Sweden Here I Come!

Sweden Here I Come!

Saturday, May 31, 2014

"Leave Them Wanting"

     My apologies to all of the faithful followers of Elder Milne's blog.  This is definitely the latest I have been on his weekly post.  But in an attempt to save face I offer the following - "leave them wanting".  These are the words my very own mission president, President Duane Beazer, would often speak.  He would tell his missionaries that a teaching appointment should only be one hour long.  This was how we showed respect to our investigators by respecting their time.  We would often say, "but what if we are right in the middle of a very powerful discussion?"  He would reply, "Leave them wanting, that way you will insure a return appointment".  Of course, this was not my intent with being so late to post this week, but I thought it would be a fun excuse!

     Monday came and as usual I was excited to read what Aldste Milne had to share with us this week.  Blaine was home this morning because of the Memorial Day holiday.  We read Dallin's email together and rejoiced in his goodness and the blessings that have come because of his service.  Blaine then wrote Dallin an email.  This was cause for some trepidation and distraction because of what happened just before he sent it (you will read about it in his email).  By the time we resolved that issue it was time to get ready to travel to Beaver, Minersville, and Cedar City to spend the holiday with our family.  We had an amazing day.  First, we stopped at the Washington City Cemetery to place flowers on Blaine's parents graves.  We love and miss them.  Many of Blaine's other relatives are buried there as well.  Then we headed north.  As we traveled up the road Blaine had Carter choose and dedicate a song to each loved one we have lost.  We all shed tears as we listened to the songs and reminisced about our loved ones on the other side of the veil.  We first stopped in Beaver to visit the cemetery there.  This is where my father is buried along with his parents, brother, his grandparents, great grandparents and other relatives.  We placed flowers on the graves and marveled at the beautiful cemetery.  The Beaver Cemetery is always draped in beautiful flags memorializing those who have served our country.  We then drove to Minersville to visit my mom and her husband Raymond.  We first stopped at the Minersville Cemetery where my dear grandparents and other relatives are buried.  I have so many fond memories of the Minersville Cemetery and Memorial Day.  As a child I would always spend the weekend with my grandparents.  Very early in the morning on Memorial Day we would wake up, eat a delicious breakfast, cut fresh flowers from my grandmother's rose, peony, and snowball bushes and take them over to the cemetery to place on the graves.  My sister Shelly and my cousin Cynthia would always be with me.  We liked to go around and find graves that didn't have any flowers on it and place on it a single flower we had actually taken from other well adorned graves.  Right or wrong we felt we were rendering an important service.  We would then go back to grandma's house to be joined by her brothers and sisters and anyone else who stopped by for a lunch of sloppy joes, homemade potato salad, chips and fruit, and always congo bars for dessert.  The kids would then go out and pick sour sockets off grandma's bush and put salt on them, and then distribute them to our aunts and uncles.  We loved sour sockets!  My mom had some this Memorial Day for us.  I don't remember them being this sour.  My kids hated them! Wimps!  Nanette and her family later joined us and we all enjoyed a lunch of sloppy joes and potato salad.

It was then off to Cedar City to spend the evening with Blaine's sister Kim (Aunt Kim).  We love their family and always enjoy spending time with them.  Kim asked Blaine if he would give a blessing to her son Keaton.  Keaton is an awesome kid.  He is so kind hearted and good natured!  Keaton is also an amazing baseball player.  He will be a senior in high school this year and has already had scholarship offers for baseball.  He has committed to BYU.  Keaton lost his dad to cancer when he was just a very young boy.  The last words he said to his father were "I'll see ya in Heaven dad!"  Blaine baptized Keaton when he turned 8 years old and was honored when Kim asked him to give Keaton a father's blessing.  It was a beautiful blessing.  We were all touched by the Spirit.  In the blessing Keaton's father Bill was mentioned several times.  We all love Bill and miss him.  Keaton is a lot like his dad in nature.  We left Aunt Kim's with our hearts full of love and appreciation for our family.  She also ordered us pizzas from the Pizza Factory - our favorite!  Keaton's father Bill started the Pizza Factory in Cedar City 40 years ago (correct me if I'm wrong Aunt Kim!). 

