Tuesday, September 15, 2009


Hi Family and Friends,

Well another great week and another day closer to seeing some of you. This has been a week of training trek leaders for their next year treks. It has been a lot of fun having people from all over come to learn about how to have a successful trek experience. Each of the missionaries were given a number of responsibilities to help make the seminar work smoothly. I was given responsibly to help with the parking of many cars. It reminded me of the old days on the Las Vegas Strip. I also drove a cart and helped shuttle the stragglers who were having a hard time keeping up with the rest of the group, especially some of the older trek leaders. Sister Leavitt helped with registration. She also worked the days and weeks before preparing all the packet information for the Trek Leaders. This coming week we will have one more seminar and then the rush will be over for another year. We will still have visitors coming, but not in the hundreds like we saw in the summer months. Mostly we will be getting the site ready for winter and saying goodbye to all the missionaries who won't be staying the winter, which is the vast majority of them.

Last week we were privileged to have Peggy's sister Elsie and husband Barney up to visit with us on their way back from Michigan to Las Vegas. It was a great visit and I really think they enjoyed getting to visit the Cove and hear the pioneer stories while learning more about the immigration trail. It was sure fun getting to see them and catch up on what was happening in their lives. We also had the chance to do a little touring, which included a drive up to the old gold mining town of Atlantic City and have a great lunch, then to Lander and the famous Sinks State Park. We are always amazed at the variety of natural attractions that Wyoming has to offer.

This week Mo and Barbara ( Peggy's Brother-in-law, who was married to her sister Carola before she passed away) will be visiting us. They are from Sheridan, Wyo. and are such a fun and talented couple. We are looking forward to spending a couple of days with them. Tuesday night we are having a talent show here at the Cove and maybe we can talk Mo and Barbara into sharing their musical talents with us.

Happy Birthday to Al Muncy who along with Jo are two of our very best friends. My birthday gift to you Al, is 3 strokes next time we play golf. And that's a generous gift considering I haven't played and you are playing almost everyday. But, I love a challenge!

Happy Birthday to Roy Wilson (on Wednesday) who along with his sweet Bonnie are also two of our very best friends. You guys are so generous and we love you dearly.

We received an exciting email the other day from cousin Judy and husband Glade Bailey. They said they are considering serving here at Martin's Cove next year. If they can work it out we would just love it. That would bring the number to at least 3 couples who we know from back home who would be serving with us next year.

You can tell that fall is in the air, not only because the weather is cooling off, but the antelope and deer are beginning to congregate in the Sweet Water Valley. We are starting to see herds of them everywhere.

To our children and grandchildren, we love you very much and look forward to seeing you in about 3 weeks. You are the light of our lives!

May the Lord Bless all of our family and friends until we meet again. Elder Leavitt

Hi everyone -- I don't have much to add, as usual. I'll attach a picture of Elsie and me that was taken in Atlantic City. The other picture is a photo of a poster I saw in Lander. I thought it was so funny and appropriate for Wyoming. We loved having Elsie and Barney and Elsie and I did what we Rowland girls like to do -- we talked and talked -- it was so much fun getting all caught up.

The Trek Seminars were amazing -- so much work to prepare, but so worth it. It was a spiritual feast for 2 days. We had approximate 170 people here and will have that many or more next week.

I'm also in charge of a Talent Show this week on Tuesday night. We will have both performance-type talent and talents that will be displayed. I've been talking like crazy to get the men involved -- for instance, we have a man here who has killed 8 or 9 rattle snakes and has made hat bands and covered his walking stick with rattle snake skins. I think people would love seeing them -- as least the folks here would :)

Also, looking forward to seeing Mo and Barbara tomorrow -- we're a little unsure what time they'll arrive as their internet is not working and our phone rarely works -- typical of living here :)

That's all for this week -- as Charlie said, we'll soon be packing up to move stuff to our apartment. Hard to believe the summer is almost over.

