Sunday, April 2, 2017

Week of March 27 - April 2

We have been enjoying near perfect days and weather lately. We have also been enjoying our pretty daffodils.

This week was pretty ordinary with nothing very exciting to report. We just went to work everyday and tried to keep busy. Missionaries came into the office to get large print Book of Mormons, a German Book of Mormon, media Bibles, a children's Book of Mormon, pass along cards, and their packages. A few brought in their baptismal records, car receipts, and a set of sisters brought their car so James could look at a dent and scratch. President Layton was doing interviews this week at the different stake centers in Bakersfield. Sister Layton called James Thursday morning to say they had a flat tire in the church parking lot. James went over to fix it. A man was walking his dog near the  parking lot and went to get his hydraulic jack to make changing the tire easier. That was very nice and helpful. Then James took their car to get the tire fixed and ended up buying four new tires. He didn't even go to Big O Tires because the church has used a local tire shop for a long time. James told the salesman (who was not familiar with the church account) it was the President's car, and he looked at him very strangely. He thought that James looked quite official with his white shirt and tie, and his first impression was that it was Obama's car. Then they had a good laugh about it after James explained about the mission and the mission president.

The restoration company was in and out of the office for a couple days finishing up the water heater leak problem. On the third day, I had an inspiration to ask the men if they knew that Jesus Christ's church had been restored to the earth and would they want to know more. It would have been a great conversation starter, but they did not come anymore because they were finished with their part of the work. I missed a great opportunity. A couple other guys came to put the new sheet rock up and paint. The man in charge asked us if we were Mormons. He said his mother and brother joined our church some time ago. We talked to him about it and why he hasn't joined. James ended up giving both him and his helper Book of Mormons (one English and one Spanish) before they left. They both said thank you.

We went shopping to buy me a new purse because mine broke. Purse shopping is not easy and finding the right purse (size, color, shape, straps, price, etc.) is very difficult. I think I love the third purse I brought home and will return the other two.

People in Bakersfield have always been so nice and friendly. However, we encountered two different men Friday evening when we were shopping and doing errands that were not so nice. They each seemed to want to start an argument about our religion, but we kept our cool.

Saturday we had 50 baptisms in our mission. Our missionaries have really been working extra hard!

April Fool's! Actually, we didn't have any baptisms scheduled because of General Conference.

General Conference this weekend was wonderful! We watched most of the sessions on our computer at home. It was fun to see my cuz, Alan Niederhauser, singing his heart out in the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.                           (Alan is the blonde man on the far left.)

President Thomas S. Monson, President Henry B. Eyring, President Dieter F. Uchtdorf 
On Sunday, I made a big fruit salad and pumpkin raspberry/blueberry muffins that we took over to the potluck lunch with the Hispanic members at our stake center. They invited all the missionaries that were there to eat with them also. It is such a nice tradition they have to eat a meal together between conference sessions. They have carried on this tradition for about twenty years. Then we stayed and watched the last session of conference at the church.

There were three sets of sister missionaries watching the conference at the church and a bunch of elders. The sisters had already left when we decided to take a picture, so here are the elders.
(The elder standing to the left of James is 6'8".)

Did you know that there are 2600 varieties of palm trees? Surprisingly, there is only one kind of palm tree that is native to California, the California Palm. The others have been imported and what would California be without them. Bakersfield has lots of different kinds of palm trees. Some are very skinny and tall, some are short, and some look like huge pineapples. Palm trees make you feel like you are on vacation.