Pre Christmas Call !!!

Just had an (official) pre Christmas phone call from Sister Smart, just to clarify the details for the skype message on Christmas Day.

I'm very pleased to report that she has not developed one of those daft Missionary accents you know 1/2 West Country, 1/2 American, 1/2 Cockney, 1/2 Canadian monstrosities that they usually do. (well, least not yet anyway).

She sounded great, full of the spirit of missionary work and most difinately enjoying her time...

Late Again Boy !!!

Well I'm late again getting the Blog out to you I'm sorry Life is pretty hectic at the moment. Ive just spent the last couple of days at a smelly pet food factory and I stink like rotting cat-food (note to self - get in shower ASAP)but I need to get this blog done first...
Oioi!! So I can't remember much about last week... I feel like I have so much to tell you as I go through each day but then I forget... Everyday molds into one!

I loved going to the Temple with all the other Missionaries this week... 1/4 of the mission! About 70 Missionaries! It was a wonderful experience that has helped my testimony grow. We also had Christmas dinner, but it wasn't much like the Christmas dinner I make... It was very American! We all got an amazing gift from President and Sister Millar... A England London South Mission Temple Recommend holder... I'll send a photo next week. I forgot my camera AGAIN!

We had an exchange on Thursday/Friday. Sister Brown went to Weston-Super-Mare and I stayed in Yeovil... I was very nervous about leading the area but I was pleased with how things went. I learned new things from Sister L... We call her that because no one says her name right. She's from Finland! She knows Jussi and Touko :) She also knows Jai Turner from Liverpool... Something to do with her Grandad/Dad and Jai's dad's conversion, anyway... I am thankful for the opportunity.

The Elders that were the transport for the exchange were very kind and gave us a lift to one of our appointments. One of them is from Stafford... He had two strokes about 5 days apart 3 years ago... He was 23. He can walk but his left arm has no movement and he lost his left peripheral vision. When I have negative thoughts about about walking so much I remind myself of him... He is an inspiration to me!!

I have been asked to speak in sacrament meeting this coming Sunday on the Prophet Joseph Smith... I am quite nervous and stressed about writing the talk. I know I only have myself to blame as I don't know enough about the Prophet as my studies and activity have been poor throughout my life. Having said that, I am excited to research him so that I can learn and grow from the challenge. Also, Sister Brown is quite knowledgeable so I'm going to pick her brains!

I am extremely excited about/for Jamie. He is progressing really well and I am so pleased for him. We're working towards 11/01/14 for his baptism. People told me that I would learn to love each investigator and it's true. I am concerned for him everyday and on Sunday when he was too ill to come to church, I was devastated. Hopefully he will be well enough for our lesson with him tomorrow so we can see his progress. We have others that we are teaching but They're not progressing like he is... He was so ready to hear about the gospel. Did I tell you how we met him? We decided to knock some doors one evening a couple weeks ago... I was adamant about knocking this one street in particular so off we went to knock it. We knocked about 20 doors (it's a small street)... We taught 4 lessons, gave two people literature that they requested and then we got to the last door. I knocked my happy knock... No response so I did my bailiff's knock :)... Jamie answered the door and the rest is history! Oh and we later found out that he house shares with 4 other people... 5 people could have answered the door that day and Jamie answered. I think he was waiting for us! :)

This afternoon we are shopping and then I will read all the emails I have printed off! I'm sorry if I don't reply personally, but I'm trying my best! :)

Oh and apparently we get to call home a couple days ahead of Christmas day. Just for a couple minutes to arrange a Skype time. My mind is blank of most things pre-mission so we'll see if I remember the numbers!! Haha!! I'll try to make it the evening of Sunday 22/12 so I catch you at home.

I'm still excited to be a Missionary and I think it's actually starting to sink in!! I actually feel like a Missionary... Sometimes!

I hope you all have a lovely Christmas... Remember the true meaning! Don't let the gifts and what not get in the way!

Time is flying by... I'm on week 6 in my planner! :| Speaking of... I think I'll need a Missionary planner for the rest of my life!!

I love you all!!

Take care, Sister Smart

Latest Titbit!!!

Titbit being the operative word here.
Sister Smart was obviously so excited to be going to the Temple today that her message home was somewhat shorter than usual, but nevertheless its good to see her in such high spirits...
Quickest Email ever !!!

