Saturday, December 31, 2011

hiking in a winter wonderland

I love going hiking! Mountains and fresh air and flora and fauna really appeal to me. I love the time to be alone and really ponder. Plus, it's good exercise while still being lots of fun. Unfortunately, it has been a summer pastime - until now. I tried snowshoeing and loved it! Look what a beautiful world I live in:

Of course, it didn't hurt that the outside temp was in the 50's. Who wouldn't love snowshoeing in that kind of weather?

Friday, December 30, 2011

Festival of Lights in D.C.

Christmas night I decided to go see my parents so McKayla, Shanley, and I got up early on the 26th and flew to Washington, D.C. It was a quick trip but so much fun! We played lots of games - Zilch, Pandemic, SkipBo, and Ripple. We ate way too much! We went to see the Festival of Lights at the temple. We looked at the creche display in the Visitor's Center. We went to the temple. I even got to see an old friend of mine from Cody. We watched a couple of heartwarming videos. Early Wednesday morning we were on a flight home.

Here's the beautiful lights at the temple. Wow!

The Washington, D.C. Temple is one of my favorite temples (along with the one in San Diego).

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Christmas recap

This was probably the best Christmas I can remember! I am glad about that because I didn't go into it with much Christmas spirit. I felt like Scrooge on the 24th. I really missed having Brakston with us! It was hard because he'd been gone the previous 2 years on his mission and I had really looked forward to having Christmas with him once again. But, alas, he's married now and spent Christmas with his wife's family. It is something I will have to get used to but it was really hard on me this year and I shed a lot of tears. Also, I was a little frustrated with a couple of my children who had put off making their homemade gift. Also, there was no snow which didn't exactly help put me in the proper Christmas mode. So, Christmas didn't get off to the most promising start.

I arose really early and took care of a few things. I also made homemade eggnog and started the Swedish Tea Ring which is our traditional breakfast. We went to church before opening anything. The music and prayers at church gave me the peace and joy I was seeking. We came home and baked our tea ring, ate breakfast, and did the dishes. Finally, when the kids were ready to burst in anticipation, we went in around the tree for another family tradition - the finding of the pickle. Based on a supposed German myth (most Germans have never heard of it), we have a pickle ornament which is hidden on Christmas Eve. The first child to find the pickle receives an extra present.

Chandler was the lucky pickle-finder this year and got a jar filled with gumballs.

Santa does not wrap our gifts but leaves the gifts and stockings on the couch covered with a tablecloth.

The kids line up by age for the unveiling.

I guess what really made this a great Christmas was that Kevin and I managed to surprise every child with something they really wanted. Some didn't know that was what they wanted and some didn't expect to get what they wanted. Shanley got this peacoat which she absolutely loves and didn't ask for.

McKayla was shocked to receive an acoustic guitar. She has really wanted one for a while but didn't actually expect to get it.

Chandler needed a new bike but thought he'd have to wait until his birthday. We also surprised him with a Legos watch. He didn't even know there was such a thing and he LOVES it!

Shanley and Alec show off their matching pajama pants.

Alec wanted a light saber. He was sure every present he opened would be that so, of course, I saved it to the very last. He was pretty excited about it. He likes that it makes lights and sounds.

I am so glad we were able to surprise our kids! I threw the budget out the window this year which wasn't smart (and is so unlike me) but it was worth every penny seeing every child so happy!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011


One of our favorite family traditions is Christmas Eve bowling and pizza. We love bowling because it is something the entire family can do! Even Alec bowls a pretty mean game!

Kevin and Chandler
Alec, Shanley, and Whitney
Scores from our first game. McKayla got a 66, Kevin a 95, me a 76, and Chandler a 77 (hate it when your 10-year-old bowls better than you do!)
More scores from our first game. Brakston scored a 74, Whitney a 79, Shanley a 111, and Alec an 85. You can see from our scores that we're practically pro. heehee!
Brakston and Whitney.
Alec with his usual enthusiasm.
Scores from our 2nd game. McKayla a 74, Kevin a 139, me a whopping 54, Chandler a 71.
More 2nd game scores. Brakston a 96, Whitney a 100, Shanley an 83, and Alec a 119.
After bowling we had pizza at The Pie (another tradition). Yummy! We also enjoyed their new drink machine. It is electronic and gives you so many options - Fanta in grape, cherry, strawberry, peach, etc; lemonade in strawberry, raspberry, cherry, etc; even vanilla root beer. We used one of these machines in the Atlanta airport earlier this year but this is the first one I've seen in Utah (course I don't eat out much either and almost never buy a drink when I do - I'm kind of a water gal).

The rest of our Christmas Eve tradition consists of reading the Nativity story from the Bible and giving our gifts to Jesus (usually a spiritual goal for the upcoming year). Then we watch "A Christmas Story".

pics - FINALLY

I'm a little behind on getting pictures posted. Here's the gorgeous anniversary flowers from Kevin. I just wish the photo could do justice to the amazing color of the bouquet.
Here is Alec's birthday cake. He picked it out since he told me for weeks before his birthday that he wanted a Star Wars cake with Luke Skywalker on it.
I went to the Denver Temple on the 23rd. This is the view from the entrance.
This is the view from the street (the opposite side from the entrance).

Monday, December 26, 2011


The Christmas present opening was a LOT of fun this year! We managed to surprise every one of our children with at least one of their gifts. And, in every case, the surprise gift was something that really made them happy.

For Alec, it was a light saver (yes, he's a Star Wars fan).

For McKayla, it was a guitar.

For Shanley, it was a peacoat.

For Chandler, it was a Legos watch.

Seeing them so excited made my Christmas a lot cheerier.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

the case of the missing Christmas present

As a youth I devoured mysteries. I loved Boxcar Children, Trixie Belden, Encyclopedia Brown, Nancy Drew, and The Hardy Boys. I read them all!

You'd think I would have picked up a hint or two on how to solve my own mystery but alas...what I really need is my own personal Encyclopedia Brown.

I helped Alec buy a Christmas present for McKayla. I remember that much. I even remember exactly what it was. What I don't remember is where I hid it. It is a small item and I have looked in all my usual hiding spots - dresser drawers, closet, under my bed...Nothing. Zip. Nada. I even went so far as to clean out my closet. Still zilch. Closet looks good though.

I've never experienced a completely lost present before. I'm not liking the sensation. Where is Nancy when I need her?

