Another Unique Philippino Bridge. It is kind of amazing that everyone has just been accustomed to these bridges and it is no big deal.
This is the river next to San Mariano. There is a big city on the Island in the middle of an enormous river.
Waiting to go to San Mariano.
Coming home from San Mariano after Elder Cajumban's Birthday Party.
The weird fruit is called Rambotan which I like to call the DR. SEUSS fruit! The spikes are soft on the outside and the white oval inside is what you eat! ENJOY!
Freshly opened fruit, already to eat. Mmm... masarap! (delicious!)
This is a picture of the Scout Uniform in the Philippines. It is different in a cool kind of way.
Countryside of San Mariano by Illagan.
Wow where to begin! Well 1st of all I got transfered! Sorry I don't know how my past investigators are doing because they are no longer in my area! I now am stationed in a town called San Mariano next to the big city of Illagan. Now my companion is Elder Cajumban another Filippino but this time a little taller. (I'm still bigger!) He's awesome and very obedient to the mission rules mostly because he's the district leader! I think... Anyway my new area has got to be the place where the creators of the animal kingdom in Disney World got their insperation! GREEN GREEN GREEEN! Our house has two little mice in it like Minnie and Mickey too! And coachroaches and ants. Also life got a little bit harder because we don't have indoor plumbing anymore we have to pump all our water and take it to the house now! Makes showers and washing the dishes a pain but besides that I see it as a blessing. My arms are gonna get HUGE with muscles!
In our area theres an island and the only way to get to it is by boat and (I'm sending as many pictures as I can!) There's two boat rides. One is with no engine and the guy in the front has to pull the boat along by the wire that is posted on both sides of the mainland and the little sandbar. After that you get on another boat and travel off the sand bar and on to the ISLAND! This island is huge with a high school a grocery store and various villages and communities. We have so many awesome investigators there! Like the 3 sisters and the wierd old tatay we teach and it is just a blast. The CHAPEL there is great. No more meeting house and we have two wards in our area. I've only met one ward so far and the bishop talks REALLY FAST so its hard for me to understand everything! My Tagalog has been pushed to the limits these past days with my companion who understands but speaks little English and all the Ilacano and Ilongo and Ifugaou and Tagalog floating around its hard to comprehend everyone but I'm managing.
Just the other day we traveled to the island and had an FHE/Birthday party for my companion. He had a blast and his birthday ironically was on 9/11! We played party games and ate Pancit, a noodle dish, and we played this one game that was pretty fun where you are supposed to hold a piece of rolled up cloth straight up and if it flops over you are out. You pass the cloth around in the circle. I lost once and the punishment was to rub Charcoal on my face so they gave me the Hitler Mustache and my companion got it pretty bad too! You can see all that in the pictures. After the party it was getting dark so we had to get out of there. BUT there were no people running the boats so we got some member boys from the party to take us over in the really wobbly litttle canoe boat thing. They pushed it along with a bamboo stick! ASTIG! (awesome) We got home and I was pretty pooped.
We woke up and today is P-Day we pumped the water washed the clothes and then got an emergency text from a local member family. The wife was pregnant and well on the way to delivery so I teased that we would have to deliver the baby and E. Cajumban would have to catch the baby. When we got there we were surprized to find no pregnant mother, just the father. We were invited inside and that's when the father told us that his wife had just had a miscarraige. Due to complications with the baby's development in the womb,it had died only seconds after birth. This was not the 1st miscarraige but the 2nd that this family had faced. I was asked to give a prayer on behalf of the little baby boy and the family even though the mother was still at the hospital. I said a prayer asking our Heavenly Father to accept the baby back into his arms warmly and for the family to be comforted. One of the saddest parts of this horrible ordeal was that all they had to put the baby in was a card- board box from the hospital where he was born. They didn't have the money for a coffin. We left and an hour or so latter we met the family at the grave site where the Father dug the grave of his baby boy with his own hands. No shovel. His hands. I blessed the burial site and asked for the site to be protected until the 2nd comming so that the little boys body wouldn't be disturbed. As the father laid the card- board box in the ground and we all helped push the dirt into the hole and cover up his shallow grave. I thought to myself, this has to be the worse and most saddest part of my whole mission but then the father said something to me that really touched my heart. He said "Thank you for helping with the services" and then asked about the ressurection of his son. I told him that his son would have a perfect body when our Savior comes again. A smile was on his face as we left that cemetary. He was mature enough to know that he would see his son again and he would have a whole complete body also! How beautiful the gospel of Jesus Christ blesses families. This Father has restored hope for his little baby boy and I was a part of that. All of this I was somehow able to do in Tagalog. I know that Heavenly Father has blessed me more than I realize. These experiences are specifically designed for me to live through to grow to get smarter and better and I am sooooooooo grateful to serve my mission here. This area is my area and I know I'm supposed to be here and I have people to bless!
Anyway I'm sorry that was kinda long. Now I will answer all your questions!
