Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Thanksgiving with Missionaries

Hermana Woodward visits with her family before going home. She was one of our very first Sister missionaries when we arrived in Malaga. We had lunch and enjoyed getting to know her Mom, Aunt, and Sister.

Hermana Deere and Elder Norton (Left), Geest, Rodriguez (right).
Wow! What a feast everyone contributed to. I had fun making all the rolls, cranberry relish and 6 pies.

These are the real "Turkeys" - Elder Barahona from Zaragoza, Spain and Elder Geest from Grand Junction, Colo.

These three amigos stole my camera. Very funny you guys!
Elders Manning from Draper, Ut, Phillips from W Jordan, Ut, Peterson from Orem, Utah 

President Deere on the left. What a great group of Missionaries. Sixteen of the greatest Elder and two Sisters ever. 24 of us for this feast. 

Hermana Deere and her children, Annie and Justin.
Playing the game of "guess who you are." Justin was Hitler!

Doug with our two turkeys!

Doug was "The Easter Bunny"!


November is almost gone and the Christmas season is upon us. It's hard to believe the time goes so fast. We have enjoyed this month with our JAS and our missionaries. Some of the highlights of November was our Stake Conference. We enjoyed the adult session on Saturday with our Mission President, Pres. Deere and his wife, also our area representative, Elder Richards, a counselor in the Area Presidency of Europe, and his wife, who are stationed in Germany. We enjoyed hearing from all of them and feeling of their special witness of Jesus Christ.
The Sunday meeting was in Granada. The church charters a bus and for a small fee you can ride the bus and attend Stake Conference. The Saints gathered together in a hugh group that day. Our Stake Presidency was re-organized also, and we are looking forward to working with this new Presidency. These members are strong in the gospel and love the Lord with all their hearts.

Thanksgiving turned out to be a wonderful day with missionaries all around us. Our Malaga Zone had a meeting that day from ::: to ::... President Deere and his wife presiding. We didn't make it until :: as I was busy making all the hot rolls and a banana cream pie. The day before was busy with making sweet rolls and five other pies and cranberry relish. It was a busy two days just like at home and I loved every minute of it. The missionaries were so thankful and some of them helped with the food too. Some of these Elders and our two sisters are really great cooks. After many hand helped with clean-up, we played a guessing game of who we represented as to what name was written on our foreheads. Great game.

Our JAS group had a great activity at one of the beaches in Malaga. The young adults took charge of the activity by organizing the event and buying the food. One of JAS members wanted to barbecue his special Argentina recipe of chicken, spare ribs and sausage. So good!! Then we ended the meal with cake for the November birthdays and I brought calabaza (pumpkin) pie, left over from Thanksgiving. We played volleyball and did some rock climbing and exploring around the area and one of our JAS, Ernesto, who just returned from a mission, brought his guitar and played and sang for us. Our young and older members got to know one another much better during this activity. What a great group of young adults. We love them. They are planning a service activity for December. They hope to go caroling at a hospital or an old folks home. More on that next month.

Our area Presidency has given all of the Senior Couples in Spain a special assignment for the remainder of our mission. We will be going to Madrid in two weeks for two days of training for the program of Education and Employment. Unemployment among the YSA in Spain reaches up to %%% and something needs to be done to help the YSA and other members in attaining more self reliance. We are excited about this new assignment and hope we will be able to help more of these young adults in this area.

The weather is quite cold some days, especially when the wind blows, but when it is calm and the sun is out, it is beautiful and sitting on the terrace warms our old bones right up!! The Sea is so beautiful to look at each day. It's like a gigantic lake. Just calm and serine most of the time, unless the wind blows, and then it gets a little choppy. But nothing like the ocean. Granada area, which is almost two hours from Malaga, actually had snow dumped on them yesterday. Amazing!! Now we know our JAS group will want a snow day for one of their activities. Brrrr-rrrr. They are keeping us young, right?

We hope all of you had a great Thanksgiving with family and friends. We are looking forward to the Christmas season here. There is no celebrating of Thanksgiving here in Spain but the Christmas season is already in full-swing here. I think we will make do with a couple Poinsettias for our Christmas tree this year.