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Last night was an exciting night! On Sunday, they passed around a sign-up sheet for anyone that wanted to feed the missionaries. I was really excited. It is my first time ever feeding them as a married couple.
When I was on my mission, I loved eating at members' homes. They usually cooked us really extravagant dinners, because for them, it was a special occasion to feed the missionaries. Unfortunately for the missionaries, when it is a special occasion every night, it becomes really difficult not to gain weight. However, the food was always good, regardless of what culture it originated from, and in Texas there is a lot of different cultural backgrounds. Sometimes people would take us out to eat as well, and that was a nice treat.
So, after I picked up the Sister Missionaries, I told them the ground-rules.
1- Don't eat anything you don't like
2- If you get full, don't feel the need to finish your food, we can doggie-bag it for you
That was basically it. I just remember too many nights when I left stuffed to the gills, and spent the rest of the evening trying to walk off the delicious food. One time we had salad for dinner, and that was a rare treat!
We ended up having rice with cream of mushroom gravy and meatloaf. It is my own special recipe. I think it's probably the best meatloaf I've ever eaten too. The missionaries seemed to enjoy it. In fact, the newer sister was being really polite, and cleaning up the dishes. However, when I told them that there was another pan of meatloaf, she got really interested, and though she kept trying to tell me it was okay, I could tell that she wanted some more.
So, I got her a paper plate (so that she wouldn't feel guilty about dirtying another one) and she happily ate some more.
Here's my recipe for meatloaf, if you're interested. The problem is, I kind of eye-ball stuff, so this is just a basic guideline. I tried to write down the measurements based upon how much I put in, and it seems to turn out okay. This is enough for one bread-pan.
Emma Tank's Meat Loaf Recipe:
1 1/2 pounds of hamburger
1 cup oatmeal
¼ cup corn
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup milk
1 tsp garlic salt
¼ tsp pepper
¼ cup barbeque sauce (or ketchup)
¾ cup ketchup (or combo barbeque sauce and ketchup)
¾ cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon mustard
Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Spray the bread pan with non-stick spray. Put meatloaf in pan, press down to fill all edges. Combine topping, pour on top of meatloaf. Cover all surfaces. Cook at 375 for 1 hour 25 minutes.
It turns out really good and moist. Personally, I think the corn adds a lot.
Anyway, it was a really nice evening. Kevin showed off his walking, and while they shared a spiritual thought he kept walking back and forth between them. He really liked them. Afterward, they were going to walk to another appointment, but it cancelled, so I drove them to another place to do some service. They seem like very good missionaries. One was from Tonga and the other was from Wyoming.
Having them over, reminded me a lot of my mission and how much I loved being a missionary for my Savior. I have had very strong spiritual experiences since my mission, but there is no other calling in life like being a full-time missionary. When you sacrifice everything in your life for an 18-month to a 2-year mission, the Lord blesses you in turn. I can't explain how much I grew over that period of time. I learned a lot about myself and how much the Lord loves every one of his children. It doesn't matter where you live or what you are doing. The Lord loves you.
One of my favorite sayings goes like this:
The Lord loves you just the way you are, but He loves you too much to let you stay that way.
The Lord constantly is requiring us to grow and change for the better. If I allowed my own son to only stay in kindergarten his whole life, he certainly would not grow into the man I know he is supposed to become. The older grades may be tougher, and he may suffer because he has to learn harder things, but in the end Kevin will be better for it.
I know the gospel is true and Christ is my Savior. I know that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is God's church on Earth and He has set it up. It is not a church of men, but of God.
We pray for you, and keep you in our hearts.