Monday, December 26, 2016

High on the Christmas Spirit

I feel like this isn't exactly missionary appropriate but whateves💁🏻 but it's definitely a thing as a missionary to be high on the Christmas spirit.
The Christmas cake a member surprised us with. How nice!!

I know.

I'm mission weird now.

Help me.


Skyping the fam was basically the best Christmas present I will ever receive and nothing will top it for like maybe 3/4 years.

Christmas Eve Fishburn family picture!
Haley in Kichijoji, Japan and the family
at home in Kaysville, Utah.
Christmas in Japan is a little different than Christmas in America, that's for sure. We just had sacrament meeting and we were super excited to see one of our investigators who comes to church every week but she didn't come! WHAT!? She told us she was coming!? So. After sacrament meeting we walked to her house to give her some presents from some members and a card from us (because we're poor and that's all we could afford..). Then the wonderful Skype session happened and those tears I shed were definitely tears of joy. SO MUCH JOY. Please enjoy the candy, fam! Also, big thank you to the family for making fun of my Japanglish. After that we had an appointment with a less active who lives alone so we thought it would be nice to visit her. Turns out it was actually her birthday! So we were real glad we visited her so she wouldn't have to be too alone on her birthday and Christmas.

This week we had some great things happen, as usual. That's just さすが Kichijoji for ya. So there is an investigator family that live super close to the church and the mom and son came to eikaiwa last week and they're just perfect. They told us they would come to sacrament meeting on Christmas but then their plans changed so they couldn't come😔 BUT they came to the ward Christmas party and were able to have a good lesson with Kawamitsu Shimai as they ate (I was at another table and wasn't being completely useless, I promise). They're just real cute and have so much potential and I just want them to have the happiness of the gospel. That's all.

Also, Ward Christmas party was bomb. The ward did a nativity scene and it was hilarious and fun and the missionaries and a few members sang during that. The dinner was a delicious meal of chicken(yaaaaas), potatoes, and rolls.

And Santa came! The kids were all so cute when he came! We also counted how many people came that we had invited and we had around 30 (I forgot the actual number) people come! A bunch were from eikaiwa and kids eikaiwa and we were so happy to see them and they all brought their families! It was a fun time. And Sister Warnick has like 80 nativity sets so she set up 60ish of them for the ward party and everyone LOVED them. It was so cool to see all of our eikaiwa students and investigators get to hear the story of Christ's birth for the first time and look at all the nativity sets and I JUST LOVE CHRISTMAS! I feel like I did not like Christmas before my mission hahahahahahaha I'm just such a missionary.. but I do not care😊

On Christmas Eve we went to the Tokorozawa area and did some caroling for the busy folks walking by. I have never been a huge fan of standing in public places and singing Christmas songs but oh boy, I was real happy watching those people stop and take time to listen to us sing. We had 19 missionaries just singing and trying to bring the spirit of Christ to these people. It was seriously so cool to see people smile when they walked past us. Also, I saw a frick ton of small children dressed in Santa suits and my heart melted. That is all.

Musashino North Zone singing some wonderful
Christmas carols for the people of Tokorozawa✌🏻️

We also had our mission Christmas conference which was a grand time and I quite enjoyed it. We just talked about Christmas and looked at pictures from the year and our lovely Michiko Shimai shared her testimony because she's the most recent convert in our stake and another stake had the conference with. We also did a white elephant exchange and I got a Santa hat filled with candy and I am not complaining. Shout out to whichever missionary brought that. I thank them for the two big black thunders I received. President and Sister Warnick gave us all presents, too. They gave us dvds of this tv special they had here in Japan in like 2006 about Jospeh Smith and the tabernacle choir and stuff and they also gave us these chopsticks that say "Tokyo South Mission 2016" on one and then the same thing using kanji on the other one. SUPER COOL and I probably won't ever use them because I don't want to ruin them.  So nice of them!
Our cool chopsticks from the Warnick's!🎌

6 months have flown by and I don't know how I feel about that. Like, what the what? Like I told y'all on skype, it's slightly terrifying how fast it's gone. Dad pointed out that we only have to wait 5 months until we can skype again and by that time I will have less than half of my mission left. I will be at 11 months in the field. SO WEIRD. But that's so far away so we won't think about that. Just the fact that I've been a missionary for 6 months and my mind is blown. It's always blown when a month has come and gone, though so I don't know why I'm so blown away by this.. I'm done ranting about 6 months now.

