Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Philippines Grand Finale!

Ok, this is finally it. The last of our trip to the Philippines. Wednesday we left the beautiful Bohol Beach Club and made our way back to Cebu.

One last walk and a few pics of the beach

A big yucky beetle

I think this is a banana tree, it was in the front of our hotel. I want one for my yard.

On the boat back to Cebu. We had front row right in front of the big screen.

The famous Jollibee's. Nels loved this place while he was on his mission. It was in the mall right next to the Marriot in Cebu. It's like the Filipino version of McDonald's. We ate here twice.

Nels and Ben got to golf at the Cebu Country Club on Thursday while Becky and I went to the spa and had a massage and facial.

They even had their own caddies.
Thursday afternoon, we met up with Rita Cuevas (on the far left) and she took us around one of Nels' old areas and also where she lived. This is her mom, dad, sister, and nephew.
In the house of another gal Nels baptized. She is the one next to Nels. She isn't active any longer.

Thursday afternoon we saw an older missionary couple in lobby of the hotel. He told us to go to the Temple that evening and he would get us into a VIP tour (the real open house didn't open until Friday morning). So that night we headed up to see the Temple. My Uncle is the Bishop of the new Temple President in Idaho Falls and they had heard we were coming. They invited us into their office and gave us our own personal tour. It is a beautiful Temple and was such a great experience for us.
Nels and I with Rita and Brother Gaso.

Nels and Ben crammed in the back of Brother Gaso's car on the way to dinner Thursday night.

Becky and I (Looks like I need a tan!)

Dinner at AA BBQ. It was kind of like Tucano's Filipino style. We didn't realize how much food we had ordered. Brother Gaso had his two sons come and eat with us and the bill for all 8 of us was only $58. We even sent bags of food home with Rita and Brother Gaso.
It was also the only place we found "Lift"(like MT Dew). Nels really liked this on his mission too.

Friday morning we went through a regular session of the open house.

The girls putting little white booties on our feet before we went in.
This girl was in our group going through the open house (Sister Florentes). She thought Nels looked really familiar. Turns out that she served in McKay's mission.

An American in a Filipino hat!

The kids are sooo cute!

Another crazy shot of their power lines.

Saturday we went up to the Taoist Temple.

Us acting like a dragon, it's in the picture up above.

Cebu tops, on a clear day you can see the whole city.
The "love bell". Hold hands and ring the bell. It was very loud!

Nels has a pic like this with him and all his mission buddies. I bet he never thought he would get one like it with his wife! (except he wasn't holding their hands) :)

Leaving Saturday night. Brother Gaso was kind enough to take us to the airport.

Almost home in the Seattle airport!

I will say this was the most incredible experience I have ever had. I feel so blessed that I was able to go back with Nels. Did I ever tell you the story of Elder Oaks personally telling me to go back with Nels? He came up in April of '09 for a Stake Conference. He stayed with my parents and we were lucky enough to have dinner with him before he flew out on Sunday. Elder Oaks had lived in the Philippines and my brother-in-law Jake expressed that I was really nervous to go over with Nels. He told me that I should go because it was apart of my husbands heritage. I am so grateful that I did! What a blessing this experience has been! I would love to go back and serve a mission there one day.

A huge thank you to all of those who made it possible for me to go! Monica, Quincy and especially Janis for taking the time off of work to come stay with the kids. I am truly grateful! Thank you!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Tuesday In the Philippines

Tuesday we did some fun tourist things on Bohol.

Up with the sun again, you can't beat an early morning walk on the beach to a beautiful sunrise.

Breakfast with a beautiful view!

This was the path we walked to get to our room.
This is the Blood Compact Shrine. Filipino Chief Sikatuna and Legaspi from Spain back in the 1500's made a blood compact to not fight with each other.

Baclayon Church, this is the oldest catholic church in the Philippines.

Our first time in the confession box.

Chocolate Hills- There are 1,776 hills like this. They think that this used to be a coral reef under the ocean that has broken down and formed little domes.

The kids really wanted us to get a picture with a caribaw (water buffalo). It was kind of a nasty one, it was caked in mud, notice how Nels was trying not to get too close.

Nels and Ben waiting for our boat ride on the Loboc River.

This was hands down the most beautiful scenery I have ever seen.

So grateful that I live in America and don't have to wash clothes like this.

Along the river the filipino people performed some of their custom dances. This little boy was our favorite.

These are Tarsiers (the smallest monkey in the world). They have really big eyes, which will explain the next picture of me :).

We weren't supposed to hold them, but our tour guide asked if we could. So I got to hold the smallest monkey in the world. It was pretty cool.

Here's one with some genetic defects! LOL!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Philippines Day 2

Monday was probably my favorite day. We woke up early, went for a walk on the beach, and had breakfast. At 8 am we met up with our driver and headed to Calape to try and find some of the people that Nels baptized. It was about an hour drive from our hotel and I really enjoyed seeing the countryside on the way there. Lots of rice fields and little huts scattered all over. There was still garbage, but not nearly as much as Cebu. We stopped in the town of Calape and walked around. It was so humbling to see how these people live and survive. My bedroom is bigger than most of there houses.

Sunrise Monday Morning

We found lots of shells for the kids on the beach. There was a little crab living in this one.
We found Nels' old apartment where he lived for 7 months. While we where taking pictures outside The people who lived there came out and invited us in for snacks (we had no idea who they were). I was a little nervous to go in, these were my exact thoughts, "oh crap, it's only our 2nd day and I'm going to get sick." We didn't want to be rude so we went in and luckily they fed us little muffins that they must of made for breakfast, watermelon, and coke. I was very relieved! It was fun to see where Nels lived and cool that he got to eat in his old apartment.

Nels outside his apt. 13 years ago.

Nels outside his old apt. 13 days ago. As you can see, they have done a lot of work to it. This was actually one of the nicer houses in town.

They took tons of pictures while we were there, they said we looked like movie stars (I liked that, LOL!)
We walked through the streets and through the market. The market was very unique. I almost threw up when we walked in, things got better when I started breathing through my mouth. Nels tells me that this market was pretty tame compared to others. I was grateful we went to one of the cleaner ones!
The little filipino kids are soo cute!

After the market we met up with our first python that swallowed a chicken in a lady's yard (notice the lump in its belly). The police where carrying it out as we walked by. It was like something you would see on animal planet. It was pretty crazy!We were too scared to ride in one of these. We figured since we had 4 kids back home we better stay alive!
I experienced my first BBQ banana, Nels really likes them, but they weren't my favorite.
This is how they move cows in the Philippines!
This is the church in Calape, the churches were really nice. It has doubled in size since Nels has been there.

This was a picnic area at high tide. Obviously it is the hot swimming spot also.

Nels playing ball with the filipino kids.

Nels and Ben with Bo Parker. Nels baptized him 13 years ago, he has served in the Branch Presidency for 11 years. He still has our wedding announcement from 10 years ago!
Nels in front of Lourdes Buzon's house. She was the one that we really wanted to see, but she had left to go visit her kids in another town before we got there. We were disappointed, but notice the picture of Christ above her door. She is still active and going to church. She has also moved into a lot nicer house.
Eating lunch at Joe's Chicken Inato. This was Nels' favorite while on the mission. It was REALLY good. The dip for the chicken was Awesome!

This is how they fix it it in the Philippines. This guy is in the middle of one of the busiest streets in Tagbilaran! His ladder is propped right up against the wires, but the little orange safety triangle should keep him safe!
Monday was an exhausting day. We got back to the hotel about 4:30, laid down for a sec, and totally fell asleep till the next morning!