Elder Jones and I worked very hard Monday-Wednesday so that we could take some time off to enjoy Tom, Heidi, Riley and Brady Jones this week. We took a trip to downtown Philadelphia to ensure that some sister missionaries had electricity. We had word that the electricity had been turned on, but the Landlord had not flipped the switch. Apparently a maintenance person had to unlock the place where it happens...But Elder Jones was determined to get them electricity, so we headed down to the basement, opening every door that we could, then walked 5 blocks to personally visit with the landlord and get this problem resolved. The end result: We took the sisters to lunch and ice cream so they were happy, and within one hour the electricity was on! YEAH! My part was to initiate the process to get the electricity turned into our name. I seem to be on hold with many utility companies lately as the mission opens new and closes old apartments. Tom and his family arrived early Thursday morning (they took the Red Eye). We took Brady with us to the mission office where he played basketball and helped in the commissary and stamping and stapling bills. Meanwhile, the rest slept til noon and then we headed to Valley Forge. Above are Riley and Brady as colonial children. This is at the Valley Forge Visitor Center. We thoroughly enjoyed the grandeur of Valley Forge and the fact that it was about 75 with a cool breeze made it even nicer. Then we headed to dinner and our favorite ice cream place, Zwalen's. Besides frozen custard, they make the best caramel apples ever!
The Jones family at the statue of Ben Franklin. The statue is made of bronze and many, many keys. This statue is right around the corned from the U.S. Mint, where we enjoyed a tour of the institution. I highly recommend it to people coming to Philly as it is free, well done, and you get to see $$$$$!
Brady at Betsy Ross' home. He liked the flag. This was taken Friday. We spent all day in Philadelphia, after a slight detour to show Tom Merrion Golf Course where the U.S. Open is held. We drove straight down West Chester Pike into Philly so they could get the feel of the city. When you travel this way you go through many suburbs and then the slums, inner city, then lots of universities and finally the downtown and historic places. We sure love Philadelphia!
Elfreth's Alley. This is the oldest street in America that is still inhabited. The homes go for about one million.
Tom and Heidi in the very room where the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution were signed. The only piece of furniture still original is the chair in between them where George Washington sat.
Riley at the Liberty Bell. I thought it was interesting that much of what both John's kids and Tom's kids knew about Philadelphia was from the film "National Treasures".
Saturday we headed straight to the Philadelphia Temple site. What we saw when we got there was a gigantic crane placing the top on the tower. One more Octagonal, but shorter and wider piece will go atop the one pictured, then Angel Moroni. We got to watch the entire placement. What timing!
Riley and Brady in front of the temple. In the background is the billboard of what the temple will look like. It will blend in nicely with the other historic buildings. It is similar to the Nauvoo or Manti in style and is just right in Center City Philadelphia. It is scheduled to be done in late spring 2016. We plan to come back and see it when completed.
Jones Family at the "Rocky" statue after just running up the Rocky Steps. We certainly enjoyed our time together. We had some awesome Philly Cheese Steaks and Philly Pizza as well as a Rita's water ice. We welcome any family to come and visit us. We ended our time together by attending church today and then staying for our ward "potluck". Then Tom and his family headed to Dover, DE to continue their trip and we headed for Wilmington, DE to take a phone to 2 missionaries whose phone had stopped working. A side note to the week: Elder Jones had 2 calls from missionaries who had locked their keys in their car. One missionary is headed home tomorrow about 4 months early as he blew his ACL playing football at a member's home... We will miss you, Elder Taylor!