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Chat with mom January 26, 2015

Yo mommy Neicia is on!! Talk to me! I misses your face! I hear you are just doing great on my blog mommy!!! Keep it up!

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There isn’t much to do now because everybody has to wait until the rainy season is over to rebuild!! Water has been a real issue!! We are not allowed to drink in the area at peoples houses because of cholera! And we have had no running water!!! Pipes are all broken in all of Blantyre! Bottled water is very expensive so we don’t ever buy!!! I have been very dehydrated and got quite sick!! But it is really all good!! The zone leaders have been getting us clean water in our 2 liter bottles They’re out every night at the well because they have to do it for the whole zone and senior couples!! There are 24 people so they are busy!! The water turned on yesterday (which we still can’t drink)!! I have a filter in my flat that I use!! I got to take a shower mom!! Be grateful I know how much you like to be clean!! I got a shower!! I think I was in there for about 45 mins!!! I just sat there because I was sick but it was one of the happiest things ever!!! I got to shower!! I will tonight too if, hopefully, the water is on! But if not, oh well dirty is good too! I have a bucket! 😉
​I told you I was very sick this week! I didn’t get to work or go out much!! I feel almost all the way better!! My tummy is still hurt a little but I walked here so I am obviously doing better! Two days ago I couldn’t walk across the room without taking a break! I probably had bad water or something!! I ate some nasty chips that were probably soaked in gross water. Chips are french fries-kinda!! I like them!! I eat them every day! It’s just water is low so all the food places are closed. We were starving and found that place and I don’t think it was sanitary!!
People don’t like to talk about the flood too much! They just think happy thoughts and move on with their lives and I don’t want to pry and ask people to relive their trauma!  Agogo is safe! She lived in a strong house!! She’s as happy as can be! Not that I can speak to her but hey she is sweet!!
A little piece of our chat when I got off for about 2 minutes.
Neicia: You said you’d be back.
Me: Umm…I am. We’re chatting.
Neicia: Sorry, I was impatient! I’ll repent!
Me: I think you’re okay.
Neicia: Heavenly Father doesn’t allow ANY imperfection in his kingdom!
Me: Then DO repent, lol. Better now than saving it for later when you may forget. And I forgive you. I was just confused. No harm done…does that make you feel better?
Neicia: I don’t need your forgiveness! The Lord’s will suffice and God’s mercy!! But hey, yours doesn’t do harm! So I acknowledge your forgiveness and I thank you for it!
Me: LOL!
Neicia: No seriously, Mommy!

Then after she sent out the group email we had another little chat session:
Me: Awesome story. Just like your stories of perfect obedience. Loves that story from the MTC.
Neicia: Ha ha! Except this one was a joke!
Me: As in a joke like it didn’t really happen?
Neicia: Of course it happened!! As in nothing!! Just my mind humor!!! I’m on my mission. My jokes aren’t entitled to be funny to mere civilians mother!!! 😉
Me: ‘Tis true, Neicia. I just needed a little clarification after you confused me. 😉
Neicia: Sorry, I’ll repent again!!!
I’m going to Ndriandre tomorrow on exchanges. I’ve been there one other time. I have no idea how big everything is because I just stay in my area. Look it up! My area itself is pretty big! I still have yet to get everywhere!! Not that it’s humongous though!! There are many houses very close together! Sometimes I’m talking like 1 1/2 feet from one another!! So it’s lots of people to see! I already have too many people to get to in a week!
No, but honestly we are fine! Life is going like it normally does!! It’s sunny today!! Pipes are being fixed and all the people have been relocated!! We even just had a party in the branch! We are happy! Things are good! 🙂

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Group Email January 26, 2015

