Dear family and friends,
Jim: Still the reluctant typist. Patricia’s arm healing is coming along, and I will be very glad when she has her use of it again. We were so blessed that the accident wasn’t any worse that it was. It does give one more empathy for those who have much more serious issues to learn from. I am thankful for the example of others who have faced challenges with faith and trust in the Lord. It is through Him that we can meet all these challenges and hopefully learn something good in the process, and then help others along the way, as we have been helped.
Monday: Today was Patricia’s birthday and my decorations were a big hit with her. She loves a party, the balloons and streamers. Lots of well wishes all day long, which the decorations promoted for those entering the room. There were treats of course. We did manage to get in some work today also. We had our bi-weekly staff meeting with President Wakolo and addressed several issues with him. He does know what his new assignment is but cannot tell anyone yet. We are still trying to get our office in compliance with the printer guidelines, but that is taking a while. I also had bills to pay and entering changes into IMOS for changes due to three missionaries going home today for medical reasons. I also worked on apartment inspection reports and some needs that were identified. Patricia worked on updating the mission calendar, did emails, and assorted things. After work we went out to eat at a Japanese restaurant and enjoyed a good meal there. We had calls from the kids wishing Patricia a happy birthday and singing to her. It was a great day.
Tuesday: I had a slower day, not much new and so had time to work on less important projects and they was nice to complete. Patricia worked on some iPad issues, and some letters. We took some packages to ship and to mail for missionaries also. We had a good visit with Brent on the phone. After work we exercised, had dinner, and I worked on some photo uploading.
Wednesday: A little busier day for me, though Patricia has been less busy due to very few missionaries coming the next couple of transfers. I mostly worked on apartment issues, renewals, and a few closings. I also worked on an article for the monthly mission newsletter. They tried to relocate two of our printers today, but will have to come back later to finish. One printer is too old to network and there was a wiring problem in the new location they will have to come back and fix later. President Wakolo was doing interviews today, so we had several missionaries in the office waiting their turn to have their interview. Patricia processed a couple new missionary recommendations with the help of Sister Hess. After work all the office couples, the military relations couple, the Rasmussens, and the Greens from Conway met and went out to dinner at Olive Garden to celebrate Patricia’s birthday. Any excuse to eat out, and this was a good one. Fun visit and good food. I fix our lunches in the evenings so we are not so rushed in the mornings.
Thursday: Another slower but steady day. This has been an unusual week, with less new issues, and Patricia still waiting on paperwork from Salt Lake to finish processing some of the Dep missionaries that will leave soon. We had some more things to mail after work today at the Post Office. We picked up some dry cleaning and then did our grocery shopping. This evening we exercised, had dinner, ironed and did laundry.
Friday: I don’t mention it often, but we start each day at the office with a spiritual thought and then prayer. It is a great way to start each day. We also cleaned the office today, the restrooms, vacuumed, and dusted. The Hesses are helping out most weeks now also, so that helps the work load. Elder Hess is frequently in the office working on his medical reports, researching, and having conversations in private with missionaries who are struggling with various things. One sister was in this week to pick up some crutches for a sprained knee resulting from a fall while running for exercise. Her companion is a great nurse for her. Elder Sorensen has the never ending tasks of keeping up with car repairs, replacing old cars with new ones, and many related issues. About 4 pm we left early to drive to the mission home to pick up some paperwork left by President Wakolo when they left town for the semi-annual Mission Presidents Seminar. We stopped at the Two Rivers Park on the way home and enjoyed a little walk there and to just sit and enjoy looking at the river and being out in the park. The park is on an island with a nice bridge access and is a popular locating for biking, jogging and walking.
Saturday: It was cooler today, overcast, and rained last night. We attended a soccer game for one of our grandsons, the other sprained his ankle and couldn’t play. It is nice to be out and enjoying the games and the parks they are played in. Today was bathroom cleaning day in the apartment, and we spent some time washing clothes and getting winter clothes ready to ship home and hanging up the summer clothes. We were packed to the brim coming out and won’t be needing all these things until we get back home next fall. We exercised, had leftovers and a quiet evening.
Sunday: This was a lovely sunny day. We enjoyed our reading time in the morning and then got ready and picked up Sister Bowie on the way to church. One of the new converts, an elderly gentleman, probably our age, but I don’t think of myself as elderly, is confined to wheelchair, and today they had a special table set up for him to be able to help bless the sacrament. That was very nice. I can remember the first time I blessed the sacrament and what a special privilege that was for me. I am sure he felt similar. We had a youth speaker and then two brethren. The first brother spoke about forgiveness and reminded us that if we say we have forgiven someone for an offense, but keep remembering it, then we haven’t really been forgiving. We have to let it go and let the atonement take it away from us. The second spoke about the troubled times we live in, and how we need to look for the good and not focus on the bad. Others declare that they have the truth but are deceived. He referred to the scripture in Acts 17 where Paul said “For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, TO THE UNKNOWN GOD, Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you.” We now, as did Paul in his day, live in a time when some people think they know God, but do not. We have the truth and can be a light to them, if they will listen.
After Sunday School and Priesthood and Relief Society, we had a Linger Longer pot luck. This is easier to do now that we have the last schedule in the building. It was a nice gathering and good food. We met a couple of new individuals as we ate. It is good to gather and to have fellowship together.
Our thoughts and prayers are with you all,
Love, Elder & Sister Hartzell