Monday, February 25, 2013

First Baptism!

Area:  Pukalani, Maui
Companion:  Elder Niemann

OK well I'm here again and I'm not really sure if I'll be able to transfer all of my thoughts into an email in 35 minutes (I had some technical difficulties). Kim's baptism was good I also got to be the witness which was cool. The confirmation went pretty good even though I was a little scared.

Elder Niemann, Kim and Elder Shoemaker -- First Baptism!
I also got to dress up as King Benjamin yesterday and teach some of the little children. Got to wear a rope and some sweet pajama looking clothes.

I'm a little afraid about getting fat, because really we eat at a members house every night.

I got to go on exchange with Elder Mortenson, so I got to be the zone leader for the day. We got to visit a sweet little village named Kahakuloa, the drive there was pretty crazy. Your driving right by the side of the ocean and there's only one lane, and there's tons of curves where you can't see the cars behind it, but the village is a awesome place, right by the ocean in this little ravine like thing.  While on exchange I got shot by a kid with a bleach squirt gun during the lesson, he also took his pants off right in the middle of it. Elder Mortenson had to go do something with another Elder so I was with the other greenie, Elder Green, and they tell us to teach this dude. But what they dont tell us is that he's basically blind, and he isnt really all there in the head. It was so funny, because you cant understand what the heck he was saying and were just nodding our heads and saying "yea, okay, uhuh". Then he fed us some like pigs ear which I ate but I gagged as it was going down. He says that his cigarettes gives him good fortune and power. That was a pretty fun day, kinda like a vacation from Pukalani.

O yea and there was also some crazy raining and like monsooning going down all over the place. One second blue sky's then the next it was flash flooding all up in here. Makawao calls us and they can't get to there pad because the roads flooded, Sister Kaimimokus car got taken away by the water and trashed (pretty funny). And some peoples house actually got swept away, so not that big of a deal. right? :/ We had to help a member bail out their house and by the end me and Elder Niemann were soaked all the way to the core. But yea it was pretty fun.  O ya and Pukalani is supposed to mean "hole in the heavens" because it doesn't rain there as much, but it actually rains quite a bit. Makawao always gets the rain though, so I'm pretty sure it was worse over there, rains every day there.

We also have this cat that likes to chill around our pad. We call it "cat", it always tries to get into our pad. But where not supposed to have pets, so he just chills outside, and we hear his meowing.

 Our mailbox got locked because we need to show proof of residency or something, so i yea that kinda sucks, havent got mail since Friday.  We're gonna have a water balloon fight as a zone at 1 o' clock today at Kehei so that should be good.

We found 8 new investigators last week, 2 from tracting the rest I think from less active, non members. We could get up to having two to three baptisms next month (maybe). Cuz we got this dude name Kalei, who said yes to baptism and this girl named Caitlyn who will also probably say yes to baptism, also a girl named Juvy  who has some issues but might say yes. Got some Portuguese guys that could possibly say yes, and maybe that old lady "D" who farted on me.   {leave it to Tanner....ha!}

So ya going pretty good I'm trying to remember all the questions that Grandma asked me, so I can remember but I now have 5 minutes and if I don't send soon this email will get erased, so sorry Grandma maybe I'll write you a letter with your answers, if I can remember the questions. Pigeon is just broken English, and a lot of the locals speak it.  Cya love ya later.

Mahalo nui Loa {Hawaiian for Thank you very much}

Elder Shoemaker

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Wingin' it by the Spirit

Area:  Pukalani, Maui
Companion:  Elder Niemann 

Aloha Family,

Ok, well yesterday was Presidents day so I wasn't able to come to the library, but we were able to find some time today. I don't actually live in Pukalani,  I live in Kula just letting you know - so thats that.

We got to feed some cows when we went up to the Akinakas house the other day it was pretty cool. Their house is up on this steep hill so we had to have four wheel drive so we had to get into Bro. Akinakas car. They got a pretty sweet view from their house. 

We also have a a baptism coming up on this Saturday, her name is Kim, so that's pretty sweet. Elder Niemann will be doing the baptizing and I get to confirm her in church on Sunday. I'm pretty scared but you know, you cant go wrong with a blessing. As a mission we are supposed to be baptizing one person a month as a companionship. Our goal for March is like 200 baptisms, its quite a lot. 

