Monday, November 24, 2014

Gobble Gobble!!

Area:  Independence, Missouri
Companion:  Elder Tu'akalau

Happy Thanksgiving week!  I loved all the cabin pictures and everything, it's so beautiful and there is nothing like getting some pictures of true snow and pine trees from home.  It never gets old!  Yeah it's beautiful here, but in a different way.  Keep up the good work and don't get cabin fever! ;)

Well, thanks everyone for all the birthday wishes and everything!  I truly do appreciate it.  I got the box actually right on my birthday!  Which is probably good because it may have been open before then if it hadn't... For my birthday I was actually in a meeting at the mission office.  The meeting was actually for missionaries who will be training next transfer!  Yep, I was kinda freaked out too when I got the news.  It was actually a potential trainers call so I may or may not be training.  Elder Tuakalau has been here for 4 transfers so he will probably be leaving this Thursday and if he does, I will probably be training a new missionary, or finishing up training a 6 week old missionary.  We will find it all out tomorrow when transfer calls come. 
My comp is the best and actually took me out for ice cream at Applebee's for my b-day.  We were hoping Freddie would be there (Trying to kill 2 birds with one stone).  Turns out, he was there!  We had a great conversation, some delicious dessert and a great birthday.  What was really cool was when we went to go pay the bill, someone else had already paid for it!  We truly are blessed as missionaries! 
We found this new girl this week.  Her name is Autumn and she lives in the same house as Woody, which makes it easier to teach them.  The first lesson we had with her the spirit was so thick in the room and we put her on date for December 13!  We invited them to a baptism that was on the 22nd but she didn't show up.  We also invited them to church and they said they would come but, surprise!  They didn't.  So that was kind of a bummer but we have another appointment with them today so we will figure things out.  Our only worry that we have is if they are truly being sincere.  I think that will show soon if they stop keeping their commitments. 
My favorite funny moment this week?  It would have to be when I went on exchanges with Elder Brinkerhoff.  After we were done working and heading home, we decided to stop by this tiny lake that is next to their apartment and check out the ice.  Well we started chucking rocks into the middle and breaking the ice into pieces and having a great time!  We made a video and as Elder Brinkerhoff was videoing, he almost stepped into the lake and was about to fall in!  We had a great time and it was nice to loosen up a bit!  

Well, that's about all I got!

Love you all and have a great Thanksgiving!!  I know I will, I'm eating at the Tonga's home, yay for Polly food!

Love, Elder Shoemaker

My Birthday campout! 
Thats what I wanted for my birthday was to go camping, so we put up our Christmas stuff that we found in the closet and brought out our mattresses and camped out!  It was a pretty fun and chill night. 

Heres the lava lava pics you wanted mom!  
{He's wearing the mission shirt I had made for him for his Birthday! -- so GREAT!}

Monday, November 17, 2014

The WEATHER slapped me in the face!

Area:  Independence, Missouri
Companion:  Elder Tu'akalau

Ahhh shoot, I forgot to get lava lava pictures..... next week!!  :D

OK, before I forget, I think I'm going to buy a new bike next Monday if that is ok.  The bike I have now just isn't working and it's a borrowed bike from another elder.  I have another one that was given to us by a member but its made for a little kid....  Not working to well.  There is a Trek bike store here and they have some nice bikes.  I just wanted to get a price range from you and make sure it's OK.  The decent bikes range from 400-500$.  Let me know if that's too much and I'll keep shopping.  I just want to get a nice one that will last and I can probably sell it to another missionary before I leave and get most of the money back at the end of my mission.  :)

Well, we got slapped in the face with the weather!  It ranges from 16-30ish degrees this week.  I honestly enjoy it a ton!  I probably am going to buy another jacket or sweater today to wear under my big coat because the cold bites ya!  Especially with the humidity, it's like when we were in Boston.
It's crazy the Elder Thomas is home!  Doesn't seem like it's been two years.  Maybe I'll gain some of the mission height too like he did! ;)

I'm feeling better now, just a small cough that pops up every now and then.  The meds have been helping a lot!  My birthday plans are going out to breakfast with the AP's because of the AP's birthday is the same as mine so we are going to celebrate together.  Then we are going to work the rest of the day!  I'll be watching for the box, those are the best! 

Cool story this week.  We were at dinner with one of the members and they took us out to eat at Applebee's.  While we were there a guy sees our name tags and says, "hey, I used to go to your church!  I want to start coming back to church!"  He then gave us his phone number and address then walked off.  We contacted him this week and he is amazing!  His name is Freddie.  He truly is prepared by the Lord and we are so grateful to have a new investigator.  We have been working so hard to find and the just plopped him into our laps! 

Woody is still keeping his commitments but hasn't come to church yet. :(  We are still working with him to get him baptized.  The last lesson we had with him.... his dad was there and he had a little bit more than his 2 cents to put in about baptism.  They were both baptized Baptist and he doesn't understand the whole Restoration and priesthood authority.  So we now have that to get around, but Woody will be baptized! 

We had a great Zone Conference this week, my first one!  Pretty cool to see some of the other elders I came out with and how they are doing. 

