Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Celebrating Memorial Day

May 26, 2014

We didn't write  a week ago because it was Transfers and was a very busy week for us. We did get to go to the Temple on the 20th with the 8 Elders who were leaving to go home. We took a picture with 3 who we had served with ( 2 in the Shawnee branch and 1 was assistant to the president and worked in the office with us). 
The 2nd picture we took on Saturday with the group from the Shawnee Branch that we took to the Temple to do Baptisms.  I made it black and white, because our camera was shooting pink again.
It took us 2 1/2 hours to pick everyone up and get to the temple but it was a great experience once we got there! It was one sister's 1st time to the temple and she has been a member for 30 years. We always take everyone out to McDonald's after the temple- so we added a shot of us at McDonald's. 
A week ago we took several people from the Branch to the Crestwood stake center to a swap and shop where things you don't want any more are given away for free. Our car was overloaded on the way home with all the goodies they picked up. It would have been a great picture but we were too busy juggling items to take a picture. It was a fun day for all. Every one kept saying how they loved America! You can get a lot of things for free! When we dropped off one of the girls from the temple a few days later her brother was outside and he was wearing a Wasatch Wasps t-shirt. He said his mother picked it up at the swap and shop! Small world! Jason and I were "Wasatch Wasps" in High School!
Sunday we were planning to feed the missionaries and the Lemmon's offered to bring some stew they were making, so they came to dinner also. Here is  picture of them.
There is also a pictures of the missionaries enjoying the food. We got two new elders at transfers. We miss the ones who left, but always love the new ones who come. 
Monday, (today) we had to work at the office, but we planned a Barbecue for lunch. I made everyone eat outside. We found a tiny piece of shade to sit in. It was 90 degrees with 90 % humidity. I think it was our hottest day! But very fun.

We invited the Woodburys and we got our pictures taken with them. They leave in one month and the Halvorsens leave in one week.  The Lemmons are training to take their place. They were supposed to serve only in the Shawnee branch, but we are happy to have a replacement for Halvorsens in the office. They are over cars, housing, referrals and media.
With the Mission President and his wife.
We left work early on Memorial day and went over to Cave Hill cemetery. This is a large cemetery near the office.  It is beautiful, has 213,000 people interred in it and also has a National cemetery.  The first picture is of the Confederate dead.  The confederate flag flies over this portion and has the inscription on it base CSA Confederate States of America.  
This is the National cemetery with the flags.  It was beautiful today with all the flags. 
It was a great day but we missed being with our family.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Mothers day in Kentucky

Last Sunday evening, May 4, our new Senior couple, the Lemmons,  arrived here. We visited with them and the Halvorsens took them to their apartment.
Monday night we stayed late at the office to plant a pot of flowers to go out front. Here is the picture of the flowers we planted. They look so cheery! We planted some at our house also. Then the Lemmons came over and we took them on a little tour of the area. (They were looking for Walmart). 
Tuesday was the missionary leadership council so we had 30 plus missionaries for breakfast at the office.  Then they go to meetings at the mission home. Their meetings ran long so we waited for missionaries to come back to the office to pick up media and did not leave the office till 6:30 pm. 
Wednesday, Dad helped some Sisters with the brakes on their bikes.  That evening, we transported some young women to mutual.  During Mutual, we visited a family with the Lemmons. 
Thursday, Dad spent helped out a member of our branch who was at court.  That evening we took the Lemmon's to visit a sister from the branch who is a shut in. She is very fun to visit and makes us laugh. 
Friday evening we went shopping for Mother's day and it was pouring rain all the way home. It's not like Washington rain. We couldn't see anything!  
Saturday we went to a baptism for a man in the branch.  We took a sister who is taking the missionary lessons as well as three other young women. Again, pouring buckets of rain.  After the baptism there was chili feed at the branch followed  by a dessert auction. It was to benefit the young  women's camp program.  We took a banana cake that sold for $50.  The young women made over $1000 to help with their camp.  It was a lot of fun for everyone. 
Sunday we had took several to church and then after taking them home, we picked up the four missionaries and brought them to our apartment for a Mothers day dinner of roast beef, potatoes, gravy, carrots, salad, French bread, and multiple desserts that we bought at the auction. 
We had the three Sr. missionary couples there plus the 4 missionaries.  One of our elders is ending his mission on the 14th and another is being transferred on the 13th. We always grow to love them and hate to see them go. But each transfer is a growing period for them as" all our transfers in life" are necessary for our growth. This picture includes the Lemmons on the right.
After dinner the Elders all called and or skyped with their families.  We played Seek while they were having their turns. We took the Elders back to their apartment around 7 pm. 

The last picture was taken last Monday in the office.  The Lemmon's came into the office for training. They will be replacing the Halvorsens who leave at the beginning of June.   The three Assistants to the President fixed lunch for the adult couples and it was a very nice lunch. The assistant on the right leaves on Wednesday. He is done with his mission.
Then at 7:00 we went to the mission home to have dinner and meet the 7 new missionaries who just arrived. 

On Tuesday night we went to a special temple session with the departing missionaries, the mission president and his wife and the other senior couples.

Thanks for all your calls and cards and packages for Mother's day. It was a very nice day! 

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

A Visit to Church Hill Downs

May 3, 2014

Last Monday we had lots of rain and thunder and lighting. It was raining so hard when we left the office that we drove some Sister missionaries home and also took them out to dinner. We dropped them off and then on our way home, we picked up a lady from Dialysis.

On Tuesday we attended a special event called Dawn at the Downs.  This is an annual event held prior to the Kentucky Derby.  They open up the "Millionaire's room" for breakfast and we got to look around and watch the horses.   The jockeys and trainers were working out their horses on the track.  We sat at a table with 3 other couples from Louisville.  They were wonderful to talk to and asked a lot of questions about what we were doing here as missionaries.  After a very nice breakfast,  we went out to look at the track. 

