This post was just about to be an ad for a lost dog.
Kolohe, our older dog (not to be confused with Scooter, our boxer puppy) was missing when we got home late from the temple tonight. Kolohe does not like to be outside at dark, she sleeps indoors and starts to get anxious if she can't come in once she knows the kids have gone to bed. (don't ask me how she knows when that is, but inevitably she is whining at the door minutes after they've gone to bed) So apparently when we didn't get home until 11:30, she got so upset she tore her way through our fence. Left a lovely hole in the bottom of it, a whole big enough for our other dog to escape through, however that wonderful well behaved puppy apparently had no desire to, as he was still hanging out in the yard.
Now normally when Kolohe gets out (this is a recurring issue, ever since puppy-dom) she likes to wander down a few houses and sniff around and comes back, if we're not home when this happens she usually hangs out near Adam's police car, it's a familiar scent (train dust has a unique smell to her I think). Kid's in our old neighborhood used to ask if she was his police dog, cause she'd just hang out by it just waiting. The reason she is so familiar with his police car is that in her younger days of escaping, the only way we could get her to come home was if Adam went in a car and picked her up as she loves car rides. And his police car wasn't upholstry we cared about so picking her up in that was easier. Then it just became the car he used because he knew she knew it so well, it looked and smelled so much different from street cars in the neighborhood.
The moment Adam told me she was missing I felt strangely calm, normally that's the kind of thing that would freak me out, I would instantly imagine life without her and how sad that would be. But for some reason I didn't feel that at all. Adam got in his police car to go look for her. I stood out on the lawn listening in my quiet neighborhood for sounds of a dog sniffing around in the dark, but no such sound came. I turned around and looked at my house and had a thought, maybe she is trapped somewhere, like behind the shed in the backyard or something, so I should go check the yard again. I went through the front door and into the house, I looked for a moment at the garage door, a passing thought of going through the garage and out the side door to the yard, but instead went to the sliding door to the backyard. I looked all around, played with Scooter for a few minutes and figured I should go back in, as she was obviously not out here. I could go back in through the side door into the garage and into the house that way, but instead I went back through the sliding door again. Adam still wasn't back yet, feeling helpless I decided to walk back outside and wait for him, I could go through the garage and open the large garage door to get to the front yard, but instead I went through the front door. I called her name a few times, listening for rustling or other dog noises in response, but nothing. Adam wasn't back yet so I walked back into the house, glancing in the direction of the garage, thinking, I could have gone in that way if I'd come out that way.
I headed upstairs, I suppose it's time to make a missing dog ad, I thought to myself, still not really believeing that's what I was coming upstairs to do. I sat down and started blogging about our day at the temple, not really believing the day had all been so wonderful yet ended so badly. As I blogged I heard Adam come home, one car door shut, not two (Kolohe usually rides in the back seat). That meant he was alone, I heard him come through the front door, I stopped typing to listen for the clicking of dog paws on our tile floor....nothing. No Kolohe.
Adam had noticed the garage light was on (we have windows in the top panel of our garage door) when he came home, it has a motion sensor on it, but if it's still on more than 5 minutes after we've been out of the garage then someone likely flipped the switch on and he decided to go turn it off. When he opened the door to the garage, Kolohe came walking in, as if she had just been hanging out in there waiting for someone to open the door and let her into the house. Waiting....in the garage. I'd had that thought several times, first the thought that she was trapped somewhere, then the thought several times to go through the garage to get to the yard and even to go through the garage to go back into the house. I'd heard these thoughts everytime they were placed in my head, but I didn't listen to them a single time. But Adam, the first time he had the thought, go switch off the light in the garage (even though it's on a timer and would usually go off by itself) he did, and there was the dog. Strange how sometimes I hear the promptings loud and clear, the answers to my problems and questions spoken in my own voice in my ear, and I just don't listen. Everytime something like this happens I vow to never let it happen again, somehow it usually does eventually, but maybe blogging about it for the whole world to see (or at least the 10 or 12 followers I have) will help me to learn from my mistakes.
