Thursday, June 28, 2012


Thank you THank you Uncle Alan.  I just received your package last week. LIke almost a month from when you sent it haha. Thank you so much for the granola bars And that package of garlic seasoning! we're excited to try it on garlic bread or breaded fish or something.  I know that it was expensive to send it and I really appreciate it.  Thank YOU

Today I want to tell you about Sister Jessibeth.  Jessibeth is a referral that we found a few weeks ago. She has been in-active for about 20 years now.  She has 3 young children. Jennifer 8, Jasper 6 and Jeanefriel 2.  Surpisingly they came to church the week before last and we went back to teach them Thursday.  When we visited her again. She started talking and it wasn't very long till she started to cry. She was overwhelmed with tears when she opened up to us how she enjoyed church and how her children loved it but that they went without food. She told us about how she has no money to feed her own children. I looked at her house that you couldn't call a house. Dirt floor that turns to mud when it rains. no chairs jut a wooden bench and one table. animals like ducks, dogs, and chickens running in and out from inside your home. One bedroom with only a tarp for privacy. They have no electricity and no refrigerator. So they have no light at night when it gets dark at 6. No stove, just a pile of wood and a pot for cooking. She has sponsors for her to children to be able to go to school.  After we visited her and shared with her Mosiah 24:14. We left and I was overwhelmed with gratitude.  I told Sister Patricio that we just had two lessons.  Sister Jessibeth's lesson and a lesson for us.  A lesson of gratitude.  I've felt so grateful for the things I've been blessed with.  I want you to look at your homes, your family, your bedrooms, fridge, Food, electricity, carpet, privacy, money.  And to be filled with gratitude for the many blessings God has given you.  Because I have seen those who literally have nothing left.  No one can really understand how to be grateful till you have seen the things that I have seen.  I"m grateful for my blessings, for being raised in a loving home, being well- nourished and for a roof over my head.  I"m grateful for my education, and for my clothes,.. for the gospel.  I hope that you all can take a step back and whenever you are feeling down, THink of all the blessings God has given you.  Don't take them for granted because some are not as blessed. 
We were able to provide a little service and I used Alan's box (that was sent in the mail) and filled it with all of my roman noodles I had for my 72 hour kit, Crackers and some tuna and gave it to her. It wasn't much at all but when You hear how she had no food for those three little mouths to feed, you want to give anything.  We were so happy to see her again this Sunday and she has expressed her gratitude. We hope that we can welcome her back into the church and to provide physical and spiritual comfort.  

I love you all so very much!  Thank you so much for you support. I know that when days are hard that I am blessed.  I love you all so much.  Keep writing, I love letters.  

Monday, June 18, 2012


HAPPY FATHERS DAY!!!   I cried in church yesterday when all the fathers stood up.
WOW ANOTHER hole in one!!!!  That's amazing Dad. You see.. Many blessings from the mission. Joke lang!!  You're the man Dad!

That's so awesome hearing about Kelsey's Wedding. I wish I could see pictures of her dress and cake etc. 
Jade Little is coming home next week?? WOW.  Tell her congrats. 
This week was funny. While I was teaching, a tiki fell on me.  I squealed and freaked out a little.  Everybody laughed at me.   We received a lot of referrals this week and that we found many children in our ward who are not yet baptized. This week has also been hard because school is back in session so many of our investigators are not available until night time and all at the same time.  

I really enjoyed last weeks Zone Meeting. Elder Galloway and Elder Thayne taught a lesson about the Book of Mormon. How in the 1500 people were risking their lives for the scriptures. The man who translated the Bible into English was killed for doing so.  They asked, what did they understand about the importance of scriptures that we don't understand?  We need to help people gain a deeper testimony about the Book of Mormon because it is truly the Word of God.   They also shared with how the mission isn't running a marathon, where you have to run 26.7 miles or something. If you are planning to run that far you go a steady pace at the start because you know you have a long way to go.  But the mission is like a relay race.  Where you only have to sprint your hardest for one mile and then you pass the baton to the next missionary who will run his hardest to the next mile.  THis is how the work progresses.  I loved it.

I'm sorry that my letters are not very long.  I am encharge of sending the weekly report to president. So i have even more less time :(
Transfers are next week and I'm afraid that sister Patricio or I might transfer, more likely her than me. I most likely will be getting a new companion and I'm so nervous.  Pray for me that I will have a follow up trainer and not a fresh new missionary.  The language is getting better. I'm trying now to always speak it.   I've notice that I am doing a lot of the same manorisms as the filipinos. I point with my lips, and I say yes with my eyebrows.It's pretty funny.

