Sunday, December 1, 2013

With All Our Love

Dear Tanner,

I want you to know that I'm thinking most likely you'll be going back to school. Especially since Hunter has decided to go to school a year before his mission, so he can be with you. Remember? He's very excited about spending time with you before he puts his papers in. Your wingman spent most of the weekend finishing his BYU application, including last minute essays and ecclesiastical endorsements and interviews. I really don't like the senior year. Too many deadlines, and too much to do in so little time! We did notice that you have into the new year to reapply for scholarships...good luck!

It was a Thanksgiving kind of week, and after having cooked many dishes, the strongest impression I received was that I need to save my pennies so that I can not only buy you and Hunter tickets to come home at Christmas time, but tickets to come home for Thanksgiving. It's been three years since you've graced my table, and you're overdue. Then Hunter will be gone, so next Thanksgiving is the Year of the Feast to be Remembered. Mark it on YOUR calendar. We're saving you and your brother a seat ;-)

Your cousin Adam and his UMASS band were invited to the Thanksgiving Day Parade, so his family and Uncle Aaron's had Thanksgiving early, and then traveled to New York for his performance. We had fun watching the parade on t.v., and were diligent in watching for the silver trumpet on the red Macy's star. We think we watched him perform! And have enjoyed looking at the pictures they took while there. Uncle Aaron and Mason were both interviewed on the national news, and had their claim to fame moments.

"I think it's pretty awesome!"

"Is there any part of your body you can still feel?"

This week, due to potential winter storms, the Bachs drove into town a day earlier, and were picking up the boys from school Tuesday afternoon. What a whirl of a week! They went to basketball practice with Sawyer and Miller, and games on Saturday for all three boys. We played games, perused through bags of pennies to add to coin collections, read a lot of books to Breyer, talked, laughed, cleaned and cooked, made and decorated gingerbread houses, played blocks and trains, took lots of pictures, tried to take Christmas card pictures, ate lots of food, watched a movie or two, told stories, zapped bugs, made rubber band bracelets...Bro. Bach fixed the hole in the wall. We inherited a weak patch job, Grampy fixed it on two separate occasions, and Bro. Bach hopefully put a super patch on and we can be done! He was able to find paint that matched, and voila! it's a whole new look! Sis. Bach bought a Mr. Clean eraser, and took the boys with her all over the house cleaning up Breyer's marker messes. We must be leaving soon. The walls look great!

Sawyer's bunny died the day before Thanksgiving. It was bitter cold, and the bunny probably could have used a bit more food and bedding. Needless to say, Whisker's passing put a damper on our spirits, especially Sawyer's. He's already wanting a third bunny!

Dinner was served in the afternoon on Thanksgiving. It was a quiet dinner, but full of your New England favorites. The missionaries came over just for pies - coconut cream was my new one this year and it was probably my favorite! The Duncans were in town so we saw them a couple of times, and celebrated Shay's and Miller's birthdays with ice cream cake at the river house. It's been a fun-filled long weekend, and it will be hard to get back in the groove of life, especially knowing more holidays are coming.

Brandon Welch arrived home from Puerto Rico, and had a little homecoming Saturday. I've decided you don't need a homecoming. You need to do a fireside. Share funny, exciting, anything you won't be saying in sacrament meeting adventures that will give us a taste of Brazil. Pencil that in on your calendar as well.

Are you asking if Breyer has had any new adventures I'll be writing about this week? It's been hard for her to get in trouble, as she's made Shay her constant companion. From the moment she wakes up to the moment she goes to bed crying, she has wanted to be with her friend. However, today someone left the medicine tray out, and she squirted antibiotic cream on the rug, with a little spray of sunscreen, and a dabble of eye ointment. It was a lovely concoction worthy of a few gray hairs. She came running every time I turned on my mixer. Her Thanksgiving assignment was to put the whipped cream on our cream pies.

Dad went to a football banquet for the team tonight. He and Porter showed up in their Sunday suits, and tried to raise the bar. They got a few comments on how handsome they were, and were a good example of influencing others for the better. You never know how the decisions you make will affect others. But the story of Abinadi in the Book of Mosiah is an example of how doing what’s right, even when it’s hard, can affect many lives for good. Abinadi’s testimony to wicked King Noah cost him his life (17:20), but changed the life of one of the king’s priests, Alma the Elder (18:1), who at the time was “a young man” (17:2). Abinadi never knew he influenced Alma, because he died, but Alma the Elder helped bring into the Church about 450 of King Noah’s people (18:35), and then in Zarahemla, Alma baptized many more (25:18). His son was Alma the Younger (27:14). He helped convert more than 3,500 people and converted many more during later missions to Nephite cities. Alma’s sons served missions as well. His oldest son was Helaman. He led the 2,000 stripling warriors. His son was also named Helaman. During his righteous rule, “tens of thousands” joined the Church (Hel. 3:26). He had two righteous sons, Nephi and Lehi. These brothers were such powerful missionaries that most of the Lamanites were converted to the gospel (Hel. 5:50). Nephi turned the records over to his son, Nephi. This Nephi became a great prophet. He and the other disciples helped convert all the Nephites and Lamanites after Christ’s coming (see 4 Ne. 1:2). The influence of your personal testimony is ever so far-reaching.

We're thankful for you this week of Thanksgiving. We're thankful your influence is far reaching, and is the kind of influence that makes the Savior happy. Be safe!


Mom and Dad


MarieC said...

I love the idea of a homecoming fireside! There's just not enough time in a sacrament meeting to do a 2-year mission justice.

shirlgirl said...

Great letter and pictures! Looks like Breyer was eating more of the whipped cream than went onto the pies! They look awesome.

CubSctAnn said...

Love LOve LOVE being there! Sad to be back home and its hard getting back into routines, it's way more fun at your house!
I hope I always remember Porter's answer when you asked him about Abinadi. His answer was "stubborn" and when you asked how, his reply is the prophet was stubborn in keeping the Lord's commandments and sharing the gospel. I pray we can all be 'stubborn' for the same reasons :) Way to go Port, you influenced me for good during early morning seminary! <3