Monday, December 22, 2008

The Meaning of Christmas

I have never taken the time to do research on the hymns and carols for Christmas like I have during the last month. My reasearch gave me some great tidbits about the songs and I really enjoyed listening to them. However, there was a greater benefit . . . I truely gained a greater appreciation for the spirit of Christmas. Taking the time to read the words to the music and learn lessons from them helped keep Christ in my Christmas experience this year. This is why we celebrate it . . . Christ.

So, here is the immortal lesson that Linus taught us while Charlie Brown was trying to discover why we celebrate Christmas. Enjoy. . . and Merry Christmas.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

My brain is frozen. I need your help.

Actually, I'm just functioning with half a brain. I've known for some time now that I am becoming more and more forgetful (just ask Marge L.) and can't recall information at the drop of a word like I use to. Heck, every so often I completely loose my head trying to figure out how to spell the word "when." My brain is currently frozen. Well, not really because I can obviously type and that takes some brain power.

This is what I need help with. I am putting together a dvd for my family with pictures of my siblings and myself growing up. I need ideas for what music to set it too. I would even consider a country song, so don't count those out. Here is what I have so far:

1. Little Wonders - Rob Thomas

That's all folks. I have many, many pictures of my sibling brew and need more songs! Anything that would be suitable will be considered. If you help me out with this little conundrum I might just be tempted to leave a sweet on your doorstep.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Okay . . . There is one country Chirstmas song I can handle

While channel surfing in my car (radio channels that is) I stopped on this one Christmas song that I forgot that I like. To my horror, it was COUNTRY! So, alas, there is at least one county song I can stomach during the holidays. Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Top 10 Christmas Melodies

My issue with Christmas music is just about solved! I seem to have progressed passed the retching phase I went through for a couple years after having Sam. I guess I should explain that.

I was pregnant with Sam during the Christmas holiday of 2004. I started the morning sickness the end of November. I am NOT the happy pregnant woman type so I was often found lying on the floor or on my bed with my eyes closed waiting for the green light to get up and move. The moments of "I really don't want to throw up again" thoughts were often accompanied by Christmas music being played in my house. To deal with it I pulled a pillow over my head to drown out the merry tunes. If I didn't have one close enough I would have to suffer through the torture of the music. The worst was that blasted Country Christmas CD that the kids played over and over and over and over . . . .

The Country Christmas CD met some friends in the trash a couple years ago and time as proven to be my friend. So, at last, I can now say I enjoy Christmas music again - anything but country.
If only I could test out the time theory on the quilt I was quilting for Lanette during the same time . . . . but that's another story.

So, to celebrate my new found enjoyment of Christmas music, here are the top 10 favorite Christmas songs. It was hard to choose - so go ahead and mention your favorites and my top 10 might change!

10. The Little Drummer Boy - The lyrics tell the story of a poor young boy who, unable to afford a gift for the infant Jesus, plays his drum for the Savior of the World with his mother Mary's approval. Miraculously, the baby, although a newborn, seems to understand and smiles at the boy in gratitude. I love the imagery of a child knowing who the Savior is and has an innocent and pure desire to offer his own greatest gift to him.

9. God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen - This carol carries with it words of hope and peace. Many Christmas carol have the same message - I just really enjoy the minor tune of the one. It was also sung in Charles Dickens "A Christmas Carol" which I watch every year - yeah I own it. The lyrics are some of the oldest Christmas Carol lyrics known. I listened to a Christian rock station in PA that I really like. One of the versions I'm posting reminds me of the music I listened to on that station. So, here are two versions of it. One has more metal in it - of which you all should know by now, I love.

8. Rockin Around the Christmas Tree - Come on! Who doesn't like a "get up and shake that booty" song like this! Brenda Lee's rendition is a perinnial holiday favorite. It's just a feel good song!

7. Carol of the Bells - Originally composed to be sung acapella, this Christmas song has been given the makeover year after year. I love it in every form. Again - the minor key thing. I researched it a little and found this funky tibit to share - The song is based on a traditional folk chant whose language was thought to have magical properties because of the manner in which it manipulated the number 3. The original Ukrainian text tells the tale of a swallow flying into a household to proclaim the plentiful and bountiful year that the family will have. The title is derived from the Ukrainian word for "bountiful." Cool.

