Sunday, December 9, 2012

Bula Vinaka from sunny, hot and humid Suva.  This  little boy is in our ward and is dressed in his sulu  with  a special Samoan piece that is wrapped around his waist and held by a brown (belt like) strap.  He has a fun personality and loves to come and sit by Elder Hogge becaue he has the Kindle Fire that has the words to the Hymns, that we use  if a hymn book isn't available, which is often the case.

When I asked if I could take his picture after church he did this pose next and said he likes Batman

We've had a busy week. Last Saturday all  our missionaries  were in  Suva.  We prepared  lunch for 105, then  dinner that night as part of our Christmas with the missionaries (all the seniors were here also = 18 of us).  Then we headed down the hill for the talent program with the missionaries doing island dances, skits, and singing.

The picture above was the Sunday night Missionary fireside where all the missionaries sang in a choir under Sister Klingler's direction.  The speakers were wonderful and it was a nice way to begin the Christmas season.  Sister Klingler doesn't think we'll be able to bring everyone in next year because we are getting too big and it's expensive.

Elder Brown and Elder Hogge talking while the last of our potluck dinner  was being set up on Tuesday night. After  dinner, we had a fireside with  Brother Hamula, our area 70 who came for a visit with his wife. They told us some wonderful stories about their family and heritage.  In the zone conference the next morning Brother Hamula counseled the missionaries to be ready because a sunami of missionaries were headed our way and counseled that they would be the trainers for these new missionaries.  This confirmerd what I had been seeing in the office.  In January 11 are coming, and in March 19.  President Klingler was told in an area Mission President Conference he attended recently that our number of missionaries will probably climb from 62 we have now to 150 by the end of next year.

These are the Terry's who work on an island North of us and she loves to cook.  The  missionaries where they are don't get many invitations for dinner so she cooks for them a lot and loves to make cakes too.

L -Elder Davis our temple Presid. R  Elder Muir who came here on a mission  over  30 years ago and has returned with his wife.  They are also on one of the outer islands and he speaks Fijian.  They will be finishing their mission in February

I heard a faint knock on the door one morning and the gardener handed me these.  The one on the right  is the fattest egg plant I've ever seen since I arrived in Fiji, and I have no idea what the one on the left is but it's probably a relative to the eggplant

This big vine is growing through the fence from our neighbor's yard and may be a pumpkin vine.  I was curious to see what it would turn out to be, but the gardner came and trimmed the yard and chopped it out!  I'll just have to watch our neighbor's yard to see what it turns out to be.

I'm sad to say this is Shirley (our car that the Elder's in Lautoka have been  using since the truck accident ).  No, it  hasn't been repaired yet and will take some time to get the parts in.  The Elders came too close to a wall and put a "few scratches" on it.  

Just before they came in town for our Christmas celebration, someone broke the back window and stole a  Bible and empty duffle bag that was left in the back seat when they went in doors for the night.  Poor Shirley.

We are seeing a lot of things blooming now that we're in the hot summer months.  This bush on the left  is pretty because it has a lush green lower part and then a bright yellow folage on top.  The little tree in the middle is a paw paw tree (Papaya for you westerners)

I lie this one because it's blooms are red and green in time for Christmas

We went for a ride in a nicer neighborhood and saw this home, it looks so nice because it has been painted recently.  

To the right of the house above is this one.  It's just as nice as the one above but hasn't been  painted for a while.  The gray wall is turning black with mold, something that is a common sight here.

With it being so hot and humid Richard and I decided to go for a ride  and explore  some of the villages outside of Suva on Saturday, after we had lunch with the Senior Couples.  It was nice and sunny and we thoroughly enjoye taking a few pictures in a nice air conditioned  car. Our current rental car is brand new and only had 14 miles on it.

We noticed some sheer cliffs on the side of the road and discovered a waterfall.

As life often goes, Friday night when we got home, we noticed  that things in the fridge were warm  and discovered that our fridge wasn't working.  Luckily there's a fridge in the mission office so we moved everything there and put a few items in a cooler with ice until Monday  when the repair man will come to see if it's fixable.  I had just bought some green beans on Friday and figured I could leave them on the bar and cook them on Sunday.  I had tied the bag they were in in a knot and when I opened it found big white fluffy mold growing on them!

This is a bread plant tree, the famous one that Captain Bligh went  to the islands for  in the Mutiny on the Bounty story. The fruit is about the size of bowling ball when it's fully mature and has a pebbly looking surface. It's another one of the many starchy types of food that is used in the Fijian diet.

We think of all of you often and hope you are happy and well.  Things will be pretty busy for us with all the missionaries that are coming the next few months.  Next week we will be saying goodbye to 5 that are heading home.  Things are always ebbing and flowing, but we love being here and serving the Lord.  Today their was no teacher for Sunday School (a common things in our ward).  An Indian member leaned over and asked if I would like to give the lesson, and fortunately I was inspired to suggest that Elder Hogge would be a much better candidate.  He did a great job and thoroughly enjoyed teaching the lesson.            Bye For Now, Love Elder and Sister Hogge


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