Monday, January 31, 2011

Taiwan week 5

... We had a baptism this week! A young boy by the name of Zheng Hong Xuen. It's been nice seeing him grow from 0 interest to Baptism. We're working with the family this week. We also have a 9 year old boy that is supposed to get baptised this week. When we were at church, the second counselor in the Bishopric came and said that this little boy had been coming to church for a few months but wasn't a member yet, really wanted baptism and his family wouldn't have a problem with it. Yeah, so we didn't really do anything, but somehow it stilll counts.... So that should be this Saturday. Lin Ping Hong is a 19 year old who started by coming to English class with his friend and we are teaching him a lot now. ... There is also a much older man by the name of Liu. He met with me two weeks ago and we gave him a Book of Mormon. He kept standing us up and not meeting with us and then yesterday he came to church and has read up through 1 Nephi 8. Whoo! That is a miracle right there.
Also, I'm sorry about exploding a little from last week about computer use. Computers are really good and have many many good uses.... Just use your brain. It's the same with anything. If it's not being productive, don't do it. There is not enough time to waste any of it.
I'm glad to hear that stake conference was good. I have Zone conference this next week, so I'll tell you more about that later.
THank-you all for the love that I feel when I read your letters and hear of stories from home. I'll try to do better about keeping you informed.
Love Ya All!
ELder Sanford
P.S. I bought a cord for my camera! I'll try to get it to work...

Monday, January 24, 2011

Taiwan week...I forgot (Week 4-- Ma remembered)

This week (Taiwan #4 ) I'm sharing the entire letter. I think he just might have to look into motivational speaking after the mission. He's pretty good at it!!! Enjoy:
So yeah, I forgot what week I'm on. I think it's three? Yeah I don't know.
Passed off the third section of Phase 1 this morning though. This
week was pretty intense with the studying, but this next week is going
to be two times as intense. I look forward to when it will all pay off
and I will actually be able to understand what people say to me. That
will be nice. Thank-you for the prayers to help me learn the language,
they are definitely being felt. The way that I have structured it, I
have had two days where I would devote all of my time to memorizing
words. I've been able to get in about 50 a day. But this week, I need
to somehow double the number of words learned in the same amount of
time. Thank-you so much for the prayers. I do need them.
THe saddest thing in the world is the amount of time that is wasted
in Taiwan on computers and TV's. I'm in an internet cafe with a bunch
of internet junkies. They spend all of their time here and all of
their money. Online gaming is HUGE here. When we tract here and there,
every single door that we go to, without fail, is greeted by a person
who just got up off of the couch and supposedly has "No time". I am
trying to save lives here, and I am torn apart because I see so many
lives being wasted. If you can do one thing for me, don't waste away
your life, don't waste away an hour, DON'T WASTE EVEN A SECOND! If you
are sitting infront of a screen, then chances are there is something
better that you could be doing. There is a world of opportunity being
thrown away. Go find a piece of it.
Sorry for my bluntness, but I really feel strongly about this since
being here. So please, don't waste your time.

ON a happier note, we have our first baptism this week (: Yeah.
He's fourteen. Cool person. It's interesting to see the light that is
so much more apparent in him over the past few weeks. I remember the
first time that we talked to him, it was late-ish at night and he was
half asleep. I'm excited for him.
AH! tight on time, so I'll wrap up. THe more I learn about the
Savior, the more I know I can rely on him. If there is something that
you have been asked to do, but it seems hard, chances are that it will
help you grow. THis Gospel is here for our help. That is what the
whole idea of the Gospel is. Repentance and improvement. This week, I
challenge you to do the hard things. Reach higher and become better.
As you do, the Lord will help you. I know it to be true because I live
it every day. There is no way that I can become what I need to without
him. His is my Lord, my Savior and my Redeemer. I love Him and I owe
Him my every effort
Have a wonderful week! I love you all. I'm very happy to hear that you
are all doing well. Good luck! Thank you for your prayers and help
from home.

-Elder Sanford
P.S. Logan can have my piece of pie.. If he hasn't already.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Friday, January 21, 2011

Jamaican Missionary

This morning I was on the LDS Headlines page and I saw the story about a Missionary who was killed in Jamaica on the 17th of January. I began weeping...for his family.

I thought back to when Greg McOsker died while on his mission. He wasn't feeling well so the District went ahead and had their weekly meeting in the front room. He was in the bedroom resting. He suffered from an aneurysm (sp?). It was in an instant and he was gone. He was the cutest nicest boy...the one that all of the moms in the ward dreamed of capturing for their son-in-law. The Lord needed him on the other side.

