Friday, June 17, 2011

Photo Project

Well I took a break from this but I'll get back on it and hopefully soon it'll be with my way nice new Canon camera :) This week the topic is Father's in honor of Father's Day coming this Sunday, I'll see what I can come up with!

Our last days in the Philippines

Well We finally made it back home after 28 hours of traveling and yucky plane food, but we made it! Our last few days were mostly composed of eating our body weight in mango shakes and shopping. We hit up 3 malls in one day, it was pretty exhausting. On our last day we just chilled at the hotel because there is so much stuff to do at Plantation bay! Then we left for the airport in Cebu to fly to Manila. It was funny, in the Cebu airport when Pete was checking us all in I guess someone had already checked in under my ticket and had a bag checked so they were trying to figure out whose it was so they went and got the bag back out of the baggage area and Pete calls me over and says "Emily, are you sure this isn't your bag?" and the reason he asked was because the bag had a Canadian bag tag on it...exactly like the one I had on my back pack and all the Tag said was the last name Morrison...It was kind of creepy! We got it all figured out and boarded our plane and found out that our group was basically the only ones on it so we all got our own row of 3 seats! When we arrived in Manila it was about midnight and the Delta ticket counter didn't open till 3am so we all laid down on the freezing cold tile floors and tried to sleep for 3 hours, when everyone woke up we were all soooo cold! It was like they were trying to make the airport the artic circle or something!! I had on 3 shirts, a sweater and my hoodie still couldn't seem to get warm! So finally get into the ticket line to check our bags and then we head to our terminal, our flight didn't end up leaving Manila until 7:45 am so we had a long long layover there. Next we fly into Tokyo and we found a McDonalds at the airport! Heaven! We all got large fries to take with us on the plane. The Tokyo flew straight into Salt Lake so we had no layovers and we were home. My mom came and got me and as soon as we were in the car I said "Mom, I need real food, I need Cafe Rio right now." So we went to Cafe Rio and as the lady starts making my pork salad I told her no rice and she looked at me and says "what! no rice?" and I almost told her "you trying eating only rice for 2 weeks and then tell me you want to eat it still", but I didn't. Now I am sitting wide awake in my room, and it is now 3:22 am because I cannot sleep! Darn jet lag, it's a good thing I don't have to start work until Monday :) Well that is it for my adventure, next one doesn't start until the end of August...this time to CHINA!...with more rice :( I'm going to hope I love there noodles because I refuse to consume another grain of rice this year.

-my whole row I got on the plane-

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


So today we got to wake up when ever and then we headed over to the "Mall of Fakes" as it has come to be known by, this is because it has designer everything and they sell it for dirt cheap, which usually means they are fake. Our guide told us not to be surprised though if some of it is real because it can be imported here easily. So after about 3 hours of shopping there, we met up and drove to the SM Mall, which is gigantic!! and we shopped again for another 2 hours. Few things we noticed about malls in the Philippines...

#1: There are no trash anywhere! I had to go outside to find one!
#2: You can't sit on the floor...or you will get yelled at by security, we aren't sure why this is but it's evidently not allowed.
#3: You thought US sales associates were pushy...The ones here follow you through the entire store, I mean like they are like 2 feet away from you the whole time you shop! Suggesting things, asking if you need sizes, colors, etc. It was very obnoxious!

Well after the SM Mall we went to dinner at this place called the Maya, it was Mexican food which was pretty good seeing as it's from the Philippines. Then we split into 3 groups, one group went to a spa because you can get an hour long, full body massage for like $25, way good deal. The second group went to the movies to see the new X-Men movie. The last group just came back to the hotel. So I opened up my green second suitcase tonight and almost died of the horrid smell coming from it. I had designated it as my dirty clothes bag and boy did it wreak!! So rather than deal with the smell I filled the tub up with hot water and poured laundry detergent and shampoo into the tub and let my clothes soak ha ha, so now they are all drying in the bathroom :) At least they smell a bit better!

