Wednesday, January 21, 2015

We arrived in New York on Monday, January 19, 2014.  The roads were clear and dry all the way from Salt Lake.  We went directly to the Mission home and met with President Francis and his wife upon arriving.  We had a great interview with him and were sent to the Mission Office to greet the staff and gather materials.  We then drove 50 minutes to our apartment in Batavia, New York.  The apartment is on the 2nd floor and we both had our hands completely full while try to navigate the stairs to the apartment.  It seemed that they were about as steep as a ladder.  I got the giggles and barely made it.  Just as we enter our apartment Dennis's cell phone rang and it was the Ray's, another senior couple (and his name is Dennis Ray), they had called the young missionaries and asked them to help us.  They arrived in about 3 minutes and helped get the car unloaded in quick order.  That was such a blessing to us!
While we were at the Mission home we felt like we were being fed with a fire hose.  President Francis asked us to:
  1. Be in charge of the Ipads (all missionaries in our mission have one) and they are asked to use Facebook to proselyte for 1 hour per day
  2. Monitor Facebook and what is happening with our missionaries (and I have been a hold out for social media)  Training sessions to be held on this.
  3. Help the missionaries with Family Search.  (which we have used about 1 hour total)  Give training sessions at the meetings with the missionaries, etc.
  4. Drive over the mission, meeting the missionaries and helping them with any thing they need.  We are located centrally in the mission and will be seeing much of New York; regularly. 
  5. Help with the Branch that we are assigned to; and assist the district missionaries where we can.
Well, all in all, we feel totally out in deep water--treading rapidly!  We were able to get internet installed in our apartment today, so we will be training vigorously.
While we were in our interview President Francis asked us to read Doctrine and Covenants Section 31 together.  He asked us to substitute our names into the verses and consider the promises were directly to us.  Please read that section, it is wonderful!
We had a fun trip to the grocery store that was suggested to us.  The name is Aldi's and we thought it was weird that you had to pay for the cart to begin with; but it was really crazy when we didn't get bags for our groceries.  We laughed hard about getting groceries this way. 

Here are some pictures of our apartment (which is really pretty nice).


Sunday, January 18, 2015

The 2nd week of the MTC was filled with office training and learning (some parts of) the church programs for missionary work.  The church has been so inspired in helping missions take care of the missionaries along with the people they work with.  We enjoyed our time learning and were half way able to keep up. 
The Horsley's from Malad came to the MTC the Monday of our 2nd week.  She is a good friend to Dennis and is the daughter of Harvey and Daisy Field from Grant.  It was good to see Debby and Spence.  They loved the MTC also. 


The training was complete on Thursday around 3:00.  We checked out and drove to Salt Lake City to stay the night with some of our kids.  We had a great time eating, laughing, and sharing experiences.  We love our family so much.  They are so wonderful!

We drove from Salt Lake City on Friday to North Platte, Nebraska, on Saturday we made it to Coralville (Iowa City), Iowa, Sunday we went to Toledo, Ohio, and onto Rochester, New York on Monday.  We felt very blessed to have dry roads.  The conditions were good, but the sky was overcast and looked like it could storm.  The worst stretch of the drive will be tomorrow and going into New York.  The news this morning warned of 60+ car pile up in Pennsylvania because of an ice storm. 

Saturday, January 10, 2015

We finished our training from Preach My Gospel on Friday, Jan. 9, 2015.  We were assigned to a 'district' and loved the couples in it.  We had many teaching opportunities during this week.  It was a very intense, spiritual experience.  Dennis felt like he had started the week on fire, but it had been doused with gasoline by the end of the week.  We loved it!  The people below are Brother and Sister Knowles from Idaho Falls, Brother and Sister Young from Logan, Utah, Sister Bennion, the Merrills,
Brother and Sister Manning, and Sister Fisher. (in the lower picture)

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Life at the MTC

We packed for an entire week prior to going to the MTC.  We cleaned out our belongings from our room so Rob and Annette could use it while we are away.  What a job!  I have decided that I must be hoarder, what a lot of STUFF. 
We were set apart by President Cook at Chris's home after church on Sunday, had a nice lunch there, and then took off for Provo.  Dennis had gone to his early morning meetings, so he was really tired.  It was a struggle getting here, but we made it.  We stayed at the Courtyard Marriott and were up in plenty of time to get to the MTC.

What a humbling experience the MTC has been.  There are 70 couples and a few single sisters here.  Many of the couples have served 2-5 other missions.  We are one of the few that are first timers.  Everyone has multiple talents and has had many callings.  They are so nice and kind. 
We had a great meeting in the afternoon of the first day that filled us in on what to expect and then we met with a smaller group (district) for our week of study.
Day 2:  We met all day with our district and discussed ways that we can serve and teach.  It was a day of relating life stories and inspirational happenings.  We enjoyed the entire thing.  We have great couples in with us.  Dennis was talking about going to Texas and meeting with his friend that is a sealer in the Temple there.  Elder Manning asked about the man's name and Dennis told him it was Herk Rainey.  Elder Manning said, "he's my home teaching companion and in our ward".  Small world, isn't it?