Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Another day divided between the office and the shed.

Monday, 27 February 2017

We spent the morning catching up on paper work.

We been trying to cull and organize all the stuff in the storage shed and making some progress. We created sets of stuff for kitchens, tableware, plates, mugs, cooking utensils, knives, pot and pans, etc. and then throw out excess. The same with beds.

Sunday, 26 February 2017

I spoke in church. With a usual attendance of about 25 people, I'm sure I'll have be speaking frequently.

Investigators got 1/2 of yesterday's cake, each missionary companionship got a third and Dorothy and I got a third. Strawberries were $1 a quart at the Publix supermarket. We bought four so everyone also had strawberries to go with the angel food cake.

Saturday, 25 February 2017

Still suffering but spent a couple of hours in the storage shed sorting dishes. We made up set of four large plates, four small plates, and four cereal bowls and ended up with enough to furnish six new apartments. We'll have to have complete inventory by next Saturday to furnish a new apartment for Spanish speaking elders in Augusta. Their apartment will be ready to furnish on Tuesday.

The sister missionaries in Forsyth are teaching a grandmother and granddaughter. Once in discussion with them, the granddaughter said she had never had angel food cake so I've baked one to give her tomorrow.

Friday, 24 February 2017

Still sick but went into the office very late and left early. Discovered that I didn't make clear when signing the lease in Augusta the Corporation of the Presiding Bishop was the official renting agency. Will have to fix that when we go back to furnish the apartment.

Thursday, 23 February 2017

Started in our apartment sick.

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

A little less hectic today. One of the Augusta elders left his phone charging cord in the van so we had to return it as the first task of the day. Fortunately, we had stayed just a few blocks from his apartment.

We were able to finalize an apartment in Augusta for a new Spanish companionship. The first apartment we investigated and leased. Undoubtedly more to come.

The major task of the day was to take furniture to the Pine Mountains sisters in Hamilton, GA, 171 miles from Augusta and they had commitments starting at 2 PM. The GPS had us arriving at 1:47. We made it a couple of minutes early and delivered a bed, a study table, a chair, a desk lamp, and serving dishes and table ware for four.

Nearly ran out of gas in the middle of nowhere Georgia. The yellow light indicating a nearly empty gas tank was lit for about 10 miles before we found a gas station.

I started the cold that everyone else in the office has had. Five for five for the virus, a perfect score.

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

At the office at 7: 30 to get the van for our first transfer day. Transport eight sisters and an elder from the mission home to the stake center. Distribute 13 laundry bags with a bed set including sheets, pillows, and mattress covers that Dorothy assembled over the last week or so—the easy part.

President Grayson created two additional sets of three sisters in Augusta and Lanett in the eastern and western most reaches of the mission and a new Spanish companionship in Augusta. We've been trying for a month to firm up an apartment for the Elders in Augusta but we just missed one apartment and are waiting to a second to vacate. The changes mean moving furniture.

108 miles to Augusta with six mattresses, four box springs, four bed frames, two dressers, two study tables, four chairs, two desk lamps, light bulbs, and additional plates and table ware. Deliver one bed, two mattresses, a study table, three chairs and a dresser to the Steven Creek Sisters. Oh, and we had the luggages, bikes, guitar, and weights of three Elders transferring to Augusta in the trailer. Delivered one set of personal stuff to Martinez Elders and acquired a fourth set of personal stuff. Delivered two beds and two sets of personal stuff to the Augusta Elders who are housing the Spanish Elders until I can get them an apartment.

Dorothy's been suffering from a cold, worst in years, hurts everywhere including her skin. Stop at Krogers for thyme and honey for tea. Fill van with gas. Get to hotel at 9. Busy day.

Forgot the part about getting five bikes to new missionaries which entailed hauling the small van to the stake center, getting all of the aforementioned luggage, pulling the small trailer to the office. Getting the large trailer, taking it to the shed, emptying the furniture we collected last week in Cusseta, loading the furniture for Augusta and Lanett, picking up six mattresses at the Mattress Barn, transferring the luggage from small to large trailer, and, then and only then, picking up Dorothy and heading for Augusta. Tomorrow we try to firm up the apartment in Augusta and go to Lanett.

Monday, 20 February 2017

12 missionaries left to go home and 13 new missionaries arrived today from the MTC in Provo.

Left the house at 7 to get the van and some paper work from the office. Van wouldn't start. Seems that running a vacuum from the lighter socket does not charge the battery. Missed some papers I needed but got the van jumped (Took 10 minutes to find the lever to open the hood of the Outback. I had never had an occasion to do so before today.) and made it to the mission home in time to get a load of missionaries going home.

When missionaries come and go they take all of their lives' possessions with them so most of them had two very large suitcases (There is a scale in the Mission Home garage to make sure they don't exceed 50lbs) that get loaded into a trailer. I was amazed at how quickly they unloaded the trailer at the departing gate of the Atlanta airport. Then we waited three hours for the new arrivals and did the whole process in reverse getting back to the Mission Home at 4:15.

