Graduation Parade and Our Surroundings

 Wednesday was 6th grade graduation at the elementary school a block over from us.  We were amazed to see the parade they had to honor that event.  Every palm tree on the avenue to the Temple had a child's picture on it that was graduating.  Here is a picture and a video of the event.

Video of Parade

Our life revolves around BYU Hawaii campus, the Temple, and the Polynesian Cultural Center.  Here are some pictures that show you some of our surroundings:

Heber J. Grant Building (Where we teach)

Temple Beach (Where we swim every morning)

This traffic circle is 1 block from our apartment

We try to go to the temple once a week

Beautiful Stake Center building on BYU Hawaii Campus

The Cannon Center where big events are held

We are attending Seminary Graduation tonight. We have two boys graduating from our ward that we teach in Sunday School
 (Samoa and Langi). It is kind of fun that we are finished with Seminary but we will miss the students.  We get to see them every so often around town and they always have a smile for us.

We love our mission!  It is so fun to work with the young people here.  It is like we have 1000 grandchildren!

Two of our Sunday School boys graduating from Seminary along with their bishop and his wife

Summer Season?

 It turned hot this week.  Suddenly, it is in the high 80's and lower 90's with very high humidity.  We now put a new value on swimming in the ocean, not just for mental and physical health but to cool off.  It makes a difference for several hours after swimming in the ocean.  Even the water is warming up a bit but it was never really cold.  We will stick close to a breeze or our air conditioned office.

Along with the heat, my little container garden has exploded.  My tomatoes are blooming and the summer squash has started setting fruit.  The pepper plants are right behind them.  I love it that I can grow a few things.  

Our Coconut starts

Our little garden

Geckos and lizards roam about freely.  Fortunately, our new neighbors have a dog and she keeps the chickens away so they don't bother our plants.  I planted all of the vegetables from seed.  The coconuts are spouted from their husk!  Here is one of our friends on

our front steps.

There is beauty all around us.

Flowers and fruits from around our apartment.

Our lessons went well this week.  We taught both Wednesday and Thursday night lessons.  We love teaching our classes.  We have one of them (Nephi) coming over tonight (Sunday) to cook Filipino food for us tonight along with 5 of his roommates. 

I had a couple of hours yesterday to try my hand at painting an ocean wave.  Here is the first attempt.  I will work on it and see if I can repeat it.

We are Back in Business!

 We got to teach our first Institute lesson of the Spring term this week.  It was so good to have those gospel discussions back after our 3-week break.  We also got to teach Thursday night's lesson because Brother Meyers was sick.  The students are so fun to be around and so full of life.  It is exciting to be at this crossroad of their life.  Most of them are from other places (the Pacific Islands, China, Mongolia, India, Japan, Cambodia, Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, Australia, New Zealand and even the United States.  They are diligently studying, working, and socializing.  They believe that what they are doing here will better their lives.  

We traveled to Honolulu twice this week.  On Thursday, we had to do a Costco run to get some treats for Seminary.  While there, we stopped by the Honolulu Institute office and I got a few answers on how to close out the year for Seminary on the Church's web-based grading system. 

As we were coming home, we witnessed this spectacular rainbow.  This is my pot of gold at the end of the rainbow (Janice, not the car).  

Friday, we got to attend the beautiful temple here.  It is particularly breathtaking to step outside after you are done.  The view is stunning.  You can see all the way to the beach, the ocean, and off the edge of the earth.  It is like you get a glance of eternity.

That night we took tickets for one of the Luau's.  We worked with a new senior couple from Canada.  They are a little older than us and have been married for just 2 years.  We are amazed at the level of faith that some of our colleagues have.  We do it because it is just a lot of fun! 

Saturday morning we woke up with our air conditioner not working.  This was the third air conditioner since we got here from the mission.  We decided that we needed something a little more reliable so we went into town and bought one of our own (a different brand) from Sam's Club.  It works really well and we think this will last us the rest of our mission.

Welcome to May!

 We made it through another week wondering where the time disappeared to after it was over.  We kept very busy with recruitment activities that included attending a lot of activities and spreading the word about Institute.  We start up this next week and we are excited to start teaching again.  We held our last session of the adaptive needs seminary class.  We must say that we have loved working with that group of young people.  They are so loving and accepting of each other.  We have made instant friends with all of them.

We snuck over to the world fire knife junior competition at the PCC

and enjoyed the young people doing a spectacular job.  I have inserted a video of a young lady that was competing.  

We got the sweetest call from one of our former institute students that decided to change his life while he was here in Hawaii.  He has moved back to Texas to work with his Bishop there to submit his mission papers.  After chatting for a bit on the phone, he tenderly told us that he loved us and thanked us for being here while he got on the right track.  Truth be told, his returned sister missionary girlfriend probably had a lot more to do with it than we did but we appreciate the courage and repentant attitude of this good young man.  

