Tuesday, January 6, 2009

It's soooooo cold and other things.

This is what we woke up to on Jan. 2, 2009. It had snowed overnight. It snowed again on the 4th and again today. The temps are about -6C although tonight it will be much colder. The picture to the L is out our back window. I love the way the trees look all covered in snow. Next is the construction site across the street.

Our street sure looks cold. The cars are all iced over every morning. We have to scrape the windows to even see where we are going. I know all of you Utah family and friends are used to it, but it's all new to us. We are not used to such cold weather.

We had an awesome zone conference last Thursday. Zone conf. is when all the missionaries from a zone meet together with the Mission Pres and have a day of instruction, of encouragement, of spiritual strengthening, and of doctrinal education. After a lunch of these yummy sandwitches(below), chips fruits and dessert, we spent the afternoon listening to our President Woodland as he instructed us about the atonement. He reminded us how sacred partaking of the sacrament is. Those who bless and pass the sacrament in effect pass the power of the atonement to the congregation, as the purpose of the sacrament is to renew our covenants which make the atonement effective in our lives. He described how olive oil is produced. Gethsemane means the oil press. Under intense pressure from the vat, the olives release the oil which is red in color as it comes out, symbolically pointing to the red blood of Christ whose capillaries and skin had to be broken for the blood to fall on the ground. At the last day when we stand in front of Him for judgement, He will ask us what did you do with my agony to help the people around you? Therefore the necessity for us to give our heart, might, mind, and strength to bring souls to Him.

This is how my lettuce came from the open market, only it is about 1/10th the size it was to start out with. It was so funny to see the roots still in their soil. I watered the lettuce when it started getting a little wilty and it just perked right up. This is how fresh it was after 2 whole weeks. I love it.

We have some very nice neighbors to whom we gave a missionary discussion. The husband said he really wasn't too interested because he doesn't think that God has done anything for him and he doesn't like that there are so many wars, unrest etc. His wife was a bit more receptive. We hope that eventually he will realize that God has and does things for him each day, such as lending him breath from day to day, that he may live and move and do according to his will and supporting him from moment to moment, etc. Anyway David and Stephanie and their daughter Manon are good people and we enjoy talking to them. We went back on New Year's Day and brought them some grape juice and a box of chocolates. We had a nice visit with them.
Several days later, on Sunday we were sitting in our apt., in the afternoon, after church, and I was a little sad being away from everyone. I said to DH, "...wouldn't it be nice if someone invited us over sometimes." Not 10 minutes later there was a knock on the door and it was Manon inviting us over to have some Galette au Roi (The King's Cake) with them. When we said when? she said, "Maintenant" (Now). Well we were so happy to go. We had a nice visit with them. We went and ate the special cake, which they serve for the day of the Magi (they said they didn't really know what it was, but I looked it up and it's a celebration of when the Magi brought gifts to the Christ child.) Inside the cake is a huge horse bean and the person who gets it is the royalty for the day. On top of the cake is a gold, paper crown. David got the bean, wore the crown for a minute or so and quickly passed it to his daughter. We hope that eventually this fine family will be receptive to our message.
Our calling is going to be a bit of a challenge. First of all the name is going to be Center for Young Adults. We are now working on getting official approval to open up the center in Lille. We are working with a couple who are monitoring and participating in the EU (European Union) and they are working directly under the leadership of the presidency of the european area. We are also working on getting funding, furnishings, computers, games, equipment, planning activites, getting staffing and so forth. We are projecting that it will take about 6 months for the full implementation of the program. In fact, we are going to Holland this saturday to get training. Even though this will be a challenge, it will happen and will be successful because it is the will of the Lord and what the Lord wants will be. He will compensate for our deficiencies as long as we do all we are able to do.


marcia@joyismygoal said...

you have such an exciting calling and it is just perfect for your sunny sunny personality

One For All said...

Whoa, it looks so cold there, but pretty. I love how your lettuce comes. I wish I could find that here. I appreciate your sweet comments about my boys. I love that we get to see what you are doing out there. Love you!

Erika said...

I love reading your updates. And I love how you post pictures of food! Everything looks so interesting and delicious! Try to stay warm!

** Dre and Yoho ** said...

I cant believed it snowed!! Its been snowing here like crazy!! Be safe and drive slow! LOve ya

nikko said...

Wow. That is really pretty. And the baguette sandwiches look so yummy. Thanks for sharing your experiences. We enjoy reading them!

Yvonne said...

I'm so glad you did another post--I have been wondering how things are going.

Oh, I'm so sorry about the cold. When you are not used to it, it can really be uncomfortable. I hope you can stay warm.

I love your summary of Zone Conference. (Thanks for sharing) I was so amazed when some time ago I read about the olive oil coming out red--isn't that something.

That lettuce is so cool.

You will do a great job and you are right--this is the Lord's work and it will all work out.

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Peter and Sharon Anderson said...

I am grateful that the Lord is taking such good care of you. From the pics you have posted it is obvious that the work is agreeing with you. You are both radiating the love and light of the Gospel. Also, thank you so much for sharing what Pres. Woodland taught so that we can learn too! I found a site on line with pics of olive orchards, oil production, etc. Here is the link.

Eliza2006 said...

I served my mission in the Netherlands...your pics brought back memories!