Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Yankee Stadium P-day

Today we went to Yankee Stadium and had a tour of the facility. This is the final season that will be played in this ball park. They are building another stadium right across the street. We were sad we didn't even get to see pictures of the progress of the new stadium. But we did get to sit in the dug out and walk thru Monument Park. It is just off to the right of the stands. There is a lot of history here in this stadium. I guess since we live in New York we are expected to be Yankee fans. Doug bought a yankee sweat shirt so I guess that counts. GO YANKEES!!!! Next time we are here, hope it is to watch a game.
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Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Little members are special

Today we had the sweet opportunity to watch little Kelsey Mangum. She and her parents are members in our ward. Her mommy saw a need at the church to clean the bathrooms and asked if we could watch little Kelsey while she cleaned. Of course we said yes. She is about 10 months old. Such a good baby. We had lots of fun with her. Towards the end of our opportunity Doug put her to sleep with his singing and rocking so mama could strap her back in her snuggly head towards the subway and go home while she napped. It was a great fix as we miss our sweet grandkids so much.

Monday, February 25, 2008

New Convert "William"

William and Elder Christensen. Elder Christensen lives in Elk Meadow up in the mountains. In talking with Doug discovered he was from Bicknell. He had been to Bicknell once and remembered the strange pies that are made at the cafe. Dill Pickle Pie, Pinto Bean Pie. Our favorite is the Oatmeal Pie. He's a fine young man and has fullfilled a great mission.
Sister McClary and her daughter Donna. We home teach these two sweet sisters. Sister McClary is legally blind, Donna is mentally challenge. We love them and try to help them get to church when we can. Sister McClary came from down south to New York many years ago to go to school. She worked in the Educational system, special education, where she retire back in the 90's.

Today was great. Early this morning Doug picked up 4 Elders and went to Kingsbridge Chapel for Stake Priesthood meeting. Charles Archibald, one of the young men in our ward who is also in our Institute class talked. He has his mission papers in and is waiting. After bringing the Elders back we drove across the Bronx to pick up Sister McClary and her daughter Donna. Church was wonderful. As the Elder's walked in the door they were asked to talk in Sacrament Meeting on Prophets. Four of the did an exceptional job. After church we stayed for a Baptism. Elder Bateman and Elder Christensen, who is going home taught and worked with William. Elder Christensen's parents are here to tour the mission and New York and then fly their son home. Mission completed. So they were able to be here for their son's last mission baptism. It was awesome.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Temple Excursion

We are waiting for the train to come at the subway station near where we live. Elder Grahl is standing next to Doug.
Keith Grippa, Bro. Foldmo and his wife Nikki, Igeoma Kolo, Irving Reed, Mary Maurice, Elder Nearents, (Beverly Rucker and Sister Mangum and Bro. Scarburough met us at the temple.)

This morning we met at the chapel with a group of new converts to go to the temple to do baptisms for the dead. Two of the Elders were able to accompany us along with a member of the Bishopric and his wife. In our mission we try to get our new members to the temple withing 6 weeks of being baptized to do baptisms for the dead. It was a great experience. Of course they go not really knowing what to expect. The baptistry was extremely busy, but the spirit was very strong. Because we serve in the temple on Friday's and know our way around, I was put to work doing the laundry. Just off the clothing place there are two commercial washers and four huge commercial dryers. Doug was busy running the baptismal service as the recorder. One of our Elders, Elder Nearents, is a convert. He has only been a member for three years and that includes the 1 1/2 he has been on his mission. He was excited because he has never done baptisms for the dead. The elders were asked to do the confirming, and Bro. Foldmo and Bro. Scarsburough were asked to do the baptizing. Elder Nearents was also able to be baptized and confirmed himself. There was 4 converts who were able to be baptized and confirmed. One of the Temple Presdency, President Gruber came and shared his testimony with our group before we began.

A really neat thing about the baptisry is the huge picture that is right behind the font. It is a picture of the river Jordan. If you stand right infront of the center of the font, it looks like you are getting baptized in the river Jordan.

Friday, February 22, 2008


We woke to snow this morning. It is snowing pretty good even as Doug is taking this picture.
Doug couldn't wait till we got home from the temple today to change and go blow the snow. As you can see it has turned dark and he is still out in the snow. By the time we got home this afternoon the roads had all been cleared and most of the side walks.

