Monday, May 23, 2011

We have enjoyed wonderful Firesides.

President Scott Lorimer, He used to be the Stake President for the Riverton Stake for many years, years ago. He and his wife are amazing. They have had amazing experiences with the Mormon Handcart Historic Sites starting way back in 1971. He was very instrumental in aquiring much of the property here at the sites. He has entertained Prophets and Apostles, Govenors, Senators, many many people here at the Historic Sites. Before the missionaries were here, The Riverton Stake was here. His spiritual insight is responsible for the "2nd Rescue". His stake was responsible for the temple work that was done for those in the Willie and Martin Companies, the Rescuers, and the Hodget and Hunt wagon companies.

We have enjoyed many wonderful firesides.

Doug is in Heaven.

White Tail deer in the yard of the Welcome Center. I just think they are so cute with their white tails bouncing as they trot off to the river.
Willie joined Doug as he was down at the river hunting. Yes I said "HUNTING".
Elder Bagley gave Doug his rifle to get the beavers who are causing havock in the rivers with their lodges. They back up the river so we have more flooding than normal.
So far: 2 down. We are yet to find them floating to be able to get to them to skin 'em and hang the skin up in the trek center.

The Logs have arrived

It is exciting to see the logs delivered for the new Visitor's Center up on the hill.
Elder Brunson and Doug are tweeking the jig they made for cutting the logs in half. The saw blade doesn't go all the way through the log.
There are just a couple of the Elders who have their CDL license, Doug is one of them. We have quite a bit of big heavy equipment here at the Willie Site.
All the walls are framed in the basement and the 2nd floor, floor has been completed. Ready for the logs to be stacked.

"The town is filled with Mormons....."

"The Town is filled with Mormons....but the largest part of them are going to Salt Lake this Spring."

Sunday, May 22, 2011

CES Bus Tour

Joel Richards and Jeff Myservy were our tour guides on our CES bus tour. Very fun guys who shared so much knowledge.
Doug was asked to read a portion of the Ephraim Hanks story when we were at "Split Rock".
Sister Turek and I slid down the west side of Independence rock in a hurry to not be left behind. There was only three couples who were adventurous enough to climb over Independence Rock.
Notice the rabbit laying flat as a pancake trying to camouflage it's self from us intruders.
After climbing down the back side of Independence Rock, Sister Turek and I explored and climbed through a few caves. We love the Tureks. They are so fun. We met them at a MHHS reunion we both were invited to just before our mission. The Tureks are at the Cove.

If you look carefully you can see the indentation of where the wagon wheels made ruts and wore down the rocks
Notice the date scratched into the rock on the top of Independence Rock. The rock got it's name because this is the place the pioneers needed to be by Independence Day (4th of July) when traveling across the plains in order to make it to the valley before winter storms hit.

Doug is in the shank of a hand cart that is on a treadmill of sorts to assimilate the weight in a hand cart and how fast you would have to go to make good time and distance. This is at Casper Wyoming Interpretive Center.
I enjoyed a reality ride in a covered wagon. Doug is standing by a section of the original bridge that crossed the river many many years ago.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Willie Site trek training

E/S Peterson shared the "Water Crossing" talk given to trekkers who come before they cross the water with their handcarts.
E/S Newman gave the Willie talk in the meadow near where the Willie Company were rescued
E/S Smith gave the talk about the "John Linford" monument that was placed here by his descendants. John died in this valley.
Doug and I gave the "Willie Talk" in the meadow where the Willie Company were rescued.
Last week we went to the "Cove" and were instructed by 2nd year missionaries at all the sites that they share a prepared history of the place. So this week it was their turn to come to the Willie Site and trek our trails here. The first year missionaries, (that was us and others) were given the assignment to share the stories at significant places. The Cove missionaries were divided into two groups, so we had two sets of 1st year missionaries to deliver the talks. Our turn was with the second group that came thru. We were so blessed with the spirit as we shared the Willie Story. Elder Fenn, who is the Director of the Mormon Historic Handcart Sites, said that he was so touch and had heard this story given many times over the past three years but never as good as we did. We know it wasn't us, it was the spirit that shared the message to touch hearts, we were just the tools. We are so grateful for answered prayers and for the help we received from the Spirit.

