Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Elder Dahl's birthday!
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Saturday, March 21, 2009


Not exactly what we expected for our "Highly intelligent interpreters", we were told we would have! So much for learning Russian!
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This is a scrumptious shish-kabob {shashlychnaya} And we are having this great lunch with Alexander and Tatiana, and their son, Ivan. They do speak english, but Ivan speaks really good. This is one of the newest restaurants in Krasnodar. Great company and great food. See what senior missionaries get to do. We were so gald that they knew how to order, or we could have ended up with a pig ear or some such thing.
For example, we were at the store and thought we bought a box of brown gravy mix, but when I made some of it up, I knew within minutes we goofed again. The kitchen took on the strong aroma of horseradish and I mean strong.

This sweet lady is Tatiana, down in Sochi. It was women's week and she wanted to perform a special musical number for me since we wouldn't be there for their social. She is a great pianist and she wants to put on a production of some of the stories from the Book of Mormon with some of her musical friends and who are not church members. She is hoping that by them all working together that they might get more interested in the church.

Sister Harrison on left, Tatiana, her daughter, Katia, and son Micha, the 10 yr. old who wants to get baptized now. Elder Gnatyshn and Elder Dahl.
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Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Women's Day

Today was another day for Russians to celebrate for 3 days. women's day, and all females were to get flowers. And yes, they celebrate for 3 days, of drinking and no govt. offices open. So guess we can't pay our power and water bill tomorrow. These 2 branches had a great celebration last night. I wish so much we could have understood it, because whatever Alexander was quoting in a poem and songs made them all laugh. I got alot on my video because Alexander dressed up as a woman and sang a song, made us laugh just watching him. Until today, he was the 2nd counselor in the branch pres. These people know how to have good simple fun. Rocky, and the ladies that exercise with him, put on a great aerobics skit, and thank goodness I only attended it one Saturday!! or I would have been in it too. We can hear our neighbors right now singing and having a good time celebrating! Wish I could peek in on them. And definitely in high spirits! It's funny, really. These are cement walls abt. a foot thick, but might as well be paper, so that has stopped us from ever getting into a disagreement!!!! ha, ha! We know when someone showers, or uses the toilet above us, or walks around in heels. Lee did such a great job his first day of being Branch Pres. in a Russian branch and can't speak the language. Thank goodness for wonderful missionaries and members who can interpret. The Lord and the Holy Ghost are amazing helpers, don't you all think? I was glad that he has a strong heart, because when Pres. Harrison called him to this position last night, he got emotionally sick and we had to leave the party just a little earlier than we intended too. I told Pres. Harrison this morning that he sure knew how to wipe a smile off of someone's face fast! Many came up and said how grateful they were that the Lord sent him to this branch, and that they would do all they could to support him. Because of the time it takes to go 6 miles on tramvi, our day started at 8 a.m and we got back at 5. We would walk the hour and a half if it weren't for being in Sunday clothes and carrying a brief case. Hmm. Since he will have more meetings now than I need to attend with him, I will send him on his way, and then walk on over to meet him when he is done. We don't have a primary yet, only 1 boy, so he asked me to teach him so he wouldn't be turned loose to do nothing. 2 missionaries came in too, and helped me with the language barrier, and we had a great time. He, Micha, Michael in english, is 10 and not been bapized because he didn't want to be. His dad is Alexander the past 2nd counselor. Anyway he wanted me to teach him some english phrases, and we did it with the things he likes to do. And, guess what? He told us that he wanted to get baptized now. He is a cute boy, and really does good learning the language. It was a fun day. He loves Kit Kats, football {soccer}, black, his dog Rex,& fried potatoes. His words for this week. Well, hope you all have a wonderful week, and we send our love and prayers that all will be well with everyone. Love, Mom and Dad, alias, Lee and Corine

March 7

Made banana breads all afternoon, for zone conf. tomorrow and because I had to taste them to make sure they were edible I am sick as a dog. Taste did not mean 10 spoonfuls of dough! I am done baking for a month! ..........
We are back from zone conf. and pray for your dad as Pres. Harrison just called him to be the branch pres. for at least the next 3 months. He will be put in tomorrow and he is almost sick. I know he can do it with the Lord's help and the missionaries'. He will have to have one right by his side every time he goes to the church and does anything for the branch. He is a good organizer and I know he can do it. And it's only for the next 3 mos, they hope. Then one of the other men, hopefully, will have things worked out in his life affairs that he could be the pres. Things are very very different in this part of the world!!! and we still have to travel to the other branches every other weekend. I was so hoping we wouldn't have to continue that for awhile only because of all the trains we have to take, and have to stay over night when we go. But, we are here to serve the Lord, and we will try to do as He asks and do it with a willing heart. We love the Lord and our Savior and can never, ever, repay them for all their tender mercies and blessings they have given us and our family. Have a great day, and we send our love. Love, Mom and Dad

Snail Mail

In case any one wants to write snail mail here is our address and it takes abt. 2 wks. to get to us. Elder and Sister Gregersen
ya. Stavropolskaya 183/2 #25
Krasnodar 350001

Good for regular letters but not packages because the packages usually don't make it unopened.