6. Away in a Manger - I have always loved this song, sung with either tune of "Cradle Song" or "Mueller" (more common). However, I have become even more enchanted with the melody and words since our Young Women sang it for the Christmas Carol program we had in Relief Society this past Sunday. They did such a fabulous job! I heard it was Karli that came up with much of their parts and use of the song. Way to go Karli - you rock! I wish I could have a recording of it to play!

5. White Christmas - Bing Crosby really is my favorite for this one. This is another Christmas movie I endulge in every year. In a time when movie musicals were made to show off dance and song talent, here is one with a "feel good" story woven into the scenery. Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye used their comic relief to teach us that kindness and motivation matters. Acts of the heart. I love the finale and enjoy all the dancing and funnies. It's just a great show with good music.

4. Silent Night - This is simply one of the best Christmas carols. It's is also one of the most popular. Translated in hundreds of languages and dialects, the song was sung simultaneously in English and German by WWI troops during the Christmas truce of 1914, as it was one of the few carols that soldiers on both sides of the front line knew. The word "silent" is used throughout the song. Silence is a way of expressing reverence. The whole song speaks of showing reverence for our Savior. I'm posting two versions because I couldn't decide between the two - I'm a sucker for acapella.

3. Do You Hear What I Hear - This song was originally written as a plea for peace during the Cuban Missle Crisis. Noel Regney said he wrote the words "Said the night wind to the little lamb, 'Do you see what I see?' " and "Pray for peace, people everywhere," after watching babies being pushed in strollers on the sidewalks of New York City. As you listen to the song you can see how he moves the understanding of the message of peace froma lamb to a child delivered all the way up to a king. Interesting.

2. What Child is This? - Another minor key song - imagine that! I love this song because it speaks specifically of the Nativity scene. I learned that the gentleman that wrote the lyrics to this song was confined to his bed because of a serious illness and wrote this song during Ephiphany day (celebration of God appearing on Earth in the mortal form of Jesus Christ.) It is set to an old English tune with original lyrics that are not very good. The meld of the tune and these new words to create what we know as "What Child is This" make for enjoyable listening. I'm posting an instrumental version - it's quite pretty.

1. O, Holy Night - by far my favorite Christmas song EVER! The words are so calming they stopped the Franco-Prussian war - at least for one night. On Christmas Eve, 1870, overcome by thoughts of home, a Frenchman jumped from his trench and began to sing "O, Holy Night." His voice reached the German lines and the fighting ceased for the night. In this song, the singer recalls the birth of Jesus Christ. I love the part, "Fall on your knees! O, hear the angels' voices!" I imagine that is how those who have met the Savior have felt in his presence.

Please, please feel free to tell me what your favorite Christmas songs are. I am so happy to be able to enjoy them again I just can't get enough!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

A funny email from Carson

I get these kind of "answer the questions and pass it on" emails sometimes. I seldom answer them and forward it to anyone else. HOWEVER, I got one from my son Carson last week that gave me a good laugh. It's truely insightful as to why Carson is one of my favorite people to hang out with. There is often laughter when he is around.

Here is an interesting email I got from josh. I hope you answer the q's and enjoy it.

Carson, your amazing beastly ninja son.

Have you;

1. been on TV? Yes, but you never saw me. (I’m a ninja)
2. walked 5 miles? No. I never walk. I run. Several hundred miles at a time…
3. received a C or F in school? not on a report card

4. kissed someone? Yes?
5. killed someone? Yes. (I’m a ninja remember)
6. put a hole in a fence? Of course! But even though it was a huge hole, I fixed it before you could even go out into your backyard.
7. played poker? yes for keeps

8. been in a gang? Yes. Ya don’t mess with my homies…
9. broken a window? Yep.. almost ten separate windows (repeats don’t count do they?)

10. passed notes in class? yes. . . . . a lot. . . . . . but none have been mine
11. seen a purple-people-eater? Seen it? I won it in the poker game I played for keeps. I OWN IT!
12. driven a car? Yep. I’m too tense…
13.What are you doing right now? Checking my e-mail. (Isn't that a wee bit obvious?)