The balloon show was awesome am I right? You must've felt real special with just you and Mom and Dad. I bet waking up at 5 AM must've been rough too! I hope that you are always having fun! We'll have tons of fun when I get home! LOve ya Elder HAmblin
I'm sorry you're so busy right now. If you can find a little time to sit down and just breathe in and out and just listen to your heart beat that's what helps me. I also do a little relaxation before I go to sleep sometimes. I lay myself out like a star fish on my bed. Then I focus on my toes until I can fell them and relax them then I just move up my body until my whole body is relaxed it feels really good and you should try it before going to sleep each night. I think it will help with the stress and stuff. Life can get really busy and if you think you can get rid of something you don't need then do it! Free up some time. Clean your room. Write down everything you are thinking about on a piece of paper. Those all seem to work for me. I hope that helps Shay. Please don't stress yourself out too much. You can't over heat on me while im gone on a mission. I still need you when I get back home! Who's going to play video games with me when I get home? JK I love you Shay. Don't get too CRAZY. You'll stress out Mom and Dad and Devree. LOVe YA Elder Hamblin
Don't let Shay fool you. He is a crazy fool! But if he's making out with chicks in the Driveway let Mom and Dad know! You keep him in check for me okay? :) Now your movie was Ever After of course I knew it from the 1st line! Love that movie okay heres mine: "And every time it rains it rains pennies from the heavens.....SHOOBY DOBIE" or "My finger has a heart beat!" or "The best way to spread Christmas Cheer is singing loud for all to hear!" Guess that you love that show.
SO The gum was nasty and i can't believe that Hillary is off to college already. AHHHHHHH! Whats going on while I'm not around goodness gracious. What's a missionary to do? Love ya little sis Elder Hamblin
Well haven't you been busy? The balloons sounded awesome! I am glad to be born in America seeing all the poverty here really does make you gratefull that you live in such a great country. Erin sounds like the stud she's always been and of course has got a handsome young man in the audience waiting for her. She is the absolute best young woman that I think I have ever seen! She's just amazing!
I'm sorry the only info I have for you is that the sisters do have baptismal dates and I'm sure Chrizel the 10 year old will be baptized. Jerry and Jemma didn't come to church but I think they have a good resolve to try again and they do still want to be baptized. I know they are in good hands with Elder Anzal still in the area. Yea I did forget that I wanted those pictures didn't I? Thanks for reminding me. I put them up on my wall again so that I can "Begin with the End in sight!" as our Mission President asks us to! JK Love ya
Whooo weee I am glad that I am serving a mission. My opportunities are definately being multipied and my life is blessed from the skills and talents I am developing. It's true that the weak things are becoming strong. The mission is awesome! I'm sure I can get a wife when I get back with my cooking skillz now! JK
Yea Aunt Tammie goes for the Good stuff just look at Uncle Ky! She doesn't like the cheap generic brands! JK I'm sure that you and me will have plenty of talks about wifes and things AFTER my mission. Gosh Dad you can't start making me trunky now!!!!! JK
Yes Tagalog is a really fun language isn't it! I love It! Try this on for size. Kaya ko maglaba na pero medio matagal. Maraming magandang babae dito! Pwede po ba ako mag-asawa dito sa mission ko? Salamat Tatay. Ingat!
Your still single son,
O and im sending a ton of pictures of people, funny boy scouts shirts, KAB scouts and of the river and the Island and all sorts of stuff here in my new area. The black faces are because of the coal game and the weird fruit is called Rambotan which I like to call the DR. SEUSS fruit! The spikes are soft on the outside and the white oval inside is what you eat! ENJOY!
On Mon, Sep 12, 2011 at 7:47 AM, Hamblin Family
I'm having a fun time. Yesterday I wen to the balloon races in Reno and I saw a whole bunch of balloons. They were pretty and different colors and one had an alien. We saw a Darth Vader balloon and Smokey the Bear and a Panda Bear too. I had a great time and we got donuts too. I was the only one that woke up at 5 am to go with Mom and Dad because Shay and Devree went to Hilary Hanses going away party and got in late.
I don't like my life anymore. I am so popular that I was the only Freshman at the Hanses party but I don't like my life anymore. I danced at the stake dance last night till my feet almost fell off but I don't like my life anymore. I don't like my life because it's not mine anymore. I go to school. I go to band and soccer and then when I come home I go to Mom and Mom gives me chores so I am very sad and I want your input and I hope you are doing well. But on another note, I am happy that I have a brother on a mission and I am glad he is getting baptisms.
Love, Shay P.S. I invited Harry to the Stake dance and he got a dance card, and invited another non member girl who got a dance card and he danced alot last night.