So we're in Bristol on our way to the Temple and I have 12 minutes to email!!! :O Maybe we'll get another chance to email later in the week... I'm not sure! If not, I'll email next Monday :) We're getting a coach to the temple in a couple hours, then staying in Temple accommodation overnight, tomorrow we get to do a session in the Temple and then have a Mission Christmas dinner. We're very excited!

Firstly... We got the shopping! Thank you so much!!!!!! And mum, you're naughty for spending so much!! I have a photo of the fridge after we filled it! :) I'll send it next week!

Mum, I forgot to tell you that I found your missionary name tag my first day in the MTC and I have it pinned on the front of my journal. I cried when I found it! :)

I'm doing well... Still not got Sister Brown's cold. I've been taking Vit C and Vit D and I reckon that's helping me out.

Rae, the stake president and his wife spoke in my ward on Sunday and it turns out that their daughter, Honey lives in Rugby and apparently she's if your visiting teacher. Small world! Also, an Elder White is serving here from your ward. I've not met him yet but we have his Christmas package to give him :)

Not sure how much I have told you about a guy (Jamie) we met a couple weeks back.... anyway things are progressing really well for him. I'm so happy for him!! He came to church again this week with us and it was a good day!!!! He looks like Joseph Gordon-Levitt! :)

I'm excited to be a missionary most of the time... There are the odd things that do wind me up though such as when things fall through and I feel useless. I can hear you saying Mum that I need to have more patience :)

I miss and love you all but I'm where I'm suppose to be!

Love, Sister Smart

The Long Awaited Photos!!!

Well, she actually remembered to take her camera with her to library today, so we actually get so see some pics.
Those who thought she may suffer a little from home sickness need not worry she appears to be having the time of her life.
Well... This week has been a bit of everything!
Sister Brown is sick so we have had a few days stuck in the flat but I tried to keep myself busy by organising, making appointments and such.
We also had Zone training which was amazing but that took us out of the field for a day!!
We received an announcement yesterday that we will be going to the temple one day next week... Sister Brown and I squeeled!! We're so excited. Zone Training was amazing... We were addressed by Elder Texira and his wife! Everyone was mega pumped afterwards :)
It was thanksgiving, so some of the members in the Poole area made thanksgiving dinner for about 130 missionaries. It was pretty good! I had desert for the first time in a long while and that was really good... Pumpkin pie.
After lunch we sang Armies of Helaman with "we thank you for the food" added at the end, to the chefs/helpers... They cried. It was a really good day!!
We also received post that day that was addressed to the office. I got my first Christmas package from the Manchester and Ashton YSA... I was really touched and I'm well excited to open it!!! Thank you!!!!!!
I did feel a little awkward there though... As I was so new I didn't know many people. I did chat with Sister Steffensen and Elder Johnson though... We were in the MTC together so that was cool. One of the AP's (Elder Patten) is from Wales and he's older like me so we chatted a bit so I didn't feel too awkward.
Oh and the night before Zone Training we had 4 other Sisters stay at our flat so it was easier for them to get to Poole in the morning... That was weird and made me feel well awkward. 4 new/very loud people in my "home" was weird... I pretty much just sat in the corner and watched haha!
One day last week we visited one of our investigators and it was amazing... I squealed the whole way home. Then he came to church yesterday!!!!!! Amazing!!! I felt like a proud mum haha!
We met a guy named Jamie the other day while knocking and I'm really excited to go back and visit him.... He's Golden, as they say!! The work is kind of slow... We're getting much better though! We do more everyday but we could be doing a lot more!
Oh and I'm getting calluses on my knees from praying... That just shows that I had never prayed enough before now! I can't think of anything else to tell you... Other than time is flying by! Oh and prayers get answered!!!!!!! Get on your knees and give it a try :) That's what I tell people when they mock me... Maybe you should try and it get back to me. With a smile on my face of course!
I didn't come on a mission for myself but I'm only one month out and I've already learned so much. I'm still the person I was but the way I look at things/life is different. I know the person I want to be and I know how I can achieve it. I also know that I can only get there with the help from my Savior.
Remember who you are and pray!
Love, Sister Smart
Blisters... they're not too bad in the photo but they got alot worse! they're on the mend now though!! :)
Area map... I know you've already seen it but it's huge!!!! Hence the blisters.
Being a Sister Missionary at the temple
Elder Omer... He's from Milan, Italy and know's Moreno!!!!
Elder Nunes... He was my dictrict leader in the MTC... He's ace!! He's from Brazil... Doesn't speak much English but he's going to the Manchester mission! Look out for him!!
Sister Alipio!!!!! I love her... Also from the MTC and Brazilian! She's serving in the London mission.
Elder Abel from the MTC :)
The curley hair... Sister Brown and I

