Monday, January 26, 2015

Monday January 26, 2015

Today I did some laundry and then we headed to the office.  We had a Skype call with Clint Christensen (our boss) at the Church History Library in Salt Lake to discuss the progress we have made so far . . . 

Wade has had some trouble with his church computer and has been trying to work with the help desk to get it working properly.  Today I start getting the administrative part of our interviews done.  Hope it all goes well! 
Sunday January 25, 2015

We attended the Metro Ward which is a ward made up of people who speak English, most of them are here working for the FBI, DEA or other US companies.  Everyone is wonderful.

After church we went back to the Trujillo Alto building to do more interviews.  Wade interviewed a couple in Spanish and I did my first interview with a sweet single sister in English . . . All went well!

A Day of Unexpected Exploring

Saturday January 24, 2015

After we completed our interviews, we decided to go to the Super Walmart where we could purchase fresh fruits and veggies as well fresh meat is smaller quantities that at Costco.  (Yes, there is a Costco here as well as Sam's Club).  We used our GPS and went to the saved places that were already in it.  There were two Super Walmarts listed so we pushed the one closet to where we were.  We ended up in a area called Casovanas. There was also an Outlet Mall so we visited it too.  When we used the GPS to get us home, we were routed on a mountain road that was barely two lanes.  The country was beautiful but it took us about 3-4 house to return to our apartment.  We found that the GPS isn't always right!  There is actually a Super Walmart about 10-15 minutes from our apartment.  We will try that one another day!!

I will be posting pictures of the people we interview.  I have gotten verbal permission from each of them.  This way I can remember those we have interviewed and the friendliness of the people here in Puerto Rico!

Jose Toro
Alberto Zayas
Hector Llanos
Jose Luis Diaz Rivera
Rafael Rivera
France Marie Feliciano Zayas
Hector & Maria Berrios
San Juan Stake Center - Trujillo Alto
San Juan Stake Center - Courtyard in the middle of the building

The beautiful countryside in Canovanas

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Our Work Begins

Friday we interviewed two wonderful men.  Brother Toro and Brother Zayhas.  I am really enjoying sitting in on the interviews.  These were done in English.  Today we are interviewing again at the Trujillo Alto chapel in San Juan. So far the men that we have interviewed prefer to speak Spanish, so Wade is doing those interviews.  I get the paperwork in order.  (I'm using my administrative skills.)  I will post  pictures below of those we are interviewing with their permission.

It has rained the past couple of days off and on.  This morning the sky is a beautiful color of blue and it is about 80+ degrees.  I love the weather here . . .  warm and sunshine most of the time with occasional rain.

We stopped at the store last night on our way home from the office to pick up a few supplies so that I can cook again.  I made Chicken Alfredo and it tasted so good!  I love to eat at restaurants, but sometimes it is nice to have home cooked meals!  I hope we can make it to Costco later today.  Sister Eakle brought me a conventional oven so I can bake.  I want to pick up a couple of frozen dinners since those will be good and easy to fix after a full day.  Maybe pick up some fresh veggies as well.  Prices are pretty much the same here as in the states, but milk is almost $6 a gallon!  Gas prices are about $.57 per liter - about $2.00 per gallon.

Our apartment is nice.  We have three bedrooms and two bathrooms. The dining area and living room area are one big room. The kitchen is nice other than not having an oven. (But now I have the conventional oven!)  We have a stacking washer/dryer!  It is perfect for us!  We have a queen bed in the master bedroom and right now a twin bed in one of the other bedrooms.  They are bring over another bed in a few days since we will have visitors in February.  Patti, Eric and Riessa are coming to visit Patti's mission.  She is so excited to show her cute family around the area that she grew to love some 16+ years ago. 