It's crazy, I hit my 3 month mark this week!  What the?!
What scripture really meant a lot to me this week?
Alma 48:7-10,17
I love those scriptures because they show me an great role model, along with the role models I already have in my life.  It shows and reminds me how my testimony should be if I want to stay on the straight and narrow.  It also shows me priority's that should be important in my life and what I should be protecting.
Thats about it for the week!   Love you all so much

Elder Shoemaker

Monday, November 10, 2014

Of Course We Did!

Area:  Independence, Missouri
Companion:  Elder Tu'akalau

Hiya folks back home!

Man, these weeks have just been flying by!  But the days go on forever... If that makes sense.  It hasn't helped being sick for the past two week with a cough and cold.  So I'm still trying to get under wraps and junk.  Sounds like the Ranch House is moving right along and keeping everyone busy and on their toes.  Yay for new beds!  I actually just got one out here too because my last one was a hunk-o-junk!  Makes a big difference. 

That's so sweet of Emily and Sister Orr to take you out to lunch!  It's pretty weird to think back to that time and think of what I was doing.  Her day to leave is coming up faster and faster!  If you stop by their house just tell her good luck from me and to not stop writing me haha!  I'm going to have to give her some crap, in a loving way, on her crying because she tried to with me!

Oh man, I bet the Alex Boye concert was sweet!  I remember going to his concert and how fun it was.  I'm sure it just gets better every time.  Yay for well behaved puppies!  Sounds like they are learning!  Do you still have that trainer coming and teaching them at the house?

The recipes have been great!  Thank you so much.

So this week we still haven't found any new investigators. :(  But we are working on it!  We have been pushing a lot with the less actives and trying to reactivate them.  We actually just got a new ward mission leader and he is a really good guy and a hard worker as well!  He has been pushing on working with the less active families as well so that's what we have been doing.  Woody is still progressing and keeping all his commitments!  Except it has been hard to get him to come to church because he works the weekends.  We are still working with him.

This past week it was Elder Tuakalaus birthday!  We celebrated it by going to Buffalo Wild Wings for lunch and working hard!  Also, on his birthday we were riding bikes to a less actives house and we were just about to pull up and he smacks a pothole and his bike flips completely over and he jumps off and lads on his feet!  It was so funny!  We think the less active saw him through the window but we are not sure. Haha!

So we have this family in our ward, the Tongas, and they are basically like our grandparents.  They really love us and feed us all the time.  The husband is actually the Patriarch for the stake.  So while we were over there for dinner one night and they gave me a sweet lava lava!  Why don't Americans wear those things regularly?  they are the most comfortable things!  Pictures of Elder Tuakalau and I in them are soon to come! 

Your question, did we act upon the spirit this week?  Of course we did! :)  We have actually been trying to contact they less active guy ever since I have been here with no luck.  So one night we were walking home and my comp felt impressed to stop by his house and low and behold he answered and let us in!  He actually took us back to his shop and showed us all his wood projects he does.  He is a really nice guy and we were able to invite him to church and set a return appointment for this week. 
My favorite scripture for the week:  John 16:33!

Love you all and thank you for the continuous support!

Elder Shoemaker

We got to go to the Kansas City Zoo this week!

Monday, November 3, 2014

You Only Mission Once!!

Area:  Independence, Missouri
Companion:  Elder Tu'akalau

You Only Mission Once!!  A phrase my companion taught me this week.  Hes a pretty silly guy!  One thing that I learned from him since I have been his companion is to just chill out!  You all know how I am and I just like to go go go and get the job done.  Well that's what I've been working on is not being so uptight and just have fun with everything!  The Polynesian culture really emanates through Elder Tuakalau and it's awesome!  I may come back Polly...  Surprisingly we have quite a few Polly's in our ward too.

Yeah!  So I was able to get both boxes and I appreciate it so much!  I've been using my GPS watch to track my morning runs and my progress.  I have really been working on my 1 mile time and doing some sprints.  It helps with the sports aspect out here, P-day sports can get pretty crazy!  Gotta be fit and ready!  The GPS works great as well!  We can actually get around to new houses now!  Thank you!

Yeah, the Kansas City temple is pretty small, but it gets the job done!

So Carlos is gone officially and Araley is still here.  Araley is Carlo's dance student and they are good friends.  But, Araley hasn't been returning our texts or calls so I think she was just listening to us because Carlos was.  Now that she is gone she lost interest.  Too bad!  

Woody is doing great!  We put him on a soft baptismal date.  Nov. 15.  He is only on soft date because he is going to talk to his dad about getting baptized.  So we are waiting on that and praying for him too! 
I'm super excited about the cabin!  Send some pictures after you go there Thanksgiving weekend.  I would love to see it in the fall.  

Super cool how SV band did at BOA!  They are really getting up there.  Good for them!  Band was some good time!

Well that's about all I have this week!

Love you all!!

Elder Shoemaker
PS:  You asked what I want for my bday.  I Really just want my baseball glove and an extra baseball glove too so I can play catch and stuff.  I would also like my harmonicas that I have put in one of the boxes.  And that BOM too. :)  Love You!!  Thanks!

PPS: Oh, and Elder Tuakalau said Josh can just fill up the ipod with good music for when he get home.  Cool Cool.  Tell him thanks again!