The one with the scarf... its for the office. they put together a christmas book with everyones photos as a keep sake :) looking forward to getting that!

Called To Serve!!!

Today we were given a lovely gift by some very good friends, some that have played a very important part in the progression of Sister Smart and are partially responsible for her being where she is today.

This gift is very special to us and well bring much comfort to us over coming months, as it will serve as a reminder of what she is about in those times when we are missing her the most.

Thanks Peter & Claire.

Slacker, That's Me, Not Sister Smart!!!

Sorry, I'm a slacker, we received this message from Sister Smart yesterday, but I was involved with something else and didn't get round to updating the blog last night.

I'll try to mend my tardy ways
Well... I forgot my camera again so I can't attach all the photos that I want to :/ I'm going to write 20 notes to myself to remember next week.

This week has been something else... I am tired!!!! :) Everyday is a good day but with a little disappointment. On Saturday we went to a village called Chard, we have an investigator there. It takes 1 hour to get there on the bus. As we arrived we received a text from said investigator saying that she would have to cancel as her son was unwell... I nearly cried!!!!! Sister Brown and I hugged, bought some lunch and did our best to make good of the situation. I think we did a pretty good job... We were very cold but we managed to talk with a lot of people and taught some lessons. We ended our Chard adventure with a stop in at the Parkes for hot chocolate and a good northern chat. They are members and have been since the 1960's. Tommy Parkes is originally from Openshaw and has the most amazing accent!! Or at least it sounds that way now after hearing weird farmer and American/Canadian accents for a while :) Margaret Parkes is from around Yeovil somewhere... They met in WW2 when he was on leave. They lived in Manchester for many years and they were stake missionaries for some time. They know President Fletcher well as they were about when he was joining the church with his family. It's a small Mormon world!! They've not spoken to him for many years and they would like to so hopefully someone can let Pres Fletcher know... I have their number if he wants it.

So much has happened this week but I can't remember it all now plus I haven't the time to write it all... You should see my journal!! I brought two with me thinking that would suffice... I don't think it will as I write 2-4 pages a night. I'm just about 1 month into my mission and 1/4 way through the first journal. I wonder if I'll ever read it again!!

Wednesday was a good day... We had district meeting in Bournemouth. It's crazy how it takes 2 hours to get to meetings! I made brownies and everyone loved them... Get to them by their tummies. Maybe I should carry brownies around with my on a daily basis. The night before at 22.01, Elder Hilton our district leader called to say we had to take our (fully up to date) area book with us to DM to be checked. Sister Brown and I looked at each other with disbelief. Haha!! To be honest it was up date for the most part but we still got to bed 20 minutes late at 22.50 :/ I teased Elder Hilton the next day for forcing us to be disobedient... Clearly it was our fault as it wasn't up to date in the first place! Anyway... The meeting was good! nice to see how everyone else is doing in the district and we had a great lesson by Elder Hilton. Oh and I found out that Christchurch is inside the mission boundaries... Where Matt and Stacie now live. We originally thought it was in the London mission but we were wrong... How weird will that be if I serve in their ward!! If I do, I hope it's when they get married :).

We have has an invitation for Christmas day... The Hazel family! They're lovely!! They have Skype so I think we'll be skyping from there. They're a lot like the Smart family when it comes to missionaries, which I like. We don't really get fed here but they feed us. That's okay though as I like to cook! More and more members are asking us for dinner though and Sister Brown thinks it'd because I'm English. It's nice to get to know the members so we're happy that's happening.

My blisters got a lot worse and now they're kinda on the mend... They're not as bad as the blisters I had while I was in Singapore though so that's good. We walk a lot... Seriously!! If I'm not a size 6 when I get home I'll be very disapointed :)

This work is amazing to see... To watch people's expressions is ace. Some bad ones of course but with some people you can see the light bulb glow as they understand what you're telling them is truth.

