So I am loving Nakano and my new sweet companion Sister Stevenson, we are always cracking up about something. At first we thought Nakano was Gathum from batman, but it is becomming a great place to live. We live just about 5 minutes from the mission home so we are there just about everyday it seems running an errand. We joke that the assistant to the president is our personal assistant because we are always asking them for favors it seems. This morning we went running with Sister Budge, the mission Presidents wife- she is what I like to refer to as the power house- shes insanely fast and just as I thought I could keep up, she broke out in a sprint! But it is good for me, as I feel this mission is turning me into a sumo wresteler! So running is something that has been good.
I love being a missionary though. Its wonderful. I know that Heavenly Father just wants us to reach the fullness of our potential, and if we dont push ourselves we will never know what were really capable of. I really feel like he lets us be pushed to the edge, but never beyond what we can handle.
Yesterday we went on a little road trip to watch our friend Seylene get baptized. The Galbraiths (who work as a senior couple in the mission office) are the ones who introduced her to the church). They are hilarious and are almost in their 70ies, they took us with them and we had a great time. This week was both the Galbraiths Birthdays so we were baking them cakes which was really fun. We hand delivered Sister Galbraiths and she gave us a little tour of her house- I felt like it was Mini America! Her cake was banana cake but here there are no ovens just microwave looking ovens so we are always guessing and estimating how things should be cooked. To say the least her banana cake which we called "The gel cake" because all the edges became caramelized had to be covered with whip cream and bananas, but she said it was delicious.
Seyelen's baptism was beautiful and she kept saying how clean and beautiful she felt. Sister Stevenson and I sang the primary song "Where Love Is". On the way home the Galbraiths (the office couple here) gave us marriage advice and kept passing us American snacks like peanut butter crackers and granola bars in the back of the mission van. It literally felt like an all American road trip. They gave us the following advice: "don't marry anyone too controlling, and date a variety of men".
We are still working hard to find some good friends here in Nakano. Were both new to the area so were starting from scratch. We have been teaching a lot of practice lessons to members and visiting them. One lady we visited was hilarious, she grew up in Brazil and brought us half eaten jelly beans and chocolate, she apologized, but she said "I'm sorry it is opened and some are missing, it was a gift. I had to try some too!" Japanese people are so sweet and are always bringing gifts, kind of like Clark. I want to adopt this tradition.
The amazing thing about being a missionary is everyday you get so exhausted, like I'm not running a marathon or anything, but somehow you just feel so tired. Like more tired then you ever have in your whole life, but then everyday Heavenly Father gives you the strength you need to get up and do it all over again.
I know that we are all blessed with our own special talents and gifts and that is perfect and enough.
"Thus they were all equal and they did all labor everyman according to his strength"
I am so thankful that through the Savior, we don't have to be perfect at everything. We just have to do our very best and he will make up for all of our individual shortcomings whatever they are. The gospel is true and I know it can bring us the most happiness beyond our wildest dreams.
Love you each and think of you everyday
hugs and kisses
ps I included some pics of the after-church massaging for the seniors (and Momi--- do you see Kiyomi? she was at BYU Hawaii too?! Then the Tokorozawa Church that is beautiful! Some pictures of how I'm becoming a sumo wrestler, and also a pic of Nakano --- at night it looks a little spooky!