Friday, October 30, 2015

The Gift of Tongues October 25, 2015

Well....this week I received the gift of tongues. Not the gift where I speak Korean...I am talking about the gift where I gag down food. I will start with the not scariest and end with the scariest.
FIRST: Shrimp. I love shrimp, but I have never had the kind they have here! Here in Korea they have live seafood outside of every store, so you just buy it and kill it yourself, I guess. So we went to a member's house this week and had these giant delicious shrimp, but they still had legs and a head and stuff. When we ripped their heads off, blood was everywhere, and I faked myself into believing it was marinade. It was pretty bloody. It squirted Sister S in the face! Hahaha but the shrimp really was fabulous.
SECOND: Chicken. A WHOLE CHICKEN. Like the neck and everything. And you just have to eat the whole dang chicken. I am pretty squeamish, you know! SO that was pretty brave.. But just wait...
THIRD: FISH OVARIES! OKAY WHAT THE WHO KNEW THOSE WERE A THING!!! It is a good thing I fake ate fish eggs with Bri! A member bought us this soup and it wasn't just a bowl of soup...we each received like our OWN POT!! I had know idea what I was eating, and I didn't let my trainer tell me until an hour afterwords. We ate fish eggs. Not that bad. BUT LET ME TELL YOU, OVARIES AND EGGS ARE DIFFERENT. They stuff a thin skin (kind of like a sausage skin) FULLL of fish row (their eggy ovary things). They are each the size of like a golf ball. I literally probably ate 9 of the sausagey things. I was praying hard core and I wished that you all could see me eat them. I picked out all of the grossest looking stuff in the soup and ate it first. I was sooooo brave.
FOURTH: FISH INTESTINE!!!!! Also in that same soup. I can't even tell you or describe how it looked...It literally looks like a brain. IDK how big this fish was, but the intestine was impressive. Google some pics!!! IT IS NOT MY FAVE!! It literally was a blessing from heaven that I just chewed and swallowed. It was insane....

I took this pic right before I came to the computer lab. My hair looks cool, huh? Sister S did it. I love her!

FUN KOREAN FACTS:
1. It always looks like a gray sky here because of pollution. :(

2. Koreans increase in age at the new year, not their birthdays. Also, when you are born when you are 1, not zero. So when people ask my age here, I say 21! EWWW OLD!

3. It's a huge no-no to wear shoes on the floor. Like HUGE!! But since I live with all Americans,one time I decided to run on our floor with shoes. You should have seen how they flipped. HAHAHAHAHA They think I am Satan.

4. Missionaries walk SO MUCH here. The other sisters who we live with wore a pedometer the other day and clocked in at 12 miles. Wowww!

5. Koreans get plastic surgery ALLL the time. People ask me if I got a nose job and an eye job. It makes me feel good to know they love my face...but it is weird that they notice that type of stuff! They can't believe how big my eyes are. hahah.

6. Hiking clothes are the style right now. WHY? IDK. Everyone walks around with hiking clothes and hiking sticks and hiking hats and all of the store mannequins wear hiking gear. It is hilarious.

This pic is of me on these rocks that we hop over a river on to get to the apartment building of a member!

This week I have worked on being more faithful and more cheerful. In 2 Nephi I have noticed a pattern of talking about being happy. In 2 Nephi 9:21 it says "Let your hearts rejoice." I think the key work in that is "LET". We are the ones who choose whether to be happy or not. I am going to start choosing happiness more! In 2 Nephi 10:20 it says not to "hang down your heads." Once again, God WANTS us to be happy! Show Him you love Him by obeying him, and choosing to be happy. Third, 2 Nephi 10:34 says to CHEER UP your hearts. Heavenly Father has blessed us with the COOLEST PLAN EVER!!! If we can keep an eternal perspective, we can always find a reason to smile!!

I love my companion, Sister W!  She is awesome and such a hard worker!

