Monday, December 29, 2014

December 29, 2014

Dear Loved ones
 
The time is once again flying by.  With trying to live out of two different houses, organizing the Christmas party, having the Mission Christmas party, taking a friend to the airport and preparing to speak in church has kept us on the go. 
 
Without a washer and dryer at our house we have had to go to the other place to do the laundry.  Not really having time to make the whole move has been a little frustrating but who wants to move during Christmas.  The move is planned for this Wednesday though so that is a good thing.  We have continually taken stuff over as we have gone to do laundry so the actual move shouldn’t be too bad (if any move can be an easy thing).

The Christmas party went off really well.  We had 8 nonmembers there which was great.  It was so fun to dress the kids up and see how much fun it was for them.  Wilson’s had brought 4 of their grandkids so we had a little girl to be Mary so didn’t need to use Hardman’s daughter and son-in-law.  The Osborn boys stole the show as the wise men.  William was so cute carrying the “gold”.  I had told them they could have some of the gold to eat if they were really good and no one could believe how good he was.  For him to hold still that long was a Christmas miracle.  We watched the Luke 2 video after doing the nativity and then closed with Silent night.  Everyone seemed to enjoy it.  I felt really good when President Hardman complimented me on a job well done.  He really did seem pleased and he is usually so grumpy that when he was smiling I felt like he really was pleased. 
 
On Monday we went to Crestwood for the Mission Christmas party.  It was really fun to have the whole mission together.  We had a nice program which showed off some of the talent in the mission.  Some of those people have voices that they could sing professionally if they desired.  We then had a very nice lunch with ham, baked potatoes, salad, green beans and pie.  After the dinner we moved all the tables and played some extreme games.  We divided into 4 teams, Comet, Dasher, Rudolph and Prancer.  We were on the Comet team and our team won most of the competition.  They started out with an Elder from each team and they had to put together a 48 piece puzzle and we won.  Then they had an Elder and Sister from each team throw an egg back and forth until there was only one team left with an egg and we won.  We also won the cow roping contest and the hula contest.  We missed on the ping pong ball throw, the orange peel and the marshmallow stuffing contest but they were split between other teams so we came out ahead.  We then put all the chairs into two circles with the Sisters in the center and the Elders around the outside.  We each had a scarf or tie and played a game where President Brough read a story and every time he said right we passed it right and every time he said left it would go left and when the story ended whatever scarf we had was the one we kept.  We had all brought scarves and ties for the game so everyone got one.  It was such a good experience to see all of the missionaries who have been in our district but are now in other areas.  Can I just say again that I love Mormon Missionaries.
 
 The Elders came to our house to make their phone calls (Facetime calls) on Christmas Day and then we went to the first dinner appointment.  We had a wonderful feast and then played the gift game where you have a number and choose a gift but someone with a higher number can swipe your gift.  It was really fun with so much of the Skeen family.  Evan ended up with a tie he swiped from one of the Elders who had swiped it from someone else and I got a small throw that I swiped and then gave the snowman pillow with it to one of our friends who collects snowmen but was gracious enough to not swipe it from me.
We then went and opened our gifts from the kids and then went to the next dinner appointment.  None of us were very hungry but made a good show of it.  I have lost some weight from being sick so long so am trying to not eat all the extra treats and gain the weight back.
 
Now it seems that Christmas was so long ago.  On Friday we were back into the usual routine of a District Meeting.  It is always good to feel the spirit at those meetings.
 
We have done something a little different this week though.  Our friends who went to Idaho for Christmas left us a key to their house and we have gone out and enjoyed the use of their hot tub on three different evenings.  That has really been a treat.  We are going to try and get in one more soak after FHE this evening.
 
Thank you to all who have sent cards and emails.  We feel of your love and support and appreciate it especially at this season.  I was just a little (ok maybe more than a little) homesick but hearing from you all helped.  We both have testimonies of our Savior and His atonement and are so grateful for the opportunity to share that with the good people in this area. 
 
We love you all
Elder and Sister Fullmer

Monday, December 15, 2014

December 15, 2014

Hello everyone
The highlight of the past week was going to transfer meeting.  Our Elder Caldwell finished up his mission and was ready to go home.  We had such a good meeting with some really wise “words of wisdom” from the awesome missionaries.  We sent 20 Sisters and 7 Elders home this time and only had 17 come in.  The time has come when the rush with the age change has evened out.  The mission has to close several areas now because of the lack of missionaries.  Our Elder Evans got a brand new greenie to train and he is doing well already.  Elder Caldwell’s parents flew out to get him and drove to Tell City on Wednesday and we were all able to go out and eat together.  He said it seemed weird to have his mission family and his real family together.
 
I finally gave in and went to a different doctor because my cough hasn’t gotten any better.  He gave me a steroid shot and some very pricey drugs.  He told me that I had pneumonia in my right lung and if I wasn’t feeling better by today to come back and see him.  I did go back today and he said the x-rays showed I didn’t have pneumonia but did have bronchitis.  He said it sounds like I am probably ¼ of the way over it and to just keep taking the drugs, my cough drops and cough medicine but that I am not really contagious and can go to Zone meeting tomorrow.  I also sliced a finger when I broke a glass yesterday but he said it had already started to heal and he wasn’t going to stitch it.  It is of course on my right hand and is numb but if I accidentally straighten it get quite a shock.  We were going to try and move this week but with the Christmas party we are in charge of, the cough and now the sore finger we have decided to wait until after Christmas.  We might change our minds again but it is good to know we don’t have to do it all right now.  The rest of the week we will spend setting up and preparing for the party.  It is so different to plan a party for 60 instead of a whole ward but still a responsibility I take seriously.  Last year at home I was in charge of the treat bags for every member of the ward.  We put names on each bag and anyone who didn’t come to the party got a visit from the bishopric with their bags.  We did about 250 bags last year so it is a real change.
 
We are looking forward to our mission Christmas conference and party next Monday.  We have never been with the whole mission at once and it is going to be great to see some of those who were in our district and now in the other part of the mission.  It is so easy to love these missionaries as they work so hard to share the gospel.
Our weather has been more like September to us and it is hard to realize that Christmas is just over a week away.  We are told that this is a normal December.  It makes it easier to travel with no snow but I kind of do miss a white Christmas—probably would only want a day or two and then back to enjoying the weather we are having though.
 
It is certainly easier to remember the reason we celebrate Christmas when we aren’t even thinking about gifts for anyone.  We have watched the #Sharethegift video over and over as well as the one that was done with the live nativity in Utah.  That really is the reason for the joy of this season.  I was missing buying books for the grandkids though so found some books for the 4 little boys we get to be with every coordination meeting.  Buying a train book and a construction book made me smile as I thought of our grandsons Max and Zane and their love of those books.

