Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Serving our Sisters

Went and picked up sister Crystal McCune, a single mother, whose oldest daughter Rena-17, is moving to Alabama on Friday with her husband and two kids. This is really hard for sister McCune to see those little babies go. Rena has a 1/12 year old and a 1 month old. Crystal also had 2 little girls still at home, Delores 8, and Kily 5. I picked them up to come with me to Lisa Arndt, an investigator who is also a single mother of two little boys, Kevin - 4 and Ethan 1. Lisa is struggling with depression and other issues and we went over there to help her get a handle on her home. We help clean and the two got acquainted. Each new convert needs a friend. This is a good thing for both of these moms. They both need someone to fill a void in their lives. I so admire Crystal and her sweet caring and instant friendship. They have all ready set up Friday to get together and pop popcorn and watch a movie. They are both Harry Potter fans.

Doug was off entertaining the Elders today at a golf course they found that was pretty cheap. All offered to help clean Lisa's house but it just needed to be a girl day.


This is a SHOUT - OUT to our Kell - - - Happy 5th Birthday!!!

Brandee and Kevin's oldest Princess-daughter is 5 years old today!!! Go have an awesome girls day at Build-a-Bear!!! We love you so much McKell.

Monday, August 25, 2008

District Meeting

Of course there is always time to play a game of "7" at district meeting. The two in front with the ball is our Zone leaders, they came up to do splits. Today I played with them and took 2nd place.

We were passengers for the first time going to district meeting. The Elders had to get new tires for their car and so they had to take their car and we rode along with them. District meeting is always in Middletown, I suppose because we usually drive and it saves the three sets of missionaries miles on their car. The training today was on becoming acquainted with the bishop and ways that you can help him with the missionary efforts for his ward. It truly makes a difference if the Bishop is on the same page with missionary work. Building trust with the Bishop and ward members so they will give you referrals of their family and friends. They need to become excited about sharing the gospel. President Hinkley has said: "There is absolutely no point in doing missionary work unless we hold on to the fruits of that effort. Members are essential in helping new converts remain active and faithful." It is so important for all of us to work together in finding, teaching, and nourishing new members. How are we all doing? I quote from a friend of ours, Doug Bentley, "If we are going to accomplish the work that our Savior has for us to do to usher in His second coming, we cannot afford to be average Latter-day Saints any longer. The time of being average members of the Church is over." Neal A Maxwell has said: "all of the easy things the Lord has had for the Church to do are done. From now on it's high adventure." So I say - strap on your safety harness, your testimony and knowledge of the gospel and go forth and share and testify. Remember - "Every member a missionary."

We love you boys!

Just wanted to say thanks for a wonderful weekend. We had such a great time. You all look so good and happy. We miss you already. Sorry the flight was such a bummer.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

The boys have arrived!! Yahoo!

Went to see the temple and Central Park.
Dinner at Max Brenner Chocolate factory, Yum!!!
On top of the Empire State building
Orange County Chopper store and museum
Coming out of the church after changing to head to airport. Wasn't thinking or I would have taken a picture before they changed, Handsome men!
Picking the boys up at the airport. Boy do they look good!
Enjoying our night at the ball game - Go Braves!!!!!!!!!!!!

Rockefeller Center.
Watching the USA basketball and volleyball during the Olympics

We had a long day as it was our Zone Conference in New Burgh, which was awesome. Always is, we really enjoy when we gather with the young Elders and get to experience the strong spirit. It is always great to be with Pres. and Sister Searle. After Zone Conf, we drove back to Monticello because Doug had forgotten his medication, and extra 100 miles to pick it up, and then down to Laguardia Airport to pick up the boys. It was so good to see them as they walked down the hall to the baggage dept. Not much time to spare as we went right to the Shea Stadium to watch the Mets and the beloved "Braves" play. It was a great game up until the last play of the game that put the Mets 5-4.

We drove into Manhattan as we decided to get a motel there as it was really late and we live to far away from the city. We did the tourist thing all day Friday. Went to Rockefeller Center, Time Square, Subwayed down to the Manhattan temple then over to Central Park, China Town then to Ground Zero. Went to dinner at Max Brenner Chocolate Factory in Union Square and then went to the Empire State Building. What a joke. We waited in line for an hour and 15 minutes to finally get to the top, which was beautifully awesome and then in line for another half hour to be able to ride the elevator back down. Finally got back tot he motel at about 10:00 pm, watched some of the Olympics and then to bed.

