Sunday, May 2, 2010

April Flowers and Gospel Blessings

This lovely young lady finally got permission from
her Mom to be baptized. Elder Smith got to baptize her
before he got transferred. She is wonderful! Her mom even
came to her baptism.
A few changes to Santa Cruz Zone. Always sad to say
goodbye, but always excited to welcome new ones. We
have two brand new missionaries, an ASL Elder, our
singing Elder from New Zealand, and a new Senior Couple.

Meet the Hanbergs from Altamont, Utah. They have already
dug in, and are hard at work.

Elder Murray & Elder Valencia asked if we could help
them get an investigator to the temple. No problem!
We are prayerful for a baptismal date soon for Samantha.

We had another wonderful senior activity day, but ended
up at the Vegetarian House. What, where's the beef?
Actually, it wasn't to bad.

Callas everywhere! They were beautiful!

Todd & Gail Brown treated us to a lovely lunch, and trip to
their office. Todd and his family are the largest Calla Bulb
growers in the world. It was amazing!

Matt & Kathryn McDougall invited us to be their escorts
for their first trip to the temple. We were honored!
They will go back soon to have their 2 daughters seal-
ed to them.
Phil & Irma Emory. Phil was baptized on April 25th. Irma
had joined about 4 years ago. Now they sit together at church,
united in the gospel and in their love for the Lord. How blessed
we are to know this wonderful couple! How thankful we are
to the Lord for this glorious opportunity to serve Him! The
worth of a soul is truly great in the sight of the Lord!

An eternal friendship.

Strawberry fields as far as you can see. Watsonville produces
the biggest and best. Did you know that you shouldn't put your
strawberries in the frig after you have bought them at the store?
They lose their flavor faster.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

One Year This Month

Seniors celebrate Valentines at a Moroccan restaurant. Those
with the bad knees didn't sit on the floor.

Washing your hands is very important, especially if your
actually using them to eat with.

President did a good job of picking the restaurant.
It was pretty good, and we even got out before the
belly dancers showed up.

Santa Cruz in the springtime. Beautiful!
These are called Tulip Trees.

Another Zone activity at Henry Cowell Park.
We do like spoiling our young missionaries.

How we love serving with them.
Nice try Elder Cook, but it's just to big!

This is the bottom.
This is the top. Trust me, it's way up there.

Your not going to believe this, but we are standing inside a
giant Redwood.

These wonderful Spanish brothers & sisters got to go
hear Elder Richard G. Scott. It was wonderful!

Bro. Torres baptized his daughters, Paulina & Fernanda.

President & Sister Jackson's son, Clark.

Our new favorite thing to do on P-Day, collect sea glass.

Maria & Joie Sandoval. We spoke at their
baptism. They are wonderful!

Daniel & his family have waited a long time for this moment.
You should hear him tell the story of Joseph Smith's First Vision.

A trip to Main Street Bagels for the Sisters, just before
heading to San Jose for transfers. There was lots of giggling
around this little table, but when they teach you can feel the power.

Well, I think that should catch us up for awhile. We just want you to know how much we love each of you wonderful family and friends. We are so grateful for the opportunity we have to serve a mission together. The Lord has truly blessed us, and our family. We are so blessed to have the Book of Mormon, Another Testament of Jesus Christ. I am on my third time reading it on the mission. It truly is evidence that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. I love the Book of Mormon!
We look forward to General Conference. That always makes for a wonderful weekend! Take care! Love to all!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

A New Year in the Mission

Elder Elmer teaches Sis. Jensen about priorities, using sand and rocks.

Sis. McNally fixes Chipino for Elder Elmer, I got spaghetti.

Yes, another full moving van, thanks to the Elders Quorum
and the missionaries.

Elder & Sis Hanson say goodbye to the Vietnamese Branch where
they have been serving, as well as in the office. We'll definately miss them!

Artichokes are big in California. You can eat them a million
different ways, so our Senior Day activity started out doing
just that.

Shopping in Carmel. We got our picture, and the store
manager got a pass-a-long card. She was very nice, but
not interested.