Yesterday we knocked a door and the chap that answered was an anti-Christ... We had a good chat. He told me I was a fool, brain washed and naive. I told him that I wasn't a fool and that I only know that's it's true because I have tested it and I have received a personal witness of it's truthfulness. He couldn't think of much to say so we bid each other a good day and said goodbye.

Anyway... I've said enough and I'm running out of time!

I miss you all but what I'm doing is important and this 18 months will fly by. I'll be home before I know it and I will miss doing this work and having those matter of fact chats with an anti-Christ.

Remember how you are and try your best... Oh and keep smiling!!! :D

Love, Sister Smart 

First Real P' Day!!!


Sister Smart is now established in her first area, wearing her feet out but loving the work!!!


So I only have time for one email so it will have to be okay for the blog... I'll try to get better at replying :/

On our last day in the MTC one of the teachers (Sister Binnie) came into the room and said "I've just had a phone call with President Millar, the London South Mission President and there has been a problem with transfers. One of the Sisters has had to go home early so two of the Sister from this MTC group will be ‘white washing’ a new area without trainers and will be companions. Any volunteers?" WELL.... There were only three of us so Sister Steffensen and I were looking at each other thinking it has to be us if we're doing it. However before we had chance to say anything the other Sister volunteered and said I would be her companion. I stood there thinking I was about to have a slight heart attack, trying to figure out how the combination of the two of us would manage it. Just before my brain exploded Sister Binnie admitted that it was a lie/joke and explained that things like this do happen and we need to be ready for them PHEW!!!!!!!!!!! I'll never forgive Sister Binnie J I was very relieved to meet my trainer Sister Brown.

So Yeovil is the biggest area I've ever known... (I'll send photos next week). From what the Ward Mission Leader was saying, I think it's 50 miles north to south and 40 miles east to west :O. Way bigger than the Ashton areas, the area had a car once upon a time but doesn't many more so we walk ….. A LOT!!! I don't think I've ever walked so much in one day before and we do this every day. My feet are getting used to it but I have blisters but that's okay... I'll need 20 pedicures when I get home J

The area is good but quite slow. There is a lot more that we can be doing to be proactive so we're going to be working on that soon... Hopefully my trainer will agree... She has agreed with everything I've had to say so far which is nice because we're on the same page. She has only just finished her first 12 weeks herself! I know I'm being trained but you know me, I have an opinion and I think it's a good one! :/ Ha Ha. Her name is Sister Megan Brown... She's from Alberta, Canada and it's 95% Mormon where she is from :O. She tried to warn me about the ward before Sunday she said it was really small and what not.... However from the UK perspective it's not small at all and the members seem really nice! I haven't met a family like the Smart family yet though: / Ha Ha.

Our Bishop is originally from Leeds and his name is Bishop Hull... He is Laura Smith's (Will and Laura Smith) brother. Small Mormon world!! There are quite a few members from the north here so that's kinda weird as I didn't expect that. Our Ward Mission Leader is a guy by the name Brother Edwin Ralph and he has a brother in law that is going to the Manchester mission soon... Look out for him….. I think his name is Elder Dads. Oh btw they've got right farmer accents down here J

I'm running out of time!!!!!! :O

I love you all and I miss you but I'm where I'm meant to be. I love this gospel and I'm excited to tell everyone about it. Everything is fine if you just keep smiling!!!!! :D

Remember who you are!

Love, Sister Smart

Area 1 Yeovil - Poole Zone!!!

We received a letter today from Sister Smart's Mission President, just to again confirm all is well and to say that she had been assigned to work in the Yeovil Area which is in the Poole Zone.

Also enclosed was a picture of her with her new companion Sister LaRee Brown and the Mission President & his Wife.



Click Here To Read The Letter

Here is a map of the church she will be attending for the next few weeks


View Larger Map

Found a picture of the Yeovil Chapel - I guess Sister Smart will be giving her first talk to Ward members here !
 

Arrival In 'The Big Smoke' !!!

Another big day of excitement for Sister Smart as she arrives in London.
We received an email today, not from herself, but from the Mission Office to let us know that she had arrived safe & well and has been sent out to her very first area and had been given her very first 'real' companion...

