Tuesday, March 11, 2014

We Went To The Temple and Other Things

What a week!

Shortly after getting medicated for my brain (and not a week too soon before getting meds for my asthma), I got pretty sick. Just a head/chest cold, but if I didn't have those asthma meds already pumping through my blood regularly? I imagine I could have ended up very, very sick, indeed. Instead, I just hung out in bed for an evening while the kids took care of each other (Brandon was in Texas).

Anyway, sickness, blah, blah, got better... then... Oh! Temple trip!

We went to the Washington D.C. Temple on Saturday! The Temple in Philadelphia won't be finished until 2016, and so our Temple is the D.C. one. We could go to Manhattan, but that one is harder to visit with kids and we wanted our children to see the Temple and experience being near it. It's about a two hour drive from our house (both the NYC and D.C.), and let me tell you, going from a temple only 8-10 minutes from your house to this distance is very sobering. And the fact that Brandon and I have been to the Temple twice in the last three months with this distance makes me see how incredibly blessed the sacrifice of going is... it's almost... sanctified. Yes. Sanctified. But I won't get into all that right now! I'll just tell you of our day (and encourage you to attend the Temple whenever you can!).

We left around 8AM and took another family from our ward with us (mom, two teens). When we got there, it was packed! No parking, so many people... But we were prepared to hunker down and get some good experiences and some service done, so we made it work.

Brandon, Kelly (the mom), and the three teenagers (I count #1 as a teen, even though she won't be 13 until next month) went to do Baptisms for the dead. They needed more Priesthood help, and so Brandon got the chance to do Baptisms (and Baptized #1! So fun for them!). While they were in the Temple doing that, I took the younger kids to the Visitor's Center. We watched videos on the family, the Book of Mormon, and listened to some narration on Christ. Then we had snacks in the van, and walked around the Temple grounds.

[The last photo of the three teenagers is one Kelly took. Sadly, I didn't get any photos with all of us! What was I thinking!? Next time...]

When they were finished with Baptisms, Brandon convinced Kelly and I to do an endowment session while he took all the kids to Cafe Rio for lunch. It was a great experience! Kelly was just endowed in November, so this was only her second time doing an endowment, and the first time doing it for someone who has died (obviously, since her first one was for herself). Things were a bit chaotic in the temple and I wasn't used to the relaxed way they have of just sending people up to endowment rooms... but we figured it out and it was an incredible experience. The Celestial Room? WOW. Jaw-dropping, gorgeous! I wanted to stay there all day.

But we had to go, and so we did, and the kids were all waiting for us (with our Cafe Rio food! Yummy!) when we came out. Brandon then drove us on down into Washington D.C. We drove past the White House and the Capitol Building, as well as the Washington Monument. It was really cool to see all these places I had only seen on TV. We hit traffic a bit, and by the time we got home, it was nearly 8PM. Long, wonderful day!

Ah, but then Brandon woke up sick on Sunday morning. That meant a pretty busy day for me while he tried to sleep it all off. Church, ward potluck after church, feeding the sister missionaries, and daylight savings throwing an exhausted wrench into it all... But it wasn't a bad day at all --in fact, it was a rather delightful day, because the Spirit was strong and the kids were well behaved through it all.

Adventure for Brandon yesterday: after sleeping/recovering some more (he got hit hard with this virus), he boarded the train for Washington D.C. to attend a hockey game (long story --had to do with his job). Unintentionally, he missed the last train back (it left at 10:10PM), so he went to a hotel for the night. They were overbooked, so he stayed in the lobby working (and watching BYU basketball) until he could board the first train at 3:15AM. He arrived home at 5:20AM and crawled into bed. But he was up and gone to the office by 9:30AM... poor guy! Exhaustion is hard, but exhaustion and recovering from an illness is harder.

In other news, I exercised for 30 whole minutes this morning! Just another baby step. I have this goal, dear reader, to just live in the moment, to take it one step at a time --to eat less and exercise and use the energy I'm finding, now that my lungs and my brain are starting to work a bit better. In fact, I was so surprised at the amount of energy I had this morning, and shocked myself by grinning as I did nearly 200 jumping jacks! It felt so great to be moving and sweating. I've missed that feeling; I've missed the feeling of loving it, too. But the truth is, I don't want to focus on the 73 pounds I need to lose. I want to just focus on the positive little things I'm doing. When I see that large number, I start to panic. So, I'm going to ignore it for a while. Work hard, step by step, and then weigh myself again in a few weeks. If at all. Truly, this is going to happen a bit differently, I think... better for my health overall...

In other, other news, Spring seems to have sprung here, but I'm not holding my breath. Utah springs always brought snow (they got snow last night!), and since this winter in PA has been so severe, I will not be surprised if we get snow again before the good weather decides to stay. But we're loving it until it does! The kids are so happy to be riding bikes and wearing jackets instead of coats. I just love the sun!

Tomorrow night is our Relief Society birthday celebration party dinner thing-a-ma-jing that I'm helping put together. I'm excited because it will be simple and fun (dinner and speakers and dessert!).

And there you have it! All caught up. For the most part.


Linda Liebhardt said...

I am SOOOOOooo impressed that you can do 200 jumping jacks!!! You go, girl!! My friend and I joke about needing a mat under us. ha. We are aging and falling apart. :-)
Proud of you for your baby steps. Enjoyed the temple trip narrative and pictures. LOVE your thoughts, Cherylthoughts!!

WoozleMom said...

DC is "our" temple. My husband's family was sealed there when he was about 1 1/2, it was the first temple where either of us did baptisms for the dead (though we were actually assigned to the Atlanta temple at the time, and later to the Raleigh temple when it was built), and it was where I received my endowment and then we were sealed the following day. We haven't made it back since. We currently live in western NC and are in the Atlanta district; I think we are about 8 hours from DC. But one day I hope that we will be able to take our children and show them where we were married! Thanks for posting your pictures. They made me nostalgic and happy. :)