Archive for category Jaron – Temple Goal

First day of school….

Trevin and Emalee were both bright-eyed and bushy tailed this morning. They were excited to start a new school year, see their friends and meet their new teachers. 


I picked both of them up from school and we headed to Em’s Brain Balance appointment . On the way there, they both proceeded to tell me about their day. It dawned on me how much I love picking them up and having those few moments with them after school each day.  

Later in the evening, Trevin had soccer practice at Grant Elementary. At the same time, Andy and Emalee went to Tae Kwon Do. Fall is back in full force!

Jaron on the other hand got to go to the Copenhagen, Denmark temple today.  Lucky guy!


Derek’s Wedding

Friday morning Trent, Jaron and I started out on our road trip to Oregon for Derek’s wedding.  We rented a car Thursday night so we could hit the ground running and get 40 mpg.  We had fun singing tunes all the way there and back and yhe treats were in plentiful supply thanks to mimi and Kristin.

We made good time on Friday and went and saw Iron Man 3 at a theatre near our hotel after we checked in.  That was nice and we were about a mile or so from the temple.   We went back to the outdoor mall where we saw the movie Saturday morning to catch some lunch before the wedding.  It was nice.


Trent and Jaron waiting for our food to cook at the outdoor bbq place shown. Rhe burgers and fries were really good.


Jaron patiently waited at the Portland Temple visitors center for us. They had some great movies, interactive information and games for him. The actual ceremony was only fifteen minutes, but very nice.






Lots of beautiful pictures at the temple. From there we went to Olive Garden and had a wonderful dinner and visit with each other.
Jaron, Mark, Connie and Trent.
Derek and Nicole.

Annette and Dane.


Kari’s daughter Vivian wasn’t a happy camper for pictures at the temple but I snuck this picture of the two of us in a good moment. We all enjoyed visiting for several hours. It was the first time I remember getting to visit with all my Christensen cousins as adults. Good getting to chat with each of them.

{Let the fun begin….}

Well, our family vacation to Florida has begun.  The morning was filled with countless chores and errands, but ready or not, the time came to depart.  Andy, Jaron & Trevin took a direct flight to Atlanta, Georgia (our beginning destitation).  Ashlyn and I had a layover in Denver, changed planes and then headed to Atlanta.  Let’s just say the first leg of the flight was terrifying.  It was turbulent from the moment we took off until the moment we landed.  It got so bad that the stewardesses took everyone’s drinks and told us they would not be back around until the end of the flight.  I was so nauseated.  However, I had a little girl to be strong for.  Ashlyn looked up at me and said, “Mom, I’m scared.”  I told her, “You shouldn’t be scared.”  (And in my head I thought, “YOU SHOULD BE TERRIFIED!!!!!”)  I told her to just hold my hand as I smiled.  Inside I’m DYING!!  I have experienced turbulence before, but nothing like that.  We were both pretty scared to get on the next flight.  Turns out, that the first 15 minutes were just as bad, but from there, things settled down a lot.  WHEW!!!

We met up with the boys in Atlanta and all went well for them.  We got our rental car, pulled out the GPS and we were on our way.  We had to run a few errands first, but then we checked into our hotel.  It was very, very nice.  It had a full-size fridge, stove top burners, dishwasher, robes, recliner chair, executive desk, wireless internet and it even had an alarm clock that hooked up to an ipod, so if you wanted to wake up to your own music, you could.

The next morning we had a nice breakfast (included with hotel package).  They had a nice variety of breakfast foods as well as a gal making waffles and omlets. Yum!

Our fist stop after checking out, was to see the Atlanta, Georgia Temple.  It was pretty close to our hotel.  Here are some pictures:

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JARON                                         ASHLYN                                      TREVIN

The one thing I love the most about all the temples, is their beautiful landscaping.  Each temple is landscaped differently, but all are well done.  I loved the flowers and took a couple pictures.

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Once we got back on the road again, it took about 45 minutes to arrive at the closest chapel.  It was the perfect amount of time to put all three kiddos to sleep:

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The ward we visited had Primary/Relief Society first, then Sunday School and last of all Sacrament Meeting.  So, we took the kiddos to their classes and I then went to Relief Society, which was held in the chapel.  There were only eight to ten rows total, very tiny chapel.  It’s been a LONG time since I’ve attended Relief Society, so it was refreshing to have a gospel discussion with sisters.

