Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Much to be grateful for...

The five Choatelets came over for FHE and we made a gratitude tree

Luke went to swim lessons.  His teacher got married last week!

Luke doing the backstroke

We got our first snow of the year

Donated Todd's red car to Autism Speaks

Cute little Miss May came over a few times this week.  

Amy likes styling her hair

She entertains us with her cute smiles

Luke doesn't know what to think about her.  When she comes over, he usually says, "Bye-bye," takes her by the hand, puts her outside and shuts the door, sings, "Shoo, Fly, Don't Bother Me," and recites, "Little Miss Muffet sat on her tuffet, eating her curds and whey.  Along came a spider, and sat down beside her, and FIGHTENED MISS MUFFET AWAY!" Ha!

Weekly letters from missionaries...

From Elder Todd Stout

SO. This week has been a BLUR. I ended up needing to buy a bike, as I am sure y'all found out by the massive lack in funding in my bank account.. But we walked the whole hour and a half or whatever walk to Asahi, and we were just talking and joking like old times, and then we got there and it was CLOSED. So we ended up walking to the rest of our appointments for the next few days, but honestly I think it was a blessing from the Lord, because me and John could literally talk about pretty much anything for hours and hours, and we ended up doing a lot of that because we had to walk so much.. It was a good ol' time. Finally got a bike, so we have been a lot more effective! The branch President here actually got together with us super late last night, and he was telling us about how our numbers were way better this week than ever, and how he has never had missionaries get more done that he has asked them to do than us.. So, I guess me and John were feeling bad for spending so much time catching up, but in reality we were also being super productive!! So that is an exciting. 

My Japanese is surprisingly good and bad. Most of the time, I can't even tell the people aren't speaking English with me, but I can't seem to utter any Japanese to save my life. I seriously have forgotten how to vocally speak it feels like.. So I have had my confidence grow and shrink in that matter. Most of the Japanese I meet are convinced that if they heard me on the phone they couldn't tell I wasn't Japanese. SO look out Dad! By the time I come home, Imma be native level and smash y'all!!

I love you!! I don't really like writing, so my emails will probably all be short! If y'all wanna hear anything specific, you can ask!! Have an awesome week!!

From Elder John Stout

We are doing GREAT!  This week has been fantastic, and I am more confident than ever before that we're going to be a part of a something great this transfer (and hopefully the next few transfers.) Man, this is the closest companionship I've ever had, and it's week 2! :D

So, our first adventures were this week were trying to get a bike.  We walked for 2 hours to get to the bike shop in the rain only to find...... it was closed.  So, that was the worst.  But we got these huuuuuge beef bowls for dinner!  So it was still worth it ;)
The next day we dendoed lots and it was awesome!!  Elder Stout was fantastic at talking to people and we've developed a good way of stopping them, him introducing us to them, me learning more about them, him sharing a spiritual thought, and then an invitation!  We're becoming a killer team!!  We found a new investigator in our first hour AND gave him a Book of Mormon!
We finally got our bikes and our first trip was to brother Tosaka's house, a less active member.  We helped him with his rice company and packaging and shared a spiritual thought Elder Stout had prepared, and it was awesome!!! :D He came to church yesterday and is doing great!!

TK is doing great!  This week he's started to progress a lot.  Due to some personal matters, his family is in a lot of stress right now, and he's been humbled.  It's brought him closer to God and he's determined on his own and then informed us that he wants to be baptized on Christmas Day.  There's also a really good chance that his girlfriend has the same desire, so please pray for them.  We love the O's!

AND AND AND!!  We have a new investigator named A C!  She's around her 30's and has been studying with the sisters for some years, but in the last year hasn't done much because the sisters were removed from Sanjo last year.  However, she came to church in Saitama while visiting a friend and I met her there!  She knew Elder Fra and one of the U sisters.  Well, when I came to Sanjo, we met and she's decided to take lessons again!  We always need a male ward member there so there's a lot of coordination that goes in, but she is so prepared.
Also we met a new man at the train station named H who we're meeting on Wednesday who is also investigating now!  The Lord is blessing us with so many friends to talk with.

Today we hiked Mount Yahiko and it was the most gorgeous fun P-Day I think I've ever had.  Brother S (the one American in our ward) helped us get there by driving us to the mountain, and his wife made us onigiri!

One more big development.  We've been doing practice lessons with part member families to get to help them. :) Our branch president N Kaichou (Kaichou is president in Japanese) told us yesterday that he can tell we're determined to work hard and he feels like he can trust us and that we're good missionaries.  Hearing a bishop say that made me feel SO good :) We're determined to do our absolute best!!  We have the trust of the ward and that means we can do anything!