Sunday, April 22, 2018

It Has Been a Long Time

Yes we know it has been a long time for this version of our blog. It seems like we miss one week and a month passes by.

We had a transfer since we wrote and Missionaries pictured went home. From left Sister Tuilili went home to Samoa, Elder Kaese to Australia, Elder Terekia to Hamilton, New Zealand. Of Course President Walker is staying. Sister Ballena and Sister Perocho went home to the Phillipines, Sister Tahau, Sister Hicks and Sister Pauli went home to Australia. We will miss these great Missionaries.

We were privileged to help celebrate the 80th birthdays of Brother and Sister Parese in our Ward. They are wonderful people and have a wonderful family. Their daughter and son-in-law were very involved in our Ward and have now bought a home out of our Ward so they will be missed. At least we still have the Parese’s to be there every Sunday.

We have our Family Home Evening with the Senior Couples once a month as we have mentioned before. This month was a Western theme. We are showing off our matching bandannas. This is the whole group picture and you can just imagine all of us saying Yehaaaa!
They even taught us some line dances. Who says you can’t teach an old dog new tricks.

These are the cute centrepieces for our table.


We began Zone Conferences a week after our transfer and tried to schedule flu shots during the Zone Conferences. That worked great for our first Conference in South Auckland but not for our other Zones. We are glad that is done but we will leave clear instructions for the future Nurses so they don’t go through the hassles we did. We are sad to have to say goodbye soon to Elder and Sister Thatcher. They have been wonderful Missionaries serving in the Mission Training Center here in Auckland.

We will never learn that when you hand Missionaries your phone for a picture you will get a selfie along with the picture. Here Elder Taeleo, Sister Faiga, Sister Uesele, and Elder Tutu’ila. We did finally get the picture we wanted with Elder Tavina, Sister Faiga, and Sister Uesele after Zone Conference.

We do have Missionaries who go home between transfers. This is Elder Talaipa who went home to Samoa as you can tell from the flag.

Amidst all of our turmoil we see beauty all around that reminds us of our Creator and our Redeemer and Savior.

We happened to be in Takapuna during the Flu shots and were getting something to eat and we heard some bagpipes. We we went outside we saw a parade with bagpipes followed by University graduates. I guess graduation is quite important here.

We found this sign interesting. Littering is a problem here and they seem to have some clever signs to handle things like this.

After our Zone Conference in Kaikohe 4 of the Senior Couples decided to take a trip to the very Northern tip of New Zealand called Cape Reinga. We stayed in Kaitaia at a Bed and Breakfast called The Waters Edge. This is us having breakfast with Elder and Sister Woodard. Also Elder and Sister Ashby having breakfast with Elder and Sister Stosich. We were all actually having breakfast together only the tables were to small to get all of us around the same table. 

We were complimenting the couple running the bed and breakfast on the furnishings and they said it was South African furniture. They were from South Africa and brought it to New Zealand.

This was a good photo on our way to Cape Reinga. The dunes in the distance are part of 90 mile beach which is actually only about 50 miles long. 

These are some panorama shots of Cape Reinga including the Lighthouse in the bottom picture. Where you see the whitecaps is where the Pacific Ocean meets the Tasman Sea. There were many small whirlpools which were forming below us as we looked over the cliffs at the ocean below.
Maori legend is that the spirits of the dead leave the island from the tree that you can see between the two peaks in this picture. We don’t know know the whole legend but there were signs that explained much of it.

I guess this sign tells the spirits which way they should go from the island. The Sisters just had to get a picture in front of the sign and lighthouse.

On our way back to Auckland we stopped at these large sand dunes which were along 90 mile beach. They actually slide down the sand dunes on boogy boards that you can rent from someone at the dunes.

We hope you have enjoyed this version of our blog. We hope we can be more prompt with sending these out. Love Elder and Sister Bartlett.

Sunday, April 1, 2018

PBJ Burger and Krispy Kreme

The other day we were at the Doctors Office and as we passed the Burger Fuel fast food we saw this sign. Yes it was a Peanut Butter and Jelly hamburger. So we just had to try it. It was really messy and not our favourite, but we gave it a try. Will not have to do that again.

This is our District. From left to right top row is Elder Bartlett, Sister Tauiliili, Sister Frost, Elder Latu, Elder Fakahua. Left to right bottom row is Sister Bartlett, Sister Ete, Sister Brown and Sister Falute. We like to take a treat for our District Meetings each week so we usually take some fruit like apples and bananas. Since Krispy Kreme has come to town we have brought them to our District Meeting twice. I don’t think we will have them for a long while.

This is our Zone Leader Elder Bingham who was taking the picture of our District. They just can’t resist the selfie.

Here he is with our other Zone Leader Elder Peluaele, they love to pose for pictures.

They all love to get in the act. Here with our District Leader Elder Fakahua and Sister Brown and Tauiliili.

We are enjoying all of these wonderful Missionaries. Until next time we bid you farewell.

Love, Elder and Sister Bartlett

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Happy Birthday and Anniversary!

Perhaps someone here is still celebrating Christmas or maybe Easter or perhaps my birthday? We did find this tree all lit up.

For our Family Home Evening with the Senior Missionaries we decided to go to the Kauri Museum. The Kauri is the largest tree in New Zealand and is only found in New Zealand. The only tree larger is the giant redwoods in California.

This large butter churn is made from Kauri trees. That would make a lot of butter.

This Kauri is only about 800 years old but there are Kauri which have been aged to over 40,000 years which have been found buried in ancient swamplands and dug up to be used in carvings since it is now illegal to cut down living Kauri trees.

After our trip to the museum we had a gourmet dinner prepared by the landlord for one of the Senior Missionary couples. He believes in ionized alkaline water and very fresh ingredients in his food. 

Since it was St. Patricks day we had some green decorations including some flowers made by some friends out of flax. They were still green but will eventually turn brown when they are fully dried.

We took the opportunity to take this picture out our back window. The golf course is finally taking shape behind us. 

We also have some fall flowers blooming around the yard.

This was my birthday cake, mango cheesecake with passion fruit topping. Yum! 

We were able to visit Pacifika this year which is a celebration of all the Pacific island culture through dance, food and crafts. Probably some you have never heard of like these from the Cook Islands.

You probably never heard of these islands and neither did we until we came to New Zealand. What you may not know is that Aotearoa is the Maori name for New Zealand.

We enjoyed what entertainment that was provided by the different islands.

We also liked the watermelon sundae.

After Pacifika we went to the Relief Society birthday program for our Stake and this is our Otahuhu Ward performing a Maori song. We enjoyed the performances and the food. 
So this is how we celebrated 67th birthday and our 45th year of marriage. We feel so blessed that we have had this many years together. The Lord is with us and watching over us.
We love you all. Elder and Sister Bartlett