Hilongos Week 16 PICTURES

April 26, 2010 Hilongos Week 16

I got the packages this last zone conference. The starburst are
yummy, but I have to keep them in the fridge because we have ants that
manage to go EVERYWHERE in the apartment, so the only safe place is in
the fridge. :P

YAY! A house! The reason you think mom's yard is so big is because
it's the 2nd biggest in our neighborhood at home. :) Elizabeth got a

I've included pictures!
The giant pig is owned by the branch President, Alex Papel. She's
pregnant right now.
The beautiful scenery is at Atabay, Hilongos.
You can see how different my tan is on my arm (VERY) when I wear that
green shirt. o_O
The really awesome cave Catholic chapel is in Maasin city. You have
to hike up these evily painful stairs that represent Christ's journey
to the cross before you can reach the chapel.

I have great news~!
Today I FINALLY figured out how to wash clothes by hand. Ahahahha!
I've been using a washboard before now and occasionally trying to wash
one or two by hand. I asked Sister Malicdem to show me and it clicked
inside my head! The same way that it just clicks when you figure out
how to ride a bicycle! I was washing by hand, and it was awesome and
even a little fun until my hands started to burn. o_o Yea, since it
was my first time by hand my hands are now sore in spots from rubbing
off skin. Owie.

Julius had his interview on saturday. So this saturday, he will be baptised. :)

We found a new family in Atabay named Matas that we're excited for.
Hopefully we'll get to see them all again this week!

I finished the Book of Mormon. :) Next time I go through, I'm going
to color code it. Woooo!

~the end~

April 19, 2010 Hilongos Week 15

Wow!!! Foreclosures are the best! (Cuz they're cheaper ;D) This
house might be the reason that you shouldn't have bought the other
houses. ;P
Take videos of Elizabeth talking!! They're good momentos forever!

That one picture of Kira looks like it could be similar to the
pictures of you or Eva as a toddler too! :D Take videos too of the
babies. <3 I don't think I can watch them now, but someday I will. :)

I love Disney movies. :) I hope I like the Princess and the Frog.

I have to quote this because it was so funny to read. A good-well
wish from Eva: "Have a great week in your Filipino paradise with the
amazing gorgeous scenery and NICE little people." xD

We're hopefully having a baptism this Saturday. He's a youth named
Julius that we thought was a member! hahaha. He's been attending
church straight for almost 3 months, and he got an award from seminary
for scripture mastery. During one of our recent lessons I asked him:
"Why do you want to be baptized?" And he said: "Because I want to go
to the Celestial kingdom."

AHHHHH. I was so happy/proud. He's so sincereeeee! At first, his
grandma wouldn't let him be baptized, but now she will. :) Julius
says it's because he prayed about it.

We also had a branch activity at the Lamberte house yesterday. The
Nanay (Mother) wanted to have company that day so she wouldn't be
lonely. So there were a ton of people there!! I showed everybody how
to play "Kini Kutsara" (This is a spoon) The spoon is passed around
until it catches the plate/bowl/etc that's passed around too like

1: This is a plate. (Kini plato)
2: Ha?
1:This is a plate. (Kini plato)
2: Ah! A plate! (Ah! Plato!)
Then the plate is passed. But, the spoon is passed like this:

1:This is a spoon. (Kini Kutsara)
2: Ah! A spoon! (Ah! Kutsara!)
So the spoon is really fast. :)

The games are everyone's favorite part of FHE.~

I was also reading in Ether today (almost finished the Book of Mormon
:D) and I think I realized that my favorite story from the BoM is the
brother of Jared. <3 He trusted in the Lord so much and was so
righteous, that he saw the Lord and all the inhabitants of the earth.
(Ether 3:25-26)

~the end~

April 12, 2010 Hilongos Week 14

Yay! CDs! :D Baby's favorite words is always "no". It's so easy to
say and defiant at the same time. And I think the ACT is more common
for the general populace of the United States than the SAT is. (And I
think it's easier. :O) Out of all the words to teach Elizabeth, you
taught her the word "Gentile"? o.O

We always ride in put-puts! It's SUPER common and they're everywhere.
If New York had
this kind of cheap transportation, New York would be less fat and
there would more room on the streets and less pollution!


Haha that'd be weird calling you Abbie. :O
Are you scared to walk alone now that you're back from your mission?
Is the first name thing weird karon?
And a bit of sad news...
Brother Lamberte died on April 9. We had the funeral service
yesterday. I feel sad that I never took a picture with him. Did you
ever take a picture with their family? I would probably like a copy
of it. :O

We went to General Conference in Maasin, that city that we visit
occasionally because that is the "district building". We watched it
in English! <3 There was a separate room for Cebuano.
My favorites were Elder Packer's talk about the need of the Father at
the head of the family, Elder Holland, because he is always so to the
point, and the Prophet, Thomas S. Monson because his talks always want
me to do better. I do think that the Saturday sessions were my
favorite. I felt the Spirit, and I left the Saturday sessions feeling
like I could accomplish anything! At first we were sure if we were
allowed to go to the sessions or if we had to proselyte on Saturday
morning. So I'm so happy we got to go. <3 And I'm waiting anxiously
for the May issue of Liahona So I can make lots of notes :) (We get
the Liahona here... A subscription to the Liahona here is the
equivalent of about $1.75 for a year, but an Ensign subscription is
about $17.50 for a year. So the members get the Liahona and most of
them speak Cebuano anyway.) ;P

This keyboard that I'm writing on is weird because the buttons are all
wrong!! Where it's supposed to be an "a" there's a Q, and a W where
there's supposed to be an "s". But I'm okay because I don't have to
look at the keyboard to type! <3 Sister Malicdem wanted to switch
because of that. eh heheh.

