Monday, May 28, 2012

best week so far!!!

magandang umaga po! 

this week was so good. went by super fast. we had so many activities. we have like no money left cause we have to pay our electricity bill and its outrageous! but the lord takes care of us! we had like 3 dinner appoinments and a wedding reception! so fun. 
*next week i won't email til wednesday, which is tuesday for you

at our dinner appointment, i went to scoop rice on my plate and ants came crawling out of the rice. like 3 or 4. yummy right? don't worry i still ate it. for some reason i just don't care ya know? 

yesterday in relief society, ya know i can't understand anything but the lesson was on prayer and the sister goes, "we pray everyday, especially for our sister missionaries in our ward to not get raped" UHHHH??? what the!!! YES YES please pray for that. so scary. everyone just nodded their heads, so scary. but don't worry that won't happen! 

we went to the manilla temple for the sealing of the couple in our ward. so cute. it made me want to get married, but in america. anyways, the couple's family aren't members so we gave them a tour and my comp did most of the talking, but then i bore my testimony and i just cried. what the. its crazy cause when you are next to that wonderful building you just feel the spirit so strong of the temple. like hello how can you not want to go in there? everyone was crying. i spoke in english but told them its a beautiful place inside and i feel so peaceful and warm there. i told them its the closest place i feel to my heavenly father. i love the temple and SOOO grateful all my family are members so they can all go inside with me when my special day comes..cough cough next year. jk. anyways focus shelby. 

tuesday i got sick. the first time. i woke up with like all the sinus stuff everyone said its from the weather, one day it rains and is cold then its super hot. i think they were right. so all morning i just rested. and our elders in our district brought me medicine so sweet right! but then i just had a huge headache and the elders were like, can we give you a blessing? ha i was like..uhh i have a headache but they insisted. i think they like the practice. but then seriously the next day i was healed! power of the priesthood. i still have an annoying runny nose. 

we had a baptism on saturday so fun. they are so cute, hazel, hasin, and hershie (like the candy bar) ha so fun. 8,10, & 11. i'll send pics. that's all i can think of. i love you all and pray i won't get transfered cause i love love love cogeo. it's the celestrial kingdom of the mission. i want to be assigned to "cogeo" mission. ha!

Sister Curtis

Monday, May 21, 2012

It's COLD in the Philippine's

Hi everyone. k i feel like i have so much to write okay? so this is going to be long. plus its like 4 in the morning right now for utahn's so nobody can interrupt me! 
haha k this week was SOOOOOO GOOOD! Fastest week of my mission by far. 
Monday we woke up at 5 and had a great p-day i talked about it last week.
tuesday we woke up at 5 and we had zone interviews. President was sick so we traveled inland to the mission home (usually they are at our church). it was great. i had an interview with the President, the last time i had an interview i was branddddd new and now its been 2 months. SUCCESS. I just cried to him and said can i do this? and he said "yes you can sister curtis you have the right mindset and attitude, time will help" cause i told him i just want to work really hard and love my mission. anyway after that his wife sister delamare took me and my comp aside and had a little workshop. she talked to us about how great of women we are and what we are doing is so great to prepare us for life. i thought about my mom and my sisters and how they didn't go through this "training" to become mothers and wives, because they are already great. they didn't need it haha but it's true. that was the first time in my mission where i was so happy with where i was and that i didn't want to be anywhere else. i kept thinking, ya i have grown so much in 4 months and its only been 4 months i can't imagine how i will be at the end. i was so happy then that i am learning all these lessons now so in the future i can be the best mother and wife. anyway i just walked away from talking to her so happy with my choice to serve a mission. i know its not all about me but i'm super grateful for the lessons i have learned to far. 
after that, wednesday thursday and friday were suppperrrr fast. i love love love love love X10 my area. i want to stay in cogeo foreverrrrrr pleeaassseeeee. 

saturday we had TEMPLE tour! SO SO fun. it's once a week and we travel to the manilla temple as a zone and we all bring investigators, less actives, people preparing for the temple and give them a tour. a zone is in charge each time and they do the tour so we just get to listen and walk around with them. the whole mission goes so its so fun! i saw a lot of my batch and missionaries from the mtc. one of the elder's said, sister curtis i am so proud of you i didn't think you would last" haha how mean. but true..he also said he heard stuff about me. about my first day in the philippines. how embarrassing. the ap's told him. i got so mad at them! haha anyway temple tour was soo fun! i loved it.