view from our hotel lobby

my clothes being washed in the tub :)

Monday, June 13, 2011


So this morning we woke up at 7am to head to an eco adventure camp that the mayor invited us to. It was a 2.5 hour drive up there and the roads are dirt so in was extremely bumpy. Fortunately for the girls we got to ride in the van with AC and not dust, but the guys on the other hand were in the back of those army trucks again and we all covered in a layer of dust when we finally got there. They all look like they'd aged 40 years because their hair was white-ish from all the dust. So once at the camp we could each do two activities, most of us did the zip line and the plunge. The zip line was about 45 seconds long, you are in a harness but lay flat on your stomach, kinda like superman and takes you across this huge high ravine and then you come back across again on a second one to get to the other side, I did that one. The plunge, I didn't do this one, but it dangled you over the edge of the same ravine and then drops you and you fall till the rope gets tight and then swing...yeah, crazy people did that one but it was sure fun to watch! After that we drove back down and if you want to know how that drive was just read the post I posted about driving...scary as all get out!!! We finally get to the pier and Pete went to McDonalds and brought back a box filled with 31 big macs and anther box filled with 31 large fries...we were quite content. We had an hour and a half boat ride to Cebu and got checked into our way nice hotel!! I'll post some pictures of it later, it was too dark to take any tonight.

-Joci and I before our zip line ride-

-The boys before their zip line...this is how we are strapped in-

-This is Nolan right before The Plunge-

-And after they yell bombs away they let you loose!!-

Driving through the Philippines

I had multiple near death experiences today. First of all, let me explain about how people drive in this country. 

#1: There are no rules on the road other than don't get hit...
#2: There are posted speed limits and signs but no one follows them...
#3: You are allowed to pass any other vehicle, anywhere and at anytime...

I have yet to see a stop light since coming here and it is just scary! So I have been driving in the front seat because I get car sick and I think I would rather risk throwing up than riding in in the front ever again after today. We had a 2.5 hour car ride today and the entire drive home I was either trying to remember CPR and first aid or covering my eyes with my hands. Our driver was going 105 kph, in a school zone, right when school got out!! I think he almost ran over like 15 kids! And then since you can just pass any vehicle whenever you please he would try to drive around a little trike and would pull into the opposite traffics lane and try to pass the trike, and all the while there is a huge truck coming right at us honking it's horn! It is pretty crazy! Pedestrians aren't much better...they just cross the street whenever and we basically hit some guy today who ran out in front of our van. I do believe from now on I shall be riding somewhere that aI cannot see out the front window.

Sunday, June 12, 2011


Today started with an interesting morning, a mistake on my part. So we were supposed to wake up and be down in the lobby by 8am this morning to leave for church so I set my alarm on my phone fr 6:30am and this morning we get a phone call that wakes us up from Joellen asking if we are almost ready to go...we weren't we had just woken up to see whose calling so early...I then look at my phone and realize it is still on LA time and never changed so we didn't get an alarm and ended up sleeping in till 8:15am. Needless to say we were left behind this morning, which was okay cause I guess quite a few were sick. So we order french toast and mango shakes to our room for breakfast and watch Eclipse :) it was a lovely and relaxing morning. When everyone else got back we all went to the Bohol Beach Club which is so so nice! Beach hammocks, mango shakes, the ocean, and a way nice pool. We spent the entire afternoon there just relaxing and having fun, it was very nice! We then came back to the hotel and got ready for dinner and went to a place called Joe's, it's one of Pete's favorites, and had teriyaki pork skewers and chicken skewers, it was so so good! First meat I'd eaten in two weeks! Then we came back to the hotel and Joci and I watched a movie with the boys from our group...they wanted to watch Mean Girls (really big, funny, chick flick). We leave Bohol tomorrow morning and head to Cebu to this amazingly nice hotel called Plantation Bay and just shopping and relaxing for the last 2 days! Off to bed!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Friday and Saturday


