Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Merry Christmas everyone!!! I cannot believe that the time of year is come once again for me to talk to you. I am so excited to let you know of all the changes going on. I can't believe it is that time of year. I am way excited. Only two more weeks and I get to be spiritually pumped up by my family. Thanks for being so cool. I hope that I can sleep at night....;).
Well, the week is going great, it has been really eventful, and it is going by way way too fast. This transfer is already half over almost. I don't know what to do. Right now we have four people in the baptisimal pool that can be baptized this transfer. Not only do they have goals, but these are some of the most amazing people that I have ever taught on my mission. We have one who is the most humble man in the whole entire world. He sells tea leaves for a living, so that is obviously a problem, but he loves church, I mean loves church. We met with him right after last week and taught one of the most amazing lessons of my whole mission. It was actually our member that did most of the teaching, but this man has been a chain smoker since he was about twelve years old, meaning that he has smoked tons in these 15 years. But the spirit was strong in the lesson, and he commited to going cold turkey. I was in shock. He gave them up right on the spot because Elder Tarver and I asked him too. How amazing is that? Heavenly Father has really prepared this man to be a leader and a wonderful member of this church. Can you imagine when other investigators have smoking problems, they could talk to him and he will just tell them how its done. What an amazing guy.
Another one is a member referral. He uses his Book of Mormon with his friends testimony in it and everything. He is amazing and is almost done being taught. His biggest challenge so far is getting to church.
The third is having his baptisimal interview this week. I have watched an internal battle with him. He really is changing his mind set and watching his thoughts so that he can join this church. I have faith that he can do it as well. Keep praying for him.
The last is probably the hardest one right now, but he is great. It is a blessing to have so many wonderful people to work with. I am so grateful for Heavenly Father and for His love for me and Elder Tarver and the Taipei 3rd ward. I really have never seen so many miracles, and I love it so much.
We sang in a nativity that the English ward put on, and it was really fun. It is so weird that last time I went I was still with Elder Miles, but this time, I was the one in charge. Oh man, how times have changed.
We also had a zone leader district leader training, and I learned a ton. I really learned about loving my Taiwanese brothers and sisters, and I will keep you updated on how that goes.
Anyways, time is almost up. I love you all thanks so much for all of your hard work and your prayers in my behalf. Have a good one, and talk to you soon!!! Love, Elder John Marble Shilin
Friday, November 23, 2007
Thanks so much for always taking the time out of your busy schedule to write to me and let me read of your love. It really means a lot to me, and the fact that I have such a good support system back home really makes me a better missionary everyday. Thanks so much! Wow. I cannot believe that it is already Thanksgiving. Time is flying. I remember when I had Thanksgiving dinner last year with Elder Miles and I had chicken nuggets from McDonalds. That was the closest thing that they had available for us. However, this year our ward is having a Thanksgiving party and because me and Elder Sewell make everyone laugh, they have asked us to take a part in it. I think we are gonna act out turkey hunting....haha. I love being able to serve close to Elder Sewell, he still cracks me up so much. Anyways, tonight in our English class we are going to be having a cooking competition. It will also be a Thanksgiving party. Everyone will be introducing their food and sharing how they made it using English, and than the missionaries get to test it all;) I love English class!!
*If you would like to read the rest of his letter, and receive them regularly, contact Aunt Helen. She is the best at missionary communication. I know this from personal experience and testify of its truth.
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
James received his mission call to Slovenia/Croatia. He will teach the gospel in Serbian. Who even knew that was a language?! He is really excited. He enters the MTC on his birthdate, Jan. 23.
Also, here are excerpts from a letter from John, followed by an excerpt from Jesse's last letter.
This week is going awesome, I am getting along with Elder Zhao, we have looked past our differences and are working harder than either of us have on our missions. Even though the area that we are serving in is not the most prepared area to boom with the gospel, we are seeing a ton of miracles and blessings.
