This past year has been very interesting for us. We entered the MTC on January 12. After spending a week in the MTC in Provo, we attended a wedding dinner in SLC and then a marriage the next morning of our son Jesse, to Cynthia OKeefe. Then left on Monday for the Philippines. After losing a day due to time change, we arrived in Naga on January 21. No wonder the year has gone by so fast. It started out in a big hurry.
With the new year, we just began reading the Book of Mormon again yesterday. We have challenged others many times in the past to read with us but I thought I would do it again. If you will read 2 chapters a day, you can read the entire Book of Mormon in just 4 months. We will finish it again by the end of April and start again before we return home in June. The promises to us by the prophets, if we will read from the scriptures daily, are numerous. They include a closer relationship with God and the Savior; a better understanding of God's will in our lives; more peace and harmony in our homes; a closer connection to the Spirit; and so forth. We encourage all of you to seek these blessings from the Lord by reading from the Book of Mormon daily. If 2 chapters a day is too much, then do 1 a day and you can read it in about 8 months. Whatever you decide to do, do it diligently if you desire the blessings that are promised to us. We know that the Lord has given us this direction to help us and teach us and by so doing we are showing him that we care about what he has asked us to do. This is a simple step in our progression in the church and kingdom.
|This is the food table including pig. The metal pan just beyond|
the pig head is full of a chocolate pudding like substance. When
I asked, I was told it was the blood. Sis Valenciano, RS Pres, in
the green striped shirt.
Our pictures with captions will tell the story of the Ward Christmas party. The picture here is okay for most to see but I will include some pictures at the end which are more graphic. If you don't want to see them, just stop when done reading.
|New Year's Eve with the Reeders and Watsons.|
We had a New Years Eve get-together with President and Sister Reeder and Elder and Sister Watson on Thursday afternoon at our place. We enjoyed some light food and talked a lot before the Reeders left for home. The Watsons stayed and watched a movie with us. "The Cokeville Miracle". A fun time with some very good friends.
|The daughter on this end in the striped blouse jsut returned from|
Australia on a mission last week.
We invited some other friends, the Lopez family, over for dinner and a movie on Saturday night. They came with their 5 girls and we ate Fruit Pizza which is the the personal favorite of Brother Lopez. (Favorites of the things S.Hoopes makes. Sadly, it doesn't include rice.)
This is a card from the RS President in the ward which Sister Hoopes got on Wednesday night along with a gift.
I know this is a little hard to read but it is readable for this who try hard enough to see it. So nice and thoughtful from these dear people.
I SAVED THIS PART UNTIL THE END. READING WILL BE OKAY FOR MOST.
LOOKING AT THE FOLLOWING PICTURES MAY NOT BE. I WOULDN'T HAVE PUT THEM IN BUT WE WANTED A RECORD OF ALL OUR EXPERIENCES IN OUR BOOK WE WILL HAVE PRINTED FROM THE BLOG WHEN WE GET HOME.
I walked out into the parking lot on Wednesday morning looking for some Elders and I saw a white van parked near the back entrance to the church so I walked over and there hanging on the railing were two pig carcases which were being washed out. The heads were over in the shade with people cleaning the hair off with razor blades. I don't know where they were killed and dressed out but they were plenty bloody when I saw them. They were later taken somewhere and cooked for the day. The missionaries who ate the food later that evening said it was really good but I had already been turned off by the scene that morning and the smell that stayed there all day long.
There was some chocolate pudding I saw that night on the dinner table which looked good until I found out it was from the blood and that was a further turnoff. I grew up being very touchy about some meat items and even though I am somewhat better, I could just not bring myself to eat any of this food.
STOP HERE IF YOU DON'T WANT TO SEE SOME GRAPHIC PIG PICTURES!!!!!