Well it was the last day on the island and we headed up to the building site after breakfast to try and get the walls started. We got it even with where the floor will be and afterwards we got a big picture taken with all the school kids in front of the school, I am pretty sure it took almost 15 minutes to get everyone situated to take that picture, but we got it taken and made 3 big copies and had everyone sign them. We gave them to some officials in government who helped us out. We also received a folder full of letters from each of the high school kids thanking us for the supplies and for building them new classrooms and they were so sweet and grateful for all we had done! We left for dinner and then watch another movie, this time we invited the school kids to watch with us and so we watched how to train your dragon and they absolutely loved it! After walking all the kids back home, we all watched the dark knight then headed to bed. Probably the worst night sleep I'd ever had on that island, the wind was blowing so so hard and knocking all the coconuts down out of the trees, which was making all the animals wake up and start with the noise again...AH!


We Left the island this morning after getting no sleep. Packed everything up and got everything loaded on the boat just as it started to rain. It sprinkled a bit on the boat ride over and then we loaded up into the uncovered army trucks and headed up to the army camp. About 15 minutes into the ride it starts to down pour!! This down pour continues all day...but up at the camp we got to shoot some M-16 guns which are sooo loud! and then we went and watched the guys play basketball game against the army guys in the jersey that got made for us! They are sweet, the front says V4TP (vaccines for the philippines) 2011 and our number and then on the back our number again and our last names. They are sweet!! We then left to check into our hotel and eat and shower before heading across the street to watch the guys play their second game of the day against the college team and they didn't win that one but it was still fun to watch. I am very happy to be clean and sleeping in a real bed and have eaten a mango shake :)

Wednesday and Thrusday


We woke up early and were going to head back to the island but the
boat wasn't going to be able to leave till 8am so we got to have
breakfast at McDonalds again. I have pankcakes and a hot fudge sundae
Best sundae I ever tasted! So We get to the boat finally and found out
we needed gas so ended up waiting on the boat for like and hour and if
I had to venture a guess I would say it was 95 degrees, if not hotter!
Finally we start heading back and we are all putting sunscreen on before
the ride and I put it on everywhere, except places I never get
mistake. I was laying down on the boat and now have tomatoe red legs from
mid-thigh down. It looks much worse than it feels but still pretty sore.
When we got to the island we unpacked and headed up the the work site but
of course we had to supplies and had to again wait for them to come, only
they didn't come for about 5 hours later. So while waiting me and some guys
went to this place on the other side of the island called the fish sanctuary
and went snorkeling, it was so so cool! We saw just about every fish from
Finding Nemo, even the drop off and I also got stung by a jellyfish which
left a lovely mark on my shin. Afterwards we just hung out don't here for
the night and played with a puppy. At dinner time we got a movie projector
and watched Avatar on the side of the old church, it was way neat.


Well I was very stiff thursday morning from my sunburnt legs but mostly...
already...dying of heat! We headed up early this morning to work on the school
and we got all the colums filled with cement and the outside border. It was cool
we had a little assembly line going so it went by really quick, and we all
were covered in cement by the end of the morning. We all walked back down the
hill to camp and just walked right into the ocean in our cement covered clothes
to try and get it off. It came off our clothes pretty easily and it was all over
my legs and would not come off! I sat in the water and was rubbing sand on my
legs to get the cement off which killed because of my sunburn! Once finally all
clean we all were laying down reading and chatting and one girl went to get her
tank top off the clothes line and screams, so of course we all run over to see
why...yeah, I sooo wish I hadn't done that! There, half inside her tank top, is
this thick, brownish-black, hairy, spider. No lie, it was the size of an orange!
I am officially scared to go under the clothes line because we couldn't find it
after hitting it off her shirt! Well we then helped this kid with his eagle
project, he collected/raised money for sports equiptment to give to the school
here, so we pumped up all the balls then headed up the hill to the school. The
kids are still in school when we get there and they all came out and sat on the
grass and we told them what the stuff was for and then explained to them how to
play kick ball! It was so fun, we played one round with just us and ten island
kids so everyone could see and then some kids played. We then handed out all the
balls, frisbees, jump ropes, and baseball stuff and just let the kids all play
with everything and we played with them. Volleyball, some played basketball with
the older boys, we taught the girls jump rope and played with them. they were
just having a blast, it was fun to watch. Well we came back and just hung out
and watch Prince of Persia and The Blind Side while eating dinner on the
projector and then headed to bed.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011


