Sunday, September 28, 2014

Git'r done

We had such a wonderful weekend with y’all.  It was fast I know and we hope we got to spend enough time with each of you.  We DO love our family and extended family too.   The best part was being at the Temple with you.  It is a parents dream to have all of their children, their spouses and our three grandchildren there  in the Temple.  That is what this life is all about and we thank you for the lives you are living and the choices you are making. 
The evening with the Andrew’s family was very special.  They are a wonderful family and shared with us the things they enjoy.  The pork was delicious!!  I have to admit I was a little taken back by the WHOLE pig thing, but it is Brother Snarr’s favorite thing to cook and it was delicious.  So was the corn.  Andrew and Shayla were so gracious at the Temple and at their reception.  They were so happy to meet all their guests and it was a wonderfully warm atmosphere.  Sue and Cal hosted a wonderful evening including their the old Star Palace days when they were dating. It was a special blessing to have Aunt Ann, Aunt Joan and Uncle Frank come down. It is truly a blessing how well Ann is doing after her serious fall We did miss having Caitlin with us, but we understand her commitment to school and her team.  GO EAGLES!  We will see you in the spring.  On Saturday, I  enjoyed the drive up to Bridal Veil Falls.   I haven’t been up there since I went with my parents. The whole weekend was just wonderful!!! 
We got home Monday about 3:00 and jumped right back into things.  The termites, the Pee Wees and the J.V. teams  had games starting at 5:00; so of course we went to give them and their families our support.  We were sorely missed!  And they were so glad we came back.  Tuesday we went over to Montgomery for our final golf game with Elder and Sister Kelly.  They are from Tampa Florida and have served their mission on Maxwell Air Force Base.   We have become very good friends and it was hard to say good bye.  They complete their mission tomorrow.  Tampa and Salt Lake are not very close, but technology will keep us connected.  The two men would take one cart and golf and the two sisters would take the other cart and talk, talk, talk.  A mission has so many wonderful blessings. 
Ryan in a text message said: “ Great to see you both, you look and sound awesome. It was fun. NOW GO GIT'R DONE.’”  We will get back into our missionary mode, with renewed goals and commitments.  We know our family is being blessed by our service and your sacrifice.  We can’t tell you how much you each mean to us and the love and support we feel from you.  Love you y’all!!!
Grandma and Grandpa   

Monday, September 15, 2014

Spiritual Payday

Thanks for sending us the pictures of Shayla’s shower.  It was so fun to get the photos as the shower was happening, it really let us feel that we were there.  

Elder Zwick of the Seventy was here in our mission last week.  We went up to Birmingham for a Wednesday night Fireside and then stayed over night for the all day meeting with the Mission.  The emphasis was on the Ward/Branch Mission Leader to spearhead missionary work.  I don’t think this is a change such more emphasis on it.  We don’t have many members for all the callings, so Dad and I are the Branch Mission Leaders.  We have our work cut out for us.  We have been working with and meeting with the less actives and they are so glad to see us and to talk with us.  You would never know they are less active until Sunday, when they don’t come to church AGAIN.  But we just keep loving them.

We completed our Book of Mormon Reading Challenge.  Not everyone finished the book, but almost everyone said that they felt the spirit more in their lives.  We gave out awards:  “Reading the Book of Mormon is a “SPIRITUAL PAYDAY’   We attached a PayDay candy bar to the award. 
Next we are going to read the New Testament .

We have also had some success with the Temple.  Our youth have a temple trip on Oct. 27th.  We challenged the Branch to find family names that the youth can take with them.  Today, several of the Sisters said they had names ready and you could feel their excitement.  That is our next big goal, to have a Branch Temple Session before the end of November.   It’s a 2 ½ hour drive up to Birmingham and most of the Sisters work, so it will take all of a Saturday or part of Friday and Saturday, but the experience will be so good for the Branch. 

 Thank you for being such a wonderful thoughtful family.  We love you!!  Love Grandma and Grandpa

Sunday, September 7, 2014

It's a Snake!!

Some interesting events this week.  Monday night we were invited to Margaret and Jarrett’s for dinner and family home evening.  There son Stone didn’t get through football practice till 7:30 so dinner was late, 8:30.  After a lovely dinner, Jarrett asked his boys to take out the garbage can to the street for garbage day the next morning.  All of a sudden there was commotion outside....
“It’s a Snake!”  “It’s a Rattle Snake!”  Then there’s a Boom.  The sound of a gun.  By now we are all outside ...I am still safely on the porch, watching from a distance.  With one shot, Jarrett hit the snake, but of course they can still move.  It was about 4 feet long.  Jarrett said if it had bit anyone of the boys, we would have had a hard time getting to the Selma Hospital where they have the nearest snake anti-venom.  That medicine is $12,000.00!  But it is the only thing that can save your life if you get bit. The Sister missionaries were very brave and touched it and held it once it was safe.   I finally got brave enough to go off the porch and I leaned down ‘til I was about 6 inches from it.  That was close enough for me.!  Definitely not your typical family home evening lesson.
Tuesday Night we were invited to the Football game.  There is no soccer in Camden!  The major family name in our Branch is VICK.  That night we had SEVEN Vick members on the field.  The “termite” team, the Pee Wee and J.V.  Each age group also has a cheerleading squad and we had 5 girls on those teams.  Many of them are from the less=active families and they so appreciate that we come to support and cheer for their children.  I noted that we sat in our seats at the game and almost every less-active couple game over to talk with us.  The Kids are especially excited to see us there. Not in the Mission Hand Book, but a most wonderful fellowshipping experience.

Friday we had the Annual Camden Branch Fish Fry.  Boy, talk about FRIED FOOD!  Fried Catfish, Blackened Catfish, Fried Chicken Strips, French Fries and HUSH PUPPIES.  So GOOD!  (also cold slaw, baked beans, watermelon, brownies and cake)  They cooked 30#’s of catfish.  I don’t think it is anything like catfish at home.  It was so good, so light, and so tasty.  We had about 35 people in attendance.  A great evening.  I am getting the recipe for the hush puppies....y’all love them!   They dip them in ketchup but I suspect y’’all  use ranch. 

Many of the Branch members have been so concerned about us coming home for Shayla’s wedding.  They want to make sure we are coming back!  We are so glad that we have been able to serve here and give this small branch our love and our service. 

Be grateful for every calling and opportunity to serve in the church.  Our Heavenly Father wants us to learn and be prepared to serve others where ever we may be.  I am so grateful for callings in Primary, Relief Society, the Choir and even my piano playing for the primary when I was about 13.  He has a plan for us and is trying to prepare us for our current and future service to Him and His children.  We are so proud of each of you and your faithfulness to the Gospel and to our Family.  We send our love and prayers!!!! 
 Love Grandma and Grandpa