Sunday, December 15, 2013

Winter has arrived, English class winds down, Family History news, Family Home Evening

Baby bundled up for winter weather
Winter in Mongolia. This week had a smattering of activities but our first heavy dose of cold weather.  It has consistently been in the -20 degree F range for more than a week.
Accumulated smoke particles in the air purifier filter
Some days have miraculously been smoke free while others are choked full of smoky air and pollution.
Coal is hauled in big chunks in special trucks
No big snowfall or strong winds – just frigid weather and air pollution are the main problems. Not incapacitating weather but more than a nuisance.
Bags of coal ready to be hauled to Ulaanbaatar
Our fall English ends soon. We have fun and enjoy our small class of 5 students. Next week will end this term and we start up again after the first of the year.

Waiting for our students to arrive
We are teaching a segment on food and Christmas music. We brought some American foods for tasting.
It has been a great fall class!
Missionary work and Family History. We are getting more and more missionaries making appointments with us to bring their investigators and members to our office.
Two missionaries with a member
Batbayer, our new member from Baganuur, received the priesthood and was able to baptize his wife into the church. Darlene teaches piano every Friday afternoon so we weren't able to attend.


The pictures of Batbayer, his wife, and their farm are courtesy of Dr. Stewart who was able to travel to Baganuur for the special event.

He was the man who researched his family genealogy and had accumulated over 730 family names prior to his discovering and joining the church.  
Here are some pictures of his farm home and animals 7 km outside of Baganuur. He wants us to come and visit him and his family at his farm before we leave the mission.  
Batbayer's kitchen

Heavy winter coat
On Saturday, we held our year end Family History training in Ulaanbaatar.

It ended with Christmas gifts and treats for our 25 Family History Consultants who came.
Presenters Ulziika and Badmaa along with our decorations, treats and gifts
Two of the consultants surprised us with gifts including a Christmas stocking.

Visitors from Hong Kong. Sister Gong, the wife of the Asia Area President came to Mongolia with the Ballantines, Directors of the Kennedy School of International Relations at BYU.

They came to assess our situation in Mongolia on how to better teach English as a second language. They met with all the English teachers (foreign missionaries) during the week and observed their classes.

Sister Gong made several suggestions on how to improve the way English is being taught here. All the Senior couples were invited to share their experiences and also participated in the feedback meeting held toward the end of the week.
John directing the music
Family Home Evening with the Bensons. All the senior couples were invited to the Bensons where we watched different segments of the Christmas devotional.
Pres. Benson with John and Tommy
The Benson children were front and center – doing part of the program and generally entertaining all of us with their antics.
Mary Ann trying her hand at photography
Playing with a Ger nativity set
Isabel solicited an impromptu piano lesson from her teacher


On cold winter nights, police keep the traffic flowing from pedestals. Hard duty!

1 comment:

  1. If the Benson kids were any cuter I would die. They are adorable! What a fun time at Family Home Evening. I love the pictures of the coal - and the tied up baby. What a way to adapt to the cold. I can't imagine. I am cold when it's 30F. I am so glad that you are doing well. Have a great week! Jeanette