14. Who are you thinking of?my mom (because im ganna send it to her/you)
15. What is your greatest fear? That I won’t be able to kill one of my victims. You can never have enough weapons…
16. If you had a million bucks, what would you buy first? Well first, I would pay my tithing. Then, I would give 100,000 to a charity, Then I would by an invisible dirt bike (those are the only ones that ninjas can have.
17. favorite food: a ninja can stomach anything except sushi.

18. your age: 15 - 16 in may
19. What you have always dreamed of doing? See that’s the problem. There are no dreams. Ninjas do everything they want!
20. Your favorite vacation spot: Pennsylvania. No question
21. favorite sport to play: Soccer, rugby, and football. Also bloodball on the occasional off day.
22. your most embarrassing moment: Ninjas have no embarrassing moments. Even if we had some, we would have to kill you if we told you.
24. your favorite place: any place I can see my next victim..
25. whose response are you looking forward to get?my moms

I laughed that he would make sure he paid tithing and not so much that he is a killing machine. Here is my response:

Have you;1. been on TV? I can't remember
2. walked 5 miles? I use to. Now I drive it.
3. received a C or F in school? Um, never?
4. kissed someone? It was always hard to keep the guys away . . . 5. killed someone? I ran over a rabbit in California.
6. put a hole in a fence? Do you really think I'm that strong?
7. played poker? Your Dad taught me
8. been in a gang? Yes. The sampson gang, the mellott gang, the girl's night gang . . . .
9. broken a window? Yes, but never in anger.
10. passed notes in class? I had a naughty one taken by a teacher in 4th grade. The whole class had to stay in for recess.
11. seen a purple-people-eater? I would love to meet one someday.
12. driven a car? Often
13. What are you doing right now? Answering Carson's email
14. Who are you thinking of? Carson - still laughing after rereading this email you sent.
15. What is your greatest fear? Something bad happens to one of my kids.
16. If you had a million bucks, what would you buy first? Of course I would pay tithing, then redo my house and pay cash for everthing. Oh yeah, I would buy some chocolate covered strawberries.
17. favorite food: fresh fruit - any kind
18. your age: old enough to have a 15 almost 16 year old
19. What you have always dreamed of doing? Visiting Italy
20. Your favorite vacation spot: Pennsylvania. No question
21. favorite sport to play: I like racquetball when I played sports. I think I still would like it.
22. your most embarrassing moment: Do you really have the time for this - there are too many to pick from.
24. your favorite place: home or a quilt shop
25. whose response are you looking forward to get? Just sending this to you Carson.

Friday, November 28, 2008

I am so grateful . . .

I hope you all had a safe and fun Thanksgiving holiday. It's pretty fun, isn't it? Eating and chatting with friends and family - I sure enjoyed myself.

There are so many things I am grateful for. I have been listing some of the things on my mind each time I post a blog. Today, I'm just going to make a list of MORE things I am grateful for.

1. That I live in the land of plenty. I ate SO MUCH yesterday at our Thanksgiving feast with my family. I also used gas at my own discretion to get there, stayed as long as I wanted and drove as fast as comfortable on the way there and back. We have so many great things to enjoy in America (cars, gas, food, medical care etc . . . ) This really is the land of plenty.

2. That I can give service in my church. Sometimes I'm not as grateful as I should be. But really, what a great opportunity to have someone trust me to teach kids or to rely on me to answer the promptings to visit someone, to use and develop talents and to be part of something that is healthy and wonderful in my life. I really am grateful that I have a calling that I can grow and serve in.

3. I am grateful for friends. Where would I be without all of you? I have so many great friends with sanguine personalities. You all make me feel so warm and fuzz! Truely - that is a blessing.

4. I am grateful for my ability to see and hear. I would be lost without words and music. I know there are ways to experience those things, I'm just grateful I don't have to face the challenge of figuring that all out.

5. I am grateful for sugar. I know it's an artificial high. I can do artificial.

6. That my cats are tolerant. They really should have run away a long time ago. There really should be scratch marks all over Sammy. I couldn't really blame the cats with how she man handles them. I am grateful they put up with all the extra loving and don't react adversely to her affection and wild ideas of "fun."