Love you all!
How's your Book of Mormon reading going?

~the end~

April 5, 2010 Hilongos Week 13

Of course the Alice in Wonderland movie is weird/strange. It's
directed by Tim Burton! That's what he does... making things weird.
My hair was just permanently straightened. They call it "Rebond"
here. No coloring or anything.
People like to ask if I will marry a Philippino. They think it's
really funny. I just tell them one of either two things: I'm not
allowed to have a boyfriend now or Kon buotan siya. (If he's kind ;P)

This transfer was pretty hard. S. Taunan left on Tuesday afternoon
and S. Malicdem didn't arrive until Friday afternoon. They moved the
transfer meeting for one day later so I was with members for 3 days.
@_@ For two of those three days, my "companion" was two young women
and a girl in primary who is 10 years old. It was hard because I
didn't want to ride to any appointments because it would be expensive
with 4 instead of 2 and I taught by myself. :S The total lessons for
this week are half than usual :(
Conference for us is April 10 and 11. I suppose that means its a
delayed broadcast then. Which makes me hope it isn't in Cebuano. I
want to be able to understand. :( We only get to attend the Sunday
sessions I think.
I am looking forward to your hand picked out music selections for myself. <3
Have you been taking pre-natal vitamins?

Your email this week was great!~ You had a pretty exciting week to
write all of that. And I'm really glad that the bathroom is starting
to get done. hahaha.

So we just finished HOLY WEEK! Semana Santos. That was intense. On
Good Friday in the morning, the WHOLE downtown was closed. Like,
almost deserted. I thought about it for a second and thought how nice
it would be if that attitude of worship was on every Sunday and not
just on one day a year. There was a procession, small floats of
different stages of Christ's journey to the cross and it ended with
some floats of saints. I wondered why there was no float with His
resurrection, but I figured it out later because about 2 am in the
morning on Sunday, there was a display in downtown that pronounced
"Christ is Risen, Alleluiah!" :) They pretty much "re-live" the
events for those couple days.

My new companion is S. Malicdem. She speaks English too! So we can
communicate/learn words from each other/define things for
understanding. Yay. Her previous companion was S. Dustin. <3! (My
first companion in the MTC) So far I know that she really likes green
and she really likes ginger too. :P

And I've been on my mission for 5 months now. :S That's alot.

I've been reading the New Testament recently because I finished Jesus
the Christ, which talks a great deal about Christ's ministry (which is
recorded in the New Testament! haha)

This is because we have General Conference this week:
Mosiah 15:11 - Follow the Prophet, follow the Prophet, follow the
Prophet, he knows the waaay~
~the end~

March 29, 2010 Hilongos Week 12

I think I remember a time when you said you weren't interested in
Harry Potter... and then look what happened! hahaha.

Jessie or Emily~
When Mom is done with the additions to the house, take pictures so I can see! ;)

I had/have a sore throat and a cough this week TOO! We're so
connected, even across the globe. ;) Oh, and I printed off that email
that you sent me a couple of weeks ago so that I can ALWAYS read it if
I should ever have a need. <3

Did you get my letter? I asked if you wanted a belt. They have belts
here made out of coconuts too!

I received my valentines day card this week. ;P Haha There was
several letters from the ward as well wishing a happy valentines day.
Our ward is so awesome. <3

More questions to be answered~ :D
So have you already had your zone conference for the second transfer?
(Assuming you have a conference each transfer...) How do you know
that your comp is leaving? Is she done? Or did someone tell you?
~We have 1 zone conference for each transfer. It happens like two
weeks before the transfer ends. I'm sad because I figured out that
we've been having our district meetings each week with our entire zone
(there are only 8 of us) and Pres. Malit said district meetings have
to be separate. So I don't get to see the people in my zone as often
now. :( S. Taunan is going home. So I'm being left... again. Haha.
I think I said that last email too. We're having a weird situation
now though... We found out yesterday that they aren't going to
announce who is transferring until TUESDAY MORNING. (Before I came,
they announced it on Sunday... and when I first came it was Monday
afternoon.) And I think they changed the transfer meeting from
Wednesday to THURSDAY. The missionary being left behind is supposed
to stay with a branch/ward missionary because not everyone is going to
Tacloban for transfer meeting. (We're the farthest zone from
So in my case... S. Taunan is leaving me on Tuesday morning. And my
companion won't arrive until Thursday evening. :(!! So I'm going to
be with a member for TWO days. And I reaaaaally expect that there
will be some ping-pong ball effect happening, where the members trade
me off at times. So I'm just... not sure what to expect. Especially
because we have some appointments. @_@

