Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Called to Serve!

One of the best parts of being in Sweden has been meeting the missionaries.  With 3 boys having strong priesthood examples is so important.  After 2 weeks here our boys have come home with a dozen new heroes.  After an afternoon of football Matts latched onto a few and asked them to participate in his baptism.  He loved calling them to ask for their participation and was thrilled to hear that "they'd be honored".

Elder Jenkings teaching Little C.  C is very advance and has been cleared to be a designated driver.

Elder Marler and Elder Todesco had to head out early to go teach a lesson.  Go Elders!  

Elder Jenkins (confirmation), Elder Marler(confirmation), Elder Nelson (closing prayer), Elder Dunn (confirmation), Elder Overstreet (talk on Holy Ghost), Elder Todesco(opening prayer).
I'm so grateful for the example and generosity of these young men to our family.  They give support and joy to my parents and they were so kind and made a lasting impact on our boys in just a short time.

I have a family...

Not only did we get to have Grandma Candi and Grandpa Greg attend Matts' baptism, David, Anna and their girls also drove 10 hours to be here.  It was so thoughtful and generous of them to come such a long way (especially when they're moving on Friday).  Family is so special and the girls added some much needed beauty and musicality.  
Matts: doing what's right.  Alise: In her own world.  Emelina: Following along.  Gray: Cheesiness.  Linnea:  Miss Attitude.  Christian: Me too! Me too!

Cousins!  (missing Madi, Izzy; who joined via Facetime and Gentry who's getting ready for a new sister)

Our Swedish Family

Matts receiving his first quad from Grandma Candi and Grandpa Greg.  Plus a MARKING PEN! and a FOOTBALL CASE!

Now when I am baptized...

After waiting for 2 1/2 months since turning 8 Matts was baptized today.  It was well worth the wait.

Getting ready

Reed, Matts and Grandpa Greg in front of the same font I was baptized in 5,285 days ago (Thanks  for the calculations, Dad)

Matts taking things in Sverige quite seriously.

The Werjefeldt family.  When we were first living in Sweden, Brother Werjefeldt was our bishop and presided over my baptism.  For the past 20+ years our families have stayed in touch and enjoyed their visits to the States.   
G wasn't so sure about the whole thing, but was a trooper and sang with his cousins.  

Miss Amanda.  His Primary teacher (for one week :)

Little C was very enthusiastic about the whole event and after watching Matts be baptized, spent the rest of the meeting yelling "My Baptized" at random intervals.

My first born.  As Matts walked into the font and was getting situated he looked right at me and gave me a little wink.  I love this boy.

Flying high

Much happier after some brownie balls.

One step closer to being together as family forever.  

 It was a wonderful day.  I was so proud to watch Matts and hear his sweet testimony.  He has such a strong spirit and wants to do what is right.  He takes things very seriously and literally.  Our closing song was "I belong to the Church of Jesus Christ", because "I will be, Mom" (duh).  I'm so grateful for his desire to choose the right and the the way it's led him to be worthy to be baptized.  

Sunday, June 24, 2012


 Sunday evening we took a drive into Stockholm to see the sites of my childhood (with fully awake children this time).  It's lovely to be back.  Stockholm is a beautiful city and when mixed with some nostalgia it makes for a fantastic Sunday night. 
The embassy

THE hill.  I learned to ride my bike on this hill.  In my memory it was second only to Mount Everest.  Perspective, it's a crazy thing. 

I guess some things will never change.
G found his own mountains to scale.
Everyone else had to join in.
Thankfully, Little C found a more appropriate climbing area.
Looking out over the Baltic.

We love Grandma

She has the best wardrobe

She lets us do all kinds of illegal things

She's pretty much AWESOME.
*While in London, Christian fell in love with DOUBLE BUSES!  He would spend hours staring out our apartment window yelling "DOUBLE BUS!" each time one drove by.  So, you can imagine his excitement when Grandma and Grandpa picked him up from the airport in their very own double bus.  He almost spontaneously combusted from pure joy when Grandma let him back it up*
The simple things.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Kew Gardens

At the suggestion of some of Reed's good friends, we headed out to Kew Gardens as part of a long weekend.  It was beautiful and in spite of the rain, it was a great way to escape the city for a day.  

The largest indoor Palm Tree

On the skywalk of the largest Victorian glass building.  We like superlatives.  They make everything more interesting :)

The pagoda (I told you Reed loves this angle)

The peacock was quite friendly
A little too friendly

Simply adorable.  (The baby gosling and little C.)


One of the things that has left me very pleasantly surprised is how helpful and kind most people are.  I guess with the 3boys I always brace myself for the worst.  But, most people we met were extremely friendly and helpful.  While in the pool at St. Pierre's I struck up a conversation with an older couple.  After learning of our quest for all things Roman they suggested going onto to Caerleon before returning to London.  It was a fantastic suggestion.  On the way to Caerleon we passed the remains of a roman town and it's wall and then in Caerleon they have an amphitheatre, a bath house and a Roman Battalion museum.  It was the perfect way to end the weekend. 
The Roman Centurion

The Gladiator

Me Too! Me Too!

Ching Ching

Scaling the Amphitheatre

Ready for Battle

"Mom, take of picture of me meditating in the sanctuary of the Roman garden"

"No, really mom, I feel really peaceful here."
I think we'll be recreating a Roman garden back in Georgia. 

Chepstow Castle

After a good night's rest we headed out for more adventuring.  We started the day at Chepstow Castle.  Since it was a Sunday morning, it was completely deserted.  Perfect for exploring and a game of "Ching-Ching"

What's Ching Ching? It's the eternal battle between two brothers (and an occasional wildcard), fought from the beginning of time (or our arrival in London), fought on all terrains (castles, parks, city streets) and through all manner of obstacles.  It obeys the letter of the maternal laws by avoiding all contact. 

The keep

It's good to be King

His Royal Highness

Ching Ching


 Although we denied Matts ultimate wish of going to see Hadrian's Wall, we appeased him with a weekend filled with Roman ruins.  The Baths in Bath were quite cool and we spent a lot more time there than I expected.  The city was beautiful and a great place to spend an afternoon.  
On our way into the Roman Baths.  Matts hadn't figured out the audioguide and was convinced this was boooring.   G and Little C were excited to have buttons to control. 

At the baths


As you can see, Matts figured out the audioguide and was exploring every nook and cranny.  G and Little C were done with pushing buttons. 

When I carry C it looks like this...

When Reed carries him...I wonder who's the fun one?

He LOVED the lion who was guarding...

The Pump Room!  Be still my Austenian heart.  Although Reed graciously suggested we have tea there, I declined.  I don't think the boys are quite ready for Jane yet. 
Outside Bath Abby

R's angle of choice

G explores the art of photobombing.