Monday, August 30, 2010

A note from a thankful family- To Phillip Ray Brown

President Brown insisted that he’d never want us to say that “the mission years were the best two years of our lives”… So we won’t say that here… but for both Angie and I those years still hold some of the choicest blessings and some of the fondest memories we’ve experienced so far. And how we miss our dear mission family, our great missionary friends, and the people we were called of God to serve!

The Câmara Manoels are the merging of two Porto Portugal missionaries- Sister Angela Fawson and Elder Câmara Manoel, and rather than entertaining you with how that ever came to pass, we’ll tell you a bit about where we are today.

Angie ended her mission in mid-1993, and at the end of the same year I ended my own. At that time I came to the United States to spend Christmas with a good mission friend. During that stay Angie and I went on a date, and 23 days later we were married in the Salt Lake Temple (we had other dates during that period of time- at least two or three more). Heavenly Father has since blessed us with four beautiful and healthy children. Two boys and two girls (David- 13, Stefanie- 10, Daniel-8, and Anna-4).

We lived in Utah while I completed my undergraduate at BYU, and shortly after graduation was hired by Novell where I worked for the better part of a decade. We’ve since moved to the Pacific Northwest where we’ve been living for the last five years, thanks to a departing Novell VP who snagged me to work with him at Microsoft, in Redmond Washington. At Microsoft I work as a Group Program Manager (that means that I manage a group of developers, testers and project managers) in the software virtualization space. I have since then also completed an MBA.

While I’ve been having fun with computers and school books, Angie has taken upon herself the responsibility of full-time motherhood, running our household, raising our four children (and now homeschooling them), and serving in a variety of callings in the church, from cub leader (this one came handy), primary president, to counselor in the relief society presidency, to now a teacher in the primary. My church service has been almost exclusively in the young men, serving in various callings in the ward, stake and with the Boy Scouts of America’s Western Region. Only recently was I called to serve as an Elders Quorum president in my ward where I still work with “young men at heart”.

The one constant thread throughout our journey together has been our deep and abiding testimony of Christ’s atonement, and the truthfulness of His gospel. This we have today, in great measure, because of a loving mission family who nurtured, loved, taught, and chastised us when we needed a loving and firm father and mother. They were instrumental in instilling in us the good faith-promoting habits that have since shaped our lives.

Still today, whenever my own family kneels to pray, I remember Sister Brown’s pleading to the Zone Leaders (who were not kneeling to pray), to show reverence for the great Jehovah.

Still today, whenever I kneel to pray in the morning, I remember how President Brown taught us that the first part of his body to touch the floor when he got out of bed was his knees.

Still today, when I open my scriptures daily, I remember how he taught us that his life-changing Zone Conference talks had taken him over forty years of preparation, explaining that they were the fruit of consistent scripture study.

The truth is we all just wanted to be like them back then, just as we still do today.

And with those teachings they left us, with their great legacy of faith, and in following with President Brown’s loving admonition, we will continue building the best years of our lives.

We love you President and Sister Brown.

Com o seu poder e no seu amor, nos encontraremos em jesus. Com seu poder e no seu amor, oh, que deus vos guarde em sua luz.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

An Early Start to a Life of Service

Once in a while our kids will do something so amazing that you just have to stand back in awe. Almost two years ago Stefanie had a friend who was growing her hair out for locks of love, a charity in which you can donate your hair to make wigs for people who are losing their hair from cancer treatments or for various other medial conditions. It's not as easy as you might think. They need a minimum of 10" in order for them to accept you hair. Stefanie has Very thick coarse hair and so the morning brushing of this hair at times was taxing on her because she has a very sensitive head. We've taken a few trips to the salon over the months hopeing that it would be long enough but it just hasn't been until this last weekend

Last night we shipped her hair off to Locks of Love. I'm just so proud of her willingness to do something bigger than herself. As you can see she feels pretty good about it too. What an amazing daughter I've been blessed with.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The Best Part of Summer?

The best part of the summer? That's easy. We had the honor of having my wonderful in-laws at our home this summer. Eduardo and Manela What amazing people. I can't say enough about how much they have enriched our lives and I just think the world of them. I'm so grateful we got to spend the summer with them and I'm truly grateful for the amazing moments that presented themselves. The Lord truly does bless our lives in wonderful ways.

Summer Summary

What an amazing summer we've had this year! We kicked off our summer fun with a Mariners baseball game. Our first game as a family since we moved up here 3 years ago. We spent the evening with our friends from the ward as it was LDS night. We all got the giggles as the poor beer salesman climbed to the top of the nose bleed section to no avail. The Mariners lost, but Daniel has been showing an interest in playing next year.

Monday, June 29, 2009

David Camara Manoel Earns Star Rank

David, our 12 year old has just earned his star rank in our local scout unit. We are all very proud of the work he is doing to advance in scouting. This is something he has grown to enjoy quite a lot. David loves camping and the outdoors and demonstrates a great deal of desire to serve others, which is a core value of scouting. Kudos for a program that does so much to develop strong young men, and to his leaders as well, who are tireless in helping the boys meet their goals.


O David, nosso filho mais velho (12 anos), recebeu recentemente o ranque de "Star" na nossa unidade escutista local. Estamos todos muito orgulhosos e gratos pelo trabalho que o David está a desenvolver no escutismo, um programa que ele parece apreciar bastante. O David gosta muito de acampar e da natureza, e demonstra um grande desejo de ajudar ao proximo, o que constitui um dos valores centrais do programa do escutismo. Estamos gratos por um programa que tanto faz para desenvolver os rapazes, assim como pelos seus líderes que são incansáveis no seu apoio aos jovens.