It finally really snowed and has stayed. Last night we were helping a sister move. Bishop Brignoni was there helping with his VAN. Bishop has several places that he owns that he has to do snow removal for. So he watches the weather really close. Now Doug has been watching the weather close too because he wants snow. He is definately the minority here in New York who votes for snow. Anyway, last night the stars were out, a very clear night, but Bishop Brignoni cancelled the ward potluck party because he said that it was going to snow and snow alot. Most of the ward members don't have cars and would be walking from the bus stop or the subway to get to the church. I thought, yea right, there is no breeze the sky is clear. Guess what? at about 4:00 am it started snowing and snowed for about 8 hours. It was beautiful. Doug was so excited. Like a little kid at Christmas.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Long awated TRAINING today

Finally we were able to meet with Bro. Hayes. He is the main head honcho over all the store houses in the new england area. We had a great visit today here at the store house. He actually helped unload the van that brought our delivery. A very nice brother. Lots of our questions and concerns were answered and we actually are doing a great job.

District/Zone meeting

Monday was the last District meeting for three of our missionaries who are going home. Every companionship except for one in our Zone is being changed around. So we are saying good bye, see ya later, and welcome to many. No one knows where they are going or who will be their new companion until transfer meeting. It's all a surprise. Anticipation is a killer. Some love it, some hate it. I don't have to worry, We won't get transfered or change companions.
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Olmstead Zone

Today is the last district meeting before transfers. Everyone of our companionships are being changed except one. So out came the camera. Good bye to you who are heading home, see ya around to those who are getting transfered, and welcome to you who are coming here. We have one of the smallest Zones. 1- English district, 1-Spanish district. But every missionary who has been here says they love it the best.

Serving Tom

Today we helped Tom Nickich. Tom is in the Care Center now and he needed some of his things taken to him and he donated other things to the church. Furniture etc. We spent the day with 4 Elders in our district. Our Zone Leaders, Elder Nearents on the left and Elder Thornock on the right, Elder Reynolds in the center.
Elder Nearents was so intrigued with this little guy. Found he he can dance and sing.
You can't tell, but he is doing the Micheal Jackson "Moon Walk"

Most of Tom's things were put in big garbage bags. He donated his furniture to the church and the rest will most likely be thrown away. It is so sad to see that his whole life is in this little one bedroom apartment and because he is blind and in the Hospital he was not there to make decisions. We took him the things he could have at the care center and the rest was sacked up and the landlord will decide what to do with it. We were told it would go out on trash day.

Tom is still holding on. He is very sick but enjoys our visits so much.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Senior Couple/Valentine/Going away luncheon

Our Mission Senior Couples - Together we can do anything.
Elder and Sister Davis are headed home next week. We are sad to see them go. They worked with the ASL (American Sign Language) program . It took in all the 5 bouroughs of New York. When they got here a year ago, there was only 40 ASL active members. There are now about 90. They have been absolutely valuable and will be so missed. Best wishes to you both.President and sister Searle, we LOVE YOU!!!

Today we went to Scarsdale to the Mission Home for a luncheon. The senior couples get together once ever 6 week cycle to socialize and visit and become acquainted. We seldom see each other because of various assignments. It was a lovely afternoon. The food was delicious and the company was delightful. There are 9 couples. Each has a variety of assignments. It take a lot of individuals to help the mission run. From Internation Public Affairs to Mission office to ASL leadership to CES to Welfare management, etc. We are just a very small part of the whole. But so grateful to be among the many faithful servants of Heavenly Father. They are all amazing.

Thursday, February 14, 2008


This is a shout out to all of you out there.........WE LOVE YOU!!!!!!


Today we spent the day inspecting mission apartments. This happens once every 6 week cycle. We are to go to the missionaries apartments and go down a list of items with them making sure that everything is in working order, and everyone is doing their share. And also fill out a supply order form for items needed, such as; broom, mop, tilex, etc. What amazes me the most is that they are in small quite confined areas. There are at least 4 missionaries in each apartment, sometimes 6. At transfer time, some come and go. Trying to keep order and cleanliness with a bunch of other individuals can be a chore. Only those of you who have served a mission can dig in your memory and probably smile as you remember those days. For the most part things are in pretty good order. But some of these apartments are very old, bathrooms are so small, outlets not adequate so there is always lots of extension cords. We love our missionaries and my do they eat a lot of cold cereal.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

SNOW glorious SNOW - fooey

Burrrrrrrr it's cold outside. It finally snowed enough for Doug to go outside and shovel off the stairs and walkway. He loves it, in fact he is out there now shoveling again in the dark.

