though i still have a cough, weird voice, and the sniffles (yes, still...after how many weeks now? i have lost track of it), my spirit/soul feel so rejuvenated and healed. i don't want to share too much, because what i learned and gleaned this weekend was very personal. spending time with my incredible cousins in arizona (even if it was for just barely over 48 hours) was just what i have needed in my life for the past few months.
it wasn't so much a campus with the palm trees all over. it wasn't so much all of the awesome students i met. it wasn't so much the warm weather. although every bit of that was so good.
it was simply being in nicole and josh's home. they have a wonderful spirit in their home and three very sweet boys. valerie stays with them and i loved getting to know some of my very favorite cousins even better.
it was all of our conversations. it was the amazing thai food and talking about our memories of our grandma jane. it was valerie and nicole being so kind to drive me around and drop me off and pick me up...multiple times. it was making cookies, reading books, playing with toys, and laughing about silly things with the youngest boy. it was a basketball game, guitar playing, and a pinewood derby for the older boys. it was visiting temple grounds of the mesa arizona temple on thursday night and going to the construction site of the gilbert arizona temple on saturday afternoon. it was trying to not cry while i said goodbye to nicole and josh and their boys. it was going to "the chickafila" (what our grandma jane called chik-fil-a) with val on our way to the airport. it was trying to hold back tears when i left and receiving a text from val, which made me cry as i boarded the plane to come home.
this weekend helped me really feel an even deeper love for the gospel, my family, and my Heavenly Father. it deepened my understanding of things i've known to be true for a very long time. it helped me get back on my feet and feel even more determination than before. we spent almost four hours on friday night talking about everything in the movie room. i was so grateful for the wisdom shared by nicole and val and i gained so much more than i would've by just watching a movie. i feel so blessed to have such wonderful family and for the sure knowledge that we will be together forever.
all bets are off and i know that i've done my best to put my best foot forward. i know our Heavenly Father will always look out for us when we have done our part. i feel like the luckiest girl in the world to have been given the opportunity to even have this past weekend happen and it all means so much more to me than i can put in words.