Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Brakston's First Day

Brakston's first day was Tuesday (yesterday). He is attending Utah Valley University in Orem. All of his classes are on Tuesdays and Thursdays. He has writing, intro to public speaking, college algebra, and General Psychology.

Brakston's Stats:
6 feet 2 inches
186 pounds
Favorite Color: Blue
Favorite Candy: Milky Ways and Swedish Fish
Favorite Food: Chinese
Favorite Book: The Hunger Games
Favorite Movie: Thor or Megamind
Favorite TV Show: Lie to Me (but doesn't really ever watch TV)
Favorite Free Time Activity: soccer
Favorite Class: Intro to Public Speaking
What He Wants to Be: Physical Therapist
Prediction for the Year: It's gonna be a long year!

Alec's First Day

Alec "graduated" from Riverton High earlier this year so he now attends South Valley School - a special education program designed to increase the student's life skills (laundry, shopping, cooking, transportation, etc) and to prepare them to enter the workforce.

Alec's Stats:

5 feet 3 1/2 inches
153 pounds
Favorite Candy: Reese's
Favorite Food: hamburgers, corn dogs, chicken nuggets, pizza
Favorite Movie: Indiana Jones, Star Wars, Pirates of the Caribbean, The Guardian
What He Likes to Do in His Free Time: watch sporting events or movies
Best Friends: Brakston and McKayla

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

McKayla's First Day

McKayla had her first day at Riverton High School yesterday. She was actually very excited to start school. She already knows lots of juniors and seniors because of her involvement on soccer, track, and cross-country teams so she feels pretty comfortable.

McKayla's Stats:
127 pounds
5 feet 7 inches
Favorite Color: aqua/blue
Favorite Candy: Twix
Favorite Food: Orange Chicken
Favorite Eatery: Panda Express
Favorite Subject: history
Favorite TV Show: iCarly
Favorite Movie: A Walk to Remember
Favorite Book: The Hunger Games
Favorite Thing to Do in Spare Time: play soccer, run, or hang with friends
Best Friends: Brooke Barnett and Dakota McDonald
When I Grow Up: want to be an OB/GYN nurse
Prediction for the Year: I will set the school record in the 1600m run

Monday, August 29, 2011

Shanley's First Day

Chandler has been back in school for weeks (due to year-round in the elementary school) but Alec, McKayla, and Shanley started today. Here's the pics from Shanley's first day of 8th grade.

5 ft 6 1/2 in
127 pounds
Favorite color: green
Favorite food: chicken nuggets
Favorite candy: Skittles
Favorite movie: Little Rascals
Favorite tv show: Good Luck Charlie
Favorite book: The Hunger Games
Favorite thing to do in free time: hang out with Brooke
Best Friends: Brookelyn Ludlow and Madi Kearns
Favorite subject: art
What she wants to be when she grows up: brain surgeon
prediction for the year: "I'm going to get straight A's)

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Varsity Start

McKayla had her first two Varsity starts this past week. She got to start and play the entire games against West High and Hillcrest High. It was fun and exciting!

American Fork Grass Relays

McKayla had her first cross-country meet on Saturday. It was a relay race where 5 team members each ran 2 miles over hay bales and such. The team didn't do exceptionally well but McKayla enjoyed it and it was a good orientation to a cross-country season.
McKayla and her friend Bree.

Friday, August 26, 2011

where would I be without my daughters?

Don't get me wrong - I absolutely love my sons too - but I really would have been lost without my daughters and future daughter-in-law this week! Whitney, McKayla, and Shanley were so awesome as I fixed lunch for 100 yesterday.

First, McKayla and Shanley helped me shop and carted in hundreds of pounds of groceries. Then on Wednesday I had all 3 of them (plus a couple friends) chopping onions, tomatoes, green peppers, and tomatillos. Yesterday, they helped set up and decorate tables, schlep food in and out of buildings, run to the grocery store for ice, run back to the house for more tablecloths, and so on and so on.

We fed Cafe-Rio type chicken salads/burritos to about 100 people. Yummy! Chicken, black beans, lime rice...makes your mouth water, doesn't it? We also made 3 double-batches of rice krispie treats (some with caramel and marshmallows in between layers of rice krispies). All served with cucumber lime punch.

