Sunday, April 7, 2013

Temple Square

For some time now I have wanted to take my boys to Temple Square.  I have felt like while they may not be able to go to the temple yet they can visit Temple Square and enjoy the feelings of the spirit there.  I have also felt that of the 14 million people who belong to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints only a few are able to visit Temple Square, we are some of the few and we should take advantage of it far more than we do.  We had such a wonderful day there that I hope to make it a pre-conference tradition. 
 We began our day at City Creek Park - I have never been to this little park, but it is lovely, a perfect place for our brown bag sack lunch.  The boys were so excited to eat lunch out of a brown paper bag. :)  Then we visited Brigham Young park, which was once part of Brigham Young's farm - the boys were impressed with the large wheel. :)
 After our picnic lunch we went across the street to go up to the top of the Church Office Building.  when we got inside the main lobby I was amazed at all the people who were clearly from out of town, probably out of the country.  I originally though they might be the people who translate conference, but my mom visited with the front desk and learned that they were all of the people of the Seventy from Saudi Arabia, Brazil and Guatemala, the spirit was so strong, I don't know if Brandon and Grant noticed, but my mom and I held back tears of joy and awe.  Because of all the visitors we were not able to ride the elevator to the top, but we would be able to if we came back latter. :)

So we started our walk around the fountains and gardens.  While we were at the fountains I told Brandon to pay attention to how they felt while we were there.  Brandon said "Mom I already know, I feel love and happy because you brought us here".  Melt my heart. :)
 We went to the Joseph Smith Memorial Building and went to the top to look out at the temple - the boys enjoyed looking at the "toy" cars, people and train, they were so small they looked like toys.
Then we walked over to the temple where the boys played in the little alcove and slid down the side of the stairs. :)  The temple was as always beautiful.  Brandon and Grant lit up when they saw a Bride getting her pictures taken. :)

We then walked across the street to the Conference Center, we took a tour to the top of the Conference Center.  I love how the church turned this building which cover a full block into a forest by planting several different trees on top.  It is so beautiful!  The view of the temple was beautiful!

 After visiting the top of the Conference Center we went into the assembly hall - this was the first time for my boys and their reaction was exactly what I was hoping for.  Brandon walked in and gasped - I know this place, this is where President Monson talks on tv. :)  Every time I visit I am amazed at the huge size and beauty.  While we were listening to our guide one of the men who works in the stage crew came to Brandon and offered him his I-Pad, the screen showed a big color wheel, this man then told Brandon to pick his favorite color, he of course chose red, it turned the pipes red, then Brandon and Grant had a hay day changing the colors of the pipes and the colors of the wall behind the pipes to several different colors.  I wonder if Bonnie Goodlliffe (a family friend who plays the organ for the Mo-Tab choir, and was there practicing) wondered what was going on as all the colors kept changing?  Meanwhile this same man, happily chatted away with my mom and me about everything that goes on back stage, like the miles worth of cat walks, the three different rooms above the center, where they work, and more interesting facts.  It was such a treat for all of us!!

 After the Conference Center we visited the Christus Statue, the Tabernacle and then crossed the street to visit City Creek.  The boys had fun playing with the water in the fountain and were so surprised with the fountains and music came on.  We enjoyed watching the show.
 Then we hopped on tracks for a train ride to and from the Gateway center, which thrilled Grant.
 After our train ride we walked on the overpass and watched the trains go right under us - so fun and exciting!

 Then we went to look for the fish, Brandon was so excited when we finally spotted them. :)  If only they allowed fishing, or even had a vending machine with food to feed the fish, oh well.  :)
 Then they had fun looking at the animals in the animal statue .

 We admired the large waterfall, looked for animal foot prints on the walk ways and then headed back to Temple Square.  As we were walking past the Church Administration Building I was pointing out the window of President Monson's office and the curtains parted and a lady who I assume was his secretary waved enthusiastically at us :)
 We ended our fun and busy day by taking the elevator to the 26th floor of the Church Office Building.  It was so fun to look around and see all of the places we were able to visit.  The view was beautiful!
 It was also pretty fun to see our car - it was so tiny! 

On the drive home while Grant was sleeping Brandon and I visited about our day.  I mentioned to him about the night before when we were reading about Nephi praying to understand his father Lehi's dream.  An angle appears to him and takes him to the top of an exceedingly high mountain and proceeds to show him the Saviors life and Heavenly Father's plan for His children.  I found it interesting this time that he takes him to the top of an exceedingly high mountain; when we are at the top of a mountain we have a better view, a better understanding, just like when we were at the top of the Conference Center, Joseph Smith Memorial Building, and Church Office, we had a better view of the city, we could see things better, understand things better.  I shared this with Brandon and also told him that the temple is also called the Mountain of the Lord.  When we are in the temple we can see and understand things about our lives, the gospel, and Heavenly Father's plan for us better.  This is one of the reasons I love the temple so much!  I am not sure how much Brandon understood, or how much he will remember, but I hope that a seed was planted for him.

The whole day was simply wonderful.  I was so grateful to be there with my boys and my mom.  As we watched conference this weekend my boys would point out places they had been.  I think it made their experience with conference a bit more memorable.  Hopefully this will become a tradition and they will begin to understand and appreciate our love for the Temple, General Conference, and the Church.


Aspen said...

DARLING picture of you and the boys in front of the temple. Wow. I love it.

Julie said...

This was such a great day, I'm glad I could be a part of it!

Sharece said...

That looks like a super wonderful and busy day! You always inspire me Michelle!! Thank you for sharing this post and making me want to be a better mother. :)