Sunday, September 13, 2020

Hope through Christ

My aunt Areej (my mom's sister) got sick this past week. We thought it was minor, but she ended up having multi organ failure within a few days. She was taken to the hospital unresponsive and died yesterday. It was shocking to all of us. She tested negative for COVID but the doctors think it must have been what she had because of how fast her health declined. 4 members of my aunts family died suddenly within a few days of getting sick. My uncle, 19 years ago, then my cousin Wisam 3 years ago, then my cousin Mohannad 2 years ago...and now my aunt.

She has been wanting to join my uncle who had passed away 19 years ago this month. She kept saying, I want to go be with Yacoub. My cousin Rana says she had her funeral dress picked up, decided where she wants to be buried and even had a picture she wanted people to post for her funeral. She was so ready to go and be reunited with her family members.

I wish we were able to travel home this summer and see her one last time, but sadly COVID prevented that. I am sure I will see my aunt again someday.

I was reading these days in the Book of Mormon about Christ's visit and his resurrection. How He came out of the tomb after three days of darkness and appeared in all His glory. Our lives are a lot like that. This earth life is sometimes dark and gloomy. It seems like the darkness will never end, but light will come. One day, just as Christ walked out of the darkness of the tomb, we will too. That day will be glorious. We will see loved ones again and we will fall into the Savior's arms to thank Him for making all of this possible.

My family and I are overwhelmed with the amount of love and concern others have shown. I posted on our prayer Facebook page asking for prayers for my aunt and her family. I had 1800 views and about 700 comments of people telling me they will pray for my aunt's family. Thank you all for your faith and love.

My friend and her daughters came to my house today and dropped off this cute plant. In our culture, we don't give flowers generally when someone dies. So, I was not sure what I did to deserve flowers. It really meant a lot to me. Thank you Laura! I am really blessed to have amazing friends who care about me and my family.

 I don't post as often these days. I have been busy the last few weeks. I had some friends who came to visit me from Utah. We went to Yellowstone and did a lot of fun things. One Tuesday we started our meetings before classes start. We had our college and department meetings. I joined through zoom. I have decided to teach remotely in the fall. 

I was given a certificate for being at BYU-I five years. I can't believe it has been 5 years since I came to Idaho. Time flies by so fast. I have really enjoyed living here. Our summers are great and I wish they would last longer because I am not ready to go back to work! 

September is usually a very busy month for me because school starts and I also translate for conference. I am hoping to find something to do this semester to get out...teaching from home in the winter is going to be a challenge. I am tempted to just hibernate for the winter and not leave my house at all. But, I know I will get depressed fast if I do that. Even though it would be nice not to have to clear my driveway! I can just order food online 😆 I guess I could do puzzles so I don't go completely insane.

Sunday, August 30, 2020

Challis Hot Springs

 On Tuesday we went to Challis hot springs. It is about a 3-hour drive from Rexburg. It was actually a nice smooth ride and I was not so stressed driving my motor home. I do fine on as long as I am not going too fast. When it is windy it gets a little scary driving the motor home. When the wind blows it feels like some large hand punches your trailer every now and then. You just have to watch it and make sure you stay in your lane when it happens because your trailer is constantly being pushed off the road!

I can't say enough to describe how much I enjoyed this trip. It was so relaxing and simply perfect. Having water and power when you camp makes all the difference. You feel clean all the time! Even though there were SO many people around us as we camped. It certainly was not private, but we camped by the river and had the pools to go soak in.

They have two pools, one super hot and one not so hot. We didn't go into the super hot one that much. I did enjoy how clear the water was. It had rocks in the bottom and was just perfect temperature. For the first day or two we had the pool to ourselves most of the time which was nice. It was great to get in when the temperature was a little cool (early morning or late evening). They empty the pool daily and refill it so it stays nice and clean. The natural spring of hot water comes through the cracks and bottom of the pool and it is boiling hot so it gets cooled down.

Here is my motor home, behind it directly is the river:

Here is the pool, first picture shows the bottom of the pool (don't you love the crystal clear water?),

We had a few adventures. We went to two ghost towns. This was an area where people looked for gold in the past. I tried to find gold, but I was not successful. The gold factory we saw left mountains of stones that supposedly have millions of dollars worth of gold. I should have taken a few buckets of rocks home to look through them!

Here is one of the ghost towns...

This house in particular looked spooky...Notice our 'happy camper' T-shirts...

This is part of the engine which worked to carry the rocks then separate the gold out...

Doug let me ride in his side by side. I want one 😀

Ok, you can't really see them well, but there are two woodpeckers in that tree...You can kind of see their red head in the middle of the picture...

S'mores time...

Every day, this herd of mountain sheep came down from the mountain to eat grass in this field by the hot springs. It was fun to watch them...

Doug took us down the river on a raft. We saw an eagle, deer, and other birds...We hit class 1 rapids 😁 and it was so much fun.

The river actually was super clear and pretty...but it rained on Thursday and some mud went into the river that is why you see that the water does not look clear.
Here is the bold eagle...far picture and close up in the next one...

And the little deer. There were actually lots of dear especially in town in people's back yards...

The food we had was amazing. Most of the time we were so full, that we just would sit in the pool and not move. My friend's family really took me in and were so accommodating when it came to my gluten sensitivity. I am so grateful for that. You surely don't go hungry when you camp with the Romrells 😋

I will work this week to get ready for classes to start. My friends from Utah are coming to visit me the end of this week. So, I have to work a little bit before they come, then I can have fun one last time before classes start. I took my trailer to the storage. I found a site to store it, but it is so small. It will work though.