Monday, December 30, 2013

Happy New Years

Man the weeks are going by so fast! Its crazy really! Christmas this year was very plain. Almost like a normal day really. But thats alright, I realized that lights and presents and that stuff don't really matter anyways. Life goes on. The thing I did enjoy a ton though was seeing the Family! Man I missed you guys so much! Ha, even the Clowards and ole Sammy Walton managed to peak in and say Hi! Love it. The other awesome thing that happened this week was we had 2 Baptisms. Syra and Joshua Pimentel. Their family is almost all members now, just waiting on the last boy who is only 6 so I won't be here when he gets Baptized. I got asked to Baptize them so I was really excited. I love Joshua, he reminds me of my kid brother a lot haha little troublemaker. On Sunday our new investigator (Emanuel) made it to Church! We were so happy, this kid is really promising. Hopefully he will continue to want to listen to us and I will be here when he gets Baptized. We set a date for Jan. 25 so hopefully he keeps coming to Church. The other day me and Elder Yu were at a dinner appointment and I looked in the front yard and noticed this ghetto, lower than regulation, wooden ping pong table. The paint was chipping and it had a little bit of lean to one side, but I picked up that paddle and heavy, scruffed up ping pong ball and challenged my comp (who was on the High School team) right there. I beat him 11-9. I was so proud of myself. I used all of the Frei tactics I had learned over the years...its all about getting into their head. I paraded around the yard for a good minute or so then called it good. It felt good to pick up a paddle again. Yesterday I'm pretty sure I saw Si Robertson from Duck Dynasty in our area...only he was Filipino. Maybe they're cousins or something I don't know but he had the face, beard, glasses, and cup so I'm almost positve they're related. Who knows really. I'm miss you all and hope this New Years is awesome! I know I won't be getting any sleep that night, Filipinos are crazy about Fireworks. They already have one named after the Typhoon called "Super Yolanda" so I'm told. Love you guys!
-Elder Akins

Monday, December 23, 2013

Merry Christmas!

Hey everyone! I hope you all are having a Merry Christmas wherever you are! This past week has been really crazy! I'll start on Monday.

Monday we had to travel to Sorsogon to practice our skit for the Christmas Conference on Wednesday. After waiting for like 2 hours for everyone to get there we were able to start. After we all went out to eat. For some reason we had a lot more Elders than we should've had on one tricy, and all the big guys were on the back. The driver took a bad angle on the gutter and needless to say we ended up poppin a wheelie. I was inside not knowing what the heck was going on and the driver was screeching Bicol at us. Lucky enough someone caught us before the thing tip over backwards but it was still pretty crazy. Once we got going again we all started laughing our butts off and the driver was laughing with us.

Tuesday we stayed in the ZL's apartment with 10 other Elders. It was packed and it took forever for everyone to shower. Once it was time for bed the ZL's pulled out 3 regular sized mattresses for 8 of got pretty tight. But we still had fun talking and stuff. Took forever to fall asleep cuz one of the Illocano Elders would not shut up. They like to talk haha.

Wednesday we went to the Christmas Conference. It was awesome, we got to see all of our batch mates and the rest of our mission. The Polys did the Haka for one of the skits, it was way sick. They fed us way good, which I needed cuz all we eat is either Adobo or Pancit. On the way home I got way car sick. I hate the vans we have to take. Its packed to the brim with people, hot and the seats are terrible. I hate those things with a passion.

Thursday we had some good work. On the way to one of our areas I saw this lady wearing a shirt a funny shirt. The only reason I noticed it was because it said Cowboys. This is what it said," Cowboys butts drive me nuts." I was dying after haha Elder Yu had no idea what was going on. I led all the lessons during this week too, I was so proud of myself haha. Somehow, even though I have hardly any knowledge of the language I was able to convey my message to them. It was pretty cool.

Friday was pretty interesting. We were at a member's house for lunch this crazy guy was walking by and started to talking to me. He came right up into the house and just starting talking. I managed to understand him. It was really wierd, he started to talking about how he "died for the church", of which church I have no idea, and then things got weird. He pulled up his shirt and showed me the big scar close to his belly-button and said "see". I had no idea what was going on. After that he offered me a cigarette. First time thats ever happened to me haha. That night after dinner I used the scraps and made a nice little trap, just as any good ole country boy would do. Well I in fact did end up catching one of the neighborhood cats, not once, but twice.

