24 February 2015

You Know How I Like Gadgets

Dear Family,

Looks like the internet's really slow today. >.< Also, this has been typed in Word.. As I write this the website isn't even loading. Blah. Frustrating. And I just switched computers because that one was having issues. This is just a bad emailing day. Dang.

Well, this week was somehow not too much but kinda eventful! Okay, to be honest, I don’t really remember anything that happened this week. I guess I’ll open up my planner and see what I got. J

So, Tuesday was kind of interesting! That was when we had the solar panels and the inverter installed with the giant batteries! It’s awesome. We’re currently going through the testing process with it. I’m the one responsible to watch the thing and flip the switches ‘cause they don’t want all the elders messing with it. I got the gig because when they were hooking it up I was just sucking in all the information about it. It’s like candy to me. J a new toy! You know how I like gadgets. They put the solar panels on our roof—well, the roof of our upstairs neighbors, which is opposite the Julander’s apartment. That way the Julanders can make sure the panels are doing okay while we’re the guinea pigs! It also charges from the power that comes from the ECG (Electric Company of Ghana) when that’s on.
Solar Panels!
This installation meant that we had to be indoors on Tuesday, which meant that district meeting was held in the Julanders apartment! Shh, I’m not sure they know. Haha, I took a picture of it ‘cause it was funny to me. We were switching companionships that would be watching our apartment while the meeting was going on. We would’ve had the meeting downstairs, but the noise and mess was too much for us to hold it there.

Tuesday night was fun: Elder Guymon and Elder Ntsie slept the night! You know Elder Guymon from previously on mission. It was fun to talk to him! Seeing him and Elder Pearmain go home is so strange for me. Those guys were only 7 months ahead of me when I came out! Now they’re gone! They were the border MTC where I started to think someone was quite a bit further on mission: if they were older than that group than they were OLD.

What else happened this week… We taught B. and A.! They’re still great. J I love teaching them. I love them. They’re a great couple. They came to church, and they’re now praying over a specific date in March to be baptized.

We had missionary Sunday on Sunday! I taught the YM (young mens) class and we did a musical number. Two elders, Elder Wight and me, as well as Vincent (our ward mission leader), sang with 3 sisters (2 RMs and 1 future missionary) "The Army of Helaman" in a nice arranged way. It was really fun! :) That musical number was in sacrament meeting. Elder Wight also gave a talk while I blessed the sacrament and other people did other things. It was a fun Sunday!​
Elder Wight, Vincent (ward mission leader), and Elder Price
This morning we had a district activity at the Julanders’ apartment! We watched a movie that was approved by our mission president to watch: Saratov Approach. Crazy, eh? Well, it was really good. Elder Halterman kept telling me to pretend that it’s the “Rostov Approach” and that they’re two sisters instead of two elders. I decided not to do that. J It was a fun activity.

We currently don’t have too many investigators, and we’re kinda back to square one in finding. 

<internet crashed... I'm navigating with solely keyboard buttons! For some reason that's working...>

Things are going pretty good here, and it's actually rainy today! It's great to hear all of those things about the homecoming as well, and I'm glad that those cards made it to you safely. I value those a lot.  [We received two SD cards from Elder Pearmain on Sunday, one was completely full of Elder Price’s photos from Liberia and the other contained many photos from Liberia and Ghana]

I'm doing my best and trying to get better, but it's not always easy. With some thought that I had this week I've realized that I wouldn't be who I am today if I had been in the Ghana Cape Coast Mission my whole mission, and I wouldn't be who I am today if I had been in Liberia the whole time. For some reason I'm supposed to experience both and learn from both. I just pray that I'm learning the right things. :) Thank you so much for your love. Have a great week!

Love,

Elder Price

"Ghana!"

16 February 2015

Solar!

Dear Family,

Hello! Happy Valentine's Day!

Whoah, that talk sounds awesome! Especially that stuff about that investigator in Doe Community. Why? Because I've met that man. I was teaching him, but we were mostly teaching his wife. He's awesome. That's really cool stuff to hear about. Widdison and Humphreys both served in Doe Community as well, but I'm sure you figured that out. :) Sweet pictures! ahh thank you for including the returning missionaries in this email! [Yesterday we attended Elder Zaugg's homecoming and shared stories from his talk and photos from before and after the meeting]

TRANSFER NEWS!

For Sekondi Elders... Nothing!!! Only a couple elders in our district are going; Elders Nielsen and Joseph (Draper, UT and South Africa, respectively).

