Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Jayden's Armenia bound

Instead of sending Jayden off to Utah and the MTC from Pasco, we drove him down so we could spend some quality time together. Quality it was! We left Saturday late afternoon and made it to Boise where we checked into our new favorite "cheap night's sleep"...at the Sleep Inn. It was awesome. Bed's (and pillows) were great and the shower was warm. Even had a nice breakfast the following morning of scrambled eggs and biscuits with gravy. Can't beat that.

Sunday, after breakfast we drove on down and stopped in Brigham City to take some pictures and see some sights before driving on up to the ski resort in Eden. The new temple is absolutely breathtaking. The town was all decked out for the holidays! It was fun to drive around and see all the different decorations.
Brigham Temple

We stopped in Ogden for dinner and then checked into our condo where we snuggled in for the night. It's an amazing resort with all the comforts of home. The view was awesome. Fortunately, the roads were clear and dry and it didn't snow much while we were there.
Dad and Jayden
 View of Powder Mountain
 Our bedroom upstairs was huge!
Jayden settling in

Monday, we drove on down to Salt Lake and walked around temple square. There was an almost surreal feeling around about us; knowing that in just a few short days, we would have to say goodbye and be separated for two years. It was bittersweet.

Jayden and Dad at the Joseph Smith Memorial Building

 Father & son, forever and ever
Mother and son
Temple square was festive and the lights were beautiful. We loved walking around taking it all in. We were trying to capture moments in everything we did. Jayden wanted to eat lunch at the Lion House so we did that. It was fantastic! We went to Deseret Book and bought him Armenia scriptures and had them engraved. We didn't want the day to end. 

Salt Lake Temple

For dinner, we met up with Dad's old missionary companions, Rob Thompson and Steve Solberg and their wives at the Red Iquana. What a place!! The food was so amazing they had people lined up behind the block. Fortunately, they were there early and had a table waiting for us. Good times. (I ate a salad smothered in prawns...omg).

On our way back to the lodge, we met up with John's niece Stephanie and nephew, Kevin with his wife Melanie (and kids) at a convenience store. It was so much fun reconnecting with Steve's kids. Jennifer wasn't able to come but her husband, Dave brought the kids to meet us. So fun!! They are so awesome. We committed to not let so many years go by before we visited again. 
 Jayden, John, Kevin and Stephanie

Tuesday, we got a late start because it snowed overnight and it was an icy commute into Salt Lake but well worth the effort. We did a session at the Salt Lake Temple. Neither Jayden nor I had ever been so it was powerful to say the least. Afterward, we walked around temple square again, taking in the visitor's centers and talking to several of the Sister Missionaries: getting Jayden all excited about his adventure! We ended our evening visiting with our good friend, Lucy! (which I didn't get pictures of, darn it!)
 Truly a missionary!

I cannot express in words the ache and void that filled our hearts as we stood across the street of the MTC (missionary training center) while we said our goodbyes. Jayden was strong, and kept his parents from falling totally apart :) So like him... We love him so much and are so proud of the choice he's made to go and serve the Lord in the great country of Armenia. We pulled it together long enough to send him off, then John drove around the building and parked the car where we sobbed our hearts out. We cried all the way home and for three days after, literally mourning over the separation. As time moves on, we're learning to celebrate the beautiful man he's become. Carry on Elder Cornett!!