Archive for the ‘February 2013’ Category

Sunday, April 7th 2013:  We stayed up till midnight last night and finished watching the Saturday afternoon session of Conference so we were a bit slow to get up this morning.  At 10:00 the Branch held a 45 minute sacrament and testimony meeting.  Then they set up a projector and  prepared to watch last nights Priesthood session.  Again, it was determined that it was “best for everyone” if we returned to our apartment and viewed it there in English.  I wonder at the end or out mission if it will be “best for everyone” if we return home.  It was great to watch the Priesthood session with Win.  We have never done that before but I look forward to doing that again in October.

For lunch Win got out one of the three waffle irons from the panty and made wonderful waffles with maple syrup.   We studied some this afternoon and took a nice nap.  Just before turning on the morning session of Conference at 6:00 PM we got on Skype with Von and Janet for a few minutes.  It was early in the morning for them so Janet was still working at the “paint and body shop”.  The morning session was great.  How wonderful it is to hear the messages and music.  I am so grateful for these inspired leaders and the direction given.  We will anxiously await the next copy of the Liahona so we can read and reread the council we are to strive to live by.  At 10:00 tonight we will tune in to view the last session.  We just got a nice email from our Stake President, it was great to hear from him.


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Thursday, February 28 2013:  Well, during our first month in Hungary we have taken a cold shower and now a sink bath.  A sink bath is where you stand at the sink with soap and a wash cloth and wash yourself all over and then rinse off. Have you got that vision in your mind or do I need to describe it further?  We are lucky to have a drain in the middle of our bathroom tile floor so it is easy to wipe up the water from washing and rinsing.  Sorry, no pictures of that event.

The mason was supposed to come at 8:00 this morning but didn’t show until 10:00.  It took him an hour or so to do the prep work and figure out how he was going to build the wall that would enclose the tub and support the new tile.  It was interesting to watch part of the process as he measured and cut cement block with a hand saw.  He mixed mortar in a bucket as he needed it and finished up with this phase of the work about three this afternoon.  As he was cleaning up, I asked him is he would come back tomorrow (jössz holnap?) and he pointed to the clock on the wall and said between 10 and noon.  Hopefully he will install the new tile and caulk around the tub tomorrow and we will have a functioning shower again on Saturday morning.

Win and her assistant, that’s me, taught the advanced English class at 5:30 this evening.  Win had so much fun.  She loves the interaction and had way more prepared than was needed.  We all, the five of us,  have a homework assignment to do the “1, 2, 3, all about me” sharing activity for next week.  Institute class followed at 7:00 with eight in attendance including two investigators!  Win served home made cup cakes that were devoured within minutes.

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Wednesday, February 27 2013:  The plumbers, Gergő and his dad, showed up right at 8:00 this morning.  What they thought would be a one or two hour job turned into four hours of work.  The base and support walls for the old bathtub were made of much stronger brick and mortar than they expected.  They had to use an impact hammer/chisel to bust it up.  The bathroom was a mess and the lady upstairs asked if she could come in our apartment to see what all noise was about.  What we didn’t realize was that even though they would get the new tub installed today, we would not be able to use it until a mason comes to rebuild the support walls and reinstall the tile around the sides of the tub.  We asked them if the landlord had scheduled a mason to come so they called him and he said he didn’t know a mason who could do this work.  Luckily, Gergő and his dad knew of one that could come in the morning.  So, if all goes well we may be able to shower or take a bath Thursday night or Friday morning.  We got quite a bit of study time this morning while they were here working.  They finished about noon and Win fed them the leftover tacos from last night.  At 3:00 we made a run to the store because it is hard for us to go a day with out buying some groceries.

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Tuesday, February 26 2013:  Early this morning we went for a walk in the rain for almost an hour.  We came home soaked but it felt good to get out and see a different part of the city.  We have stayed in all day and have done laundry, cleaned and studied the language quite a bit.  Tonight we are planing to watch an old movie on the i pad.  In the morning the plumber is supposed to come and install our new bathtub so we will most likely stay in the apartment tomorrow also.  That’s ok, because Win was asked today if she would teach the YW in Bekescsaba on Sunday (vasárnap) and she also needs prep time for English class on Thursday.

