Monday, January 18, 2010


Hi Family and Friends,

This week I take back what I said about Global Warming. All week we have experienced balmy daytime temps mostly in the low 40's. Who knows about next week? This week I experienced a little bout with bronchitis due to helping the other missionaries who have been working on the remodel. They were installing insulation, and in such an enclosed area with all the fiberglass and dust I guess my tender little lungs rebelled. But as soon as I got back out into the clear Wyoming air and took a few drugs I was back in business. I found that grading roads and making gravel suits my lungs much better.
I had another interesting experience, this week, while grading the road out to the gravel pit. The road runs past a fenced-in hay stack which the ranch uses to supplement the cattle's feed. While I was grading along, oblivious to anything around me, (probably singing to myself) the ranch manager pulled along side me and motioned for me to stop. He pointed out the 800 head of cattle which had lined up along the fence by the entrance road thinking that I was getting hay for them. He pointed out that he had been trying to graze off the feed in that area and I was hindering the process by drawing all their attention to me. He asked me to quit until tomorrow when he would move the cattle into the field where I was working. The next day when I went out to finish grading the road I was, with in a few minutes, surrounded by all 800 head. They again, thought I was there to feed them. I was determined to finish my grading job, so I just put the motor grader in first gear and kept going. It was only as I was about bump them with the graders big front tires, would the cattle then part like a sea of horns and fur. They kept me totally surrounded until I was completely finished. It turned into a tough job considering I couldn't see the road ahead of me, which is something you really need to be able to do with a grader. I think I made the road a little wider than it needed to be! Oh well, that's life in Wyoming, the cowboy state.
This mission is not all work of course, we have had some great spiritual experiences, i.e.; our church service, our family home evenings, and our scripture studies. I have been studying in the Book of Mormon and I have truly come to believe that this Book along with the Bible is the greatest witness of God and Jesus Christ I have ever read. It is the keystone of our religion and my faith hangs on the teachings contained in that book. We believe it was translated from ancient records by divine inspiration. I'm not saying this to try to convert anyone, but rather invite all of our family and friends, who have not had the opportunity to read it, to to take the opportunity do so. We think it will give you a better understanding of who we are, and why we are enthusiastically willing to sacrifice 18 months out of our daily lives (especially our retirement years) for our belief. The Book of Mormon makes for very interesting reading and is highly recommended by this old cow-bumper. We love you all and pray for your welfare daily and ask for your prayers for us. It's my belief that the Lord usually answers an individuals prayers through another person.

Elder Leavitt

Hi everyone -- in reading Elder Leavitt's report, I was wishing he had had a camera when he was grading the road with all the cows surrounding him. That would have been quite a picture !
As mentioned, our days become pretty routine, so when another couple asked us to go to Thermopolis with them (because of a change in the schedule, we got the same day off -- that rarely happens), we jumped at the chance. When Sister Stastny asked me about going, I asked her why they were going there and she said " we just want to point our car in a different direction"! I laughed my head off as it is so true. Even our days off get to be routine -- jump in the car, drive to Casper and run errands. Anyway, I had been to "Thermop" -- as the locals call it-- years ago when my younger sister lived there, but I didn't remember anything about it. Just south of Thermop is a gorgeous canyon one drives through to get to town -- it is described as one of the prettiest drives in Wyoming and it just might be. It was spectacular! Thermop is a small town of 6000 and its main claim to fame is their hot springs. However, we chose to go to a dinosaur museum that was built in the early 90's. I was really impressed with it -- for a small town they had a large display and it was very well done. I'm attaching a picture I took in the Wind River Canyon and one of Charlie in the dinosaur museum.
Still busy booking treks -- the computer that crashed is up and running again, so we're back on track.
As Elder Leavitt states, our testimonies continue to grow and strengthen -- every day is a blessing. We love the people we are serving with and we are grateful for the spiritual experiences that we have on a daily basis. As much as we miss our family and friends, I know we will miss being here when it's time to go home. I try not to take any day for granted. When I look out my window and see Devil's Gate (a famous landmark along the Immigration Trail) I try to remind myself to enjoy it as next year at this time, I'll be doing something far different.
Well, enough -- we love all of you and thank you for the emails that keep us connected with the outside world.

Sister Leavitt aka Peggy

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