I apologize for such a long space between posts. There have apparently been some technical difficulties on the blog site recently. Today was the first time in over a week that I have been able to download pictures. Happily, it seems to be fixed. Yeah!
Elder Beckstrand entered his office a couple of weeks ago and found an unusual sight awaiting him. Almost every surface was pasted with smiley faces and balloons sporting BIG smiles. One balloon contained the slogan, "Don't worry - be happy! Sister Kranendonk has been encouraging Elder Beckstrand to smile more often - (he sometimes looks rather stern.) Since the girls don't want their director to look like 'Grumpy Gus' they decided he needed a motivation to smile!
There was some quality time spent on this activity. Every balloon had a smiley face that was a virtual work of art!
Pictures of the sisters and couples demonstrating the difference between a cranky, frowney face and a happy, smiley face made us laugh with delight. Some of these sisters had a very hard time coming up with a convincing frown.
"Am I going to let them get away with this?" ponders Elder Beckstrand.
The balloons didn't answer him. Their facial expressions said it all!
Sister Avila and Sister Lewis added their 'in person' encouragement to look happy. Yes, missionary work is a great reason to be happy. Making it through Christmas Lights is another reason to be happy. We were able to get a TON of referrals - now that's something to smile about!
Baptisms bring a big smile to our missionaries' faces. Here Sister Brownell and Sister Javed show their happiness at the baptism of this investigator and his daughter on January 12th.
Sisters Lewis, Shurtz, and Hamstead wear big smiles at this young man's baptism. He was a golden contact from the beginning.
Getting a new hairstyle makes Sister Mackenzie smile. She found a woman from Kenya who lives in our mission. On P-day they came to our house and spent 8 hours weaving a combination of red and black artificial hair into her own hair. I would never have believed that anyone would be willing to sit that long for a new hairdo!
When I saw what tiny little sections of hair the stylist put into each braid, it was easy to understand why it took so long. Even with Sister Sordes' help it was a very tedious process.
Woo Hoo! A NEW Sister Mackenzie! That's a smile big enough to light up the whole country of Kenya when she returns home next month.
A view from the back. Quite a big change from how she looked when she came in this morning.
These Sisters (Cottrell, Kranendonk, Smith, and Hollady) received lots of smiles when people at the Visitors' Center saw their look-alike outfits. The navy polka-dot was planned, the turquoise and black was quirky coincidence. It certainly seemed like we were seeing double all day.
The recent cold snap, however, did Not make us smile. Many plants were frozen and will probably have to be pulled out. These lovely big flowering plants outside our back door were lovely and green just a couple of days ago. Temperatures in the 20's three nights in a row were too much for these plants to tolerate.
The ferns on the east side of the temple didn't fair any better than our flowers. Only a tiny bit of green remains. Thank godness the cold snap lasted less than a week. Today the temperature reached 80 degrees! Now THAT makes me smile!