Monday, October 6, 2014

An Unexpected Surprise

Day one of our second week long traveling extravaganza was a complete success in every sense of the word. We rushed out the door early this morning and were on the road before I even had time to register what was happening around me. After driving two hours we arrived at Burghley House--said to be the best Elizabethan home in the country. It did not disappoint! It was full of beauitufil murals, detailed furniture, and old tapestries. Oh, and you can't forget the artwork lining all the walls.

*fun fact for Jane Austen fans: it is Lady Catherine's estate, "Hastings" in the 2005 version of Pride and Prejudice; so yes. I once again walked where Elizabeth Bennet did. But just wait, the best is yet to come so keep reading*

This is the room in Pride and Prejudice where Elizabeth plays the piano for Darcy

It was pouring all morning and continued throughout our two hour drive to the next stop of the day: Chatsworth.

aka. the exterior of Pemberley in Pride and Prejudice.
Yes, you read that right.
I most certainly visited Mr. Darcy's home today.
Yes, it was magical in every sense of the word. Thank you for asking.

He stole my heart so I stole a kiss.
Aside from fulfilling a life dream, Chatsworth itself was dreamy. It was even more decorative and fine than Burghley--a feat I did not believe possible. Touring it was delightful and highly recommended by me. The best part was by the time we finished exploring the house the sun had decided to show its self and the rain had stopped! This left the grounds looking absolutely perfect. Everything glistened as if it were brand new, the air was crisp, and the trees were changing colors so it actually looked and felt like fall. I was in love with life at this point.

Why yes, those are the stairs where Elizabeth ran away from Mr. Darcy after spying on him in his house.

Now, for the unexpected surprise. Sunday night I sent my dad our itinerary, mostly to ask him questions regarding Scotland (his mission) and what I should see there. Then he informed me that his last mission companion lives in Sheffield, the city we are stopping in just to sleep tonight before continuing on to York. One thing led to another and before I knew it his companion was calling me and invited me to dinner tonight with a friend! He picked me up from the hotel with his wife and the four of us went to get delicious Chinese food.

Although the food was great, the company was even better. They were a lovely couple and so kind and funny. I couldn't believe my luck with getting to meet someone from my dad's mission, especially on such short notice! In case you didn't know, my dad is not the most talkative person on the planet. As a result I have not heard many tales from his mission. I cannot tell you how much I loved to see pictures, read journal entries, and hear stories from someone who spent the end of Dad's mission with him. He told me my dad taught him everything he knew about leadership, focus, and that the best moment of his mission happened with my dad as his companion. It was a blessing from the Lord to meet these people; one that I had not even thought to ask for but am infinitely grateful was given.

The "Erickanton Theorem" on how to double baptisms. 
Isn't he cute? I think he looks like Jacob. Am I right, or am I right?
Heavenly Father is always looking out for us, I promise.

Have a happy week! Reread/watch/listen to some new conference talks and set some goals for yourself, yeah? Life is good, but it is much better with God.

Love Always, Aimee

Hi, my name is Aimee Elizabeth and I am in love with life.