Thursday, September 30, 2010

Had such a nice day, thought I would make another post. A friend came over to enjoy the pool with me. We had a nice visit and were in the water for almost two hours. I haven't had this kind of afternoon with a girlfriend in a long time and it was fun and relaxing.

When you make a move that is about 3500 miles away from what has been your home for the past 17 years, it's kind of hard to make new friends, especially as my age. You make a lot of acquaintances but not necessarily people that you can talk openly and freely with about you lives, nothing too heavy, just girlfriend stuff. When I invited this woman over to enjoy the pool with me I really had no idea that we would hit it off so well and have so much fun. Just goes to show what can be provided for you if you relax into your life.
After a couple of days of not posting, I figured I had better just write this morning. I had not realized how the tensions of the past few weeks had affected me. I know I had not been sleeping well but just figured that was my normal "crazy" sleep patterns, anyway...after having some things settled, exactly the way they should be, I felt a weight lifted off my shoulders and have felt how exhausted I was. Yesterday was the final tying up of loose ends and last night I about passed out around 9 o'clock. Actually it felt good. Aside from that we did have a couple of nights where we simply could not get hooked into the Internet. Good news, that really doesn't bother me too much anymore. Guess I'm weaning myself away from it.

Rick and I have been enjoying our afternoons together. We have been real fortunate with the job he has, where he really only has to work a few hours in the mornings on most days. They are making a push to finish up by the end of October, so he is working more now but that is probably good as it is preparing us to a more "regular" job that will probably take him away from home all day. He has been making applications all over the place, but so far no takers, but we keep praying. The contract for this job is written until the end of November, so we are hopeful that there might still be some work in November but we're not counting on it.

After much talking and brain storming we have decided that I will not look for work until after the first of the year. I am still planning on going to Idaho for the month of December to help Rachel, when she has her baby, so it seems foolish to work for two months and expect a month off. Of course, if something fell into my lap and they would consider the month off, I might just take it, but we have the problem of the car.

Yesterday I made plans in the afternoon, Rick cleared it because it figured he would go out to the site in the morning, then his boss called and wanted to meet him out there at 2 in the afternoon. I had to do part of my planned excursion and then take him out to the site and drop him off and go and finish up. He was able to get a ride home easily enough, but he was not happy about the whole set up. Therefore he is encouraging me not to work. I have agreed for 2010, but we'll see what happens for 2011. A lot will depend on what kind of income he can make at another job, right now we're doing fine but we'll have to see what the future brings.

Meeting a friend today to workout in the pool together, it will be nice to have some company, not that I mind being in the pool by myself. I have to admit, I love that pool. I actually look forward to working out.

Weather has turned to be more like what I would have expected in the tropics. Partly cloudy each day, with some scattered showers and not really too hot or humid. For my taste it's just perfect. Rick keeps telling me he's not so sure if it has really cooled off or if we are just acclimating, either way works for me.

With the aforementioned (is that a word, guess it must be cause spell check didn't catch it) burden lifted off my shoulders I feel like I can concentrate on the things that I want to, instead of constantly trying to ward off trouble. I feel like my prayers can be more about my family than myself, not sure if that makes sense, but it sure does feel good.

I'm looking forward to meeting Rachel's new baby, so far everything indicates it's a girl, and I'm looking forward to spending some time with Macy. Not necessarily looking forward to spending time in Idaho in December, or being away from Rick for 3 weeks (the plan is that he will come out for Christmas week and then we'll fly home together), nor am I looking forward to that long trip alone (4 flights), but that's where they are so it will be OK. The girls and I should have plenty to keep us busy in that 3 weeks, getting ready for Christmas, that it will fly by. An added benefit it that I don't have to worry about decorating my house for Christmas, we'll just put all our efforts into Rachel's house. I don't mind the decorating, what I don't relish is the taking down and putting away of all the decorations. Rick's and my gift giving will be limited to the spending on this trip (so that will make that part easy).

Sunday, September 26, 2010

What a day, it is absolutely beautiful, Fall in the Caribbean. Temps in the low 80's, clear skies, terrific blue sea and an absolutely wonderful day, and it's Sunday to boot!

