I have to begin by expressing my feelings at church on Sunday last week. As I was sitting on the stage playing the prelude music I was able to watch Austin (a student from Sandy, Utah) teaching Hamish and Sam how to pass the Sacrament. They both received the Aaronic Priesthood this past week and are worthy and able to pass the sacrament now. I felt like a proud mother. I have sat in on discussions and worked with them on their family history and have been so excited to see them come to church week after week since they have been baptised. If I could have taken a picture I would have. I am so happy for these two young men who have found the gospel and found happiness and blessings. It is so nice to see someone really understand what it is they have a hold of now and become better because of it.
This week was busy as usual. Transfers happened a week ago and this is a short transfer period with the next transfers happening in four weeks so that means moves planning is in two weeks since one week has already gone by. So everything is a bit busier and lots to get done in a shorter amount of time.
I don’t even think I can do a day-by-day play of this week – it all is running together in my mind. But here are the highlights.
I went with Sister Allred and Sister Sun who are now our sister missionaries in Corstophrine, to do a follow-up lesson with McCauley. We talked about the Plan of Salvation. What a wonderful lesson and McCauley is such a great guy. It was totally enjoyable.
I ran a lot of errands this week it seems. I had to go to the doctor to get my prescriptions refilled again. They may not charge much for medicine but you can’t get a full year’s prescription. I get about 3 months at a time then I have to go back and pay for them to write a new prescription for me so I can get more.
I also ran a plaque to an engraver so that we can add our new mission president’s name to the plaque and President Donaldson’s end date. I can’t believe that is happening in the next couple months. It will be a hard thing not to have the Donaldson’s around. What amazing people they are. I am so happy that I had the opportunity to meet them and become friends. They will be eternal friends, that’s for sure.
Thursday we just closed up the office and took Elder Hinckley and Elder Crowley out to Zizzi’s for dinner when the President called. They were in Belfast and their plane was cancelled and could I get them on another plane right away. There I was at the restaurant. My mission phone was not with me. I thought it was in my bag that morning but it must have been tangled up in my bed somewhere instead because I didn’t have it. So I was talking to him on Sister Gifford’s phone which had about 2% battery left and trying to get on the airline’s site with my US phone. I couldn’t purchase a ticket on-line because the only other flight was less than two hours out and they won’t sell on-line that close to departure. I told President he would just have to get in the queue and buy a ticket there but he said the queue was too long and they wouldn’t make it. He said to try and get them into Glasgow so I decided to Facetime with Lacey instead and see if she could get on her computer and get the tickets. But the same thing. The flight was too close and it wouldn’t let her purchase them. So I am in the restaurant with a phone on each ear trying to eat a little bit since I had skipped lunch and breakfast that day and nothing was happening in our favor.
Finally, I told the President, hop in a taxi and get to the ferry terminal. I will get you ferry tickets and Sister Gifford and I will pick you up on this end. The ferry terminal is 3 and a half hours away and the ferry ride is 2 and a half hours so I knew we needed to get moving fast. I hung up with Lacey quickly and then without thinking told the President I was hanging up and that I loved him – (I got a funny look from Elder Hinckley and Elder Crowley) and then really flustered hung up the phone. I called the ferry and booked them tickets and we ran the missionaries to the church and got back in the car to head to Stranraer. I picked up Sister Gifford’s phone to text the President that we were on our way and her phone was completely dead and my personal phone was about dead as well. That was actually a small miracle that Sister Gifford’s phone actually held out until I didn’t actually have to have it. We were able to do everything we needed before it died.
Well the zone leaders, Elder Worley and Elder Butler knew what was going on and they saw that our phones were dead and said – you can’t drive all the way to Stranraer without a phone so they ran home to get a car charger that they have so we could get Sister Gifford’s phone plugged in and we were off. We realized as it got dark just as we reached the coastal road that is narrow and filled with large trucks coming at us that this was the first time we had driven this stretch of road without it pouring rain. We had good weather. And the forecast for that day had actually been snow. So another small miracle for us. We got to the ferry about ten minutes after it landed due to the ferry leaving Belfast late and all was well.
We pulled into the mission home just after 1:00 AM and President said, “It’s Good Friday tomorrow. Businesses are going to be closed anyway, take the day off.” So we did!! We slept in and when I got up I got some laundry going and then I cleaned the kitchen and went for a walk. When I got back Sister Gifford was waking up so once she was ready we left to
go to the store. The Miller’s had invited us over for dinner and games and we were very excited. Since we had a free day I decided to go to Primark. Lacey is always wanting to shop vicariously at Primark so I got her on the phone at 6:30 AM her time and we strolled through the store and pic
ked out a few things for her kids. I got Skyler’s kids a few things as well and then we got a hot dog at Five Guys and headed home so I could make salsa.
Dinner was wonderful with the Miller’s and we played some games afterwards. The Helps joined us and it was a great evening.
Saturday we got up and even though it is a rainy day outside we got out and picked up the Miller’s for another adventure and headed on our way to the border’s area. Every time we drive to Galashiels we pass two roads that have castle signs on them and I have always wanted to drive down them to see what we could find. So today, that was the plan. The first castle was Borthwick Castle, just a mile down the road. I was delighted when I saw it. It was exactly what we were hoping for but then we got out of the car and walked up to the gate, which was wide open, and saw the sign – Borthwick Castle is a private venue with no general public access. So we had to take pictures from the gate. But what a beautiful castle. There was also a lovely old church right by it.
The next road we travelled down was to get to Crichton Castle. Again, we had no idea what we were going to find and this jaunt was 3 miles away. But again we weren’t disappointed. Except that these out of the way castle’s are not open during the winter and so they don’t actually open until next week.
I loved this poem that was on the sign at Crichton Castle gate.
That castle rises on the the steep
Of the green vale of Tyne;
And far beneath, where slow they creep
From pool to eddy, dark and deep,
Where alders moist and willows weep,
You hear her streams repine.
–Sir Walter Scott
Then of course you can’t take a trip to Galashiels without going over to Melrose to see the Abbey. It’s still one of my very favorite things to visit.
Now we are heading over to the church to attend conference. Of course we have had a full day and you are just starting your morning but it feels good to know we are doing something together at the same time. I hope you have a wonderful conference and that you hear words meant for you.
I love you.