Monday, October 31, 2011


Amost Home! It's been a long drive home contrary Winds!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


What's your email address? We need the rules for Dork!

Monday, October 24, 2011

All Good Things Must Come To An End

We have many thoughts running through our minds about now.  We will be heading home in four days and should arrive either Monday or Tuesday.

And we admit to being a bit excited about returning to our 'huge' home (not really all that big but we have been living in an RV)! We've been gone a lot over the past four and half years or so and we are ready to stay home for a little bit. 

One thing I learned; I had a 65 year warranty on this earthly tabernacle of mine, and it ran out last July!  We both have had some health issues while we have been here. Mostly, backs that are not up to this sort of work any longer!  I have no cartilage left in the lowest (or L5) position, so it is bone on bone. Don't know how long it has been that way, but this mission let me know about it!  I've been in pain most of the six months we've been here.

Sister Caldwell has also had some back trouble the last couple of weeks.

But we will make it home and then take some time to recover!

None-the-less, this has been a wonderful experience and we are thrilled to have been able to serve here. Kirtland holds a much larger roll in Church history than we knew. For example, Joseph and the headquarters of the Church were in Kirtland longer than anywhere until Salt Lake. Not Nauvoo or Missouri, Kirtland, Ohio. And nearly half of all of the revelations contained the Doctrine and Covenants came here, in Ohio. And the list of things which began in here in Ohio is a rather lengthy and impressive one. Such things as the offices of Bishop, Apostle, Seventy, Patriarch, Deacon and others, all began here.

And the list goes on.

A VERY common response from those who come here and take part in one of our guided tours, is, 'Why don't we talk about this more in the Church' or 'Why don't know we know about all this in the Church'?

The included photo is of the Johnson Inn and the Whitney Store, just two of the venues we help with here.

We have learned a lot here.

Wonder what our next mission will teach us.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Fall is here!

Actually, it's about finished. What a beautiful area! We actually stay fairly busy at the sites here in the fall. There are a number of tour buses which bring loads of tourists to the area just to see the fall leaves. We're not surprised! It is quite stunning, as you can see!

We also have quite a few Amish folks living in the area. Amish are of German descent and speak both English and German. But being several generations removed from Germany, their German seems to have changed a bit. I spoke something fairly simple in German to a couple of the children but they had no idea what I said. Not that my German would be anything to brag about!

It is really interesting to see them as they plow their fields and work their farms with only horse power to do it. It's amazing what they are able to do!

We learned a lot more about them recently when we all had an Amish dinner at the Miller family farm -- Amish farm, that is. The Miller's are Amish and run a window making business in a large building behind their home. They simply moved all of the equipment aside, setup tables and fed about 50 of us!

The Amish hold church services from 9:00 am 'til about noon, every other Sunday. They have about 200 in attendance, on average, and they take turns meeting in members homes. In the case of the Millers, church would be held in their shop.

After church, they (the hosting family) feed all who attend. Yup, all 200 of 'em! But it does get spread around over time!

They also run their own school system -- by agreement with the State. Their children attend grades one through eight and then graduate.  And we were told that they receive almost the same education as our children do, in twelve years of schooling.

We don't have any pictures of the Miller family; they do not generally believe in pictures. They feel it would increase the likelihood of vanity. So, we readily agreed and didn't take any pictures of them.

The food was really good and we had an enjoyable time.

This is the kind of scenery we drive through to get to the historic sites every day. The leaves are extraordinary, as you can see. In Utah, to see something even close to this, we have to take a nice trip through the mountains. They can't here. They don't have any mountains!

But, we haven't had snow yet, like Utah has!

Don't you wish you were here?  Come on up!! We have two weeks left! We'll take you on tour!

Oh, yeah. We will be heading for home in about two and half weeks. We've enjoyed it here but it will be really nice to be back in our home where we can where we have to get out of our dinning room chair in order to reach things like the stove, the cabinets, the sink, etc.!

Monday, September 26, 2011

It's That Time!

Yup! Believe it or not, it's time to put up Christmas lights!

They put up quite a few decorations here at the Kirtland historic sites. And though it seems awfully early to be putting up lights, we have to start now to get it all done. Especially since we find ourselves dancing between raindrops in addition to just needing the time to get them all up.

And, to this point at least, I seem to have drawn the short straw and have taken the biggest burden for the lights. of course, that is really because I am so talented at it! Yah, right!

But I don't mind.  It will bring a lot of happiness to a lot of people at a very special time of year.

