Happy New Year!

Best Filipino Christmas ever!!! So Christmas Eve, Sister Richmond and I had the great idea of handing our Christmas cards to everyone! We just printed a little business size card out with our picture, a Christmas scripture and the time our church and mormon.org. Then we handed out about 100 cards to just random people all over centro and told them Merry Christmas! Hopefully something good will come of it.

So Christmas, in the morning Sister Richmond Skyped and then in the afternoon we had our ward Christmas party! It was super fun. Just lots of performances and of course some food. Jenavie, Jessielou and Ronal all went with their kids. Yay! All of us missionaries did do the cup performance (Sister Richmond has a video which I’ll get from her someday) and we sang a few Christmas songs. We were all matching though so everyone look at how cute we were! Ha Sister Richmond has the pictures I think on her Skydrive. So after, we had the brilliant idea of doing a Christmas service project. So we told the elders we should all the clean the church so the members could go home. Well they were hungry so we made a deal that the sisters would cook and that they would clean. We ended up having a very nice Christmas meal, catered by us sisters! in the church parking lot haha.

Day after Christmas, SKYPE!!!! Sooooo good to talk to you guys! Love you guys! Definitely the highlight of the week. And the big news with that is…. SIDNEY IS ENGAGED!!!! Everyone, my little sister is getting married in May!!! How crazy is that!!! Oh my goodness I am so happy for her and her fiance, Cody. He proposed to her Christmas Eve… Awww. They’re super cute and I am so happy for them. (Yes I will miss the wedding but the deal is they can get married before I get back only if they take a million pictures for me to see. And take me to get yummy food when I get back… Right Sid & Cody? 😉 )

So random Christmas traditions in the Philippines… Firework type things are always going off! And it’s like 8 or 9 year old little boys always shooting them off with no parental supervision. The only thing is most of the time, there isn’t like lights or anything coming from the fireworks, it just is a loud pop or boom! So Sister Richmond and I this past week have felt like we’re in a war zone cuz it always sounds like gun shots or cannons are going off haha. Caroling is huge here! But they do it differently. Little kids mostly do it and they accept money afterwards haha. Sometimes though they all dress up and have matching dresses or something like that so they can get more money. Maybe I’ll try that in America 😉 Probably won’t make too much. So Christmas ‘time’ in the Philippines is actually Midnight. So we missed most of the celebrating because we were sleeping! But apparently that’s when the Christmas celebrating and eating is. Lots of Filipino spaghetti, pancit, rice is eaten though.

Funny story: We were yelling ‘tao po’ at the door of one of our less actives houses who happens to have like 4 geese outside just free. Well for some reason they were in a bad mood and one of them starting charging! So I’m not sure if Sister Richmond was just acting out of panic, but she decided to kind of use me as a shield! So the goose was charging me and I couldn’t move! Ha well I was blessed and was kept safe and got away some how but it was pretty funny.

Yesterday Sister Richmond and I were both asked to give talks right before sacrament meeting. First just Sister Richmond was asked and so I just went up on the stand to sit with her for support and help her quickly write a couple Tagalog words down for her talk, but then they asked me too since I was already up on the stand! Weird though cuz I felt like it was almost the best talk I’ve given since I’ve been here. I just talked about the Atonement, sacrament and things like that but I feel like it went well. I used Grandma Hansen’s analogy though of the 3 levels of Christmas. The first being just the level of presents, gifts, parties and things like that. Second is the birth of Jesus Christ and the Third is more about the actual life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ (Sorry Grandma if that isn’t totally right. I just kind of took the idea and meaning and talked about it:) ). But anyways that was fun. I actually almost enjoy talking in sacrament meeting now.

Well I think that might be about it! Not too much to report about investigators except for Jessilou and Ronal will be Manila for two weeks so that’s a bummer we won’t be able to see or teach them for a while. Jessilou did text us though and asked what time and where the churches were there so hopefully they went to church! She also said they brought their Book of Mormons so hopefully they’ll keep progressing even though we’re not teaching them. Jenavie is doing great! Just a few problems with her husband so please pray for her. She already has an amazing testimony. Expecting some real miracles this transfer! Which btw… We’re both not getting transferred! Wasn’t expecting to but such good news. Sister Richmond would be happy if we were companions the rest of my mission! Well I am so thankful for the birth, life and atonement of our Savior Jesus Christ. Remember Him and try to come even closer to Him this new year 2014!

Love you all and be safe!

Sister Taylor

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Jaycee doing her Skype call to us for Christmas!

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Christmas gifts!

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Members leaving for Manila soon. Jaycee just looks so cute in this picture so I had to post it.

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