I love you sooo much.



I love you and miss you.  I love hearing the blessing that our family is receiving while I'm away. It really helps me know what is going on at home and I can literally see the blessings week by week.  I"m glad my emails can help some of your presentations DAD. Love you!!!

This week I've learned a lot of things. We had a companionship exchange where Sister Patricio Left me for a day and I was companions with sister Martinez! I lead the area and teach with Sis. Martinez. Having a different companion helped me learn what i'm doing well in and what I need to improve on.  She told me that i'm Sagad (doing really well) in the language.. When she told me that I just laughed and said, "Then why do I feel like I'm not good." haha  She told me that I seem to be following along pretty well. During our exchange we passed by some of the people we know and I  was able to say Hi and tell introduce Sister Martinez. I would try to understand what they said and I could kind of respond. With these little experiences I can see that i'm understanding a little by little.  I'm grateful for the exchange to see the progress I've made. Sister Martinez tells me to continue, her advice is to continue learning from sister Patricio, to continue to learn in the language. She said she was grateful that it wasn't awkward to work with each other. When we had our companionship study in the morning we had a spiritual experience during our practice teaching. I was inspired to share a scripture in the Book of Mormon and afterwards she told me that she had the same scripture was in her mind before I shared it. she told me that it means that the spirit is working between us and that even though it was just one day and we don't know each other, we can still work together.  She is sooo COOL! She told me I remind her of how she was at the beginning of her mission. When she said this, It gave me great hope that some day I will be like her. 

This week I was able to experience what Elder Neilson taught us. About physically bringing people back on our shoulders. This Sunday we went to pick of some of the Marote Children to come to church with us. By the help of a member who had a tricycle we went together to pick them up for church. While we were waiting for JennyRose and Jean Marote to get ready. We were able to bring their neighbor, Sister Roselyn, to church aswell. Sister Roselyn is not a member but her husband used to be a member when he was younger but is in-active now. surprise surprise. But by our efforts to bring the Marote Family, we also brought Roselyn and her son to church. I hope that they had a good experience and that we can find ways for their families to have transportation to church.  

We discussed the difficulties in our specific mission that keep people from coming to church. Some of the obstacles in our mission are different then others.  For instance, if the family is poor, they don't have money for transportation to church. It really is a test of faith for people to come to church when the money they use to get there is the money for their food.  

I've received some letters!!  I received one from Jared again, Shelley, Diana! and a lot from the wards. I received that huge card the relief society made. It was awesome. It's funny because it seems like I receive more letters from the ward councils then my friends because I got letters from the old ward AND the new one your are in.  THank you for Everything.. I love you.  Tell Kelsey Congrats! Tell me what her reception looked like.  Tell Happy Birthday to Marsha!!!!  

Oh what a fun week.  We had Elder Nielson speak with to us and we traveled to ROXAS. you pronounce it RoHas. We have a joke that everything is in Roxas. You ask anyone, where did you get that?  "oh in Roxas"  Everytime.  So it was cool to go to Roxas because it Rox!
Some few points that I loved from Zone Conference. D&C 1:19 How does the Lord do his work? it is by the weak and small things does the Lord break down the strong ones. He made a good point with how the Lord uses the people the world doesn't want.  For instance, young 20 year olds that are too young to really hire for career jobs and he uses the 60+ year olds that are too old to work, like senior couples, Apostles, Prophets. The Lord uses the people the world doesn't want.
He told us also that they not only assign missionaries to missions, they assign them to mission Presidents. I believe that is so true. I love President Pagaduan. He is the BEST.  We found out that this November President Pagaduan's Father is going to be the future temple president of the CEBU TEMPLE!  You can tell that he comes from an amazing family. 
I learned a lot about looking at the big picture. Some days you feel like you are not making a difference. But when you think that way, you are only seeing the small view instead of looking at the big picture that Heavenly Father sees.  He said that in 1961, four missionaries came to the Philippines from Hong Kong and now their are 853 chapels, 85 district, and 83 Stakes and there are like 659,000 members in 50 years!! He said, how this happens is by missionaries. So in the big picture the work is really moving forward.  that is amazing.  
But out of 659,000 members there are 115,000 attending church.  So our mission is to rescue. We can baptized many but we want them to really be converted and establish the church. We are sent here to rescue the lost sheep. I loved this story they told about this Runner from Africa who ran this famous race, it was like a huge marathon or olympics or something. He was injured badly and he was in last place. They showed the video of him limping into the stadium towards the finish line and the crowd started cheering for him and he tried his best to limp and jog until he crossed the finish line. they asked him later why he didn't stop running and he said "my country didn't send 5,000 miles to start the race, they sent me 5,000 miles to finish the race." those words are so inspiring to me.  I didn't come all this way to let something get me down, or to feel homesick, or to be discouraged. I came here to finish the race and to do my very best. To see the big picture in our purpose. We are here to bring people closer to Christ by helping them have Faith in him and his Atonement, Repentance, Baptism, Receiving the Holy Ghost and Enduring to the End!! How great is our work.
I loved what sister Neilson said. ""Some of the best blessings in life don't come with everything you want.""
Pres. Pagaduan shared with us Alma 26:27 and said that we are never alone, and when we are about to turn our backs, he will be there and he will soften the hardest of hearts.  I love him and Sister Pagaduan! they are the best!

