Sunday, August 14, 2011

Pioneer Day

Our Ward Pioneer Day Celebration wasn't til early August but it was lots of fun! The boys enjoyed the stick pull and Chandler really got into the tug-of-war. After some additional play they served snow cones and watermelon which was quite refreshing on that very hot day.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

One Great Disney Day!

Welcome to Disneyland!!And welcome to Mickey's house! Here are some of the highlights of our day:See Grandpa's hat on the roller coaster?Phineas and Ferb!We were serenaded at lunch by an all-female mariachi band.Look who's on tv! Will they ever get out?Toy Story army men.Kamryn especially loves Handy Manny! I always wanted to see Michael Jackson's Captain EO and with this tribute revival my life is now complete!This is what A Bug's Life looks like after dark!The World of Color Show was love at first sight! I can hardly wait to bring my Dad to see this. He will LOVE it, too!!Good night, Mickey and Friends! See you another day!!

(PS. I didn't take the World of Color pictures, I found them online)

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Arigato Shannon, Joe, Isabel and Olivia!

Our time in Japan was wonderful! It was with mixed feelings that we came home. Thank you so much for inviting us to come and be with you for Olivia's arrival and for being such great hosts and showing us both fun and important sights on Okinawa. And thanks for introducing us to your friends, who have now become our friends, too, The Mattes Family and some of the Ward members. We love you all!!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Symbols Of A Lasting Impression

Leaving Japan after being there for 4 weeks has given me time to reflect on what I have learned from this experience. These islands are not as stunningly beautiful in appearance as the Hawaiian Islands and other vacation hot spots of the world but they tower above the rest in some of the most important qualities of the people themselves.

We would do well to follow Japan's example in so many areas of happy living by exercising self control. They seem to take the lead in physical, social, economic, spiritual and mental well being.

-Good Health.
There are more centenarians in Japan than in any other country of the world because of their healthy lifestyle.

We were met with kindness and graciousness everywhere we went. No rudeness or "road rage", etc.

The Japanese have made the most out of the U.S. example of Free Enterprise. So much of what we use everyday was "Made in Japan".

With Okinawa so close to China, Korea, Japan, Vietnam, Russia and the Philippines, they have been repeatedly caught in the middle of war by both being fought over and used to fight for others' agendas. They were even left to starve by Japan after WWII, who should have been their ally. After so much suffering, the people have risen above it by setting an example and proclaiming peace to all the world. They came out of it all better, not bitter.

The Japanese have such regard for their families that they make every effort never to bring them dishonor. It is a place where you won't have your purse stolen out of your car even with it in plain sight and behind unlocked doors, and the children can ride around the block alone on their scooters without worry or fear of strangers. This is the kind of "island paradise" that is most beautiful.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Beaches From Afar

These beaches have no sand. They are coral reefs and the surface is smooth, uneven and hard.This beach had the whitest sand we saw. It was at the resort where we went on the glass-bottom boat.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

A Few More Random Pics

Hmmm... Should I or shouldn't I?Gives a whole new meaning to "The Big Apple."Olivia and Isabel.Kyle and slinky.Here's looking at you! This is the shop where Shannon got her glasses and I love those lenses on the doors!The four-colored sticker in the window of this car is a handicap sticker.This display was in a shop that sold seashells.Yes, this vending machine dispenses umbrellas.This is one of those drink vending machines you see everywhere on Okinawa.This is a Japanese ATM machine.I saw several of these Japanese public telephones. This is the one at the church. We think the higher castle ruin stairs were the ones the king used and the lower ones were for his guards and attendants. Seemed logical to us.