Saturday was the Branch Christmas Party. It was great. We all had a good time and the food was awesome. We had a whole cooked pig too! The only problem was the Branch can't afford utensils for everyone. Kamay lang or just hands. The highlight for me was I ate for the first time the Chocolate Stew or Pork Blood Stew. I tasted like some Ronny lit one up and tossed the ashes into the stew. Nasty.

Sunday I gave my 2nd talk in Sacrament. It went pretty well. My topic was "Gifts we can give the Savior this Christmas". I focused on using the Atonement, taking the Gospel to others, and living the Gospel. I wish I was fluent at Tagalog, that would make things a lot easier haha.

Thats about all of the things that happened this week. I hope everyone has a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. I love you all!
Elder Akins

Monday, December 16, 2013

Kamusta Po Galing Ang Philippines

Another week in the Philippines! Well first off last Monday as I was sitting at my desk writing in our Area Book I noticed that my legs were shaking. Then I realized that the whole house was shaking! The earthquake was only minor and it only lasted like 3 or 4 seconds but it was enough for me to freak out! Our work this week wasn't as good as usual because me and Elder Yu have had to take care of all of the paperwork and other matters for the new Sister's apartment. When we took the final papers to the owner she told us to fill everything out and then she would sign it. She made us write all of her information and stuff! I've come to realize that there are two kinds of people in this world: Hard Workers, and Lazy Turds. Couldn't believe it. Anyways some good things that did happen this week though was that one of our investigators that has been an investigator since Elder Yu got here has finally been accepting what we are teaching and is reading and praying every night! She is slowly progressing, but never the less progressing. Also I had my first dream in Tagalog. It was flippin sweet, there was also monster bucks in it so it made it double amazing! And the best part of all! We got another baptism. But this time I got to baptize her. And it didn't turn out like I had planned. The first time I dunked her I forgot to have her plug her nose haha so we had to do it again. Next she let her legs come up. Again. Then this time her hair didn't get all the way under (In my defense they didn't put enough water in the fount). But the last one my District Leader said "Just shove her under" so I did. And we finally got it done. So now the joke in our District is that we have 4 baptized and 1 confirmed this week haha. And yesterday we had a goofy lesson with the Sister I baptized on Saturday. We were teaching about baptism and recieving the gift of the Holy Ghost and had just shared a scripture about the two. I asked her "So Sister, what happend yesterday?" She literally interpreted this as "What did you eat yesterday" because she replied back "Well I didn't eat lunch." All I could say was Uhhh...what?! Haha it was just really weird. She gets confused easy and stuff I guess haha but she has a really strong testimony of this Gospel so I'm glad I got the oppurtunity to baptize her. I hope everyone is doing well back at home and I hope that you all have an awesome Holiday Season. Shout out to all my boys in the field, just to let y'all know the Cowboys are actually doing good this year as far as I'm told! Mahal ko kayo and Merry Christmas!
Elder Akins

Monday, December 2, 2013

Almost 100 Days In!

Well to start off last week I broke our fridge. I was cleaning the ice out of the freezer with a knife...ya that was a bad idea. I hit a pipe and all this gas started coming out, I was freaking out! Anyways we got a new one yesterday so its all good, the old was stunk anyways. I got to go on Exchanges with our District Leader this week, Elder Webb. It was nice to be with a white guy for once, someone I could talk to about home. I also led the area, that was pretty cool. I found that I knew the language better that I thought, although I still don't know it very good haha. The next day after that me and Elder Yu were walking back from our last lesson and I had to "pee like a race horse". The cool thing about the Philippines is that they don't have many bathrooms, so bushes work just as well I've come to find out. But after I got done I got this burning sensation done South...ya not good. Come to find out I need to drink more water and less pop so that I won't get UTI...I was pretty close. Anyways I'm good now. The next day I left my shoes outside cuz they were wet from the rain. I went to look for them the day after and I only found 1 of them. I searched all over the yard, couldn't find it. As I was walking out into the street I saw it stuck in a slit in the fence where all the dogs come into our yard from. I got lucky some mutt didn't run off with it haha. Nothing else happened this week, just work work work. We do have another investigator who is going to be baptized next week, and she said she wants me to do it! I'm super stoked. Sorry I haven't wrote that much, we don't have alot of time this week because yesterday was actually PDAY but we didn't get to email cuz some Ricky down the street was putting a big sign up on a building and it somehow fell and hit the powerlines. So we didn't have power most of the night. Love you guys! Talk to ya next week!
Elder Akins

Monday, November 25, 2013

Another Week in the "Pines"!