So it has been raining the past 3 days. and we had to walk through yucky puddles. And we had our Zone Activity that was supposed to be on the beach but of course it had to rain and ruin our plans. so we just played games and the church and went to this sampicita gardens resort. It is like the creator of the precious moments dolls and at this resort they have these giant statues of these precious moment dolls. Kind of cool, kind of creepy, I wouldn't want to be there at night. haha
But it was very fun. I love you all. I tell you some more funny stories later.  Love you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

Yes I received your email Dad That sounds like it will be a great talk. I was able to skim over it.I remember those stories. I can't print it out here and I hope now that i'll have enough time to write to you. P.S. is my plaque picture thing in the fruitland acres ward or in the Foxridge ward now?? Mom I really like those Forget me nots from Uchdorfs talk. I feel like I can apply every one of those here on the mission.
That is exciting about selling Grandma's house. I'm sad that I wasn't able to have a slumber party there like you did Mom the night before. I'm so excited for Chad and for Arie getting married soon.  That's great. I'm sad that I wont be there.  Tell them Congrats :) 

So tomorrow we have a mission tour.  I don't really know much about what it is, only that we are traveling to Roxas Zone to have a combined conference. And Elder Neilson, who is in the Presidency of the entire Philippine Country Missions, is speaking to us. So that is exciting. It will be a little change in our routine.
Also Next week for Pday, we are having a Zone Activity and we are going to the beach to play volleyball and going to this Sampaguita Gardens.... I'm not sure what that is but i'll find out.  So I'm not sure what time we'll be emailing next Monday.

I love the people we teach. I love Sheila and Jun and their family!!!!  I love when we visit them.  They have 3 young boys, Froilan, Francois yuan and Fernan.  Last time we came Fernan who is like 3 came running towards us to greet us.  He reminds me of little Cammers and he is so cute.  Every sunday they boys come sit by us while church is starting.  They love me too even though i don't understand what they are saying. It's because I take pictures of them so whenever I come they say "Picture, Picture!"  I hope that i'll still be here in the mission to see them be baptized. we just have to wait a long time for them to have enough money to get married. Brother Jun sells popcorn so when they make it their entire home smells like a movie theater. They always send us home with small bags of popcorn.
There is also a 12 year old girl who we visit. Her name is Annalee and she is so sweet. Last week she gave me a bracelet at church so we now have matching bracelets. I'm so happy that I can still show how much I care for these people even though I can't speak the language very well.
This last week i've been taking the lead a little more in the lessons, Starting the lessons and giving commitments. I still feel so frustrated at times but I know that I need to be patient with myself. But you know, you always worry if you're behind, or if you should know more than you do.  I can still say that I can understand more than I can speak. But when someone talks directly at me I go blank and have no idea what they said. I think it's because I'm looking at their eyes and not their mouth.

So this week we had a lot of "emergency expenses" and we have no kwarta (money) because we still have one more week before we can withdrawal haha. We had to pay for gas for our stove, then we had to pay the water bill, the electric bill, money for the mission tour, Sis Patricio's watch broke, and we needed to buy groceries for 2 weeks because we won't be here next Pday. So we laugh and say that this P day stands for Pigado day (poor day). So we've been eating rice and canned goods, our 72 hour kit, and popcorn. :) 

I love you all!  Be safe and Lift Where You Stand.
LOve SIster FOwles!!!!!!
OH man. How I love Mothers Day.  It was so wonderful to be able to see your faces.  I love you so much.  I really needed that.

