Wednesday, January 29, 2014

New Baby!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 I am beyond excited.  Michael and JaNee had their first little baby.  She's perfect and she's beautiful.  It's a girl and both Mommy and baby are doing fine.
 I don't know why, but I was so nervous for them both.  I spent many an hour praying for their safety and well-being.  Many of my family and friends were keeping them in their prayers too.  Lots of my wonderful young missionaries were praying for them.  I appreciate everyone's prayers and love.
Now I have 18 grandchildren and they are all GRAND!  There are 10 girls and 8 boys and I am one happy, excited, blessed grandma.  Of course, I also remember my two sweet great granddaughters.

Friday, January 17, 2014

A week in January

 Since we have been having such bad weather in Montreal and so much snow, we take the Metro almost every day now.  Luckily the Metro's come very quickly one after the other during rush hour and so we never spend too much time waiting.  Sometimes we will come and a Metro has just left.  The crowds will have looked like this photo, but in just a few minutes another comes along and the crowds are much thinner.  Below is a picture of an empty car which we have never seen in real life.  Even though there are usually a lot of people and the cars are cramped full, the people are very polite.   I have not seen any pushing, shoving, or anything like that.  Often a younger person will stand up and offer me their seat.  I think that is really nice and I appreciate it.  Going into the Metro one must walk down or up  several flights of long stairs in addition to taking a really long escalator.  I hate it when the escalator breaks because those escalators are really long.
 We take the Orange line getting on at Sherbrooke ( in our basement) and gett off at Laurier.  It hardly take any time at all.

 We have been so, so busy in the office.  Last Tuesday night after working all day we went to the Temple.  It is our regular evening to work at the Montreal Temple.  It was unusually busy there and we didn't get home until almost 11:00.  The next day we began our regular day at the office starting before 8:30.  We had to train incoming missionaries in addition to our regular work.  I was also extra busy for a couple of days with two missionaries.  One Sister had to go to the hospital for a suspected appendicitis.  That took several hours of work to get her admitted and then after being there over night she was sent home only to return a few days later for further testing.  She did not have appendicitis, but is being treated for a different problem.  We also had an Elder who slipped on the ice and broke his wrist.  That also was something that had to be dealt with for almost a week before he got the help he needed.  Part of the problem was that he waited to go to the clinic until we told him that he absolutely had to go.  With the medical system here, it also takes a lot of time to be seen and only because a member had some connections was he able to go to a clinic so soon.  Then President asked us to take the three departing missionaries to the Temple.  We were happy to do so.  We love Soeur Houde, Elder Bangerter, and Sister Grossenbach.  They have been awesome missionaries.  Afterwards the President invited us into his home to participate in their Testimony Mtg.  After that they had dessert and after that he asked us to stay and just visit with him and Sister Patrick.  By the time we got home it was 1:00 a.m.  I didn't want to wake up the next morning, but of course I did.

                                   Here we all are after midnight.  You can see our tired faces.

 About a week and a half ago we received notice that our car had a recall on the steering shaft and some other problems.  So today we drove to Plattsburg, New York to have the work done.  The car place had a driver take us to a little shopping center while they worked on the car and they picked us up when it was done.  We did some shopping, some talking, and some reading. After we got the car back we went for a late lunch to Buffalo Wild Wings a new restaurant there at Consumer Square.
                               I loved the poster of the chicken in the car with a seat belt.
                                    Papa had a yummy sirloin tip with horseradish sliders and fries.
I had Asian Style wings that were too hot for me even though they were medium.  Next time I will choose mild.

I am beyond tired this week because I haven't been sleeping well either.  Hope for better sleep next week.
I forgot to say that Elder Arhets has been busy with several accidents.  Our missionaries have been having about 2 accidents a week.  We have been blessed that there have been no injuries.  As I am writing, he is on the phone with some Sisters who just had an accident.  It is now after 9:00 in the evening.  The roads here are very bad and very slick so lots of accidents occur.  

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Busy Few Days

 Elders Williams and Lopez, our wonderful assistants to the President spent all P-day (Preparation) working hard, hence P-day clothes.    Of course when they come into the office, they have to goof off just a little bit.  This past Saturday was Transfer Day and after spending 6 transfers as an AP Elder Williams is being transferred to Trois Rivier as a trainer.  He is excited to be going.

