Sunday, May 25, 2014

This week in El Salvador...

We've had an exciting week--May 19 to May 25, 2014.
Our oldest grandson, Daniel, and his wife, Kelly, have come to San Salvador to volunteer in an orphanage for three months. We picked them up Monday at the airport.
They were tuckered out from having only slept one hour the night before they boarded the plane in Boston.  They had been in Boston for a couple of weeks following their wedding open house in Kelly's home town.
They were sealed in the Mt. Timpanogas Temple on December 27, 2013, then finished their semester at BYU-Idaho before going back to Boston.
We like to get a photo on our terrace patio with the temple in the background. One photo with Grampa...
...then one with Grama.
The the traditional gathering meal...stew and scones.
[Time out...Walt's just back from a 2-hour training in the temple with the six sealers. He needs a nap.  He had a Regional Correlation Council this morning from 7:00a.m. to Noon...then we had a "welcoming Sunday dinner" for Daniel and Kelly with a temple missionary couple, Elder DeVar y Hna. Sharon Haroldsen, and friends from our ward--Herbert y Daniela Castillo Hernandez. when we come to Sunday.]

Daniel y Kelly slept four hours. They had just awakened when we returned from Family Home Evening at the Udalls.  Pte. y Hna. Alas were at their home*, and the Haroldsens were at the eye doctor for a conjunctivitis he got on Sunday. 
Udalls called it "Visit the sick" family home evening. Elder Udall is recuperating from a hernia surgery.  We all enjoyed talking with each other.  Then she had whopping servings of brownies topped with ice cream and cherry sauce.
Tuesday we did our shift at the temple, then we did some grocery shopping. They like picante chips and picante salsa.
Our computers go everywhere with us, don't they.
A night time photo by the temple and we're calling it a day.
Wednesday Walt was in his temple presidency meeting from 8:00 until noon.   Delena Markland came and cut my hair at 9:00-ish, then she drove us to the "Home of Love and Hope" for the Fishers to check in with Rachel (on the right) who is in charge, and Mandy (on the left) who coordinates all the volunteers. They are both from Ohio.
They took  us through the home (which is in a different area than when the whole Fisher family came last September with several suitcases of things that ward members had donated to bring to them).  Then around the block to the volunteer house where Daniel and Kelly might stay during the time they are helping (the last week of May to the middle of August while they are between semesters at BYU-I).
Here are Kelly, Daniel, Rachel, Delena holding Dixie, and Mandy just out back at the volunteer home. Mateo, Dixie's twin brother is crawling just of site of the camera.
Wednesday when we got back from our temple shift, they were doing some rigorous exercising!
Thursday...We got to go to the National Theatre to the performance of the National Symphony where our Bishop was the featured viola soloist.

This was our first time in this grand performing arts building in the center of the city of San Salvador.
We enjoyed the selections from Beethoven.  Our bishop, Eduardo Figueroa, was marvelous on the viola.
Hna. Majano took a photo of the four of us.
 We were grateful to Presidente Rafael y Hna. Aida Majano for driving us since we didn't know how to get there.  Along the way they pointed out special landmarks to us. And it was fun going back for him to drive us up around where he grew up, and the home around the block from him where she grew up.  
"Cupid shot the arrow of love into my heart for her when she was 12," he said, adding, "so I waited for her to grow up."
With no traffic, it took only 16 minutes from the city center to get back to the temple grounds.  We thought we were further away than that from downtown San Salvador.
They have had three major earthquakes that have leveled this city center.  Two of them were only a week apart, so they've had to rebuild twice.
Daniel took a photo of the four of us.
Friday... We planned to go eat out at the Multi-Plaza mid-afternoon, but Grampa was needed at the temple for three hours more after our shift ended, so we got there about 6:30 that evening.
It was worth the wait, however. The food at LaPampa was delicious. Three of us got traditional food like Tenderloin steak or Talapia (fish).  Oh, but Daniel, he was brave and ordered rabbit.
After he shared a piece with Kelly, then Grampa, I got brave enough to take a little taste.  Way out of my comfort zone.  I thought it could have been cooked more.  The other three thought it was delicious.  
Then went up to the second level to do a little grocery shopping. I sent them over to get some carrots while we were picking out bananas.
   "These carrots are huge! Daniel exclaimed, adding "Three would make ten normal-sized ones."
We'd forgotten how shocked we used to be at the size.
Same with the cabbages...
But these marble-size potatoes don't measure up to Idaho potatoes.
Then our "Friday-night movie" was watching their engagement and wedding photos.
Fun evening with this darling couple.
 Saturday after our temple shift we headed over to the Artisans.
Why were we not surprised that Daniel looked at knives first.  He was enamored when he was old enough to have his first pocket knife.  
There is something for everyone...
They were excited to find this painting of The Last Supper.
It's on a curved piece of pottery.  Beautiful!
When we got back to the apartment, I asked Grampa if he could hop out of the van for Daniel to take a photo of us together.
"We have lots of photos of us together," Grampa said tiredly.
So I had Daniel take one of us in the van.
And that brings us to Sunday...
   Here are the newlyweds just coming out of Church talking to a missionary.
Everyone pitched in and help get dinner on the table.
We explained to our guests, Herbert y Daniela Castillo that this was a typical Mormon Sunday dinner of roast beef, mashed potatoes 'n gravy, veggie, salad, rolls, and dessert.
They especially loved the hot homemade rolls and frozen strawberry jam.
We got a group photo before Presidente Petersen had to leave for the temple for the temple sealers' training.
For dessert, Hna. Haroldsen brought the rest of her "Poor Man's Cake" that she had made that has no eggs in it.
Before the training began, Walt called from the temple to see if I had another jar of jam in the freezer to send with Herbert y Daniela.
"That was our last jar," I said, "but I'll send the rest of the jar of it with them that I just opened for dinner."
They were happy about that.
And I also sent with them the two white rolls and the two whole wheat rolls left from the 3 1/2 dozen I'd made. (The whole wheat rolls were a plain bread dough without eggs that I made for Elder Haroldsen who is allergic to eggs.)
Can't beat good food and good company.  After a walk around the temple, Daniel and Kelly are skyping her parents in Boston.
Daniel's Mom and Dad, and four of his brothers and sisters are driving to Salt Lake tonight as they are flying to London tomorrow with a hundred or so for their 50 Idaho Ballroom Academy dancers to complete at Blackpool, England, during the week.  Aimee, Heidi, Ashley and Michael are the happy Fisher siblings who get to go this year.  We wish them good luck.
Wherever our family members are this Memorial Day weekend, we always pray for your safety and happiness.
...Planning to post a Memorial Day salute to our parents and grandparents tomorrow.  All that we are and hope to be we owe to them.  We are so thankful for our great heritage and pray we will always bring honor to the names they have given to us.

We pray you have had a peaceful and restful Sabbath Day.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is true.
We are blessed to have a living Prophet to guide us in these troubled days.  President Thomas S. Monson is not just the Prophet for the members of this Church, he is the Prophet for the entire world.  
The head of this Church is Jesus Christ, who will reveal to the Prophet all that we need to know.  
God, the Father, and His Son, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost make up the Godhead.
There are Twelve Living Apostles today, just as Christ chose Twelve Apostles when He lived on the earth.
May we follow the counsel of our leaders as they lead us in righteousness.
As the time draws closer to the Second Coming of the Savior, Satan is frantically lashing out as he causes more and more wickedness.  We see him leading more and more astray, deceiving even the elect.
Jesus Christ is our refuge and strength for these troubled times. May we be ever found following Him.
Of this we testify, in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
Walt and Eileen Petersen, San Salvador, El Salvador

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