I cannot believe that Christmas time is just right around the corner. Oh man. I remember that day like it was just yesterday. So we are receiving a lot of blessings, and not to mention the fact that I will be able to go to the temple today. James, I hope you know that I will be praying for you. Also, dear family, I appreciate all of your help and support, and especially your sacrifices. Thanks so much for all that you do!!! It is going to be a great week this week! Take care! Love, Elder John Marble ShiLin
And Jesse says:
We have a lot of hills here, which is another thing I'm not excited about for the winter. This week we had a twenty minute up hill bike ride to get home to have someone pick us up for dinner. There's not a whole lot of flatness in our area, and it's a pretty big area. I'm glad I did have Rathdrum, so I got a bit better at biking where it was flat before I had this challenge placed before me. Elder Morrison is a basketball player (meaning that he played everyday before his mission) and so he's in great shape. I guess I'll just blow someone's house down instead of knocking on their door, with all the huffing and puffing I'll be doing :)
I have to meet with a member of the Stake Presidency and High Council on Saturday Morning to coorelate how the work is going in my district. The Spanish District Leader comes too, and we have breakfast. You can imagine how ill-prepared I was this week, having only been here a few days. Well, guess who came along? First off, the High Council representative was Brother Neuenschwander, who's the son of Elder Neuenschwander, of the first Quorum of the Seventy. Well, guess who brought Dad along? Yep. So, the Spanish District Leader gave a pretty thorough report of his district, and I just gave him the few things that I knew of, which wasn't much. I guess the point is that I felt kinda stupid. I guess I better learn a lesson from it or something, or else it's likely to happen again.
I really liked the reference in Jesse's letter to the big bad wolf.
Monday, November 5, 2007
Aunt Helen sends the following news:
James is waiting for his mission call. The status on his call is: "ready for assignment." He is excited about getting the call.
I hope you are all doing well. We have been busy at our house. We especially enjoyed the Fall Break on Monday and Tuesday of this week. We got a lot done in getting the yard ready for winter and getting rid of junk!
Liz has only two more months until she graduates from BYU with her BSN and will take her state test next year to be a full Registered Nurse.
Gordon is in his seventh year as the Bishop and continues to be a great Bishop. I am teaching the Marriage and Family Relations class in Sunday School. The past two months I've also been able to teach the Teachings for Our Time Relief Society Lesson.
At this time of Thanksgiving, I just wanted to say thanks for being such wonderful friends and family. You help make life great! Thanks for all your prayers for our family and especially for our missionary and soon-to-be missionary.
Monday, October 22, 2007
Sammy, singing a special song that she wrote for the occasion.
There are still lots more pictures where these came from, but I'm working on several projects right now, so I'm not sure when I'll get to posting them.
Please leave comments for me if you have anything you would like to see on the blog, or email me if you have news or just something to say!
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
Wednesday, October 3, 2007
Sunday, September 30, 2007
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
"I went to San Francisco at the end of August. My friend's mission doctor and his wife live there in an RV, along with their dog, Tater (shown here with my friend Betsy and I). They took us sailing. This is Tater in all of his glory. Life jacket, and yes indeed, dog sunglasses. The brand is doggles. Doggles. Yes indeed. Have you ever seen something so cute in your life?Never fear, I did not throw up over the side of the boat, thanks to a lovely drug we like to call non-drowsy dramamine..."
Thanks for keeping us posted Liz. That is one pampered pooch!
And if you want to know another scoop, check the Sept. 25th entry on my blog. (See sidebar, family member blogs.) And if you have a blog, tell me and I'll link to it also!
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
Happy Birthday today Ryan D. Nay!!
Friday, September 14, 2007
Also, if you have a blog, please let me know the address so we can put a link to it on this page. You could put your blog address in a comment! Or you could email the address to me. Thanks.
Love you all!
