Sunday, November 27, 2011

                                      Some beautiful native bead work in Katie Oates' pony tail.
                                                      More bead work on Katie's gloves.
Icicles on the frozen exhaust pipe. 
                            Thanksgiving with Gary, Elder Meteer, and Elder Spens in our apartment.
Alisa and Dale Hardy came to help with our Thanksgiving dinner & Elder Williams.
                                                                        Jackapo and Rachel                     Matt Chandler
                              Jackapo, Cameron, Kamal, Alisia, Gary, Rachel & baby Brooklyn

                                                 Ready to play games after dinner.

What a wonderful week we have enjoyed.  On Monday evening, we had a Thanksgiving dinner and talent show with the branch at the Stake Center.  Everyone came through on their food assignments, and the food was delicious.  The talent show was a variety of fun and an opportunity to learn more about the members of the branch.  Elder Spens participated with a variety of illusions that he likes to share.  "There's no such thing as magic," he says.  We had about 40 or more people that came, members and friends. 

Tuesday evening our guest speaker was called away to Idaho with a family emergency.  We were able to put together a panel of members who work in the medical field, and we had a great discussion on the importance of living a healthy life.  Wednesday, I had another wonderful class with my group of faithful students discussing a conference talk.  Every day I get a little closer to my goal to have the library cataloged.  It's a blessing to have access to cataloging information from the Church History Library to help me out.  I couldn't do it otherwise. 

Thanksgiving day was delightful.  Bro. and Sister Hardy had offered to have us come to their home for dinner.  Since we had already invited several students that did not have families here, we invited them to join us.  Sister Hardy is a wonderful cook and really outdid herself with a variety of additions to the dinner.  At least she let me fix the turkey, dressing, potatoes, and gravy.  There was plenty of food and enough for the guys to make plates to take home for the next day.  I was happy to have the students stay and play games for almost three hours after dinner.  It's so fun to associate with them. 

The car decided to rebel again and wouldn't start even though we just got it back from the repair shop.  Luckily we were able to jump it and took it to the repair shop again.  We didn't expect to find anyone there, but by a small miracle, the owner decided to come to the shop for just a few minutes at the same time.  The use of the spare mission car is a much needed blessing. 

Today we were able to talk to most of our children and grandchildren through the computer.  We are so grateful to be able to see the little ones grow up even though we are so far away.  We are so blessed to be a part of our wonderful family.  There are so many things to be grateful for, especially at this wonderful time of the year.  We are grateful for the gospel of Jesus Christ that has been restored to the earth with the power of the priesthood available again to bless the world.  We are grateful that Mom and Dad are still with us and  that we can talk to them fairly often.  They have been such good examples of faith and service to me and all of our family.  We appreciate all the wonderful friends that we have both at home and here in Alaska.  It's a great blessing to be able to serve the Lord here.  We love you all and pray for the Lord to bless you.

JoAnn & Jim