Thursday, May 14, 2009

Gum and a Long Day

Apparently, Joseph doesn’t like gum as much as I do! Last Friday we spent a couple of hours touring Seattle and one of our visits was to the gum wall at Post Alley….probably thousands of pieces of gum have been chewed and stuck to that wall! Some people even profess their love on that wall! Now, while I do love gum, I don’t love it enough to actually touch the wall or leave my own piece of chewed gum; but I did have Joseph take my picture in front of it! I tried to convince him to do the same; but he was unwilling! We also went to Pike Market-where they throw the fish-we didn’t see them throwing the fish; but it was still fun! The Pike Market also sells fresh flowers, fruit and vegetables-I have never seen an open market like that before! At almost every open spot of the market, we saw people playing instruments or singing for tips! We also went up into the Columbia Tower, the tallest building in Seattle, to overlook the city! Yes, we did go to the Space Needle; but we didn’t go into it, it was much cheaper to visit the Columbia Tower and from the Columbia Tower we were able to get some good pictures of the Space Needle! A couple of blisters later and an afternoon later, I must admit we had a great time touring the city of Seattle and hope to go again when we have more time!
On Sunday morning we were in Sammamish, Washington at a church that was planted by a couple that I went to college with! It was great to see their work flourishing and they treated us so well! They put us up in a nice hotel, gave us a basket of goodies, treated us to a couple of meals, filled our gas tank and gave us a great love offering! We felt really blessed to be there and to be a part of their services!
Sunday night we were off to Ana Cortes, Washington. They put us up in a hotel that Joseph wanted to live in-there was a fireplace in our room and that was the greatest things in Joseph’s eyes! We had a good meeting there, Joseph preached and I was able to play the piano for their services. During that time there I was able to get catch up with a friend of mine from college, who is very involved in that church and who set us up with the meeting! Joseph and I also went to brunch with him on Monday morning and we really enjoyed ourselves!
Monday after brunch we took off to Missoula, Montana where we had dinner with a friend of Joseph’s and the church that Joseph used to be the assistant at put us up in a nice hotel! Tuesday morning, we enjoyed breakfast with the pastor and his wife before heading off to Yellowstone and this is where it gets interesting…I better start a new paragraph to explain!
So, we got on the road at around 11:00 and according to our GPS would arrive in Cody, Wyoming where we would be staying that night around 8:00. We arrived at Yellowstone around four and had to pay $25 to go into the park-which I think paying to go into a park is absolutely crazy-and yes, I do realize it’s a national park…but still, its crazy! During our drive through we got stopped twice by herds of bison in the road way, we were able to see geysers-it was pretty relaxing! Despite, not being able to see bear-the one animal I desperately wanted to see we decided to leave for Cody, it was about 6:30 so we had plenty of time to arrive by 8! But, nope the one road that had the fastest access out of the park to Cody closed minutes before we got there due to trees falling in the road and the fastest way to Cody from there was a trip that lasted for five hours. Not fun! During our time being stuck in the park, we were also able to see quite a few deer and elk; but honestly it wasn’t worth it to me, because we ended up being trapped in our vehicle for 12 very long hours that day. After a very long drive, I was ready for a bed and a shower-I couldn’t wait to arrive to the prophets chamber in Cody just so I could have those two things! Well, while the room was clean and had a nice bed for us to sleep on-the shower was absolutely disgusting. What was the point in showering in a dirty shower when it would just make me feel even dirtier? I couldn’t wait for Tuesday to be over!
So, Wednesday we woke up, grabbed a bite to eat and left for Sundance, Wyoming where we would have our last meeting before heading home. The pastor was gone and left a deacon in charge-we had no clue where the church was, the GPS didn’t recognize the address and we couldn’t get a hold of the deacon. We showed up at 6 and realized that services would be starting at 6:30 and we still had no clue if anyone- besides the pastor who wouldn’t be there-knew we were coming. They didn’t! The few people that showed up were nice; but we left there without a love offering or a place to stay. I was still in search of a shower, we drove off to Spearfish, SD for the night and put ourselves up in a cheap; but nice hotel-where it was worth the money for the clean shower!
Today we arrived to Rapid City for the next couple of days! While walking the mall, I heard someone call my name…which is crazy since we are not even at home! I turned around to find a family from our home church! We knew they would be in town; but didn’t expect to run into them at the mall! So, this evening we get to meet them for dinner and I am so excited to see friends from home!
Tomorrow, its off to Mount Rushmore and Saturday we will arrive in Sioux Falls for a few days before taking off to visit our families and have one last meeting of the summer!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Raised Hands...Swaying...? Interesting!

