Sunday, December 12, 2010

Christmas Prep

Well, PHEW!!  I finally have the Christmas decorations up and I will tell you the saga of how we got there.  The young man on the left is John-John who is a wood carver at the craft market in Ocho Rios and famous amongst the missionaries here in Jamaica.  If you want something carved you call him (everyone has his phone number) and order whatever it is you want.  Well - with a catch.  He needs a $2,000JD deposit.  We really didn't want to buy before we saw but  - what can you do. 

He was there and we were here (a several hour drive) so we called the Smiths (Senior couple in Ochie) and asked Elder Smith if they could possibly go over and make our down payment.  He advised me he didn't think that was necessary so I agreed to take his council.  Sister Smith called back immediately saying "Men don't understand shopping".  The deposit was made and we were committed.  Turns out we loved the nativity set we had ordered so he wrapped it in newspaper and put it in a black plastic bag (what else) and we were on our way.

This charming man has nothing to do with our Christmas
decorations but he was peeling coconuts across from John-John and was more than happy to pose for me. 
It actually took me quite awhile to get this just right but as you can see below it turned out nicely with the addition of the Christmas tree Susan sent.  Our other preparations/aactivities have been rather pedestrian compared to the arranging of the nativity. 

Our seminary and institute classes in our branch planned a party for last Friday night and after much drama the organizers were unable to get any funds for a dinner so we volunteered to furnish dessert.  So I made a LOT of cookies and we got ice cream to go with it.  The party was deemed a success by those who attended.

I also made enough cookies to take for the Sr. couple FHE on Monday night but the real hit will be Jack's chocolate cake.  His reputation has already spread among those who care about such things. 

There are others who are planning Christmas dos.  Our Relief Society president, Sis. Heath, has been quite excited about the dinner she is going to fix for the branch adults.  It was originally supposed to be just for RS but it was so close to the Priesthood dinner that they have decided to combine.  She is going to fix fish and this morning she told us she would like to make a potato salad if she can find sweet potatoes.  The sister conducting (this was after the OH, OP, PH, Theme) said the farmer by her had sweet potatoes to dig.  Sister Heath informed her that they had to be Big because she bakes them for potato salad, she doesn't cook them .  Sister Tomlin thought they were quite big and drew the size on the board.  Sister Heath said if they wern't big enough she would have to take them back.  This also included a discussion on the price and whether it would be better to get them from the farmer or in the market.  Unfortunately, we will be in Negril that night because I really would love to sample that salad.

Sister Heath graciously invited us for Christmas dinner but we had already invited the sisters so they can call their families on our Vonnage line. 

Well, it doesn't feel much like Christmas but we celebrate the wonderful occasion with all of you in our hearts and memories.

I was going to end this blog with some more pictures but the whole process takes more energy and patience than I have in store.  Next time which I hope will be sooner than so later.

Love you all.  Fran

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