Convent Sisters

We have talked alot about finding new apartments for the sisters in the convent. The convent is sandwiched in between two other buildings in the middle of a block on 14th street. You would never pick it out as being one. Just thought I would show you pictures of it and three sisters we will be moving out soon.

2nd North Mission Conference

We are sad to see more of our missionaries complete their mission and go home. Sister Underwood will be heading home next week. She is an absolute joy and so very sweet. We have two more from our Zone heading home, Elder Christensen and Elder Bedwell. Mission conference is right before new arrivals, transfers, and departures.

This was our 2nd Mission conference. The mission is divided into North and South, It is all the driving missionaries and our Zone who don't drive. The AP's come pick up our elders in the van and we take the sisters with us. W drive to Yorktown which is about 30 miles north of Bronx. We have Mission Conference every 6week cycle. So we are now into our 3rd cycle. I love the work shops and the training. The fun Zone updates, and the speakers who share a message. This time Elder Rich, who is the mission Doctor for about 16 different missions along the New England and East Canada area, spoke. He talked about the Health and Wellbeing of missionaries. There is a whole appendage to the Preach My Gospel book just on that subject. He related it to many scriptures and how we are to keep our Temples,(bodies) clean and pure and in good condition. Doug wrote a little note to me saying how he was going out today and buying a stationary bike. Our Stake President spoke and admonished the missionaries to not be extravagant after they go home and start their own families. It is important to be wise with our excess and share it freely with Heavenly Father's children in need. He did share with us that our stake has one of the highest income zip codes in the state and one of the lowest income zip codes in the nation.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

P-Day or P-Evening, whatever!


This young lady in the picture with us is a reporter from Singapore. She interviewed us during intermission and took our picture. We had great seats right towards the front to the left side.

We were in Costco the other day and they were selling tickets to the "CHINESE NEW YEAR SPLENDO." It was a good deal so Doug bought us two tickets for our P-day activity which was really in the evening. We rode the subway way down town to Radio City Music Hall and watched a delightfully beautiful show. The singing, music, dancing, colors, story line meaning, beautifully modest costumes, and orchestra were superb.

Get together with Mission Office couples

Left to right: Elder and Sister Unsworth, Elder and Sister Morrison, and then us.

We had a wonderful evening last Wednesday as we went to the Morrison's apartment to spend the evening with them and the Unsworths and enjoy dinner and getting to know each other. It is a real treat to visit and spend time together on an casual basis.

loved ones from home come for visit

What a treat to have dear friends from home stop in and see us on a busy trip out east. Robin Bowler and her son, Dustin were out here visiting schools where Dustin was accepted for Dental School. How fun will that be to maybe have him here in the Big Apple going to school. It was wonderful to spend some time catching up on things back home in St. George and sharing with them some of our exciting adventures. Good Luck to you Dustin! We love you guys.

Don't ya just love our back drop. It is the big frig that holds the produce for the Bishop's store house.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Institute Class Growing

Don't worry, you're not seeing double, it's just me, oops, don't know how this happened, it printed it twice. We love you all double.

We love Thursdays when we get to have Institute class. Just thought I would post this picture of more of our friends here. Doug gave a really great lesson on the Creation of Man and Women.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Crazy Food Delivery Day

Our District Elders who come and help with the Delivery Day. After unloading, stocking and smashing boxes we feed them. And boy do they eat. Elder Bedwell and Elder Christensen, the second and third elders from the left side are going home in two weeks. they will be missed.

It's Wednesday! It was crazy this morning. We had to run to the store before 8:30 to pick up Milk and eggs for 4 member food orders that would be here by 9:30 am. Thank heavens the Food Delivery will be here by 11:00. We also had the FM guy, Lewis , here fixing our ceiling problem and the water line to the frig. The 6 elders showed up just as the Delivery truck pulled up. We then had two more show up, Elder Christensen and Elder Bateman. They usually don't help on Wednesdays, too far away, but I invited them because it is one of Elder Christensens last Wednesdays here before he goes home. Transfers are going to really chop up our Zone in the next two weeks. Soon, the AP's showed up and two more elders. I didn't get a picture with the last four. It was quite a full house, literally. They must like the hot meal and of course P-day leizure time. They are so good to come by on their P-days to help us out.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Friends we meet