My heart goes out to Elder Walker's family.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

KC Temple

When I was growing up in the Gracemor Neighborhood in suburban Kansas City MO, I remember the friends we had. It was a new development. We were young families. There were only 7 in our family (Momma & Daddy and we 5 girls) when we moved in. Over the years we became 10 (with the addition of 3 brothers). I pretty much had my friends next door. There was Russell Sickman to the south of us, and Jeri, Linda, and Ray Moulder to the north...and the Thompson's just past them. My older sisters "branched out". My sister Jonna had a friend who lived up the block and around the corner. Our backyards ALMOST joined. They were/are the Simpson's. (That was WAY before the cartoon show.) Chris used to come over. She and Jonna were very good friends. Chris was always smiling and I still remember her cute laugh/giggle.

Just the other day, Chris took the photo of the Kansas City Temple that is above. Chris grew up and moved away from Gracemor--as many of us have. (She's about 5 minutes away from Momma and Daddy.) She and Jonna still keep in contact. The photo is from Chris' home, from her deck. I'm so glad she shared it. I hope she doesn't mind that I am sharing it with you. When the Temple is completed, I hope Chris will visit the Open House.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Taiwan Week 3

Here is his letter we got in the wee hours of this morning.

SO I have about five minutes to be able to write you because we are a little pressed for time from the Temple trip. It was a wonderful and fun experience and am super grateful for it though. We were in a super fancy travel bus that actually isn't too uncommon for Taiwan and really cheap. We watched classic church films all of the way up. It's fun to see the old videos from the past and how much the church's productions have improved. I wonder what they are going to be coming out with next?
This week has been just about as cold as it gets here in Taiwan. So yeah, we sleep with the heater on and a few extra blankets, it's good though. The people in Taiwan just wear really huge coats all of the time instead of making houses that can contain any sort of heat. Infact, most of the places that we go will have their doors open wide all day. So yeah, pretty insane. I'm still trying to get used to it. Another thing that I'm still getting used to is that we take our shoes off at everybodies home. I love the Idea actually, but I think that I may have to invest in some slip-on shoes so that we can be in and out of people's houses quicker and be able to do more for the Lord in less time.
Thank-you all for your mail. I love getting mail from you all. The Lord is there and watches out for all of his children. I love that fact.
Well, I'll write more next week, but THank-you again for all of the love that is being sent to me. I love ya all!
-ELder Sanford"

Last week he mentioned that his preparation day would be moved--but gave no indication as to why. I'm so happy he was able to go to the Taipei Temple! I wonder how often they get to go.

He sounds good, but I know I need to "pump-it-up" on the letter side! Our family is good about writing emails (I'm so thankful that that is available to us), but I need to do better about handwritten letters.

If any of you wish to write him--do so! Here's his address. We've been asked to write to this (his Mission Home address) and the mail will be given to him. That makes it easier I suppose. Only one address to memorize for the rest of the time. :D

Elder Colby Sanford
Taiwan Taichung Mission
498-11 Wu Chuan Rd.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Taiwan Week 2 , 3 month mark

So this week I will recount part of his letter and share part of his letter. Colby started out by thanking for the letters he's received and mentioned there was a "Zone thingy". I hope that it was enjoyable. As a Missionary I loved the time when I had contact with the other Missionaries. We shared success stories and ideas on how to succeed.

Colby then talks of a teaching a young boy whose father first said he could get baptized yet after the Baptismal interview the father said no. Maybe the entire family approach will be better? (now here is part of his letter):

"So prayers for us to know what to do to move forward would be nice. Elder Buenning and I are being as obedient as we can and using our time to the best of our ability to help with it. I pray that it will work out. I personally think that the family getting involved is a good thing and that it will give them all more exposure to the gospel. The Lord will prepare a way.

Other than that, the whole week has been pushing it to the limits and trying to get as much of the Lord's work done as possible. I passed off the first section of "Phase 1" which is the Chinese program that Taiwan has. I've seen blessings there too because it means a lot of hard memorization and planning. Most missionaries don't do it all this fast. There are 7 pass-offs before "Phase 2" which focuses more on the day to day vocab, where as Phase 1 is all focused on the Lessons that we are teaching. I hope to get "Phase 1" done my first move call. 5 more weeks. I can do it! THank-you all so much for your prayers and mail. I love ya All."

