Monday, December 12, 2016

Week 41: Exchanges, Investigators & Hair Troubles

[Insert catchy introduction here.] Normally I like to write down little notes in my planner when funny things happen during the week; however, this week just went by so fast I just couldn’t even keep up!!  The days are going by fast and I can only hope to be able to always look back with pride on my time here in the mission.  That being said I am slowly and painfully learning the difference between being a serious missionary and being a fun but obedient missionary. It’s a matter of balance. I have a friend (Ashley Little) whose favorite word is ‘Remember.’ For me it is ‘Balance.’ Life takes things to extremes, but I believe we could really and actually find peace on earth if we would simply find balance. That is not the same thing as tolerance, but balance. I just love that word.  

This last Monday was nuts. The Batac ward has been doing a salon class and is now at the final stages, so they needed volunteers to get their hair done. So Sister Ganaden, Cathy and I volunteered to have our hair permed. Now, this is something I have always wanted to do. Ever since I was a kid I remember having my cousins over and watching with fascination as my cousin Heidi Mock’s hair just naturally curled as it dried.  So you can only imagine my excitement to get my hair done, and for free!! I simply forgot one tiny, itsy bity, yet ever so important, tiny, little detail… MY HAIR IS VERY STUBBORN!! After sitting in the chapel for 3 hours (I had not eaten breakfast yet as we thought it wouldn’t take that long and it was getting close to lunch) I was very done with it. They finally deemed my hair permanently curled for 1 year and I left the chapel with my hair bouncing in gorgeous ringlets. Throughout the course of the rest of the day my hair dried and the curls went from ringlets to… straight. Now my hair is basically back to how it was last week before the perm, just slightly frizzy due to the chemicals. But at least I can say I saw an opportunity and took it, and I won’t have to live the rest of my life thinking ‘what if’ or ‘maybe I should have.’

We also got to help an investigator move into her new home this week and it was not only fun but we also got to meet her adult daughter who agreed to let us teach her! That investigator has also given us three referrals, two of which we are teaching and one of whom lives in the elders’ area. Honestly she would’ve been baptized months ago but she wants to be absolutely certain of her conversion and we are simply honored to be a part of it.  Apparently though we were supposed to arrange with the mission office about the service beforehand but we will simply be sure to do that next time and learn from our mistakes! Haha.

I also got to go on exchanges with sister Pangilinan, Sister Hermosa’s trainee. She has only been out for a little over a month now since first reporting to the MTC so I felt like a momma hen guiding her through the lessons and just enjoying watching her go! The whole experience just made me want to train so much. It was fun as I would give her tips on teaching and she would correct my grammar, so in the end we both felt edified and instructed! I can’t imagine what it would be like to train a foreigner as I can speak Tagalog- but with horrendous grammar- and they wouldn’t be able to speak at all and I’d end up teaching them the bad grammar I knew! We’d be a mess!! Haha! We had a great day together and I kept telling her how lucky she is to not have to worry about leading the area her first cycle like I did!

Throughout the week all the missionaries in Batac Zone are all preparing for Christmas Con which will be next week. We are going to do a folk dance with cups and candles and I’m supposed to dance with a candle on my head and I'm not so sure how this is gonna turn out but at least if I catch on fire then I can try getting a pixie hair cut… so let’s hope I don’t catch on fire. I have also noticed something. Members often say how they have so many great memories with my companion that they can hardly believe she has only been here for 2 months, yet they seem surprised that I have been here 4 months! So I guess I need to make some memories! I’m just worried that I will fade out of the memory of the members here.  So I need to just speak more and get my grammar under control!! Haha.
Like in Sarrat there is now a Festival going on in Batac. There was even a parade with floats and stuff going down our street on Sunday so we had to walk to church since we couldn’t get a tricee! Christmas here is nuts and I can’t tell you how many little elves (kids dressed as elves) running around. I think Santa’s workshop is actually in the Philippines, not at the North Pole.

Mery-Jane and Jennifer simply amaze me. Starting the night of their baptism last month their grandmother (who cares for them) has been in the hospital. The doctors are not too happy about the diagnosis and their grandmother is quite certain she is dying. Yet, through it all they are so hopeful and not only that but they are preparing for the ‘what ifs.’ They have decided that if their grandmother does end up passing away they will move in with their aunt who is a less active member and reactivate her and keep her newly baptized children (their cousins) active in the faith. They are shy, but they are strong. We are also starting to meet with their brother Greg, who is Iglacia Ni Christo. In the end it’ll be up to him anyways, but we did get to meet with their whole family to celebrate Greg’s birthday and that their grandmother had been released from the hospital and seems on the mend! What miracles.

All and all the work is progressing and we will continue to have baptisms monthly here in Batac- the top progressing area of the mission. (or that is what I tell myself).

From the mother hen,
Sister Eldredge


Pennies from Heaven.

This song is my theme song. I find on average about 20 pesos every week. sometimes it'll fall from somewhere and hit me on the head or I'll find it on the ground. sometimes it's just one peso (a piso) and sometimes its 10.

When i gave the sister missionaries at home rides and they said i would be blessed for giving them rides i never knew it would come in the form of free money! whoop!

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