Your favorite part and you know it, scriptures: Job 27:4-6, John 17:9,
2 Nephi 27, Luke 2:1-20.

This is a long email all about Christmas and 6 months but I since these are the important things of this week I'm okay with only writing about that. As usual, if you have any questions, concerns, comments, complaints, or corrections, please send an email and I will get back to you as soon as possible.



Our ketchup rice that Kawamitsu Shimai
drew 🐟🔥 on and I tried to 
draw her kanji on..

Say hello to my origami fish from Kawamitsu Shimai

MTC companions reunited and
slightly happy about it😉

Christmas PJs straight from mama fish and
fresh out of the shower on Christmas Eve✌🏻️

Monday, December 19, 2016

I have finished a full journal📖

I have finished a full journal. Well, kind of. It's falling apart because I put papers in it from special days and such and now the binding is bulging real bad and I only had like 8 pages left so I felt it was time to move on. This is so crazy to me because a) I have never used an entire journal in my life and b) I have been a missionary long
enough to have written in an entire journal. Like what? Speaking of which, Thursday is my 6 month mark which means I am almost 1/3 done with my mission. May I repeat: like what? SO CRAZY. I now have a little 4 next to my name on the mission roster meaning I'm a transfer 4 but let me tell ya, I definitely still feel like a bean chan. Kawamitsu Shimai told me I'm more like a junior high student in the grand scheme of mission life. That's not terrifying at all. Junior high was real rough. Let's hope my mission life doesn't imitate my real life.


How are y'all? I hope everyone is surfing the wonderful northern Utah winter! I'm not going to lie, I have become a baby when it comes to cold. Kind of.. I'm not a big baby but I'm definitely not as tough as I used to be. I'm real scared for next year when I have to go back to Utah in the middle of winter. I'm basically going to freeze the second I get off the plane. But that's awhile away and the moral of this story is that I'm usually always cold unless we're riding our bikes. Then I am pretty sure I'm going to die from overheating with all my layers on.

This week was pretty normal buuuuut we have a kiseki (miracle) here in Kichijoji. So. My first Saturday here we were doing a family history fair for the youth before stake conference and this lady came to the church with her two year old son and wanted to know why there were so many cars and what our church was like. WHAT!? We didn't get to talk to her but some other sisters talked to her and got her number and told her we would call her. So we did😊 and she gave us her address. SHE GAVE US HER ADDRESS. That is SO rare here in Japan because no one wants to be bothered at home. So we go to visit her one day and we come to find out she lives in a dead end where all of the houses and the apartment building have the same address.. so problem. So we left chirashis at all of the houses and the apartment building but never heard anything from her. So being the good missionaries we are, we followed up. And we called her multiple times throughout the next few weeks trying to get in contact with her. But nothing. The calls wouldn't go through. And THEN on Tuesday SHE CALLED US TWICE. And of course we were in a lesson and missed them. Of course. So we tried calling her back and it didn't work. She called again on Wednesday and again, we were in a lesson. Called back and what do you know, it
didn't work! So about 30 minutes before eikaiwa she called again and we finally answered! Yay!! She asked about eikaiwa and kids eikaiwa and church! She only lives about a minute walk from the church so she came to eikaiwa and kids eikaiwa on Saturday! What the!? Such a miracle! And then she came right at the end of church with her son and husband! GOODNESS WHAT AN ANGEL. She is so cute and just amazing! Her and her husband are insanely nice, too! And they're going to come to
sacrament meeting on Christmas!!🎄🎉 yes, big kiseki!!