okay listen to this. don't tell dad this haha the other day we went to our area that is a mountain literally. i hate it. and we had to cross a "hanging bridge" okay its exactly what it sounds like. this bridge is the sketchiest, unsafest, horrible bridge that is going to fall any minute. ya everyone crosses it no problem. you have to go one. at. a. time. well i was the last one to cross it and usually i am pretty ya know tough and not scared. noooo i was scared to death. it took me about a week to cross it and i kept yelling, "i can't die!! i have children to bear, and a finance!!" everyone was like staring at me and totally thinking i was crazy but i was right, right? haha anyway i didn't die and i am never crossing that again!! 

so i can't speak english. at temple tour i asked an american elder, "do you feel like your english is loosing?" what the? loosing? i can't speak. i can't speak english, or tagalog. ugh. 

friday we went into a less active's house and their gay son was watching "GLEE" i could have cried i was so excited to see normal tv. don't worry i watched it for a sec. then they told him to unplug the tv and go into his room. so he did but we could still hear it. we were trying to teach and invite the spirit but we could still hear the songs loud and were distracted by it. I thought about how hard we try and teach these people the gospel the most important thing on this life, but yet so many are distracted. i thought, if we are trying to teach this hard how hard is our Heavenly Father trying to speak to us but can't because our lives and minds are too distracted by everything else (like cruises-just saying jk)  we can't hear because its "too loud" does that make sense? a mission really helps you understand what is most important. parker wrote me and said "shelby, we were so spoiled in highland, what did the highland area do to us? i still like nice things and will have nice things, i just appreciate them more" haha love that kid 
this drunk guy came up to me and proposed. Parker you may have some competition. my companion grabbed my arm and helped me get away. ha ha 

so for the first time in 2 months we got rejected. this 14 year old girl who is just so cute told us she doesn't want us to teach her anymore and isn't allowed to go to church. when she said that i couldn't move. these people are so nice they NEVER reject us. and i just felt so sad. i looked at her and thought no no no you need this in your life i promise! my companion asked if we could teach her one more lesson, so we taught her the plan of salvation. we asked her where she wanted to go after this life and she said the celestial kingdom...hello you can't get there unless you listen to us haha i was so sad. i just bore my testimony and told her i traveled all the way from utah to share this message beacuse it is so important and true. the spirit was so strong through out the lesson, but she couldn't feel it. my companion said sometimes people's hearts are too hard to feel the spirit. i was so sad. i love these philippino people so much and hate to see them not accept this wonderful message. after her we went to Bok ya know the best kid ever? we let him watch the restoration in tagalog which makes it so weird sounding oh well but the spirit was so strong. he said the closing prayer and asked heavenly father if he will tell him the truth. sooo awesome! i love that kid! his whole family watched the movie with us and the spirit was so strong in their cute little house. i was so happy his family joined in to watch. i feel like that was the first time i could feel the spirit so strong and knew that everyone felt it too.

i thought about the wonderful people in my life that can't feel the spirit, because of their choices. how do you not feel the spirit? how can you go your life not feeling God's love and that great feeling? as missonaries we feel it constantly, all day and it makes me so sad how some people can't feel it. it got me so sad. 

we just got back from the mall. we went bowling! i felt like a normal person haha i love being in the malls cause i feel like shelby comes back. elder lim told me to close my eyes whenever we would pass a shoe store!! they have cute stuff here and its all so cheap! anyway, bowling was way fun. the malls are in the city i hate the city. i like going there for a little and then going back to the province where there is nothing. i love the provinces! 

only 2 and 1/2 weeks left of the transfer! aH i won't be a trainneeee so scary. but excited. i think i will stay and my comp will go. or we will stay together. i don't really care as long as i stay in cogeo. this week we have so many activities. we thought it would be boring cause all our activities are over for the transfer but we have like 2 dinner appointments, a service project with the ward, and then saturday morning we are doing another temple tour for a couple's family in our ward who aren't members while they are getting married we will show their family around! YAY! so exciting. 

the other day me and my comp were talking about miracles. i told her there were so many miracles that happened in the book of mormon. like when lehi and nephi were in prison and there came a ring of fire around them and protected them or something like that haha like how does that even happen? how come miracles like that don't happen anymore, but then i was thinking aobut all the miracles right now. like its a miracle i am in the philippines teaching the gospel, its a miracle there are over 55,000 missionaries all over the world serving. its a miracle all the temples we have. like those are all miracles ya know?? miracles happen everyday. seriously its the BIGGEST miracle i don't die everyday on a tricycle or a jeepney,. haha but in all seriousness this church is a miracle. i love it. i never want to go inactive. 

thats all for today. sorry its SUPER SHORT, i really had nothing to say today sheesh.

Sister Curtis 
p.s. i love you parker! 

