I have fond memories of visiting “Pinhead Hill” in Snowflake just after the temple was announced for that site in 2000, and I still have a rock I picked up from there that is special to me. I really, really wanted to go and see if I could find a rock at the temple site here and to walk on the ground there one last time before I would only be able to watch from a distance.
Everything was set up and ready, and a few members were there making sure everything was still okay what with the rainish weather.
I couldn’t find a single rock. :) But I did take some dirt from the mound you can see in that picture. One of the people there said he heard that that spot is where the Celestial Room will be.
We were so excited the next morning! We had to be very early because DC was serving as an usher and they were having a meeting beforehand. I planned for us to watch the groundbreaking broadcast at the nearby church.
When DC’s usher-meeting was over he came to us with extremely welcome news: we were invited to watch the groundbreaking from the temple site, if we didn’t mind standing at the back. Of course we didn’t! We agreed to take turns holding Rosebud.
But I had the feeling that this was a tender mercy from a loving Father to me.
I was so relieved that Rosebud fell asleep on my lap during the talks – she had been a little restless and I didn’t know where I would take her if she started to be disruptive. Then, right during the prayer dedicating the ground, she started jiggling, then woke up and said she needed to go to the bathroom. Arg! I was thinking to myself, “Really? Right now? I am so glad that she will be two years older by the time the temple is dedicated!” And trying to convince her to hold it till the prayer was over. Then Elder Rasband started praying for the children in the temple district and I was struck with guilt. ;-) I stood up and took her to the nearby port-a-potty, missing the rest of the prayer. Talk about the sublime combining with the mundane. :)
Thankfully we got back in time to see the actual groundbreaking with the special fancy shovels. He invited all the community leaders to join in the symbolic turning over of the dirt, then the stake presidents, then the full-time missionaries, and Rosebud was fussing the whole time saying, “I want to dig with the shovels! Can I go dig with the shovels?” And just as I was explaining to her that it was not for the kids to do, Elder Rasband invited all the children to come up and have a turn! Yippee!
Again, feeling a bit like we weren’t actually supposed to be there, like maybe we are not really Coloradoans yet, we took our turn. There was a sweet young man there that shared his turn since Rosebud was having a hard time and Hummer hadn’t made it up.
Then there was a closing hymn and prayer, and to our delight, Elder Rasband invited whatever families would like to come up and have a go with the shovels and take pictures. yay!
It was a beautiful morning. Such a sense of joy and anticipation and gratitude was there among all the people who had gathered. I felt -- and I hope so much that our children felt -- what a unique opportunity this was. It was the first time in my life ever to attend the groundbreaking of a temple, and possibly it will never happen again.
I love so much that we got to be here as this temple began its existence, and that we will get to see every stage of its construction. Hopefully by the time it’s dedicated and we can worship inside we will feel like we have served well here and that it really is “our” temple.
As I write this post I am struck again with amazement and deep gratitude at the special blessing it was to have been at this event. I can hardly believe sometimes how much Heavenly Father loves me!
Praise be to Him!
For the official writeup on the Church’s news website about this, go here. (I’m in one of the pictures, for better or for worse! Wish it could have been Rosebud. :0)