We still love it here, we still love the wonderful people we get to associate with, we love the Self-Reliance Initiative and it's potential to bless lives, and we are especially thrilled when we hear of lives being changed and blessed as Self-Reliance courses are held.We keep very, very busy with many meetings and are often exhausted but love what we are doing!
Of course we get attached to them and it is sad when they are transferred to a new area. And when they return home - wow! We just wish them all the best.
Our testing process has been streamlined so we test only the 4th Monday of each month here at the mission office. It makes our lives so much smoother. But if there is someone who is serving a couple of hours away we will drive up there since it is too hard for them to come in.
That is what we did last week when someone up near Newcastle needed both the Michigan and OPIC tests. After the tests we took the long way home and did some sight seeing. We drove through an area that was full of both white and black trunked trees. We had seen them on one of our other trips but did not have time to stop.
We took a few minutes to examine the trees. I could see that there had been a fire at one point and was surprised to see some large trees with white trunks while others looked burned. And I could feel the charcoal on the trunks of the black ones. Then I realized that they were probably all burned and that some of the trees had shed their bark. I suppose at some point all the trunks will be white. It is amazing to me that there could be a fire and not destroy the trees.
|definitely burned bark on the black trunk!|
|I have no idea why these trees were lined up in a row.|
|Larger trees had shed their bark, leaving only the smaller ones with burned bark.|
|I am always a sucker for waves against rocks!|
|During low tide it is possible to go inside and explore the caves. |
But the tide was going in and we were not dressed for spelunking!
Nor did we have the inclination to do so.
There were some other beaches we had hoped to check out but since the sun was setting and our energy was pretty much used up we just headed home.
I am sure we will be that way again and discover more beautiful places.
August is a month full of birthdays in our family which gave us the opportunity to try to reach the birthday boys and girls to serenade them with our rendition of "Happy Birthday". Pretty much it just sounds like two old folks trying to sing on key 😄 But the best part is when we can see and/or speak with our family.
We miss them of course and it is always does my heart good to hear their voices.
Technology is so amazing! Not too many years ago we could not have communicated as we now do.
Spring is coming! How strange it seems that spring begins near the end of August. But the other day as we left the office it smelled like spring! I even repotted a plant on our deck today.
|A TALL tree!|
|A nice walk!|
|A tree shedding its bark to reveal |
a beautiful white trunk
What a delight to find a nursery on site that was selling lots of beautiful flowers for spring planting. There are so many unusual and beautiful flowers in Australia and we are lucky to see so many.
|A grass tree which was retailing for about $400!!|
|A Kangaroo Claw! Yes, that is it's name!|
|A lovely Grevillea|
|But AMAZING when open!|
How many of you have seen the old Star Wars movies when there were huts in the trees? This park has a 'walk in the trees' experience that reminded me of the movie. It is just cool!! When our grandchildren come in a few months we will bring them there for sure!
|I thought this was so cool! Yes, that is Elder Jenkins |
in the foreground with his Australian hat!
|The platforms on the trees went for a LONG way! |
It is necessary to put on the provided harnesses
and head gear but what grand adventure!
Whoever thought of this activity has a wonderful imagination!!!
We had an enjoyable day. At lunch time we brought out our packed lunches and prepared to sit at a couple of picnic tables. At one end a lady was trying to take pictures of a bowl of food.
Turned out she as the owner of the CAFE on site and was developing a new dish for Father's Day, - By the way Australian Father's Day is September 3rd.
She had a bowl of 'porridge' with all sorts of goodies on top. Her husband was drizzling honey as she took the picture.
Elder Jenkins spoke with her and gave her a pass along card so she could learn more about the Church. Then he said something which causes her to say she would bring us out a sample of the dish. A few minutes later we all had sample spoons and this lovely bowl of "porridge" to sample. It was free to us but she had yet to determine the price she would charge when she put if on the menu.
|Very Yummy Porridge with a sliced banana, chia seeds, nuts, almonds, granola decorating the top.|
And so goes our life from one adventure to another. Last night we went with other senior missionaries to the temple. It is such a blessing to live literally 5 minutes away from the temple. We usually go every week. We all went over to the food court for dinner afterwards. It is a good place to go because there is a great variety of food from which to choose. All of us do not have the same taste in food so this is a way we can all eat what we want and still be together to enjoy each other's company.
Last night was especially nice for us because we were able to deliver a Book of Mormon to a young man at one of the food places. We had met him earlier in the week and spoken about religion. He is so open and hungry to speak about God. We told him we would bring him a book the next time we were in. He is a foreigner in Australia and may not have had the opportunity to learn of the Gospel in his own land. He was so happy to get the book and to have missionaries come and speak to him about the Gospel. We will likely be patronizing his place of business for some time to come so we can visit.
Today is our Saturday and we have been busy cleaning our flat - vacuuming, dusting, doing laundry, replacing a light bulb, sweeping the balcony, washing floors and will clean the bathroom before we go to a Stake Conference meeting tonight. It is nice to have a day when we can actually clean!!!! I like a clean place to live.
Life is good and we are blessed to be here and to know about the Gospel of Jesus Christ.