Another kiseki: I translated a lesson from Japanese to English. Yes, you read that right. I, Haley Nicole Fishburn, translated a lesson. While it was happening. By myself. No help from anyone else. IM A GENIUS. JK. I'm not a genius. We taught a lesson to one of our investigators with the new sister who just got to Japan from the MTC and since we had a member there, Kawamitsu Shimai was like "is it okay if Sister Fishburn just translates for the new sister?" And I was like "no. I can't do that!" But I did it! It definitely wasn't me, though. It was all from my Heavenly Father. But it was so amazing to know that I can do it and I may not be able to speak the language very well right now but if I really focus and do all that I can to listen and understand, I can. I can do hard things!

I feel like I always just ramble in my emails. So sorry for that.. but I just want y'all to know all the happy things that have happened! And even sometimes the not so happy things because that's the missionary life!

Everyone's favorite part: Scriptures! Job 14:15, Job 19:25, 2 Nephi
8:24-25, 2 Nephi 10:20-21, 2 Nephi 16:8, 2 Nephi 19:6.

LOVE YOU ALL SO DARN MUCH!! If you have any questions or anything else you want to know, feel free to drop me an email. I've reached the point in my mission where emails are supposed to basically stop until my like last three months so feel free to share some love😉

Stay safe. Stay classy. Stay sassy.

From heart attacking the Horta Kazoku last night.
Fun fact: their 
house is in this little village that definitely
doesn't look like it's 
in Japan and it has GRASS. No where
has grass here! When we found it,
Kawamitsu Shimai
laughed at me because I told her I had to lay on the 
dead grass for 1 minute before I could leave.
And I did just that. It 
was glorious.

Kawamitsu Shimai drew me again.

She just cut the pepper and then all I heard was
"Mitte! Scream mitai!"
Meaning "look! It's like it's screaming!" She named it Charlie. 

Monday, December 12, 2016


 We had zone meeting and we're supposed to take a serious picture. That
clearly worked well.

So. This transfer is only 4 weeks because of Christmas and people wanting to go home for that. Weird, people wanting to see their families at Christmas. Who would want that? But anywho, because of this we had transfer emails come on Saturday. Because of my track record I was real worried. Like almost didn't look at it because I didn't want to know where I was going. But Kawamitsu Shimai looked at hers and read it out loud and said she'd be staying in Kichijoji and in that moment I was like "I'll go start packing". Buuuuut then she read who her companion would be and it was me!! YAAAAY!! I'm staying in Kichijoji!🎉 Next transfer is 8 weeks so I'll be here at least until February! That's crazy to think. February. Wow. But that's still awhile away so we'll stop thinking about that right now.

Kawamitsu Shimai and I had family home evening with a less active and her adorable children on Monday. They are so cute! It was way fun and I hope we can continue to serve them! The mom is SO nice. And she makes porcelain dolls! Mom would LOVE her house. It's so cool. She's ridiculously good at it, too. So cool. The message we shared with them was one from President Uchtdorf about prayer and hope. It was a cute little animated video and the kids loved it! When we finished it they just kept saying "matta!" Meaning "again!" So we watched it again and asked them questions throughout it like "what did the mom do when she lost her kids?" And they yelled "INOTTA!" Or "prayed!" SO CUTE.

Michiko Shimai is still as cute as ever and is basically the best member missionary there has ever been. We have this other investigator and we meet her every Wednesday to read the Book of Mormon together and go through the Book of Mormon story book to help her understand it. She's so ready for this gospel! But we can't force her to do anything so right now we're happy to just read with her and listen to her👍🏻

We have been visiting a lot of less actives recently and let me just say, it is the absolute worst when you talk to people and can tell they have hard feelings about the church now because you know that they once knew it was true and had great experiences with it. But something happened. It breaks my heart. A lot of the less actives won't even just talk to us. I just want them to feel God's love!! And then there are less actives who don't want to be less active but their husband or family is against the church and in an effort to keep their family happy they don't come to church. That's just as heartbreaking. But it just makes me want to try harder to help them!