Oh Julie your pictures are so incredible. You are in such a strange
and different place. I hope you are loving the new and exotic
experience! There's not much like that here!
~Actually I meant to talk about this earlier, but I forgot. "The
Other Side of Heaven" is actually not a very accurate comparison to
the Philippines that I've seen so far. ;P The main differences so far
for me have been diet, the climate, religious ferver, and the
friendliness of the people. Some people here have houses made out of
cement, others out of bamboo, but the biggest things that have
affected me are the above 4. There are businesses and communities
similar to back home here, and it doesn't seem that different I think.
I realized that because I grew up in Long Beach, I probably have a
very city-like-view of the world. But I think this (Hilongos) is
probably pretty similar to a small town feeling in America.

~Diet of course is obvious, rice at every meal. There's a word here
"sud-an" It means "The thing you put on top of rice" or "Rice
topping". So sometimes I hear people say Whats your favorite sud-an?
What's your favorite thing to eat (obviously with rice). And there's
a funny tendency here to eat your pancit (noodles like the ones Mila
makes) with rice. Very carbohydrate heavy. Haha. Everyone also
likes fish and pork and chicken. There don't seem to be many
vegetable options.

~Climate is hot, shimpre! Slowly getting used to it though. First day
I was here it was veeeeerry obvious but like I said, I'm much more
used to it now.

~Religious fervor. Everyone has a professed religion. Most often,
it's Catholic because of the Spanish influence. Everyone's parents
were Catholic or are Catholic now. As far as I know the only
"Atheists" here are the foreigners. But on that same note, a lot of
the people we teach don't know what to say if we ask them "What did
Christ do when he lived on the earth?"

~Friendliness of the people. Like I mentioned before, nearly everyone
wants to say Hi. Mostly because "Oh hey, its a foreigner... HI! HI
HI!" But also, I think the Philippine people are much more down to
earth and real than the general populace back home.

Are you able to find enough toilet paper?
~Yea, I just buy it at the general merchandise store. Haha.

Do you have to use squatters ever, or are there usually toilets?
~It depends on the place... The more well off members have toilets.
But most people, if they have a toilet, don't have a flusher. Pouring
a bucket of water down the toilet gets the job done though. I've been
careful enough to plan when I can use a toilet. xD But also, toilet
paper is rare in that most people don't use it. It's very American
though. I... don't know what the people in bamboo houses do for a
bathroom. o_O Lots of people in communities bathe at the local water
pump, but as to the other business, I am still naive of it.

Do you have any fast food restaurants there like McDonalds? Maybe the
town is too small. Bermejo was. Maybe in the city did you see while
you were there?
~There are food stands here in the middle of town. Lots of lechon
chicken (rotisserie) stands and a stand called BigMak that makes hot
dogs/hamburgers (I know what you're thinking, but they're different!)
Maasin has Jolibees, which is like McDonalds:America,
Jolibee:Philippines. They serve fast food fried chicken and rice,
spagetti and hamburgers.

I think you look tanned. =)
~My arms are tanned. And the top (not the sides or toes) of my feet.
My face and neck aren't really tanned though. I use an umbrella. :)

Are there ANY tall people there? Or are you pretty much the tallest person?
~Some are tall. The tallest are around my height. haha. Mostly short.

Are there any chubby people? Or is everyone skinny?
~There are chubby people. But they're rarer.

Have you come across anything yucky that they eat?
~There's a raw fish dish that I saw that the members/S. Taunan told me
not to eat. I complied. For the most part, I think the food's yummy.
I've never eaten fish so often in my life, and it's only when we eat
at Branch President Alex Papel's house. There was one dish that was
made that was too native for me. It was a root of some sort, like
taro. It just was too bland for me. :S I'm not interested in eating
balut. But I AM interested in eating Banana-Q :) I've been trying to
eat mangoes every chance I get. <3

~I think I just leveled-up in my rice eating. I knew I was above
average as an American that likes rice, but now it's pretty intense.
This afternoon for lunch we ate instant pancit (like instant ramen but
less sodium packed...) and rice. Noodles on top of rice! Imagine
that. o_O

Now from me to you!
How's your Book of Mormon reading going? ;) I'm in 3rd Nephi now. My
brain was hurting when Isaiah was being quoted. It always ends up
like: Bah, I'm confused and I don't understand anymore. Oh wait...
He's quoting Isaiah.


Brother Lauriano Beltran brought his daughter and wife to church on
Sunday! Oh recent converts are the BEST. <3<3
~the end~

I am a LDS sister missionary serving in the Philippines Tacloban area. I made this blog so that I may share my experiences with my friends and loved ones and anyone who may need to hear my story. My sister will be updating this blog with letters that I'll be writing home.