Thursday, February 13, 2014

Gender Prayers

Hearing children pray is priceless.  Hearing and watching Brock pray is priceless and unforgettable

Of late Brock's prayers are as follows:

"Dear Heavenly Father" ( pause, eyes open and he starts to point)

"Bless the boys (pointing to dad, himself, Parker, & Kolby) and the girl (pointing to mom)"

"In the name of Jesus Christ Amen"

Ahh the prayers of the children!  Priceless!

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Another milestone!

There are milestones that open new vistas.  Potty training, learning to walk, talking, etc.  Parker has marked those milestones one after the other.  

With Disneyland as an incentive Parker conquered another milestone today as he  used his nimble fingers, overcame frustration, and after making an x, and a couple loops proudly displayed a tied shoe!

The proud shoe was a black Children's Place Church shoe!

And so now Velcrow and slip ons of earlier years now give way to laces and Air Jordan's of what lies ahead.  

Tuesday, June 4, 2013


It took every bit of the pregnancy for us to come up with a name for Kolby.

It took a matter of a day for Kolby to collect 3 nicknames:

"Chip Kolby Carl"

I must confess that I like the name Chip and so I have been telling everybody that I wanted to name the baby Chip.  Parker caught on and also said that he liked the name.  It got to the point that Parker would write his name all over his drawings and on random things all over the house.

When he came to the hospital for the first time to meet his brother he had been calling him "Chip Kolby Carl".

So I guess I finally get a "Chip" in the family!

"Baby Carl"

Apparently something got lost in translation when told that the baby's name was going to be Kolby Carl as he was calling Kolby "Baby Carl" when he came and visited him in the hospital.


The nurses at the hospital were great.  One of the nurses was very outspoken and opinionated.  Whenever she would refer to Kolby she would call him "Pipsqueak".  True, probably every baby she has attended received the same nickname, but Kolby is now added to that list.

Brotherly love

When the boys woke up Tuesday morning (June 4, 2013) they must have been surprised (and excited) to see that Grandma Vicki was in the home (We had already given the boys a heads up that we may leave in the middle of the night so that they wouldn't be confused or worried when they woke up).  Grandma told them the good news that they had a new baby brother!  Having eaten some breakfast and getting ready they came over to greet their little brother.

Having spent a tiring morning in the hospital and being exhausted it was refreshing to have the boys and Grandma come by as our first visitors.  It was a joy to watch the excitement on the boys faces to see this new addition.  Parker was anxious to hold him and made the comment "I'm never going to let him go".  Brock on the other hand seemed a little hesitant and confused as to what was happening but seeing that Parker was excited made him want to do what Parker was doing.

Having Kolby in the home for the first few days has been exciting for the boys.  They are constantly asking, "Can I hold Kolby" and "Where is Kolby".  Parker loves telling his friends that he has a new little brother and what his name is.  Brock also loves to hold him but also shows his love by sitting in his chair and seeking some attention of his own.

Witnessing this truly is an example of "brotherly love".

 Parker a few days after Kolby was born
 Brock taking every chance to look at Kolby

Kolby Carl Esplin

Melissa was a state champion sprinter in high school.  Fittingly, when kids come to the Esplin home, they come in a hurry.

The early hours of June 4th were eventful as Melissa went into labor.  Upon feeling contractions we called Melissa's mom to give her a head's up that we would be heading into the hospital.  Another call was made to our good friend Bishop Labrum who we had come over and help administer a blessing to Melissa as well as sleep on our couch and watch the boys as Melissa's mom made the trip down here to watch the boys.

As we were driving over it was obvious that this baby was going to be coming fast.  Dad was obedient to mom's pleas to which the police didn't quite understand as we were pulled over just outside Huntington.  After kindly explaining our situation the officer was gracious and on our way we went.  We pulled into the hospital at 1:48 AM as Melissa was officially admitted.

Within 3 hours after being admitted at 4:14 AM, Melissa gave birth to our third son Kolby Carl Esplin. Of the 3 boys he was the longest at 22 inches.  He weighed 7 lbs 2 oz. and had a full head of hair.

As always mom was a champ and Dr. Shane Gagon was great during the delivery.

Dr. Shane Gagon

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Grandpa Swenson

Grandpa Swenson passed away on Friday, May 24, 2013.  We received a phone call around 10:30 am informing us that he had peacefully passed away in his home around 8:30 am in Spanish Fork, Utah.  After hearing the news I (dad) gathered Parker and Brock and told them what had happened to their Great Grandpa.  I had the following tender moment with Parker:

Dad:  Grandpa passed away. 