We went to a baptism in Hibarigaoka, the area next to Kichijoji, with Michiko Shimai and one of our investigators who  is 17 years old and wants to be baptized so badly! She's just been super busy with school. School here is insane. Like I will NEVER raise my future children here because of school. Too much pressure. We'll stay in America🇺🇸 but yes, this investigator is the best! She got a CTR ring from some missionaries before us and she wears it every day. She also came to church yesterday and in young women's and Sunday school she had no problem testifying and I was just like "ahh yiiiiis". She's so great! After the baptism on Saturday we went to an Italian restaurant and the menu had Italian and Japanese.. so since I can't actually read Japanese I ordered based off of using my French from high school and comparing it to Italian. I'm a genius. Linguistic genius. (I was going to turn that into a pun about linguini but decided against it.)

The ward here in Kichijoji is the bomb. Last night we had dinner with the Honda kazoku and it was DELICIOUS. Oh my. So good. Dad, you'll be pleased to hear that I have eaten more mushrooms in one week in Japan than I have in my entire life before my mission. And I have yet to puke while eating them. Anywho, it was so good. They both went to BYU Hawaii and are fluent in English. That's always nice👍🏻 they also have two utterly adorable little kids and I almost took one home with me. His name is Ichigo Kun. SO CUTE. 

Christmas time definitely makes ya home sick. But then you go out and you dendō and you forget about all the sadness you felt because you're just so happy serving people! At least that's how it is for me.. but the mornings and nights are kind of hard.. it just means I love y'all too much! çœŸå®Ÿã§ã™!

次は聖句です。 Job 1:21, Job 5:17, Job 6:24, Job 11:15-18, 1 Nephi 18:16, 1 Nephi 22:25. Also, if you haven't yet, watch the First Presidency's Christmas Devotional! You can watch it on or read it on the gospel library app😊 and please check out the #LightTheWorld campaign the church is doing!!

All is well with me. å…¨ã¦ã¯è‰¯ã„し。Everything is especially good because I found the peanut butter m&ms from mom and dad and that just makes everything good. I don't really know what else to tell y'all and I feel like I've already rambled long enough in this email so please have a lovely day and holla at me (email) if you have any other questions, concerns, comments, or complaints. 

Stay safe. Stay classy. Stay sassy.


When a zone leader dies, this is what happens. RIP Elder Spackman💀⚰️

Kichijoji District✌🏻️

Monday, December 5, 2016

I have the answer.

I know what question you've all been wondering for some time now and I am pleased to report that I have the answer. "Tamagotchi" literally means "egg friend". You're welcome.

Also, shout out to mama and papa fish for the suteki Christmas tree and the subarashii Christmas package! I am not ashamed of the fact that I almost cried when I saw the Swiss rolls and chocolate fudge pop tarts. And don't get me started on the chocolate orange. Basically Christmas came early for me and it was the and I haven't even opened the wrapped presents. THANK YOU!!! And thank you to Papenfuss Shimai's father for bringing it to Japan!

In other news: MICHIKO SAN GOT BAPTIZED AND IS NOW MICHIKO SHIMAI🎉 that was a crazy day. We started the day off by teaching kids eikaiwa in the morning and then spending all day getting ready for the baptism. When the time actually came for the baptism I was just like "wait. This is real? This is actually happening right now?" Watching her get baptized was THEE best. Oh my. Of course it's exciting when anyone gets baptized but when it's someone who you know has done everything they can to try and follow Christ's example and you love them so much, it's the best feeling watching them walk into the font😊 she is seriously the cutest. She kept saying she wanted to do it one more time😂ahhhh it was the best! She was so happy and couldn't stop smiling! Basically, I just want everyone to get baptized and feel the joy of the gospel! I guess it's a good thing I'm a missionary then! After the baptismal meeting we had a Christmas concert put on by the Shibuya Institute Choir. 'Twas a lovely time and I quite enjoy Christmas music even when it's in Nihongo and I can't understand it.

