I can't believe it's Sunday evening already! Where did the week go? It has been a pretty good week, but it sure went by fast.
Tuesday we had a District Meeting in Romney, about 40 miles away. We took our four Elders and met the two Romney Elders at the meetinghouse there. Had a good meeting, then drove about 5 miles further to the Elders little house for lunch and House and Car inspections. I did much better on the apartment inspections this time - I gave them all a checklist the week before and spelled out very clearly my expectations and consequences. They actually took me seriously and all did well. After I complimented one pair on their clean kitchen, one Elder exclaimed, "But Sister Orton, you didn't even look in the microwave and I worked hard cleaning it!" So I had to examine it and praise his good work... After returning to Petersburg and inspecting the cars and apartments here, we fixed a quick meal, then picked up the two Elders assigned to Hardy County and took them to a couple of evening appointments outside of Mathias, a little town about 40 miles away. One was Connie Stever, a single lady about 50 years old, been away from the church for years but now wants to return and asked the missionaries to come re-teach her. She is great and has a good understanding of the gospel, fun to visit with. Being single, the Elders couldn't go in without us being with them. Then we accompanied them to Chris and Ariann's home, a young couple, she's a member, he isn't. I am her visiting teacher and on my last visit I asked Chris if he would like to learn more about our church. He agreed and I set this appointment up. The Elders did a good job teaching and it was neat for us to be there and assist a little. As we traveled back to Petersburg, it was beginning to rain a little. Lots of freezing rain later in the night, it was so pretty the next morning - to see the trees and shrubs covered in ice. The mission cars were grounded, but Wayne and I made a few visits. We had dinner Wednesday evening with two of the Elders at the Whetzel home - we love them. She fixed us a great dinner, then the Elders taught a Word of Wisdom lesson. Walter is 74 and has smoked and chewed tobacco since he was young. Doris has been to the temple, but is waiting on him so they can be sealed. Good lesson and he expressed a desire to quit, but he said it would be very, very difficult. We will encourage and pray. Doris had crocheted me a lovely scarf.
Thursday we made a very productive early morning visit, had a long coordinating meeting with the Elders going over the ward roster, Wayne had a practice session with his buddies rehearsing for the ward activity, then in the evening we had a meeting with the Ward Mission Leader, the Bishopric, and the Elders, discussing missionary work in the ward. Oh, and the mission office senior missionary stopped by delivering a new bookcase (very large) and we finally cleaned and rearranged our study room. We had had boxes of supplies around on the floor, so we can now set them out in the bookshelf. We rearranged the desks, too, and it looks very nice and is more convenient. I got frames for a couple pictures we had tacked to the walls, too. Good project.
The nursing home where we volunteer several times a week is closed to visitors and volunteers for a while because of a flu outbreak. We miss being able to go there. And Wayne was supposed to sing there Friday night. He is disappointed. But it's just as well, he is coming down with a cold and needs to rest. I made several visits by myself Saturday while he napped, then also saw a lady in the hospital. Made numerous phone calls, and typed and printed the ward bulletin.
Good thing he rested up, because today (Sunday) was a very long day for us old folks. Wayne had PEC at 8 am, then we had our regular three-hour block. I taught Relief Society, it went very well, good participation. We had a pretty good turnout at church, only one of our three investigators showed up, but we had several less-actives attend. After church we had the four Elders over to our apartment for dinner (chicken enchiladas - they loved them), then we took Elders Mordecai and Plumb on visits. We took dinner to the Parks (less active husband John who is singing with Wayne for the ward activity this Friday, wife Audrey is taking the discussions and close to baptism), visited an older single lady Helen Mongold in Moorefield, then taught a third or fourth lesson to investigator Sonja who hopefully will be baptized in March. We drove out in the country to Jane Halterman's. She had called me earlier in the week, saying that she was going to have surgery next Wednesday and could we come out and bring the sacrament and give her a blessing. It was a good visit, the Elders did well, and Jane appreciated it very much. Next we visited Woneda Kenney in the Baker Nursing Home, she is doing much better and also appreciated the visit. She get very lonely. Then way, way out in the country past Mathias for another lesson with Connie Stever. She is awesome. Fun to chat with and is making great progress in her gospel study. So almost an hour to drive back home and we were tired. Wayne is feeling pretty good, but still stuffed up. Looking forward to our P-Day tomorrow, but will have to work a bit at the Food Pantry.
Transfers are Wednesday and one of our Elders (Hartwig) will be leaving. He is the last one that was here when we arrived in September. It will be a busy week, District Meeting on Tuesday, working at the Food Pantry a couple days, driving three hours to Transfers on Wednesday, Blood Drive Thursday, and our big ward activity on Friday. We have encouraged more ward activities, so we hope this is well attended and goes well. Hopefully we will find time for some more visits and missionary work as well. It's good to keep busy, isn't it? I keep reminding myself of the phrase: It's better to wear out than rust out! Also heard in testimony meeting last week my new words to live by: There is no Growth in your Comfort Zone and no Comfort in your Growth Zone.
Thanks for the email Karli (and Dustin) and thanks Devin and family for the call. Good to see you all - and for the songs by Naomi and Gage. If anyone is reading this blog, please make a little comment, we'd love to hear from you, and know who is there and what you think.... Our love to all.