Monday, August 13, 2012

Mama Rika Updates...Hopefully Pictures Next Week!

Family Update

August 12, 2012
This week I have spent way too much time trying to cram in everything I want to get done before school starts back up.  Thus, I have neglected my writings and now am forced to attempt to recreate the week. 

Now, after being sidetracked about 5 times, perhaps I can begin.  Or not.  

Dad took a rather quick trip to AZ for work from Monday to Tuesday so that he could learn how to fill out all the reports and other things that need to be finished with his interim job within the next couple of weeks.   After being gone, he basically lived at work for the rest of the week.

Sticky was gone a bunch this week at work too, having gotten more hours than usual.  He and Peanut also went to the usual stuff…Improv Club, Young Men’s, etc.  They also took in a Stake dance that Dad got to go help chaperone.  They actually came home early.  Sticky apparently was falling asleep at the dance.  However, he rejuvenated quite quickly upon arriving home and discovering that he hadn’t missed the much anticipated men’s and women’s relay races of the Olympics. 

Princess was completely happy to have some play dates and Activity Days to attend this week.  She also participated in some rousing games of balloon volleyball with her brothers.  She is starting to become our resident jell-o maker for Sunday dinner. 

My little Love Bug is growing up way too quickly.  He plays all little boy games, not baby games.  He is in the beginning stages of potty training.  His vocabulary seems to double every week.  He is right now counting 1-2-3 Wheee!  as he tosses a toy cookie cutter in the air and attempts to catch it in the toy frying pan.  

This morning, I went downstairs to grab some breakfast shortly after Dad got home from an early morning meeting.    Being still tired, he laid down on my side of the bed for a nap.  When Winwin came in the bedroom to find me, he was puzzled to find his Dad there and even more puzzled by his attire.  He questioned, “Why are you sleeping in your church clothes?”   From his perspective, that really is an odd thing to do. 

Love Bug  hates to let me out of his site.  If I go to retrieve something from the fridge in the garage, he must follow me.  If I run upstairs to grab a basket of laundry, my shadow is close behind.  Sometimes I sneak off quietly to have some uninterrupted time in the bathroom.  I am rarely there for more than 30 seconds before he discovers me.  He sticks his little fingers under the door, insisting on feeling my toes.  Or, he pushes objects under the door for me to enjoy, saying, “Want it?”  The only acceptable response is “yes, thank you.”  Sometimes he gives me books.  Yesterday it was a very large screw.  Another time he gave me a plastic gorilla.  After I tell him thanks, he just cutely says, “Welcome, Mom!”

We were presently surprised that Carol was able to come visit us so soon after her world travels.  We didn’t think she’d make it until September.  She arrived on Saturday night.  It is fun to have her come to church with us.  She has become enough of a regular that other people know her now. 

Anyway, I am really boring and I can’t think of anything else to report for this week.  This week coming up I will hopefully be more on the ball with writing and doing fun things.  I did manage to go to the frozen yogurt place with some friends.  This week we plan to go to the beach tomorrow and who knows what else.  J

Missionary Letter:

This week we were extremely blessed by the Lord. All the work E. Guthrie and I have done in the past several weeks culminated in the Baptism of M B. It was an amazing week to say the least.
Pday, lots of fun as usual. We took our suits to the dry cleaners, wrote letters, played games with the Hunts, etc.  We also had an FHE lesson with some members, It was on the articles of faith. It took me back to my primary days when we sang and memorized. I can still remember all 13 Articles (not necessarily in order). I guess my primary teachers did something right!
We had a Zone Conference for a good portion of the day. I always enjoy when all the missionaries get together, and President Pitt teaches us. The spirit is always so strong at these conferences.  I was reading this morning  (Monday 13th) in Acts chapter 2 which talks about the day of Pentecost. Where the spirit was so strong that it was as a "rushing mighty awind" (vs. 2) Immediately following, Peter testified to the gathered crowd and taught about the resurrection of Jesus Christ. He was so full of the spirit as he spoke that when he invited the entire assembly to repent and be baptized, immediately 3000 stepped forward for baptism. "Then they that gladly areceived his bword were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about cthree thousand souls." (vs. 41)
It helped me to understand how important it is to have the spirit with you as you teach the gospel. When things are done with the spirit, miracles occur. In relation to our church meetings, whether they are a simple sacrament meeting, or a missionary zone conference, we receive such an increase of the spirit the we need to immediately teach and testify, in word and deed, of the divinity of this work. Miracles happen when we do.
Right after Zone Conference, we went on exchanges with Bluefield. E. Johnson came to Richlands with me, and E. Guthrie went to Bluefield with E. Dayley. E. Guthrie and I had a booked schedule. On our way home we taught the Ratliffs, and Maddie, ate a rushed dinner, and followed up with a few potentials. We were so busy, we didn't even check the mail until 9 o'clock that night.
First thing in the morning, E. Johnson and I tracted around a member's home, we saw a lot hills, road, a few dogs, and plenty of doors. In an hour and a half we talked to one person, and he took a Book of Mormon. One more down, only 6 billion people left to go!
After we exchanged back, we were able to start teaching one of our investigator's long time boyfriend. She wasn't able to meet with us, so we started talking to her boyfriend and after a few minutes, we were sitting down teaching a restoration lesson. Sweet! Always finding!
We went out to Honaker and taught a few more people, some of them gave us some fresh produce from their garden. The gave us a tomato that was so huge, E. Guthrie and I thought it was a small pumpkin. Things grow so well out here.
Had our planning session and taught a few folks. Did some studies at the library on the church websites. I found a cool thing for family history work and youth. It's cool stuff!
During studies that morning, we got a call from some of our investigators, and they said they didn't want us to come by anymore. It was really sad because we were hoping to see them baptized in the next couple of weeks. We'll give them the time they need for the Lord to prepare them more, and when the time is right, the Lord will inspire some other missionaries to give them a call. We've brought them this far, it just looks like someone else might be leading them the rest of the way.
Food pantry in the morning as usual. 
When we got back from the pantry, we taught a few people. Then the zone leaders came down from Blacksburg to interview Maddie for her baptism the next day. Things went really well in the interview, and everything worked out well. When one door closes, another one opens.
We started filling up the font around 8 that morning. It doesn't fill up very quickly, and the hot water runs out quickly, so we have to make sure to start it as soon as we can in the morning. Madison had asked me to perform the actual ordinance, but i guess I was more nervous than I thought because I had Maddie standing the wrong direction, and I almost forgot to say her name at the beginning. Despite the faults, the service went really well. Her whole family was there, the Dad is less active, and the mom is a nonmember. Maddie is setting a really good example for her family.
Not only that, but another less active family, the S family, came to the baptism. Right afterwards, the dad came up to us and said his daughter wants to take the missionary lessons, and they'd be at church the next day. Sweet!
After the baptism, we taught a lesson to an investigator, and then we headed off to the L's for dinner. They just moved here from AZ, and Bro. L makes the best enchiladas in the whole world. What a great way to end a great day!
M was confirmed, and the S family made it out to church! Yes! what a great day as well! We started teaching N S. Right after church, we found two more new investigators, and taught a less active member. It was a great way to end the week!
Love ya!
Elder Brayden Connole

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