Sunday, April 3, 2016

088 Tuesday to Tuesday (Dec. 23-29, 2015)

Here we are ready for Christmas. On the 23rd, we were down at the Wisconsin Center checking hats and coats for those who were coming to work in the kitchen and in decorating for the dinner. It is expected that 8,000 people will be fed on Christmas Day. Can we even imagine that many people to be fed? When you look in the dining room, there are 1,600 seats so there are volunteers for everything. We got to give out t-shirts and check coats and hats to, give everyone a number for their coat or hat and then tag a hanger with their number and hang them up. No one can get into the room where the coats are kept, so we have to guard the door. It was fun, and we were by ourselves so I could read my ipad and Craig played on his phone for the time when it got quiet.

That night we took Victor a couple of presents. I had bought him a nice sweater, a nice plaid shirt, a white shirt, some candy, and cookies and brownies I had made. We stayed and talked with him some. He still wears his earring, but we have hear that he did take it off for Church one day. He has changed so much, so he is taking little steps. We had talked about buying Victor a coat like we had bought for Craig. Craig wore his coat to Victor’s place so that Victor could try it on. After trying it on, it was a perfect fit and Craig gave it to him. I was surprised but proud of Craig.

On Thursday, we got up early and went off to get an MRI for my shoulder. The xray that I had did not show anything because it only looks for bones. My appointment was at 6:45. When we got there (the Smart Choice MRI Center) was located in a small store building. The lights were off, there was no movement, and the door had a red light showing. We thought a red light indicated the door was unlocked. After waiting for 10 minutes, I called the main office and asked if the office was closed. They said it should be open. The woman I was talking with said she was checking on what was happening. Just as I hung up, the two people working (a man and a woman) came through from the back and turned on the light. They were messing around, she sat down to her computer (the office is a big store front of windows), and then he turns off the light behind her. I get out of the car and go in the door. I was not being ugly when I said, “Starting a little slow this morning, aren’t we?” The man turned to me and said, “I don’t need you giving me any grief today.” “I’m not giving you grief.” “The door was open, you could have come in.” “The lights were off, who would believe the office was open when there were no lights on.” Craig came in at that time, and I tried to tell him what happened. I was given a set of papers to fill out, and when I walked back to my seat, the man said something about he didn’t need to be called a slut. Craig’s eyes were about to jump out of his head. Needless to say, I was not amused by this man. Makes me wonder what they were doing before they came out front. I think the main office called them and made them come out or no telling how long we would have waited to get in.

On the 24th we went off to the Fleet Store to buy Craig a coat like the one he gave to Victor. It didn’t take long to find one, we couldn’t find the color we had before, but we got a black one.  Then, we were on to the Wisconsin Center to check coats and hats again. After our time at the Salvation Army, we went home to make cookies for the Elders and then later that evening to take a Christmas present to the Armstrongs. We had framed copies of the Family Proclamation and the Living Christ for them. While there they gave us winter caps with the Packer’s logo on them, and Craig got a cheesehead and I got a cutting board in the shape of Wisconsin.

On Christmas Day, we were there by 8:00 that morning to get a good parking place for one thing, and to be ready when the people started coming in. The dinner wouldn’t start until 11:00, but people started lining up by 9:00. We ended up helping with several different things. One group was assigned to fill all of the water pitchers and place them on the tables in the dining room. This group was late in registering to help and got upset because the job of the pitchers had always been theirs. So they gave them what they wanted, and then they didn’t show up when they were supposed to in order to get it done before the dinner started. So, Craig and I and one other man who was helping had to fill the pitchers with the ice and water by taking each one off these big carts to fill and then placing them back on in a way that was easiest. The carts had four shelves and it was hard getting one off and putting one back without having to move others in the process. We had 160 to do. When we were finally down to the last couple of shelves, the group showed up to do their job.

They had 10 tables across, 10 people to a table, 17 rows front to back. They fed 8,000 people in 3 hours.

Outside hallway before they allowed people to enter the building.
Choir (we did it last year) in hallway when people started to arrive. Girl (3rd from left) did it with us last year, and she went to our gym).

Getting last minute instructions before letting people in to eat.

Because we were so willing to help do other things, they asked Craig and I if we would help seat the disabled who came to eat. They had removed the chairs from the tables we would use so we could get wheelchairs up close. We were supposed to seat the tables in an order, but we found out that wasn’t always possible.  
Santa and Mrs. Clause

After the people ate, they came out a door and came down a set of tables to get bus passes for that day if they needed them, then they got a bag of baked goods (leftovers from bakeries – and we had to check for mold on the bread); then they could get two pair of socks (but they would tell you they had none) -  the tables had hundreds and hundreds of socks and the line was long for them - and as they went down to my area they saw that we had different kinds of socks so they would ask for them. I would ask if they had gotten socks yet and they would say no, but I would look at their bags and they would have 6-10 pair already. I would tell them
Waiting for the fun to begin.

