Sunday, March 27, 2016
Our front entry banister is not white. We got a late spring snow on Thursday. We woke up to many flowers bent down to the ground with the weight and many more trees looked like they had white blossoms. At least for a few hours.
Refreshments were doughnuts. The Sisters had fun learning how to cut out and cook. The elders had fun eating and creating odd shapes, at least for a doughnut.
Sunday, March 20, 2016
Spring has definitely come to Romania
If I remember right the bush behind me is forsythia. Grandma Howlett liked that bush. Forsythia branches often made it into her early spring flower bouquets for church.
We bought transplants at Leroy Merlin to begin a garden in the planters at the church. We planted gladiolus, dutch iris and frassia (SP?) bulbs for later in the season but for now we have a lot of small pansies. Church faces North so sun loving plants won't thrive here.
People don't have to water their gardens here. The soil was already wet. Lucky them
Finished for now.
Beautiful day on P-day for a drive up to the local ski resort. As you can see there is very little snow. They didn't have much the whole winter except maybe on this North facing bunny hill.
Elders Hubbard and Hellewell drove up with us and we ate at a restaurant with a very nice view where we told each other crazy stories from our past. They especially like hearing about our adventures in Africa. We aren't sure if the corn ears hanging from the roof of this patio are decorations or just the way they dry them.
We're about 30 kilometers from Sibiu and we think that is the city we could see from this view.
Two signs to Santa and one to Sibiu. We should have gone to Santa just to see what it was.
Wish we could capture on camera the lovely scenery that we worked so hard to take. As dad always said, "make sure someone is in the picture". It does make it more interesting especially when you can't portray the view like you want.
The oldest working swimming pool in Romania is called the Neptune. It is within walking distance of the church so that is the one I have started working out in. It was built in 1904 and been remodeled at least once. It isn't open on p-day or Sunday to give the system a chance to catch up on cleaning. It is quite cheap and thus popular. Each swimmer get their own dressing room which limits how many can swim. When I get there I often wait 5-10 minutes for someone to leave and free up a dressing room.
The sea shell decorations along the side give it an old feel, maby even medieval
Starting at 10 every day teachers come to teach the children swimming. As you can see one narrow side is partitioned off for the instruction of over 20 children. It was interesting meeting the instructor. He says he is "orthodox" and had never heard of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. I hope to have more meaningful conversations in the future. Glad he speaks some English. Their website says that all children in Sibiu that learn to swim do so at this pool.
Decided to even up my hair on my own. Then when I got to the back I couldn't figure out how to cut so had Alexandra make an appointment with her hair stylist. This what she came up with. I guess I'm not growing my hair out after all.
I was given the assignment by the District President of keeping up on a branch face book page to be used as the branch history. With the help of Alex from Cluj we had contacted the instigator of the original page as it was locked as to who could post. Johnny, or Elder Cernat as he is now called is a missionary in England never responded to our requests to make posts to that page so this week Alex helped me start a new page. You can follow us on Ramura din Sibiu. This is the picture I took for the front page. Parking is at a premium and it took some time before we could park our little green Opel in front for this picture.
Last week we wrote that we were getting two new missionaries as Elder Hubbard was going to Bucharest and Sora Trebas was going home. Here we have Elder Cochran who is from Mesa and Sora Djahanbani who is brand new to the mission and from Utah. Our waffle dinner after district meeting is continuing strong however at this point we were cleaning up when I thought to take this picture.
One picture I didn't get is of the Craciuns, Alexandra and Sandu are meeting with us weekly to learn the self reliance material. They both are working on starting their own businesses. Once they have gone through the material they will help us teach the branch members. We hope the material will be available in Romanian this summer.
Saturday night activity was really fun with a great turnout. Sora Trebas, who is touring the mission with her parents came and we enjoyed getting to know her parents, Cheryl and David Trebas. They were able to attend church with us on Sunday and we fixed them a meal to eat at the church before they headed off for Bucharest.
Two lines as you can see with your back to the other person. The last in the row were given an object to draw on the person in front of them. This was passed on then the one at the front of the line drew what they thought it was on a white board. The team whose picture matched the original object the best got a point. Never realized how hard a drawing on your back is to feel. YSA below is drawing what she thought she felt.
Good bye Sora Trebas from the Gang. Several are investigators, some are members and most are friends we found in English class along with the missionaries of course.
Sora Trebas with her parents, her last companion, Sora Yost and Sora Yost's new companion Sora Djahanbani (Jahanbony)
Elder Cochran is a jewel. This is the second batch of dishes he has done without any assignment given. He'll make a great husband some day.
Sibiu sister missionaries Jan. 2016 thru March 21, 2016. Sora Trebas and Yost, love you.
We are loving the Church's new video on Easter. One advantage we have here in Romania is that Easter is celebrated first Sunday in May (Orthodox Easter) so we get 7 weeks to share this video. The missionaries have a small booklet that they can carry up to three videos on. We've been with them when they sat down with an investigator and showed them a video on the 4 inch screen. Hope you are preparing for the real purpose for Easter. Thank you to our Savior for his infinite sacrifice on our behalf. We are forever blessed.
Sunday, March 13, 2016
Greetings from Romania where this past week we celebrated Women's day. Romanians thought it was an international day. We explained that in America we celebrate the second Sunday in May as Mother's day. They were surprised and thought our holiday sounded odd.
This is not a head stone. They are all over Romania and tell you how far to the next city. Here it is 4 kilos to Sibiu
The other side says 1 kilo to Selimbar. Since we are really close to our house we're not sure where they get the 1 kilometer. Also this is the only one we've ever seen on a sidewalk. Mostly they are out along roadways where there are no sidewalks. This one was probably installed originally along a roadway that is now in a city.
P day this week was zoo day. I had thought to never go to a zoo again since our 18 months in Uganda gave us the most amazing animal experiences. Going to a zoo would be boring after that but Eugen (middle figure) wanted to go for his birthday and since it only cost 75 cents American we decided to humor him with our presence.
Fun taking pictures of the missionaries. They were as animated as the animals.
Elder Brown with the green Python. Good thing there was a glass between him and the man or the man would have disturbed his rest.
A very active tiger. Maybe he was new to prison life because he was a pacer.
Seeing and smelling these orange blossoms reminded me that even in winter you can have a touch of Arizona if you have a very large South facing atrium.