Well this has been a crazy week for us here. First off we had Transfers. Sadly, the other American in my apartment (Elder Hatch) was sent to a different area. He's such a funny and awesome kid, and hopefully we will both be able to hook up after the mish at Utah State! He's way tight. Anyways after he left, his comp became a trainer and is now training Elder Gutierrez. I am officially the only white guy in Gubat now...not counting the way fat, rich German guy we see riding on a scooter all the time. He's in the other Elder's area, and appartently he speaks terrible English and no Tagalog. I have no idea how he lives here haha. So last week we lost 5 investigators due to baptism, but we worked really hard this week and found 10 new investigators! It was way awesome. One of them was living in an Iglesia ni Cristo community and who was Catholic...the only Catholic in that area. All of the Iglesia ni Cristos pretty much hate us, appartently they are a break off of our church. We were really guided to her! It was awesome. In another part of our area the kids always ask me to do the "Rocketship". They hold their arms out and make me lift them up and make them fly for a second. It gets tiring after awhile haha. Then I give them all Knuckle Sandwhiches after haha, they all run around and try to give each other them now. Also this week I witnessed my first Cock Fight. Although they didn't have blades on them, it was still pretty hairy. Those Roosters can kick like 5 times every time they jump up in the air! Its crazy to watch. My comp loves to watch it, he always tells me he wishes he could raise one but his Mom won't let him haha. He's obsessed with it. And like 10 minutes after watching that, we were walking down the road and these two guys come out of the jungle. One was carrying a bloody itak (machete) and a "barked out" animal of some sort, and the other had its cape. Then I saw the last guy holding a bloody dog head in his other was pretty messed up. Made me think of Duke back at home haha and if me and some of my buddies might end up doing that. Haha lets hope not! Well thats about it for this week. I love you all and I'm grateful for all of you. And know that no matter the roadblocks in the way, the work continues to go on!
Elder Akins

Monday, November 18, 2013

First Baptisms!!!

We finally did it!!! Me and Elder Yu finally dunked some people! Last Saturday was awesome! I can't describe the feelings I have for those kids. They are so awesome! Elder Yu baptized both of the families (3 Jarabejo kids and the 2 Pimentel kids), but it was still amazing to see some fruits of our labors. Haha there was only one bad thing that happened. The Pimentel family has these 2 crazy wild boys that are like 6 and 8, and they kinda just run around and do what they want haha. Their father is deaf so he really doesn't have any idea whats going on ever and their mother is extremelly shy (so shy we had to drag her to the baptisms basically haha). During the ordinances they ran up to the tub and were like cheering kinda haha and just runnin around the room. Nobody really is bother by it here haha I guess its just normal. Anyways it was still spiritual, regardless of kids slamming doors every once in while. Last week I also had Trainers/Trainees Workshop all the way in Legaspi. Its like a 3 hour drive from Gubat to there, so we had to wake up at like 4. We took a van and we had to fit 10 Elders and Sisters into it, plus 3 other passengers. It was pretty packed, especially for me because Filipinos don't have long legs, so they make the seats closer together. I was fine on the way up because I sat in the front row and I also sat by my old comp from the MTC, Elder Haymond. I felt a little queasy but was ok. We got there, listened to President Guanzon for awhile, did some different workshops and stuff, and then got to go to the mall. It was kinda weird being there haha. President fed us and then we went home. But instead of having some ok leg room like on the way up, I had to sit in the very back corner, and I did not feel good. I stuck my head out the tiny window for awhile, fell asleep with it hanging out the window haha then fell asleep again with my head in my lap. I don't think I would've made it if I hadn't been totally exhausted haha. They dropped us off in Sorsogon, like 45 minutes from Gubat so we took a Jeepney. I was sitting on top and it start pouring. Not just raining, but literal buckets! It might have been the biggest rain drops of my life. I couldn't see, and I even had glasses on! Needles to say my clothes were drenched. Haha it was pretty bad. The good news though is that we all bought airsoft guns the other day. I've been taking care of all of the neighborhood animals that stray into our yard. This way I'll be ready for Deer season when I get home. Aren't missions great! Haha gotta love it. The sad news though is that this week is Transfers, and Elder Hatch (the other 'Cano in my apartment) is moving somewhere up north. Elder Pascual is going to train some Greenie, that means I won't be new anymore! Thats good, I hated being new. Well I love you guys and am so grateful for all of you! You are all such a blessing in my life. Thanks for all of your prayers and concerns! I pray for you guys every day.
Elder Akins