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
So we headed out of the house and took a taxi to the hospital. It was so weird being outside of the house at night. The whole ride over I was just laying in the back seat groaning. No matter what position that I got in, the pain would just not go away. We get to the emergency room, and it is pretty painful. I really let them know it hurt. So we waited for about half an hour before the doctor gave me an iv, but during that time the pain got so bad that I actually threw up. Gross, but true. I figure you all want to know the whole story. So the doctor checked me out, got an xray, and they hooked me up to the iv and gave me some awesome pain medicine. About that time sister nielson and the mission nurse sister groberg were there by my side.
Poor Elder Miles, he was running around all over the place trying to help me out. Sister Nielson said that I am going to be an awesome husband because I will know somewhat of the pain of childbirth. It felt so good to get that pain medicine in there, and like five minutes after it was injected, I was out. Then I got an ultrasound and they saw the stones. It was crazy, they hooked me up with a ton of medicine and sent me home and said to come back in a few days for a checkup. All of this work only cost me $15. How cool is that?
Basically, not too much pain after that, the medicine works good so when I went back for the checkup, I didnt hurt at all unless they poked my kidney. Got another ultrasound and it turns out that I am pregant with a boy on the way. Haha, not really, but it turns out the stones are gone. Yes! Today is my final checkup and I pray that everything goes well. So it is a miracle and I really appreciate the Atonement and the pain that my savior suffered for me.
Anyways, I am so happy to be with Elder Miles again. My area, ShiLin, would still count as part of the taipei city. It is only about a thirty minute subway ride there. We had zone conference and it was awesome. I played a big role in it, taught a lot of things and it was so great to see so many people. Elder Anderson is a zone leader, everyone is growing up. Ilove youall, time is up. Elder John Marble ShiLin
Monday, September 10, 2007
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Sunday, August 26, 2007
Cook Family Highlights (August 25, 2007)
Dan has successfully and officially completed the first
year of the three year Pharmacy Program at Midwestern
University in Glendale, AZ. He is now enjoying the last
break of classes which lasts a total of 5 weeks before he
starts a rotation at a Pharmacy site in AZ. After two
rotations this fall/winter he will endure more class work.
And then five more rotations in which he can request through
application as to where he would like to go to gain
experience. He has already requested two rotations in
Independence, Kansas where his sister's family lives. He is
interested in applying for a rotation in Maryland where
another of his sister's family lives.
As for me, Annette, I am willing to try different places to
see where we eventually will want to live in the long run.
"Somewhere not as hot as here!", I always add. Dan
currently works at Walgreens in Avondale, AZ as an intern
where he has had some interesting things happen with
Annette has had an adventurous summer that isn't over
yet. The temperatures have exceeded 117 degrees here on
occasion. I often make my opinion quite clear that I
would never live here by choice due to the blasted heat.
Our A/C unit doesn't keep up during the more part of the
day and so all I have to do is just sit there and sweat.
The inside temp. reads 85 degrees and I'm sure you all feel
sorry for me now. So Dan up and bought an A/C window unit
which will be installed soon.
I taught my first sewing lesson a few weeks ago. I
showed my student how to make pillowcases and her next
project is making pj shorts. Yea!
We just returned from a visit to Provo where we bought
peaches and pears. So like Jenny, I took on the task
of canning peaches. The next day I got really excited
when I realized I was capable of making Strawberry
Freezer Jam like Grandma Grace has served me for years.
I was very happy when it turned out. Today Dan helped
me can half of the pears. We will attack the rest when
they are ripe enough.
While we were in Utah we visited the Museum of Ancient
Life at Thanksgiving Point. Tira was scared of all the
dinosaur statues. James loved flipping sand and water
everywhere in the Erosion Pond. Dan was the photographer
of the event. I was fascinated by the 16 foot wide turtle
that was completely preserved when they found it. I
would really recommend going to the Museum if you haven't
been yet because it was tons of fun not only for the kids,
but for the adults as well. The money we paid to go was
well worth it.
James Caden is now 3 years old and is learning the art
of potty training. He is preparing to start preschool
at a local elementary school on Sept. 4th. He must be
potty trained to go so wish us luck!
James is into trains, cars, and trucks. He absolutely
loves Nursery and takes care of Tira while they are there.
