Sunday, February 17, 2008

Update from Connecticut

Hello Dear Family,
I just wanted to fill you in on the latest from Connecticut. We are so excited to announce the birth of Tylie Belle Bulkley, daughter of Shane and Chelsea Bulkley born on Feb 15th. She weighed 6 lbs 15 oz and was 19 inches long with quite a lot of dark hair. Mother and Baby are doing well and Shane is as proud as he can be. I am not sure if you knew that Jason and Nicole are also expecting a baby sometime in April. They wait to find out what its going to be to make it more suspenseful. Anyway, along with Avery who was born to Morgan and Jil after we left in late August, it will make three new grandchildren who have been born since we have been gone. Its hard to believe we have been gone now for almost 7 months, but its things like this that make us realize yes, we have been gone a while.
I wanted to let you all know how Elder Bulkley is doing. We appreciated so much your remembering Elder Bulkley in your fast and prayers in January. You will never know how much it meant to us for you to join with us. We truly felt the strength from that event and even though it wasn't immediate, we are certainly seeing the hand of our Heavenly Father in his health. As you know, he developed several new health issues as well as having trouble with a few new ones since we have been here on our mission. Most of them have been quickly resolved and in fact he is doing better in many of these problems. For instance, he is on different seizure medication now and I can see a huge difference in him as far as his being tired. He has so much more stamina and is less tired. He had some heart issues that have seemed to be controlled now with a change in some of his medications. THose are just a few of the things that seem to be doing better. It seems like we have to be patient however, and I am sure that the Lord was trying to teach us that. Immediately after the fast, it seems like several things came to a head...and we wondered if it meant we should not stay out here. But, we persisted with some doctor appointments, medication changes and things have really fallen into place and he is doing much better. I have, decided that things will probably not ever be perfect with him, however, since he comes with a lot of medical issues and I think it is just par for the course for him to have to deal with some of them. We are still trying to figure out why his potassium level keeps going up? An endocrinologist is now trying to figure that one out. Oh well, we are grateful that he is doing so much better and we know that all of our prayers have been answered in his behalf. We are so very grateful to our Heavenly Father for his letting us come on this mission. He could have said no, you have too many health problems. But, instead he has let us come and has helped us work out things and poured his blessings out upon us. For this blessing we are truly grateful. Our testimonies have been strengthened so much for being here and being able to serve this mission.
We are loving our mission. Some of the fun things we have been doing lately are: going on a double date with a young single adult guy who doesn't drive due to a brain injury and a YSA girl that he wanted to ask out. It is the first date he has ever been on and he was thrilled. We went to dinner and then back over here to our house to watch The Best Two Years on our laptop. It was fun. We had to drive about 35 miles in one direction to pick him up and then back past our house and an additional 15 miles to pick up her. By the time we were done, I think we had about 150 miles on the car...oh well, it was so nice for them. We have a young single adult conference for all of New England next weekend in Exitor, NH. We are taking a carload and plan to spend the night in a hotel while the YSA members stay at member houses. It will be really fun. We have Elder Glen Pace and Elder L Tom Perry coming to the mission on two seperate weeks, the last weekend of February and the first weekend of March. We are having a senior missionary dinner with Elder Glen Pace and then two seperate Zone conferences where he talks to all of the missionaries. We are not yet sure what Elder LTom Perry's plans will be.
We are so excited because there is a YSA young man and his girlfriend who are non members who have been coming to activities for about a year or so. Mike, the young man, had a baptismal date last October, but started having fears and backed out last minute. They stopped coming to YSA and institute for about a month is all and are now back coming again. We pick them up for institute eachThursday and today we were able to take Mike to Sacrament meeting and we got them having lessons again with the Elders. It is really neat to hear Mike talk about how things have started to fall into place for him as he has started back into the missionary lessons again. We are hoping and praying that this time, he will be able to be baptized. We feel like he will and Lisa his girlfriend, who is coming along a little slower, hopefully will also. We often go out with the Sister Missionaries. About three weeks ago, they answered a media referral and found a young girl about 21 years of age who seemed just golden. She had previously had friends from Georgia, where she is from, who were LDS. They must have left a big impression on her, because she had sot out the LDS website and made both an institute referral and a media referral for herself. When the sisters went to drop of the DVD, she immediately wanted the lessons and came to church. We also took her to FHE that week and the mission president talked to at one of the lessons and in fact gave her a beautiful blessing. We all thought she was coming right along so well and she had committed to being baptized. She called her family to tell them of her decision and I guess they must have really given her a bad time because she started canceling appointments and didn't want to come out anymore. All she will tell you is that she needs some time to work out her feelings. We are hoping and praying she will be able to make the gospel part of her life. What a hard thing to have to deal with when parents don't want you to have anything to do with the church, but yet, you know it is true.We are still working with the 21 year old girl with Cystic Fibrosis. She has been in a jam because her roommate moved out and she didn't have enough money to pay rent. The ward is helping her I know that, but she is still in a really hard situation. She ended up in the hosptial last week and we went down to see her. She has an awesome visiting teacher who is always willing to help her too. I am sure that things will fall into place for Connie. You feel so bad for her though because she is very handicapped by her Cystic Fibrosis and Diabetes. She has no support from family and yet, she is cheerful and pleasant always. We love her and pray for her. Well, these are just a few of the special young people we are working with. We still love teaching insitute two nights a week and doing visits.
We hope you are all doing well. It looks like its been a pretty hard winter for those of you in Utah. We have also had a very cold, wet, and icy winter. We are ready for spring. We pray for you always. Please keep us posted on how you are doing. One thing for sure, is that we all need to help each other through this life. It is tough and without each other and the gospel. We all need each other. We all have different trials that are hard. No one is exempt from them. Lets all band together and we can help each other though. Thanks for your love and support.
Love, Elder and Sister Bulkle

PS Speaking of trials, I either lost my purse or it was stollen this week, and they started to put charges on one of our credit cards but luckily, the Lord was looking out for us and our son Morgan called us out of the clear blue to find out some information. We told him what had hppened and he told us we needed to call immediately and cancel everything (A big huge pain and we kept thinking we would find the purse) Anyway, we are grateful that we did because the person put only $100 dollars worth on (which we can appeal and not have to pay it) but right after we cancelled it, they tried to put several hundred dollars on it at Wal-mart, but luckily it was already cancelled. The Lord helps us usually through others. Thats why we all need to be aware of each other and help each other.

This is a picture after a snowstorm in December.