Ideas Forum

These are some ideas that have been shared


Contents
  1. Ward Tape, Monthly Scripture, Ward Helps
  2. Journal
  3. Dinners
  4. Newsletters
  5. Include misionary at family gatherings. Keep boyfriend/girlfriend close to the family
  6. Missionary email
  7. Money Tips
  8. MTC Cookies
  9. Taste of home
  10. Tape Thanksgiving
  11. Special Envelopes
  12. Rice Krispie Pizza
  13. Holiday Momento
  14. Missionary Supplies
  15. Letters
  16. Family Gatherings
  17. Wall Space, Letters, Family Gatherings
  18. Holidays
  19. Missionary Adoption
  20. Spiritual Thoughts
  21. Spiritual Thoughts, Letters
  22. Needs Ideas
  23. Video Ideas
  24. Missionary Girlfriends
  25. Missionary Cookies
  26. Ward Bulletin
  27. Letter Scrapbook
  28. Coupon Book, and Cool Drinks
  29. farwell
  30. Hump Day
  31. Preserve Letters
  32. Greenie Box
  33. Appropriate Gifts
  34. Group/dinner support
  35. Gift/Scriptures
  36. MTC FREE MAIL
  37. Party in Box
  38. singapore help
  39. packages
  40. Scrapbook
  41. Web page ideas
  42. party packages
  43. Missionary website
  44. Missionaries mom's letters
  45. Family Support
  46. Water Bottles
  47. Help with packages
  48. Writting Missionaries
  49. Scrapbook Ideas
  50. How is Mail in Brazil?
  51. Helps for Missionaries
  52. 12 Days of Christmas
  53. Valentines Day Package
  54. Brazil Mail
  55. Recipe Box
  56. Keeping Missionaries in the Loop of Family
  57. MAMA CD Club
  58. Cheap Phone Calls

Received from
Charleen Brown
charleen.brown@m.k12.ut.us
Date: Sun, 05 May 1996

Ward Tape: Take a small tape recorder around at church meetings and record short messages from ward members.

Fruits of the Scriptures Tree: Make a tree picture on a poster with candy glued all over it as the tree's fruit. Find out the scriptures your missionary must memorize in his mission. Put strips of paper with those scriptures on each candy. The missionary may eat the candy when the scripture is memorized. Be careful to use non-melting candy for some climates.

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Margaret writes that she would make copies of her husbands journal pages from his mission and send them to her son when he was out in the field. It helped her son to know how his father felt when the door was shut in his face, or when they had a baptism, or when he was homesick. She made copies of the journal pages so that they would be in her husbands own handwriting.

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Received from
Sue
Date: Wed, 17 July 1996

The missionaries in the California Anaheim Mission where I live call me a "Missionary Mom", even though none of my own children have served missions for the Church. We are privileged to have four Spanish-speaking missionaries for a meal once a week (Tuesday nights), which is the most that the Mission President will allow at any one meal, and of course we feed the missionaries now serving in our Ward as often as they can fit us in. I try to find out what their favorite foods are, and, as often as I can, prepare something special that I know they will enjoy. For example, Elder Larsen (cute kid!) shared his mom's jello-salad-ish recipe and I have made it many times. He always enjoys eating it and says he feels at home in our house.

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Received from
Kathy Breivik
bravekate@interserf.net
Date: Tue, 06 Aug 1996

We have 14 missionaries in the field and I have started a newsletter so that they can keep informed as to each others doings and so that we at home can be aware of and supportive of them. I include a report on each missionary, all their b'days, addresses as well as pictures, news clippings, ward news and anything that a missionary asks me to add. I have enjoyed doing this so much and love hearing from the missionaries on a regular basis.
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Including your missionary at family gatherings
A neighbor whose son left a few months ago on his mission didn't want him to be left out of any family gatherings, family prayers, FHEs, etc. She purchased a large stand-up cardboard replica of President Clinton from a party/novelty store. She had a picture of her son's head enlarged to the size of the cardboard head and replaced Pres. Clinton's with her son's likeness. She pasted a missionary name tag with her son's name on the breast pocket and put a Book of Mormon cover in his hand. Her now life-size "son" stands in the living room and is ever present at their family activities. The same idea can be used for a daughter-missionary and the Hillary Clinton stand-up.

Keep Missionary's girlfriend close to the family
To include their missionary's girlfriend in family activities, one of my friends makes a monthly "theme" pillow case to give her when they invite her to dinner each month with the family. For example, the September pillow case was made with a school print material; October's is a Halloween print, etc. The mother actually makes a pair of cases, but only one is given to the girl during the mission. If the pair decides to get married when he returns, the girl, who then becomes the daughter-in-law, will receive the matching cases as a wedding gift.

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Received from
bankaf
bankaf@xmission.com
Date: Thu, 14 Nov 1996
Missionary email
Our missionary was having trouble answering all the letters that she loved to get. She sends one home and I type it up and send it to all the family members via E-mail. There are about 15. It helps her a lot and in the mean time when they get their letters they send messages back and I forward them on to her. I not only keeps her informed but the whole family is informed with each other. We are getting much closer to members of the family that live far away and we are unable to see. Of course we print the letters and send them to grandma and grandpa each week. We haven't got them on-line yet, but we're working on it.

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Received from
Lisa
LisaMH1@aol.com
Date: Sat, 22 Feb 1997

Hey :) My missionary [boy]friend is in the Italy, ROME mission. I decided to save some mula for me and him, so what I do is get a dollar every day and make a chain! Boy.. I hope I don't run out! I fold them each a special way. K.. hold up a dollar bill, right-side-up. Now fold the lower-half up. Now fold the upper-half down, so it's even skinnier. Now fold the lower-half up, so it's WAY skinny. Now turn it over... Isn't that neat???? So that's what I have on all the rings. I staple the ends together. I hope that's ok!

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Received from
Lisa Oliver
lisa@itsnet.com
Date: Tue, 11 Feb 1997

Sending cookies to a missionary over the Internet. There is a great service run for the last year by a young married couple called MTC Cookies. They deliver fresh baked chocolate chip cookies daily right to the MTC with a card and my personal message. http://www.galaxymall.com/MTCookies It's a great way to let your son or daughter know right away that you are thinking of them.

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Received from
Georgia Gerritsen
georgia@ldsbooks.com
Date: Tue, 07 Jan 1997

When our son was on his mission in Argentina, we found the greatest way to ship him small packages was in pringles cans. We stuffed them full of items he couldn't get there, but would give him a taste of home. Things like ranch dressing mix, snickers candy bars, razor blades, spaghetti sauce mix. He loved it. We always made sure to ship two of the edible items so he could share with his companion. I was surprised to find that some of the missionaries have no contact with their families so it is important to remember them also.

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Received from
Marilyn Johnson
djohnson@aimnet.com
Date:Tue, 25 Mar 1997 21:16:16

When my brother was on his mission, we put a tape recorder in the middle of the Thanksgiving dinner table. We would ask him if he was crowded in the little black box. So now that we have two sons out, we did the same thing. We addressed them both at first and then just carried on with our dinner almost as if they were there. Then I made a copy and sent one to each of them. The only negative comment I got was that one son had comments he wanted to jump in with but couldn't. We would even ask if they wanted more turkey or potatoes and gravy.

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Received from
Chelsi Hirst
splake@itsnet.com
Date: 19 Apr 1997

My name is Chelsi Hirst, my boyfriend is currently serving in the Pittsburgh Pennsylvania Mission. We decided when he left that I would send all my letters in green envelopes (his favorite color) that way he always knew at first glance if he had gotten a letter from me. I also gave him a box of envelopes already addrssed and with postage, before he left to save him some time and cash.

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Received from
Melissa
rixter@infowest.com
Date: Sat 19 Apr 1997

One of the best packages I sent my missionary while he was in the MTC was a Rice Krispie Pizza. It was easy to make and it was a BIG HIT with all of the elders.
Here's how you make it:
1. Make a cardboard circle about 14" in diameter
2. Cover the circle with tin foil
3. The Crust: Make Rice Krispie treats (according to the recipe on the box) and press onto the cardboard circle.
4. The "Sauce"...Melt a bag of Milk chocolate chips in the microwave until creamy and spreadable. Spread the chocolate on top of the Rice Krispie crust.
5. Cool until chocolate is set up.
6. The "Cheese"..Melt together butter and marshmallows to make a cream sauce. Spread on top of chocolate.
7. Toppings: Pepperoni: Red gum drops, sliced; Sausage: Tootsie rolls, sliced; Green Peppers/Yellow Peppers: Green and Yellow gum drops, diced; Onion: white gum drops diced; Mushrooms: Cashew halves; Olives: Black gum drops, diced
Sprinkle on top of pizza
8. Refrigerate for several hours
9. Wrap Pizza several times in clear plastic wrap.
10. Place in pizza box (I got my box at a grocery store snack bar)
11. Send it right in the Pizza box.
Just a suggestion: I sent a pizza cutter with the pizza. Your missionary will love it!!!!

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Received from
"Rob Olson Family"
rolsen@golden.net
Date: Feb 1997

Whenever we have an extended family gathering for traditional holidays (Christmas, Thanksgiving, etc.) we always create a momento and send it to our missionary. One time we got a paper plate, and had everyone write a small note. We wrote it in a spiral, starting on the outside rim, and worked our way around and into the center. We had to use both sides to get everyone on. It was quite dizzying to read but fun. We have also made banners that everyone wrote a short note on.

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Received from
Lois Campbell
CRA456@aol.com
Date: 19 Jun 1997

Our son is in Costa Rica. We send pacages in padded envelopes and pringles cans. We list on the customs sheet "Missionary Supplies". Inside we include pictures mosty items he cannot get there. Ranch Dressing mix, Cheese cake mixes (send instructions) Candy bars (they are very expensive there) We have his wall of fame in our Den. A big bulletin board with all the pictures he sends us. We have a count down calendar that we put happy stickers on for every day he serves. On the side there are maps and the flag of Costa Rica. For Birthday and Christmas family members send a packet
I also feed our ward missionaries whenever they need a meal They know they can come anytime for a snack or cereal. I enjoy running errunds for them and hope that someone does the same for my son.

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Received from
CRight
CRight2638@aol.com
Date: 27 Jun 1997

Before our kids left on their missions we decided to purchase a large 3 ring binder for all of their mission letters. Whenever they wrote home we would read their letters and then immediately put them in a plastic sheet protector...and put them in the note book For those that wrote weekly it became their journal and then we added pictures from the MTC and the mission field and it was a wonderful keepsake when they came home.

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Received from
Terry Turk
TURKNUT@aol.com
Date: July 12

We just recently had the first nephew enter the mission field...before he left we decided to start a wonderful tradition called the "Tie & Ice cream Party" Everyone gathered to watch "Called to Serve" the wonderful video. Then grandpa called on a few uncles and aunts to bear testimony of their missions....The missionary then opened a tie from his aunts and uncles....He wrote their names on the back of the tie so that when he wore it, he would think of those at home that were thinking of him....We then enjoyed homemade Icc cream....We made sure that the missionary had his favorite kind....We all sang "Called to Serve", and the missionary bore his testimony. It turned out to be a wonderful evening!

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Received from
Cherlyn Curtis
ccnsl@sprintmail.com
Date: August 10, 1997
We asked for a map of the mission from Salt Lake right after our son received his call. We took it to Kinkos and had it enlarged to poster size. We hung it on a wall during the open house and then took it home and put it on a prominate wall. We highlight each area that our Elder is transferred to so we can track where he is serving. This really helps when his letters refer to going to this village or that city, we can look on the map and see how far he had to travel. Our son also prepared a list of names and addresses of those he wanted to keep in touch with before he left. Because time to write is precious in the mission, we edit his letters home and then make copies and send them out to those on his list. In order to conserve postage, we condense 3-4 letters at a time, and some times we send them out to all the names on the list, and other times we send them mainly to close friends and family. Ward members who are close to our son pick up their copy from us at Church. There will be 7 missionaries from our ward in the field soon. As mothers we exchange copies of our missionary's letters and forward them on to our missionary. That way they can keep in touch with each other and see how the different missions are doing, and not have the demand of writing so many letters home.

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Received from
Linda Tucker
LTucker972@aol.com
Date: 28 Oct. 1997

Our son just returned from Spain on Jan. 5th of this year. He and I were both born in Dec. so he loves Christmas as I do. He had never been away at Christmas. When he was at college he was home at Christmas so this was hard. I went to a store (Low-cost) with a small Christmas tree, trimmings and other Christmas decorations. A Nativity was also sent. He and the other elders were so happy. They had their pictures taken with the tree and they sat around the tree on Christmas reading the Christmas story. It helped them to feel the Christmas Spirit. They celebrate Christmas in Jan. there so my son gave these things to different families and they were thrilled. It helps to know it helped him and other elders but also is still a part of someone elses Christmas for a long time.

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Received from
"Karl Pearson"
thedad@ut.colubs.com
Date: 9 November 1997

I am hoping you can help us, or forward our message to someone who can. We are looking for a lonely missionary to "adopt". We know there are missionaries who never or rarely receive letters or packages. Our family adopts these lonely missionaries and sends them letters, articles, and care packages. We are searching for these Elders and Sisters. Thanks you for helping forward our message! ..."My Pleasure!!"

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Received from
Margie Westra
westra@softcom.net
Date: Dec. 6, 1997

As our 4 (so far) missionaries have served, I have collected inspirational, teaching, and motivational articles and stories--sending one with each letter. Since I have a nice collection now, I wanted others to be able to benefit from them also. So now, as each missionary leaves from our ward, I give a "Missionary Packet" to his/her parents with a cover letter, inviting them to send one of the enclosed articles with each of their letters. I print them on both sides of the paper to save weight, and prepunch them for convenience. I also give a 3 ring binder to send with the missionary to put the papers in as they are received. For a list of inspirational messages please visit http://www.softcom.net/users/westra/Margie.htm

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Received from
Former Elder Reynolds
KReynoRisk@aol.com
Date: Dec. 23, 1997

My mum wrote to me faithfully every week, and that consistency really helped through any tough times. She always included news about the ward, family and home city of Coventry. Sometimes the letters were short, but the fact that she always wrote was what counted. Included in every letter was an inspirational thought which not only raised spirits, but gave useful quotes for zone conference talks! Talk tapes were always a treat, family home evenings were sometimes recorded. As any missionary knows, especially those who are in a foreign land, you lose track of what is going on at home because of your spiritual growth and the change in culture. Hearing the voices of those at home helps to remind you of your roots even as you struggle to hang on to your accent (as I did!). The simplest of things were what I appreciated most - faithful letter writer, basic news, inspirational thoughts.
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Received from

EA1GLE@aol.com
Date: Sat Apr 18 1998

My missionary left this Christmas time for Rosario Argentina and I have no idea what kinds of foods I can send him. Any help?

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Received from
Sharon
mcavoy11@brigadoon.com
Date: Sat Apr 18 1998

We received the best present from our missionary this Christmas. He and several companionships shared the expense of renting a video camera. They each filmed a "Day in the Life of..." video for their families. It included a tour of their apartment, preparing for the day, and super testimonies from recent converts and ward members. We played the video on Christmas day and it was ALMOST like having him home. This was all done with approval and everything filmed was uplifting and appropriate. We are thinking of using the video as a fireside for the YM/YW. Thanks Sharon, sorry I am so late in getting this reported.

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Received from

LYoung3041@aol.com
Date: Sat Apr 18 1998

We currently have 2 daughters and a son serving missions in the Hong Kong, China (Amy); Dublin, Ireland (Rebecca); and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (Bradford); missions. Over the past 1 1/2 years our ward has sent 16 missionaries out. The families of current missionaries gather quarterly for a pot luck dinner and sharing of news and pictures, etc. of each missionary. As each missionary or couple return they also join us at the next gathering to share more of their missionary experiences in an informal setting. We have called it our missionary support group and it has been hugely successful. An idea for sending pictures as well as copies of letters to the many interested in our children's missions is to assemble several photos on a legal sized sheet and make color copies for maiing. Our children love getting family pictures and shots of each other in this way. They all write to me weekly and I copy their letters for each other, family and friends. We have over the months found less active members of our extended family showing great interest in receiving updates and letters from our children. One of their goals has been to do missionary work within the family as well as far away. Something that brings me closer to my children and their mission experiences is to attend homecomings of former companions who live in the area. For over a year we have had all three missionaries out and have another 8 months before they are all home. I would love to hear from others with multiple missionaries and their ideas.

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Received from
SLTG
johan@mail.cwia.com
Date: Sat Apr 18 1998

My daughter is my 3rd and last missionary to go. She is in the New York New York South Spanish Speaking Mission. My husband writes to her faithfully, every week. Since he tells her everything that's going on, I decided that I would send her packages about twice a month and write twice a month. The packages don't have to be very elaborate. Sometimes I just send her a case of Top Ramen. Sometimes I send theme packages. If the package isn't quite full, I go to my cupboards and see what is light weight or find something she probably won't buy but would enjoy it. I have sent cereal, toilet paper, napkins, Q-tips, dental floss, jello pudding & seasoning packets like taco seasoning. For February, I'm sending her the ingredients for rice crispie treats and a bear mold to put them in. I also made paper hearts on my computer and wrote a scripture on that talks about hearts; "A Pure Heart "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God." Matthew 5:8. "A Loving Heart" ...Love one another as I have loved you." John 15:12. I found this in a book sometime ago. What I have found out about Missionaries is that it's not what you send that counts, they just want to know that they haven't been forgotten and that you think about them as much as they think about you. They need to know that you love them.

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Received from

Curby22@aol.com
Date: Sat Apr 18 1998

My friend is going into the field soon. I plan on giving him a bunch of CTR rings (like the ones they pass out in primary) to give to newly baptized members. Many friends and family also tied him a quilt to take to remind him of all the support he has back home.

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Received from

Katenkids@aol.com
Date: Sat Apr 18 1998

To help our ward members write to our missionaries we typed up labels and pinned them to the ward bulletin board along with what it cost to send a one page letter to that missionary. Ward members liked the convenience. It has increased our ward letter writing.

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Received from
Deborah Cooper
http://www.mormons.com/creativeconn
Date: Sat Apr 18 1998

We sell Missionary Survival Kits. If you are interested in our site please give us a look see.

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Received from

Lpenro@worldnet.att.net
Date: Sat Apr 18 1998

I have a missionary who is serving in Magdeburg, Germany. I have found it easier to be without him by writing when I miss him. I write about everything that I am feeling, and then sometimes I send them within the week. The ones I don't send, I keep in the scrapbook I am making for him. I find this very helpful! (I don't write negative things... just positive)

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Received from
Sheila Reynolds
glr@brigadoon.com
Date: Sun Aug 2 1998

My son is returning this month from the Buenos Aires North Mission. While he was gone he missed our family reunion that we have every two years. This past reunion was at Yellowstone and was attended by almost 40 family members. I bought 40 assorted Yellowstone postcards, put postage and Andy's address on them, and gave them out to everyone there. A few days later I gathered them back up and mailed them. For weeks he received postcards sent filled with love and news from all those who love him. He was so surprised and felt included althought he was far away!

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Received from

TLandKim@aol.com
Date: Sun Aug 2 1998

This idea I have done with my son for 21 months now while he has been gone. At the MTC, and the first part of his mission, I would ask him questions, and he would never answer all the questions I had. (I had a lot of questions!!! ...I am a mom!!!) I wanted to know what his apartment was like questions about his companion, what was his favorite foods he ate at members homes, and etc. He would never respond to my silly questions. So I started sending a questioneer with each weekly letter. I left blanks for him to fill out. He always writes his letter on the back of the questioneer, and I always get an answer to my silly questions......important or not.

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Received from

Nanarob2@aol.com
Date: Sat Aug 29 1998

Our Son Rick in the Guayaquil Ecuador South Mission. At Christmas we sent him a packages (starting in Oct) for the 24 days of Christmas. ie. Christmas tree, light bulbs. We sent him his Christmas dinner at this time also. ie. 11b. ham, flaked mashed potatoes, gravy mis, cheese cake mix. We sent him a Christmas music tape of our favorite songs, LDS book, See's Candy, pants, etc. I get inspirational stories off the Internet and send them to him every week. I send him a package usually twice a month with cookies, candy, cheese slices (grilled cheese sandwiches), a can of pop, Doritos and some salsa. I send the chips in a Slim Fast can or large cookie can so they won't crush. I can only send things in 4 lb packages. I really have to use my head with what I send. I send the declaration sticker with "Missionary Supplies". I also put a sticker of Christ on the package. That way the postal workers won't help themselves to the packages. We have 7 more months to go. We are planning on picking our son up when he is released. YAHOOOOOO!!

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Received from
Linda Johnson
JOHNSOL@nopark.cache.k12.ut.us
Date: Mon Oct 26 1998

My son, Elder Cody Johnson is in the Cherry Hill, New Jersey Mission. When he left we were told to send sheets and pillow and blanket to his mission field for him. We tied a quilt with a design on one side and plain on the other. We took it to his farewell and put it in a room where Cody could not see. We asked friends and family to sign the quilt and give him advise and encouragement with fabric markers. There was so much love on that quilt. When he arrived in the field it was waiting for him and now he has his companions sign.

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Received from

qda@digitalpla.net
Date: Mon Oct 26 1998

I send a daily thought or poem with each letter that I send. The thoughts I put on a decorated 4 x 6 card and enclose it in the letter. If it's a poem or story, I put on cute stationary. That way they are not part of the letter and can be kept in a book or file to use for talks or lessons that they may give. I have a listing of all the thoughts and stories that I've been sending.

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Received from
Julie Ann
larson733@home.com
Date: Tue Oct 27 1998

THANKS FOR ALL YOUR MESSAGES

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Received from
Elaine
ETanne7770@aol.com
Date: Fri Oct 30 1998

We have six children. When our oldest was serving in Scotland I tried to send something each month. And to use a theme. One of his favorites was a "Birthday party in a box." We used a roll of paper used to cover tables at ward parties. We had each family memeber lye down and we traced around them (an idea from nursery), then each one filled in their own clothing, hair, etc. We also invited some of his best friends to come over and do the same. We cut them out, rolled each one up and put them in a box along with party hats, plates, napkins, cake mix, a can of frosting, money for ice cream, and cards from everyone. He was told to hang everyone on the wall for the day and have a party. He loved it and so did everyone else. It made me not miss him so much on his birthday, too. The other thing he liked was a long letter he kept asking for. He would always write, "Would you guys write me a long letter." Sooo, I took a roll of adding machine paper, unrolled it and wrote on it long ways, the words running the same direction as the tape. It was great. It was about 30 feet long. He talked about that forever. I just folded it up and mailed it in a large envelope. Try the party, you'll have a lot of fu n and it's great for family night. We now have a son serving in the Oklahoma, Tulsa Mission.

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Received from

mom_dad@ix.netcom.com
Date: Fri Oct 30 1998

I have a missionary in Salta, Argentina. It helps a lot to keep in touch with his family, especially when I miss him. I go and visit every so often and they invite me to dinner often. I am also making a scrapbook for him. It helps to remember him always and it keeps me going. :)

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Received from

Mle1998@aol.com
Date: Fri Oct 30 1998

This idea could be used by the Young Men or Young Women in a Ward. Maybe even Primary Children would like to do something like this: I'm a middle school teacher, infact where I teach 96% of our students are learning English as a second language. Spanish is their first language. My son is at the MTC right now. He will be going to the Mendoza Argentina mission. The first writing assignment I'm going to have my class do will be a letter to to my son. They will predict personality traits of his first companion. They will draw pictures of what the town will look like. I'm encouraging my students to use their Spanish in this one writing assignment. I will mail each letter separately. One day he'll be receiving 150 letters. What a celeb!

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Received from
Betty
kpearson@utw.com
Date: Fri Nov 6 1998

I have started an email group for mothers of LDS Missionaries. The group provides support, friendship, ideas for providing encouragement for our missionaries serving. If you are interested in joining, please visit our website at www.utw.com/~kpearson, or email me: Betty kpearson@utw.com. In each letter to our missionary, we like to enclose a spiritual thought or story. Our favorites come from the LDS Gems mail group. To find out more about LDS Gems, visit their website: www.lds-gems.com. You can also s subscribe to their mailing list.

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Received from
Rachel
rachel_415@hotmail.com
Date: Fri Nov 13 1998

Rachel is looking for a poem that she thinks is entitled "A Missionary's Girl." She does not know if that is the actual title, or who the author might be. If you have heard of a poem written especially for girls waiting for missionaries, send her an e-mail. Thanks

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Received from
Janet
jjensen@uswest.net
Date: Mon Nov 23 1998

Several diligent missionary moms in our area print a monthly newsletter for all the missionaries in the field in a particular high school graduating class. This newsletter contains names and current addresses of all missionaries serving from the class of '96, for example, dates of farewells and homecomings, and messages from missionaries. There is also a "What's Happening" column that one mother writes. It includes a report on what's happening at the high school, sports reports, new businesses in town, or anything that might be of interest to the missionaries. It is delivered each month to the family, which sends it to their missionary. Our ward also publishes a monthly newsletter, and each month there is a paragraph about each missionary who is serving. This is also sent directly to the missionaries Since my son is on the pouch system, his address will remain the same for his whole mission. I have printed return address labels for him to use. When he gets a new companion, I print a batch for him also, and send them with a card.

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Received from
Charles and Veline Ball
cbvalfam@worldnet.att.net
Date: Mon Jan 4 1999

My third (and last) son left for his mission in May 1998 to the Germany, Dusseldorf area. He and I have a special bond of loving drawing. He always had a cute cartoon for me when he drew at home and I would leave cartoons on the door of his room. Now when I write him I decorate his letters with artwork or I collect stickers and rubber stamps to include with my drawings. I was delighted when he sent me a comic strip of his experiences on the Autobahn!! Best wishes to all of you and many blessings to all your sons and daughters serving the Lord in the field.

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Received from
Gary A Lane
dalup@ior.com
Date: Tue Jan 5 1999

I have one son waiting for his via to go to the Argentia, Rosario mission and his twin brother at the mtc preparing to go to the Russia, Rustov na Danu mission. I am the Young Womens President in our ward and we take it upon ourselves to take care of the missionaries from our ward during the holidays. This season it has become extra special. We thought we would send pillowcases with a special message from each of the youth. (not just the girls) I sure appreciate all the ideas from everyone else. Thanks!

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Received from
Thais Maciel
thaismaciel@hotmail.com
Date: Tue Jan 5 1999

When my boyfriend went out on a mission I found out a way to make the long wait not too long. I bought a jar and put 25 gummy bears (or any long durable candy) inside the Jar. The first gummy bear I ate right after he left, and the following ones I would eat after fasting every first sunday of the month. It doesn't make time go any quicker but it sure makes you think it isn't that much time to wait.

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Received from
Terri G Sims

Date: Sun Jan 24 1999

My son left January 12th for Rome, Italy after 2 months at the MTC. After a tearful goodbye at the airport, I began trying to figure out how we would be able to save money so we could pick him up at the end of his mission. I knew that saving dollars would be near impossible because our budget is already pushed to it's limit. I remembered hearing about a local high school that saves 1,000,000 pennies from September to December each year for their Christmas charity. I decided that if they could do it in 4 months that certainly I could do it in 22 months. I mentioned my idea to some friends at work and soon had a large cannister sitting on my desk with my goal and what it was for printed onthe front. I have already receivedmany "unwanted" penniesfrom my co-workers toward my cause. My other 5 children are also contributing all of thier excess pennies. I also have another son who will be leaving on a mission in a year and this "penny fund" will help us be able to pick him up also.

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Received from
Lindsey

Date: Sun Jan 24 1999

When my missionary left 4 months ago, I decided I was going to start a "Missionary Monthly Newsletter" for him. So I made up a actual Newspaper cover page, and titled it "Missionary Newsletter", with the Month on it and the number of the Issue:(ie:"Issue 4"). Then I print up a scripture of the month, a story of the month, a quote of the month, and most of the time I will include a picture of the month. Also, I have every one in my family write him letters and paste them in there also. I put articles out of the actual newspaper that I think he might enjoy reading about, and also include the Ensign for that month. He likes those the best, because he can get talk topics out of them! I also try to send him a little "prize" for the month, like a "Missionary Pal", or a tie tac, ect. You can really put anything you want in the Newsletter, and the best part about it is, time starts to go by so fast, that the next thing you know, you are getting the next one ready to be mailed!! It also helps you to feel connected and closer to him while he is away!!

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Received from
Kathy McDowell
kmcdowell@omcs.com.au
Date: Sun Jan 24 1999

Whilst I am not a missionary mum, I am in Primary and oce a month for sharing time we want to do something special for a sister missionary out in the field. If any one has some great ideas of what we could do then I would appreciate knowing them. Kathy McDowell

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Received from
JANCYB
JANCYB@aol.com
Date: Mon Jan 25 1999

I know you can buy pillowcases with appropriate phrases for missionaries. B But I made "personalized" pillow cases. I used verses from scriptures and hymns that encouraged them to arise early, to get their sleep, walk and be not weary. I will look through my oldest sons things and see if I can find his and give references.

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Received from
Janeil Olsen
janeil@proaxis.com
Date: Mon Jan 25 1999

Our youngest son is in the France Paris mission. Our oldest son who is a computer whiz has set up a webpage for him that's really exciting. It has pictures, excertps from his latest letters, the weather in Paris, a map, links to the mission home page and the church's, a French English translating dictionary, and more. If you'd like to check it out the address is http://www.missionweb.com/carl/ It's a quick way for friends and family to get news of Carl (Elder Olsen I should say) and they can also send notes back to him which we print off and mail in a bunch. My oldest son would be happy to set up and maintain a web page for other missionaries (for a small fee). His address is www.missionweb.com Sister Olsen

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Received from
Maile
maile@azstarnet.com
Date: Mon Mar 8 1999

I am writing a book for missionary girlfriends. I am interested in stories and advice from other missionary girlfriends and missionary moms. I have started a listserv specifically for missionary girlfriends. This gives us a forum to express ourselves without fear of being laughed at or looked down upon. To subscribe, send me an e-mail to mg_club-request@listserv.azstarnet.com with the word "subscribe" as the subject/topic. Thanks *Maile*

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Received from

SunBeamGX@aol.com
Date: Mon Mar 8 1999

There is a place called MTC Cookies...I sent them to my missionary boyfriend while he was in the MTC and he loved them. They are about the size of Mrs. Fields Cookies and you get 2 dozen for around $20 delivered warm to them. The number for it is 1-888-MTC-COKY

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Received from
Mert and Pati Davis
wilddavi@gte.net
Date: Mon Mar 15 1999

Our ward, Garland 4th Ward, best ward in the Richardson Texas Stake - which qualifies it as the best ward in the universe. Not brag - just fact. Anyhow our ward has a half page (81/2 by 51/2) insert in the Ward Bulletin each Sunday with the name of the Missionary on it - this gives everyone a chance to write a note during Sacrament Meeting (keeps them from sleeping). A mailbox is located in the Foyer and every Sunday a bundle of letters is collected and mailed (on Monday) to our missionaries One of the other parents listed this idea, and we got it from a parent who has a son (Elder Ben Taylor) in the same mission (Philippines Ilagan Mission) as our son (Elder Gerald Davis) - and that is a questionaire (Stuff mom and dad want to know about) with room between the questions for him to write in the answer and send it back. Also, although the missionaries can't do email anymore, I have managed to get email addresses for the parents of one of our son's companions (Elder Barrett Labrum), and for the parents of several other missionaries (Sister Raygon Postert, Elder David Pardoe, and Elder Ben Taylor) and we share letters, notes, stories, etc with each other. We even were able to schedule a dinner together. Shared pictures, stories, and had fun.

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Received from
Linden Hatch
LHatch@eureka.k12.nv.us
Date: Mon Mar 15 1999

Our first missionary is now serving in the Texas San Antonio mission. Starting with the first letters he sent us from the MTC, I have put them into plastic holder pages, numbered as they have been received, and kept as a journal. As I look back on his earlier letters, and compare them with the ones received recently, I can see great growth, even in just the short time of 4 months he has been a missionary. I also have kept all the pictures he has sent so far. This binder will be my gift to him upon his return, to help him remember his mission, and be able to see how much he has grown during the time he thought he wasn't contributing much to the missionary effort. We also have his picture on the wall in the living room. I can be reached at this email address. Please list SUSAN as the subject.

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Received from
Bobbie
lizard66@gateway.net
Date: Sun Apr 18 1999

Our son is serving in the Billings, Montana mission. I made a "coupon" book and sent it to him. I made such coupons as "This coupon good for 2 dozen of your favorite cookies, etc.....I made some coupons "Good for a book of stamps" (or more stationary or things he needed.) I also sent him a coupon good for one "free" lunch for him and his companion. (I sent them money for pizza or whatever). It wasn't much but they sure appreciated it. I just printed out the coupons on the computer and printed crazy graphics on them. He really like them and has sent some home to be "redeemed". I always make extra goodies for his companion too. Also, here in the Northwest it can get humid in the summer and the missionaries serving here are on bikes. They no doubt have unquenching thirsts and just need a minute to stop and rest and get something icy cold to drink. I always keep a cooler on the back porch and it is filled with ice water and cold sodas for the missionaries. Whenever they are in our neighborhood they know they can stop by and helpl themselves to a cold drink. (I put a candy bar in there too, they love that). Since I work and can't be home when they come by, this is my way of letting them know how much I appreciate all their hard work. I know that by showing appreciation for them, someone in Montana will be doing the same for our son. I'd love to hear from Mom's who have a son or daughter serving in Montana or who have a missionary here in Tacoma. I'll be sure and correspond. Thanks bobbie

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Received from
Blake
wisecrac@wilmington.net
Date: Tue Jul 6 1999

My son will soon be leaving for the Provo MTC. Our family will be speaking at Sacrament Meetig, and I have been having difficulty preparing for this. What do you say, "I am having temporary schizophrenia-yes, I want him to go and no, I don't want him to go." HELP!!! I know every mom must feel this way at times. Nothing he could do in his life at this time would make me happier, and we have all been preparing for this since before he was born. Alas, I am coming up short on ideas for this talk. I am certain my entire ward would appreciate any help you could give me, for they don't want to see me cry and blow my nose (again!!). Brazil is very far away from this southern mama.

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Received from
Lenard Flygare
bflygare@itsnet.com
Date: Tue Jul 6 1999

Our son, Brady B. Flygare, is in the California, San Bernardino Mission. He is just about to go over hump day. Does anyone have any clever ideas to celebrate this special occasion? THANKS!

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Received from
Hendricks
n7ut@burgoyne.com
Date: Tue Jul 6 1999

My son is serving in the South Dakota Rapid City Mission 5 months left YEAAA ~ But I digress :) I understand that after several years the letters written in pen or pencil will fade and are very difficult to read. So, when we receive Elder Steven Hendricks letters I will photo copy them. I have one binder with his original letters, one with the photo copied letters and one with a copy of the letters we have sent him. (this latter also works nicely as a journal keeping for mom)

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Received from

WMHCAWeb@aol.com
Date: Sun Aug 1 1999

I have sent three missionaries on mission (two left to go) and their favorite thing to get in the mail is a greenie box. Just as they are leaving the MTC (if they are going foreign -- this saves on postage) or after they have their first assignment (if they are in the states), I sent them a greenie box. This box was filled with all sorts of useful things that were green: green gum, lifesavers, stationary, soap, shampoo, beanie babies, bubble bath, tie, socks...you get the idea. My children at home had as much fun shopping for the contents as my missionaries had receiving them. My younger children can't wait to get out in the missionfield to receive greenie boxes of their own.

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Received from
Kathryn Lynch
hartford@haldane.com
Date: Thu Aug 5 1999

I have received an invitation to a mission send-off day for the daughter of friends of mine who are LDS. They are in Las Vegas, I am in CT, unless I win the lottery tomorrow, I'm probably not able to attend the farewell party. But I would like to respond appropriately and send along my encouragement as well as an appropriate gift. I am not LDS. I have no idea what is appropriate. I might assume money to help fund her mission. I know that missions are self-funded and I see by your website that they generally last 2 months. But I could be wrong. What would a young woman about to embark on her mission value, enjoy, use? I really like my friends and would like to support their daughter's service to the church. I just don't know what is usual.

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Received from
Gary and DeAnn
gdlloydl@juno.com
Date: Tue Aug 24 1999

We currently have 13 missionaries out from our ward. Each month the missionary parents get together for a dinner at one of the local eating places. We share ideas and find out about all the other missionaries. We really love these monthly sharing times. We also invite parents as soon as we know their child is preparing to send in their papers because we all know the best places to get the best deals on missionary items. We also lend a shoulder for crying for the moms of recently gone missionaries and help them wait "patiently" for that first letter. We have become a really close knit group. In fact, we have parents anxiously waiting to be able t join with us.

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Received from
Marge
lexiemis@fascination.com
Date: Thu Aug 26 1999

I don't have any children on a mission but I have been an advisor in the Young Women's for a few years and there is always a lesson or two about missionaries. So I went to Walmart and bought some of the sample items (enought of each item to send one of each to each missionary) such as small tubes of toothpaste, bars of soap, tums, red and black pens, tic-tacs...etc. and then I passed them out to the young women's class and they had to find a scripture that would go with each item. It is really amazing what they found. For example: on the Tums, they found a scripture about the burning in your bosom. And the missionaries thought it was a lot of fun to receive these items that they could use and not have to pack from one area to another.

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Received from
Lisa Oliver
lisa@mtcfreemail.com
Date: Thu Sep 9 1999

My name is Lisa Oliver. We are starting a new service for friends and family of MTC missionaries. It is called MTC Free Mail. We deliver letters at no cost directly to the MTC. People don't even have to use a stamp. It is really free. http://www.mtcfreemail.com In accordance with the First Presidency advisement that missionaries are not to use email...we acutally print these letters out and hand deliver them in an envelope to the MTC Mailroom. Just thought that it would be of interest to some of your people.

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Received from
Misionary idea
WBills6648@aol.com
Date: Thu Sep 9 1999

While I don't have any missionaries, I have served a mission myself and know how important it is to be remembered by family and friends - particularly on a birthday. I am an independent consultant for a company called 8-800PARTYSHOP and we sell "Theme Parties in a Box". There are over 80 different themes and the boxes come complete with plates, napkins, tabelcover, candles, knives, forks, spoons, balloons, etc. There are themes for birthdays or themes just to "cheer someone up". Prices are reasonable and the boxes can be shipped directly to the missionary or college student or anyone. If there are any individuals who would be interested in receiving a catalog or more information they can e-mail me at either WBills6648@aol.com or billswendy@juno.com It takes so much time to run all around finding things for a complete birthday party, packaging it, shipping it, etc. - and this makes it really really easy!

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Received from
Rachael
cumorahs@lady2000.freeserve.co.uk
Date: Fri Sep 10 1999

Hi my Best Friend is in Singapore & is English (like me) & doesn't return home till March 2000 is there anyone who knows him. His name is (Elder Quinn) or who has any ideas on what to send? All ideas and answer's will receive a reply Thank you My e-mail address is cumorahs@lady2000.freeserve.co.uk

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Received from
Laura
lala_08@hotmail.com
Date: Thu Dec 2 1999

I have a web-site on packages I sent to my friends who were serving missions. I sent them packages every month and on my page is posted ALL the packages I did and a few ideas others have sent me. If you would like to take a look go to: http://www.homepages.infoseek.com/~lalahaha/Missionary1.html

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Received from
Judy Hoeger
hoegergjh@freewwweb.com
Date: Mon Apr 24 2000

We have sent two sons on missions and our dadughter will be returning from Brazil in two weeks! I started this tradition when our first son on his mission. We kept anything to do with his mission, i.e. his call, letters of instructionn, all things he wrote us and all pictures he sent us. We compiled all this into a loose leaf binder in page protectors in chronological order. Before our missionary returned, I bought fabric and made a covered photo album with all the memorbelia. My sons have used them as journals of their missions. Our second son wrote very detailed letters because heknew this would be his mission journal. They marvel at their own growth during those two years. It's a great keepsake of a mission.

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Received from
Laura
lala_08@hotmail.com
Date: Mon Apr 24 2000

Hi. I have a web-site on packages I sent to my friends who were serving missions. I sent them packages every month and on my page is posted ALL the packages I did and a few ideas others sent me. The URL is: http://homepages.infoseek.com/lalahaha/Missionaryl.html.

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Received from
Kelly
jakellfarnsworth@hotmail.com
Date: Mon Apr 24 2000

Well I just thought I'd add one of my recent ideas that I used. This year for my missionaries new year packages I got together a bunch of balloons, lots of different candies, new year party decorations, blowers, hats....the whole works. I found a bunch of little travel games at the dollar stores and added them, to give the missionaries something todo, bubbles, stationary and stamps, a letter to each of them, mind games and just a whole bunch of fun stuff so that they can ejoy their new year. They may not use all the little games, but they made it cute and party like. One missionary is in Ohio, so I won't send it until closer to New Years, but one is in Australia and I had to send it a few weeks ago so he will get it by then. Always make sure you add enough stuff for your missionary and their companion. Well hope it was helpful.....even a little bit. Good Luck! Kelly

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Received from
Jason
jwturley@quik.com
Date: Mon Apr 24 2000

There is a website that has everything you could ever want for missionaries. It is http://www.calledtoserve.com. The site was originally launched in September of 1998. This site is by far the most complete site I have seen for missionaries. You can create your own website for your missionary, where you can post letters, pictures an more. There is a section where you can get 100's of quotes and talks from General Authorities on missionary work. They have a full service bakery, clothing store and book store. This site is awesome! All of the services are totally free!!! There are alot of sites out there that have some good things for missionaries but I haven't seen anything even close to the called to serve site. They have mtc freemail and a daily inspirationl missionary thought that comes to you in your email ("mission pearls"). I am so excited about this site. I can't list everything that they have. You'll just have to go there and see. Ed J. Pinegar former President of the MTC chairs their advisory board with 7 other former mission presidents, and Sister Ardeth Kapp (former Young Womens President.)

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Received from
Theda Duff
theda@mesh.net
Date: Wed Apr 26 2000

The day after I took my son to the MTC in September 1996, I was driving to the SLC Airport to fly home. I was thinking it would be great if someone from the area my son was going to serve in would write me and tell me a little about the area. I drove a mile or two and it came to me I could write the missionaries' mothers that are serving in my home ward. The next Sunday I got the names and addresses of the missionaries mothers. I wrote them a little about the area and a little history of the ward and community. I have written mothers, dads, grandmothers, step-mothers and whoever the missionaries would like for me to write. I have received calls, and letters from some mothers and granddads. They have said it was an answer to their prayers. Some just write a thank you note and others write you back several times. Some I never hear from, but that is ok I don't expect to receive anything from them at all. My son came home in 1998, but I have continued writing the mothers. It has been a blessing to me and I feel it has helped some of the family members too.

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Received from
Julee
Soelberg257@cs.com
Date: Sat Jun 24 2000

Prior to our son leaving for his mission we asked extended family members and friends to write a one page letter of advice, or their feelings, to our son as he left for his mission. We gave them each a page of cute missionary scrapbook paper and asked them to computer-type or handwrite their feelings of love and support to our son. While our son was int he MTC we collected all these pages and put them in plastic scrapbook pages. We then compiled a three-ring binder with all of these wonderful letters. The day our son left for his mission from the airport, we gave him a little goodie bag with treats to eat on the plane and included this book. He absolutely loved it! He said he read it as he flew to Brazil and it helped him tremendously. He has referred to it as a great motivator while on his mission also. You could include a few photographs of the people who write their letters if you want to. It takes a little prep time but is well worth it.

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Received from
Jeff Bright
jeffb@masterhealth.net
Date: Mon Sep 18 2000

Water becomes a necessity for every missionary during the hot summer months. I went on a mission to Chicago and it was required for us to carry around a water bottle while we tracted. We were strongly advised not to drink the city water, so that made things difficult. Missionaries who go to other countries like Mexico or Brazil have a difficult time finding good water. I recently found a water bottle that filters the water as you drink it. I am sending these to all of my friends who are on missions. Those long tracting days would have been much better if I had one of these bottles. If you are not sure where to find a filtered sports bottle, contact me and I will direct you to the company that I buy from.

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Received from
Jeanine
nnrsbyu@hotmail.com
Date: Mon Sep 18 2000

I have a missionary in Resistencia Argentina. Right now I'm trying to come up with a cute creative package for his birthday. If anyone has some great ideas or has a missionary in the same mission I would love to hear from you!!!

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Received from
Elizabeth
egtexas@hotmail.com
Date: Thu Mar 8 2001

I am not a missionary mom, but I am an RM and thought that maybe mothers out there might want some ideas about what to write and what not to write to their missionary. Do's - send thoughts that you hear that can be used to share with members after dinner. We can never get enought of these. - do write about a spiritual experience you have. - write about missionary experience that you have - write about once a week. Missionaries live for letters. - let them know how proud you are of them - encourage them to share their mission experiences with you and keep them as a journal for them. - remember that missionaries get discouraged, so send positive letters. - remember to include them in your prayers!!!!! Don'ts: - Don't do any sort of countdown or let them know how long they have been gone. They already know!!! At the end most are trying to forget that their wonderful experience is about to end. - Don't go on and on about how much you miss them. This will make it hard for them. - Don't write things that will distract them from the work. They are doing the Lord's work and need your support. - Don't write them things about the opposite sex (ex. girlfriends or girls you want them to meet.) Hope these are helpful.

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Received from
Karolyn Pieren
pieren@harborside.com
Date: Fri Jun 1 2001

Having our son in a state side mission may not be as "exciting" but it sure is easier to do fun things as it is less expensive. I like most of you, am doing the scrap book thing, and have gone into the mapquest and typed in his address and the mission home and got driving directions etc. to his home....I have sent that to him, as a joke incase he gets lost etc... I keep them in his scrap book to remember each place. I try to send a box about every other month, and never tell him until the last minute when to expect it. On hump day, I bought a beenie baby camel, and he seems to be collecting ties, so I go to thrift shops and often send him a tie...In March, I did an allGREEN box everything had to be green, On Valentines Day I followed him thru his day and had first things you do in the morning till bed time comes out of the box hooked with little notes telling about them and every thing had to be red, pink or white. At Christmas we of course sent his gifts but first sent a package of lights and decorations, then his gifts but we missed the "do ta do" fights with the rolls out of the wrapping paper so I sent him two on top for he and his companion to keep up the tradition. I also had a ward family give him and his companion the traditional 'sweats' pajamas that we give each Christmas eve, he did not know that he was going to get them and that was fun. We were able to send a email to that family to give to him...(we since were told not to email and have not) I send him a party in a box for his birthday...with streamers hats, etc. cake mix In between boxes I cut up my church news, and send articles, clippings and glue ins and special stories. I have never missed a week writing and try to write the most newsy and up lifting letters I can. Thinking of things all the time to send and to write keeps him close to us in our hearts as well as our prayers.

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Received from
Deborah Snyder
Sterlingpeople@aol.com
Date: Wed Jul 11 2001

My son, David, JUST left for Brazil. He is going to Belo Horizonte East Mission. As many of you know he flew straight to Sao Paulo to the MTC there. We are getting very conflicting information on the mail system in Brazil. How long will letters from there to here (Northern Nevada) take? You can imagine how anxious we are for that first letter since we are not getting that Provo adjustment time. Will it take longer from Belo than Sao Paulo? How long for our letters to reach him? How about packages? Do they have to pay duty fees when they receive them? Do they receive them always or how much of the time? How long does it take to receive a package from the States? I picked up the US Postal internation mailing guide. THere are so many ways to send! Obvisouly letter post airmail for letters. But what about packages. It looks like Global Priority Mail is the best route for anything under 4 pounds. How long will this take? and what about the time differences between Parcel Post Airmail and Parcel Post Surface? Surface seems to be the only even half way economical way to send a larger Christmas or Birthday package but how long will it take? Does it take longer if they are not in one of the large cities? Is it safer to send to the mission home or direct? I know these are a lot of questions but I am hoping some of you good people with missionaries out there or recently returned will clue me in. You may respond to sterlingpeople@aol.com. Thanks Deborah Snyder

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Received from
Catherine
AlwaysTheLuck1@aol.com
Date: Thu Oct 4 2001

I have been writing a missionary in the Sydney Australia Mission recently. I was wondering if anyone had any ideas on what they might be missing out on over there. Things such as candy bars or what not. I know there must be little things he misses from the states, that he can't get over there. I am just not totally sure what. Also, is it appropriate to send pictures? I want to help be a positive impact on his missionary experience. Any other ideas on special things to do or send that would make his day and help with the home sickness would be appreciated. God bless the missionaries and thanks for the help.

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Received from
Aimee Linde
talinde@netzero.net
Date: Thu Oct 4 2001

Hi my name is Aimee Linde. I was searching for something like the 12 days of Christmas for my brother who is serving a mission in the Bronx of NY. I found your site but didn't find anything for my idea, so I wrote my own and thought that you might like it for your site. Just in case anyone else would like to do the same for their missionaries. Any one can e-mail me and I would be happy to e-mail the whole song.format to them or you can put it up on your site: (**NOTE: put shoes in correct space for size and move what was in that space to 12. (smile) Also I have it written out so that all you have to do is cut each day out and put it with the gift....we are also in the process of making a tape of the whole song for the 12 day so they can hear it all together On the First Day of Christmas my family gave to me: 12 size in shoes, 11 cookies crumbling, 10 pairs of socks, 9 foods a yummy, 8 different candies, 7 tree hangers (ornaments) 6 stocking stuffers, 5 nice white shirts, 4 new ties, 3 pairs of garments, 2 pairs of gloves, And a nativity scene of our Lord and King.

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Received from
Britty
brittynz@hotmail.com
Date: Thu Apr 18 2002

This idea is similar to one I have seen on this sight, but with a twist of sorts. I am a returned missionary sister and understand the importance of the need to remain focused on the work. Valentines Day can be made easier for the missionary by changing the focus of the day. Valentines Day is to remember and acknowledge the ones that you love and that love you, so rather than making him a love sick puppy, make it a day to remember the Savior. Everything inside and outside the package is red and pink. First line the package with red tissue. Cut out red and pink hearts and write as many scripture references that you can out of the topical guide on love. Frame a picture of the Saviour in the red robe in a red frame, purchase "Greater Than Us All" and replace the label with a red or pink one. A heart shaped gift box filled with heart candy and thoughts about the Atonement and why you love the Savior. You could add candles, heart ballons. Write your testimony on pink or red paper, rolll it up and put a red ribbon around it. Make the Savior the focus and not romance. Happy Valentines Day!

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Received from
Kathy Dahlin
kgdahlin BYH@msn.com
Date: Wed Jun 26 2002

My son is going to the Recife Brazil Mission. The information in our missionary booklet discourages sending packages to the missionaries there. Has anyone had experience with sending packages to this mission?

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Received from
Carissa
hodges@redriverok.com>
Date: Wed Jun 26 2002

I have a brother going away on a mission this year. He will be the first and we are so proud of him for chosing to go. The decision was tough considering his father is not a member and he is giving up a scholarship to do this. I came up with the idea of sending a recipe box to your missionaries and filling it with recipes from your kitchen. even some of the ingredients that would keep well through the mail. It's great that they could open up a box and whip up something mom used to make. We all know there are days when they don't get fed by the memebers and don't have the money to go out. This comes in so handy. Remember to make sure these recipes are easy and quick as they don't have a lot of time to be cooking. I hope you can find use for my idea.

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Received from
Sandra Erickson
sandrae@atkinsonel.com
Date: Tue Oct 29 2002

I am an avid scrapbooker and have started a scrapbook for my son's mission. I also take pictures of family happenings such as reunions, blessings, trips, etc. and have two copies made. I send one to him which he can throw away because he can't possibly keep everything, and one stays with me. I include that copy in another scrapbook I am making entitled "While You Were Away". This way he can see how the family grew while he was gone and won't "miss out" on the happenings in the family.

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Received from
Donna Lowry
donnalowry61@knology.net
Date: Fri Jan 24 2003

I started the "MAMA" CD Clug with my son Ryan when he left on his mission. MAMA stands for Missionary Appropriate, Mother Approved. I sent him a letter. Dear Elder Lowry, Welcome to the MAMA CD Club. If you decide to join our club you will receive one new CD each month for your listening pleasure. Some of the titles you will be receiving will include such titles as: "Popcorn Popping" and "I Know My Father Lives." Please accept this first trial CD "Songs Of The Savior" as our free gift to you. If you enjoy it another CD will follow, one each month. You don't have to keep any you are not totally happy with. You may throw them out with no expense to you or our company. The only cost to you for enrolling in this club is continued hard work and dedication. (You must also write to your mother!) Please let us know if you enjoy the songs that have been selected for you and if there needs to be any changes made to the program at any time. We do ask that you inform us of any address changes so we can update our files. (We do understand that in your present line of "WORK" that an address change can occur at any time the Lord sees fit.) Thank you for your interest in our organization and we hope to be hearing from you soon. We send only copies of the music in case it gets lost or with mission president changes the style of music they can listen to may change. This way if tahey need to get rid of some they can just throw it away and not worry about it. He will also have a great library of wonderful music when he gets home! We've had a lot of fun with this and I am happy to say CD #12 Goes out this month!!!!! Only 12 more to go!!!!!

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Received from
Tyler Smith
tysuesmith@msn.com
Date: Fri Jan 24 2003

There is a website with international phone calling tips and links with low rates to most countries. Our son is in Brazil. It costs 8 cents a minute to call to Sao Paulo or Rio. The calls are very clear. There are no monthly access fees and no connections charges and they bill in 6 second intervals. Our missionary can call home on our account for only 46 cents a minute instead of calling collect at over $7.00 per minute. The website is www.MissionaryCalls.com

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