Along with that, I would like to share this quote by President Hinkley: " You can be excellent in every way. There is no need for you to be a scrub. Respect yourself. Do not feel sorry for yourself. Do not dwell on unkind things others may say about you. Polish and refine whatever talents the Lord has given you. Go forward in life with a twinkle in your eye and smile on your face but with great and strong purpose in your heart. Keep trying. Be believing. Be happy. Don't get discouraged. Things will work out." 

I have also been pondering this quote from Corrie TenBoom that Mindy wrote in my book, " Worry does not empty tomorrow of it's sorrow, it empties today of its strength." My goal is to TRUST Heavenly Father more and stop being a worry wart. Worrying does nothing but make me feel sick. So here's to having FAITH instead of fear!!

Well...I have to go and I am really sad about that!! But I love you all SOOOOO much.  PS, fun fact: every Friday night we teach English class.

Sad news--next week I do not get to email on P-day. :( On the bright side, our mission president is taking us on an all day hike to see the fall leaves! 

Until next time!

Love
Beckett Jamae

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Hey There! October 18, 2015

Well guess what? EMAIL TIME!  :D  I am doing SO much better than last week, but sometimes I still have hard days. Thank you for your encouraging words!



This is the day I got to go on Splits with Sister M. In Korea they have TONS of street food. These are yummy little fried pancakey things with red beans in the middle...they LOVE red beans. I absolutely LOVED being with Sister M. I love her to death and miss her so much! The other girl in this pic is Sis M's trainer.


Here are some random answers to questions:

Okay..sounds like you all want to hear about FOOD! So here we go. :)

1. Grapes. They are not like grapes in America! You suck the grape out of the skin!! And they taste like grape flavoring, not grapes, so at first I hated them. (Thanks for training my tastebuds, mom!) You should look on youtube to see if there is a video of how to eat Korean grapes.

2. Percimens. YUM!! I eat these every day here, and I love them! If you ever see them in the US, buy them and eat them in remembrance of me! ( I did not mean that in a sac relig way!)

3. Pears. Asian pears are HUGE and delicious. They are like a mix between an apple and a pear. Every time we go to a members house they cut up fruit for us, and we all use these baby CUTEST forks to eat them. Also...the members sometimes ask me to peel the fruit with a knife (they NEVER eat pear skin, apple skin, etc) and guess what... I CAN'T DO IT! So eventually they just take the knife and apple away from me and do it themselves in like 2 seconds. Whoops.
 

4. Sweet Potatoes. They eat them like apples here. As in...you just bite right into it. Kinda good, kinda weird. They are steamed when you eat them.


5. Onions...my worst enemy and one of the most common foods here! The other day we were eating spaghetti at a members house and there were so many onions and so I only at the noodles and left the onions but GUESS WHAT?! That meant that at the end I literally had to eat a half cup of straight onions. WOOOW. I am getting good at eating foods I hate. Also, we drank Dr. Pepper at that meal. You'd be proud, dad. You'd be disappointed, mom.


6. Little fish. You eat the whole thing...eyes, bones, you just pop it in your mouth. Last night I was at dinner and I thought I was dishing up noodles...after I dished it up I realized they were all little fish! But, I was a good girl and didn't offend the member. I just popped a whole family of fish in my mouth and chowed down.

Fun thing in Korea: They have doorbell cameras! SO you ring the doorbell and they see you on a screen inside of their house. They can talk to you and you can talk back but only they can see you. The other day we wanted to secretly heart attack a members door in a locked apartment building, so I called a random house, they saw me, unlocked the apartment building, and we were able to secretly heart attack a members door. IDK if this even makes sense. But it was funny because it was a stranger that I called so that we could break in!!!


Also, yesterday I had to introduce myself in church and share my testimony. AHHH! I have never been so scared or talked so slowly. There are 7 other missionaries serving IN OUR WARD, and they can all speak Korean...besides me...so that's fun. Hahah.


Korea seems VERY safe. It literally isn't scary AT ALL. Another funny think about Korea: Policemen drive around with their lights on ALL of the time. You only know it is an emergency when they turn the siren on.



