Friday, July 15, 2011

We Love to See the Temple

Last Saturday, July 9th, we went to the temple with our three children to be sealed.  It was a big deal.  I'm about to go overboard with photos and words because we want to have this in our 2011 blog book.  You've been warned.

We've known for six months that we would get to go to the temple with our little family.  That's one of the perks of adoption - we get to see in real life what everyone else only gets to imagine.  We arrived at the Mt. Timpanogos Temple about an hour early and settled the kids in the Youth Center.  I told Bridget that "The Grandmas" would be taking care of her and the boys, but I didn't know about all the awesome toys in the youth center.  Each of our kids had their own grandma, too.  (Brian and I were both pretty emotional all morning.  He claims I was talking too much to the women taking care of the kids.  What?  They needed to know where the diapers were and who was going to be wearing what.)  Brian and I went into a little office where a woman looked over our paperwork (the final adoption decree and the family group sheet) and filled out some stuff.  She also handed us a letter from the temple president and his wife (President and Sister Brown).  We were touched that they took the time to congratulate us.  (We were the biggest thing happening at the temple last Saturday.  Sealing babies to their parents isn't an every day thing and twins to boot!  Plus we had a beautiful little girl with us.)
Brian and I both had someone helping us the entire time.  I love that about the temple!  No wondering where to go for more than a few seconds.  Just like when we were sealed to Bridget in Salt Lake, the workers at Mt. Timpanogos treated us like a bride and groom.  Brian finally told the old man helping him that I'm not his bride - that we've been married for almost 15 years.  "She's still your bride." :)

While everyone got comfortable in the sealing room, Brian and I were in the crowded Celestial Room waiting.  (I couldn't help thinking about the differences between this sealing and Bridget's.  We were sealed to Bridget in the Salt Lake Temple on January 4, 2007.  I think we chose the least busy day in that temple ever.)  We came into the sealing room and sat down on the little couch where the bride and groom usually sit.  It was so nice to see members of our family, our mission president and his wife, and Kellie there.  (Kellie and her family stayed the night at our house Friday and she was our pack mule all day Saturday.  Plus she got a beautiful poem stuck in my head.  Feelings of friendship!)
Finally, our kids were brought into the sealing room. We saw Bridget first in her white dress and Brian and I started to cry.  Emil and Colin were in white as well and the sight of them about did me in.  It's exactly as I imagine heaven to be and the living image of the picture I've kept in my head for a lot of years.  That picture is what got me through the rough years of infertility and what makes any temporal sacrifice worthwhile. 

Then the little temple grandma handed Colin to Grandma Peggy and he started to scream.  Bloody murder, actually.  It was pretty hilarious.  Denise held Emil and Mom held Colin while Brother Cardon performed the sealing, which was just a few words.  I had to look at Brother Cardon to know if he was talking because once Emil got across from Colin and discovered that they were crying, there was no hearing anything else.  They had our little family look in the mirrors, which was a treat for us.  Then we got to hug everyone and hand the babies and Bridget back to the grandmas to wait in the youth center until we'd changed our clothes.
I sat in the bride's room, dressed and ready to walk out with the groom at the same time, I guess.  The brides (all the people getting married last Saturday looked 15 years-old) were all too nervous for any chit-chat with the likes of me.  We picked up the kids in the youth center and went into the lobby.  Mom and Kellie were talking to a woman named Charlotte.  There were eight kids in my first grade class and Kellie, Charlotte and I are three of them.  What are the odds of us being in the same place at the same time without planning it?!  Crazy.  We walked out (after my Dad had his moment of celebrity walking out ahead of us) and got a few pictures.

Bridget needed a moment with her Grandpa during all this commotion.

Then it was off to The Bench for a few photos with everyone who had come.  (Except President and Sister Paulson, who left to meet their daughter before we could take a picture of them.)
This is the face of a woman who just had a baby! 
Front row: Claire, Melissa, Nicole holding Emil, Brian holding Colin, Bridget, Makenzie, and Kellie  Back row: Hal, Debbie, Rob, Jeff, Denise, Harold, Robert, Peggy, Bishop Barrus, Cami Barrus, and David
I like that you can see the whole temple in this one.
I tried to stay in the shade with Emil while we waited for stuff.  Emil had the white blanket Grandma Shirley made for Bridget and Colin had the blanket my parents brought home from Bethlehem.
I think this is where Bridget really got tired.  How about a high-five for that $15 dress from Costco?! 
Can you see our family and friends clustered under the tree in the background?  Ha!  It was hot.

Then it was time for some chicken at the park!  Thanks to Shannon and Melissa for all of the photos in this post.  Major love feelings for you both and all the pretty shots you got.
You've never seen a more tired baby. 
Cousin Claire and Gabriel
Aunt Claire holding Ian
Hal, Nate, and Debbie
Am I really that much shorter than Kellie?
Whew!  I started this post with all the kids in bed and now one of them is down for a nap, one needs breakfast, and one is freaking out.  I think it's time to go back to life.  I wish there were better words to say thank you to everyone who supported us on our big days.  We love you!  We love that we know you.  Thank you.


Justin said...

Awesome, awesome, awesome! So happy for you and your eternal family!

Jess said...

Eyes got a little teary here. I am so happy for your family. Congratulations.

Jill said...

This is one of the best blog posts of all time! I've been to a few sealings like this one and they are wonderful, amazing events. I'm so happy for you Nicole, and your whole family. Lovely!

Yeah Shannon with the photography!

KQ said...

All this happiness is making me tear up. Such beautiful pictures of a beautiful day in your life! Congratulations to forever with your family!

Andrea Lee U.R. said...

What a special day!
I LOVE the pictures of your sweet family and the temple in the background.

K2 said...

I have been reading your blog for quite some time but haven't yet had the guts to comment. My sister Liz, went to Peace college with your sister Melissa. I have enjoyed so much reading your blog especially reading about the twins and what a miracle they are. So happy for your whole family!

melissa said...

So glad we could be with you on the best day, ever! We love you all so much!

allyn said...

shannon did such a beautiful job capturing everything. perfect weather for the perfect day. still majorly bummed i couldn't be there. it is such a special event. you it, but i'll say it again, i am so happy for you!

(is it just me or does nate look like he is 10 years old in that picture?)

Katy said...

Beautiful pictures of a beautiful family! You deserve such happiness! It's wonderful to see you and Brian so blessed.