On p-day yesterday me and elder Niemann went to the Iao Needle it was pretty good view, but a little cloudy. Then we also went up and hiked the Waihe'e ridge trail. It was a pretty sweet hike and I got pretty dang muddy, and almost died like 5 times right next to a cliff.  {Mom's reaction-ahhhhhhhhhh!}

We went to go teach the H family the ten commandments the other day, and this family is just crazy off the walls. We went over all of them, then we had the H family translate them all into Pidgen. We also taught the T family whose kids are complete atheist, the little girl thinks that we came from aliens. O yea and there's this one guy from our ward whose name is Lad Akeo, he was football captain for BYU, thought maybe you might have heard of him?  He's my Elders Quorum teacher. We also went where some ancient Hawaiian dudes made human sacrifices, pretty messed up. 

Elder Niemann is a good companion and trainer though, he helps me out with all the stuff I struggle with and all that. Its weird to say, but I have actually been away from home for a whole month plus change. Its hard to really see 23 months into the future, but I know I'm gonna be here for a while.  I'm not very good at really making up stuff on the spot and most of mission work is just wingin' it by the spirit. 

I think I have that letter with my license stuff in it but I haven't open it yet so I haven't done anything with it yet.  And that's so cool that Matt R. is going to Guatemala, Thomas will like that. 

I'm trying to think of more words to say so bare with me.

Its kinda nice living up in Kula because its not to hot like down in the city but not really all that cold. Its only kinda cold in the morning because we don't have heaters and the house we live in has like no insulation. 

I'm still not that best teacher but I am trying, I guess that's why we have a companion to pick up your slack. We have exchanges later tonight, I'm a little nervous about who I'll be with. I seem to wright in my journal a lot, its a good way to relieve stress. 

We also didn't hike to the top of Haleakala we just drove, if we would have hiked we would have had to wake up at like 1am in the morning to see the sunrise. 

O yea and thanks Annie, Jackson and Charlee for all the stuff I really loved and appreciated it! 

Gots to go cya later I guess. 

Elder Shoemaker

Snail Mail Letters

Today we received not one, but TWO snail mail letters full of pictures from Hawaii!!

Elder Shoemakers letter:

Aloha, These are just some pictures I took while at the MTC and at Hawaii.   There's kinda a lot (he sent 30!).  I probably won't send as much next time.  I might just send the SD card then you guy's can look at them and put them on your computer and then send it back.  The pictures of Mount Haleakala don't do the view justice!

Mahalo Nui Loa, Love Tanner


Elder Geddes and Elder Shoemaker (From the same ward--- and good buddies)

Elder Dzieman (Tanner's MTC companion) & Elder Shoemaker in Hawaii

Elder Green and Elder Shoemaker at the MTC --- COUSINS!!

Sunrise at Mount Haleakala

Elder Shoemaker holding up the sun at Mount Haleakala

Elder Shoemaker's Pad

Banana Tree's in Elder Shoemaker's backyard
Elder Shoemaker's Closet!
Pulehu Chapel and Pad

Bonus drawing by Elder Shoemaker

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

ALOHA Elder Shoemaker

Elder Shoemaker's first day in Hawaii
In Tuesday's mail, we received a letter from President Dalton, the Hawaii Honolulu Mission President.  Included in his letter was a picture of Tanner with President and Sister Dalton.   It's so Swasome (Sweet + Awesome) to finally see that wonderful predictable Tanner smile and missionary name badge.

We also were instructed that when we send mail to Elder Shoemaker at the mission home, to send it USPS.  The reasoning behind this is that the missionaries are on different islands and USPS mail can be forwarded without additional costs.  If you send Fedex, DHL, or UPS that costs extra to forward which is then subtracted from the missionaries monthly budget.  Makes sense! 

I was able to do some detective work and find out his direct mailing address on Maui, which is list on the right side bar.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Pukalani Maui -- 1st Area!!