This picture is looking to the east at the new television screen added this year. 
Here are a few of the ladies with their hats.  It was fun to look at the outfits. 
This is the entrance to Church Hill Downs with a statue of Barbaro.  I think this horse was named after Sister Moulton. 
This is us at the entrance.  As we were taking pictures a couple from Lehi, Utah who are members of the church came up and asked if they could take our picture together.  They were in town on business. 
After our breakfast,  we drove about 90 miles to Paris, Kentucky to pick up a missionary and bring him back to Louisville.  This is the missionary apartment in Paris.
He had been in a threesome and was needed to replace an Elder in Louisville who had been waiting for a Visa for 6 months. Below is our Visa waiter (red hair) with his companion and ward mission leader and wife. Elder Moulton took him to the airport in the afternoon.  He flew all night to Brazil.  It was a fun day taking a field trip from the office but we stayed late to make up for it.
Wednesday evening we drove some young sisters and two scouts to Mutual at the branch. Elder Moulton counseled with a another Sister during mutual and then then we drove the youth home. 

Saturday morning we attended a special baptism at 8:00 a.m. We had taught the sister with the sister missionaries and she asked Elder Moulton to baptize her.  This is a picture of her, the Sisters who taught her, plus the Assistants who will take over because she will be a member of the Single's ward.  She is a Senior at Sullivan University in Criminal Justice. 
The Sister Missionaries who taught her. 
She is the most amazing and excited person to be joining the church.  We are excited for her.  Afterwards we had Krispy Crème doughnuts for refreshments and passed out hats. Since it was Derby Day we got a picture of every one in their hat. 
We went shopping at Costco and some other places for food for missionaries for Sunday and Tuesday for Leadership meeting . We also bought plants to make a planter for the office and our house.  It was the Derby Saturday, but everyone said to stay away - traffic and people get kind of crazy around here (106,000 attended).

Sunday was great. We picked up two trips worth of people for church.  We always have wonderful testimony meetings in our branch. We fed the missionaries at our house. We had pumpkin waffles, sausage, potatoes and eggs! Our new Senior couple arrived tonight.  We are happy to have someone to take over for the Hiatt's. We hope we will get some more Senior couples assigned to our mission in the near future.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Spring flowers, a flood and saying goodbye

We had a great week with lots of pretty sunny weather.  This is a picture of the dogwood blossoms in our parking lot. I love that they are everywhere and there are always pink and white ones together. 

Here is a picture of 4 sister missionaries who came into the office and were all color coordinated. They look like flowers standing under a white dogwood.
On Tuesday, Dad got a call from the church public affairs office that Elder L. Tom Perry, his wife, Elder Rasband and John Taylor (from public affairs) were coming to Louisville on Thursday. The Mission President was going to be out of town at a Mission President's Seminar so Dad was asked to be their driver. The President and Assistants were doing interviews in Evansville, Indiana on Tuesday and Wednesday. The plan was to use the Assistant's new minivan to transport them.  Late Wednesday night we got a call that a deer ran across the highway and was hit by the Assistants van. We were happy that the assistants were not injured, but their van was no longer an option to use.

Thursday morning, Elder Moulton and Elder Halvorsen emptied the big mission van (Gus) and cleaned and polished it. The van is pictured at the back of our parking lot in the first picture. The group was flying on Thursday night so dad went to the airport to pick them up and then drove them to their hotel in downtown Louisville.

Friday morning, Dad took me to work and then he went back to the hotel and picked them up at for their meeting with the Catholic Archbishop of Louisville. Following that he drove them to the home of the President of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. They ate lunch with him. Then in the afternoon he took them back to the airport for the trip home. They had been traveling for the past week. 
They were very gracious and were excellent examples of the quality of leadership in the General Authorities. It was a pleasure to share some time with them. 
Thursday afternoon, we had another kind of excitement, as people came in telling us that water was spurting out of the middle Eastern parkway.  A four foot water main that is buried in the middle of the road had ruptured and was pouring thousands of gallons of water down the road near the office. It flooded a bridge at the park nearby, creating a waterfall. The water flowed down the road and flooded some homes on the street behind us. They finally got the water turned off and then none of the homes in the area or the office had water. We worked as long as we could and then took a walk to see the damage. 
Here is a picture of the crater in the middle of the road.                               
This is a road that the water washed down. Earlier the road had been covered with water way up onto the lawns. 
This is the apartment behind our office that was flooded. 
Luckily the water came back on Friday morning or we couldn't have opened the office. We could not drink the water due to a boil order- but were able to work there. Lots of missionaries were coming in that day. Eastern Parkway has been closed since then and it makes it a little tricky for people to find a way to the office. 

Saturday we took in more of the Derby celebration by going to the hot air "Balloon Glow" . We went out to dinner with the Hiatt's first and then about 8:00 went over to the exposition center. They had lots of events going on and there were about 50,000 people there. At 9:00 they had all the balloons blown up and then they lit them all at once. It was fun to be up that close and see them. They also had balloon races the next morning but we didn't make it them. We did hike up to the lookout at Iroquois park and could see them in the distance.
Saturday evening, we went out to a farewell dinner with the Halvorsens and Hiatts. Sunday we had the Hiatts come to dinner with us and the missionaries at the church. 
The Haitts headed home from their mission on Monday morning.  We will miss them very much. They were wonderful missionaries in our Branch. We have heard that there is a shortage of Senior couples. We have four more couples going in June and as yet have no replacements. Pass that need on to your friends!