Monday, November 11, 2013

Week 5

Well all is well. As you have all heard we did have a Super Typhoon hit the Philippines. Luckily our area was ok. We somehow only got hit with about a Class 2 storm. It was still windy and rainy but not much really happened. We just chilled in our apartment the whole day. A few of the members houses got beat up. Not much to clean up. The night before the storm hit we really just helped people move from their homes to the schools and our church. The scary thing is that the storm should have hit our area a lot harder than it did, but for some reason the storm kind of veered away from us so we only got hit with the side of it. Tacloban got hit way hard, there is over 10,000 dead there. So sad, the whole city is just a mess there. I heard that there used to be a cement stadium somewhere in the city, and now its like in rubble. Its crazy. And before all of this there was the earthquake down there too. There are rumors of a Tsunami happening because I guess there was another earthquake during the storm, I have no idea. Its crazy. But for now we are all ok here. The good news is that I'm going to be having my first baptisms on Saturday! The Jarabejo and Pimentel kids! I'm so stoked. They are awesome and are so excited! They both wanted Elder Yu to baptize them, which is understandable because he's been here the longest. I'm so excited though, these kids are so awesome. Something funny that happened to me this week was when me and my comp were walking to a Less Active families house. They live in the middle of this rice field and you have to walk on the path thats like 8 inches wide, which just so happened to be muddy from all of the rain. I slipped and my foot slid off into the muddy water on the side of the path, but as i tried to gain my balance I accidentally kicked some mud on my comps back haha. And that was his last clean shirt. I felt so bad but I laughed for like 5 minutes haha. Well before I end I wanted to share a cool quote I saw this week. Its from Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin: "Those who in faith, leave their nets (or fishing poles, rifles, bats, etc.) and follow the Savior will experience happiness beyond their ability to comprehend." I just thought that was awesome, and remember just because you aren't set apart as a full-time missionary doesn't mean you can't help out in the work. Thanks for all of your prayers, I love all of you guys! Mahal Kita! Ingat Po!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Week 4

Not a lot of time this week so I'll try my best to fill ya in. First off, last P Day I got my first haircut here. The guy cut it good, but left the front the exact same. So I think I'm gonna need to cut it again this week. I also have learned how to cook Chicken Adobo. Thats our basic meal here. We eat that more times than not. Its actually way good. You get the meat from the market in town, cut it up into pieces with the bones still on, throw it into a pan with onions, garlic, soy sauce, brown sugar, and the works. So good. I love it. Well I missed Halloween. That stinks. All I could think of the whole day was all the scary movies I'm gonna watch in two years haha. They don't really celebrate Halloween here, instead its called "All Saints/Souls Day". They all go to the graveyards and sleep next to their dead ancestors. Haha and the night of there was a brown out, so all the people were screaming in the graveyards, we could hear them haha. The other day me and Elder Yu were tracting and this dog kept growling and barking at us as it followed us so one time he got to close and I popped on the nose with my foot. Also yesterday we were in the church having a party for one of the members birthday and this beetle flew into the church. This sister who is really funny decided to throw it on me. I didn't know it, but I kept hearing this like hissing sound on my tie. So I reached for the knot and I felt this beetle on my tie. Haha I started freaking out and threw it! I had no idea what was going on! Haha scared me to death. This week we taught the Pimentel family. They have a hard time getting to church because money is so tight. Tati Pimentel prayed extra hard this week that the Lord would provide for him so he could send his kids to church. A couple of days after he was in Gubat when he saw some paper crumpled up on the ground. He picked it up and realized it was a 500 peso bill! Then he opened it up, only to find another bill! He was so excited to tell us that the Lord had answered his prayers. He is so cool, I love him. Well thats it for this week. I love you guys and pray for you constantly.
Elder Akins

