Sunday, June 30, 2013

Treasures leave for Idaho--June 23-30, 2013

On Sunday, June 23, we met with Elder Wong, an Area Seventy, and representatives of the four Hong Kong stakes for the quarterly Family History meeting. One of the subjects of discussion was the upcoming Youth Conference in July. We will have an hour block of time to present ideas on how the youth can be involved in family history. There are lots of new features on Family Tree that will excite the youth.

During the week we spent time working on the English program for Sister Gong and the sites of Hong Kong project  for Elder Gong. We also started kicking around ideas for the Youth Conference.

On Tuesday we spoke in the Vic 2 Branch which is the referred to as the Everyday Branch. After our talks we had training with four full-time missionaries on how to use family history as a teaching tool. They were excited about the fan chart and the ability to add photos on Family Tree. If you haven't been to Family Tree through we recommend that you check it out.

Elder Watson has been working on his family history and has started using Family Tree. He had questions so we were invited to his office to help him.

A new couple has been called to Cambodia for Family History. President Senior wants them to be MLS (Member/Leader Support). We had to write a letter to Elder Gong expressing the need and importance for a Family History couple in Cambodia. We hope we were convincing.

We left early on Friday and went to Stanley to do some shopping with the Aardemas. It is fun to go there as it is away from the city and right on the ocean. We bought some gifts that we will need to ship home. We had dinner at the Pickled Pelican.

When Garnalee checked the emails on Saturday morning, she discovered that Calvin had called and left a message. We were able to call them back and visited with Calvin, Rayola, Roxanne, Leila, Allan, and Ket. It was good to hear their voices and to find out they are all doing well.

Since the HOT weather has arrived we try to find things indoors to do. We decided to go to the movie Man of Steel.

Elder and Sister Treasure are leaving for home tomorrow. President and Sister Chia had their 31st wedding anniversary on June 26. The Filippina sisters sang songs to them and then, of course, had to have their picture taken. They love to sing and have their picture taken. After the picture they served a wonderful meal that they had prepared.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Dim Sum and all caught up--June 17-23, 2013

On our way  back to Hong Kong we flew through the Singapore Airport. This art piece has 1216 computer driven raindrops. The raindrops were programmed to raise and fall which created beautiful geometric images.
 As we stood and watched the display it changed from a rain storm to birds flying to a flying carpet. We were mesmerized.
 We arrived back in Hong Kong  early on the morning of June 12. We had 4 hours of sleep and then accompanied our branch to the beach for a branch activity as it was a holiday in Hong Kong (Dragon Boat Festival).
 The Filippina sisters love to Bar-B-Q. The corn is yummy!
 Anyone for fish balls?
 A big thumbs up for all the yummy food--fish, chicken kabobs and wings, and pork steak. Along with watermelon, grapes, apples, kiwis, and a salad.
Ready to head for the water.
 Saturday, June 15, was our monthly senior activity. We took a harbor junk boat cruise. This is an original junk boat that has been restored. A junk boat was used by Chinese traders. It was a rainy day.
In spite of the rain the view from the boat was beautiful.
 Picture of our apartment complex from the far side of the harbor.
<--Our apartment if right there.
This pirate ship can be chartered for $10,000 HK. We thought it would be fun but a little out of our price range.
After the cruise we went to a famous dim sum restaurant. The traditional way to serve dim sum is by cart. As the carts would come by our table, they would stop to see if we wanted any of the dim sum they had. Sister Watkins and Elder Frandsen are trying to decide what might be good.
 A cart full of wonderful desserts. After a selection is made they would stamp your meal ticket which was totaled and paid at the end of your meal.
The Bertins and Cowleys enjoyed the food.
The Treasures and Gregorys strike a pose.

Tom has been put into the Branch Presidency as the 1st counselor. He conducted for the first time and started off "Good Morning, Sisters and Brothers" and everyone immediately responded with "Good Afternoon!" Our church begins at 1 PM.

When we arrived back at the office from our trip to India and Malaysia, we found an e-mail requesting that we do an hour Power Point presentation to the new Area Presidency about what we do. We thought we had until the end of the month to get it together but then found out it had to be done by June 21. So we spent most of the week working on that. We developed 23 slides and sent it to Patrick Cheuk. He e-mailed us back and asked us to shorten it to 20 slides which we did.

Elder Gong would like us to generate a booklet identifying some of the notable sites visible from the 46th floor of the Central Plaza Building. He asked us to include some obscure facts that most Hong Kongers would not know.

