Making memories one day at a time.......and then I write about it.

Monday, January 19, 2015

More From the Philippines!

Elder Rubow awhile back asked me if I had a favorite picture of the Savior.  I don't have a particular favorite but without knowing why or what he wanted, I sent him a few that I like.  He had this made for me.  It is made from bamboo.
January 12, 2015

The most frustrating and yet hopeful day of the week is Sunday for missionaries.  After teaching many lessons and your investigators say they will go to church but don't because they were washing plastic....thats really annoying.  And we cannot progress with our investigators until they are reading the Book of Mormon and going to church.  So now we have to wait another week and their baptism will need to be pushed back.  Grabi gid.

Other then that though it has been a very very awesome week.  As District Leader I am assigned to go with the other missionaries in their different areas and I was able to see the progression in language, teaching, investigators, and many more things.  It was way fun.  I was able to work with Elder A, a pretty new missionary, and with Elder L, another new missionary.  Elder L is from a nearby island and he is native Hiligaynon which is awesome because he doesn't have to learn the language here.  He grew up in the church in a very active family so he knows the doctrine and he used to work with the missionaries almost everyday so he knows how to teach.  So basically if he was from America he would be serving a state side mission for him.  Really awesome guy.

Um...that really is our week.  Not incredibly exciting and no more of our members are killing anyone so I think things are good!  One other thing that did happen though was three less active families have come back to church this last week which was awesome!  Thats going to be a big focus for the next couple of weeks though I will be transfering in two weeks. Thanks again for all you do and Ill talk to you next week!

Nothing much really happened this week but I hope more for this week.  I didn't have time to make a video sadly but I will have one next week for sure.  Thanks again for your prayers!  Do enjoy the pictures!

Elder Rubow

January 18, 2015

Elder Rubow is pictured in the center.  With Elder M on his left and Elder S on his right.  

So I have heard I am going to transfer next week.  And I am really sad because I am so close to some of the
people here and now I will probably never see most of them again.  Thank goodness for modern technology
though so I can keep tabs on everyone.

So it souds like you have been very busy with floors!  (I wrote and told him I am sick of cleaning carpets and if I had my way, I would yank them all out and replace with concrete and tile with a huge drain/disposal in the middle of the floor!)  There had better be carpets though when I get back.  I miss that so much.  Send me some pictures of that purse. (The SM bought me a new purse.  First impractical purse I've ever bought.  It's not brown or black.  It's cute and trendy and did I mention impractical??  Elder Rubow wants proof.)
So I prepared a video for you this week but it died and now it wont send.  I promise you one next week though and with some pictures.  I have a lot of those I need to send.  

So I hate to make this email so short today but I am on one of the worst computers for some reason and everything keeps crashing and not working and it is really frustrating right now.  Anyway this week was one of the best we have had in a long time.  And a lot of good things have happened as of late.  So I will just start with the top.

Exactly a week ago we had a Zone Activity with a bunch of missionaries.  Probably 25 of us total.  The subject of the activity was survival and we all went to a field that a member owns.  The Zone leaders made a bunch of obstacle courses and games for us and we were all put into tribes and the best tribe that was able to pass the tests won.  That was a lot of fun but I had just recovered from a fever so I mostly just took pictures and helped run the show.  In the course there was a lot of water holes because the members had water buffalos so a lot of missionaries got really muddy.  One of the couple missionaries lost his shoe in it.  But they had a lot of fun as well.

Tuesday was the most spiritual part of the week for me.  As a district leader I have the opportunity to lead 7 other missionaries which is a lot of fun.  One of my responsibilities as well is interviewing missionaries in my district.  A few of the missionaries have been having some difficulty with culture as of late. Most companionships are made up of one Filipino and one foreigner and we have a lot of differences sometimes.  I have been reading a lot about the gifts of the Spirit and how I can receive them and use them for good.  After hearing a few of the problems they were having I could literally feel the Spirit telling them what they needed to do.  I don't remember much that was even said but I do remember the look they had and they have been working together really well ever since.  

