Saturday, November 5, 2011

Natto Challenge(From Oct 23rd)

My dear family,
I have a big announcement! You know those slimy, disgusting beans called natto that I'm always talking about? Ever since the first time I tried natto for the first time at age 11 or so I have despised them more than anything else. They were the only thing I couldn't eat. Back in high school I swallowed a live goldfish without blinking, and during my mission I have also eaten some other things that would scare off a lot of people, but for some reason I seriously could not choke down this stuff. Definitely my only food weakness. Being extremely determined to conquer all of my weaknesses during this life, I decided that if I didn't act now I would never overcome my fear of natto. Therefore, last Monday I started a 7 day natto breakfast routine. Every morning for a week I have been gagging down the stuff. The first morning I ate about two bites while dry heaving and couldn't eat anymore. Each day it got a little easier to swallow, and by day five I actually exclaimed, "Uchida Shimai, the bite I just ate tasted kind of good!" Haha. The miracle of today, day 7, was that I ate a whole serving of natto, without rice or anything to wash it down, and it actually tasted delicious! Thus, Ether 12:27 is true ;). I included  a picture of the stuff just so you can get an idea of how repulsive it is/was.
Ugh. Poor Baby.
 Ok, now for the important stuff. My favorite part of this week might have been sitting in the little antique shop of a recent convert named Funakoshi Shimai, on a rainy day drinking herbal tea and eating biscuits. We had a nice chat about the gospel and I just felt so warm and fuzzy and happy. I love the chilly feeling of October. It's my favorite month of the year for sure.

Just being happy with Uchida Shimai (this picture is from 2 transfers ago in Naha). I love it.

We also threw a Halloween party on Friday for the parents/kids Eikaiwa class we teach. It was super fun! I dressed up as a gypsie/pirate and Uchida Shimai was Indiana Jones. She used the old jump rope that Dad lent me as a whip. It was pretty hilarious. A lot of members brought their friends and kids and it was so fun explaining about Halloween to them! The kids loved trick-or-treating and we even made paper mache pumpkin pinatas for them to destroy.

Today we had a really amazing lesson with these two women who have been coming to Eikaiwa. They invited the Elders and us to their house for lunch and we shared a really simple message about Jesus Christ's love. We shared a story that Uchida Shimai's sister sent her about the earthquake in China. It was a story about a mother they found who was crouched in kneeling position shielding her 3 month son from the collapsed roof. When they found her she had been killed from the collapse but her baby was quietly sleeping under her body. They also found her cell phone tucked in her jacket, and a message from the mother to her son was written on it. It said, "if you live, you must know that I love you." That child will never know his mother, but he can know and appreciate the sacrifice she made for him by the testimonies of those who saw, and the message she left. Just like that, we may not have met Christ face to face, but from the testimonies of the prophet and apostles, as well as the messages he has left us in the scriptures, we can know of his love and sacrifice.
Uchida shimai deathly afraid of our investigator's deathly spicy curry
I know that Christ is my Redeemer and that He sacrificed and took on everything just for me! That is the message I'm here to share in Fukuoka, and when I am able to share that message I literally feel a peace in my heart that Heavenly Father is so happy with me and that I'm fulfilling my purpose. Everybody needs the gospel, especially those who don't know anything about what Christ did for them. They need to know so that they can feel his love, repent, and be baptized so that they can live with their families, Jesus Christ, and Heavenly Father forever!  
Elder Anderson in a scary horse mask. He's been sneaking around the mission home wearing that and scaring the life out of Sister and President Margetts. Haha!

Thank you for your love and all that you do! I'm so amazed with the ward members here and my own family and friends who work so hard to fulfill their callings and serve Heavenly Father. As a missionary I have grown to appreciate that so much. Thank youuuu!!!! I love you all!

Love, Tingey Shimai

A GIGANTIC butterfly bug thing we found. Dad, can you tell me what this is? It looked like a bird, but it was definitely a bug. It had like hair on its body and I picked it up and it was so giant! Dad, do you know what this is?

1. Uchida Shimai and I laughed for about an hour on our beds reading the children's version of the Book of Mormon stories. She told me, "Kind Lamoni is so handsome." Hahahahahaha. Look at it if you get a chance

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