Sunday, October 22, 2017

11!? ELEVEN!? Gross.



I'm so old. I am an old woman missionary, or as they like to say in Japanese, I am an obaachan. Seriously. Wow. I can't believe that I am now transfer 11. Where the heck has the time gone? 分かりません。

First of all, I want the world to know that I love Rodriguez Shimai and I miss her so much and I cannot wait for Wednesday because it's Zone Conference and since we're in the same zone still I'll get to see her. My life has not been the same since she left me. I may or may not have started crying after the nice man came to get her luggage for her on Wednesday. I also may or may not have told her that she cannot leave me. Well, sadly she didn't listen to her senior companion and now I miss her so much.

But it's okay. Because now I have Ikeda Shimai and she is wonderful. She is from Nagoya and worked as an occupational therapist before coming on her mission. She's 25 and soooo nice. Also, she loves chocolate just as much as I do so we get along swimmingly. She wants to learn English but doesn't think she's good so we mainly speak Japanese together. Which is cool because then I get to learn more from her but I also want to help her with her English so we're trying to find a nice balance haha.

It has been raining nonstop for like a week now. I feel like I'm in a rainforest. So. Much. Rain. So because of that, finding people to talk to us has been kind of hard buuuuut we've been able to do a lot of housing so I mean, there are pros and cons to all sides haha.

Speaking of rain, the big typhoon that just came through didn't manage to kill me or kick me out of Japan just yet but it did manage to keep all missionaries inside until this morning. So we did a lot of studying and phone contacting yesterday. 'Twas a party, let me tell ya.

We only had one lesson this past week and it was good but she just can't get over the fact that her religion was "chosen for [her]" (her words, not mine) because her father is the one that takes care of a religious shrine. So we're struggling with that because she keeps almost all of her commitments and really wants to learn but like, won't get baptized. Uhh.. yeah. We're in a pickle right now trying to help her overcome this little (big) hurdle of hers.

This weeks scriptures are Alma 58:10-11, Alma 62:48-50, Helaman 3:8, Revelation 1:8, and Revelation 3:10. Please read and enjoy the word of God😊

Well, I love you all and hope you have a fantastic week!

Stay safe. Stay classy. Stay sassy.

愛しています💕

--フィッシュバーン姉妹🐟🔥


Our beloved Jenny Shimai who has taken to
being the missionary mom. I. Love. Her.

We had dinner with the elders before eikaiwa at this super American burger place and wow. Delicious. I love Japanese food but man, I REALLY love America.

Rodriguez Shimai💙

Two of our cute eikaiwa students,
Sakiko San and Asami San

Ikeda Shimai!


Sunday, October 15, 2017

😷

That emoji is me right now. I pulled a classic Fishburn Shimai and caught a cold. And it's kicking my butt. Sister Warnick told me I had to rest and sleep so I literally slept from 12:00pm yesterday until 6:30am this morning, only waking up once for chicken noodle soup made by my amazing companion. And yes, I am still sick but I feel better today so that's good! I'm going to sleep some more later so hopefully I'll just sleep this bug away real fast.

Because I've been sick, this past week wasn't too exciting.. we've done a lot of contacting from areabook.. and we've found a lot of people who don't have interest anymore or don't have time right now..but we're still digging for the kinjin!!

We tried to visit the young mom we found last week but she was busy and couldn't talk then😕 so we'll try again this week and see if she has time then! Also, we had a lesson planned with the lady the elders found for us that is just amazing, but she had to cancel.. but we'll hopefully be able to set up another appointment for this week. We're going to call her tonight and get that figured out.

Rodriguez Shimai has been a complete doll and has been taking care of me. She's seriously an angel. So great. I love her.

Speaking of companions, we got transfer emails😳 I'm super sad because Rodriguez Shimai will be transferring to Yokosuka😭 we're still in the same zone but I will miss her soooo much. She's great. My new companion is named Ikeda Shimai. She's Nihonjin, if you couldn't tell haha I think she'll be transfer 4.. but she's probably a much better missionary than I am so I'm excited to learn from her and get to work with her these next six weeks. But I will miss my beautiful Rodriguez Shimai so very dearly😔😔

With transfer emails comes a new transfer. Transfer 11 is upon us. Wow. This is my last full transfer since I'll be leaving a few weeks into my 12th. Taylor Shimai emailed me today and pointed out that we only have 9 weeks left (she's going home the same day I am) and that's how long we were in the MTC for. Whaaaat? I have an MTC stay left. That's not very long.. I mean, in the MTC it seemed like forever but I feel like here it's going to go by much, much faster than the MTC did. AHHHH I AM SUCH AN OLD WOMAN MISSIONARY👵🏻 HALP.

Yup. That's about it for this past week. Sorry, it was kind of a lame week since I was sick for most of it..

Anywho..

Here's some 聖句 for ya! Alma 40:11, Alma 42:13-15, and 1 John 3:18Please read them and enjoy them:) also, I hope y'all are reading the Book of Mormon on your own because our beloved prophet has asked us all to do so. So please, read:) and receive some nice personal revelation for your life! Yay!

Have a good week!!

Stay safe. Stay classy. Stay sassy.

Love you!
愛しています💕

--フィッシュバーン姉妹🐟🔥


Because I was/am sick,
this is all I've got for you this week.



Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Happy Columbus Day⛵️



Someone recently told me that emojis were created in Japan and my mind was blown. Then it started to make sense as to why there are so many emojis that have to do with Japan and Japanese culture. That's what I learned this past week.

Well, that's one thing I learned this past week. Now I'll enlighten you all with a few other things I learned this past week.

The first thing on the agenda for today isn't something I learned buuuut I finished my third journal this past week. Yup. Three whole journals since leaving dear ole Kaysville. I'd never even finished one before leaving on my mission.. the mission changes you, man. But here we are, moving on to journal number four! Special shout out to Talise for the past journal I just finished and to Abby for my "adventure book" I've just started.

Okay, here's something I learned: I feel like I've recently said this in an email but it just keeps being relevant so I'm going to say it again. The Lord hears and answers our prayers. As a mission we've all been asked to have an exact idea of the type of people we want to find and so Rodriguez Shimai and I decided we wanted to find a young mom. So we prayed every day this week to find one. Well, on Saturday before conference we had like 40 minutes to go out and dendō so we decided to go housing at this place close to our apartment. And as expected, we prayed to find a young mom who would listen to our message. And guess what!?!? We found one!! And we almost didn't knock on her door because it was really hidden and hard to see and kind of had the "don't bother me" feeling to it but we decided to bother it anyway and a way nice mom answered the door with her 2 year old son. SO CUTE. We talked for a little bit and were able to set up a return appointment for TuesdayHe hears us, you guys!!

We also had a waaaaay good lesson with a super nice lady who the elders found while housing. And by the way, her house is so American, it's crazy. Rodriguez Shimai and I were freaking out the whole time, haha. During the lesson we talked a lot about prophets and so we invited her to come to General Conference. Most of the time when we invite people to church or things like that they're like "yeah.. if I have time but like.. yeah.. I don't know.." but she was like "oh, I don't have anything! I can come!" Yaaaaaaaas!!! And she really did come! She said it was hard but she liked it. I told her that we can read the talks on an app and she was like "what's it called!? Can I
download it!?" Whaaaat? She's so cool! We're meeting her again on Friday:)

I know I'm a week late (because we're a bit behind here in Nippon) but I hope everyone had a chance to watch conference and received sooo much personal revelation and answers to prayers and questions. It was such a good weekend! A few of the themes I noticed were service, focusing on the now and putting away social media and our phones, humility, and (my personal fav) THE BOOK OF MORMON!! Also, how good was Elder Andersen's closing talk!? Wow. Talk about a mic drop. I mean, I quite enjoyed it. Also, President Nelson's talk was waaaay good. Basically I could go on for days so if you would like to know specifics, please email me at Haley.fishburn@myldsmail.net and I will respond to you ASAP.

Well. Since I brought up the Book of Mormon, it's only fitting that I add some scriptures to this email (yes, I remembered this week!). Alma 34:8-15, Alma 36:13-21, Alma 38:8-9, and Alma 39:15.

Have a good week! And find someone to serve along the way😊

Stay safe. Stay classy. Stay sassy.

Love you!
愛してます💕

--フィッシュバーン姉妹🐟🔥



Zone conference picture from forever agooo

When the members really like you😏
Just kidding, it just has some Japanese
candy in it haha #yamatelife

I found Stonehenge

Mama Fish is the real MVP and sent
Reese's puffs all the way to Yokohama, Japan

   
Preconference selfie while we were
waiting for an investigator to come

Our "Shimai" dresses from
Mama and Papa Fish



Monday, October 2, 2017

"I don't particularly love this hill"


Those are the wise words of a young American boy living here in Yokohama who was riding his bike up a hill with his friend. I felt the meaning his words on a deeper level in that moment and wanted to share it with all of you.