Friday, December 23, 2011

my anniversary flowers

Kevin is great about giving me flowers! He does it really well. I especially loved the color of these ones that he gave me for our 24th anniversary!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011


Today will be my final day of 4 days substitute teaching seminary at the local middle school.

thank goodness.

Normally, I love teaching seminary. I love it a little less when it's at a middle school rather than a high school.

I love it a LOT less when it is merely a few days before Christmas! Students are insanely hyper - I am going to need a lot of luck and a huge amount of prayer to get through today. Pray for me.

Monday, December 19, 2011

anniversary and birthday

Yesterday was the 24th anniversary for Kevin and me! Yep - 24 years!

I went to bed early Saturday night feeling a bit queasy. I awoke yesterday to gorgeous flowers (roses and lilies in a wondrous shade of orange), a mint truffle and a wrapped gift. Sweet!

Unfortunately, I was still a bit queasy.

Last night, Chandler and Shanley were sick all night. They stayed home from school today.

Today is Alec's 19th birthday. He requested eggs for breakfast and coffee cake for dinner. He also wanted a Star Wars cake with Luke Skywalker.

The celebration went great! It was quick because we had to get to Shanley's dance recital. She was barely feeling good enough to dance. About halfway through the recital, Alec got really sick and I had to get him out of there. We barely made it home in time for him to get super sick. Poor guy!

Do we know how to celebrate or what?

Friday, December 16, 2011

best nativity EVER!

Last night the Special Needs Mutual performed the nativity. Alec was a shepherd and was very serious about the role. One of the sheep insisted on wearing tinsel in her hair like the angels. One of the wisemen had on a Utes beanie. There were more angels than anything since almost every young woman wanted to be an angel. One shepherd on the stage enthusiastically waved his arms in leading every song. One man, who played the part of a cow, made us all laugh when he bore his testimony and said the whole thing was "udderly" fantastic. T

My personal favorite was the narrator reading about King "HE-Rod". I'm not sure I'll ever read the nativity the same again.

It has also never touched my heart as much before.

Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Adult Truths

A friend of mine has been posting these on Facebook (a truth a day). It's from an email that's been circulating (probably forever). Some really do make me laugh!

Adult Truths
1.I think part of a best friend’s job should be to immediately clear your computer history if you die. (you know who you are!)
2.Nothing stinks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you’re wrong.
3.I totally take back all those times I didn’t want to nap when I was younger.
4.There is great need for a sarcasm font.
5.How in the world are you supposed to fold a fitted sheet? (I just roll and roll and roll!)
6.Was learning cursive really necessary?
7.MapQuest really needs to start their directions on # 5. I’m pretty sure I know how to get out of my neighborhood. (LOL)
8.Obituaries would be a lot more interesting if they told you how the person died.
9.I can’t remember the last time I wasn’t at least kind of tired.
10.Bad decisions make good stories.
11.You never know when it will strike, but there comes a moment at work when you know that you just aren’t going to do anything productive for the rest of the day. (YES!)
12.Can we all just agree to ignore whatever comes after Blue Ray? I don’t want to have to restart my Collection…again. (thank you!)
13.I’m always slightly terrified when I exit out of Word and it asks me if I want to save any changes to my ten-page technical report that I swear I did not make any changes to. (this applies to other apps too)
14.I keep some people’s phone numbers in my phone just so I know not to answer when they call.
15.I disagree with Kay Jewelers. I would bet on any given Friday or Saturday night more kisses begin with Miller Lite than Kay.
16.I wish Google Maps had an “Avoid Ghetto” routing option.
17.I have a hard time deciphering the fine line between boredom and hunger.
18.How many times is it appropriate to say “What?” before you just nod and smile because you still didn’t hear or understand a word they said?
19.I love the sense of camaraderie when an entire line of cars team up to prevent a jerk from cutting in at the front. Stay strong, brothers and sisters!
20.Shirts get dirty. Underwear gets dirty. Pants? Pants never get dirty, and you can wear them forever. (don't totally agree)
21.Sometimes I’ll look down at my watch 3 consecutive times and still not know what time it is. (LOL!)
22.Even under ideal conditions people have trouble locating their car keys in a pocket, finding their cell phone, and Pinning the Tail on the Donkey, but I’d bet everyone can find and push the snooze button from 3 feet away, in about 1.7 seconds, eyes closed, first time, every time. (totally disagree with this one. I've never hit a snooze button in my life and my current alarm doesn't even have one!)
23.The first testicular guard, the “Cup,” was used in Hockey in 1874 and the first helmet was used in 1974. That means it only took 100 years for men to realize that their brain is also important.
24.Has anyone figured out why there’s an eject button on the DVD remote? Don’t you still have to get up and take out the DVD???

Monday, December 12, 2011


One of the ironies of living in an area completely surrounded by mountains is that you find yourself hoping for a big winter storm.

No, that's not a joke. You see, the drawback to living in a valley is that the air gets trapped in the valley (inversion) and the air quality gets really bad. The only way to clean the air is to have a good storm.

Currently the air quality is so bad that it's rated as a "red" day meaning you are not supposed to be outside. The schools keep the students in for recess and they encourage you to exercise indoors. That brings the second catch-22. Do I stay indoors and suffer the ill-health consequences of a sedentary lifestyle or do I go running and inhale lots of poor, gunky, dangerous air?

I guess you could say "I'm dreaming of a white Christmas!"

Sunday, December 11, 2011

2 fabulous concerts

Every year FM100 hosts Christmas mini-concerts on Tuesdays and Thursday at noon at the mall. These concerts feature 2 artists for 30 minutes each.

It has become my tradition to try to attend a few of them. Relaxing and listening to Christmas music by wonderful performers is such a great way to get into the holiday spirit!

This past week brought 2 of the best concerts! On Tuesday there was Eclipse (a local acapella group who actually performed at the opening and closing ceremonies of the Winter 2002 Olympics). They were highly entertaining! They were followed by Jon Schmidt who is Chandler's favorite piano player. Therefore, I even pulled Chandler out of school to attend.

Thursday was David Tolk (another amazing pianist) and Peter Breinholt (a folk singer whom I personally enjoy very much).

Definitely feeling the Christmas spirit!

Saturday, December 10, 2011


Lately I have had the oddest sensation in my left leg. It's a bit of a vibration.

I often set my person at my feet and over the course of several days I kept picking up my purse to check my cell phone. I was always surprised to find nothing there because I had clearly felt it vibrate.

Being the extremely quick-minded person that I am, it only took me several days to realize that it was not my phone vibrating but MY FOOT!

An electric pulse, a vibration, something was starting in my left foot and working it's way partly up my leg - very odd.

