Sunday, December 7, 2014

Elder and Sister Strong's Bye and other memories to keep

Well done thou good and faithful servants! Bye to Elder and Sister Strong

Also, bye to Elder Jakob and Purkasho Masjh

Hi to the Ortons from Cache Valley

Our Pub

Pub Food!!!

Our last meal at Smith and Western's, with the Littlefields and the Coopers

Littlefield's 52nd Anniversary kiss!

Farewell to our beloved London Temple

The window we looked out every day to see our temple view.
All will be memories cherished

Monday, December 1, 2014

Saying Goodbye....

Saying goodbye is hard to do. Thank you Ian, Maggie & family for your love and support!

The Turner's generously lent us a car for transportation while serving our mission.

Beautiful view to the garden from inside the Turner home

Eloisa and the beautiful "We will miss you" cake.

One of Ian and Maggie's adorable baby grandsons. 

Beautiful granddaughters

We also said goodbye to our Primary class this last Sunday November 30th;
JJ, Mike, Ella, Jerome, Myah, Bryant, and Arlene (I suspect names are not necessarily in any certain order? and two of them may have been also missing from the picture?) 
Also missing Oliver and Finn 

Tuesday, November 25, 2014


There we were, enjoying juicy fillets, on a Saturday night, when coming down the hall, clanking and banging came this group of (Temple Missionaries??). What on earth? Seems they had decided to do a little celebrating of Guy Fox. Obviously, they had too much time on their hands and too many ideas to create from. (Did I really end that sentence with a preposition?) Guy Fox was an ancient character who was want to assassinate members of British Parliament.  But—he got caught and burned at the stake, after he was drawn and quartered. (Not a good thing.) Guy Fox Day is a big deal over here. Fireworks are set off just like it’s the 4th of July. Big bon-fires can be found all over the country, where an effigy of Guy Fox is usually burned. These people really love their bon-fires too.  Anyway, several of these sisters hail from Wales. We love our Welsh sisters! 

Sister Adler, our Welsh friend game for anything!

Merthyr gang

They are a fun-loving lot and great teasers, too. The only problem we ever have with them is that most all Welsh simply cannot whisper or even talk quietly whilst doing ordinance work in the temple. I guess it has something to do with the way they distinctly pronounce each syllable in every word they speak. Their accent is extremely strong. Whispering is not in their blood. However, we don’t know what we would do without them. You gotta to love the Welsh! A worker I am training currently gave Niel and me little Welsh Dragons to wear on our lapels and when I said that I would probably put them on the English wall I am planning to put up in our Springville home, she got quite distressed. She said: “Oh, don’t do that. If you put a Welsh Dragon on an English wall, he will just fly away!” Okay, okay.

Last Sunday, we attended church in the East Grinstead Ward. We happened to sit on the opposite side of the chapel from where we usually sit. What a choice experience! There, sitting behind us were two elderly gentlemen, one of whom, RELISHES the opportunity to really belt out the hymns. Honestly, he didn’t disappoint us. He sang so loudly that we couldn’t hear ourselves sing. But that’s not all. He slid from note to note. He trilled little trills on certain words and actually warbled and scooped his way through each hymn. It was great! My word, how can a little old man (must be in his late eighties or early nineties) actually do that? He also attends the temple every Thursday for the 3:45 session. Oh, by the way, his name is Bro. Mann.  Man o man!
We are preparing for our annual Thanksgiving dinner to be held next Monday. Thankfully, I have already prepared and frozen all the rolls. I’ll just have to thaw, raise and bake them on Monday morning. We will send pictures.
Also, we are going to collect our little French lady, who we have befriended at the local McDonald’s and bring her to see the temple and grounds and Visitor Centre. At first, she was hesitant because she said she wasn’t ready to change her religion. She is a Scientologist. When we promised her we wouldn’t, she agreed to come. In the past, she has asked a lot of questions about where the temple is and what we do there. We’ve given her a Book of Mormon with our testimonies written inside. So, no pressure. That’s as far as we will go. We’ll send more pictures of that too.

Our friend Fay (Fayrouse) at McDonald's

The prospects of cleaning out our flat and packing our bags is turning out to be a real test of how two people can stay happily married and not do each other in. It has been interesting, I might say, how to get rid of a “lot of stuff”. I dare say that it will happen, one way or another.
Love to all, Happy Thanksgiving!

Niel (Grumps) and Carolee (Gran)

Tuesday, November 4, 2014


What will become of us without our precious Temple view? This is how close we live to the London England Temple. This is our view during the day. 

