Wednesday, May 8, 2013


Every once in awhile, I get to the end of a day and think, “This was a PERFECT day.”  April 13th was one of those days.  I will never forget it.   It started off with a beautiful morning.  Cali, Lexi, and Xander all chose to be baptized as members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.  It was such a sweet service.  They were able to choose the music, speakers, etc. for the baptism and they did such a good job.  At the risk of boring you, I’m going to outline the program—I’m sure they’ll love reading about it in the future!  Again, you’ve been warned!  This will be a long post!  (:

Grandma Nelson was chosen to lead the music.  The opening song was “I’ll Walk With You” which Xander chose.  The words seemed extra fitting for these children:

If you don’t walk as most people do,
Some people walk away from you,
But I won’t! I won’t!
If you don’t talk as most people do,
Some people talk and laugh at you,
But I won’t! I won’t!
I’ll walk with you. I’ll talk with you.
That’s how I’ll show my love for you.
Jesus walked away from none.
He gave his love to ev’ryone.
So I will! I will!
Jesus blessed all he could see,
Then turned and said, “Come, follow me.”
And I will! I will!
I will! I will!
I’ll walk with you. I’ll talk with you.
That’s how I’ll show my love for you.

Grandma Rose gave the opening prayer, followed by "spotlights."  It’s tradition at most baptisms to spotlight those getting baptized.  The kids picked who they wanted to spotlight them—Lexi picked Parker, Xander picked Taylor, and Cali picked Graci.  They did such a beautiful job.  It was so sweet to hear the things they chose to say about their siblings.  After the spotlights, Cali and her darling friend Kara sang “When I am Baptized.”  It was precious and I was so proud.  Cali had been so excited to invite her friends to her baptism.  She kept asking me for more invitations to give to people.  I was really praying that at least a couple of friends would show up.  As it turned out, about 15 of her cute school friends (few of whom I had even met) showed up.  Cali was so excited as they started to file into the room, but soon got overwhelmed.  I could see her getting emotional and I asked what was wrong.  As it turns out, she was scared to sing!  As she told me, she had little tears trickling down her cheeks.  This was right before the baptism started, so I was nervous that she would get up there and be afraid.  Well, she may have been scared, but she didn’t show it.  She sang SO sweetly and it was absolutely perfect.  Here are the words to that song:

I like to look for rainbows whenever there is rain
And ponder on the beauty of an earth made clean again
I want my life to be as clean as earth right after rain
I want to be the best I can and live with God again
I know when I am baptized my wrongs are washed away
And I can be forgiven and improve myself each day
I want my life to be as clean as earth right after rain
I want to be the best I can and live with God again.

Following the song, Aunt Megan gave a talk on baptism.  Uncle Matthew had been asked to talk but had gotten sick that morning, so she filled in.  You wouldn’t know that she hadn’t had any time to prepare—it was perfect.  After the talk, it was time for the baptisms.

I wish I could explain in words how strong the Spirit was as these sweet children were led into the water and baptized by their Daddy.  Lexi in particular had pure JOY written all over her face as she came out of the water.  She couldn’t contain the giggles and it was just perfect.  Are you getting that “perfect” seems to be the theme of the morning?   She kept saying throughout the day how she felt the Holy Ghost in her heart as she was baptized and how it felt so warm.

As the kids changed from their wet clothes, those attending the service had a few minutes to write notes for them, which I’m sure they will always treasure.  

This was followed by a song performed by Lexi and Jesi called “I Will.”  This song was written by Hilary Weeks, who Lexi happens to be absolutely obsessed with.  They were so precious singing their little hearts out into the microphone.  Once again, the Spirit was so strong in the room and I’m not sure there were any dry eyes.  It was simply beautiful.  I wanted to attach a video of them practicing, but I couldn’t figure out how to get it from photobooth to here—so I just put it on facebook.  I also included a clip of Sophi singing with Lex.  You can access them HERE.
Aunt Jenny then gave a wonderful talk on the Holy Ghost, followed by a testimony from Sophi.  Sophi hadn’t been coached on what to say, and these were her words as close as I can remember:

“I bear my testimony that I know the church is true and I know Jesus will fix my arms and I know Jesus will fix Lexi’s eyes and Elli’s eyes and I know Jesus will fix Cali’s legs and I know Jesus will fix Xander’s legs and I know Jesus loves me.  In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.”