We're also editing a missionary English training course for Asia that Sister Gong has been working on for a couple of months. She wants to get it out to missionaries in Hong Kong to test out before the Mission Presidents' Seminar in September.

 Elder Barry and Sister Diane Treasure are heading home. Tom helped put together another farewell song. This one was to "Oh What a Beautiful Morning" from "Oklahoma." Hopefully they can give Roy and Blanche a big hug from us as they live in the same ward. This is their third mission to Asia.
This photo shows how they created  relatively still water for the Dragon Boat Carnival races held on Saturday, June 22. Fourteen barges were parked end to end to create a lagoon. The dragon boats were paddled by a crew of 10 or 18.
The gun shot went off and the race began.
Each boat has a drummer in the front (bow) and a steerman in the back (stern). The drummer's job is to beat out the stroking rhythm to keep the paddlers synchronized. The steerman's job is  to keep the boat in his designated lane.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

India and Malaysia Pictures--June 2-June 16, 2013

Picture before the baptism of the 78-year old husband, father, and grandfather in Hyderabad. Tom was one of the witnesses.
 Dinner after the fireside on Saturday, June 1, at the Paradise with Brother and Sister Pulla.
 Posing with Sister Pulla, the District Presidency, and Naresh Godi, the Family History Country Adviser for India.
 At the first birthday party of Alivia Godi with her mother and father. The first birthday in India is a big event for the child. The family gathers together to celebrate.We suspect the celebration is held because formally, infant mortality rate in India was so high that reaching a first birthday was a milestone.
 Charminar. Char means four and minar means minaret. It was built in 1591 by Muhammad Quil Qutb Shah of the region to memorialize the 4000 who died of a plague including his wife. This structure is as well known in southern India as the Taj Mahal is in northern India.
 Travel in Hyderabad is by 2-wheeled, 3-wheeled, or 4-wheeled vehicles as seen in this picture.
Photo from the top of Charminar with our guide. We had a private tour and got to go to areas where the general public is not allowed. We were approached at Charminar by many locals to have their picture taken with us.
This elegant and immense structure is the tomb for a single person, Hayat Baksh Begum. See the next picture to learn more about her.She is the only woman in the tomb area of the Shahs.
 The Golconda (Shepherd's Hill) Fort had a circumference of seven kilometers and was an impregnable fortress.  It is a ruined city formerly the capital of the ancient kingdom of Golconda built in the 13th century. At the outermost wall can be experienced the fantastic acoustical effects in which a hand clap at a certain point under the dome can be clearly heard at the uppermost pavilion almost a kilometer away. This acted as a warning note to residents in case of danger.
A pot of Biryani prepared by the Pullas for our dinner. 
 A group of Saints that had gathered at the beginning of the Ipoh Family History Open House.
 Chris Liew and Garnalee at the Open House. Chris was kind enough to take us site seeing on Monday, June 10.
 An example of one of the many displays at the Ipoh Open House.

Elder and Sister Harrington's fan charts. This was a reminder to the visitors at the Open House that you don't need to be a genealogist to begin your tree. The important thing is TO GET STARTED.
 At the Open House the youth performed two sketches. This one was an unhappy family who found happiness through listening to the missionaries, accepting the Gospel, and going to the temple to be sealed as "A Forever Family."
This sketch was about a boy who was a striving to be a commandment keeper. We loved this sketch because the little 5-year old boy on the right was acting as the "bishop" during the interviewing of the "Mother."
 The theme of the Open House was, "The Branches of the Future are Rooted in the Past...."
 This shows several recent converts and their family trees.
 A list of the videos that were shown at the Open House.

These banners were hung up around the city.

Another one of the displays.
Above is the monastery on the inside of the caves.

At the caves there was a pool and feeding area for a huge group of turtles. We fed them tomatoes. We knew some of the turtles must be quite old because of their huge size.
 Chris took our picture with the god of love.
Our picture with the dragon at the entrance to the cave.
Photo with Shirley Chong in front of the god of mercy who performed so many great works during his life that he came back to life as a woman.
Ipoh, Malaysia is known for its huge limestone caves. This is a view from inside the cave looking out. One of the caves we didn't get to visit was large enough for the Japanese army to hide in during their occupation of Malaysia in World War II.
This was our Titanic pose just to show how large the cave is.
The entrance to the cave.
Lunch with Shirley Chong, Sister Seow, and Chris Liew on our last day in Malaysia at a Chinese restaurant.