The Journey to Freedom

The Journey to Freedom

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Happy Birthday

Today was my birthday.  I have never been one that wanted to be recognized on their birthday.  But it is great to talk with loved ones.  We had stake conference today.  We had to leave by 8:30 so we could take Kirsi, Moses and Hazel with us.  We got to conference and Elder Anthony tried to shuttle some of our interns from the metro to the Stake building.  The last call that came in he went to pick up and never came back until conference was over half done.  The young man couldn't find him got a taxi and Elder Anthony didn't have his phone so he sat and waited for him.  We grabbed rides for our interns from people around us so we didn't have to shuttle everyone back to the metro.  We had promised to get Moses and Hazel back to their school early because they had to work today because the senate was in session at 3.  Our conference was wonderful.  It was great to hear Senator Larry Pressler, three term senator from South Dakota, conversion story.

It is always fun to see Harry Reid come into conference.

We said good-bye to Hazel today.  Her page experience ends this Friday.  I hope she can keep in contact and her parents won't fight her about the Church.

We had 6 more interns over for dinner today.  Elder Anthony and I have enjoyed a quiet evening.  We went for a walk and talked to family members.
I got a surprise last night.  When we picked up our mail we had a little package from our neighbor at home.  She sent me a box of hand dipped chocolates.  That was a nice surprise.  I have dipped chocolates for over 25 years.  So I know what a special gift this was.  I haven't dipped the past two Christmas so this was a fun gift.  We ate the whole thing in one evening.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Stake Conference

Today was a quiet day at home. Elder Anthony is still recuperating from his pulled muscle. My mother called me and talked to me for an hour today.  It was wonderful to have her express her gratitude for all the blessings she has been given.  She is such a great example of enduring to the end.

We had stake conference this evening.  It was a great session.  They had people share how they were converted to the church.  Some of those that shared had been members their whole life.  It reminded me of my first experience.

I was about thirteen years of age. It was Christmas time because the big stereo was in my parents bedroom to make room for the Christmas tree.  My older brother had returned from his mission.  When he returned home he brought with him a large vinyl  record album.  It had a purple cover and an outline of Joseph Smith on the cover.  It was the story of the first vision. I laid on the floor and listened to the dramatization of the first vision.  I was so riveted to the story that the night came on and I didn't get up to turn on the light I just continued listening.  There was no one at home and the house was totally quiet except for the album playing.  I had the Spirit bear witness so strongly to me that I started to cry as I lay there.  The very first thing I gained a testimony of was the prophet Joseph Smith and his mission.  I have never forgotten that feeling and that testimony has continued to grow but I know that Joseph Smith was a prophet of the restoration.  I know that he saw God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ.  I know that he translated the Book of Mormon from gold plates that he was led to.

I have lived to see the fulfillment of the prophecy Moroni gave Joseph Smith. JS-H 1:33 "That my name should be had for good and evil among all nations, kindred, and tongues, or that it should be both good and evil spoken of among all people."

But respective of all that is said, I know he is a prophet of God.

Friday, May 29, 2015

Temple Day

Elder Anthony went to the temple but it was a painful experience today.  Sitting about does him in.  We did our shopping at Costco and Walmart and picked up the laundry.  When I went in to pick up the laundry they couldn't find it and thought someone had picked it up yesterday.  It was two suits, a pair of pants and two ties.  After we had left they called to say they had found it.  That was a relief. The best part of the day was getting my hair cut.  I have needed a hair cut for three weeks.

When you live together 24/7 and your work is influenced by another you soon realize that what hurt ones effects both.  We got some new stronger Tylenol and that has helped some.

Thursday, May 28, 2015


Last night on the way home from teaching Elder Anthony tripped and fell on the side walk.  He scraped his knee and was embarrassed but thought he was okay.  In the middle of the night he realized that in falling he must have pulled a muscle right in his rear.  He can't stand to sit or get up from sitting.  He tried to exercise today but was in a lot of pain.  There was a trainer there helping one of our neighbors and he told him that he should try and walk today so he could get blood to the area that would help healing.  He told him he would be in pain for 10 day at least.  I went over to the Barlow today and he stayed home and laid down.  Elder Anthony came over for an hour or so but then went back to our condo.  So we have stayed in most of the day.  I came home from the Barlow at 2 and cleaned and did the laundry and made dinner.  We went for a walk tonight and passed a place that was going out of business.  They sold men's suits.  Elder Anthony got a nice double breasted suit for 65.00.  It is going to be tuff to hem it without a sewing machine.  Elder Anthony is really swore tonight so we are done for this evening.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

An adventure a day

Well, our motto is, "An adventure a day keeps the boredom away."  Today's adventure began early this morning when we got up.  We decided to reverse our studying and our workout.  We began the day by working on our lesson for next week.  After our study time we dawned our swimming suits and did our workout in the condominium pool.  Our objective was to learn how to run in the pool.  We worked hard at getting our heart rate up but neither one of us really felt like we achieved our goal.  We will continue to work at it.  
Following our workout in the pool we got ready and headed to the Barlow Center. Sister Anthony purchased a pair of CROCS from Amazon within the last week.  However, they didn't fit and Amazon just said to keep the shoes and they would refund the money.  Sister Anthony tried to purchase the same shoe one half size larger but the price had gone up 4 fold.  So she took them to the Barlow Center and found that our building engineer wore that exact size.  We were able to find a nice home for the shoes.  
Tonight we taught institute at the DC Young Adult Center.  It really was thrilling as we had the largest class we have ever had there.  We had eight students.  We feel that this Center can be a real benefit to all young people in central DC.  It makes us thankful to be a part of this great work.

