Elder and Sister Watts

Elder and Sister Watts

Hill Cumorah Visitors' Sites Mission Statement

"Behold, I am a disciple of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. I have been called of him to declare his word among his people, that they might have everlasting life."
3 Nephi 5:13

Wednesday, December 22, 2010


Decorating, for me, is an important part of the Christmas season. I guess I inherited the tendency from my mother, the only person I know that hangs Christmas ornaments from the ceiling (or she did when we were kids). When I was a child I thought it was magical! Now, our youngest daughter does the same. I like to decorate our entire house – it is fun for me. But, when we left Oregon in January, we didn’t pack any Christmas decorations – there simply wasn’t room.

And, it wouldn’t make sense to buy many decorations here, because going home there won’t be room either. So, I was not expecting much to happen in the way of Christmas decorating on our mission. I seem to remember stories of missionaries cutting out paper trees and putting them on the walls of their apartments (maybe our kids). In Elder Watts’ case, as a young missionary, he got a Christmas tree for free on Christmas morning.

For us, now as adult missionaries in New York, little by little, things started looking hopeful as far as decorations go. On our way to our mission last January, we stopped in Utah to see relatives. Our oldest daughter gave me my Christmas present, that didn’t get mailed. It was three very beautiful Christmas decorations, two ornaments and a cute box.

Then, last February, when our neighboring missionaries left, they gave us their beautiful lighted wreath and an artificial tree.

Another daughter and her husband gave us two more tree ornaments, relevant to our mission, a crystal maple leaf and a fox ornament.

When we moved to our new apartment in November, we found a table centerpiece and another wreath.

So, the day after Thanksgiving we hung a wreath on our door and another one on our wall. We put up our “Charlie Brown” artificial tree, with lights and decorations that came in the box.

To my delight we found some other decorations in the box including a darling nativity set.
We did buy ourselves some stockings – I couldn’t get through Christmas without stockings.

Next, an unexpected package arrived in the mail from yet another daughter, gifts for the 12 Days of Christmas, most of which were more decorations. YEAH!

As we went to work at the Smith Farm one morning shortly after Thanksgiving, it so happened that the Facilities Management team was there to decorate – so, they were kind enough to let me help.

The next day, at the Hill Cumorah Visitors’ Center, Elder Watts and I were there doing some organizing in one of the storage areas and to my delight, the Facilities Management Team was there doing some decorating, and again, they let me help. Let’s see . . .organize a storage area or decorate for Christmas . . .I choose decorating.

To me, these experiences testify that God is mindful of me and my insignificant desires. I love everything about the Christmas season and I especially love that we reflect on our Savior, Jesus Christ and His birth. And I love knowing that I have a Heavenly Father that loves me. He loves each of you too – that is the good news of the Gospel!

Here are some of the decorations from the Sites in Palmyra and Fayette:

You might also enjoy going to the following link to read about Christmas in Palmyra at the Historical Sites.  Elder Watts is quoted and Sister Watts has some pictures posted.  http://www.mormontimes.com/article/18922/Experiencing-Christmas-at-LDS-Church-sites-in-Palmrya


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