However, lights are not the only thing they do for Christmas.  The Visitors Center will be full of Christmas creches. About 700 of them to be exact!

Unfortunately, we won't be here to see the final result or when the lights are finally all turned on.  Hope someone will send us pictures!

And really, we are not that early with the decorations. Temple Square started over six weeks ago.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Wonderful Kirtland!

Part 1

The 124th section of the Doctrine and Covenants, verse 84 says, in part, " . . . nevertheless, I the Lord will build up Kirtland . . .".  So what, you say?  The 124th Section was received in 1841.  The saints had been forced out of Kirtland three years earlier, in 1838.  So why does the Lord say, he will build up Kirtland, after they had already left?  Easy, it is yet to happen. Or at least, it was yet to happen.

Hiram Smith, Joseph's brother, prophesied of the future building up of Kirtland, too.  But he said that the building up of Kirtland was to happen many years in the future and would be accomplished by the descendants of those who lived there in the 1830's.

Little did we know that when we came to Kirtland, it would be in direct fulfillment of prophecy!

Part 2

Fall is showing up in force, now. We've had night time lows in the 40's a few nights and the trees are really starting to turn.  Still not a majority of them but it is really getting pretty.  When Karen and Grady arrive, things ought to really be showy!

We are really looking forward to all the color that they all talk about around here.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Better late than never!

Things have been a bit hectic for us lately.

Our oldest daughter, Julie, had open heart surgery on the 9th -- unexpectedly. They had to repair an aortic aneurysm. It was something that one hopes they will never have to face. But the surgery went very well and so has her recovery. We flew home for a week to help and I was able to give her a Fathers blessing before the surgery. How grateful we are for the power of the Priesthood.

She is back home and they say she is 'way ahead of the curve' on her recovery. And we are back in Ohio.

All is well, all is well.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

The End of Summer?

Let's see, today is August 25th.  Fall leaves are just around the corner but we are still dealing with hot summer temps, right?

Not so fast, Smallville!  Don't know about your part of the country but here in Ohio, Mother Nature seems to be a bit confused.  Our temps are in the 70's during the day and hover around the lower 50's at night -- most days and nights, at least.  A bit colder, we suppose, at tree top height.

And then to really mix things up, take a look at the accompanying pics.  No, this is not some sort of trick and no we didn't get them off the internet or take them a couple of years ago.  We took them a couple of hours ago on our way home from the historic sites.

Some locals have told us that this is a bit weird even for Ohio (which we think is sort of weird any way -- had to include that for some of our Ohio readers!).

So, if the weather is already fall like in August, what is it going to be like at the end of October, when we try to drive nearly 2000 miles to go home? Yikes!

We probably should mention that most trees are not like this. Just a few here and there.  But it makes a better story if we let you think all the leaves have changed and are falling from the trees.

Honesty has its draw backs.

Saturday, August 20, 2011


It rained here a day or two ago. I know what your saying. It always rains in Ohio, so what's new?!

You don't understand. It REALLY rained here a couple of days ago.

The still photo is a pic of a small brook which runs right through the historic sites here. The little trickle you see is actually a bit larger than what it sometimes is.  It is spring fed and so never runs dry, but most of the summer it is just this gentle little trickle of water running over the stony bottom.  Thus it's name, Stony Brook.

That is, it is like that most of the time. But not all.  The video shows the same section of the 'brook' after one of our major rain storms here, though this was a bit worse than most. We've never seen it quite this full.  There is about ten feet of bank there. It was lapping at the bottom of the bridge I was taking this video from. Through most of its length, it was full to the very top of its banks.

The rain continued for two days and so did the level of the creek.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Hale Historic Farm

A couple of days ago, we went with a couple of other seniors to a historic farm located south and west of here about 45 miles.  The farm is the largest and most complete operating historic farm reserve in Ohio, though there are quite a few smaller farms around, too.  It was a fun day, though it would have been even more enjoyable had the temperature been a few degrees cooler.

First, we saw this old truck.  Then, virtually right next to it was an old safe.  Nothing special looking about the safe, until you find out that it was "Joseph Smith's Safe!"  We would know it as the safe that was used in the Kirtland Safety Society Anti-Bank Company.  If you look closely, you may notice that there doesn't seem to be any visible way to open the safe -- no key hole nor combination.  In fact, we couldn't figure out how it opened and the people on duty there didn't know either!  Interesting.

Later, we watched a re-enactment of the Civil War.  It was really quite a production.  Lot's of noise from cannon such as this one and muzzle loader rifles.  In fact, the whole area became hazy sometimes from the gun smoke!

