Friday, May 30, 2014

Sadly this week we didn't get a letter :'(  Elder Hack's zone leader's mom forwarded me her letter from her son Elder Doggett and he talked about spending a day with Kyle and that they had a great day and night together!  So I know he is happy and healthy somewhere in the bush!  He also talked about how the electricity had been off a lot last week...he says that ECG "Electricity Company of Ghana" is more like "Either Candle of Generator" haha!  So I guess we'll chalk it up to no electricity and pray for a letter this Monday!!!!  I thought I would do a throw back photo from the days when we could get pictures.... hopefully some day soon we will see some new ones!  I had seen this picture about a year ago and loved it so I saved it, then got the picture of Elder Moleme, Elder Hack, Elder Cavaness and Elder Larsen, and it looked almost identical.  Amazing picture, and love those happy missionary faces!!  So at this point we figure this is as good as it gets for this week.  We are keeping the faith that no news is good news!!

Monday, May 19, 2014

Aloha and happy Monday! I am doing great, thanks for asking! Man the computer did it again! I had typed all of it and was sending, but the network crashed! Grrrr! I copied it this time, well most of it! Stupid Ghana internet haha, it’s great to have to retype a giant email, that is always a blast haha. But yeah good week this week, interesting week with some interesting stories, so let’s dive on in! Well, Wednesday was a really weird day, so these two stories are from Wednesday...

We felt inspired in the morning to go and visit Bro. N, the man who likes to drink and is the high priest group leader. We got to his house around 11 and yeah, he had been drinking. So we sat him down to give him a little message on having faith to endure and overcome, but he wasn't having it. He would keep interrupting and ask weird questions that did not pertain. He even told us he has a hernia and wanted to show us. Well, I had had this experience in Axim with our good less active friend Ebekai when he dropped his pants to show us haha. So I turned my head so I wouldn't have to witness that again!  That turned out to be an inspired decision. What transpired was just scarring haha. Elder Ouma did not turn his head and he says that Bro. N had a hernia the size of a baseball on his waist that he held in his hand and squeezed!!!! I didn't see it luckily but I did hear it. I will never get that sound out of my head of intestines being squeezed haha. Man had I seen it I probably would have vomited on that guy hahah. He did it like 3 times throughout us trying to teach him, so we decided to get the heck out of there haha. We started to close and as Elder Ouma was testifying Bro N. interrupted saying to wait and he then squeezed it again... So we closed, prayed and got out of there. We told him he needed to get that operated on or else he was gonna kill himself but he said he was scared of surgery. We told the bishop though, so hopefully something happens….. Weird experience of Wednesday #2 comes in Bereku. One of the member’s 16 year old boy named Dominic was sick so we went to visit him. He was in bed really sick and nobody was tending to him so we decided to go and buy him some juice and bread. We walked to a store and bought him some bread and a thing of juice. Juice here comes in basically a giant juicebox. Well, we walked back, found a cup and opened the juice to pour into the cup. The moment we opened the lid I was hit by a sharp smell and knew we didn't buy juice haha. Yeah, smelled like alcohol. So we SEARCHED the box to see what it was, since it really didn't say. Well, after sifting through 10 different languages listing the ingredients we found English and sure enough, we bought red wine hahahaha. Yeah, I never thought I would buy alcohol, let alone as a missionary, but I would be lying if I said I haven't. So we poured it back into the box, and took it back to the store. The 10 year old girl who sold it to us traded for a 1.5 liter of Sprite, so we made it out ok. Luckily we didn't get the sick boy drunk hahaha, that would not have been good at all!!!

But yeah, other than that things are going pretty well. We will have 4 baptisms on Saturday, we were hoping for 5 but there is a story attached to that as well. The one that won’t make it yet is an old woman named Georgina, who has been coming to church as long as I have been here. She comes each week and even pays tithing. Well, we decided to visit her after church on Sunday to confirm some details for the baptism and so we headed to her little shop. We get there and catch her red handed smoking! What?! We were shocked and sad! Even worse was she tried to lie, telling us it was medicine. Very sad! We had taught her the word of wisdom a few days earlier and asked if she had any problems and she said no! So that was sad that she lied to us, but thankfully the Lord showed us before the baptism went through. So we will have to work through that one with her... But the rest are doing good and are on track so that is good!!!!

Today for p day we went to the next town down called Assin Praso for a district activity.  There is a fort there from the British where they would keep the slaves as they transported them to the coast, so they have a little museum and in the bush are some ruins and graves and stuff along the river Pra.  Sadly no one else in our district wanted to spend the 8 cedis to come and get in. So it was just me and E. Ouma. But it was sweet, got lots of nice pictures. There is a NICE bridge built in Feb over the river. It’s really not that nice, basically and overpass, but for Ghana it is NICE haha!! Got some good pics there too! I was talking to Elder Cowan the other day and he wants to room with me at USU when we get back, told me I should tell you and he will tell his mom. But yeah that would be sweet, he is awesome. I am feeling good, the mission doc is over all of West Africa but Sis. Schiffman who is one of the sr. missionaries was a nurse at Ogden Hospital so she does most of the checking up on us sort of thing so if it gets to be a problem I will talk to her! And no I never use sunscreen, I have only gotten burned a few times on p days haha. But yeah, good old Italian skin is a +.

That is awesome about Adam knocking one out of the park, I liked the picture of him holding the ball that you sent! Also the ones of him dancing made me
laugh haha! They were awesome. I loved the pics of Cody and Amanda as well, looks like they really had a great time in Mexico! I am happy about Brady too! Sounds like he is laying the foundation for a wise economic future full of big business investments and corporate sieges(idk). But really, that is awesome he is doing so well. I have snapped some awesome pics this week, so hopefully someday I will get to send them home haha. I have a nice one of me holding a giant grasscutter (rat), so stay tuned! The camera battery shouldn't be a problem, I have not looked for one yet because I am in the bush, but I really will be able to find one I think. The day is coming soon however that I will need some new socks and maybe a belt and one or two ties however, not immediately but soon!  Fun fact, it was one year ago today that I received the Melchizedek Priesthood!

