Sunday, December 28, 2014

Christmas Memories... ah.

Chapter 20:

Hope your Christmas was memorable in the good way. I’ve had some memories… I tell you that are downright memorable but in the wrong way. I mean that only in the good way.

It was HOT… Did I mention that I hate hot??? Yeah, I know, enough already. But I heard Alpine and the rest of my neck of the woods got snow! Lots of it. Yay!

It is Saturday and thankfully, cooler. (As I'm posting this it is Sunday and still a bit cooler than Christmas)

So, here’s our Christmas in a nutshell. We had a blast buying for our friends and family. Not OUR family but a family that lives here. They are our friends and their kids are our friends… Oh you get the idea. We met the mom and dad on Monday evening to transfer the wrapped gifts from our car to their car. It was a great evening. For Christmas Eve we went to a local Christian Church for a Christmas play that when it all washed out was fun for kids but didn’t have a lot to do with Christmas… Just saying.

On Christmas Day, I cooked a turkey, twice baked potatoes and brownies in 100 degree heat with 99% humidity. Have I mentioned how much???? I know. Well, this was like Hell with Humidity… or if you are sensitive… like Phoenix with Humidity…which in my opinion is about the same. Do not mean to offend all you Zoneies but I hate heat.

So, about 1 in the afternoon, we took ourselves, our turkey, gravy, brownies, potatoes, and salami and cream cheese horns over to the Maleka’s (a family in our branch) for a fun day of swimming,(which we can’t do) eating (which we did) and chatting. By the time 5-ish rolled around I was more tired, more hot and a bit sad—yeah, missing my kids and grandkids and Christmas music, and decorations.

By 8-ish, while we were back in our flat with our noisy A/C turned on and watching Christmas movies, the Elders came back from Joburg bearing gifts and big smiles. We got the gifts from the Haights. (I might add right here that I am using my first dryer sheet!) J We exchanged gifts with the Elders which was really special. (We now have a Toilet Slam Dunk game—we really do.)

My friends Diane and Ruben noticed that I was not in the best of moods on Christmas Day so she emailed me that night and after complaining to her about being hot, tired and a bit sad I felt better. Sometimes you just need to vent. And I did vent. Poor Diane.

So, the next day, they concocted some story about needing us out there… out there is a 50 minute drive to Sabie. Which I was glad to go because Sabie is always cooler than Nelspruit. Once there, I discovered it was a ruse to have a second Christmas dinner where I didn’t have to cook—they did. I just sat in the coolness of their wonderful covered patio and was waited on, showered with gifts and lots of love along with Christmas music, decorations and holiday spirit. Something I had truly been missing. It was really a wonderful do-over Christmas Day. One I will never forget.  

I’m going to change the mood here a bit.

On Tuesday, we drove to Lydenburg to teach Calisto. It was too hot to sit outside so we sat inside at a restaurant table and taught him the rest of the plan of salvation lesson. We had several people listening or eavesdropping as it goes but that’s always ok. The Sunday before, he came to church and afterwards Elder Scott gave him a LDS Bible and a triple combination—the blue ones. Now, everyone knows these are scriptures that we give away for free. Every Ward Library has dozens of these books lying around.  They are not very expensive for us to buy thanks to the church programs. You know the ones. Well, ES handed these two books to Calisto saying they were a gift to him. Calisto teared-up as he looked at the books, took them in both hands, clutched them in a tight embrace, pulling them towards his heart, he said, “This is the best gift I have received. I will love them and cherish them.”

Goes without saying but do we all feel this way about our scriptures? On Tuesday when we met him he had already read to Section 52 in the D&C… Wow. He is so hungry to be baptized. Now, every time the Elders teach him, he teaches the people he works with. Can’t wait until he is baptized! Angels will be singing on that day!

