Tuesday, September 25, 2012

after vacation

After our vacation, I went to Seattle to get Chase and Mark flew home to Boise to take care of Reyna.  Chase was quite happy to see is mom, even though he was totally spoiled by grandma and grandpa.  
 This is Chase on the ferry ready for our drive home to see dad.  He was just as excited to see dad as he was to see mom.  He was a good boy on the 7 1/2 hour drive home.  He ate snacks, napped and watched movies.  What a good travel buddy!

Vacation 5 and 6

Ok, so I have finally decided I needed to finish up our church history vacation.  So, on day 5 we woke up in the morning and headed off to the Kirtland temple.  This was the first temple built, but it is not owned by the LDS Church at this time.  It is owned and operated through the Church of Christ.  We got to tour the temple and hear all about how it was used at the time and now.  I was initially disappointment, as I thought for sure the spirit would be so strong there and it wasn't.  It made me sad.  However, prior to leaving, the tour director said he would allow the group to sing a song if they wanted, so a lady in our group jumped up and went to the piano and the song chosen was "the Spirit of God", which was song on the day the temple was originally dedicated.  WOW!!!  Talk about a powerful experience.  Song invites the Spirit, and I felt it so powerful at that time.  We then headed out for pictures.  Isn't it beautiful, and to think it was all built by hand, sweat and blood.  
 with my honey!
 We then ventured to the Newell K Whitney store.  I loved it there too!
 This is the Bishop's Storehouse.  This was a place where members could come with items and exchange for what they needed.  Even today the bishops store houses are present within the church system and offer food and other items to people in need.
 This was the room that was used as the school of the prophets.  This is where much learning took place.  During our tour, the missionary giving the tour asked Mark and I to bear our testimonies.  Of all the people in the room, she picked us.  If you know me, then you know I don't do well bearing my testimony in public.  It is dear to me and I have worked hard to gain a testimony.  For me, many of the things I believe in have come with a cost to have that knowledge, so the experienced attached are so dear and personal.  I also have a fear  that because much of my knowledge has come from personal study that I sound pretty stupid and simple.  As a result, it scares me to share that with others.  Anyway, it always makes me cry when bearing my testimony and this time was no different.
 Another room where many meetings were help and lots of revelations were had on top of the Whitney store.
 This is the sawmill that was used to help build the temple.  In working order, however it is not used.
 This is the ashery.
 Finally, on the last day, we journeyed to the John Johnston farm.  Here, is where Joseph and Emma stayed. for some time.  This is the house in which Joseph was taken from, tarred and feathered and  a few days later their young son died from having the measles and then being exposed to the cold air when the mob came into the house.
 This was the room Joseph and Emma stayed in.  Isn't the floor cool!  This is original that they found.
 This is a room in the Johnson farm house that many revelations were had.
Front of the farm house.

Then we flew home.  It was a great trip with lots of learning and experiencing.  I am glad Mark and I were able to enjoy it together.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

September 11

I just wanted to take a few moments to reflect on my feelings on this day.  I knew it was coming.  Who could not see the date September 11 and not have some feelings about it.  However there had been little talk in the news about this day, compared to last year, the big 10 year commemoration.  As I drove to work, the radio replayed events from 11 years ago and flags were flying in yards, more so than normal.  All the flags at the police station were being flown at half staff and I realized it affects me more as each year passes.  I get teary eyed and a bit emotional as I recall the events on that day 11 years ago. 
There are just a few times in my life that I can vividly recall where I was and what I was doing and how I felt when something I saw as a big deal happened.  The first one, for those that lived in Las Vegas, was when Pepcon exploded.  I was at school at Las Vegas Day School, out at recess.  It was May and my mom was out of town at a health camp.  I saw that mushroom cloud in the sky and had a deep need to have my mom home.  At that young age, I really didn't know what was happening, but had that sense in my body that I just wanted to be around my mom.  Obviously in the end it wasn't that big of a deal (except the marshmallow plant next door that blew up too).  The second obviously September 11, 2001.  I was driving to work like normal and heard stuff all over the radio about air traffic being stopped.  Once I got to work, TV's were playing and people were gathering to watch the fires and eventually the towers crashing down.  I was impacted that day, but more in a surreal way.  I left work early to pick up my 1 year old daughter, who ironically was dressed in a US flag shirt and matching red shorts.  I brought her back to work with me, just so she would be close to me if anything more were to happen.  I just needed to see her and hold her.  Then, by that night our life was just like normal.  The United States was in crisis because of the attack on us and pictures were devastating to see and the stories of all those dead were horrific and the thought of war was scary, but nothing much in Boise, Idaho had changed. 
I think all these years later I am more aware and much more sensitive to the events on this day because I see and know more of the people that have stepped up for our country.  I hear of families whose loved ones died in all the chaos that day.  I think of their grief and their courage to continue on.  I see those in the military and all they have sacrificed for all of us that haven't.  My cousin in one that has devoted his life to our country.  He is away from his family more than not and continually in harms way, while we get to enjoy our normal lives here.  I see daily the love his wife has for him and how much she misses him and how much of "normal" life he is missing out on...all for us.  I also know, being married to a law enforcement officer that he too would have been one of those men running into those buildings and out there risking his life to help others.  I know everyday that he is willing to work with people that do not have much value for human life and yet he loves his job and gladly goes to serve.  It is terrifying as a wife and as a mother to know the terrible things of this world and yet get up everyday, send kids out the door and kiss my husband good bye.  I am so blessed to live in this amazing country where we do enjoy our freedoms.  I am honored to stand with my hand on my heart as I see a flag.  I am so thankful for those that are willing to display their flags in their front yard and those that honor service men and women in all capacities of service.  On this day, of all days, my heart is so full for those that gave and those that continue to give.  I am glad this is a day that will never go by without remembrance.    

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Vacation days 3 and 4

So on our 3rd day of vacation we attended the Palmyra temple in the morning.  It was such a beautiful temple, but I failed to get any pictures of it.  Then in the afternoon we hung out in the small town of Palmyra, New York.  Here is Mark and his dad, David, after we enjoyed lunch together before a tour began.  
The is the building that the first Book of Mormon was published in.  
 Here is a picture of all the different languages the Book of Mormon is now written in and the order in which they were produced.
 Here is  picture of some of the printing equipment that was used to publish the Book of Mormon.  What a task that must have been.  Someone had to take the hand written manuscript and pull letters from the cases and put them together to form words, which would then form sentences, then for a page, etc.  Lots of man hours.  
 Here is a picture of one of the first Book of Mormon's published.
After seeing that, we went to the Peter Whitmer farm, which is where a good portion of the Book of Mormon was translated.  It was also on this farm that meetings were help.  I LOVED this part of the tour, however left the camera on the bus and didn't get any pictures.  Today there is a beautiful church building next to the house.  The Spirit in the Whitmer house was so strong.  The missionary asked those that would recite some missionary saying (I have to ask mark what it is called) to do so and wow...chills went through my body.
Day 4 we left Palmyra and headed to Buffalo, New York to see Niagra Falls.  We went on the Maid of the Mist, which is a boat that takes you between the falls on the American side and the Canadian side.  We had to wear poncho's to keep from getting soaked.  It was so beautiful!

The boat we were on.

 After that, we headed to Kirtland, Ohio, which was a few hours away.  Once we arrived in Ohio we went to this landing, which is where many Mormons got off the river and joined others from New York to Kirtland.  We were lucky enough to go up the lighthouse and check out the view.