7. I'm grateful I live near a second hand store. Hey, everyone needs somewhere they can shop - and afford it.

8. For Christmas Carols. Actually, I love the whole Christmas season. I thought Christmas carols were ruined for me because of the pregnancy association thing (I was pregnant with Sammy during Christmas.) I got sick in my stomach for a couple years whenever I heard Christmas carols. I am so grateful that has passed and I can enjoy carols with out the urge to retch.

9. My scriptures are something I am very grateful for. I am also grateful I have had the prompting to study and read them everyday. I am definitely no scholar - far from it! However, I understand them more than I did a year ago, and the year before that, and the year before that etc . . . I hope I never drop the ball on this one!

10. That I am a mother and a wife. Those two are my favorite words to hear. I don't care if other peoples kids call me Mom besides my own little buggers. I just like to be called Mom. While I was washing dishes yesterday I heard Carp talking to his aunt on the phone. He was telling her he really had a good life. He told her he had a wonderful wife. I paused for a moment when I heard that and thanked God for him and that he appreciates and love me.

So there you have 10 more things I am grateful for. Count your blessings as you watch a clip from one of my top ten favorite movies ever (White Christmas.)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Be selective in your Thanksgiving grocery shopping

Just a little reminder to be extra careful when picking out those much desired produce in the upcoming week for all the delicacies you are itching to prepare for your Thanksgiving feast. May the force be with you in your choices.

5 Things I'm grateful for:

1. That going to a place of worship is as easy as crossing the street. There are so many in this world who do not attend a worship service because of health, distance, politics or fear.

2. Carson and Brian come home for lunch. A days they come to my house, B days they go to Brians. They are a hoot. You should have seen their rendition of the Acapella Star Wars Tribute to John Williams last week. They crack me up! Check out the video on Youtube at and just imagine the two of them singing it.

3. Baby wipes. They are not just for baby's bottom.

4. Laughter. I love to laugh. I better. There is so many situations I get myself into that I have to laugh at or else I would die of embarrassment.

5. My husband has a job. With all the crazy layoff stuff that has been happening lately, I am grateful he has employment. Layoffs: been there, done that (three times) and would really prefer not to repeat it.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

What you can do with a roll or two of packaging tape

Seth is taking a sculpture class at his junior high. His class did sculptures of people in different positions made out of packaging tape. I noticed them around the school the other day. Some of the life size sculptures were sitting on a bench or leaning over the top of the lockers and in lots of different places around the school. They were totally awesome.

Seth's group consisted of 3 girls and him. They used their own bodies to make the sculptures. For instance, one of the girls allowed her hand to be wrapped to form the hands for their sculpture and another let them use her legs. None of the girls wanted their head to get wrapped so Seth let them do it to him. What a good sport.

The reason I found the sculpture of his group so interesting was because of the subject they decided to portray. They made a vampire.

You know I love a good vampire story! Well, remember how the kids displayed their sculptures around the school? Seth's group were asked to remove theirs. Apparently you can't display things that show blood at school! I can totally see where the school is coming from, but I had a good laugh about it.

Come on! Isn't this totally cool? Check out the red tissue paper that goes down the throat. That is imagination! There is even blood on the teeth! I totally digged this!

None of the girls wanted to take the sculpture home so Seth got to keep it. You can just imagine the perplexed look on my face when I was driving home and passed him hauling this under one arm while trying to ride and steer his scooter on his way home from school. I pulled over and helped Seth ram the life sized vampire into the trunk of my little white car. That was weird. I felt like I was breaking the law somehow. Oh well.

Maybe some mothers might find it morbid that their kid decided to make a vampire sculpture with blood represented in such an obvious manner. But - I have to say I am very proud of his vampire. It sure made a good display on Halloween night!

5 Things I am grateful for:

1. That I can share interests with my kids. Vampires aside, I love to play Guitar Hero with them, go on Harts runs with them and watch Stargate with them. These are our current interests - they are ever changing and welcomed.

2. For kids that are just kids. I drove up tonight and stopped the car to listen to the end of a song on the radio. While I was listening, Nathan opened the window drape that hangs in our shower and proceeded to start drawing on the steam covered windows. It just made me giggle.

3. The bounty of food I am blessed with. I never have to struggle to feed my family, except when I am just to lazy to figure out what to make. There is alway food in my home.

