Thursday, March 22, 2012

Familiy night in Lublin

When we came back to Poland after Christmas we decided there was NEVER going to be a dull moment. We vowed to stay busy... There is much to see and do here on this side of the planet...

The members in Lublin hadn't caught on to Family Home Evening. They didn't really understand it's point. So President Mecham introduced this concept last Monday and instituted monthly branch FHE here in Lublin. It was a HIT!

This FHE was focusing on goals. After understanding the importance of goals, we set our own branch goals for this year.
1) Progress personally in the gospel. Thank Heaven the church already instituted programs for this purpose: Personal Progress for all the sisters ages 12- death. Duty to God for all the priesthood ages 12- death. Faith in God for all the primary children. The members are soooo excited!
2) Read the Book of Mormon! Daily study of this book will change lives! The members in Lublin are reading it!
3) Go to the temple. Our temple is in Frieberg, Germany. Our branch will be attending that together in November. That is going to be lots of personal and branch work... There will be many attending for the first time. We are really excited!

With the introduction of each of these goals there was an action item activity which took place... after all, a goal with no action is just vanishing thought.
somehow I missed the photos of the "night crawler" portion of this activity. It was awesome though.
1)night crawler activity was a huge pan of gummy bears and worms in chocolate pudding. Each team nominated a representative who was instructed to find as many worms as they could only using their mouth. Elder Kennedy killed Mariusz at this! I think mariusz like the American pudding more than he cared about the gummy worms.
The point was that as we set goals there will be many deterants and most of them will be good. But if we want to achieve that goal we must only go for the best things that will help us do that. The bears didn't count for points... only the worms.
2) finding hidden mini safety pins in a pile of rice is harder than it looks...

Beata and Marlena battled for the treasure's in the rice. Marlena won by a landslide!
The point was that searching the scriptures for its treasures will bless our lives.

3) Lemons are sour! If you squeeze 1/4 of a lemon you won't have enough lemon juice to make a picher of lemonade. But if you squeeze and sqeeze, little by little you will have enough!

Marlena begged for another turn at this one... She loves lemons! So McKay gave up his spot as the lemon juice sucker to her while Fidel was her fierce aponent. The rules were to suck juice out of the each lemon wedge and spit it in the cup. 3 MINUTES!!! Whomever had the most juice at the end won!
The point was that little by little, if we keep working on the goal we will achieve that goal... Our goal, of course, is going to that temple in Germany!

On another note:
Last night we hosted a missionary discussion at our house! Pawo was introduces to the church while living in England a few months ago. He moved back to Poland to be closer to home in January and looked up the missionaries to continue his investigations of the church. He is getting baptized in April. Sabastian is Marlena's 13 year old son. He is investigating the church also. His introduction came through his faithful mother. Last night Sabastian accepted the invitation to be baptized in April. Cole will be 8 next week. He will also be baptized when grandparents arrive to this part of the world... That will be 3 baptisms in Lublin this year. In the past 2 1/2 years there has only been 1 baptism here. We are soooooo EXCITED!

In the NEWS:
We are moving to England in July! The dome here is finising up early and Mr. Mecham will just have to travel a bit to finish up closing negotiations. Mr. Potter, whom he works with, is BEYOND capable to do the rest. I think even the Potters will get to go early on a new assignment! We are going to miss Poland and our friends. It is a bitter sweet feeling to think about moving to England. We just fell in love with POland... and so we know that in time we will feel the same about England...
When we told Marlena (last night) that we were moving she said, "President, at family night you told us we would ALL be in the temple together this year". Then she stared at Mr. Mecham like her statement was a question... until he answered, "then I guess Becky and I will meet you in Germany this November". Knowing that I get to see our Polish friends again in November will make moving a little easier! If you were hoping to come put your feet under our Polish table you better make plans sooner than later...

Our obsession to create life:
The children have found out just how inviting it is to create new life... on dragonvale. Their breeding caves are always occupied. It's a good time.

I can not describe the excitement around here when a new dragon is hatched! Never a dull moment!

Saturday, March 10, 2012


Not going to lie... when the sun doesn't come up, I am not a happy camper! So you can imagine that there were some depressing days around the winter solstice in Poland when the sun didn't really ever come up but rather it got light ish around 7:30 a.m. and then was mid night black by 3:00 p.m. Infact, when Elder Plumb tried to prepare me (months before) for the lack of sun during the winter It didn't even process in my brain. But it was processing during winter... It was dark!
You can also imagine our delight when on December 17 our family was driving to Warsaw to go to Arizona for Christmas and the sky got light... and then we hopped a plane to the United States and that plane followed the sun across the globe with our air plane. It gave us a day without night... 24 hours of sun. I was healed!
Upon our return from the United States, the days in Poland are getting longer which means more sun... And wouldn't you know it, this very morning the sun came up while I was taking Mr. Mecham to the train station... and It was beautiful!
The sun light stays around much longer these days. I didn't realize how much I loved that ball of fire until it was gone.
I love sun! I love it's warmth. I love that it makes things bright which is simultanious with happy in my mind. Happy can exist without sun... but sun can not exist without happy! I will never take Sunshine for granted again. I can't tell you the joy I feel with a simple sunrise!

