Sunday, November 3, 2013

With All Our Love

Dear Tanner,

Has your birthday box arrived? If not, does that mean you'll get it next Monday, the day before your birthday? Can you believe you're going to be 21? Wow, where did the time go! Well, no matter when it arrives, have a stupendous day!

Naomi always tries to have one of those stupendous kind of days. This week two sisters "introduced us to their new investigator. He's trying to learn English. Now we see him everywhere. Once, I happened to have a talk by President Monson and so I gave it to him. I also taught him part of the law of chastity because a flirty Muslim started to talk with us too. I figured they could use it." Isn't she wonderful?

Greg isn't as funny, but works so very hard on his mission. One night they were at a new converts house teaching and "my companion and I were both really hungry. He must have sensed it because he brought us some bread with cheese. I looked at it and ate it right up seeking to fill my stomach. My companion on the other hand searched the food that had been given him and found that some of the cheese was a "little old" aka really moldy. So he broke off the moldy part and ate the rest which was still good. In this example my companion sought to fill his hunger with the "best" part, while I just sought to "get filled" Well I am now paying the consequences of my actions and cannot stray too far from a bathroom. We must not just seek to fill ourselves, but rather seek to fill ourselves with things which are best." Good stuff over there in Chile!

Closer to home in Brazil, your funny AP wrote that for the last three months "I have been using the same green's pretty dirty now! If you scratch the tie with your nail it makes a white line because of all the nastiness. But this tie has been good to me, we've been baptizing with her!"

We're excited to hear from you this week, as always. Our weeks dull in comparison with the adventures in France, or Chile or Brazil! Oh, they are busy, but not as fun to read about! Porter's new hobby, writing universities and requesting literature and tee shirts from "prospective" schools. Because he started in the A's, he's received a few from Alaska Pacific (two tee shirts), Grand Canyon Arizona (hat, sunglasses tee shirt), Anderson University (Indiana - tee shirt) - then jumped around a bit - Western Michigan (tee shirt), University of Utah (sunglasses, poster, pennant, pens), Utah State (tee shirt). He actually thinks BYU sent the best prospective student folder and a tee shirt! He loves checking his daily mail, and sporting new collegiate shirts.

Cooper had three physical therapy appointments for his little pinky. He began the week not being able to bend it at all, and has been tremendous progress! We have one more scheduled, and then we'll go back to the hand doctor to see if he approves. 

Sawyer wanted to include a picture of the bunny, for two reasons. We only have one picture of his last bunny, and he wanted you to see it again.

Monday Hunter drove himself to the dentist to get his braces off. He received good news from the orthodontist in that he will be able to keep all four of his wisdom teeth - no extractions necessary - he's one of the ten percent of the population that actually has room, and has teeth that came in upright. He was very glad to hear this, and thankful for his father's genes.

Tuesday was the Halloween pack meeting at scouts, and the first of too many this week. The boys pulled costumes out of the bucket, and I'm sure you'll enjoy the variety and creativity as you look at the pictures in your email. A policeman came and spoke to the pack about safe rules for trick or treat activities.

Wednesday was another home quiz bowl meet for Cooper. Because of all the positive feedback last week, with his Superman cape, Mrs. Speed told him he must have done so well because of the cape. So Cooper wore another cape, Fairland green, and slaughtered the competition. He was a buzzing machine! He got a few wrong, as well, but he carried the team. Wednesday was also the yearly `trunk 'n treat' at the church. The turnout wasn't the biggest but it was decent. I hope you enjoyed the Halloween pictures in your email box. We tried to think of a costume in which you could be included, and you were actually the inspiration behind this year's theme: The Little Rascals. You make a great Alfalfa! Wednesday was also the day the Boston Red Sox clinched the final game to be crowned this year's winners of the World Series. 

Thursday was Halloween. For the first time in five years, we've been able to `trick or treat' on the actual day of Halloween. The boys no longer wanted to wear their Little Rascal costumes, and opted for the karate gi's instead. Breyer, in realizing it would not fit her next year, was put into a ballerina dancer outfit I received at my first baby shower three years ago. She was beautiful! The boys get so excited when she descends the stairs looking like a princess. They are so kind to her when she's dressed in non wrestling clothes! Larry helped walk Breyer around, so I could take Cooper, Sawyer and Miller around the mile loop quickly. We didn't want to get caught in the rain that was coming. The potential weather must have kept a few people home, as at one time we were the only ones out on the entire street!