Renewing Our Visas for the 3rd Time

We just got back from Sochi and what a tireing ride that one ones. Tomorrow we leave at 5 for Rostov, 4 hrs. stay at Pres. Harrisons and leave Tues am for Kiev, to activate our new visas, get back on a plane and go back to Rostov. Stay there and come home on Wed. am. Sat. is Zone Conf. here. Next Wed. we go back to Rostov for a meeting with Pres. Harrison and the other sr.couples,and have a welcome party for the new sr. couple. They are assigned to Volgograd.

We had a very long 40 hr. visa trip. To make it short, we spent 8 hrs. on 2 trains, 10 hrs. on 4 planes, 8 hrs. at Pres. Harrisons in 2 nights time, 14 hrs. waiting and changing at air terminals in 4 airports, but acutally only 2 different airports two times each. When we entered the Kiev, Ukraine airport,we went thru passport check, walked over to the waiting area and exchanged our one passport/visas we checked in with and exchanged them with Elder Ortega, who was with us, with our newest passport/visas, and turned around and got on the same plane we came in on. Now, tell me that that is not confusing? Our next one should be less traveling, as we probably go to Armania and fly right from here. If you have the church news, the new Mission pres. is announce in it for here and his picture. He starts in July. We are doing just great, and hope you all are doing as well, if not better. Love Mom and Dad


We got home here after 2 days of traveling on trains,and dad called Elder Gnatyshn to let them know we made it back o.k. And I had nothing to do with this next part. I heard him tell E.G. that he needed his help because I had fallen at the voxall in this snow storm. Elder G. said "which one and I am out the door"! Dad had to say really fast, NO , I was just joking, remember I never get even I always get ahead? Then Elder G. said, "I just wouldn't think you would joke about something as precious as Sister Gregersen". When he told me that, I just had tears and so did dad. Earlier Elder G. called us and said our landlady called him and she wants our apartment back because we haven't paid the rent yet. That is why the joke. But we haven't paid it because no one could get ahold of her and it was due on the 15th of Feb. So, now I must make Elder G. a batch of choc. chip cookies for tomorrow to make up for the bad joke. I made dad tell him I had absolutley nothing to do with the joke.

February 24th

Our apart. small part of it. We are on 5th floor on the left side, middle section. 5 of these buildings in this complex, abt. 500 flats, yuk. My gift from them onLee's b-day, El. Gnatyshn and May.

our bowling gang

Elder Gnatyshn at the social for servicemen and was in a skit.

Elder Gnatyshn is so proud of his sister, 2 yrs. older than him, and she is a balarina for a prominent group from Ukraine. He showed us a picture of her and is always talking abt. her.
Be good! Stay strong in your testimonies, and you will be blessed beyond measure.
Love, Mom, {grandma}


We went with the missionaries last night to Kareena and her daug. who is abt 22. They are from another country by the Caspian Sea, and came here 5 yrs ago so the daug. could study at the University. She will grad. this summer in Foreign relations lanugage teacher, as she can speak 6 languages and 1 is english.. Anyway it was a great discussion. Kareena is the tramvi conducter we met a month ago and got her # and gave it to the elders. They live in a very nice, neat, clean, decorated so pretty, 1 room apartment. The apartment building is one of those that each family has their room, and on each floor they share a kitchen and a bathroom. Not sure how that works, the bathroom. We saw the kitchen and it is just a big room with a stove/oven and a sink, and a couple of cutting tables. In their aprt. they had a nice frig, just med. size. and an electric hot plate on the floor buy it. They had a computer desk, and a nice t.v. and it really was very comfortable to be in. That is our first experience to be inside that type of apart. living. That room was abt. the size of our living room here but just abt. 2ft narrower. abt. 20 x 14. and that was their bedroom, probably pulled the couch out. They were just so nice and Kareena said she felt so good having us all there, and didn't want us to leave.
We see alot of this in all kinds of weather.
Ludmelia and father who was a communist. She is a new member, he is not.

Maria & Zara
Well, remember Zara, and me telling you that her mom felt good abt being in our church, and happy that Zara is our friend and that she sees a difference in her since she started meeting with us. Well, her mom took a few lessons and was coming along so good, and THEN she talked to the priest at the Provoslovic church they belong too, and now it's over with for her mom, anyway. At one time Zara expressed the desire to go to the U.S. and work, like alot of girls want. And we told her if she could make it there, then we would help her get a job. She told her mom out of pure excitement, and the priest said that we only wanted her to get to the U.S. so we could keep her there and then steal her moms aprtm from her, and that we were a sect and of the devil. Well, he also is going to report us to some higher upity in Moscow. Zara is not happy abt. her mom, and the priest, even tho she said she probably will never join the church. But, we are still her friends no matter what, and that is what she wanted to hear. Don't concern yourself over what the priest said he will do, it is more than likely just a threat so they will not see us. They can't do anything anyway. We are going to the church tonight to a social for service men, which is celebrated on Monday 23rd.past and present servicemen. We are still seeing Maria and fam. , infact, we will get together with them next week for more UNO night. They don't want to have lessons either, but still want to be friends, and of course we are glad abt. that. You can really see how satan works. Those that are ready, he jumps right in and takes over!!!! Someday he will be squished.
Me & Zara

Us with Nina, Pres. Beyletskes mother, total russian-member.

Elder Gnatyshyn on left, Elder May on right-Lee's b-day shirt from them 100% Man!

russian torte, and only half as many layers as normal.
Learning to make Pirozhki ------