My apartment 
My tan line 

Me Slayin Monsters (JK It's a fisherman's, I borrowed)

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Week 3 in the "Pines"

Well time is flying by for sure! This week just floated by. For starters, the whether here is crazy. Not 5 minutes ago it was sunny and nice, now its dumpin buckets outside. Its crazy. It kinda reminds me Cali because of all the overcast. This week we tried to help those people in our area with Baptismal dates to keep their commitments and not  relapse on some of their problems. We have a Brother who is 18 who used to drink so its hard for him deal with that, and he relapsed on a little bit of alcohol. He was kinda down about that, but we made sure he knew that no one is perfect and that we can always try for the next Saturday. We offered to give him a blessing to help him with his addiction. It was a great experience. After he gave us both hugs. He is such a cool kid and is really trying to learn all he can about the Gospel. I can understand the language for the most part...if an American is speaking. The Filipinos talk so fast its rediculous, I hear one word and think about it and by the time I've tried to piece that sentence together they are already done sucks. But it'll come one day, I got 2 years haha. The other day we got invited to eat lunch at a members house. They served us crabs, fish, rice, and this adobo with some kind of meat. They said they had already eaten and to go ahead. I didn't really pay attention to the meat as I threw it on my rice and ate it. I tasted it and couldn't help but cringe. Elder Hatch was sitting across from me and he started laughing and said it was chicken liver! Ehhhh! It was so nasty! I didn't like it at all haha. Everything else was good. I also had some of the famous bananas here, way better than ours. Another funny story was when we got done teaching the JarabeJo kids, Jarome caught this baby Gecko played a joke on my by throwing it on me. It was dark and I thought it feel on the ground and ran away so we laughed and started to walk home. About 200 yards down the road I felt something on the collar of my shirt. I jumped onto my neck and I flipped out and tried swatting it off haha I looked like some crazy guy dancing in the street haha. Today is the elections of their Kagawads or Counselors here so we can't proselyte
 tonight. I don't know what we are going to do. Throw a party or something haha. Maybe  we'll have a bonfire with all the banana trees around here. I don't know we will figure something out. Anyways thats all I got for ya this week. I love y'all and can't wait to see ya in 2!

