Monday, September 30, 2013

Providing Service - Harvesting Potatoes

   So this week has been so crazy, but it's been so fun!!! I love having to 2 companions!! It's so much fun being companions with Bastow Shimai and Lundstrom Shimai. I can't remember if I told you anything about them. Bastow Shimai is from Utah, she just turned 20 and she was in the MTC the same time as me so we both got to Japan almost 2 months ago! (Oh man I just realized I've been here for almost 2 months! Time goes by so fast!!). Lundstrom Shmai is from Ohio and she will be 21 in November. She's been in Japan since April and she says that her Japanese isn't very good, but it really is. We have a lot of fun together and we all get along really well!
   This week we've pretty much been exploring Obihiro. Me and Bastow Shmai have been in Obihiro for 6 weeks and Lundstrom Shimai just got here. So we're in charge of leading the way and finding where our investigators live. It's been quite an adventure, but we're all learning together. We visited a lot of people this week to introduce Lundstrom Shimai. She's a really great missionary with talking to everyone and getting to know people!
   Obihiro is the city that I live in, but there's a lot of church members who live in another area called Otofuke. There's a lot of farm land so we go up there every once in a while to visit people. On Saturday all the missionaries were invited to a members' house, the Shibota family, to help them harvest their potatoes. There were also a couple other church members who came and they all brought their kids to help out too. It was really fun and I mostly helped the little kids and they are just soooo adorable. At one point, one of the little boys picked up a worm and put it on Bastow Shimai. She flipped out a little bit, but then that gave us the idea to do the same thing to Lundstrom Shimai.... i guess we should be nice to our trainer, but we thought it would be so funny. We put the worm on her neck when she was talking to another missionary and she screamed and freaked out. We all laughed about it. And the kids thought it was pretty funny too! Have I mentioned how much I love the church members here? :)
   Japan has been great and I love it here - even with all the rain!
Hope you are all doing well!
Morrison Shimai

Sunday, September 22, 2013

First Transfer - Still in Obihiro

This past week we had TRANSFERS!!!! I am still in Obihiro and my new companions are........... Bastow Shimai and Lundstrom Shimai!!   Bastow Shimai came to Japan the same time as me (although she was in a different district in the MTC).   We`ve both been in Obihiro for the past 6 weeks and Lundstrom Shimai is our follow-up trainer.   Last transfer we had 5 shimai in our apartment, but 2 different companionships. (Me and Furue Shimai and then Gibbs Shimai, Sugihara Shimai and Bastow Shimai). But now we only have 3 Shimai in our apartment!  There is so much room now!!!  I kind of don`t know what to do with all the new room!!!! It`s great! :)   On Saturday we started our weekly planning session and usually it takes us about 2.5 to 3 hours to complete, but it took us 3 hours on Saturday and 2 hours on Sunday and we still didn`t finish...... It`s been a little crazy.... Obviously... :)   But it`s been fun. We have to combine 2 different companionships into 1, so we have so many investigators now!!   I`ll let you know how this week goes. :)
Fun part of this week is that we went up to Sapporo for our Stake Conference on Sunday!! We had a member drive us to Sapporo and it usually takes us about 3.5 hours to get there and so we had to wake up at 4:30 am so that we could meet the member at the church at 5:30 am (not the fun part). So we drove to Sapporo and the countryside of Hokkaido is absolutely beautiful!!!   It so green here and a lot of it is farm land. It reminds me a lot of Oregon becuase there is so many trees here!  So we got to the Stake center at about 8:30 and the meeting didn`t start until 10 am. So we just hung out and said hi to all the members and we got to see a lot of missionaries!   So it was fun seeing other missionaries.   I still can`t understand a lot of Japanese, but during the meeting I was so surprised at how much I actually understood. So it`s coming along!!   K so the really cool part was after Stake conference!   We left and the member asked us if we wanted to see the Temple site and so of course we all said yes!!   It wasn`t super far away from the Stake Center. There`s a bridge to the side of where they are building it!   So we went up there and took some pictures! It`s suppose to be done December 30th, 2015!!! I`m so hoping that I can come back and see it when it`s all done! It`s going to be beautiful!!
Hope you all have a wonderful week!!!!! And enjoy the first week of fall!! Love you all!!
Morrison Shimai

Week 14 Pictures - Still in Obihiro

Jazmyne in front of the new Sapporo temple site with her new companions.  The Sapporo Temple is expected to be completed December 30th, 2015.

Jazmyne and Furue Shimai - Polka Dot Day

All the sisters in the apartment and the number of months they have been on their mission.

Jazmyne - 3 month anniversary, just 15 to go. :)

Sunday, September 15, 2013

We're all in this together!

