Tuesday, February 16, 2016

 Just another beautiful day in Taiwan
Our cute investigator made us cookies for guonian!
Happy Valentines Day!

Unfortunately, that has absolutely no meaning in Taiwan, other than it was the last day of guonian. Bo,y did we experience guonian! We had lunch and dinner appointments every day, and it was so fun to be with all the different families for this celebration. 

It was interesting to see the difference between all member families, and just part member families with other family members bai bai-ing the food to their ancestors.  Haha let's just say I've gained a respect for and a greater understanding of the Buddhist culture and religion. I really just love the feeling of being with a family all together and sitting down eating a meal.  Isn't that what holidays all over the world are about? I love these sweet Taiwanese families (: I got to eat a few new things too! We had (pig) ear cake in all varieties, and I even had my first chicken foot.  Yes, complete with the toenails and everything.  It wasn't half bad! 
I finally got to eat jizhua--chicken foot!
We got all moved into our apartment, and it's nice to finally settle down.  Changes are good.  We've found new places to find new investigators and new miracles (: For Valentine's day yesterday, Sister Juarez even made me cookies with our new stove! We got song'd a fruit called xiantao; it's kind of like a pumpkin, and we had a little bag of flour and who knows what else, and there ya go! COOKIES IN TAIWAN. Best Valentines day ever (:
Look who made me cookies with our new stove?  Best tongban ever!
Our two zone meetings went really awesome. We kind of took a more discussion approach this time, and I thought it worked out great.  Lots of room for spiritual impressions! There's a talk in the February Liahona about group discussions, and I think it was Elder Hales who said  "participation allows individuals to experience being led by the spirit." Well, it worked.  As a mission, we're going to nuli on working with members and asking inspired questions to find referrals. It's definitely still in the works, but we've seen a few miracles already! 
Rangers of the North zone-Elders Matua, Sessions, Facer (from Tennessee--
we've got to be related), Peterson, Dong, Dixon, Taulepa, Qiu,
Francis, Chen, Christensen, Sisters Qiu, Chan, me, and Juarez
Real quick, before I forget, next week is temple day!!! So P day will be on Wednesday instead of Monday. I'll get to bring my last two family names (: 
Haha so Elder Dixon, our district leader, comes up with the funniest sayings that sound like your 'typical Chinese' to the average outside person, but just normal phrases in Chinese.  Here's a few I just had to share: 
Shengdian shi zhu de wuyu (the temple is the House of the Lord)
Jingcha gongche tingche chang (police bus parking lot)
Yongsheng shi yizhong chouchang (eternal life is a type of reward)
Xili shi hen shensheng de yishi (baptism is a sacred ceremony)
Chi putao, bu chi putao pi (eat grapes, don't eat grape skins)
Haha good luck with trying to read that.  Either way, I think they're hilarious (:
 Dinner with Niki and Sister Zeng at a spicy hot pot place
Lunch with Niki and Elders Dixon and Facer
Lately, I've been writing a list of things I've learned from my companions.  I try to read the notes from my setting apart blessing pretty often (thank you for helping with that!) and I was told that I'll learn things from my companions that will help me in later experiences in life.  I love looking back at the things that I've learned, and how each companionship has had kind of a theme in helping me to learn and grow.  I sure hope I learned well enough to use those lessons in the future! 
 Dinner with Shi family.  They have the cutest little boy that reminded
me of Andrew
 Lunch with the Wu family.  She's an RM, and I just love listening
to her teachings
Exchanges with Sister Ioane. She's from a little island called Tuwalu
(not sure if that's English or Chinese way of saying it), but
it's by Fiji
My ponderizing scripture for this week is Alma 26:35, basically just putting all your glory in the Lord instead of yourself.  Man, he's done so much for me! It's interesting how people always comment on how we're so young, or our Chinese is so good, or how we're so great for leaving our homes, but we literally couldn't do any of it without the help of Heavenly Father.  He loves us so much, doesn't he? 
That is my share for the day.  Let me know if there's anything you want to know about Taiwan, or my mission or anything, and I'd love to share! Xin nian Kuaile!

Love, Feng Jiemei

Alright, so it's been a while since I've used a fridge.  I'm still
getting the hang of it...

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