We just received these pictures that were taken at the senior couples conference in Budapest on February 13th and 14th.

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Monday, February 25 2013:  After some study time, we got dressed in our missionary outfits and headed off the the store to shop for tonight’s FHE dinner.  We have decided to try having dinner with the YA’s on Monday night as part of FHE so we don’t have to cook at the apartment and then load dinner in the car and transport everything over the branch house and back again on Friday nights.  We had lunch back at the apartment and then Win spent much of the afternoon preparing a taco dinner with lemon bars and brownies for dessert.  I spent a good part of the afternoon calculating where we are with the YSA budget for the month.  It looks like we went slightly over on our food budget for the first month of our mission.  I guess I will have to have a talk with the cooking queen sometime but probably not today.

We only had five YA’s come to FHE tonight but we also had the elders with us because we though an investigator was coming.  The investigator didn’t show but we let the elders stay for dinner anyway.  We had a nice spiritual message about the Book of Mormon (A Mormon Kónyve) and then ate dinner.  The dinner was good and the YA’s and elders ate everything Win set out.   Before dessert, we played a game where you had to do certain things that were drawn out of an envelope when it was your turn.  Win really enjoyed the tasks that I ended up with because as everyone knows, I’m not a fan of games (see pictures).  I don’t think I have ever braided a girls hair before, a least that I can remember right now.  Eight o’clock at night is way to late for dinner so we will try to encourage them to eat when they come at 6:30 next time.

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Sunday, February 24 2013:  Speaking day.  We attended the Szeged branch at 10:00 this morning.  Win taught primary, there is only one class with one child.  At 1:00 we ran home for a quick lunch and then headed to Bekescsaba.  Just before the meeting we met with the elders, three of them are newly assigned to the branch.  We had to have a member show us where to turn the heat on, as the building was really cold.  Win directed the music again and then we each gave our first sacrament meeting talks here in Hungary.  We typed them up in English and read a sentence at a time while Elder Johnson, the new branch president, translated each sentence.  It went pretty well and the members seemed to appreciate our messages.  Win assisted in the YW’s class, there are two YW, then we headed back to Szeged.  It will be nice when the drive home is not in the dark.  We are grateful tonight that we are not currently on the senior couple speaking circuit.

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Saturday, February 23 2013:  Ground breaking day.  We needed some bread for lunch so while Win was in the shower, I went to a small pastry stand at the square just a block away.  I pointed to a long skinny loaf of french bread and the lady put it in a sack but I could not understand what she said for the price.  So, she rang it up and showed me the receipt.  It was 165 Ft or just $.74.  As I stood in line to get the bread, I really enjoyed watching the old people in front of me.  They would ask for the bread they wanted and then handed the lady a plastic liter bottle, usually a pop or juice bottle, and then a man would fill it with milk from a stainless steel milk can like we used to see around diary farms.  I bet it is really good whole milk but not sure if I will try it.  This time of year would probably be better than when it gets hot in the summer.

At 10:00 AM we drove over to the ground breaking.  It rained the entire time but everyone was all smiles and there was a great spirit of excitement.  The branch choir sang an opening song, then a prayer, a short talk by the former branch president, some remarks by the current branch president, a counselor in the mission presidency spoke briefly and then President Smith concluded.  I learned that this branch was started in about 1992 or 1993 and one of the early meetings consisted of six members, six investigators, and six missionaries. Everyone then got to turn over a shovel of dirt if they wanted and then there was a closing song and prayer.  After that, we gathered at the branch house for cookies, made by the cooking queen of Szeged, and several dozen local pastries and some fruit bread the branch members provided.  When the group left, we helped the YA’s clean the building and then served them a light lunch.

While we were having lunch, the elders came with an investigator for a program.  We invited them and the investigator to join us for FHE on Monday.  We hope they will bring him.  The elders can’t come to our FHE unless they bring a YA investigator.

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