We kind of wondered that with all that shooting and them at such close range, nobody seemed to get shot.  But then someone reminded us that it happens all the time in Hollywood movies!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Poison Ivy!

One thing we don't have a lot of where we live in Utah is any of the poison family of plants such as Poison Ivy, Poison Oak, etc.

Well, they do have those in abundance here in Ohio! Sister Caldwell can (unfortunately) attest to that!

This is a shot of her arm about 10 days after she apparently played in a nice patch of Poison Ivy! Not fun!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Attending a funeral

The mother of one of the men who actually works at the historic sites, passed away unexpectedly a couple of days ago. We are at the lunch following the services right now.

It's been an interesting experience. Have not attended a non-LDS service before. It was conducted in what appeared by name to probably be a Jewish funeral home, by a Catholic Priest. The lunch is in a Methodist Church but provided by an LDS Relief Society. Wow!

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Johnson Farm Part 2

The Johnson's had a rather large pantry in their home. It was right off the kitchen and would likely be stocked mostly with things produced right on the farm. Additional storage was had in the basement (which were seldom used for living space then) where it was cool and moist.

The second picture is of the "Master Bedroom" on the main floor, where grandma and grandpa Johnson would have slept. It is just to the left as you enter the front door and is also where we think Joseph and Ema slept during the year they stayed here.  There is in reality some disagreement as to which room was actually theirs, but this seems the most likely to us.  It is also the room as determined by Karl Anderson, who wrote "Joseph Smith's Kirtland'. As we have spoken with him, we agree that there is no other place where grandpa and grandma Johnson would have put Joseph and Ema.

This, then, is where they were when a mob came, dragged Joseph from the home and tarred and feathered him.

The floor has an interesting pattern to it. We know it was the original pattern used by the Johnson's.  Care was taken during restoration, to peel through the layers, down to the original.  Under the bed, in the corner, still remains some of the original paint, left unrestored.

In the next post, the 'Revelation Room'.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Johnson Farm

Realized we really haven't posted much about grandpa Johnson's farm, for some reason. Just sort of slipped by us somehow!

The Johnson farm holds a very special place in the history of the Church -- much of it good, some of it not so good.

We travel to the Johnson home once each week to clean, repair help maintain the inside and also prune, weed, plant flowers, etc. on the outside. It is something we quite enjoy and look forward to each week.

Grandpa Johnson was one of the most well-to-do (if not the most well-to-do) farmers in the entire area. And he was quick to share when it seemed needed.

And it was at this home that more recorded revelations were received than in any other single place - at least until the saints reached the Salt Lake Valley. Those revelations were received during the year that Joseph and Emma lived here the Johnsons (Sept. 1831 to Sept. 1832).

The inside picture if of the kitchen and is quite large, especially for that time.  The curious finish around the fireplace and in other areas of the room, is . . . interesting.  But it is apparently how the Johnson's had it when they lived there.  If you look closely at the open closet door, you can see that same painted finish.  It is from the inside of that and other closets, that we know what much of the house was originally like. The insides of the closets were apparently left unaltered over the years.

Interestingly, we are told that taxes were at least partly accessed based on the number of closets a home had. The Johnson home was not lacking in closets.

They also had a rather nice and separate dining room - something not often found in homes of the time. Another indication of their success as farmers.

We are headed there again tomorrow morning (Wednesday) to make certain things are in good order.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Visitors From Mexico

At least some of you know that in addition to our duties taking care of the grounds here in Kirtland, we also help as tour guides on Sunday and other days when they have an unusual need.  Last Sunday, a bus load of people from Mexico showed up without letting us know they were coming. So, we helped both because it was Sunday and because there was an unexpectedly large crowd all of a sudden!

We took half the group. Most did not speak English but there were a couple of them who did speak good English and were able to handle translation during the tour.

All the regular site missionaries were a bit flustered, trying to work out just how to handle the sudden influx.  And this was the last day of the busiest weekend of the year (they are always busy here during the Cumorah Pageant run). But, we did good!

Sister Caldwell and I lead the second half of the group, so we were last.  And we had a really good time! Just sort of took us back to our time in Mongolia when we always had to speak through an interpreter.  These were wonderful people and we made some new friends that day!

After they left, Elder Caldwell ended up taking over a small group as they finished the last half of a shortened tour later in the evening.  One of them was a non-member, which we do not really see here that much. Most are members for whom we are committed to providing a testimony strengthening experience.