4. My general good health. I have aches and pains - SURPRISE! I am getting older. However, they are not life threatening and do not keep me from doing anything.

5. Sleep. I am getting to the point that I might just be able to count on sleeping though the night. For the most part, my kids stay in bed at night. It's just my stupid internal clock that can be wacky sometimes.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Sean turns 40

Phone conversation with my Mom (went something like this . . . ):

Mom: "Hey Sean!"

Sean: "Hey. I'm feeling a little bad. Nobody remembered my birthday today."

Mom: "You mean you didn't get my card in the mail? Maybe it will come Monday."

Sean with his 3 oldest: Cody, Sid and Alix.

I know the conversation didn't go exactly like that, but Sean did call my Mom and said that nobody remembered his birthday. This was probably because we were all invited to a SURPRISE 40th birthday party for him. Yes, he was very surprised.

MaryJane and Sean

MaryJane collected and scanned photos of Sean growing up and of his kids. She also went around to my family and hers and did video clips of people sharing memories and wishes for a happy birthday. She had them all put together in a birthday DVD for him. It was so cool!

There were a lot of people there. It was great fun to see some friends we haven't seen for a while and I always like seeing MaryJane's family because they are so nice!

My sister Jenny and some of her kids: Chase, McKenzie, Sierra and Logan.

My sister Katie, Sean and I.

5 Things I am grateful for:

1. My water heater. The pilot light went out on Saturday. When I tried to give my girls a bath there was only cold water. Thanks be given for running HOT water!

2. That I get along with my family. It sure makes family get togethers fun!

3. For funny misquotes by kids. We have taken to playing the BOM cd's on Sunday morning the hour before church to get the kids settled and ready to go. While doing my hair Gabby came in the bathroom to ask me what "decay in the past" meant. I couldn't figure out what she was getting at. She said, "The guy on the cd keeps saying it over and over." I had to laugh. I guess "decay in the past" sounds a lot like "It came to pass."

4. My home and yard. The bank still may hold a controling interest in it, but someday it will be mine. I am grateful for the shelter it provides, the security it holds for my kids, and the land that I can plop a seed in the ground and grow something.

5. Fresh fruit. I love the colors, the myriad tastes abounding, and the aromas of all fruits. I crave them more than sugary treats - well, most of the time.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Ode To A Fallen Tree

Ode To A Fallen Tree

As an oddity you joined my life,
Immediately sewing seeds of strife.
Dropping fruit not fit to eat,
Rotting squish beneath my feet.

Fermenting smells drifting through my door,
It was hard to keep up - it was a chore!
To gather the apples you've discarded,
Without love they were brokenhearted.

In their gloom they gave up their guts,
transforming to mush, driving me nuts!
Alas, there is no more fruit to fall,
but no worries, I won't bawl.

We sawed and cut and then discarded,
your limbs, your leaves and in the end, applauded.
No more rotten stink to offend the nose,
no mushy yuck between my toes.

To run in our yard without dead limps leering,
tromping on rotten apples accumulating.
Farwell to our old apple tree we bade,
I sincerely will miss all your shade.

The huge apple tree was taller than my house. Now, that's unnatural. Many of the limbs were dead.

The limbs may have started to die before we moved into our home 7 years ago, but I know for sure they have been dying off every year since. It is sad to see it go. However, sometime dirty deeds have to be done.

5 things I am grateful for:

1. The imagination of all my favorite authors - especially my new favorite - Brandon Sanderson.
2. My knowledge of the gospel of Jesus Christ and to honestly know it's right and true.
3. Guitar Hero. It's an innocent addiction - one that I don't want to kick.
4. Girls Night. I don't know which one of you chicas out there decided to start that, but I so need it in my life.
5. Photos. I can't imagine a world without images to spark a memory and invite a smile.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Halloween 2008

I better get some pictures from Halloween posted before I forget! It's kind of a pain to help my kids figure out what they are going to dress up in for Halloween. BUT - I always love to take pictures of them when they get there costumes on.

Sammy was an Elephant.

Gabby was a Web Spinner - Spider Princess.

Nathan was a Ninja.

Seth was a Philly's Fan (Baseball and Hockey.)

