Sunday, July 21, 2013

Nauvoo - The Temple and Carthage Jail

Wednesday morning I had set the alarm in the hopes that we would be heading to pick up tickets for the wagon ride, but we were all SO tired and moving very slowly that we were too late :-). We made it to Nauvoo around 8am and had until about 10am to explore before meeting up with Mike's fam to go to the temple. Most of the sites didn't open until 9am though, so we drove around and eventually found a little playground for the kids to get some wiggles out on until 9am.
We were then able to tour through a few of the little historical shops. I thought we could just walk through them, but they were all tours and while some of the sweet missionaries who gave the tours were great about gearing them to small children (at the Stoddard Tin Shop), others were a little clueless :-) (the sweet man who guided us through the Browning Gun Shop). We made it through those two and then stopped by the Pioneer Pastimes where the kids were able to play around for a bit freely before we headed back to the visitor's center for Mike to change.
As I was walking in to take the kids into the restroom, guess who walked out?! The Shipp family from our ward in Katy! I knew they would be there at the same time as us, but really what are the odds :-)? Maryann and I were able to get a quick picture together. I can't believe she will be a missionary soon!
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I couldn't decide which of these I liked more
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I was so proud of how well our kids did on all the tours for the most part, but by this morning this was how Preston was feeling about them :-).
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this sister was SO good with gearing it towards kids
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this one on the other hand took about 45 minutes
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Chloe was a brave babysitter and watched all 5 of the nieces and nephews (8,6,4,2,1) so the adults were able to all attend the Nauvoo temple . It is such a gorgeous temple and it was so special to all be able to do that together. We owe Chloe big time :-)! I'm so thankful that we were able to go inside and feel the special spirit there.
We did our best to get a picture of the whole group outside the temple with Mike and I taking turns with the camera so I could photo shop myself in :-). I wish the people were focused better but we had to be so far back that my lens wasn't sure what it was doing. Oh well. It was definitely a fun trip to take with family!
the whole Freefam gang
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After a stop for lunch, we went to Carthage Jail. This was my favorite of all the sites that we went to over our three days and where I felt the spirit the strongest. I think a large part of why going to this jail hits you even harder is because so much of it is the original house that was there when Joseph Smith was. To think that it is THE floor he walked on, THE door with THE bullet hole from that night is pretty amazing. It was a perfect end to our trip. I feel like I have a better understanding and a greater appreciation for the early saints who helped to lay the foundation for our church after our experience over those few days and I hope my kids do too.
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the front of the door, and then from the back you can see how the bullet entered it
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We starting driving back towards Dallas to pick up the RV straight from Carthage, making it to Springfield for the night. This is one of Preston's drawings from that drive. A "ghost Preston" and a "heart flugger". Preston calls plugs fluggers for some reason :-) and this one is obviously shaped like a heart! He serenaded us along much our drive, singing along to the songs in his little "ipad" as he calls it. Super cute!
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