Monday, January 6, 2014

Jones ba ito?

The Americans cooking while the Filipinos watched Narnia
Happy New Year! Ano ba iyan? Jones ba ito? Haha. I’ll just say this was a really good week here. We had a good time bringing in the New Year with the Sisters in the Alicia 3 branch :) Good friends, good food, and we were allowed to watch a good movie- Narnia :) The day of New Year’s was really good too, lots of members taking care of and feeding us all day long. On Thursday in Jones we were visiting an investigator of ours and her cousins were there, so we talked with them too, and I was way excited because they’re from Bayombong! It was so fun talking with them, turns out they’re from my exacxt area in Bayombong, back in District 4, and they said they remember seeing me there. We were able to share a message with them too, and the 17 year old told us that he sometimes goes to church at the Mormon church in Bayombong but that he’s been too shy to approach the missionaries, so  we got their info and were able to pass their information along to my anak, Sister Grande. Ha I really am still quite attached to Bayombong, I don’t know if I’ll grow that close with any of my other areas. My little friend Erica even sent me a cute little Christmas present this past week and sent me a bracelet. I hope I’ll be able to go back and see all of them some day.
                Our splits this week was in Echague with Sister Davis and Matautia. We had a good time there, and I was really happy to see the good things happening in their branch and with their work. They’re both foreigners here, so the language is stressful for them, but I was happy to see how they are still being blessed with successes.  Friday was an awesome day of work in Jones, I asked the question a couple of times, “is this really Jones?” haha. We were able to visit and catch up with people that we hadn’t seen in a while, and we also have a new family of investigators now as well. Ha things are improving a lot here in our area, just in time for transfers haha. That’s life.  But really we are trying to get things nice and ready for the new missionaries that will be coming in, we hope they are good missionaries and will take care of our investigators and less actives that we love.
                I’m not sure if it’s just because of New Years… but our attendance was up this week at church :) 64! Ha we were really happy about it, and happy that our investigator was able to come to church for the first time and make friends quickly with the young women. This is our 14 year old investigator, Marinella. We teach her and her mom and have really enjoyed them. Her mom told us that Marinella has been saying that she wants to be a missionary. I picture some of these young women as missionaries some day and it makes me really happy, just knowing how great of a blessing it would be for their lives especially. This week we have also seen what a great blessing it is to have members of the branch be willing to work and fellowship. It makes things a million times better. Oh and this next week we’ve been invited to two Family Home Evenings, haha which hasn’t happened here in Jones for us yet, so yep, it’s just been a happy week. Oh and we’ve had awesome weather, I get funny stares and comments for being the foreigner walking down the street not using a payong (umbrella) while it is bright and sunny outside. Enjoy your snow ;) Thank you to my friends, cousins, aunts, uncles, and family for the constant love, support, and emails. I love hearing from you, and I know I’m so blessed to have the good friends and family in my life that I do. I hope you have a great week, and are using this time of New Year’s to find more ways to be happier, create the kind of life you want, and become the person that Heavenly Father intends for you to be. Happy 2014, see you all this summer ;) 
Sister Stabenow

Squatting like a Filipino!
New Years Eve!

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