September 23, 2010 ~ New Beginnings

I was going to copy or import everything from my earlier blog to this new site but then decided it wasn’t worth the time.  New beginnings aren’t really new when plagued by everything old now are they?

So here I sit in a quiet house (man that almost NEVER happens) contemplating rolling out the new blog, or continuing to craft.  I decided (at the risk of stating the obvious) to roll out the new blog.  I’m still figuring out some of the WordPress options and settings so I ask that you bear with me if things change often for a while.

The last blog entry I wrote was in April and concerned attending Time Out For Women.  There have been so many changes and things to occur since then, I’m not sure where to even begin.  TOFW was mid-April…let me just start from where TOFW ended….

April 2010

After TOFW, April was pretty much a disaster.  Just before TOFW began, Sass Master and I were both assaulted.  Her by the neighborhood bully, me by the bully’s mom.  April was spent going to court a total of at least 5 times.  Maybe more.  It was by far the most difficult month we’ve had all year and I wasn’t at all sorry to see it go.  We weren’t going to move until the end of June when I got out of school, but April’s drama pushed the move date up.  All we were waiting on was the go-ahead from the city court…even though I was the one with the marks on me, Bully Mom and I were both arrested.  I needed my charges dropped to be able to move.

Impulsively we decided to take a trek to a Church History site hours away for the weekend.  We took Sass Master’s Bestie with us and she has now become my FAVORITE daughter!  Why the favorite you ask…because her being the favorite doesn’t cause grief among my other three girls.  Favorite Daughter of mine…I sure do love you and am so glad you were able to come with us on our trip.  Our trip to Palmyra was the perfect way to wrap up a stressful month.  Here are some of my favorite pictures from that weekend:

Mister in the kneeling in prayer in the Sacred Grove

Mister walking in the Sacred Grove

The Mini’s, Favorite Daughter and I at the Hill Cumorah Visitors Center

Joseph Smith Home

After visiting Palmyra, we couldn’t resist the urge to visit Niagara Falls.  Traveling to Palmyra by the time we hit the Niagara Falls exit, it was pitch black but we left early enough we were able to stop and spend the day at the Falls.  I took the kids on the Maid In The Mist tour and it was well worth the cost.  I wholeheartedly believe that making lasting memories is worth the effort…Niagara was no different.  Since we didn’t have passports to re-enter the country, we weren’t able to go over the bridge to Canada but technically we crossed the border when on the Maid In The Mist.  After our Maid In The Mist tour, we shopped a little for souvenirs and then got some yummy ice cream from an ice cream cone-shaped building.  We even got up close and personal with Border Patrol…well as up close and personal as we could get without getting close enough to be suspicious anyway.  On the way back, the kids stopped and put their feet in the Niagara River and filled water bottles full.  We were amazed at the clarity of the water…so clear that the Minis mistook it for regular bottled water and took a big ole swig…EEEEEEWWWWWWW!  Here are some of our Niagara Falls pictures:

Niagara Falls are in the distance, American Falls up front.

American Falls

Niagara Falls

Check this out…this is JUST the mist off the falls…crazy huh?

On the way back to the dock on the Maid In The Mist

Oh Canada!

Look at how intensely Mister is looking into the pipe.

Look…a black squirrel. The only other place we had seen them was Colorado.

We got SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO wet on the boat. I mean soggy, dripping wet and it was SOOOOOOOOOO fun!!!

Three of my babies…I can’t wait to make another trip with Baby Girl.

My Favorite Daughter

May 2010

The month came and went with lots of major changes.  First, mid-month we got the permission we needed and were able to pack and move.  We didn’t really officially start packing until the Thursday before we left.  We packed all day Thursday, Friday, Saturday, took Sunday off (mostly because my Dad INSISTED), finished up Monday late and left first thing Tuesday morning.  With a move the distance ours was, the car was packed to the hilt, barely having enough space for the kiddies.  We stopped to say goodbye to Baby Girl (we were moving further away from her and wouldn’t get to see her as often), and then hit the road.  Our first stop was Nauvoo.  We spent the entire day exploring the historic City and still didn’t see it all.  We want to join some of our friends for another trip next Summer.  Nauvoo is a MUST-DO event for EVERY Latter-day Saint, but also great for history buffs in general.  We learned that at its peak, Nauvoo was nearly the size of Chicago then.  Despite how fun it was to explore Nauvoo, I couldn’t help but leave feeling pangs of sadness knowing everything the Saints were forced to leave behind.  How blessed I am (as is my family) for the sacrifice of these early Pioneers.  These pictures help us remember Nauvoo:

This is one of the saddest places I’ve ever been. Thousands of names…entire families wiped out.
Remembering Nauvoo…likely the same view many of the Pioneers had as they left Nauvoo.
The temple again stands in Nauvoo…the original one was destroyed, this one built in the exact spot with the same layout as the original temple.
This is the 5th temple my children have been to…their count is now up to 7 I think.
We learned the expression “can you hack it” comes from brick making…in brick making, hack means to stack the bricks with a finger width’s space between them allowing room to try. A grueling process when the Nauvoo Brick House was cranking out 4 million bricks in a single season.
An oxen drawn wagon the same size as ones the pioneers had. We got to ride in it…it’s not very big.
One of many quotes along the Trail of Hope…another sad experience.
See the signage above
Everyone who could walk did…there wasn’t enough room for provisions and people. The little trunk two items to the left of the flour bag is often the size of container that held clothing for the entire family no matter what size family it was.
Mister says if he was a pioneer, he’d want to be the Blacksmith.
One of the original Sun Stones from the original Nauvoo Temple. This one is owned by Illinois but the state has graciously allowed it to be displayed at the Nauvoo Visitors Center.
Caption not needed.

There are so many more pictures I could share but this post is long enough as it is and we’re not even finished yet.  After a busy day in Nauvoo it was time to get back in the car again and head further west to Nebraska where we rested for a couple of days and hung out with friends.  While we were hanging out in Nebraska, our friends took us to Winter Quarters.  Another significant Church History location.  Winter Quarters is where people would stop to wait out the winter before continuing west.  Many people died here and are buried on temple grounds…the only temple I know of to share space with a cemetery.  It’s a beautiful way to solidify the importance of the work we do in the temple.  It’s past my bedtime now though so I’ll be back tomorrow with photos from our Nebraskan adventures.

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