Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Missionary Twelve Days of Christmas

Twelve Days of Christmas for a missionary and his companion.  My notes.  Idea taken from I got most of the stories off this site, but because it was September (and Christmas items were few), and my son was going to be in the hot Philippines, I made story and treat substitutions as necessary (not too much chocolate, etc.) The site has links for ordering the treats on Amazon, but I was able to find less expensive substitutions.

Instructions for the missionaries:
Read the stories starting December 13. Open the package marked with the same number.  Guess what the package has to do with the story.  If you don’t get the package until Christmas, start on Christmas or Christmas Eve with number 1, then do 11, then do the rest in order.

1.Why Christmas Trees Aren’t Perfect –small tree and decorations, or could use paper tree and d├ęcor, or Christmas Tree shaped peeps
2.The Other Wise Man-ring pops
3.Christmas Day in the Morning-Cow Tails candy
4.In Shepherds’ Field-pooping sheep-or small pack animal crackers
5.A Boy Learns a Lesson-beef jerky sticks (for RR tracks)
6.Christmas Family-chocolate coins in a red envelope (or neccos, or ‘gold’ dollar coins)
7.Rudolph-That Amazing Reindeer-reindeer peeps or pez, or chocolate covered raisins (reindeer poop)
8.The Christmas Orange-a chocolate orange, or in hot climates, orange licorice sticks, or orange shaped gummies
9.A Brother Like That-hot wheels cars, or mini car candies
10.Christmas on the Rhine-gingerbread cookies or gingerbread man peeps, if it’s September and you have to send your package already, sour patch kids
11.Stockings Filled with Love-small stockings and candy canes, encourage them to write their testimonies and deliver these to someone
12.Will the Christ Child Come?-Christ in the manger of some kind, ornament, etc.

Hobby Lobby had Christmas items at the end of August (stockings, small trees and decorations, ornaments).

Note: get SMALL packages and if things are boxed, remove the boxes to save room for other gifts/items.

Links for the stories listed above that are not on the link:
Stockings Filled With Love
A Boy Learns A Lesson
Will the Christ Child Come?

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Caleb's Wedding

Our Forever Familee!
Caleb Darin and Miranda Katy (Rechis) Lee

Married in the Bountiful, Utah LDS Temple for time and all eternity.

Wedding Luncheon at the Canterbury Place in Bountiful

Wedding Reception at the LDS Church in Centerville

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Yes, he did return-six months ago!

I have been noticing that my blog still says that my missionary son will return in 2 weeks.  Well, he did return!  May 28th at about 10 p.m., about two minutes before we came into the airport, even though none of the airport screens said his flight was in yet.  We were walking down the hallway to head down to the waiting area when we heard a huge cheer!!  I raced over to the overlook and sure enough, they were there!  I missed the grand entrance.  I tried hard not to cry that we had missed it, which worked okay, because HE WAS HOME!!  I was so happy to see him.  And just so happy for what he had accomplished as a missionary of the Lord Jesus Christ.

He really did have the missionary glow that missionaries receive from such righteous living. I WAS a little surprised to see that he was much the same person. Which wasn't a bad thing-he was great before his mission. But the more I was around him, the more the wonderful new differences were apparent.  We stayed up for 3 hours listening to him talk about his mission, and then for the next several days I followed him around like a lost puppy dog, and hugged him whenever I got the chance, and stared at him whenever he was around!  My handsome boy!!

A few of the differences and things we learned about him (I'm sure I can't even remember all of them now):
He talks with his mouth more closed, and faster.  I think this is from speaking Portuguese.
His suits were worn out.  Except for this new skinny European suit (pictured).
He looks at us more directly when we talk to him.
He walks BESIDE us instead of several paces AHEAD of us!
He talks to many more people, and is not afraid to talk to people.
His prayers are more sincere and specific.
When we read with our younger sons from Preach My Gospel on Sunday nights, he LOVES to participate!

We learned that he was a super obedient missionary.  We were discussing our younger son 'running the mile' one day and Caleb said, "Oh yeah, I ran a mile a couple weeks ago."  They had just finished leading a discussion and were not going to make it home in time for curfew.  They considered calling in to let them know, but instead, just decided to run to make it in time.  In their suits and dress shoes!  Also, one companion at the end of his mission called him the Energizer Bunny, because he kept going and going and going. Oh, how it did my mother's heart good to hear how hard he worked. 

And the stories that he told over the next few weeks!!  Hearing him express his testimony and talk about his mission was absolutely divine for me.  He bore fervent testimony about his mission and the gospel as he reported emotionally to the high council and stake presidency, as he spoke in our home ward, and at least two other times in other wards.  Even in July, that testimony was still emotional and fervent when my dad asked him to report on his mission to my family, most of whom were not able to attend his homecoming talk.

It is amazing what the Lord did for my son, and for others through my son, in just a short two years.  It was oh, so hard to send him and have him gone, but oh, how grateful I am that he did and for the growth he experienced.

Caleb is now attending BYU and doing so well.  He works driving a delivery truck for food services 7-11, has class 1-4, marching band 4-6 some nights, and plays with the marching band for 6-8 hours before, during, and after BYU football games on weekends. He is doing well, and doesn't usually feel stressed. Before his mission, a sealer in the temple told him, "You take care of the Lord's work, and he'll take care of yours."  Caleb is now engaged to marry his sweet friend from before his mission, Miranda, in the Bountiful LDS Temple on December 30th. They are so happy, and so excited, and I know they will continue to serve the Lord together as they raise a righteous family.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Missionary Phone Call

We got to speak to our missionary, Elder Lee, for 40 minutes on Mother's Day. We asked him what his favorite part of Portugal is and he said, "The pastries!"  He said he has loved every area and that every part of Portugal is so beautiful and that he wants to come back some day.

We asked him what his favorite part of his mission is.  He said, "Seeing the growth in people as they accept the gospel and go from not knowing anything about it to being baptized, confirmed, and receiving the Priesthood, is just amazing."  The Sousa family was baptized last week and this week confirmed, and the father, Rui, received the Priesthood. Earlier, when Elder Lee and his companion went to teach the family about the Priesthood, but before they introduced the lesson, Rui expressed a strong desire to really help people.  Caleb said it was the perfect introduction to talking about the Priesthood.

Caleb said the other part about his mission that he loved was the learning.  Learning through study.  Learning to work with people.  And learning to be happy.  I asked how do you 'be happy'?  He said, "You just decide to.  So many times in the mission when things would happen I would realize that this has all happened before, and it's just a matter of attitude and deciding to be happy."

A few people whose lives have been changed by the gospel of Jesus Christ:

 Elder Lee will be coming home to us in just two weeks, and we are so excited to see him!  We know he has done great work and that he will miss his mission so much. A scripture he shared with us in his email yesterday:   
D&C Section 1
20 But that every man might speak in the name of God the Lord, even the Savior of the world;
21 That faith also might increase in the earth;
22 That mine everlasting covenant might be established;
23 That the fulness of my gospel might be proclaimed by the weak and the simple unto the ends of the world, and before kings and rulers.
24 Behold, I am God and have spoken it; these commandments are of me, and were given unto my servants in their weakness, after the manner of their language, that they might come to understanding.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Happy Birthday Maren!

Happy Birthday to my sweet precious baby dolly!

 Maren Christen is nineteen today!  Missing her on her birthday while she is at college, even though we celebrated with her on Sunday.  Maren is super smart, super committed to the gospel and doing what's right, and super loved by all her family.  We love you Mar!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

The Gospel of Jesus Christ

The gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored to the earth!  Watch this to learn more.