Friday, May 23, 2008

Henry vs. Henry

Last night we saw the new Indiana Jones movie. I have never seen any other Indiana movie so I had no expectations. I really liked the movie all the way to the end when they lost me. Overall I thought it was a good movie. I thought Harrison Ford did a good job even though he is old. 

During the whole movie I kept thinking about the resemblance between Harrison Ford and our nephew Henry. I thought it was even better that Indiana Jones' name is Henry. Indiana makes a half smile smirk on his face a lot, and Henry does the same thing. I tried to find a picture of them both and put them together to see if anyone else agrees with me. Maybe you have to know little Henry to see the resemblance. Vote on the side of our blog what you think about all this. Here are the two pictures: 

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Ja's Graduation Gift

Thanks to my husband I am fully decked out with BYU gear. He gave me a BYU shirt, jacket, blanket, and a Utah mint chocolate truffle. The shirt happens to be green, which isn't BYU colors, but it is a UVSC color. I told him it's perfect because it'll will remind me of BYU and UVSC, and since I went to both of those schools it works out. He didn't plan on that when he bought it but it sure is perfect. 

Stacie's Wedding Dress

When my family was in Utah for graduation my mom, Stacie, and I went wedding dress shopping. Stacie found a gorgeous dress pretty quickly. Of course I won't put the picture of it on here in case the fiance sees this. I will post a few pictures of our other top favorites. 

Well, this one wasn't a favorite of ours but I still wanted to post it. Stacie said she felt like a mermaid. 

Now you can't wait to see the final choice huh?

Monday, May 19, 2008

Pennsylvania Welcomes You

From New York we drove to Pennsylvania. We wanted to see Harmony, where the Priesthood was restored and where Joseph and Oliver Cowdery were baptized. We also visited a little with our friends the Shifflers. We did have a hotel to stay at in Harmony, but we canceled it because we changed our plans a little bit. It was a good thing we did, because the Joseph Smith Harmony doesn't really exist anymore. We had a reservation in Harmony, PA but it was completely in the wrong part of PA. So don't expect to stay around the Susquehanna river, there isn't much there.

I have to give Scranton, Pennsylvania a shout out! Hi Michael, Jim, Pam, Dwight, Angela, Andy, Creed, Oscar, Kevin, Stanley, Phyllis, Kelly, and Meredith.

Here is a monument for the restoration of the Aaronic Priesthood. 

We had to get around one fence, jump another fence, and walk across the train tracks to get to the banks of the Susquehanna river.

This is about the place where Joseph and Oliver baptized each other. 

The next day, we drove down to Gettysburg. This was the only picture we took because it was raining so much we couldn't see anything. We left soon after this was taken. We figured we can come back later when things aren't as wet. 

We arrived in McLean about 2:30 p.m. Tuesday May 20th! YAY! The trip is finally over!
These are really bad pictures of the Maryland and Virginia signs in case you can't tell what they are.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Palmyra, New York

As you can tell, it wasn't a very warm welcome into New York. We could hardly see anything because of the rain.
We got into Palmyra at about dusk so the only thing to see that night was the Hill Cumorah. I'm glad we did because the sunset was beautiful. 
Joseph Smith saw the Hill Cumorah in a vision and he said he knew exactly where it was in real life. Well, it wouldn't be too difficult because this hill really is the only hill around Palmyra. It's a huge hill too which would make it difficult to carry the gold plates down, especially with people chasing you. Here is the monument on the Hill Cumorah. On the sides is the story of Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon.

The next day was Sunday, so we went to church then saw the sites. Church was 9-12 and the sites opened at 12:30 so the sister missionaries could show us around. We saw the Smith family log home and frame home. This is the log home with the sacred grove behind it. When Joseph Smith said his family moved to the next township I figured that meant the next neighborhood, but it was just a few hundred feet away. The log home was on the border of one township and the Smith family moved right over the line.  The second picture is where Moroni appeared to Joseph Smith. All of his brothers were sleeping with him in this little room while he was talking with Moroni. They must have been deep sleepers. 

This was the Smith family frame house. 

 We drove down to Fayette to visit the Peter Whitmer farm. There is a nice visitor's center there with a really cool chapel that rebuilt in 1980. It looks like something that was built around the 1830's. We saw a couple at the visitor's center that we recognized from Kirtland. Ja remembered the guys BYU sweatshirt.