Today, we met with Debbie… the woman from last week’s blog. We just stopped in for lunch and brought her a Book of Mormon. She was excited to get it and has already watched both DVDs, read the pamphlets and is ready to call the Elders to set up an appointment to be taught. She told me today that she likes the way I say things. She can understand me and wants to know what I know. I simply told her that because I know who I am and why I am here that I am grounded inside. I am happy because of this knowledge. Come what may, I will still know I am a daughter of God and that He loves me and He knows my name. Something along those lines. Often when the Holy Ghost is speaking through your mouth you can’t remember exactly what was said… only the gist of it…but it is a cool experience nonetheless.
Well, that about wraps up our Christmas week. We spoke or emailed or texted or facetimed some of our children and checked out the others on Face Book. Hope your week has been Christ filled... It was great to see on FB all the missionary moms excitement and joy over hearing from their children. I know Elder Ah Wong and Elder Smith were sure thrilled to speak to their families. Till next time... Still no monkeys but we caught a glimpse of some gray ones along the road the other day... cute flea infested critters...

Christmas Eve Presentation...A rock band singing adapted Carols.

two more views of the performance

Yes, I am tired and HOT. This is the food I took to the party. A turkey is under the foil
I was still making gravy

The pool party. The kids had a great time!

Nice pool and nice view

Playing Wii

This is a house across the street. It is really nice but look at the tree and the nests hanging from the top. There must have been 50 birds flying around and making their homes.

These are our friends, the Weitsz. We took them to dinner to celebrate Christmas.

They invited us to the day after Christmas (boxing day here) to celebrate sans the pool but I didn't have to cook anything. They showered us with gifts, food, music and good will and love. Ah, a real Christmas Party
Our Gifts... The cup wears a hat! cute.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Chapter 19... Hot!!!!!

Chapter 19

We have officially been in Country 4 months today. We arrived August 19… Yay!

I hate to say this too loudly, But I HATE this weather. It is not so hot but boy is it humid. I hate humidity. Sure, everything is green and plants and grass and trees love this damp, sticky weather but I hate it. Our towels never dry. Our necks, elbows, knees and other parts are always wet. My hair is damp which is always so flattering… My face doesn’t like this damp stuff either… I keep breaking out… Do you know the last time I had a zit? Actually, it was yesterday but before I came here… years, decades even. Yeah, the weather stinks. I love the weather in Sabie. It is raining. I mean if it’s going to be wet anyway, let it rain.

Last week I found a lonely little metal sign that says, “Let It Snow!” It’s on my front door. Now the chances of it actually snowing are the same as when you–know-what-freezes but I’d welcome it right now. What’s worse is cause its Christmas no matter what the weather one must bake cookies and things. And bake I did. The Jrs and I baked cookies for hours—6 to be exact… actually, I did most of it and they joined me for the last hour. We came up with the idea of taking cookies and caroling to members of the Branch. They zeroed in on 16 families who could use some songs and cookies. Do you know how many cookies it takes to make 16 plates of cookies… I do. I made them all but one batch. It was fun but wow does a hot oven heat up your kitchen which in turn heats up the entire flat since the kitchen is about 1/3 of the entire size of the flat.

So that’s my complaint for the blog.

We had district meeting today and went to breakfast. In case you’ve forgotten or you just didn’t know, the Swans and us take turns cooking breakfast for the district. Today, we took them to a place called The Puzzle. It was really yummy. They advertise the best Breakfast in Nelspruit and since we’ve not eaten at any other establishment I can’t say that’s a true statement but it was really good. I had a ham, mushroom and cheese omelet and ES had an “open omelet” which is a piece of toast, scrambled eggs on top and cheese on top of that. It looked great and gave me an idea for a quick breakfast. But, that’s not really why I’m talking about all this food but apparently I do mention food a bit. We ate early and therefore we were hungry come around 2 pm so we went to lunch. We had trouble deciding where to eat as we were just hungry and not for anything specific. Elder Scott was leaning toward McDonalds but in my mind “Mugg & Bean” kept whispering. So at the last minute we decided on Mugg & Bean as a healthier option.