I just wanted to share with you about our new friend Tom. We first met Tom over the phone. He called and wanted to know if the new Missionaries could come and visit him. We made an appointment with him and of course it took a little bit to walk around the buildings to find his building and apartment. Tom was baptized in March of this past year. Tom will be 60 years old in March, he is blind. His wife died in 1982 and his little boy died three years after her, he was 5. We had a very nice visit with Tom, he was so very grateful and appreciative of our visit. We shared with him a message out of the Ensign. We made arrangements to pick him up the following Sunday to take him to his new ward as he had moved from ours a couple months previous. We talked to his new bishop to let him know about Tom. He was eager and happy to meet Tom and welcome him into their ward. Sunday Morning we went to pick up Tom and he said he had been up all night sick and that he still was very sick. So we told him we would check back on him later. A few days later, we called and was told by his aid that he was in the hospital. Tom called us and told us that he had been moved to the care center right next door. A few days later we went to visit him. He broke down crying as he had been told that he had full blown aids. That he would not be able to go back to his apartment because he was so sick and wanted to donate all his furnishing to the church. The next two weeks he has been in and out of the hospital. He is so very sick. Tonight we went to the hospital to visit with him. Doug had the strongest impression that we needed to go tonight to share a letter with him that the Shaffers had sent that we received a couple of days ago. It was such a sweet message of love and concern for him. They needed a little more information about his wife before they could go do her temple work for her. Tom cried. He misses her so much. He looks so near death. Doug says that he has seen that look before. We pray that Heavenly Father will be merciful and take him quickly so he can be with his sweet Rose and Pablo. It has been a blessing to us to know Tom for such a short time. He was afraid that the church would not want him any more because of his situation. We assured him that the Lord was mindful of him and this would be his church for ever. He was always so humbly grateful for our visits. We will miss Tom.

We Thank Thee Oh God for a PROPHET

The new First Presidency has been announced. How grateful we are to know that the Lord is at the helm of his church and that the leadership will always be there. No voting, just sustaining the Lords choice. And we do sustain, love and support our Prophet Seer and Revelators.
We have always loved President Thomas S. Monson, 1st councilor - President Henry B. Eyring and 2nd councilor - Dieter F. Uchtdorf.

We were able to hook up the TV at the church and watch the Press Release with our Mission Zone. And top of the gathering with "Bronx" Pizza.

Monday, February 4, 2008


We tried to be very good missionaries and not watch the game, Doug had it on with the volume down while he was doing some reading in the Book of Mormon. (of course he recorded it) That last minute was a real temptation where the volume came up and so did Doug. Anyone who has ever watched Doug watch sports knows exactly what I mean. I was "blessed" to hear the play by play loudly and over and over again. GO GIANTS!!!!! The elders called right on queu, to find out who won. They know Elder Ellett too well. It's been fun being here in New York for all the excitement.

Rainy P-day

Just thought we would Monkey around at the American Museum of natural History
We didn't have to crank our neck too far to enjoy this part of the museum. Of course the animals always catch our attention. Especially Doug. He misses hunting.
But this kind of hunting is a natural part of History.
Can you imagine coming across a snake this size. Look at all those bones.

We woke to a very wet wet day. We planned to go to the Statue of Liberty, but that will have to wait for another day. We braved the weather, rode the subway and made a new transfer we hadn't done before. I am always afraid I won't hear them say our stop and we will go for a long afternoon ride. Especially when I am on the buses. It was a great day that was topped off with dinner at: With Doug having his choice of course at AppleBee's.

This museum is right where Doug goes to the Dr. So now we know how to make the transfer. We have always driven to the Dr. It is right next to Central Park. Can't wait to explore the Park but it will have to wait for sunny nice weather.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Institute class

This is part of our Institute class. We actually have about 11 signed up. From left to right is Shaleen, Sister Adams, Ashley, Peter, Me & Elder Ellett.
Every other week we alternate who gives the lesson. The one not giving the lesson has to provide the refreshments we have chosen to bring every week. For all of you who know how Doug likes cobbler, this is a masterpiece of his. It was so yummy. He was sad he didn't have a dutch oven and open fire to cook it in and on.
Doug insisted that he buy this hat for me. We just got a new camera so he had to try it out.

Every Thursday evening we get the opportunity to teach Institute to those who are interested. Tonight I decided to take my camera. We sure enjoy the class. It is a real sacrifice for many to attend. Most ride the subway and or bus and have to make a transfer and walk to the transportation and back both ways. And this is done in the dark. I sure admire them for that. We have some great comments and discussions. We love them all. And of course the teacher always learns more than the students.