I was uplifted by the testimony meeting today. It just felt good. Grateful for the Sabbath! I have been texting Zac each day he is gone even though I know he doesn’t had signal. It helps me in a way to feel more connected to him. Aaron informed that he probably won’t even see them when he does get signal because they delete after a certain period of time. Well I have kept all the ones I have sent so I will show him when he gets home. That’s what moms do, right? ;) Jessie is up at the cabin enjoying some fun times with cousins, aunts, uncles along with grandma and grandpa Hall. I am sure she is excited to make memories and enjoy the family traditions that are had at the cabin!
We had an early start to the day at the Hall home. Bode had to be at the church by 4 a.m. to leave for Scout camp. They are headed to a camp near Austin so almost a 2-hour drive away. He isn’t real excited about going but I think it is because he knows the Hall cousins are at the cabin this week. I am hoping he has a great experience and gets to know the boys better in the ward.
Being fourth of July and transfer week, I prepared food for a backyard barbecue for our departing missionaries. We had hamburgers, hotdogs, potato salad, corn on the cob, fruit, tapioca Jello salad and pie. We had cherry, apple, and blueberry pie. What’s more American than pie in red, white and blue? I know the AP’s though it was and appreciated the change from our usual departure meal. My boys would have enjoyed the change as well. ;) We had an amazing testimony meeting with our missionaries. I love to hear the growth they have acquired as they have served their Heavenly Father in the Texas Houston South Mission. I will cherish these departure testimonies. We had four sisters stay at our house. We tried to go see the Sugar Land fireworks but they ended before we could get there but they did get to long board in front of our house for a little. A fun moment to have with them, sisters long boarding in their skirts. I even got in a little long boarding myself, which they thought was so cool. Sister Hall can long board!
I got a call this evening that I didn’t expect. Bode frustrated, tired and adamant that I come get him from camp. “I’m done!” I had to talk him through why I couldn’t get him today (4 hour round trip) or tomorrow because the new missionaries arrive to the mission and that I could possibly come Wednesday. Luckily he settled down and thought he could make it until Wednesday. Whew! I did make some phone calls to his leaders to make them aware of the situation and see if they could help him.
We had several of our missionaries that took on the challenge of waking up to go running with president and I this morning. President had planned a nice 5k but I just can’t do a 5k. If I’m going to run, I like to go 5 or 6 miles or in today’s case 7 miles. Oh man was it a muggy run though. Blaaah! Bring on the water! After everyone was ready for the day, the missionaries came back to our house for breakfast and some departing counsel. We then loaded up in three different vehicles to get all 19 missionaries to the airport to see them off on their new adventures back home. Timing this time around was a bit tricky. Our departing missionaries usually leave several hours after our new missionaries arrive but this time we had two that were leaving before and at two different terminals. President and I quickly went from one to the other to personally send them off and finally goodbye to the remaining 17. This is always a bittersweet moment for sure. We had a quick turn around with our new missionaries arriving shortly after from Provo. We quickly greeted them, videoed their escalator arrival, picked up their luggage and hurried to the international terminal because both planes arrived at the same time. Fortunately, the international flight takes some time coming through customs. We there in time to video them as well to post on Facebook. Once all in the car we headed to Bissonet for a brief introduction meeting, pictures, OYMing and brief interviews with President and I. Then we head to the mission home for testimony meeting and dinner. It truly is a whirlwind of a day.
Bode called again tonight in the same desperate voice to come get him and reiterating that “I’m done mom, I can’t do this!!” Once I was able to calm him down again. I explained to him he was exhausted and needed sleep. Lovingly, I asked him to brush his teeth, say his prayers (for specific help), think about Buddy the Elf (because who doesn’t smile when thinking about the Elf movie?) and go to sleep. We will see if it helped.
Yeah!! Great news. I received a text from one of Bode’s leaders this morning saying that after they talked that he has decided he can/will stay at camp until Friday. It’s transfer day! I go to the mission office to walk the parking lot as companions meet each other, move their luggage and bikes to the car going to their new area and say goodbye to their old companion. I chat with them about how they feel, reassure them, hug sisters, but most of all I try to spread sunshine and happiness because change is hard. Oh can I tell you about sweating in Texas? No bueno! Sweat is dripping EVERYwhere, oh I mean I love glistening in Texas. Yep, it’s All about the attitude. During this time the new missionaries are being trained on funds, cars, apartments and bikes all good information. Later Aaron and I talk about the resources to help them with change and ways to handle it by using Adjusting to Missionary Life. Everyone can use Adjusting to Missionary Life just cover up the Missionary part and insert MY. Feel free to check it out. ;)
Today I met with a companionship in the Houston North zone and also a companionship in the Rosenberg area to do weekly planning. The sisters in the north ask me study to help an investigator to know the Book of Mormon is true. As I did so I study several different chapters in PMG that brought together several thoughts on how to help this investigator. It is so amazing when you are study for a specific person’s needs that you receive inspiration just for them. I love how the Lord works, it strengthens my testimony in his doctrine and personal revelation. In Rosenberg, for weekly planning we talked about helping each of their investigators along the path by how they will invite with the “why” to church, read the Book of Mormon and pray. Then who, member friends, will also help them along the path and ways they can do that through invitations to church, FHE, dinner, lessons at their house or an upcoming ward activity. We discussed these same for less active members to help them to get on the pathway again to feel the blessings of increasing their faith in Christ, repent (making changes in their life), renewing their covenants each week in sacrament and having the Holy Ghost with them to endure to the end. It was a great day working with the sisters!!
Bode called me tonight. He was happy and sounded relax. A drastic improvement over his last two phone calls. He shared with me that he bought a fishing pole and has been fishing a lot at camp. He stated that it helps him clear his mind. I now know what to have him do when he gets stressed, FISH!
I returned to the Rosenberg area on Friday to attend a district meeting. The focus of the meeting was how to teach investigators by using the Word of Wisdom and Chastity pamphlets to meet their needs and increase their understanding of the principles and blessings when they follow these commandments. It was a good meeting. The district leader is new to this assignment and was so intent on learning what he could do better next time and how to work with the sisters in his district better. He is a leader over three sets of sisters and him and his companion. I think he will see the blessing of this assignment in his future family.;)
We get to go pick up Bode from his scout camp. YEAH! Bode was happy to see us…two BIG hugs. He is sun burned, covered in mosquito bites, exhausted, elated that he passed off 6 merit badges and survived scout camp in Texas! Allie and Jessie are headed up to Bear Lake with my family for a few days. I am sure Jessie is one happy camper.
Happy day. :)