Our view at night is ever so spectacular! This view is what keeps us coming back for more each day. It just draws us up to the front doors, recommend in hand, to serve another day. My heart aches when I think of never living this close to a temple again. It has been an experience that we will never be able to replicate, and, you know what, we would never want to try it. Yes, the end is in sight. We are ready to close this wonderful chapter of our lives and move on to whatever the Lord has in store. 
Niel was able to find a little bit of good weather to take some more pictures (see pics) of the temple grounds in their fall glory. Love this place! 

We spent a wonderful week with our darling granddaughters, Ashley and Allie Lancaster. They overcame their jet-lag with flying colors and kept themselves very busy all through the week. We visited Stonehenge, which Allie said was her favorite, and the white cliffs on the Channel, which are called the Seven Sisters and Beachy Head. 

They spent two days in London and even saw the Queen in her motorcade! 

The English will be celebrating a day of remembrance for the soldiers who served in both WWI and WWII this Sunday. I wrote about the church services we attended last year. Very impressive. I included a poem about the poppies in Flanders Field. This year, there was a BIG project to make over 800,000 ceramic poppies and plant them in the dry moat outside the Tower of London. Niel was able to get pictures.

We are now in the process of training new couple missionaries. Two couples came this week. One of them will be coming for one in eight. That means, work one week and be off for eight, which means we will not be seeing them again. We have only one week to try and get them prepared to serve as T.O.W’s (temple ordinances workers). The other couple moved back to England from their home in Brittany (France) in order to serve as full-time workers for a six month period. They are Bro. and Sis. Banks and will definitely be an asset for the A temple shift. We are expecting another two couples in the coming weeks. One couple  from England and the other will be coming from Logan, Utah. WooHoo!  My sister, who works in the Logan Temple has been telling us about their coming for quite a while and they are finally coming. However, they will be on the B shift and we won’t be training them. But, what’s to train? They will already know what to do. Wait a minute, they won’t know the London Temple way, though. Guess they will still have to be trained, properly, as the Brits say. 

Be prepared for lovely pictures of us packing our bags on the next blog. Hopefully, we have more exciting things in store to share on the blog, though. 

Love to all, Niel (Grumps) and Carolee (Gran)

Sunday, October 19, 2014


I had to bring my temple shoes home today so that I could take a picture of their condition. I’m sure that many missionaries have worn bigger holes in the soles of their shoes than mine, as they have walked the streets, looking for a golden contact. But, I never thought that working in the temple each day could bring about the same effect. I’m going to make them last to the end, though. It can’t be said that we just sit around in the temple.

We have been doing a lot of training the past two weeks. I, personally, have been training two darling sisters from Wales. Their accents are a cross between Irish and something from somewhere else completely. They are sometimes hard to understand, but I wouldn’t change how they speak, ever. I have grown to love these people. They are very humble and gracious. They travel many miles to serve here at the temple.  One of them, Sister Bustamonte (that’s Spanish) has been comin’ (Welsh never pronounce the g.) along nicely. She had been a less active church member for many years, having only attended an endowment session twice in her life, many years ago. She came to a point in her life where she needed to return to the testimony she always had and her bishop sent her on a temple mission. Well—it was touch and go for a bit, since she couldn’t remember any of what went on in the temple. So, we started from scratch. She has worked extremely hard to learn and memorize all that was needed. She is a delight! The other sister, who is also from Wales, has also worked hard. She comes when she can get accommodations in the A/C, so it isn’t all the time. She has reached a point in her temple worker journey where memorizing is just out of her reach. She does keeps trying. She is a dear sister.

We have received our travel papers!
I won’t let myself think about it because it will be a very bitter-sweet experience to leave this beautiful land and all the people we’ve grown to love. On the other hand, it will be sweet to see our family and friends again. The sacrifice of serving a mission has been number one on my “bucket list”. I am so thankful that we could both come and serve. (And live through it with all the challenges)
We were able to travel up to Nottingham during the conference break and stay with Ian and Maggie Turner. They had the whole family there with us too. When it got wild, with the grandkids, we were reminded that we needed to get used to how it was going to be at home. (SO TRUE)

This week, we are excited to have two of our granddaughters come to visit. Ashley and Allie Lancaster will fly in on Friday. WooHoo!! They will be coming during “French” week, though. However, it will be good for them to experience what it is like when the French (from Lille) take over the temple. So while the French Lille Stake members are here, our granddaughters will make a quick trip to Paris. Look forward to some cute pictures from a couple of darlin’ girls!

Allie (Allison) Lancaster

Ashley Lancaster

Wednesday: In the temple, a special endowment session was held for a good brother who is celebrating his 100 birthday. He and most all of his family, who are members of the church, and, many of whom have come from America, will be together. We have been making special arrangements for him to be able to do this session. What a great way to celebrate your 100 birthday!

