Tuesday, 16 July 2013

The Ellis's touch SNOW

On Monday the 8th April we took an hour trip up to Logan Utah to visit with Boyd and Joan Humphreys.  These wonderful octogenarians served one of their three missions in Melbourne Australia and spent about 10 months in Launceston when I was about 15.  I can remember that my parents and the Humphreys became really great friends. When Jason and I were newly weds we were fortunate to take a trip to America where we saw the Humphreys again.  They made us sleep over using their pyjamas.  Jason had to wear a 'onsie'  (this was in 1997 when they weren't popular)... a very unforgettable night.  Anyway 17 years later it was so great to catch up with them again and visit with them and have our children meet such a lovely couple. 

After a very warm snug nights sleep we were so amazed and astonished to arise and see snow every where!!! Apparently snow wasn't forecast all! It was a dream come true for our cherubs.  The excitement and chatter they made as they talked about the snow and telling each other to come and check out this window or that window....then we saw quite a lot of deer run through their front garden.  It was amazing!  So after sooooo much begging and pleading I finally agreed for everyone to go outside at 9am!  (they had been asking since 7am)  I will never ever forget that precious freezing 15 minutes we spent outside together playing and running around in the snow!  It was glorious to see the children having so much pleasure.


Tuesday, 9 July 2013


During Conference weekend some missions from all over the world get together and have mission reunions.  Officially anyone can attend as it is just like a fireside but most likely it is people who have served in the mission or maybe people living in the area who happen to be in Salt Lake for general Conference.  On Friday the 4th April we attended the New Zealand Missions reunion.  Jason served in the Wellington/Christchurch Mission but they combine the reunions with Auckland Mission as well.  I was surprised and happy to hear that starting this week (July 2013) there will also be a third mission in NZ - the Hamilton New Zealand Mission and the new mission president and his wife were in attendance.

Close to the beginning of the meeting new members of the 'New Zealand Mission' society were asked to stand and introduce themselves.  Jason was to chicken.  I thought he would have introduced himself especially from coming so far away.  A couple of others from Australia also stood and I obviously wasn't listening too well as Dawn Sayers from Hobart Tasmania stood and talked for awhile.  (Her daughter Amy and my brother Matthew used to be married and have three gorgeous boys)  - After the meeting I was really surprised to see Dawn, Keith and their son Joe. Joe and I had some great activities together in the youth program.  It was so lovely to see some friendly faces as Jason couldn't find anyone he knew! Dawn seemed to be related to everyone there :)

The actual meeting overall, was a little boring, maybe because I haven't served a mission in New Zealand.  However one of the speakers was the son of Matthew Cowley who was a missionary in the 1914-1918 and later as an apostle, who spent loads of time living in New Zealand loving and teaching people.  There are many recorded miracles that happened around his time over there.  So it was really humbling and spiritually uplifting to listen to this mans testimony and his experiences of love that flowed from his father for other people.

Then on Sunday after the morning conference session we were fortunate to meet up with Nathan Hepworth.  He served in Adelaide Australia Mission and had just returned home from our ward about 6 weeks from the day we saw him.  The children were really excited to meet him and Joanna spot him first amongst a huge crowd.  He looked well and happy to chat about a few members with Jason.  I think is was really great for the children to see him home from his mission and still a happy church attendee (even if he is still very newly home).

THEN on the Sunday night of Conference we were able to have an 'Aussie Reunion' of sorts at Mark and Andrea Knight's family and loads of other friends who were mainly from South Australia but there were some other Aussie links there as well.  It was such a great evening and I am really grateful for everyone who made it happen.  One of the best things were just listening to everybody's accents....well lack of American accents really.  Felt like we were at home.  Paula and Rolf Lawrenz moved over to America over 8 months ago so it was so nice catching up with them and their beautiful children. We also saw Michael and Tracey Kemp and 3 boys.  On this night they were preparing for a round trip back to Australia as there visa's were about to run out then a week later back to America where Michael has landed a job at BYU thankfully.  I hope they are happy and safe.  I was so happy to see Josh Smith and his lovely wife, Josie and their three gorgeous little children.  My girls had lots of fun helping, cuddling and playing with these cherubs.  We also caught up with Victoria - who Jason and I knew as Vicki Baker and her husband and two children.  Lovely family!!! She may not know it but she taught me how to say positive things about people even if it is difficult sometimes!!! Victoria also had some friends there from Queensland and during the night Greg Wilson and his cousin, Phil Baker also turned up which was loads of fun!!!