We are getting a new zone leader, however. Elder Miskin is now transferred, and we are receiving... Elder Judy!!!!!! I'm way pumped for that one. Our apartment is far away from the zone leaders, so I still won't see them very much, but it will be awesome to have him over here. :) Other notes from the transfer... Nothin' really. We're glad that Elder Halterman is staying--he gets to continue teaching B. and A. I'm glad too because there are still places that I don't know too well. >.<

Other updates:

B. and A. are awesome! Unfortunately they were a bit busy this week, so we didn't get to see them too much. Also, B. was sick over the weekend with Malaria which meant that they weren't able to come to church. We visited them after church, though! When we saw A. on Wednesday or so with the Julanders, she asked us if she could feed us. So, how do you think two young guys will respond? Yes! When we came on Sunday we were greeted with an amazing meal of good jollof rice, plantains, great meat, a salad thing, with things like ketchup and soda for us! Yummy! :)

As for the dumsor dumsor, it's going to be much better after today. :) That's because of some SWEET stuff that's happening for the Sekondi apartment. Originally we were having the rough schedule of that, but it's been keeping us on our toes lately. We can't really tell WHAT the schedule is anymore. I still have some of the solar stuff [he took with him], and I appreciate it dearly. Other elders like that I have it. We have rechargeable lights, but ours only lasts for about 30 minutes. I still have that inflatable light, and that one is by far the best thing that I brought, light wise. I also have two solar flashlights. The big black crank and solar lamp that I brought was left in Liberia, and the solar charging headlamp broke in Liberia. But, speaking of solar... We've gone solar!!! Or are currently going. We are being used as the test apartment for having two GIANT deep cycle batteries (they each look like car batteries, but are 3x the size), which will charge from the regular current that we get from Ghana as well as some solar panels that they are putting on our roof. It's going to be awesome. :) No light off! They are currently in the apartment installing it; the other Sekondi elders are stuck there until we return. 
Solar panels and deep cycle batteries!
Also, in the realm of apartment improvement, they gave us a new door! Our old one was trash. It could've been kicked down by a 3 year old. Hm. Ghana is really safe.

I'm not going to be sending a camera card with Elder Pearmain... Maybe with Elder Guymon. Elder Guymon is in a far zone, so he'll be sleeping at our apartment tomorrow night before he goes to the mission home. I might send an old one, but it will mean that I no longer have any Liberia pictures and videos with me. But I guess that's okay. :) I haven't received my latest package... I am eagerly awaiting it. :)

On Tuesday we had a zone meeting! I mention it mostly because I wrote it in my notes to email home... haha. I bought banana bread. It's not as sweet as the stuff back home, and the heaviness is different, but it's not bad. It was a nice treat for me. :)

Monday night last week the missionaries going home from Western Region had a nice party with the Julanders. That meant that Elder Guymon came all the way from his zone, Tarkwa, to visit them! Because of the distance, a couple companionships from that zone slept over at our apartment that night. It was fun to chat with him for a bit! It was my first time seeing him since coming to Cape Coast Mission.

I never mentioned that I got a nice little sidebag from Elder Halterman! He bought a new one, so I took his old one that has gone through quite a bit but is still holding up fine. Just thought I'd let you know so you're not surprised when you see pictures with me and that bag. [It may be a while. It seems most of his pictures are of his companion these days:]

"We climbed down this thing, to the much laughter from the locals. :) 
It's a sandstone like wall with a million goats. Shortcuts!"
"Looking over Sekondi from the same wall."
This past week we had a celebration for Elder Halterman and Elder Allen! They have 6 months until they go home. Crazy how time flies, I'm only one transfer behind them. We celebrated making cake and chicken curry (from packages that parents sent their kids. Curry came from my companion, obviously [his family lives in Singapore]). We did this all up in the Julander's apartment and they made a bowl of mixed fruit. Yum! :) We stayed up too late.

There was another random night when Elder Halterman and I went up to collect some letters for us (I got one from the young men of the ward) and Elder Julander made us candy corn, kinda like caramel corn. It was really good. :)

In the Liahona that we recently received, there are some Africa West Area pages in the middle of it. This issue Elder Berrett wrote something about the Liberia YSA summit that happened last year, while I was still in Liberia. The best part about the article was the picture of four younger woman from Doe Community branch!!! Those 4 are awesome, and I know them well. [links to the article he refers to: online version and pdf version]
"Left to right: Helena Boakai, Favor, Sarah, and Princess"
I think that's it for this week. It's been strange this past week to think about home and what it's like. I'm not sad that I only have 5 transfers left, but it feels weird. I'll be hitting my 18 month mark this transfer, I believe. I'm trying to do my best! I'm still trying to change, despite being in the downhill where it's harder to change. I'm doing well, and mission is good!

I love you all so much!!!