Elders Smith and Potz beginning their work with a new friend.
Sisters Lamprecht and Butler found a friend to work with also.

Elders Pound and Palaccio getting ready to hand out socks.
no, we needed socks for others and some got a little miffed. Then, we weren’t supposed to give toys to anyone who wasn’t there, and parents and grandparents wanted stuff for their children/grandchildren. We asked if the children were there, but no they didn’t bring them to eat. While we weren't supposed to give them toys, someone decided we should.  

The tables were roped off so there was an aisle for the people to walk down from one end to another. Someone decided the line wasn’t moving fast enough, so they decided to move some things and make a line on the other side of the ropes. So people who had been in the line for a while were then beaten out by those who just walked up. People who had already been through the line then went on the other side and got volunteers on that side to ask for stuff again as if they hadn’t already been through the line. They were asking us to throw socks over the heads of those people in front of us to those on the other side of the ropes. I think I’ll write a note to the woman in charge and let her know that those who were in the back really got little because those in the front were taking advantage of the giveaway. It is the way of the poor. Get what you can and get as much as possible because you don’t know when you might have another chance at it.

After we got home around 4:00, we got a visitor. Angelina Ruiz was in the Spanish Branch, and she was in our Pathway class last year. She keeps us supplied with tamales and verda sauce. She brought us some really sweet presents, I got pajamas and Craig got ties. She brought us some Le punche. It was delicious. We have tried to make it ourselves, but we weren’t successful, but we will try again. When Angelina left, I walked her to her car, and together we saw the Christmas full moon. Supposedly, there hasn’t been a full moon on Christmas since 1977, and it will be many years before it happens again. It didn’t look anything but ordinary.

On Saturday, we were taking it easy. We were worn out and our feet hurt; however, that night we had a baptism, Sabrina Wynne, who has been a foster mom for several hundred kids over her lifetime. Twenty-five years ago she first met missionaries, and over the years she has gone in and out meeting with them. She called the missionaries and told them she was ready to be baptized. She is a wonderful black woman with a heart full of love for others. She is spreading the Gospel to all her acquaintances, family, and foster kids.
Good woman with a wonderful heart of love for others.

Sunday, I had to talk on giving. I starting out feeling like it was a pretty good talk, but now that I think about it, I believe I was kind of out of it.

Monday brought us a blizzard. That morning we had to do an inspection, and we knew the snow was predicted to hit us around 9:00 a.m.  So we got up and got to Pewaukee around 8:00. I inspected the Sisters apartment, and we were on the road back to Milwaukee. Sure enough, as we were taking the inspection papers to the mission office, the snow began. It snowed forever. We stayed in for the rest of the day and worked on family history.

On Tuesday, we had our District Meeting. No one had plowed the City Branch bldg.. parking lot, so we had to park on the side of the road. We would never have gotten in and out without ripping the bottom of our car off like we did last year.  We spent the time setting our goals for this year. We felt like we really didn’t have much to say because we won’t be here as the goals are met.

So here we are at the end of the month and the year. I feel like I’ve just gotten used to writing 2015, and now we will be writing 2016. It’s a good thing I don’t write many checks.

Our Scripture for December:  Alma 32:41

But if ye will nourish the word, yea, nourish the tree as it beginneth to grow, 
by your faith with great diligence, and with patience, looking forward to the 
fruit thereof, it shall take root; and behold it shall be a tree springing up 
unto everlasting life

Elder and Sister Lenhard

Sunday, February 21, 2016

087 Tuesday to Tuesday (Dec. 16-22, 2015)

We love to go to the Temple, and we look forward to finding new things each time we go that might deepen our understanding of what we are being taught. Every time we have a new film I learn so much. We went on Wednesday, the 16th, and I really had an epiphany. For the first time, I began to understand what it means for the Temple work to be so symbolic. Why do we dress as we do in the Temple? I’m just guessing that we cover ourselves from head to toe with the Priesthood, and its through the Priesthood that we are able to perform the ordinances needed to return to our Father.

I guess after so many tries, you are left with the best of the lot!  This is sad.
 Our Pathway class is over. On Thursday, we watched over the classes and reviewed what we had learned for the first semester. We started early so they could have food. It was so good. We had a wonderful class, and it was a great way to go out. We will miss this class. We are sad, but it is necessary. The Jepsons will be good, and they are so looking forward to it.

Early in the day, I finished my last proctoring of a test for one of our students from last year. What a great program, and it is from the Lord.

