Family Week Celebration!
I am doing good. I am loving my area here in Penablanca! The people are so welcoming and they are so kind. I am enjoying the work here. This week we had our exchanges with the sister training leaders, Sister Balaoing and Sister Songcuan. They are wonderful and I love working with them. Working with them feels natural and we work well together.
Me and my companion are doing great! Sister Barranco is awesome. She's a good companion. Here are some things I love about her: she never complains, she is a hard worker, she is very smart, and she walks fast (she should be an Olympic speed-walker). We walk a lot in our area, and we ride a lot of tricies in our area. We're always go go go! It's a lot of fun, it's a lot of work, and it makes me so tired but I LOVE it. Nothing makes me happier.
Our ward is doing good. It is a great ward. It's not a perfect ward, but it is a great one. Our bishop, Bishop Tumaliuan is amazing! He is a firefighter. Like he said to us, he's a "full time bishop and a part time fireman." I liked that. He magnifies his calling each and every day. He is a great support to us missionaries and to the ward. He is one of the nicest people I have ever met in my entire life. The ward here in Penablanca is in good hands with him. Our ward is divided among two sets of missionaries, so only about half of the members live in our area. Even though we are split in two, we still spend time with all the members and have dinner appointments with them throughout the week. Usually we eat lunch at home and we have dinner with the members. They are nice and welcoming. I haven't had to play the piano yet at church. They already have several pianists. For my laundry, me and my companion pay a nice lady in our ward to wash our clothes once a week. I still wash my garments myself in a bucket. Our apartment has a nice bathroom with a shower head, so I don't have to shower with a bucket anymore. Yay!
I want to tell you about my two housemates, Sister Montejo and Sister Fukofuka. Sister Montejo is my batch! We came to the mission together. She is a Filipina. She is a great missionary, is very clean, and is very smart. She's an engineer. I really like her a lot. We were already close before because we were zone-mates in Cauayan (my first area), so I know her pretty well. Sister Montejo is training Sister Fukofuka. Sister Fukofuka is from Tonga, but she spent most of her life in New Zealand. (It took me forever to figure out her name and I still feel like I'm swearing every time I say it haha). She is brand new in the mission....only three weeks old! Even though she's new, she is already amazing. She is so prepared for her mission. She was supposed to go to the Oakland California Mission, but she had to get reassigned because she couldn't get a visa to go to the US. She is in the process of learning Tagalog, which I help her with. I always try and talk to her in English too, because I don't want her to get lonely. I was the only English-speaker in my first apartment, and I got kind of lonely because I couldn't really talk to anyone. But - I am making sure that will not happen to Sister Fukofuka. I really love her! She's hilarious. I love all my house mates and my companion. We have a happy house!
By the way....the typhoon didn't come by us at all. Not even a single rain drop. It's been pretty calm weather lately. Just hot, as usual! My new area is the hottest place in the Philippines....so that's kind of rough hahaha but it's been rainy lately so it's all good. I like it here!
We also got to watch the General Women's Conference broadcast. I loved it so much! I especially loved the talk by President Uchtdorf. If you haven't had a chance to watch or listen yet, I highly suggest it. I want to be a "fourth floor, last door" missionary like the missionaries President Uchtdorf talked about.
I love you all so much and miss you all so much.
xo Sister Allen
Me and my sisters!
Celebrating a birthday with the members.
Me, Sister Barranco, and a ward missionary, Krizel.
Me and a member at Family Week celebration.
Some of the ward members.
Our ward banner. Go Penablanca!
We looked like prisoners in our orange.
Me and Sister Rochel and Brother PJ.
PJ just sent his mission papers in and Rochel will send hers in soon.
A traditional Filipino dance.
At women's conference.