Friday, July 15, 2016

From Mom

Slow Friday in the office so decided to write you a letter. Smile

Dear Family,
We had a good 4th of July. We were kind of busy but had a good time.
We had a ward pancake breakfast and flag ceremony. We sang a few songs and had a good breakfast. We had pancakes, eggs and sausage and watermelon. Two wards so lots of people. They had plain and chocolate chip pancakes.

We were then invited to the mission president’s home for lunch and had BBQ spare ribs, corn on the cob, watermelon, pasta salad and I made homemade rolls. We were there and played a few games and talked with the other senior missionaries – about 14 of us now.
Then after lunch we went to a friend’s house for another BBQ.  I brought potato salad and lemonade to that one. Just a few of us there but fun talking and getting to know others. A new couple was there and they just moved here from South Carolina so fun to talk to them. The man is a residential appraiser. And her mom lives here so they moved here to be closer to her and help her as her health is not very good. So not sure how long they will be here, but fun to get to know them. Then we went back to the apt for a bit and cleaned up and washed clothes. Then about 8pm we headed to the college close by to watch fireworks with some friends. We brought popcorn, and others brought watermelon and homemade root beer, and cookies. So we had all sorts of treats. The fireworks were really nice and about 20 minutes. So a fun filled 4th of July. Also remembering all our family and others who served our country.

Dad and I are giving talks at a tri stake single adult fireside on July 17th. It was supposed to be on the 24th but they had a conflict of the building. So that is good. So we will be talking about our pioneer ancestors and how we are all pioneers. But I have some good stories so hope it all goes well.

We have met with Jeff Johnston and he is such a fun guy. He is the typical surfer guy who has now gotten older and realized he missed a lot from not going to church. So he is having the missionary discussions, but he is a member already. He has the Melchizedek priesthood.  But has not been to church for many years so just needs to learn more. He is ready and anxious to learn as much as he can. He has a calling in the ward and is greeter and then also to help every week cleaning the church building and calling people to remind them to come clean. He is a really great guy – probably about 36. Jake is back in the hospital with his drinking problems and one nurse said he did not have much longer to live but then today he was moved out of the icu so not sure what is happening. We called his mom in Florida so she is going to fly up here and see him. So hope that will help him and maybe get motivated to keep working on no more drinking. He has come to church a few times but is sick many of the times, so leaves early or does not want us to pick him up. 

Then we have Fred who is so excited to be baptized. His last name is Ward and he said this the place I need to be since it is called a ward. Smile But the sisters just saw him on the street one day and asked if he wanted to learn more about the Book of Mormon and he said sure. Right away he loved everything they were teaching him. He is being baptized July 23. He has called all his family to come to the baptism and many are coming and some even flying in here from other states. He put it on facebook too. So fun having him in Sunday school class.

They started having missionary dinners for us now. So we have people invite us over one time a week to get to know us and them more. So last night we went to the Bishop’s home for dinner and was fun to learn more about them. He is Bishop  Chris Hooke. But an interesting story about him and his family. Their family name is really Hooker but they have 3 daughters and did not want them to have to worry about their last name as they got to be teens. So they talked to his parents and other siblings and asked if they wanted to change their last name. The parents understood so agreed, and a brother said yes. They were trying to figure out a name they all could have and maybe keep the first initial of H. But one brother liked the name of Thomas but Bishop Hooke already had a son named Thomas so did not want him to have the name Thomas Thomas. So decided to just drop the last letter R and they could be Hooke. But the one brother still liked Thomas so now Bishop Hooke has a brother with the last name of Thomas. And his parents kept the name Hooker and his sister got married so changed her name when she got married. So we told them they better do their genealogy and keep it updated so others do not have to sort through all that. Smile!  It will be fun to go to the member’s homes and learn about them more.

Not sure if you all knew but Christian and Suzi and family came out this past weekend. They got here Friday evening so got here in time for dinner and talked. Then Saturday we went to the beach and got bogie boards and borrowed some wet suits. Some wore the wet suits but after a while the water felt good and so took off the wet suits. The kids did a great job with the bogie boards and loved “surfing” on them. We did not have surf boards but fun riding the waves in. I even was in the water and on the bogie board and bouncing in the waves. Really fun. Mostly had sun screen on the right places, but with us in and out of the water some was washed off. But mostly Christian got a pink back. He was wearing a wet suit most of the time then took it off and forgot to put sun screen on. But he loved the water. Suzi and Christian were riding the waves most of the time. Then cleaned up back at the apt and went out to dinner at a BBQ place we wanted to try. Then back to the beach for some sunset pictures and walk along the shore. We don’t have many sea shells, so picked up broken pieces of what shells we could find.

