While here in Ogden, we have tried to spend time exercising. We are living in the foothills, and so there are some pretty steep hills that we have been able to walk/run on. It's been nice because we feel like we are really getting in shape. One day while walking, we were on about the highest street on the bench. Suddenly it started to rain. The rain didn't bother us, but then it POURED, and started HAILING! We ran down the hill, and found shelter under a large pine tree. It took the brunt of the hail stones for us. We were still at least a mile away from home. By the time we got home, our shoes were sloshing, they were so wet, and we were drenched from head to toe.
On May 16th, we had a moving company come and pack up what little we had to take to Uganda. It will be shipped, and delivered to our new home once we arrive. They said it will take 2 or 3 weeks once we get there to be delivered to our house. We were told our home will have all the necessities we will need, so we didn't need to send any furniture or household items. We mostly sent family and church pictures, clothes, and a few personal items that we thought would be nice while we are there. It was pretty funny, when the movers came they kind of chuckled and said they were expecting us to take a lot more than was actually going. They showed up with a huge moving van, and I think we filled maybe 10 or 12 boxes. What can I say... we packed light.
With our jobs being finished, and our belongings on their way to Uganda, we decided May would be a nice time to take a final trip. We booked a cruise to Alaska. We drove to Washington state where we stayed with my aunt, uncle, and my grandma. My grandma is 96 years old, she's still pretty spunky but doesn't remember a lot of things. I would remind her who we were, and tell her that we wanted to see her one more time before we leave the country for 3 years. She told us she was so glad we came, but she didn't expect to be here when we returned, so as we left she said a "final" goodbye. I'm not sure that she won't be here when we get back, but we sure enjoyed the time we spent with her. My aunt and uncle treated us so well too. They treated us to yummy smoked salmon, and invited my cousins over to see us. My uncle took us to see some fun sights, and have a true Washington experience.
We were supposed to leave on our cruise on Saturday, and on Friday night my aunt and uncle from Utah came for the night to see Grandma. We were talking with them for a bit, and said something about us going on a cruise. As we were talking about it, my aunt got real excited and asked which ship we were going on. When we told her, she said that my cousin would also be on that ship. Her husband's parents were celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary, and all of their kids would be there. It was so fun to see them on the ship, and although the we only spent a little time together with them, it was wonderful to catch up with each other. We really felt like it was a tender mercy.
We spent a week on the cruise, and saw Juneau, Skagway, and Ketchikan Alaska. We saw Glacier Bay, and rode the White Pass Railroad. We ate Ukrainian dumplings, crab, salmon, steak, and lots of wonderful things. Steve celebrated his birthday while we were on the ship. They decorated our door with balloons and a birthday sign, and he got an extra dessert with dinner. The cruise was chilly, and rained a lot, but we decided that was a good thing. I think we will be pretty warm for the next 3 years. All in all, it was a wonderful experience.
On our way home, we stopped for church in Eastern Washington. Steve's childhood friend is a Branch President of a Singles Ward there. We enjoyed the meeting so much, and although it was very different from many meetings we have been to, the Spirit was so strong with those young men and women. It was fun for Steve to catch up on memories with is old friend.
When we returned home, we received some scary news. Sarah, our daughter in law, is pregnant with her first baby. She was 25 weeks along, and said she was concerned because she hadn't felt the baby move for a day or so. My son took her to the ER, and they found out that they had lost the baby. They have been living in Colorado, and had to come back to Utah. She had to be induced, and deliver the baby. We were able to spend the day with Sarah and Steve, along with Sarah's parents. It was such a special time. They buried her a couple of days later. She was tiny, but so perfect. It was such a difficult time for our family, and them especially. We are blessed to know that our Heavenly Father has a plan for us, and that through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, we can be blessed with peace at difficult times like this. We are so sorry for their loss, and pray for them to be comforted at this time.
Well, running up hills turned out to be a bad idea. Steve woke up one morning, and had so much pain in the back of his heel, he could barely put weight on it. He iced it, and elevated it, and took Ibuprofen, but still continued to put weight on it. Finally after about 4 days we got him some crutches and a boot (a great find at DI for only $5). We called a podiatrist, but had to wait a couple of days to see him. Keeping the boot on, and using the crutches when the boot was off turned out to be what he needed. By the time he went to the podiatrist, he wasn't feeling a lot of pain, and was able to walk. We were pretty concerned, because we are two weeks away from leaving for Africa, the timing was terrible! He said Steve needs to continue to wear the boot for a few more days, and don't sprint up hills. He gave him some anti-inflammatory cream, and is making him some orthopedic inserts. He says he should be fine to even run again in a few weeks. We are relieved.
Hard to believe we will be going to the MTC in less than two weeks, and will be in Uganda five days later. We have really enjoyed the preparation, and look forward to meeting the missionaries, and seeing what the Lord has in store for us.