This week was a pretty average week. But it was a good week, none the less.

We had interviews with President so we went to Kamiōoka on Tuesday and every time I go back there I'm just really glad I don't have to walk those hills every day. It was a great area with great people but the landscape was definitely not my fav..

The elders found a woman housing a few weeks ago and passed her over to us and we went and visited her on Wednesday. Well, it was perfect. She had just gotten home right before we got there and she came out to talk to us. She was so nice and said she had read the pamphlet that the elders had given her! She had a lot of questions about the Bible and the Book of Mormon and all that so we were able to talk to her about it for a little bit and then gave her a Book of Mormon. She was so happy to receive it! It always makes me happy when people are like that. It's just like "yes, you can already tell it's a special book! Please read it and feel even happier:):):)" it was way good. And we were able to set up a return appointment to meet with her this Wednesday as well. We're pretty excited about her.

We also had a less active member come to eikaiwa on Wednesday! It was a day of miracles. She's only less active because she moved to Yamate 10 years ago from Hokkaido and didn't know where the church was here. So it was cool to get to talk with her. She said she's also been trying to share the gospel with her friends and wants us to meet them. Yay! Member missionary work!!

I've realized I never write a whole lot about my companions but I just want you all to know that I love Rodriguez Shimai so much. We're really similar in a lot of ways but really different in a lot of ways. It keeps things interesting, hahaha but we get along super well and it's been so much fun being her companion. She's helped me more than she'll ever know.

I just realized I'm the worst missionary ever and forgot to write down my scriptures for y'all AGAIN! They're in my journal... in our apartment. G*sh d*rn it. I'm sorry..

Zone Olympics were held today and I think they were one for the history books. It was quite interesting and we even had a flag ceremony where we sang national anthems. And old lady who lives by the park we were at watched us from her window and clapped for us when we finished USA's national anthem. It was beautiful. And yes, I failed miserably at most of the games but hey, I had fun🤘🏻

Well... I can't really think of anything else to write about at the moment sooo.. I'm going to leave you all with the invitation to (if you haven't yet) watch general conference and enjoy hearing the words of the leaders of the church. I know I'm a week behind.. but in my defense, this week is conference week for us in Japan so I'm doing good if we're going off of that, haha. But yes, please watch it or reread the talks:). We got to watch the general women's session on Saturday and it was sooo good. I loved the talk that Sister Joy D. Jones gave. She said something along the lines of "you maybe a little less worthy but that doesn't make you worthless." AHHH SO GOOD. The leaders of our church know what they're talking about.

I also heard that Elder Hales passed away. My STL told me that at our zone Olympics and it made me so sad. But I'm sure he was welcomed home with a warm hug and more love than any of us could ever imagine.

I love you all so much and hope you have a great week!!

Stay safe. Stay classy. Stay sassy.

Love you!
愛してます💕

--フィッシュバーン姉妹🐟🔥


Going up a reaaaaaally long hill..
Going down before mentioned
reaaaaaaally long hill.

This is Yamashita Park. It's quickly becoming one of my favorite places to go.



Monday, September 25, 2017

Well.. uh..


This week was filled with a lot of experimenting and failing.. but now we know what not to do so that's good!

One cool thing happened on Wednesday while we were walking to the church for eikaiwa. When we prayed before we left, I specifically asked to be able to find someone who we could give a copy of the Book of Mormon to. On our way to the church there is basically NEVER any younger people over there because it's all just old couples that live on those streets. But as we were walking we saw a high school student! So I was like "don't freak out. You gotta risk it to get the biscuit." And we stopped her and talked to her for a little bit. We talked about families and how much they mean to us and how we're all children of God. We were able to share one of my favorite scriptures, 1 Nephi 11:17, with her and she accepted the Book of Mormon!! Whaaaat!? God hears all of our prayers. And He's just waiting to help us with what we need. When we ask, He will help. He will bless us. He will guide us. The power of prayer is seriously insane. Heavenly Father loves us so much and has given us a way to talk with Him. How cool is that!?

On Thursday I went back to Kamiōoka! I was on splits with my new STL, Miyagawa Shimai. She is so cute. We taught a lesson to their investigator who is straight up adorable. We taught about tithing and fasting. We were kind of worried about it because she LOVES to shop and tends to spend all of her money on that.. but after we taught her it we asked her what she thought and she said she wanted to keep it! Yay! She is still praying about baptism but Miyagawa Shimai and I both feel like she will be baptized one day. She just needs to recognize her answers first. It was a way good lesson! I love going on splits because there's always sooo much you can learn from other missionaries.