I scrubbed out the roasters this morning so now after I return those, I can concentrate on nothing but the wedding. Whew!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

did I say I was prepared?

Was it really just Monday (3 days ago) that I blogged about feeling prepared for the Rivalry Relay this Saturday? Famous last words...

It just goes to show that the Book of Mormon is true - every last word - including, but not limited to, "...there must needs be opposition in all things..." And let me just emphasize ALL things. Even the road to the relay race can't go smoothly.

Monday night I got sick. Really sick. I've spent the last 2 days making extremely frequent trips to the bathroom. Without being too graphic let's just say my butt is so sore that I can hardly walk let alone run. I spent 3 nights with very-limited, much-interrupted sleep. I now feel fatigued and dehydrated.

Oh well, there is still almost 40 hours until the race. I'm sure I'll be completely recovered by then.


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

me and my big mouth

Poor McKayla - she now has to attend a high school where I've probably just offended all the teachers.

I had to address the faculty this morning and I told them that I'd be much more comfortable if they were all teenagers. Then I joked that I had seen them come in and fill in the back rows first and then have trouble quieting down when the principal started speaking so maybe they had a lot in common with teenagers and I shouldn't be nervous...

Oops! Did I really call the faculty a bunch of noisy teenagers?

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Parent/Player Game

Last Saturday the RHS Girls' Soccer Team had a picnic with their families. We just met on the high school soccer field and ate. Afterwards we had a player vs. parents game. It was a lot of fun! A few of the parents were actually pretty good. The rest of us were just there.

Here's Kevin trying to get a good pass off.
I'm pretty sure I stole this ball (that's my story and I'm sticking to it!)
McKayla going up against an older sibling (one who played for RHS more than 7 years ago).
A RHS player and I battling for the ball. Our knees actually collided pretty hard and I've got a very bruised kneecap to show for it. Ouch!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Rivalry Relay

The Rivalry Relay is this Saturday! I am really excited and a tiny bit nervous. The race goes from the University of Utah to BYU (slightly over 60 miles) and there are 6 runners each running 3 legs. I have great, accomodating teammates who are allowing me to run legs 1, 3, and 4 so that I can get to the temple (Whitney is receiving her temple endowments). My total mileage is 10.9 miles.

I feel like I am ready. I've run up to 10.6 miles recently. My weekly mileage has been good. I've cross-trained with Jazzercise. I ran 5 miles this morning and half of that was 8% grade hills. (Do you like the pep talk I'm giving myself here?)

I can do this!

Now, if I just focus on getting enough sleep this week, things should go well and it will all be FUN!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

BYU Education Week

Last week was Education Week which is usually one of the highlights of the year for me. This time I was unable to attend as much as previous years and I believe I was too stressed to really do it justice.

That said, it was still worth every penny of the registration fee!

I attended several classes on teaching. I love to teach! I especially love to teach the youth and I love to teach them the gospel! So, I enjoy attending classes designed to help me become a more effective teacher. Then, it is so fun to come home and try to put those lessons into play at home, in Young Women's, and when I substitute teach seminary.

I truly desire to be an instrument in the Lord's hands in building His kingdom and in preaching His word.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

new calling

Almost 2 weeks ago I received a new church calling - to serve as a Young Women advisor in the Special Needs Mutual. This is a regional calling and involves every Thursday night and one Sunday a month. I will be working with women ages 14-80 who have a disability of some sort or another. I am actually quite excited about this calling even though it means I will have to be released as the counselor in our ward Young Women Presidency.

The region covers 6 stakes. I am one of 10 advisors. We divide the YW in 5 "classes" and every 2 leaders have a class of 8-9 girls plus "friends". The "friends" are non-disabled peers who also help with the lessons and activities.

I am excited, nervous, apprehensive, leery, and excited.

Friday, August 19, 2011

how stupid can a person be?


In my case, the correct answer is: PRETTY DARN STUPID but also quite lucky!

I needed to get my 6 mile run in this morning beginning at 4:45 am (only chance to do it) so I set off on my favorite 6-mile loop. It is DARK at 4:45 especially when there is only a bit of a moon and that moon is also cloud-covered. My favorite run contains a stretch of dirt road that is, of course, chuck full of pot-holes and uneven ground. It is also tree-lined which blocks most of the already-dim moonlight.

