The Arizona Gilbert Mission is a wonderful second adventure for us and we are loving it! It is hard to believe that we have been a part of this mission for 5 weeks now and actually survived our first "transfer" here. I am already busy preparing for the next transfer and trying to make sure I have enough bedding for the 13 new missionaries that will be arriving. Early in the past week Elder Ashton and I went to the storage facility and took an inventory of what was available. It appears that we have enough comforters and sheet sets for the next 2 transfers, but I need to do some shopping in person and on-line for pillows and mattress pads. Hopefully I will get that taken care of early this coming week.
On Tuesday I received some training on entering baptismal data into the computer. It was great that I had been working on a spreadsheet of that data for the last couple of years because it made the process much more understandable. I will be taking over that responsibility in a couple of weeks when the current missionary is released. At that point in time my responsibilities will be; supplies for missionaries, temple schedule and clothing needs for missionaries, preparing binders for mini missionaries (16 & 17 year old kids from the area who serve for a couple of days) and binders for all new missionaries, entering and tracking all referrals received by the mission, entering and tracking all baptisms. Until I understand the processes better, these tasks will keep me more than busy.....and that makes the days fly by!
I decided to take a different route home from the office on Wednesday and drove into a neighborhood of big beautiful homes. Many of them are built in Tudor style architecture and have lots of vines and trees surrounding them - maybe that keeps them cooler in this hot weather.
This is my little corner of the office. On the desktop you can see the binder I use to help me determine zones where baptisms occurred over the past two years. Under the desk you see boxes of binders that have been prepared for young people coming to serve mini missions this weekend.
This past week (Tuesday and Thursday) we had some missionaries go home mid transfer time frame to allow them to get into school which starts this next week. That kept us busier than we would normally be between transfers.
In addition to some extra activity at the office, we kept up the extra activity at home as the remodeling process continues. On Thursday night, Eldrer Ashton (mostly) and I (a little bit) worked on getting some lights up above the island area in the kitchen.
Elder Ashton below rigging up his "scaffolding" to stand on to perform the work. This picture reminds me of the warnings I hear on TV - "Do Not Try This At Home".
In fact, the "scaffolding" started sliding around when Elder Ashton was standing with one foot on the step stool and one foot on the ladder and it made me so nervous I had to quit trying to hold things in place and go to a different room. It was such a pleasant surprise to see this the next morning...
All three pendant lights up and Elder Ashton still in one piece and walking!!!!
A few days this week as I went back and forth to the office, I noticed this historic vehicle parked in a driveway in my neighborhood. I thought it was a "cute" car so just had to take a picture of it. I asked Elder Ashton what it was and he said it was made by American Motors, and was one of the first attempts to down-size cars. Just look at the size of that steering wheel!
On Friday morning as I went to the gym, I noticed a beautiful sunrise in a partly cloudy sky (It is really hard to get a good picture of sunrises and sunsets in the city - too many buildings, light poles, etc.
Late Friday afternoon, about the time we were ready to leave the office, a couple of sisters stopped in to speak with Elder Ashton about some car issues and to pick up some supplies. One of the sisters had a great accent that I loved listening to, and when Elder Ashton asked where she was from she told us she came fro Australia. Every time I have opportunity to read or hear about the international make-up of the missionary force here in Gilbert, I am amazed that they have come from so many different places. We have 3 of the 13 missionaries coming in July who will be arriving from a foreign country. I love talking with them and learning about the culture of their home country and what they think of Gilbert, Arizona.
As I was driving home from the office on Friday I noticed a very faint glow of the beginnings of a sunset in the partly cloudy sky. By the time I got home and got stopped so I could take a picture, most of the pink and orange of the sunset had faded......
But the puffy clouds above it were pretty and calming to watch.
This picture is especially for my friends from Virginia - wanted you to see what a typical Arizona landscape yard in my neighborhood looks like. It has it's own special kind of beauty and I am adjusting to the gray brown all around me instead of the vibrant green that surrounded us in Virginia.
We are loving this opportunity to serve again and to rub shoulders with the young missionaries. One of the best parts of this assignment is getting to serve all week long, and getting together with family on the weekend. Today we had a smaller group for dinner .... only 18 of us, but looking forward to having 25 of us in a couple of weeks when we get together.....just thinking about that makes me smile!