The other gift I have been experiencing is the gift of tongues. I have been pronounced fluent Illango here and I can honestly put 100% into the Spirit.  So many times I have felt the spirit enhance my knowledge and though I can't understand or say everything I have the spirit with me to help me.

This last Sunday was also amazing.  4 of our investigators were able to go to church and they all seemed to like it and have expressed a desire to return.  Then we had an answer to my prayer.  In La Paz we have over 300 less active members and this last week the ward has put together a rescue team to work with the missionaries and find those less active members.  We have found 4 families already and we also by chance found 9 new investigators who have expressed interest in our message and already have close friends in the church.  This is a huge growth!  The power of members is so strong.  Even I used to think that the missionaries are the ones to go out and rescue all those people but I can honestly say that it is the work of both the missionaries and members that will bring the growth that the Lord needs.  Such good things have started up.  And sadly I will be transferring to a new area next week.  But it was an amazing to have been apart of this huge growth.  I am going to miss this so much but I am really excited for some new experience and maybe even a new language.
Thank you again for all the prayers and I hope to hear from what is happening in your lives and what amazing blessing the Lord has blessed you with.

That is whats going on this week so yeah!  I can't believe that it is almost February already.  Time goes whether we know it or not.  It is going to be such a busy last week before I go.  Love you so much mom and you you do make faces! (I do not!!!!)

Elder Rubow

Wednesday, January 14, 2015


Levi:  I have a sore on my nostroll.
Me:  It's not a sore, it's a zit.
Levi:  It hurts.
Me:  Stop picking at it.  Leave it alone.
Levi:  Cuz it will get worse?
Me: Yes, it will get worse.
Levi:  Iz a sore.
Me:  It's a zit.
Levi:  Wuz a zit?

Levi is covered in scars.  Anytime he gets a sore of any kind, a mosquito bite, etc. he picks.  Won't leave it alone.  Takes forever to heal.  I have been dreading the day he hits puberty and acne begins. The day when his face is covered in 'sores' and he won't leave them alone as he picks at them and scars his angelic face.

Levi has a zit on his nose.  He's obsessed with it.  I keep trying to get him to leave it alone.  Gross moment.  Maybe if I pop it and show him what's inside he'll leave it alone?

Me:  Hold still.
Levi:  Ow!  Dat hurts!
Me:  Look!  This is what comes out of a zit.  See?  Don't pick.  It's a zit, not a sore.  Leave it alone.
Levi:  You made me bleed.  Iz a sore.

Oh puberty, please be kind to my son............

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Adding Some Flair

Do not ask me what in the world I am looking at.  I handed Mr. B (eldest native) my camera and told him to take a bunch of pictures.  Grandma wants to see the sweater I've finally finished knitting!  I told him not to worry about my head.  I'd be cutting it off.  Just needed photos of the sweater.

Saw the photos and had to laugh.  Leaving the head and face.  Just out of the shower.  Hair thrown up into an awesome ponytail so it doesn't cover the sweater.  No make up.  There ya go folks!  Me.  In the raw.  You can thank me later.

P.S.  At least I did brush my teeth for the occasion.  You're welcome!

Pattern is from BERGERE de France Ref# 160.17
Yarn is:  BERGERE de France Pyramide L7642

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Philippines!! A Video AND Photos!

Playing basketball!! (Elder Rubow is wearing the white t-shirt.  Second in from left.)
Hello Mom!!

First of all, yes I did!  they are hanging right over my bed.  (I sent him some plastic snowflakes in his Christmas box because he misses the snow so much.)  Pressing end was indeed hard.  (Saying goodbye at Christmas when we Skyped).  Sorry you have all been so sick.  Thats not a fun way to spend Christmas.  I will be praying for you all to get better. 