After church we headed back on the road for a five/six hour drive to Andy’s friend’s house.  We planned to stay with Shane and Viviani for two days.  Let’s speed things up a bit by just saying the ride to their house was L-O-N-G and I’m soooooooo glad we didn’t drive the whole way here!  Enough said.  :)

Shane and Viviani had dinner ready when we arrived.  They had made the most delicious meal, of which I asked her for two of the recipes…..vegetable potato salad and flan.  Yum, yum, yum!  I’ll be sharing those later.

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Trevin playing with Kaleb.

One of Jaron’s favorite things to do at their house was to catch lizards.  Shane caught a lizards tail and showed Andy.  The tail was still moving back and forth, back and forth, even though it was detached from the lizards body.  The lizard will grow a new tail, but it is fascinating to see something like that.  So, after that, Jaron wanted to catch a lizard too.  There were several around their house, but Jaron wasn’t fast enough.  He tried hard though to catch one.


The kids played for a little bit while dinner was being cleaned up.  I took this video of Jaron and Trevin playing with their kids’ toys.

{Messy Missionaries ~ I am a child of God Exhibit}

As you know from yesterday’s entry, I signed up to feed the missionaries dinner tonight.  I debated all day what to take them.  I was going to make them some chicken quesadillas, but decided to do breakfast for dinner.  (I wanted to make them something they wouldn’t get all the time (i.e. pizza, chicken dishes, spaghetti….etc.)  My mother-in-law said that once the missionaries came over to her house for dinner and were relieved to be having hamburgers for dinner and not a chicken dish.  They had had chicken almost every day (in some form) for several days.  This thought stuck with me when trying to plan today’s menu.  I got everything loaded up.  Jaron, Ashlyn and Trevin had all drawn pictures for the missionaries.  I threw the kiddos in the van and we headed over.  All of the kids wanted to give the missionaries their own pictures, so they started filing out of the van.  When Trevin started to get out of the van I noticed he didn’t have his shorts on, just his t-shirt and underwear.  (He does this all the time after going potty….who cares about getting dressed???)

I stopped him and asked, “Where are your shorts?”

“In the bathroom,” he replied very candidly.

“Well, you can’t get out of the van without pants on.”

He was crushed but I told him I’d give the missionaries his picture.  He was okay with that.  So, with food and picture in hand, we knocked on the door.  No one answered.  We weren’t late.  It became evident that no one was home.  I decided to wait for a few more minutes to see if they were running late.  Nothing.  I was just about to get in the van when Jaron said, “Mom, the door is open….see!”  Oh gosh.  “Jaron, you shouldn’t be opening their door!”  However, since I had the food there and some of it was perishable (I brought some ice cream and some frozen lunch stuff for another day…..) I thought, “Well, I’ll just sneak in and put it in their fridge and leave them a note.  Then I won’t need to bring the food back later.”

So, I headed to the kitchen of this very small apartment and oh my gosh!  It was a MESS!!!  I couldn’t believe it.  There wasn’t room to leave a note.  I tried to clear off the kitchen table a little to write a note.  I took the empty milk carton off the table and went to throw it in the garbage, but it was overflowing.  I went to take some of the dishes and put them in the sink, but there was no space in the sink…it was piled high.  Yowsers.

I already felt bad for being in their apartment without them knowing….I knew I shouldn’t even be there…but I felt like I should clean up a little.  So I gave myself five minutes to see how much I could get done in the kitchen.   I did the dishes, cleaned off the table, emptied the garbage and picked up garbage on the floor.  Seriously, I would be mortified if this were me.

I quickly left and felt mixed emotions.  I tried to do something good and help them out, but at the same time I shouldn’t have really gone in their house….  Oh well, it’s in the past.

Tonight for Family Home Evening, we went to the Church History Museum’s “I am a child of God” exhibit.  The kids had a blast.  They loved every part of the exhibit, even Emalee enjoyed herself.

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Picture 1: The exhibit was in English and Spanish.
Picture 2: Trevin building a Nephite tower.

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Picture 1: Jaron doing CTR rubbings.
Picture 2: Jaron and Trevin putting the fruit back on the “tree of life”.

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Picture 1: The kids are labeling Lehi’s Tree of Life vision.  (You can see two of the word strips in the picture…”rod of iron”, etc.)
Picture 2: Ashlyn in the Nursery at the hospital…taking care all of her new children.  What a good mommy!

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Picture 1: Trevin putting together a stained glass window puzzle.
Picture 2: Emalee’s favorite thing by far, was taking the lids off the markers and putting them back on.
Picture 3: Emalee’s next favorite thing was playing with these blocks.