This was a beach down by Big Sur. The sand was marbled.
It was really beautiful!

This is a great beach for Tidal Pools. I know a few grandkids
that would love this place. I know Papa J does.

Rule #1 is you never turn your back on the ocean. Seconds earlier
we were taking pictures of the marbled sand, and then we were
running to get away from this giant wave (and some of us didn't make

Our California San Jose sweatshirts. The Elders and Sisters
keep trying to get them away from us.

Famous Highway 1. Wow, what a view!

Elder Murray gets a new companion, Elder Gushiken from

Twin Lakes Beach (by our
apartment) got some pretty rough waters during a storm
we had. The ocean is an amazing and powerful thing to behold.

Annie & Sophie made a blanket for Lamar. He loved it!

The Santa Cruz Zone

Did I forget to mention, that E. Gushiken is a Ballet Danseur.?

FHE with the Levys

Emily makes Elder Elmer one of her healthy green Santa Cruz

I don't think this missionary is going to turn Veggin anytime soon.

We got to substitute in Seminary for a week. Not a bad picture
considering it was 7 a.m. in the morning. Great kids!

Well, believe it or not, we have been on our mission 1 year now. It's going by so fast. We keep thinking there is still so much for us to do. We have had some additional responsibilities added. We go to Alma Branch (in the mountains) one week of the month. The mountain people consider themselves very different from the Santa Cruz beach people. They are very close and self sufficient. There are about 55 families in the branch. We are excited for this opportunity, and look forward to meeting more wonderful people to love and teach.
We've been getting a lot of rain here in Santa Cruz. It makes it a little hard on the contacting. We are really looking forward to daylight savings time. Our evenings will be much more productive.
There is much to share, but not much time. We send our love to all our family and friends. We are grateful for the gospel in our lives. Thank you each for your examples of love and committment to the Lord. We sure love our mission!
Advice: Hold to the rod, and DON'T LET GO!!

Congratulations to Katie and Daniel on their engagement!

Congratulations Rob and Christina on little Riley's arrival!

Happy Birthday (FEB 25th) to Aaron!

Gotta go!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Holidays in Santa Cruz

Building a fence for the Forsyths.

Our Assistants to the Presidents. Four hard-
working and very fun Elders.

A Seniors's Day Outing

Look closely, and you can see lots of little orange
dots on those leaves. The orange dots are Monarch

A real skeleton of a Blue whale. Does the word
humongous come to mind?

A Santa Cruz Sunset

A Thanksgiving Feast for the Santa Cruz Zone

Pre-Thanksgiving Thanksgiving was a hit, Elder Elmer.

Teaching Alex and her dad, the Plan of Salvation.
Our visual aids are very helpful. Thanks Grace and
Thanksgiving at the Blakes, Elder Baker, and
Elder Heyland. It was wonderful!

A little Christmas spirit in Santa Cruz.

In case your wondering if it gets cold in Santa
Cruz, just look at this picture. We would like to say
thanks to Cheryll Mabray, and her helpers for
this great quilt!
Another transfer, and more Sisters in the Santa
Cruz Zone.

Brian and Crystal are sealed in the Oakland Temple.
It poured down rain, but didn't dampen our joy for
this wonderful occassion. One of the great blessings
of our mission.
Brad and Ash got to help the seniors fill the stockings
for all the missionaries.

Sister Manarello makes a little hat for Brad and Ash's

A great day for a walk on the beach!

Brad didn't quite escape this wave. Actually
it got us all.

All Ashley wanted to do was to see some ocean.
So we worked hard to give her a little ocean.
The cup use to hold a Slurpee, but now it's being
used to hold sea glass and other treasures.
Felton for a walk in the Redwoods.

Lights at the harbor.

The Boardwalk for a little shopping.

Sister Mcnally can't wait till the kids come back.

How's this for a Christmas tree? We love our

Elder Baker, Sophie, and Elder Murray

Christmas 2009, Sophie's Baptism Day!

Sophie with her mom, Remy, and sister, Sydney. How
grateful we are for this sweet little family in our lives.
We hope each of you have a wonderful new year!