Remember we love all of you.  We love the opportunity to serve and we certainly love the people here.  The gospel is true, the Savior is the reason, we need to all do our part in spreading the joy.
Love
MOM and DAD

Elder and Sister Fullmer etc.

Monday, December 8, 2014

December 8, 2014

Dear Loved Ones
This has been a rather slow week as I am still coughing so hard I am afraid to go visit anyone.  We made a number of phone visits to check up on people but spent most of the early part of the week just cleaning the new apartment and moving some of the things we don’t use much.  It has taken some major cleaning but I think we are about ready for the move whenever we decide to actually do it.
 
We were able to go to Louisville on Thursday for the Senior Couples dinner at the mission home. We took a tour of the mission home and saw the basement which has a big dorm for the Elders and two smaller rooms for the Sisters along with a commons room where they do training.  The house was built especially for a mission home.  There is a staircase for the Elders and one for the Sisters and never the twain shall meet.  It also has a bedroom for the visiting authorities or a senior couple who might stay there.  President Brough had to go to the airport to pick up Elder Kopischka so we just went around the room and each told a little about ourselves, where we are serving, how we met and our testimonies.  It was really nice to get to know some of the other couples.  President Brough kept calling to tell us the flight was delayed and by the time he got back with Elder K it was about 9:45 so he didn’t actually talk for very long.  We could tell that we were in for a special meeting on Friday.
It was nice to stay in a hotel, enjoy a continental breakfast and leisurely drive to the mission office.  Our meeting wasn’t until 1:45 so we had time to sleep in a little and be lazy.  We then went over to the mission office and picked up a microwave, some new frying pans and some other odds and ends that we need for the new apartment.  They have a recliner that they are going to bring to us when they come and get the washer and dryer on the 16th.  That will probably be when we actually move because once the washer and dryer are gone we are going to want to get it done.
 
We were told last Sunday that “the missionaries always do the Christmas Party” so we have been scrambling to get things organized.  We have a generous budget but I sure miss Winco.  Trying to get candy in bulk just isn’t happening and because the branch has never done just bags of candy and the orange and peanuts that are so traditional at home we wanted to do them.  It will all come together but take a little more careful planning.
 
We will be taking the Elders to Louisville tomorrow as Elder C goes home.  His parents are already here to pick him up as his mother served her mission here a number of years ago and came to visit with some of the people she has kept in contact with.  They are actually coming back to Tell City on Wednesday and we are doing a Christmas dinner for them.  It will be nice to meet his parents.  We are excited as always to learn who our new Elder will be.  We have heard that Elder E will be training a greeny which will be awesome.  Elder E is such a dynamic Elder that he will be a great trainer.
 
That’s all the news for rainy Indiana.  Remember that we each need to share our testimony at every opportunity.  That is something that has impressed me since we got here.  We have been here for 9 Fast Sunday’s and not once has there been any pause between testimonies.  These people love to share their testimonies and the spirit is always so strong.  There are seldom any talkamonies or travelogues but just sincere testimony.  We love our branch.
Love
Elder and Sister Fullmer

Monday, December 1, 2014

December 1, 2014

Dear Loved Ones
We had Zone conference last week which is always such a spiritual high.  President Brough told about how in our mission it takes 71 new investigators to get 1 baptism and the rest of the world it takes 15-20.  We need to talk to people not contact them.  We need to be more open and friendly and not just treat it as “we have to have so many contacts so we will harass everyone we meet” kind of contacts.  He also told us of being a fighter pilot and how they were trained to keep turning to keep the “enemy” on their 3 o’clock position so they were always in sight.  The saying was Lose sight-lose fight.  We need to know what the goals are and how to achieve them.  He then told of going on his mission to England back in 1969.  That year that mission had set a goal to have 1200 baptisms.  It was December and the mission was close to their goal.  Pres. And his companion had set their goal as 7.  They had the number 7 all over their apartment, on 3x5 cards and a great big one in their window.  They talked to everyone they could and did get their 7 which gave the mission 1207 baptism for the year.  They never lost sight of their goal and accomplished it.
When we were talking about being prompted by the spirit Elder Pollack read a quote that Elder Bednar had given at the MTC.  He said “quit worrying about it.  Quit fussing with it.  Quit magnifying it. Keep the commandments and I promise you in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ that as you press forward with faith in Christ your footsteps will be guided.  As you open your mouth, it will be filled and you will be where you need to be and most of the time you will not even have any idea how you got there.”  Sometimes when we make our visits that is just how I feel.  We don’t know why we are prompted to go visit someone but it always seems to work out.
Most of last week I spent in bed and Evan worked on his talk.  I caught a cold and then it turned into a nasty cough.  I have felt pretty good except the cough.  Sleeping sitting up hasn’t helped much but that has been the only way I could keep from coughing.  I have to be over the cough by Thursday because we get to have a Senior Couples dinner and fireside on Thursday evening.  The fireside is with Elder Kopishke from the 70’s.  It will be so nice to meet all the other Senior Couples and have time to really get acquainted.  We are staying overnight in a hotel in Louisville because it worked out that because of a late flight Elder Kopishke won’t be able to start the fireside until 9:00 and we also have a mini mission conference with him the next day so rather than drive clear home and then back the next day we are staying over.  I am looking forward to the hot tub in our hotel.
We were able to enjoy Thanksgiving dinner with different families.  It was interesting to have real southern cooking and see the traditional dishes from here but I must say that I missed some of our traditional favorites.
It is official.  We are moving the first week in January.  Our current landlord is raising the rent on our home and we were able to find a duplex for less money.  We can actually start moving any time now as the new landlady said she didn’t even care about December’s rent but wanted us to move before the weather gets too bad.  I am going over to clean cupboards this morning and then we will probably start moving a few things.  It is surprising how much more stuff is in this house than was on the list from the mission office.  The couples before us have collected quite an assortment of furniture and kitchen appliances and as we are moving into a smaller place we need to get rid of some things. 
This week I have been so grateful for good health.  When an inconvenience such as the cold and cough which I have had the past week come along it is such a good reminder of how blessed we are to have good health and to be able to serve here.
 The gospel is true and we must be part of the hastening of the work. Take every opportunity to reach out to others and share what we are so blessed to have.
Love
Elder and Sister Fullmer etc.

Monday, November 17, 2014

November 17, 2014

This becomes an old song we keep singing about how fast the time flies by and how busy we can keep here.  This week has been no different.  With Evan helping two different families get their winters wood in and the 72 kits project we kept plenty busy.  We also got to enjoy the spirit of zone meeting   I love hearing of the success the missionaries are having simply by being obedient.  The Vincennes Sisters told of how they went tracting one night and ran into a man that they talked to about the restored gospel and they gave him a Mormon.org card.  They asked him to give them a call when they could stop back by.  The next day he called them.  He told them that he wanted to be baptized and asked them to come over.  Then 5 minutes later one of their baptismal dates called them back that they had lost contact with.  Sometimes it seems like doing the small things don’t matter but they all add up.  Determination and diligence totally bring miracles.  We hear these kinds of experiences at every meeting we attend.
The elders have found a family that looks really golden.  They are a young couple with two kids and are really coming along.  They know George, one of our members well and he is going with the Elders to teach.  They are keeping all the commitments and reading the Book of Mormon.  They also found a lady in the Cotton Mill apartments who says she is searching for something at this time in her life.  We went with them for a lesson last week and it was really positive.  In sacrament on Sunday we had 6 non-members and 3 less actives.  Elder E spoke and had invited everyone he has been teaching and got some of them to come.  We were all pleasantly surprised when Bill Z came because his family has all been members for 35 years but he just says his kids can do his work after he dies.  He is 85 and supports his family completely and insisted that the temple be put on their headstone which they have already purchased but resists being baptized.  Elder E is very persuasive and has a heart of gold.  The work is moving forward in our area.

We got our first small snow storm last night.  It would have been nothing at home but they had their first no school day and watching the news tonight show that many of the schools in the area are on delayed schedules for tomorrow.  We just laugh because to us it is really nothing.  However it is very cold and cuts right through our coats.   The wind is whistling outside even now.   Winter has definitely begun.

We sure love all of you and enjoy your emails.  Thanks to all of you who keep us in the loop from home and the temple.  Remember that you are each important to the hastening of the work.  Keep your missionaries busy.  The gospel is true so share the joy.

Love
 Elder and Sister Fullmer etc.

Monday, November 10, 2014

November 10, 2014

The first picture is of the birds on our lawn one day last week.  They kept flying up into the neighbors tree and then swooping around our house and landing on the grass.  They did this several times and also we have had a day this week when they did it again.
Here are a very few of the pictures that I took of the hotel I talked about in the last email.  1st in Evan and I so you can see the hotel behind us.  2nd is the Art Mystery.  Hopefully you can read the information.  The next ones give some of the ideas for the angel room and then pictures of the angels.  The next is of the dome which doesn't give a very good idea of how large it really is.​



 
 
 



































These are another better pictujre of the hotel.  The information on the army hospital, a picture of a picture of men bowling and then the bowlling alley which they have not restored yet.







November 10, 2014

Dear Family and Friends
This has been a busy week trying to finalize all the plans and get all the food for the 72 hour kits.  It had worked out to be 72 kits which made it easy to buy things because most everything comes in 24, or 36 count.  However on Wednesday, after I bought all the stuff on Tuesday, one of the sisters gave me her money and wanted just one.  I didn’t have the heart to tell her I had already purchased all the stuff so just scrambled to get single items.  When another lady found out I was refiguring for one she asked me if I would figure for two and do one for her mother.  I so love her mother that I couldn’t refuse so had to figure for two more kits.  It meant some more shopping but today we took all the stuff to the church and got it all set out for tomorrow.  We have Zone conference in the morning so won’t get home until about 4 and need to be at the church by 6.  I work well under pressure.  ;-)
Last Friday we had district meeting and it was amazing.  Elder Fleener our District leader started out with an activity. .  He started the activity by asking Hermana Bennett if she wanted a donut and then asked Elder Russell if he would do 20 push-ups so she could have one.  He then asked Hermana Porter if she wanted one and again asked Elder Russell if he would do 20 push-ups so she could have a donut.  When Elder Fleener first started the activity there was joking and laughing but each time he would have Elder Russell do another 20 push-ups it got quieter and quieter.  Even when Evan said he didn’t want a donut, Elder Fleener asked Elder Russell if he was willing to do 20 push-ups so Elder Fullmer could not have a donut.  As we compared it to the Atonement the spirit was really there as we each thought of how the Savior gave so much to each of us and that it was done for each of us individually and He did it for us even if we aren’t putting it to use in our lives.  Elder Russell ended up doing 300 push-ups and it was not easy for him.  The last 4 sets of 20 he would do some and then have to rest before finishing.  We each wanted to help him but knew we couldn’t.  It was such a spiritual lesson.  I had read about this activity before but actually participating in it was so powerful.   The purpose of the activity was to help us become more focused on teaching of the Atonement every time we teach.  Instead of just teaching lessons and trying to get through all the points we need to continually teach the Atonement.  We then did role plays where we were to teach focusing on using the Atonement more.  The Zone Leaders taught us and it was amazing how strong the spirit was.  They used the Restoration pamphlet and just had us look at the pictures and they taught of our Heavenly Fathers love for us, about families and about our Savior.  With each point they talked about what our Savior did for each of us so that we might feel of the love and joy of being in families and how we can be together forever because of what the Savior did for us.  Once again I say how much I love missionaries and meetings with them.

Time is flying by and with the holiday months ahead it will go even faster.  The weather is getting colder and I am already missing my wood stove.  As much wood as Evan has helped cut for different members you would think I had a wood stove.  We will be invited to those homes though so I will enjoy the fruits of his labors.
 
The gospel is true.  Missionary work is challenging but so worth it.  Help the missionaries out in your area.  Feed them and learn from them and work together to bring others to the knowledge of their Savior and His gospel.
 
Love
Elder and Sister Fullmer etc.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

November 4, 2014

Dear All
The weather has certainly changed in the past week.  Just like home in Idaho it gave us some very cold days, froze everything but now we are having some nicer days.  Cool but not really cold.  It has turned cold enough that we put another blanket on the bed.  It is sweater weather for sure but not like the east that has so much snow.

We had a neat experience at transfer meeting last week.  There has been a young man from Indianapolis serving for 6 weeks with a companionship of Elders while he has been waiting for his mission call.   He actually read his call to tell us where he is going.  He is going to Oregon and leaves in 3 weeks.  It was funny because we have a companionship of Elders who are both from Oregon.  They were late getting to the meeting so when they finally got there President Brough told them about the mission call and how it was taking only one going to Oregon to replace the two who had left from Oregon.  Of course there was much laughter.  I sometimes wonder what the new missionaries think when we have such lively transfer meetings.  President Brough even said he wanted them to see that laughter was an important part of a mission.   There was one new sister and when she was assigned to her new companion there was kind of a silence.  It was amazing how much they looked alike.  President Brough commented on them looking like twins and other than the difference in height they really did.  Transfer meetings are always such a highlight of our time.
Our trip to see some of the country this week was to French Lick Indiana.  It was a beautiful drive through the forests which have turned such beautiful colors.  French Lick has a casino which was built with a moat around it because when it was built it was only legal to have a casino on the water so that is how the owners got around that law.  The moat has since been filled in because the law has changed.  The hotel we went to see was totally amazing.  It was built in 1902, and was called the 8th wonder of the world because of its dome.  It was the largest dome in the world for many years.  It had over 800 rooms, a bowling alley, a bike and horse track, mineral spas, an opera hall, ballroom and all the elegance of the early 1900’s.  After the stock market crash of 1929 it fell on hard times and was finally turned into a hospital during the 1st world War and then a school for the Jesuit monks and then finally was just let go.  It stood empty for a number of years until 1996 and then was placed on the National Historical List and the renovation started.  It is such a nostalgic place.  I could just picture women in long gowns or the roaring 20’s styles with all the rich luxury associated with that.  We walked all around the hall looking at the pictures and browsing the shops and then went through the gardens and peaked into the windows of the old bowling alley which has not been renovated yet.  After that we drove down to the casino and other hotel which was built in 1901 and has a list of the famous people who stayed there including Al Capone but we were too tired to walk through.  From the outside it looks fascinating so maybe at Christmas when they decorate we will make the trip back. 

We had District meeting last Friday.  It was a good training.  We started out with a game where Elder Evans who is one of the Elders here in our area, was blindfolded and then Elder Russell was going to get him to the picture of the Savior.  The rest of us were to try and distract him from that goal.  I felt really bad doing it because I knew he would follow whatever I told him.  I said ‘Elder Evans who do you trust most in this room and he said Sister Fullmer” and it was so hard to try and lead him astray.  I finally couldn’t do it any longer and started telling him the right way to go.  It really showed the point that sometimes the people in investigators lives are telling them one thing and they trust them which makes it hard for us as we are trying to lead them to the Savior.

This week the focus is all about the 72 hour kit project.  I finally got a count and the money from everyone and after figuring everything out yesterday we are headed to Owensboro to buy all the stuff.  I like working with numbers but after spending so much time on this project I am really looking forward to next Tuesday when it will be done.  We have had a good response from some of the less actives who ordered the kits and have committed to being there to help put them together.  Even the single men in the branch have ordered the kits and want to help.  It should turn out to be a lively fun activity.

I will send pictures later as we need to head out.
 
Love to all
Elder and Sister Fullmer

Monday, October 27, 2014

October 27, 2014

Dear Family and Friends
On Sunday we got a phone call from a sister in the branch named Teresa.  She was in North Carolina visiting her sister but her former branch president had called her to see if she could help him out.  It seems that there was this girl Ashley who is originally from Tell City who was in an abusive relationship and had left and the branch president was bringing her back to Tell but she needed a place to stay.  Her mother and sister both live here but she couldn’t stay with them for some reason.  Teresa wanted to know if we could help out until she got home Friday and then Ashley could stay with her.  We talked to Teresa’s branch president and he told us a little of the story but we didn’t know what to do.  We met up with them at Ashley’s mother’s house and said she could stay with us.  I didn’t know if that was the right thing to do but what could we do.  We just asked ourselves “What would Jesus do?”  Ashley said she wasn’t afraid to stay on the street because she had done it before but we didn’t feel good about that.  So from Sunday night until Friday morning we had a guest with us.  She was very easy to have around.  We would take her to her mom’s each morning when we were ready to leave for the day and then she would come back home at night.  She was very diligent in her job search and by Wednesday had a job lined up.  She then went and spent a night with Teresa and then met up with a new friend and moved on to another town.  We see that so much here.  The young people drop out of school, make poor decisions and can’t seem to stick to things when they finally do make a good decision.  We are trying to keep in touch with her and we will see how it goes.

Tuesday and Thursday of the week we helped our friends whose mother passed away clean out her apartment and move all her furniture.  I was surely blessed for that service as I was given several clothing items.  This lady had two closets full of clothes and I was told to take anything I wanted.  Unfortunately for me she was a petite so things were too short but some of her shirts and sweaters fit.  That gave me a boost in the wardrobe department.

On Wednesday our good friends took us out to lunch and then to see an old house called the Holt house.  It was owned by the man who was the attorney general under President Buchanan and was the one in charge of the hangings of four of the people involved in the Lincoln assassination.  The house has stood empty for many years and is now being restored.  As I love old houses it was a treat to see it.  The family cemetery was also interesting to see.  After that we went to a little Amish store and browsed.  After that couple of hours we went to and again cut wood.  Elder Fullmer loves that part of service.  Not so much the moving of furniture though.

The graveside service for our friends mother was on Saturday which was our scheduled temple day.  Because there were 5 women going and we couldn’t get everyone in our car, Elder Fullmer decided to stay home and go to the service with the Elders.  The sisters and I had a good day at the temple   Evan said it worked out well because he was asked to give the opening prayer.   On Friday morning we had learned that one member of our branch presidency’s father had passed away so we attended his service on Sunday after church.  It was very interesting as none of the family except Tim are members so it was a very Protestant service.

We have passed our 8 month mark.  Once again we feel that time is flying by.  Hopefully we are making a difference in some of the people’s lives.  We know it is not us but the spirit that will bring them back so we just keep trying to help them feel the spirit when we visit them. 
 
The gospel is true so what else matters.

The first picture is the information plaque, 2nd is of the house and 3rd is us at the side of the house.

Love to all of you
Elder and Sister Fulllmer


 

Monday, October 20, 2014

October 20, 2014

Dear one and All
This has been an emotional week in so many ways.  We have seen and heard of great blessings of the gospel and the strength it can give us if we will do our part.
We got a text from Angie asking us to get a hold of the elders in Louisville and have them go to the hospital to give her husband Randy’s mom a blessing.  We called Elder Moulton in the mission office to learn who the Elders were that would be over that area and he already had the word.  The chaplain from the hospital had called and got it into motion and the Elders were already on their way.  I love that we are well known enough that the chaplain knew who to call.  I called the temple and put her name on the prayer roll.  On Friday evening we got a message that she had passed away.  It was such a blessing because she had cancer so badly and hadn’t even been able to speak for nearly two years.  Randy used to be a member (don’t know the whole story) and Angie has been less active most of her life.  This might be what it takes to bring them both back.  We never know what effect events will have on different people.   We love them both so much.  I have had experiences with Angie that are so sacred and special to me.

We had district meeting on Friday.  Sister Kuenzle told of how there is a family in their area who has joined the church.  The father was baptized about 3 months before the 11 year old girl and he told her not to take the sacrament until she was baptized.  She said that she could hardly wait until she was baptized and that since she has been that she loves going to Sacrament meeting because she gets to partake of the sacrament.  What a mature attitude for one so young.  We should each strive to make that our focal point of every sacrament meeting and be prepared for that sacred ordinance.

