Serving the Lord in Russia

Thursday, April 26, 2012

It's Finally Spring in Moscow!

Spring has finally arrived in Moscow!  We had snow on our lawn up until last week and now we have green grass, yellow and purple crocuses blooming, and the tulips will be bursting open probably within a week.  Our heavy winter coats, boots, gloves, hats, and scarves are now put away and we seem to be able to get out the door five minutes quicker. 

The Russians have three phases of spring.  First comes the spring of light and that is when we start having more and more daylight.  Second comes the spring of water - when the snow begins to melt and you have areas of flooding.  And third, the spring of green and that is what we are finally into now.  I have loved watching the different phases of spring here.

We had two wonderful Easters here.  On April 8th we celebrated our traditional Easter and then Russian Easter was on April 15th and that was when we were able to watch General Conference with our missionaries and members.  One of my Russian friends gave me some onion skins that she had been saving to color Easter eggs with.  What fun that was!  That was the way they would color their eggs, even during the Soviet years.  I also colored some eggs with food coloring that I had brought with me and they turned out beautiful too. 

Life has been busy with new missionaries coming and going and with preparing for our "new" mission that will happen on July 1st.  The Moscow West Mission will be discontinued and separated among three missions and our mission will receive their nine Russian cities, about 45 of their young missionaries and 7 to 9 of their senior couples.  We will add to Moscow the cities Tula, Tver, Yaroslavl, Ryazan, Smolensk, Kaluga, Voronezh, Lipetsk, and Nizhny Novgorod. We are so excited!!!  What a great missionary force we will have and wonderful new members. 

Here are a few photos of our life the last couple of months.

Our two new Elders that arrived in March.
The night we had our farewell dinner and testimony meeting for our wonderful departing missionaries we gave them our newest Russian treasure - the triple combination in Russian.
Our Russia Moscow Mission in March with President and Sister Schwitzer.

Easter morning (April 8th) in front of the mission home.
Easter morning (April 8th) looking down our street at the mission home.
Our Easter dinner.
Coloring Easter eggs - Russian style.
My beautiful Russian Easter eggs.
Our newest missionaries.
Enjoying lunch provided by one of our Russian branches after our Specialized Training.
Thumbs up for our lunch.
True signs of spring in Moscow - bringing back the small fruit stands.
The mission home on the morning of April 26th.  It's finally the spring of green.
Looking down the street at the mission home on the morning of April 26th.

We love our springtime in Moscow!