Thursday, July 17, 2014

Jessica's Fortieth Email! July 13th, 2014

HELLO!!!! Great news!!!! I am TB free! We went and got x-rays this morning.
Horrible news!!!! A TYPHOON is going to hit Naga tomorrow around 3pm!!! AHHHHHHH. We have been getting texts all morning from the Zone Leaders about evacuation plans and stuff like that. Pretty much, I’m scared to death. I am really trying to work on that whole faith thing. So yes! Way short on time cause we gotta stock up the 72 hour kit and charge the flashlights and ahhhh I’m stressing thinking about it. 
But we just stopped by the mission office to drop off the x-rays and stuff and I got the package from mom!!!!! Thank you so much!!!!! Didn't open it yet because we just went to email and I am going back to pick it up after. But thank you! The Assistant who was my Zone Leader in Tigaon knows how blessed I am with the mail! He said, Sister Richmond! I’m not even surprised anymore, and no need to tell you cause it's just expected, but you got another package haha. What can I say?!! I have the BEST family and friends!!! Also, earlier in the week I got letters which were so great. One from EMIII!!!!!! AND!!! A package from Kari Rich!!!! Thank you soooo much. Trader Joes snacks <3. I really appreciate it! 
Ok! So this week started off SLOW. Haha Sister Ril had some sort of fever/flu deal all of Tuesday and Wednesday. I didn't leave the apartment from Monday night to Thursday morning. 60 HOURS in the place!!! Haha just had to go out on the balcony a few times for a breath of air! But wow! I sure was productive, let me tell ya! Haha I was just go go go the whole time. I read like all the conference talks from the October 2012 conference. Read the whole book of Helaman, finished 1 Cor in the bible. I watched the Joseph Smith movie and 17 miracles. Tons of Mormon messages. Wrote all the Sisters in my batch in the Naga mission. And wrote Mary, Mckayla and Mel. Did my eyebrows. made BR pages. Did all my laundry including my big blanket (which I think was a good thing. Pretty sure bed bugs are for SURE in my mattress). Ahhh so yes. That’s everything I did for 60 hours in case anyone was wondering Haha. Didn’t mean to go into so much detail.
Ok so then Thursday finally back out in the game. After District Meeting we went out teaching! First lesson hahaha. We taught the word of wisdom to this lady we've been teaching for a while and 10 of her nephews/sons/and their friends. So like 10 guys in their 20's and this 60 year old lady. At least 4 of the guys were smoking during the word of wisdom lesson! And then there was this one super drunk guy who kept coming in and out. It was a crazy experience hahaha. But they committed to try and stop! :) 
Then we headed over to our born again investigator. I’m sorry, but I'll be honest. I DO NOT LIKE TEACHING BORN AGAINS> Everyone I have ever taught is such a bible basher. It's so frustrating. Asks a question, then before we can answer tries to prove wrong the answer she thinks I would have answered. CRAZY! 
OH MY GOSH. The APs told us we could email at SM while we wait for the x ray stuff so we are in this place and the whole wall is just glass. These 10 high school girls just saw me and ran in the shop and all took a selfie with me hahaha. AWKWARD!! I will never understand. 
Ok back to the born again. We taught about prophets and authority and she was like uhh so my church doesn't have authority?. AWKWARD!! That’s like the thing we always jokingly say during practice teaching because it would never actually happen. Well, it happened!!!! 
Ok really gotta go! But I will just forward here what I wrote to president this morning. The girls are back for more pics. one sec!
Ok, they are gone. Here is an experience I told him about:
There was one day this week when we were out to work that was interesting. We were walking down the street and we passed about 10 people. We had at some point taught every single one of them, but they never progressed. At first it was almost discouraging and I felt like we had nobody left to try. But then I thought about it and I felt good. This may not be their time to accept the gospel! But at least I know that I am doing all I can. We have talked to and taught so many people in Camaligan. We have tried to fulfill our purpose, but in the end they have agency. It was just a neat thing to realize all the people we have reached out to. So we will just continue to put in the effort and pray for those who are prepared!
So yes, we are doing what we can!!! Even though our investigators are lackin and slackin!!!!! All those great moms I told you about like 2 weeks ago, ya they are hiders now. Too bad! We will keep finding!!!! 
Ok!!! The girls are taking pics through the glass now. This is getting outta control! I’m gonna leave now!!!! I LOVE YOU!!! PRAY I SURVIVE THE STORM! Have a great week.
Love, Sister Richmond

Top 10
1. Broke out the new garments on the 1/2 way day
2. Had 2 very productive house bound days
3. Mak is a missionary!!!! In the Mexico MTC, then up to CA!!!
4. I can speak Tagalog! Sometimes it’s still crazy to me
5. TB free!
6. Sister Ril gave me her bowl that is my FAVORITE for my oatmeal! 
7. Lunch swap with Sister Ril. I cooked terriaki and the next day she did Adobo.
8. Letters and packages
9. First time emailing in SM

