Pal & Hatty

Friday, March 10, 2017

"Russian Week" and Ella's Birthday

"Russian Week" 

Last week gave us three opportunities to celebrate and remember our missions to Russia.  On Wednesday evening we hosted three young women from our ward for a Russian dinner and missionary lesson.  They were having a YW activity to prepare them to be missionaries someday.
This was our table's centerpiece.
I prepared borscht and blini for them.
Some of the blini were filled with creamed chicken for the main course and for dessert, we had raspberry/strawberry filled blini.
After dinner, the YW/"missionaries" taught us a lesson about the Book of Mormon.  They did a great job teaching and answering our "Russian investigator" questions.  

Blue & Gold Banquet

Friday evening, we helped with the ward Cub Scout Blue and Gold Banquet.  The scouts, their families and all guests were loaded onto an "LDS Air" jet (chairs set up in the hallway, take off  safety instructions and a flight attendant ,handing out peanuts )and taken to visit new places and foreign countries.  Our first stop was Hawaii!  Here we enjoyed dinner:  Hawaiian Haystacks, salad, rolls and cupcakes for dessert.
The cultural hall was decorated for the event.
The cupcakes had little flags from the countries that the scouts would visit.

After dinner, the scouts took their "passports" and visited the 6 countries on their tour to learn more about them.  After their visits, their passports were stamped and their trip was over.
 We set up some tables with information and items from Russia.  It was fun to teach the boys about the animals, flag, souvenirs and hats that we  had in our display.
The Hermansens behind their display of Zimbabwe.
Lele Neria with his display of Samoa.
Italy, France and Scotland were also represented.
It was a fun evening for the scouts and for the adults as well.

Dinner with Russian Friends 

On Saturday evening, we hosted our Russian friend - Denis Smogluck and his cute wife - Elena and their two children, Vitaly and Miesha.  We met Denis on our first mission to Russia.  He was a great help to us when we were preparing the Youth Conference.  He helped us find a facility, purchase the T shirts for the event as well as serving as one of our YSA counselors for a group of YM at the conference.  He came to our apartment often for lunch and dinner and we came to know and love him well.  Now he is married with two little boys.  He and his family are living at Wymount Terrace, in Provo, while he gets his masters degree of law.  He graduated from law school in Moscow and had been working there for the church's legal department, before coming to Provo to attend school.  It was fun to meet his wife and boys and to talk about our times together in Novosibirsk.

Ella's Birthday Celebration

We gathered at Allison and Jon's on Sunday to celebrate Ella's 7th birthday with cupcakes and homemade ice cream!

 Our birthday girl with cupcakes and gifts
Grandma and Grandpa with the birthday girl 

Birthday party guests
Four beautiful cousins!
 Our two Prestons
  Princess Evie Marie (barefoot)
Tricia and James
 Violet and Aleeya
 James & Preston
Ruby and Evie
Preston & Minnie
 Jon & Minnie
Our oldest grandson  - Treygan

Sunday, March 5, 2017

2017 Begins!

2017 Begins!

Our year began with both of us having the flu.  After a few weeks - the sniffles and coughs finally left us!

A Visit from 2 Missionaries

We were so pleased that two of our missionaries came to visit us.  Elder Iliaronov and his mother (both from Russia  - but now living in Virgina Beach) and Elder Neilsen (from Salt Lake City).  It was fun to meet Sister Iliaronov and try to remember some Russian so that we could communicate.  We ate sandwiches and cookies and mostly just shared memories of our time in Russia 
Sister Iliaronov was so sweet,  (a kindred spirit I think)  and we became friends instantly!

Violet June Thomas is baptized!!

The invitation to her baptism
The Thomas Family on this special day
We are so proud of  our beautiful, blossoming Violet!!

 Tom and Joan's Visit

Tom and Joan came to stay with us over President's Day weekend.  We are always glad to have them come, so that we can spend time together and catch up on each other's lives.  They arrived Thursday evening and Friday morning, Joan, Hal and I went to the Payson temple.  We did some Initiatory work and then showed Joan our beautiful temple .

 After the temple visit, We drove into Provo to visit the BYU Museum of Art to see: A Visual Testimony: Minerva Teichert's Book of Mormon Paintings.  There were many of her beautiful paintings that I had never seen; she was a very prolific artist!
After the art display, Joan, Hal and I went enjoyed lunch together at the MOA cafeteria.

The next day, Joan and I went "sister shopping" (which is always fun) and then we ate lunch at Bona Vita, an Italian restaurant at Traverse Mountain Mall.
The bread, salad and pizza were yummy!

After lunch we picked up Dex and London at Hailey's parent's home in Linden and brought them home with us.  Hailey and Conrad had gone on a weekend getaway to Logan after the busy Valentine rush at Red Mountain Floral.  Conrad manages Red Mountain now and Valentine's is their busiest time of year.
It took London a while to warm up to this "other grandma", but by Monday morning, when Hailey picked up the kids, we were best friends.  It was great to have an opportunity to spend time with them!  I was worn out, but so glad to cuddle and hold them - they are both so cute!!

The Wizard of OZ

Alex played several parts in  The Spanish Fork Youth Theatre's production of this delightful musical.
We first saw him in the part of Hickory (one of the hired hands on Aunt Em and Uncle Henry's farm).
Here come the three hired hands pushing a wagon - Alex is on the left.
The hired hands and Dorothy.
Alex (Hickory) talking to Dorothy.
Dorothy with the Munchkins and Glinda.

Alex next appeared as a Crow in the scene with the Scarecrow.
Alex is 4th from the left.
Alex is 4th from the left!

Next Alex appeared in the poppy scene.

This production was well done with costuming, sets, music, and most of all - a well rehearsed cast.
Alex in his role as an Ozian.
Alex in his role as one of the Wicked Witch's Guards.
Back in Kansas, Dorothy reunites with her friends and family.
They take a bow!

                                                             Our star -Alex/Hickory!
Alex and Sam
It was a delightful evening and so fun to see Alex enjoying himself in the production.  I went home humming the tunes of The Wizard of OZ!

Pam and Roger's Visit

Pam and Roger stopped for a one night and one day visit.  They were on their way north for Roger's sister, Chryl and her husband, Glenn's, missionary farewell, and visits with their family and friends.
We enjoyed dinner together and lots of visiting that evening to catch up on each other's lives.  The next day we had breakfast together and more time to talk, then we went for lunch at Hickory Farms and they continued their trip  north to Ogden.  We always love spending time with them!!

Thank you dinner with Hailey, Conrad and kids

 Hailey and Conrad took us to dinner at their favorite Mexican restaurant in Orem - Maria Bonita's. This was their "thank you" for watching the kids when they went to Logan. It was fun to be with them and to see Dex and London again.  Hal, Conrad and I enjoyed the lobster enchilada and Hailey had the chicken quesadilla's.
Our yummy lobster enchilada with big chunks of lobster!