Dear Elder Hamblin,
Today is the 10th anniversary of 9/11. We are having a park dedication in our neighborhood. They decided to call the park "Patriot Park" and they are going to have a special program to honor all of those that died in 9/11 and those military that have died for our country. It has been a litle emotional even yesterday. Dad, Dane and I got up at 5am to go see the balloons in Reno. It started out having an acapella choir sing tributes to all of the armed forces. Then we sang the National Anthem as the first balloon went in the air with a flag hanging down. The sun was coming up and shining through the flad and I got tears in my eyes thinking how much I love living in this country. If you get a minute, look at our blog so you can see all of the balloons. http://hamblinsfamily.blogspot.com
Erin Briethaupt came home from her mission in Hungary and she extended her mission by 6 weeks. She gave an excellent talk on Agency and Accountability. She sometimes had to stop to think of the English word for things. She said her approach in Hungarian and she bore her testimony in Hungarian at the end. she gave a great talk and was accepted into UNR again even though she was a couple of weeks late. Erin has alwyas been my favorite girl. She is so smart, talented and always very righteous. She deserves a really good guy.
Well I just wanted to tell you that we are praying in our family prayers for your investigators. We printed your letter, put it on the fridge and highlighted the names of your investigators so we could remember them. Did Jerry and Jemma come to church? How are the girls? Did she find a job and were you able to set baptism dates? We love your letters. Dad even printed out pictures you sent to put them on the bulletin board so everyone can see at church. We love you and are so proud of you and I just want you to know, that you are the highlight of our Mondays around here. I am so glad you got and liked your package. But you know why we sent the enlarged picture of the "Strawberry Shake and Burger" don't you? You specifically asked for it. We didn't just send it to be heartless. You just don't remember that you wrote that in one of your letters. You silly goose! We love you so MUCH! Love, Mom
Dear Elder Hamblin,
The other day I was playing Brain Age and I was doing the syllable count. Usually the sayings are proverbs or some famous quote but this one was so funny. it said "Thank you Mario, but our princess is in another castle." It was sooooo funny! Ugh, the other day I was going to open my locker and someone put fresh chewing gum on the part of the handle you pull up. How disgusting! Luckily I found a package of tissues a few feet away and used that to throw the gum away. YUCK! Well, mom is harrassing me to be done but I refuse. Friday we went to Hilary's farewell party. She's going to college at the university of Seattle. I've never been to a party with just Shay and not our parents and I'm really frightened that he always acts like this when our parents aren't around. He is INSANE!!! Last night we had a stake dance. It was Stephen Watt's first dance and he asked me to dance and bowed and everything. He's so cute. It was a fun dance. OK here's my line;
"If a bird loved a fish, where would they live?"
"Then I shall have to make you wings."
"Yes I shall go down in history as the man who opened a door!"
Guess that! I hope you get it! It's one of my favoites! Erin Brithaupt came off her mission! Now the next missionary I'm expecting back is Kolton. I love very much!
Love you most favoritest sister,
Dear Elder Hamblin,
I suppose you are used to being called Elder Hamblin by now. You know I just didn’t realize how proud I would be of my missionary. When I was encouraging you to go on a mission, I just knew that it would be good for you. When I see the kids that decided not to go on a mission or to college… Their lives seem kind of empty and without direction.
Now when you see all the return missionaries that come home and speak… They are not even my kids and I am so very proud of them for the decision they have made. Bret Remington, Jason Wheeler, and Erin Breithaupt are just awesome people. I can see them having very happy lives because of the decisions they are making and the people they are becoming. I am so happy for them!!! I just love seeing good things happen to good people.
All I can say is, “Going on a mission, and going to college go a long way towards creating a happy life”. Your opportunities in life are the difference between shopping at the Dollar Store or Nordstrom’s (Aunt Tammie’s favorite). I’m kidding of course, but there is some serious truth to that statement too. It affects that quality of people you date, the kinds of job opportunities you have, etc.. If choose to be married in the temple and stay active… WOW!!! The world becomes your oyster. J
Elder Hamblin, I know that you will have challenges in your life, but you will be able to enjoy the journey if you do those three things. Keep being the best Elder Hamblin you can be and I promise you that the Lord will reward you well. I’ll tell you all about your wonderful wife after you get home. Well, you can always look up Proverbs 31:10-31 if you want to know what she will be like. I truly feel like that scripture describes your mother. Our life has not been without trials, but we have been truly happy. I am a lucky husband and you are a fortunate son.
When Rachel Breithaupt bore her testimony in Hungarian, and we all felt the spirit so strong, I couldn’t help but think of someone wonderful like that for you. There was a very handsome and squared away young man that had come to hear her speak. I thought, “Good for you Erin!!!”
Our family sure has been praying for your investigators. It really has been wonderful to hear everyone’s heart felt petitions to Our Heavenly Father in behalf of the people you have taught and come to love with the pure love of Christ.
Now, about learning the Tagalog language. I still feel “malayo sa” learning it still. Your progress with the language impresses me. I know there is still a lot you don’t know, but in truth, isn’t there still a lot that you don’t know about the English language? You can communicate and I am very impressed, even though the Lord has been helping a lot. Right now I am learning the difference between trabaho, magtrabaho, nagtrabaho, and nagtatrabaho. It is still new for me but I think Tagalog is a fun language.
Mahal kita anak na lalaki ko at Magandang Araw!