Well, a week ago, while eating at Mugg & Bean, our favorite sever there  had told ES that “I would follow your beliefs of your church if it would make me happy like you.” Or something like that.  I’ve thought about that compliment all week long. Isn’t that what we want to have happen? Don’t we want to teach people by our example and allow the Light of Christ to shine through our actions? All who know ES know that’s like his watch cry but to hear it from someone else… WoW! So of course, we left her with a pass-a-long card.

So I thought that was pretty special but it gets better. During the week, Elder Smith got a referral via the Mission Office from a woman named “Debbie” who wanted a DVD mailed to her. The Jrs have no means to mail a DVD so we have been trying to figure out how to accomplish this as all Debbie left was a POBox. OK, so while we are at Mugg & Bean up walks our favorite server and sure enough, her name is Debbie! It’s not like the card we gave her was the only one… we give out hundreds and nobody has called on them but what are the odds? So, I asked her, “Did you call the office and request a DVD?” And what to our surprise she said, “Yes.”

So we talked for a while.  She told us she has been searching for years for answers to her questions. She asked us why we were so happy. And several other questions about why do we possess such a self-assuredness and things like that. She agreed to give us her phone number and to let the Jrs. drop the DVD off to her at work.  I told her that the Holy Ghost had prompted her to say that comment to ES and to request the DVD because we do have the answers she is seeking. I bore my testimony to her about knowing who I am, why I am on earth and what happens to us when we die. She started to tear up and said, “I want to know this stuff and to believe it as well.”

Wow! Was that amazing? That’s the kind of day we had today… Friday anyway.

There is really more to this amazing story. After telling the Jrs. about the event and discussing when they could take the DVD to her they decided to strike while the iron was hot. Saturday we all drove to the Crossings Shopping Center (this is where we do most of our grocery/pharmacy/banking/eating business) and as we went to the bank they would drop off the DVD along with a Book of Mormon and a pamphlet or two.

As they made contact and explained the items they were giving to Debbie she said, “Book of Mormon? Are you the same church as the Mormons?” Uh oh? Now nobody here knows us as the Mormons!!! Well, nearly no one anyway.

“Yes, some people refer to us as Mormons because of the Book of Mormon but the real name of our church is…”

“Oh, well, in 1998 when I began my quest to answer these questions that are in my heart someone told me I should check out the Mormon Church. I never got around to doing that but it’s been in the back of my mind that I should ever since then.”

Can anyone doubt that Heavenly Father knows the needs of ALL of his children and will direct them for good if we allow Him.

Debbie accepted the books with joy and promised to call the Elders after she has read some and watched the DVD.

Now, we wait and watch and keep in contact. I really want to grab her by the arms, shake her and say, what’s the hold-up woman? Get on the ball and read and pray and get baptized so you can start enjoying the blessings of the gospel!!! But, then that’s doing the Lord’s work Satan’s way. Just doesn’t work.   

Hope you all have a wonderful Christ centered Christmas. I’ll take pix of our day. Enjoy yours.

My wrapping as one of Santa's helpers. The gold ones are from Santa and the red/white striped are from us.

At the Swan's with their family for dinner. And to celebrate Elder Pulley's Birthday.

Elder Pulley's birthday cake!

More party pix

Christmas Dinner at Cicada with the Weitsz'

Fun time and great food!
Our Christmas cookie plates... some of them!

Monday, December 15, 2014

Chapter 18... Lost in time or is it Time Lost


Chapter 18

I’ve lost all track of time. I can’t remember when I was sick or well. I guess it has only been a week but the week certainly shifted in time and events. On Monday we volunteered to go to the Urgent Care Center and beg the doctor to treat us. She did and we didn’t have to do much begging… After getting our prescriptions we obeyed the doctor, went home, took our meds and went to bed.  Basically, we stayed there for the next 3 days. ES was way worse than me but I didn’t feel so hot either. I was diagnosed with a sinus infection but ES had tonsillitis, asthma and a lung infection. He was really sick.