Area:  Pukalani, Maui
Companion:  Elder Niemann

Well this is aloha from the beautiful island of Maui! I’m serving currently in the Pukalani area and Elder Niemann is my companion. We live on the side of mount Haleakala, our pad (living quarters) is the oldest pad in the entire mission. Its right next to the Pulehu chapel, I think it’s the oldest church building in Hawaii (don't quote me on that). They call Maui the valley island because it is. We live up in the place that is called upcountry, because it’s on the side of the mountain and it kinda slants. But there’s mostly just green rolling hills. Just like 10 minutes ago I talked to a crazy homeless guy. I also talked to a crazy homeless guy in Oahu, he was talking nonsense. But yea it’s beautiful here, the islands small enough you can see the ocean on both sides. We were able to go on top of mount Haleakala and watch the sunset this morning. It was pretty sweet, we were there with our district. I don’t know our district here as well as our district at the MTC yet, because our MTC district was pretty close. I actually miss most of them a lot, but Elder Niemann is a GREAT trainer. He's been a missionary for 6 months.

 I’m gonna see if I can send some pictures, but if I cant then I’ll mail some home later ok? Make sure Thomas gets this too ok mom? I was over at the Kaimimokus house the other day, and I had the opportunity to have myself some taco poke (octopus) and it was ok, if you like gross cold rubber in your mouth. They also gave me poi, that stuff is a little weird and I had some terra plant or something. People over here think that if they feed the missionaries more that they get more blessings. So they don’t understand when you tell them your full.

I actually lost my wallet, (please don’t get mad at me) and I lost my driver license because it was in it and the cash that was in there. But I must have been really lucky or maybe God was looking out for me because I actually put my debit card in my pocket before I lost it. So were all good I think, except I don’t think I can get off the island without a license. I might have to get a Hawaiian license. If that’s so, I think I need my birth certificate and junk like that right?

 We don’t have any baptisms yet, but I think I might be close??? I don’t know, I’m still just trying to get everyone’s name right. Try giving a blessing when everyone’s name is like a whole sentence. Elder Neimann and I have the pad to ourselves so that’s nice. It’s such a sweet pad, it’s got a lot of history to it. One thing that I also didn’t expect was how cold it could actually get here! On top of Haleakala it was like 30 degrees, and with a boat load of wind.

O yeah, my P-days are Mondays if you haven’t guessed. It sucked because we left for Hawaii on our P-day so wasn’t able to email and all that. The plane ride was really quite long. I was going crazy because I had a window seat and I just stared out in the ocean for the whole time. By the end I was going a little mad. I don’t like how the wings on the plane move up and down that aint cool. But one of the girls from my MTC districts is in the Maui zone so that’s always nice. The Maui zone is comprised of Molokai, Maui and Lanai. Oahu has most of the zones with I think like 7? Elder Niemann keeps on telling me that I got really lucky when I got sent to Pukalani to start, because our pad is really quite at night can barely hear the cars. But there is this friggin’ rooster that always wakes me up, he’s a dumb bird.

It’s pretty scary being a missionary man, because when people see you, your not Tanner Shoemaker anymore. Your Elder Shoemaker - and people expect certain things from Elder Shoemaker that Elder Shoemaker sometimes doesn’t even know if he can do. That’s all I’m really gonna say about that.

We actually have a bunch of banana trees behind our house, with bananas growing on it. Church yesterday was pretty cool. They had me bare my testimony in church, it’s so weird because a lot of the buildings around here are like half built outside. I’m not sure if I’m going to be able to send pictures if I’m going to be writing more cuz I don’t have a lot of time.

We have car which is nice. We don’t do any bike riding. We have been doing a good amount of tracting lately, there was this rude lady that I didn’t really think kind thoughts about. Towards the end of the MTC I really started to love Elder Dzieman too, I actually really miss him.

It’s hard being away from home sometimes, I do miss having a solid support system to just be there for me. I just want to let Mom, Dad, Landon, Josh and Grandpa and Grandma and everyone else know how much I appreciate all that you’re doing for me, and that I love you a lot. You should totally get more people to mail me maybe, and those pictures you sent me Mom are like solid gold.

 Love you, got to go, pictures will probably come in the mail because I wrote such a long email and didn’t have enough time to figure it out. Okay?. So I guess I’ll be seeing ya!

 Elder Shoemaker