We also had a lesson on Saturday and it was sooo good! We gave her the Restoration pamphlet last week and asked her to read it before our next lesson. And she did! She even took notes and wrote down what questions she had! It was so cool. She's just like a sponge who soaks up information and can't get enough. She was like "can I keep learning about this?" YES!! It was amazing!! We're going to meet her again this week. We're pretty excited about her and hope we can continue to help her learn and grow in the gospel.

This past week we learned a lot about what not to do.. but we're hoping to take that and be better this week. We fall so we can stand up and try again, right? Well, that's what we're going to do! I'll hopefully be able to report back to y'all next week about how that goes, haha.

This past week I hit my 15 month mark. Whaaaat? So crazy, right? I am such an old woman missionary now.. I'm always tired and Rodriguez Shimai was like "well, when you're an old woman, you need more sleep!" Ouch. But so true. Hahaha I'm going to sleep like a baby on that plane ride home. But that is still far away so for now I'll just keep poppin mints to keep me alert, haha.

I hope you all have a great week and know how much I love you!!

Stay safe. Stay classy. Stay sassy.

Love you!
愛しています💕

--フィッシュバーン姉妹🐟🔥


In a random park we found where people were
doing some crazy ceremonial Japanese archery.
This part of the park reminded me of a sad and
lonely Gatsby mansion. I quite enjoyed it.

I finally bought new shoes and
decided to retire the old ones.
 It was a sad day..⚰️


Walking back today✌🏻



Monday, September 18, 2017

Big shock here..

I forgot to write down my scriptures again..😒 so sorry. Please read on your own, folks. You'll get more out of it that way, anyway😊😊

Hahahaha today in Japan is respect for the elderly day and so we want to make cards for elders because we think we're funny😂

This week in Yamate was a good one! But not overly exciting, if I'm being honest haha.

It rained a looooot. Like a lot. So going out and trying to talk to people was a bit rough but we did our best. Actually, speaking of rain, it rained all day Saturday and Sunday because there was a typhoon! Yaaaas! But to my disappointment it like really came Sunday night when we were sleeping. Lame😒

On Wednesday we had zone conference but it was the whole Yokohama stake so there were a buuunch of missionaries here in Yamate. It was way good. We focused on Enduring to the End and working with the ward and stake leaders. So good. Definitely inspired. It was cool to see all of the Yokohama stake missionaries. But it also made me realize that I don't know like any of the younger missionaries anymore and I am just an old woman now. I don't know them and they don't know me. Sad, right?

So fun history fact for all of you: back on September 1, 1901 here in Yamate, not far from where our church is, the dedicatory prayer for the the Japan mission was said. How cool!? So all Zone conferences were held here in Yamate in honor of that. And because of that there's a ton of church history stuff in the Yamate church and I'm just like a kid in a candy shop. It's the best. Seriously. So cool! We also had the first stake president in Japan come and speak to us. He's like 91 years old and so cool. He wants to live to be 129. I like him. He also basically told us that if we want to run away and go home to just do it. I don't think President Warnick enjoyed that part😂😂

Okay. This broke my heart. We went to meet one of our investigators here and her husband is pretty opposed to church things. Well, he wasn't supposed to be home and he actually was home. So he answered when we got there and told us his wife had "stoped the Christ thing" and that we weren't allowed to talk to her anymore because he said so. We tried to leave some banana bread and he wouldn't even accept that. He wouldn't listen to literally anything we said. It was bad. And I started to cry and then he apologized but I was just done and couldn't take it anymore. His wife wants to follow Christ so badly but he won't let her. I don't understand. I mean, I do because Christianity doesn't have a good reputation here in Japan but at the same time it just makes NO sense to me. None. So as he was apologizing I just had to walk away. Rodriguez Shimai and I are praying that one day his heart will soften and he will allow her to be baptized like she wants to be. If he never does, I know she'll have the opportunity in the next life to fully receive the gospel and all that it has to offer her.

Missions are hard. They're real hard. People tell you no a lot. Way more than any other time in your life, I think. But even though that's true, you also get to meet people who tell you yes sometimes and they make up for it all. But if you let those "no"'s stop you and keep you from trying to find those who will say yes, you'll only find the sad parts of being a missionary. So you have to keep going and keep trying. The blessing don't always come right when we want them or how we want them but they will come. You just have to endure to the end! Keep enduring, fam.

