Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Tsunami Update #2 from Samoa

"Just got back from delivering much need supplies to the affected saints - very touching experience to see old folks under taupaulins under coconut trees. Its like a refugee camp. Confirmed now 20 Church members dead with 2 still missing and searches are still continuing. Due to no homes and the bad smells it is safe for them to stay in camps in the bush rather than moving back and face more problems and health issues."

You know what I've notice about this whole disaster with Samoa... is knowing that Samoa is in need of a lot of things (worldly things) yet they only ask for us to continue to pray for them. I'm so humbled by this because I have not heard the question "Why?" My thoughts and prayers are with you all... especially the families that have lost their loved ones.

Tsunami Update from my Uncle.

"I have witnessed with sadness the unfortunate situation that these many people of our country have been affected. Starting from Siumu our chapel has been destroyed and a lot of homes, then Poutasi has been badly hit with homes, churches and school buildings all smashed, Vaovai has home destroyed and 2 members young members of the Church confirmed dead. Salani surf hotel has been completely destroyed and homes in Utufaalalafa and Sapoe as well as school and church building destroyed. In Vavau beach fales and Aufaga beach fales are all destroyed. The worst hit areas are from the villages of Lepa, Saleapaga, Lalomanu, Vailoa, Satitoa, Malaela, all the way to Saleaumua. There are confirmed 10 members of the Church dead in Malaela including the patriarch, his wife and 2 grandchildren. They are still looking for more dead in Lalomanu and throughout the are as debris and sand have hidden bodies. All the Lalomanu tourists attractions, motels have been completely washed out including a lot of family homes. The new stake center in Malaela that was just dedicated in 4 months is a total loss. All missionaries are accounted for and in safety now. the 2 elders that were in Malaela were able to make it to the bush carrying young children when the waves hit. It was told that the wave was as high as 20 or more feet and there was no time for any to take as the earthquake shook and 5 minutes later the waves just came crushing in. We have since sent some basic help to the saints there of rice, water, tapolins and we are organising some clothes from the unaffected saints here to sent to them. There is a reported of about 25 deaths so far with more to come as searches are continuing, not counting the criticall injuries and others."

I'm so glad to hear that my family is safe. And my prayers and thoughts are with you all... especially with the families that have lost their loved ones.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Let Me See Your Grill

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Grandma's 10 Year

Today makes 10 yrs since my Grandmother passed away. I can't believe it's already 10 yrs. I miss her sooooo much! But I know she's in a happier place reunited with my Grandfather and Uncle. I wish so badly that she was here with us but I know our Heavenly Father has bigger plans with her and I'm so grateful for the Plan of Salvation and knowing that I will be with her again. She raised 10 children by herself with the help of family and friends when my Grandfather passed away. And she has instilled in each of them a piece of her and the teachings of the gospel. She was literally the glue that held our family together. And because all that she has taught and passed on to her kids we continue to be the close nit family we were when she was still on earth with us. I know she is still with us and watches over us.

Our reunion ended in July but during our testimony meeting we were able to hear of everyones favorite memories of Grandma. My favorite ones were the ones that started, "If Grandma was alive" (and trust me to this day we still here this phrase)... LOL... "all the boys would be return missionaries" or "everyone would be married in the temple"... LOL. Everything was alway church and family. My favorite memories of her are when all the grandkids had to speak samoan to her. Even tho' our samoan was so broken she just smile and nod her head... knowing what we said wasn't right but she understood. She was loving and caring person. Always had a smile on her face.

Grandma, thanks for your love of the gospel and for our family. Thank you for being an EXAMPLE for me. I LALALALALALOVE you!

Grandma oute alofa tele ia te oe. Ua misia lava oe.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

A Great Start to a New Week

I know today is Tuesday but still I had to blog about the starting of this week. LOL. My week started it off with toga'i at my sisters house followed by FHE with the family. It's been a long time sice we (Benjamins) have done FHE together. It felt really good to be there with the people we love. Our game for FHE was "Chicken, Taco, Boom" or something like that... LOL. Not quite sure what the purpose of the game was but it was really fun watchin' my parents play. And then we got a chance to listen to the kids sing, recite the Articles of Faith, and hear stories of my dads childhood as a football player (who would of thought... LOL) and of his experience on the mission field. I loved every minute of it even the scolding part... LOL. It wouldn't be FHE if there was no scolding... LOL!

Then on Labor Day because I worked the Graveyard Shift I had a late start. My husband let me sleep in while he watched Jerzy, fed her, showered her, and etc. Then we went to Lunch at IHOP and headed over to my in-laws and had FHE there again... LOL. Yes, I know 2 FHE in 1 week we are definitely set to have a good week... HAHAHA. So we played the "What If?" game and it was hilarious! We're suppose to ask a question and the neighbor answers it. Then you pass the paper and read the question aloud and the neighbor answers it with the answer he has on his paper. So much fun when it's played with a lot of people. After we had a beautiful lesson from Vicky on the "Word of Wisdom". We been taught so many times about the word of wisdom but it was great to hear it again and remind us about that teaching also to see Patsy, Tuli and Jerzy learn about it. Then we learned a new song...

"Early to Bed, Early to Rise
Makes the man healthy, and wealthy,
and wise"

Now Va'a sings that to Jerzy when it's bedtime... Too cute. I know we've missed out on FHE for so long that it is definitely a goal for us to continue to hold our own FHE. It really makes a difference on how your week goes.

"Make it an AWESOME day"

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Happy Birthday!

Today was such and AWESOME day despite the fact the I got off of work at 3 in the morning and had and early start it was still an awesome day. My husbands family planned a surprise birthday BBQ for Grandma Pei. 79 years old and counting. It was such a success. I think anytime you have good food, good company, and lots of fun it's aways and awesome day!

Anyways, Her day started with an early hair appointment at the salon. While she was out the house we all rushed to the house to make my dessert, Delbert already firin' up the grill and Dee waitin' to get her side dishes started. We had our music bumpin', kids laughin' and food was cookin'. By the time she got back she was like, "what is this for?" Dee told her it was for her birthday and she said, "I told you I didn't want anything for my birthday!" But as the neighbors were gathering and the decorations went up she had the biggest KOOLAID smile and we knew that even tho' she says that she didn't want anything she was SUPER happy that we were there celebrating her birthday. I know being able to watch her family gather was a gift in itself.

I hope you had a wonderful and blessed birthday. I'm very grateful for her and for all that she does to be the example and to keep our family close.

Oute alofa tele ia te oe. Manuia lou aso fanau!