Thursday, July 24, 2008


 Memorizing the baptismal prayer in Russian before he baptized  Elia

Thanksgiving Day with our missionaries

  Always taking advantage of teaching moments--even if it involves the ingredients of a Sweet Salty Nut bar

 Touring Tolstoy's Estate with Pres. & Sister Gibbons during our mission tour                                                       

 Unconditional love--sharing enchiladas with our AP's

 Sister Balatskaya (from Kazaksthan) gave him a traditional hat.  Our missionaries honor, respect, and love him.  He is an amazing Mission President                                                                                             

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO your PaPa and Dad--my boyfriend, burning hunk of love, my missionary companion(I never have to worry about getting transferred either--woohoo) and eternal companion--and to THE PRESIDENT.  Phildog is a man who wears many different hats with many different responsibilities and does an amazing job at all of them because when it boils down to it---being a worthy priesthood holder who magnifies his callings--husband, father, and PaPa included--is what it is all about. In my opinion he is the perfect example of serving the Lord perfectly.  Never a word of murmuring, or complaint no matter how much is required of him.  He is always seeking the Spirit to figure out how he can serve the best according to the will of the Lord.  My love, appreciation and admiration for my sweetheart grows each day.  I am the Lucky Ducky to have him for eternity.  I love you President Collins with all my heart!  Happy Birthday.  
Hugs & Kisses

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


We sure were excited to get our first grandson nine years ago today.  For awhile we thought he was going to be the ONLY grandson.  He has always been a good sport about being surrounded by girl cousins.  Bryce is very smart--a great reader and is learning to speak Spanish.  He is a good athlete--soccer, wrestling (even got to go to a Rulon Gardner camp).  He plays a mean game of chess (his PaPa looks scared don't you think)?  He follows in his Dad's footsteps with the marvelous talent of being able to touch his nose with his tongue.  He will be our first missionary in our family 10 years from now (doesn't he look great in that missionary tag)?  He is a best big brother.  He is all around adorable.  Happy Birthday Bryce.  Hope it is the best birthday yet.  We love you tons!  oxoxoxo  MeMa & PaPa

Monday, July 21, 2008

Ryazan Sunday

Elders:  Despain, Woodland, Gunther, and Wagner
               The Hadleys

I hope your new week is starting off better than mine did this morning.  Unlike you kids, I faithfully wear my retainers.  I took them out this morning and set them on the bathroom sink.  I washed my hands with soap and dried them.  I saw the towel fling one of my retainers and I looked and looked and couldn't find it.  Then I looked in the toilet.  There it was floating on top of the water.  Disgusting huh?  Needless to say--they both have been soaking in clorox all day.  After I took care of that I went into the computer and found pictures of Lily's yo-gabba-gabba shoot,  Jane's 1st birthday at the beach on Brooke's blog, and a bunch of great pictures at the beach on Shelly's blog.  I can't tell you how many times I have gone to the blogs of all the beach pictures and enlarged each one and carefully focus on each one of you. I can't quit staring at them. I love seeing all of my sweet kids and kiddies.  Now that's the way to start out the day.  Thanks Girlios for all the pictures.  More Please.

Yesterday Dad and I drove to Ryazan for our meetings.  Our AP's are both in Madrid getting new visas, so we went alone.  I snapped some pictures of what I thought was pretty interesting on the way home.  We call the trip to Ryazan the pots & gnomes trip.  For quite a stretch there are tons of pots and gnomes and other weird creatures lined up along the road for sale. I didn't think a picture of the pornagraphic towels that are also everywhere you look along the road for sale would be appropriate. What's up with that?  I added this old church to my Russian Churches file.  Can you see the weeds growing out of the bricks on the tower?  I thought these sunflowers with the blue picket fence and the orange window was a cool shot.  Of course my favorite is the one of our Ryazan missionaries.  Elder & Sister Hadley's last Sunday on their mission.  They are coming over for dinner tonight and then they leave for their home in UT.  They have been wonderful to hold weekly FHE, District meetings and any teaching opportunities they can in their apartment.  They have also ran the English Club.  No one coming to take their place.  What are we going to do without them?   They are great missionaries and humble, faithful people.  We will miss them. 

Sunday, July 13, 2008


Jane is ONE today and it seems so weird to me that I haven't even met her.  BUT that will change come August 5th.  Hip Hip Hooray!  Even though we haven't gotten to hug and kiss on her yet, we can feel the love she has brought into our whole family.  You will notice in the second picture the little bubbles around her mouth--thus the name Bubbles.  She is adorable and we are so glad that Heavenly Father sent her to our family.  Because you are all at the beach on Jane's birthday she can get hugs and kisses from everyone.  Will each of you please give her hugs & kisses from me too? Wow--only a Lucky Ducky gets that many hugs & kisses on her birthday.  We love you Jane and we are counting the days until you get to Moscow.  Happy Birthday! 
MeMa & PaPa    

Monday, July 7, 2008


After reading all of the 4th of July posts, I remembered that I never did a post on the Russian Victory Day Celebration.  Every May 9th they celebrate their victorious winning of WW2.  All of the war veterans bring out their uniforms and medals and wear them for weeks before and after.  Some of them all year long.  They are so proud of them.  This cute little couple are in our Kaluga Branch.  He use to be the branch president until about  1 1/2 yrs. ago.  He is 86 years old and can hardly hear or see, but is so faithful and comes every week.  I couldn't resist taking a picture of him at church with all of his medals with his sweetheart wife.  This year we went downtown and watched the parade.  It was pretty impressive.  There were tons of people, but with both sides of the streets lined with shoulder to shoulder security guards it was peaceful.  This year is the first time for a lot of years that they had the tanks, missles, and all kinds of war machines parade across Red Square.  Then they had a parade of airplanes, jets and helicopters fly right over the top of us and over Red Square.  It was quite the "cultural experience.