I love you soooo much, you are the best mom in the world and we have the best family in the world!!!!! I LOVED getting to talk to you guys, it was sooo nice!!! It sounds like everything is going well at home!!! I love you all!!! In the words of our favorite Wendy's drive thru guy, "Have an AWESOME day!!!!"

Monday, May 5, 2014

Hi from Foso!!!!

So it just happened again haha! I typed up a good two paragraphs and it crashed!!!! But I am here and intend to email haha!!!!! The power was off for a bit but it came back!!! YEAH!!! I am doing pretty good, just getting adjusted to everything here in Akonfudi and trying to learn as much as possible from Elder Ouma. It’s been a crazy but sweet week! Elder Ouma is sweet!! He is such a good example to me and I am learning so much from him! He is quiet like me, so it can be a quiet companionship at times, but it is good! He really is awesome though, makes me feel like such a young missionary haha. But it is sweet, work is getting done in Akonfudi now! We are planning on 4 baptisms on the 24th, so that’ll be sweet!!! Elder Ouma really is helping me out a lot with his example and everything, I am learning a ton even though sometimes I feel bad like I am holding him back. But he speaks very good English as every Ugandan I have met does. They speak Swahili in Uganda! No clicking language here in Ghana, mostly in Southern Africa! He has been out a LONG time so yeah, he can luckily speak a bit of Twi and Fante, but not like Elder Quaisie! He converted 4 years ago, his father was a Muslim and his mom didn’t go, so that is powerful eh? I will have to talk to him more about it!!  His dad died a bit ago, but he was able to do baptisms for him. He is hoping to convert his mom when he goes home in Aug. Yeah the area has lots of potential! It’s so good to have him here since he knows how to do everything so well! But it’s been a good week of finding and teaching and helping the ward. You truly learn so much from teaching, it is amazing!!! They are gonna start getting us referrals and such so that will be sweet!! The work is moving forward, even though it isn’t easy at times, it is moving forward. The past transfer was hard on me to see such little progress and to contribute virtually nothing, that it is refreshing to be working again!!! We have a lot more lessons with members translating which is good, along with some English speakers, so that is also good. It’s not easy, but it is all coming together nicely, I am hoping this week will be even better than last!!! Church was great, we had 12 investigators come!!!! So that was really exciting. Our last baptism Grace brought a friend to church. We challenged her to do it Friday and she really did it!! So that was cool! Elder Ouma was so shocked to see the school where we worship haha. Honestly it is a barn. But yeah we taught the youth class a nice lesson, and we had a good PEC meeting after church!!! They all agreed to give us referrals and work with us on reactivating less actives so it was sweet.

So for a fun fact last week I weighed myself at a member’s house. I weighed around 150 lbs when I came out and now I weigh....132 lbs!!! Wow 20 lbs have vanished. Ghana is a great weight loss plan haha! But I am eating a TON of food, I don’t know where it goes haha. We are eating lots of fufu and noodles with stew and stuff, but yeah walking a lot. I probably have worms and combined with the walking it takes the weight out of you hahaha. This past week they started re-flooring our apartment, so it has been a strange situation. Before it was like vinyl lining like the pool, but they tiled it. We had to move everything into our tiny kitchen while they did it. We even were sleeping in the Bishops office at the church!!! Kinda crazy eh? But there was AC in that room so it was awesome at the same time! I felt bad for Elder Ouma coming to the apt like that, but now it has nice shiny tiles down so that is sweet! It looks really nice!!! ! It’s hard being in a 2 man apt sometimes, especially with people who don’t know Seinfeld or anything! I miss joking with you guys!

So for mother’s day, what time would be good?!?!! I think I will call around 3 here, so that is 9 home? But if we can figure out a better time that’s no problem! Just let me know! I will try to have a pre-call again, but no promises! Judging from the fact I have not been able to even send a pic home, I will say no…. Skype is not an option hahaha!!! Sorry!!! I am soooo excited to get to talk to you guys though! It feels like yesterday it was Christmas!!! It will be awesome!

Oh and I have elder Dogget here as the new zone leader, elder Cowan is here in my district and now yep elder Larsen is here! As a matter of fact they are all in the internet cafe right now! They are sweet guys, I am happy to have them here! It’s so nice to get a taste of America, I really can’t explain how nice it is. Today we went to Cape Coast in the morning, Elder Ouma needed to do one or two things. But we went into Cape Coast Castle and it was awesome! We got in for free too, and we didn't stay all that long, but it was very interesting. So sad to think about what happened to all those people!! I am trying to take pics, but my camera dies sooo quick!!! I was only able to take a few pics at the castle cuz it died, I was bummed… I just need a new camera battery. I thought I told you, but it was in the lost email I suppose hahah. It’s a Samsung BP70A battery, so that would be super when you send another package!!

But the work goes on. I am excited to have these baptisms coming up, I love studying in the mornings, I learn soooo much. And I am excited to continue learning from a seasoned vet like Elder Ouma. That is AWESOME Brady lives by Elder Holland!! Tell him to tell Elder Holland I say hi haha!!! I will get the packages tomorrow, so I am excited to see what lays inside!!!! I love you soooooooo much!!! Honestly I miss you guys a ton, but I know this is where I am supposed to be, the Lord has called me here and He teaches me soooo much each day!!! I will TALK to you on Sunday!!!!!!