Saturday, December 31, 2016

White Christmas

I realized today that I didn't post about our white Christmas.  It started off with a bike ride last Saturday and this was the sunrise.  Amazing!  
Our white Christmas refers to driving to Santa Barbara and attending a baptism.  The meeting was in Spanish but while waiting for them to get dressed it was opened up to testimony bearing.  One sister bore hers in English which blew me away since she was Hispanic.  I think it was just for me.  

We drove back through Ojai so we could drop a thank you off to President Ashton who helped us with the writing on the water bottles we gave to the missionaries.  He had a name tag made for each bottle as well.  This is the scenery we saw and yes that is snow on top of those mountains.  Very far away but we saw snow for Christmas.
We were loving Christmas eve and the wonderful feeling.  We face timed with the Hales.  We had clam chowder in bread bowls along with shrimp and crangrape.  We didn't do as much with the traditional Christmas eve dinner but enjoyed what we had.  
Six missionaries came by caroling.  I made cinnamon cake roll just in case we had visitors and they stayed for that and hot apple cider.
Just before the carolers came the Assistants showed up and I could tell something was wrong.  They proceeded to tell President about two missionaries that had not made good choices.  The missionaries came so we then enjoyed them.  Our neighbors had told them Santa Claus was scheduled to fly over in a helicopter in two minutes.  They all stayed out to see him but I hurried to get the cider warmed up.  Sure enough I heard the helicopter and the others saw it all lit up.
After everyone left President called the two missionaries but no answer.  We decided to drive to their apartment.  Just before gettinig there they returned his call.  Business was taken care of and we got back home after 10:00.  
Dell woke up early thinking about the missionary situation.  He felt there was more to the story so he asked the two missionaries to come to the mission home after 4:00.
Christmas morning we were able to see Travis' family before going to our Sacrament meeting.  It was a very nice service with a lot of music.  
We enjoyed seeing the rest of the family.
We deviated from the usual Christmas dinner of ham and potatoes and had stuffed lobster.  It was yummy.
Dell met with the missionaries.  We call our sister training leaders every Sunday night and did that.
We commented that next year we will look back on this different Christmas.

Today, December 31, I experienced my first fall from the bike.  We were just in front of the driveway after climbing the hill and I was changing gears so the bike would be ready to take off with a new ride.  The first gear went well but I must have not been moving fast enough and the chain came off.  I stopped but my legs were spent and as I was trying to get off of the bike, I fell on my knee (don't worry, it's only a flesh wound) but I saved the phone. I use my phone to document the rides and time.  
This morning we were able to go to another baptism.  It was in Santa Paula.  He was a media referral.  They had gone to temple square in the Fall and enjoyed it.  The next day he was walking along the Jordan Parkway and loved the fall colors (we don't get that so much in California).  He sat on a bench and began to cry.  He had felt the Spirit and told his wife he needed to get a Book of Mormon.  That's how it all started.  The sister missionaries in Salt Lake kept in touch with him.  Our elders showed up at his door promptly after the referral.  His wife and grown kids were all there to support him.  I'm sure the ward will embrace him as well as her.

We're off to dinner at Cafe Nouveau with the Joneses.

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