Love that girl.

The kids were then confirmed members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints by laying on of hands and were given the gift of the Holy Ghost.  Grandpa Nelson confirmed Cali and Lexi and Grandpa Green confirmed Xander.  They were all given beautiful blessings and had many wonderful men standing in the circle.  I am so grateful for so many righteous men in my life and for the power of the priesthood.

Our wonderful stake president, President Davey, and our bishop, Bishop Short, then shared their testimonies and gave some beautiful thoughts that I will never forget.  The closing song was picked by Lexi, “If the Savior Stood Beside Me” and the prayer was given by Jessica.  Here are the words to that song:

If the Savior stood beside me, would I do the things I do?
Would I think of His commandments and try harder to be true?
Would I follow His example? Would I live more righteously
if I could see the Savior standing nigh, watching over me?
If the Savior stood beside me, would I say the things I say?
Would my words be true and kind if He was never far away?
Would I try to share the gospel? Would I speak more rev’rently
if I could see the Savior standing nigh, watching over me?
He is always near me, though I do not see Him there,
And because He loves me dearly I am in His watchful care.
So I’ll be the kind of person that I know I’d like to be
if I could see the Savior standing nigh, watching over me.

Following the baptismal service, we had a wonderful luncheon at the church.  So many people helped with set-up and food and clean-up.  I was so grateful!  One of the highlights of the day was seeing Cali surrounded by all of her friends at a table, laughing and clearly loving the attention she was getting. As a mother, I am SO VERY GRATEFUL for these incredible young ladies who have rallied around Cali and taken her in.  Thank you!!!

After the luncheon, our family was so blessed to be able to go to the Oquirrh Mountain Temple to have Cali sealed to our family.  Again, there isn’t any word to describe the afteroon besides PERFECT.   It was simply heaven on earth.  To have our children inside the temple dressed all in white was such a beautiful reminder of what is to come someday.  Cali absolutely GLOWED.  Many people commented on it—she was just radiant.  I don’t know that I’ve ever seen her look so perfectly happy and peaceful and content as she did in that celestial room as she held her hand over ours during the sealing ordinance.  I am absolutely overwhlemed with gratitude that she is mine forever.  This absolute angel on earth is my daughter—it is so humbling.

The only “un-perfect” part of the day was that our camera kept having issues.  I’m grateful to those who stepped in and took some photos for us.  Pictures aren’t allowed in the temple (we consider it a sacred place) but you are able to go out onto the temple grounds in your white clothing to take family photos afterward.  We’ve done this in the past but we were too exhausted this time!  We did take a few pictures in our church clothes.  Speaking of which, you may notice that I chose to dress Elli all in white for the baptism even though she wasn’t baptized that day.  In our church, we believe that only those accountable for their actions are in need of baptism.  Little children are perfect and alive in Christ—so they are only in need of baptism when they reach the age of accountability.  Because Elli is obviously not accountable, she is incapable of sinning and therefore is also perfect in Christ, having no need of baptism.  I still wanted her to wear white because it represents purity, and she is the most pure little soul I know.  I have no doubt in my mind whatsoever that she is a celestial little spirit who is so much closer to Christ without baptism than I will ever be with baptism  I love you, my darling, perfect Elli.  I love you, sweet Lexi, Xander, and Cali!  I am so proud of your decision to follow the Savior.  I love you, wonderful Graci, Taylor, Parker, Jesi and Sophi!  You mean everything to me!  And I love you, little Emily and Jacob.  I felt your presence in the temple and know that we will all be eternally together someday...

             Aunt Jenny snapped a photo during their song but didn't want to have a flash on....

                                      My friend, Denise, makes the most amazing cupcakes.
                                           These are pink lemonade flavored-- so yummy!

 Cali showing off the flowers sent by Kristen-- her dear friend and the lady who made her adoption possible

               Graci made this pillow for Grandma Rose-- it took hours and hours and hours!

                                                              Xander and cousin Ben

                                                        Nikki and her neice, Hollie

                                                       Aunt Laura, Ben and Uncle Tyler

                                     We were all cold and tired by the time we took photos...

             My beautiful children!!!  Can you tell it's hard to get a photo of them all smiling?!