We had some good lessons this week and were able to figure out some needs of one of our investigators which was super nice. We weren't really sure where she was at or how she was feeling so this was a miracle. She's been an investigator for about 8 months now and comes to church every week. I'm pretty sure she believes it all, she's just scared. But it's okay because little by little we will help her! 

I got to see Porter Shimai twice this week and ah man, I miss her. It was so good to see her. I also saw some Hachiōji members at the Christmas concert and that sure warmed my soul! I will forever always love Hachiōji💕

On Friday, Kawamitsu Shimai and I decided we were going to go heart attack this family in the ward and then do some housing and posting for the Christmas concert. As we were walking, we passed this nice lady pushing another nice lady in an wheelchair. They stopped us. THEY STOPPED US. They just wanted to know where we were from but still! That initial stop is always a little rough so it was a miracle that they did it for us haha and we were able to invite them to the Christmas concert and they seemed super excited! I don't know if they came or not because there was a tooooon of people there but I hope they did! We also gave them a flyer with the elders phone number on it so maybe one day they'll call them and we'll get to meet them again!

It was simply a week of miracles here in Kichijoji. Pretty much every week is a week of miracles. But I especially liked this weeks miracles😊

It's all starting to make more sense as to why I'm here. Why I'm serving a mission. Why I'm in Japan. Why I'm in Kichijoji. Why I was in Hachiōji and Kamiooka. I still don't know the answers but it's making more sense to me now. If that makes any sense at all hahaha I'm just too good with words sometimes. I'm still struggling every day with little things and sometimes big things but it's easier to see the big picture of it all now. I've come to the realization that I am a detail oriented person and seeing the big picture is a struggle and a half for me. So maybe that's why I've had some hard times, so I can learn to see the bigger picture of it all. Wakaranai. But for now I'll just keep on keeping on and try my best! 

Scriptures! I don't have a ton this week but here are a few! 1 Nephi 1:20and 1 Nephi 10:19. Also, President Uchtdorf's talk "You Matter to Him" from October 2011 general conference. Good stuff. Good stuff.

Okay. I'm done rambling now. Thank you for reading my ramblings and please know someone in the land of the rising sun loves you!🎌

Stay safe. Stay classy. Stay sassy.


Kawamitsu Shimai just casually drew this during companionship study.

She also drew me on a whiteboard at the church

(I don't have her email and she's serving the good Lord in Texas).

I died laughing at this. Please enjoy.

She's too funny😂😂😂

Monday, November 28, 2016


Tokyo Temple with my fav Nihonjin✌🏻️
Fun fact: that's really how they pronounce "hello" here and it's my favorite thing to say "hello" to people on the street just to hear them say it back. It's also a good time when you act like you know zero Nihongo. They usually just giggle and use what little English they've learned in school and then giggle some more. It's adorable. Seriously. Our interactions normally go something like this: 
Nihonjin: *giggle*"Hello!" 
Me: "How are you?"
Nihonjin: "I'm fine, shank you!" *giggle*
Me: "Oh, eigo jouzu desu ne!"
Nihonjin: *giggle*
And then my Nihonjin (Kawamitsu Shimai) steps in and takes it from here.
Yup. That's my life as a missionary in Japan.

Oh, today was temple p-day so please accept my sincerest apologizes for not emailing yesterday. If I had known today was temple p-day, I would have told you but they decided to tell us on Wednesday last week so I was unable to inform y'all. Gomen.

Happy things!