Rock Creek Hollow

This early in the season we were lucky to be able to drive into the Hollow. The road had been snow plowed as there was a deep snow drift there.
It is a very beautiful place and the spirit was so strong there as it is a very sacred place. Here there were 13 people buried in a common grave and two more close by of the brothers whohelped dig the grave, who died the next day. These saints had the day before traversed the Rocky Ridge in terrible conditions. Snow was knee deep, they had a bitter cold northwest wind blowing right in their faces and they were freezing and starving. Rocky Ridge is about a 3 mile ascend to the top and then they still had to travel about another 12 miles before they reached the camp. Tragedy for those who died the next day and triumph for those who made it.
The Sweetwater river runs right thru this valley. This picture shows the river running right under this big snow drift. It was beautiful.
Here you can see the actual trail the pioneers came down into this Hollow, just above Doug and the others.
Here is the memorial that the Riverton Stake put here honoring those who lost their lives after traversing Rocky Ridge. We have a camp site as you can see in the back ground. Missionaries have the opportunity to stay here as camp host for a week at a time. There are two amphitheaters on site as well. Many firesides will take place here during the trek season.

1st District Meeting

Our first district meeting was held at the "Miner's Grubstake" in Atlantic city about an hour and 15 minutes west of the Willie Center. Our district consists of, left to right: Wallaces, Brunsons, Heges who are our district leaders and also the assistant directors of the Willie Center, and then we are on the far right.
This was a great experience. Atlantic City is an old mining town that still has operating mines. It is a tiny tiny town. This is the only establishment open to serve food.

Laurel, the Proprietor of the establishment was a real treat. She reminds me alot of our good friend Kaye Peterson who was our back yard neighbor, who we love dearly, when we lived in the sandtown area in St. George. The drive was worth the food and the atmosphere. Atlantic City is 11 miles west if Rock Creek Hollow. Where we went next.

Yard crew

We are given daily assignments and one of them is to be on the yard crew. Sister Bulechek has great company with "Willie" our community dog here at the Willie Site. He comes with me when I take my early morning walks and herds the cows away for me.
Sister Gardner & sister Davis are real troupers as she spreads bark in the flower beds.

We all stay very busy, not just the guys

We had a great fireside and training from the Churches Historic Department with Jenny Lund and Mel Bayshore. Here the Bagleys are presenting them with a gift for coming and training here at the Willie Site.
Sister Brunson, Newman & Smith are crocheting in the humanitarian center.
We enjoy Prayer meeting every morning at 8:00 am. Who can say they have had a prayer meeting with a back hoe in the building with you. Minor work needed to be done so we shared the trek center with the back hoe.
Everyday sisters are assigned to the Humanitarian Center. A quilt is always on. So far I think we have completed about 10 quilts. They will go to places here locally. knit hats are being made, pioneer clothes for youth in Argentinia are being made.
Sorry sister Stokes, but you are crooked. Many of the sisters were in the kitchen all day long to prepare a meal for 150 people. The missionaries from the Cove came over to trek here at the Willie Center and we fed them dinner.
Shepherds Pie, yummy fresh fruit salad, homemade rolls and a delicious frozen orange desert.
That evening we enjoyed a wonderful fireside given by Andrew Olsen, who wrote the book "We Paid the Price". He was kind enough to sign everyones books.

I love to see a project come together

Doug spends most of his days at the site up on the hill. I think he really is enjoying it. He enjoys who he works with and has a great love and respect for them. Who would have thought that you could take a bunch of missionaries and turn them into builders. It is awesome to be apart of this project. The Lord is in charge and he qualifies those who serve.