We have been surrounded by people who have contracted Covid.  They have been sick and we have given them a test kit and guess what?  It turned up positive.  Janice and I want to get our boosters as soon as possible.

Janice talked to all of her children on the phone today or video chatted with them.  They are so kind in remembering her and showing their appreciation through word and deed.  What a gift from heaven she has been for me as she has given me 6 wonderful children, been my councilor and partner for 43 years, and works herself to death to serve her family.  We are blessed to have her.  Here she is with her Relief Society Sisters this morning in Church.

We keep seeing spectacular sunsets here!

A Story About Janice


We are saying goodbye to a senior missionary couple serving with us and soon living in Pleasant Grove Utah.  They both grew up and met here in Hawaii.  In fact, Elder Scoville enrolled at the university here in Laie before he was a member of The Church.  His now wife caught his eye as he was in the registration office.  Through her and other’s influence, he joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.  As soon as he qualified himself, he was called on a full-time mission in the Eastern United States.  All of this happened without his parents knowing what had become of him.  At the time, they lived in Honolulu.  His enterprising father called up the college in Laie, inquired his whereabouts, phoned his mission president and secured permission to visit his son.  Elder Scoville was shocked and surprised when his father appeared on his doorstep.  His father stayed for several days, went tracking with them, and found out that his son was becoming a better man.  From that time on, he and his wife financially supported their son on his mission.  They never did join the Church, but they knew that since joining the Church, it had done something profound for their son.  Until that time, Elder Scoville had been supported by members of his local stake.  Now turn the wheels of time ahead about 15 years as Elder Scoville had married his college sweetheart and settled in Pleasant Grove, Utah.  Before Janice and I had met and gotten together, Janice had been called on a mission to Norway and had secured a promise from her biological father that he would support her on her mission.  Although he had good intentions, the problems that took his wife and children away from him years before were distracting - enough so that he failed in his verbal agreement and Janice was left without support.  She wrote the family she had been staying with in Pleasant Grove asking for help.  As a member of the Pleasant Grove Stake, Elder Scoville quickly volunteered to support this unknown missionary in Norway because his mission had made such a profound difference in his life.  Again, fast forward the wheels of time to today.  Janice and I were eating dinner with the Scoville’s when they related the story of his conversion and serving a mission.  Janice then shared her story and the kind people in the Pleasant Grove Stake that helped keep her on her mission.  Elder Scoville’s eyes misted up and he confessed that he remembered that event and in helping keep Janice on her mission in Norway.  So, after 44 years, a kind and giving man and woman got to meet the “investment” they made so many years ago.  The result is a faithful, hard-working mother of 6 who has passed on a legacy of hard work, love, loyalty, high moral character, and devotion.  Now, with 22 other persons in our family their investment was well worth it!  How rewarding it was for us to meet the couple that “paid it forward” and made a difference in our lives.

Our Grandsons are Good Men!

 We had a great time with our three grandsons, Henry, Noah, and Isaac.  What a thrill it was for us to share a few days of our mission with them.  We snorkeled at Pupukea, swam in the waterfall at Waiamea, and did boogie boards at Laie Beach.  We saw the night show at the Polynesian Visitor's Center, toured the Island villages, took a canoe trip on an outrigger, and ate some of the best food of our lives at the Gateway Buffet.  We prayed with them, visited with them, and just before they left, Isaac gave Janice a blessing for her knees that was very touching.  She is scheduled now for knee surgery on June 29th.  All in all, we had the time of our lives with these three grandchildren knowing that we would not see Isaac for at least 2 years while he is on his mission.  Noah and Henry are growing up so fast!

We hosted the activity portion of Institute on Wednesday and Thursday nights and got to meet some new students.  We had fun with them playing Uno and giving them ice cream.

We attended a devotional at the PCC on Saturday Morning at the Samoan village.  We met our Bishop's son from Samoa (Bishop Fapuleai) and had a great visit with him.  We took tickets for one of the Luaus later that night, prepared for our Sunday School class, and fell exhausted into our beds.  It certainly makes time go fast here.

We love our mission!  We love our assignments working with the wonderful people here.  We love their beauty and strong faith.  We appreciate that we can make a difference in the lives of the young people here.  We thank God every day that we are here but miss our family and long to hold them in our arms.  Thank goodness for video chats, telephones, and email.  It makes it somewhat tolerable while we are away from our loved ones.  

Buffet Extraordinaire!

Grandma must be getting shorter!

Siva at Samoan Devotional