Today at church I was released as the 1st Counselor in the Relief Society and called as a teacher in the R.S. When the Mission President was in St. Croix about 6 weeks ago her explained his vision for our Branch. There will now be one Auxiliary for the sisters, consisting of a Relief Society President as the President, the Young Women's President as the 1st Counselor and the Primary President as the 2nd Counselor. This will allow these sisters to work together in behalf of all the sisters and children in the Branch. We are having a huge effort at reactivation, especially in the area of Primary and the Youth (another reason for this NEW Auxiliary Presidency), anyway, after all the fal de rah regarding these changes and where I would fit into the mix I am greatly relieved to be called as a teacher. I think I can really make a difference here, it will be small and slow, but I have also learned that for things to be really effective small and slow (baby steps) is the best way.

Today I taught the gospel Doctrine lesson in Sunday School. The sister who normally teaches wasn't feeling well and she has another sister who generally substitutes for her, but yesterday she decided to ask me. I told her no problem and then realized we are just beginning to study Isaiah, I was so nervous. I find Isaiah really hard to understand, but the manual had a lot more information than I expected and it really helped me to understand, at least, this portion of Isaiah. I felt I did a pretty good job, I hope the class felt the same. Just more baby steps.

I really love this Branch. If you asked me to give you one reason why, I really couldn't. I suppose the main reason is that I know this is where I belong at this time in my life. I suppose my feelings about the Branch are the same as my feelings about St. Croix in general. Rick, keeps telling me how surprised he is that he likes it here so much. I have to admit, I had no idea he had so much apprehension about coming here, but I am relieved that it were all unfounded. It's great for the two of us to be so happy.

I really enjoyed the Women's Conference last night. I really felt a "touch of home" seeing all of those sisters in Salt Lake City and hearing from our leaders. Sometimes you don't know how isolated you are from that, until you are reminded. As I said earlier both Rick and I are truly "home" here, but sometimes we do feel a little isolated from the mainstream of everything that is familiar to us, especially the church. It was good to hear our Prophet, President Monson speak to us. I am looking forward to General Conference next week, I hope I will be able to sit for that length of time. I suppose prayer would help.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Beautiful day, like I said yesterday it feels like Fall. Wow, I thought I liked Fall before the Caribbean, but here it is extraordinary!

Spent most of the day working on various projects on the computer, arkhhhh, "just shoot me", I like this even less than grocery shopping, which by the way, I should have done today. Oh well the computer projects are completed and I shouldn't have to do that for quite a while. Did get my workout in, in the pool, of course, and that always makes the day go better.

Tonight Rick took me out to dinner. I now have a new favorite restaurant. Favorite in the world. Duggan's Reef. It's just down the road from where we live, a cool outdoor place build right on the beach and it even has a deck that goes out over the water. Can you say, Conch Chowder, Lobster Fritters, Lobster AuGratin and Key Lime Pie? Ahhhhhh! It was wonderful, and I have half my Lobster AuGratin for dinner for tomorrow. We split the Chowder, Fritters and Pie but I'm still stuffed. After dinner we went out on the deck and looked at the full moon shining out on the Caribbean Sea and I thought, 'I can't believe I actually live here'. What a night! This place is a bit pricey, so it won't be a weekly thing or anything like that, but we will go back.

Got some news yesterday that one of my younger cousins was undergoing triple bypass heart surgery. I keep wondering how we got this old. His sister sent out a wonderful message on Facebook telling us what was going on and asking for our prayers. It really made me feel good to have the opportunity to pray for my cousin. It made me feel, not so detached from my family (all I really have left are cousins and one aunt). It also made me feel good about Facebook, sometimes I wonder about all this social networking stuff and worry that I spend too much time looking at it and kidding myself that I'm keeping up with friends and family when really so much of it seems more like gossip. Anyway...this renewed my faith that it is more about keeping up and notifying us, no matter where we are on the planet, of someone close to us being in need. By the way, the news on my cousin, Mark, today is that he's sitting up and doing real well, hopefully he will be able to go home soon. Keep praying!

More and more signs, in my life that prayers are answered. Not always in the time frame that we think or want, not always in the exact manner in which we want, but they are answered. I often think of Garth Brooks song "I Thank Good for Unanswered Prayers", it's true, there are times when we think we know what would be best and what we really want, only to have some time go by or for Heavenly Father to send us something else for us to realize how grateful we are for those unanswered prayers, or maybe the better way to put it is, for our prayers to be answered in the way that Heavenly Father knows would be best. I will keep praying and being grateful for the answers.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

OK, if you can believe this, it actually feels like fall down here. Well Fall in the Caribbean anyway. The winds are pretty swift, and it was a little overcast today, temps in the low 80's and we had a few rain storms pass by. Now I know I'm gonna take flak from my friends in the states who read this because it's nothing like the Fall they are experiencing, but for the islands there is a change and for me it feels like Fall.

