Saturday, October 1, 2016

Ties, ties and more ties....

Theron's parting gift
 Talofa Family and Friends,
I don't know what is harder, getting ready to go on a mission, or getting ready to leave the mission field.  Both times are mine fields of emotion, feelings of uncertainty and the stress that comes with any big life change.  All of this was brought to the surface this week with our good friends, Theron and Shanna Schaefermeyer, leaving for home.  Rusty and Cindy Gillette, more dear friends, leave in a month, and then 4 weeks later we will be on our way home.
     Last week driving cross island with Schaefermeyers, Theron kept telling us he saw grapes.  Since we were all sure that there are no grapes here, we humored him. This week he brought in what he had seen.  They are beautiful, but I have no idea what they are.
       Brent is handling his stress by sewing more ties.  However, he has discovered that not everyone needs ties the same size.  We had a good laugh when Theron came into the office and started pulling and pulling and pulling out the inside part of the tie from inside of his shirt.  President Hannemann wore his tie into the office, and it reached  down past his belt buckle.  Well, back to the drawing board.  I have to give Brent credit for his tenacity with this project - something he has never lacked when he puts his mind to a project.
Brent's homemade ties - Still working on perfect pattern
Apollo Movie Theater one last time with dear friends
      This weekend we just took it easy, and rested up for this week's transfers - always the busiest/craziest time.  We enjoyed watching General Conference today, and were grateful for BYU TV.  Tomorrow morning (Monday) we will be up early to watch the first Sunday Session. Next week they will show all the sessions at church, but will have it translated into Samoan, so will stay home and have a quiet Sunday.  One of the greatest blessings of the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ, is hearing the Prophet, Apostles, and other church leaders counsel and teach us every six months. Their messages are always inspiring and comforting.
      With the time change last week, by morning walks are once again in the dark.  The upside is the beautiful stars that I rarely see in Las Vegas.  Orion's Belt is always easy to spot and is the constellation that led the 1st people to these islands thousands of years ago.
      On a humorous note, last weekend when we were at the beach, Brent found this very unusual green shell, the only problem was that it was inhabited.  Since I wanted the shell, Brent brought it home, and I set it out on the front porch, thinking we would get the critter out the next morning.  Well, the next morning it was gone - down two steps and nowhere in sight.
Wednesday morning, returning home from my walk, I saw something moving down the sidewalk quite a distance from our house - It was my Green Shell.  I was surprised at the size of the clam that came out when Brent put it in warm water.  I did feel sad about evicting it, but we put it outside with another shell we had.  Next time I will leave all inhabited shells on the beach.    
Driving around the island you often see these large sheets full of oval holes.  They are what is left over after they cut out the soles for flip flop shoes, the shoe of choice here.  When you live on an island with limited resources, nothing is wasted.
      I finished the D&C this week, and have a renewed testimony of the Prophet of the Restoration, Joseph Smith.  We in no way worship Joseph Smith, but honor him for the part he played in restoring the gospel and priesthood back to earth after the great apostasy.  This scripture is from D&C 35:3 and was written after he was killed by a mob in Carthage, Ilinois in June 1844.
 Joseph Smith, the Prophet and Seer of the Lord, has done more, save Jesus only, for the salvation of men in this world, than any other man that ever lived in it.  In the short space of twenty years, he has brought forth the Book of Mormon, which he translated by the gift and power of God, and has been the means of publishing it on two continents; has sent the fullness of the everlasting gospel, which it contained, to the four quarters of the earth; has brought forth the revelations and commandments which compose this book of Doctrine and Covenants, and many other wise documents and instructions for the benefit of the children of men; gathered many thousands of the Latter-day Saints, founded a great city, and left a fame and name that cannot be slain. He lived great, and he died great in the eyes of God and his people; and like most of the Lord’s anointed in ancient times, has sealed his mission and his works with his own blood; and so has his brother Hyrum. In life they were not divided, and in death they were not separated!

I send my love to all of you from the beautiful island of Upolu, Samoa !


  1. I'm hoping that since you return post-election that things might have settled down a bit and all of the hate talk will be put away for good, or at least until next election. May all of your goings be in peace and returnings be in joy.

  2. Hi Patty and Brent You look wonderful. Your blog is so fun to read. I can't believe it is almost time for you to come home. Wow! Miss you both, Debbie and Gerry