So today we got up around 8 and hopped onto these 2 massive army trucks and drove 2.5 hours away to the site they built the maternal health center last year. When we got there it was a cool day, lots of cloud cover, and we painted the inside and outside of the entire center white. It is sooo hard to paint cement! Well we then went for lunch at a pavilion just next to the site and got to have PB&J, best lunch rice! We started driving home and it started to rain and I am talking like monsoon, down pour, raining! You could hardly see anything on the road. I was riding in the front seat with Maryanne because we get car sick easily and for starters I am sitting between the two seat on the most uncomfortable, small, metal, tool box and then the back of the canvas starts to leak water. Needless to say, by the time we got home my back of my shirt and shorts were DRENCHED! For dinner tonight we got Pizza Hut to deliver to the hotel so we wouldn't have to go out in the rain again which was nice. Pizza and Mango shakes...dinner of champions. Well tonight is our last night in this lovely AC hotel, we head back to the island tomorrow morning and are there Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and then come back to a different hotel Saturday morning on Cebu.

Monday, June 6, 2011

10 Things I will never again take for granted

1. Flushing toilets!
2. HIGH Speed internet!
3. Real Food!
4. Running water!
5. Being able to drink out of basically anything that runs water!
6. AC!
7. Cold water!
8. My car!
9. Ice!
10. Showers!

Sunday and Monday

Well Sunday we woke for sacrament meeting at 8:30am and it was an amazing testimony meeting! We have lots of RM's in our group who speak Tagalog so they bore their testimonies to the people in their native language and it was very moving for the people to see we care that much. Their church looks almost like any other normal meeting house and there were about 45-50 people in their branch on sunday, all in white shirts and ties, thanks again to those who donated those for me to bring, the memebers really appreciated them. We then went to McDonalds for breakfast/lunch and it is a very busy place on sunday mornings so it was about 45 minutes before we finally got our food. We then went to the Bohol Tropics Hotel to swim in their pool and cool off and of course it started to rain mid way through....typical philippino fashion. Afterwards we went back to the hotel and took naps and just hung out untill we went to dinner at a members house. There seems to be some sort of stomch bug or something we ate (which is most likely) but about 5 of us were sick right during dinner, including myself. Haven't been able to keep food down since then so we'll see what happens.

Monday morning we woke up way early to go dolphin watching and saw a ton of them around Pamilacan Island, afterwards we were dropped back off on the island. We went and got all the school kits out of the bungalow and carried them up the hill to the school yard. This was the most amazing experience, we drop all the bags onto the grass out front of the school yard and all the kids start gathering around the bags with eager faces. Their teachers then organized them into lines by grade and then gender and they sang us the national anthem and did a dance to Waka Waka by Shakira, it was their way of saying thank you to us for helping them be able to learn. The head teacher (or captian), then started with the preschoolers and worked her way up to the high schoolers reading each name one by one so they were able to walk up to us and recieve a school kit. They were soooo excited to get them and I have tons of pictures and video I will post on my facebook in the next day or so. After that we headed back to the boat to go back to our hotel and everyone got ready for a dinner we were invited to by the govenor, I, along with 4 others, did not go because we aren't feeling so good. Well tomorrow we are going to see some water falls and to paint the birthing center they made last year. Hope I'm feeling better by morning!