Tomorrow is transfer day, another new adventure.

Sunday, 19 February 2017

Our second Sunday in the Forsyth group: The Gospel Doctrine teacher, Sister Evans, is really, really good. It is evident that she prepares diligently and has good teaching techniques.

This is the second time we've given a ride home to a former member, Patricia, and her granddaughter, Skyler. Patricia is blind from macular degeneration and Skyler, who is fifteen, helps her grandmother get around. I've been impressed with how Skyler is with the task.

Saturday, 18 February 2017

Cleaned out our own apartment. Bought four new mattresses for delivery next week. Cleaned the mission van throughly—some of the pockets in the door may not have been cleaned since the van was new. We are scheduled to pick up new missionaries arriving from the MTC on Monday and, being that we eat as we travel and had been traveling in the van for two weeks, felt we should at least clean up our own mess.

Dorothy has this vision of making Christmas stocking for a daughter and daughter-in-law while she's in the mission field so we spent an hour in Michaels getting floss and beads.

Friday, 17 February 2017

Every time we travel to solve housing problem, the housing paper work piles up. Today we attempted to get ahead of it. Some success but not enough.

Thursday, 16 February 2017

Spent most of the day cleaning out the Cusseta Elders trailer house. I had heard that it was bad but that didn't prepare us for the total disaster of its reality. The place should have been condemned years ago. There were soft spots on the floor and, at least once in recent memory, an elder put his foot through the floor. There was no door on the bathroom. Dorothy wouldn't go near it. Not that the elders helped much. The clutter was monumental. There was a box, maybe 12"x18"x 10", full of old priesthood manuals—enough for three wards. Canned goods and frozen food in the freezer, bags of popcorn and chips, etc., etc., etc. We meet the neighbor, a retired army veteran of several tours to the Mideast who volunteers at a local food bank. We cleaned what we could and left the food and various containers for him.

On Wednesday we took a broken bike out of some elders' apartment. The front wheel was busted up. In this rundown trailer, there was a second broken bike except in this case the back wheel was busted up. I saw a boy of maybe 14 two trailers down, called him over, and said, "Do you have a bike?"

He said, "No."

"Would you like one?"


"How mechanical are you?"

"Pretty good, I guess."

"OK, here are two bikes. You should be able to get one good one out of them."

Missionaries are notorious for leaving stuff when the transfer for go home without regard for the someone who has to deal with this stuff. We going to try to fix this attitude. Wish us luck, pray for us, we're going to need all the help we can get.

Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Thrice in Walmart for various mattresses, door mats, shelves while visiting missionaries in Lanett, Auburn, and Phenix City, Alabama and LaGrange, GA. Yesterday being Valentine's Day, all the candy was 50% off so we got 24 small boxes of chocolates and some Valentine cards giving one of each to each of the missionaries we saw today. Truth be known, we got two big boxes for ourselves.

All the missionaries we've talked to have one or more investigators working toward baptism.

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Last of the zone conferences but we left early to get started on a trip to the western part of the mission. Emptied out an A-frame house of missionary furniture in Hamilton, GA. The most valuable items are two dressers. One of them is already spoken for in Auburn, AL. We took the Pine Mountain sisters to dinner at a Mexican restaurant. While we were waiting for a table, I asked Sister Evans where she was from. "Utah, originally," she said, "but now Rochester, NY."

"Oh, did you dad get a new job in New York?"

"Yes, he's the new mission president in the New York Rochester Mission."

We talked about the quality of Mexican cuisine as compared to what we experienced in the early 70s when we first moved to the East Coast. Actually, no comparison. What was available could hardly be called food much less Mexican food.

Hampton Inns were all full so we stayed at a Comfort Inn. Won't do that again.

Monday, 13 February 2017

One day to prepare for zone conference and call all of the missionaries in the Columbus zone. The questions: what do you need in your apartment and what do you have you need to get rid of. Trip starts tomorrow afternoon.

Sunday, 12 February 2017

Ward Conference so the Forsyth group met with the rest of the Macon ward. There was a pot luck dinner afterwards. We talked with Sister Palmer whose husband is the stake president. Her daughter wants to be a paleontologist. Her parents, Del and Mary Lou Elsworth live in the Elizabethtown Ward of the Lancaster Stake.

Saturday, 11 February 2017

Baked a cake for tomorrow's potluck after church. I used Cherry Mash candy bars for icing. I had a bunch I wasn't eating so it was a good use of an under utilized resource.

Thursday and Friday, February 9 and 10, 2017

Two more days of zone conferences, Savannah and Augusta. Left Macon at 7 AM with the van and trailer.

Light bulbs for for sisters were wrong, got new dimmables and a shelf for some elders. TIWI, the device that monitors you when driving a church-owned car, didn't know the speed limit between Statesboro and Waynesboro. A constant, "Check your speed." which I just ignored. Overnight in Waynesboro.

