Niels. For realz. Also, love reading your emails so much. I always feel suuuper inspired. Brobro, write me a poem. And a letter. Did you get that rad letter/card I sent you?
- family - saw Malachi McGee's baby for the first time. He's precious and I feel like he's full of the spirit. He's so cute. His name is Moses Michael McGee, which I feel is one of the greatest names of all time.
- recent convert Cai Jiemei, one of my besties/my Taiwan aunt took like 5 minutes teaching me how to say "qu", which means "to go" - a word I say all the time. But she told me that my pronounciation of that word makes it sound like I have a lisp or something. So funny. She was explaining to me how to put my tongue and pronounce it, so I kept trying to say it over and over. Chen Jiemei (old companion) was there, and started taking a video. Faj, you would love it. I'll show it to you when I get home.
- Yesterday we went to a rockin' stake conference! Elder Toronto and Elder Wilson of the 70 were there. My favorite was Sister Wilson's (his wife), talk on teaching our children to have faith. She had a list of a few things they did in their home to help their children grow up with faith:
1. Talk about the gospel in everyday conversation.
2. Ask them questions about how they and their friends react to situations or something. (this one I can't really remember)
3. Tell them the scripture stories, especially as they are going to bed at night. Help them realize who true heros are.
4. Her kids wanted her to give them foot rubs and back rubs at night, so she told them she would do it, as long as they talked to her the whole time. Faj, you'd love doing that one to Finn's feet.
5. Let them see you read and pray on your own (separate from family studies)
6. React with faith to challenges, and your kids will learn how to use faith to face challenges.
7. Be nice to the church members. Invite them over for dinner and fhe and help them when they need help. Never criticize or talk bad about other members, especially leaders.
8. When you're with your kids in nature, teach them to respect and love nature. Say things like, "Man, isn't God amazing? Look at that sunset!" The Faj Mahal was so good at teaching us to have love and respect for nature. Eternally grateful for that.
Elder Wilson mentioned how faith requires sacrifice. I love that. He also talked about how every effort we make is rewarded and every effort we put forth gives us more and more light. Every good choice gives us more light. Even though Kai is in a dark place right now, every good choice he makes and every effort he makes and every good influence in his life will give him light. I love that that is what the gospel is. It's light and everything good. I want everyone to be an active part of this church and gospel.
On the way home from the stake conference, I sat on the bus next to one of my favorite Taiwanese people, our mm leader's wife, Wu Jiemei. We chatted the whole time. I loved it. We talked about some of the trials in her life, and discussed faith and the gospel. I talked about Kai. She kept holding my hand. I love hanging out with her. I always learn so much from her. Whenever I'm with her, I'm like, "Tell me how you have so much faith!" "Tell me how I can love fasting and not want to die every time I fast." etc. I love chatting with her.
This last week, we also had a zone meeting and a training meeting with President Day. At the zone meeting, Elder Deal said, "It is a bondage to fear death." I think that's so profound. Another Elder talked about why we need to read the Book of Mormon daily until we die. He said "our memories get captured in these verses, on these pages." He talked about as we read it again and again, we remember revelation we've already received and we remember thoughts and feelings that are associated with certain verses. Every time I read a certain verse in 1 Nephi, I remember my mom and some personal revelation she received about that scripture and then shared with me years ago. I'm loving the Book of Mormon more and more. I am reading about Christ interacting with the people in 3rd Nephi and I love Him more. I love studying how He teaches and interacts with others. In some ways, I feel like I've never read the Book of Mormon before. It's cool.
Some investigator updates:
A super golden, beautiful girl showed up at the chapel on Sunday to go to stake conference with us. Faj, you have a student named Jason Ni in one of your classes, right? She's his best friend. (I know Jason from Zhubei.) Anyway, she has a bunch of member friends, and is so prepared. I talked to her on the bus ride there. She pretty much already keeps all the commandments. She said she pretty much believes this church is true. I gave her a Book of Mormon yesterday and we're meeting with her this week. She's sooo good.
A girl named Zhu An we've been meeting with for a long time. She's so cute and wonderful. She's doing really good, but is scared she can't keep all the commandments forever. She has been reading and praying. She said lately she has been getting a lot of feelings that she wants to get baptized. She has been feeling that the Book of Mormon is true. She's keeping the word of wisdom, even though she loves her tea, and seeing the blessings that come from it.
Xu family - we just met with the mom and son last week. But now the dad and one daughter have baptismal dates, as well. We're excited about them. We'll see how it goes.
Our LA, Ping, is doing sooo good. She's been to church every week since she came the first time. She's so funny and we LOVE hanging out with her. She had to RUN to catch the bus to stake conference. It was so funny and so stressful. If we call her aunt or say anything remotely referencing her age, she gets TICKED. It's hilarious.
I love you all so much. The gospel is the most important thing to me. I'm excited to follow the commandments more fully my whole life. I feel like before my mission, I was sometimes casual in keeping commandments, but I'm understanding more how important and wonderful commandments are.
Love, Sister Nad.
Celia: whew, finally! So glad to hear from you. Glad that you guys are all doing okay. How's the rest of your family? How's work? Yep, Steve and Ariel are in ny! You guys should hang out sometime.
Allison: thanks for your big update! love hearing about everything! oh, allison, IMPORTANT, ugly pictures of me are getting tagged on my facebook. UNTAG them pronto, please! thank you a million times! I think I sent you a letter a couple weeks ago - did you get it? Also, would you hair be like hombre? I'm not sure if I can picture what it would look like, BUT I 100% trust your style judgment (aka, sending you my pre-going-on-a-date pictures to get your approval). I bet it'd be so cute, and then you wouldn't have to keep it up at all, right? You could just cut it off later if you didn't like it.
Tara: Are you still in the wilderness?? I'm going to start writing you back today!
Erin: Did you get my letter?
Emily Brown: I love your emails. Every time you talk about your Russian members, I picture little old fair-skinned, smiling grandmas. I love the images I have of your mission.
Kjirsten: love you writing you today too.
Aunt Jeni: You're the best.
Aunt Bonnie: How are you?? Miss you.
Kimi: writteee meee. love you guys.
ALICIA HARRIS: I've been thinking about NAtive Americans lately. Did you get the letter I sent forever ago?
COURTNEY PETE: do you read this? I misssss you. Write me an udpate.
look at the grandpa/magnifying glass in the background
love metro pictures. aka armpit pictures.
Chen Jiemei - verina do you look at this? your sister wears scarves now!