Love, Peggy


Happy Labor Day Family and Friends,

This has been a rough week for me. I had been having what I thought were asthma related wheezing and breathing problems that wouldn't go away. So finally we had to go to a hospital emergency room to have it checked out because we don't have a doctor up here, and Urgent Care doesn't take Medicare. After a thorough examination they told me I had pneumonia. As far as I know this is my first bout with the darn stuff. Well, they gave me some powerful antibiotics and steroids and I'm definitely on the mend. I fortunately lost only one day on post. Maybe I'm pushing it but I can't stand to lay around when there's something to be done. Now on the other hand, when there's nothing to do, then I'm a slug!

We're now preparing for our trek seminars starting this weekend. For these seminars we bring in all the leaders that will be bringing trek groups in next year. It's important for them to learn everything about how to plan, organize and execute a trek. It's unbelievable to see all the work and planning that goes into putting on one of these handcart treks. From the transportation of several hundred trekkers of different ages, food, tents, medical staff, support vehicles, food refrigeration, cooking facilities, and on and on. Here at the Cove all we provide is orientation, handcarts and of course the land, trails and facilities including restrooms. We also provide one couple at each campground as hosts which are there to make sure each group gets to the right camping area and to provide information if needed. During the summer this place looks a little chaotic, but it's actually very well organized. Of course we still man the Visitors Center and the many other related posts for the average visitor who just wants to come and learn about the history of the pioneer trails and the Sun family who built a cattle empire out of this area.

Sister Leavitt and I will be heading home on the 1st of October and returning here for our Polar Bear (Winter) experience on or about the 4th of November. Hopefully we will get to see many of you while we are home. We do have a previously planned week-long vacation in Ohio from October 15th to the 24th where we will visit with Ross and Susan Johnson, two of our good friends who are serving a mission there.

P.S. Today Sister Leavitt tried to poison me by secretly putting dish washing detergent in the bottom of a crock pot that I had decided to scrape out the last bit of previously great tasting juicy casserole , but she was unsuccessful because all I did was pass bubbles. Maybe next time! Until next week may God Bless all of you.

Love Elder Leavitt

Hi Family and Friends -- well, I kept telling you that things would slow down after the trek season, but it sure doesn't feel like it. We seem to be as busy as ever. As Elder Leavitt said, we are now preparing for the Trek Seminars so in the office we are super busy as we have to notify all these trek leaders, and then prepare all the necessary information for them when they get it. We will have approximate 170 people at each seminar. Additionally, we are planning our last Enrichment, which will include the men. We will have a crock-pot soup dinner and a talent show. Should be lots of fun.

The last few weeks we have experienced the most beautiful weather we have ever had since we've been in Wyoming. The temperatures have been in the mid-80's and very little wind. We really appreciate good weather as it's so rare that we have it. Tonight we roasted hot dogs out over a big campfire w/ all the other residents of Missionary Village -- such a good time.

One of my favorite stories this week again testifies to the tender mercies of our Lord. One of our Missionary Couples who was going into Casper decided to stop at Bessemer Bend, which is where the Martin Handcart Company camped after the fateful day they crossed the North Platte River during blizzard conditions. While there, they started chatting with a lady who was sitting on a bench, enjoying the peace and serenity of that site. It turned out it was Jolene Allphin, the lady who has written a huge book containing hundreds of biographies of the Mormon handcart pioneers. We read a pioneer story from that book every morning at our prayer meeting. So our friends and Jolene started talking after they realized who each other was, and our friends told her about a handcart pioneer from whom they descended. It turns out that it was someone that Jolene had been trying to get information on. She had prayed that the Lord would lead her to the information she needed, and there, at Bessemer Bend, it was personally delivered to her by Missionaries from Martin's Cove. These "little" miracles happen here everyday. We know that the spirits of those pioneers want their stories to be told.

Well, as usual, we have an early morning so must get to bed.

Until next week...........

Love, Peggy AKA Sister Leavitt