Thursday, June 24, 2021
It was a little tricky this year figuring out what to give the kids for their Experience Gift for Christmas because it felt like Covid had shut down all the Experiences. And after such a long few months trapped inside our homes we felt like we needed an experience. So Brian and I decided to go big. Well, bigger than our previous experiences of escape rooms and shark aquariums.
Big, like in small vacations. Two, actually. One full of shopping and exploring on Balboa Island for the big kids, and one to St. George for hiking and eating and playing games all night in a hotel room for the littler ones. And I was the lucky one that got to enjoy both.
First up, Carson, Kenz and I packed the car with suitcases and snacks and left Boulder City behind in search of the beach. I like to take the route to California through the intriguing Joshua Tree forest. I've always wanted to get out and explore, but since not everyone in my family shares my affinity for exploration I've kept my mouth shut and soaked in what I could of the forest as it sped by my window.
But this time I had a car full of adventurous spirits!
Monday, June 7, 2021
I have so many pictures of these two. They've adored each other since Eliza was born, and I keep wondering if at some point Eliza will start looking more like a pesky little sister to Carson... but it certainly hasn't happened yet.
Saturday, June 5, 2021
Timothy was so very ready for his baptism. He didn't have a nervous or worried bone in his whole body as he spent the few weeks beforehand preparing. He has a sensitivity to him that is deep and real and yields itself to feeling the Spirit and believing. I recognize it because I think I have the same thing. I wonder if his heart will ever question deeply or if he'll mostly always know - in the deepest parts of him - that God is real and that he is loved and cheered on by the heavens. His mind might question, as mine does, but his heart seems blessed with a living testimony that pulses as consistently as the muscle itself. I think it might take a lot for his faith to skip a beat, and even more for it to diminish in its life-giving nectar. We are so blessed to have him in our home.
He dressed in white just minutes before the meeting started, and his eyes told the whole story of anticipation, excitement, faith, preparedness. My favorite quote from the whole weekend was from him just before we started the meeting. "I can't believe I'm almost baptized... it's like... ONE MINUTE!"
When the time came for him to get into the water, he stepped a foot into the hot tub we had heated just one hour before. And, it turns out, a hot tub can lose quite a bit of heat in one hour if it's left open to the elements! He opened his eyes in surprise as he stepped down to the bottom and laughed a little as he said, "Cold! Cold, cold, cold, cold, cold!" But even being submerged in cold water couldn't temper his excitement and couldn't dull those bright, happy eyes.
He is such a beautiful boy. Outside - it's true that sometimes I can't stop myself from staring at that handsome face and wonder how many hearts he's destined to break - but so much greater is his beauty inside.
He was lucky to share his day with his best friend, Ezra.
And, I know I've said this here before, but I love that this pandemic has showed me that my home is a sacred place. We have now baptized in our hot tub, and we have given the gift of the Holy Ghost on our sports court.
God's power is here. In my home. In my family. And I feel it so fiercely. God's power doesn't care too much about the dust on the shelves. It moves around the dirty dishes and unfolded piles of laundry with ease. It patiently waits for me to work through my overwhelm and frustrations and wraps me up each time I turn to it for help.
I still don't understand God's power very well. But I do know that I have the authority to call it into my home, to use it to strengthen my faith and my family, and to let it flow within us and around us.
And it is here.