Big rainstorms last night. Since we sleep with the patio doors in our room wide open you can't miss it when it rains and it was coming down in buckets. At one point something flashed and popped(more like exploded) on a power pole not to far away and we both woke up with a start. Not sure if the power went out or not (because there are generators at our condo project, in the night you never really know for sure). Anyway that was a rude awakening, and then of course, I was wide awake and couldn't go back to sleep. Had to turn to my trusty book. Wind is picking up right now and a short shower just passed by, it's amazing how hard the rain can come down for only a few minutes. I suppose I should be grateful it's only a few minutes because things could get flooded real quick.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Wow! what a day. This afternoon we had a nice visit with some friends and discussed some things that had been bothering me for awhile. A very Spiritual and interesting afternoon a definite answer to prayers.

As we were eating dinner Rachel called with an offer on our piano, we took it and after almost 6 months of trying to sell it, it's sold. Another answer to prayers.

Then this evening I was visiting with a good friend on the phone and I heard my cell phone give it's ding that says I had received a text, at about 11:45pm as I was heading to bead I went to look at the text and it was another good friend with an answer to prayers, I have been praying for several years.

If I hadn't been going on and on over the past few weeks about how important prayer is and reminding myself to keep praying over everything, I almost wouldn't believe it. Today has been awesome and a real testimony builder for me. If anyone hears me complaining and whining, slap me upside the head, will you please.

During the day today I had another interesting thought. Yesterday I was going on about not wanting to do certain things and forcing myself to do them anyway. Well it occurred to me that I am constantly praying for something or other and, what if, Heavenly Father said; "well Barbara I just don't feel like it today". Of course, I can't imagine that ever happening, but it's the flip side of my not wanting to do things and these are good things that I know I should do, things that will really benefit me in the long run. It's given me a whole new perspective about "simply not wanting to do something".

Well I can't say much more than how grateful I am for a Heavenly Father who loves me and who does listen to and answer my prayers. What ever else you may do KEEP PRAYING.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Didn't post last night, simply did not feel like it. Trying hard not to post negative things and trying harder not to let negativity creep into my life. Some days harder than others.

Actually yesterday was a pretty good day, got a lot done around the house and caught up on most all of our paperwork, bill paying, etc. It's nice to have a regular paycheck and feel caught up. Unfortunately, Rick, the eternal pessimist, is starting to fret about this current job running out. The contractor had a big push the last two weeks to get a lot of work done so he could get paid(his pay is dependent on productivity). So now, Rick thinks they will be finished up by the end of October instead of November. I don't think it will work that way, because already, now that the contractor got a fat check, he's backing off a little, but I suppose I should let Rick think that so he will get on the stick and get something else lined up. He never really seems to see the need until about 20 minutes before we are absolutely desperate. That's probably not fair, but sometimes, it sure does feel that way. Anyway, I had to tell him that his pessimism and negativity was starting to stress me out, (it really was) and I have been working on not being stressed or negative lately, so please give me a break!

Feeling a little pressure to get a job myself, not from Rick, actually I think he would prefer me not to be punching a time clock. So, I'm not sure who I'm feeling that pressure from, but a lot of people keep asking if I'm going to look for work, or if I have found anything yet. It's probably just me. Trying to make arrangements to go to Idaho right after Thanksgiving, to be there when Rachel has the baby and that is stressing me out. It's expensive. I'm also worried about Rachel, she has been diagnosed with gestational diabetes and I know that has stressed her. Anyway...back to the job, I would want to be honest with a prospective employer and I'm not sure who would give me a job and then basically give me the month of December off, especially since I expect that is the real start of the "tourist season" around here. Of course, I haven't talked to anyone to even have them tell me that's preposterous, so maybe it's just that I don't want to go to work outside the home. I guess I'm just gonna have to figure this one out to a point where I'm comfortable with my decision, and not worry what anyone else says or thinks.

Church activity tonight that I have to admit I'm not too excited about but then other times when I feel that way and I go anyway I usually have a good time. No matter, it will be good to be in the company of the other Saints. I'm sure Sister Dye will be there and she has a way of cheering me up, I don't think she even knows it, but her presence is always cheerful and uplifting I can't resist feeling better in her company. There that's reason enough to go and be excited about going.

