melinda's blog

Sister Melinda Kay Free is headed to Europe!

I opened my mission call tonight amid many friends and family members. I have been called to serve as a missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and I have been assigned to labor in the Baltic Mission. I will prepare to preach the gospel in the Lithuanian language, and I report to the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah on June 4, 2008! I am so excited, and I love you all!!!!

Love,
Melinda

P.S. The Baltic mission includes Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania. So...Holly wins the guess on where, because she guessed I was going to Latvia! Yeah, Holly!!!

click to see slideshow->

Fall Fun

I have had a wonderful first half of November! With the help of the Hord family, I was able to fly down to AZ and surprise my family on the 1st. On Friday, I went on the Father/Daughter campout with my Dad and sister (you can see a picture of them with some of the YUMMY teryaki sauce we picked up on the way). It was fun to spend time with my family and visit my home ward (and mission prep class...it is the BEST). Joseph and Elizabeth Hord were also down there that weekend (trying out for the Easter Pageant). The three of us flew back to Salt Lake on the same flight and got lunch together (Wendy's) after arriving back in Provo.

This past weekend, Becca and Reid were able to fly out for a visit. Some family friends hosted a baby shower for Becca, and it was a lot of fun. Reid's mom did the food, so of course it was amazing, and they have a lot of great people there. They also had a really fun and creative activity at the shower. There were several plain white onesies and special fabric markers for people to use in decorating them! It was great! I took a couple pictures of Lauren's masterpiece. Ü

Today, I got to go with Becca to the BYU Museum of Art (one of our favorite places to be...lots of good memories Ü). You can see a picture of us in front of the building that a nice girl (enjoying her lunch on a bench nearby) was nice enough to take for us. We looked at almost everything in the building, and we also got to visit briefly with two of her (well, our) former art history professors. We then headed across the street to meet up with Reid for lunch and ice cream (delicious, of course!) at the BYU Creamery. Happy day! ...And a beautiful one. I am also including a couple shots of the fall leaves and blue sky taken today in the courtyard of my building.

I hope you are all having a fun fall!

click to see slideshow->

Halloween: Cowgirl and Indian

My friend and roommate Jennifer and I dressed up for Halloween and then had fun taking several pictures. We hope you enjoy them too. Ü

click to see slideshow->

More Spring Break Pictures...

Here are a few pictures I took last week when I went down to Parowan/Paragonah/Brian Head for Spring Break.

(Thanks, Dad, for uploading the pictures for me! Ü)

Pun Intended

Yesterday was my friend Paul's birthday. He and his roommate Derek are great friends, former missionary companions (served in Tucson, AZ), and current home teaching companions (they teach me and my roommates). One thing they share in common is a love of puns.

I have always liked puns, but being around these guys has made me really love puns. So...for Paul's birthday, I decided to make him a card based on a pun and give him a list of puns I found on the internet.

The card went something like this (with illistrations and fun lettering Ü):
So it was my birthday. I had a big party, and my friend made me a birhtday cake. He brought it out, and it was a savory cake. It had a doughy base with cheese and all sorts of toppings sprinkled on top. I said, "That must have taken a lot of effort to make." And he said...

(then on the inside...)
... "No, it was a pizza cake."

Heee heeee heeee! Ü

A couple of my favorites:
* A rubber band pistol was confiscated from algebra class because it was a weapon of math disruption.
* He said I was average - but he was just being mean.
* When the smog lifts in Los Angeles, U C L A.

If you want to read some more fun ones, check out http://www.punoftheday.com/


Giving Thanks in Arizona

This year, we got together with Dave and Kristin Free and their family, Eric and Malina Hulsoff and their family, and Opa for Thanksgiving. Before our meal, we all went around and mentioned things we are thankful for. We thought we would share them with you. Here is our list:

Elena: Relatives and family
Terran: Everything
Madison: Jess
Adran: Terran and my house
Jessica: Holy Ghost
Daniel: Food
Jordan: Cars
Adam: Dad
Malinda: Family
Eric: You guys still like me (even when my intelligence can be overwhelming…Ü)
McKay: Good education
Dave: Loving Heavenly Father
Brett: Beautiful things in life (certain cars, turkey, etc. Ü)
Melinda: Music
Kristin: How often the Lord condescends to hug me and tell me it’s worth it
Josh: Family, food, and fun
Becca: Dishwashers
Michael: Missionaries
Nate: Scriptures
Jeremy: My family
Andrew: Freedom fighters and my family
Lauren: The earth
Opa: Being here
Joe: Free country
Diana: Missionary son
Elder Joseph: All you guys
Jake: Ability to run

(P.S. Sorry if I spelled anyone's name wrong!)


"It's Better to Be Kind Than to Be Right"

I was looking at some books online the other day (big surprise there, I know Ü), and I found this excerpt from a book that looks really great... Dad: The Man Who Lied to Save the Planet, 12 Timeless Virtues Handed Down to a Son by an Everyday Dad (by James Michael Pratt). The excerpt was printed in an article entitled "It's Better to Be Kind Than to Be Right" in MormonLife. I really enjoyed reading it, and it shares a great message. If you would like to read it too, just click on the link below.

"It's Better to Be Kind Than to Be Right"

P.S. Dad, I thought of this story again when you were talking last night about how you learned the same sort of lesson from your dad. Ü

At Long Last....Yeah!!!

At Long Last....Yeah!!!

Well, today I left work a couple hours early and went with my Dad down to the DMV. I filled out the paperwork and then began the wait for the driving test. Finally my name was called and I went outside to take the test. I did well in the preliminary test (u-turn and 3-point turn...harder than it looks in a big Suburban beast), and then waited my turn for the drive with the judge. I actually started up the conversation with the judge, and my drive went smoothly. I was most worried about parking at the end, but that turned out just fine. I got out of the car with a big smile and a signature on my paper saying I could have a driver's license! Happy Day Ü !


Happy April 15th!

My roommate Shae shared this with me this morning, and I thought I would pass it along to all of you. ?

2005 Rex Lee Run

2005 Rex Lee Run

Hey, I just got back from participating in the 2005 Rex Lee Run. Note my running companion safely tucked away in my pocket. ?

New Missionary Enters MTC!

New Missionary Enters MTC!

Today I had the opportunity to go with my brother as he entered the MTC! My Uncle Ric and I (and little Taylor Jamison) picked Elder Free (Jopes) up from the airport this morning and then came back to my cousins' house in Highland. We all talked for a bit and Joseph had some breakfast. Then we (my Uncle Ric, Aunt Jodie, Eric, Matthew, Taylor, Joseph and I) all drove to Provo. We stopped at the Krispy Kreme in Orem and got some doughnuts (what else?!) which we ate in the parking lot across from the MTC. Then we walked over and got his luggage stowed away before going in the main doors where two nice ladies made sure his suit pocket was all ready for his tag. Then he got his cool missionary tag with the fun "celestial spot" (as the mission pres. called it) on it. This dot shows everyone that he is a newbie. ?

FHE Western Movie

FHE Western Movie

For the month of February, my ward was combined with another ward for FHE activities. Each group from my ward was paired up with group from the other ward, and together we were to create a movie. Each group was given a different genre of movie to make, and my group ended up with WESTERN. I think we totally lucked out with that! On the 26th of Feb, we got together for a combined ward party and had an "Academy Awards" of sorts. We had dinner (sub sandwiches) and watched all of the 5-7 min videos and then had popcorn and played a trivia game while the judges made their decisions. Oh, yeah, there was a list of about 15 things that if included in your movie would give you extra points. We got all but 3-4 of them. Anyway, our movie ended up turning out really great and we tied for BEST PICTURE! (I think we won because they asked the audience to vote between the two and there were more votes for our film...but the person in charge didn't want to announce one way or the other and told us to fight it out.) We also won BEST SPECIAL EFFECTS & EDITING. Anyway, I have a copy of the DVD we made (see pict of it with its cool label and everything) which has the option of playing it "Old Western" style (sepia tone) or in regular color. By the way, it is a silent movie with cool saloon/cowboy music in the background. Too fun!


Gondola Girl

Gondola Girl

Well, inspired by the topic of my recent magnet-letter phrase, my roommate and I decided to have a little fun. So

Fun Letters

Fun Letters

Hey, everyone! This is me in front of our refrigerator. Last year, my roommate Marie ended up with the letters you see (a complete set minus