So as you know my nanay left me and now it is just Sister Patricio and I.  I love her Gid (emphasis). We laugh at nights telling stories and talking about the "aswangs"  It is a myth here in the Philippines. They are like creatures that look human in the day but at night or on a full moon they turn into creatures with sharp teeth and eat people.  Their version of vampire/cannibals. But They like really believe in them.  Sis Patricio's step-mom told her when she opened her mission call to Iloilo that she needed to be careful!!  Their are many "aswangs" there. haha So I have yet to see an aswang but I hope I never do.

I find that the Philippines like to name their children strange names.  I've already told you about San Francisco. I just found out that a man we know, Bro Banner, his first name is Star Spangled...  No Joke.  Put that one together. I laughed hard gid.  I've also met three young girls named Princess. One was named Liahona which is actually really pretty.  And then a boy named Baby Jesus. :)   They like to combine the names of the mom and dad. For instance, Donalyn and Jun have a daughter Junalyn.  Their are also Damo (many) J names here. I can't keep track of them all.  We just contacted a less active family for the first time last week. The Marote Family, and they have like nine children and all their names start with J.  Joralyn, Jeremy, Jomar, jennyrose, jam, jean, judyAnn, and Julianna.  Yep Super confused over here.

This last week we experienced some tracting. We ventured out to the area Linabuan which is kind of far to find a referral. As we were searching we found their home but they were not home so we had the opportunity to teach her neighbor. Sister Wenina. She was very generous and she is very Faithful. I think she is Catholic. She fed us some Kamote which is that purple sweet potatoe. You remember the one that we tried at the Cabatus? It was interesting because while we were down in Linabuan we received a text of another referral that was around that same area and he doesn't work on Thursdays (the day we just happened to be visiting the area) So we were really excited. While we searched for this referral I noticed the different attitude people had towards us.  As we would stop by to ask people about the referral, their were shy people, timid to talk to us, afraid that we would teach them haha. and people that were happy to help us. (probably because they were talking to an American.)

Haha this reminds me, I must have adapted well to the mission because now when I see a white person I catch myself STARING. haha one time I said to myself, "Woa a white person!" Thats really when you know you're Filipino. When you forget that you're white.  But now I don't blame people for staring at me because I realize that they can't help it. That it is like a muscle reaction.  Just the other day we were standing at a chungy and I see this white man walking past us. He looked like an intense outdoors-man with his large hikers back pack, tan skin and scruffy beard. We looked at each other has he walked by and we both exchanged a smile and chuckle. It was like we were instantly friends because we had something in common. We were white foreigners. When I do see other Americans I wonder why they are here. Because I know why I am here but why are they here??

Another fun fact. I find that it is smart to carry an umbrella with you at all times.  Because you use it when it is hot and sunny to keep you in the shade. And you use it when it unexpectedly rains.. and also that it can be a good weapon for attackers or large dogs. So always carry your Payong (umbrella) with you.

Oh well time is gone I have to check out.   I love you all!!!!!  Love sister Fowles
Alright so I received some of my first letters from home finally. (and Brittany Worley's announcement. CONGRATS) I recieved Jared's Dear Elder too.
They were asking me about my first week in the Philippines and how my first Pday went.  Well I have now had about 5 Pdays and they are all relatively the same. I remember thinking the Pdays would be like how they were in the MTC but they are a lot less relaxing.  It really is a "preparation day" not a "lets sleep all day, play in the sun, eat banana sundaes DAY" It's just as tiring as all the rest. haha.  We do our studies, email, pay bills, buy groceries at Gaisano, buy meat and produce at the market, dash home to wash our clothes, and write letters if you have any time left before it is 6 o'clock. And then you go to work.
You wanted to know my schedule. We wake up at 6:30am exercise, shower, eat and start Personal Study at 8, We then have Companionship study at 9 till 11am doing mostly our training, practice teaching, learning principles of how to be an effective teacher as well as principles of the gospel.  We then do language study which is me trying to translate the things i'm going to say in the lessons we have that day. We eat lunch and then we go to work. We visit families that are less-active. President Pagaduan really wants us to focus on the family. That we want to bring families into the gospel together because if you save a family you save thousands in a ripple-effect. Our motto is to Lift where you Stand.  So where ever I am assigned here in Iloilo I am to LIFT it.
We have good days and not so good days. But i've really learned that the success of a missionary is based on your "in-put". How much I put into serving others and to finding the lost sheep. I spoke to President about not having any regrets on my mission.  He said the easy way to go home with no regrets is to come home everyday with no regrets. Each day when you walk back into your apartment, ask yourself, did I do everything I could today. If the answer is yes everyday, your entire mission won't be a regret. 
We do meet with our district every Tuesday. It's where we report on our work from the previous week and learn on things we can do better. The pattern we have during the week of a missionary is.. Church on Sunday of course, Pday on Monday, District meeting on Tuesday and Weekly planning is every Thursday. and this is the pattern your entire mission.  Weekly planning seems to take us like 4 hours! haha especially with the 3 of us.  We figured out that it was because Sister Salway was repeating everything twice. Once in Hiligaynon, once in English and then a 3rd time because usually one of us didn't hear. (guess who that could be haha) 
So some questions for you. Who is the new Stake President?? if you moved to the other ward, is my mission plaque in the new ward or old ward? 
I'm sending you a picture of the GUMBAN family.  Sister Myrna is the younger lady and she is going to be baptised on June 2! They are just getting things in order for her and her husband to be married and then she can be baptized so we are soooo excited.
Also Sis Salway had to go to the mission home this week for training So we combined with Sis Butler and had to work in both Kalibo 2 and Kalibo 1 areas. This was the first time I was able to work with Sis Butler again from the MTC.
And then the last picture is the Frog who was eating a dead mouse who was on our porch. 
I love you SOOO much 
Palangga Gid Ko Kamo!
Love SIster FOwles



