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  • Writer's pictureVivian Foley

Welcome to 2024!

Every year it happens and we often say the same thing: "How did a year go by so fast?!" 2023 is a year that brought so many changes to our liives: retirement, my Dad passing away, making our home a short-term rental, and then of course the big one that brings you all to read this blog...serving a mission in Singapore.

I have started working with missionaries from four of the missions I cover and I love it! One of my favorite parts in counseling is hearing stories. The missionaries I work with have often lived in numerous different parts of the world, and all of them speak or are learning a second (or even third) language. They have amazing stories of strength and overcoming difficult things, and we all share a common story of belief in Jesus Christ. Many of them are so excited to try the tools and coping skills we work on together, and I love bringing spirituality into my work.

We are starting to feel more confident about being able to feed ourselves. We wandered into a wet market (think farmer's market meets swap meet) to try it out, and we found some wonderful fresh produce for better-than-supermarket prices. We also found other items for lower prices in the market place surrounding it. We purchased some things that very night to try them out and made mashed potatoes, corn on the cob and watermelon to go with our pork chops. I'm still a little nervous about purchasing fresh meat at the market but want to try it out as well. Another day I made some banana chocolate chip scones and was pleased with how they turned out in our counter top oven.

We are having mini adventures to break up our long days of work. We briefly visited the Gardens by the Bay, Singapore Botanic Gardens, and Woodlands Waterfront Park (where we saw our first wild monkeys). Today for New Year's Day we hiked to Mount Faber, one of the highest peaks in Singapore, via the Henderson Waves. We also discovered a park that is close by our home and have been there a couple of times to get in some needed walking. In addition we have sometimes been taking buses instead of trains just to get different views of the city. In Singapore they have an amazing transit system including many double decker buses. We love to sit on the top deck of the double decker to get a great view of our surroundings.

Last Saturday night we had a mission wide devotional. We talked about regrets and resolutions after reviewing this classic talk by Elder Uchtdorf. We were invited to ponder this past year and write down three regrets and three resolutions. This was a great exercise for Sean and I to do together and we decided to be each others' accountability partners as we work on making good changes in our lives. A new year is always a great opportunity to take a close look at ourselves and work to make changes in our lives. What will you do this year to grow?

Finally, I am so grateful for modern technology that allows us to connect. We have loved seeing our families over the holidays, and even enjoyed a video tour of our daughter Emily's new home - we are so excited for her to be a new home owner! We really miss seeing you so feel free to comment and let us know how you are doing.

Great Gifts!

  • Cards from our ward Christmas party

  • Epic pastries from some of our children via Cedric Grolet Singapore

  • Beautiful pictures from Ryan and Hannah (PC: Lori Garcia)

Great Sights

  • Exploring the Singapore Botanic Gardens

  • Beautiful flowers

  • Beautiful flowers

  • Beautiful flowers

  • Beautiful tree

  • Beautiful (if a bit overwhelming) city

  • Delicious food - this is the national dish of Malaysia

Great People

  • Mission-wide devotional via Zoom

  • Elder's Quorum Bowling. I am getting to bowl my first frame on the way to.........

  • (Not pictured) We also participated in our first baptism. She is a young woman who had been working toward baptism both in the Phillipines and Singapore for a long time. It was a truly beautiful experience.

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1 Comment

Jan 09

So fun to get those chances to explore the city. It looks beautiful there! I’m sure it’s all a little overwhelming at first!

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