I'm sure it's just my electric presence!

Friday, December 9, 2011

candy land

My home is beginning to look like Willy Wonka's chocolate factory. Yum!

Every year we host an open house for our neighbors.

So far this week I've made:
English Toffee
White Chocolate Pretzels
Peanut Butter Balls
Cake Batter Truffles
Milk Chocolate Balls

Unfortunately, that is only about halfway there. I still need to make:
Peanut Brittle
Coconut Orange Balls
Oreo Truffles
Mint Truffles
Chocolate Truffles
Another Batch of Fudge

We don't even want to think about how much sugar I go through in December but I love having my neighbors and friends over! It is so much fun to visit! Last year about 60 people came and I loved all of them! I always stress about having enough candy and I always have tons of leftovers - luckily, I never have a problem finding people to give it to.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

what do you do?

What do you do at 3:30 am? Sleep? Nah. Highly overrated. Personally, I can't sleep so I just get going on my never-ended to-do list.

Monday morning at 3:30 am you could find me downstairs in the basement organizing my seasonal decor into storage bins. I will confess. My storage has probably been what can best be described as "a disaster". It is now organized, labeled, and stored in an accessible fashion.

Tuesday morning at 3:30 am you could find me in the kitchen. I made coffee cake for the kids' breakfast, stuffed mushrooms, cordon bleu lasagna, and tortilla dessert cups.

Wednesday morning at 3:30 am you could find me in the living room on my laptop. I answered emails, typed our Christmas letter, and caught up on facebook.

Thursday morning at 3:30 am you could find me still in bed. That's right. I slept in and didn't get up until 4 am at which time you could find me back in the kitchen. I made fudge and dipped pretzels.

Sometimes I actually amaze myself with all that I can get done before 7 am.

Now, if only I could stay alert enough to get something done after 6 pm.....

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

You might be...

You might not be a shopper if:

*You take your almost 11-year-old son to the mall for a free mini-concert and he informs you he's never been inside before (only been there to drop off his sisters a couple of times). You don't believe that's possible, and on further review, it's not. You brought him once before to do a photo scavenger hunt. Yep, he's been once in almost 11 years - I am not much of a shopper!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011


Thanksgiving was great! 25 people at my home - everyone helped with food. We ate, visited, did a puzzle, and the kids played. Here's the boats I made as place cards. I thought they were pretty cute. Too bad I don't remember where I stole the idea so I can give credit where due. Just know I didn't originate the idea.

I was reading the New Era on Sunday and came across a gratitude challenge and thought I should do it. Then I saw the same gratitude challenge when I was reading The Ensign. I take that to mean I really should do it so here goes:

10 Living People I'm Grateful For:
Jesus Christ
my husband
my mom
my dad
Brakston (and Whitney)
Pres. Thomas S. Monson
(super hard category to only name 10)

10 Dead People I'm Grateful For:
Joseph Smith
George Washington
Abraham Lincoln
Jane Austen
my grandpa Searle
Benjamin Franklin
Mother Theresa

10 Physical Abilities I'm Grateful For:
able to run long distances
sense of hearing
I'm flexible
my body's ability to heal
sense of smell
able to smile
able to take 10-minute naps and feel refreshed
ability to read

10 Material Possessions I'm Grateful For:
sewing machine
Bosch mixer
quilted advent calendar and stockings that Vicki and my mom made for me
cell phone

10 Things in Nature for Which I'm Grateful:
the majestic mountains which surround me (especially the Wasatch Range)
leafy trees in summer that give shade
sweet-smelling flowers
the colors of the trees in autumn
juicy, ripe tomatoes in late summer
fruit trees
sparkly white snow when I can stay indoors
water in which to swim and play
clean, pure water to drink
beautiful, clear-blue skies with a golden sun

10 Things About Today I'm Grateful For:
my to-do list is do-able
I awoke at 3:30 am and already have a dozen things done
I get to help a couple girls with a project for SilverRush
I get to go listen to a mini-concert of Voicemale and Jon Schmidt
my Christmas decorations are up and I can enjoy them
I have the house to myself for a few hours
I have time to think about what I'm grateful for (count my blessings)
my family is all healthy
I get to go for a run soon
I have a positive attitude

10 Places on Earth I am Grateful For:
my home
the temples
our church building
the Wasatch Mountains
Yellowstone National Park
Cody, WY

10 Modern-day Inventions I'm Grateful For:
cell phones
DVD players
iPods/MP3 players
modern medicine

10 Foods I'm Grateful For:
warm rolls
peanut butter

10 Things About the Gospel I'm Grateful For:
the Atonement
the Plan of Salvation
that it's the same no matter where you are
it's well-organized
the Primary
the Young Women's program
it's constant and sure (doesn't change with the world)
living it makes me happy
living it is a protection
it gives me direction and purpose

Monday, December 5, 2011

books I've read in the past month

Here's my list of books I read in November. I put a * buy the ones I recommend.

"A Lesson in Secrets (Maisie Dobbs, #8)" by Jacqueline Winspear

**"Tuesdays at the Castle" by Jessica Day George

"Sullivan's Woman" by Nora Roberts

"Breaking Night: A Memoir" by Liz Murray

"Irish Hearts #3" by Nora Roberts

"The Tower, The Zoo, and The Tortoise" by Julia Stuart

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Resolution Check-Up

Better late than never. I just didn't have time to blog at the end of November so here is my monthly accounting of how I'm doing on my goals.

Lose Weight - Yikes! Gained weight again. Pretty frustrating. I ran long miles surrounding Thanksgiving, tried to not badly overeat, and still gained a ton. The only bright spot is that I did lose some weight after Thanksgiving.

Read Jesus the Christ - COMPLETE! Yea!

Go snowshoeing - nope

Run Ragnar - COMPLETE!

Write My Grandma's Life History - No progress this month.

Do family search indexing - I did do quite a bit of indexing.

Attend 5 Temples that I've Never Been to Before - I made it to the Denver Temple. It was nice.

Overall - failure on losing weight and my grandma's life history but good progress or complete in other areas.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

in which I brag that I survived


Insane might best describe this past week but I'm still standing. I survived.

Threw a scavenger hunt-type FHE for my family and a friend's. Hosted book club at my home complete with refreshments. Sold flags at the RHS basketball game. Did countless hours of PTA work. Attended a PTA meeting. Volunteered at Festival of Trees. Delivered (on foot) 90+ invitations. Attended Shanley's dance performance as well as my niece's. Fielded 13 calls per day regarding subbing, PTA bylaws, RHS SilverRush,Battle of the Bands etc. Got McKayla ready and off to California. Had the Suburban break down on me and walked home to get another car. Went to a doctor's appointment and underwent allergy testing. Taught Special Needs Mutual.