Carson was - well, I guess a cow. He really caught me off guard when he walked into Gabby's school Halloween party with this cow head thing on.

A room mother perk - I got a picture of all her classmates and her teacher in their costumes.

I've decided during the month of November whenever I put out a post I need to enumerate 5 things I am grateful for.

1. My washing machine. It is a thing of beauty to not have to pound my family's clothes with a rock to get them clean.

2. The internet. I love keeping in touch with people down the block or 2000 miles away through this wonderous invention.

3. Coupons. I've saved quite a bit of cashola lately with those puppies.

4. My family. Of course.

5. The change in seasons. I have a need for each of the different season. The winter, so I get stuff done in the house. The spring, because I get inspired to clean. The summer, because I love to garden. The fall, the best of all of them, because I need the beautiful color and chill in the air to inspire me stop and appreciate the seasons in general.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

This one's for Peggy

I love Peggy. She has a great personality and is a reliable source for a good laugh. I loved her 8's blog she wrote. I especially loved that she left it up to those who read her blog to decide if they wanted to do a post on the same thing WITHOUT the guilt or pressure to do so.

So Peggy, this one's for you . . . because I like making my own choices and feeling responsible for them emotionally.

8 T.V. Shows I like to watch. (Disclaimer: I don't watch T.V. - really, I don't. Though I did watch some of the election results last night to see what direction our country is headed. Woooooooo, Nelly! Anyway, I watch T.V. series on DVD's.)

1. Firefly
2. Angel
3. Buffy the Vampire Slayer
4. Stargate
5. Stargate Atlantis (Currently viewing for the first time. We're on the second season.)
6. Bones (on my list to watch)
7. M*A*S*H

8 things that happened to me yesterday:

1. I voted.
2. Went to Walmart.
3. Finished reading Hero of Ages by Brandon Sanderson - EXCELLENT!
4. Started reading Winter's Heart - 9th book of the Wheel of Time Series by Robert Jordan.
5. Felt compelled to make homemade bread. Yummy.
6. Did general housework.
7. Kissed Sammy's neck. I love kissing her neck.
8. Gave Carp a backrub that didn't require anything else of me.

8 of my favorite places to eat:

1. At my kitchen table with every member of my family present.
2. My Mom's house.
3. Anywhere one or both of the Merryweathers are cooking the food.
4. Macaroni Grill
5. Kneaders
6. Any mexican food place minus Los Hermanos.
7. Olive Garden
8. Picnics during the summer.

8 things I am looking forward to:

1. Actually making up my mind as to what I'm buy/making for whom for Christmas.
2. New doors.
3. A Christmas tree in my living room. I love Christmas trees!
4. New Years Eve - we have a feast!
5. Finishing my hallway painting.
6. Starting my wool tree skirt - though it will probably take me several years to finish!
7. Finishing Carson and Nathan's quilts.
8. Finishing that #!^$%& OMDR stuff for the junior high.

8 things on my wish list:

1. Ipod shuffle to go walking with.
2. Straight hair.
3. New kitchen cabinets, flooring and appliances (does that count for 3 wishes?)
4. Overhead lighting in my living room.
5. Ford F250 quad cab v8 black with lift.
6. New walking shoes.
7. For The Hobbit to be released earlier like Twlight and not later like Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince.
8. To get my door fixed on my van.

8 people I tag:

I'm taking a note from Peggy's book and leaving this up to you. It's really not that hard and it makes a fun post for others to read! So, if you're willing, you're tagged! If you don't feel up to it, that's okay too. I wouldn't have done this last week but this week gave me a little more time.

Have a Happy Day!

Friday, October 31, 2008


Thursday, October 30, 2008

Snoopy has something here . .

Snoopy is classic. I loved the other characters of Peanuts, but Snoopy was simply my favorite. He don't pull no punches and he sure meets challenges head on. What's not to love about that!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Nathan's 10th

Nathan turned 10 about 5 weeks ago. I was a flake and didn't post anything for weeks - so to catch up, here are some pics from his sleepover.

Bugs, Slugs, Legos, and Spiderwick Chronicles - these are a few of Nathan's favorite things. He got a taste of all of them for his birthday.