This week has been pretty crazy!  First of all I swear the weather here is so strange!   So the last couple of weeks it`s been really windy and raining every day.  One of our investigators told us that it was suppose to start snowing in some places on Hokkaido (the island that I`m on).   No snow yet for Obihiro, but it was crazy to think that some of the other missionaries in my mission will experience snow in September.  So me and my companion have been getting ready for winter pulling out big jackets and buying more tights and sweaters!   We thought we were so prepared, but then to our surprise, this week has been warm and humid, just about every day!!   Haha and we were obviously not prepared.   In the morning it would look foggy and cold, but by about 1 pm it would be bright and sunny. Oh well!  I`m having a hard time deciding if I should enjoy the humidity while it lasts, because I know in about a month I`m going to be wishing for some sun. :)
So one of our investigators, Miyako San, has really been progessing!  We had a baptismal date set for this last week, but she`s been having some trouble with the Word of Wisdom.  So we met with her last Sunday and we made a deal with her:  If she would not drink alcohol for a whole week, me and Furue Shimai would also give up something for the week.   For all those High School Musical fans: I almost wanted to start singing "WE`RE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER!"   Anyway so Furue Shimai decided she would give up eating snacks and I said that I would stop eating chocolate.   And anyone who knows how much I love chocolate knows that this would seem like an impossible task....  Even here in Japan, I usually always have some sort of chocolate bar or candy sitting on my desk and I eat a little bit each day.  I know, it`s bad! :)    It was a lot harder than I thought that it would be to not eat chocolate!   But I did it!!!   I went a whole week and no chocolate!   And the best news was that Miyako San went the whole week without drinking alcohol!!   Great news all around!   She is very strong and I hope that she will continue to progress.  I know that we recieve so many blessings when we live the Word of Wisdom.  It`s not just another rule we have to follow, but it`s more like a protection. If we don`t put harmful things into our body, then we will be more healthy! Who wouldn`t want that kind of promise?!?
Transfers are this week so we`ll find out tomorrow if I`ll stay in Obihiro or not!   But we do get to go to Sapporo this week for a mini mission conference so I`m really excited for that!
Hope all is well! Love you all! Thanks again for all the letters!!
Morrison Shimai

Sunday, September 8, 2013


Investigators, Ward Members, and Birthday Party

Furue Shimai and one of our investigators Akarichan - Jazmyne mentioned them in her basketball story from last week.

Obihiro Ward Family

Birthday Party 

Octopus and Squid!

So this week was good!! I`m going to start out by bragging a little bit because I`m so excited!!

1. I navigated the city all by myself!!!!! After a month I finally know how to get around (well a little).   My sense of direction isnt the best, but Im doing pretty good if I do say so myself!   We ride our bikes everywhere becuase that`s the fastest way to get around.   A couple times during the week we went really far (to the outskirts of town), it took us about 40 minutes each way - and I was able to lead the whole time.   The way the city streets work is that it`s a grid system a little - kind of like Utah.   So as long as you know how far south or west or north or east you need to go it`s all numbered.   I never though I would say it but I`m grateful for the grid system with naming and numbering streets!! Haha. :)

2. I talked to 3 people all by myself!!!   Don`t be too impressed becuase the conversations we had were probably only a minute long, but they were able to understand me and I kind of knew what they were saying!!   Every time I do something good Furue Shimai`s comment is always "you`re growing!!"  It`s pretty great and a really good feeling.   But I know I still have a long way to go before I can have conversations with people for more than a minute!!   Sukoshi zutsu! Little by little! :)
I think I`ve mentioned it before, but the people here are so nice!!   Whenever we go and visit people they always give us food!   And I`ve had some good and some interesting expiriences!   Octopus and squid are very interesting.   I found out that I actually like squid as long as it`s cooked, but raw is just a little too chewy for me.   The Japanese do have some really good treats though!   Like last Sunday we went to a member`s home and she make us this apple with cinnamon and carmal, whipped cream thing!! It was so good!

Morrison Shimai

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Obihiro Zone Conference

New Missionaries are given a "Bean" shower at the first zone conference after they arrive in Japan.  I'm not sure why they call them "Beans", here in the US we call them "Greenies."

Monday, September 2, 2013

P-Day Basketball

Ok so this week I found out how I really am not a sports person! The elders invited us to come play basketball with them so me and Furue Shimai went and we also brought along one of our investigators, Akarichan. She is 22 years old and she works in this cute little bakery in the city and she has the cutest, littlest purple car I have ever seen!!! Anyway so it was 5 guys and us 3 girls. All the guys were so good! And so was Akarichan! And then theres me and Furue Shimai. We were having some real difficulties! They would pass me the ball and say `shuto` so I would try to shoot the ball and only 3 out of the 30 times I shot the ball did it actually go in. They wouldn`t even try to stop me from trying to make a basket (thats how bad I was). Hahaha. :) It also probably didnt help that they were all speaking Japanese and so I couldnt tell if I did something wrong or not. Anyway it was very funny but really fun!
Japan has been great! We are getting into the Fall season now. I now wear tights and a sweater everyday because its so chilly and a rain jacket is a must! But I think people are more willing to talk to us once they see that we`re drenched becuase weve been out in the pouring rain all day so thats good!
Again sorry this is a short letter!
Love you all! Hope you are all doing well!
Morrison Shimai
モリソン 姉妹