Sunday, August 23, 2015

To My Fans

Helllllllllo fan base! Glad to see you are all still with me and reading my emails. I'm on the last stretch of this mission and your dedication is commendable. I applaud you; congratulations on making it this far. To those who have stopped emailing me, I forgive you, you know not what you do. 
Just another week in the flood plains of Taiwan. God's gotta keep it interesting. He's trying to tell all of Taiwan that they should be baptized, but they arent getting it... so we're following behind the rain and telling them what all the rain means, but they havent started to believe us just yet. S'all good. 

Our investigators are doing great! They are progressing. Some, a little faster than others, but they are all coming towards Christ and that is what matters! We have a nice big pool of people we are working with and so we are happy clams. Especially the ones with dates!!!yayy!! I have resigned to the fact that I wont live to see anyone baptized in person here before I go, but I would rather meet the investigators and start teaching than be at the end anyways. So God gave me my wish. 

I'll be moving in two weeks I think. Just a guess. A strong guess. So I'm trying to make sure things are in order. 
Today Elder Teasdale moved on an emergency transfer because he is training! We were all so so sad. And him and I have both been here forever in Ping Dong, so I it was sad to see my buddy go. Now I am actually the oldest missionary here and have to answer all the questions about the ward? Heavens to Betsy, someone start praying quick. 

This week in five things:
  1. We say four miracles in the first hour of p=day last week. We ran into two investigators, one inactive RC, one member, and another girl deciding to go on a mission all on our bike ride on the way to the church. :)
  2. Also, we wrote an arrange my ear for zone conference that night. The performance went well. 
  3. We played a match game at zone conference, and it wasnt even hard because we are all so used to memorizing. Literally, the missionaries were'nt even trying and they were like, "oh ya I saw that card ten minutes ago, third from the left on the sixth row" haha. Easy as pie. I think the woman who made it was a little discouraged because we never got one wrong haha.
  4. Confident in our new composing skills, I wrote a four part harmony to a primary song that we performed sunday. That was fun. I felt bad that the chords were all super complicated but we thought it sounded okay in the end. 
  5. The senior couple came and inspected our apartment, said our apartment was terrible but we had made it miraculously more clean than before. Then the next day we came home and they had dropped us off a bunch of new stuff! mattress covers, toaster oven, real plates, a hose for the washer, etc! We told them it was like Santa came. They said, "hohoho."
My companion is almost done with training. Sometimes she says our language practice feels like this:

I got a good laugh. Well that's all folks! Love ya,
Until next week, 
or for those who dont write me, 
until next Dec 27, 

Sister Ashley Wawro

P.S. Below is attatched a hilarious email from my companion's friend. It is so funny I attatched it below:


Hi mum the mission is so great! I love everyday! the people are the nicest! you can tell they like americans! they call us yankees, like one man i said i´m from the united states. he said los matamos aqui, jajaja what ever that means. almost everyday we have lunch with a member! they are so sweet and feed us well! mostly we eat a lot of chicken! Hey did you know we can eat chicken medium rare? i thought we´d get salmanela but sister mage said that´s only in salmon. she´s really sweet the otherday we got to chop down a tree in her yard! it was awesome i got to climb a tree with a machete!!! that´s when we found Fred! oh ya, Fred is our new pet, he´s a brazilian banana spider, sister mage said he´s only poisious if he bites, so we cant make him angry, he´s cool, we´re going to teach Fred how to swim later! we want to teach him how to swim incase it floods again, hey did you know if you pipes break your apartment will flood? it wasn´t too bad, on the other hand our floor is really clean now!
Teaching the gospel is takes so much energy so everyday we try to stay fit so we and feel the spirit more! somedays my companions is too dedicated to fitness, like when the gangsters shout hey Mormones! like they want to hear the gospel, he says we should start running, I don´t know why he likes running at night, it seems like the best time to share a message about the light of christ! 

Speaking of messages did you get the letter from the hospital? it was a nice visit, the doctor did however say that i shouldn´t give myself stitches, oh don´t worry mom i only had 4, did you know we´re not supposed to use thread from the sewing kit for open wounds? oh The mission is great mum! later we have to go to the pharmacy, probably cause elder matis has another paracite, no big deal it´s probably from the cow stomach we ate the other day! Elder Fru said we shouldn´t have eaten it after leaving it out all night but what ever my stomach is like the iron rod! 