Our recent study sessions have centered on the Great Apostasy. In 100 AD, the “Old World” was nearly devoid of Apostles and Prophets. Only John the Revelator continued his mortal journey. In the “New World” the prophets had also become nearly extinct, after the death of Moroni, leaving only the Three Nephites to sojourn in mortality. The sacred ordinances became altered. Idolatry was promoted in its “most seductive and pernicious forms” (Talmage) There were restrictions imposed on scripture study. Not until John Wickliffe of Oxford University, did the world receive the first Holy Bible in English, which event caused him to lose his life. “Their professed love of God and devotion to Christ’s service were chiefly signalized by the sword, the ax, and the stake”. (Talmage)
The prophet Amos prophesied, “Behold, the days come, saith the Lord God, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord: And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the Lord, and shall not find it” (Amos 8: 11-12)
James Talmage wrote, “It was not meet that the precious seed of the restored gospel be thrown upon unplowed soil, hardened by intolerance, and fit to produce only serfdom. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is the embodiment of liberty; it is the truth that shall make free every man and every nation who will accept and obey its precepts”.
I testify that the Church of Jesus Christ has been restored in its fullness. We are living in a marvelous day and age when we can receive a fullness of the gospel. Priesthood Authority has been restored by those ancients holding Priesthood Keys, and were restored untainted by years of apostasy. This thought alone adds greatly to my testimony of the restoration.  

Thankful to be a member of Christ’s Church in the latter days.

Hi to Mike and Angela Key, Isle of Jersey

Bye to Colin and Vivian Prentice, Assistant Recorders

Hi to Roger and Moira Head, England

Hi to Brother and sister Crocker, England

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Hampton Court

Another Monday has come and gone. I went on another van trip with some of the other sister temple workers and Niel went----you guessed it---fishing. We both enjoyed what we did, though.  I can’t get over all the history in this country. Everywhere one looks there are buildings, parks, monuments, estates, palaces, and castles. They all have a story to tell and it’s all a part of this country’s history.
This trip took us to Hampton Court. It is located near London, right on the Thames. (Pronounced "Tems.") The place is more than huge. Several wings and extensions have been added by a succession of Kings and Queens. Henry VIII lived here with two or three of his wives. William and Mary, several King Georges, and even Elisabeth I took up resident at Hampton Court.  I thought that the best part of it would be the apartments and rooms, with all of their finery, etc. but visiting the many gardens was spectacular! I’m so glad I got to see them and experience the outdoors of the monarchy. Hope you enjoy the pictures.

Entering into the front of Hampton Court. It's so big!

Each room has it's own fantastic chandelier. This one is made of rock crystal

This is one of the reasons why Hampton Court was such a special place to visit.
They provided plenty of toilets for all the crowds.

The brickwork on the chimney is a treat to experience

The outside was what was really fab!!

More of the outside...lots of school children.

Okay, here's a picture of me...

More of the beautiful gardens

We are starting to see a little color in the trees. The weather has been wonderful, too. I keep thinking that it will soon be the rainy season and we will have to try to enjoy the rain. (Is that possible?) It is getting cooler at night. I even got out my winter jammies last night. My body is getting to be so very arthritic that I find it best to keep warm and not let the cold get to my bones. 

We are still teaching Primary. Niel thinks it’s Sunday School, so I have to remind him often that it really is Primary. Actually, this is his first experience with Primary age children and teaching them has been a great blessing for both of us. We have Ella, Myah, Jerome (investigator), Flynn, Mikey, J J, and Oliver in our class. They try to talk with American accents from time to time and it sounds horrid. (Are we really that bad?)

The temple has experienced a surge in attendance the past couple of weeks. (roughly one thousand endowments in a week) We’re not sure but think the new carpet may have influenced that a little bit. President Johnson, the temple president, is making a push for British ordinance workers with the hope the need for “black badge” temple missionaries, from around the world, will be reduced. He has received commitments from several members that will start their service shortly after we complete our mission in December of this year. We hope he is successful. We have served with many wonderful couples from this temple district including England, Wales, Ireland and France.

London Temple workers, August 2014

We are looking forward to visiting and watching General Conference with the Turner’s in Nottingham during Conference weekend. They have done so much for us. We will really miss them after we are finished here.  We hope you are all ready to listen to the Prophet and others. We surely are. It’s a great time of the year, one I really look forward to.

All is well.  

Love to all, 

Niel (Grumpa) and Carolee (Gran)


Elder and Sister Adams (West Point, Ut)--Mission Office

Elder and Sister Murdoch (Logan, Utah)--Temple missionaries