Sunday, January 22, 2017

Feliz Año Nuevo 2017

Is it really 2017? Time flies by! We celebrated New Year's Eve with four of our favorite missionaries here in Virú Pueblo. We took turns wearing the yellow party glasses, ate our twelve grapes each, drank hot chocolate with marshmallows, and Paneton, also pineapple and mangoes. We put on some church videos and then we watched out the window at fireworks and people burning their "last year's sins." Interesting and festive.
We can tell we're getting used to life here because we hardly take pictures anymore. What used to be surprising has become just normal. I'm afraid we may have trouble adjusting to life back home. We said farewell to another group, but this time all the sisters were ones we had welcomed when they first arrived! It was teary-eyed. Most of our missionaries have been here less time than us. One of the new sisters asked me if we lived in a little village. I told her, no, it's a pueblo. Oops, I guess that means village.
Last night we attended a young adult fireside as the guest speakers on marriage. After 42 years, they figure we're experts. Then today we gave talks in church about family history. I talked about how Family Search recently opened up some old Newfoundland census records providing nearly a hundred family names for me. It's been such a treat sharing those temple ordinances with our kids and grandkids back home. And it's been especially moving to perform temple ordinances for parents, grandparents and some of my favorite aunts.
I was thinking we need to get back into the piano lesson routine. With Christmas, school summer vacation, and our ever busier schedule, it's been a month. I worry no one's practicing, yet today in church several students pleasantly surprised me. First Mary played all three hymns today, and two from the regular hymn! Then Mel and her family did a special musical number, "Teach me to Walk." Mel accompanied beautifully, even though she hadn't yet learned it last time we met for lessons. I stayed to attend the later branch because Alissa said she'd be accompanying for her first time playing the sacrament hymn. Since I wound up leading the music, I was there for the special family number too. What a surprise, Susana accompanied! So that was four students making me proud, all in one day. I promptly scheduled lessons for Tuesday.
Then Pulidos announced that they just got an oven. We know what that lessons for family home evening!

Happy New Year, 2017

 We're eating our 12 grapes for good luck in the New Year.

Better fresh grapes than fermented!

Our neighbor Susana runs a special holiday stand with her kids: Keren, Guillermo, Julio.

Dining out in Chimbote: I ordered anticuchos de corazon.

Hermanas Herrera and Muñoz in Casma

 Fresh jugo for breakfast 

Pancakes while we wait to hear the transfers

Herman Silva learns to make pancakes.

Elder Whitney tells his famous "Clap 3 Times Story" one last time before Elder Ricse gets transferred away.

Farewell Elders Soliz, Arévalo, Campos, Alanoca, Watkins. Farewell Hermanas Espinola, Rowley, Flake.

Welcome new missionaries.

Missionary breakfast: manjar blanco crepes, chocolate avena/oatmeal, jugo de piña, yogurt with cereal, chicken nugget sandwiches

Tongue, any questions?

What's Elder Whitney gazing at so longingly?

High rise construction: bringing up concrete one bucket at a time

Consilio Hermana Lideres: Butts, Fullmer, Esprella, Miranda, Dillree

The Young Adult Fireside on Marriage

So talented with the selfie stick, Hermana Sariah recently served a mission in Paraguay.


  1. So awesome about family history and temple work! Also, love the classic cross eyed Ken face with the 2017 glasses.

  2. I love seeing all your adventures, and so glad you both have kept your sense of humor! Such great experiences.

  3. It's such fun to get your comments and know that you still remember us after being gone so long!

  4. I'll forgive you guys if your first few months back you post a ton of photos of everyday ordinary things!

  5. Camilla: Grandpa, you look like you have a new hair cut!
    Lillian: I love you!
    Oliver: I'm getting my hair cut right now! What kind of tongue is that you were eating?