Thought: "To marvel at the wonders of the gospel is a sign of faith.  It is to recognize the hand of the Lord in our lives and in everything around us." Bishop Gerald Causse Ensign May 2015

Tuesday, May 26, 2015


Today we got up a little earlier and we were at Arlington by 7:45.  We were up at the grave of the unknown soldier to see the changing of the guard at 8:30.  Instead of 100's of people there we were 4 of about 8 people there.  It was quiet and reverent and as always very inspiring.

There was a funeral going on when we were at the cemetery.  They had a wagon with the casket on and horses.  

Dogwood tree in bloom. 

After Arlington we went to the Capitol for a tour.  One of our interns gave us a great tour.  It is the third time we have been and each time I learn a little more.

Rosa Parks  

Stain glass window in the Capitol.

We came back and Russ and Kaylynn got ready to leave for the airport.  We all left together.  We went to the Barlow to catch up on things and get ready for our class tonight.  Russ and Kaylynn  went to the airport. On the way to the airport on the Metro Russ set down Kaylynn's camera bag and when they got off he left it on the train.  They didn't realize it was missing until they checked their luggage in.  They ran back to the metro got the run around on the lost and found.  Russ asked if they couldn't call to the gate person at the end of the line and if they found the back pack there have them hold it.  Now the miracle it was there.  They were blessed that they were near the end of the line and the crowds are less and no one took it.  They jumped on the metro rode to the end of the line got their camera bag.  The train driver waited for them to get their things so they could get right back on and got to the airport.  They had 20 minutes to get clear across the airport.  They got through security in record time. They sat down in their seat on the plane the doors closed and it took off.  When Russ called he said please pray for us.  I went immediately into Elder Anthony's office and we prayed that they would be able to get their camera back with all their pictures from the week. I was sick for them and when we got the news I knew without a doubt it was a miracle.

We also got word tonight that a miracle we have been praying and fasting for is occurring in our family.  A change of heart is happening.  I feel so humbled tonight to see the Lord's hand blessing our lives.  I just want to praise the Lord because it couldn't have happened with out His help.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Memorial Day 2015

We got up a little than normal and had sour dough waffles and got on the metro and headed for Arlington Cemetery with Russ and Kaylyn. We got there and started up to see the changing of the guard.  They were blocking the roads and only letting people ride up.  You couldn't have back packs or water bottles.  There were tons of people coming and we found out Pres. Obama was speaking at 11:00.  We decided to leave and go back Tuesday morning.  Hopefully there will not be huge crowds.

We walked to the Jefferson Memorial.  This is the Memorial that we have not been to before and I really enjoyed it.  It is really off the beaten path.

After we took off and headed home to study.  We didn't have our lesson ready for Tuesday evening so we studied and let Russ and Kaylynn explore the  museums.  It was so crowded with the holiday that I was glad to get back.  

We met Russ and Kaylynn at 6:30 for dinner in Chinatown.  We went to Legal Sea Food.  It was wonderful.  I need to get back on my diet before I can't fit in my clothes.  

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Hazel Was Baptized

Elder Anthony Confirmed Hazel a member of the Church.  I gave the Holy Ghost talk.  We left church at 4:00 and stopped at the National Cathedral so Russ and Kaylynn could see it.  We were all fasting so we were grateful to get home at 6:30 to eat.  What a wonderful day.  I am so grateful for the small part we played in Hazel's conversion.  What a dynamic young lady she is.

Valley Forge and Philadelphia Spring Summer 2015

Freedom Foundation

Since Sarah's family is a gold star family I thought she would enjoy this memorial.

They had three statues of George Washington.  All of them show him praying.  After he won the Revolutionary War he walked away and gave up all recognition.  When the King of England heard that he said that is the most impressive thing he had ever heard of for him to walk away from all that power. 

This is the MacArthur Building where we stayed over night. 

Washington after two terms in the presidency said I walked into the room as the president of the united states and I walk out as a citizen. Our tour guide and a few others commented that George Washington was the real thing.  He honestly was a great man and not a hypocrite. 

Valley Forge 

Al our bus driver.

Washington's command house at Valley Forge.  This was the first Pentagon you could say where they planned out their military moves. 

Ned Hector who was a revolutionary black war hero. 

We are learning to do a revolutionary period dance. 

Liberty Bell in Philadelphia

Independence Hall were the Declaration of Independence was written and  signed.

Court room in Independence Hall.

The room where a government came to be.  It starts out We the People. 

This is the engraving on the chair where George Washington sat.  It had a half sun.  Benjamin Franklin at the end of the convention said I have wondered if the sun was setting on the United States or rising.  Now I know it is rising.  He also said something to the effect that if God notices the sparrow and the Lilly of the fields how can we create a government without his help. Gentlemen we should pray and ask God for help.

This was just in a window of a house.  

Have you heard of Phil Stake Sandwiches?  Well they are the very best you have ever eaten. Jims was great. 

Carpenters Hall.

Original streets of Philadelphia

Oldest Bank 

Christ's Church

Washington owned a pew and so did Benjamin Franklin. 

Benjamin Franklin's Grave

City Hall