By Wednesday we were down to 2 naps a day and a couple of errands run. Wednesday night we realized we were not well enough to take the drive to Pretoria for Zone Conference. After discussing it with the Swans (I’m the driver when we go) we all decided to take a bye.

We really missed going to Zone Conference but we made the correct decision. It would have set ES back on his wellness course. Today is Sunday and we are about 85% well.

On Friday we were both stronger but not out rock-n-rolling. I spent all day preparing food for our Branch Christmas Braai at the Weitsz. It was also very hot in Nelspruit and believe me cooking in the heat isn’t any more fun here than at home.

We did go to lunch at the Mugg & Bean. They make delicious salads and we have a favorite waitress. I haven’t really mastered the money thing around here. I don’t know the coins at all except the ones for the parker-people—they’re easy—but the rest of it just won’t stick into my brain. Consequently, I tend to tip LARGE. Especially after I heard that the servers generally only work for tips. I guess I got a little generous with this particular server one time because she came running after us with her tip money in hand and thanked us profusely. Needless to say she always seats us at her tables. She is very good and she gets ES’s jokes so that’s a plus. Well, Friday while we are there and waiting for our bill (one must ask for the “bill” not “check” if you want to get out of the place as they will let you sit all day if you choose)after she brought the slip of paper  in the leather cover she said to ES, “You are such delightful people. I would follow your beliefs of your church just because of you.” I cannot think of a great compliment. I know she was being kind to include me but she was looking right at ES when she said it. Well, of course, she got a pass-along-card. It is such a pleasure to share the gospel and a great cobb salad at the same time.

But, back to the Braai! It was great FUN! We had American Hamburgers… BBQ’d beef patties, buns, Heinz Ketchup, American Style Mustard (really that’s what it’s called)Hellman’s (Best Foods in the West) Mayonnaise, tomato slices, pickles (sorta) and lettuce with cheese for those cheese burger fans.  Yummmmm… and all sorts of delish. We also BBQ’d chicken legs… so good. I made potato salad, rice pudding (that was yucky) Rice Crispy Treats and sugar cookies without cookies cutters… I found some but nothing to write home about so I cut out circles with a jar mouth and made ornaments… they were cute. The recipe was not mine but Valerie Myers butter recipe since they do not have shortening in South Africa. Go figure.

We had crackers… the popping kind that you pull apart and find a prize inside like opening a box of cracker jacks… along with a paper hat and a riddle or joke.  ES’s joke said “what do you get when you eat Christmas decorations? Ready for it????? Tinsillitis’s! Get it? Uh, he had Tonsillitis and you get TINSIL—itis… Well, I laughed a little.

It was a low key, singing Christmas songs and visit kinda day. It drizzled rain all day which kept it delightfully cool, almost chilly, which was wonderful since it’s been rather hot for the last week.

Tonight is Sunday evening and we’ve just finished dinner, the dishes and the Elders (Elder Ah Wong since now Elder Smith is sick with the upper respiratory infection) made Snickerdoodles for a family in the Branch. They are going caroling tomorrow night and cookie delivering. I supervised Elder Ah Wong while Elder Smith read and rested.

After church we took Elder Smith to the Urgent Care Center to get medicine for the Lad. He had gotten sick in his last area and let it go too long. We did not want a repeat of that so he’s already on his way to recovery.

Does it seem like Christmas time mixes the great with the tragic? It seems like this is the happiest season as well as the one most subject to grief. Our Branch President who is a marvelous man with two small really active young sons almost lost one early Saturday morning. A miracle occurred which prevented a total tragedy but here’s what happened.

The Manjate’s put their sons to bed and then went off to bed themselves falling into a peaceful slumber. Suddenly, Sister Manjate woke up about 2 AM and rushed into their son’s bedroom finding him on the floor in his own vomit and not breathing. His eyes were wide open, his mouth clenched shut, his hands in claws and his lips and nails blue. He had aspirated his vomit and suffocated on it. Fortunately, Sister Manjate is a doctor. She knew what to do. She knew how to get his jaws unclenched and brought her baby back to life. After clearing his airway, he coughed then started to cry and asked for a toy. He is still in the hospital and undergoing tests but there doesn’t seem to be any lasting damage to him.

