Monday, August 29, 2016

Tender mercies (Jackson's first temple visit)

Jackson had his first experience in the temple this Friday night, August 26, 2016 in the Houston Temple.   Of course ever since we talked about going to do this he's been worried that he could drown.   I promised him repeatedly that NO ONE HAS EVER DROWNED IN THE BAPTISMAL FONT!!  He just kept bringing it up.  This is why we decided to go with just our family first, Dad doing the baptizing.  We would get him to do one and then see if we could convince him to do more.  

Anyway, we got to the temple and were shown into the waiting room.  A Sister Fairchild came in to talk to us for a minute and when we mentioned  it was Jackson's first time she said, "I promise no one has EVER drowned in the temple baptismal font!"  I'm sure she thought she was just saying something funny to try to relax a first timer.  She has no idea that the Spirit had brought those words to her mind.  Greg, Kobe, Reagan and I just sat there with our jaws dropped! Later I talked to Jackson about the fact that her saying  those exact words to him  was really Heavenly Father letting him know that He knows Jackson and what Jackson was doing that night in the temple.

We brought some family names with us to do.  (Sunny also sent me the names of some distant family members, so we got to baptize an entire family- Valentine Rewa, his wife Ann Mary Bartz, and their sons William, Anthony, and Clements.)  Kobe helped Jackson get dressed for the baptisms and then he also was the first one in the font so Jackson could watch.  Jackson did 4 family names and then he was done, but happy.  Kobe took on the big job of helping him get out of those wet clothes and redressed into his shirt and tie.  It went well.  

After we did the confirmations, we got to meet with a temple presidency member.  He was wonderful.  He asked if this was our whole family and we told him about Jillie being on her mission right now in Brazil.  He said how even though we as parents have faith that our missionaries serving will be ok, it's just a little unsettling until you get that family circle back together again.  This reminded me of when Greg's dad was dying.  At the time he was laying in his hospital bed, eyes closed, not really coherent, but talking non stop.  At the time 2 of Greg's brothers were not active... VERY far from being active.  Grandpa G talked about trying to get those boys into the circle, needing them back in the circle, not knowing how to get them back in the circle.  I bet he did feel very unsettled knowing he was leaving this earth and he was not sure if those son's of his would come back to the eternal circle of the family. (I'm glad those brothers are coming back.) I'm also glad that when we were in the temple with Jackson we were doing the work to help more of our family members begin to close that circle. 

Grateful is was a good experience for Jackson. Grateful for all the blessings of the temple. Grateful for all of our family and that we can be together forever! 

Reagan took some pictures of us.  Kobe of course was happier to be there than it appears in the pictures. 

Monday, June 11, 2012

Our long lost friends

We got some pretty special visitors today!

We met Nick and Angie 4 or 5 years ago when they were investigating The Church. During the 2 years they lived the Buffalo area they were invited to church by their new neighbors (Marilyn and Kirk Chambers), they investigated The Church, were baptized, and a year later sealed in the Temple with their little daughter Olivia. Then they moved away to New Jersey. We were so fortunate to have met them and enjoy this 2 year journey with them. They are a great family- we've missed them!

Now they have 2 more kiddos to add to their family (Sophia and Nico) and they are moving again. Lucky for us we live somewhere they have to drive straight through on their way to west coast.

We had so much fun catching up with the Brandt's- hanging out this afternoon and through dinner. Of course we had to take them to Jeni's for ice cream this afternoon too! Thanks for paying Nick! I really didn't mean for that to happen! I still owe you!


Jackson has started swimming lessons. He's not comfortable putting his head under the water and his baptism is only about a month away. He's not a swimmer at all either so this is important for his safety. We'd done a parent-child class a while back, but he clung to me a lot. This time around its private lessons at the YMCA.

His teacher is Tara. During the school year she's a Special Ed teacher. Perfect for Jackson! She's so patient and so good at keeping his confidence up. :)

Saturday, June 9, 2012


Hoping this works! I may blog again- at least quick posts- if this works!!