Pretty sure that's Noah's 4th finger he's graciously greeting me with. The kids had pizza for dinner and watched movies before FINALLY going to sleep at about 3:30 a.m. in the wee hours of the morn. Three of the boys had soccer games the next day. Surprisingly, they were in a pretty good mood after waking up at 7:00 a.m..

Nathan's favorite color is orange - like you all didn't know that with all the orange t-shirts that kid wears. I made a white cake and put holes in it with the tip of a wooden spoon. Then I poured orange jello over it and topped it with cool whip and orange slices. My mom use to make cakes like this when I was little. Ah, nostalgia!

I love Nathan's crazy friends. There was quite a variety of personalities at his party but they seemed to all get along pretty well.
I'm pretty sure he is not doing this next year. I know it's good for memory making, but I'm not sure I can pump myself up to do this every year. I must be getting old!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

BFF High School Memories

You know how we all check our caller ID when the phone rings and if it is a number we don't know we don't answer it. I did that a few weeks back. Carp was home early and picked it up anyway. It was Becky.

Most of you that read my blog have no clue who Becky is. Well, let me introduce you to my best buddy ever from my youth!

Becky and I with friends at youth conference. Brad Wilcox spoke.

Becky and I met in our ward in Mission Viejo. She always dressed nice, was a dancer and loved to sing. I wore jeans and t-shirts, loved hiking and played a little piano. We had not so much in common, yet everything in common.

As a teenager we all needed to have someone to talk to, someone to share your dreams with, someone to gush over your latest crush with you, and someone to just, well, hang with. Becky was all of that for me.

Becky and I at youth conference at BYU.

We attended the same ward but were in different schools. We both had early morning seminary, but went to different buildings. When we were not in school or seminary, work or dance classes, we were together. I was incredibly lucky to have someone to spend so much of my time with having fun and making great teenage memories.

Becky and Scott/Jon and I ready for Prom.

Becky sang and I played the piano for different church functions. We often would spend time together at the piano playing and singing for fun. We also spent a lot of time at the beach together.

My favorite thing we ever did was write in each others journals. When I read about her dreams and desires for the future I remember sitting on her bed writing the same things in her journal.

When Becky and I went to college we didn't room together. I think we knew better than to do that! When a guy named Scott moved into my ward and showed up in my FHE group, I told him I had a girl I wanted to introduce him too. They are now married and live in the south.

When Carp handed me the phone and I heard Becky's voice I was filled with gratitued that she takes the time to call or come see me when she is out my way. She has a beautiful family. She still teaches dance and has 5 kids from senior down to almost 1 years old. I LOVED SEEING THEM! It's so wonderful to see her happy and have so many good things in her life. I love you Becky and hope you have many more happy years ahead!

Becky with Jet and me with Sam.

Becky and Scott Haslam.

Abrielle, Cloe, Becky and Jet.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008


Here are some pictures of the Tetons.
We left Yellowstone and traveled down through the Teton. We camped there for a couple nights at Colter Bay and did some sightseeing.

View from the visitor center at Colter Bay.

All the visitor centers in Yellowstone and the Tetons had tables with different antlers for kids to check out. My big kid liked this moose antler. Of course, it seems as though he doesn't know where on their head it goes.

It was really cold at night in the Tetons. I am so grateful for warm quilts and sleeping bags! We're eating breakfast here before we take off for some sightseeing.

Colter Bay has lots of rocks in it water. People were out boating and stuff, but out kids played in the water and built rock walls.


Pretty rocks.



This show the rock wall the kids were making.

This is a functioning church. It had some really pretty stained glass inside.

This black tailed deer was near out campsite.

The Tetons are pictured behind everyone.

In Yellowstone you had to be a kid to work on your Junior Ranger patch. In the Tetons anyone can earn a patch. Seth, Nathan, Gabby and Sam all earned their Junior Ranger patches and were sworn in at the Colter Bay visitor center.

My kind of vacation - Relaxing!

We met this really nice family from Oregon a couple campsites down from us. Our kids played together at the campground and we sat down by the showers one night chatting. I'll look for the paper with their name on it to post it later. It was fun talking with them!

On our way home we stopped in Idaho Falls and took a picture of the temple there. It was so beautiful that day.