Wednesday, January 17, 2018
Wednesday, January 17, 2018: D2 mall walks, Winders / MK showers, sets hair / October blogs getting edited & printed / 7-9 Missionary visit with Farrington to Artie Tufts
D2: I took my meds and headed out to the mall for some exercise. I got in six laps for a total of 2.2 miles. While there, I saw fellow MLS missionaries Elder and Sister Winder from our district. We stopped for a second and then were off.
I took out the trash and recycle cans when I returned and then went inside to veg out. I showered and shaved in preparation for tonight’s “blitz” in the Sego Lily Ward. I did little the rest of the day except eat and watch the last part of Chelsea vs. Norwich match.
MK: I prepaed myself for tonight's missionary by getting my hair washed & curled, then pulled up October blogs and edited and printed about half. Good work!!!
At 7, we went to the Flint Chapel where we met with the stake presidency and the Sego Lily Ward leaders for their yearly “ward blitz,” visiting members who needed a visit. We ended up with Bro. Farrington, the ward mission leader. We went to one house, but the sister wasn’t there, so we visited Artie Tuft, an older woman who is homebound for the moment. We recognized her from years ago. She talked our ears off and we reminisced about the old days. She was as sharp as a tack! We stayed a long time. We got home about 9.
Tuesday, January 16, 2018
Tuesday, January 16, 2018: First Presidency announcement /district mtg.,/ haircut, glasses
D2/MK: We were up and dressed to pick up the elders by 8:30 and were a little confused when they didn’t call us as per usual and didn't answer Elder Doyle's text. As we headed for the car, Elder Niedfeldt called to say that they assumed we'd we watching the Press Conference in the comfort of our own home, so they got a ride to district meeting with their landlord. Good grief! Well, we were dressed and the car was warm, so we hurried off to the district meeting site and watched the annoucement with the six elders on the television in the high council room where we always meet.
What a thrill to see Pres Nelson looking so wonderful seated between Elder Oaks and Elder Eyring. We were surprised that there was a change in the counselors--Pres. Uchtdorf was back in his place among the other apostles! Elder M. Russell Ballard is the new President of the Quorum of the Twelve. It was a short announcement and they turned off the TV. We went around the room so that we could each express our thoughts about the changes. Sweet. There was to be a press conference at 10:00 and Elder Cronin got a text message saying that they were to skip the press conference and carry on with their district meeting until 11:30 and MLS missionaries could go home and watch the press conference and miss district meeting. Wahoo! We alerted the Murphys and Winders about the situation when they drove up, nd off we went!
We went downstairs and watched the proceedings in the comfort of our home...MK had recorded it before we left, so we watched evertthing again, plus personal interviews with Carol Mikita and Spencer J. Condie, as well. Marvelous! We loved to hear the testimonies of these great men of God and they really are great!!! The press conference was interesting, as well, but pretty well confined to a few basic questions. Pres. Nelson would answer first and then Pres. Oaks and/or Pres. Eyring would express feelings and ideas, too. One local female reporter from the Trib, Peggy, tried to stir the pot by bringing up gender and women’s issues, but was assured that the Lord loves everyone and that church policies are dictated by Him. Again, it was wonderful to see the intellect and wisdom of these brilliant leaders and feel of their spirit.
We changed out of our missionary attire and got ready for the rest of the day. After eating a reasonably healthy lunch, I took off for the Barber School located on State and 72nd. There were many student barbers there, most of whom were covered with tattoos. I got a young black lad from Jamaica who had played soccer at West High. He did a pretty good job and I felt that my $5 had not been wasted. I’ll go back.
On the way home, I got a text from Costco saying that my sunglasses were in to be picked up, so I went straight there. I got gas first and then went inside to try on my new shades. They were glorious! Everything seemed so sharp! I’ll wear those from now on. I also stopped by Thryve to check out their exercise facilities. I decided I’ll go with the Life Center because of my familiarity with it, its proximity, and the presence of a hot tub.