President was at church this morning looking as if an entire building was sitting on his shoulders. His wife was with their 3 year old in the hospital while he had custody of their 18 month old who is a cute spit-fire of a kid. I just sent the Jrs. with dinner for President—just spaghetti and fruit salad but something he can heat up without thinking about it much. I suggested to our RS councilor today that we might want to do that as a RS and she acted as if this the first time she’d heard about this kind of service. She agreed to post it on our message thing called “Whatsup?” and see who could take in meals for a week. I think this is the first time that compassionate service has been done in our branch. It is so meat-and-potatoes for the Sister’s in the States so I just kinda figured it would be worldwide. Maybe it is now here as well.

Last report from President is good. He’s doing better and mom and dad are recovering as well.

So all is right with the world again. Still no monkeys but I keep finding little crawly things trying to get in my house. Eisch! I hate bugs. Till next time.

a tent trailer...all that fits into these tiny things a Smart Car could pull. Really amazing

cookie baking



the boys watching a church video on the Book of Mormon

just because it was beautiful

the Braai


the view

the food and decorations

the Braai guys

the hosts... Diane and little one


Our Christmas party hats


Sunday, December 7, 2014

chapter 17... still no monkeys

Chapter 17:

We haven’t done to well in our resolve to take more snaps. We went to a swanky place for dinner last night and nary took a pix. What is wrong with us? This was a really above the cut lovely dining establishment with linen (at least white) table cloths and large cloth napkins… we call them serviettes in South Africa… candles on the table, complete with a real rose in a vase. The occasion was Sister Swan’s birthday. Elder Swan’s failure to plan actually turned out rather nice. He basically lucked out and the evening was a success with great food, great atmosphere and great company… Well, I’m bragging about being great company but we are a kinda fun couple to go to dinner with… just saying.

Here’s how the whole thing started:

Monday was a busy P-day with lots of errands to run and groceries to buy. We pay as we go around here so we had to buy power…yep, buy electricity. We have a meter on the wall and it shows how much power we have used. When it runs out we run out and nothing around here—runs. Every month we have to go to the management company and buy power and pay our water bill. We did both of those things, got some cash from an ATM and went grocery shopping. Never have I ever received anything from a grocery store because I’ve spent a lot of money…well, here every time I exceed a certain Rand amount, I get a sleeve of candy. We always give it away to one of the baggers but it’s kinda nice to get something free for spending money on food.  We also went to the largest mall in the area—it is really large—and bought a few things and paid our internet/landline bill. That’s one thing that is not cheap here. If I didn’t need it I wouldn’t have it but…

That evening (Monday) the Swans came down and we discussed our upcoming plans for zone conference, Sister Swan’s birthday celebration and a myriad of other nonsensical topics. Sister Swan wanted to go to a restaurant called the Nest.

Elder Swan got so busy doing whatever he did on Tuesday that he forgot to request a booking (reservation in US talk) but we drove out anyway taking a chance that it would not be filled. Sorry, they said, “We are booked.”

So, we drove through the back roads and hills and dales to another city called White River and after exploring the place settled on the Magnolia. They had plenty of room and really was lovely. I highly recommend it to anyone traveling in South Africa. I had Kudu again. I will say it was not a tastily prepared as the Kruger’s version but it was very good. ES had a cob salad, Elder Swan a prime rib (unlike any we’d ever seen) and Sister Swan had Yellow-tail tuna. The service was great, the food was great and we even had sparking red grape juice… We were enjoying ourselves!

And no photographs.