Friday was the day I gave away the candy. Three nights in a row of candy, by at least three kids? Too much! I bagged a big bag for three school teachers, and the town librarians. When the missionaries came over for dinner, I let them do the bagging. We still have two grocery recycle bags full - mostly chocolate! This night Dad was at another home football game. This was last week's newspaper article about Fairland's football team, but it still holds true for this week. "It was a night to clinch. By blanking the Rock Hill Redmen 27-0 Friday, the Fairland Dragons clinched their fists as they clinched at least a share of the Ohio Valley Conference title, a winning season and a Division V Region 17 playoff berth. Fairland is 6-3 (now 7-3) overall and 4-0 (now 5-0) in the OVC." Dad will be traveling Saturday to Wheelersburg, their first game in the playoffs. He's on his third kicker, who kicked two field goals, and three extra points. Not having a field goal in ten years, and having three kickers able to kick a total of six field goals, has clinched his status as the go to kicking guy. Now his thoughts of holding summer kicking camps are coming closer to fruition, as the head coach that he's helped would help him with potential kickers and facilities.

Saturday we spent a good portion of the day at basketball try-outs. Miller and Sawyer had to try out because they're in "even" school years. The coaches were drooling over your brothers. It's actually quite humorous to watch their expressions when the boys' turn rolls around. They wake up, pay attention, wonder how to spell their last name, and leave the competition in the dust. Cooper had middle school tryouts on Friday and did not make the team. He was in a tough spot, not being able to go to open gym because of his finger. He was only one of two boys cut. Porter did not make the team. This was a surprise. But perhaps the chance he was given last year didn't pan out the way they envisioned. So Porter's schedule is all of a sudden much emptier, and I'm sure he'll need help filling his need-to-stay-busy calendar. Hunter took his last collegiate test, the SAT subject test. He tested in History, Math 1 and Literature. Unbelievably, his PSAT scores are still the highest, especially math. Ohio University Southern had a community day, and offered free BBQ to those who stopped by. Are you kidding? The boys had a great time. If you played in the volleyball tournament you got a tee shirt. Just what your brothers needed!

Today! What a wonderful surprise! The Bishop read a letter from your mission president, addressed to us, that we never received. It was informing us that because of your good example and success, you were called as a zone leader. He wrote about how you're a representative of the Mission President and the Lord for a group of missionaries because of the will of the Lord, your faithfulness to the mission rules and the commandments, your hard work, and success as a missionary. It was very sweet. "We trust in him completely" touched all our hearts. Thank you for your example and love.

(Fresh off the back deck yesterday...)

 In Jacob 5:61-62 70-71, he says, "Wherefore, go to, and call servants, that we may labor diligently with our might in the vineyard, that we may prepare the way, that I may bring forth again the natural fruit...Let us go to and labor with our might this last time...And the servant...brought other servants; and they were few." Know that now is the time of which was spoken of, and that you are one of the servants of the Lord. Knowing you are one of the last laborers in the Lord's vineyard should fill you with the love of the Savior. If I had a hard and difficult task ahead of me, involving much pruning, digging and fertilizing, I would choose those whom I would want to work with, those who had the same vision as I and who would work with all their might, mind, strength and heart. The Savior chose you to assist Him in His efforts during these last, latter-days. He also chose your grandparents, who are the reason we have the gospel, and who have labored so diligently, and set the way that their posterity may follow. Know how much the Savior knew what kind of worker you are, and how you would give Him your all. And He wanted you, out of all those who came before, and during the previous 6000 years, to work with Him and beside Him. "And ye shall have joy."

(From the backyard today :-)

Today in fast and testimony meeting the Primary president stood and told how she and her primary presidency had prayed that children between the ages of 8-11 in our ward, and not baptized, would be able to learn the gospel and be baptized. In one month our ward has had six Primary children baptized, including Sawyer's friend. What a sweet testimony to the power of prayer. The work is hastening, and we all have different ways we can and should contribute. This Primary president struggles with terminal health issues, yet is committed to her part in nourishing the Savior's vineyard.

That's about it! November means we're so very close to speaking with you! Have a wonderful week. Stay safe. Always cheerful. We love you!

Mom and Dad


MarieC said...

I love how Porter is expanding his wardrobe by writing to all those colleges. I wonder why I didn't know that kids could do that??

Hunter is a lucky kid to be able to keep all his wisdom teeth. Jason has an appt. with an oral surgeon in December to hopefully hear the same good news. I have all my wisdom teeth, so we hope Jason has inherited his mother's big mouth in that respect.

shirlgirl said...

What a wonderful letter. Always wonderful to read what has been going on in your neck of the woods each week. Congratulations to Tanner being a zone leader. Just from his letters, one would know how much he loves his missionary work. He serves the Lord well.