 January 2, 1831 is when the Church had a conference in the Whitmer home. This is when Joseph Smith tells the Saints to move to Ohio, and he received the revelation for Doctrine & Covenants section 38. 

This house was rebuilt on the land that Martin Harris' farm was. I don't think you can tell in the picture, but the whole house is faced with river rock. Each rock is placed perfectly to make rows. It looks really cool. There are a many houses like this in the Palmyra area.

 Of course we had to visit the first Book of Mormon publication site. The building is in the middle of other businesses so it took me by surprise when I walked in because it looks like all the other visitors center's. E.B. Grandin was the man who published the Book of Mormon. It took two years to print and bind all 5,000 copies of the Book of Mormon. That was a huge order of books back then so E.B. Grandin was afraid to go ahead with project because he didn't think we would get payment for it. This is why Martin Harris sold 151 acres of his farm to pay for the Book of Mormon. These pictures of of the front of the building and the printing press room.

The next day we went to the Palmyra Temple. It's a great little temple with stained glass windows of the Sacred Grove all around inside. The workers there are all very proud of the temple and told us a lot of stories about it being built.

Sacred Grove

The Sacred Grove is a beautiful place to be on a drizzly Sunday afternoon. The rain made a soft dripping sound off of all the leaves and trees. The water also made the green in the leaves brighter and more vibrant. We had a nice time wandering around the grove of trees pondering what occurred here. Joseph Smith saw Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ here and spoke to them. While walking around I could really feel that Joseph really did see and talk to them. I could picture him walking from his house to the grove, walking out totally surprised and shaken up, then telling his mother what happened. It's an amazing and spiritual place to be. If you can only go one place while you are in New York you should go here. I took a lot of pictures in the grove, I'm only posting some of them here. I think it would be cool to frame a few of my favorite pictures and put them up in our house. 


Saturday, May 17, 2008

Kirtland, Ohio

Uncle Jim is in the mission Presidency over the Kirtland Missionaries so he really wanted to come with us to Kirtland. He wanted to make sure we got the best tour we could. Kirtland is set up a lot like Nauvoo, you go tour the buildings and learn about each one. We did have a good tour, thanks again Uncle Jim.
Ja and I in front of the Newel K. Whitney store, me looking at a bonnet in the store, and us thinking in the school of the Prophets above the store. 

Kirtland has a saw mill that actually works. Here Ja is trying to cut some wood. There is also an ashery where glass is made. 

The Community of Christ still owns the Kirtland temple. It was the first one built in this dispensation. It was built differently than our temples today because the Saints didn't have the same endowments we do today. It was built more like a regular church house that was used for church meetings, and community meetings. Today all different religions can rent the temple for services or meetings. 
You can't see them here, but there are telephone wires crossing in front of the temple that make it hard to get a good picture of it. We learned that our Church paid to have all the telephone wires put underground in historic Kirtland so they don't distract from the old town feeling. President Hinckley also made sure the concrete ground was changed to look like dirt roads. A major street was also moved so it didn't interfere with the historic Kirtland feeling. When the Church wants something done, they do it right!

Friday, May 16, 2008

West Lake, Ohio

We have spent the last two days in West Lake, Ohio with Ja's Uncle Jim and Aunt Patti. West Lake is a suburb of Cleveland. We were able to go to the Indian's baseball game yesterday. The seats were only 3 rows away from the dugout on the third base-line. We had a lot of fun going to the game with Aunt Patti. Today we spent the day driving to Hiram, Ohio to see the Johnson Family Farm. It is really beautiful out there. Tomorrow we are driving to Kirtland, Ohio to visit those sights. After Kirtland we are driving on to Palmyra. Once again, we took a lot of pictures so we'll post them when we can!

West Lake, Ohio, Uncle Jim & Aunt Patti

I have to begin by saying Uncle Jim and Aunt Patti are great hosts. We had a lot of fun at their house. Aunt Patti was nice enough to stop what she was doing and take Ja and I around town. The first day of our visit we went to a Cleveland Indians game. FYI: they don't go by the Indians, they go by the Tribe. All of those PC people...
Our seats were three rows away from the third base dugout. Thanks Uncle Jim's company!

After dinner we drove to Lake Erie. This was my first experience with one of the Great Lakes. It looked just like the ocean because you can't see the other side. There are waves coming onto the shore and it was colder by the water, which is also like the beach.