WELL THIS WEEK, BIT TOUGH! BUT HEY IT’S A MISSION!! SO I AM GOING TO TELL YOU A STORY OF HUMILITY!
REMEMBER LAST WEEK, I SAID WE WERE THE ONLY ONES WITH WATER IN MY FLAT!! KK SO BECAUSE OF THAT LAST WEEK ON WEDNESDAY THE SISTERS IN THE ZONE AND THE ZONE LEADERS ASKED IF WE WOULD MAKE THEM DINNER! THEY ALSO HAD NO ELECTRICITY! SO THE SISTERS SAID IF WE DID THEN THEY WOULD BUT US HOT DOGS ON MONDAY! SO WE SAID DEAL!! WE MADE A TON OF FOOD!!! IT WAS FOR 7 PEOPLE!! I’M USED TO COOKING FOR 2! WE USED UP A LOT OF GROCERIES AND TIME! BUT WE MAKE THEM A REALLY GOOD MEAL!!! RAPE, VEGGIES WITH MEAT AND RICE!!! IT REALLY WAS GOOD!!!
SO LAST MONDAY WE WERE ALL HUNGARY RIGHT!! SO SISTER GRIFFUS SAYS “LETS GO GET HOT DOGS!!!” THE SISTERS JUST WERE RELUCTANT AND DIDNT WANT TO!! WELL, WE WERE LIKE WHAT THE CRAP!! AND THEY ALL STARTED TO LEAVE!! LEAVING US ALONE WITH EMPTY STOMACHS!! WE WERE ALL PLAY BICKERING AND LAUGHING THEY WERE LIKE “OH SISTERS COME ON!!! WE WILL GIVE WHEN WE WANT TO GIVE!!!”  AND SO I YELLED “HAVE FUN GOING BACK TO NO WATER!”
WELL, WE WALKED HOME TO A FLAT WITH NO WATER!! THE NEXT DAY NO WATER!! ALL OF BLANTYRE NOW HAS NO WATER!! THE ZONE LEADERS ARE RUNNING AROUND FILLING EVERY BODIES WATER JUGS AT THE FILLING WELL!! STILL NO WATER!! WEDNESDAY MY COMP WENT TO THE HOSPITAL FOR SOMETHING SMALL SO IT WASNT A BIG DEAL BUT WE HAD TO STAY HOME THE REST OF THE DAY! AND GUESS WHAT NO WATER!!! THURSDAY CAME ALONG AND BOOM WE GET TEXTS THAT SAY THERE IS GOING TO BE WATER IN THE AREA!! WE WERE SO EXCITED!! WE CONTINUED TO READ “DO NOT DRINK THIS WATER BECAUSE THERE IS CHOLORA IN IT…” NO WATER!! I STARTED TO FEEL ILL THAT NIGHT! FRIDAY ROLLED AROUND AND THE ALARM WENT OFF AT THE STANDARD 6:30! I PUSH IT OFF AND WENT BACK TO SLEEP! I AM SICK!! AT 8 MY COMP IS LIKE MAN WHY ARE WE STILL SLEEPING AND SHE JUMPS UP CONFUSED! I JUST SAY “SICK I WANT NYQUIL!” SO SHE GOT ME SOME AND I WENT TO SLEEP!!! THEN I THREW UP MY NYQUIL! JOY!!! WHY AM I SICK YOU MIGHT WONDER!! MY GUESS A MIXTURE BETWEEN DEHYDRATION AND POSSIBLY THE LITTLE WATER I GOT BEING BAD! SO I AM ILL!! MY COMP MADE ME GO OUT!! THAT’S FINE IT WAS A PARTY AND WE WERE CHARGED! BUT STILL ILL! I JUST SAT IN A CORNER AND WATCHED PRINCE OF EGYPT!! MAN THAT IS A SWEET MOVIE!!! PLUS I’M WAS ALLOWED TO SEE TWO MOVIES NOW ON MY MISSION! BOOM! SUNDAY THOUGH! BACK TO BED!! TOO ILL!!! NOT MONDAY! I AM FEELING A LOT BETTER!! WHY YOU MIGHT ASK!! WELL MY FRIENDS ITS BECAUSE MY WATER CAME ON LAST NIGHT!!! GUESS WHO GOT TO TAKE A SHOWER!! OH YEAH!!! SHOWER MAN! THAT WAS THE BEST!
BUT THE MORAL TO THIS EMAIL IS DON’T EVER BRAG ABOUT THE BLESSINGS THE LORD HAS GRANTED YOU! IF YOU DO HE WILL MAKE SURE YOU REGRET IT!! 🙂
LOVE YOU ALL!
SISTER NEICIA MARIE BROWNING!
SORRY NO PICS AGAIN!!! MY CHIP HAS A VIRUS AND I CANT DOWNLOAD ANYTHING…
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Pictures January 19, 2015

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So much washed away because of their mud mortar and uncooked mud bricks. They couldn’t hold up under so much water.

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Grey skies are going to clear up. Put on a happy face.

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Sister Griffus

Neicia asked me, “Does the news say how many are lost!? That is the one I feel really bad about!! Not knowing if they are alive or dead! It’s not like they have the means to find the family!!! It was like “The Impossible.” I am sure that’s how many people felt trying to find their family members!!! It all happened in the middle of the night too! All of the sudden they were just being swept away in a river! Most the people that died are children and old people!”  The latest stats I’ve been able to find are 176 dead, 155 missing, 200,000 displaced.

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She said the phrase pangono pangono means little by little.  I thought of that phrase when I saw these pictures of recovery.