By the time we returned home that night it was almost 11:00 pm.  I had to get right to bed to get some sleep because the next morning Carter and I were leaving for youth conference and I still hadn't packed.  Youth Conference was amazing.  We spent three days up above Duck Creek on Cedar Mountain.  We camped in tents but thankfully had an indoor kitchen, bathrooms, and even showers.  We went on several hikes, explored some amazing caves, did archery, played fugitive, went horseback riding, had some wonderful and uplifting firesides, and my favorite, a testimony meeting.  I was so impressed by the testimonies of our youth.  Carter bore a very powerful and spirit-filled testimony of the power of the atonement and that what really makes a girl attractive is her testimony.  We returned home on Thursday evening and I had to go straight into my transcribing.  I met with Dr. White on Friday morning and we spent five hours on our book.  It is really coming together, and I am so excited about it.  We interviewed some amazing women.  I returned home to St. George and Blaine took me up to Pine Valley to eat at the Brandin' Iron steakhouse.  It was delicious and the drive was beautiful.  I love Blaine!  He is a wonderful husband and father.  I was too tired to write last night because I had been up since 5:00 am, so here I am finally on a Saturday morning posting on Elder Milne's blog.  My house is a mess, my life a little disheaveled, but this has been an incredible week.  I am so blessed!

Here is the letter Blaine sent this week to Elder Milne:

Dear Elder Milne,

I can't believe what just happened. I had the most beautiful letter written to you and was just closing it when my thumbs hit the computer pad just right and your letter was gone. It was a masterpiece. I have tried to begin rewriting it but the electricity I had in the original is now counterfeit. I therefore will not try to rewrite but ask the Lord to send it unto your spirit.

It reminds me of the Lost Manuscript in the early days of the church. Maybe it was the Lord protecting you and me because the Lord knew it would fall into evil hands. Or my letter might have influenced someone in the wrong way. Therefore in the Lord's wisdom He allowed it to be lost. I had written the most uplifting and somber letter to you expressing my Love for you and who you are.  (Blaine shared this experience with Aunt Kim and she said maybe it would have made Dallin extra sad and homesick...  I agree, it was an amazing letter that brought me to tears.  Blaine loves Dallin so much and is so very proud of him)

Here is some of the letter to you.
I need you to know your life is a miracle. Your life was one that had the strength to bring change into mine. I think back to those days and become astonished at the memories.
You were my best friend at that time. We would take you around Cedar City showing you off. I was so proud of my little guy.

And now you send a scripture to us:

Alma 26:27
Now when our hearts were depressed, and we were about to turn back, behold, the Lord comforted us, and said: Go amongst thy brethren, the Lamanites, and bear with patience thine afflictions, and I will give unto you success.
Now that little guy has gained this testimony to help us along our way. I say thank you to you this day for your life that has influenced mine is such a spectacular way.
Please take care of yourself Dallin. Watch out at all times for your safety and well-being. Satan would love to have you and wreck the work you have helped begin.

Your mother's scripture today

Deuteronomy 6:7
And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thy liest down, and when thou risest up.
You are definitely as Moses of old. Take care old buddy.

Here is my letter to Dallin this week:

Deuteronomy 6:5-7
5. And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.
6. And these words which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart:
7. And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.

Dear Aldste Milne,

So much love in my heart for you today Dallin. I am so proud of you. I know mission life is difficult, and I admire your willingness to diligently serve the Lord regardless of the circumstances. I cannot even imagine the struggles you have each day or the obstacles you have to overcome. Keep your chin up, stay steadfast, and stay prayerful. The Lord is ever mindful of you, of your wants, and your needs. He knows your heart! And He will bless you with your righteous desires. My prayers are continually with you and those you serve and teach. With the Lord all things are possible.

The scriptures I shared this week are from our Sunday School lesson today. Deuteronomy as you know is the last book written by Moses in the Old Testament. In Deuteronomy Moses takes the opportunity to share his final teachings and testimony with those he loves. He shares those things that he feels will be of the most worth to them. Our Sunday school teach Brother Wilkey had each of us take two minutes and make a list of the things we would share with our loved ones as our final words in mortality. I was amazed at how quickly the words flowed for me. I love my family so very much, and the list I made is essentially my testimony of what I believe to be true and the most beneficial. Brother Wilkey singled me out and had me share my list. I thought I would share it with you. Here it is:

1. I would testify of the unconditional love that our Heavenly Father has for each one of us, the importance of feeling His love, and the importance of seeking to feel His love often. It is only on this sure foundation that we can truly be motivated to strive each day to keep His commandments. And it is His commandments that keep us happy and safe. And it is obedience to His commandments that we become all that our Father desires.