On Friday, we had a wonderful experience with the Salvation Army. We got to go help with families doing Christmas shopping. Last spring we spent time helping this organization pack up all the toys that were left from Christmas 2014. As we went in, Craig got to help out front checking those who came in and directing them to the right places. I think he also got to spend time talking to lots of those who were volunteering. I got to line up with a grocery basket by me and then as a person came in with the paperwork, they checked it and gave it to me to take the person shopping. The paper had listed the number of children and their ages. I did not suggest anything, and some of the mothers (which is all I had) knew exactly what they were looking for as shopping. We were told that they could not ask for anything, but several of the shoppers I saw did just that. There were some who had been there before and were more aggressive in asking for stuff. Most of those I worked with were really sweet, and they were very grateful for what they got. There were some really nice gifts, many contributed by the Marine Corps. 
Signing in to help
Preparing items to be selected

This is a Marine-sponsored activity

While there, Craig had managed to meet one of the last survivors of the Tuskegee Airmen.. He came around and introduced me to him. I don’t remember his name, but he was 91, and you would have thought he was no older than 75-80. What a wonderful man, so humble, yet so strong in his love for this country. He was grateful for what those men were capable of doing. It took 40 years for our country to recognize their contribution and give them the medals they deserved.

What a nice guy!
One of the other men Craig introduced me to was a member from the Kenosha Ward who was a Marine and who was helping with the shopping experience. This was such a great program. We are proud of our work with the Salvation Army.
Elder from Kenosha and a Marine to boot!  hahaha
On Sunday, we had a great Sunday program, and then that afternoon, we went to Racine and fed the homeless like we did earlier in the year. It was a little better organized this year, and we so enjoyed it. I was touched by one woman who told me that she was not happy that it was Christmas time because she would be all alone. I felt for her. 
Elder and Sister Smith Helping

Elder Jepson Getting Ready

I'm Mixing Lemonade

Getting food ready to serve

Socks appear to be a necessity

Monday found us at our final dental appointment in Wisconsin. The dental hygienist is one I won’t miss. She loves to tell me that I never clean my teeth correctly. I brush those little boogers 2-3 times a day, use picks (not as much with the flossing which she hates), and am always using mouthwash. Evidently, I’m not very good at this. It always feels so good when she is finished, but it hurts.

We went by the Mission Office to pick up packages for Christmas, and we left them for Christmas. We also had to take a box to the Post Office where I was returning two skirts I had bought from a new company called She Traveled – started by returned missionaries for sister missionaries. Both were two big; one I didn’t like. So I returned both and asked that one be returned to me at a smaller size – love that!!!!

Tuesday, we were off to the Temple because our District Meeting had been changed to Wednesday at the last minute because it was going to be a Christmas meeting. We were sad that we would miss it on Wednesday because we were involved in the Salvation Army getting ready for the Christmas dinner to be held on the 25th. So we were off to the Temple and had to get back so that I could get a haircut that evening. It was another wonderful opportunity to strengthen our testimonies of the Temple.
I'd say this one is better than last time.
Have I said how much I love Christmas. We have been so busy this month that it is hard to believe that Christmas is here already. I love it.

Our Scripture for December:  Alma 32:41

But if ye will nourish the word, yea, nourish the tree as it beginneth to grow, 
by your faith with great diligence, and with patience, looking forward to the 
fruit thereof, it shall take root; and behold it shall be a tree springing up 
unto everlasting life

Elder and Sister Lenhard

Saturday, February 20, 2016

086 Tuesday to Tuesday (Dec. 9-15, 2015)

Starting off another wonderful week. We are out of our busy time when we feel really needed, and we now have to find things to keep us working. The more we work, the faster the time goes. Besides, we love to have stuff to do.

On Wednesday, we went to the Temple and took a sister from the Ward with us. Sister Diane Bridges is from Guayana. Actually, her family is from there, but she has lived in the U.S. all her life. She is a cute little woman, and I have to say that I misjudged her and figured she was a sweet black woman. On the way to the Temple, I found that she was a paralegal and had finished an MBA from a local college. She is really a nice person. She was set to have a job interview the next week. She had lost her job with a temp agency as a paralegal because the agency had lost a billion dollar suit in California and layoffs were held throughout the country. She has an older daughter in college who is a straight A student and a freshman in high school who could care less about school. He is a good looking young man who plays football, basketball, and track. He is not as interested in Church as his mother would like, but she continues to love and work with him. He is a good young man, just looking for what young men look for when they don’t have a close friend at Church.  
I liked this picture

Going to Temple with Diane Bridges and did Sealings only

Anyway, we went to the Temple and did Sealings. She has been doing initiatories forever with her mother who lives in Lacrosse, WI. She hasn’t done Sealings in forever, so we got to do something new for heer this time. We had taken our family names and were able to do quite a few Sealings of husband and wives and children to parents. What a fun activity. It is so nice to see these Sealings done. I had one that I had reserved from 2014. If I didn’t get it done, it would be removed from my reserved list. After our work was done, we helped with some other people’s work also. It was wonderful.  We had started later in the day, so it was later when we started home. We stopped at the Oasis (where we can get our easy toll pass and eat from several restaurant). I like to get Panda Garden from there while Craig usually goes Taco Bell. Neither one good for us, but it’s easy to get after being at the Temple. So we stopped there, ate, and got to know Diana better. She had interviewed for a job on Tuesday, and she had come to the Temple to ask for the Lord to help her get a job. We are praying for her.

