Last week we went to the Frankfurt Temple. It was about a seven hour train ride to get there (and that was on the high speed bullet train, normally it would take eleven hours).
We stayed at church-owned apartments that were right next door (22 euro a night!), so after we arrived it made the daily commute easy! There were also several lovely bakeries nearby, and lots of dandelions and daisies growing in the grass, so the kids were very happy to eat pastries and pick flowers every day.
Oliver really liked to pick the daisies. He would sit down in the middle of a patch of flowers and pick the daisies. Elora would try to give him a dandelion, and he would throw it away, and return to his daisies.
Elora loved to sing "I love to see the temple" and whenever she'd see it, she'd shout, "That's the temple I'm going inside someday!"
It was actually kind of nice that the temple was so far away because we had to prepare and think about getting everything ready a lot more than normally. And then once we arrived we stayed for 5 days, which meant we didn't have to worry about much else. No frustrating commute through traffic, 2 hour drive through the national park behind RVs, tourists pulling over at every turn, etc. etc. like we had to back home.
The only downside? The apartments, were actually just small rooms, with enough room to hold two single beds, and a bunkbed. Literally. Nothing else, just room to walk from the beds to the door, all in a single room. Needless to say, we would all have to go to bed at 8pm. But maybe this was a feature and not a bug...
No TV in the room either, so suitcase rides had to pass as entertainment. The room guidelines said to respect the room like the temple itself, so no eating in them, only in the cafeteria. I think they just wanted to prevent a big mess, since the rooms are also cleaned by visitors. But since it is also said that your house should be like the temple, and you naturally have to eat at your house, we found this to be an adequate loophole in their legal reasoning and snuck in some food. Shhh... don't tell anyone.
Elora and Oliver hanging out in the bunk bed reading together (seperately). Note, the playpen had to be placed on top of the bed, because there wasn't enough room on the floor for it. Oliver and Elora loved climbing up on the bunkbed and sitting behind the ladder. Elora kept asking Oliver to marry her everytime she crawled up next to him. Oliver would push her away like the little brother he is, and she'd run into the bathroom saying, "I'm not getting married to Ollie anymore I'm going back to the castle." (the bathroom a castle?)
Then 2 minutes later she'd run back up and repeat the whole process over again. Even though Ollie didn't want to get married he cried whenever she left. We think she's been watching too many Disney princess movies, but how else do you fill a 7 hour train ride!