Have you ever had one of those wild & crazy and totally busy weeks? This past week was ours! What was going on you may well ask so I will just start at the beginning – “it’s a very good place to start”. Last Sunday at church one of the ladies who was coming to Family Home Evening let us know it was her birthday and the inflections in her voice left no doubt, even though’ the words were Russian, that she expected a birthday party. After all we had celebrated every other birthday that had come along. We watched as all through our three hour block at church she invited everyone she could see. We didn’t know what to expect but we knew we had to get ready for a bunch, just in case. We spent one whole night making “Plov” a big roaster pan full which we put on the porch (our second fridge – yes, it is getting that cold) until the party. When the party happened only 3 people came plus of course the Gundersens, the Sister Missionaries and us. Needless to say we have and will be eating PLOV for weeks to come. We all had a great time and we were glad we had gotten the hint. It was just fun to watch her enjoy the evening.
On top of the PLOV we cooked hamburger several nights this week (about 15 pounds worth) getting ready for the missionary sponsored “Mexican Night” for our Branch activity this month. There was dancing, entertainment and plenty of food. A great turn out with many non-members attending but still a ton of food left over - at least we will have taco hamburger to go with our PLOV for dinner the rest of this month.
This past week three missionaries left for home and 9 came out from the MTC. It was also transfer week so there was a ton of activity in the office with people coming into the city and those leaving. New missionary training and orientation, train and airport pick-ups and deliveries, and a host of other stuff kept all in the office quite involved all week. It is always sad to say goodbye to the missionaries who are going home but we are so thrilled to greet the great missionaries coming to serve in Siberia – the biggest (literally) and best (naturally) mission in the entire world.
Friday evening we were privileged to join the Gundersens for dinner at the Mission Home with Pres and Sister Gibbons. It was a great evening of visiting and terrific food. Pres and Sister Gibbons had just a few days before returned from the Mission Presidents Seminar followed by a 10 day visit to our Kazakhstan missionaries and members. This was really their first chance to spend some time with the Gundersens who had arrived while they had been travelling so we felt very blest to be able to join in the evening. We love Pres and Sister Gibbons and then to have very special friends from home here as well it was just more than we deserved.
The perfect end of this week was of course General Conference. We are 13 hours ahead here so to watch live on the internet we stayed up Saturday nite to watch the Saturday morning session. We went to bed and then got up and watched Saturday afternoon session and stayed up on Sunday nite to watch the Sunday morning session and then up Monday morning to watch the Sunday afternoon session. So now we are pretty wiped out but will catch up this week. It should be a little slower for us. All our love to everyone and have a great week.
|Birthday girl next to Sister Webb and two guests|
|Special poster from Home - thanks Laurel Class|
Everyone in the office got a real charge out of this. Remember
the only other one such they have seen was Sister Webbs
birthday poster for the Gibbons'
|What is a Fiesta without a Pinata|
|Susnset from our Kitchen this past week|
|Our own private performance on the Mandolina|
This is Yaraslav our Branch Presidents oldest