We were invited to a Welcome to Summer party this week. The kids had a blast- especially with the shaving cream fight!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Merry Christmas 2011

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Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Merry Christmas from us.

Oh What Fun Christmas Card
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Sunday, May 30, 2010

No promises

This picture may actually bring me back to blogging. Something has to- I can't believe half a year has gone by undocumented. What a tragedy. Why can't I seem to find the time and/or energy to blog this year?
I don't know.

Last week though I took this picture. The big kids wanted me to go on a bike ride with them around the neighborhood, so we asked Greg if he could just sit outside with Jackson while we were gone. Greg is not a big fan of being outside, especially this time of year when it's "buggy". So I came outside to leave for the ride and found Greg watching Jackson play from the comfort of his car. Serious? He couldn't just grab a chair to sit on in the driveway? The scene was so ridiculous I had to laugh- and take a picture of it of course- because it is so Greg. :)

There. I did it. I wrote a small post. Baby steps. Maybe I can get back in the habit.
Heaven knows I have lots to write about.
No promises, but maybe.

Sorry this baby step was made at your expense Greg. Love you. :)

PS I even did a quick post on The Garrick Gallery tonight!
I've got a lot to catch up on there too!

Friday, January 1, 2010

NYE in the OP

We got a very happy surprise after Christmas. The Avery's snuck into New York to play with us for a few days. Their kids didn't know where they were headed until they were on the road that morning. Our kids had no idea what fun was coming their way. Since they would get to town around dinner time we hatched a plan to meet at Wegmans (the local grocery store). They have a nice food court area and Holly has a passion for their sandwiches. So I told the kids I needed to get a few things there, so we might as well grab dinner there too. They were quite shocked when the Avery's showed up behind us in line. Reagan couldn't speak, she just stood there tapping my shoulder as if to ask me if what she was seeing was real.
We ate dinner there...
and settled in for a few days of fun.
Sledding and snow play were the number one priority.

Off to sled Chestnut Ridge.
My little "pretzel boy"
Hiking up the hill.
Jillie, Saroya, Reagan
Kobe and Saroya
Just the girls.
The toboggan runs are open this year, but you need a wooden toboggan to use them
Jillie, 13 years old. :)
Holly and I
Everyone wanted to ride with Uncle Nathan!
We couldn't have had a better day for sledding!
Kobe and Saroya spent a lot of time together on Club Penguin when we were at home. They play this together almost every Sunday now too- by phone.
New Years Eve- Party Time!
Jillie, Ethan, and Reagan
Played some games.
and ate a lot of goodies.
(Sure wish I could figure out how to make that chocolate fountain work right again. It only ever worked nicely the first time.)

I got no complaints though. Chocolate is chocolate.

Ethan thought he should ring in the new decade by playing in the snow at midnight...
The other big kids followed his lead.
The Littles enjoying(???) some sparkling grape juice.

LOVE Jaleigh's reaction!
Holly and I had a little nostalgia fest.
We made cheese ball, just like mom's. Sadly, the Blue Roka that her recipe calls for is no longer made by Kraft, but we found one precious last jar of it in my food storage.
We had the kids make the same type of ornaments that we made for a family home evening when we were little... and we still have those ancient ones hanging on our Christmas trees each year. Now there is a new generation.
The most exciting nostalgic moment was making hard candy together-
again, just like mom used to do.
We even used our Grandma Nellie's pot and our Grandma Streeter's candy thermometer while making Mom's candy. How's that for carrying on family traditions?!
Pouring out the boiling hot candy into the trails made in powdered sugar. We figured out that it really doesn't have to be done that way, but that's how Mom did it so we will too.
We did bend the rules a little and made a Hidden Mickey in honor of our new family tradition of going to Disney Parks together. ;)

We had a GREAT time and are glad they made the trek through the snowy weather to be with us.

A special thanks to Holly for taking all of these pictures (at least the ones that are really good are hers.) And thanks to Holly for putting together this post on her blog that I pretty much just copied here.