And in my spare time, I was in charge of the Ward Christmas party. You know. A little thing like feeding 350 people dinner, arranging for Santa, organizing entertainment, shopping, cooking, helping to decorate...

Anyhow, it was the week in which I didn't get to do much running but still lost 4 pounds because I didn't even have time to eat. Ever.

Didn't have time to sleep either.

So, I am going to go take a nap because although I did survive, I don't want to be "still standing".

Sunday, November 27, 2011


Dismayed. Disgruntled. Disgusted. Disappointed. I am even feeling a bit irritated.

Finding it a bit hard to retain the spirit of love and gratitude that comes with the holidays.

I was asked to be in charge of our ward's Christmas party. 350 people. $500 budget. I have had sign-up sheets going around the ward for the past couple weeks and even a plea in today's ward bulletin for help with the food. Just asking people to bring a pot of chili.

I can't get enough volunteers.

This party has occupied my every free moment for the last 3 weeks. I have lost sleep at night stressing over it. I have prayed and worked. Plotted and planned. Made phone calls and organized. And I can't even get 17 people to agree to bring a lousy pot of chili?

Sorry to be so negative. Tomorrow I will grow a new attitude but for the moment, I am going to wallow in a few moments of self-pity.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Count Your Blessings

name them one by one...

1) I finished one major Christmas project this morning - YEA! Gifts for 9 families done.

2) I don't work in any of those stores that are making their employees work at 10 pm or midnight for Black Friday. For that matter, I'm glad I don't work in a grocery store that makes their employees work until 2 pm. Plan ahead people - buy your groceries ahead of time so these poor employees don't have to work.

3) I got to teach seminary yesterday.

4) We are not heading out of town for a soccer tournament.

5) We have tickets to Hale Center Theater tomorrow night.

6) Everyone chipped in this morning to help clean the house without complaint.

7) Great kids, fantastic husband, good health, home, ....

8) My Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

my fave

Tonight is my favorite holiday. It's Pie Night!

What?!? You don't celebrate Pie Night? Well, you should. Everyone should. At least everyone who loves pie, that is.

My extended family started Pie Night years ago. We decided we were too full after turkey to truly enjoy the pie. Also, you have that pesky problem of in-laws wanting their time too so you don't always get Thanksgiving with everyone. Not to mention that this is the first year in about 9 or 10 years that we are not going out of town on Thanksgiving for a soccer tournament so usually we weren't really able to celebrate on Thanksgiving day. So, voila! We created Pie Night and it solved all the problems.

Everyone is available on Thanksgiving Eve so we all get together and eat soup, scones, and PIE! Yum! After that, turkey is so anti-climatic.

Dawnette is hosting it for their friends in Texas since she and her family can't be here. I've even had ward members tell me they now hold Pie Night. Good for them! Best holiday of the year!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


*I get the most random emails - everything from dating sites for senior citizens to info on obtaining my GED. What? Nothing like those boosts to my self-esteem.

*I don't hate cooking for my family. I just hate that most of the time, someone doesn't like it. I guess with 7 people in the family, odds are that I can't please everyone but still...

*I don't know anyone who doesn't feel like they are the busiest person on earth. What have we gotten ourselves involved in? Once in a while, it would be nice to go back to the days of spending the evenings sitting on your front porch watching people stroll by leisurely.

*It seems a fine line between starting Christmas too early (Really? Christmas decor on sale in the stores before Halloween is even over?) and appearing Scroogelike. My kids are so adamant about not starting Christmas too early that they don't even want to attend a Christmas concert with me on Friday because it is "still Thanksgiving weekend".

Sunday, November 20, 2011

100 Life Goals (and counting)

Years and years and years (since I am now officially old - just ask my children) ago I made a list of 100 life goals. I guess it was my bucket list. Who knew that 100 would not be sufficient?

A few more:

1) Serve a mission (or three) with Kevin
2) Go to the Sacred Grove
3) Memorize 20 of my favorite scriptures
4) Watch the AFI's 100 Best Movies
5) Hike the Grand Canyon
6) Go to Paris, France
7) Study the conference talks of Elder Neal A. Maxwell
8) Become more proficient at Power Point presentations

Saturday, November 19, 2011

a temple-going person

Alec loves going to the temple to do baptisms. He has been going at 4:10 am twice a month for years. He is usually so excited about going that I don't have to wake him. Often, when I awake at 3:30 am, he is already up, dressed, and ready to go. He hates it when it's not his week to go and usually argues with me about it - he is always sure it is his turn.

I had to laugh this past week because McKayla drove he and Shanley to the temple on Tuesday morning. As Alec was leaving the baptistry, he ran into Pres. Haight (the temple president). Pres. Haight shook Alec's hand and told him to come back. Alec got really excited and said, "Really?"

Alec definitely took Pres. Haight seriously because Wednesday after school Alec dressed in his suit and demanded that we take him to the temple. We couldn't persuade him otherwise so I dropped him off at the temple by himself and hoped he'd be okay until I could send McKayla back for him later.

I blame Pres. Haight.

just kidding.

I am actually thrilled that Alec desires to be in the temple so much! I don't know that he understands what is going on there but I do know he feels the Spirit and wants to be there.

Friday, November 18, 2011

grace in motion


I certainly would never be described as graceful. Especially if you had seen me yesterday.

I was delivering pizzas to a high school classroom with an assistant principal when I tripped going up the stairs. I went down hard with my big toe and my palm taking the brunt of it.

You see, I like to display my klutziness to others.

The good news of the day was that the assistant principal was carrying the pizzas - thank goodness!

The big toe is really swollen and attractive today - maybe I can trip over it a few more times as I navigate the crowded halls of the middle school all day today with Shanley. You know, display my grace to a few more people.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

no comprende

Can I just say I cannot relate to people who don't want their teens driving?

For me, my teens receiving their license is a cause for celebration! It makes me do the happy dance! It makes me sigh in relief! It makes me shout for joy!

Finally - some help.

It has been so helpful having McKayla as a licensed driver. Both girls need to go to the YW activity? No problem. McKayla can just drive. Chandler is at indoor soccer and Alec is at the temple and Kevin is flying and I am in a meeting? No problem. McKayla can pick up Alec and Chandler. Shanley needs a ride home from dance? No problem. McKayla can go get her.