Are you getting the picture?

Luckily, I do not bend, twist, or break easily so I escaped with no twists, sprains, or injuries. Whew!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

It's What Fun Is

Some of the family spent Monday at Lagoon. It was quite fun! I was nervous about going on some of the rides because I got really sick on a carnival ride at Riverton Town earlier this summer but Lagoon was great and no sickness! (Thank goodness! I was beginning to think I was getting old - such a relief to find out I'm not. heehee!)

Favorite rides:
Chandler - Colossus
Shanley - the swings
Alec - the rickety, old, wooden roller coaster
Me - Wicked and the swings

The 4 of us had a great day!

Monday, August 8, 2011

nothing fishy about me

Last month our Sacrament meetings focused on gratitude. I could always use some work on the "attitude of gratitude" so today I am grateful I am not a fish!

Yep. Pretty darn glad.

I was watching a large fish tank this morning while sitting in the hospital waiting room (nothing serious or scary - another things to be grateful for) when I thought how dull a fish's life really is. I mean, what does a fish do all day but swim and eat? Oh sure, they may have the occasional game of tag. Maybe even a few races around the tank. But other than the normal chitchat around the plastic plant, what else is there to look forward to?

The food is the same every meal. The other fish are the same. The scenery doesn't change much. They are under constant scrutiny. Ugh!

On the other hand, there are no meals to prepare, no laundry to wash, and no cabinets to dust. No kids to run to endless practices, no nagging your children to do their homework, no vacuuming, no dishes, no meetings, no schedules to maintain...

Did I really say I was glad I wasn't a fish?

Sunday, August 7, 2011

say what?

Yesterday Chandler and I went to WalMart to purchase a gift for a birthday party. We walked in the door and he said:

"I love the smell of WalMart!"


Saturday, August 6, 2011

creeping along

Do you suppose it would bother a turtle to have a human speed past it?

Nah. Probably not. When I am out running it doesn't bother me to be passed by a car or an airplane. That's a natural event. It is supposed to happen. Cars and planes were built to be faster than man. No, I save my feelings of inferiority and ineptness for times like this morning when I am passed by two men who whiz by fast enough it makes it seem as though I am standing still.

I try to console myself by saying things such as "They are probably only running 2-3 miles and I am running 8." But, truthfully, I know that's most likely not the case. Let's face it, when I hit the halfway mark on the marathon I knew some runners were actually finishing! Heck, my own daughter can run 2 miles in the same time I run 1. No, that's not true. She can run it FASTER than I can run the one.

I am built for endurance NOT speed.

I am a turtle!

Friday, August 5, 2011

helpful Alec

When Alec wants something done, he wants it done RIGHT NOW (gee, I wonder where he gets that trait from). Otherwise, he takes matters into his own hands.

So, when Alec asks for cookies, I usually make them. The alternative is ending up with a bowl of unmeasured, miscellaneous ingredients when he makes them himself.

Last week I got the cookies mixed but had to leave before I got them baked. I came home to find that Alec had "baked" them. They were very well done (and not in the good way).

Thursday, August 4, 2011

one of these things is not like the others

How do I even know that Sesame Street song when I didn't have a TV while growing up? what a mystery!

Anyways, I would describe our family as pretty physically active. Last week Kevin ran 25 miles. I ran about the same plus did 4 Jazzercise classes. Brakston ran, lifted weights, went wakeboarding, and played soccer and basketball. Alec jogged quite a bit and even went and lifted weights with Brakston. McKayla ran about 40 miles, did conditioning for soccer, went swimming, and went out on the innertubes behind the boat. Chandler rode his bike, went running, had soccer practice, built forts, etc.

Shanley? not so much.

I made Shanley run 2 miles one morning and you'd have thought I was torturing her. There was some foot stamping, lots of complaining, and quite a bit of attitude. I'm not sure she's totally forgiven me yet.

Can you guess which thing is not like the others before I finish my song?

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Chandler's first day

Chandler's first day of 5th grade was Tuesday, July 26.