On another note, Today is Marja's birthday.
One of the great things about marrying Mr. Mecham was the inheritance of his awesome family! Marja is one of my very favorite people on this earth... she is one of Nate's younger seester. I first met Marja after I had been dating Mr. Mecham for a few months. We were in American Fork visiting his family. I was sitting on the Mecham's front porch with Merillee and Nate when Marja came home from a date to the gym... she was dropped off down the street by her long haired muffin who had a BIG black truck. Marja was full of allergies that day and pinched her nose the entire visit. Marja and Merille made me laugh as hard as Shellie and Tamara Hawkins used to. If there was any question that MR. Mecham was cool, it had been answered. With sisters like this he was cool! haha... I had to stay.
After legally making Marja my sister, I found that she just got better! I will forever and ever be thankful to know her, to call her a friend and to be legally tied to her family now and through the eternitites.
A few years ago she made the long journey from Utah to Arizona for spring break. It will go down in my book as the best spring break I ever had. Her boys and my boys are like peanut butter and jelly. They just go together.
When we are in Utah, Marja and Co. love to entertain and create memories with us. My children still and forever will talk about the good times they have with Uncle Curt, Aunt Marja and the boys. We are thankful.
So today, in celebration of her mortality, I post 10 of the reasons I am certain that this world is a better place just because of her existance. Only 10? There are a million...

10) Marja has endurance. She pushes through. A few summers ago we ran Ragnar de sol together... it was so fun... Her endurance for running those hills without a hint of weakness is just like she is with trial in her life. She endurs well.

9) She is responsible. I've tried to talk her out of doing her scout calling, taking jello salad to her ward cook outs and watching over the neighborhood... but when she said she would she vowed to keep her word on every. little. detail. I want her on my side.

8) Marja is Loyal. She is loyal to her family. She would die for her awesome husband and sweet boys. She will defend her family to the enth degree.

7) She is fun! Oh BOY HOWDY... Marja is fun! I LOVE that she can think of something fun to do, or nothing at all and still have a good time. Some of the funnest times we've had during out summer breaks in Utah are with Marja. Oh... and funny! Funny is fun. She has an amazing sence of humor. (refer back to first time I met her.)

6) Marja is level headed. While some people are either fun or responsible, or level headed, she seems to do it all. Marja can take a situation and make heads or tails out of it and make the best and right decision EVERy. Single. Time. She doesn't make emotional decisions. I like that. It is quite the remarkable quality. I am envious.

5) She is so stinken cute! Though some would not say it matters, I think it does. People judge on what they see... and we all know that what we see is often the face of what is going on inside. Marja takes care of herself. She keeps a relationship with her Heavenly Father. She brings honor to her parents and family. She takes time for her health. She makes and leaves a good impression on others. She is radient!

4) Marja is clean. Everything has its place in her home. Everything! Her carpet does not know dirt. I do not understand this. While most peoplel eat dinner and then clean up, she cleans behind herself... Honestly! One night while we were at her house Cole decided to puke all over the hall. Marja woke me up to help him in the bathroom while she cleaned up the puke. It was disgustingly everywhere! By the time pulled his head out of the toilet, the mess was clean. I setteled Cole back into his bed with a bowl close by and found Marja sitting on the couch staring at the wall. It was still middle of the night... but she had cleaned up the floor and walls and already started the laundry... and now she was trying not to puke herself. She is a Mary Poppins type.

3)In true Mecham fashion, Marja is hard working! There are those that run cirlces around their peers... they seem to get everything done with time to spare... this is Marja. She is the first one up and the last one to bed. Her peaches are all canned, her jam is made, her laundry is washed, dried, folded and put away, the nutritious meals are created, served and cleaned up before digestion even sets in. The sheets are clean, the towls are fresh, the tile shines; even the grout, the carpet looks new, the walls and baseboards are dust free, the yard is impeccable, the car is clean inside and out, the kids are taxied to and fro, she watched their games, the church assignments fulfilled, the pictures taken, the vacations planned, the parties thrown, moving her brother and sister-in-law in and out of grandma's basement and on and on and on... I am exhausted... but she is still working.

