaly answered the phone before with "dear heavenly father this is Alex," but I've never accidentely rolled out of my bed in the morning to say my prayers, or accidentally become a less sarcastic person. You just, you can't accidentally become anything good - it all comes from the things we choose to become. 
My concept of the Plan of Salvation has changed a lot this week as I've been learning about opposition. I feel like I've always thought of the Plan of Salvation as a bright yellow brick road that we can skip down without tripping over anything, so long as we're doing what's right. Turns out, that's not exactly how it works. It still is a really bright and beautiful path, but even the most beautiful of paths have a few rocks and thorns that get stuck in your shoes, and we need those trials in order for there to even be any purpose in our coming to this world. The question is whether or not we'll let God strengthen and comfort us, and dull the effects of our trials, or try and push through on our own.
This is just going to be a lot of my random thoughts from this week, haha. :D
I was also thinking yesterday (can you tell I think a lot?) about what's changed the most in my life over the past year+. The difference between knowing about the Atonement and understanding and applying the Atonement is -literally-  life changing. And I love it so much. My mission has definitely been the answer to so many of my prayers since I was young...er. 
Nothing too crazy happened this week because I was in the Chinese area for half with week while sister Cloward was in Singapore for visa run. So I heard a lot of Chinese! Aaaaand I still don't understand anything. haha
Mom, thanks for the pep talk. :) 
Pictures this week: Malaysian hoodlums, Malaysian hoodlums playing racket ball with a dumpster for their net, the bus, no smooking or smooching?, and waiting for the bus to fill up. :)
Tell kris I say happy anniversary! Oh, and KC! Belated! 
Does Kris know you're killing her cat? haha, kidding. But really, does she know Miko is going away?
Thanks for keeping my cat! Right???

the bus, no smooking or smooching?

Church Friends

waiting for the bus to fill up. :)

Malaysian hoodlums 

Malaysian hoodlums playing racket ball with a dumpster for their net

Monday, August 22, 2016

"Horrible Child"

I'm a horrible child. I'm so sorry. Tonight I'm going to repent and do better next week. BUT nothing really exciting happened this week. Haha, I did send you  a picture of my makshift shoes though. Rubberbands? Lol
I love you so much!Don't be mad.
Also, a picture of a sink full of rambutan that a member gave us from his village! Random or not?

***Since we didn't get a letter, I've decided to add useful information about the rambutan fruit: Rambutan (scientifically termed as ‘Nephelium Lappaceumis’) is a fruit that definitely features in the list of ‘Most Exotic fruits of Our Planet’.  The fruit has a thin, leather like skin layer with multiple tube-like structures sticking out of it that seem like spikes on a hedgehog. Sometimes, one can also find rambutans having greenish yellow or orange exterior skin colors. The fruit, in many ways, also looks exactly like a sea urchin.
Rambutans, apart from tasting quite good, have several nutritional characteristics which are beneficial for our health. Here are some you probably didn’t know before:
1. It is Anti-Cancer (I assume we all are anti-cancer, but I believe the website says it contains many anti-oxidents that "have been proven to be effective against different kinds of cancer."
2. Helps in hair care
3. Helps in treating diabetes (pain relief)
4. Good for headaches, thrush, dysentery
5. Helps remove waste from the kidneys
6. Eliminates free radicals
7. Makes sin better- "soft & supple," it says!
8. Strengthens bones
9. Generation of red and white blood cells
10. Helps boost energy
11. Decreases unwanted fat
12. Good source of iron

A dragon head at Church? lol

Her "new" bike! She had to kind of piece this thing together! lol

"My makeshift shoes"

I think these sisters are in their ward.

Aw, there's our cute & sassy Alex ;)

Friday, August 19, 2016

Was I Adopted?

My roommates are sister Welling and sister Lim. Poor sister Welling, because all three of us others are going home at the same time. S. Lim is just local. S. Welling is new - first transfer.
My old bike got repossessed.   I found an old sister's bike and have been fixing it up little by little. Speaking of, I need to fix/replace a few things... like shoes. I don't have shoes right now,haha. And brakes for my bike. 
I'm so proud of you two and your missionary moments! They're awesome! 
I got... really sunburned this week. 
Sorry, I don't have a lot to say this week. I'll let my  pictures tell the story. 
Also, in the elephant pic I look really Asian. Everyone, literally everyone, things I'm mixed something. I have to show them my family photo every time. Chinese? Japanese? Mexican? Tongan? Philipino? No one knows. Mom, was I adopted?