2. I would testify of the unconditional love that our Savior and older brother Jesus Christ has for each one of us, and that because of His love he willingly suffered, bled, and died for us. I would testify of the power of the atonement, and how it applies to every aspect of our lives. I would also testify that the resurrection truly proves that Jesus is the Christ.

3. I would teach about the importance of developing a relationship with the Holy Ghost, and testify that this relationship is as important to our salvation as our relationship with our Heavenly Father and Savior. I would testify of the guidance that comes through the Holy Ghost and that every gift of the Spirit comes through Him.

4. I would teach and testify of the power of choice/agency, and how this is a fallen world ruled by natural consequences and is subject to the use and misuse of others agency.

5. This brings me to the reality of Satan. I would testify to my family that Satan and his followers are real. They are the reason that evil exists in the world.

6. I would then teach the importance of baptism and other saving ordinances, and testify of the blessings that come to us by partaking of the sacrament each week.

7. I would testify of the power of prayer and how prayer controls the powers of Heaven.

8. I would teach the value of daily scripture study (particularly the Book of Mormon) and that knowing the scriptures is one thing, but knowing the author of the scriptures is quite another.

9. I would testify of the miracle of forgiveness. It is only through the atonement that forgiveness is possible. It is vital to seek forgiveness, and equally as vital to offer forgiveness.

10. I would teach and testify of the blessings that come from having prophets and apostles on the earth today and how important it is to remember that they are our leaders. They are true representatives sent here by our Father to help us return safely home.

11. I would testify of the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ and the of the life and mission of the prophet Joseph Smith.

12. Lastly, I would express my eternal love and gratitude for each member of my family and my great desire for them to love one another and keep the commandments of the Lord.

In essence, this is my testimony. "And all thy children shall be taught of the Lord; and great shall be the peace of thy children." 3 Nephi 22:13.

This has been another busy week. Graduation was on Thursday. We drove up to attend Pete and Keely's graduation. Aunt Kim invited us up to her house before the graduation ceremony for dinner. It was wonderful visiting with her and her incredible family. Aunt Glenda was also there along with the Carter Family. Pete spoke at the ceremony, and we were so proud of both him and Keely.

Ty went up to Utah County this weekend to play in the memorial day tournament. He rode up with Tyson Miller and his family and they stayed in their cabin through the weekend. They went 3-1 but it was not enough to get them into bracket play for Monday. Ty arrived home tonight around 7:30 pm.

Carter started the week with the stomach flu. I don't recall ever seeing him this sick. He had a fever for a couple of days along with throwing up. He was right down in bed for three days. He had the Dixie High School basketball tournament this weekend. His team went 2-2. Carter played some and did a great job. His three pointer looks even better this year. It will be interesting to see how PVHS does this year. Carter also, after an amazing experience of fasting and prayer was able to maintain his 4.0 GPA despite a very busy baseball season.

Dad is still working super hard. He even went in today after church to check on one of his patients. I went with him and it was fun. His patient is actually a retired actor that was quite famous back in the 60's. He did many films with John Wayne, and he has even given dad a picture of himself with John Wayne. He was a super nice guy. Dad I can tell is really missing coaching already. I'm not sure he knows what to do with himself.

I have been doing extra house cleaning and laundry this week. We have had too many busy weekends and days. I have also been transcribing a lot this week. One interview ended up being 18 single spaced typed pages. This is for sure the most tedious part of writing this book. It is good to do though because it helps you really comb through the interviews.

Uncle Chad and his family stopped in on Friday and visited with us for about an hour. They seem like they are doing well. Rance has an interest in coming to SUU after his Senior year. He and Carter are the same age. It was real good to see them. It has been too long. Tomorrow we will put some flowers on the graves here in Washington and then take some to Beaver and Minersville. We are going to eat breakfast at the timberline, visit family in Beaver and then head to Minersville for Lunch with Grandma. Chantel's husband Trevor is putting a new roof on for grandma so he and his family will be there along with David's and Nanette's.

