Ya, here we go again.  Welcome to the hastily written email by Sarah Taylor for you, my lovely family! 

There's something about the food here that is just so fun to talk about.  Probably my favorite thing to talk about.  So this week I was in charge of all the cooking for us 4 sisters in our apartment.  Which to say the least, it's an honor and a burden at the same time.  It was my first time buying everything at the market, I was so proud of my skills with the people, buying all this awesome Filipino food (especially being a white person) and being able to talk to the people.  Markets are just so different here, that seriously, coming out alive (and with food even!) is an awesome accomplishment.  Gold star on my forehead for that day:).  Then I realized that I had to find ways to cook this food.  We all know I struggle cooking in the US let alone in some crazy country where they don't believe in knives, ovens, and pans.  HA so pretty much everyday was "let's just experiment."  I made french toast, tried tacos (fail), Hawaiian haystacks (a little better because it involves rice), and MOM YOU WOULD BE SO PROUD OF ME!  I learned how to skin and clean fish and chicken even though it is soooo nasty- because in the Philippines all the meat is soooo f.r.e.s.h.  So ya, another gold star for that.  Also, I learned to make mango float!  Mom, please talk to Sister Findley about making this because when I get home, it's all I'm eating.  It's cake with mango's, condensed milk, and graham cracker stuff all in layers, you will dieeeeeee.  Except I'm sure the mango's at home are nothing like the mango's here.  Ha wanna-be's:) 
I tried halo-halo too!  I remember looking up the different foods in the Philippines before I got here at the coolest looking dessert was halo-halo.  Ever since I got here I've been looking and asking around for where the best place is to buy it and I finally had it on Wednesday!!!!  So basically, the word halo means a mix or everything and so literally that's what this dessert is.  Look it up on the Internet sometime.  It has ube ice cream, beans, gelatin, flan, rice, rice flakes, condensed milk, some random red squishy stuff, shaved ice, and tofu.  Haha doesn't that sound crazy?  To be honest, it wasn't as good as I thought it would be- beans in a dessert mixed with ice cream is just not okay.  But check it off the list, more Filipino culture! 

So, last week I mentioned we had to move.  We found an apartment next door to the district president (equivalent to a stake president in the states) and it is pretty small but so much more safe.  We were having a lot of problems at our old apartment with creepy guys (don't freak out though please, it's fine now) and so we have a couple gates here at our new apartment and all the president's dogs to guard us:).  The outside of the house is teal colored with darker blue stripes around it:)  Inside the walls are bright orange, haha oh the Filipino's.  We cleaned our old apartment, moved everything out, cleaned our new apartment, and moved everything in all on Tuesday.  It was the worst.  And there is still a lot of remodeling that has to be done in our new apartment (like it doesn't have floors or a toilet seat) so all our furniture is outside until probably next week still.  I'm pretty sure that I'll just be living the rest of my transfer here from a suitcase (literally) if the remodeling takes as long as they say it will.  Adventure, right?  But it's the greatest living right next door to your best friends:)

Along with a new apartment this week will be coming a new companion on Wednesday.  Sister Tanielu left yesterday afternoon after church and wow, so so hard.  She was such a nice, patient, and perfect missionary, seriously so good at everything.  I'll definitely miss her.  Now that I don't have a companion (I'm on splits with the other sisters in our apartment until Wednesday) I feel sooo lost and alone in our area.  It's hard now because even though I've only been here a little tiny bit of time, I realized how much I'm going to have to lead my new companion even though I feel like I have no idea what I'm doing.  It's been a struggle.  Until yesterday, I thought that I could probably do it and be fine.  Now, we're just going to take it day by day.  But I'm still here!  I'm still being a missionary! 

The River we cross to get to one of the Villages
Last week on one of the last days Sister Tanielu was here, we went to a part of our area that that's suuuuuper far away (takes about 20 minutes on a tricycle or jeepney) and literally the middle of nowhere.  In order to get to the village, we had to hike up our skirts, take off our shoes, and cross a river up to our knees (probably 40-ish feet wide).  Then we went though a forest for a couple minutes on a tiny path (palm trees, cows, frogs, and random unknown insects).  It is what I thought the whole Philippines would be like.  The houses there were all made from palm fronds and little huts like you see in the movies.  SOOOO COOL!  They were all so nice, so happy, the only problem is that because they are all so far away from the church, none of them are able to come to church on Sunday.  I really like these people though.  And I felt like a jungle explorer with some crazy indigenous people, which is great added bonus:)

Update on one of our investigators- remember the Barecante family with all the financial problems?  Well, they started coming to church and absolutely love it (we pay for them to get there).  It's still really hard for them to be there with so many things they still have to do at home, but I think they are starting to see the blessings.  They are supposed to be baptized the end of this month, they are so ready.  Then yesterday we went to go pick them up for church and Sister Barecante was super sick, had just come home from the hospital, and so now everything is kind of stopped.  She doesn't have any medicine (can't afford to get it or go to the doctor again) so yet again, they're in a hard situation.  Satan is definitely working hard on them, I feel so bad because they just encounter problem after problem and I can't help them with any of it.  So, just keep praying for them.

Now, to answer some of dad's questions:
We have zone leaders (mom- remember Elder Fonsbeck?  He was one of our ZL, but he got transferred last week so not anymore), district leaders, and sister training leaders (girl equivalent of zone leader).  The leaders in our zone are pretty awesome, but transfers are this week, so we'll see if they're fun anymore (joke'lang- maybe).  For reporting our statistics for the week, we just text the STL's and DL's.  Thankfully we don't have to call them.  Sometimes they call to see how things are going but it's pretty random. For statistics, we have to report investigators baptized, investigators going to be baptized, investigators that came to church, lessons taught with a member present, progressing investigators, referrals, and total church attendance.  I'm pretty sure those stats are the same no matter where you are.  Here in our mission, President focuses so much on lessons taught with members present and referrals.  Honestly, stats really annoy me and I try not to focus on them. 
Moving in Pajamas
For my routine in the morning, most our clothes just hang on the clothesline all week because it either takes them that long to dry or I'm too lazy to bring them inside and fold them all.  We're always doing laundry.  Also when we do laundry, all these frogs come out of nowhere are sit under the counter where we wash clothes.  I have no idea why.  I sit in front of a fan during personal study and dry my hair while I read my scriptures (at first I tried to eat breakfast too, but food got all over my scriptures and hair because of the fan ahah), and then we have language study and then usually I write letters or clean until we start proselyting at 2pm.
Bug stories: There are so so so many.  But just because I deal with bugs now does not mean I am any less scared of them.  I've squished cockroaches a lot, one time there was one hiding in my shoe when I put it on and it ran out and over my foot as I was putting it on.  Ya so many

Funny story: So when we were moving on Tuesday, I spent the whole day in my pajamas (picture attached) and didn't match my clothes just to be funny.  I thought it wouldn't matter because we were just moving but in the afternoon, the mission president, assistant's to the president, our zone leaders, district leaders, and district president all came to help us move.  So here I am, the brand new missionary, greeting all these leaders in my dirty pajamas.  So so awkward and so funny.  All of them now won't let me forget it.  Let's just say hopefully that's not what the mission president remembers about me. 

Well, love you all!  Have a great week!