We got better at telling the missionaries about bugs and tellings about problems and cleaning after doing it now for the the fifth time. Spent the afternoon moving a dresser and two beds in to missionary apartments. Turned out that there were burned out bulbs so the undimmable bulbs didn't go to waste

Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Left the house at 8:30 to get the Forsyth elders. Elder Parkin strained his neck last week and convinced Sister Goff that he ought to see a doctor. He lost his wallet so his mother had to email his insurance and prescription cards before he could see someone for the pain. Got to the office with the Forsyth elders about 10:30.

Made a couple of phone calls to get a washing machine fixed and confirm the exact bedding needs of some sisters in Augusta.

Took the elders back to Forsyth. Got the office at 12:45. More phone calls.

Left for a 3 PM appointment to the keys for a new apartment for the assistants to the president. Put one of the office chairs we have into the car.

We went to Walmart for mattresses covers and then back to the office.

Attached the trailer to the van. Moved the office chair into the trailer for an elder in the Savannah zone.

Took the trailer to the storage shed. Loaded two box springs and a mattresses. Moved one dresser drawer out to the trailer. Dorothy decided that that one wouldn't do. Moved a different dresser drawer into the trailer. Moved the first dresser drawer back into storage. Drove to the office, parked the van/trailer, and went to supper arriving home at 8:30. Tomorrow we go to Savannah and Friday to Augusta.

The weather feels almost tropical. The high today was in the mid seventies. Lots of magnolias, daffodils, and dandelions in bloom.

Monday and Tuesday, February 6 and 7, 2017

Zone conferences in Columbus and Tifton stake houses. Dorothy and I nagged the Elders and Sisters about spraying for bugs, keeping their apartments clean, and letting us know whenever and whatever is a problem with their living situations.

The Relief Society in Tifton put on a great lunch with table cloths and fresh flowers.

As we begin to get a little familiar with being housing coordinator, we need to now start addressing bicycles and referral.

Sunday, February 5, 2017

President Grayson asked us to attend the Forsyth group on Sundays rather than the Macon Ward. Today was our first time. The Forsyth group is a dependent branch of the Macon Ward that meets north of Macon. The group leader is Brother Phillips. There were four families and several single sisters in attendance. Dorothy's been saying for sometime that we needed to find a unit where we could really be useful. Looks like we may have found it. My first assignment: Be the chorister in Sacrament Meeting.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

We spent four hours starting to clean and get a handle on the housing storage shed. At the end we had two bins of trash, one bin to donate to Goodwill or Salvation Army, and had cleaned about the front fifth of the storage area.

We cannot remember ever working harder than we've been working for the past two weeks. We come home exhausted. This too will pass and once we are familiar with all we need to do, we wouldn't be running from pillar to post every minute of the day.

Friday, February, 3, 2017

Members from the Missionary Committee in Salt Lake attended the MLC, Mission Leadership Council, to train zone leaders, sister trainers and district leaders. Dorothy and I introduced ourselves along with Sister Goff, the new nurse, to these missionaries

The balance of the day was spent with four missionaries and their companions who came in for their three week training. We got to meet the two counselors to President Grayson, President Fussell and President Russell. President Fussell is a dentist, former bishop and former stake president. President Russell is an army psychologist nearing retirement. We sat with them during lunch and it turned out the know Darrell and Janice Phillips who we knew in Lancaster, PA.

Thursday, February 2, 1017

Meet the Martinez zone leaders, Elders Daly and Goodsell, in Augusta and toured a potential apartment for a new companionship of Spanish-speaking elders in that area. Took them to lunch at Woody's BBQ. Not bad but no the best BBQ I've had.

Went to the only Costco in our mission in Augusta to get some refills for our electric toothbrushes.

Deliver new mattresses to the elders in Grovetown. Cleaned their patio of a broken end table and a bike without a front wheel that a previous elder had left. Took a keyboard for an elder who had transfer to give to his new zone leader at the MLC on Friday.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

While thinking about what we needed to accomplish tomorrow, Dorothy decided that there was no way we could do what we were planning in one day so we quickly put together an overnight bag, unloaded the trailer from Monday, put in the dryer and mattresses we needed for Beaufort and Grovetown into the trailer and headed south.

We exchanged a refurbished dryer for a piece of junk in the Beaufort elders apartment. Elder and Sister Wilson met us there. They're servicing a military relations mission for the Paris Island Marine Boot Camp. They have two and a half hours on Sunday during which they can be on base and hold services. The recruits are not allowed off base for 13 weeks. They told about one young man that wandered into the service one Sunday and attended for all the time he was there. Apparently, when he graduated, all he could talk about was the Mormon services he had been attending. His mother wrote Elder Wilson saying, "Please do not contact my son any longer. When he returns home, we'll be sure he understand the Catholic doctrine he grew up with." Elder Wilson response with how much he enjoyed getting to know her son and wished both of them God's blessings. He hasn't hear back from her.