We had a branch social on Saturday.   It was the Fall Festival which the branch usually holds out to the Branch Presidents because he has a large place where we could have roasted hot dogs and marshmallows and had a hay ride but because of the poor weather we moved it to the church.  This meant that we went back to all the less actives we had given invites to and let them know the venue had been changed.  It was just another good opportunity to contact them.   There were several kinds of chili, some of which were great and some just okay.  We have learned which members of the branch are the really good cooks and know to get their food first before it is all gone.  Our Relief Society President makes a killer carrot cake that is always the first dessert gone.  We all know that if you want a piece of Eva Mae’s cake you get it before you get any other food or you won’t get any.    Everyone visited and just kind of rotated tables and talked to everyone.    When Penny started the karaoke going it was hard at first to get people singing but after they started groups singing it was really fun.  One of our less actives did come and seemed to have a really good time.  Our 6 boys in the branch had fun doing the games, running around and trying to sing along.  We all laughed when William who is 3 was sitting behind the karaoke machine and was really feeling the music and was swinging his sword and mouthing all kinds of nonsense.  A non-member lady Deb we have helped move two different times came but not her husband.  It turns out that she and several sisters in the branch were great friends growing up.   She kept saying she needed to go home because she does a very early (2 a.m.) paper route but she stayed clear until we started cleaning up.  Maybe this will get us in to teach them.  One of the sisters said that Deb was actually one of the girls her mother liked her to run around with growing up.

I have spent several hours this past week preparing for the talk I gave yesterday.  The inspiration just kept coming from every meeting we attended and so many experiences of the week.  Even on Saturday night I went back in and added and revised some parts of my talk as things were said at our social that gave me new inspiration.  As nervous as it makes me I felt that it went well.  I know that I certainly learned many things from all the preparation and study which I did.  The topic was "Why a testimony is not enough".  It was a good reminder to me that a testimony reguires action to keep it growing or it is too easy to become complacent.  So many of our less actives say they have a testimony but after such long periods of inactivity what do they really have a testimony of.  President Uchtdorf gave a wonderful talk on testimony just this last conference.  If you didn't hear it be sure you read it.

We are involved with a new venture this week.  It is not one I particularly relished at first but we just had to ask "What would the Savior do?'  I will write next week and let you know how it all goes.  Is that a good enough teaser?

The gospel is true.  We need to all do our part to move the work along.  Help the missionaries in your area in whatever way is possible in your particular circumstances.  Feed them, go to lessons with them, do their mending, drive them places they may need to go.  Somehow get involved with the missionary work.  Let us all strive to strengthen our testimonies as we share them with everyone we possibly can.

Love
Mom and Dad etc.

Monday, October 13, 2014

October 13, 2014

Hello one and all,
This past week at zone meeting we had some great training by our Zone Leaders.  Elder Newbold told of an experience he had while in a bike area.  He and his companion were nearing the end of the day and were on their way back to their apartment when they saw a man on a bike in the distance.  He was going really slowly and they caught up to him so stopped him and asked him about himself.  His name was Tom and he was interested so they set up an appointment to teach him.  From then on he was either not there when they went for appointments or cancelled the appointments and rescheduled.  They were about to give up on him.  One evening they got a call just as they were about to retire from this man Tom.  He said that this was the end and they thought he was saying that he didn’t want to try and meet with them anymore but he said “You don’t understand.  I have taken a bottle of pills and this is the end”.  They hurriedly got into their car and started to his apartment.  They passed a policeman on their way and stopped and told him what was happening.  The policeman got help and the got Tom to the hospital where they were able to pump his stomach and save him.  Another day when the Elders got home there was a man standing by their apartment.  It was Tom.  He had just moved in with his sister across the street from them.  They learned that he was so down and out because he had no job; his wife had taken the kids and moved to Florida and was divorcing him , he only owned his bike, he had been living with his mother and now was going to live with his sister.  It worked out that they taught him the gospel and he is now in the Elders Quorum Presidency and dating a member.  Elder Newbold stressed how a 3 second decision could have made the difference in this man’s life.  If they had ridden by that first night and not stopped to talk to Tom he would probably be dead now.  It shows how a split second can make a difference in someone’s life and we don’t know what things we do that will affect someone.
 
Elder Pritchett, one of the zone leaders, told of how his dad is not a member and the rest of the family had all been less active as he grew up.  The elders in his town in Arizona were continually working with his family to try and reactivate them. He finally got his life together and came out on his mission.  One of the missionaries who had been one of those working with his family back in Arizona lived in Lexington Kentucky where Elder Pritchett was assigned to serve at the time.  One day as he and his companion were teaching at a less active member’s home, the member who went with them was that missionary who had helped his family.  They chuckled at the thought that the last time the two of them had been in a less active home it had been Elder Pritchett’s home.  The power of missionaries and member missionaries is unmeasurable.  It makes all the difference to the missionary work if we have the help and support of the members. 

Evan spent a good part of one day out to a member’s home cutting and hauling wood.  Bro. Zellers cut the trees down, Evan trimmed all the branches off and cut it to shorter lengths and the Elders hauled the branches and loaded them on the wagon and hauled and stacked the wood.  Sister Zellers and I kept them fed, ran errands to pick things up for them and worked on a Christmas project she is doing for her granddaughters.  Evan really enjoyed the whole day but certainly felt it the next day.  He thinks he can work like the 20 year old Elders and I must say that he certainly held his own with them but paid for it with some sore muscles.
We found two more of our less actives this past week.  One told us very emphatically that she didn’t want us to try and see her but the other’s life has just changed in a dramatic way and we may see him come back to church.  We will certainly keep in touch with him and encourage him to make the changes in his life he needs.  He really wants to be happy and we know this would be the way to find true happiness.
 
We had a wonderful Stake conference this past weekend.  Elder Foster of the 70 was our visiting authority and because he is over the Family History he talked a lot about the new program to find and save our families.  He did a presentation showing how even those of us who think all of our genealogy has been done will probably find people who still need work done.  He had a man come up who thought his work was all done and in just a couple of minutes found someone in his lines that the information was there but the work had not been done.  I spent some time today looking at my lines but I didn’t find any temple work that needs done.  I did get the information for a family here that was missing one child in their family and got it ready to have this man’s work done and seal him to his parents.  I also have another brother I am trying to find to get this family complete.  His name and death date are on the family headstone but the dates don’t fit in completely so I will do more research.
 