Defenitely feel frustrated in my church calling. This should be a source of "something to do" for me and it feels more like beating your head against a brick wall. This may be the source of my "job thing" I really don't feel like I'm doing anything here except the mundane. Everyone is just holding their breath and waiting for the changes we are told are coming and nothing is moving forward RIGHT NOW! You know me, I'm a right now kind of person, so I am frustrated and feel as though I'm doing nothing or less than nothing. I need to trust in the Lord more, I have no doubt that he is in charge but I still feel.......I don't know what. I can see I need more prayer.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Well it's Sunday again. I'm still learning lessons in turning things over to the Lord, otherwise frustration could be my constant companion. Preferably not! Rain today, I expect another "tropical wave" passed by. Good when they stay waves and don't mature into anything else, even better when they pass by.

Drove out to the Carambola Resort today after church. Rick had a meeting and there was a couple visiting from California who needed a ride back. Had a nice visit with them, and felt pretty good that I could get myself there and back(I haven't done a lot of driving on the island) the whole time staying "on the left".

We just finished a great dinner of rib eye steaks. Back in Idaho eating beef wasn't really a luxury(we almost always had a side of beef in the freezer) but here it is expensive, so we haven't had much. Things have been looking up with a regular paycheck and all so we splurged. Umm Umm was it good! Going to settle down for the evening and relax!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Igor has moved on and are we glad. Unfortunately, it doesn't look too good for Bermuda. The Weather Guessers were actually right on about it's track(even though I didn't believe them there for a bit) and they probably know what they are talking about, when they say Bermuda is gonna take a direct hit. This storm is a monster, it never came closer to us than say 500 or 600 miles and the sea was raging and the wind blowing, not too much rain but I would not have wanted to be out in a boat. Keep in mind that, that is 500 to 600 miles away. Pray for the folks in Bermuda.

Had a good day. Got off to a slow start but had a nice finish. Rick and I did get quite a bit accomplished and learned some valuable lessons. Did get some groceries, generally grocery shopping is a real drag for me, but we have been getting paid regularly and are able to have things on hand, so it's not the ordeal it has been in the past. We both learned some valuable lessons about how to ensure that things we have planned will work out. Follow up, follow up and follow up some more. It's a matter of recognizing the authority that you have and exercising it. Sometimes I think that we think because we are new here, we need to get in line with what others are doing, instead of leading out as the example. We will be making some changes in how we organize and do things in the future. Like I've always told my children, if you can learn from your experiences, then nothing is lost and you can be the better for it.

Ok, on to something just plain fun. Has anyone ever heard of International Talk Like a Pirate Day? Well it's tomorrow September 19th. It was just a goofy by line on the home page of AOL, but being very pirate minded and living in a historical pirate paradise, I thought "what the hay"! Well it's a goofy thing that is in fact international and the founders are two guys who came down to St. Croix(go figure) from Oregon, two years ago. They have a silly web site and seem to have gotten some recognition from National G, not to mention AOL. I didn't have much time to devote to their web site, but will take another look tomorrow, but for now; "Aaarg! shiver me timbers, matey, ya best be talkin' like a pirate tomarye, ar ye may hav ta walk the plank, savvy?"

Friday, September 17, 2010

Guess the best we can hope for is up and down and in and out, computer was out again yesterday. It's not our condo complex but the provider on the island(needed to get that in because I was complaining a few days ago that I had my suspicions it was actually the condo), not sure what their problem is but I guess I just have to deal with it.

I was talking about cell phones with a friend the other day, particularly about how dependent we are on them and how although I'm definitely hooked, I hate it. Well ditto for the Internet. Actually double ditto. It makes me crazy that I'm crazy when I can't get on and see what's happening or get in touch with someone, or pay my bills or check my bank account or whatever... Just a few years ago, I had a computer and I was hooked up to the Internet but I was not dependent. Got to find a way to break this habit. It's like dieting, you still have to do it(especially where I live now) but you have to do it in moderation and with discipline and not get completely crazy when it's not there. I'm sincerely gonna work on this.

Also, along with this computer thing spent some time thinking about "justification". Like justifying why I'm so attached to the computer. I really need to be comfortable in my own skin and learn to really think through the things that I say and do. Then there is no reason to have to justify these things or make excuses for my actions or beliefs. Now there is also a responsibility to not intentionally hurt other's feelings or trample on their beliefs.

Need to remember to work on all of these things. The goal is to keep getting better, right?

More things to pray for.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Yesterday ended up being a pretty productive day after all and today the internet is back. It's a little sad that I am so excited by that, but hey......

Woke up with a sore throat this morning and have had a hard time getting going all day, all I want to do is sleep. I am learning to listen to that and try to take it easy, better to have a lazy day than be sick for two.