10. I don’t have time to ponder a 10th! But it was a good week!

Monday, July 7, 2014

Jessica's Thirty Ninth Email! July 7th, 2014

Well hello everybody!!!! It is July! This Wednesday is July 9th... I am half way! Can you even believe it?!?! I cannot!!! Ahhh so scary how fast it goes. Last week Dad sent me an awesome email about how the mission is like a run and I'm on the downward slope and how great that feels to know you're over the bump... well I thought about running up to the cross. Maybe Dad has forgotten #strugglecentral but I'm sure Christie remembers. Usually never run the whole way home. That is where the mission will not be like a run! I am so ready to run these 9 months like never before haha. Before I left on my mission Sister Strasser and Clement (the sisters serving in our ward) gave me tons of awesome articles about missionary work. This week I read a ton of them. Nothing like a good chastisement to realize that, I'm doing a lot, but I can do more! I really liked this one, "The 4th missionary" by Lawrence E. Corbridge. It was way legit. Read it, did a self evaluation, and thought about where my intentions really are. It is time to buckle down. I don’t want to look back on my mission and have any regrets. I am so grateful for all the support I have and just know I won't let you down! The area may be hard, but that's no excuse to not give it my all! Just because I get down on not having baptisms, that's not what will measure my success! It's the effort! Gotta give it my all for the next 9 months. Man it was a good pump up and I am stoked to be a missionary. But I don't want to just be a missionary, I want to become one.  I want to be changed and always do the things I've learned here as a missionary! 
So I guess the pump up just pushed me a little harder than usual because this week I was so exhausted. I mean, I'm a missionary, so of course I'm always tired. But I mean like, one night we were walking home and I told sister Ril I could easily fall asleep in 30 seconds if I lay down on the street. It was tempting. But we made it home. I was so dead tired every night, just the way I like it! A good measure of how much effort you put in for the day! 
Ok! So much fun news in the family! I have been way out of the loop. But welcome home Jesse!!!!! Congrats on a mission well served. And congrats Tyler on the marriage!!!! (Tyler Heap and Tyler my cousin both just got married. so congrats to both Tylers’ and their beautiful wives!) 
Mom! Read the articles on TB! Thanks for the info and we will be careful. Gonna try and focus our teaching pool on some more overweight investigators for now to play it safe. That's some scary stuff. We'll also probably go get x-rays in the next few weeks to be sure. Sister Ril is way paranoid about it now hahaha. 
Well speaking of our teaching pool! There is this lady we've taught a few times now. Francha. She is great. Really seems interested and actually talks in our lessons unlike most! I think she really has a desire to know if our message is true! Hoping she can recognize the confirmation from the spirit. She is wonderful. 
Then there is this girl we just started teaching! She was actually a referral. 20 and has a 2 year old kid. Really nice! And get this! Her name is sister Ril's first name, and her baby's name is Jessica! What are the odds! When she was introducing them we both were just trying not to laugh. It's weird nobody knows our names here haha. 
Who enjoyed fast Sunday yesterday?! Hollaaaa. We are so lucky we get to fast every month. How generous is God that he straight up just gives us this opportunity to give so little and receive so much. Not gonna lie, I got way hungry during that final stretch. We usually start Saturday after lunch so then we end Sunday after church. Wow. Relief society was long haha. I started craving so many random foods. Hollah bread from Charlie’s! And even dippin dots. Random. Are those still around? Love that. Anywayyy. It was awesome. The testimony meeting was... well you know how it usually goes. Some are just bizarre, but for the most part the spirit is strong and it's just lovely! I am so grateful for the restored gospel and our knowledge of ALL the essential things we need to do. 
Also yesterday was way fun because we went on splits! I got to work with Tweety and Angelo! Two single adult members in the ward. It was a good few hours and really helped us get all our lessons in! Hmmm, not sure what else happened this week. Not much. It was just a good week to be a missionary. I'm not trunky, I mean I could go for a pedicure, but I can wait! :) This is the life. Also! This 9 months away thing is really starting to affect my memory! Missionary veil is real! Someone asked me my favorite show and I can't remember the name! Don! Help me out! The crime show we used to always watch. I think the boss's name is Gibbs?! Driving me crazy! Also! How are all the 7th ward pregnancies going?! Any additionals?? Can't wait for that new batch of babies to be waiting when I get home. 
I Love you ALL!!! The church is true! Read the book of Mormon. It WILL help you. The change I see in people is epic. These people may be stubborn as heck... but when it clicks, it just clicks!!! Please pray for more clicks out here in Camaligan, these people need the gospel! Have a beautiful week and enjoy the life we have been blessed with! 
See ya in 9 months :D
Love, Sister Richmond
Top 10
1. Sister Simpson wrote me and told me that her mom got baptized! That completes her family! Next step…temple sealing :)
2. Homeless man this morning threw up the shaka to me
3. Zone training
4. 4th of July! Don’t worry, rocked the red white and blue complete with American flag hair tie from Christie! The sister from Tonga kept calling me Miss America and singing the national anthem haha. 
5. Sitting up with one of my jeepnie drivers fanning him on the drive so he gave me a peso off my fare. Score!
6. Egg and cheese sandwich on wheat with avocado! Life is good when you get your hands on some real cheddar!!!! 
7. Contacting a lady lamed Enci. Thought of Daniel and his enci boy act! 
8. Mel had a safe delivery and she and her baby are doing well!
9. Jojo and Tupe still scoot scoot the washing machine over once a week

10. Sister Ril wore a turtle neck one day even though it was probably still 90 degrees. The laughter never ended that day.