Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Easter in Romania

Did you know there are two Easters?  We learned that here in Romania most celebrate the Eastern Orthodox Easter which is a week later than the "Catholic" Easter we observe back home.  The Easter bunny part of the holiday is not as big here but they sure know how to do Easter eggs.

There is a custom of giving friends a red hard boiled egg.
At the branch Easter dinner there was a red egg on each plate.  They also have the custom of bumping eggs with another person.  It's kind of like breaking a wishbone.  The egg that doesn't crack wins and that person is supposed to have good luck.  Here Brent and Eni, one of our YSAs are cracking their eggs together.
There were about 45 people at the branch Easter dinner.  It was a good crowd for our little branch.  They served sarmale which is a traditional holiday dish here.  It is an acquired taste but with bread I managed to enjoy it.
We are enjoying the city of Arad and the branch here.  They have been very welcoming and love the missionaries.
Happy Easters!

And Happy Anniversary to us!  It has been one year ago today that our son,Todd dropped us off at the Missionary Training Center.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Where do babies come from?

Storks, of course!

This winter as we were traveling through some small villages we noticed huge empty bird nests on the tops of power poles.  We heard from other missionaries that these were stork nests and we eagerly awaited spring to see if we could actually see a stork.  The only storks I have ever seen are plastic in front yards.  It is now spring and the storks are back. 

sometimes together tending the nest

and sometimes just one alone sitting on an egg

then it is time to trade places

.They don't seem to mind being on a power pole on the side of a busy road with cars and trucks zooming by.

And speaking of babies..........
A bean is born!

Our daughter Taryn with grandbaby number 13.  He was born on March 29 and weighed in at 6 lbs. 13 oz.  He came a month early after Taryn spent over a month on bed rest, most of that in the hospital.  Well done, Taryn!

Practicing his baby kisses.

The bean with proud dad, Jason.

Meet Crosby Howard Schroeder at one week old.
Where is my grandma?

We can hardly wait to nuzzle his yummy neck.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

We feel like real missionaries now!

We have holes in our socks, and we've been transferred.

Our mission call was to the Center for Young Adults in Bucuresti.  However, all missionaries know that their assignment can be changed at any time.  So when President Hill asked us to move to Arad which is a city on the western side of Romania just a few miles from the Hungarian border, we were happy to go.  Our assignment here will be working with the young adults and traveling to the branches in the Oradea district giving support and training.

Let's just say we were moving with more than we arrived with.

Thanks to Elder Newey and Elder Pettit, our Zone Leaders, we were able to load in record time.

And "Big Blue" the beloved mission van was up to the task of hauling us and our belongings to Arad.

This is the entrance to our bloc.  Our last apartment was on the 8th floor and this one is on the ground floor of a 4 story bloc.  And here is the view out of our bedroom window.

Just a little different than the view out of our Buc apartment where we could see over the city to the horizon.  I just won't look out the window much.

Elder Wahlquist is pleased to have a vehicle that is small like his mini at home.  We even have a parking spot that isn't on the sidewalk.

We invited the missionaries over for breakfast and to watch a session of general conference.  They wanted to fix the pancakes and bacon.  Elder Nilsson is manning the smoke alarm while Elder Myers fries up the bacon.  Sora Henrie and Sora Schuld are on pancake duty.

We are looking forward to whatever this new adventure brings.