And, of course, the biggest help of all is that McKayla can get herself places. McKayla needs a ride home from cross-country/track practice every night? Yep. Can do. McKayla wants to go to a friend's house to do homework? Yep. Can do.

I'm not sure what I'll do with all my free time. Maybe spend some time perfecting that happy dance.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

how the West was won

or not.

That would be a different show.

I just got back from chaperoning a middle school field trip to see the high school's performance of "Annie Get Your Gun". I was blown away (pun intended) by Annie's voice - amazing talent for a high school student.

Now I have songs like "There's No Business Like Show Business" and "Anything You Can Do, I Can Do Better" going through my head. I might be singing those all day.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

the rest of the story

So many stories I read in the paper, see on the internet, or hear on the news tug at my heartstrings or make me angry.

But, I often wonder about the rest of the story. What else was going on that we don't know about?

For example, the paper this morning reported on an orchestra concert where the conductor stopped the performance not once but twice because he could hear noise. He accused people of bring children to the performance (no one under 8 was allowed) and then asked the offender to leave. It turns out the "offender" was a man with a mental disability. This made the audience angry and they yelled at the conductor.

This conductor could have saved himself some grief if he'd known "the rest of the story". I would expect a different reaction had he known it was a man with a mental disability rather than thinking it was a rule-breaker.

Maybe the audience members needed the rest of the story as well. Had this conductor gotten in trouble in the past for allowing noise during his concerts? Had audience members complained in prior performances?

We just don't know.

Too often I find myself guilty of judging before I know the whole story. I will admit to some sympathetic feelings for Joe Paterno when he was fired in the Penn State sex scandal. However, as more and more of the story came out, my sympathetic feelings changed to outrage over a man who did very little to protect innocent children.

Is there still more of the story? Probably. (Do I want to hear it? not really but that's beside the point)

So many other examples. So much judgment, anger, and condemnation. Maybe misplaced, mistaken, misunderstood.

If only I could learn to tame my feelings until I was certain I had "the rest of the story".

Monday, November 14, 2011


Well, it's done. Too late to back out now. I have signed myself up to run a marathon and a half-marathon next year. Of course, at the moment I am excited and don't want to back out but who knows how I'll be feeling in 6 months.

I ran a half-marathon just a little over a year ago and I've run 8-10 miles at a time in recent weeks so the half should be no problem.

On the other hand, I haven't run a marathon for 17 years! I honestly didn't think I'd ever run another one. Running one was on my bucket list, did it, checked it off, moved on. Now, I've got the bug again. So, my birthday present to myself will be running a marathon (it's the day before my 45th birthday). What a way to celebrate!

Sunday, November 13, 2011


More things to be thankful for today:

*Brakston married a woman I really like
*Alec gives great hugs
*McKayla causes me very little stress
*Shanley is so funny and makes me laugh
*Chandler is so curious and inquisitive

and last, but certainly not least...

*Kevin is incredibly patient, hard-working, and is always improving!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

parent-teacher conference

Yesterday was Chandler's parent-teacher conference. Ironically, his teacher's name is Ms. Chandler. Easy to remember. And Chandler can definitely spell his teacher's name correctly.

The conference went well. He is a whiz at math (100% on the benchmark and straight A's on every unit). He struggles at reading aloud and identifying sentence components. His teacher says she loves him and he is such a cute kid. She also says he is too competitive at trying to finish all of his assignments first (I think we've heard that from every teacher since first grade).

I never stress about meeting with Chandler's teachers.

Friday, November 11, 2011

the irony

The substitute teaching in the culturally-diverse, impoverished junior high has continued all week.

Yesterday's class almost made me laugh (or cry or wring my hands in despair or something). A 14-year-old girl gave the devotional on dating. She read from For the Strength of Youth on dating. She read the part about not dating until you are at least 16. Then she read the part about double dating and testified that double dating is good because she and her boyfriend and her best friend and her boyfriend doubled over the weekend (did I say these girls are 14?) and they had a lot of fun.

She told the class they should follow the guidelines in The For the Strength of Youth (I guess she meant except the part where they tell you NOT to date until you are 16).

Thursday, November 10, 2011


My current favorite running songs are:

Bittersweet Symphony - The Verve
We Live - Superchick
Jar of Hearts - Christina Perri
You Are Loved - Josh Groban
Home - Michael Buble
Arms - Christina Perri
Bright Lights - Matchbox 20
Waka Waka (Time for Africa) - Shakira
California King Bed - Rihanna
Uprising - Muse
Landslide - Dixie Chicks
All That You Are - GooGoo Dolls
Walking in Memphis - Marc Cohn
If You're Gone - Matchbox 20
Better Man - Pearl Jam
Kiss from a Rose - Seal
King of Anything - Sara Bareilles
Viva la Vida - Cold Play
Secrets - One Republic
Someone Like You - Adele
Do You Know - Enrique Iglesias
All These Lives - Daughtry
Hollywood's Not America - Ferras
Every Teardrop is a Waterfall - Cold Play
Pretty Girl Rock - Keri Wilson
If Today Was Your Last Day - Nickelback
Good Life - One Republic
One Last Chance - Daughtry

What's your favorite running music?

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

reality check

This week I have been substituting seminary at a junior high in a highly impoverished, culturally diverse area. Nothing brings home the difference to me quite as much as asking my students what qualities they want in a future spouse and hearing the answer "not being a gang member".

What a wake-up call. I don't think I would ever hear that answer at the schools in Riverton. Sometimes I forget how good I have it in my very average, middle-class neighborhood. I'm not even sure my children could tell you what a gang is.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

stuff happens

Dang it!

I feel so badly for Brakston and Whitney. The engine blew on their car last Saturday.

They had tried so hard to do everything right. Brakston worked hard all summer, budgeted carefully, and saved every penny he could towards buying a new car. Whitney also saved money. They carefully researched cars and found out which car to buy. They found a Subaru Legacy in their price range and took it to our mechanic friend who inspected it well. He gave it a thumbs up so they bought it. They were quite happy with it.

Just over 2 months later - ENGINE BLEW (and that blows).

Yep, stuff happens.

Monday, November 7, 2011


I have a lot to be grateful for but I don't always give Thanksgiving the attention I should. Not that I put up my Christmas tree the day after Halloween or anything but still....

So, today I'll list a few things I'm grateful for:

*FHE with my extended family - my brothers usually make me laugh

*That Brakston is so excited to take part in the family traditions that he missed while he was serving his mission

*That my husband is a pilot so we get to fly for free

*That my elementary, middle school, and high school students each have an amazing principal (how often do you strike the jackpot like that?)