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Picture 1: Jaron and Trevin playing with the sheep puppets in the Nativity theater.
Picture 2 and 3: Trevin and his sheep.

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Picture 1: Trevin and Jaron in the Nativity scene.
Picture 2: Jaron holding onto the rod of iron.

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Once we finished up with the exhibit, we decided to walk around Temple Square for a few minutes, since it is just across the street.  Usually when we go to Temple Square it is FREEZING and we are looking at Christmas lights.  Tonight was a nice contrast from our norm.

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Jaron, Emalee, Trevin, Andy and Ashlyn on Salt Lake Temple Grounds


While we were walking around, we encountered a few water fountains.  We stopped and admired one of them for a few minutes.  While there, I gave each of the kids a penny and told them to make a wish and throw their pennies in the fountain.  Andy overheard Jaron’s wish…..”I wish I could go to the dentist tomorrow.”  (No, he doesn’t have a toothache…I would definitely know about that and yes, he is crazy).  He loves the dentist.  It is one of his favorite places.  How weird is that for a kid his age?  Or even my age???

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My darling little goof balls…..

The last thing we did before heading home, was to take a picture of each the kiddos and the temple.

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We did a cowboy roundup and headed out.   It is now late, the kids have all gone to bed.  It is dead silent.  I am sitting here listening to the fan sound as it blows warm air on me….  As I look at my kiddos, I feel like they are like energizer batteries and they are simply recharging.  They’ll wake up tomorrow refreshed and recharged and because I am blogging and not in bed…my battery will die pretty early on.  SO, after making a pit stop to move the wash to the dryer, I’m off to bed myself!

 “I like to compare the home evening, family prayer, and other associated activities of the Church for the saving of the family, when they are conscientiously carried out, with an umbrella. If the umbrella is not opened up, it is little more than a cane and can give little protection from the storms of nature. Likewise, God-given plans are of little value unless they are used.”  -Spencer W. Kimball,    General Conference, October 1969

SeaWorld and sunburnt yet we had so much fun!

Well, the title pretty much says it all!  We loved Seaworld.  It became a favorite of mine a few years back when my side of the family went on vacation.  Jaron was only one year old.  Anyway, we enjoyed our stay and of COURSE I took a million pictures….not very surprised…are you???


The kids were so excited to be there…they didn’t know what to do first!  However, we started with the beluga whales.  They seem ‘big’ until you go underground and see them under the water….then they seem GIGANTIC.  Wow.  When they are born they are a medium grey color.  However, once they mature (around 13/14 years old) their coloring goes all white.  They are so long. 


This first picture is one of Trevin’s favorites.  He really liked the turtles.  The next picture is a of a display that showed just how big a shark’s mouth and teeth are.  Not a place you want to check out in person….  The kids really enjoyed the polar bears….although they seemed pretty lazy….or perhaps bored.


This is perhaps my very favorite picture of  the whole day!  It’s of Ashlyn watching this sealion.  The kids were facinated at the sealions and watched them swim around for quite a while.  But Ashlyn seemed very taken by this one.   Even though there is glass between Ashlyn and this sealion, she still would jump back when he would turn around…almost as if she was expecting its tail to hit her.  Your mind forgets that you are behind glass.  Anyway, these animals are very long and interesting to watch.  All of us watched them for at least ten minutes or so.   A funny sidenote….before we walked away (shortly after this picture) the sealion pooped and Ashlyn pointed it out to everyone watching, “Ooooooooo….he just ‘pooped’ mom!”  As a parent you just smile and say, “Let’s move on…..let’s go see what’s next?” 


Once we moved on from the sealions, we headed to the aquariums.  Trevin was so excited to see all the different aquariums that it was hard to keep up with him…he went from one to the next, to the next….ALWAYS facinated with the “next” one.  We then watched the shamu show and really enjoyed it…but it started to get really hot.  My main concern was Trevin.  I forgot to bring sunscreen (coming from near 40 degree weather) and wouldn’t be able to buy some until later that night.  I tried to keep Trevin in the shade as much as possible.  Trevin and I got a little too much sun, but not bad.  I mean, we had on long sleeve shirts and pants so we were mostly kissed by the sun on our foreheads and cheeks.  He and I are like marshmallows.  We only have two shades: white and burnt.  There is no inbetween.  Sorry Trevin, you got that from me!