Parker:  To where?

Dad:  To the spirit world

Parker:  What is that?

Dad:  That is where you go when you die

Parker:  So we can't call him anymore?

Parker:  When he comes alive can we call him again?

Parker:  I will see Grandpa again when he comes alive

We had the sacred opportunity of visiting with Grandpa Swenson on the phone on the Monday and Wednesday prior to his passing.  The boys sang" I Hope They Call Me On A Mission" and "I Love to See the Temple".  He expressed how much he appreciated hearing the singing and then shared his final counsel with us "Take care of your family and keep doing what is right!"

Having talked with Melissa and visiting with the boys we expressed gratitude and comfort for family as we prayed to our Heavenly Father.

Thoughts?  I couldn't help but think of my love for my Grandpa and how he was now spending time with family and even perhaps our son that will be joining our family soon.  I looked at my yard in which I had been working and noticed not a single dandelion of which I think he would have been proud.

Days after the funeral Parker continues to pray for Grandpa Swenson "in the spirit world" and perhaps said it best, "I will always remember Grandpa Swenson."  

Me too because of all that he taught us!

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Pen Pal Parker

Parker is a thoughtful boy.  He loves to write notes and draw pictures for people.  A few weeks ago he told mom that he wanted to draw his aunt Brittany a picture and send it to her in California to cheer her up!  It did just that and a pen pal was instantly born.  From that moment they have been going back and forth sending letters and little gifts.  Parker loves it and I think it is fair to say that he loves his Pen Pal.

Parker Pele

I never played soccer growing up.  Baseball was the national pastime and apparently it was our family pastime.  I remember seeing pictures of my brothers wearing soccer uniforms but pictures of me playing the world's game was not in my world.  Even when I went and watched some friends play soccer I found it very hard to stomach, especially because it took me away from the baseball diamond.

With Parker coming of soccer age and not conflicting with t-ball season, we decided to put Parker into the county soccer league.  He was put on the Castle Dale team with other youth ranging in ages from 4-7 of which he is one of the shortest and the youngest.

Despite not having soccer lineage I have made a few attempts to share with him my wealth of soccer knowledge.  I had seen some soccer highlights and so the first lesson I taught him was that when he scored a goal he was to throw his hands in the air and start running and yelling, "GOOOOOOOAAAAAALLLLLLLL."

5 games into the season that lesson is still waiting to be put into use.  So far he is getting the hang of getting into the "swarm" of kids that moves as one up and down the field.  He started a little timid but seems to be holding his own.  He loves playing goalie and has been a wall only allowing a couple of goals to sneak by.  Probably the best part for Parker is that he gets to travel to other places to play soccer.  So far Parker has taken his Pele skills to Cleveland, Huntington, Ferron, an Orangeville.

Pele was the great Brazillian soccer player, Parker is the Pele of Emery County?

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Parker Prayer Roll

It is always nice to be prayed for and surely prayers of a child call down the powers of heaven, but to be prayed for by Parker of late you were either injured or sick.  Almost daily the following made Parker's prayer roll:
     - My eye
     - Brock's sickness
     - Grandpa Swenson
     - Haven's leg
     - The baby in mom's belly
     - Christian's leg
     - Mom's test
     - President Monson family

With Parker's thoughtfulness in praying for others maybe that is why it seemed the list grew!  Truly Parker is a boy of prayer!

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Temple in Cedar City

Today was a great day for the kingdom of God! The Lord's Prophet announced today that my hometown would be having a temple built in their backyard! Though we live in Castle Dale we hold Cedar City as a great place and a place we will always call home.

My family moved to Cedar City in 1990. Cedar City was still a small town where everybody knew each other. Leigh Hill was still where you could hunt jack rabbits. My dad had grown up in Cedar City on Dewey Ave. I loved growing up in Cedar City.

Cedar City is where I graduated from high school and college and most importantly where I met my eternal companion. Our first year of marriage started here and we have fond memories here.

As time went on Cedar City changed. Leigh Hill is now covered with homes and probably no sight of jack rabbits on the hill. Having been away now for over 7 years we have lost touch with the community but love to go back and remember.

When they made the announcement today I couldn't help but think of the faithful Cedar City pioneers who have sacrificed so much. My grandparents and parents come to my mind first. I couldn't help but think of how happy my Grandma and Grandpa Esplin are on the other side of the veil!

What a blessing it will be to have a temple in the home of my fathers and my hometown!!