It is really turning into fall.  From last week to this the trees have changed colors and the forests are so beautiful.  We have had some much needed rain.  Evan has three little watermelon growing from some seeds he just tossed out and they seem to double in size every day.  If the weather stays warm until November as it usually does here we night get some small watermelon.
 
We love you all and enjoy hearing from you.  We both encourage each of you to become best friends with the missionaries in your area.  They are there to help you and you should each be there to help them.  It takes all of us working together to bring this great work to pass.  Don’t let a 3 second opportunity pass you by when you might change someone’s life.  The gospel is true and we should joyfully share it. 
 
Love
Elder and Sister Fullmer etc.

Monday, October 6, 2014

October 6, 2014

Dear One and All
 
The real highlight of this week was the district meeting we had last Friday and lunch afterwards.  The training was about Amulek teaching with Alma and was compared to Amulek being the branch member and helping the missionaries.  It gave me some things to put in my talk.  I had coupons for the Ponderosa(a buffet place) so after meeting we all just went there.  We sat in their banquet room and Sandy was out waitress.  Evan and I got up to leave before all the missionaries were ready to leave and Sandy stopped us before we got to the door and said she was so impressed by the group.  She liked how polite and quiet the kids all were.  She said that her daughter and granddaughter were members of our church and her son-in-law had joined and they had just done something where they were put together forever.  They must have gone to the temple.  We asked her if she would be interested in learning more but she said she just plans on going to visit them and be sure to be there on a Sunday so she can go to church with them before she has anyone else tell her about the church.  We went back in and told the missionaries what she had said and to be sure and leave her a good tip.  Most of them didn’t have any cash on them so we left $10 and Elder Jacobsen said he had a $5.  The missionaries are just such a nice group of young people.  We all need to be aware of our example daily.  We never kknow who is watching and the affect we might have. 
 
Evan is still enjoying collecting his chestnuts.  He gathered another bucket today and has quite a bunch.  I don’t know if he will ever get them all roasted but he is enjoying it.  He is also looking forward to this Wednesday because he will be cutting wood again with our friend Greg and the Elders.  There is so much wood laying around Greg’s property that just needs to be cut to length that he will not have to buy wood for the winter if they can get a good supply cut and down where they can get to it.  Evan really wishes he had a table saw to cut all the scrap lumber the neighbor has brought to Greg’s. 
 
 We are so glad we have a laptop computer.  When we got to the church on Saturday to watch conference we learned that the cable had been cut by the lawnmower people and we had no way to watch it through the satellite.  We just hooked the laptop through the system and were able to watch it.  Sunday there was quite a group there to watch so it was good we were able to do that.  It seems that conference weekend doesn't last nearly as long as it did when I was trying to keep a housefull of kids watching and listening.  Now it is over way too fast.  Wasn't it a glorious conference!!

We have a busy schedule this week with Zone Meeting, wood cutting, taking the Hermanas for a dentist appointment which will take a good part of the day and then we have stake conference this weekend which means a trip on Saturday and again on Sunday.  Three trips to Evansville and one to Huntingburg all in one week will add the miles to our trusty old car.  We are blessed that it is still working so well.  New tires are in the near future but we have planned for it.
There's not much else to tell this week.  We are busy and are still finding the less actives.  We found one more we hadn't met before but she can't come to church unless her son comes which isn't going to happen any time soon.  She lives about 20 miles out and doesn't drive.  Everyone has their reasons but I think hers are more valid than most.
  WE are enjoying our time here and can't believe how fast it is flying by.  Remember to share your light and be an example as our missionaries are. The gospel is true and we are so blessed to have it and we need to share with everyone.
We love you all.
Elder and Sister Fullmer
Mom and Dad
Evan and Trudy
Grandma and Grandpa

Monday, September 29, 2014

September 29, 2014

It has been a typical week for us.  We have done service again, met with lots of people, had interviews with our mission president and I have worked on the 72 hour kit project.  That is pretty much all the week consisted of.  We did get to watch the new movie Meet the Mormons while we were having interviews with the President.  Evidently the mission presidents have a link to stream the movie. I asked Sister Brough about getting it because it isn’t going to be showing in Indiana at all and the closest showing to us is in Lexington Kentucky which is 150 miles from us, she said there was a possibility they would be getting it on dvd because the streaming is having some problems and we could possibly get a copy.  It was so good and will be a great tool for introducing people to the Mormons.  I loved that it really showed the diversity of the Mormon people and that we are not all white, rich, educated people but have our trials and challenges just like anyone else.  If you get the chance I highly recommend you go see it.
We had two different members of the branch who are less active tell us that they were just not interested in coming back to church right now.  That is always so hard to hear but we won’t give up.  Because we are doing this 72 hour kit project and we also have a branch activity coming up out at the branch Presidents home, we will make sure these two people know about these activities and hopefully at least spark some interest.  One never knows what will get through to a person.
Our one sweet sister who is a convert of 4 years had her next door neighbor to the women’s conference on Saturday.  I couldn’t tell how Lacy felt about the whole experience but the spirit was definitely there.  It was so good to see strong women speak about important things and show that women are valued in this gospel.  Hopefully it touched Lacy in some way as she has 4 young daughters that want some kind of church.  She was raised with no religion and says she will just let her girls decide for themselves but how can they make a choice if they are never exposed to any kind of religion.
 
There’s not much else to say about this past week.  We are busy but it is becoming much more routine as we have now been here for 7 months and know most of the less actives and the actives who want us to make a visit frequently.  We have found several of the less actives who have moved from the area and been able to get them to the clerk to clear them off the branch list.

The gospel is true and we are so blessed to be able to serve here and try to help these people feel of the blessing of membership in the church.  We all need to actively help in our wards and branches to hasten the work.
Love
Elder and Sister Fullmer etc.

the picture is of one of our chestnut trees.  See all the prickly spine balls. You can see the one that has opened up and dropped its nut out.  Evan has collected a whole ice cream bucket and a large butter container of nuts.  He is enjoying "roasting" them.  I think they are rather bland but he likes them.
 

