Monday, December 16, 2013

So we are finally in Solo

Dec 15 2013
I love you more chocolate with coconut creamer in a little red mug!
Who sang with MoTab this year? I always love their Christmas concerts :) This is random but I've been trying to think of Christmas songs and have been humming some while I ride my bike but seriously a llllll that I can think of are about home! “I’ll Be Home for Christmas”, “I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas”, “Blue Christmas”, “I Cry the Day that I Take the Tree Down”, “Oh There’s No Place Like Home for the Holidays”… aren’t there any that don’t talk about wanting to be home? I can’t remember! Sheesh my brain is so mean to me sometimes.
Indonesian cultural dances for the Knorpp's farewell party.
All the kids who can do a "peace sign" basically get a $2 bill

So we are finally in Solo! There are 4 wards here between the 2 buildings. Since there are only 2 sisters, we cover allllll 4 wards. But luckily there are 4 sets of elders… well 3 actually since one set moves tomorrow and no one is coming to replace them. Since we are “white washing” (we are both new) and there are 4 wards, it has been a little hectic. We get lost all the time (there are just too many 1 way roads here!) and it is hard to keep track of what investigators are in what ward, what members are in what ward, when all the meetings are for the ward mission leaders/ward council/sacrament meetings in each ward. 
Me in front of our lil' house
The house is extremely small. Basically the bedroom and a hallway haha but it takes like 5 min to sweep the whole house! I think we’ve actually adjusted pretty well here. I’m feeling a little bit of the flu again but pray it goes away so we can just get some teaching this week. Sis Manurung is the best! She is so cute especially since she can’t really ride a bike…. Haha poor thing. I think I almost killed her the other day when we were on our way to an appt. and it was uphill and raining. But she is so determined and so willing. I always forget that she is new! I forget to explain things sometimes because I feel like she is already an old hat in the mission.
View from the fridge to the bathroom
(it's a mess because there is not place for the washing machine hoses)

View from the fridge to the front door/desks
My desk is the one you can see.
One good thing about being in 4 wards is that we get spoiled with Christmas parties! Haha oh and the mission couple here, The Knorpp’s, go home tomorrow! So we have gone to 2 farewell parties for them. Last week we didn’t get a lot of teaching done but we are still learning how Solo works. It is nice that we both don’t know so we really have to rely on each other.
Me and Sister Manurung at a service project

OOOOhhh one cool thing! SO the other day we went to get some dinner and I picked this Sate place and we were already done eating just sitting there and I thought , “talk to this family sitting next to you” so I tried to ask how old their toddler was and when the mom answered, I realized she was deaf. And the dad too! So I got all sorts of excited and tried sign language with them. Oh my sign language is terrrrible haha. But I am so grateful that Heavenly Father gave me the gift of tongues in that moment to use American Sign Language in Indonesian! So they were pretty enthusiastic that I knew ASL and I was from America. They have 4 kids who are all hearing and the oldest daughter was helping us communicate so we asked her if she wanted to come to English and she was pretty excited about it. Well that’s only half of it because at the exact same time we had just gotten a message from an investigator who is also deaf! Her story is that she had a baptismal date but had to cancel when her muslim dad told her never to go to church again. So I was speaking with one deaf family while texting another deaf investigator! Looks like I need to brush up on my ASL :)
It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas
All of the members here in Solo know me as “that one sister who sang in Jogja” because of my solo from Ward Conference last month so I have already been asked to sing a lot and accompany a lot and I even taught the primary kids Hujan Jatuh di Tanah (Rain is falling all around) yesterday. I was wrong to think at the beginning of my mission that I wouldn’t get to use my talents!
First/last district photo before 4 of them leave

So I got your packages last week at Senopati and have already put up the Christmas tree! And thank you for the conference issue! It still hasn’t come in English here, so I am spoiled.
So I have been thinking a lot about spiritual gifts. What are my spiritual gifts? I think it is hard to ponder about what you’re good at as a blessing from Heavenly Father. And it is a little more personal. But I really am grateful for the ability to use the language here. I feel that I still have so far to go but I know that Heavenly Father made my language grow leaps and bounds. I am also grateful for flexibility. I have been thinking about a few others but maybe I won’t share them. I want you all to think about the spiritual gifts that you have been given to use in the hour you most need them.
I am so excited for Christmas! It really doesn’t feel like Christmas but maybe that is good so I don’t think about it too much. But just this time of year, when so many people think about their Savior; His life, His birth. It feels so good just to think about the light He brought into the world that we are trying to share with these Indonesian people. I get warm fuzzies!
Random but cool; The guy sitting in front of me on the plane had 6 fingers on his right hand!
Where is Inigo Montoya and Westley when you need them.
When you talked about what it going on at home, Haha it’s funny you said that I’ve “been there done that”. Because it just is funny that everything is exactly the same! Recitals, dances, Choral Edition, gingerbread houses for publications and jumping in the river…
OK! So for skyping on Christmas! We are allowed to skype on the 24th, 25th, or 26th for an hour…. I think that in my time Christmas morning or anytime the 26th would work. So for you that would be either Christmas eve, Christmas night or morning of the 26th.
Oh and that reminds me, HAPPY EARLY BIRTHDAY DAD!!!!!!!! One year older and wiser too! What are you going to do on your birthday
I love you guys! Have a very merry Christmas break! Sing some Christmas carols for me!
Kasihmu selalu!
Sister Shef(in the)field

PS I wanted to send this a while back to put under the Christmas tree in our box… but this year my gift to Christ is that I will try to better recognize and follow promptings of the spirit.

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