Love you mom we´re going to try and ride the elephant at the zoo!  

Elder Schoonover

Ps, when was my last tetna shot?
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The Trojan Horse and Typhoons Got Nothin' On Us

Typhoon came.   Is that how you spell it in English? Such a hard word.
We no longer have a roof on our balcony. The typhoon took it away!  We were awakened at about 5am to hear the ripping of it and see chunks of it fly away a piece at a time.  We didn’t sleep well and it was scary..  but it was exciting too.  We stayed inside.  When we were going to go out, the elders called and were said, “Yes we are outside.  You don’t want to be outside.  Stay inside.  We are headed back home."  I guess stuff was flying through the air.  Then it became a rule to stay inside.  An adventure to be sure! 

A member gave us a beautiful plant to put on our balcony.  Little did we know the plant was actually a Trojan Horse!  That thing brought so many ants into our apartment!  So we dumped that.  Ha!  Problem solved.  Now we have a beautiful aloe plant instead of a mint one. 

A snippet from my letter to president:
Hello President!  If happiness is who you are with, I am floating on a cloud.  A rainy stormy cloud but it’s more fun that way. The typhoon ripped the roof right off our balcony but we are okay.  Something to write home about.  I heard about the papaya trees being ripped out-- a disappointment to us all. 辛苦你們。 I'm doing well, Sister Howard is a dream, and in Ping Dong we finally have another baptism date!
In fact, that is my miracle this week!  FINALLY someone accepted an invitation!  We wanted to cry!  And then one wonderful family told us this week that they really believed they should be baptized, but felt they needed to come to church before they could commit to that!  Well ya,  we agreed and the family came with three sons!  We are happy little clams down here.  I feel like we're going to get all the dates set up and then.. then I will move.  It always happens like that but it's okay.  I'll still be so excited for them.  Actually I was disappointed in our numbers this week (typhoons cancelled about 7 lessons) but then I started thinking about it and I was like, wait, when I first got to PingDong and we were working so hard I would have loved even having 6 peikes!  So then we counted our blessings this week, and everyone set up for next week. 

Blah blah I said more things to President..

Moving on! 

Oh ya and I am singing in Zone Conference this week. By myself.  Scary!  It was going be a duet but I couldnt get anyone to sing with me... -__-

Also, the Elders gave us thier blender this week because they “weren’t using it".  Actually,  We are pretty sure they used it everyday but they felt bad for my stomach hurting so they were trying to help.. sweet.  I'm loving it though. 

Well.  That’s all!
Love ya. 
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Monday, August 3, 2015

Zion's Camp

other than giving one of our favorite investigators to the elders and biking for almost 5 hours saturday, I dont have much new to announce. Oh ya and there theres tha tyear mark thing, but no one wants to talk about that. 
Did you know your calves can sweat? I didnt know? 
Its so hot here that when you pray at the end of the day you slide on the floor.

My old companion just emailed me:
"My dear, I'm engaged.

Hahahha. I am just kidding."
trickster. But she is the only one not engaged so... she got me. 

Anyways, letter this week:

Zion's Camp:

I'm camping. And in camping you pack all your gear. 
Me, I've been camping for over a year. 

In camping you learn real real quick, 
which gear is heavy, and which gives you a fit. 

You keep what you need, dump out the rest, 
but not to re-pack to soon is the ultimate test. 

You'll say lots of prayers, hear lots of talks,
and there's no fate worse than getting wet socks. 

In camping, sometimes it kinda sucks. 
You'll hike for hours just to get stuck in some ruts.

It's physically hard, you'll sweat a lot,
and sleep on a bed that feels like a cot. 

You'll get bitten, get tired, eat food with foul taste,
but be expected to smile and keep up a good paste. 

While camping you find out real quick, that happiness
depends on the people you're with. 

You'll get closer to people, make some new friends.
They're your best souvenirs when this journey ends. 

While camping, you learn some impressive new skills, 
conqueror some fears, take parasite pills. 

You clean up after yourself, bring your own kit, 
You leave every place better than you found it. 

Camping builds character. Brings you to new heights. 
You'll climb to new peaks and see beautiful sights. 

At some point in camping, you realize you need a shower.
You'll accept that you need one more by the hour. 

Which is fine, because camping can't be your whole life.
You go home to apply the lessons you learned on your hike. 