Kumusta ang buhay ninyo? (how is your life)

Here is some random notes I wanted to tell you about. 
So I learned a very funny word the other day. nakakapagpabagabag... it means agitated.. I thought to myself, of course that word means agitated, just look at it!
I've noticed that people kind of have a hard time pronouncing my Last name.  They usually say it like Sisterrr.. Fow.. less! or Sister Powles! I go with either one. Or tell them to just call me Sister ibon because that means Birds. 
There is a man in our ward. Brother Richie and he looks like he is about 80 years old. He is white and his wife is Filipino. He is SOOO funny. He doesn't know how to speak Filipino at all which makes us wonder how he has lasted to live here so long. But he is awesome. He sings the loudest during the hymns.
My Apartment is not stilted unfortunately. It is like a normal apartment. It has two levels and we sleep upstairs. so if it does flood we'll be fine. Sis Salway was telling me that Panay island is probably the safest from typhoons. We'll just get a lot of hard rain if there is a typhoon near by so we only need to worry about flooding.
There are these lizard type gecko things that live in peoples houses. There are small ones called Tikis and then there are the large ones named Tokos.  Sis Patricio is afraid of the large ones. They make this sound like "tuuukoohh" like they are saying their name. So you'll know when one is around. We aren't supposed to have any pets in our apartment. But I'm sad to say that we have many because we have tikis, spiders and ants!!!
So I tempted to eat "balut" the other day (boiled duck egg with a chic fetus). Sis Salway and I both bought an egg. But it was a failed attempt because the egg I bought was just a normal boiled egg. There was no chic inside. So it got my hopes up for nothing.
We are teaching the Gumban family with Sister Myrna. She is our most progressing investigator. We are just trying to get their marriage license in order. When we visit her family they always give us food to eat or mangos to take home.  We are teaching Sister Sheila and Bro Jhun. Jhun is an ex-Iglation ni Cristo.  Sheila asks tonz of questions and is really interested in the church. We are hoping to extend a baptismal date to them soon. We also contacted a referral Sis Susan who is very interested. She is Catholic but she knows that there are a lot of things the Catholic church is doing wrong. She is curious about the Mormons because she saw the church house and noticed that there is a nice spirit there and is wanting to know more. So we are excited to teach her more. There are lots of other people we are teaching but those are my favorites so far. and the only names that I can remember.

