Sunday, September 21, 2008

Some shots from the high ropes course activity with the young single adults yesterday.

The blue hats are ours.

A summary of the week will make you dizzy but here goes: Sunday - regular set of meetings and then evening fireside at the Institute and potluck dinner; Monday - shop for groceries and prepare a large dinner and dessert for the evening and then have Family Home Evening at the Institute; Tuesday - pay our local customs taxes and attend the Institute; Wednesday - morning district meeting, prepare dinner, German class and Institute class at the Institute; Thursday - a "P" Day for preparation and relaxation; Friday - all day conference in Heidelberg for senior missionary Institute couples; Saturday - afternoon activity at a high ropes course and a baptism of a young single adult investigator in the evening. And it's here we go again this week but a little slower. Our schedule mostly revolves around working at the Ramstein Institute Outreach Center with the young single adults (ages 18-30) in our area. We have many more to find but the attendance is improving.

Our average attendance on Monday evenings is 8 which is up from 1 or 2 when we started in April. And yesterday at the high ropes course we had 9 attending. Everyone had such a great time. It took a lot out of the Institute budget but it was well worth it. We can only do those kinds of activities every now and then. That one was a super idea. There are a few photos for your perusal. This coming month we will have 2 young adults leave for missions, 1 get married, and 1 has just left for permanent station change to Alaska, etc. We have a new president of the student council that is a fun "live wire" so we are very excited about that.

Our activity at the high ropes course was a little daunting for those afraid of heights. Who me? We took photos from down below. Elder Karn would have loved to be up there swinging too. But since I retired from my high wire act in the circus I haven't had much need to get back up there. The thrill is gone.

The baptism of Joshua McCormick went well. He is a security policeman with the Air Force and has been looking into the church for several months. He has not had much happiness in his life. He seems to be more content now to have found some answers to his questions. It is great now that he can be in the company of his peers who are not out "partying" and drinking in their spare time.

Baptism of Josh McCormick yesterday. He is the taller one in white. Brother Tarin from the ward (the other one in white) performed the baptism although much shorter. Josh just fell backwards and fortunately didn't hit his head. So they got the job done the first time. The Elders are from left Elder Reynolds from Provo, Utah (a center for BYU football, his dad is assistant coach), and Elder Moulding from Ogden, Utah.

Today is our 11 month mark and it seems that we just turn around and another whole month has passed. We are looking for activities coming up with the cold weather such as movie nights at the Institute now will be twice monthly and we hope to sponsor a stake wide young single adult conference and dance. Activities will follow the sequence of Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas. We are really the only family here for a few in the military. And they are also our family over here. Being with them really makes you feel younger.

The heat is turned on! Some couples were saying that the heat has not been turned on in their apartments by their landlords. I am so glad to have heat. We have had it from day 1 as the control is in our apartment. We have 40 degree nights and mornings so I am one lucky girl to have warmth when others have to wait for a landlord to decide when it is cold enough. It's a blessing.

This past week there was a welfare bazaar held by the military spouses association at Ramstein Air Base. They used 2 huge airplane hangers and a large part of a paved area. The vendors (131 of them) were from many countries around the world. The wares and displays were amazing and one could purchase some amazing items. The only problem was the prices were out of this world. We suppose that there was an entry fee, shipping costs, set up costs, besides travel and perhaps an import tax. People were leaving with purchases but the prices were unbelievable! It was a great place to shop if you had money to burn. And as retirees, we would have had to pay another 13% customs tax if we had purchased anything. If anyone tells you everything is expensive in Europe, you might want to believe that. Window shopping can be fun and we went home with a few coins in pocket!

From pennies in our pockets,
Sister & Elder Karn