Love you! This week was great. Praying for you.

We went to the zoo this morning and had a lot of fun.

Last P-Day we did a break out room - it's like a simulated puzzle.

A member at a food court

A cute kid of one of our members.

Our investigator V gets baptized in two weeks! He also brought us each a bottle of fresh honey from his village. I thought dad would like that, it's super good.

Banana leaf! You eat with your hands. :)

My branch mission leader feel asleep on Sunday. haha

I held a monkey!!!! It was a baby. :)

Our apartment!

lol What nationality IS she?

Monday, August 8, 2016

Masi boleh cakap bahasa! Sangat gembira sinilah! Tak mahu balik america.

(Loose translation of title: I can speak the language! I'm vera happy here! I do not want to go America.) ;)
It looks like the cabin was a ton of fun!
My week was also very fun. :D Very, very fun! So I"m in Kota Kinabalu (aka: KK). It's a mix of walking, busing, and biking, although we haven't biked yet. People can speak more English here than any of my other Malay areas, but it's still total Malay except for a handful of people. We have a handful of AWESOME investigators who are just ready to learn and serve. They're already part of the ward, really.
One of our investigators V. is so great. He wasn't committing to a date for baptism until this last week when he told us he didn't want to commit before because he wanted to make sure that all of his family from his village could come, but now they can come so he's all in! haha, He also brought his inactive fellowshipper to church this Sunday (it's been years!) with his less active son and the son's girlfriend who used to learn from missionaries and wants to learn, again! Everything is just kind of fitting together for the people we're meeting. ...Except for the people who don't want to meet. Sis. Cloward and I are really focusing on only getting the numbers of people who can set an appointment right when we meet them and who are really, really interested, instead of people who are "eh" interested. We're seeing a lot come from it already. Before in my mission we were setting goals to get 30-40 potential investigators a week, but they usually weren't people who were ready to recieve and act on the gospel. Now we're setting a goal for maybe 10 potentials who are really, truly, ready to learn. We've set a lot of great goals for what we want to see happen in this area this transfer and are so excited and ready for it. 
I am literally so happy to be here! KK is so beautiful. We live on top of a mall right next to the beach. The branch is awesome and I love them so much. Also, we're not allowed to talk about me going back to America any more. Because I'm not leaving. Haha, Catch me if you can!
Also, it's so cool here. Meaning not as hot. Yay for ocean breazes!
My first day here I went to my first ever Malaysian funeral. That was interesting. And sad. They made us go up and look at the casket. :( No one in our family is having open casket by the way. 
I realized on the plane ride over here that I haven't been in an area where people speak Malay for almost one year! Surprisingly, I'm still basically fluent and I'm actually better than when I left. Miracles happen. It's now easier to talk in Malay than English, haha.
I did get your letter by the way, and I love the pictures! I've already given a few away to people who really needed the reminders each individual picture caries.
Thanks for your missionary experience this week. It hope things work out and she find that peace in the temple. I know that's my heaven on earth. :)
I love you so much!

Pictures this week:

Sister Tuugavao, a Singapore roomie, extra photo from last week!


Last photos with her awesome greenie Sister Roylance.

Amazing, traditional hat!

Last pic of these two beautiful companions

We love Sister Roylance! 

A few of my favorite members/investigators/people in general from Singapore!

A few of my favorite members/investigators/people in general from Singapore!

A few of my favorite members/investigators/people in general from Singapore!

                 On her way to Kota Kinabalu (KK)!

It looks like she grabbed a Starbucks steamer or hot chocolate at the Singapore Airport! -Comfort Food!

I was by myself all day when I traveled, and I was so lonely!

The view from our apartment

The view from our appartment

Our mall has some people doing tribal dances in it all the time. It's so cool! I have a video but... it's too big to send in Malaysia. I think this is....Dusun.... tribal clothes? Don't quote me on that.

Sister MacKay and tribal dancers!

The inside of our sketchy buses.

My planner: busy days!

Our church! And the set up for the lesson throw down. I always feel like I"m setting up an interrogation.

Our church!

The jungle selfie is when we were trying to find a member but ended up getting eaten alive by mosquitos instead.

The sketchiest toilet I've ever seen. Almost.
Sister MacKay's desk is on the left.

We have some pictures of KK. The part with the water is what I walk past every day to get to the bus.

We have some pictures of KK. The part with the water is what I walk past every day to get to the bus.