How has your week been? How are things with Elder Packer? Any new investigators this week? What was the craziest thing that happened this week? What was the best thing that happened this week? When do you get your new mission president? Will there be a special conference to say good-bye to President Newell?

Love you Dallin! Keep on Keepin' on! I hope you are happy and well, and that you have all that you need. Stay positive.

Love you so much!

Here is what you have really been waiting for - Aldste Milne's email and pictures:
 Dear Family
Well Mom you are all world. Those are some pretty impressive last words, and a powerful testimony. Thanks for sharing. We kind of have a crazy schedule today so this is going to have to be a little short. Sorry!
We had a prettyalot of things didn't go exactly the way we wanted to but that is life as a missionary. But we stayed busy and got a lot done. We haven't been as hot with the finding new investigators lately so we are going to put a bigger focus on that this week. But the investigators that we do have are all doing very well. There is one family that we are working with who are doing very well too so we are excited about that. They were in church this week and had a good time. We have a pretty good pool right now there are just quite a few obstacles that are in the way of making everything fall into place. But we are trying to stay patient and faithful. I am finding a lot of solace in this scripture from Alma:
27 Now when our hearts were depressed, and we were about to turn back, behold, the Lord comforted us, and said: Go amongst thy brethren, the Lamanites, and bear with patience thine afflictions, and I will give unto you success.

I have really fallen in love with the scriptures this week. I started reading the book of Acts to learn more about the church after the death of Christ and before the Apostasy, and combined with the cross references has made it really interesting. I'm starting to study only in Swedish which has also made it more fun to learn the language on the way.

The craziest thing that happened this week was probably when me and pack got let in by this middle aged woman from south america who proceeded to flirt with us in a combination of english swedish and spanish. Nothing she said made sense and we soon realized that she was drunk. We tried to insist on leaving but she really wanted us to read the bible with her so we read a bit together and got out of there. And we always have an interesting experience every week with a muslim or two trying to convert us.

The best thing that happened this week was probably when we gave a church tour to probably my favorite old lady of all time. She is a Swede and we have met with her quite a bit. She is so nice and so sweet. She likes what she is hearing from us and the Spirit has really been strong when we are together. The only thing she is worried about is her family and what would happen if she made the choice to join our church. Which is completely understandable. But I have a good feeling about her.

Our new mission president arrives in Sweden June 30th I think. And yeah I'm pretty sure there will be a special farewell conference for President Newell.

Anyways I got to bounce, sorry about the short email! Love you all!

Äldste Milne
Me and Pack at a Swedish castle

The Castle

Sister Anderson, the Dixie chick, she is being transferred, she was a lot of fun!

Me and the baby of the family we have been teaching.  Cutest kid ever!

Beaver Cemetery

Minersville Cemetery

Dad and Keaton - Love the bolo tie (it was Grandpa Glen's)!
Memorial Day at Aunt Kim's
Yay!  My Easter gift and Mother's Day present is finally finished!
"A Hopeless Dawn" by Frank Bramley
Blaine ordered the oil painting and then had it professionally framed.


  1. I'm not finished reading the lastest blog; I had to stop because I'm crying from all the good things that you recorded. I loved hearing about your time in Beaver and Minersville on Memorial day. These things are so important to record for your posterity. I loved what you said about our family--tears flowing. I love my family and I am soooo grateful to have you and Blaine and your wonderful boys in our lives. THANK YOU so much. Now, I'm going back to read the rest. Love to all. Aunt Kim

  2. OK back again. I had to stop with Blaine's letter on "What would your final words of mortality be?" HOW AWESOME IS THAT! I didn't want to read Blaine's quite yet because I'm going to think about this and do this myself. What a neat thing! I'm going to skip to Dallin's letter right now, but I will for sure be back tomorrow to read Blaine's words. I want to compare ours together. What a great blog you are creating. I love and enjoy it.

  3. You tell Carter how impressed I am with his comment about how attractive it is to have a girl with a testimony. WOW, he has his priorities correct.

  4. So now I'm reading Dallin's letter and it's your last words. Oh my, I can't compete with you Natalie! I can't wait to compare though. Love you.

  5. Has Dallin been lifting weight. He's shoulders look B R O A D! Is that how you spell it? hahah. So handsome too. There's something about that Dixie chick, can't wait to hear the rest of the story. Dallin is handsome. Love love the pictures.