Sasha, in the forefront, is our Activities Director in the branch. He arranged to come to our apartment and prepare the food for the Branch Women's Day Activity. In Russia there isn't a Mother's Day. They have Women's Day instead on the 8th of March. The activity was on Saturday evening. The country took Friday and Monday off work. Above, Sasha Yartsev and Deema Gavrilov (2nd counselor in branch presidency) are mixing cookie dough.
Sasha had a lot of fun rolling out the dough. He wasn't used to using a rolling pin sleeve and thought it quite unusual. Some of our children may recognize the apron he used. It was made by Rick for Bonnie when she was in college and says, "Hot Dish." He loved using it.
Deema peeled all the potatoes and cut them up for a Russian version of potato salad.
The program was begun with our Branch President giving some appropriate remarks for the occasion. Then Deema gave a spiritual thought about women. Next, the missionaries entertained. First Elders Hiatt and Armstrong sang a duet, accompanied by Elder Jouttenus on the piano and Sasha on the guitar.
Then, Elder Armstrong and Sasha performed a duet.
All the missionaries joined together to perform a skit showing a "woman" putting on make-up. As you can tell, this is a combination of two pictures. As a result, you can see Elder Jouttenus twice. From left to right are Elders Hiatt, Jouttenus, Heath, Jouttenus and Armstrong. They are preparing Elder Heath for the skit.
Here you see all the missionaries again. Yes, you really do. That is Elder Hiatt's right arm and Elder Jouttenus's left arm protruding from the plastic bag. Elder Heath ended up with quite a mess at the end with lipstick all over his face and eye brow pencil in various places on his face. Sister McClelland recommended that Elder Heath put on vasaline before this started and Elder Heath was very happy about how easy the make-up came off. He was such a good sport about the whole thing that it really helped everyone enjoy the Elder's hamming it up.
Sveta worked tirelessly getting the food ready to serve. In addition to the potato salads, she had a fruit plate accompanied by a caramel fountain to dip the fruit in.
Here you can see a shot of the audience with Elder's Hiatt and Jouttenus serving. All the women were served first, then, the men got to eat. You can see the two potato salads on the plates that Lena is carrying. Lena is a returned missionary who moved to Moscow from our branch about a year ago. She is also the sister of our former branch president's wife.
New Baby Chernikov
Here is a picture of Larisa Chernikov with Karina (on the right), Maxim (on the left) and baby, Matvee (in the center). They are wrapped in towels that Anne made for them. The baby had to stay in the hospital for over two weeks because they were concerned about him. Larisa had to stay with him. She finally told them that she would give the baby the treatments which they were giving him and signed a release so she could take him home. Everyone is happy to have them home. They all came to church the next Sunday.
Here is a picture of the snow we walk around in every day. The walks are mostly cleared but very icy. The snow from the parking lot to the right of this picture is dumped in the field adjacent to make the mound you see. This is taken half way between our outside apartment door and the Texac restaurant.
This shot is taken from our bedroom window. If you look closely at the little fruit stand across the street, you'll see a mother pushing her baby in a carriage. We are amazed how many people walk their babies even when it's so cold and icy. The building on the right is an elementary school.