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Group Email January 19, 2015

SO THIS WEEK STARTED OFF ROUGH!! LIKE VERY ROUGH!!! SO, REMEMBER HOW I SAID THERE WAS A STORM THAT WIPED OUT THE ELECTRICITY LAST WEEK? WELL IT DIDNT STOP RAINING! NOT FOR DAYS!!! IT WAS SO BAD THAT IT FLOODED AND DESTROYED EVERYTHING. HALF OF MY AREA HAS BEEN DESTROYED!! ALL THE HOUSES ARE GONE… THERE ARE 160 DEAD SO FAR, DONT KNOW HOW MANY MISSING AND 200,000 PEOPLE HAD TO MOVE DUE TO THEIR HOMES ARE GONE OR PARTLY GONE. IT IS ALL VERY SAD!!! LOTS OF PEOPLE IN MY WARD HAVE MOVED BUT LUCKLY NOBODY DIED! THEY HAD FAMILY MEMBERS DIE THOUGH AND THAT WAS VERY SAD!  SO WE HAVE BEEN TRYING TO HELP OUT! AND WE CALLED ALL OVER AND TRIED MAKING SURE PEOPLE WERE ALRIGHT!! I AM SO SURPRISED MORE PEOPLE DIDN’T DIE!! MANY ARE INJURED THOUGH AND IN THE HOSPITAL.  SO IT HAS STILL BEEN RAINING AND WE JUST PRAY THAT THE FLOOD DOESN’T COME AGAIN!!
BUT, KEEP ALL THIS IN MIND!! HOMES DESTROYED, PEOPLE MISSING OR DEAD, AND THEN, LISTEN TO THIS:  THE AFRICANS ARE HAPPY. I CAN’T EXPLAIN IT. IT IS SO AMAZING TO ME. THE DAY IT ALL HAPPENED I DIDN’T SEE ANYBODY CRYING. SOME WERE LAUGHING EVEN. PLAYING IN THE WATER. IT’S NOT LIKE THIS HAPPENS ALL THE TIME, THEY JUST ARE SO MUCH MORE HUMBLE. THEY KNOW THAT THEY’RE LOVED ONES ARE WITH GOD AND IN A BETTER PLACE THAN THEY WERE ON EARTH! THEY ARE JUST HAPPY AND LOVING. THEY WERE JUST TO THANKFUL THAT THEY’RE ALIVE, EVEN THOUGH SOME LITERALLY JUST HAVE THE CLOTHES ON THEIR BACKS WE WERE ALL JOKING THAT GOD WAS CONFUSED. FIRST ALL THE MALAWIANS WERE PRAYING FOR RAIN AND WHEN HE GAVE IT TO THEM THEY PRAYED FOR IT TO STOP. PEOPLE HERE ARE FUNNY! I LEARN FROM THEM EVERYDAY BUT I REALLY LEARNED FROM THEM THIS WEEK. I LOVE THESE PEOPLE.
SO I MADE FUN OF THE ELDERS FOR KEEPING BUCKETS OUTSIDE TO COLLECT RAIN WATER RECENTLY BUT I HAVE FOUND THAT IT IS KIND OF A SURVIVAL THING RIGHT NOW. SO NOBODY HAS HAD WATER FOR DAYS EXCEPT FOR MY APARTMENT. WEIRD. LOTS OF MISSIONARIES ARE THERE EVERY NIGHT FILLING UP WATER JUGS. THE ONLY THING KEEPING PEOPLE FROM DEHYDRATION IS THE RAIN WATER. SAD THAT ALL OF BLANTYRE HAS NO WATER. CHURCH WAS CANCELLED THIS WEEK BESIDES SACRAMENT BECAUSE OF IT ALL!!
SO NOW FOR A LIGHTER MOOD:
I WAS ASKED OUT BY A 1/2 WHITE 1/2 INDIAN MAN THIS WEEK. WEIRD THING IS HE ASKED MY COMP OUT TOO!! WANTED TO TAKE US OUT TO EAT AND THEN SALSA DANCE. HE ASKED IF WE WERE ALLOWED TO GET MARRIED! HAHA THAT MAN! OH, HE IS ALSO MY LAND LORD!!! I DON’T KNOW HIS NAME! FLIRTATIOUS LITTLE INDIAN MAN! HAHA!
I GOT TO STUDY MY CANDLELIGHT!! THAT WAS FUN!!! I FELT LIKE JOSEPH SMITH!! I DON’T KNOW WHY BUT I DID!!!
WE GOT LOCKED OUT OF OUR APARTMENT BECAUSE I LEFT THE KEYS IN THE BEALS CAR AND IT WAS RAINING BUT WE HAD FUN! EVEN THOUGH IT WAS PITCH BLACK AND RAINING WE JUST DANCED!! SAW A NASTY BIG SPIDER CHASING US AND WE RAN FOR IT! OUR GUARD WAS JUST LIKE “AMERICANS.” OH, THEN THE BEALS CAME HOME AND THE KEYS WEREN’T THERE! SO I CHECKED MY BAG AND REALIZED I HAD THEM ALL ALONG!! BUT HEY WE HAD FUN! 🙂
SO I CANT REALLY THINK OF ANYTHING ELSE!! IT WAS A SLOW, SAD WEEK BUT ALSO HAPPY!! HARD TO BE SAD WHEN EVERYBODY IS HAPPY! I AM SAFE THOUGH AND FEEL SO BLESSED.
ANYWAYS I LOVE YOU ALL!! COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS, YOU HAVE MANY!!!
LOVE SISTER BROWNING!
P.S.  I TAUGHT A MALAWIAN WOMAN HOW TO MAKE AMERICAN SALAD THIS WEEK! SHE WAS JUST LIKE “WOOOOW.”
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Group Email 1/12/2015