So today (Wednesday) has been a bit laid back. The Jr. Elder’s car died a horrible death yesterday afternoon. The camshaft belt broke so they called ES and said, “Help!” and of course, he did. Got the car towed to the Chevy dealer and they are fixing it but the Jr’s will be without a vehicle for a week or more. Now, this isn’t a place to be without a car. The Jr’s have no money for taxis or buses so they’ve been walking but we live a bit off the beaten track so that’s not even an easy thing to accomplish. ES left to help them keep some appointments this afternoon.

One of those appointments is with a family called Ngcosa. The mom and the children (6) are all interested in the lessons. They even rang up the elders asking when they could come over to teach them. There is just one little problem. Mom is married to a man with several wives. She may be the first wife but I don’t know if that gives her any additional standing here. It is not against the law and it is very traditional for Zulus to have several wives. Only problem is, they cannot be taught while living in this situation unless Mom is willing to divorce husband or kids can live on their own.

The Jrs. asked the Senior ES to go with them to ascertain what their interest and testimony level really is. It’s a sticky problem. The wife really married “one” man. It was the husband who married other women. They don’t all live together but he does provide for all of them and the kids know their dad has other children and they are brothers and sisters and … See what I mean. Wow. I’m glad I’m not in that meeting. I feel sorry for the family and the mom who was really interested.  But we all talked about it and decided that we could not be responsible for denying them the choice of salvation verses security. The husband does provide for his family so if Mom divorced him she’d be giving up a lot—security and the nice house they reside in—but there are many people who give up just as much once they know the gospel is true. The Elders were tempted to just drop them but after speaking together we all came to the conclusion that only the family can make that kind of decision.

So, I stayed home and did some mending for Elder Smith and a bit of baking. It’s a warm day but a nice breeze is blowing and cooling things off nicely.

The men came home and reported that the family that I mentioned above received the news very well and all 4 of them understood and asked to continue the lessons. The mom told them she was the second wife and even when she married him she somehow knew it was wrong in the eyes of God. The Elders came out of the lesson feeling great. All the kids and the mom have read the passages the Elders underlined for them and Mom has already read to 2 Nephi 13… They spent the first part of their lesson responding to questions they had written down regarding the Book of Mormon. This is a prepared family. The Jrs were pretty excited about being able to continue to teach them.

Thursday brings a new adventure as well. We’re going out to Sabie so I can teach Seminary again. The Elders are going with us and then over to the Bethels to see what help they can offer them. They are the ones who own the second hand store where I have purchased a lot of bric-n-brack and our A/C. Since they are without a car they’ve had to think outside the box and rearrange their schedule. We moved the lesson to today due to our 45th wedding anniversary which is Friday. We’re going to go play!

ES and I had a memorable anniversary. I even remembered to take a few snaps of where we spent most of the afternoon. The place is called Casteridge Village or something like that but it reminded me of Gardner Village out in Midvale or that area at least. The shops were high end with lots of art galleries and specialty stores filled with handcrafted goods. There was even a chocolate maker who specialized in Belgium chocolate. We spent a bit of time there, as you can imagine. They have a thing called a “chocolate shot.” They have chocolate cups about 1” tall and 1/2” around that they fill with melted milk chocolate dripping from the huge chocolate fountain they have bubbling over with sweet goodness. Too bad it wasn’t dark chocolate but oh well, it tasted divine. Yeah, I had one. But only one.

We ate at a great restaurant called the Gum Treez and enjoyed an amazingly loud lightning storm and then walked in the rain to our car. It was a really romantic day—just like a 45th wedding anniversary ought to be.

Before we started our celebration we had District Meeting and I fixed breakfast. ES brought me home roses. They are super, super beautiful and unlike so many florist roses, these actually have some fragrance. Hmmm. I have pix.

I made crockpot breakfast casserole—the recipe from FaceBook and everyone but me loved it. I didn’t like my choice of Beef Sausage. It was GROSS… But everyone else enjoyed it and even went back for seconds. I had an entire crockpot left over—I made two. One big and one small as I never can judge how much one of those will serve so the small one went home with the Elders.  I even made chocolate and bran muffins—24 of each so there were even some of those left.