Saturday we drove to the Bronx to show them our home there at the Bishop's storehouse. Formans were gracious and let us pick some tomatoes and squash from the garden we started before we were transfered. We drove up state over Bear Mountain, which was a big hit and then on into New Burgh to OCC - Orange County Choppers to tour the big store and motorcycle museum. We then went on into Monticello and relaxed for an hour before driving up to Bethel Woods to have dinner at Bubba's bar-b-que on the lake. It is a cute quiet quaint little place we found a month ago. The perfect summer get away. The boys loved it there. After getting home we watched National Treasure and sack out.

Sunday came all to fast. Isn't it amazing how time drags before the vacation and then it slips right past you and its over. That was certainly the case with today. I couldn't believe their time with us was coming to a close. We got up had breakfast, the boys packed and then got ready for church. Dusty got sick and was throwing up and had to go back to bed. Doug and the boys gave him a blessing and he was able to get up and off we went to church. It was Doug's month to conduct and find Sacrament speakers. He had asked the boys to all talk a couple of weeks ago before coming out here. They all did a wonderful job. Even Brax who hasn't talked in church since he was 12 years old. The Spirit was so strong as the theme was on families. How blessed we are to have our family and how we love them. After church we were off to the city as the boys flew out at 3:30 pm. I think they loved the Monticello area, who wouldn't, it is beautiful country. Thanks to Cari and Malea and Abbie for letting them come spend some time with us. They are awesome men and we are so blessed.

Saturday, August 23, 2008


Today all of our boys spent the day with us. I'm sure even Clint was with us as we hung out and enjoyed the day. Boys day in New York. We thought of you often Clint. We miss you so much. It has been eight years today that you started your mission on the other side, in heaven. We reminissed and laughed as we talked of you today. Brandon mentioned how his little Brecky Clintin, one of your name sakes, reminds him of you. Dusty's little Tryston has that gleem in his eye too. Oh how they are in for a wild, fun and crazy adventure with their little guys. The boys will all be talking in our Sacrament meeting on the topic of Family. We are so blessed to know that we are a forever family. We will be all together again. Be good, keep busy and know that we love you and pray for you always. Sure wish this mom could get a letter or a phone call on Mother's day, but I know you do too. The boys and dad say hi and send all their love.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Huray for today!!!!

The Boys are here in 10 hours, on our way to Zone Meeting and then to the city to pick them up. Can't wait.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Elder back from medical leave

Elders: Bishoff, Bergonza, Jesson, Gale, Iro, Mook and us.

We drove down to Middletown for District meeting today. Two Spansh speaking Elders have been placed in the area. Elder Bishoff from Moab Utah just arrived back in the field after rehab from a hip injury. It was so fun to see him. He is a great young man. His new companion Elder Bergonza from Illinoise had just been transferred to Kingston area and then re-transferred when Elder Bishoff arrived. The Middletown area are blessed to have the spanish speaking Elders there. It makes us one of the largest districts. (Elder Bishoff is a major hunter, he and Doug get along really well.)

We stopped at Gander Mtn on the way home and picked up "Edward" the blow up deer and a cross bow that shoots foam darts. (The Elders nic-named it Edward). FHE lesson was on the story of Nephi and his broken bow. They gave a great lesson and then Doug hosted a game with "Edward". If we answered his questions correctly we got to shoot the cross bow. We had 13 at FHE not counting the missionaries. We had a great time.

Two more days and the boys will be here - Yahoo!!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Apartment searching continues

We spent all day Friday in New Paltz area looking at places for the new Missionary Couple coming out the end of September to live. New Paltz is about 68 miles east of us. I had spent tuesday all day on the phone calling and making appointments for us to check out places for rent. This is a hard task when it is for someone else instead for us. The last place we looked at that day is the perfect place, location wise. It is new construction which is a great plus. But, with the perfect place the price tag is always a little more. When you consider that there is a washer and dryer in the apartment, it still smells and looks new, and it is partly furnished, it is hard to pass up. It will be up to the Farnsworth's to make the choice because it is their dollar. We took pictures and will email them to the couple with details about each place. We have also learned that as soon as you get out of the City, about 30 miles, it is all in the country and very beautiful. Very green and lush everywhere.

RS Enrichment Activity

We had our first Relief Society Enrichment activity since we have been here in Monticello. It was a book review. 5 of us showed up. We had a good time and even celebrated Sister Annie Pyrum's birthday with cake. She was very happy to have us remember her and sing happy birthday.

On my way in the building there were several does and fawns out on the church lawn. The little fawns were frolicking and chasing back and forth. They weren't the least concerned about me as they played and chased together. My camera said no battery as I attempted to take a picture, didn't realize it had taken this picture until I was able to charge the battery. They were so cute. Just like little puppies running and chasing each other.

