Tuesday, December 29, 2009
I was able to attend the reunion this past summer and what a joy it was to see so many of the sisters I served with and to get a hug from the Cleggs.
Funny coincidence, my husband, Eric Blaser, lived in the same cul-de-sac as the Cleggs when he was growing up and Presidente was his scout master and their son Josh was his best friend.
We've been living in the Seattle area for almost 9 years, married for almost 11. We have 4 children: Ridge, age 9; Cannon, age 6; Laine, age 4; and Sommer, age 2. For my 30th birthday Eric surprised me with a trip to Italy. Our favorite part of our trip was staying with Massimo and Eva Meduri in their lovely home in Sicily. Massimo and I served in the same Milano area and I have fond memories of testing my Italian skills while conversing with him when we were supposed to be doing mostra. Eric became a convert to adoring Italy as much as I do and we are looking forward to going back again.
Other memories? Eating Anziano Rippa's bread pudding after an optimistic district meeting run by Anziano Killian in Alessandria; mostra with Sorella Russell in Alessandria -- once we were in front of a pastry shop and at the end of the day a lady came out of the shop and handed me a package of treats. I told her I had something for her too and I know she was expecting me to pull a Book of Mormon from my backpack but I actually had brownies wrapped up for the famiglia Costalioglia(?) that I handed her and we took the professionally made treats to that wonderful family instead. Our service in Torino, Sorella Baily and I got to help the nuns, amazing examples of Christ-like service, who worked with disabled women. Riding bikes in the rain through Monza with Sorella Davis; getting haircuts (that were way too short) from that sweet sister who just wanted to serve the missionaries. Taking long lunches in Alessandria (on accident) with Sorella Landro -- she made the best soup! And appreciating the cute southern Italian guy who came to play soccer, what was his name? Feeling helpless as Sorella Shaw navigated me through Milano for the first time. She was so capable with that map! District meeting with Anziano Clonts -- enough said. Parco with Sorella Gilette, she helped me speak up, and touring the Duomo together (with Anziani Buck and Meduri so I guess it was a double date). PDays in Milano at the park with lots of missionaries. Meeting Dario and Al with Sorella Stephanie Smith; actually going into one of the shops on Via Montenapoleone with her -- Ferragamo.
It's all about the people I served with. I feel like Heavenly Father gave me a gift by sending me to Italy where I got to meet such wonderful people who have enriched my life in so many ways. Vi voglio un sacco di bene!