week 18

Feb 2, 2016 by

Blythe is being transferred to a new area for the first time since she arrived in California back on September 29. I think she is sad to leave the many people she has come to love, but is handling it well and ready to get to work in a new area. We are hoping she was able to pack up all her stuff tonight quickly and easily. She really hates packing. So moving to a new apartment today was probably really hard for her. We are trying to put together a little Valentine’s Day package to send to her and the ideas on Pinterest are all a little WAY overwhelming to me. I think maybe a Jamba gift card will suffice!

Well, I’m leaving my area. :( On Tuesday I will be going to the Young Single Adults ward. My new companion will be Sister Christiansen. She just barely finished her training, so I am again greenie breaking. :) The YSA ward is supposed to be really awesome and conveniently I’m still covering this area because the ward boundaries are both Mission Viejo and Santa Marguerita, though I will officially be in a different zone.

Yesterday at church the bishop was gone, so it wasn’t announced in sacrament meeting that I was leaving. All throughout the day, one by one the word got around and it was announced in the classrooms, so people kept coming up to me and like “You’re leaving?!?!?!” and there were some tears. :( And hugs. This ward has become home to me.

There was a mission farewell for Luke Taylor, who’s going to Japan Negoya Mission, and his talk was wonderful. They had a lot of non-member friends there and the spirit was really strong. At the end they sang “God Be With You Till We Meet Again.” He’s up there crying and I’m down in the congregation trying not to cry, and we both have our tissues out, and I’m wondering why on earth they needed to sing that song of all songs. I always cry when they sing that song. Actually, no, I really did appreciate that song, and I love it. It was kind of cool to have that song for my last Sunday, even though it was more for Luke than me, of course.

It was cool to have everyone tell me how I have strengthened them and to see the difference I made in their lives. That was good to know that I was making a difference here. To see how much they don’t want to lose me is probably the biggest testimony that I have done some good here. I have not had baptisms, and only a very few of the less actives I’ve been working with have actually come to church, but that is not the measurement of success. I have been able to build real relationships with them, and come to love them, and that’s what really matters. I’m going to miss it, but I think this new ward will be wonderful too. The YSA wards are some of the busiest and my area will be huge. It’s going to be crazy!

By the way, there’s a house we found that is decorated like Jurassic Park with huge metal dinosaurs and the gate and everything.

Love you all.
Sister W.

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the cold that won’t quit

Jan 31, 2016 by

After a few days of getting better, I am back in bed and living in snot-city again. Okay, to be honest, the snot volume isn’t back to where it was last Sunday, but it has dramatically increased in the past 12 hours. My neck is kinked and super sore, so I am lying in bed hooked up to my TENS unit, smothered in oils, with my tissues and Miracle Salve nearby.

Annes is sick as well, waking up with a fever and sore throat, so she and I are hanging out while everyone else is at church.

This is so rare for us, I don’t know what the cow is going on. Richard has been ill…probably with walking pneumonia for nearly 2 months. I am sick and now Annes is sick as well. We hardly ever get sick and when we do, our supplements, oils, and energy work take care of it lickety-split. But this time, it is hanging on.

Last night we all went to see Keziah’s play – SO FUN! It is an adorable story and we all laughed our heads off. Well, I didn’t actually laugh. I also didn’t clap as it took far too much effort to move my arms to clap. I mostly just laid there and smiled on the inside. I was so exhausted by the time we got to the play, I could hardly move. But everyone else laughed and enjoyed themselves.

The last few days…iFamily starting, Liberty Girls Kick-Off Party for the new semester, gym on Friday, errands and the play on Saturday…kicked my butt and now I need to take a few days to rest this body and let it recover all the way from this cold.

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annes and the police station

Jan 27, 2016 by

Miss Annes is full of zest. Chock-full of curiosity, stories, creativity, enthusiasm, and is about as cute as can be. Everywhere we go people love her. Except for the few people she drives absolutely banana-cakes with her “muchness.”

Today was the first day of iFamily, our awesome homeschool group. She is in a Community Explorations class this semester where they go out to different businesses and community entities to learn about how they function and what the do to make our community great. Today was the Police Station. Annes gave a Texas-sized shout of “Hurrah” when she found out. Unbeknownst to me, she is a little over the top curious about all things police-y because of her current obsession with Adventures in Odyssey mysteries.

When she returned to iFamily I asked one of her mentors how it went and if Annesely was well-behaved. She gave me a huge laugh and said, “Annesley is the best part of my day, I love that girl! She is FULL of life!” Thrilled with that response, I asked her to tell me all about it.

She reported that on the way in to the Police Station, Annesley said, “Oh no! They won’t let me in! They have metal detectors and look at my boots!” Her mentor said she thought the little piece of metal on the end of her cowboy boots would be just fine. Annesley responded with, “Oh, are they not very sensitive?”