Elder Akins


Sunday, October 13, 2013

First Week in the Philippines

Well shoot, where do I begin. This place is freakin crazy!!! I'll start with when I got off the plane. First step off the humidity hit me...then the smell. I'm used to it now, the smell that is. I don't think I will ever get used to the humidity. And its the dry season...not even the dryer season! Haha anyways so they loaded us up and sent us to this church in Legaspi where we meet our new Trainers and had a meeting with President Guanzon. My companion is Elder Yu from Cebu. He's awesome. He's really patient and kind with me. And he speaks pretty good english. Then we were assigned our areas. Mine is the Gubat 1A area. We then drove for like 4 hours because we had to drop off the other missionaries at their apartments. It should've been like a 2 hour drive though haha. The way people drive here is UNREAL. I have never seen anything like it before. They just pass each other whenever, they drive on the left side of the road, and there is like zero traffic rules. Haha no stoplights too. As we were driving to our apartment I looked off on side of the road and this drunk guy was walking around in pink underwear with a bottle in his hand haha such a ronny. We got to our apartment and I met the other two elders that live there. Elder Pascuel from Cebu and Elder Hatch from Elko? Nevada. They are both way awesome. Then I passed out on my bed which smelled way wierd. The next day I just got settled in and we did a lot of planning and studying. Took my first "shower"...bucket and ladle. Oh and no TP by the way if you catch my drift...the toilets can't handle wet wipes either...soooo ya. We went and met some members the other night. I ate some fish head soup that was actually pretty good. Rice with every meal...I ain't complainin. At the store they sell this like bread with some sweet like jam kinda stuff in the middle and it looks kinda like a danish...anyways I eat like 1 of those a day. I've started to drink lots of water too, I need it. Everyone stares at me everywhere I go. It was cool the first few days, but now its getting kinda wierd and annoying. Oh well. I'll get used to it. There are dogs and cats everywhere. And chickens too. On Sundays there is a big Cockfight competition in one of the villages between Gubat and Sorsagon. Thats some peoples lives here haha but a lot of the men do it for side money. They all have their prized Roosters tied up by their house somewhere.Life here is just like whateves. Way chill. People just like walk in front of jeepneys and trycis all the time. Their houses are way humbling. Although it was told to me that they don't need much of a house because its never cold here, just as long as they have something to cover them from the rain and they're good. I rode on top of a Jeepney the other day haha its so fun. You kinda just chill and let the wind flow through your hair. Conference was legit...again. Although this time I didn't pay attention as well...I thought about the deer hunt and fishing quite a bit. Whoevers got a tag this year and is reading this make sure you email me and tell me how it went...I'm getting depressed about not being there haha jk but seriously. We played ball today. I kinda just rebound everthing and drive it back in because everyones afraid I'm gonna run them over or something haha. Filipinos are good though, they pass alot. They beat us both times, we played whites against darks. Haha they are way funny too. They all ask who my "Barly" ({Girlfriend} we will say) back home is and they say I have to choose one from our Zone...haha they are so dumb. But I love them so much already! The people are amazing too. All the old ladies let us talk to them. I placed my first Pamphlet the other day! We don't do BOM's because a lot of the time they will just throw them away. Also I shared the scripture Mosiah 24:14-16 with an old lady who is going throw some hard times the other day. Awesome experience. The works going well, I can't really understand anyone except kids because they talk so flippin fast but I am trying my best! I love you guys so much and miss everyone! I loved talking to the FamDamly the other day and I realized that I have the best family in the whole world! Thanks you guys, I'll keep you in my prayers!
Love Elder Akins

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Last Email From the MTC

Well, its finally here! We leave for the Philippines on Monday, and I can't wait. The MTC's been great to me, but I'm getting sick of it. I'm ready for real investigators and all those wonderful experiences I'm going to have out there. If you are wondering why I'm emailing on Thursday instead of Saturday, its because on Friday we have "In Field Orientation" and Saturday and Sunday are Conference. Last Sunday we had Fast and Testimony Meeting. My whole District got up and bore their testimonies. It was awesome. After that we walked over to the Main Campus to go see Elder David S. Baxter of the Seventy speak. On the way I could have swore I saw Kim Gubler in a white SUV driving past the BYU baseball stadium. Ask her if it was her Mom. I was so mad because I saw someone from home and I didn't even get to say hi! Then when we got to Main I was sitting on a bench and Elder Graft walked up to me! I was super happy! We sat together at the devotional on the 2nd row! It was so sweet. I saw the pic of Mason with the Alligator! Haha I showed everyone in my District. So funny. I hope I don't have to deal with any Crocs in my mission. So sketchy. Recently I've picked up some dope ties by my mad trading skills. My new favorite is a grayish, silvery background with large red, crimson paisley covering it. So sick. Well my times up, but I want you to look up a scripture. Its Alma 26:37. And I want you to know that I know that no matter where we are, God is mindful of us. Regardless if its me in Philippines, or y'all back home! Know I love you and miss ya!
Love, Elder Akins

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Week 5!!!! One more and we gone!