(Actually written on May 7th-just late posting it...)
I left off in Idaho Falls! We arrived their Saturday night to a beautiful hotel-we felt spoiled just being in our hotel room! After we checked in, dying of hunger we went to Olive Garden, which was absolutely delicious! The evening was relaxing after a long day of travel-8 hours.
On Sunday we presented our ministry to a church there in Idaho Falls and I must admit that was quite an experience. I don’t even know how to describe the church…when I say the church I am referring to the people there! They were friendly, just different from what I am used to. For instance, I am not used to people raising their hands and swaying when they sing hymns…
On Monday morning when we woke up we were still curious as to where we would be staying that night as well as Tuesday night. We really didn’t want to have to pay for a hotel so we were just trusting God to provide a place for us. The pastor from Glenrock referred us to a pastor in Prosser, Washington, who had a prophets chamber. So, catching the pastor off guard we called him early Monday morning and he gave the okay to use his prophets chamber for the two nights. So like two crazy birds we flew as we readied for the day and took off on an hour trip to Prosser.
After we left Prosser it was off to Spanaway, Washington for a Wednesday night meeting at a large church. The people there were friendly, gave us a decent love offering and gave us a few “missionary handshakes”. For those of you that don’t know what a “missionary handshake” is, it is when someone shakes your hand as they pass money from their hand to yours! The church also put us up in a hotel and is putting us up in it until Saturday-which is such a blessing!
Tomorrow we plan to tour Seattle and I am very excited! And on Saturday we will take off to Sammamish, Washington for a Sunday morning meeting. After that we will be in Ana Cortes for Sunday night. Our journey is almost over for a little while!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

A month later...

It has been forever! Below is a post that I meant to publish a month ago but we have not had capable internet service for my blog until now. I apologize to all my faithful blog followers and hope that another month will not pass by before my next post.
Where to begin? We stayed in Kalispell for two weeks and that was an interesting experience! We had some good meetings out there and made a few new friends! While there I met a pastor’s wife, who is a scrapbooker-just as I am! I was able to spend some time with her over lunch and doing a little scrapbook shopping! Joseph and I were able to visit the driving range a few times and I have finally figured out how to hold my club correctly! I was also able to meet a good friend of Joseph’s from Missoula!
After we left Kalispell, we took off to Great Falls, Montana for a three day missions conference! The church treated us so well! We stayed with a lady from the church and enjoyed late nights chatting with her! Each night of the conference the church spoiled us with gifts and good meals! The conference started on a Friday night and on Saturday the men went for lunch and the ladies had a special brunch together. After the men and ladies activities were finished, Joseph and I decided to visit the mall and waste some time. Well, me and my small bladder had to visit the ladies restroom almost immediately. And, it was during my restroom visit that things became exciting…or maybe the correct word is disgusting? After I finished my business, I heard what sounded to me like a little splash. I slowly turned around and there sitting at the bottom of the toilet bowl was my pretty phone. I pondered, do I really stick my hand in and grab it or do I let it be? After deciding that Joseph and I really couldn’t afford to buy me a new phone, I gathered my courage, stuck my hand in and grabbed the phone! I dried it as best as I could and immediately Joseph and I took off to Verizon; but people seem to not be so helpful when they realized where my phone was and it could not be fixed. Joseph was eligible for a phone upgrade; but I wasn’t. So, since they were offering a buy one get one free blackberry deal-Joseph bought a phone-as he was already needing one and I was able to get a blackberry curve for free and a new phone number! As I said, other than this event the rest of the conference was amazing! God was really at work at the conference and some new friends of ours, surrendered to be missionaries! Our friends had been fighting God’s call for years and they discovered after surrendering their lives to God’s will, peace filled their lives. I couldn’t help but to think that there are so many people in this world, that are not willing to give their lives to God-instead they choose money and worldly goods. However, when those earthly goods and money are being threatened from their lives, they live their lives in fear; but if they would only accept God’s salvation, they wouldn’t have to fear-God would be in control of their lives and they could have peace that God would take care of them!
We left Great Falls on a Wednesday to go to Evanston, Wyoming for a meeting and then the following day we took off back to Glenrock, Wyoming! We arrived to Glenrock at about four in the afternoon allowing us just enough time to get ready for dinner and the evening services as Joseph would be preaching that night! When we arrived to church, we felt like we were right at home-it was great! On Friday, I woke up not feeling right; but still went on with the ladies from the church and the other missionary wife for brunch and a ladies shopping day in Casper! I shopped with the Pastor’s daughter and enjoyed my time with her, we found so many good deals and discovered that we share the same taste in a lot of clothing styles! When I got back to my hotel room that afternoon, I decided to take a nap and when I woke up, I had such a fever and felt horrible. So, unfortunately I had to miss Friday evenings meeting and get my rest! By Saturday afternoon, I felt 100% better! I was glad to feel so much better and be able to enjoy the rest of the conference! After the conference was over, we were able to stay for a few more days! During that time, I made a jean skirt with Pastor’s daughter out of a pair of jeans-it turned out super cute! And, I should probably admit that all I did was rip the seam out and she did the rest! But, at least I now know how to do it myself! We were also able to spend more time with Pastor and his wife-which we always enjoy! We also, made new friends with a couple in the church who shares Joseph’s passion for mashed potatoes! We had fun playing Wii with them and enjoying homemade hot fudge! I could probably write a book about all the fun we had in Glenrock; but I will stop and move on to where we are at this point and time!
We left Glenrock this morning and drove to Idaho Falls, Idaho! We have a meeting here tomorrow night! From here we are off to a few meetings in Washington State, a meeting in Wyoming and then home to South Dakota for a few days! Exactly two weeks from today we should be home and we are thrilled!