Then Sunday went to church and the young men and young women do not have very large classes so were excited to have visitors to add to the classes. In the afternoon we went out to the pier and walked out there to see many people fishing and out for a Sunday afternoon stroll. We actually saw a seal along the beach. It was first swimming by some of the people out in the water. They probably did not even know it was there, but then went to the other side and went up on the shore to sun himself. Fun to see. Then back to the beaches to see the sunsets.

Monday we took the day off from work and so we went to a different beach and played in the sand and played on the bogie boards. Fun day just playing in the water and sand. Then back to the condo and played in our pool a bit. Cleaned up and went to our office to introduce them to the Floyds, who we work with and tell them all about our family so wanted to see who we are talking about. Then we went to the fruit stand to get some fresh fruit and meet Juan, my fruit man! He is a great guy and love his help in picking the right fruit. Then home for dinner family home evening and then out for yogurt and the beach for more sunsets. Smile! We had a great time and think we showed them some fun things and played in the water. Hopefully it was relaxing for them as we had fun with them all here.
We went to work in the office Tuesday and they left Tuesday morning. Fun weekend.

Tuesday we had the Missionary leadership conference (MLC) and so we had pulled pork sandwiches. I had cooked the pork before the kids got here so had that all cooked and ready to reheat. Then had baked beans and my scalloped baked corn, watermelon, chips and blueberry cobbler. The missionaries loved it and had some leftover so was fun to take some home for dinner later. No blueberry cobbler left over but that was good they liked it all.

We started doing missionary apartment inspections. So went out today with the Floyds to show us what to look for and how to grade them. So we start doing that next week. I will take some cookies or donuts to the missionaries as we go inspect their apartments. You know… just a “treat” to see us!!

Had a fun phone call from a missionary who is coming to the mission in a few weeks. He asked if he could, bring his lacrosse stick to the mission. I told him no weapons were allowed and he just laughed, but told him no he could not bring it.  Also too much equipment to bring with it.

I have a list on the computer of all the missionaries who are coming to the mission and when and so my list was long – about 42, but the next day it went down to 17 as 25 of them had just entered the MTC! So all 25 of them will get here August 1st so busy time. I get packets all ready for them – emergency information, orientation booklets, papers to update with family addresses and emails, etc. and then they write a short letter to their parents and I sent a picture of them when they arrive here in the letter. Then also we give the new missionaries bedding to use for their whole mission – mattress pads, sheets, pillow, blanket and quilt and a large bag to put it all in. So we put those in the hall but has been full when we have 12 coming so will be really full when we have 25 young missionaries arrive to pick up the bedding bags. But fun exciting times when those new ones come.

We also feed them lunch that day so I think I am going to keep it simple and sub sandwiches – like the 6 foot one so I do not have to cook as much! So with the 25 new ones we also get lunch for their new companions and so 25 more there, plus us office people, so about 60 of us. So probably a few 6 foot subs. Smile.

Love you all and hope your week is going well.

Sorry Henry is back in the hospital and hope the blood transfusion helps and he can be home for a bit more. Sending prayers for you all.
Marcus did great on his end of 2nd year test and moves on to 3rd year medical school!! Yeah! Congratulations Marcus!
Bryan accepted a new job as chief engineer with the government. He skipped lead engineer and moved up to chief engineer. Working as boss now of his co workers. He starts the new position mid -August. Congratulations Bryan. 
Kristin continues to do well in her new job and does the appraising of homes, plus taking classes for residential appraising.
Josh is working a new job and works from home now so the kids love it while they are home in the summer. I think Josh likes it too. Carrie is out with Jessica for a week – playing and watching the kids and enjoying the summer in West Virginia for a week. Then she will go to be with Liz’s sister Kate for 3 or 4 weeks, being a nanny for her for a while. Allison did super on her horse completion and got 1st place in her group and 4th place individual!! Her bedroom wall is Full of wonderful ribbons and awards she has earned.
Jon and Summer have 3 little ones in their home and all under 2 years old. And an older girl. Josie will be 2 this Sunday but lots of little ones to love and take care of. You are doing a great service for those little ones.
Jessica, Anna, Summer, Jeni, Suzi, Liz  you all are doing super watching all the little ones and keeping them busy and happy over the summer.

Love you all so much!!!

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