*Ward members who laughed and teased McKayla yesterday when Alec announced to the ward during his testimony that she had had a date

*That I'm not the one that Alec shares embarrassing stories about when he bears his testimony

Sunday, November 6, 2011


Whew! Survived McKayla's first date last night. Dating can be so rough on the parents. This one was great because they stayed here all night making it easy to keep an eye (and an ear) on them.

I was pretty skeptical when he first asked because he is 18 and already graduated from high school. Too old for my baby!

However, I was won over by a few factors:
*she met him at EFY
*he is a cross-country runner
*he has his mission call (to Washington, D.C. South)

His name is Taylor Braithwaite.

He came over and brought Texas Toast and the two of them made french toast. Then they played Ticket to Ride with Shanley and Alec (more points in his favor). They goofed around on the piano and then played soccer with Chandler and his friend. Then they headed downstairs to watch Forever Strong. Alec watched it with them. In fact, he even sat between them the entire movie. (heehee!). After the movie, the two of them played a few games of Settlers of Catan before calling it a night.

McKayla had a great time and it certainly was a low-stress date on her parents. Thank goodness!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

XC Awards

Thursday night was the RHS cross-country team award's banquet. McKayla received a varsity letter. The certificates are pretty nice.
McKayla and her friend, Bre, holding their certificates and plaques.
These are the plaques received by everyone who lettered (ran varsity). The a is meant to signify that they are the alphas of the wolf pack (Riverton High Silverwolves). The a is also found on their jerseys.
McKayla and Bre each received additional awards. Bre received the award for the Female Rookie of the Year (she and McKayla are both new to cross-country this year). McKayla received the award for Alpha Female (top girl runner). This time the A was capitalized to signify the alpha of the alphas.
McKayla finished 19th at State and Bre finished 29th. Not too shabby for 2 girls whose primary sport was NOT cross-country. McKayla's priority was soccer while Bre's was lacrosse. Imagine what they could do if they actually dedicated themselves to cross-country.

Friday, November 4, 2011


The essential items in my purse are:

*chapstick (first and foremost - I can't seem to be without this item)
*a pen (always prepared - that's me)
*cash (I hate pulling out the credit card for items under $5)
*a black Sharpie market (I can't believe how often this comes in handy)
*mints (gotta have fresh breath and I can't stand gum)

With this short of a list, you'd think my purse would be even smaller than it already is. What do women keep in those HUGE bags?

Thursday, November 3, 2011

it's just Utah

Just 2 short weeks ago I was exulting in having 60 degree temps to run in - PERFECT running weather! I was loving life!

But...this is Utah. The following week we had a 30 degree temperature drop (yes, that happens overnight here) and now I find myself running in 20 to 30 degree temps. Brrr...not quite so perfect.

I've decided I'm difficult to please. Las Vegas and it's 80's was far too hot. Now it's a bit chilly.

It's true. I want my cake and I want to eat it too. Further, I don't want to gain any weight as a result of eating that darn cake. Is that too much to ask?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011


My children frequently use a phrase that I have grown to strongly dislike. I think they utter these words EVERY time I ask them to do something. I also think I am not alone as a parent in hearing these famous words.

What phrase?


Am I right? Does anyone else hear these words often?

It ranks right up there with:

"in a minute"
"I'll get to it"
"just a sec"

What are Kevin's words of comfort? "In a few more years, you won't have to hear those words anymore."

Who is he kidding? He might use them as often as they do.

I think I will just have to learn some patience. I'll work on that - LATER! heehee!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

books I've read in the past month

Oops! I only recorded reading 2 books last month. I think I read 4 but I forgot to write them down so I don't have titles or authors or even a clear memory. whatever. give me a break. I am 44, have 5 children, and usually run around like a chicken with my head cut off.

In fact, what's really bad is that one of the books I read this month is one I just read in July. I forgot I'd already read it until I was about 30 pages into it. Unfortunately, it was the only book I took on my Las Vegas trip so I had to keep reading it. Again. At least it was pretty good. It was:

Shades of Milk and Honey by Mary Robinette Kowal

The other was:

Think of a Number by John Verdon

Both books were pretty good. If I remember what else I read, I'll update this. Then again, we may never know.

sweet 16!

Let the driving and dating begin - McKayla turns 16 today!

I really am not afraid of her dating or driving. She shows a lot of common sense and level-headedness. She is pretty mature and I believe she will make good decisions. At least, thus far she hasn't given me any reason to worry. She got asked to go to Lagoon last Friday by a guy she really likes and without even double checking with me, she turned him down by telling him she wasn't old enough to date yet. It was also Girls' Pref on Saturday so she wasn't old enough by ONLY 3 days but she didn't beg or bug me about it - just knew she wasn't old enough yet.

That's the kind of gal she is.

And as far as driving is concerned, the sooner I have help the BETTER!

McKayla has a bit of a stubborn streak (which is great when it's focused on good things). She is reliable and a good student. She is organized and doesn't forget things but does keep the messiest room imaginable! Yikes! (can we say slob?) She is athletically gifted, modest, and has a fun and playful personality. She likes to give people a hard time (I'm sure she doesn't get that from me - heehee!) yet she is generally nice to everyone. She has a strong testimony of the gospel of Jesus Christ and is a good example of living according to her beliefs.

She has brought so much joy to my life! I love her and am so proud of her and her accomplishments!

Happy Birthday, McKayla!

Monday, October 31, 2011

Resolution Check-Up

Another month come and gone and it's time for my monthly day of accountability regarding my New Year's Resolutions.

Lose Weight - I am losing...losing this battle, that is. Not doing well at all. In fact, I gained. Must. Quit. Eating.

Read Jesus the Christ - COMPLETE! Yea!

Climb Mt. Timpanogos - Dangit! I decided that for safety's sake this one must go on the shelf until next year. We have late snow which prevented me from going up early and then a wedding that kept me too busy to go up. Once I cleared my schedule early this month, I determined that the Timpanogos Emergency Rescue Team had declared the season over and had disbanded. Not that I planned on needing rescuing but I don't feel a solo climb of Timp is a smart idea outside of the normal climbing season. I will re-try this goal next year. For now, I'm replacing it with going snowsh for the first time (again, assuming the weather cooperates. I will need snow before year-end to do this one).

Run Ragnar - COMPLETE! Yea! This was a lot of fun! For more info, see here.

