Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Another Family Picture

Here is another family picture. It seems that everyone was OK with the idea to take their shoes off except for the guy 2nd to the left. :) Wish I was smiling more here. We will surely miss the guy 2nd to the right.

Being Set Apart

Every missionary needs to be officially 'set apart' as a missionary of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints prior to beginning their labors as a missionary. This is a picture of Ian preparing for that setting apart.

Mormons believe that there are two ways authority is conferred in the Church: by ordination and by setting apart. A missionary setting apart is usually done by the missionary's Stake President in his office a day or two before the missionary leaves for the Missionary Training Center (MTC). A Stake President serves in the capacity as leader over many Wards ( called a stake) in a specific geographical area. A Bishop serves in the capacity as leader over a Ward. The Stake President and Bishop both are ordained to the office of High Priest in the Melchizedek Priesthood and the Bishop is also ordained and set apart as a Bishop.

Ian was previously ordained an Elder, an office in the Melchizedek Priesthood, a year ago when he turned eighteen. Last evening he was set apart to serve full time using that Priesthood authority as an official representative of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and of the Lord.

He said a few last good byes to friends yesterday, rode his favorite long board for the last time in two years, and put away his cell phone. His heart has turned towards his service to God and to those he will serve in Brazil.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Food For All And Then Some

massive foodstuffs
So I worried and worried and worried that I wouldn't have enough food. I always worry someone will be hungry. That must be an Italian thing too I guess. But we had PLENTY of food and then some. We sent a few people home with some very tasty leftovers.

We learned that 100 people can fit in our house but not necessarily in our kitchen and not really well. There were a few bottlenecks when people tried to get to the desserts but other than that I think it went very well. I learned what to do next time we have that many people to make the flow go smoother.

It was VERY fun to have so many people show up and very fun to see everyone enjoy themselves so much.

Ian gave a beautiful talk in church yesterday and it was nice to see how sincere and honest he is in his desire to serve a mission.

Today he has me on laundry duty. He's got me washing all sorts of stuff he wants to pack this evening and we are methodically going through his list of things to do. I told him yesterday to prioritize them on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the most important. This morning he said he did that but that they were all 5's and no 1's and not really even any 3's.

Hmmmm. Maybe I need to reteach the meaning of "prioritize."

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Tired But Ready

So why is it that women (or should I say mostly Italian heritage women) have this cleaning thing that happens to them before people show up? And why is it that before 100 people show up, more cleaning seems to happen? Does anyone really care besides the crazy person (me) who does all the cleaning? Nope. But but my house is clean again and I like it.

But I'm beat.

Tomorrow I will look around at all the happy people who are here who won't notice what I cleaned today and I will be happy some more.

Maybe that's why people like to come here.

Maybe it's for the meatballs and sauce. :)

Too bad we're having hot dogs tomorrow but several people who undoubtedly knew that I surely wouldn't send Ian off with out his favorite spaghetti, meatballs and sauce.......have been asking......and hoping..... to get some for themselves. :)

So I clean. And I will make my famous meatballs on Monday. And everybody's happy.

But I'm tired.

Friday, August 27, 2010

You Invited How Many Ian?

Many times when a missionary departs, the family has a get together after their last Sunday in church to say good bye to the missionary and wish him or her well. The family serves something modest as a way of saying "thanks for coming" to all the extended family, neighbors, and friends who stop by.

I don't do the whole Facebook thing and so I don't quite know how it works. But Ian does. He said he would send out Facebook invitations letting everyone know when the get together was and I told him to just let me know how many people he thought would stop by. When he was finished he just matter-of-factly said, "with family, I guess it will be about 100 people." I don't have a lot of family!

One hundred people. Where does one put 100 people?

How does one feed 100 people?

So today, we did the only American thing there was to do. We went to Costco. The day after we went to Walmart that is.

Hot dogs anyone?

Oh, and maybe bring a chair................ :)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

An Old Picture I Love

So I have finally figured out how to post pictures. This is a picture from 1983 just before Jim & I were married. I found it not long ago and I always liked it. We have aged considerably in 27 years but it's nice to know we were young once.

Latest Family Picture

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Mission Prep & Blog Thoughts

So I have been thinking a lot about what I want to write on this blog. I have decided that after Ian goes to Brazil, I will only get updates from him on a weekly basis and therefore I would like to add other elements to this blog as well.

I have decided this blog will have a finite time line. I started a week before his mission and will end it a week after he arrives home in August 2012. I think I will add stories about my family, my life, and autobiographical information that may be useful to others. We'll see as I go along.

If I can ever figure out how to do pictures and links, I will for sure add lots.

Mostly, I would like to chronicle the growth of a young man into a mature man because of his missionary labors and the effect it has on all of us who follow that journey.

Today Ian is working on a talk he needs to give Sunday in church as part of a farewell to those who know and love him in our local ward. He contacted the missionary travel department of the Church this morning because there is a discrepancy of whether or not he will actually fly out to Brazil on Tuesday or head to the Provo MTC on Wednesday. According to the Brazil consulate website in L.A., the visa has been approved but we're still waiting for the "ready to pick up" button to light up. Missionary travel said they won't cancel his flight to Brazil until Monday and they overnight visas from L.A. once they are ready for pick up so it is still possible he could fly out Tuesday. I guess we just wait and see where he actually goes to next week. The only sure thing is that he "goes" somewhere for a long time.

In the meantime, take care and God bless.

Liz

P.S. Take a look at this link:
http://www.amyjosphotography.com/Amy_Jo_Sturzenegger_Photography/Home.html

My kids gave me a gift certificate for family photos for Mother's Day and we finally had them done about two weeks ago. This is a preview and I will get the actual CD of all the pictures next week. And I will post some. I think. If I can figure out how to do that. Click on the "blog" link for a description the photographer said about our family. Click on the Photo Gallery link for some of the pictures. If I look squished, I was. :)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Welcome to My New Blog!

My name is Liz. I have a wonderful son named Ian. He is headed to Brazil to serve as a Mormon missionary where he will serve the Lord for two years. He leaves next week and I have decided to keep a blog about what it is like to be the mother of a Mormon missionary. I would love to share this blog with anyone who would like to go along for the ride with me as I know there will be ups and downs along the way. There will be times I could use a friendly word of support and times I will just delight in wanting to share my thoughts about the whole missionary process.

I certainly need help setting up my blog and figuring out how to add pictures and making it look like something people might enjoy reading. I welcome comments and visitors.

Today Ian and I spent a little while reviewing his mission packet which tells him about everything he needs to bring to his mission. Another acquaintance, who also served in Brazil a few years ago, reviewed the list with us and it was very helpful. He and Ian then went out to a Brazilian restaurant for lunch. Ian loved it and I am happy he won't starve while he's gone.

That's it for now. I will fiddle around for a while figuring out this whole blog thing and I look forward to posting.

In the meantime, take care and God bless.

Liz