Our weather has been and still is beautiful. It's actually cooled off some and not too humid. Watching the Tropical Report, Igor is beginning to turn but not dramatically enough for me, I wish it would make that 90 degree turn that they keep predicting.

Being so intense about the weather has made me think about other things that I can't change and how I really want to handle those things in my life. I believe the real test of our agency(our right to choose) is not so much about the circumstances or things that we choose as it is about how we handle the things, people, circumstances, etc,etc,etc that are sent our way. Lately I have witnessed some people getting really "excited" about things that they really can't change and that are really pretty trivial(at least to me) and I think about how when I was in my 20's and early 30's I used to be sooo like that. I'm not sure what mellowed me, maybe just age, but I really want to handle myself better. I do realize that so many things are trivial or "small stuff" and that there are things to be passionate about but you really have to be careful. I think in the long run we all want to be remembered more for our compassion and kindness that our ability to intimidate or bully others into getting what we want. Just something to ponder, see what happens when I have a lazy day. Best to keep praying.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Sitting in an Internet cafe trying to catch up. Our condo complex has new managers and I have no trust or faith in them. Maybe it is coincidence but since they have come in we have had more problems with various things. Currently it's the Internet service. They blame the provider, Innovative, and maybe that is true, but I'm starting to suspect otherwise.

Anyway.... we came down here this morning to do some business and I thought I would take this opportunity to blog. don't want to get out of the habit. It's strange how disconnected you can feel with cut off from the Net. I don't really like that feeling.

Weather has been beautiful. We have been watching the Tropical Reports and they assure us Igor, who is taking a direct bead on the islands will turn to the north shortly. Keep praying for this, we sure are. This storm is a monster and even if it came within a few hundred miles of us it could do some serious damage. May it be a "total" fish storm and head out to sea.

Got some great news yesterday. Our dear friends the Gordon's had a turn of really good luck. Well not actually luck, they worked hard for this,not to mention the prayers that I know have been offered in their behalf. The news is that Bobby has primary custody of his daughter Nicki, hopefully now they can settle down and have a more normal life, at least I hope that Bobby can, I know that he has done everything possible in the last few years to assure that Nicki already has the most normal life she can. Rick's and my best wishes go out to them with the hope of a very bright future.

Got some unfortunate news yesterday about Rachel, she has gestational diabetes. I know she is upset about this turn of events and we are too, but also know that she can get through this and maybe it will be a blessing in disguise, helping her to get even more healthy. It's not uncommon for some women to have diabetes during the end of their pregnancies, and it does go away after the baby is born. Our good wishes and prayers are with her. We are also thinking of little Mavis(most likely not her real name, buy my name for the unborn baby) and hoping that both she and Rachel will come through this with flying colors. Keep praying.

Rick is being very patient waiting his turn on the computer and since he has some work he needs to do, I'll sign off and hope we get up and running at home later today.

Remember prayer does work so keep at it for all!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Just so nobody thinks I'm getting lazy about my blog, we have been having trouble with our internet provider. The connection here at the condo works but Innovative the local Cable/Internet/Phone company has been blinking out from time to time. This affects our Internet service as well as the TV. We still don't watch much TV but we will wait until 50 minutes until the hour for the Tropical Report on the Weather Channel, and the TV will blink out right before it, frustrating. Even more frustrating is when I log on to the computer get on the Net and start checking out some of my favorite spaces and I "get the boot" because the connection was lost. Anyway...just so you don't think I'm losing interest or getting lazy or something like that.

Yesterday, Saturday, we had big plans for a fun filled day(Rick's words,not mine) we were going to go to the beach in the early part of the day and out to dinner and a concert in the evening. All outside activities. Well when we got up it was pretty cloudy and windy, not lookin' too good. I suggested we get dressed right away and go to breakfast. We did, it was good(I love eating breakfast out, it feels so luxurious to me) then because it didn't look like we were going to get any beach time in, I suggested we go over to the Divi Resort, cause I wanted to pick up something I had seen in their gift shop for Macy. While in there the skies opened up and the rain came down in buckets, the wind was fierce and the ocean was really roaring. On our way home we decided that the beach was out and it didn't look good for the "concert under the stars" either. Since the rain was letting up a little, I suggested we go by Rick's job site and he would show me the new sign. When we got there it turned out the construction crew had decided to work and they were sitting out the storm in their trucks(they were going to have to sit all day). So....we came home with all of our plans for a fun filled day scrapped and Mr. Excitement took a 4 hour nap. I spent a lot of that time cleaning up the mess that the storm made in the kitchen and entryway because we had left the windows open. When Rick got up he finished up the clean up. We did have a real nice dinner at home and played a game and watched a movie, and I was content. The best laid plans and all of that.

