Sunday, February 3, 2013

February 3, 2013

Happy birthday to my sister Lenae, who turned 50.  Can't believe that she has reached that milestone.
The weather is absolutely wonderful for winter in Russia.  We still have snow, but it was forcasted to be 2 degrees above 0 Celsius today that would be about 37 F.  We didn't have that little pause in the freeze last year.  The snow piled upon snow last year and there was ice under it all winter.  This year is so nice with not near the danger of falling that we experienced before.  Usually February is a very cold month, but we realize that there is still much of February left. 
We had a combined zone conference in Moscow this past Friday.  It was wonderful to see everyone, but more important to feel the spirit in such strength.  We feel blessed to be able to help with the work of the Lord in this part of His vineyard.  It is a bit of a trip for us as it lasts 24 hours, and for some of the missionaries some it is even longer.  We have an overnight train ride which isn't always a good sleep, but we manage to get some rest most of the trips.  The old song with the lyrics that go: 'rock'n, roll'n, ride'n all along the way, all bound for morning town, many miles away"  describes perfectly the ride we have.  I used to sing that song to my kids who probably don't remember it, but it was a good  as a lullaby.
The days are passing quickly and we are trying to make use of our days by inviting some of the people who have had an impact on us while we are here, to have dinner with us. It is a wonderful time to spend with them alone and to get to know them on more of a personal level.
This next week is transfers, the last one we will witness, and we are losing just one young missionary, who will go to Zaleningrad (near Moscow) and another Elder will take his place here.  We will miss him as we miss all who leave, but it gives us opportunity to meet other missionaries.
This last week we visited 2 babushka's who are often home bound in the winter due to the difficulty of walking to the bus on the snow and ice.  One is 92 years old and is sharp as a tack.  She knows everything almost before we do!!  She still hears from several missionaries who have gone back home to USA.  She told us that she is popular in the US with her missionaries!  We do love her and are glad for the care she receives from the other members of the church.  One little sister couldn't afford another telephone when hers quit working, so the branch (local church) paid for another one for her.  The Russian saints have trials that we can't even imagine, yet they are happy and manage to live a comfortable, joyful, and meaningful life.  God bless all these wonderful people.
There were 2 new people who attended church today and they were delightful to have with us. They are from Nigeria and Namibia.  We have been blessed to meet many Africans, probably from 10 or so  countries.  

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

January 29, 2013

WELCOME TO THE FAMILY.  Geneil Olivia  was born on January 21, 2013 at 6:09 AM.  She is a beautiful little girl and  has been welcomed by her Mom and Dad Raenie and Charlie, brother Dallin age 7, sister Kenzie age 5 1/2, and sister Alayna age 2 years and 2 days!!  It is reported that she is a very good baby.  She looks a lot like her sister Kenzie as a baby.  We think she is very sweet and look forward to seeing her in person. 
We took our Christmas decorations down last week.  Our living room sure looks bare.  We had a lot of positive comments about our Chrismas decorations. We just had a small tree, some candles and a few lights along the top width of both windows. If they could see my house in Utah at Christmas they wouldn't think this was that much.  I love Christmas and the decorations remind me of the season and spirit that should prevail. I loved reading the scriptures under the light of the tree and other lights. 
  Russia is still cold but not nearly as cold as this time last year.  The reported trend this week is for slight warming with no new snow expected until later in the week.  It will still be below 0 Celcius but not that much.  We still have snow on the ground, but unlike last year the sidewalks are kept much cleaner and safer to walk on.
  We have recently had our friends, Anactacia and Ludmilla here for dinner.  We love them and enjoyed visiting with them.  They are members of our branch here in NN. We also had dinner with new friends Nciah and AK who are from Ghana and are here studying to be dentists.  We applaud them for their pluck in coming to cold Russia from such a warm climate to study.  They are brave souls and we have loved getting to know them.
Last evening we had our friend Dasha come to dinner.  We met her a year ago and since then she has been baptized and we have enjoyed seeing her grow in her faith.  She is a wonderful person and we hope the best for her. 
We still teach the Gospel Principles class to English speakers on Sundays.  It is fun to be so engaged, and we find that many people that are beginners in learning Russian find more for them in the English class than they do in the Russian classes.  We are glad to be of service.
   Elder Foutz is sharpening his culinary skills right up lately.  He has taken to baking bread, cookies, making many meals, but breakfast is still his favorite.  The missionaries are surprised to know that he is so good in the kitchen.  Whenever they come over he usually has some little treat or other for them.   We both do a lot of cooking as there is some meeting or other where we bring treats on a regular basis. 


Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Pictures January 1, 2013 C-Novem Godem or Happy New Year!!

 HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Caleb Crane, 9 years old on Jan 1,  Emma Foutz, 8 years old on Jan 11, and Alayna Pratt who turns 2 years old on January 19.
Sons-in-law Kelly Peterson and Charlie Pratt who both have a birthday on January 25.
Our Sister Mitchell singing a Christmas solo on Dec 22, 2012.
She is from Blanding, UT. 

Elder Foutz is the myrrh bearing wise man in our Christmas pageant. 
Doesn't he look grand in his red outfit bedecked with silver stars.

We visited and lectured at this class of students
who are studying English.  Their teacher, Helen, is a good friend.

Statue in front of the school.  The principal is the model,
and he loves his children in the school.

Taken 25 December 2012 in front of
Malia Prokovskya D. 6 K. 3.  Our home for the
past 15 months.  Elder Foutz has a Russia Shopka,
and my hat is called something different
because it has a brim.  My coat is actually
made in Russia but Jerry's came from Atlanta, Georgia!!