Sunday, December 11, 2016

Week of December 5 - 11

This week was draining, especially for Elder Porras. He had a colonoscopy on Tuesday so Monday it was a clear liquid diet and Dulcolax and Miralax. When they took him back for his procedure, I went to work for a couple hours until they called me to come get him. Everything went fine. It took all the rest of Tuesday and all night for his drowsiness to wear off and his stomach to get back to normal.

On Wednesday we met Elder Sant and Elder Chamberlain at the church to teach April a new member lesson. First, Elder Chamberlain helped her with some of her math problems she didn't understand. We were lost, but she got it. Then we had a lesson on faith and how faith, hope, and charity are intertwined. We took the pictures below at church today because the elders wanted pictures with us before they get transferred on Tuesday. Elder Sant is on top and Elder Chamberlain is on the bottom.

Saturday we went to Tehachapi, which is about forty-five minutes from Bakersfield. It is a pretty drive there because you get into the mountains. Since it is over 4,000 feet in elevation it was about fifteen degrees colder there and rainy and foggy. Before we got to the town we stopped at  the Cesar E. Chavez National Monument and museum. Cesar Chavez was an American labor leader and civil rights activist who organized strikes and protests for the benefit of the migrant workers. He helped organize the National Farm Workers Association. He helped so many people improve their lives. He started out in the fields as a Mexican American farm worker. That back breaking work and his long fasts for his causes took a toll on him and he died when he was only sixty-six. It was a slow day at the museum and we were the only ones there, so we got to visit with the girl at the front desk and ask her lots of questions. She is Daniella Chavez one of Cesar's thirty-five grandchildren. She was born after he died so she only got to know him thru her grandmother who took care of her when she was little and then Daniella took care of her grandmother in the last years of her life. Helen, Cesar's wife, died just last June. Daniella is twenty years old and one of the younger grandchildren. She said she has been bullied and called a Communist by those who didn't like what her grandfather did or understand it. I told Daniella what impressed me as I learned about her grandpa is what good one person can do in this life. I told her about our church's Christmas initiative, "Light the World" on I told her that her grandpa certainly did his part to light the world by helping all the people he did and improving their lives and bringing light into their lives.
Then we drove along the scenic Tehachapi Loop. However, because it was so foggy we couldn't see much. We did see the train. The train loop was built in l876 and is the largest spiral configuration of railroad tracks every designed and built. They say if the train is long enough, it will pass over itself.
We drove on into the town of Tehachapi to the Crèche Festival at the church. It was beautifully set up. We enjoyed seeing some of the missionaries serving there. Sister Gallacher, from Highlands Ranch, Colorado is in the red shirt. Remember the nativity scene (in the bottom picture) that we all got from Primary or Mutual back in the '60's and was in every Mormon home. That brought back memories.

Sunday evening we attended a Community Christmas Music Festival at the stake center. There was beautiful music and singing. Our favorite was a couple who sang "All I Want For Christmas" accompanied by her playing the ukulele. It was very peppy unlike most of the numbers. Too bad they didn't sing more.

This evening I made and decorated sugar cookies all by myself. There were no grandkids around to help me. I missed our annual grandkids cooking decorating and caroling day! I made the cookies for a treat for the arriving missionaries that come tomorrow.

This week the mission received four new cars; Chevy Malibu's. The cars are really nice. We have fourteen more coming in the next few weeks. Some of the missionaries have been trying to buddy-up to Elder Porras in hopes that they will be assigned one of the new cars. Too bad it doesn't work that way. The cars with the most mileage (over 50,000 miles), cars farthest away from Bakersfield, and other factors are taken into consideration. Then the President and his Assistants are really the ones who make the decisions.

Dewar's Fine Candies is a fourth generation family owned and operated business. It was established in Bakersfield back in 1909. They have chocolates, taffy chews, and ice cream. We had an ice cream cone there and it was good, but Utah State Aggie ice cream or Texas Blue Bell ice cream have them beat. However, it is a fun place to go. They have two locations; the original store and a new modern building.