Today, Sunday, our official day of rest. We had some real good meetings at church. I had to teach Relief Society and of course, was nervous. I do think the lesson was pretty well received. Their was a broadcast fireside tonight, but because it was a Church Education System broadcast geared to Young Adults we opted not to go. It was a good day and all but I woke up with a terrible headache(more low pressure, I fear) so I felt exhausted.

Hurricane Igor(category 4 today) is out there but the projected path puts it pretty far north of us, so we should be good. The storm in the Caribbean that caused us so much grief yesterday, is expected to reach Tropical Storm strength but it is past us now. There is one more Tropical Wave coming off of Africa that looks kind of ominous, so this is no time to give up on the prayers for our safe passage through hurricane season. We also pray that Haiti can escape, not only the hurricanes but even the heavy rains that would be so devastating to the people there who are still living in tent cities. Actually we keep praying that all of the storms will be "fish storms" heading only out into open waters. There is no breeze tonight and the humidity is high, not my favorite weather conditions, makes it real warm and muggy. Thank goodness for the fans.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Yesterday we went to the Babcock's in the afternoon for haircuts. No not me, I actually have decided to grow mine out, much easier to pull up and get off my neck and out of my face. Rick was sorely in need to a haircut and the salon's all charge about $50. Sister Babcock bought some clippers and has been cutting her husband's hair. We thought his hair looked pretty good, so when she offered to cut Rick's we went for it, she asked me if I would cut hers, thus haircut day. Rick's looks great and I hope Sister Babcock is happy with hers.

Today we had a nice relaxing day with no expectations. Rick worked in the morning but was home pretty early. I got a load of laundry done, some light cleaning(just a general fluff and buff) and a lot of needed paperwork. I finished putting the groceries away from the shopping trip yesterday(my favorite thing to do, NOT) and then we went to the pool. I even cooked a real nice dinner(we've had a lot of salads and thrown together things because it had been so warm). The temperatures have dropped and so has the humidity, it is wonderful. Just another day in paradise. Keep praying the storms pass us by.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Some "island thing" had our Internet down for two days, just another glitch in paradise.

Went to the church social thing last night and as predicted, it wasn't so bad, actually it was kind of fun. Unfortunately, I had a real severe breathing incident, like a major sinus, asthma, allergy, some sort of horrible attack. Came home and was miserable, took a decongestant, some ibuprofen and went to bed. Have had a groggy feeling all day(probably the drugs) and my throat still isn't completely clear. When I started thinking about what could it be, I figured it was some sort of allergic reaction to something at the church, but this hasn't happened before, then I remembered that the senior missionaries have been cleaning out and organizing the library. When we first got there, I went down to the library to visit with Sister Babcock and spent some time in there. The only thing I'm real allergic and pretty sensitive to is mold and I wonder if there is some mold in and among all those books and papers that were stacked in the library, in this climate it's not a far stretch to think so. Anyway....I am going to have to be careful about that, hopefully, once they are done organizing and things aren't so "stirred up" it won't be so bad. Just one more thing!

Didn't do much today but lay around and read, trying to get over the breathing incident and the result from the drugs. We were supposed to deliver the twin bed back to the missionaries but that didn't happen. Well tomorrow is another day, Hope to be off to a better start and finish tomorrow.

Monday, September 6, 2010

What an absolutely, totally and completely beautiful day! We did almost nothing, in true holiday fashion. It felt good. Back to the daily grind tomorrow, of course,here on St. Croix, you can hardly call it that.

Got roped into attending the Branch Activity tomorrow night, one that I really had planned on missing, but one of the dearest and kindest sisters in the Branch asked us to bring the Primary President(she doesn't like to drive after dark), since the Primary is in charge of this activity(although they have been kind of pre-empted)the President really needs to be there. Couldn't refuse Sister Dye(the Primary 1st Counsellor, who made the request) so I guess the Lord wants us there. I'm sure I'll have more to say about it tomorrow.