Woa!  Lots of questions.
so first off Yes I'm still in the three-some. I'll be in a tri-some till around May 14th because That is when Sis Salway is going home :( It's hard because I'm supposed to have 12 weeks with my trainer (2 transfors) but I'll only have 6 weeks with her. But I will probably still have 12 weeks with Sis Patricio even though she isn't my trainer. Sis Salway doesn't want to leave yet. No offense to you guys but I can't wait to have that feeling of not wanting to go home. Some times I do get homesick so I know that when I have that, I will have even more of a desire to work hard each day because my time will be limited.
Sis Salway is sooo nice. she is very smart. She is going into astronomy so every night while we walk home we ask her about the stars we see in the sky.  
The language is very difficult.When my companions speaks in the Apartment they are speaking in Hiligaynon (illongo) I can understand my companions more and more each day but when I hear the people we teach I don't understand it.  I think it is because different people are speaking either Tagalog or Aklanon. Aklanon being the most difficult to speak and understand. So that could be the best reason for why I don't understand people.  SO that also makes learning the language really hard because I don't know where to start!
The church house is very much like a church house in America. They just have tile floors. The church is located on Vilia Salvation street. (what a coincidence). 
It is just the 3 of us in our area which is Kalibo 2 but we do have other elders in our district who serve in other wards and areas in Kalibo. There is also a second companionship of sisters in the Kalibo 1 area which is Sis Butler from the MTC and her companion Sis Martinez. So I get to see Sis Butler often.
The food is fine to eat here.  You just mostly avoid the food that you see being cooked at tsungies (chungies). Like sidewalk venders because you don't know how long it has been sitting out. 
We walk to the near by homes but we'll sakay (ride) to homes that are far away. The Kalibo 2 area is pretty big because they used to have two companionships that were incharge of it. but now it is only us three.  There is basically 2 main highways that travel through Kalibo. so one day we'll travel down one highway and the next day we'll travel the next.
Yes i pray every day for the gift of tongues Gani (duh) haha
Our President speaks English very well.
I love Personal study every morning. I love reading the scriptures and actually having time to ponder and think about what i'm studying. I've noticed that I have no distractions and I can get a lot done. It is something I'd like to keep in the habit when I'm home

So Life is good here. I'm having fun. I pray for you everyday. I love you So much! Be safe.
Love Sis Fowles...  Fow-less... Powles... ibon

Kumusta Pamylia!

So guess what I did Dad.  I cleaned fish last Monday. Like 5 of them. I thought you would be proud of me. We went to the Market to buy our produce and it was definitely a different experience. The smells of all the meats are powerful and you can tell that the animal was probably alive not too long ago.  There was so much fish and chicken and probably other animals i didn't recognize. Very interesting. 

It's kind of hard to walk around the streets of Kalibo.  Not only do I stand out because of my name tag but because I'm white.. Sis Salway, who is also white says that it never gets old and that you'll be getting looks and cat calls your entire mission.  The story is true about marriage proposals. She has lost track of her number of offers and told me that I should keep track. I was told by an investigator that I look like a Movie Star. Bahaha. I wish that were true when I walk down the streets of Logan. I like the fact that I can be sweating, hair up in a messy bun, dirty clothes, red mosquito bites on my legs, muddy feet and still be considered as a movie star.  The Philippines is very flattering.

I think the Philippines will help cure my small fear of dogs too, because I see dozens all the time.  A lot of them are kind of malnourished and it is sad but I'm more afraid of spiders and mosquitoes then I am of the dogs.

This place is so beautiful. I see flowers of every color imaginable as I walk. I want to collect some and dry them in my journal. I'm getting more used to the area and the homes people live in.  Most homes are raised off the ground and are closer to like Tree Houses. I'm assuming it's like that for when the area floods. Some areas remind me of the Swiss Family Robinson movie.  Speaking of Floods, It has rained only a few times here and usually in the mornings or at night.  You can actually hear the rain coming and when it hits it is SO loud! It just pours! and then it stops after like 5 minutes. But it is so funny because the Filipinos don't like the rain (go figure). So when they hear the thunderous showers they all dash for cover.  I wonder what it will be like when the actual rainy season comes.

The Food is really really good.  No it is not just rice. I'm excited to collect recipes so I can maybe show you.  We had Pancit Canton,  Adobo, Bangros Fish which was Delicious! But you have to pick small bones out.  Sis. Patricio makes fun of me a lot, saying that I'm truly a Filipino now because I eat rice with my hands.

Oh so washing my clothes was pretty fun.  I didn't realize how dirty clothes get until you actually physically rinse them. "I'm truly a Filipino now!"

The pouch mail address I guess will work but it's really confusing and Sis Salway says that you can actually still use Dear Elder and it's a lot easier.  That Dear Elder prints out in Salt Lake and will be sent to us as long as you have the right name and mission I believe. So maybe that will work. 

We have visited a lot of people.  Most are less active and it's because they fall away usually from being offended. When we watched Conference for the second time I was hoping people were listening to President Uchdorf telling them to "Stop it" There is an investigator Sister Sheila and her husband Bro. Jhun who are really cool. She has been to church many times and has many questions.  They speak Aklanon which is the hardest dialect.  It's hard to learn the language because Kalibo is mostly a Tagalog and Aklanon speaking area. But all of the other areas speak Hiligaynon which is the language the "illongo" people speak. My trainer speaks mostly Hiligaynon. So I'm trying to do both Tagalog and Hilgaynon. It's still the first week.