Monday, May 14, 2012

Happy Mother's Day

I remember thinking, wow I can talk to my family on Mother's Day and i will be in the Philippine's. Crazy it's come and gone. I loved loved loved loved seeing and talking to my family. It's weird everyone is still there, and alive and stuff. I have looked at a picture for the last 4 months and it was weird to see you all moving and alive. haha 

The morning before we skyped I bawled to my companion. I was curling my hair and just like, "no i don't want to see them" cause I thought it would make me so homesick. But It was great. That day, I got really inspired to work! It was such a good day. This past week was really fun. Temple day was great. Besides the fact that my hair was orange and white, but don't worry (parker) all is well. it's brown and pretty. Everyone has told me I look like kate middleton, ya know the princess?? I love the philippino people. Haha 

We have been working really hard lately. Like I just wanna die each day cause I am so tired. But I love my area. Our area is massive and we just got news that half of it is turning into a different zone. I wanted to cry when they told me. That's mostly all of our investigators!! But they will all be baptized before June when the bounderies are active. So that's good.

Happy Birthday this week Bryceeee-man. I just love you! I can't believe you are 17. I am so happy you are my little brother!! Have a good birthday in the carribean. For my 17th birthday I was in hawaii! it's a great way to celebrate it. Love you!

So yesterday was Mother's Day and in our ward the young woman did a musical number. Don't you worry, it was a Boyz II Men song and they brought in a cd player and the people were singing in the back round while the y/w sang over them. I was laughing the whole time I couldn't stop. But all the y/w were bawling. haha cause they all just love their mom's. Seriously everyone was crying to these y/w singing to boys to men i just love it. It's the philippine's and that stuff is allowed ya know? Ha. 

So last transfer me and my old comp were walking from an appointment and this kid comes up to us and said he used to be taught by the missionaries but stopped and he missed the feeling of them teaching them. OKAY. He is sent from God seriously. So me and sis O have been teaching him. He is the greatest. His name is Bok and he is 24 and so so nice and just loves what we teach him. He is one of those investigators that everyone tells you about that is "prepared and ready" I didn't think those existed, but they do! He is one of them. I keep telling my companion he needs to be a member and have the priesthood he is so great! 

the other day i opened my desk drawer and there was this nasty smell, and i was like ewww gross. oh there was a dead lizard on my books decaying. what the?? it was so gross. I screamed. 

So today we had zone p-day and we went to "stair way to heaven" its exactly what it sounds like. a massive stairway and i wanted to die. jk. it was so beautiful!! we will do it when we come back mom and dad. i kept telling everyone stairs makes your butt toned but they didn't care! haha we got up at 5 am...ahhh so early. after the stairway we went to daranak falls. okay i thought it was just like a tourist site, no its like a water park but a huge water fall. everyone is swimming, families are everywhere eating lunch and it looked so fun. the water is so clear you can swim in it and its beautiful. Ask me how homesick all 10 of us were when we see everyone swimming and having fun and we can't cause its bawal!! Ahh so homesick. I thought "wow I can't do this for 14 more months" uhhh oh well. It's fine. But I thought of raging waters and how i miss that place! there was this tiny little snacks place and i thought of the resturant and how i don't miss that place haha 

So i am like dead right now emailing cause remember i woke up at five?? So i love you all! this week is going to be really fun, we have zone interviews tomorrow and temple tour on Saturday. have fun in the carribean family. don't tell me about it. haha it will make me so crazy. LOVE YOU all!

Sister Shelby Curtis 

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

my hair is white.

yep it's white. let me just tell you how this great p-day has gone. temple day yay! but well, 
woke up at 4 to the most annoying alarm ever, its the worst feeling when you wake up and look at the clock and it says 4 am and its not a joke. like you really have to get up. well our zone and another zone all rented a jeepney and took it to the temple. we got the first session. we got there at 6 am. it was great! i love love love the temple. then after, me my comp, our district leader and another elder went to the mall cause i wanted to get my hair done..ya know cause i am in the philippine's and still worry about my roots. 

well. just. wait.

they died my hair orange. then i cried and complained (philippino's dont usually complain, but don't worry i am the crazy americana that complained) then they bleached my hair and its white. so i called the president's wife cause i knew she would understand and called to her and said i am having a mental breakdown! haha i think that woman thinks i am crazy, but now after we email we are ALL going to a really nice salon to die it brown, sorry parker i will look ugly for the next 14 months. don't worry the two elders stayed with us the whole time and made me feel a lot better. and they are going with me haha i would have died if elder lim wasnt there! he's my brother in the mission. i am wearing theeeee ugliest headband right now and i tell everyone i see "dont worry my hair isnt staying like this" no one can understand me. but i just want them to know-ya know? oh my gosh i am going crazy haha

anyway, now to things that actually matter.