Saturday (today as I’m writing) we were surprised by the Elders who had a gift for us. Watch the video and you’ll see what they did. Needless to say, I cried and ES cried. He got to hug them and thank them… I can’t…boo hoo. But, I hugged them in my heart. These Jrs. are as close to my heart as any two men ever could be. I knew I was going on a mission but I didn’t know I was going to adopt two boys as well. Move over kids and make room for two more brothers! Trust me, you’ll love them as much as I do. Thanks MOMs for sharing your sons with US.

We are heading to Lydenburg to teach Calisto. He’s sharing his lunch break with us. He wants to be taught. He just came back from visiting his wife and baby. I hope we find all is well with him and his family.

After reading Facebook I learned that several of my friends and family need prayers sent their way or in behalf of others. Know this: we are praying for all of you and especially for those who need a bit extra sent their way. We only ask in return that you include us in your prayers. We really need to grow this branch. That is our goal. We need an entire congregation to join. Ones that will stay in Nelspruit and make our branch strong so this will be a Ward someday. With united prayers from us in South Africa and you in the States (or wherever you are) we can find those who are seeking… especially Father-lead families who will garner generations of righteous Africans to build up this part of the vineyard. It is ripe and ready to harvest and we are thrusting in our sickles but we need to do more. We need to hasten our work and run and not be weary…

Next week will be filled with the same busy schedule, I’m sure. On the 12th is Zone Conference so we’re leaving town on the 11th and staying at that great B&B we stayed before. I’ll keep everyone posted.

As you all count down towards Christmas, remember “The Gift” and think of Jesus Christ and how blessed we are. I hope all of you have running water and plenty of electricity. Right now, we only have electricity and it just came back on. This early morning we had scalding hot water in all our taps and even in the toilet… kinda interesting Sauna experience. Such a funny place.

When we arrived home after our very productive visit to Lydenburg (I even saw Baboons but we had no place to stop along the roadside so we could take pix and when we did the Baboons were gone) because we visited Caroline as well as Calisto. I got to hold a 3 month old baby girl. Really neat.

We got home in time for the Elders to go to a DA and for us to relax and to discover that we still had no water. After a few phone calls the caretaker came down and discovered that some unknown prankster had turned off our main… Yeah, it’s right out there at the bottom of our stairs out in the open so anyone could mess with it…  And I guess anyone did. Eeeeshhhh.

Sunday…We ended up sick with colds I’m sure curtesy of Elder Pulley… Yesterday we tried to fight them off but we both just got worse and worse as the day went on. We stayed home from church we feel so rugged. I’m posting this AS IS so I hope it’s okay… Enjoy.

 E’ya later.   (P.S. No monkeys and I have water)

This is the box that tells us how much electricity we have. We purchase how much we think we'll need then they give us a receipt with numbers on it. We go home and punch in those numbers... Yeah, for real

This (and sorry for the underlining and the blue can't figure out how to change it and yes, I've tried) is my table be
The above would not let me edit anymore... but my table before the meeting. With the plant the Weitsz gave us for our 45th anniversary.
Rapt attention to Elder Smith
/Elders teaching Brother and Sister Bethel. He has Alzheimers and is getting really bad. They are going to have to sell their store and move in with children... Sister Bethel is having a really hard time with that option. Great people. Strong members.

Here is a view of the strip mall we wondered around. It was raining while ES was taking this pix

Another view

The center of the Riverside Mall.  It is the largest mall in the area. That's a bear in that yellow ball. A tree!

I'm looking at Native American CD's I've heard this guy before selling his captivating music. I asked what a Native American Indian was doing in South Africa and he replied "selling my music" He sounded more Northern Mexico to me and his music sounded Inca or Aztec or Peruvian... Oh well. I left since he didn't want to conversate..


NYC: Murder Brooklyn Style

NYC: Murder Brooklyn Style
Dang this copyrighted stuff! Couldn't get rid of the red face!

NYC: A Mission To Die For

NYC: A Mission To Die For