Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Time Flies

Hanging out at the mall in the massage chairs, feels good

A little exercising for both of us.
Dusty found sport with watching the squirrels walking across our deck and waiting to take a shot with our foam darts. Those little guys were too smart for him.
Hanging out at the mall in Middletown, then going to the movie Desperaux, about the little mouse. Tryston loved it.
Bubble bath with Pompa
Grammas little cutie pies!!!! XOXOXOXOX
Airport good byes are terrible.

Oh, the time goes by so fast when family visits, vacations, holidays, etc. We had so much fun. It was one of those Holidays that is relaxing and restful. We just hung out together and played and visited. The best Gift ever. So sad to see the time fly by.

We took them to the airport and dropped them off, then 20 minutes later we got a call saying that the flight was over booked and there wasn't room for them. After some time, discussion, moving people around, and escorting a boarder off that didn't belong, they were on their way only 30 minutes late. A very crowded flight with tired tense people. Landed safe and sound in vegas and a big thank you to Cari's mom and mike for picking them up and taking them home.

The snow we were hoping for - so Tryston could play in it never arrived until the morning after they had left. He would have loved it.

Miss you all ready and love you so much. Thanks for coming out for Christmas.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Family is good for the Soul!!

Even though the time and miles separate us, when together it's like just as we remember only better.

Friday, December 26, 2008

c H r I s T m A s b R u N c H

New Burgh Zone, B-ball is always a part of gathering.
Kitchen help for Brunch.

We invited all the Missionaries in our Zone up to Monticello for Christmas Brunch. One of our Christmas Family Traditions. They become our family while on our mission. We enjoyed good food, good company, good weather, good time.



Tuesday, December 23, 2008


We had an awesome snow storm Friday, Saturday and Sunday. We decided we would go to church no matter what the weather, no matter who shows up. It was a spiritual feast. We had a member of the Branch Presidency to conduct the meeting(Doug), two Elders to bless and pass the sacrament( Elder Georges & Elder Shakespear), and 12 other members and 1 investigator. Christmas Hymns are always beautiful and invite the spirit. Thank heavens for a Piano that can play by it's self. Doug worked the piano while I led the singing. I had brought a few treasured Christmas stories that Doug and I shared and the Elders read the Christmas story from Luke 2 and all shared testimonies. Our investigator offered the closing prayer.

Our chapel has 4 huge picture windows, two on each side of the stand. It was an awesome experience singing and sharing while glancing every once in a while out the window watching the snow fall. The warmth from the building and the spirit warmed our souls and testified that we were where we needed to be this Memorable Christmas Sabbath Day.

Excited for our Christmas Visit.

Just 48 more hours and we'll be picking up Dusty and Cari and our little buddies, Tryston & Treyson. Can't wait, SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO EXCITED!!!!!!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

HAPPY HAPPY B-DAY TO BRANDON & BRANDEE & Happy Anni. to ReVon and Elva

Doug's parents have been married for 53 years today. What a beautiful example of a beautiful life together. We love you and are so grateful for your love and support and example.
Our First Born, Brandon and his wife Malea. Happy 31st B-day! We so appreciate your gentle kind, laid back manner. You are a spiritual giant, an honorable priesthood holder, tender, thoughtful, creative, fun and oh so handsome. An amazing father and husband. You are a blessing in our lives.
Brandee, our second born, and her husband Kevin. Happy 29th B-day. The magical age that you can be forever. We so appreciate your tender caring and kindness, your thoughtfulness, sweet fun and exciting personality. Your beautiful smile lights up the room. You are an amazing mother and wife, full of energy and love. Oh, so beautiful inside and out. You are a blessing in our lives.
We were so happy to know that all our kids got together to celebrate the 2 birthdays. It's hard to see them all together and not see us in the picture with them. Thanks Cari for sending the pics to me. We love you all. XOXOXOXOX Hope you had a great B-DAY! And Happy Anniversary to the two young lovebirds, ReVon and Elva.

Monticello Christmas Party

Each household was to bring cookies that we put together and made plates to take as we went carroling. Our young women put the plates together
We caroled to the house around our chapel. They put up quite a fuss when the building was being built. Just wanted to thank them for being good neighbors to us. We only had one door shut in our face halfway thru our first song. We actually had about 28 people attend. It was a good time for all. Caroling in the snow. Sister Pyrum and Karmen ended up driving behind us for those who couldn't walk that far.
Santa came and had gifts for everyone
First the younger children received their gifts, then the teenagers, then the adults.