James is a great help to Mommy around the house,
especially when it comes to mixing food together. James
knows all his letters and their sounds, which makes his
Thanks Annette: I'll be glad to hear your future updates!
Monday, August 20, 2007
Jesse is doing well also. He has several people he is working with, and he just barely got a new companion unexpectedly. We hope they are getting along well.
Both elders are doing great and grateful for everyone's prayers.
Sunday, August 12, 2007
My innocent husband went out to mow our lawn yesterday morning, and he discovered a very big problem. The front half of our lawn was converted to a swimming pool full of rocks and grass without our knowing about it. So we started digging around and about 4 hours later discovered a leak in the main water line to our house. After consulting a plumber, we will be replacing the entire line. This means we get to call blue stakes, bring in a backhoe, and the whole nine yards. So the lesson in gratitude I am gaining is that it is a privilege to be able to wash one's hands in one's own sink. And I really like brushing my teeth with running water. I told my friend about it at church today, and she said the main water line is much better than losing a sewer line. A root grew into one at her house, and their sewer backed up into their basement. I am even more grateful now!
Wednesday, August 1, 2007
Tuesday, July 31, 2007
Maybe I'm just going to have to do some research on my own into what is going on in the fambly.
By the way, Brycen, Sara's baby boy, turned 1 last week and had a swingin' party. He is so cute and held his chocolate cake up very triumphantly once he realized his mommy didn't care if he got it all over the place. Congrats on your little cutie, Sara & Ryan.
Thursday, July 26, 2007
Wednesday, July 25, 2007
Elders Jesse & John are doing well this week also. Jesse sent picture above, though he didn't say who the guy in the orange shirt is.
John had some amazing news, he went from being junior companion to being senior companion, training, and serving as the district leader. He said he could tell who from the new group was going to be his companion by the love he already felt for him. I thought that was pretty groovy.
If anyone wants to email one of the elders, Aunt Helen has John's email address, and I have Jesse's so just let us know.
Saturday, July 21, 2007
Wednesday, July 18, 2007
PS: Thanks Ryan. I'll keep it up then.
Monday, July 16, 2007
Monday, July 9, 2007
My little baby brother is doing well. I got an email from him today, and he is teaching several people. He sounds very happy. He currently resides in Rathdrum, ID so if anyone is passing through, think of him fondly. This picture is from an earlier area when he was able to fit 26 grapes into his mouth at once. We're very proud.
Sunday, July 8, 2007
My friend Maggie from Hawaii came to visit this weekend. She was a ward missionary in my last area on Oahu. She came to church and had lunch with us. Left to right it is her friend Phyllis, Maggie, Alex, and me. We had a good visit, and I loved hearing their Hawaiian accents again and feeling their Aloha spirit.
Also, check out the new link to Dad's friend Hugh's family pictures. You can see his daughter's wedding. Hugh lives in Texas now.
Monday, July 2, 2007
And this is Brycen and Grace in the back of Sara and Ryan's old Jeep. We were going out to feed Mom and Dad's dogs while they were in England in April.
Sunday, June 24, 2007
Ben C will be going to Iraq very soon. I personally am extremely grateful for the work our servicemen are doing over there. Ben is going as a civilian. Good luck to him, and wishes of better luck to his wife, who will not be joining him. Your whole family will be in our prayers.
As a graduate of "the zoo," I must express my pride and pleasure at the announcement that James M. and Candice C. will be attending in there in the fall. Congratulations on matriculation, kids.
Speaking of my fellow cougars, you can read more about the group that went with our cousin to Argentina at the new link on the side of this blog. Her initials are beneath her comments on one of the posts.
Congrats to the Nauvoo newlyweds, by the way. We hope you have a wonderful happily ever after, and remember what cousin Samuel advised at Sara & Ryan's wedding: "You should take her out to dinner."
Saturday, June 23, 2007
Friday, June 22, 2007
*Remember, don't send anything you don't want on the world wide web.