Andy called to make a date for us to meet Cami's parents on Friday the 19th. He mentioned that he needed to get Lily's car started--yep, he got her a Prius a couple weeks ago! He had talked with Oakley, who was uncomfortable anticipating meeting with Elder Becerra tonight. Oh, my!
The rest of the day was spent looking up healthy diets on the internet. I was hoping for something tasty, but it looks like I’m stuck with broccoli, cauliflower, and raw carrots. I read a little in the scriptures and then some from Bro. Line’s book Endowed With Power, which we bought at the Cruise Lady religious lecture series some time ago. The more we learn, the more we realize just how true the Church is!
Monday, January 15, 2018
Monday, January 15, 2018: Martin Luther King Day,
D2: We enjoyed sleeping in with no responsibilities! We spent much of the morning cleaning up after last night’s FHE food fest. I should have asked for more help getting the chairs and tables downstairs! Fortunately, John came over and helped a ton.
Since our garbage disposal broke, the left side of the sink kept getting blocked up. I finally called a plumber to get rid of the disposal and put in new pipes. Edward Gonzales showed up and gave me a good price, so I called the two others and cancelled their appointments. He and Carlos went right to work and were finished in an hour. Everything is flowing smoothly now! We've never used a disposal and we'll be better off without it!
Mary and I used last night’s pulled pork, rice, beans, cheese and tortillas to make ourselves lunch. It was so good! Mary got really tired and took a real nap in the late afternoon. I was surprised when I got a text from Costco saying that my glasses were done and could be picked up. I hopped in the Altima and was on my way. It turned out that only my regular glasses were done, not my sunglasses. When I tried them on, it was incredible! Everything was as clear as crystal! I can’t see up close, though, so I’ll have to use my reading glasses to read and that will be inconvenient. I probably should have gotten the transition glasses.
Sunday, January 14, 2018: We attend two ward blocks / FHE at our house--family meets Cami & kids--marriage on the horizon.
D2/MK: We attended the Bellview Ward first this morning for the 9:00 block in our own building. The chapel was half full at first, but gradually members trickled in to capacity. We sat in front of Pres.& Raya Jones. A young couple, the Broadheads, spoke on the Self-Reliance Initiative, a new initiative in our area--about three years old around the Church, as a whole. The two were totally different in their approach to describing their three-month experience in the financial class of the training, but both bore strong testimony to the powerful spiritual influence they felt throughout their dedicated efforts to learn and commitment and follow-through! Great advertisement for others to accept calls to take part!!!
Our Sunday school class was held in the RS room and it was nice to be back in the good seats! Half of the lesson consisted of members sharing thoughts about Pres. Monson and the instructor played a video from a general conference when Pres. Monson talked about the golden-voiced boy who read the sacrament prayer so beautifully, in contrast to another priest who was hearing-impaired and couldn’t do so well, but then when the "cheatsheet" was missing, it was the sincere clumsy boy who was able to recite the prayers by heart and "save the day." Touching. The rest of the lesson was on foreordination vs. pre-destination from the Book of Abraham.
We left quickly to get to Canyon Rim Ward's 11:00 sacrament meeting, where the talks were also about self-reliance. Bro. Dunn began his talk with an apology...he has had the hiccups for two months! It affected him only slightly and wasn’t too noticeable. His experience with his three-month class was positive and with Bro. Herzog's overview of the initiative, everyone ought to look forward to being invited to participate when asked!!
In Sunday school, we enjoyed a lesson by Bro. Hosman. Again it was about foreordination and we enjoyed his method of teaching...later Steph pointed out D&C 138:56, which adds an interesting perspective. In High Priest Group, Tim Shaw talked about Elder Holland’s message “Emissaries to the Church” from general conference. The subject was home teaching. There was a fair amount of discussion. Gayle Moon led the RS in a discussion from Elder Pinegar's talk. Denny met the young newly-weds, the Dansies, who are renting the westside of the Paul Skoubye house -- the young man is a son of our mission friend Warren (1962) and the brother of Tiffany who was living in Geneva while we served there in 2008-2010! Small world, yet again.