Santa was the best. We had many people call and cancel. Santa was one of them. So Elder Shakespear slipped right in and nobody knew who he was. We all enjoyed Hot chocolate and games and pie after the caroling was done.

Friday, December 19, 2008

s N o W- d A y yEaH

Santa's helpers, helping wrap presents for our Branch Christmas Party on Saturday
Look who the storm blew in
Just give him a snow toy and it doesn't matter what time of day it is.
Elder Georges and Shakespear have a turn at the snow plow.
Traveling was slow but beautiful

Finally, the long awaited snow Doug has been longing for. It started snowing around noon and didn't let up until about 9:00 pm. We traveled down to Middletown in the blizzard like conditions so Doug could try out his new "Blizzard Ice" snow tires. I had to repent and appologize as I complained he spent so much money, but they were awesome. We never got stuck or spinned a tire once.

The Elders were "grounded" unable to drive their car. Poor tires. So after we got back from Middletown, had to shop for our Branch Christmas party for tomorrow, we grabbed them and had them help plow the church parking lot and wrap christmas presents that will be from Santa. They were excited to have something to do out side their apartment.

New Burgh Zone Conference

President Searle's training, Doug is in the back right hand corner
AP's, Elder Improta, Elder Bown, the "Hunting analogy"
Always there is fun for a few short minutes. Dodge Ball

Zone conference is always a treat. We love learning from the AP's and Zone Leaders and the Searles. The spirit is always so strong and we are always so amazed at the ability of these young men. The Lord truly takes them and molds them into fine embassadors for him. It is so interesting the perspective I now have of the great responsibility we all have to share the gospel. I think sometimes we are afraid to open our mouths out of fear of rejection. Well I know that is a huge reason. Our training today was on Finding the Elect and not wasting our precious time on those who are doing just that, wasting precious time. I loved the analogy that the AP's used. When you have a tag to go hunting a deer, we know exactly what it is we are hunting. We are not out there looking for turkeys, rabbits, or moose. We go right after the deer because that is what we are after. The spirit allows us to receive revelation as to who is really interested in the message we are here to share. Instantly we can know if we found a deer.

Referral from Home

We received a call from our good friend, Darci Hansen a couple of weeks ago. She has a friend, Vicki Sorenson who is now our friend and wanted to know who she knew in New York that could teach a friend of hers who is interested and is quite a "Golden" contact. Darci thought of us and asked us if she could give Vicki our phone number. Vicki told us about her dear friend Malaika. Malaika is a young mother of a little boy Adjan, who is 7. She lost her husband several years ago and loved the idea of families being together for ever. With in a couple of days, we learned about Malaika, she learned about us, we called her and set up an appointment last Friday evening. We were headed down to the city for Doug's Dr appt that day. We contacted the sister Missionaries that are in that area, met up with them for dinner and then took them with us to meet Malaika and Adjan. It was an awesome visit and first lesson. She had lots of good questions. Sister Miller and Sister Roberts were perfect and have taken over teaching Malaika, as they are down in the city and live close by. They were back the next day teaching and then back on Sunday to pick up and take Malaika and Adjan to church. We called Malaika Sunday night to see how church was and the sisters were there again teaching another lesson. An interesting fact is that sister Roberts is a new greenie. She met Malaika on her 2nd day in the mission field. We received a call from Vicki a couple of nights ago telling us that Malaika is getting baptized in January. How exciting is that. We are so grateful to have had the opportunity to be instruments for the Lord for a short time. In the process have made three new friends. We are so grateful to have had this unique opportunity and grateful for friends back home who wanted to have us share in this gift of the gospel.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

We are happy to welcome Elder Shakespear to Monticello

Elder Georges, Elder Shakespear, Doug

Elder Shakespear is from Escalante, Utah. He is best friends with Porter Ellett who was spotlighted on the cover of the New Era about 9 months ago. With the last name of Ellett and having family from Wayne County in Utah, for sure we are related. Small world. The most amazing thing about Elder Shakespear that we have experienced in the last three days, is "He's got game." Awesome basket ball player. We are excited to learn more amazing things about him.

Awesome ICE Storm

Day after the ICE storm. All the ice glistens in the sun like crystal. Click on the pic to see the total effect. You'll love it.
The red berries under the ice and snow make this for a very pretty sight.

This sight is right out our back door off our balcony. For the last couple of nights we have listened to the cracking and breaking of tree limbs, and the clanking of branches brushing against each other when the wind blows. It is a very magical sight. I have never seen anything like this.
I guess the only awesome, amazing, breath-taking thing about an ICE storm is the visual. Pretty darn COOL!!!Posted by Picasa