Height: 4 feet 7 1/2 inches
Weight: 68.6 pounds
Favorite Candy: Skittles
Favorite Color: Green
Favorite Subject: Math
Favorite Book: the Harry Potter series
Favorite Movie: I am Number Four
Favorite TV Show: Man vs. Wild
Favorite Meal: spaghetti noodles and vegetales with Mr. Yoshida's sweet and savory sauce or chicken poppyseed pasta salad
Favorite thing to do in free time: play with Legos, build forts, and play soccer
Favorite Sport: soccer
Best Friends: Abby, Jared, Jeremiah, Jeffrey, and Joey
What I Want to Be When I Grow Up: a pilot

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Searle Reunion

Family reunion at Strawberry Reservoir:

*no tent sites (clear your own)
*extremely unlevel ground
*broken boat propellor
*no 4-wheeler trails out of the campground
*rainy, windy weather

Still, it was the best Searle reunion ever! We had an absolute blast despite the circumstances. What we had:

*great crawfish fishing (and eating)
*riding the waverunners
*visiting with family
*candy cannon going off twice a day
*great food
*lots of card games
*Minute-to-Win-It contests
*wakeboarding behind the waverunners
*a few boat rides
*some 4-wheeler rides
*time to relax, read, and even nap
*a movie projected onto a tarp
*games of Zilch

Here is Brakston wakeboarding behind the waverunner:
The kids after the candy cannon loot has been collected (we call it the candy cannon but it contains candy and small toys)
Rachel (Jolyn's daughter) with her big lips whistle from the candy cannon.
Visiting around the campfire.
Shaury and son Kameron. Matt Hatfield and Todd and partially hidden.
Darin asleep with Mindy's baby Brielle.
Who else but the Lawtons would READ while camping? Jolyn, Vicki, and Todd reading. You could also frequently catch Melissa, Brakston, McKayla, and I with books.
Dane and I playing "Minute-to-Win-It.
Lisa's kids (Mark and Adrianna), Alec, me, and Emma bouncing pencils into a cup.
Dane's son Ryan balancing nails on a string.
Darin doing the same while Emma (Todd's daughter) and Rachel (Jolyn's daughter) watch.
Shaury, Jolyn, Vicki, and Jeremy picking up penne with a spaghetti noodle and no hands!
Darin, Dane, Brakston, and Kevin doing the same.

I even managed to get a lovely morning run in! We missed Dawnette's family, Brant's family, and my parents but otherwise had a wonderful time!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Resolution Check-Up

It's time for my monthly day of accountability regarding my New Year's Resolutions. Do these months fly by or what?

Lose Weight - No progress. I lost weight then gained it back on my trip to DC. Then lost weight again and gained it back on our family reunion. So, the net result is I weigh the same I weighed at the end of June.

Read Jesus the Christ - COMPLETE! Yea!

Climb Mt. Timpanogos - Will do this one near the end of this month or the first of next month.

Run Ragnar - I am up to 9 miles and feeling good about my running. I've worked a bit on time but I am still a slow runner.

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

Do family search indexing - I did do some indexing but am not sure how many names. I do know that one batch I did was the toughest I've ever done! I really couldn't decipher the hand-writing at all!

Attend 5 Temples that I've Never Been to Before - Still no progress. I looked at flights during the month and decided that I better put this one off until September when people quit traveling so that I can actually get on a flight.

Goal for this month - LOSE WEIGHT! The wedding is in one month.
I got lots of reading done in July! Some of it was really good and I highly recommend the ones **.

On the Edge of Survival by Spike Walker

Sweet Misfortune: A Novel by Kevin Alan Milne

@The Red Tent by Anita Diamant

**Jesus the Christ by James E. Talmage

**Becoming Isaac: The Next Potter of Niederbipp (Remembering Isaac, #3) by Ben Behunin

**Nobody Don't Love Nobody: Lessons on Love from the School With No Name by Stacey Bess

Farm Fresh Murder (A Farmer's Market Mystery, #1) by Paige Shelton

@Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher

Shades of Milk and Honey by Mary Robinette Kowal

#Liar, Liar: A Cat DeLuca Mystery by K. J. Larsen

**Dragon Slippers (Dragon Slippers, #1) by Jessica Day George

Also, the # one was a good, fun, quick read but I would recommend avoiding the ones with the symbol @.