January 1, 2012
HAPPY NEW YEAR to all!!!
How was everyone’s holiday? We hope they were filled with fun, excitement and wonderment. We hope that Santa brought you everything that you needed. Yesterday, December 31st, it felt as if it were a late August day in Utah. The temperature was 82, a gentle wind was blowing and some of the leaves were starting to fall from the trees. One more month of this weather then the hot season starts up again – argh! The time has gone by so quickly. It seemed only a few weeks ago we came to Manila and now we will be off to spend the last 6 months in Palawan. Wow!
I hope that this letter makes sense. The fireworks lasted until about 3:00 am so I’m working on very little sleep. Staying awake in church today was a real challenge. The nice thing is that this year we didn’t have all of the videoke singers all night long in our neighborhood. We spent a quiet day working. President and Sister Stucki treated the office crew to a New Years Eve lunch and after that, they invited me and Mom over to the mission home and we played Dominos, Speed Scrabble and Rummy-cube. We left to come home around 8 and then read and studied. It was a quiet and relaxing evening until 10pm and then the fireworks started up. It was like we were under attack. Early Sunday morning I went outside and the smoke was still hanging around and you could smell the gunpowder in the air. The Filipinos love their fireworks and they love to celebrate. All in all, it has made for some great memories.
We began the week with some excitement. After Christmas and the Monday holiday (haven’t figured that one out yet) we went to the new office to see what progress had been made.
There was still considerable work to do before we could move in but we all felt that Friday would be the best day to move. The phone line was working, we had internet but there was still some minor construction and then a 2 day clean-up to be done before we moved in. Well, Wednesday morning they showed up at the old office and began moving us! Whoa! This week is supposed to be a holiday vacation (the whole week) and they wanted to get everything done so they could have their vacation (can’t blame them for that). The whole organized moving plan went out the window and confusion became the norm over the next 3 days. To make things even better, the office elders and assistants had to move from their apartment by Thursday. Well, a good time was had by all! We are now in the new office – of course no one knows our new phone number or address (that can’t be set up until after the holiday break). The old phone numbers are not able to ‘roll over’ to the new phones (this can be done but not until after the holiday break) No complaints really. Everything just worked out. It is really better to have moved this past week than next week because of the transfer week coming up. A move during transfer week would have been disastrous. Thank goodness for the little things that just ‘work out’.
|Elders Belarmino, Stirland, and Hernando|
We attended a Filipino Ward here in Manila today. It was fun to attend a High Priest Group meeting again. I think the last one I attended was over two years ago. The members were excited to have us there and were hoping that we would be assigned to their ward. They were sad when we told them that we would only be with them for 2 Sundays and then we would be transferred to Palawan. We will fly out to Palawan on Friday January 13th. We are excited. We will spend most of our spare time this week getting things organized and packed so we can make this move uneventful.
We are doing well. We hope you are all enjoying good health and that you are happy. We love you all so very much. Again, we thank you for your love, prayers and your support. We couldn’t do this without you. Give everyone a big hug for us. Please be safe and be happy. And remember to BE good, DO good, and BE men and women of Christ. And always remember to say your prayers.
Mom and Dad, Grandma and Grandpa, Janene and Grant