Our apartment:
Dining/Living Area
Kitchen looking toward front door
Laundry room
Master bedroom
Extra bedroom (empty)
Extra bedroom
Master Bathroom
Extra bathroom
Back patio with BBQ grill
Other side of patio with door going into apartment
Swimming pool over the fence from our patio
Play area behind our apartment - swings and slides for kids

Friday, January 23, 2015

Special Assignment/ Mini-Mission

Thursday January 22, 2015

Wade has been serving as a service missionary at the LDS Church History Library (CHL) for the past 18 months, most recently doing oral histories, mainly of past mission presidents in the Latin American Area.  We have been asked to go to Puerto Rico to take oral histories from the people there.  This is a unique assignment for a two month period for us to talk to Stake Presidents, Auxiliary Leaders and anyone who might have an interesting story about their conversion to the church.  We have been set apart and wear our  missionary badges.  As far as we know at this time, we are the first 'missionaries' to do this type of an assignment.  We are thrilled to be 'pioneers' in preparing the way for possible future assignments as well as others having this same assignment.  Prior to coming, I was interviewed by the person Wade worked for at the CHL.  I was able to spend a few days at the CHL doing some training for the oral histories as well as the administrative work in submitting the information to the church.  I found it fascinating to listen to the stories that were being told in the interviews.  I also enjoy the administrative part as well.  And of course, it was a no brain er when they asked if we would go to Puerto Rico for 6-8 weeks in January, February and March!  Stay in cold Utah or go to the warm sunshine of the Caribbean . . . . .

We left Salt Lake January 14th and headed to Atlanta using our flight benefits (standby).  We stayed with Patti and her family for a few days.  We enjoyed going to Wade's brother's ward on Sunday and then a lovely dinner with them, a family from their ward and two of the young missionaries.  It was an enjoyable day.  We were finally able to get on a flight Monday (January 19 2015) morning for San Juan Puerto Rico. President Boucher, the mission president, picked us at the airport and took us to the mission office where met several of the other senior couples serving there.  We were then taken to our apartment, 'our new home', and got our car.  That evening we went exploring to find a place to eat.  We found a Ponderosa Steak house and enjoyed dinner.  Then it was time to find our way back to our apartment - in the dark! We drove down several roads more than once, even a one way going the wrong way!  By some miracle, we pulled up in front of what we thought was our apartment.  Wade got out and tried the gate remote and IT WORKED!  I think the Lord guided us there before I got too angry at Wade!  

Wednesday the mission nurse took us on a little tour to help us find our way around a little more.  We road a ferry to Old San Juan, had lunch and the came back.  It was a gorgeous day and the Mexican restaurant we went to had great food!  In the evening we went to the Olive garden Restaurant for dinner will the other senior couples on the island as well as President & Sister Boucher. After dinner we went to the President's place for a desert that Wade hasn't stopped talking about!

Today we worked in the office for a little while.  Wade is so excited because each time he meets someone new and tells them what we are doing, we get more leads of who might have a great story.  We have appointments sent for Friday, Saturday and Sunday to do interviews.  I know we will stay busy here!
My sister in law and me on Sunday (1/18/15) at her house for dinner.  Her husband is a counselor in the Atlanta Mission Presidency

We are on our way to Puerto Rico!!

We made it!  San Juan PR airport

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Catch up!

I am going to try to catch up the end of our first mission and then add our new mission to this blog.

May/June 2012
Charlie called to let us know that he had met his sweetheart, Liz Fuentas, and they wanted to get married.  He asked when we were coming home and we told him September 7th 2012.  He said they wanted to get married August 3rd but could wait until the 31st.  They were getting married in the Los Angeles Temple and it would be closed the middle of August for cleaning.  We went to the mission president and told him our good/bad news.  He said to find out which date they wanted and if it was the 3rd we needed to support them in that and not make them wait.  I cried to the mission president and then to Sister Martino as well.  I didn't want to go home early, but this was what we had prayed for . . . to have our three unmarried kids find a spouse.  So we made the plans to return home the end of July.

June and July were busy with zone conferences, arrival of new senior couples and young missionaries, senior couple meetings and other activities in the mission.  Our daughter, Patti, called me after Charlie and Liz set their date for August 3rd, and told me she would plan an open house for them in Salt Lake.  So I told her how much we could spend and she took care of all the planning so I could concentrate on our mission the last two months.

We were given permission to visit a couple of the areas outside of our mission in mid July before we went home.  Our good friend Ronnie Cedillo went with us as our driver.  He was a church employee so we okay having him drive our car.