Wednesday, March 16, 2016


We're home!!!

You can tell by our smiles that we are happy to be home.  Our lives have been pretty hectic the last few weeks, and will be for the next month or so as we get re-settled into our home, and visit family who live out of town.  But it is all good - except for one thing!  We miss our friends and young adults in Finland!!!

The last picture of us with our name tags!
We were pretty tired after traveling for almost 24 hours,
but the excitement of seeing the family kept us awake and alert.
We arrived quite late in the evening, so only about half of the family was able to meet us at the airport.  But it was a wonderful welcome, indeed!  The little girls were very proud of the signs they made.  They are now proudly displayed in the back hall of our home.

Anne with Rose.
We had several height comparisons.  Our teenage grandchildren have really grown.
Faith is just as tall as Granma Anne!  Brandon has almost caught up with me.

Jackson proudly displaying his Finland flag hoody!

I was blessed with hugs and kisses from these two sweethearts.  Aren't the posters great!

Check out Rose's poster.  Lot's of detail!  The younger grandchildren have also grown.  A lot of changes in 18 months.
Our first morning home we woke up to this beautiful sunrise!  We love the view from our home at any time of the day!  Actually I had been awake for some time when it finally began to get light on the horizon.  But after two weeks we are back on California time.

The family came over for our traditional celebratory waffle breakfast!  It was wonderful to sit around the kitchen table and just visit.

Beth and I get acquainted at the breakfast table.  How wonderful
it is to spend a little time one-on-one with my family members!!

Five generations!!!  Grampa Gene, Anne, Angela, Jessica, and Emma!

Twenty of our thirty grandchildren and both of our great grandchildren!

All the excitement (and the jet-lag) was too much for me!
No, I am not dead!  In our family I am well known for falling asleep
regardless of what may be going on around me - in this case 20
grandchildren playing, laughing and screaming!
On the following Saturday we were able to attend the baptism of our granddaughter, Clara.  We are so grateful that she waited a few weeks so that we could be there with her on this special occasion!  Afterward the family came over to our place for another round of family fun and feasting!

Clara with her parents, Ben and Emy.

Most of the family was able to attend the baptismal service.  

A family get together wouldn't be complete without the world famous animal game!  It has been played in Kiev, Vladivostok and Finland!!!

Below is the view from my home office.  How I have missed this view!

Riding around the farm with granaddaughter, Rose,
and great-grandchildren, Emma and Bennett.
Teaching another generation the only answer to the question,
"Where shall we go?"
"To infinity and beyond!"
We are also enjoying getting back into regular Temple service at our home Temple.  We enjoyed serving in the Helsinki Temple very much.  I was able to attend our grandson, Sam's, endowment session as well as renew my service as a Temple sealer.  What a great blessing the Temple has been to us and to our family!  We love the Lord's House and serving there.

While I was slaving away on the farm, Anne took a girls' trip with our daughter, Angie and her daughters to Jackson Hole, Wyoming!

After two and a half weeks at home we are pretty well adjusted to our former routine of life on the farm and with our family.  But a day doesn't go by that we don't miss our wonderful young adults and missionary/temple family in Finland and Turkey, Vietnam, Colombia, etc.  We continue to be grateful for the internet and modern communications media that allow us to stay in contact with them, as we did with our family, while in Finland!

We will be giving our mission report at church on Sunday, March 20 at 12:30 pm at 252 North O Street, in Lincoln.  We would love to have any friends or family who can make it join us.  We had thought about a reception at the house afterwards, but decided to wait until our annual Easter egg hunt the following Saturday.

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