Yesterday Ashley went through the temple. I worked half the day and then drove over to Scott's apartment to drive into LA with him. Well, actually we were going with Ashley's dad. It felt a little hectic and rushed, not knowing if there would be lots of traffic or not. Luckily there was not. When our ride arrived, it was not only Ashley's dad, but also her brother AND her grandmother. I rode in the back with Ba and AJ. Ba (grandma) is a little Indian woman with a wonderful sense of humor. I enjoyed talking to her very much, and it made the ride into Los Angeles go quickly. We actually got there about an hour ahead of schedule. No matter, Ba enjoyed looking at the beautiful grounds and the pool in front. She kept up a lively conversation, insisted she would be fine walking the grounds while we were inside, and when it got dark and colder, she waited for us in the lobby. Soon Ashley, her mom, and the rest of the party arrived, and here's the fun part: not only was Ashely going through the temple for the first time, but so was her brother AJ (soon to leave on a mission to INDIA!) and her maid of honor, Kimberly. So we were a big pack of newbies.
I can't even describe to you the feeling in the temple yesterday. Between Kimberly's exhuberant happy puppy excitement, AJ's cool demeanor, and Ashley quietly taking it all in, it was a really good afternoon. Everyone's wedding agendas and jitters got checked at the door. And was it my imagination, or were all the temple workers yesterday just especially kind and welcoming? I can't remember when everyone there was so wonderful.
I enjoyed being with both Ashley's mom and dad - what a great day for them! - Kimberly's grandmother was happily teary, Scott was sweet and beaming, and one of Ashley's other bridesmaids had also come to lend support. Ashley looked like I remembered feeling like my first time: pretty much deer in the headlights. I think it was pretty overwhelming for her, but we had some good moments during it all. I'm sure she'll be thinking a lot about it in the next day or so. I asked her if, after all the excitement dies down, she would like to take a girl's night and go to the temple and out to dinner, and she smiled her gorgeous smile and said she'd like that very much. So I'm looking forward to having some good times with my newest girl.
Now that our family has grown, and we've welcomed girls big and small over the last few years, I'm thinking that it would be fun if we could organize a yearly girl's weekend - meet somewhere that everyone could get to, eat healthy, eat junk, laugh a lot, learn a lot, admire, support and love each other. I think I'd really enjoy a tradition like that.
TODAY: Katie and the girls arrive, Rex, Ronna & kids also
WEDDING DAY: 2 more days