Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Saturday, Nov. 16th when Sarah actually arrived home was covered in a post on that day (click here).  The day after Sarah returned to Monrovia she had the opportunity to speak at church and share thoughts and stories from her mission.  A number of special friends and family members attended church and then came over to 336 afterward for lunch and visiting.

The Swansons

The Todd Larsons
The Mike Larsons


The Jon Cornwalls

The Chris Cornwalls (Yep! There is only one kid still at home.)
Mom, Dad and Sarah drove from Dixon to Sacramento early Friday morning.  The "Sacramento" temple is actually in a community on the other side, east of Sacramento.  The setting is one of the most serene and expansive of  any such placement anywhere.  The interior is exceptional, done in silvery cool blues and deep cherry wood. Following a session the group sat and completed Sarah's most recent reading of the Book Of Mormon,  (quite literally in the shadow of Moroni's trump), Moroni Chapter 10, "I would exhort you... that you should remember how merciful the Lord has been unto the children of men... and... lay hold upon every good gift."

Driving west from the temple went right through downtown Sacramento and prompted a stop at the state capitol building.  The evening was spent visiting some fine families in the little town of Esparto, part of the Winter's ward.  (Sorry we didn't take any photo's we were so busy having so much fun.)

The tile reminded us of the fireplace surround at 336.

The night was spent in Dixon, CA.  Altho' Dixon was not one of Sarah's areas it is somewhat in the middle of the three areas she served in the first year of her mission - Woodland, Fairfield and Winters. Thursday morning it was a bit rainy so an indoor activity was a good choice.  Fairfield is home of the Jelly Belly factory.  Their free tour was the only really touristy event of the week.  AND they give free samples throughout the tour and at the end.

Pres. Regan made Jelly Belly's famous, having them in the White House, so in the entry of the factory they have his portrait made of 10,000 jelly bellies.  They have an entire gallery of famous people displayed throughout the tour.

It was a short drive up Interstate 80 to Davis, CA.  Davis is as far east as Sarah's mission goes and is nearly the western suburb of Sacramento.  We had an out-of-this-world lunch at 'Plutos'.  One of the 'gems' of Davis is the arboretum that runs the length of the U.C. Davis campus.  It is divided into distinct "areas", Australian, Redwood Forest, Native Calif., etc...  The trail on each side of the man made waterway is peaceful and beautiful.

The 'gateway' to the arboretum is an archway of shovels, symbols of this agricultural school.


 The afternoon and evening were spent in nearby Winters, Sarah's 3rd area.  Winters is a small Yolo County town of about 6,000.  Visits were made to a few of the choice families in town after a brief walk down the 19th century old town.

The good Bishop of Winters and his family, including his mother and grandparents, who all live on a little farm outside of town provided a hearty family style dinner.  They house the missionaries (including Sarah) in the old 'bunk house'.

The Tippetts