Tuesday, May 31, 2011

First Letter

We got Jared's first letter today....He wants more mail! I've put a page on this blog (link is on the right) that gives you ways to contact him.  One of the easiest ways is through dearelder.com.

Dearelder.com is a marvelous website.  1) It's really easy to use. 2) Letters get there really quickly. 3) IT'S FREE!!!   In order to use it, click on the site and then click on "Provo MTC (Free!)", located on the left-hand side of the screen.  Then type in your address.  Next type in Jared's information.  He is "Elder" (under 'title'), MTC Mailbox #304, "ARM-YER 0808" under 'mission code'.  We put his estimated departure date as 8/25/11 because we haven't heard anything else.  You then have to enter your email address at the bottom.  Then you can write him a letter at the bottom of the screen.  If you mail the letter in the morning before 12:00 p.m, he gets it the same day!  Cool, huh?  I don't think this works on the weekends or holidays, though.  But the best part is that this doesn't cost you anything.  He will then get an actual letter, not just an email. Great site!

So if you have any time at all, he could really use a letter.  It really makes his day!  The language is tough for him but with encouragement I know he will do an amazing job!  Thanks for your support!

Still Waiting

We're still waiting to hear what the MTC has been like for Jared.  We know he's probably working hard and getting used to a  new schedule.  We're wondering when his preparation day (P-Day) will be.  This will be the day that Jared gets to write home to us.  With Monday being a holiday, everything might be a little off. 

We've heard that an Elder Jared Skidmore entered the MTC the same day Jared did and is going to Armenia as well.  It will be interesting to see if the two Jareds end up being companions.  I'm sure before the mission is up they'll be companions!

My dad mentioned a couple of things about the day Jared went into the MTC.  I thought I'd post his note to me:

1.  He was almost the last one off the plane at Salt Lake Airport because he was given a seat near the back of the plane.  In fact his luggage got there before we did to pick it up.
2.  Was so tired, that he fell asleep in the car by the time we got out of the airport parking lot.
3.  We went to breakfast at Denny's in Provo.  He order a moon's over My Hammy and asked if he could have a milk shake.  He then ordered a Strawberry Milk Shake.  Much to our surprise Denny's didn't charge us for his breakfast, including the Milk Shake.
4.  Just before we dropped him off at the MTC, we stopped at the BYU Creamery and had ice cream cones.  He had a pineapple sherbert.
5.  He talked to his mom by cell phone just before we dropped him off at the MTC.
6.  He was anxious to be dropped off at the MTC, but he was more excited about getting his new missionary name badge, especially to see it in Armenian.

Thanks, Dad! That's the news from here!  We'll let you know when we here anything else!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Grandma and Grandpa take some pictures too!

Thanks, Mom and Dad, for taking these pictures of Jared.  These are the pictures they took right before Jared went into the MTC.  I was able to talk to Jared by phone one last time before he left. I'm gonna miss him.

Jared looking at the flowers...or are those bugs? 
(We have a similar shot of Jared checking out bugs 
when he was 2.  He was such a doll then!)
 At the Provo Temple
Jared and the temple

 Jared getting some help at the MTC
Some of Grandpa's last goodbyes 
to the first grandson going on a mission

May 25 at LAX--Pictures

 Elder Jared Hammer waiting to leave for the airport
 "Can anyone give me a ride to the MTC? 
Maybe I should just run!"
 At the airport (Okay, Mom's taking too many pictures!)
 "I'm leaving on a jet plane!"
 Salt Lake Bound
 He may be DRESSED like a missionary, 
but he's still my Bear!
 "Alright, that's seat 42C, Sir."
Last picture taken at LAX--Bye!

The Flying Bear

Jared is on his way to Utah!!!  This morning he finished packing up all his things. (We're just glad everything fit!  We had to switch pieces of luggage last night when we found out one of the bags was slightly oversize and they charge $180 for that!!!!!)  Once he finished getting ready to go, he woke Maddie up to say goodbye.  She gave him a quick hug and then darted into HIS bed to sleep!  Funny girl!  After family prayers, Dad said a final goodbye, gave him a hug and sent him on his way with me.  Carl headed back to sleep for awhile.  It WAS only 3:30 a.m.!!

I took Jared to the airport and got him checked in. They insisted that they did not hand out any pass to moms to go see their boys who are leaving for 2 years.  We checked with another Delta agent who said this happens ALL the time.  Hmmmm....weird!  Jared ran into another missionary from Samoa who was heading to the MTC too.  This put Jared more at ease.  There were some tears from me and hugs from him.  Then he headed out and looked thrilled to be on his way!  Later today I'll post pictures.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Picture: Our Missionary, Elder Jared Hammer May 24, 2011

We're down to hours

   Jared will be flying away to Provo at 6:15 a.m. tomorrow.  We've been busily trying to get him packed, visit with friends, and keep our tempers in check.  It's been a little stressful making sure we have everything, but slowly but surely, I think he may be ready by the time he leaves.
   Tonight at 6:30 p.m., Jared will officially become Elder Hammer for the next two years.  I think he's feeling like us, a little nervous, a little scared, and really excited. I'm sure he would appreciate any letters you can send him.  His address while he is in Provo for the next 3 months will be:

Elder Jared Carl Hammer
MTC Mailbox #304
ARM-YER 0810
2005 N. 900 E.
Provo, Utah 84604-1793

Thanks for all the love and support everyone has already shown Jared (I mean Elder Hammer!) and our family.  You mean the world to us!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

4 Days and Counting!

It's only 4 more days until Jared departs for the MTC!  Where has the time gone???  Jared received his call 2 months ago.  Now we're down to 4 days.  Jared has been getting ready to serve by volunteering at people's homes.  He has watered plants, varnished furniture, changed diapers, washed cars, taught about email and many other things.  He has worked hard and is looking forward to 2 more years of service. 

Jared spoke in church along with Carl. Many of our family and friends attended.  We had an Open House that afternoon, which was also attended by both family and friends.  It was a beautiful afternoon and a beautiful day all around.  Our family has been overwhelmed by the love and support that has been given to us.  We are thankful to everyone who has helped Jared get ready for this exciting adventure in his life!