At home, we changed into our FHE clothes and got things ready for the family. We were missing Ashley, Emma and Adam. We were delighted that Andy brought along Cami and her four children: Damien (14), Shaede (15+), Ambri (11), and little Gabe (6). They are well-behaved children and very comfortable with Andy and Lily and became integrated quickly with the rest of us all.
It was quietly made known that Andy & Cami will wed as soon as her temple divorce is finalized--the ex-husband has mental health problems that make him irratic, unreasonable and irresponsible. His parents & siblings are supportive of Cami. Cami & children are living with her parents in Grantsville now, but she grew up in Chubbuck, Idaho and went to college at Pocatello.
The Café Rio-style dinner was delicious with rice, beans, shredded pork & shredded chicken, grated cheese, tortillas, lettuce, guacamole and cilantro dressing. Andy’s Oreo Cookie and Cream dessert was well-received. Angie had also brought her BD cake with it's "Hawaiian theme," representing a trip for her & Mark coming up in a couple weeks -- for their 20th anniversary in April. They will stay with Auntie Lollie & husband!
The grandsons hung out downstairs and/or across the street, Lana had a cold and stuck to Janell. Bishops Mark & John joined us after their respective ward duties. Everyone was here but Ashley. Elders Niedfeldt and Mang stopped by to give Bishop their fast offerings and to pick up the baptismal booklet. Lauren and Dallin left after dinner for committments in Provo with roommates & friends -- and the CES talk with the Uchdorfs.
Conversations were on a higher spiritual plane, it seemed. This weekend was particularly spiritual and emotional for Andy, Oakley and Lily. Lily shared her experience getting her Patriarchal Blessing...she had her personal questions answered and she is eager to get her copy soon! The new patriarch shared his own story prior to giving the blessing -- he had been "switched at birth" and raised by good parents, but had always harbored questions. For example, he is over 6' tall and his dad and siblings are short. He recently met his birth mother, 99 years old, after a prompting to go through his box of mission letters & such where he discovered a note from his grandmother, giving a name & address of someone who could tell him more about his birth. My word!
Then Andy, as a high counselor in his stake, was actively participating in interviews with visiting authorities, Elder Snow (a Seventy) and Elder Becerra (Area Seventy). He was asked about his life and his children, then both brethren expressed a desire to talk with Oakley privately, something both admitted was a first for them to have ever done on such an occasion. Oakley shared a little of what was discussed and he, Lily and Andy admitted that it was profoundly emotional for each of them and they had been crying all afternoon. Elder Becerra has written a card for Oaks, with address and notes and told him that he has a meeting with Oakley's YSA stake president on Tuesday and would like to be able to visit Oakley at that time--Oakley said "Okay." Elder Becerra also asked Andy's permission to pray for Ashley.
After eating, we gathered everyone over 14 together in the front room and let Mark talk about Kevin’s success at eating healthy and losing weight. He was very sincere as he explained why he wants all of us to follow a healthy regime -- that we may be happy & strong as we head into our mature years. He and Chanelle handed out their Avisae books and pamphlets to help us record our progress, beginning in February. Mary and I want to try it out without "competing," to see what other benefits might accrue. Mark's emotional "plea" added to the spiritual nature of the evening.
Aubrey gave a thoughtful closing prayer and then Andy asked us to sing our “theme song,” “Joshua Fit the Battle of Jericho” for Cami and her kids. We gave a rousing rendition, rather pretty, and then people broke off into their various groups to chat on more personal levels. 9:00 took most -- Oliver sleeping overnight at Vostis', Lincoln sleeping at Matt & Mary's, and Nixon sleeping at Kevin & Janell's. Tomorrow is Martin Luther King Day...no school. Cami & kids, and Oakley left, too, then we, John and Aubrey, Stephi, and Andy, Lily and Luke stayed around and chatted about patriarchal blessings and other spiritual matters until midnight. It was great! We weren't in bed until 12:30, but it was worth it!