Sunday, February 1, 2015

Oh My Goodness!  January is Gone!

We had a COLD week here in the Philadelphia area.  As you may remember, the big blizzard was predicted a week ago.  As it turned out we got maybe 1".  However, that is mostly still here on the grass and parking lots.  It has been too cold to melt.  Again tonight they predict snow.  The weathermen have even said that it is a 100% chance for precip.  They are getting quite brave after the 
cold week they had last week.  I must admit that the week was a tough one for me.  I have been experiencing pain in my hands and arms and mistook it for just more of my carpal tunnel.  WRONG...I should have recognized it--my upper back, shoulders and neck were tweaked.  After Monday I was unable to sleep at night so Tuesday I had to visit the chiropractor, then again Thursday and again tomorrow.  He has been moving things around, but I still have pain and weakness.  The highlight of the week was Elder Jones putting on my tights!  That was special.  He received some tips on how to gather up the tights so they will go on without giving wedgies...By Friday I was able to dress myself and that was much appreciated as we got to attend the temple with these fine looking departing missionaries pictured below.  The day was very cold and a bit windy, so we took photos quickly.  The session was absolutely full--no empty seats.  
 We have had some wonderful associations with these missionaries and will forever remember them.  We are getting quite sad that our mission is about to end.  The photo below was shot amid a gust of wind...But you can see the happiness we enjoy.  We have so loved our mission!  When we returned back to the office later that night we were greeted to the news that the internet was out all over our stake because they were replacing the firewall.  That is NOT good news to any of us to work in the office because this week is transfer week and that means that we need the computers AND the internet to do things like prepay luggage fees, get out new rosters, actually make the transfers in IMOS (the missionary operating system).  It should be an interesting week.  Elder Jones has 12 double outs which means he has to collect keys to cars and apartments and phones and redistribute them to unknown missionaries.  He ends up with 12 plates on his desk with names of proselyting areas on them.  He has this down by now.  I have had a rash of phone replacements and also have to swap out 8 phones by Wednesday.  That is hard to do with no internet, so I may just have to drive to a place where I can get a good signal.
It was our rare privilege to welcome Elder Kent and Sister Tami Harman to Philadelphia.  They ended their mission at the Joseph Smith Birthplace in Sharon, VT on Thursday.  They are headed to St. Louis and decided to stop and see us for a day.  We were so excited!  Tami wanted to see the various Philadelphia Historical Sites and Kent wanted Philly food, so we did both.  It was absolutely frigid (It finally got up to 36 degrees at around 10 pm, but for all the time we were in Philly it did not get above 28 degrees.  Kent and Tami (Elder and Sister Harman) said that we really did not know COLD.  They have been working all month in below freezing conditions--and their work is outside.  They learned that eyeball fluid does not freeze, but nose fluid does...On a happy note, there was hardly a tourist in Philly yesterday, so we did not have to wait in line for anything!

 Below is Philadelphia Tour Guide, Elder Corry Jones in his tour guide apparel.  He managed to get us safely around all of the Philadelphia sites plus Valley Forge and then we even took them to our mission office and apartment to show them what we do and where we live.
 This was for Kent.  Any of you who went with us to Reading Market will remember Beilers Bakery.  Yes, we bought a dozen donuts...BUT, we took them to The Wilsons to play some games later that night.  As I said, Philadelphia was almost vacant EXCEPT for the Reading Terminal Market.  It is located across the street from the Convention Center where a Car show was going on and apparently all of the car show people were having lunch when we got there.
 We did a drive through of Valley Forge.  (It was way too cold to do much else, but they did get pics of the cool statues and arch and covered bridge.)  Then we ended up at Zwalens and Kent was thrilled that they had named the flavor of the day after him!  Besides the Harmans, Philadelphia was also visited by President O'bama Thursday night and I-95 was closed for a time to accommodate his visit.  This was at the same time the missionaries were trying to get to the mission home from New Jersey...
Elder and Sister Harman were released via phone, pending an actual Stake President for the official release when they return home from a side-trip to St. Johns in the Carribean.  They both want to be really nice and warm for a week.  We wish them a safe trip.  See you soon!

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