We also discussed that it would be a good idea to try to have a ward choir. So sunday after church there were 5 that stayed after for practice. It is a good start. We definitely are on "Mormon Standard time" here in Monticello. Sacrament meeting gets started about 10:10, by about 10:35 we have had about 10 more show up. I help go pick up people while Doug is at a meeting right before church every week.

P-day fishing

We decided to try our luck at another lake. We parked along side the road and headed down a little trail that led to the lake and we came across about 12 little fishing boats in the trees just off the shore. No luck with fishing, but we did get some sewing done. I crocheted around a receiving blanket and Doug tied off some of his "Atlanta Braves" lap quilt he is making. I sewed around the edges for him and he is tying the center. He is getting excited for when our boys get here for a visit next week and we will be going to a Mets Vs Braves game in Shea stadium. He was feeling like he had to have something "Braves" when he goes to the game. He even talked Brax into looking for one of his Braves shirts back home and bringing it with him.

Wahoo!!! 4 more days and the boys will be here!!!!! So excited!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Are Lizzards really orange?

Looks like this one is. We found it on our walk this morning early. Almost stepped right on it. Doug decided he needed to bring it home and keep it as a pet. Notice the cheerios as you compare the size of this little guy.

Our favorite 1st graders KC & Easton

Can't believe our little buddies are in 1st grade. School all day long. Can summer really be over? We know they will have a blast. They are the cutes boys ever and best buddies. Have an awesome time in school. We are proud of you and love you so much.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Mini Zone/District Meeting/then off to FHE

FHE with Annie Pyrum and her family.
Dodge Ball after our Zone Meeting - This is quite the sport for the Elders, they love it.

And of course they love the food too
Newburgh Zone after a mean game of Dodge Ball

We drove to Newburgh for a mini Zone gathering. We became acquainted with the new Elders in our Zone, had awesome instruction and testimonies from ZL and others. We learned the importance of being an Elder Dan Jones, instead of an Elder " I'm a Mormon". Are we here on our mission because we love the Lord and have a testimony of his Atonement or are we here because we are a Mormon and we are expected to be here on our missions. Now that is an important question we all can ask ourselves with our everyday lives.

After the sharing session the Elders changed and had a mean game of Dodge ball. We brought some brownies and chips and dips. No matter what it is the Elders are hungry and grateful. We love being with them. During the meeting the thunder rumbled like crazy and the rain poured. After about an hour it cleared up and the sun was bright as ever.

We drove to New Paltz to check out an apartment complex for the new senior couple that will be here the end of sept. Nothing available. We'll have to spend the whole day looking soon.
We then headed home and prepared for family home evening. It was our turn for the lesson and activity.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Baptism delay

Today there was a baptism scheduled for Lisa Rivera, the investigator that the Elders have been teaching. She had her final interview friday night with Pres. Sasine and things looked great. We found out late last night as we drove in from NYC that she wasn't sure. She didn't show up to church today which was a let down. Pres. & Sister Searle surprised us as they had travel up here for the baptism. I felt so bad that it was a wasted trip for them. 180 miles out of their way. We will continue to pray for Lisa that she will receive an answer to her prayers and studying and choose to be baptized. Her son Carlos is so disappointed, he is so excited to be baptized. Pray for her.

Senior Couples Temple Excursion

Good bye and Good Luck to the Carpenters from Denver Colorado. They were evicted from the old Convent building the church bought 4 years ago. Last Friday, they had 3 hours to be out of there and make it look like no one had been living there. What good sports in this great adventure they have had.
Hello and Welcome to the Evan's from Layton Utah, they will be serving in the Mission office taking the Unsworth's place.
The Old Bear Lodge built in 1916

Notice the wake behind this Goose, it was really moving.

Our get together with the Senior Couples began Friday about 3:30 pm, as we traveled to the mission home. Sister Searle had invited us to spend the night at the mission home before going on to the temple on Saturday. What a treat to share dinner on Friday with the Searles. We so appreciate their generosity and kindness. We traveled with them to the temple Saturday morning. It is always a sacred experience to be in the Lord's house with those you admire and love. It was fun to say hello to our temple family we served with while we had the opportunity while in the Bronx. After the temple session we all gathered next door to the church building for a potluck lunch hello, fairwell to in coming and out going missionaries. We are so blessed to be on the same team as so many talented missionaries. We love you all.