I am disappointed in everybody!!! No happy birthdays man!!! I am 2 months old today!!! I figured you would all remember that!!! Geeez  😉 no but my awesome companion woke me us to green pancakes in the shape of a 2!!! Boom aint she great!!!

Hey my family, and friends!!! This was a fun week!!! Let’s see, so I ended up in a trio this week!! That was fun!! I was with sister Mantungwa and Griffus!!! They were companions before!!! Ha it was a bit weird because they were comps like two weeks ago and then they ended up being comps again, but with me!! That was fun!!

Nothing to epic happened I don’t think! I am trying to remember!! We worked very hard!! Probably the hardest I’ve worked on my mission! It was also one of my favorites!!! I have been exhausted!!! But it is all good! Knew that that would happen before I went out on mission!!!

I attempted to make Nishima yesterday!!!  That was fun 🙂 ha I spent the majority of the day at a members house!!! It was raining so hard!!! When it rains we cant really do much!! Nobody wants to talk to us out in the rain and you cant hear anything in the houses!! Metal roof tops!! So when it rains we just take cover and wait it out!! Unfortunately it hasn’t stopped raining since!!! Still raining… now the power is out!! Hopefully it comes on soon or else nobody is going to get this email I will just be tortured to see the emails from people but can’t open them!!! I think I might murder people!!!

I am at one of the senior couples houses emailing because I am ill… isn’t that great… it isn’t to bad!!! Just a bad head cold probably from the rain!!! So I figured out why my tummy has been hurting since I arrived!!! It’s because I grew up eating processed food!! Then you come here and eat EVERYTHING straight from the ground!! Even though I would eat the same things its different because we are making it all from scratch!! But It tastes better!!!

So what else can I tell you that you would care about?! I will make a list of things that are different from home to my new home!!!

1. Xing milk

2. Combees (scary taxi van that we have to ride daily and we almost die!! )

3. Here ketchup is called tomato sauce!

4. We use military time!

5. There are walls around many houses to help keep people out! On the top of said walls is broken glass!

6. There is no carpet in the houses! Not even in my flat!!!

7. There are no toilets where I work!! They just have a whole in the ground!! I have gotten very good at waiting until I get back to my flat!!

8. They pronounce there z  like “zedee” (w x y zedee!!) I get strange looks sometimes!

9. They cut the grass with a machete! No lawn mowers here! Tell that to the girls next time they complain about having to mow the lawn, dad! (I still don’t want to though when I get home!)

10. Here we have a store called “game” which is a mini Walmart!! It is even owned my Walmart!! I discovered it last Monday!!!

Well I cant really think of much things to write about!!  So you all get to read a spiritual thought:

 So I have been watching a lot of conference lately, I loved a lot of the talks!!! I loved a line by Elder Ballard! He said something like this: An evil man could never write the book of Mormon, and a good man never would unless he were instructed from God! I loved this quote!!! It is very true I hadn’t really thought about it that way!!! I do know though that an evil man would never be able to write a book so sacred as the Book of Mormon! And A righteous man only would if God had told him to!! The Book Of Mormon is seriously wonderful! One of the main things I have learned here on my mission is that it is a sacred book!! Before I believed in it, I had a testimony of its truthfulness but I didn’t fully grasp just how sacred it is!!! I Didn’t fully appreciate how much pain and tribulation prophets had to go through to write, translate and protect it! I still don’t fully appreciate or understand but I will keep trying!!