It's not enough to pray for answers, even quiet unspoken, only spiritually uttered prayers. It's just as important to listen and act on the answers recieved. I should have known from the instant calmness I felt at finding out she was gone that the answer was available to me, if only I would listen.
Wednesday, July 27, 2011
Today was an AMAZING day. Darla Deanne Hoskins was sealed to our family for time and all eternity at the Sacramento, CA Temple. The picture above is the Sacramento Temple. We got to town early so that we could stop in at the church bookstore and pick up a few inspirational books and cd's. The kids LOVED that store and didn't want to leave, they thought all the books with pictures of Christ on them and lessons about church in them looked like the best books ever. I think we may have to venture there more often. Then we were at the temple an hour early to take family portraits. I knew of a photographer who lived in the Sacramento area and asked if she could do a photo session for us so that I didn't have to worry about family getting there early to take pictures and we could do it before going in and before all the crankies were likely to set in. She was excited and did a wonderful job for an amazing price! Pictures will be available in a few weeks, and I'm hoping for something frame worthy of a family picture, seems all our family pictures of late have been with all the kids moving in different directions. Here's hoping!
Then when we went inside there was such a sense of peace just walking in the door, I love that feeling about the Temple. The temple is a reverent place, and whispering is really preferred and so of course with little babies I wondered how quiet they would be. Darla is loudest when she's happy and Catcher I knew was tired and that was going to lead to some serious crankiness. Adam and I had to do paperwork and get ready so the children were left in the care of a few temple matrons and family who had arrived early. Apparently Catcher was just inconsoleable so they brought him into the bride's room because it's rather sealed off in the middle of the temple and a crying baby wouldn't be as likely to disturb others in there. So when I came in all dressed, he just wanted me, normally this kid is Daddy's little shadow, but since I was there, he wanted me. He was pretty happy with me around but when it came time to seperate again, he started to cry....loudly. But what had to be done had to be done so we sent him off with a Grandma while I met up with my Husband Man to have a quiet prayer together before hand. I prayed for peace, for myself and my children, that the spirit might calm them all, so that the time could be enjoyed by all in attendance.
When we went into the sealing room and our friends and family were there, it was just beautiful, and then the moment came, bringing in the children. Each of them had a sweet smile like I've never seen, glowing from the inside out like sunshine from their glimmering eyes. Catcher was carried by a temple matron a woman he was unfamiliar with and yet, despite being in a room full of family he knew, he remained perfectly content in her arms, not whining to go to someone more comforting and familiar. It was obvious my prayer was answered.
The sealing is a short prayer pronounced as Adam and I hold hands and Darla's hand is placed atop of our hands. Adam's sister, Amanda, held Darla's little hand in place and I looked at my Husband's face and then we both looked at little Darla. She stared into Adam's eyes, not with fear, or concern for the strangeness of being held this way, but with peace. The calmness in her spirit was manifest in her stillness as the prayer was said, the gentle way she looked into our faces, a gentle smile the whole time. And then in only a minute, she became our fifth child, not just for the time of our lives on this Earth, but for the Eternities of Heaven's everlasting glory.
Outside the temple the children of our friend's and family waited, cousin's hugged with joyous laughter and children danced about amongst the fountains and gorgeous plantings outside the temple. It was near 7pm at this time and we decided to head out for dinner with a few close friends and family. Including children and babies, this was a party of around 32 people, thanks to Cattleman's restaurant for accomodating us on such short notice! It still took a while to get served our food but I think everyone had a great time, I know I did. Catcher was tired and a little cranky but as far as cranky goes, his behavior was quite handleable. And how did the star of the day, little Darla do? That sweet girl must have hit a second wind around 7:30, she laughed and giggled and played her way through dinner until we left some time around 9:00ish, she really is a joy!