          Kamusta Pamilia at mga Kaibigan!
(Whats Up Family and Friends)

Life is good! We leave in 1 week! I'm so excited. Our Flight Plans came yesterday! Can't wait! This past week has been the craziest so far. So much has happened. So on Tuesday we moved from the Main Campus over to West Campus. Before we left on Monday we said goodbye to the older Districts that were departing for the Philippines. There were some really cool Elders that I'm gonna miss. Before we left though, we pulled a prank on the Elders upstairs. We stole all of their shower curtains and hid them, and duck taped the shower heads, haha! We got em good. Also before we left, one of my companions cousins came into the MTC named Elder Bunker. I didn't know his real name so I called him Elder Dale Bunker. While he was talking to my companion, I got everyone in our Zone to shake his hand and act like he was some kind of famous person. It was halarious. He had no idea what was going on. Also before I left, I got my first hair cut that wasn't from Mom. The lady did a pretty good job actually. I have also changed my hairstyle for the first time. I kinda like fohawk it a little. Its a pretty good looking. My facial hair is growing at a much faster rate now. I shave like every 3 days instead of a week. I'm convinced that I will be able to grow an amazing mustache when I come back.  So anyways, we moved over to West into an apartment with the other Elders from the District that leaves the same time as us. My companionship has their own room because we have a trio which is nice. We play a lot of PIG at night with our B-Ball hoop hung on our fridge that one of Elders that left gave to us. When I walk over to get the mail with Elder Christofferson, I generally take a peak at the Provo River which is like 20 yards from the fence. I haven't seen any fish yet. Swiss Days sounds good right now, gettin me some of those Navajo Tacos and Twister Lemonades! Man I miss that. Good for Austin! Tell him congrats from me ok Mom. I miss you and love you all! Mahal Kita!
Love, Elder Akins

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Week 4! Gettin Close!

'Musta kayo?! How Y'all Doing?! It sure is good to hear from everybody. This week I had my teacher translate some good stuff to say. Nangangaso ng usa, nagmamaneho ng sasakyan! Huntin' Bucks and Drivin' Trucks! Haha good stuff right! This morning me and my District and some other Elders from our zone decided to have Sauna Saturday. We threw a towel over the entrance to the showers and made a sauna. It was nice and relaxing. Last night we had a Zone Flossing Session. It was great, it really brought us closer as a Zone haha. I will send some pics. Our lessons have been getting better as we are progressing with the language. Being a District Leader is fun, but it's kinda hard. I hate to tell people to not do this or to do this better. But I guess someones gotta do it. There are 2 Sisters from St. George, ones from DHills the other from Dixie. I didn't know em but whateves, it was still cool to talk to someone from home. Mom I repped that little Santa Clara postcard in our class for a little while that you sent me. Everyone in my District knows about Santa Clara now! Also I found some sweet talks by Elder Bruce Stucki who grew up in Clara about there. One of his talks was about Prayer and it talked about how he hunted the hills behind Santa Clara with his bow for rabbits! Haha made me miss home a little! Lifes great! I hope everyone is doing well! Oh and no mom I don't need money. I've only spent like 40 bucks so far. Stamps would be nice though. I miss everyone so much! Keep the Faith! Mahal Kita!
Elder Akins

Zone flossing session. 

Our district with the others who came in at the same time.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

3rd Week in the MTC

September 14, 2013, 11:20:34 AM MDT
Hey guys! Hows everyone doing! I miss you all so much. I'm doing great though. Mom please make sure that my friends are all in this. This past week has been kinda rough. Our lessons are supposed to go well, but me and my comps can barely stammer our a few words in Tagalog. It kinda sucks. Our last lesson with our "investigator" Romel went alright. We found that if we say a prayer before we knock on his door that our lessons go better. I managed to bear my testimony to him, but it wasn't as long as I had wanted it to be haha. The new group that came in is pretty cool, although I'm gonna miss the group that left. Especially our Zone Leader, Elder Christenson. I talked to him quite a bit about District Leader stuff and he helped me out a lot as a missionary. But in the new group is an Elder from Ogden. He's a country boy so I've talked to him quite a bit the past few days. He's into huntin and fishin so we talk for like an hour at a time, cuz I seriously havent had anyone to talk to about that stuff haha. Amongst the Greenies are 2 Elders from the Marshall Islands. One of them comes into our room and lays on my bed all the time haha. I gave him so of the leftover jerky from Punts buck that he gave me, and showed him the pic of his deer. He came back into our room like 10 minutes later so I asked him if he wanted some cookies or something. He pulls the pic off of my wall and points to the deer. Haha he doesn't speak good english but I understood what he wanted. He polished it all off haha. Theyre funny kids. I've been doing sit ups and push ups every night before I go to bed, so don't be suprised if I come back riped. I love you guys and love hearing from you all. Mom make sure you send me that address book ASAP. Oh and  I havent gotten those Hep A #2 shots yet, I was told that you don't need them but that was by some Ronny lady at the front desk. What should I do? I love yall!
Love Elder Akins

