...I really don't know why I spent ~350 words describing me tripping.
Me neither :-) -- except that some immediate family members would've appreciated the connection to an earlier incident. Anyway, he bruised his knee good falling down some concrete stairs.
The next day a part-member family took him and his companion to an enjoyable seafood restaurant for lunch.
Next, Christmassing! (Another day they returned to distribute the gifts.):
we went with the rest of our district to this other church that was doing a Christmas toy giveaway to families and children in need. We were mainly wrapping presents, which I was very happy with - last Christmas, I only wrapped one present, and that was with sticky notes. So it was good to get my hands on some wrapping paper and wrap presents. The lady in charge there commented on how good my wrapping skills were.
Thursday evening, I made cookie dough, because I said I would bake cookies for District Council on Friday. As I was counting down the days until Thursday, I was thinking of how I could relate making cookies to the Gospel. I wrote a fable / parable (which do you think is the best word describing this?) about it:
Oatmeal is lonely. He kind of just sits there. He's plain, nothing much to look at, taste is kind of meh.
Then Oatmeal's good friend, Cinnamon comes along. Cinnamon, like Oatmeal, is lonely. He realized that by himself, he can't amount to much. So he went over to talk to Oatmeal.
Cinnamon brought up the idea that they could do something together, perhaps create something that neither one of them could create on their own! They talked and talked, and eventually came up with a plan. They decided to gather together some of their friends and see what they could accomplish together! They each went out to grab their friends, Flour, Sugar, Butter, Baking Soda, Salt, among others.
Together, they discussed their plan to work together to create something that none of them could do by themselves, and everyone agreed to help.
Working together, these friends created something that was much better than any of them by themselves - cookie dough! They were satisfied with what they achieved, and how close they had grown to each other during the process, believing they could never be separated.
Then came along Heat. These friends, now cookie dough, were subject to the wrath of Heat. They couldn't figure out why they were having to go through this! It was very unpleasant - they were happy with being cookie dough! These friends grew kind of angry with what they were being put through.
As Heat went away, these friends had changed. They realized that because of Heat, they had become something even better than cookie dough. They were now cookies. Because these friends had stayed with each other and helped each other throughout the baking process, they had become something entirely different, something much better, never to go back to their old selves again.
In this story, we are like Oatmeal. We do a little bit by ourselves, but can't do all that much. But if we work with others people, and pool our talents and skills together, we can accomplish much more.
Then comes life. Life is often unpleasant; it contains many trials. But if we rely on each other, strengthen and help each other, and have faith in the Savior through these challenging times, we can grow to be someone we never thought we could be.
Friday, I baked the cookies. I made Oatmeal Chocolate Chip and Chocolate Chip. Because of my limited choice of pans, I made the Chocolate Chip cookies into bars instead of regular cookies. While they turned out okay, they would have turned out better if I had followed my own judgement instead of following the recipe (why would you use a higher temperature for a 9x13 pan than for cookies? Obviously the edges are going to crisp, and the middle won't be done all the way).
They gave a chapel tour and the tourist was going to attend church Sunday, but got sick.
He noted the receipt of the Christmas package that we sent him; it's sitting underneath the Christmas tree that they drew on their whiteboard.
Lastly, a maintenance note:
My apartment in Cleveland had ants. My apartment in Broadway had ants and mold. My apartment here just has mold. I've been working on scrubbing the mold off of the vents