Monday, April 7, 2008

Our English Family is Wonderful!

We are doing well here, however the weather is a bit mixed up. We had snow on General Conference Sunday and Easter. I'm not sure what happened here at Christmas time because we weren't here, but I think winter has come in the middle of April. It is cold today, but not snowing so that is good. WE enjoyed General Conference. We spent 14 hours at the Stake Center yesterday. We went at 10 in the morning and got back about midnight. It was a long day, but we enjoyed it a lot. This has been a special week. We spent Wednesday through Saturday visiting my cousins in Lechlade on Thames and Herefordshire. We had a wonderful time. Their hospitality was amazing. It is so interesting because these are cousins that I basically have known only through letters and a few short visits through the years, but it is like we are kindred spirits having always known them. We just immediately have
connected with them. It has been wonderful. I have four first cousins over here. Donald and Judy are my first cousins that we visited this weekend. Their mother was my mom's sister. Judy has never married, but Donald is married and has four children who are now all married except his daughter Hannah. We had a big family dinner with them on Saturday. Almost everyone was there. At the meal, Donald made a little speech. In it he said how much they all loved having their American cousins here and how we had become friends so quickly. I then tried to tell them how much we loved seeing them all and how comfortable we were already with them. I am so sure that my mom is so happy about the opportunity we have to be here and renew old ties with this part of my family. Of course, I had to weep just a little. Some of them were crying, too, so at least I didn't cry alone. We even had a good discussion about life after death and our beliefs with Judy.
We also talked about the purpose of the temples and family history work that seal families together for eternity. It was a great time. Judy is planning to meet me at the Family History Library at Hyde Park in a couple of weeks so that we can do some geneology. That will be exciting, too. I am sending a picture of my cousin Donald's home in Herefordshire, near Wales and a picture of our flat covered in snow from yesterday.