Love,
Elder Price


"This kid is awesome. He's the 2nd counselor in the bishopric's son, and his returning from school routine goes like this: He gets home, changes out of his uniform, grabs food, eats the food, then sets up a stool and table with all his books and immediately begins to study. This was my first time to see such an impressive routine here! :) If only I'll be able to instill that in myself when I return."
"Looking from a ridge over a bunch of stuff toward the chapel--the big white point in the distance."
"Random road"
"Cat in the chapel. >.< :D "

09 February 2015

Dumsor, Dumsor

Dear Family!

Hello! Happy Monday! Happy February! Wait... it's Valentine's day this week. Happy Valentine's Day!

Sister Julander told me about her becoming friends with you on Facebook. I laughed and rolled my eyes. She's fun! They did an apartment inspection (kinda) this week! They walked through our apartment and critiqued small. But they didn't do a real inspection--they gave us some tips on cleaning before they'll come down and really inspect the place. 

Yes, I only have this week left in the transfer. Transfer news is this Saturday! It's felt pretty fast (mostly just normal), but I don't really think Elder Halterman will be leaving me quite yet. He's been here for 6 months, a decent amount of time, but I think it'll be a 2 transfer companionship. It's crazy to hear all the stories of people going home, especially that MTC because I knew most of those elders very well. All those pictures were so bizarre to see! I get to have Elder Baldwin and Elder Pearmain in this cafe with me, so we all gawked at the pictures quite a bit. People are HOME. O.o Strange. [I sent him a couple photos of Elders Cottrell and Zaugg at the SLC airport, home from Ghana]

Things are going well here! I forgot to take a bunch of pictures of the apartment... But I sent you one of our front room where we had our district meeting! 

We had our district meeting there because Elder Allen was way sick, and we wanted to provide a way for Elder Wight to be present for the meeting. So we did it inside! It's a different feeling when it's inside the apartment (through the districts I've been in I've experienced a various mix of meeting places), but it wasn't bad. It was a good instruction, despite Elder Halterman only getting about 30 minutes to prepare for it! We were running around most of the morning buying meds, then returning them, then buying a malaria test to replace the one we used in the apartment. That testing was hilarious; Elder Wight was the one trying to prick Elder Allen's finger, but he poked Elder Allen's finger something like five times before he even got blood to come out. But then the blood wasn't enough, but by the time they realized this (they being Elder Julander and Elder Wight), the blood had stopped flowing. So he had to poke again! And mess up again! And then he switched fingers and FINALLY got the blood needed. Fun morning. :)

We are on a new electricity schedule! It's now 12 hours on, 24 hours off. Dumsor dumsor (on off, on off). It's pretty funny to listen to locals rant about it. :) It's definitely not easy, but, y'know, we'll manage. Fridges won't exactly work as we usually use them... But I'm used to that by now, right? ;)

We taught a ton more lessons this week! It made logical sense, because we have been doing a lot of finding in the past while... But now we actually have people to teach! It's perfect! I hope it stays up like this now. It's much more enjoyable than trying to find new people.

There was one time this week when Elder Halterman and I had just finished walking a crazy distance and then had some failed appointments, so we were just sitting in the shade, cooling down, when something unique happened! We had been sitting for 5 or 10 minutes when a man nearby calls us over and asks us to sit with him and visit with him. It was really cool! Completely unplanned, but worked in a perfect way to fill the amount of time we had.

I went on an exchange into Kweikuma again this week! I went with Elder Barlow, another sleepover. Not too much to report on that. It wasn't bad! I was exhausted by the time it was all over, but it wasn't bad. Just normal. :)

Oh yeah, the palm butter. Here's the story: there's a return missionary sister from the Accra West Mission named Abigail, or Sister Essel. She's awesome! She's in Sekondi ward, and she served most of her time with Liberian companions. So she can speak their english and cook their food. :) She's recently returned; she's the same MTC as some elders who are still on mission and was in the same mission as Elders Bowring, Tolar, and Fairwell. She made Palm Butter for me. :) It was really good! 
Palm Butter
We also sat with her later in the week and she showed us all her pictures from her mission and such. It was crazy to see some people I know (my MTC mates, Liberia mates, etc)!

Anddd B and A. They're awesome. We taught A every day this week, as planned, and she just.. understood. And it all clicked. There was a time during the lesson on Friday when we were talking about baptism and her feelings about being baptized, the things we were teaching, etc when she said basically that if she hadn't been receiving answers to her prayers, didn't believe it, and so forth we wouldn't be sitting there right then. She's awesome. It was very blunt, but definitely in the right direction. :) B and A BOTH came to church on Sunday (they gave Elder Halterman and me a ride), and it was INCREDIBLE. This is no normal conversion process, and it's a blessing to be able to be a part of it. It makes any other hard time in this area or on mission seem completely bearable simply because of how great the joy is of an occasional hour or two on the occasional day or so.