Monday, September 22, 2014

September 22, 2014

Dear All
This past week I spent a lot of time working on a 72 hour kit project that the branch wants to do.  I made the mistake of letting them know I had done one for our ward last year before we left and they asked me to head it.  It is really different planning for a much smaller number of kits than the huge project we did last year.  I have spent hours trying to figure the best foods with enough calories to keep someone going without costing too much.  I think after making a trip to Sam’s club and redoing some things I have it pretty well figured out.  Now it is all about spreading the word so that all the less actives know about the project and can be a part of it all.  We found when we did it at home that it was a really good way to bring the less actives out and fellowship them.  Hopefully it will be the same here.
Not much else different has been going on this week.  We have made visits, gone to transfer meeting to pick up our new Elder, had District Meeting, had FHE at our house and done service.  I did get to help in Primary yesterday as the President and her daughter (both part of the presidency) had to leave after Sacrament meeting which only left one counselor who also plays the piano and teaches.  It was an interesting challenge to keep those 5 boys under control.  We have one 7, one 8, two 9 and one 11 year old boys.   Our only girl usually comes for the first hour when her grandpa teaches Sunday school and then they leave.  I guess it was a good thing our boys didn’t come that I needed to teach in the Sunday School class but the Sister I am teaching with and I had an awesome lesson planned.  We will just hold it for another week which we have done before.  We have only actually taught two lessons together because the boys aren’t really active.  We had had a lesson with them on Saturday evening about preparing for the temple but it isn’t going to happen quickly because the one boy is terrified of the water and doesn’t want to be baptized.  He is becoming a little more open to the idea but I think it is still a ways off. 

Evan has enjoyed being able to cut wood with one of our members.  He spent a couple of hours on Friday cutting and went out again today and spent 4 hours.  With getting to drive the tractor last week and cutting wood thins week he is very much in his element.  He is enjoying all the nuts he finds out here (and thats not the people).  We have a chestnut tree in our yard and it is very interesting to see how the nuts grow.  There is a very prickly green ball that falls off the tree and the nut is inside.  The thorns on it are very sharp.  After the ball opens up you have to roast the chestnuts (not necessarily on an open fire :).  This makes them edible and quick tasty.

We learned about the predicting of the weather by the persimmon seed.  When you cut open the tiny seed you will find either a knife, fork or spoon inside.  If a spoon it means a lot of snow, a fork means light snow and a knife means it will be cold and cut like a knife.  We only cut one open and it was a spoon so maybe lots of snow this winter.  We questioned what was really inside the seed but it really did look like a tiny spoon.  We will cut more open later to see what it predicts.
 
The first picture is the prickly ball and a cup of the nuts before cracking them and the second is of a nut roasted(in the microwave).  The third is the persimmon seed with the tiny spoon in it.
 
Love you all

Elder and Sister Fullmer etc.


 

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

September 16, 2014

Dear Family and Friends
I don’t know how the time can fly so fast.  I guess it is because we find ourselves so busy some days that there aren’t enough hours.
We have done a lot of service this past week.  One of the ladies in our branch was moving from a trailer into her house that the renters finally moved from and we spent a good part of two days helping her.  When we got there for the major move and she took Evan to get the u-haul truck I just started putting things in boxes trying to clean off the furniture that would need to be moved.  She is the sweetest lady but as we had learned doesn’t pack up ahead of time when she moves.  This is the 4th time the branch has helped her move so they knew what to expect.  With the Elders, another branch member and the two of us we moved most all of her stuff the 2 miles and then unloaded.  By the end of that day we were really feeling the years.  Thank heavens for young Elders and their energy.
On Wednesday I had a scheduled appointment with one of our less active sisters who lives about 20 miles out of town.  I picked up our sister Janine (who has two kinds of cancer) to take her with me because she really wanted an out and to visit some of the sisters.  We tried both Shannon and Melinda but neither were home so we just drove to the little town of Birdseye to get ice cream cones at a wonderful little ice cream place but the shop didn’t open until later so we just got ice cream bars at the station and started home.  Both of the sisters we had tried to visit were now at home but we didn’t have time to stop as the other sister who was with us had to be back home and we had another scheduled appointment.  I put about 85 miles on the car and we didn’t get to visit with anyone but I think it was just what Janine needed as the only places she ever goes are church(just sacrament), chemo and doctor appointments.
Friday we had District Meeting here in Tell City and I made lunch for the Elders and Sisters.  I really enjoy cooking and they really appreciate not having to spend money for lunch.  It is almost like having all 11 kids home again only the 10 Elders in our district can certainly out eat any of my boys I think. 
Saturday we went out to the Branch Presidents house to help him get his yard ready for the Branch activity we are planning.  He has a big yard and it hadn’t been mowed all summer so Evan got to drive a tractor for 5 hours and mow which he really enjoyed.  We are planning on a hay ride and big fire (to burn all the tree limbs he has cleaned up this year) as well as singing, games and visiting and of course lots of food.  When they did this last year they had over 70 people come which meant that lots of the less actives were there because we only average about 35 to church.  As a lot of the less actives are the Branch Presidents relatives that helps the numbers.
The James boys finally came to church and I was able to give the Sunday School lesson I have had prepared for over a month.  With the two boys and the two Elders we had quite a good lesson.  These boys have never had any primary and we really have to teach them on a very basic level as they learn about the Savior and Heavenly Father.  We talked about the commandments and how they bless our lives and it was a whole new idea for them to actually hear.  I think they especially enjoyed it for the fact that we used the ipad and tablet for them to look up scriptures and also had a video.  They became quite good at finding scriptures in the topical guide.
We are losing one of our Elders.  He is being transferred tomorrow which means we are making another trip to Louisville.  He has been a good missionary and has struggled with his companion who is getting trunky already even though he doesn’t go home until December.  We are praying for a really strong gung ho Elder that will get the work going again in Tell City.  We need some greenie fire here but know we aren’t getting a newby.
I know that we are here for a reason.  Every District Meeting and Zone conference we repeat our purpose which is to invite others to come unto Christ by learning of the restored gospel….  I know the gospel is the only way to find true happiness and I am so grateful for that knowledge.  I know my Savior lives and that brings me great joy.  Share your testimonies every chance you get.  Spread the joy.
Love you all
Elder and Sister Fullmer

Monday, September 8, 2014

September 8, 2014

Dear Family and Friends.
After writing in my email last week about our 5th Sunday meeting in which the branch members seemed to have the same excuses for not visiting our less actives which we all use I got a reply from my sister who lives in a tiny branch in Texas.  I wanted to send it along hoping she won’t mind because it is such a good message for each of us.  Here is what she wrote.
“I can also relate to the members of the Branch who weary of trying to get their inactive members out. I, too, have had the attitude of "why keep visiting them because anything I do never does any good, they still don't come out."  Then I became converted!  When I was in the District Relief Society presidency, we were keeping track, BY NAME, not just numbers, of those sisters not being visited each month.  I was embarrassed at one meeting to find that one of the ladies who hadn't been visited for 3 or 4 months WAS MY responsibility, my sister who I hadn't been visiting.  When I was driving home from this meeting I was reflecting on this experience and was murmuring and trying to justify my non-visits.  "Why should I keep going and visiting her, she is never going to come back to church.  I have been her visiting teacher off and on for several years and I have never seen her come out."  Then the Spirit quietly told me, "This isn't about her coming back to church it is about your obedience--your obedience in doing what you have been asked to do."  Well, since then, I no longer worry whether my efforts are going to produce fruit, I make a strong effort to do my fellow shipping and 100% visiting teaching so that I can be obedient.  And with the change in attitude I have a greater love toward my sisters and less fear or worry about them coming out, understanding more strongly now that each of us is judged on our own merits.  I also know more firmly now that "you can't hold their hand all the time"  and I am okay with that. They, too, have their choice to take or refuse but at least I am being obedient in offering.”    
 