Write My Grandma's Life History - No progress this month.

Do family search indexing - I did do some indexing.

Attend 5 Temples that I've Never Been to Before - No new ones this month. I took McKayla to the St. George Temple and it was her first time being there but I've been to that one before so I can't count it.

Overall - failure on losing weight and my grandma's life history but good progress or complete in other areas.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

loss of stress

I have now had a headache for 48 hours. Nothing is working to get rid of it. I've tried a nap, pinching the area between my thumb and forefinger, massaging my neck and shoulders, drinking extra water, etc. I even resorted to taking Ibuprofen. Still, the headache persists.

I blame it on my lack of stress. For most of September and October I had WAY too much on my plate. Life was extremely hectic. I tend to hold all of my stress in my neck and shoulder muscles.

Over the last week or so, life has calmed down considerably. I have been able to take a deep breath and relax a bit. I am not running on overdrive. Thus, my body is also trying to relax so now I feel the high tension in my neck. Ouch!

Anybody have any great headache relievers?

Saturday, October 29, 2011


I LOVE my calling to serve in Special Needs Mutual!

I must admit that when I was called, I wasn't overly excited. I deal with Special Needs nearly every day of my life and have for almost 19 years now.

However, I LOVE love LOVE it! Greatest church calling EVER!

Friday, October 28, 2011


A few awards for the kiddos this week:

Wednesday night was the RHS soccer team banquet. It was quite fun and, being catered by Costa Vida, it was also yummy!

The long-standing tradition is that the Seniors determine the awards for all of the underclassmen and the coach then selects the Seniors' Awards. Usually the underclassmen awards are inside jokes requiring some explaining.

McKayla's award was "Just Keep Pace with Mickey - NOT!" (Her soccer team calls her Mickey) The story behind this is that the coach was requiring the girls to run a mile in under 6:30. Most of them were very stressed about this. On the day of the time trial when the girls were expressing their fears to the coach, he told them to "Just keep pack with Mickey and you'll be fine". The Seniors related that the team tried to keep up with her and couldn't even do it for one lap around the track. They said, "We were practically dying trying to keep up with her." They said she ended up lapping a lot of the girls on the team. Thus, the award.

The Senior girls also gave Alec an award for being their best fan! They gave him a mini soccer ball, a picture of him at their game, and a thank-you card. He was so pleased. Of course, he kind of strutted up to the front to receive the award. Then, on the way home, he kept randomly bursting into giggles. When I'd ask him why he'd say, "I just so happy!". That made me happy!

Thursday night was Pack meeting. Chandler was award his Webelo! Yeah! He also earned several activity pins. He is now one team sport short of having earned every single activity pin possible. That last pin should be his by December.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

no good at night

My mom and I are alike in many ways. However, we have a couple differences. For instance, I never remember her going to bed without leaving the house clean -- no dirty dishes in the sink for her.

I, on the other hand, am usually worthless at night. I am tired (and generally a bit cranky). It is all I can do to help kids with homework or wait up for them to get home.

It is not the least bit unusual for me to leave my dirty pans in the sink. I am much more able to face them and deal with them in the pre-dawn hours.

I don't wake up to cleanliness but on the bright side, I get to enjoy it ALL day while my kids are at school before they come home to mess it up again!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

HOPE Squad

After there was 3 suicides during one year at Riverton High, Hope Squad was formed. Hope Squad is a group of students who, under the direction of the school counselors, are trained to talk to those in crisis. (and then direct them to real help)

A little over a week ago, the 734 members of the sophomore class were each asked to write the names of 4 students who they would want to talk to in a time of need. The top 15-20 were named to the Hope Squad.

McKayla was one of them.

I think it is an honor and McKayla was happy to be chosen. My only concern is that all the training takes place in 4th and 8th periods (the last periods of either A or B day). Those are the same periods she consistently has missed for her sports. Not to mention those periods are Chemistry and Spanish 3 - not the easiest things to miss.

It might be a minor miracle if McKayla can manage to keep her grades up while still missing so much class time. I worry a bit for her but I am so glad she has gotten so involved in school activities. She is really loving high school and is certainly not getting lost in the huge number of students.

Monday, October 24, 2011


First things first, we had to get the Suburban all decked out and ready to roll. Tonya's kids Josie and Curan as well as Phillip's wife Apple did the paint job.

The scenery was not very pretty. Desert landscaping. Maybe it was just hard to appreciate it in the blistering heat. I love to run in temps in the 60's not high 80's.

Our van load before the race - Karen Goins, McKayla, me, Tonya Cole, Jacobson Cole, and Phillip Adamson. Our race gear was supposed to include the plaid boxers and a plaid bandana but we soon got to hot for any extra clothing.

All of us at the finish line (not looking a lot worse for wear but maybe feeling it!)

The entire team at the finish - Alex Adamson, Josh Harker, Danny Adamson, Phillip Adamson, Jake Cole, me, McKayla, Tonya Cole and (front row) Kristine, Rose, Carina, and Karen Goins.
McKayla and I at the finish.

Our impressive number of "kills".

191 miles (lost runner so we did 3 extra)
31 hours
12 runners
2 1/2 hours sleep
85 degree temps
2 vans
over 140 "kills"
dozens of tired muscles

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Ragnar Relay

McKayla and I are heading out today to start our Ragnar adventure. 188 miles. 12 runners. Hours and hours with no sleep. Blistering Las Vegas heat (I'm a huge heat wimp). What were we thinking?

I am excited and nervous. Anticipating and scared. Curious and dreading. Confident and unsure.

My legs of the race aren't terribly difficult (McKayla has the hard ones) but I'm not sure how I'll handle the heat and the sleep deprivation.

All I really know is that I can't wait to be able to say I've accomplished this goal!

Go Ragnar team!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

awesome coach

I have been so impressed by McKayla's cross-country coach. I couldn't tell you if he is the best coach as far as the actual running is concerned but he is fantastic as a caring, dedicated individual.

He really gets to know all of his runners. He knows who they like, what other hobbies they have, etc. He has attended several of McKayla's soccer games (he has 3 other runners on the soccer team as well). He is encouraging and positive.

To top it all off, yesterday he gave each of his 10 runners who qualified for State a personal letter. I don't know what anyone else's letter says but McKayla's is complimentary and motivating and it is obviously not a generic form letter of any sort. I can hardly imagine a coach taking the time to do this. Especially one who is not only a teacher but is currently taking classes to obtain his Master's Degree, doing an administrative internship, fathering 3 kids, and fulfilling church responsibilities.

