Sunday, August 21, 2016

You Say it’s Your Birthday

August 21, 2016

The big deal this week was to prepare and have Renee’s birthday today.  We spent the week making secret combinations with the missionaries so we could have a real good party.  But before that we had to do a little work.

Elder Nielson and I received our Driver's licenses.  Now we are truly Uruguayos

And a little bit closer :)
One of the things we have been working on since we arrived is to complete our legal documents.  We can go on a tourist visa for only so long.  As you may remember we spent about 3 hours at the immigration office a week ago completing our documentation for our cedula or residency papers.  After we completed that we received a “ticket” that allowed us to come back and get the cedula a week later.  So, last Tuesday, Renee, Elder Nielson and I returned to the immigration office and after a short wait received our cedula.  We are now full fledged Uruguayos.  One Wednesday we went to a medical clinic and completed a health test for our driver’s license.  This test included a blood pressure test, touching our nose with our fingers with our eyes closed and standing with our feet close together and our eyes closed for a while to see if we are coordinated.  Now we were ready to get our license.  So on Thursday we drove to the municipal building to get our license.  Notice, we drove the car to the driver’s license office to get our license.  Once there we took a number to get in line to pay the fee.  After that we went downstairs to take another number to stand in line to get our license.  After reviewing our medical information and the receipt for the fee for the license they took our picture and soon we were walking out of the building as crazy Uruguayo drivers.  What a great day.  You know it is a somewhat complicated process but I can see how it all fits together and can see why they do it.  Now I know how to do it I won’t have to do it anymore.

Elder Rodriguez cleaning the apartment
We have several apartments that we are trying to get changed in the mission.  This requires getting the legal documents completed and moving the furnishings into the apartments.  It is much more complicated and time consuming than I like.  The biggest challenge we have had is to get ready for the Wall family to come next Tuesday, August 25th.  We have had the contract ready for the real estate company to sign for over two weeks and still do not have the contract signed.  We hope we can get it signed this week so they can get settled.  Meanwhile we have furniture stored in several locations waiting to move it to Florida.

If you are going to move, you have to have cookies
One of the things that I have worried about is getting the furniture moved around in our apartment and the other apartment.  The doors are small and I have tried to move some of it alone with no luck.  Well, we asked to missionaries to help.  I dropped off four of them and went back to get the others.  All the while I was hoping that they would get it done without me.  When I got back with the other missionaries, guess what? It was already done!  I was so relieved!  We have some real good pictures of the missionaries helping us move.  Too bad I can’t put more in the blog.  They are so helpful and fun to be around and we have found out that they will do anything for Renee’s cookies.  We completed that on Friday.

Birthday dinner with the Temple Missionaries
On Saturday we cleaned the house, cut my hair and got ready to go out to dinner with the Temple Missionaries for Renee’s birthday.  In the middle of that we had the chance to drive a few missionaries around to help one that was in the hospital.  Saturday night at 6:00 we attended a graduation ceremony for some of our friends in the Malvin Ward that graduated from the Pathway program.  This is an online program that members can take from BYU that helps them learn English and other skills to be more successful in business.  At 7:00 we picked up the Temple Missionaries and we went out to dinner for Renee’s birthday.  We went to a little restaurant on the beach called Salmuera.  It was better than good.  I had the rib eye and Renee had the Salmon. Both were excellent.  We had key lime pie for dessert.  Then, the waitress brought out a brownie with ice cream and sang happy birthday to Renee.  It was a fun evening and we plan to return.

Now it was time for the real festivities to start.  After Church we went to lunch with the Temple missionaries at their apartment where we had Indian Tacos.  We finished dinner with German Chocolate cake that is Renee’s favorite.  After we finished that, the office missionaries, zone leaders and Sister Missionaries showed up with another cake and a video that they made for Renee.  I could tell by the tears in Renee’s eyes that she really liked it.  I wish I could really show how fun it is to spend time with the missionaries like this.  They are so happy, helpful and great to be around.  Their enthusiasm is very engaging.

Elder Rodriquez bakes a cake
Well, you would think that we would be about done with fun for the week, but the real good stuff had just started.  As we were waiting to go to lunch, Elder Stewart called from Castillo’s.  He was excited to let us know that they had several new people at Church today.  Their efforts are really paying off.  We are so looking forward to going up there this weekend.

After lunch we dropped the sister missionaries off at a charla.  It was right near Humberto and Cristina’s house so we decided to see how they were doing.  You may remember that Cristina had a stroke about 45 days ago and after staying in the hospital for about a week was taken to her daughter’s house.  When she arrived at her daughter’s house she could not walk, talk or use her left hand and arm.  To our surprise Cristina is now home.  She can walk and use her left arm and hand and can also talk.  She was in very good spirits and we were so excited to see how much better she is doing.  She seemed pretty excited to get better so she can make us some more empanadas.  (I love missionary work)

After that we were more than half way to the hospital and so decided to continue to see how our sister missionary was doing.  Our little sister missionary is recovering very well from having her appendix out and hopes to be back working in the near future.  They were in such good spirits and make us want to serve them more.

We are trying to get a good rest tonight so we can be ready for a big week ahead.  We have several moves and a big weekend planned in Castillos.  It seems like the missionary works gets more fun, more busy and more rewarding each week.  We are so grateful for this opportunity.  We love the Lord and his Gospel.

We love you all.
Gordon and Renee


  1. Yep, I'd do just about anything for my mom's cooking, too. Those are some smart missionaries!!

  2. Yeah....I'm still seething with jealousy over the pear pie! I hope those missionaries know how good they've got it!! :)
    ~ Jan

  3. Just don't start driving like the Uraguayans, please!!😀


Please keep comments positive! Gordon and Renee are missionaries for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. This blog is meant to be a fun way for them to communicate with their friends and neighbors back home.