Well, I hope you all have a wonderful week! Oh! Next week we're going with the elders to a zoo where apparently you can ride camels. But it's kind of far so I don't know how much emailing time I'll have..but I love you all SO much!

Stay safe. Stay classy. Stay sassy.

愛しています💕

--フィッシュバーン姉妹🐟🔥




We went to a park one morning to do some finding and it was beautiful! We also met some cool people who wanted to take pictures with us and then they showed us their drawings and they are like reeeeeal good. So good. We talked to them for quite some time. I enjoyed it haha they said our church was too far from where they actually live but they would try to find one closer to them so that was cool👍🏻







Monday, September 11, 2017

First week in Mountain Hand✌🏻


Yes, the kanji for Yamate 山手 means "mountain" and "hand". I live in "Mountain hand". Cool. It's actually really pretty here and I quite enjoy it. I mean, tears were definitely shed when I left my beloved Hachiōji but change is a good thing, right? Also, Yamate is like the most fancy area I have ever seen in my life. It's filled with lots of rich people and lots of gaikokujin (foreigners). It's weird. I have heard more English in the last 4 days than I think I have my entire mission. So weird. I also feel like I am waaaaay too poor to live here. But it's okay because I live in the "normal" people part. It's kind of like how in Kaysville when people live up on the mountain, you know they are rich. It's the same here in Yamate. SO MUCH MONEY. It's crazy.

Before I left Hachiōji I called basically all of the ward members and told them I was leaving and it was the worst thing ever. I don't like saying goodbye. Not one bit. Nope. And they were all so cute and a bunch of them came to eikaiwa to say goodbye or set up appointments with us for before I left. My heart❤️

Yamate is a good place. I like it! I really do. The ward is smaller than Hachiōji but everyone is suuuper nice. We had dinner with the bishop and his family on Friday and then met a bunch of the other members at this like summer festival the ward put on. It was way fun. They did this thing where they make a little noodle slide with bamboo and then they put soumen (noodles) down it and you just stand around and try and catch the noodles as they whiz by. It was fun haha I'll send some pictures for you:)

The Yamate Ward is really great. They have all been so welcoming. It's also probably the most diverse ward ever. Like really. So many different nationalities! My favorite thing is that there's a Chinese woman who speaks really good English and okay Japanese and she's married to a Japanese man who speaks perfect English so they speak English to each other and their son has lived in Japan his whole life but only speaks English. How does that happen!? Mind blowing. But I think it's cool haha when you live in Yokohama, you don't actually need to speak Japanese, apparently.

We have an investigator here and she's so cute. She loves the Book of Mormon and has received all of the lessons but can't be baptized even though she wants to because her husband won't let her😭 it makes me so sad. So we're trying to figure out how we can soften his heart so she can come to church and be baptized😊

Speaking of baptisms... LIZA GOT BAPTIZED!!! AHHHHH!!! Words cannot express how happy that makes me:) really. It was hard knowing I couldn't be there for it but it was slightly easier knowing that mama and papa and brother fish went and supported her. Liza is so strong and I'm SO blessed to have her as my best friend😊

Today we're going to Costco! Woot woot! It's been so long since I've been to Costco haha. It's my first time going in Japan! So I'm excited hahaha. We're going with the elders and should be good:) Gotta buy me some big bags of delicious Japanese granola!

To end I'll leave you with some scriptures:) Words of Mormon 1:8, Mosiah 3:20, and Mosiah 5:7.

This week I learned that change is hard but it's a good thing. We just have to trust in the Lord and it will all be okay.

Have a good week and never forget how much I love you!!

Stay safe. Stay classy. Stay sassy.

Love you!!
愛しています💕

--フィッシュバーン姉妹🐟🔥


There are SO many churches here in
Yamate and this one is across the street
from ours hahahaha I died😂😂😂

Awful walking selfie with Rodriguez Shimai💙
The noodle slide! So funny hahaha
People take these things seriously here.
 
The noodle slide! So funny hahaha
People take these things seriously here.


We had lunch with Yamaoka Shimai before I left Hachiōji. She's so cute.

Hatanaka Shimai💕 she gave me chopsticks
because I told her I love them:) and a cute
handmade holder for them. I love her so much.

Minami Shimai and Furui Shimai.
They're adorable. Love them!

After kids English class with some of my favs✌🏻

My beautiful Aoi chan.
She came to eikaiwa to say
goodbye to me and I could've cried.