After riding back to the Mission Home we picked up our car and head back to Monticello. Thought we would enjoy the ride over Bear Mountain and came across the State Park there over looking the Hudson River. Stopped to go for a stroll around the resivoir and take a few pictures. We were the only ones there in dress clothes and I am sure we were quite on odditiy as the place was very crowded on a beautiful Saturday early evening. There were many enjoying fishing, swimming, paddle boating, bar-b-que-ing, vollyball, frisbrey, soccer, people watching, etc. It is a very beautiful recreation area. A huge lodge that was built in 1916 that was being renovated. The perfect place for a family reunion.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

We love you THELMA BROWN

We are again saddened at the passing of a cherished friend Sister THELMA BROWN. She is my hero, I want to be like Thelma when I grow up. We adopted each other as family when we first met. She has been struggling with her health ever since her sweetheart Reed passed away June 23, 2000. I was blessed with the opportunity to go visiting teaching with Thelma, and blessed to just visit her with open arms always. She is one of those Elite women like you read about in the scriptures. Her last several years were spent in a Nursing home. She was well loved there and anywhere she lived. She moved up to Centerville this past winter to be close by family. I am so excited for her to be with her beloved husband. She was so lonely for him. I know too that she will look up my Clint and give him all my love, as we talked about that many times. Clint used to collect fast offerings from the Browns and Reed would always tease him. Oh, how I will miss you Thelma, you have blessed my life immensely, as well as others. Doug and I will miss our visits with you, but know that we will see you again and embrace with a sweet tenderness. I will always be grateful for your friendship, counsel, love, example and memories. I will always remember how important it is to "Bloom where you are planted" no matter where I am or what I am doing.

P-day adventure

Lisa, (the Elder's investigator), was so kind to cut Elder Mook and Gale's hair and help me do mine. Thanks Lisa, you are great!

Management for our building we in set up for the Bug Man to spray every condo. So we hung around for him to come and go. During the wait the Elders came over and watched Work and the Glory 3. Lisa, an investigator they are teaching came over and her and I went to the beauty supply store to pick up some things for her to do my hair. She was gracious enough to help me take care of my gray popping thru and I was brave enough to let her do my hair. I was the ginny-pig. The first time she has weaved hi-lites. She actually is not licensed but would like to be. She had to quite school because the commute was getting too expensive. It went a little lighter than I expected, but never the less, the gray is gone. So thanks to you Lisa. The guys didn't want to stick around for the transformation so they took off and went fishing to a new place down the road about 10 miles to a place called "Wurtsboro".

Lisa and her son Carlos are set to get baptized this Sunday. She has many questions and is quite a scholar of the bible. The Elders are doing a great job teaching and answering her questions. Doug and I have gone over and helped teach on about 3 occasions. She is awesome. Carlos is 11 and comes to our basketball hour on saturdays.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Trey's Big Day


Treyson Ellett was blessed today August 3, 2008 by his father Dusty. All our family gathered to share this experience with Dusty & Cari's little family. We are so blessed to have such an awesome family who love, support, have fun, help, play,worship, experience, share,laugh, cry, with each other. We love you so much. Our hearts and thoughts are always with you.

Friday, August 1, 2008


5 Years, Did you ever think you would be where you are 5 years ago? Congratulations!
Congratulations to Kason and Wendy who were married today 8-1-08, Doug's sister's boy.
This is where you would be and what you cherish. TOO CUTE!
This is a shout out to Dusty and Cari - Hope you have a great day and enjoy a nice quiet dinner together. Kiss and hug and reminisce. Hurray to Brax and Abbie for tending the little ones. We love you XOXOXOXOXOXOX

Congratulations to Kason and Wendy Bale on their wedding day!

Apartment Inspections in Newburgh Zone

Today we are getting to see the country side some more. We have been to several new places and drove thru many new places. Very green and lush. It is nothing like driving thru any of the western states. The further away from the city of New York you go the further away from the cultural melting pot. We enjoy inspecting apartments cause we get getter acquainted with the Elders, we see the countryside and Doug gets to use his tools and handyman skills, and we try somewhere new and fun to eat. We cross over the Hudsen river a couple of times and are always having to pay a toll. What's up with that. That's something we never have to do in Utah. Probably because there are no huge rivers with huge bridges. There are tolls just to be able to go into a city or drive on a certain freeway. They get you coming and going. I'll bet we went thru about a dozen tolls. The scenery is beautiful, but I miss our good old Utah mountains.

In the town of Kingston, we spent some time looking around for apartments for rent. We are to find an apartment for the new couple missionaries from Washington that will be here the first of October. Senior couple are needed so badly in the mission field. Well it is almost 10:00 pm and we have 32 miles till home. Some days seem longer than others.