2) There is something to be said for a good wife and an incredible mother. While everyone on the planet aspires to be a good wife, some arent! But Marja is. In great part all the above mentions make her a great wife. But I think that because she has the ability to always focus on good, stay optimistic through life's trials, and that she puts forth 100% into her relationship, always loving Mr. Damon makes her a good wife. When mom duties call, Marja does not shy. She is available for teaching opportunities, a great cheerleader, a busy taxi driver, a kind nurse, she sponsors the "friends come to our house" idea and above all else, her boys know they are safe and loved. I believe that when Braige and Brogan talk about their mother, their hearts are full and thankful to have the one they have. One day they will find themselves all grown up and probably moved on... NEVER will one replace the love they have for their fearless and devoted mother.

1) Marja is humble. In fact, if she were to read this, I think she would be embarassed. She likes to quietly go through life, serving, doing good, having fun, struggling, loving, whatever it is... without drawing attention to herself. She must have a clear understanding of who she is. Whatever it is, She is humble.

There are a million other sweet things about Marja Liisa that could be mentioned. The list is really quite lengthy. This is a small start on her character. She blesses life in general. I am ever thankful for her presence in my life. I hope and wish for Marja the best birthday yet, full of wonderful people, great memories and a year full of pleasant surprises!
Happy Birthday Marja Lissa... Hope it is great!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

A leave of absence

I took a leave of absense. I went home where it was Oh soooo sweet! Here is the run down in a nut shell... I will try to get the necessary info included without boring detail.

Christmas in Arizon, with Sunshine was the goal! We hit the goal. It was amazing!
But what started as a 3 week vacation for Christmas break, ended up being 2 1/2 months of doctor visits bliss and we in a sick way, we loved every minute of it! A lot can happen in that time:

McKay visited LOTS of doctors, had bone scans, x-rays and lots of lab work.
McKay found out he needed nothing more than physical therapy.
Mckay found that he has an arch in his foot with in-sol orthotics. Bless them!
McKay and Kate became seriously good friends! She rubbed his fasia, taught him stretchy "go fish" and helped McKay find his mobility again!

We love Kate!

I Had a biopsy for cancer. It was negative. Thank you!
I awarded myself the bronzed uterus award for having to go through that. Don't ask.
Totally un-related but still equally fun... visited the cardiologist who reminded me the the mitral valve isn't closing properly, causing minor enlargement in the upper heart chamber and assured me that as scary as that sounded that I was fine. ALL RIGHTY THEN... sounds normal.

Bailey is a bonafid teenager!

soaked in a LOT of Arizona sun. It put the biggest smile EVER on my face!

I rammed into a suicidal garbage can that jumped infront of my moving vehicle which happened to be my parent's car... and barely cracked the passenger side light costing me only $250.00. WHAT THE HECK?!!! Stupid garbage can! (FYI: That was 1/2 the price is should have cost me... thanks to dear friends whom we soooo love for his kindness!)

cleaned Grampsydoodle's garage.

Went on date night every Friday night with my seester... Dinner and a movie. It was like clock work... I loved it!

Marci introduced me to juicing. I have never felt so good in my life!

Taught mum about pinterest... and she is going for a world record... but I have to say, while I only pin and dream of doing the things I see, she actually gets off pinterest long enough to cook or create that which she pins.

(grampsydoodle and the wee ones in their bird shirts at the air port)

Then we hopped a plane one day, (Which we almost missed and then almost missed our connecter flight too... good times) and came back to Poland to live happily with our dear old papa Nate... and we...

Went to Polish Conferance. It was so cool!

Elder Christopherson came. I found out that Nate is related to that apostle and it was fun to talk to him about it. His wife is awesome!

While there we were able to see all our friends from all over Poland, and the sweet missionaries whom we sooooooo love! It was WAAAAAy fun!

Jake Armstrong, mcKay and Cole

Bailey and Grace Armstrong
The kids stayed at the Armstrongs over night and had a BLAST!

I met my cousin, Siostra Ence, who is serving here in Warsaw... Then I came home and called her parents. Siostra Ence's great-grandfather and my grandmother are siblings.

Mr. Mecham hired a tutor who is a professor at the Medical University in Lublin to tutor our children in home school. Bless his heart... Joanna got the kids all caught up in school and is looking forward to field trips all over the area with them.

Today is "Woman's day" in Poland. So whatever that is... Happy day. Maczek brought me tulips. What a guy!

Life is good. We are happy and healthy now and couldn't be more thankful to be here with good old papa Nate! I sure do miss that old grampsydoodle dandy and mummy... and my sweet seesters and cutest nephews and little Ellie buns... and my fun friends. But life is good. We are enjoying the journey!