Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Mammoth Anniversary


In our faith, we don't believe that marriage is "till death do you part", but we believe that marriage is a sacred covenant that can last after this life, and that families can be united for eternity. So to help remind us of the covenants we made in the temple, we enjoy a tradition of going to a new temple every year to symbolically renew our commitment to each other, and to have a much needed getaway!

There are currently 128 operating temples in the world, and 17 others that have been announced or are under construction. So we certainly won't run out of temples to choose from! Part of the tradition we've established is to surprise each other with the temple we visit and also the accomodations. So this year, it was Mr. Wonderful's turn to surprise me... and SURPRISE me he did! We've been to temples in Washington, Ohio, Kentucky, Michigan and Illinois. So this year, I had absolutely no clue where he was going to take me. He had me convinced we were flying somewhere, but just as we were about to take the exit to the airport, he abruptly swerved to the other lane and kept driving south all the way down to... Nashville, Tennessee! Here are some pictures of our adventures from our annual getaway. THANK YOU again, Nana and Grand-papa for taking care of the kiddos!!!
First stop... Grand Ole Opry Radio City Christmas Spectacular featuring the Rockettes! It was really an amazing show. I especially enjoyed the last scene called, The Living Nativity. They played traditional Christmas Carols and ended the performance with the Hallelujah Chorus. It was absolutely stunning and I was thrilled that after such a glitzy and secular show, they actually emphasized the reason for the season.
Then Mr. Wonderful took me to a gorgeous place called Brentwood Bed and Breakfast outside of Nashville. It was a nice surprise because usually when we travel we'll stay in the cheapest motel we can find. So it was a real treat to splurge and enjoy a special night together.


Check out this romantic room, complete with sparkling cider, flowers, and cookies. I highly recommend this charming place!

Then to the best and most sacred part of the trip. It was so special to be together in the temple and reflect on the last 6 years we've shared together so far. To think about all the love, all our triumphs, all our mistakes, and to plan ahead for the future we hope to create together.
And the final stop- On our way home, we had the opportunity to explore this AMAZING National Park in Kentucky to complete one of my goals from my list of 100 life goals.

This is Jon feeling apprehensive about entering "Fat Man's Misery"... a section of the cave that was especially cramped (ha ha!)

This park was even more incredible than I had imagined. It's the largest cave in the world, featuring over 350 miles of caverns with fascinating geological formations throughout. We were able to go on the "Historical Tour" through one of the caves. It was really an eye-opening experience. The tour guide took us to one of the lowest points in the cave and turned off all the lights and had everyone turn off their flashlights/cell phones, etc. so we could experience true and complete darkness. He said our eyes would never adjust down there, because there was simply NO light. It was pretty terrifying.

Later on, it hit me that on the very same day, we had gone from what I believe to be the lightest place on earth in the temple (where enlightenment and personal revelation come so freely)... to the darkest place on earth. I started pondering about the meaning of light and I developed a greater appreciation of our Savior, Jesus Christ through this experience. I truly believe that He is the LIGHT of the world. He is the one who gives us enlightenment and hope. He is the one who illuminates our path in this life through His teachings and perfect example. I am grateful for His sacrifice... that he decended below all things, and suffered all things, so that He could know how to succor His people in their trials and afflictions. During this season of light and celebration, I testify that He is truly the light and the life of the world.

(Yes, that's a bow on my butt. What was I thinking??)

Thank you, Mr. Wonderful for this amazing experience. I love you... forever!

Happy Anniversary!

9 comments:

Saquel25 said...

Happy Anniversary you guys. What a lot you have done in 6 years. I really enjoyed the pictures.

Lilola said...

What a great tradition! Happy Anniversary!

Jill said...

Happy Anniversary! Ours is next week and we'll celebrate 8 years! I guess it's time to baptize our marriage, eh? LOVE the pictures! :o)

jennifer said...

Happy Anniversary! What a wonderful tradition - sounds like you had an amazing trip!

traceyroxanne said...

Wow- only 6 years? You guys haven't wasted a minute! Beautiful couple, beautiful marriage and family. I really enjoyed having Benny in my class last week. He's adorable. Oh, and I happen to know that only the most amazing brides use butt bows, they're a classic, like pearls, you know.

Mommy Bee said...

We like going to do sealings for our anniversary. :) We just hit 5 years this month (did you know our anniversary is jsut a few days before yours?) It seem so long and so short all at once. :)

Rob and Steph Puterbaugh said...

Thats a wonderful tradition! I may have to "steal" it from you. lol.

If you're ever in Tennessee again you should stop by the Oprah land Hotel...it's amazing! Also, you said you're moving to Wisconsin right? You def need to stop by The House on the Rock or something like that. it might be Hill instead of Rock...anyways, it's beautiful. My Grandpa would take us up there. It's by the southwest corner of wisconsin near the Illinois Border. My grandpa lived in Galena, Illinois and it would take us about an hour or two to get there...but i def recommend you go there!

The Woods said...

Mr. Wonderful really did a wonderful job of planning your anniversary and I love your tradition as well.

6jardines said...

I have been to Mammoth Cave...it is very cool!!! Happy Anniversary you guys!!! I vote for the new Gilbert AZ..(in our stake!!!) Temple in the next few years!!!...they haven't broken ground for it yet! :)

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