Leaving Glenrock-Sad....

We were sad to leave Glenrock, Wyoming; but it had to be done! We thoroughly enjoyed our two weeks spent there and are so thankful for the friendships we created during our time there! We had a Sunday morning meeting there, to close our time together and the church was so good to us, they gave us a huge love offering and filled our gas tank before sending us off!
We left Glenrock to head to Sundance, Wyoming. An hour before we were to arrive to the meeting Joseph called the Pastor to let him know how much longer it would be before we would arrive. The weather was not looking promising, a blizzard was predicted-which would make 2 blizzards for us in the last week! The pastor explained that he wasn’t even sure that people would be in attendance that evening with the upcoming storm and told us that it might be best to reschedule and for us to keep traveling, so that we could try and get ahead of the storm, before the interstates started closing down. We got right outside of Buffalo, Wyoming-just 25 miles south of Sheridan when suddenly we were right in the middle of the weather that had been predicted. It was like night and day with how quickly the weather changed. We didn’t know what lied ahead so we decided to get a hotel for the evening! We couldn’t even see out the window of our hotel room, that is how bad the snow was falling. When Monday morning came, the snow drifts around our van were almost as tall as the van! The interstate going south was closed; but the interstate going north was open, so we along with a very few other travelers braved the weather and were back on the road! I was thankful that there were not more travelers on the road as it’s the other cars in weather like that, that scares me because you don’t know what they are going to do! We traveled at about 40 mph for around 2 ½ hours before finally seeing good weather! It made for a very long travel day to Bozeman, Montana!
We stayed one night in Bozeman before we headed to Kalispell! We are currently in Kalispell and are staying here two and a half weeks in a very nice prophets chamber! We have many meetings around the area!
So, far during our time here we have been playing lots of Wii fit and I have lost 2 lbs as a result-getting a little closer to my 1st goal of 5 lbs! We also hurried to the driving range on its opening day-I always get embarrassed hitting the ball in front of others; but for the 1st time out this season, I did okay!
After we leave Kalispell, we will be on our way to Great Falls for a missions conference, then off to Evanston, Wyoming for a one night missions conference and back to Glenrock! We are so excited to go back to Glenrock, the pastor called us this past weekend to see if we had the dates open at such a short notice and we only had one night that we would be unavailable. So, we are very excited to go back and be a part of their missions conference!