Sunday, January 16, 2011

75th Post Mon Jan 10 - Sunday Jan 16, 2011

Monday and the start of another week in the Texas Houston Mission. Where does the time go? Elder Miller, the new AP, was in the office this morning. We had a lesson on hooking up the trailer to the truck and van. It is truly a miracle that these young elders drive the van or truck and trailer with little or no incident considering some have never driven a truck or towed a trailer before. Leona and I worked on apartment files getting ready for the audit. I signed a renewal lease for the Farrington Apartments up by the Woodlands and drove down to the trailer store and got a pin for the large bike rack that goes in the towing hitch on the back of the truck.
FHE was at the sisters apartment this evening. They showed the video about the life of John Tanner. I guess I have not heard that story before. He and his wife were such faithful saints at the beginning of this last dispensation. He was a very wealthy man, joined the church and gave all he had to the church. He ended up with no money but many eternal blessings. A very good video if you have not seen it.

Tuesday we got to the office earlier that usual. The transfer bus had not left yet (waiting for a sister to arrive - I found out later she had been told the wrong time). It is so hard to get the "water to the end of each row" every time. The AP's drive the van and the trailer up to College Station and back, dropping off and picking up missionaries along the way at various intermediate stops. I took 3 missionaries and their belongings in the truck down to the Bear Creek Chapel and picked up two missionaries for the return trip to the office. I put the bike rack on the back of the truck, which made transporting bicycles a whole lot easier. The departing missionaries had a testimony meeting this afternoon and then went to the temple. Leona and I set up the dinner at the temple cafeteria for Pres and Sister Hansen, the AP's, the departing missionaries and any family that may come to pick up their sons or daughters. The dinner is catered by a church member and this time Leona ordered cheese stuffed meatload, mashed potatoes and a dill salad (green salad with pecans, cheese, etc) real tasty. Leona made Texas shaped cookies and we decorated them with "hTm" Texas Houston Mission. They are a real hit. It is always a nice experience to be with the departing missionaries. They are ready to go home, yet do not want to leave. It was about 8 pm by the time we got back to the apartment so it is a long day but we love what we are doing and so thankful for the blessing to serve.

Wednesday, it was pretty cold this morning. There was even a sign at the front of the apartment complex that said "freeze warning in effect"! The new missionaries arrived (one sister and 2 elders) a small group. They are so excited and eager to get to the real work. One elder was born in Peru (lived in Pleasant Grove for the last 5 years), the other elder is from Hawaii, and the sister is from California. All are Spanish or Polynesian descent. When we read the new missionaries profiles it is truly humbling to know of the very hard road some of these young people have traveled, such great faith. I take a photo of each new missionary and prepare it for the transfer board (in the mission president's office) and the photo board which is on the wall in the reception area of the office. When we got back to our apartment tonight Leona made syrup and cooked 3 pounds of bacon for the breakfast tomorrow.
David called this evening and he is back in SLC again. He has had quite the 48 hours. Left yesterday for Los Angeles to an interview then took a red-eye at 10;30pm to Virginia for an interview today. He took an extra white shirt and "cleaned-up" in the restroom at the airport before catching a taxi to his interview. He tried washing his hair in a sink that his head was to big to fit in! Had his interview and lunch with the company then back to the airport. He is praying for a job/intership soon and so are we.
Thursday morning we were at the mission home by 6:50 AM. We fixed french toast, sausage, bacon, and fruit for the new missionaries, their trainers, the AP's, and the Hansens. We planned for 12 people and when we got to the mission home Sister Hansen said there would be 5 additional missionaries. We made it all work and no one was left hungry. I take pictures of the new missionaries with President and Sister Hansen and Leona prepares the letters to let their families know they have arrived safely. After the pictures they all depart for the temple and we clean up, stop at the drug store to make copies of the pictures and head back to the office.
The two elders that were waiting for Brazilian visas got notified that their visas were ready so they departed today and boy were they excited! We also had a missionary leave early to go home and all this happened after the transfers had been finalized - lots of last minute changes. I took one of the visa waiters to the airport this afternoon, Elder Alexandre (Wayne and Anne Martin's grandson) is going to the same mission where David served. Another long but wonderful day. It remains cold but no wind today (30's and 40's).
Friday morning we met for the office staff meeting. It is always a privilege to meet with Pres and Sister Hansen, people of great faith. Elder and Sister Stringfellow's son came to visit for the weekend so he was invited to come to staff meeting. We did our thing in the office today, paying bills, updating files, I signed another lease renewal and we cleaned up after a missionary meal (leadership training) at the church.

Saturday we took down our Christmas decorations. I think Leona would have left them up for another month. We cleaned up the apartment, did some laundry and bought groceries, read and went to the office for a few hours. Saturdays have to be the fastest day of the week!

Sunday we went into the office early to work on talks and presentations for zone leader council this coming Tuesday and then went to church at 12:30. They had two members of the high council speak. They were both native Spanish so their English was not real good, but a whole lot better than my Spanish.
It has been another "full week". We are thankful for the gospel and this blessing to serve together. We are thankful for our children and grandchildren; for our families and friends and for your love and support. Have a safe week. We love you.
Dad and Mom (Elder and Sister Walker

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