So attached is a video of me!  I was thinking about sending you a video every week about the week and everything.  Let me know your thoughts and everything.  Ill send the weekly letter of course and all of that but the video is just an add on.  With such a short email I hope this will help a bit more.  So yeah!  I miss you all more then I can say!  Good thing May is so close.  (He gets to Skpe again for Mother's Day). I love you so much!  I promise you more next week!  This whole two hours I have been trying to figure out how to send videos.  Expect more next week!

Christmas is now over and New Year is just around the corner.  I did not believe that this day would come to be honest but I am so surprised just how fast it did come.  Christmas was amazing!  I got two packages from home which was awesome and we were invited to one of the members to play games and have food.  All of our investigators have been either very busy or have left for the holidays so we have spent most of our time with members and less actives and trying to build up the kingdom of God.  Then I was able to talk with my family face to face which I have not done in over 6 months.  It was incredible and I love them so much! That was definitely the highlight of the week.  2 hours was not enough at all but way better then not at all.  (Agreed.  Two hours Skyping wasn't near enough but we'll take it!  We're grateful we were able to Skype. Best Christmas present gift.)

My companion got sick after Christmas with a nasty flu of some sort so we spent two days in the house where he rested.  I was able to do some reading, origami, paperwork, cook, and pretty well just wait for him to recover.  This week was rather boring really.

We did have another highlight!  The stake had planned all the way back in October for a "White Christmas" to happen Christmas morning.  As part of that, we missionaries were to bring people to baptism for that day.  25 people were baptized that day including one of our investigators.  The spirit was very strong and I feel so lucky to be here serving in the Philippines.  Many testimonies were given at the end and I feel the testimonies of those who attended were strengthened.  I sure was.

A white Christmas. (Elder Rubow is bottom row.  Third in from left giving the thumbs up.)
I apologize for the short letter this week.  I just really don't know what else to say.  I can hardly remember what happened past talking with my family. 

Elder Rubow baptizing.
So I will just end with my testimony:  I do know that Jesus is the Christ.  He is our Savior and Redeemer and that only through Him can we come unto the Father.  We are so blessed to have the Restoration of His eternal Gospel.  We have living prophets and apostles, we have revelation, and we have the restored priesthood all here on the Earth again.  And all we need to do to know if this indeed really is true is to pray to Him in the name of Jesus Christ.  Then by the power of the Holy Ghost, we will know it is true.  Which it is.  With so many wars, storms, calamities and so much confusion, we can know the truth if we shall seek for it.  Those who seek shall find.  I know this to be true and I leave this in the name of Jesus Christ amen.

Elder Rubow


Thursday, January 1, 2015

A Big, Black Truck

Life with Levi.  I've been told by many that I should write a book with this very title.  On Face Book, I often write the things he says because it is so random and hilarious.

A few years ago our family went to an old pioneer village at Christmas time.  There were activities for the natives to do.  One was, writing a letter to Santa.  When the natives were done, they put the letters in the fire place and off they went to the North Pole!  Brilliant!  Darling!  Did I ever mention Levi's love of fire and burning things?  Any excuse to put something in the fireplace to be burnt is just pure awesomeness for him!  And now, we have another excuse/reason to burn more items in the wood stove.  Letters to Santa.  FaaaaanTASTIC!

For a couple of years Levi has been asking for a big, black truck.  The kind that you can ride in.  The battery operated kind that little kids can drive.  You know the ones, the ones that cost major numeros amount of dollars??  Not to mention they aren't the most practical toy in the world.  This year, he upped the intensity.  All.  Year.  Long!

December came.  So excited.  Time to write Santa!

Levi:  Mom, how you write, big, black truck?
Me:  B-I-G  B-L-A-C-K  T-R-U-C-K

And then I go on to explain to Levi that those cost a lot of money and what else would he like Santa to bring???  He does need a new scooter!  Wouldn't that be nice?  Well yes.  Levi acknowledges that he needs a new scooter but he wants a big, black truck.