I was listening to a talk this morning while getting ready, I don’t remember who by, but it was talking about the Savior!!! They asked a question to mothers “who would intentionally put there child through pain and make them cry?” Then he said “Almost every child comes out of the doctors office crying and sad but a mother does this because she knows that only by doing this can the child be protected in the future.” Heavenly Father had to watch his son suffer for all the sins of man kind and suffer on the cross, but he did it because he understood that it was the only way we all can be saved!

The same can be said about the prophets that wrote, translated and protected the Book of Mormon. Even though these men went through hard trials and some even suffered death, there was a reason. If they didn’t go through these things we wouldn’t have the Book Of Mormon and we wouldn’t have sufficient knowledge to return to our Father in Heaven again!!

I am very thankful for the gospel and for the Book of Mormon. I know that it contains the fullness of the gospel and that it goes hand and hand with the Bible. I am eternally thankful for Christ and for the prophets that had to go through so much to give me the opportunities to learn and to grow. I love this church, it is the only true church on the earth!! And I love my mission!! I love being able to see lives change and to see how happy people get when they learn about Christ’s true church!! It is amazing!!! I love you all!!!

Here is a challenge for you all to complete. I have learned that we must challenge everybody we talk to. I have been doing this and it has really built a better relationship with both my heavenly father and companions!!

1. Kneel down and thank God for EVERYTHING you have. Then ask for ways to serve others. Pray for each family member or person in need. After completing your prayer just sit and ponder what you have said in your prayer!! Then lastly act. You will find ways to serve those you prayed for!!! It can be something simple like cleaning the kitchen or front room!! Little things mean a lot!!! The last thing to do is to pray as a family. And the person saying the prayer should pray for others. For some reason this is a little hard!!! Maybe it was just for me, to pray for my companion when she can hear me. But I know that it builds friendship and love. It means a lot to me when my companions pray for me and pray for my family. When you are done with that, report. Report to the Lord and tell him how you feel, and ask him to help you even more.  Again thank him for helping you have the spirit in your home..  I promise that if you choose to do this then your relationship in the home and with your family will become stronger!! You will feel more love towards one another!!! Mom make sure you guys do this, yes girls it is like a coom-by-ah (don’t know how that is spelled.) moment but deal with it! It’ll be good!

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Pictures 1/5/2015

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Email 1/5/2015

​Well this week was chill!!!  So life was going great until Tuesday night at 10:15 p.m. as I am trying to sleep I got a call from the ZL!  Thinking that they are asking if we need any supplies my comp answers!!  Nope, transfers!!  WHAT!!! I have only had my comp for a month!! But here we don’t have transfers every 6 weeks like most missions!  Here it is when ever president says!!!  One time sister Dlamini had a comp for 2 weeks!!  Well, she got transferred to Ndirande and I am still here in Zinwangwa!!! Sister Griffus is my new comp! She is great! She is from Minnesota! Nice to have an American to talk to!
So the week became VERY SLOW!!! It wasnt the most productive thing to have a new missionary who cant speak and doesnt know her way around, be the one who had to help the other missionary learn the area!!! This week will be good though! We are going to work very hard and I am very excited to lose myself in the work!!!
So Sunday, as you all know, two wonderful people were baptized and covenanted with there father in heaven!! I am so happy for them!!! To bad Sister Dlamini couldn’t be there!! But, It is so exciting to see a family brought together by the gospel! It truly does bring happiness!! I just love this church!!! And these people!!
Anyways, really though the week wasn’t too crazy!!! Well, besides having to move a missionary out and another in and then being lost the whole time in our area! But hey, it was all good!!! Oh, and two missionaries haven’t gotten here from transfers yet so that is crazy! I think I will end up in a 3-some tonight! That should be fun!! Some African countries hate others! So the missionaries from Congo have a hard time being allowed to come here to Malawi!  The countries here are funny that way!!  Most of the missionaries here weren’t called to this mission!  They all just get rejected and have to come here! Even the Americans!  It’s crazy!!! Zambia is chill and collects all the missionaries who can’t go to where they were assigned!!  Interesting fact: Sister Dlamini was called to Liberia but was transferred because of the Ebola!!  But she served there for two months until is was closed!  Somebody she knew had it even and then they died like a week later! So that is sad!
Oh, because I hate washing my laundry so much I hired somebody to come and wash it!! That’s fun! She came for the first time today! That was nice!!! I like her!! She is like 20 and is the YW president in our branch! She has her mission papers almost done and then she will be leaving!
Oh, I had to teach primary! That was fun!  Because of the rain there were like 5 children!  Ha!
Life is good! Sister Griffus is super funny! We get along well! It’s all chill!
Love Sister Browning!
P.S. Send me letters!