Here is a picture of Aunt Patti and I standing next to Uncle Jim's pond. He is so proud of this pond! He has put a lot of work into making it look really nice. He had all the rock work done that we are standing on, and the little upper bog. He has a canoe that he rides around in, and sometimes falls out of.
Ja and I also rode around the neighborhood on their cruiser bikes. The bikes were fun because they are easy to ride. You side up normally, no leaning over at all. And your feet can touch the ground when you are stopped. There are a lot of great trails around West Lake that Uncle Jim showed us.
The next day Aunt Patti took us to the John Johnson farm out in Hiram, Ohio. This is the room Jospeh Smith was sleeping in when he was drug out in the night, and then tarred and feathered. This is the original floor, green, red, and black checkered. 

This is the room where Joseph Smith translated a lot of the Bible.
The day after he was tarred and feathered, Joseph Smith gave his Sunday sermon on this doorstep.

Here is the full house.

That night we went to Bubba's BBQ for dinner. Bubba is a former Cleveland Brown NFL player who opened his own restaurant. It was really good food. I ate wayyyy too much. Bubba came out to talk to Uncle Jim about his food, man he was huge. I've never seen an NFL player in real life and I don't think I want to again. He could have snapped me in half with one arm. 

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Nauvoo, Illinois

We spent a day and a half in Nauvoo and absolutely loved it! Not only was it a spiritual lesson about the Saints but it was also a good history lesson. It's amazing how the Saints and others lived in the 1840's. We visited the bakery, blacksmith shop, gun shop, Hall of the 70's, shoe shop, Brigham Young's home, School house, took pictures with oxen, and much more things. We took the tour of the buildings that the Community of Christ owns as well. I felt like Nauvoo was like an amusement park because you choose which places you want to visit that are all along main street. It was so much fun. I highly recommend going. It's worth the drive too because there are other things so see too. We also did a temple session in the Nauvoo temple which is beautiful. We took a lot of pictures so we will post them when we get the chance.

Driving to Kirtland

We decided to do a temple session in Nauvoo before leaving for Ohio. That temple is very pretty inside and out.

Driving through Illinois was funny for two reasons. We encountered a lot of funny smells, and we asked if the other person tooted a lot. 

Driving through Indiana was great because we drove the north part which is fairly narrow. We were really close to Michigan. My friend Natalie grew up in Indiana and she said that her backyard was all woods. Now I understand why, there are patches of trees all over.

We entered Ohio right on schedule. We drove about 691 miles

I'm sorry if I am clogging your inboxes, I'm trying to finish our trip details!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

May 13- Nauvoo

After Carthage we spent the whole day in Nauvoo. This was the favorite part of our trip. I felt like I was at an amusement park because the town is set up like it would have been for the Saints and you choose which places you want to visit. Each house, store, or workshop was so exciting and educational. There are missionaries in every site you chose to see. Nauvoo was a great place to see in the off-season because it's such a small place that it wouldn't have been so fun packed with people. There wouldn't be very much parking, and the stores would be more crowded. However, parking really wouldn't be too bad because the town is really small and the hotels are in walking distance of the sites. The weather was great too, not too hot nor to cold.

We started the day seeing the sites that the Community of Christ owns. The buildings they own are still original, except for the Red Brick Store, which was rebuilt. 

We saw the Mansion house which is a hotel that Joseph and Emma ran for a little while. 
This is the Nauvoo House. We didn't go inside because a group had the place rented out for the week.

We also saw the Homestead, which you can tell they added on after the original house.

And the Red Brick Store. 
The Community of Christ doesn't allow pictures so I only have inside pictures of the Red Brick Store. The Store was really neat to see because that is where the endowment was given and where the first celestial marriage took place, along with other things. This is the room where everything took place.

Joseph had an office in the building.
This is the store that is on the first floor. They had things for sell in the store that were being given away for free by our church. We were glad we didn't sucked into buying anything. 
We were a little disappointed that our church doesn't own the Red Brick Store because none of the sacred things that were given there were talked about on our tour. It could have been a much more spiritual experience. It was on this tour that I realized that Emma got remarried after Joseph died. My knowledge of her ends with Joseph's death and I would like to learn more eventually. 

This is the grave stone for Joseph, Emma and, Hyrum. The bodies are actually under this stone. Joseph and Hyrum were secretly buried by Emma so no one could dig the bodies up. But the story goes that Joseph's family knew where they were buried, which was very close to the current spot and also close to the river.  The river was rising quickly so the family wanted to move the bodies so the river wouldn't wash them up out of the secret burying place. That new location is where the stone is now.