Sunday, June 8, 2014

Luck favors the backbone, not the wishbone

First for our wildlife fans...

 A tortoise waiting for the race to begin

Father and daughter or mother and son out for a stroll? We are not sure which, but they were so cute we couldn't resist the Kodak moment.
The call of the wild? 
How many lizards do you see on the Customer Parking sign?  Initially we only saw one until we noticed that the black lizard was puffing out his bright red neck.  We wish we were quicker on the camera, but it is definitely a sight to see.  During mating season, or when threatened, the lizards puff their colorful necks way out.  It is quite a surprise to see a big, bright red neck on a tiny, dark, black lizard.  Anyway, after a little more research we soon discovered a little green lizard, located toward the top of the sign, responding in like.  Love must be in the air.

Please welcome Sister Dingess, on the left, and her new companions, Sister Blake and Sister Murphy, assigned to the Titusville area. Sister Dingess is our newest arrival in the Florida Orlando Mission.

The office is plugged in for iPad training for our recent May 19th arrivals.

 This is what happens when the University Park Ward expresses their love
for the sister missionaries assigned there.

The Mission President is planning to open three new areas before our next transfer the 1st of July.  As a result we are busily looking for apartments (again) in specific geographical locations.  Not an easy task I can assure you. 

Well we got lucky and quickly found apartment #1 for the Valencia Elders. To make our find even more rewarding the apartment complex had an incentive we couldn't refuse.  Because we were taking occupancy during the month of June we had the opportunity to select not one, but three little "messages in a bottle". The first message was $100.00 off the first months rent!  We were so excited we can't even remember the other two messages.  All we know is that when all three messages were reviewed and the incentives calculated we earned a savings of over $250.00!

While out and about looking for apartments #2 and #3 we tended to be multi-taskers.
Unfortunately the mission recently had to send three missionaries home due to health reasons, two of them as a result of pre-existing knee injuries and lack of common sense :(
So beds had to be moved and missionaries re-assigned. Since we "just happened to be in the neighborhood" we decided to perform spot inspections and the Goldenrod Elders apartment didn't turn out as well as we would have liked.  So suggestions were made and a return visit for a do over was scheduled for next week.

Elder Busath loading up another bed to be transported
to establish a last minute trio of Elders.

While dropping off a bed at the University Park Elders apartment we were surprised to discover in an otherwise nicely kept apartment this in their hall closet. "It was here when we got here," they lamented.  Well they have exactly one week to find a new home for the miscellaneous items magically growing in their closet.

The above picture is a perfect example of why you should never judge a book by it's cover.  At first glance we were more than a little concerned that we had driven all the way to Melbourne, in an effort to relocate the Melbourne Elders off Merritt Island, only to discover this tired, little old house for rent.

But good news, first looks can be deceiving! 
The inside of the house had been completely renovated and it was amazing-
definitely well worth the trip!


Kitchen, dining room and living room

 The master bedroom and bathroom

The second bedroom and bathroom


Walk in closets in both the master and second bedroom

A full sized washer and dryer

The complex business center to check your e-mail.

Even a storage shed for bikes!  Go ahead and say it, oooh, ahhh!

Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity...

The above pictures are of a fabulous brand new apartment complex in the Windermere area we actually found on Google map for the new Lake Crescent Ward Elders. 
Our GPS "Samantha" didn't even know it existed. 

To be honest, even when keeping in mind that the models had been professionally decorated,  the apartment is WAY too nice to put young missionaries in it. 

Seriously if the Mission Office wasn't so far away we would have been tempted to try and persuade the Mission President that this apartment was perfect for a senior couple like us, but we don't get to decide and just do what we are told. 

But, it's all about location, location, location and this apartment complex just happened to be in the right place, for the right price and the apartment management was willing to lease to missionaries-two apartments down one more to go!

You will never guess what we found while driving around and after replacing some old, worn out furniture at the College Park Sisters apartment. 
Apartment #3, for the new Conway Ward Elders! Mission accomplished!

The apartment complex even had hurricane doors, (the first we had ever seen)
just in case of an emergency!  Which by the way is the hot topic of the day here in Florida. It has been over five years since the last hurricane touched down and so residents are not taking any chances this year. We have all been advised to get our emergency kits in order and make plans to hunker down if and when the hurricanes hit.

We caught our Poinciana Spanish Elders, Slade and Brown, taking pictures this morning and we had to get in on the action. Elder Slade, on the left, will be departing to his home in Queens Creek, Arizona at our next transfer so he wanted to capture a few memories of his time well spent here in Poinciana.
If you are doing your best you won't have any time to worry about failure!

Normally we would sign off with a...see you later Wally Gator, but we just happened to see this sign during our adventures this weekend and thought it fitting.  Especially now that spring has sprung and the Florida summers are soon to come.  90+ degrees with lots, and lots, and lots of humidity.  It's enough to make your hair curl :) 
But seriously before we go we would be truly ungrateful if we didn't take a
minute to express our heartfelt appreciation to the Super Heroes in the Vineyard Ward who went above and beyond and provided much love and support to our daughter Katie and her family, when she needed it most. 
Jim and Diana Hunt-adopted parents and grandparents
Paul and Gayle Warren and family-Home Teachers Extraordinaire
Janiece Pierson-Relief Society President
Alisa and Jimmy Pierce-Forever Friends
Angie Jerome
Christian Hogge
Jeremy Pritt
Shane Hamilton
And of course we would be remiss if we didn't recognize the never ending contributions of our family members GG, Marian, Rachel, Tracy, Sam and their families who have always been there for her and for us.
Thank you, thank you, thank you!
  It's during times like these that we absolutely know that the Lord is blessing our family through your efforts and because of your labors it makes it possible for us to lose ourselves in the work and not worry about home and family.
We apologize if we missed anyone.  Please know that we appreciate you!

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