Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Ordinances We Performed on our Mission

While serving at the Tampico Temple we gave the following service.  
[These numbers reflect our combined effort.]

1,567 = initiatory as a patron

13,862 = initiatory as an officiator

193 = endowments

59 = witness couple (an additional 118 to the endowments performed)

344 = officiated in a session with 5,039 patrons (mostly Dad)

238 = was a follower on a session with 4,405 patrons (mostly Mom)

221 = sealing sessions attended

200 = shift coordinator or trainer

151 = hours helping in the baptistry, laundry or recommend desk. etc.

47 = sessions cancelled since October 23, 2014

Work Completed for Our Own Family Names:

576 = initiatory

571 = endowments

821 = sealings of couples or children to parents

The Tampico Mexico Temple Presidency

It has been our pleasure to serve with this Tampico Temple Presidency for the past year.  Each of the presidency signed our release papers that say [translataed from Spanish]  "Having faithfully accomplished the responsibilities that were assigned to you from 16 November 2013 to 30 September 2015 you are hereby honorably released and we gratefully thank for your devoted service."

Miguel and Sariah Briones
President and Matron

Manuel and Sylvia Camacho
First Counselor and First Assistant

Perfecto and Minerva Jimenez
Second Counselor and Second Assistant

This and That for September

Paul is standing on a manhole cover that has now been replaced.  It was gone and caused problems for unaware drivers for over a year--especially when it was raining or dark.  
 We watch construction projects and it looks like these folks are getting serious about building.  At first we thought all of this construction material was for a slow moving construction site across the street from the movie theater.  We have since realized that's not the case.  This material is for the fast moving construction of a huge mall going up south of H.E.B.  The other site hasn't changed in over a year now and the rebar there is very rusted.
 On returning home from Soriano or H.E.B., we take this shortcut to get us through the Zapotal apartments and then home.   It is do-able when it hasn't rained much but when it is slick and muddy, we take the long route on the sidewalks and pavement.  We have just discovered another short cut if we duck through the fence and follow the path lined with very tall weeds.

 Our quiet A/C unit that we enjoy so much began to drip down the wall and onto the couch instead of outside so Paul decided to look into it.  He was able to blow out the hoses and keep it draining as it should.  Once we leve this house, the temple maintenance department will remove this A/C unit along with the bed, the fridge, the washer, the dryer and put them into storage.
In October of 2014, we began to watch the construction project when it began on an empty lot.  We daily walk by the lot on our way to the temple and back.  This is the BEFORE photo.

It has taken a full year, but the clinic now has the glass windows installed.  From what we can tell, they only lack a few details plus the security gates [that will keep us out] and the letters on the front before they will call it finished.  This is the AFTER photo.

Speaking of construction projects, some seem to go up slowly and others seem to go up quickly.  We were amazed to see how much had already been built in what was an empty field not more than a few months ago.  

Sunday, September 27, 2015


We called Ruben's phone to see if he was home and Alejandra answered.  We said we wanted to come over for a visit and she waited until we arrived before she left for work.  She said she wanted to thank us for the time and attention and love we have given to her Dad.

While visiting Ruben, we were pleased to learn they had been using the microwave to heat the rice bag for him but he didn't know how to do it.  So we taught him how to do it himself. We showed him how to open the door and how to put the rice bag we made into the microwave.  We wrote down the buttons he should push to get the rice bag heated.  We helped him get the bag situated on his chair and he said it helps him feel better.  We are so happy that the bag helps him feel better.  

We gave Ruben a card with our photo and he noted our names and after we had visited, sang a hymn with him and prayed together, he called us by name.  His mind is very sharp--his body is not in good shape.  We love Ruben and our visits with him.

Our Home Grown Bananas

We were wondering if we would see bananas on the tree we planted many months ago--and then we saw them start to grow.

Next, we wondered if "our" bananas would be ripe before we leave our mission....we don't t know.  But it will be close.

Paul decided to harvest just one to see how long it would take it to ripen.  

 Berenice has volunteered to care for our banana crop so that's a relief--knowing they will go to a good home!
We bought bananas at the store last week and they were lacking in sweetness and probably harvested when they were extremely green.  After waiting a week to see if the banana we cut off was ripe, we peeled and ate it.  It was still a bit green and we could have waited another few days but it was better than the ones we bought at the store.  

So in the last 14 months we have planted and grown and harvested and eaten our own bananas.  We aren't sure if that makes us official banana growers but we certainly have learned a lot about bananas from this experience.  

As things turned out, Berenice and Marcopolo came over and Paul cut the banana stalk into manageable sized hands and we bagged the banans to give to them.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

We Are (just about) Twins!

From Sherryl:  

I was standing by Hermana Briones in the foyer of the temple today and we were chatting.  Hermano Martinez happened to walk by.  Hno. Martinez is in his 30's and has a good sense of humor.  Hna. Briones stopped him and told him that she and I are sisters.  She added, "That's why we look so much alike!  Right?"  Hno. Martinez didn't skip a beat in his reply.  "You do look alike and are almost identical twins except for your height, weight, stature, hair color, eye color and skin color.  Other than that, you could be twins!" 

Monday, September 14, 2015

Our Day at the Beach

It is amazing that we have lived here for almost two years and haven't yet picked up a t-shirt for Paul that says "Tampico."  He has t-shirts from Tejin, Guanajuato, and Aguascalients but not Tampico so that situation needed to be corrected.  We knew just where to find his shirt at the shops near the beach.  
 There was a group of runners working out plus kids having fun on the sand.
 Folks were having fun in the water.
 There is a nice long stretch of beach here.

We went to these shops and they were low on t-shirts but we found one that he likes and it fit!  Hooray!

These stairs have been added from the beach to the pier since we were there last when we climbed the bolders to reach the path.

The seagulls were flapping but not moving forward and hovered together--maybe it was a game. 
 There were pelicans flying by over the water looking for something to eat.
 This sign was new and a warning for anyone who might want to hurt the wild life in this area.
We aren't sure who would want to hurt them.  Most people brought food to give to the raccoons so they weren't intersted in following us around.

 The surface of the pier is very nice to walk on now.
 There was also one lonely cat.
We saw some fishermen with poles but several would throw out nets to get the fish.
There was a hint of a rainbow in the distance.  

They are making many improvements to the beach area and a new building is going up.

Anyway, it was getting to be dusk and we made our way from the pier back to the bus stop and that’s when the sky opened up and huge drops of unexpected rain suddenly fell.  We were grateful we could see the bus we wanted to take parked ½ block away and we ran to get onto it.  Because we didn’t have our umbrella, we were fairly soaked when we arrived.  The driver was hurrying to shut the windows of the bus before he began his route.  We paid our 8 pesos each and the driver drove in the heavy rain and heavy traffic for 25 minutes and then we had to get off to walk home.  Luckily, the storm had not caught up with us yet and we hurried home in “cheepy cheepy” rain for four blocks.  A few minutes after we had safely arrived home and had shut the door, we heard the heavy storm hit.  So that was our “last” trip to the beach and it was memorable.