Saturday, June 4, 2011


I am putting all my pictures form this trip on my facebook page, if you are not friends with me just add me and I'll try to get to adding you as quick as I can :)

The Philippines!

Hey everyone! Well I finally was able to get somewhere with a plug and internet so let me tell you about my trip thus far. It has been so much fun so far and full of awesome memories. It is extremely hot here, it is about 85-90 degrees at 6 am with a good 75% humidity and it only gets hotter as the day goes on and then instead of cooling off in the evening it stays about the same, so basically I have been in constant state of sticky sweat since I got here! The food is not too bad, I am a picky eater but most days for breakfast we get rice (of course, you can even order rice at the mcdonalds here), eggs, some sort of sausage, bananas, mangoes, and some days bread with either blueberry or mango jam. Lunch is almost always rice with some blended up meat concoction to go on top and also steam sea weed or noodles, bananas and mangoes as well. Dinner time we, for the third time, get rice, some weird fried or dried fish thing (which stinks up the camp all day and doesn't taste much better), and Tang orange juice. The other day we got ice cream! It was so so good! A typical day for us is we wake up around 4am (mind you this isn't by choice, there is about 100 roosters on this tiny island we are on and they have consistently woken us all up with their loud "cock-a-doodle-dos" every morning starting at 3am, you can see why we all have plotted ways to shut them up), we then eat breakfast and then go up to the work site. The school we are building is at the top of the "hill" on the island so it is quite the hike up there! We work till about noon then come back down for some cooling off in the ocean and lunch. While up at the work site the boys are usually carrying heavy bags of cement and sand or cinder blocks from the beach up to the school and we have lots of help from the islanders which has made things move a lot quicker. It is improper around here for girls to do any manual labor like help carry heavy things and such so mostly we girls just keep waters filled, pour the made cement, play with the kids, and do easy odd jobs. After lunch we come back up to the work site and work some more and once we are all dying of heat we leave for the day. The sun sets real early here so usually at night we eat around 6-7pm which is already dark so lots of the time a few of us are so tired we eat a granola bar and head to bed. Sleep can be hard to come by here without some sort of medication, we've been passing around ambien's and dramamine's to people so they can stay asleep for at least 5 hours. The reason for this is that the isaldn gets electricity from 6pm-12am. so the islanders like to play music...very loudly...the whole time and then you get about 3 hours of quiet before the roosters start thinking the sun is up. It is a shock for us all going to bed at 7pm and waking up at 4am....haha I don't think I'd ever do that at home! The bathroom facilities here....well there is a toilet, but no back or seat or toilet paper, needless to say, I was very happy our hotel had a flushing toilet :)Bugs bugs and more bugs! We sleep in single mosquito netted tents so we don't get eaten alive which has been heavenly because I do not like bugs. There are the BIGGEST spiders here and make me want to scream every time I see them, red ants (I have been bitten by quite a few and they hurt, cockroaches and mosquitoes. The kids are very fun, quite a few speak english...mostly the older ones who have attended school. They always say hello when you walk by and wave. The first few days they were all pretty shy around us all being here but they have come to realize we aren't that bad and now follow us around. We usually have a crowd of about 20-30 kids up at the work site wanting to help, watch, and play games and the same at our camp site. We taught them things like hand clapping games, ring around the rosie, head shoulders knees and toes, and lots more. They taught us this funny game called "Boo-la-kla" not sure if thats how you spell it but thats how it sounds. We are spending the next few days in a hotel on the main island so we got to have mango shakes (absolutly the greatest thing I ever tasted in my life) and pizza hut last night! american food is awesome! haha. Funny story, we were all walking through the mall to get to pizza hut last night and while leaving, Pete (our fearless leader), was in front and we walked past these two little boys and they said something in tagalog and Pete just starts laughing, so I asked what they said and I guess when he walked by the little boys said "Holy crap! that guy is huge!", it gave us all a laugh. Well thats all for now, I'll try to keep this more updated but there is a bit of what been happening here so far!