Monday, August 5, 2013

A Day in the Life of a Missionary!

     Well, here is our typical day.  I love to get up earlier--about 6:30 am--Steve likes to sleep in to the last minute that he can, about 7:15.  As soon as I am up, I slip on a pair of pants and a sweatshirt, my sandals, grab Old Glory and I have my moment with her.  Up the pole she goes, I say my little pledge of allegiance, and my day has started.  Morning is so beautiful.  The air is cool, the flowers are blooming all around us . . .I just sometimes wish it came a little later.
       I come back to our RV, kneel and say my prayers.  I have so much to be thankful for, health, strength, being here on this mission, my husband, family, being a member of this Church, and knowing Heavenly Father loves me.  This is my time to talk to Him, ask for forgiveness and ask for His blessings.  Before we start our day, Steve and I kneel together and have our couples prayer.
       Then there is breakfast, sharing our schedule for the day.  Mostly our schedule is the same, but sometimes a few new things pop us.  Then into our camp uniform . . green shirt or t-shirt with our logo, a pair of jeans, our missionary name tag, shoes, and our sun hats.  Don't forget to clip on our keys, grab the camp radio, jump on our ATV's and we are off to the Lake.

      Ist thing at the lake is our flag ceremony and our devotional. where each couple shares a spiritual thought and then we have a group prayer.  Into action we go, putting the lake into order to receive those anxious boaters.  Vests and paddles are put into place; life vests and rescue equipment into the pontoon boat and rubber raft; sand is blown out of the pavillion and tables and benches are washed; volley balls and horsehoes  and sand toys are put in place;  boat hooks placed on the dock and boats checked for water if there was rain during the night.  All the canoes are turned over and made ready, and the paddle boats need to be dumped and wiped dry.  (it is amazing how much water fills those boats in a rain storm).

The CD player, rescue radio, and binoculars are placed in the tower, and finally the sound system is in place .  With our whole team working together this process takes about 15 minutes (unless we have to dump water out of the boats).  Now we are ready.  Let them come.
      The young women and leaders or families arrive, eager and anxious to be out on the water. Vests are given to all the boaters.  We can vest anyone from an infant up to very large adults. As we stand with our arms loaded with vests we often joke it is like being in Mexico selling our wares.

An orientation and briefing is given and then they are loaded into their choice of paddle boat or canoe.  The launching is quite the event.  They are launched backwards into the lake so they have to paddle backwards and then turn around.  It seems like one jumbled mess for a few minutes until everyone is headed forward into the lake.




     When the young women are here, after they are all launched we have a "2 minutes of silence" on the lake where everyone stops moving or talking and just quietly sit on the lake and listen and look and feel the love of their Savior and all the beauty that God has created.  When that ends, they all join in singing the 1st verse of our camp song, "I feel my Savior's Love".  This is a very special time.

      Then the fun and the crazies begin.  There is racing, games, splashing, paddling, and just the fun of being on the water.  Often there are deer along the sides of the lake, occasionally a moose, and always little families of ducks and geese.  Some days we will go all day without a tip over, other days there are many.  This puts the Sister in the tower, the missionaries on the rescue boats into action.  The wet boaters are pulled from the water by the pontoon boat, and the
canoe is rescued by the missionary in the rubber raft.

      The tip over is often a fun, embarrasing moment for those envolved.  Sometimes it is a scarry, cold, wet experience.  They are wrapped in towels and brought to shore or often they choose to go back into their now uprighted canoe and continue their lake adventure.
     Between sessions we take a few minutes to get the boats ready for the next session, grab a drink, rest, check our next assignment, and then there they come, the next bunch of boaters.  And then the routine is repeated--up to 6 times a day.  We launch between 100-150 boaters on each session.  We do have a lunch break and that is a welcome time.  We jump on our ATV's and head back to our RV's for a bite to eat and a chance to just relax.
     At the end of the day, all things we have put out to be ready, are now taken in and stored safe for the night.  The boaters have all gone and the lake front returns to serenity and quiet.  At home we do a huge variety of things;  dinner, take a ride up on the higher mountain on ATV's, visit with other missionaries, eat dinner with young women's groups when we are invited, attend a fireside, watch the plentiful animals, enjoy spectacular sunsets, catch up on our emails, watch a good movie on our TV, say our prayers, and then just drop into bed.

      This is just a typical day, but each day has its own uniqueness, because we are dealing with people, and people are unique and special.  We fill so blessed to be spending this time here on the mountain, on this mission.  We are so thankful that we have been blessed with health and the financial means to be able to do this.