Monday…crazy busy Monday! I was fully expecting a quiet start to the week, but that never happened. It seemed I was stomping out fires and answering questions at every turn. I had a ton of advancement letters to prepare and print – easily the most I’ve had with any transfer. The fact that we have 27 new trainers for 27 new missionaries was the biggest factor. President was inspired to call missionaries who have only been out 2 transfers as trainers. They are fresh, committed, and excited about the work. I think it’s brilliant. Devon spent a good part of his day delivering household stuff and bikes to missionaries. Monday evening we had FHE with the other senior missionaries at President Bekker’s home. It is always relaxing to get together, visit, eat, and play a fun game. President gave us a great thought from Preach My Gospel. It was a welcomed relaxing end to a stressful day.
Sitting L to R: Sister Evans, Sister Overduyn, Elder Overduyn, Elder Haskell, Sister Haskell (on floor). Sister Sturgis, Elder Sturgis.
Standing L to R: Elder Evans, Elder Reeder, Sister Reeder, Elder Tufts, Sister Bekker, Sister Tufts, President Becker, Sister Eldridge, Elder Eldridge, Sister Bentley, Elder Bentley, Sister Yim.
Actually, the best part of Monday was a couple that stopped by the office. They are from Utah and are here on vacation. They want to serve a senior mission in Hawaii and stopped by to see if there was anything coming up. Well…there certainly is! We are due to be released in March. This couple has extensive banking and secretarial experience and would love to work in the office. WooHoo! I think we have replacements. Nothing is guaranteed, but we have a need and they are available. Hopefully it will all work out.
Tuesday was also busy, but steady. I finally was able to shred two sets of files for the departing missionaries, and create files for new incoming missionaries. I also had time to organize my Come and Go Binder for upcoming transfers. It’s a genius method of keeping track of what needs to be done and when. I used to be afraid I would forget something, but now I have full confidence in this system. I updated and emailed the weekly Come and Go Report and emailed the mission newsletter to all the parents. I also mailed letters, release certificates, and travel information to the stake presidents and bishops of our November departing missionaries. Devon was crazy busy updating the addresses and phone numbers after transfers. It is such a mammoth task and it changes every 6 weeks. He is also getting paper work competed for the new senior apartment, and getting ready to close out another. In the evening we drove to Super Cuts for hair cuts with our favorite girl, Vicki.
Wednesday and Thursday were more of the same at a manageable pace. I got started on the next round of departing binders and I’m ahead with handouts and letters That always makes me feel good.
One of the things I make every transfer is the above “Planner Add-ons.” They are quick teaching references for the missionaries to use. They add them to their planners. Months ago I reformatted the text. Now I just have to print the four pages back-to-back, laminate, and cut each page. Then I take them to have holes punched so they can add them into the spiral binding. It is labor intensive, but so much cheaper for the mission if I do the work instead of taking it to Office Max – heaven knows we spend enough money there with other things. I also print, laminate, and cut two other information sheets for the missionaries. It always feels good when these are out of the way.
Friday was a quiet day. Work was steady and we didn’t have many interruptions. Sixteen new cars for the mission have arrived and needed to be picked up at the Toyota dealership. So a group of us drove over to get them. Sister Reeder and I have started having “ukulele Friday.” We bring in our ukes and play for a few minutes in the afternoon. It’s so much fun. We’ve started working on Christmas music. Friday evening we went to dinner at a great Mexican restaurant with all the office staff. After dinner we walked to a store called Martin & McArthur’s. It is a high-end store specializing in products made from Hawaiian koa wood – very beautiful and very expensive. It was almost like a museum.
We bought these koa wood Christmas trees, but passed on the $34,000 table and $14,000 headboard.
A couple of the new cars we picked up are going to be shipped to the Big Island. Before that can happen they need to be driven around to get the gas tank below ¼. Elder Reeder, the car czar, asked us to take one on Saturday and drive as far as we could, and we were happy to help him out.
Does this look like a mission car? Well it is, and it is the car we got to drive around. Pretty sweet! Our assigned car is a 2013 Toyota Corolla with 18,000 miles on it. We don't put many miles on...after all, we are on an island, and we walk back and forth to work and church all week.
First we went to the Dole Pineapple Plantation.
Then we drove to this quiet cove and went snorkeling. There was a fair amount of fish. But as I was paddling back to shore, along came a huge school of yellow stripped fish and some blackish fish – probably 50 or more! I followed them around a bit as they stopped and fed off the rocks. They didn’t seem to mind me at all. After the beach we headed home for quick showers before we made a run to Costco, Safeway, and WalMart. With all that, the gas gage was still at ¾.
Sunday was beautiful and relaxing. In the late afternoon we decided to take a drive up Tantalus Drive to see the view of Honolulu from the mountains. It did not disappoint.
This photo was taken from the balcony of our apartment building.
It's been another wonderful week. We're rested and grateful to have another week to serve in the Hawaii Honolulu Mission.