So I wish I could tell you more but my time is running out.  I love you all so much! I'm excited to hear from you. THat's exciting about the house and the picture you took dad is AMAZING. I'll be praying for each of you. 
palangga ko kamo! ( i love you all)

SIster Fowles


OH my goodness. I could write a novel with what has happened my first week.
The flight was the worst! I would be fine with not riding an airplane for another 16 months.  We were on the plane from san Fran to Tokyo was about 13 hours. We timed it and it took us 30 hours from the time we left the MTC to the time we arrived in Manila. and that isn't including the flight from Manila to Iloilo which we made on the next day.   So the flight was awful because it was so long and they kept playing movies on the screens so we tried not to watch.  good thing they didn't show Hunger Games because I probably would have gave in and watched it.  But they tried to help everyone sleep and shutter windows but I'm guaranteed I didn't get more then an hour of sleep total. We arrived in Tokyo with a bumpy landing and Sis Schocker was a mess haha it was pretty funny sitting next to her.  The first thing I noticed when we walked in to the airport was the wet air. it was so humid and thick but not hot because it was at night.  We then eventually flew to Manila and it was hot but not unbearable. I was expecting the worst heat imaginable. But then we finally all managed to get our luggage and walk out of the airport and OH BOY was it madness.  I can't believe how many people were running around and it was close to 1 am in the morning.  We were supposed to land in Manila at 10:30 and didn't land till about 12 and when we found the Elders it was 1am. The Elders had been waiting since 10pm so that was crazy.  It totally felt like the Other Side of Heaven when we arrived and finding those white shirt and ties.  These Elders came and took Sis. Aoina to Quezon and we had to wait for a van to take us the the Manila Hotel.  So we get there and they don't give us a room till about 2 am.  Then they tell us that we have to be up at 5 and leave here at 6 to catch our next flight.  SO we basically have been running on no sleep and only get to sleep for 2 hours.  REALLY Awesome night of exhaustion.
We wake and have breakfast and the rice they had was amazing. of course, its their delicacy. And that is when I encountered my first monkey! it bounced out of no where hanging from it's leash.
We fly again to Iloilo and my feet were so swollen and i was so dizzy because I haven't been on solid ground for over 30 hours. We arrived to iloilo and we walk out of another airport and we see... drum roll please..  President Pagaduan and Sis. Pagaduan with sets of missionaries.  I actually have seen them in person now.  3D not just on paper. They are sooooo nice. They drove us to the mission home. My first thoughts of Iloilo was I felt as if I had stepped into Jurassic Park! Just a very different environment.  OH and the Filipinos are CRAZY DRIVERS. Mom, I think you would be cured of your jumping syndrome if you came and visited the Philippines for a day.  I mean the lines on the road... they are just for show.  People just but-in when they want, pass when ever they please, cut infront of you when they are going 2 miles an hour.  But these aren't cars, they are Jeepnies and tricycles (which are the motorcycles that have side cars to transport people.)  Even pedestrians cut in front of traffic. It is MADNESS. Haha I was shocked and laughing the whole time.
So President fed us and theyre cooking is amazing and we had this amazing dessert called Mango Float which is Mangos, graham crackers, and cream. Namit gid (very yummy)
So the first day they sent me and schocker with Sis. Puig and Sis. Swarna.  Puig is from the Philippines and Swarna is from India. They were so nice but could tell we were so tired. The first day we went on splits and I was with sis. Swarna.  We rode a trici-cad which is a side car connected to a MANUAL bike. so different than a tricycle. These poor bikers, they have to manually bike these side cars full of people. I mean they were just sweating from head to toe. They must have legs of steal.
I've never seen anything like this place. We walked to this families bamboo hut and all the kids start running out to me and touching my arms saying "puti" which means white.  They touched my arms, petted my hair. they pulled me to their house and I had to walk across this bamboo bridge thing which i thought would break under my weight. Their home was nothing like i've ever seen. I just kept thinking of the new house youre building Dad and compared to what these people have.. it is astonishing. They have dirt floors, tin roofs, I mean these homes are literally made out of scraps. The funny thing was they had furniture and a nice entertainment furniture piece that held a tv and their books etc. There were these two cute girls named Scarlet and Penrose who kept saying Tagalog words at me like.. Mata.. (I would then repeat..Mata) .... EYE.  ilong.. Nose.   ...Bula... Flower. They were like my personal teachers, teaching me the language. I loved it. I want to keep one in my pocket everywhere I go so they can teach me.  we taught a short lesson about Prophets and we also visited another family.
When we were home I laughed so hard seeing sis schocker sprawled on the bed. she looked so haggard and overwhelmed. It was hilarious sharing about our first nights in iloilo and the things we saw.
OH man the next morning.  Movies lie to you. YOu know when they have the rooster crowing once in the morning, well they don't just crow once they never stop and there are like thousands of roosters here.  I woke up and it sounded like a women screaming in the distance and the sound got closer and closer as the sun rose. and soon it was a choir of roosters ka-ka-doodling all day long.  Sometimes I want to patay (kill) them but realized that it would be a never ending task.  Seriously it is so noisy in the morning with dogs and roosters, I feel like there are more animals here then people.
So we had orientation and MacDs (MacDonalds) the one familiarity here. and we had our delicious meals and the Presidents home. I had a feeling they were treating us so nice before they send us away to survive on our own.  They next day we finally met our Trainers!!! My Nanay (mother) is Sis Salway. She is from Las Vegas. and we are in a tri-some companionship with Sis. Patricio who is from Manila.  They say I have the best of both worlds having both a Filipino and American companion.  I am assigned in the Kalibo Zone which is the farthest away from Iloilo. it is in the North West Corner of Panay Island and is about a 4 hour Bus ride from Iloilo.  So again, I hopped on a bus to travel to Kalibo.
We have a very small apartment and there are lots of bugs. I have tonz of mesquito bites and sister Salway said that you could mail me 1000mg Odorless Garlic pills that would help the mesquitos not like my blood.  SO you should send me those if you can and Granola bars!
SO this has been my experience so far.  It's been really hard adjusting.  I miss everyone a lot, especially since I was separated from my District which was my family in the MTC. So now I really don't have Family.
They say that the pouch mail is only for Missionary use. So make sure you inform everyone that they can only send things to me through the mission office address. PS my Pday is on Mondays now and President Pagaduan will be sending you a letter with my picture in it saying that I have arrived here safely.  That is why you haven't heard anything yet.
I love you all so much.  Pray that i can learn this different language because now I have to learn Illongo and Tagalog and another one that I don't know the name of.
Kita Kits (see you soon)