You'll come home exhausted, excited, and ready to kick it,
but deep down you know how much you will miss it. 

Not so much for the hiking, or sweating, or tears,
But because of all God helped you put into those years. 

Cuz you knew from the start, when you got the call, 
that camping really isn't about you at all. 

But its changed you, grown you, given you a new start,
and when you pack up from camping
it's like packing your heart. 

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Weddings are Missionary Tools

I can’t remember what happened this week. It’s all a blur and Idont have much time! BUT!

We attended a wedding this week. And they were the best missionaries EVER!!  No really… they:
  • Took bridals with the Book of Mormon and Bible
  • Took photos at the chapel and temple
  • Handed out Family Proclamations as people walked into the reception
  • Had a show, were they sang hymns
  • And each gave a talk on eternal families
  • They invited the bishop to do the same
  • Complete with and opening and closing prayer
  • Invited all of us to contact their friends over dinner…

  • Areyouflabbergast?   I am and I’m only remember half of what they did.  Wow! Do I have some room for improvement. 

We’ve started calling them the "power couple."

Here's a snippet from my letter to President:
 Okay so here is the gist quickly, things are good. My companion- good.  The bishop finally agreed to meet with us and we have a REAL WARD PLAN. Not having a plan has been a stuggle here, but now we have a plan to meet the stake goal and we are excited. 
I got a blessing this week and it said that The Lord was proud of me. That I was doing the right things here, even though I doubted myself, and that I was doing the work He wanted me to do here. I was so relieved because sometimes we've felt so pulled between lack of baptisms and the ward, and all this. I didnt know how much I needed to hear it until I heard it. 

SCRIPTURES:  Finished D&C just barely.  I'm going to be a consecrated member for life, not just a consecrated missionary.  Not sacrificing, consecrating. This is Zion’s camp and I intend to start the building when I'm home. 

MIRACLES: Getting a ward plan. 

That is all! We're just laboring in the hot part of the vineyard down here!  Feel free to throw water or a towel our way! 

Okay family that is all! Sorry about the letter today!

Ilove you!  
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Ice Ice Dragon

No Typhoons. So disappointing. 

In other news, I’ve been battling a dragon all week. Every night… I am awakened by ice- ice being poured on me! From the AC above my bed!  And the AC makes this terrible growling sound and screaming sound! An ice blowing machine that only strikes in your sleep! It wakes me up every half hour. So, basically its a Chinese torture device. I turn it off to turn the noise off, but then it’s so hot in ten minutes I wake back up to turn it back on until the ice starts in 30 minutes when its cold again.

I am so sleep deprived its ridiculous. But operations is working on it, so it’ll be fine. 

In other news this week:
  • I saw my MTC teacher! She was just touring around Taiwan!  What a tender blessing because I saw her by accident  (Accident? Oh please, no way). 
  • We got a mint plant. It took us two days to kill the mint plant... 
  • We had interviews this week! It was great. 
  • Also, it was feed the missionaries week because every time we came to church someone was waiting with food, even investigators.
  • We are making some headway with our eternal investigator! WHOOOO!
  • The elders thoughtfully moved our bikes quite a distance out of the rain, so they were waiting in the church lobby area when we walked out of a lesson. #tendermercies
  • We finally got to take the trash out. Sounds simple, but we have too many appointments at night :(
  • Starting next week I'm one of the oldest sisters in the mission. Freaks me out.
  • There is this Elder who is like a child, literally- he always has toys and war heads and frozen pens and pranks- and I never really disliked him, but I just kinda ignored him. This week I realized he was actually making my life more fun.  For example, we were all sweeping, and he was belting our songs and he turns and says, “Sister Wawro, you don't look like you're having FUN." hahaha.  So now, I have to repent and thank God for the childish Elder that makes us all laugh.  We're friends now. 
Also this week, we had so many miracles! We got a whole family more committed to learning the gospel and met a woman who had a son who has to have major brain surgery, so the elders gave her a blessing and she LOVES US and church and hates her religion… so is willing to meet with us! Which is a miracle because they own a temple with a fortune teller and everything... but she thinks that its "of the devil and wants not part of it" so she will bring her sons to church to learn of God instead.  Well , alrighty then!  We are here for her!

If you are going to pray for me, please pray for baptisms!  We have investigators but we need to help them get baptized!  Thank you all! love you so much!post signature