It seems that good intentions are not enough when it comes to publishing blog posts :) Time has gotten away from us these past few weeks. We've been busy with some excellent firesides and programs, with transfers, departing missionaries, new missionaries, group PDay activities, training meetings, daily Visitors' Centre shifts, speaking assignments, the re-opening of the temple, and on and on and on.... So here's our photo journal of some of the things we've been up to in November.
A couple of weeks ago, we had a great PDay activity with all the sister missionaries and seniors serving at the Visitors' Centre. It turns out that we are only about 20 minutes from the 100 Aker Wood! Yup, Winnie the Pooh was "born" just down the road in the Ashdown Forest. A.A. Milne wrote his beloved childrens' stories based on his love for the area near the family's weekend retreat close to Hartfield, in Sussex.
|It was a blustery day, but the rain stopped long enough for us to take|
a walk through the beautiful (and sometimes muddy) woods.
Thanks to the Bridgstocks, we all had warm, dry feet in our "Wellies."
|Sister Stewart checking out Eeyore's house.|
|Playing Pooh Sticks at the bridge.|
|Winnie the Pooh wasn't home :(|
|L to R: Sisters Maddocks, Stewart, Ylisaari, Walmsley, and McLaws|
|We could have spent hours looking around this fun store!|
|Time out for hot chocolate and scones.|
|So fun to have Amy come along that day!|
Our longtime friend, Catherine Fuhriman (we call her St. Kate) came to visit for a few days this month. She and Amy took off in our car and had a great time visiting the Harry Potter Studios north of London, Stonehenge, Hever Castle, London, and Dover. We got to take one day off and travel into London with them to visit Kensington Palace. It's one place I really wanted to visit before we leave London. We made it!
|Amy and Catherine in front of the Lodge on the temple grounds|
|I sure love the bright-colored corner flower markets in London.|
|The outdoor ice rink is already open outside the Science Museum.|
|Harrod's is completely decked out for Christmas.|
|The store windows are captivating.|
|Outside Kensington Palace|
|Amy and Catherine inside the palace.|
On the weekend Catherine was here, we had a speaking assignment in the Oxford 2nd Ward. It's one of the places Don has wanted to visit since we arrived. We drove to Oxford Saturday afternoon after our shift in the Visitors' Centre and arrived in time to take a bus tour past the famed and historic buildings of the University of Oxford.
|You can tell this is a university town when you see |
all the bicycles outside the train station.
|High Street, Oxford|
|Broad Street, Oxford, was designed by Sir Christopher Wren.|
|Stone carvings at the Sheldonian on Broad Street.|
|Through these hallowed doors...|
|What a stately city.|
|Flat boats for punting on the river.|
|One of the Oxford colleges.|
|The Bridge of Sighs|
Meanwhile, back at the Visitors' Centre, it's been busy. Our sister missionaries have put together several programs for different groups lately. The "Come Unto Christ" evening was a big success (see our October 21st blog post). This past Friday night, they put on a beautiful program honoring several of the local missionaries, explaining missionary work and presenting photos and letters from the missionaries to their families. We can't say enough about all our fabulous sister missionaries! We have been so blessed to work with each of the sisters who have served with us.
|Musical number for missionary families.|
|A slide show for the missionary families.|
|Brother David Bridgstock was the speaker at our "Why I Believe"|
fireside on November 3rd.
|Last Sunday night, Elder Joseph and Sister Alisyn Boone, |
retired U.S. Air Force Chaplain and former Provo Missionary Training Center President were our speakers.
|Sister Rodrigues (second from right) completed her mission|
and returned home last week, and Sister Stewart (right) was
transferred to New Milton. It's always hard to say good-bye!
On Wednesday, we welcomed our newest Visitors' Centre missionary. Sister Ritah Namutamba is from Uganda. We are so happy to have her! Though only a member of the Church for 1 1/2 years, she is already amazing us with her knowledge of the gospel of Jesus Christ and her love for those she meets.
|L to R: Elder Horsley, Sister Ylisaari, Elder Carpenter, Sister Namutamba,|
Sister Carpenter, Sister Phermsin, Sister Maddocks, Sister Horsley,
Sister Walmsley and Sister McLaws.
But perhaps the most exciting thing of all during the past week is the re-opening of the London Temple! It has been wonderful to see the temple grounds filled with patrons once again. We have missed them! While it is true that there is a sweet and peaceful spirit on these grounds, we have missed the spirit and the enthusiasm and love that the temple patrons bring with them when they come here. We are so glad the temple is open and fully operational once again! ~Pat~