Friday, July 31, 2015

Sacred Grove to Niagara Falls

We were up bright, early and on time in order to get to the Sacred Grove before the visitor center opened.  I really wanted to have a peaceful experience with just my family.  The only thing I didn't count on was the hundreds of kids that would be there with their EFY group. Also before the visitor center opened.  Luckily once we got inside the grove we rarely noticed them.
Maysen, Stockton, Dad
Preston, Jorja
 Stockton, Preston, Jorja, Maysen, Mike, Stephanie
 Dad ~ our professional photographer
Dad reading Joseph Smith's History in the Sacred Grove 
 Preston and Stephanie
 Jorja, Maysen, Mike, Preston, Stephanie, Stockton
 Maysen, Preston, Dad, Jorja, Stockton
 Maysen, Preston, Stephanie, Stockton, Mike Jorja
 Maysen, Preston, Stockton, Jorja
After the kids happily sitting for the family photos, we let them wander around by themselves.  My dad stayed with Preston and Jorja stayed with me.  It worked out great.  No one got lost except me.  I couldn't find my way out.  Eventually I made it.
 Mike & Stephanie
 Jorja loved having control of the big camera
 Jorja even managed to find frogs here
There were so many mosquitos this morning.  They loved to eat at Stockton.  Once we left the Sacred Grove, we headed down the street and stopped at Alvin's grave.
Dad, Maysen, Preston, Jorja
 Jorja and Preston
 Martin Harris' house
 Dad at the E.B. Grandin print shop
 Maysen, Mike, Stockton, Jorja, Brett
It was really cool learning about how the Book of Mormon was printed. It took 7 months to print the Book of Mormon and 17 months to bind them.
 Original floors
 Maysen & Stockton
 The visitor's center is built around the outside of his shop
 Preston, Maysen, Jorja, Stockton, Dad
 The capital letters were kept in the upper case
That is where the term 'upper case' comes from
 Stockton, Jorja, Maysen, Preston
 Looking at the tiny letters
 They had to put the letters in upside down and backwards
 They were able to print 16 pages at a time
 Stephanie, Preston, Maysen, Jorja, Stockton, Mike, Dad
 Jorja folding the pages
 Sewing it up
 Preston, Stockton, Jorja, Maysen
 Jorja, Mike, Preston, Stephanie
Mayen, Stockton, Dad
 Maysen took a picture of this quote she found
After the print shop we stopped by the Tomlinson Inn.  This is where Samuel Smith left a Book of Mormon with Lorenzo Young, Brigham Young's brother.  Later he left a Book of Mormon with John P. Green, Brigham Young's brother-in-law.  Samuel Smith felt like he had no success during his mission.  Little did he know his two books brought in Brigham Young and his family.  Also, they brought in Heber C. Kimball and his family.
Tomlinson Inn
We went to a small graveyard where Brigham Young's wife is buried. These graves are pretty old, and the yard is kept beautifully.  I wonder who does that?
 Original Solomon Kimball grave
I don't know who these next two people are.  I just thought it was cool that they fought in the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812.
 Joseph Young's home
My dad wanted to find the spot where Brigham Young's house used to be.  He had general directions, so we headed off into a field.  Mike stayed with the kids in the motorhome.
Stephanie and Dad
Soon my dad was so far ahead of me.  The weeds were up to my nose in most places.  Sometimes they were only to my stomach, but it was pretty hard to walk.  He was so far ahead of me I finally decided to turn back.
 Starting to walk back to the motorhome.  It is so far away!
I thought I would get back way before my dad, but I was only there about five minutes.  Pretty soon he comes up riding in a car with a random stranger.  Not sure how that happened.  Our last big stop of the day was Niagara Falls.  You can see the American flag and the Canadian flag on this bridge at the border.  We walked across that bridge.  I loved that!
We rode the Maid of the Mist and got soaked.
 Mike & Stephanie
 Stockton & Jorja
 Stephanie & Maysen
 Stockton & Jorja
 Stephanie & Stockton
 Stephanie & Maysen
 Jorja has such a hard time keeping her eyes open during pictures.
I decided I'm not going to care about that anymore.
 There you go Jorja
 We walked up here and were pounded!  That was fun!
 Maysen & Stephanie
Jorja and Preston got soaked.  Preston turned his shirt around hoping it wouldn't bother him so much.  I bought them both new shirts in the gift shop, along with a Niagara Falls towel.
Maysen, Jorja, Preston, Stockton
 Preston, Jorja, Maysen, Mike, Stephanie, Stockton
I wanted to eat at the Rainforest Cafe.  I remember seeing it in San Francisco, but I wasn't sure what it was.  Mike and I ate at one in Paris and I thought Jorja and Maysen would love it.
 Preston and Cha! Cha!
 Jorja and Cha! Cha!
 Preston & Jorja
 Preston wanted a turn sitting next to the gorilla
We had brought our passports and were able to walk across the United States/Canada border.  That was a lot of fun.  They have a plaque at the line so you know right where it is.  We didn't need to show our passports until we got over the bridge on the Canada side.
Stockton & Preston in the US, Maysen & Jorja in Canada
 Now the girls are in the US and the boys are in Canada
 Preston is in both
 My family at the border
Stephanie, Maysen, Preston, Stockton, Mike, Jorja
 Falls from the bridge
 Stephanie & Mike
The border agent asked us what we were going to do in Canada.  Mike pointed to the Hershey store and said we were going there.  And we did.  That is all we did in Canada, but the kids loved it.
We lost track of Preston for a bit.  Maysen found him.  Actually he wasn't holding all of these frogs when she found him, she helped him get covered like this.  He was so happy we let him take one of the frogs home.
Maysen loved this sweatshirt.  She was so happy we let her get it. Maysen never likes to buy anything, so it is fun when she actually wants something.
 Look how happy she is!
 Preston, Eyes closed Jorja, Stockton, Maysen
 Maysen skipping down the street
 Back to the United States and the land of the tolls
 Niagara Falls
 Mike & Stephanie
I made Mike take another picture because he was pulling faces
 Much better!
 Mike, Stephanie, Preston and his new frog friend
One firework shot up while we were crossing the bridge.  It would have been cool to stay and watch them there, but we were anxious to get on our way.  Once we got back to the motorhome, we realized we had lost a bag.  It was the bag I had our new Niagara Falls towel in.  Also, the shirts Jorja and Preston were wearing.  Jorja didn't mind that, she doesn't like the yellow shirt and I always want her to wear it because she looks adorable.  Preston was pretty sad.  It was his Hawaii shirt and he loves that.  We went back to the Rainforest Cafe, pretty sure that is where it was left.  They didn't have it.  Preston had big tear drops come down his eyes.  Although if we had to lose a bag, I'm glad it was that one and not the bag with our passports and 3DS-s in them.

Today was crazy.  This morning we got a text from Brett saying Rachel was going to the hospital.  Lots of cheering.  As we were driving into Niagara Falls, we got a text from Jackie saying Grandpa Parry had died. Not lots of cheering.  I called Jackie and talked to her a bit.  He had died just a few minutes before.  Grandpa ended up dying a few hours before Brett & Rachel's baby girl was born.  I hope they were able to meet each other and have a good chat.
My Grandpa's newest Great-Grandchild
This is the picture I posted on Instagram.  My grandpa is the best.  I'm sure going to miss him.
Jackie said the funeral will either be Friday or Saturday.  I couldn't believe that.  We might be able to make it there!  I told her not to work around us, but I was crossing my fingers for Saturday.  I will be thrilled if we can be there.