We hope everyone had a wonderful Easter. It is so beautiful here in New Jersey. Sorry Utah, but I think it is just a little prettier here in the spring. The trees are in full bloom along the highways, flowers and colorful bushes everywhere and little Bambis and bunnies abound all over. We even have a skunk lurking about in the day. Does that mean it’s a sick one??? AND since we had a very mild winter with not much frost, the ticks and mosquitoes were not killed off. So they have sprung as well, earlier than usual and so we are all in for an exciting season. We are purchasing Deet protection in abundance and strictly told the missionaries to stay out of the forest and all the grassy areas. The ticks here are as tiny as poppy seeds! Doesn’t that just sound fun? For someone who swells up with mosquito bites I am also looking forward to these little creatures living with us. Between the ticks, mosquitoes and bed bugs we have a lot of friends here on the East coast!
We have had some beautiful Easter Cantatas in several of the wards and seen colorful Easter eggs hanging from many trees! Conference was, of course, the best. I do miss being in Utah for conference. Watching from the computer or at the church at 12:00 and 4:00 is not the same. Priesthood from 8:00 to 10:00 was very different for us also. But the Spirit of the conference is so great no matter where you are and lifts, builds and motivates us
This week we had our zone conferences. It is great to be with all the missionaries. There is always a special spirit and atmosphere when they come together. Even though it is a lot of planning, zone conference is always spiritual and fun. We are having a month of consecration. Jon taught the atonement and consecrating yourself more. The missionaries love hearing from him. He is an amazing teacher. We discussed ticks of course, the importance of exercising, beautiful music and videos were enjoyed, yummy lunches and games of course. We sang:
“Do as I’m doing, exercise each day. Do as I doing. It’s the only way. If you exercise you’ll know. You’ll be fit and on the go! Do as I’m doing and you will soon see. Do as I’m doing. You’ll be so healthy.” Great times together for sure.
Tomorrow we go to Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty with the departing missionaries and then Jon and I are headed to Washington DC for the Mission Presidents’
Seminar for 4 days. When we return we will be having a mission tour with members of the missionary department coming in to teach us, followed by a new group of incoming missionaries
We have seen many enter the waters of baptisms. It is always a very tender sight. The member giving the baptism talk today expressed thoughts that “being baptized is burying your old life, your sins and weaknesses and as you come out of the water you will begin a new life with a clean slate.” Do you often wish you could be baptized again? The look of joy and fulfillment on their faces is such a tender experience for all to witness. Jon sang “A Poor Wayfaring Man of Grief” today at one of the baptisms. The missionaries all want him to put it on a CD. Very flattering! He is doing well. Still gets very tired and sore but what’s new? That is our life! We are glad that we are back in the saddle riding again, no galloping non stop!
And for the finish. I just thought Jon was getting way too much attention and so as I was coming off the stand at zone conference I missed the bottom step and went flying in the aisle and rolled my ankle. Yes..black, blue and very swollen. Jon just got off of crutches and I got on them. So even though Spring has sprung here, I was “TICK”ED to be laid up for a few days! Love and miss you all…Dad and Mom, Jon and Bonnie, President and Sister Jeppson.