Monday, January 26, 2015

January Joys!!

 To begin this post, I thought I would show a pic of  Family Home Evening. We have been getting alot more people attending and it helps to have our young missionaries there as well.

 Elder Tew teaches the Institute class every Wednesday.

 Before Sister Pentz was transferred to Switzerland, Bernhard Kober our Ward Mission Leader had us all over for Pasta at his apartment.

 One of our assignments is to check all of the four missionary apartments in our District every transfer. We check to make sure everything is in working order, if they need anything, if the apartment is clean, etc. Here are our great Graz Elders Mitchell and Wasden greeting us with towels over their arms like waiters. 

 So... Elder Mitchell let us know that for some reason all of the previous Elders had been storing their empty jars in a cupboard and it was filled and spilling over. Meine Gute!! We disposed of them all!! Now these Elders have more space!

 After our Leoben apartment check, we stopped in a little town called Frohnleiten to look around.

Town square in the evening.

 Very quiet and very interesting. We loved it!

 At District meeting we celebrated Elder Mitchel's birthday and also Sister Pentz who's b-day is in February but she is leaving us.

 District Picture.

 We had four investigator friends at this FHE

 It is always hilarious when Ben comes. He brings alot of energy.

 Sister Bishop, Sophia from Sweden, and Sister Pentz. 

 We just received the family Walters to Home teach and Visit teach. They live quite a distance away and Sister Walter and her two youngest daughters were excited for us to come. Sister Walters is an American and her husband is Austrian. This is Melanie who was baptized a few months ago and is quite entertaining. She tried on all three of her new "Frozen" dresses for us and danced around to show them off. In Austria the name of the movie "Frozen" is "The Ice Princess". Melanie sang us the "Let it Go" song just like our own granddaughters sing it. It was fun!

 Our cute friend got BAPTIZED on Saturday January 17 in Vienna. This is the beautiful baptism font in the Stake Center.
 Eight Missionaries with her.

 Elder and Sister Parker treated us all to Pizza afterwards.

 Sister Bishop and her new companion Sister Poll from Mt. Green Utah.

 Our friends Elder and Sister Smith came to Graz so we could show them our beautiful city. They serve in Salzburg which is about 3 hours drive from us.

 One of the first things we did was to go up on Schlossberg and who did we find there? Our young missionaries were there for a P-day excursion. Who knew? 

 We went to visit some old friends at the Armory.

 This time we had a guided tour and found out that all of the 32,000 pieces housed here (enough to outfit 5,000 men) were ready to be used, but never were. A few pieces have dents in them, from testing the armor for strength. They are on display in the original 600 year old building, on 4 floors!

 We also found out that this horse armor was used in parades only.

 A couple of unusual characters!  The spears in the background were actually about 19 feet long originally but had to be cut off to display.

 Our guide let us hold these sword replicas.

 Another FHE with three investigator friends. Ramin from Afghanistan, George from Nigeria (both in front) and our newest Alice from Syria (She is in the striped sweater in middle). Alice is 22 and came here to Austria with her family to excape Syria. They are Christians which is unusual for that country. An older adult member of our ward met her and invited her to come to our JAE group. She speaks some German but no English. We all want her to feel loved here. Ramin has quite a story also. The Smiths actually took this picture for us and they enjoyed our group.

 We took our friends to see the Kalvarienberg Church with its interesting statues depicting the last days of the Savior's life. This church and the surrounding areas with various displays of Christ's sufferings, are built into and on top of a huge rock mount.
You can see...
                                                                    why it is called...
                                                               Mount Calvary Church!

 We ended our two days with the Smiths with dinner at the "Häuserl im Wald"(Cottage in the Forest) resturant. Here is our dessert called the Salzburger Nockerl, a sweet egg souffle'. We thought it fitting since they live in the city of Salzburg, that we should order this dessert.

 This is the cutest couple!! Lukas and Amrei from Vienna. She is the one who took us on a walking tour of inner city Vienna when our Bryan and Lindsey were here.
 Amrei is the neice of our dear Eva Muhlberger and we have become such good friends to them all. Lukas and Amrei will be married in September and it appears that they are becoming interested in knowing more about our Church. We love talking to them and the Sister missionaries in Vienna are planning to visit them. Also, in a year or so, Lukas and Amrei want to come to Utah and visit us! We hope they will be able to do that. They are really great and we love them very much!

Rick took this pic of me to check out a different setting for our camera, so I will leave you with this and say Auf Wiedersehen, till next time.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

HAPPY NEW YEAR - 2015!!

 This posting is dedicated to the New Year and I know it is going to be another great year! It is what we make of it! So... here are a couple more pics of the fireworks outside our window!


 We have so much to be grateful for!!  2014 was very good to us and our family and we wish you all a joyous and blessed 2015.

 At 12:15am our bell rang and it was our sweet neighbor Val coming to wish us a Happy New Year by giving us two little glass good luck pigs to start the year off right.

 Our two pigs from last year were a bit confused by the additions of Val's pigs and the pink one that we bought.

 But... now they have embraced them. Since we had such a good year last year with many incredible events, we know that we are off to a good start for 2015.  For some reason beyond us, pigs are supposed to bring good luck! Hmmmmm.

 Later in the morning of New Year's Day, Horst and Edith Pail invited us over to watch the fabulous Vienna Phiharmonic Orchestra Annual New Year's Day Concert with them on their TV. I took these pics while we watched.
 For over 2 hours we were enthralled by the spendid music and venue. They also showed beautiful footage of the city of Vienna and surrounding area during the music. 
 They mostly played music from the three Strauss composers but also some Mozart and others.

 Sister Pail fixed us this traditional Austrian New Year's meal of red cabbage, roast pork and Knoedel, which is like a boiled dumpling which she sliced and fried.

 Good times with these great friends. They always seem to take care of us.

These are the good luck pigs we gave to them this year. (you might think that we gave them one of ours, but not so)

 "Much Luck" Austrians delight in good luck items.

 I think this beautiful white peacock at the Schloss could bring good luck don't you?

 This is the inside courtyard of Schloss Eggenberg in Winter. (I just thought it made a nice picture)

The pig and the Tews bid farewell to this posting and may you be happy and look for the good in all that you do this year. Happy 2015 and May the Lord Bless you to have peace, joy and much love in your lives. Take Care, we love you.