Today is Colby's 3 Month mark. I can't say it has completely sped by, but time has seemed to pick-up compared to that first week. HAPPY 3 MONTHs!!!!! :D

Sunday, January 9, 2011

I guess I'm melancholy right this minute... Today I've felt pushed and tugged ... stretched here and there.... Sometimes I feel I'm not in control of my life and I'm hurt and kinda annoyed by those who are trying to control me. I'm not making a bunch of sense. Maybe I should just go to bed. Life really IS good...My family loves me and I love them... It's sad to feel sad. It'll seem better tomorrow. I hope!


I have read who put the B in ballyhoo .I LOVE it I love the art I will love 98 other books

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Colby @ SLC

A friend of ours, Mario Hernandez, works at the Salt Lake City airport and ran into Colby by accident (for reals!). I'm glad he got to see Colby.

This photo is of our handsome son Elder Sanford. The Elder with light brown hair - under the TV screen, at the tip of Colby's left shoulder, is his companion Elder Olsen. The photo of his Mission President and "travelling company" in the previous blog entry was taken AFTER this one of course--- 15 or so hours after...

Monday, January 3, 2011

Taiwan week 1

YAY! We have a letter. It's so good to know he's there, safe, likes his companion and is enjoying the work!!! Happiness! He sounds so happy!!! Here's his letter:

Well, I'm here! My new companion is Elder Buenning. He's moved all around his whole life, but he's half american half cantonese. He's a really hard worker, diligent goal setter and over all great second companion. We're serving in the Tai Ping mission. It includes Dong Xu, Tai Ping and Zhong Xu, and let me tell you, it's so awesome. I'm living almost in the heart of Tai Chung. I'll send pictures as soon as I figure out how they work! pretty much it's just like any big city. Populated. Oh and there are about two times as many scooters here as there are people. Like no joke, every nook and crany has a scooter parked in it. Pretty much on of the most insane things I've seen.
After getting off the phone with you guys, I got on the airplane. Pretty nice airplane. Pretty good food. Insanely long flight. Insane. 14 hours and 32 minutes total. Pretty close to death. So I was stoked when it finally landed. We waited for our luggage and then went and met the mission president and his wife and the Assistants. They were all pretty happy. We stayed the next day and a half there at the mission home doing orentation. We slept in the Zone leader's appartment. THen we went running in the morning. It was actually really fun. Friday, we went and met our trainers. And so the work began! I"m talking to everybody that I can. At every light, at every intersection. I'm trying to find the souls that the Lord has set up for me to find. So far, I've found 3. I thought that I found 4, but one of them put a fake phone number. Lame. It's really tiring work and I get rejected alot, but I love it. Elder Buenning is pushing me hard, which is exactly what I need. I got my bike. Elder Buenning and I put this crate thing on the back so that I could hold things in it that I need. Like my bag. and my jacket. It's very nice. Also, the stores here are awesome. THe missionaries call them "Dong Xi" stores, which means Stuff Stores. and that is exactly it is. You go in and they just have bunches and bunches of stuff. It's pretty insane. And it is all pretty cheap too. right now the exchange is about 33 to 1, Kuai to Dollar. Nice. I can usually eat pretty nicely for about 80-100 Kuai. OH and the Fruit here is amazing. THey have every fruit you could ever imagine! and it's all so delicious. So good. THe church members were nice. I really liked going to church. We teach our lessons there... when the investigator shows up. THey actually usually don't, but some do, and that is awesome. Right now were teaching an 11 year old that is pretty timid. We need to meet his parents though. I hope that will go well this week. Oh, and on the second day, we had a funeral to go to (didn't Dad have one his first day ?) Flowers EVERYWHERE. That was crazy. They take death seriously here.
Well everything is going wonderfully here and I'll be more organized next week, I'm a little rushed today because I don't know exactally how to do this. It's great here though! Keep on doing the family things, I know they will help each and every one of you.
Love ya all!
Elder Sanford

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Check my math, but I've been calculating this all wrong. Well, a little wrong. If it's 8 a.m. here and 11 p.m. there that's FIFTEEN hours different, right? 8 to 8 is 12 hours. Then 8 to 11 is 3 hours...12 hours + 3 hours = 15 hours. Math has never been my strong suite....It's a miracle that I figured this out NOW...the other question is---- Why didn't anyone correct my math before now?

Saturday, January 1, 2011

1 / 100

One of Goo's goals this year is to read 100 books she also wants to write reviews here on moms blog

I read a book in two minites it was about the art in ABC'S .I like it because i like art and there is an ABC hunt on every page. I want you to know that I got the idea from Mirielle to blog about the books 100 TIMES! But I like it and I want to do the alphabet until my 26 book.