Also...I accidentally dropped my companion's toothpaste in the toilet last night. This can teach us three things.

1. Screw the lid on your toothpaste
2. Close the toilet lid
3. Get your own toothpaste instead of asking your companion to get it. ;) haha jk.

Also..it is very humid here. I always feel sweaty and it isn't even summer yet!
View from the 30th floor!
I went and visited a member in Daejeon (long story I went on splits with Sister M who I dearly miss!!) and the member lived on the 30th floor!! It was CRAZYY! Although apartments look old on the outside, a lot of them are SO NICE on the inside!!! 

This week I am ponderizing Acts 17:27-28 (read the JST!) It talks about how if we search for Christ, we will find that He is all around us! That is my goal this week -- to find Christ in my life every day. The longer I am here, the more I am loving the people and realizing that Christ loves these people, too! The church in Korea is true!! This week when I was feeling homesick and wondering if God cared, I had three things flash through my mind. 

1. A beautiful fall leaf. I LOVE fall leaves, and by reminding me of the leaves I saw that day, Heavenly Father showed me that He cared. 

2. A mom and daughter I saw laughing and talking together. People here love their families so much, too! It reminded me of me and mom, and I realized that even though I am across the world, families are still strong here, and they need the gospel in their lives, too, so that they can know that they can be with their favorite people for eternity. 

3. I remembered all of the uplifting messages you sent me last week, and I felt re-motivated and ready to go! 

YAY! Ponderizing for life!! Also, I have been reading some suggestions in this missionary book called "Adjusting to Missionary Life" and it suggested something SO COOL! IT said to make your prayers more meaningful, picture Christ standing right before you, and you kneeling and talking directly to Him. That has made my prayers better this week. 

Along with that, listen to this quote that Sister Hansen (Martha) sent me this week! “The Father to whom we pray is the glorious God who created worlds through His Beloved Son.  He hears our prayers as He heard Joseph’s prayer—as clearly as if they were being offered in His presence.  He loves us enough that He gave His Son as our Savior.  By that gift He made it possible for us to gain immortality and eternal life.  And He offers us, through prayer in the name of His Son, the opportunity to commune with Him in this life as often as we choose.” (President Henry B. Eyring) I love that thought!


Street Shops

This picture is all KIMCHI!  Eeeew...

At night, Korea looks like VEGAS!!
Cute Korean girls at FHE who live in a foster home

Korea has the hugest, nastiest spiders!!

I have to go, but I hope you will all write me letters! I love you all, and now I have to go, so goodbye bffs. I think the world of you.

Love,
Allie

Monday, October 12, 2015

This is Allie's Mom in red.  Allie emailed last night, and we just randomly went back and forth about her first week in Korea. So there is not an actual letter to post, but just snippets of our conversation online with her. She also took pictures of her journal pages so that she wouldn't have to re-write everything, so I will put some of her comments from her journal here today as well.  Please keep her in your prayers--I think she is shell shocked right now with everything being so new and different.  She will be fine, but her letter is not quite as bubbly as usual. If any of you write to her, can I suggest she would probably love an actual letter in the mail? She has so little time on email that she can't read them all and answer them, but a letter in the mail she can keep with her and read the hard copy when she is away from the computer place. Foreign stamps are $1.20 to get to Korea.  Her address is on the side of the blog here. Thanks, that is just a side note from Mom...now here are some of the things Allie shared with us after being in Korea for almost 6 days.

My trainer, Sister W. She is a hard worker!

I am serving in an area called Cheom Dom.  It is beautiful and has lots of trees. So far we literally walk around for miles all day. Thanks for fasting for me yesterday. I fasted too. I am posting pics of my journal so that you can read more details than I can write. Sorry I don't know if I will write a big email this week because I am just sending my journal. My trainer and I are opening this area (well there are other missionaries here but we are a new set of missionaries) so we literally have nobody to teach. We just walk the streets ALL DAY. 