I love the perspective this gives.  It really is about us doing our part and not worrying so much about others not doing theirs.  We will only be judged on our efforts and the things we said we would do when we sustained our bishops, branch presidents and the prophet.  I encourage each of you to go the extra mile in home and visiting teaching and fellowshipping the less actives (and the actives who might need an extra boost).  We all need each other.
 
We had some interesting visitors at church yesterday.  Brother and Sister Huntsman from Las Vegas were here.  He served his mission here clear back in 1972-74 and then came back 16 ½ years later to baptize one of the men he taught when he was here on his mission.  He was the Elder who taught the man in our branch who is paralyzed and he comes back to visit periodically.  It was so interesting to hear his testimony and it sure is a testimony to never giving up on someone because we never know what will make the difference.  
 
We have had a good week and found three more of the people on our branch list and had good visits with them.  It is surprising how a loaf of bread can get you into a door or at least a visit outside.  Not once have we been turned away although there is one sister we still have not had answer the door as yet.  Maybe she really is gone every time we try her door.  We actually visited one home and as the Elders were all getting out of the car I saw a man poke his head out the door and then shut the door when he saw us but when we went again on Sunday he actually answered the door and said we could come back another time as they were just sitting down to dinner.  We have actually visited with the wife who is the member once on the porch so I think we will eventually get to visit again.  We have visited with her daughter a couple of times at her home down the hill from her mom and she is very welcoming. 

We saw more of the tobacco process this past week.  As we drove by the barns we saw that there were men working there so stopped and actually talked to the owner and learned more of the process.  It is all done by hand from the cutting of the tobacco through to the end.  They chop the tobacco stock, put 6 of them on a stick and then load them onto a trailer.  When they get to the drying sheds one or two men climb to the top, one in the middle and then the man on the trailer hands a stick up to the middle man who either places it on his row or hands it on up to one of the men on the upper rungs.  The pictures don't show how quickly they work or put off the heat you feel in that drying shed.  We were in there for probably 10 minutes and I was dripping with sweat and my sinus hurt from even smellling the tobacco.  Tomorrow we should be able to get pictures of them actually cutting in the field because they are now cutting the fields closer to us instead of the ones in Kentucky.  I will sent those pictures next week but below are a few more of the whole process.

The first picture is of the soy beans which they will start harvesting in October. The rest are the tobacco pictures.
Love to you all
Elder and Sister Fullmer etc.




Monday, September 1, 2014

Septemper 1, 2014

Dear One and All
This past week we were blessed to have a Mission Conference where we not only learned from our Mission President but from Elder Cardon of the Seventy.  We spent the whole day with four other zones being taught how to more effectively bring the spirit into lessons.  Elder Cardon had some of the greenie missionaries give the talks they had prepared then some who had been out more than a year and then a couple who were close to finishing their missions and it was amazing to hear them all speak.  The greenies are a powerful force in missionary work because with their greenie zeal they teach just as powerfully as those seasoned veterans.  The caliber of missionaries in the field –at least in the GKLM- is astounding.  We both really enjoyed the meeting except for the 1 ½ hour drive each way and sitting for 7 hours.  The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak (I was tired of sitting).  We had planned on trying to catch two of our families we have been unable to meet on the way home from the meeting but even the Elders were too tired to try and find them.
We spent a lot of time cooking this week as we have had several sisters ill in one way or another.  I love to cook so it gives me a good opportunity to make the food and have a little for us and lots to share.  I make a lot of breads but this was actual meals instead.  Our good friend Carolyn is having a major flare-up of her MS and doesn't feel like cooking but needs to eat so I love being able to help her out in that way. Because she is on steroids which compromise her immune system we are two of the four people who are allowed to go see her so we get to visit.
 
Evan had the opportunity to give another blessing this past week to another less active sister.  This sister is down to weighing 98 pounds but is still as feisty as ever.  She has always been small but with her illnesses has lost even more.  I took zucchini bread over the night we gave her the blessing and then took food over the next day when I went with her visiting teacher to visit her.  She said she had already gained 2 pounds from the zucchini bread which wouldn’t surprise me as it is so rich and you can’t quit eating it.  She is as feisty as ever even though she has been ill.
On Saturday we spent five hours helping the Branch President and his wife with the house they are still fixing up.  We got two more rooms painted with two coats each.  We are getting to where we can see the end of this massive project.  Basically the living room and landing are the only projects left for us.  Then they will decide what to do with the floors and put the carpet down on the spots where they go.  I really enjoy the change of pace that doing this service gives us.  It is such a relief to not be so out of my comfort zone trying to meet people.  We both came home tired from using muscles we don’t use enough and it was raining again so we had a quiet evening at home.
We had a combined 5thSunday and the Elders talked about how the branch worked so hard getting people to come to church when they were trying to get their new building and had to have the numbers and what made the difference now that they didn’t need those extra numbers.  There was a lot of discussion but I don’t know if it made much difference.  Some of the people have a good reason for not going out and inviting others to come to church but most of the branch just doesn’t take the time to visit the less active and encourage them to come back.  The attitude is that “we have visited them once and it didn’t make any difference” or “you can’t hold their hand all the time”.   I know some of the people feel this way because it is their own families who are less active and they do keep trying.  We won’t give up on these people.  Not the actives or less actives.  I have certainly seen that it really does take learning to love the people before you can make any difference.
This seemed like a slower week as far as visits but again we check our little book and see that for the month we visited 36 families just two less than last month and with the number of phone conversations we had with some of the less actives it still turned out to be a busy month.

The pictures are of the tobacco harvest which is taking place right now. We noticed the sheds starting to have the tobacco hanging so stopped to take pictures.  Since we did the sheds are even more full.  We want to try and see them actually harvesting the tobacco but so far haven't been there at the right time. The 1st picture is of one of the sheds with the hanging tobacco.  There are 8 sheds in all.  The 2nd picture is an outside view of the hanging.  The third is just of some of the buildings.  4th is part of the field and 5th is one of the long buildings which is now nearly full of tobacco.  We learned that tobacco is grown on this field every year and once you plant tobacco in a field that is all you can plant there.  Also we were told that it is interesting to watch it be planted because it is tiny plants and not seeds that are planted.  We will have to watch for that next spring.