Saturday, March 23, 2013

March 23, 2013

My "Almost" Mom, Charlene Kent passed away on March 14 last week. She had heart and kidney problems and told me when I talked to her the week before that she was still trying to hang on and be there when I get home, but her heart wouldn’t let her. She passed away happy with her two surviving sons with her and her grandchildren and great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren at her bedside. All the Super Knitters and Sister Morris dressed her in her temple clothes and said they felt my spirit and prayers with them. I’m okay now cause I know she is with her husband, son, daughter, and parents. Isn’t the fullness of the Gospel divine??? Holly and her family placed flowers in our behalf. Thank you so much for that.

That's Mom Kent with Yontz and Kaydence

The new President has asked President Wilkey to ask us to extend. We are going to call President Stoker today and tell him that our release date is July 23 but we are willing to extend to August 3. Pres and Sis Wilkey asked me to put together a manual for Pres Stoker and to copy the entire book for Pres Wilkey also. It has everything our mission does from reports to meetings to medical to transfers to……. When Pres Stoker reads it and finds something he wants to talk to Pres Wilkey about, he can just tell him what section and what page he is on and they will be seeing the same thing. Pres Wilkey loves it so much that he is taking his home as a keepsake. Anyway, I think when Pres Stoker looked at that book he about had a coronary!!!! It’s all in a 3” binder. Now Sister Wilkey wants me to make up a medical book for Sister Stoker. Sister Stoker is thinking about having the second senior sister in the office to be a nurse so she can do a lot of the medical stuff. Sister Wilkey has worked her heart out on that stuff and spends untold hours every week working with missionary medical issues. President Wilkey told us the other day that he wished we could have been with him throughout his whole 3 years! That was a nice compliment. But, we have kids and grandkids who are wanting us to be home. The renters in our house are moving out on April 27 and headed to BYU Provo so our house will be empty for 3 months. I’m not too excited about that. A couple from our home ward went over to look at it and to decide if they want to buy it, but the problem is that they want us to carry a contract for 2 years for them. We are just not going to get into that. We want to sell it outright.

We have 26 new missionaries coming in on Monday. We have to take 3 or 4 cars to the airport just to pick them all up. And housing them is interesting in about 4 places also. Tuesday’s transfer meeting will be the largest in the history of our mission with about 130 coming in. Pray for us!!! Transfers is my favorite meeting. I love the training from Pres and Sis Wilkey, the testimonies of the missionaries who are going home, the new assignments, the Temple, the dinner. It is so great! You should see our office. We have bedding for 26 missionaries stacked up all around the walls and piles of new area kits in the corners. We will be opening 9 new apartments that Mike has been working day and night to lease and to furnish. What a job that is. And we have created 2 new zones with more on the way in the next 3 months. We have 155 missionaries and will be at about 215 when we are done this year. Wow, I’m getting tireder and tireder just typing this all up!

On P Day, March 16, we went to Boston to listen to Elder Ballard. We all got to shake his hand. That was cool. He said that when the Church opens the 58 new missions, there will be 401 missions world-wide. Can you believe it? In the introduction to the King James Version of the Bible there is a phrase that says, "...that the work might be hastened." Well it surely is.

We will miss being here and miss our new friends. Mike got to baptize one sister and she and I will probably be life-long buds. She’s from Nepal and doesn’t speak English very well but she is just the sweetest person. I just love her. And of course we are still in touch with missionaries who have gone home. We love that also. We will be leaving here on Aug 4th. Then driving home and we will probably take about 10 days to drive from here to IDF to visit with Diana, Ian, and Payton, to Utah to visit with Tony and family, Kurt, Paul and family, the Larsens and the Hymases, and to Calif to visit with my brother, Tim and family. Then home to Washington to see Andrea and Holly. Paul and Kortni are driving to Washington about Aug 15th and we want to be there for their 2 week visit with everyone. Leona and Henry are anxious to see us, and Cèlin is going to spend a week with us, Lilly and Eli want to jump on Grandpa, and of course I have to take Ryker around to see if our cows and horses and rivers are still there!!!! He still talks about all of that every time I talk or FaceTime with him. He jumped inside an empty disposable diaper box, shut the lids down around his neck, and said, “Mom, I be package for Grammie.” So precious. Thank goodness for writing, phone calls, Skype, and FaceTime! We are able to keep in touch with all our kids and grandkids. Don't you just love technology?! We surely do! Actually, with everything involved, we couldn't survive without technology!!!!

Bye for now. I hope to write again soon, but we are so busy I just take time when I get it. We love you all and look forward to a very happy reunion in August!!!

Saturday, February 16, 2013

February 16, 2013 Gettin' ready for the onslaught!

What can I say more--we are busy. Elder Benjamin has been working all week and P days as well. He is in the office now and has been since early this morning. He's putting the finishing touches on the last apartment lease needed for the new missionaries coming in on Monday--22 in all. So far that is the biggest group since we had 12 coming in a few weeks ago. In March we are getting 26! Six in May so far, and 15 in June that we know of at this time.

We love staying busy, and we have been told that it will be like this until we leave the first of August. We haven't heard who our replacements are going to be, but the news is coming soon. President and Sister Wilkey are holding up very well. They never get a day "off", ever! I can't believe the number of missionaries who get home sick, or just plain sick-physically and emotionally--that they have to take care of. We pray for them and the missionaries constantly.

The missionaries who are going home on Wednesday are very dear to us. We have served with them for over a year now, and we get very close to them. Tuesday is transfer day, and after transfer meeting we will be attending the Boston Temple with the nine missionaries who are going home. That is always a special treat for us senior couples.

Found this picture of us with the Wilkeys one month after we arrived here in the mission. Picture was taken March 21, 2012.

Two of our Elders modeling Elder Benjamin's hat. Those missionaries can have fun with any kind of prop!

First big snow in Goffstown NH on January 27, 2013.

Our friends and roommates at Education Week, Dave and Marge Larsen, are going home today from their mission in the Florida Tallahassee Mission. They started on May 15, 2011 and are going home now. We are going to visit them on our way home in August.

This is my favorite tree in Manchester NH. It is on Main Street and we pass it every day going to the office. This is in the fall.

Snow day February 9, 2013 in our apartment complex parking lot. Not our van under there!

Another shot of what Storm Nemo did to us here in Goffstown NH.


You'd think that these trees are in New England. Not so! They are on Schurman Way in Woodland WA.

We are busy, but we are happy! Serving an office mission here has been one of the best times of our lives. We are lovin' it. Seeing the church grow here in New England has been so rewarding to us. And with 80 more missionaries the work will roll forth at a much faster pace. There were 225 convert baptisms here in 2012, and there will be more than that in 2013. My prediction!!!!

We do miss our children, grandchildren, parents (Mike), siblings, and friends. We do love you all. We feel so fortunate to be able to serve Heavenly Father and our Savior at this time in our lives. Having been "set apart" to serve here has been a real joy to us.