This week was crazy. It's nonstop here Kichijoji which is absolutely wonderful but boy am I tired all the time hahaha I love it! I can't even remember specifics all I know is I don't really remember what it's like to have free time and the people here in Kichijoji are so prepared for this gospel and they're all amazing.

MICHIKO SAN!! She's a miracle💕
Speaking of prepared people: Michiko San. I mentioned her in last weeks email and I must mention her again! She had her baptismal interview last week and... she's getting baptized on Saturday!! AHHHH YAY!!! She's seriously so cute, y'all. So cute. She like can't talk to anyone about anything without somehow testifying about something. It's the best. And she only met the missionaries about a month ago. It's basically unheard of for someone in Japan to get baptized that fast. She is the definition of a kinjin. She also always brings us food so that's a bonus😂 but really, I love her so much and I'm so happy she is getting baptized on Saturday!! AHHHHH YAAAAAS🎉

Another miracle from this week: so it's no secret I've been struggling hard core with my Japanese. Many tears have been shed and many tissues have been used (fun fact #2: "runny nose" in Nihongo is "hana mizu" which literally translates to "nose water"😂). But the gift of tongues is real. Let me tell ya how I know that. Don't get me wrong, I just most definitely do not know Japanese and struggle all day every day but the Lord helps His missionaries when they are doing what they have been called to do. On Friday I went on splits in Hibarigaoka with Casteñeda Shimai, my new sister training leader, and when went and volunteered at this retirement home. On the way there and they way back, I was able to have like real conversations with two people on the bus! Yes, there were moments where I had know idea what they said but I was able to figure it out and really communicate with them by myself. It was a good feeling to finally be able what I have been trying to do for 5 months now.

That reminds me, I've been a missionary for 5 months now. What the??

We had Thanksgiving dinner at the mission home and it was kind of weird but so yummy. I'm sure y'all can only imagine how sad I was during those days when I thought I wouldn't get a Thanksgiving dinner because I LOVE Thanksgiving. But do not fear, President and Sister Warnick pulled through and made my stomach and soul quite happy. We also had two other "Thanksgiving" dinners throughout the week with some members. The members here are so great! There's 10 missionaries here in Kichijoji because of the office elders and the APs and the members fed all of us. SO MUCH FOOD. 


So. Every morning we get up at 6:00am here in Kichijoji. Why? Well, since we basically live at the church we go and play basketball with the elders every morning. Yes, you read that right. Basketball. And yes, I'm still just as bad as I was in 6th grade when I played Junior Dart but good news is the elders are all much nicer about it than dad was and I'm slowly getting better👍

So many things happened this week, I don't even know what else to tell you! It was just a week full of miracles! Oh, Kawamitsu Shimai is the bomb. Really. She is SO funny hahaha I'm constantly laughing at her and then she tells me "stop laughing! I don't want to be a funny person! I want to be a boring person!" Because in Japan it isn't a good thing to be funny but I tell her she'd be so loved in America because we love funny people. Seriously, she's the best.

Fun fact #3: in less than a month, I get to skype y'all and see your cute faces and actually talk to y'all! WHAAAAAT!? Is Christmas really that close already? I swear I just left Hachiōji. This last transfer flew by and now this transfer is too. When I talk to you, I'll be a transfer 4. Out of 12😱. CRAZY! But yeah, I'm just a little excited to talk to y'all on Christmas😊

Scriptures: Ether 1:38-43, Ether 6:9, Moroni 7:33-34, Luke 7:47-48&50, Luke 9:57.
Fun fact #4: according to my calculations, Ether 12 says "faith" 33 times.

Stay safe. Stay classy. Stay sassy.



Kichijoji area missionaries. Told you there was a trillion of us
(okay, 10 but still, that's a lot).

She was so happy to decorate this tree😂
Our Christmas tree from mama fish🎄

Possibly one of the worst pictures I've ever taken but we had
FHE last night at the Warnicks and it was stellar.