Friday, September 21, 2012

Home again 14 Aug 2012

The last two weeks of our mission were very busy.  Last Family Home Evening and Tom's birthday party.  Saying goodbye to old friends. 
                                                          Watanabe Shimai and cute pig.
Last FHE and birthday party.
Hayase and Adachi Shimai and a 14 course tofu lunch.
Honda Shimai and Bess
Aoki and Kasada Shimai
Takahashi and Okamura Shimai
Garden at Tofu restaurant
Pam, a friend from Eikaiwa
Kikue, a special friend
 Sueyoshi-san (Steve) from Eikaiwa
Mark, a friend from Eikaiwa
Lunch at Zone Conference

Dinner with Shimoda-san, Hoffman and Stirland Choro
Dinner with the Matsuzaki fufu
Last dinner in Kumamoto with the Koide family
Saying goodbye: Watanabe Shimai, Bess, Kikue, and Furusawa Shimai
Last missionaries we served with. Hoffman and Stirland Choro and Watanabe and Furusawa Shimai

Our last District
At the Mission Home with President and Sister Gustafson
Elder and Sister Bues
Mission Home with Oba and Villalobos Choro
See you later, Clements Choro
Goodbye at the Airport
With Tashiro Choro and Shimai at the Fukuoka airport
We found our grandson Jace at the Seattle airport!  What a welcome visit!!
Most beautiful sight at the airport in SLC, Welcome home!
Games and dinner at the Poulson's
  Steve, Elysse, Tom, Taralee and Bess, Tom and Bess are sleep deprived!

Oldest and youngest Granddaughters, Elysse and Jada.
We are so happy to be home even though we miss everyone in Japan!!                                                                                
D&C  18: 15 And if it so be that you should labor all your days in crying repentance unto this people, and bring, save it be one soul unto me, how great shall be your joy with him in the kingdom of my Father!
*We can all receive this joy through sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ.   
            We will continue to do missionary work.  We are planning to serve more missions if it is the Lord's desire.
We have seen miracles happen in many lives through the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Grandma and Grandpa,
Mom and Dad,
Tom and Bess

Monday, August 6, 2012

Last Post from Kumamoto, Japan, 30 July - 5 Aug 2012

Last post from Japan.  One week until we start our trek home!  It is getting more difficult to say goodbye to these wonderful people here. So we say "see you later".  Hope we can come back again soon. 
Monday for FHE we had a new guest.  Bess loves playing with beatles. 
Jyunichi also stopped by.  We have not seen him for a while. 
Wada Choro brought the treats for district meeting, Oishii! (delicious)   

On Tuesday Measawa Kyodai let us take a picture of him without his helmet.
Wednesday we traveled to Sendai in Kagoshima to check apartments.  Usui and Mukaitani Choro enjoy the rewards of hard work.
Taniyama Choro needed new pillows.  Beckstrand Choro tested the pillows at the store.
Beckstrand and Allen Choro after dinner.  You would not know that a typhoon is passing by.  Maybe that is why no one else was at the restaurant!
Wednesday we started with the Taniyama Shimai, Shichijo and Hinode.
The Kagoshima Choro, McKinney and Trane, have a baptismal date and a very clean apartment!
The Miyakonojo Choro, Kwon and Hill, got a new microwave and dinner. Japanese barbeque!
We saw this full double rainbow on the way to Miyazaki.  Does that mean no more typhoons?
Miyazaki Choro, Kanaida and Fujimaki loved 31 flavors on Friday.
We went back to 31 flavors for this great companionship of Miyagawa and Latu Shimai.  What a great bunch of apartments to visit!
Saturday we toured our favorite places around Kumamoto with the Mission office couple, Elder and Sister Beus.  First, Mount Aso.  Then to the Shirakawa Fountainhead. No dropped cell phones this time.
We had a wonderful buffet lunch and then spent the afternoon and evening at Suizenji Park. Here is a 91 year old mother and her daughter at one of the booths.  We think they gave us more than we bought.
Sunday the Nagamini Ward gave us a farewell dinner.  Sam and several of our Eikaiwa students came to the dinner.  We were so excited to see them and all the Ward family.
We love the food that is prepared here.
Missionaries, Young Men and Young Women sang "Families can be Together Forever" in English.
A skit showing how Tom recieved revelation that he was to marry Bess.  Well, he wanted to shoot a bull elk, but it did not happen.  He got a better prize.
Sister Takahashi shows how Bess loves to garden.  Honeydew melon!
 The Ward also celebrated the Maui  family's July 25th Temple sealing Sunday evening.
 We have loved this past 18 months serving a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints here in Kumamoto, Japan.  It has been the best thing we have ever done for us and the Lord. We have learned many things:
            House work is fun to help your wife with.
            If you stay flexible you do not get bent out of shape.
            Not to stay home on raining days!
            Tom has learned to be a better driver.
            Learned patience from the Japanese people.
            Learned more about the Gospel and the scriptures
            Bess learned she only has to prepare a half of a Relief Society or Young Women's lesson, the translation takes up the other half.
            One cannot get ahead of the Lord.  We've received more blessings and service than we've given out. 
            Next to the Lord, members are the best help to the missionaries .
            We have felt the joy of being able to serve others.
            We found out that it is never convenient to serve, but one needs to serve when people need it.  (late night hospital runs, etc)
            You do not have to speak the language for people to feel the Spirit of Christ.
            How to love people the first time you meet them.
            All things can be overcome through the Atonement of Jesus Christ. 
 D&C  18: 15 And if it so be that you should labor all your days in crying repentance unto this people, and bring, save it be one asoul unto me, how great shall be your joy with him in the kingdom of my Father!

We love you!
Grandma and Grandpa.
Mom and Dad,
Bess and Tom