This non-member lives about 6 miles from Kirtland and decided he would finally stop and see what all of this was about.  And he had a lot of very good and very thought out questions.  It was fun to be with him, too.  He very much wants to come back to visit the parts he missed this time (it was later in the evening so it was cut a little short).

The opportunities we have to share the Gospel while we do tours are our favorite.  We do like helping with the landscaping but it is even better to help with tours sometimes.

Oh, the forecast for Thursday is for the hottest temps in 16 years!!  About 97 degrees and 75-80% humidity! Ouch!  Lucky us!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Happy Birthday Emma

To celebrate Emma Smith's birthday, the Community of Christ Church (i.e. RLDS) invited us to join them in the Kirtland Temple this evening.  It was called the Emma Hale Smith Bidamon Hymn Festival.  They had prepared a program telling the story of her life intertwined with music from her first hymnal.  Our Sister missionaries were invited to sing a couple of numbers (and believe me, they can sing!).  They sat in one of the corner choir sections and sounded like really accomplished singers!

They also asked several of our senior missionaries, our site director and our mission president, along with other missionaries, to participate in the program along with their own members.  It was well written and well presented.  We sang songs we had never heard before, but all of them were sang to music we were familiar with, so we just joined in. 

The first hymnal Emma prepared was printed with words only.  There was no music.  Apparently they had several favorite tunes and they fit the words to the music.  For example, we sang "Now Let Us Rejoice" to the tune of "The Spirit Of God".  Our closing number was the familiar tune and words to "The Spirit Of God".  The Sisters joined in with a beautiful descant on the last verse.  It was so beautiful!  What a privilege to sit in the Kirtland Temple and be part of meetings there.  That would not have been possible just a couple of short years ago.

When we left the temple, people were outside, looking upward and pointing to the top of the temple.  I looked up, expecting to see angels, but it was only a wasp nest!

What a great way to end of busy Sabbath!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

The USS Cod

On our 42nd anniversary (see previous post), we went on a self guided tour of the USS Cod, a World War II submarine.  This one is the only one left which has not been heavily modified to more readily accommodate tourists.  The Cod is pretty much just as it was during the war.
And it still is service- able. They start it up every month or two, just to keep it in decent condition. But they have to be careful.  There are strict laws against operating any kind of war vessel on any of the Great Lakes.
Look closely at the right and you'll see the periscope. Just like in the movies! "up periscope!"
It is amazing to see how cramped it is in there.  And difficult to imagine that as many as 90 men would man it at any one time.  Makes the two of us living in our RV seem quite palatial!

To the left is a pic of the most important part of the whole sub! And it's bigger than the one we have!

The sub has four huge diesel engines. But, curiously, it is all electric. Huge electric motors actually drive the boat. The diesel engines just power huge generators which provide the electricity and recharge the batteries.

And, of course, something else we always see in the movies are the torpedo tubes. Pictured here are two of the four on board the Cod -- two at each end.

There's not much wasted space in this thing! It is tight quarters everywhere! But we are told that the subs always got the best food. Real top notch, apparently. That must be to make up for the lack of much of anything else!

It was a fun little 'field trip' to go see this special boat!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Happy Forty Second!

Yesterday (Monday, June 27) was our 42nd wedding anniversary. Been a while since we have celebrated one of those at home!

But, we did celebrate! Last night and today (Tuesday is our normal free day).  We started out with dinner and a movie on Monday night and then continued with a couple of fun things on Tuesday.

Here's some pics of a couple of the things we did.

The second picture (the first being anniversary flowers, of course) is of the James A. Garfield mansion in nearby Mentor, Ohio.  It is quite a place!  James Garfield was the 20th President of the United States but was assassinated after only 120 days in office.

The house started as a simple nine room home which the Garfield's added onto and fixed up over a period of a few years. We'll show pictures of the inside in a later post.

From there, we went to the Cleveland Zoo (again). They had the sea lion and seal exhibit back together (it was closed for our first visit) and we were there when they did their daily show. We kind of enjoy zoos.

And then drove over to Lake Erie to visit a nice piece of World War II hardware -- the submarine USS Cod.  A veteran (and champion) of many sea battles, the Cod is the only sub from that era which is still in original condition. And it was really fascinating to walk through the old boat.  We feel better, now, about living in our VERY roomy RV for six months! Boy is it cramped in there!

That's Elder Caldwell as he exited the sub.  It was fun seeing things we had only seen before in movies.