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Week 2 - MTC

WHAT UP Pamilia! The MTC is awesome! I love it here! MOM! Make sure you send all of my emails to all of my friends. Make sure Fausett, Lance 'Daddy' Douglas, and my friends families get these. And grandma. And anyone else you think of. I'm sorry to say this but I havent gotten homesick yet! I hung up some of those pics in my room. Haha thats funny about Grandpa! Is he doing alright? Howd it go? The Spirit is way strong here. I honestly have never felt it like this. The food sucks, flat out. "It aint like mama fixed it." Haha I sing country songs all the time to stay sane. Thank you for all the letters, but you dont have to send me 1 everyday. Oh and you forgot to send me a big buck calender. Please...I love you?! I catch myself thinking about "Huntin Bucks and Drivin Trucks" all the time, but i focus up and get to work haha. All of my district thinks that Im the biggest Redneck because I always say Earl Dibbles Jr. lines and stuff haha. And they all think I have a big accent. Whatever. I love em though. The fridge keeps things cool, but it doesnt freeze stuff. Im ballin it up here. Theres some good players though. And i cant stress it enough, Elder Lawrence is huge. And im the one who has to guard him everytime. Still fun though. Hes way chill. I only saw Elder Cloward once, one he came in. I gave him a big hug and gave him some advice. I wish I would've thought about my camera. Sorry. Hes on the West Campus so i wont get to see him, unless I find him at the Devotionals. Ill take my camera to those. Punt and Berry have come over like every other night the past week. Im convinced the Tongans are crazy. I guess they set up like a barbershop in one of their rooms haha. One of the Elders in my District said something funny about the Sisters yesterday, he said "Its like an all you can eat buffet, but you cant eat any of it!" Haha so true. Im trying to keep my "Missionary Goggles" on but haha...Anyways, I miss everyone tons! I hope you guys are surviving without me. You probably are all going out for Ice Cream like every night now. Ill send another couple of emails with pics. I love you guys! Maha Kita!
Elder Akins

Saturday, August 31, 2013

1st Week in the MTC

Kamusta Pamilia!!! How is everyone?! Thanks so much for all the letters and packages, you guys are awesome. Life here is crazy! Always doing something. My 2nd day here I became District Leader! I sent you a letter that will tell you about how I have been and stuff. For everyone else I am doing awesome and am so glad to be here! I actually have 2 companions, Elder Haymond for Santaquin, UT, and Elder Christofferson from Lehi, UT. Elder H is Joeys cousins friend, the one Doree talked about. Hes so sick. We ball together. And Elder C is awesome too. Yes he is in fact related to the Apostle, its his dads cousin or something. Anyways, lots of the time I catch myself dreaming about monster bucks or trout and stuff haha. I love being outside when I can. I saw a "vole" as Elder C put it the other day. Haha I just notice wildlife alot more now Im away from it so much. We have a great view of the mountains though! Everyone keeps callin me a Redneck for some reason, I wonder why. I recently "installed" a new fridge into our room. Its made from a cardboard box and some ducktape, I'll send some pics later. Oh and my first discussion went ok. We taught a girl named Teresa, who is "from the Philippines"(Not really). She is Catholic, attending BYU and lives with some "Mormons". The lesson went okay I guess, it was hard understand here because she talks so fast and it was only my 3rd day! It seriously is amazing how much I already know. Dad you were right, I think I learned like 20 words on the first day, but its just remembering them is the hard part haha. Oh funny story, I was doing the Rosetta Stone things in the lab (we call it TALL) and I was repeating some words from the computer into the mic on the headset back into the computer. And I was sitting next to this Latino Elder, and a word came up called "buto" which means bone, so i said it, not registering buto and a spanish word that means a female dog. Then I realized what I had said and slowly looked over at the other Elder, haha I dont think he noticed but I sure was nervous! I love you guys so much and miss everyone a ton. Mahal kita! Ingat! (Love Ya! Bye!)
Elder Akins