Last month we had the wicked awesome chance to go to Maui. It was so awesome to see my brother Jo and his family along with Tal, Noah, and my cousins Ben and Sam and their wives. We were all there for a trip with the company that we work for (Imagine Learning). It was so awesome that we happened to be going to the place where Jo lives. More on the trip coming later - but want to get to the important stuff first.
Upon realizing that we would have so many people that we love so much there with us in Maui, we decided that it would be a wonderful time to give Zara her baby blessing. Earlier in the week Jo and Aja had taken us walking along this beautiful road in upcountry Maui that overlooks the island. We decided that would be a great place for the blessing. So, after going to church with Jo at their ward in Pukalani - we drove over to this beautiful road and slowly drove along until we found the best spot. Here is a view in both directions (thanks to the panoramic iPhone feature and to Ben for taking the pictures).
Jo and I scouting out the location and deciding this was the spot.
This is kind or personal, but I was so overwhelmed that whole day with the opportunity that I had to give Zara this special blessing as she embarks on her journey through life. All my life I have seen loving fathers take their baby into their arms and give them their baby blessing. All of the sudden that moment had arrived for me and Julie as Zara's parents. It was so special to have Jo, Tal, Noah, Sam and Ben there to stand in on the blessing and to have all of their wives there as well. It was also awesome to have Ana there to represent Zara's 48 cousins (23 on my side, 25 on Julie's). I felt such an overwhelming love for family that day and for God's plan for us. I love that the centerpiece of God's plan for us is our eternal family. Zara will be with me and Julie forever. All of our family that was there with us and those who were not are all part of an amazing eternal family. It is still surreal to me that we have this daughter for who we are eternally responsible. It is surreal to look in to her eyes and see the love of God and remember that she is my daughter. It is surreal to see Julie and Zara together and to see Julie as a mother.
This little girl is going to be special. Zara is going to live an extraordinary life in arguably one of the most exciting chapters of history - what will she experience in her life. What will she think when she looks back on these photos and sees our funny 2013 style and our ghetto old iPhone 5s etc.
Needless to say - it was a very special experience...one that I will never forget. Here are a few photos that we took afterward.
The lift up and introduce the kid. Zara was pretty excited about officially being Zara Jade Eyre (raising her arms emphatically).
Sam, Jo, Noah, me, Tal, and Ben. I think I was standing in a hole or something - I am not that much shorter than them am I?
What an experience. This little girl is amazing. Thanks to Saren for letting us use this beautiful dress that she purchased on Portabello Road in London that was hand made more than 100 years ago. Zara loved it.