Your Missionary Has Arrived

Dear Parents,

I am writing to inform you that your missionary was among those who arrived today safely in the England London South Mission. The missionaries have been assigned a trainer and started serving in their assigned area.

The Mission President will be sending you a letter soon which includes information about the area where your missionary was assigned and who their trainer/companion is.  The letter will also include a picture taken on the day of their arrival.

I am attaching a map for our mission. When you know where your missionary was assigned, you can find that area on the map.
We are glad for the willingness of those young missionaries to come and serve.  In the mission office we do everything we can to make sure their needs are met while in the field. Please know your missionary is well taken care of, and loved by us and by their mission president.

Let us know if you have any questions.


Best Regards
Sister Qumsiyeh
England London South Mission

The First Email!!!

Well after all the boasting about the blogging I was going to do, we got her first email yesterday and I  failed to post it.... I ought to be ashamed of myself.

However It was great to hear from her and just as we suspected she is having a whale of a time her email has a real positive vibe about it and she's not too good at concealing things like that, so we feel conformable that she is happy/

See for your self !!
I have to keep this brief as we really don’t have long ….Sorry if you have emailed me and I haven’t replied ! Please don’t take it personally, hopefully I’ll be able to address your questions in this email.

So I’ve officially been a Sister Missionary for 7 whole days…. It still feels sooo surreal !! I do feel different, just not like a missionary I think  …does that make sense ? :/

So all in all it’s a good experience, I am learning a lot about the Gospel and myself /my testimony.

There isn’t many Missionaries in the MTC right now …. about 25 of us. There are 12 learning German and they had been here for 2 weeks when we got here. The other 13 are mostly going to London or London South except for my district leader Elder Nunes ……He’s going to the Manchester Mission ! so watch out for …He’s from Brazil and just great, I will send a photo when I get chance.

We have 7 Sisters and as you can imagine it can be a little…..um  difficult ! You know me, I say it as it is and so I’ve told a couple of Sisters to be nicer to their companions:/…. In a good, constructive way though !

The teachers are amazing! It’s good to have known a few of them before hand and they say it as it is ! Maybe not quite as I do though ;) The other day I was having a tough moment and really wanted a hug and the first person I saw was Brother Rojas (Adrian) and I was sooo tempted to hug him…not good ! Ha ha ! Luckily Sister Bennie and Sister Richardson were there to hug ! They’re ACE ! They really get me and they understand how it is.

Oh, so sleeping…Hmmm ! We’re all struggling to sleep at night even though we are tired …. Too much in our heads ! The beds are OK though …better than I thought.

Food is important here …..mainly because as you eat you don’t have to think ;)

I am working hard….like really hard and it feels good ! People keep complaining about being tired but I feel great ….. I hope that lasts throughout my mission (fingers crossed and all that).

We’re having a devotional with Elder Donaldson tonight and we’re doing a musical item….. As Sister’s in Zion and The Army of Helamen…it’s so uplifting and refreshing !!!

Any way I am running out of time !

I love this Gospel and I know that my Saviour died for me and for you !

Remember who you are !!!

Love,  Sister Smart
Sorry I forgot to attach the photos she sent:

Sister Alipio and I... She is Brazilian. She doesn't speak much English but has so much love!! I love her!
 Sister Smith and I... My companion.

No News Is Good News, Right?

Well yesterday came and went without us hearing from her.

We were assuming that her Preparation Day (P' Day) was on a Tuesday, we based this upon asking a missionary who was fresh out of the Missionary Training Centre (MTC) "what day was P' Day in the MTC" and he told us Tuesday.

But upon reflection I don't think it would be practical for all Missionaries in the MTC at any given time to all have the same P' Day, I think it would make sense to stagger them. The Elder we asked may have just meant that Tuesday was his day.

So I guess we just have to stay on the positive side and think that her P' Day just hasn't come around yet, after all the first week is not up yet till tomorrow.

But I sure am looking forward to her first email.

Watch this space...


The Big Day Has Finally Arrived!!!

Well today marked the start of a new episode in the life of Sister Smart.

We took her to the Preston Missionary Training Centre for 10:00 and by 10:15 it was all over and done with, a very well structured affair, undoubtedly designed so as not to allow emotions to overcome the affair.