I'm doing well... Not really too much to update ya'll on. I'm not getting sick or anything. I'm trying to do my best and remember why I'm here. I try not to think about the fact that each day is going by and the fact that I'll be going home is looming nearer and nearer, but I still have a decent amount of time. I can still do a lot! :)

Have an awesome week! I love you all so much!

Love,
Elder Price

Bonus photos: 
Elder Halterman, Elder Wight, and Elder Price
Our awesome member farming 
Elder Halterman wearing our member's SWEET hat. 
Walking down a path in Ghana
"Isn't West Africa unique? Yeah, I'm kinda used to it now. :P :) "
Elder Halterman on a bridge!
We found what? A train.
Then we "boarded" the train

02 February 2015

Turning the Other Cheek

Dear Family!

Hello! And Dad's half a century old! WOOT WOOT! :D Your week report sounds like a party (literally)! What an extensive birthday. I'm glad you liked it, Dad!

Answers to those questions and random thoughts:

Bamboo socks are working great! No problems. The inside of my "mission shoes" are getting pretty worn so I might switch back to the Eccos, but socks are fine! I got the pens!!! That part was awesome. :) The oils were there too. I did have a question about a couple of them... how do I use onguard? and lemongrass? I was going to ask you about the peppermint beadlets, but Elder Wight was familiar with those and told me how to use those.

That story about church was really good. I've always valued the experience I've had being raised with that other view/perspective of church a such. It's even a different view than most other elders here, and I've loved being able to share different views and sharing experiences about my family life in regards to the church and such. It's also given me some testimonies that feel unique to me. We're all different, and put where we are so that we can be in a place to most help others. It's just hard to see how we can help sometimes. :)

Water didn't get filled on Monday.... Which made for some big issues. But we scraped through and got water on Tuesday morning. Thank goodness the Julanders are next to us; otherwise I think we wouldn't have water right now. 

B. is awesome! I like him so much! But we did get a little disappointed this week. We had a great lesson on Friday with the Julanders joining us. Unfortunately, his wife still hadn't returned, but we were able to have a great lesson with him. His questions are very good, and it makes me like teaching! :) The disappointing part, however, is that he didn't make it to church on Sunday. We called him, and he explained that he traveled and would return at the end of the week. No problem, not a huge negative, but not a great positive. But then this morning. We received a text from him! He asked us to teach his wife every day this week at 2 pm. What a miracle! We haven't been getting too many lessons, and this is one of the lessons that we've been desiring so much to teach, but haven't been able to. Now we can! A ton! :D

On Friday we had our interviews with the Mission President. It was a pretty chill interview with Pres. Stevenson. No complaints! The whole meeting was good, and I received my package at the end of it! Great package. :) Although I missed not having Dad's letter in there. The treats were nice! Medaase paa! (thank you very much)

You saw the pictures of the interviews district meeting.. we did comment how my tie matched her dress, actually. :) It was funny! I've been wearing that tie a bit more often now, and I always get compliments about it. People like it! [his purple "wedding tie" is from Rikki's wedding, an event he missed while serving]
District meeting photos courtesy the Stevenson's blog
Oh yeah, on Tuesday we went to our coordination meeting, but Elder Allen was asked to help the YW learn a song to perform later on, so we all joined in in helping! We found a whiteboard and everything. It was really entertaining! 
"Don't judge me for not smiling. In the next one I am."
Over compensating smile?
Elder Price, Elder Allen, and a really awesome YW leader (she's a returned missionary)
Another random fun thing this week was Sunday evening. We went to the B's house for a wonderful meal, and I spent some of the time at the end getting slapped by their youngest boy, Junior. The video is hysterical. :) Hilarious kids in that family. 
Fufu with Tilapia!
[the pen is there so we can see the relative size of the meal.]
Turning the other cheek?  :)
Then at the end of the night we went up to the Julander's apt and watched a video about the journey of Lehi and his family from Jerusalem to the Americas! It was really insightful, and I enjoyed it with some treats. :) see pictures.
"Some treats"
Things have been good in our area, ish. We're working hard! Finding doesn't always show a whole ton of results, but there are always some good things. I'm learning a lot about starting conversations with Ghanaians. It feels weird to say that because it's such a "new-missionary" thing to be dealing with, but I've decided to always be trying to improve on it. Contacting here is different, and I've learned to accept that and now I'm trying to be good at it!

I love you all so much. Have a great week!

Love,

Elder Price


 Bonus photos:
Elder Halterman coming out of some bush in the blazing sun. No, this isn't what Sekondi looks like. I'm standing on a road. Behind me is more of a city.
My celestial photos. :) I took these during a sunrise!






 Sunset photos:




Random night shot from the stairs of the Julander's apt: