Last night we received our first phone call from friends, wishing us a good Christmas season. In Church today we were reminded several times by members of the church and friends that today is the start of the Christmas season. Today is the first Advent. There are always four Advents that lead up to Christmas. Today we are still in the month of November, but that does not matter. I remember from my childhood that my parents had a Christmas wreath with four candles, and on the 1st Advent were able to light the first of the candles on that wreath. On the 2nd Advent we could light the 2ND candle. On the Sunday before Christmas, when we were able to light all four candles, as children, we knew that Christmas was just around the corner and the wait was about over. It is like a countdown. Today we received our first Christmas stocking with some very yummy things in them. Anina decorated our apartment with all kinds of Christmas decorations.Even without snow on the ground, It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas all around the town. The Christmas markets are all in full swing and Christmas decorations and lights are visible everywhere. In the markets live bands are playing Christmas music. The markets are all full of people. The foods that are available are irresistible, even if you are not hungry. We live less than a block from an old market in our old town of Hombruch. One could buy just about everything, but I have yet to see a bargain for things that are made in Germany, that would be of sentimental value. It is fun to walk and look at things and talk to people.On the 6th of December it will be Nikolaus day. St Nikolaus will come and bring some small gifts to all the good boys and girls on this day. It will wet the appetite for bigger and better things to come am Heiligabend (Christmas Eve).Oh, how we wish all of this wonderful Christmas Spirit would translate into a desire to learn more about the life of that baby's birth on that first Christmas Day. Even as it is, it is a wonderful season and this world is better because of it. We pray that all of you will have a wonderful and meaningful season as we think more about the great life, teachings and atonement of the Savior.We have had a wonderful week (even if we did not have a thanksgiving meal of turkey and trimmings) and we are enjoying good health.The missionary work is slow, for that we are sad. We did enjoy the fellowship of the saints in our ward in Dortmund today. All six if us missionaries were in invited to dinner this afternoon at the home of our Relief Society President. She and her husband told us to count this as their Christmas Gift to us. It was a wonderful meal.Tomorrow, we, along with some of the Young Adults will decorate the Outreach Center as part of our Family Home Evening. We have a busy week planned this coming week. We will drive to Hamburg for a Senior Missionary Conference. We are planning to stay with some friends in Bremen for one night on our trip back from Hamburg.We have been very blessed and are enjoying our work.We feel your love. Tell everyone at the Andersen Christmas party hello for us. It makes us homesick to think of not being there!