 Friday was zone council and after all of the meetings the leaders of the 8 zones come to the office to pick up the supplies, packages, and mail for their zones.  Each zone has 2 missionary companionships as their zone leaders.  I always try to make some yummy treat for them.  This time I made Banana Breads, one of their favorites, and also a large package of candies for each team.

 Here is our hallway with part of the zone orders packaged up and ready to go.  I used to pack up all of the zone orders myself, but now that our mission has doubled, I have 2 Elders helping me.  It is still a huge job.
 Today after church we had a little luncheon to say good-by to Patrick Robertson our Branch President.  He and the entire presidency were released because Pres. Robertson got a new job and is moving three hours away to Quebec City.
                                   Marie Lise, Joanne, and Perpetue working in the kitchen.
 This is the new Branch Presidents wife and her little girl.  The baby is in the stroller asleep.
 Here is Patrick with one of his 6 children.  Patrick is from Jamaica and served a mission in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida.  He just finished school and passed the intensive testing to become  a border patrol and immigration officer.  He only served as president for two months and even then he had to be gone 5 days a week and some week-ends for his schooling which was far from Montreal.  President Patrick said it was quite unusual to have such an arrangement, but that the Stake Presidency was sure that he was to serve in this calling.  He said that if the Lord wanted him to do this work, then of course he would do his very best.  He is an awesome young leader and even though he was gone so much, he fulfilled his responsibility well.  He will be missed.
                                                     Sisters Allard, RS Pres, and Ordonez      
      Some of the kids couldn't wait to eat.  They had to have a few samples as the food was being           prepared and set out.
                                                   Sisters Issacs and Chen Hua
 Our new Branch President Stewart.  He is a great guy.  He is from Montreal and served a mission in France.  He and his family moved into the Branch three months ago from the Spanish Ward.  After being in the Branch for one month, he was called into the Branch Presidency as Second Councilor and now just two months later, he is the President.  I'm sure he will be wonderful.  He gives the best talks and both he and his wife are great people.  He is a brand new teacher this year too.
The Branch is quite small.  Though the numbers are few, the members are awesome.  They have to take on a lot of responsibilities and they doing it willingly and happily.  I took a few photos today of some of the people.
                                        Jarod Issacs and Oliver and Anthony Pardieu
                                                       Leah and Mimi

                                                       Rebecca and Jonathon
                                     The Pacquettes Branch Mission Leader and Primary Pres
                                                            The Pardieus
                                       Brother, Elders Quorum Pres, and Sister Verde and Yoali
                                    On the way home we drive past this Buddhist Pagoda.

                                                       An empty, snowy lot.
                                                       The side of our church.

                               Some of the frozen parks on Sherbrooke as we drive to our apt.

Friday, January 3, 2014

Canadian Winter

 It is sooooo cold here and has been for several weeks now.  The temperatures have been between 0 and minus 11 regularly.  Of course when you add in the wind factor, it's a lot colder than that and we have had a lot of wind.  Although I got these photos from google, this is just what our streets look like now.   Last week we had church, but the two weeks before that most of the churches were closed on Sunday.  The first week we couldn't have gone even if we wanted to because the driveway to our apartment was so blocked with snow that we couldn't get out.  Besides that, the little snow blower that the custodians were working on was broken.  The second Sunday that church was cancelled the Branch President called and told us that we could hold Sacrament meeting in our apartment and that we could invite the other couples and sister missionaries that live in our apt. building.  Sister Abrams and the young sister missionaries came over and we had a very spiritual sacrament meeting.  Both John and I had been scheduled to give talks that Sunday and the Sunday before so we were totally prepared.  We talked about faith and consecration.  That morning I quickly made some banana bread and so after we had our meeting, we were able to have a nice, warm treat and visit a bit.

We see lots of frozen bikes in the streets.  Not all of them are in this good of condition.  Many are tipped over.
 Each morning people have to dig their cars out of the snow.  When we drive to the office, or even to the store, John has to scrape off the windows before we can move the car.  This year we bought metro passes and have been taking the Metro to work.  It is great.  The Metro is in the basement of our apt building and our stop is just across the street from the mission office.  It's really quick too and gets us there just as fast as if we drove.  It has been so convenient.
 These are the gates to China Town Montreal which is just a short 10 minute drive from our apartment.