Christmas came.  First of all, do you have any idea how hard it is to buy gifts for a native who has special needs and the usual 'toys' don't even come up on the radar??  Unless it is a big, black truck.  Every year The SM and I wrack our brains trying to find things that Levi will think are awesome and aren't the same thing year after year.  And year after year, we pretty much get him the same things.  Because it is what he wants.  Rope.  Carabiner.  Another helium tank for balloons.  More handkerchiefs because one can never have too many bright bandanna handkerchiefs to wave around like flags...............  

It doesn't get a whole lot more exciting than that.  The awesome thing is he's thrilled!  He loves getting the same thing year after year.  Because it is a constant.  It isn't change.  Levi doesn't like change.  Unless it is of the monetary kind and then I ask that you all keep your hands close to your change or you will find it taken when you least expect it.  How Levi's piggy bank continues to grow full of change is beyond me and a blog post for another day.

January 1, 2015.  First item of business.  Levi is watching me build a fire.  It's cold.  I'm freezing.  I notice Levi out of the corner of my eye rummaging around looking for something.  He then comes and sits by me.  I'm not paying particular attention.  I'm too busy starting a fire.

Levi: Mom, how you write, big, black truck?
Me:  (I look over and notice he's found a marker and some construction paper).  Why?
Levi:  I need ta write Santa.
Me:  But you got a really nice scooter from Santa!
Levi:  How you write, big black truck?
Me:  Sigh.........  B-I-G  B-L-A-C-K  T-R-U-C-K

The letter is written and promptly placed in the fire I've just built.  Levi looks at me with satisfaction and as he's walking away says, "I want a big, black truck".

Yes, Levi.  I know.  Nothing's changed............

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Out With the Old, In With the New!

I've been thinking about 2014 as it comes to a close.  2014 was hard.  In a lot of ways.  I remember at the beginning of the year thinking that I was really really disliking 2014 and the way it was continuing.  Several times through out the year I was ready for it to be over.

Looking back on 2014, there were some really big amazing things that happened (Mr. T going on a mission being one of them.......).  Looking back, I realize that the things that seemed so hard and were difficult going through them, in the grand scheme of things, compared to the amazing things that happened, have in fact, made 2014 a pretty incredible year!

There were a couple of things that we went through and are still going through that are hard but, as 2015 begins, I have decided that rather than choosing to be bogged down by the hard things, there are bigger and better things to focus on.  Like, a loving Heavenly Father who knows the beginning from the end and is in charge so I don't have to worry and stress!

Speaking of fathers........ when I was home for Thanksgiving, my Dad was out using his snow blower.  He had this ridiculous knit excuse for a hat perched on the top of his head.  It didn't even come down and cover his ears!  What's a daughter to do.............  so I knit him a new hat that will cover his ears.  As seen being modeled by Mr. J.

Throw out the old useless hat Dad!!!  And yank on the new!

Here's my 2015 wish.  May our noses not be drippy and if they are, may they be drippy from playing in the cold and from tears of joy and laughter!!  And what ever you do, if your Mum points a camera at you, do not!  Do NOT I tell ya!!  Crack a smile!  It's forbidden.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Adventure Is Out There!

I have no clue why I think this but, I have this tiny inkling that this little native just might, perhaps, just maybe,............. be an engineer when he grows up.  Just like his daddy.

I absolutely love watching what Mr. J and his creativity.  What he comes up with on his own with card board boxes is so delightful!  He gets so excited when he sees the local UPS man come with a delivery.  He could care less what is in the box, he just wants the box.  He told me recently that I needed to order some more things and would I order big things so he could have big boxes?

I adore the steering wheel.  It turns.  I adore that he has a flashlight inside that he can turn on and it becomes a headlight.  I adore that he found a corner of a smaller box and cut it out to hold the steering wheel.  I adore the hat and goggles made from canning lids, rubber bands, and pipe cleaner.

I adore this native.

P.S.  I don't adore the plastic in the back that was dumped out of the boxes but I do adore the coats and snow pants hanging in  front of the fireplace drying from outside adventures.  Trying to decide if I adore all of the pillows and blankets piled everywhere because we've all been sick all holiday...... don't adore being sick........ but adore our time spent together............