Monday, October 12, 2009

Elder Gage's email 10/12/09

Hey Family,Yeah I can't believe it. I have past the one year mark! Its gone by so fast. But its also kind of sad feeling that I only have one more year. but on the other hand it is nice think that I will see you guys in less than a year. Time is just going by too fast. I didn't celebrate much on the 8th because we were so dang tired. but i did take a few pictures of me holding a paper that said one year on it. It has been a crazy week. This week we went to those areas that were hit by the tsunami and helped out. We drove down tuesday, wednesday, and thursday (and thursday night was my one year mark). And tuesday night too we were up most of the night helping with the unloading and storing of all the stuff the church set on a huge DC10 cargo plane (that was a cool looking plane!). I got a total of 4-5 hours of sleep that night if you total all the little naps we got to take. Then on wednesday at 9 am we drove right back out to help. I took a lot of pictures and videos. There is so much destroyed down there. It looked like a war zone. houses and hotels are non existant, sheet metal wrapped around trees like paper. It didn't seem real. its like the stuff you see on tv but I was right there. It was so weird seeing how powerful the tsunami was. it would take concrete walls string them out held together only by the rebar in side. Its hard to describe but just seeing the damage you realize how powerful the wave was. but we would help gather the sheet metal in piles, gather all the scrap would and stuff and pile it up and burn it. Then on Thursday we went up towards the mountains where families were now living, living under thrown together houses and tarps. We helped dig holes for people to use as bathrooms, and any other things we could help with. It really just felt like a dream seeing all this. and there was actually another tsunami warning while we were there helping on Wednesday (we hurried inland) but nothing ended up coming. And all this work we did we did wearing missionary attire because president wanted people to see us, and see that we are from the LDS church. News people also got videos and pictures of us helping, so i hope that all these things will help prepare others to accept the gospel. But wednesday after all the work, a bunch of us got together and bought and ate pizza in the mission home and afterwards one of the Aps played guitar and they sang some good classic songs. So im just gonna consider that or make that my 1 year celebration since i didn't do anything the actual day ( I was so tired). Thinking about my one year mark, Im motivated to make this next year even better than the last. Jordan, I am so happy for you! What an amazing experience. I was actually just reading mine earlier. Be sure you read it often jordan, use it as your iron rod. I need to be better at reading mine often. Dad, you talk about ice on the windshield as i'm here sweating as I email. I would love to feel some cold right now :) I'm not sure about transfers. We have interviews with the president on wednesday so i might find something out. but i think its in another couple of weeks. Also, on Saturday we had a really good baptism with a 22 year old girl, Sunema Nise. She has been through so much (like her exhusband abused her, and threaten to kill her if she got baptized), it was such a good baptism. Im loving the work. Well I better go. I love you all so much, and thanks for all the prayers and support. have a good week.Alofa atu,Elder Gage

Monday, October 5, 2009

Adorable Elle Grace

More TN pics...

Mikaela, Laura, Shala and Brennley Go to TENNESSEE!!!

Don bribed Kaela with tickets to Tennessee if she would not do Stadium of Fire again this year (he barely made it through one Miley Cyrus concert!). So we flew to Tenn on 9/22/09 and came home 9/29/09. It was a blast! Especially getting to be with Shala, Shauna, Brenn and Clara the whole time! WE LOVE 'EM!!! Brennley and Clara are both adorable and perfect little angels! And Shauna & Shala are not only my sisters but my best friends!
It was so awesome to get to snuggle with baby Clara and baby Parker! Both adorable, sweet lil babies! Their blessings were inspiratonal.
One of the best things ever was all 3 of us sisters getting to spend to much time together with our mom! She is amazing and an incredible example to all if us!
We are so blessed to have such a wonderful family!