Our Family

Our Family
DAC Family At Devin & Ashley's wedding Aug 2007

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Happy Easter

Dad woke me early and said, "Let's go to the trampoline!" It was early but I was smiling, because he remembered! He piled the pillows on our bed (like he used to prepare the trampoline for all of you sleepy-heads early Easter morning). We lay there looking out our window at the temple spires and the Angel Moroni. We talked about our memories, and talked about the significance of the day...how to make the meaning of this day more evident in our daily walk and talk. Then suddenly the light hit the gold and Moroni was shining brilliantly. How appropriate for Easter and for the message these missionaries are preparing to declare to the Central American world. Happy Easter!

Outing to La Antigua March 18th with los Nortes

We only had 9 Nortes in the CCM for 1 day. The kitchen was closed for repairs so we began with breakfast at McDonald's. See those smiles!

This is the entrance to Santo Domingo-a wonderful hotel/restaurant/museum that is built among the ruin walls of the ancient city. It is a magical world behind plain, dull walls built right up against the street.

The gardens are beautiful with parrots, a pool and ruins.

Here we are entering the museum-ruins area...still abundant with flowers and green.

Looking from the balcony, out toward the chapel area. The day after our visit began Semana Santa (Holy Week-Easter). Imagine all these walkways, as well as all the cobblestone streets throughout the town, covered with colorful carpets made of flowers, sand and, shells. Grand processions carry replicas of Christ on the cross through the town and some people crawl to the churches. There will be a large gathering at the chapel area here (see the tarp covered area to the right).

Horse carts travel these streets along with the BMWs and Mercedes. This is a big tourist area. I love the Guatemala dress of these people. You see it everywhere.

We found this shop that was much more open than the crowded little stalls elsewhere that are more Guatemalan. Anything you could want...toys, kites, huipils, fabric, Maximon model (a patron saint of socerers-like Judas Iscariot. Every highland village worships him and attribute miracles to him. Humph!)...continue on the next post...

Outing to La Antigua March 18th with los Nortes

Missionaries loved shoppping at this market in Antigua. Everything tourists could want.

This little lady was not happy with me. I wanted to take picture of her with her friends in their colorful clothing. She only wanted me to buy something and chased us down the street. I felt like a heel...not a good missionary moment.

La Merced church in Antigua with vendors outside.

Our Guatemala CCM Apartment

Welcome to our home. We begin our day here after our exercise on our treadmill.

Dressing room and closets-Dad's on L, Mom's on R. (fridge stores vaccines)

We keep our parents close to our hearts with photos...your "We love you because..." books...note Chalonn's 'bucket' so Dad always know where his 'stuff' is...my pillow that reminds me "A grandma is a mom with lots of practice."...and a beautiful picture of the Salt Lake Temple.
New lamps and the red brightens the room...the green 'Chalonn bucket' holds "Happiness Book" and Chantel's candle is in front...the reminder "At Home Find Comfort and Rest" to remind us that Chantel is doing fine with Aaron & Michelle's family.

Mom's office...treadmill...window overlooking neighbors green garden and looking toward Moroni trumpeting and the temple spires...shelves for our family pictures...and a bright lounge chair

The kitchen which I only use once every 3 wks. On top are clay vases and decor typical in Guatemala.

I love the new dining table. The wall hangings are made from the huipils, which are the tops worn by the indigenous peoples here. Each region can be identified by the design. They are varied in color and design.

The living room and new leather sofas with recliners in them. My hope was to entice Dad to relax occasionally. When they first arrived we both sat down and were quickly dozing...maybe it's going to work.

I love the 'Oh Jerusalem' picture we brought.

This a new entry table which I also think completes the apt. Welcome to our home. We are very content...but would love some visitors!

Welcome to the World KALEM ERIC BAIRD Feb 27th

Isn't he beautiful!!!!

February Happenings in Guatemala

Hno Dubon took us and the Nortes to the Relief map, constructed over 100 yrs ago showing the mountains and little towns and rivers throughout Guatemala. Interesting!

One of our first outings with the Nortes to the central plaza of Guatemala City.

We were sad to see Elder G leave for health reasons. Our hearts went with him.

Dad loves Mom. We have a flower vender a block away. Flowers always brighten life!

On Valentines, the teachers and office staff surprised me with a chocolate birthday cake and sang 'Happy Birthday".

Just making plans and talking with the missionaries.

At least once with each group Dad comes up to the apt a little sweaty in his shirt and tie. Says he just needed to play a little with the missionaries. I asked him, "Did you impress them?" "Yes, I did, thank you. I think being President helps me play better. The spirit just helps that ball go in."

Presidente & Dr Wilcken found joy in 'helping' a struggling elder release a little stress.

Wecome to the Guatemala City MTC (CCM) Jan08

We were arrived at the CCM (Centro de Capacitacion Misional) nearing midnight, were welcomed to our new apartment by the Ogdens, and had 2 1/2 hrs with them the next morning for orientation. Then we were on our own. (Well, we have many ayudantes...Hno Cajas, our manager, Hno Dubon, our supervisor, 24 teachers, and a kitchen staff. They are our angels.) We didn't stop hyperventilating or get a normal heart rate for the first 7 days, but we survived. The spirit was present and the Lord made us 'equal to the task'. Dad was teaching in Spanish within the first days and I was giving my best smile in Spanish. It was humbling!

After months of preparation in Spanish and "Preach My Gospel"...goodbyes to family and friends...3 instructive days in the Provo MTC being taught by Elder Holland, Elder Perry and others...we arrived in Guatemala City Jan 18th.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Difficult Farewell...Leaving our sweet Chantel for 2 years.

She's been our teacher for 36 years...she's an angel!

Chantel was an angel as we traveled in the last months to say goodbye to family in Texas, Arizona, Washington, and California. Aaron & Michelle have sold their home in Logan and moved into our home so Chantel can have her normal environment. They will be taking care of her for two years while we are gone. It is heartwrenching, and yet Heavenly Father has set things in such order, we cannot deny His hand. Bless you, Aaron & Michelle and all the others for your willingness. May our service and yours be consecrated for all our good, especially Chantel's.

2008 Goodbyes...Washington, California, Idaho

Our Gifts...our Joys!!!!!


Kit & Creshel

Karigan, Kieran, Kimball


Aaron & Michelle...Taylor, Kylee, Jacob, Landon

Heber & Chalonn



Eric & Chelise

Mat & Chenae & Jackson


Jackson June 07

Devin & Ashley

DJ & Candra

We visited our little Mom C in Arizona Dec 2007

We had a wonderful visit to see Mom Christensen. Wyeth's always host us like royalty and we enjoyed seeing lots of other family also. When we left Chantel gave Mom the most soul searching look of love. It was very tender.