The members here are really awesome. They are so nice! There is one family that I LOVE. It is a single mom with three daughters and she reminds me so much of mom. When we visited her the other day, she was watching a movie with her daughter on a laptop. At conference (fun fact, I watched it again this weekend) she just sat with her daughter and rubbed her back and stuff and I was super jealous.


Our bathrooms are interesting, we have no shower curtain so everything gets soaked. The hand sink and shower head are connected; not sure how to explain...

Koreans really do eat and sleep on the floor, so that's cool! I love how Korea's streets are covered with fruit and vegetable vendors and street food.  I have a lot of cool things I need to try. Here are some I've already tried:

1.  Asian Pears--they are huge! They are a mix between an apple and a pear and they almost taste like nothing, but they're GOOD!

2. Grapes - Not my favorite. They taste so weird here! You pop this gooey inside out of the outside purple shell, and you spit out the seeds. It does NOT taste like normal grapes.

3. Yogurt - Not sure why it's so good here, but it is!

4.  Milk - It's like sweet and slightly buttery!

5. Rice cakes - They have this cool machine on the street where this man puffs them and gives us samples.  MMMM!  Shaped like hearts!

I hope and pray I can be blessed with the gift of tongues and a love for the people and the culture. I've already been rejected here more times than I have in my whole life!  It kinda hurts.

Me and my sweet dongbanja. I miss her sooooo bad.

There is a lot of trash on the streets.

(Next day) Good news is that I'm loving Korea even though I don't understand much. We have the nicest members! Tonight at FHE with 3 recent converts, I tried a new fruit. In English it's called percimen (that is how Allie spelled it...I googled a persimmon, but it looks different than her pictures,so I have no idea what she is eating!  ;) Percimen is quite lovely, but looks sick!  We also had their cool pears. Yum!

Here are the "percimens" (persimmons?)
Today I ate the hottest ramen noodles ever. Tears were literally flowing from my eyeballs! A recent convert lady gave me her kimbop - Korean sushi- because she felt bad for me that I was crying.  We eat food a lot from a place called "Mini Mart." It's like gas station food. That's where I bought my ramen. I also bought blueberry milk, which was the bomb.



I love you! Thanks for your help!!! I will keep going. I will survive! You are all giving me the encouragement that I needed!!!  Thank you all, SO SO much. This was just the boost I needed to continue on. I love you all, I promise I do have a testimony and I am glad to be here! Keep going strong, fam! I love you all! Time to go.

Love, Allie

Friday, October 9, 2015

EXCITIETY/ANXIETED/STOKIFIED/TERROKED (Oct 1, 2015)

Translate THAT! ^^^^ I don't even know what to say because HELLO!! I'm leaving the precious MTC (my home of 63 days) on Monday! My feelings are soooo mixed. Hmmmm yeah this is probably the bravest thing I have ever done. Sooooo...as an attempt to explain how much I love the MTC, I would like to share my TOP THREE MTC FAVES!!

1. MY COMPANION!! Wooooow Heavenly Father blessed me there! Sister M is the most patient, easy going person. She doesn't ever get mad or snappy or anything! We have become BFFs, and I can't even imagine what I will do without her in a week. We always know what each other is thinking, we have laughing attacks, she does my hair, we have literally been by each other's side 24/7 for the past 2 months! It will be like ripping my Siamese twin off of me. It will definitely hurt!!  We already have plans for me to visit New Zealand and her to visit Grantsville after the mish...She has never been camping or had smores! She needs the glory of a small town! I just love her! I hope we can be companions again later on our mission!

2. THE DEVOTIONALS!! Every Tuesday and Sunday we have devotionals. Let me tell you...we have some rocking awesome leaders in this church! After (almost) every devotional, I am SO PUMPED to serve the Lord. The leaders of this church are fun, optimistic, funny, understanding, motivating, super duper loveable...On Tuesday we had Elder Costa (from the presidency of the 70) come speak. HE IS THE COOLEST! I vote him next apostle!! He said so many spiritual things, but what I want to share is not that stuff (although trust me, it was legit.) This is what he said, "To be a grandpa is to be a father with sugar. A lot of sugar." Then, in a nice grandpa-y way he said he wanted to hug each one of us, and he hugged the air. It was funny. I know that dad wants to be a grandpa soon. I hope that I am almost an aunt by the time I get back! Anyway....conference this weekend will be sooo good! 