At some point the police officer must have been talking about roadblocks and Annesley asked if there was a robbery because why would you ever have a roadblock without a robbery?

The third comment was “Do you deal with a lot of counterfeiters?” The police officer said no, not a whole lot. Why?” Annesley said, “Well, I know all about making counterfeit money!” She actually has no idea how to make counterfeit money, but she has listened to her Adventures In Odyssey CDs about a counterfeiting ring about a hundred times since Christmas so she thinks she is pretty much an expert. However, I would hope she would be a so-called expert in catching the counterfeiters, not copying their trade.

I’m tickled she has such fun opportunities for learning and mentors that appreciate her enthusiasm for life. I just hope the good officers don’t set up some kind of sting operation to bust us for counterfeiting.

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slightly better, but still under the weather

Jan 26, 2016 by

Oh my goodness, the snot. The sneezing. The pressure in my head. iFamily starts tomorrow and I am far from ready. I am trying to pull it all together today because I am feeling significantly improved from Sunday…but significantly better still isn’t well…it is more like barely functioning instead of looking like death warmed over.

A batch of laundry done (underwear…we were all desperate for some clean underthings). The sink cleaned out. A few emails sent and Blythe’s letter posted. Children listening to audio books and drawing and cleaning out the car and cutting wood in the garage.

And I am done. Ready to go back to bed for the rest of the day.

I think I will take a little nap and then try again in a few hours. I still need to print off cover sheets for my Math Alive-EUREKA students’ notebooks, study some background information on Archimedes’ life, prepare our in-class activity, and make our Challenge of the Week sheets for each student to take home. Then the car needs to be vacuumed and filled up with gas (surely Richard will do that for me when he gets home!) and all the children’s bags need to be packed and lunch food assessed, perhaps restocked, and packed.

And I need to get better.


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week 17

Jan 26, 2016 by

We have been praying hard for our missionary this week. I know her heart has been hurting so much. It was lovely to hear from her on Monday and see that her spirits are lighter and she knows she is in God’s keeping. We were able to mail her some exercise videos this week that she can do in her apartment and she is super excited to be able to do something a little more engaging than just the push-ups, sit-ups, and other boring stuff she has been doing.

This week has been really good. My companion and have been able to work our struggles out and this last week has been great. I know it was the Lord working through us, because we, or at least I, couldn’t have done it.

Transfers are next Tuesday and we’ll get the call this weekend. I am praying so hard not to be transferred right now. Of course, I would never want to leave this area, but I really hope I can stay to help the Collins right now, because Sister Hollenbeck barely knows them since we haven’t been able to go by as much lately. But whatever happens the ward is still stepping in and helping and they’ll be alright. I was thinking of the verse that says “I have finished the work thou sent me to do” after the funeral. Leslie brought all those kids here and I believe that she has finished her work from God. I want to be able to say that when I go home that I have done all that I was called to do.

The funeral was very nice. The local Presbyterian church put it on and the room was packed. A lot of the ward members attended. It was a beautiful service, but also sad, because they don’t know about the plan of salvation and the opportunity they have to be united eternally, to be a family after this life. The three wards that have been in contact with Leslie’s family and a lot of the stake came together to put on the reception afterward and it was really good. There was the most beautiful sunset that evening too.

Random little miracle. Early last week after we’d found out about Leslie and we’d been having problems and I was having a hard time, we were contacting and I was really thirsty. I didn’t want to sound like I was complaining so I didn’t say anything for a while. Eventually I just said I was thirsty and Sister Hollenbeck said she was too. Within about a minute a water delivery truck pulled up and the guy asked if we would like some water. He gave us a bottle each, and we talked to him for a minute. He said he always tried to give the missionaries water when he saw them because he knew we walk a lot. So God really is looking out for us. :)

Sister W.

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thank heavens for puffs plus

Jan 24, 2016 by

I hardly ever get sick, but yesterday I woke up all stuffy. By evening I had a runny nose, but still felt fairly okay and was able to make it to the temple to do sealings (107 completed last night!). By the time I got home, I was wiped out and laid awake most of the night blowing my nose and reapplying Miracle Salve to my sore nostrils.

Now it is the Sabbath and I am definitely sick. Beside me on the bed is a heaping pile of used Puffs Plus tissues, Catalyn, echinacea, zinc, vitamin c, Breezy and Life Force essential oils, my water bottle, and oodles of genealogy paperwork I am trying to sort through in between sneezes. No ribs have come out of place during the sneezing, WAHOO!

I am really hoping this cold moves on out super quick. iFamily starts on Wednesday and it is Play Weekfor Keziah for the next two weeks…which means lots of long days, late nights, and tons of fun as we watch the kids we love put on great performances. I need to be all better quick as a flash!

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