Christmas 2012 – Fort Lauderdale Mission

 I am going to try to record this Christmas day in pictures. I already realize that I missed one opportunity but hopefully I will get another chance to make it up.

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Our 4′ artificial but festive tree had a few presents under it…most of them were from Mary to me.  One of the presents we received was a set of paper Star War ornaments that were cut out by Bob’s family along with Gentry’s Devan…a lot of work must have gone into them. Mary got me a tripod for my camera so I can be in more pictures. I thought the Merry Christmas bag was a nice added thought.

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Mary made cinnamon rolls so we could have our traditional Christmas cinnamon rolls and hot chocolate – the iPad is becoming traditional. We got a call from Jim’s family so we could share a little of their Christmas. Colin was very busy and we caught this great smile. The sippy cup and a box of tissues seemed to be among his favorite presents. I see we almost got Oliva in the picture.

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Colin is happy to be with daddy and Charlotte drew back just as the picture was snapped. FaceTime and Skype make it much easier to be away from family on Chirstmas. We then went to district meeting with the Ft Lauderdale group. I missed the first two DM of this transfer so I did not want to miss another. In the back is sisters Lake and Bean who add beauty to the district. Continuing along the back row we get elders Taylor, Bloom, Burt, Thorne, Bishop and Rondo. The front row has elder Rellaford, us and elder Smoot.

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I had to publish this crazy picture of the district to record the surprise – or perhaps horror on elder Smoot’s face when I threw my arms around him. Notice how Mary sat gracefully smiling while I made a fool of myself…that is the way it normally is. I think sister bean was posing for a role in a spy movie. When we got home I spent a couple of hours on the computer updating this blog and some other things.  The Evans sent pictures of their deliveries so I posted them below and put in a couple here to show what I was busy doing.

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Nativity globe for Mary while elders Smoot and Bishop, the Fort Lauderdale Zone leaders gave us and each of their missionaries a beautiful ornament with the new temple inside. After fixing a big pot of mashed potatoes (me) and a big bowl of fresh green beans (Mary) we went over to the Sommerfeldts to enjoy a dinner with three other couples and the assistants. Mary, elder Rippstein and elder Evans enjoy talking before dinner.

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Sister Evans helped sister Sommerfeldt getting things ready. The kitchen is so small that more than two people just get in the others way. Elders Shipley, Rippstein and Avila strike a pose – notice the picture on the wall behind them. Elder Shipley borrowed my camera and took this picture of me with Elders Rippstein and Evans.

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The assistants spent lots of time texting. Elder Shipley is showing something funny to elder Avila. Elder Evans gets into the picture taking business. More texting – it just come naturally. Maybe elder Rippstein is texting elder Shipley or visa-versa.

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The Sommerfeldts opened their home to us – I kind of hope elder Sommerfeldt does not see this picture. The Evans are our Family History missionaries who will go home in January. We will miss them greatly. When we got home one of the ducks came up looking for his Christmas dinner. He had to be satisfied with a couple of pieces of bread. The next day I got a note from the apartment asking me to stop feeding the ducks because someone complained…the ducks are going to be very disappointed.

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Later we got to spend some time on FaceTime with most of our children and grandchildren. William found the cookies and later showed off his new present with his sister Kelli almost in the picture. Krista is not going to think this is a very good picture but it the best we got.

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Cindy, Mike and Bob got on for a while. Mike is the only one that looks like he is enjoying the experience.


Mary watched this for the first time all the way through. I watched parts of it when it sounded interesting. The rest of my time was spent  putting things in this blog and catching up my journal.

It was a very nice, if quiet Christmas.

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