LOVE Sis Fowles

Hola! Dyok Lang.. Kumusta!

So IT's Saturday Morning before Conference. Its kind of nice to be leaving Monday Morning. Conference will charge my batteries right before the Philippines. But it basically will be Sunday night because I don't plan on sleeping when we have to leave the MTC at 5 am. I'll be up packing.  SO turns out that Delta Airlines allows two 50 lbs luggages and 40 lbs carry-on.  Good news right? Well then we get a little notice slip for those that have to go to Iloilo mission because they are Flying on a little Philippines plane from Manila to Panay. Their carry-on can only be 15lbs!!!  I just about died.  So I put that carry-on suitcase on the scale in out Residence and it weighed 12 lbs.... That is with nothing in it... hahaha  So I can only but 3 lbs of my belongings in it.  So If you havent found out yet, I postmarted my Entire suitcase to Diana. and it is filled with all my winter clothes and things I don't think I need.
SO I can't wait to go to the Philippines!!!!!  I have also met some missionaries here that are FROM the Philippines and they have told us all about it. They are excited for us and they talk about how beautiful it is.  One at lunch even told my that my Tagalog was pretty good...  DID YOU HEAR THAT! He said that my Tagalog was pretty good.  I was so happy.  But it's a joke because I only said like 3 sentences and they are the only ones I know basically haha. So I fooled him!  no.. but really that was a nice compliment. But i know It will all go out the window when i get there.  I wont understand anything! "Hindi nakaintindi"
So i'm excited to leave but super nervous at the same time. Out two districts are the last pilot program group so basically they will study us and see how well we do in the field compared to those with the 9 week program. Which makes me a little discouraged hoping that we didn't get the short end of the stick. We just had (in-field) orientation yesterday, all day. Where they cram last minute info before you peace out. and we were taught by the people who were in the district videos! it was like meeting famous people! this is as close as it gets to meeting superstars here at the MTC.  besides Elder David Archuleta i mean, who i did see in the lunch room. wha wha!
SO i have to go sorry this email is short these computers are awful and keep freezing up. I'll try again later.
Ingat po Mahal kita.
Love Sister Fowles