Again, we will show more pics (some of the inside) in subsequent posts.

We had a good time. Tomorrow, we go back to work at Grandpa Johnson's place. That will be fun, too!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

A Wonderful Visit

Julie, Dean, Lindsie, DJ, Jarod and Karen (Dean's mother) came to visit us here in Kirtland! And they arrived on Father's Day!  What a great Father's Day gift. And we had an awesome visit! Busy, but awesome!

We were able to show them pretty much everything there is to see in the way of Church historic sites, plus a few extra places thrown in for good measure.  First, we went to Lake Erie and ate lunch at this pavilion in a little park not too far from where we serve.

It was raining but the kids still managed to get in the lake!

Then we went on up the coast to Fairport Harbor Museum and Lighthouse (also on Lake Erie) where members of the Church arrived from the east coast and England. It is also where missionaries left from to go and serve -- like all of the Twelve Apostles!
Sister Caldwell (aka Mom and Grandma - you know who we're talking about) actually went all the way up the lighthouse and out on to the platform! And we didn't get a picture! Rats!

The next day we went out to grandpa Johnson's farm, ate lunch there and then took the tour through the home. It was great! It is a special place in Church history which also happens to be a special place to our family, too.  Three generations of grandchildren were there that day visiting his farm (Mike, Julie and the grandchildren).

It is such a beautiful place and has a special feeling to it.  We really enjoy being able to help take care of the farm as part of our duties.

And the kids finally did get more of an 'official' swim in Lake Erie on Tuesday!

But then we all had to say goodbye on Wednesday morning. Didnt' get any pictures of that. Some things just aren't worth remembering.

It was nice while it lasted!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Kirtland and Mongolia

I, Elder Caldwell, spoke in Sacrament meeting today in the Chardon Branch - the branch we are assigned to attend. It is about 8 miles or so from where our trailer is located.

After the meeting was over, I noticed a couple sort of making a very determined 'beeline' for the front of the chapel, obviously heading in my direction.  Seeing them, I just sort of thought, 'Well, they liked the talk and were coming to say thanks.'  We still don't know people very well in the branch and so it wasn't surprising that I didn't know who they were.

They reached the stand, walked up to me when I had finished a short conversation with another member, and said (to my shock and surprise), "Sain baino uu!"  It took me a minute to realize what I had just heard before I managed to stammer out an appropriate replay.

It seems they were not members of the branch at all. They were just stopping there to attend church on their way to Cumorah, Palmyra, etc.  And they had served in Mongolia just before us!  They are the Baileys and were the English Department couple before the Hitchmough's, whom we were very good friends with.  We actually remembered people mentioning them while we were there.

We talked for 30 minutes or more about all the people we knew there and how was so and so doing, etc.  But then we both had to be on our way to other responsibilities.

It's a small world, indeed!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Flash Back

We know we are in a different mission, now, but we couldn't resist sharing about Elder Hollands recent visit to Mongolia.

Click on the link.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Heart Attack!

When we came home today, we found the Sisters had given us a "heart attack".  Last Sunday they talked us into meeting them at Sister Davis' house on Tuesday to help her with some yard work.  Sister Davis is a 78 year old widow.  She is a very sweet lady, so we agreed---despite the fact that yard work is what we do all day long, every day!  We agreed to meet them at 7:00.  We were on time, they arrived at 8:15!  There were four of us, and we pretty much had the weeds pulled by the time they arrived!  I think they were a little embarrassed.  They did help put the weeds in the bags, as they continued to apologize and tell us how much they appreciated us!  How can you get upset with sister missionaries?  They are so cute!

Now here is an interesting side note:  We have been asked to talk in Church Sunday.  The topic:  Finding Joy through Loving Service!  We will find the bright side of all this (by Sunday).

We had one of those HOT and MUGGY days today.  They tell us it will get worse in July and August.  You all may need to pray for us that we will make it through this.  I think if Marcia made it through wearing a long, long-sleeved dress, then there must be hope for us.

We have started leading tours through the sites on Sundays.  We had to read an entire book and then come up with our own presentation that lasts an hour and a half.  We have really enjoyed leading groups around though.  We have many opportunities to share our testimony as we go around.  This past week we had a couple that is not a member of our Church in our group.  They seemed very interested and it was a neat experience to share testimony about prophets and about some of the sacred experiences that happened here in Kirtland.  Working an extra shift on Sunday kind of makes for a long week, but we really look forward to it.  Kind of makes all the hard work in the heat worthwhile.  Plus, we get to stop and point out that we are with the group the keeps the grounds looking so beautiful.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Water, Water Everywhere!