On Thursday, we had two sets of apartments to inspect. Later that day we had Pathway. It was the last class that would be taught by the students. The last class is taught by us.

Friday, I had a to proctor a test that morning. We were scheduled for 10:00; however, earlier in the week we were notified that we would have a Zone Conference from 10-4. I called the girl with the test, and she rescheduled to 8:00. She finished up in time for us to get to the Zone Conference. The Lord really helps when we need it. The Zone Conference was really good. 

It was a rainy day, but that afternoon we were scheduled to go with the Armstrongs to see Christmas lights in Miller Valley (yes, we are talking about Miller Beer territory). We went to Baker’s Square first to eat (the Armstrongs have a son who works there).  I got fish (which wasn’t all that good). They have the best pie in the area. We went to Miller Valley (an area that we hadn’t been in before). It was a great light show; we tried to use pictures that blocked out the Miller name.hahaha  It was late by the time we got home, but it had been a full day.
Frederick Miller Plankroad Brewery Welcome Center

Welcome to Miller Valley
Lights on the Trees

Crowds Growing

More Lights

On Saturday, we had another test to proctor and got it started at 8:30. It went quickly and then we went home to change and go to the gym. There was going to be a gym party that afternoon because the old management had sold out to some new people, and it was a get to know you kind of thing. We wanted to go early enough that we could work out before-hand.  We stayed around long enough to get a few refreshments; I took a photo of Craig and a couple of the men he talks to more than exercises with at the gym. 

That evening we went to the Norway House to buy a troll that a woman had told me she had left over from some figures she had for sale at the Scandavian Festival. She had told me that she would have it available, and she told me it would be $8. One other time we had tried to meet up, but we couldn’t. When I got to her this time, she charged me $10. When I saw it, it wasn’t what I expected, and it wasn’t worth $10. I wish I had the guts to say at the time that I wasn’t interested in the one I got. Oh, well, she was a sweet little old woman.
Looks a litte devilish

This one is happy

One of my favorites

My other favorite

On Sunday, we had the most beautiful Christmas program in Church that we’ve ever set through. There were 6-7 violenists, 2 cello players, 2 flutists, and a whole choir. It was so beautiful. For one song, a little girl came up front and sang the beginning of the song, Still, still, still, then the choir took over and at the end the little girl sang the last few lines. It was so still in the Chapel, you could feel the Spirit so sweetly. Afterwards, that music stayed with us all day. It was haunting.

Monday brought us to laundry, a shoulder x-ray, and hunting tubagrip. My left shoulder has been hurting me for a long. I have wondered what in the world is wrong with it. I just felt like I had hurt it carrying a lot of heavy stuff. I have tried to not carry stuff, sleep on it the right way – no pillows, keep heat on it, use Deep Blue, you name it. I’ve tried everything. I finally went to the doctors because I don’t have much time here and I’m not sure if I have enough time left to do it right.. I have some money built up in my insurance account, and I want to use it before they put me on Medicare next year. Anyway, the insurance company wouldn’t let me have an MRI until I have an xray and physical therapy. The doctor said that it sounded like a torn rotator cuff and an xray won’t show that. But I had to have it anyway. Now we will see what happens.

Later that day we used a Groupon to have lunch at a place (Silverspring House) in Glendale. I should have gotten a burger but I got ribs. Next time (if there is one), I’ll have a burger. 
Can't find our original, so had to look everywhere for this image of Silverspring House
On Tuesday we did not get to the District Meeting because Craig had an outpatient surgery on his artery on the left side of his head. It is right before the ear, and they were going to take a small piece of the artery to see if there was an abscess in the artery that might be causing his headaches. He was out for the day afterwards. We left the hospital and headed to the pharmacy for some pain medication and then got him home. It rained all day so it was good we stayed in the apartment.
Pretty good size scar (can hardly see it now) for his surgery

Our Scripture for December:  Alma 32:41

But if ye will nourish the word, yea, nourish the tree as it beginneth to grow, 
by your faith with great diligence, and with patience, looking forward to the 
fruit thereof, it shall take root; and behold it shall be a tree springing up 
unto everlasting life

Elder and Sister Lenhard