3. BEING AN STL! Being a Sister Training Leader was really stressful, but I learned so much from it. I became a lot more caring, and helping other people helped me forget about my own stress! I ADORE the sisters in our branch, and I feel so comfortable with all of them. I am so thankful that I was blessed with the opportunity to get to know and love them! Lately I have been so frustrated with myself, because my Korean is...not so hot. However, I had a baby revelation: my purpose as a missionary is to invite others (not just investigators) unto Christ. Even though I haven't been able to focus as much on Korean as I would have liked to because of my STL duties, I have still been fulfilling my purpose. I have (hopefully) been helping the sisters in our branch feel Christ's love and ease some of their burdens, and that means that I am NOT failing even though it feels like I am. My little heart might crack when I leave these sisters! 

Well, I wanted to write a lot more, but dannng I am once again out of email time. BUT GUESS WHAT?! This week I got THREE packages from the lovely Mr. & Mrs. Andrew Beckett family. Healthy snacks (hallelujah) Korean CTR rings (WHAT THE CUTE?!), a dozen donuts from Krispy Kreme (yeah I pretty much died) and A PUMPKIN!! WHY THE PUMPKIN?!?!!? Hahahahah. IT is like a decoration pumpkin that smelled like...love in a pumpkin. I can just imagine Andrew sneaking Kenzie's cute fall decorations and mailing them to me with a guilty grin on his face. AJ, you better apologize to Kenzie! HAHAHA it made for a good laugh. Thank you both for such a thoughtful package and notes! The Korean sisters (as in actually from Korea) were HILARIOUS when they saw the donuts. They were so happy (literally cheering) when I shared with them. We took pictures of the event. They are REALLY into pictures. Hahahaha. They have so many funny Asian poses they like to do. I will send some pics. And you thought that I was good at selfies and snapchats before the mission...just you wait! I am bringing a whole new Asian spin to those in 16 months. Speaking of 16 months... 2 months of my mission are already gone! Time is flying and I am not even in Korea yet!!

How is homecoming, boys? How was the Bob Firman invitational?

Well, my branch president assigned me a mission and life motto. Mark 9:23. Look it up! I have been trying to have a more positive attitude. I feel bad that sometimes I stop believing and start doubting Heavenly Father. If He believes in me going to Korea, then I will go! He knows all, and each of us can face anything that He asks us to. He is constantly by our sides, aware of every little thing we do. Reflecting back on my MTC experience, I can see how God has been with me the whole time, even when I was feeling pretty alone. Never forget that He is there and that He loves you. I love you all, too!

Next email will be from Korea!!!!!!!!! 😊 That is a pretty good Asian face, huh?

Love,
Beckett Jamae

PS, Yeah I still trust Heavenly Father, but at the moment I am curious about why I WAS CHOSEN AS THE TRAVEL LEADER!! How the heck am I gonna hurd a bunch of missionaries to Korea?! AHHH! hahahah should be fun. (Ask Briana how good I was at directions at USU.) Hahahahaha. Now instead of figuring out which apartment I live in, I have to figure out how to take a bunch of missionaries across the world! I literally prayed not to be the travel leader. LESSON LEARNED. Thy will be done! I will lead the missionaries to Korea...or at least I will try! 

Behold the Asian poses!





Me and Sister F.  I ADORE HER!  Nate and Seth and Briana, she plays tennis for BYU!  She is fabbbbulous.

This is Allie's mom interjecting here.  Her mission president sent us an email saying she has arrived in Korea, and they attached this picture as well. She is there!  Please keep her in her prayers, as she was so nervous and excited all at once. Thank you!  :)