Sunday, November 25, 2012

New Arrivals

Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving holiday.  Although we certainly missed our family, especially since nearly all of them made it to Cashmere for the first time in a long while, we did enjoy our mission family and had a wonderful Thanksgiving feast and program.  We had a few treats from home that are next to impossible to find here which made Thanksgiving dinner extra special – like Pumpkin for our Pumpkin pies and Cranberry sauce for the turkey.  Sister Webb mentioned on her facebook that we had French Turkeys (all of 7 lbs each) – we roasted 2, Elder and Sister Gundersen did 2 and President and Sister Gibbons did 2, then there was Russian cherries baked into a pie and thanks to our dear Sister Djurich, who has now returned home but was thinking of us, we had some cranberries for our Turkey.  Dinner was fantastic with 28 of us serving in Novosibirsk gathering at the mission home.  After dinner which began at 3pm we were favored by an original adaptation of Angels We Have Heard on High by Elder Dawson, a vocal solo of Once in Royal David’s City by Sister Biggs, and another original adaptation of Silent Night by Elder Bowler.  We all indulged in the dessert offerings of Cherry, Pumpkin, Lemon, and Apple pies with the appropriate amounts of ice cream and/or whipped cream.  President and Sister Gibbons shared some counsel and testimony with us and then it was back to work by 6pm.  The brief time together for food, music and fellowship was a great uplift for all of us.  Thank you so much to a wonderful Mission President and his companion.

That was just the end of the week.  It started with the final round of transfers and of course our 5 new missionaries arriving from the USA on Wednesday morning.  Sister Webb and I did some new missionary orientation with them, they had some training and interviews at the mission home, were assigned their new companions and many headed out to their assigned areas.  A couple of them stayed in the city and we were able to see them again at dinner the next day.

Saturday, we rode out to Berdsk to check out the apartments we have secured for the new couple coming in January who will be living and working in that city, and the two elders who will be serving there with them.  We also checked out a possible meeting place.  Elder Guschin and Sister Guschina accompanied us for the trip along with Elder and Sister Gundersen so this made the afternoon a special treat for us.

Winter has arrived on the Siberian Plain!!!  The temperatures are still quite mild – ranging from 0f to 25f – but we are getting lots of snow.  It has been snowing for about 10-12 straight days and is piling up quite a bit.  It is supposed to start getting really cold next week.  So we will be bundling up for sure!!  We must mention what a wonderful treat to “skype” with our dear friends Elder and Sister Bennion serving a mission on the island of Guadalupe in French Guyana.  It was great to visit with them for a few minutes this past week.  They are doing well and really loving the spiders, snakes and jungle creatures; none of that here for sure jungle that is.  If you get the time drop us an email or something we love to hear from you and so appreciate those of you who have.  We love and miss you all. 
Wishing you the companionship of friends, the blessing of family gathered ‘round, and the warmth of a shared meal.
Our contribution to Thanksgiving Dinner
Check out the size of those Turkeys!

Table set - just waiting for the Guests to arrive!

Let the feasting begin!!

Ice Fishing - on our way to Berdsk

Our adopted Granddaughter - Sophia
with Grandma's Birthday shopka and sharf
She will be hard to leave behind

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