Sunday, May 11, 2014


We are so grateful for three fans and three air conditioners in the apartment, one A/C in the car, four in the office, lots of showers, and everything else that makes it bearable for us. I don't know how our missionaries manage, except that they take cold showers and each one has a fan that blows on their faces all night while they sleep.  Our son told us that in Brazil, they did the same.  He said,"if the power went out, we were all up.  There was just no sleeping without the fans".

But, it is still wonderful, even hot.  We did notice that there were a lot fewer people out in the streets on the way home today.  Maybe the heat?  Maybe Mother's Day?  Not sure.

YES, they do celebrate Mother's Day here.  It is interesting to us how many of the American Holidays are also part of their culture.  Valentine's Day, for sure.  I will let you know about Father's Day!
 Here I am with our little Primary, after they went into Relief Society to sing today.

I am not a big fan of Mother's Day. 

   Especially since my own mother is gone.  I don't much like the emotions that get all stirred up for people.  Also, the burden it puts on my children to find some way to express their love for me.  They are all very good at that, anyway, and I enjoy the random things they do that tell me in so many ways.  

So, here are my thoughts on Mother's Day:
1.  I have been in too many meetings where the Ward leaders were trying to find a way to honor the holiday at church.   I have told them, "This is a Lose-Lose situation for you.  No matter WHAT you do, someone is going home in tears."

2.  Every one of Heavenly Father's daughters is already a mother.  He only has two varieties of children:
Sons, who preside, thus  fathers
Daughters, who nurture, thus mothers

3.  Every one of us has a mother to honor on Mother's Day.  None of us has a perfect mother, there aren't any.  Honoring her, however, is a commandment.

With all of that having been said, I admit that I have enjoyed very much the happy surprises that my children have gifted me with on Mother's Day. (And lots of other days, too!)  Also, it tickles me to see the efforts my sons make to please and demonstrate their appreciation to their wives on that special day.  

SO, here is what the Binangonan Branch did for Mother's Day.  
They had a Primary Activity, and the children made small floral pins for the mothers.  
We spent sharing time preparing two songs to sing to them.  We went into  Relief Society, at the beginning, and sang the songs, and the children presented the pins to their mothers, grandmothers, aunts, whoever was there.  Then they made sure we all had one.  Then we went back to Primary.  
I also received a very impressive "cookie on a stick" from the YW, made at their own activity.
Interesting that the talks were not about mothers, and the Guys had no "skin in the game" at all!  
Here they are, all lined up and practicing to go and sing.  we even had a soloist today!

AS usual, the week had some highlights, and some low lights!

Here is your funny story for the week:
When Elder Smith was showing me how to do some of the things I have to do, like letters in Mail Merge, he mentioned that we can also choose to email them, if it is a better choice than mail.  But, he also told me he had never done that.  I was trained in the MTC, but that was a LONG time ago.  So, we did a quick little 'test" to find out how it worked.  But, we did not know that it was just a one-click process, with no warning or checks at all.  We set it up to just try it, with a letter we were using (STL assignment) and the first name on the list.  It happened to be Elder Allen. We looked at each other, and went OOPS!  
Sure enough, on Tuesday, Elder Allen comes in to talk to me.  "Sister, who sends the letters to parents about new assignments.  Is that you?"  
It turns out, we informed his parents that he has just been called as a new Sister Training Leader.  He was, I think, a little bit disappointed to know that I only sent one, not dozens, of the wrong email.  He did say, however, that they had a good laugh about it, and he is saving the letter for his journal.
Needless to say, I may follow Elder Smith's precedence, and use snail mail all the time!!  

Thursday was MLC, or Missionary Leadership Council.  All the zone leaders, and STLs meet at the mission home for the day, with a nice lunch, and plan and train for the next 6 weeks.  Elder Schlager was asked to instruct them on the "proper care and importance of Baptismal Records."  One of our issues here is the loss, or lack of recording, of records of ordinances, ordainings, etc.  The clerks just are so new to all of this.  Well, everyone is!  Elder S has suggested that, like at home, they actually do some training of clerks at the leadership training meetings.  In the meantime, he has asked the Missionaries to scan and send to him every Monday, the BRs for the baptisms they are reporting.  That way, he can check the numbers against the actual forms he is  sent to record. The hard copies are too easy to misplace.

In the middle of that busy day, though, we had to run over to the temple for another sealing!  Vanessa and Dexter Candari went to the temple!  We saw them early in the morning, made sure they had what they needed, and left them to the Johnsons.  Then, we went back in the afternoon to witness the sealing of their family. 
  Here is Yanni, outside the doors with Vanessa, waiting for her Dad to show up.  She was so excited, they could barely hold her down.  And she LOVED her white dress!  

And here they all are, Dexter, Vanessa, and Yanni Candari, another Eternal Family. WE were so blessed to be a part of it.  I LOVE my mission!
On Friday, I got a phone call waking me up.  The two elders who were scheduled to fly back to Mindoro after the training, missed their plane.  There is only one plane per day to, and one plane per day from, Mindoro, the other part of our mission.  So, first job of the day was to get them a flight for Saturday afternoon.
I also got a call this week from the US, from the grandmother of one of our new missionaries.  She was concerned that he is having a hard time adjusting.  And a call from the Training APs, because they didn't have a key to the office.  And a letter about someone's package, and asking if it was received.
 And an email telling us that Elder Christiansen of the Presidency of the Seventy is coming to hold a meeting with our missionaries on the 27th.  But that was the day scheduled for zone conference in Mindoro, so we had to change that, and a lot of plane reservations.  And today, calls about area codes for different countries, so that they can call home for Mother's Day.  
I asked Elder S, "why do they call me with all their problems?"   He said, "because you are their mom away from home".  Guess so.  I got a lot of messages wishing me "Happy Mother's Day."

Friday afternoon, we had an office meeting, and two of the couples were "coding", so they couldn't drive home til seven o'clock.  So, we decided to go to dinner.  I asked Sister Revillo if they wanted to join us, and they could!  We tried a new restaurant they had read about, but had not had time to visit. 
WE are all pretty adventurous, or we wouldn't be here! 
We went to Bawais, a new Vietnamese restaurant near the temple. It was really, really, good.  
WE each ordered different things, and passed it around so we could try it all.  10 of us, appetizers and some drinks, plus our dinner, and it was all about p4000, or about $9.50 per person.  We had a very nice time.  President and Sister Revillo at the back, with the Barlows on his right.  Then Sheffers, and Johnsons are next to me.                                                   Don't we all look great?  
I know why Ponce de Leon never found the "Fountain of Youth".  
He was looking in the wrong country!  



1 comment: