Sunday, December 21, 2014

Catching up

This post is to catch up on the past few weeks and will be all over the place. Sorry about that.
Along with mission tour, we are in the middle of the president's missionary interviews, working on a new mission policy book, and the Christmas celebration for the elders. We will have 150 missionaries at a special breakfast on Christmas morning. Needless to say, we at the mission office have had our days filled to the fullest.

This is Alfred, our delivery guy from the distribution warehouse. Love his shirt!
He is always so happy. He comes every Monday delivering  orders for proselytizing materials.

Zone Conference happened last week - Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. It was a very busy week preparing all important items so it would run smoothly. A little exhausting, but oh so rewarding. Zone conference is one of the highlights every twelve weeks!
Decorations for zone conferences were Christmas trees made out of wrapping paper. They worked as an easy, inexpensive, and portable decoration. We used them for three of the zone conferences and CES used them for a party they had too. Got our money's worth on them! We divided them up and placed some in the mission office, and the Thompsons, Hansens and we took the rest to decorate our flats.
First zone conference setup in Roodepoort.

The serving line. Elder and Sister Cook toured the mission for this zone conference. 

President Dunn and Elder Allred

Elder and Sister Cook. Elder Carl B Cook is Area President for Africa Southeast.

Elders waiting for their turn to go through the food line

Lunch is served!

President Dunn knighting Elder Lyon with the 'Golden Toilet Brush' award for flat cleanliness. For their exceptional efforts in keeping flats clean, we had available some fun rewards for the elders to choose from.

                                                          The postal strike is now over!
Elder Christie got a package from home!!

Some of the packages have been in post office limbo since August!
Elder and Sister Cook getting a tour of the new mission office.

Zone Conference in Pretoria North

Cute nativity made of banana leaves

Our Christmas decorations. Sister Hansen made us the darling table runner and the Thompsons gave us the lovely poinsettia.

Took this photo of the beautiful magnolia tree at the mission home. The blossoms are around 10 inches across!

More tree decoration at the interviews/food demos

This district decided to make healthy Cotas.  Cotas are a South African sandwich  that is made of a quarter of a loaf of bread and stuffed with chips (fries) salad, meat, cheese, thousand island dressing and some have eggs, or other things. Usually  not healthy. Kent and I ate our first authentic one at a street vendor in Ikageng township. It was really good! But you only get them at street vendors you trust. We went with elders who work in that township and have eaten there before. 

It was delicious!

Each district performed a Christmas musical number

The next district made meatballs, smashed potatoes, and salad

Elder Hentunen from Finland used a family recipe for the meatballs. 

President Dunn was able to take a break between interviews and taste the great food

Another district made German pancakes with sauteed apples. So good!

We were able to attend the temple on Saturday for the wedding/sealing of a young couple from the Mohlakeng Cluster. What a special event!

The Nativity at the Johannesburg Temple

Tons of taxis on the roads taking South Africans to holiday. They all go back to their home towns or villages to be with family from December 16 thru mid-January.

Christmas at Checkers Hyper

These boxed cakes are very popular

These little Mallow Mice are popular too. They are in all of the stores. Not sure what the story behind them is.

Some gorgeous flowers growing in our yard

 Beautiful Hydrangeas by the Area Office 

A beautiful African dressed in clothes made from tribal fabric.

We took a trip to African Trade Beads in Parktown.  It is located at the home of the owners/manufacturers. They have their products in TJ Maxx and the Smithsonian catalog, plus a few other places. Below are some of the items that caught my eye. You might have seen some of the pillows they sell to TJ Maxx.

Us with owners Tamiko and Brett.

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