Very impressive indeed.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Gingerbread Scones

This recipe is a favorite of my family:

2 C flour
3 T brown sugar
2 t baking powder
1 t ginger
1/2 t baking soda
1/2 t salt
1/2 t cinnamon

Combine the above ingredients then cut in 1/4 C margarine.

Mix the following in a separate bowl:
1/3 C molasses
1/4 C milk
1 egg yolk (reserve egg whites in another bowl)

Stir into dry ingredients and mix just until moistened.

Turn onto floured surface and knead 6-8 times. Roll into an 8-inch circle. Cut into wedges and place 1" apart on a greased baking sheet.

Beat the egg white until frothy and brush over scones. Sprinkle with sugar and bake for 12-15 minutes at 400 degrees.

Monday, October 17, 2011

the big reveal

Life with Alec is so very entertaining!

He came upstairs last night and announced he'd cleaned his room and he wanted us all to come see. Kevin went down immedicately (I was loading the dishwasher...). Alec wouldn't let Kevin in because he wanted the entire family there at once.

So, we gathered everyone outside Alec's door. He made us all close our eyes before entering his bedroom. Then with a big TA-DA he told us we could open our eyes.

All of us were double over laughing but we made sure to ooh and aah over his clean room.

now if only my girls got that excited about a clean room....

Sunday, October 16, 2011


I attended a huge, state-wide, 5-hour Special Needs Mutual training session yesterday at the U of U Institute. This was for my calling as a YW Advisor in the Southwest Region.

I wasn't overly thrilled about going because I figure I have almost 19 years of Special Needs training (it's called ALEC).

However, it is always wonderful that even when you don't necessarily get anything from the speakers, the Spirit can always tell you something. I believe when you faithfully attend your meetings, you put yourself in a situation where the Spirit can teach you what you need to know regardless of what the speaker is actually saying.

I came home with some great inspiration for my calling. And, as an added bonus, I came home with some inspiration specific to Alec as well.

Just another example of the Lord's tender mercies in my life.

Friday, October 14, 2011

moment of the week

The winner for most uncomfortable moment was:

(I will be intentionally vague just in case...) I was sitting in a meeting at a school when we were getting ready to elect a leader for the year. I knew very well who the principal wanted and as I really like this person as well (and have known him for years), I was all prepared to nominate him. Someone else beat me to it.

I was thus all prepared to settle back and watch him be elected when the obnoxious, know-it-all bore next to me leaned over and asked me to nominate him.


I just don't have the personality to tell him, "I'd rather not because I'd sooner give birth again than have to listen to you at every meeting."

Nope. Couldn't do that.

My name will forever be in the records linked to his nomination.

Thursday, October 13, 2011


I can't post anything coherent today. My mind is just a jumble of thoughts - mostly centering on the still-swirling debate on whether or not Mormons are Christians.

I get that we Mormons don't believe in the exact same Christ as evangelical Christians. What I don't get is why that is so bothersome. Members of the Church of JESUS CHRIST of Latter-day Saints believe there is a Savior who came to earth, who suffered bled and died for us, and who will return again. We worship Him. We honor Him. We love Him and we strive to be like Him.

Many "Christians" do the same. Does it matter if some believe He has dark skin while others believe He is fair? Does it matter that some believe He speaks to us today? Why are we so afraid that everyone is not exactly like us or doesn't think or believe in exactly the same way we do?

Is that a good enough reason to call Mormons a cult?

I struggle to wrap my mind about where all the controversy even comes from. Please, people, let's just respect others right to believe and worship the way they want and just find joy and comfort in knowing we're all doing the best we can to live Christ-like lives.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

just a poser

I got a chuckle out of this last night at McKayla's soccer game:

Her cross-country coach came to watch and was cheering her on. At one point I heard him yell, "Did everyone see that kick by my cross-country runner posing as a soccer player?"

It made me laugh!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

all PTA all the time

or at least, that is how it seems!

Last week I helped with teacher dinners on Tuesday and Wednesday nights (plus all the cooking and prep work most of Tuesday and Wednesday). I also had a school advisory committee meeting at the high school and a PTA meeting at the middle school.

This week I have an early morning breakfast for Student-of-the-Month at the high school. I have school calendar committee meeting with the District, a school community council meeting at the high school, a council PTA meeting, and a PTA meeting at the high school. I am also spending Wednesday morning at the middle school doing vision screening.

None of this includes the time spent on emails, agendas, paperwork, etc.

It keeps me really busy but I do have to admit that I like the benefit of getting to know what is going on at the schools. I know the teachers, the administrators, the counselors, etc. I know so much more about how things work and what is going on than if I weren't involved. I have also met and served with some really great people and I love the friends I've made.

So, maybe it's all worth it in the end...

(now if only my house didn't look like I'm never home to clean)

Monday, October 10, 2011


Yesterday the RS President reminded us that Pres. Hinckley asked the YW to do 3 things every day:
1) read the scriptures
2) pray
3) smile

I was reminded that smiling really is a good idea!

My first year at Ricks College I noticed this super-cute guy in the cafeteria. I always smiled at him. Then we started exchanging "hellos" and before you know it, we were making small talk. That was followed by him asking me out which started us dating until he left school (very long story). While dating, he told me it was my smile that first attracted him to me. He said I was always smiling.

So, smiling really does pay off!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

sports recap

It was a little quieter on the sports-front this week. McKayla and Chandler each only had one game.

RHS had their final regular-season game on Tuesday against their biggest rival, Bingham High. McKayla got to start varsity and played the entire 80 minutes. RHS won 1-0 thus making them Region Champs (for the 2nd year in a row)!

On Friday McKayla's RHS cross-country team did not fare so well. It was the Region Cross-country Championships and Riverton girls' took 5th. That means they did not qualify for state as a team. McKayla, however, did qualify on an individual basis by virtue of finishing in the top 10. State championships are Oct. 19th and we're certainly hoping for warmer weather than at the regional meet.

After watching McKayla's cross-country meet on Friday, we headed to Salt Lake Community College to watch Brakston's Utah Valley University team face them. That game ended in a 1-1 tie.

Chandler's soccer team had a game on Saturday. His team has only won one game this season. They are at the bottom of their division and were facing the number 2 team in the division. I expected a rout. However, Chandler's team played great and the game ended in a 2-2 tie (with Chandler scoring one of those goals). It was nice to see his team finally improving.

We ended the sports week by watching the BYU-San Jose State football game. Yea! A win for BYU!