I need to pray for more patience and a kinder heart.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Today the weather was absolutely gorgeous. Like Rachel said on my Facebook page, "shocker, you live in paradise", but it was 76 degrees this morning, crystal clear and just beautiful. I was not even sweating during the 3 hours of church meetings, nice breeze coming in the windows and the fans seemed to be effective at more than blocking out the sound of the speakers. Not once today, did I have to lay across the foot of my bed (directly under the ceiling fan) to cool off. Usually I do this at least once a day, sometimes it an excuse to cool off and sometimes it's just a good excuse to take a break.

Despite all the cool weather and feeling really good at church today, Sacrament Meeting (Fast and Testimony Meeting) was gruelling. There is always a good Spirit there but a few of the sisters just want to "preach that ole time religion", and they took up most of the time, and frankly I just started to "tune out". Tuning out at church always makes me feel bad, and I know it's my problem not someone else's but that basic "protestant~fire and brimstone type of preaching from my youth" makes me crazy. With one of the sisters it kind of carried over into Sunday School and Relief Society, by the time the meetings ended I was in one of my "just shoot me" moments and I couldn't get out of there fast enough. This is something that calls for a major change of attitude on my part and I know it. It also calls for a major teaching moment for some of the sisters but I really don't know how to do that and I'm not sure anyone else will. In my heart I know that this is people who are still learning about the Gospel and have simply brought what they know over from other religions. In my head, it makes me crazy. OK, so how do you resolve the heard and the heart. Yeah, yeah, I know PRAYER!

Today, while having a conversation with someone (outside of church) they were telling me about another mutual friend who has gotten on a band wagon about nobody needing "organized religion" and that it is all a lot of bunk! I couldn't help but wondering, didn't they ever hear that God's house is a house of order. Do they look around as see the complete organization that exists in nature and how everything is ordered? Do they really think that with all of this organization around us, God wants his teachings to be done in chaos. I know a lot of people don't really agree with my beliefs, but I know that everything we do in this life is to prepare us for all eternity. This life is but a speck in the grand picture and if we are not organized, we can't learn the things we need to know. Now neither I nor my religion(very well organized) believe that anyone will be marched off to heaven against their will and that organization means forcing people to believe a certain way, but it's through that organization that we have the opportunity to learn and to teach so that we can all get to where we want to be together. The LDS Church having a Lay Ministry gives everyone that opportunity(to learn and to teach) and the goal is that we all "get there"(there being Exalted Glory) together, for what would it be without our families and friends.

OK, how did I get here. I spend one paragraph complaining about people "preaching" and in the next, I'm up on a soap box. Well, I haven't posted this so I guess I could delete it, but since this blog is more for me than anyone else, I'll leave it, just so I can remember. After all preaching to ourselves, so that we can remember is not all bad, is it?

I didn't take the opportunity to bear my testimony in church today(it was difficult to get a word in edge wise, but if I had really made the effort, I probably could have), so if for nobody else by myself I will do it here: I know with all my heart that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in Christ's true church on the earth today. I know that He, even Jesus Christ stands at the head of this church and directs all of it's efforts through our living prophet, President Thomas S, Monson. I know that the Book of Mormon is a true account of an ancient people who lived on the American continent, but who were descendants of Lehi, a Hebrew prophet who was told in a vision to flee from Jerusalem and his travels took him to a "promised land" even the American continent. I know that the Book of Mormon is true scripture and stands alongside the Bible(Old and New Testament) as another witness of Jesus Christ. I know that God is our Heavenly Father and that he lives and loves us and has a fervent desire that each and every one of us return to live with him again, just as we once did as Spirits in the Pre-existence(before we came to the earth). I know that the Priesthood has been restored to the earth and that every worthy male can hold and exercise that Priesthood. I know that this same Priesthood is the proper authority to act in the name of Jesus Christ and that through it and the sealing ordinances of the Temple we can be Eternal Families(being sealed to our loved ones for time and all eternity) and live together in the next life and for all Eternity. I know that Joseph Smith was the Prophet of the Restoration, meaning that through him all things that existed in Christ's Church when he was on the Earth have been restored. I know that Christ lives and that he is my Redeemer and that he loves me so much that he already paid the price of all of my sins, through his Atoning Sacrifice in Gethsemane and on the the cross at Calvary. I also know, that all I have to do to accept His sacrifice is to repent and sacrifice my sins by giving them up and returning to them no more. I write this testimony from my heart and in the sacred name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

Now, I finally feel better. Must always Pray!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Today is a twofer, last night I was just too tired. Friday really wasn't very exciting, I was tired most of the day, I think I'm still playing catch up from something. Rick did have to work for most of the day, he had to go back to the job site twice and file all his reports and download all his pictures, so it was that kind of a day for him. Went to bed early.