There was a few tears but no long lingering drawn out goodbyes, this was definitely aided by the fact that she herself had a very positive approach.

I think they even stagger the scheduled arrival time of each missionary, so that a tight reign must be kept on time so as not to allow any delays to set in and create a 'knock on' effect.

We were a little pushed for time and as we were on our own, there was no one around to take a photo of us all, so you'll just have to make do with one of Sister Smart with me then one of her with her mum.

Janet & I had not fallen out I promise.
























I've got to say, I think I am a better photographer than Jamet, or at least I make Janet look better on photos than she makes me look - (possibly I have the easier task).

Just to reiterate all the contact details for her:-

The permanent address for her is:-
Sister Jessica Smart
C/O England London South Mission
West Park Road
Newchapel
Surrey
RH7 6NB

But please bare in mind that is is the Mission Office Address and therefore mail will always get to her via this address. but may not be the quickest route, as it will go to the Mission Office then re-distributed to wherever she is currently residing.

For the next two weeks she will be at the Training Centre at Preston, but mail via that above address, after that once she receives her first assignment, I will keep you all informed (via the blog) of the best address to use.

Her permanent email address whilst she is serving is:-

smart.jessica@myldsmail.net

N.B. Her old personal email address will not be monitored during her Mission.

Please also be sensitive to the fact that her personal time will be limited and the whole idea of this blog is to keep you all updated on her progress, so by all means write to her regularly (she will appreciate that), but please don't be offended if any mail/email received by her does not get a personal response

Please note the countdown timer has been adjusted, now counting down to her return...

Sister Smart If You Please!!!

This thing is getting real now.

Jess is no more, she is now officially Sister Smart, at 8:00 pm this evening she was set apart as a Full Time Sister Missionary, by President Matthew Preston of our Stake Presidency.

It was a wonderful event and of all the setting aparts that I have witnessed over the years, I don't think I have ever seen so many people at one before.

















And just to keep my brother happy (who helped me to set up this blog), I have left aligned the image, cos he keeps telling me off for not doing so.

The Time Is Nigh

Look at the time counter people, today really is your last chance to bid farewell to Jess she leaves tomorrow morning.

So catch her while you can today with a quick text, call, fb comment, or if your still a normal human being  even a visit...
I Don't know what her specific plans are for today, but I'm guessing she's gonna be busy though.

Farewell Jess!

We are going to be holding a farewell shin-dig for Jess this Saturday 26th at 4:30 pm at our Church on Patterdale Road Ashton under Lyne OL7 9JA











If you want to say goodbye, then this is your chance....

Last Day At Work!

Well folks it's getting real now. Jess worked her last day at work on Friday just gone.

She came home and reported a day full of mixed emotions; excitement, sadness, gratitude, relief, anticipation, to name but a few.

Her work colleagues had really pushed the boat out and have bought her a really nice gift set.


All matching, (of course): writing set, pen, compact mirror, travel set (passport case & luggage tag) and carrier bag.

Fright Of A Life Time

Well people,

I had the fright of a life time tonight, I found Jess making her famous Gianotti Pie (that's Banoffe Pie - named after a Missionary Elder called Gianotti, who raved about her pie so much that it got re-named after him).

Anyway, I said "I take it you are making this for a 'Fuddle'" (a works get-together, usually for someone's leaving do)' to which Jess replied yes.  I then asked "For who"? And Jess said it was for her own leaving party..... Well I nearly fell flat on my back - again. Then Jess said " but I don't leave till the week after though".

I realise that this back injury of mine has left a bit of a black hole in my life for the last month or so but I just cannot believe that it's so soon to her going, so I just checked the countdown timer 15 days 10 hours YIKES!!!!!

Good News !

Jess and the family have just returned from a fortnight in the glorious sunshine in Turkey and had a whale of a time.

On day three of being back in work, just as the holiday memories were beginning to fade and the reality of life back at work were setting in, Jess was called in by her line manager and was told that her bid for another career break (for her Mission)had been accepted.

That really put the smile back on her face.

Here it is !!!

Well 'The Call' arrived today and was recorded for posterity

video

For those that were unable to be with us please view it above.

I can now reset the countdown timer to the date she leaves...

