Sunday, October 21, 2012

Fall break in Salt Lake!

In Tallinn University we have a break half way through the semester, it is still a work week though.  During the break I am going to a conference in Salt Lake, it will be a lot of fun. I'll be blogging more about it when I get back.  Salt Lake, here I come!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Young Women New Beginning

This idea is not mine, I got it from Pinterest. So, nothing original here ;).

Matthew spoke at the activity about choice and accountability. He even told about his special list that he keeps in his wallet - a list of commitments that every member of the Priest Quorum agreed to. He likes using objects and examples when teaching. The girls liked it!

We played some games, for example Fruit basket tipped over with the names of all the YW values. That I made up and we used only 3 vales at a time. It was a fun way to go through all the values and memorize them.

I also had a small display introducing Young Women Program, motto etc, Personal Progress, awards and so forth.

Every food symbolizes a YW value

I even got the signs that introduced the values from Pinterest. I had to translate them  and change them with the help of the good old Paint program

Value posters on the left (made by our Beehives), class posters on the left  (that they got to keep)

Mia Maids


One of the Laurels

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Moving to Keila

 Big news.  We are moving to Keila.  Keila is a nice little town about 25 km outside of Tallinn.  It is just past Saue on the map, not to be confused with Keila-Joa which is another place.  About 10,000 people live there, for the most part it is just a suburb of Tallinn, but it also has everything that a little town needs.  We got sick of renting an apartment, so we are buying one!  Recently my older brother and sister bought nice new homes so maybe this is just a case of "keeping up with the Crandall's".  We are very excited, it will be bigger (67 square meters compared to 50 square meters) and a lot nicer.  Interest rates are low and tax deductible, so it makes a lot of sense to buy.  I wasn't sure if the bank would give us a loan because of my residence permit situation, I have to renew it every year, but they gave it to us!  We will be moving at the end of the month.  We will sign all the documents next week, but we already have reserved the apartment and been approved for the loan.  One of the major reasons we choose Keila is because it is cheap, about half the price as the nicer areas in Tallinn.  By the end of the year they will also start to phase in new trains, so the commute will be a lot nicer.  Within two years all the trains should be new! 

 Recently we went to look at some apartments, this was our first time to Keila and we really liked it!  We haven't seen everything, but we saw most things.  We ate at the Peetri Pizza, it was really good.  Having a nice Pizza place in town is a must!

They had a really big, really old Lutheran church in town surrounded by a grave yard.  It is really pretty.  Below is a nice promotional video that someone made about the town.  More blog posts about Keila, our new apartment and the move will be coming shortly.  

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Young Women Fund Raiser

Yesterday I had an interesting activity with my Young Women - I´m writing about it because Matthew really wanted me to do it. It was a fund raiser, a baked goods fair, to collect money for the YW camp next year in Finland. We plan to do it with the Helsinki stake. The girls are very excited and one of the girls really wanted to do the fun raiser. We had a bunch of the girls, missionaries and the YW leaders bake cakes, pies and other goods. Our prices were quite low but we encouraged people to give more. And they did! People wanted to give so much. The girls almost freaked out seeing all the money pouring in. It was really entertaining. 
We did the fair during Relief Society meeting that our branch watched before the Saturday morning session. It worked well because we had a lot of customers - hungry technicians, almost starving branch president, people form the Russian branch and so forth. 
What made me so happy was to see everybody excited, enjoying the goods, feeling good. 
It was the first time anyone has done this here in Estonia (at least that is what people said). 
Here are some photos of the YW and the goodies we sold.

 The girls making pumpkin and apple cake.

 Waffles with condensed milk and syrup.

 I made low calorie zucchini bread, high calorie zucchini bread :), banana bread and apple-cinnamon muffins.

 All ready for the first customers.

 Prices where from 20 euro cents to 50 cents and people could give more if they liked.

 Our biggest complaint was that we had too many sweets and not enough savory snacks. The little rolls with tomatoes was our only healthy thing (besides my low calorie bread that I called the Weight Watchers Zucchini Bread that was very popular). 

 The last one is called the Log among missionaries but we say Spotted Dog instead. Estonian version has dried fruit peaces in it. Well actually we use marmalade but I guess you cannot really say that in English. It is a kind of marmalade that is thicker and you can cut it into peaces and add them to the mix.

 Our wonderful Beehives - they are the ones responsible for most baked goods, selling them and organizing the event.

 Our older YW. The girl on the left just got baptized, the girl on the right wants to get baptized. But she is not yet 18 so she has to wait until her birthday in December because her parents want her to be absolutely sure about it and be fully responsible for her actions. 

 Matthew and out branch president enjoying the food. 

 Me and the girls.

Sunsets in Tallinn

Here are some photos I have taken throughout this year - all from the window of our apartment. Although our building isn´t in the prettiest of areas, the view can sometimes be so beautiful. We will soon move away from Tallinn to Keila, a smaller place near Tallinn. We are super excited. 

The first two are taken in the wintertime.

Rest of the photos are taken in the summer or late spring. 

Are these not wonderful? I love sunsets.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Nova building

 Tallinn University just finished a new building, called the Nova building.  Another one should be finished in about a month or so. It houses the Baltic film and media school.  They have some cool things inside like film studios and a movie theater.

 They decided to go cheap though on the inside!  This is one of the main normal hall ways.  It looks a lot like a parking garage.  At some point someone had a good idea "hey, we can save 10% if we only build 90% of the building!"  So they decided to not finish the inside.  They have gray painted floors and cement walls.  I'm not sure why they couldn't get the money to put up dry wall and paint, they did have funding from the European Union.  They were also over budget and late in finishing it.  But overall it is a nice new facility for us.  But I realize that this isn't BYU which has the Church's deep pockets to pay for things like... paint.  We'll take what we can get over here. 

 This is another picture of the inside, they use a lot of glass to go along with the cement. 

 Here is a nice new flat screen TV on the cement wall, it is a pretty interesting style, all the best technologies on a bland slab of concrete. 

Here is a classroom from the building, they don't have all the desks in yet, at least I don't think they do.  I'm not sure how people study film and media, maybe they do it with flat screen TVs while sitting on couches.  I did get a tour of the other new building which is not finished yet, that is where our department will be.  It seemed pretty nice, I'm excited for it.  Hopefully it will be done by Christmas.