Friday, today, was a gloriously beautiful day. Nice stiff breeze and it seemed a little cooler, beautiful blue sky. We spent some time in the morning reading and discussing the Sunday School lesson and being lazy. Then Rick helped me with some house cleaning, we basically cleaned the downstairs and mopped the kitchen floor. Not really a big project and didn't take too long, but we were both ringing wet. Even on a cool day a little exertion will help you work up a good sweat.

I had been promising Rick that we would go to the Deep End for Crabby Patties. His Mom sent us a check for our anniversary, so we decided that today was crabby patty day. I do think the Deep End is my favorite restaurant. Good food, great atmosphere and not too expensive. We came home and had a surprise visit from the Babcocks, always enjoyable. Then went for a dip in the pool. Not terribly exciting, but a nice day together. We are really learning how to be together and depend on each other more. I like it.

After several of you asked, I realized that I never did tell you that, yes, Rick did finally get paid. He got paid on Friday 8/27(he was supported to get paid on Tuesday 8/24), so it really wasn't too long a wait. It was just that we were completely out of money and had promised to pay out rent on the 24th, etc, etc, etc. Anyway, it all worked out, the landlord is off island and wasn't even looking for us. We did manage to have a nice anniversary dinner on the 25th, etc., etc., etc. I do need to be better about telling all of the story, and not just complaining about things without saying how they worked out.

I really do need to be better about not complaining about anything. I have all of my "just shoot me" moments, probably because I like to be a little bit dramatic, but just for the record both Rick and I feel so blessed and know that we have absolutely nothing to complain about. We live in such a beautiful place, have such a comfortable home and are probably happier than we have been in long time. We were just talking tonight about how glad we are not to be looking at Fall and Winter the way most folks are. We talk all the time about how much we really love it here and how we are actually a little bit surprised at that. There was actually a time in my life when I thought "endless summer" would be boring, well now I say "bring it on".

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Woke up early, even after a late night, to a beautiful day. Our friends the Babcocks(the senior missionary couple here on St. Croix) spent the night, because they had no power or running water at their apartment. We had a nice breakfast and a good visit. They are helping us get a better insight into what we should be doing here in the "Branch. We try hard to follow the Spirit, but it's nice to have some confirmation from other people that the things we see and feel are not tainted by our personal experience and prejudices.

When to Book of Mormon scripture study at the Branch today and it was especially good. Some of the sisters are so insightful and add a new and different dimension to my understanding. After that we went grocery shopping, UGH! I hate shopping of any kind and grocery is the worst. Then when we came home, we had to put all the stuff away. It'd done now and we're going to relax and watch the new Netflix. I'm tired.

Have to keep praying, we have a few days reprieve from he storms by Gaston is on the horizon and nobody seems to know what it will be doing, have to "keep a weather eye on the horizon" and a prayer in our hearts for the safety of all.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Had a real lazy day today, needed to do some more paperwork(still catching up) and was having a hard time with it, went downstairs at one point and thought I would lay down for just a minute, three hours later the phone rang, I could not believe it, but I must have needed it.

Later in the afternoon Rick and I went down to the pool so I could work out and cool off, while we where there, The Senior Missionary couple, the Babcocks stopped by. They are still out of electricity and looked absolutely melted, we told them to go home get their swimming things(senior missionaries do not have the same rules as the young missionaries) and get some things and plan on spending the night. We had no idea that so much of the island was still without power. We are becoming more and more grateful for out condo each day.

The Babcock's came back, we went back to the pool and had a nice refreshing bob in the pool then we came home and made dinner. They brought some salad(good thing cause we had none) and we made up some pasta and sauce. Actually a pretty good impromptu dinner. Then we had a nice evening, staying up way too late and visiting. We are really glad we had the opportunity to share this with them.

I have been back on my gratitude thing(wondering how I ever got off of it, or why). There is so much to be grateful for and in this time of storms and related difficulties it becomes more and more apparent. As always, I am grateful to be able to live here on St. Croix(even in hurricane season), I am grateful for the home that has been prepared for us here and I am so grateful for the kind hand of friendship extended to us by so many. I am eternally grateful for my "eternal companion", my family, especially my little girlfriend Macy, and so many close friends who are constantly in touch with us and checking on us. I really makes us feel good. I am grateful for prayer and for those that are answered and even for those that are not.

More storms on the horizon, keep praying for us and others that they will all become "fish storms" keep them heading out to sea.