Monday, November 30, 2015

Our New Zealand Thanksgiving

On the Saturday after Thanksgiving the Senior Missionaries from the Auckland mission gathered together to celebrate a true feast of gratitude.  

Susan Winters described it well over on her blog so I will quote:

"We had four different ladies cook the turkeys, make the stuffing and the gravy.  All the others had food assignments to feed 15+ people.  Cooking a turkey is also a challenge, as most of our apartments have small ovens.  A few apartments have larger ovens, so they cooked the turkeys. 

Several sisters volunteered to decorate a table.  This required them bringing dishes and tableware for 8 from their apartment.  There are some very creative people in our group. "

Elder Bennett and I are feeling we have an extra measure of blessings to be grateful for this year.  In just a coupole weeks we will be heading back to America to be with our family over the holidays.  We will get to stand as witnesses to our son and his wife entering the temple to take out their endowments and we will spend time with those we love in Arizona and Utah as well.

I never dreamed when we left for this mission that we would have an opportunity to go back for a visit.  For that matter, I did not know we would be allowed to call home whenever we like or that we would get to use FaceTime, social media and other tech tools to stay in touch as much as we do.  I just didn't realize that the rules for Senior missionaries were so very different from the very structured expectations governing the young elders and sisters.  Discovering how much freedom we have to maintain close connections with our children, grandchildren and sibs  has been a wonderful blessing indeed.

I'm also thinking of our sweet son, Troy, who is recovering from his cancer treatments.  This time last year we honestly didn't know what the outcome  for him would be.  The fact that he is now thriving and is cancer free is a blessing beyond our dreams.

I could go on and on with things that we have to be grateful for this Thanksgiving season.

We truly have been richly blessed.

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