No Water Infection For Me

Quiet Confidence

Well I awoke this morning with a 'feeling in my waters, that today might be the day. (either that, or I may be starting with another water infection).  So, be on standby family & close friends, you may get contacted just after lunch to get your butts round here to ours tonight.

However having said that I kinda hope it won't be today, as we had tentatively planned an evening out for food & cinema to celebrate Janet's birthday (tomorrow).

But well see what the mail man says when he arrives...

Yep, you've guessed it (Groundhog Day No 5)

Life went back to normal at the Smart's today, Bishop Reynolds came to pick up Moreno at 7:30 this morning and then we all went back to work.

I did my usual flying visit home to check on the mail at lunchtime, but it was all in vain. Poor Jess, she's nearly as bald as me now, what with pulling her hair out...

Nothing Again (Groundhog Day 4)

Well, we've all just met at home today for a quick lunch meet with Moreno and a couple of his mission companions, but there is no post for Jess again.

Groundhog Day 3

Well the postman came and went empty handed again today.

A member of the Stake Presidency told me last night that they "usually arrive on a Wednesday so don't hold our breath till next week", this being only a day or so later than I was told "usually on a Thursday" by our Bishop.

Anyway Moreno arrived today so he is keeping Jess occupied and out of mischief.

Better go get in the shower for the BBQ...

Groundhog Day 2

I was afraid this might happen !

Well I did the dutiful father thing and went home to check the mail at lunchtime, but there was nothing..... does all this sound familiar?

If it doesn't arrive tomorrow, it's going to be one heck of a long weekend waiting for Mondays mail.

But having said that (Elder) Marino Geonotti is staying with us this weekend, so that should help lift spirits somewhat.

Groundhog Day

Well as the day draws to a close,the mood is somewhat subdued, Jess is a little disappointed her Call did not arrive today.

I guess then, that I will be taking a midday trip home every day to check on the mail, at least untill it does arrive.

However, I met with Bishop tonight, and he tells me, that contrary to our understanding the Mission Calls are currently arriving on a Thursday, not a Wednesday.

I know the ETA timer is now showing red and is counting up from when it should have arrived, I am not going to bother re-programming it untill such a time as I know when she leaves then I will reset it for that as the target time.

The Cupboard Was Bare !

Well I did the dutiful father thing and went home to check the mail at lunchtime, but there was nothing, however there was no other mail either.

So there is an outside chance that it will arrive later, but we're not holding our breath...

'D' Day


Well Family, Friends & Followers.

The day has finally arrived, this being the first realistic expected day of arrival of the long awaited 'Mission Call'.

I am under strict instructions that In about 4 hours time I should call at home during my lunch break and check the post, then if its arrived, I am to hit the panic button and all close Family & Friends will be summonsed to witness the grand 'open & reveal' tonight at around 6:30pm.

Watch this space...

Where Is She Going?

I think by now most of you will have registered your thoughts on where she will go

We have a world map wall chart:


Full of Post-It arrows with people's bets on.

However if you have not 'placed your bet' then leave a comment below, stating where you think she will go and I will add an arrow for you.

The winner receives the first letter from jess when she gets there.

Early Warning!

Today, Jess ( I can still call her Jess, yet) received a message from her Stake President (or Preaident Flet... as Jess calls him) who confirmed the assignment has been issued and is on its way to her.


We are now expecting this in the mail a week on Monday, I think thats on the outside, so it may be a little sooner, who knows?.


Going on a Mission

We are very pleased to announce that our daughter 'Sister Smart' formerly known as 'Jess' has decided to 'Serve The Lord', by going on a Mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints,

She went to Singapore in October 2012 to Nanny for a a few months for an American couple and must have just been surrounded by the right people at the right time, and when she returned in March 2013 it was with the news that she intended to serve a mission.

In the few short weeks since she returned, she has been very busy preparing her self to serve and has put her papers in, they are currently in Salt Lake City and we should hear something back on about the 6th of June.

It is my intention to bring you all the latest news as it happens and shall be including snippiets from her emails home and any photos that she may send, so please check back here regularly to be kept up to date on her 'shinanigins'.

Or better still:-

Please click the link on the left of this page (Follow by Email) to subscribe to this Blog, that way you will be notified each time I add anything to it.

See you back here soon.
Mike & Jan (Dad & Mum)