Yesterday (i.e. Saturday) when Sister Caldwell and I went to Kirtland to clean things in preparation for all of that days visitors, I found a river of water running down from the hill above us, through the lawn and washing right against the foundation of the sawmill. 

A big city water main had broken and was providing the flow. I quickly made a phone call to the Director and another senior and I set about trying to divert the flow away from the sawmill. We had to hand dig a trench down the hill leading to the mill and direct the flow around it. We're too old for that kind of exertion!

Then we spent much of the rest of the morning, cleaning things out of the water wheel race way and re-establishing walk ways so it could remain part of the tour for visitors. Sister Caldwell had to do the rest of the morning cleaning by herself and that wasn't easy either!

But it could have been worse. We know that the break happened at about 7 am, so it was only about an hour before I discovered it.  If it had broken at midnight or something, it would likely have washed away at least some of the foundation and we would not have a usable sawmill anymore! As it was, there might be one pillar for which we may have to re-pour a footing but that's it. 

What a morning!

Sunday, May 29, 2011


There is a place called Holden Arboretum near where we live. It is something along the lines of Thanksgiving Point.  Well, sort of.

This place is 3400 acres big. Not kidding; 3400 acres!  And it is full of trees and shrubs.  They have sectioned it off and have groupings of different types of tress.  You know, this is the Linden collection and this is the Spruce collection and this is the Crab Apple collection, etc.  Except that each ‘collection’ is probably an acre or two in size.

It is really something!  There are paths but only through a small portion of it.

And we went to visit the Azalea and Rhododendron area the other day.  It was gorgeous! The Azalea’s were at their peak but the Rhododendron’s were just getting started.

The stump Sister Caldwell is standing next to, was a 150 year old Maple tree that fell down a couple of years ago. Local artists have carved figures into the exposed root/trunk portions and it really looks neat!  

We also got a chance to go see Lake Erie.  Like Lake Michigan,
it looks more like a sea than a lake.  Pretty awesome!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Flowers Planted!!

Well, we did it!  All of the flowers are planted! And we couldn't have asked for better weather.  The sky was overcast, but it was warm and there was no rain!

We started at 6:00 am Monday morning.  As you can see, we had a lot of good help!  Some of the seniors assigned to site hosting were there as well as all of the young Sister missionaries.  They were awesome! We had a breakfast muffin treat in front of the Facilities Management office which we work out of and then started digging in the dirt.The site missionaries had to leave when time came to welcome visitors for the day, but they did a terrific job while they were there.

Sunday it rained in the morning but was a nice weather day for the rest of the day so things had a chance to dry out a bit. Then Monday morning stayed dry and we didn't have to dig in the mud.  We prayed hard for that!  It started to sprinkle just as we finished planting the last of the flowers.

And you can see the end result!  It is beautiful! That's the visitor's center in the background.

We had them all planted by about lunch time.  Last year they spent a day and a half to get it all done.

The picture to the left is the door of the visitors center.  Those were much larger plants, obviously and are very impressive; impatiens, if you are wondering.

Tomorrow (Wednesday) Sister Caldwell and I get to drive out to Grandpa Johnson's farm and plant flowers out there.  That should be a real treat for us. We might get some help from the young Sister missionaries assigned out there or we may just be on our own.  We'll see!

Oh, and today (Tuesday) it rained a bit in the morning but was gorgeous this afternoon.  We'll post about where we went today in our next post.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Ahhhh! Spring!

Just a quick post to show some of the beauty we do have here.  Not only are there a lot of trees around here, but there are a much larger variety of them than we see in Utah.

This is what used to be the main street of old Kirtland.  The paved surface was the old dirt road that lead right through town.  The historic sites are on both sides of that street, though they are obstructed by the beautiful trees lining part of that street.

We've had to walk down that street multiple times each day, staring at those beautiful trees.  The work can sometimes be difficult but the perks are tremendous!

Friday, May 20, 2011


Today, a big truck pulled into the Maintenance Yard.  We spent the next 30 minutes or so unloading these flowers. Over two hundred flats -- but whose counting!!

Guess what we will be doing come Monday morning.  At 6 o'clock am.  And all the rest of the day, too!

But the historic sites are sure going to be gorgeous when we are done!

Look closely at the pictures.  That back trailer is a double decker. And both trailers are large to begin with. 

Took these pics with our new 'Droid!

Will post some pics of the aftermath!