Monday, July 29, 2013

Happy Birthday to me....

My birthday present was an unexpected surprise! Kurt got a bike a few months ago and hasn't even ridden his yet!! I knew we were going to look for one for me after all the missionary/summer vacation hoopla ended. So I was totally caught off-guard when this showed up on my birthday! I'm so excited to get all my gear and take advantage of the fall weather coming up.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Powell again!

We got invited to Lake Powell with the Pedersens again. And, once again, it was an awesome trip. We don't have near the photos we do from the last trip because we didn't have the big camera with us. Kurt captured the above pictures with his iphone. Joelle was the photographer this trip but we haven't gotten those back from her yet. 

For me, the highlight of the trip was taking a boat ride to Escalante Canyon. What an amazing place! It was a long ride but well worth the trip!

Letter #2 from Finn

This letter came 9, yes 9, days after he left for the MTC!! We were at Lake Powell all week expecting a letter any day. It didn't come and didn't come! I was starting to panic. I was prepared to call the MTC the minute we got home. Luckily Thursday I got a text from Darin saying that she had just heard from Savy and, since she and Finn are in the same district, I would probably hear from Finn very soon. Within about an hour we had gotten his email. It's short and sweet as you can tell but I think he sounds great.

 Hey Mom and Dad!
The MTC is treating me alright i guess haha. i dont really know where to start, its been a long week. The food sucks, the dorms are nasty, no one speaks english, studying spanish and the gospel at the same time is sooo frustrating, i sometimes wanna punch my companion, but other than all that stuff its been good! im pretty sure ive lost about 5 pounds tho cause the foods terrible, but i can suck it up. So i have two companions right now. Elder Funk and Elder Scott, they are totall opposites of each other. Elder Funk is the kinda kid that wants to study every second of the day, even on free time. Elder Scott is the kid that jokes around and makes people laugh. Pretty good to have the best of both worlds with my companions tho. So the third day we got here, we had an investigator to teach already. We had to teach in spanish and i honestly only knew like 4 words in spanish. It was so awkward and went downhill from the begining. But we have a lesson to teach everyday and it gets better and better each day. My P days are on thursday just to let you all know. I see Savy all the time! Shes in my district, i went to the Mexico City temple with her today! It was awesome, beside the fact that it was all in spanish haha. Im in a house with Elder Avilla too, hes a pretty cool kid. And yes i did forget my toothbrush and gel, but its alright,  some elder hooked me up with a toothbrush. i dont have much time, but I love you guys and miss you guys a lot! but the work is good! Write you soon! Also tell Indy that this message is for him too, i dont have enough time to write everyone!

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Driver #3

I think we have changed the way we think about cars for our teenagers now that we have arrived at Indy. Montana & Finn's Jettas were great little cars-----inexpensive to buy, sometimes expensive to fix but not always 100% reliable. This time around we decided to lease a new little car that has an inexpensive monthly payment, free maintenance for 3 years and, hopefully, reliable and worry-free! Indy was pretty excited about it. It's a Toyota Scion XD. I hate buying cars but I must say that this was the easiest transaction we have ever made. We just went out looking one day and came back with the car the same day. 

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

First letter from Finn!

Hey Mom and Dad just wanna let you know i made it here safely! Its a whole other world out here haha. None of the leaders or teachers or whatever you call them will speak english. Not one word. So im pretty sure im gonna be speaking fluent spanish in like a week. The flight to Mexico felt like forever and i had a headache 90% of the time but its all good now. Im dead tired and trying to keep my eyes open as i write this message. The campus is huge! But its pretty baren right now, no one is here, you guys were right when you said im in the first batch of missionaries coming here. Theres like 50 elders and sisters and thats it. On the flight from Salt Lake to L.A. i met 2 other elders that were going to McAllen so i was pretty stoked about that and then in Mexico i met like 5 others. I found the kid you were talking about Mom. He came up to me and said that our parents knew each other but i cant remember his last name. I havent met my companion yet but i should be meeting him in just a little bit. Im stoked to get to work tomorrow tho! Ill write again soon. Love you guys

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Departure Day

For Finn's last night at home, Kurt and I took he and Maddie out to dinner. We were following a tradition of that since that's what Kurt and I did with his parents the night before he left on his mission 25 years ago! Since there was no Marie Callendar's close by-------we went to Pizzeria 712. (much better anyway....)

It was so hard to have to tell these boys to clear out so we could get Finn packed up. They have all been such good friends to Finn over the years. Alex is the next to leave in August and the rest will be leaving not too far in the future. Of course, a few like Q and Jonny have already left.

We dropped by over to the Hunters to pay a visit to Nate. He had surgery yesterday morning so he isn't able to be up and around quite yet. These boys have been friends since birth. After we came home from the airport I was looking at Finn's phone and found a very sweet text from Nate. He thanked Finn for being such a good friend and credited him with his decision to also go on a mission. Makes me cry all over again. These are some good, good boys...

grabbing a little cat nap on the way to the airport...

now if that doesn't make you tear up....

The airport was FULL of missionaries. It was so exciting to see. I think it gave Finn a renewed sense of excitement seeing all of them ready to embark on the same adventure.

One of the most tender mercies we have received through this mission process is that Savy and Finn were booked on the same flight to Mexico City together. How lucky they are to have each other through their MTC experience. 

Today was hard.....really hard. I'm not sure if it's the culmination of sending 2 missionaries out but I'm having a hard time not crying. I'm pretty sure I don't love Montana less than Finn but I didn't cry this much when we dropped her off at the MTC.  I really would not want Montana or Finn doing anything else right now but that doesn't make it any easier necessarily. I am so proud of each of them and feel really lucky to be their mom. 

Monday, July 15, 2013

Our CRAZY weekend

This last week has been a whirlwind of activity. Trying to get a missionary ready to leave in a week is CRAZY! But everything has fallen in to place and I think we are almost ready. 

Saturday night Finn received his endowment at the Draper Temple. It was a wonderful night. We were so lucky to have so many Brian family members in town with us so it was extra special. The temple worker helping him for the night has a son who returned from the Texas McAllen mission last September so he had some fun experiences to share with Finn.  

Everyone gathered at Sherry's after the temple to eat. What a beautiful view from her front porch!

Yes, it's very blurry but you have to be sneaky when taking pictures in church! The farewell went well. Finn's talk was perfect. He shared a part of a letter he received from Isaac Burr. That was the only time he teared up. I'm very proud of him and look forward to hear all about his adventures in the next few years to come. 

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Kids Coronado pics

What a cute group of kids! No wonder they had so much fun this year. We are hoping to get at least one marriage out of this group...... but hopefully not for a few years!!

Coronado 2013

After missing our trip to Coronado last year, everyone was really excited to meet back up with gang this year. This year marked the tenth year that we have done this. It is a great tradition!

All of our kids said that this year was one of the most fun years they have had in Coronado. I don't think we saw them for more than a couple hours here and there the whole time. 

Can't wait for next year....

Monday, July 1, 2013

First pics from Montana

Whitney Ferguson, Sister Brian and Sister Monks

The front of Montana's house in Issaquah
I was so excited to get news that Whitney Ferguson (Shayne Young's sister) was in Seattle today. I quickly texted her Montana's address to see if she had time to stop by. She and her husband Jared were house hunting and were heading to Issaquah to look at a house. I am SO glad they were able to catch Montana at home. They even brought her donuts! Whitney sent me these pictures and a video of Montana giving a very brief tour of her room. It was so nice to hear her voice and see where she is. A little peace of mind for a mom is a big thing!