These are our lunch pictures…in the parking lot.  I refuse to pay $70 for a meager amount of food for a family lunch.  We brought sandwiches and goodies, but no one lets you even bring it in the park because they’d lose out on sales.  That is my ONLY beef with these theme parks.  Okay, I’ll step down from my soap box and go on….  After lunch we saw the manatee’s (not sure on the spelling…)



Something I really enjoyed seeing and haven’t had an opportunity to ever see, was a baby alligator.  There were two gals that had a retractable leash on each alligator and they were letting them swim around.  Andy and I were kind of fascinated by these little guys.


The one thing I “thought” the kiddos would like more, but didn’t, was seeing the stingrays.  They have a little area where you can pet them and even feed them squid.  They were very apprehensive and were much more comfortable “observing” others interact with them.  In the end, they would stick their hands in the water, but only when a stingray was long out of sight. 


One of the last things we did before leaving was attend the pet show.  Various animals put on a show and did some fun tricks.  While waiting for the show to start, Ashlyn insisted on taking my picture:


Jaron and Trevin especially enjoyed the pet show.  After it was finished, Jaron really wanted to pet some of the animals like the other kids.  So, we stuck around and let the kids pet the animals.

For some reason, Ashlyn was a grump in this picture.  That’s okay.  It had been a long day.  And it was hot and….well, hot.  That makes most anyone cranky. 

After leaving Sea World, we went to the San Diego temple.  It was literally minutes away.  It was SO beautiful.  It wasn’t the first time we’d been there, but I always enjoy seeing this particular temple.  Boy, as you are driving on the freeway, the temple just jumps right out at you!  Trevin had ended up falling asleep and I didn’t want to wake him up.  Here are the pics of the rest of us (see below).  Anyway, after the temple we met up with Mimi and Opi.  They flew in instead of driving like us.  It took a while, but we drove straight from San Diego to Anaheim.  We checked into our hotel and made arrangements to meet up with Mimi and Opi and go out to dinner….by the time we got together, all of us were ravished and starved, ready to eat!  The restaurant we chose to go to was delicious!!!


The car ride from San Diego to Anaheim did them in:

Kinked neck??  Ya think??

Temple Trek

Well, we made it to St. George last night without any incident.  The kids’ were very excited to be starting our vacation but it didn’t take them long to “crash”.  They were exhausted.  That is one nice thing about traveling late at night.  PEACE and QUIET….nice!! 

While in St. George, we stayed in Andy’s uncle’s winter home.  We had a four bedroom home to ourself.  It was wonderful.  We gave the kids a tubbie in the morning, had breakfast…and figured out our plan for the rest of the day. 


One of their favorite parts of the morning was eating cereal from those little cereal boxes.  My kids are cereal junkies anyway (any kind of cereal)….but they thought this was especially fun. 

We started the next leg of our journey just before lunchtime.  However, our first stop before heading out of town was to visit the St. George temple:


We tried to stay quiet as there was a young women’s group having their Sunday lesson on the lawn of the temple (there was a chapel across the street).  How nice would that be to have a temple right across the road??  Trevin (especially) has a hard time being quiet.  He loves to call attention to himself. 

Before we left the temple, we made some good ‘ol PBJ’s and other lunch goodies and headed off to Las Vegas.  It was a long drive, but the kids were really good.  Jaron and Ashlyn especially loved the chalkboards I got from the dollar store:


The next temple we wanted to visit was the Las Vegas Temple.  It was so pretty:


We decided the kids needed to get out some of their wiggles….they were very high strung after sitting in the car most of the afternoon.  So when we passed a Burger King that had a playland, we immediately stopped.  We decided to grab some food and let the kids run around. 



Probably the most interesting part of this Burger King experience was seeing Jaron interact with another girl that was on the playground at the same time.  She and Jaron seemed to be around the same age and this girl was going crazy over Jaron.  She wouldn’t leave him alone and he didn’t know what to do.  :) 

 So finally he started playing with her and called her his new best friend.  She would then “walk” by our table several times trying to signal to him….”Come on, come chase me!”  Here is one of the pictures of her “walking” by our table.  It was interesting to watch the two of them play together.

Our last temple trip of the evening was the Redland, California Temple.  You know, it took so long to get to the temple that the sun went down.  It is a shame because it’s beauty was amazing.  I really wish I could have seen it in the day.  Out of the three we saw today, it was my favorite.

Well, I think we did the kids in because on the way to the hotel, I turned around and saw…..this:


It was a good day.  Although I miss Emmy….I love being with my family.