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Historic sites vacation to New York, part one

Our family just got home from a nine day trip to upstate New York, mainly to visit the final day of the Hill Cumorah Pageant, then to visit a number of places that are significant in the history of our church. We had an excellent time together, and I took close to 400 pictures. Here's the first batch, but I'm uploading them in order, which will be reverse order on the blog. Enjoy! This picture of Lindsey is one of the first of many that I took in the Sacred Grove. I'll be adding more in part two.

This is the Smith family home that Alvin, Joseph's brother, had helped build before his death.
It had much more space on the inside than what you might think by looking at it here.
There was a constant need for Joseph to hide and protect the gold plates from opposition. At one point, they were buried here below these bricks, just before an angry mob came ransacking through the house in search of them.
This rug is a replica of something like Lucy Mack Smith, Joseph's mother, would have painted.

The Palmyra temple shinging through the trees was so beautiful.
Speaking of beautiful....

Kelly and Lindsey and I had our cameras going the whole week and we all probably have many duplicates. They just have much better cameras than I do but I'm the only one who typically will take time to posts them online. Yay, me!

We took Madison and her companion out for pizza on her p-day at a place in downtown Palmyra that she had requested. It was delicious and humongous. We sent them home with the leftovers for dinner and that seemed to have pleased them.
This was our last day, of three in a row, to see our sweet niece.
I made sure to give my sister's firstborn plenty of hugs from her mom too!

We met the missionaries in the parking lot of the Palmyra temple before taking them to lunch.

Christopher was so thrilled to see his cousin on her mission.

This is the visitors' center where Madison has spent hours giving tours during the busy and hectic Hill Cumorah pageant in mid-July.

We enjoyed driving through the country searching for the various sites and touring each of them and hearing interesting stories pertaining to the history.

There was a Boy Scout group touring this site the same day we did. They looked so handsome in their uniforms and hats that I asked them for a picture.
This is the house where my niece currently resides with the other sister missionaries in that area.

Our tour guide at this site.
Madison's trainer gave us our tour at the Peter Whitmer Farm. She was so sweet and did a nice job and said she was wearing my niece's dress. Cute!
After we attended church in Brighton, a suburb of Rochester, we drove out here on this lovely Sunday afternoon.
Christopher decided his church clothes weren't very comfortable, so he changed into some shorts and a shirt.
This Whitmer home seemed larger on the inside than it appeared on the exterior.

I really did feel like we were standing in holy places in these rooms where heavenly messengers had once appeared. It was a good feeling.
The beds were tiny and looked uncomfortable. Air conditioning had been added for comfort of the current time visitors, and I imagined how hot and muggy the summers must have been and how frigid and chilling the winters would have been for these pioneers of the 1800s. I prefer a climate controlled within about five degrees with heating or cooling and felt for them.
The senior tour guide offered to take my picture, so I agreed.
The chairs were so tiny. People must have been much more lean and fit from all the hard labor and lack of food in abundance and gluttony that we sometimes overindulge in today.
The field of corn is owned by the church, but leased out to someone else to farm it. It makes for a dreamy backdrop. "If you build it, they will come."
Christopher just wanted to nap for a while.
Since he still had on his church shoes and socks, I cropped this picture above his feet. Pretend he is wearing summertime sandals.
This was from the statue at the top of the Hill Cumorah.

Christopher stayed down below at the bottom of the hill to avoid the hike and to save our seats, for which we appreciated his efforts.
Here is the view from the top of the Hill Cumorah, referred to by locals as "Mormon Hill."
We missed Donny Osmond and his family by a week. They attended the pageant as guests in the VIP section and afterwards, he spoke to the cast and was very gracious, approachable, and friendly. Those of you who read my blog, are one of my friends or family, you probably know that I adore Donny. I wish he would have shown up the same night as us, then suddenly, I run into him. Nah, he would have been jealous of my husband, for sure. I wouldn't want to ruin his night or anything.

Maryanne was such a sweetheart and gave me plenty of helpful hints in planning and what to expect. She and her family were chosen to be part of this year's pageant cast of more than 600 people. I didn't have my camera with me when they were in costume, so I hope to get some from Lindsey's camera soon to post. They looked so authentic in their performance attire.
Huge crowds would fill these seats later in the evening. We saved four spots with our umbrellas and bags then went hiking to the top of the hill to see the view.
A family was chilling under a shade tree a few hours before the Hill Cumorah Pageant begin at 9:15, just after dark.
We enjoyed looking at a table where copies of the Book of Mormon were printed in hundreds of languages. I headed straight tot he Dutch one, Het Boek van Mormon, having served a mission in The Netherlands and Belgium back in the 1980s, and Kelly went straight to the Chinese one. He served his mission in Argentina, but is currently studying Chinese for work.

We had just arrived and this is when we first saw our niece, Madison, who is serving her mission in Rochester, New York, working hard as a tour guide in the visitors' center in Palmrya on that particular week.
My honey and I had a blast together this week.


jennie w. said…
Fun trip! I'd love to do that once my kids get older.
looks like a great time. i will have to show these to brent - he'll get homesick i'm sure!
Julie V. said…
What a wonderful vacation! I am so glad you had a great time and got to see Madison. It makes me happy that she got to see family.
Great job with the pictures, by the way.
Lonna said…
I think that is really funny that all of you were clicking away with different cameras the entire trip.

What a fun time for your niece too, I bet that she was thrilled to have some family around as she was working hard. My younger brother was in that pageant after he graduated from high school, he loved it.

There is a picture of you with your niece where you look very Farrah like. I love your hair!
You did a great job on the photos, too bad Donny missed your week, I am sure that he would have loved to meet you.

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