this week was CRAZZYYYYY. Woke up tuesday morning with a text from our ZL saying "good bye zone i am getting emergency transfered" two of our elders got transfered in the middle of the transfer so that was sad. then, president texted us and said "hello sisters, sister delamare will be working with you today" so scary. i told her "remember i am still a trainee okay and i don't speak tagalog" it was great she was wonderful to be with. it made me miss my mama. i miss you mama!! 
thennnnn, wednesday we had the "traveling sisters" come on splits with us and that was scary. they are like the ap's of the sisters. but it was really good and i learned a lot!! i cried to the one i worked with because i just feel really down like i will never be as good as anyone else. oh well. 

sorry my emails are like never spiritual i promise i actually work hard i just like to tell you all the funny things that happen. like my hair is white. 
the work is going so great. i love it. i love all the people. seriously, i love these people!!
but, we work with so many less active's and sometimes i feel like i am babysitting. if we dont visit them they dont come to church, and then they get mad that we dont visit them because they looovveee us. i don't blame them.
but oh well, i really really want to stay in cogeo for like 6 months like really bad. i told the a.p. to not transfer me. i told him to tell God not to transfer me. is that sac religious?? haha oh well! i love cogeo.
my companion told me that one of our zone leaders told her I get skinnier every time he sees me YES! thank you. i love him!! haha except all i eat is bread, so if i am 1,000 lbs when i get home thats why. okay..what else? 

i can't think of anything. oh family can't wait to talk to you guys!!! its going to be great. i can't believe friday morning i get to see you guys! ahh. so exciting. love you all so much.

talk to later!!
Sister Curtis

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Stressed Out.

Hello family! 
so our area "cogeo" has gone from 4 sisters down to 2. Our area is MASSIVE! Okay. so stressed out. Between the four of us sisters we were bringing in 50 less actives to church every week, and our ward here isn't progressing. Callings aren't happening, people aren't getting the priesthood, there is no temple and etc. SO our president decided to take 2 sisters out until things start happening. He texted my bishop and told him to get things in order, which is great. But everyday we are in a new neighborhood meeting new people. We have Less actives, investigators, referrals, members and all them to look after. its a big job for just 2 sisters. needless to say, i don't sleep at night and there isn't enough time in the day. We are trying to get people to the temple and if there is no temple prep there is no reason for 4 sisters, theres no point. hope that all makes sense. 

My week was hard. Adjusting to a new companion. I went from having THE best companion, to my new one but she is great and I know I will learn a lot of things from her. I got to go to transfer day which was way fun! I got to meet a lot of missionaries and hear from our president which is always really great. He told me to start making things happen in the Cogeo area. I feel stressed out. I AM STILL A TRAINEE! Remember? Ha Ha we have a lot to do this transfer. But I love this work. I spoke in sacrament meeting yesterday about "blessings of service" it hit me hard that I love serving. I didn't before, but now I do. I love missionary work.

I got a letter from Parker on transfer day. BEST thing ever. He told me his heart pounds so hard thinking about the day he has to take his name tag off, because he loves that little name tag. It's crazy because that's how I have felt ALL WEEK! I love love love my name tag. I hold onto it while I bear testimony and I get excited putting it on each day. It's a privilege wearing it. People look at me first (cause I am a white girl in the philippines ya know?) and then they look straight at my name tag, and see my name and Jesus Christ's name. I love it. 

Yesterday and the day before our door bell rang about 4 different times and it was always little kids begging for money. Its not allowed we give out money but we can give out food. I get SO mad when little kids come up to us-not because they ask for food but because they have to. Where are their moms and dads? I have never begged for food and these little children of God shouldn't have to either! I hate it. I cringe every time our door bell rings :( 

Not a lot happened this week, because of transfers. Our zone is so great that only one person got transfered. We got a new district leader. He's awesome. Our zone is really strong so I think they wanted to keep it strong! I have a really fun mission. Every transfer we have temple day, zone interviews, zone conferences and temple tour! I feel really blessed I am in pqcm! Its definately hard. Count your blessings you are in America, but i love it.

Missionary work is so great, i just love being a missionary. i love teaching. we went like 3 days without teaching because we had p-day temple day and other stuff and i missed it so much! i love being in a tiny little shack sharing the gospel with bugs crawling on me. haha i love it.

congrats kallie on graduating!!! So proud of you. everyone take care!!
Sister curtis