Sunday, April 29, 2012

Saturday was a "Special" Day (otherwise known as the "Perfect Storm").

We'd known for several weeks that Sarah had not one, but two dance recitals on Saturday April 28th. So, we got tickets for the whole family and planned on spending the day at the Snowflake social hall where the recital was being held.
Then, about a month ago Caleb brought home tickets to the Scout-o-Rama, also to be held on the 28th. Well, I'm sure we can squeeze in a trip down to the park for the scout-o-rama. So, that went on the calender as well.
Then, a few weeks ago, Caleb's pine wood derby car won 3rd place in his pack race, which meant he was invited to attend the district pinewood derby race held on the 28th as well. Hmmm....O.K. , no problem, I'll make sure Sarah gets to her morning recital,  and Dad can take Caleb to the pinewood derby race. Then, we'll all meet up to watch Sarah's afternoon recital together.
Then, We got a call from Adam's sister Malorie, SHE GOT HER MISSION CALL TO TACOMA WASHINGTON!!! YAY!!!!....She scheduled her endowment session in the Mesa temple at 5:00pm...on the 28th.
O.K. new plan. We'd go to the Scout-o-rama first thing, then have Adam take Caleb to register Caleb's car for the pinewood derby while I got Sarah ready for her morning recital. Then, Adam would leave for the Valley and I'd just drop Sarah off at the Social hall and take Caleb to the pinewood derby. Eliza and I would hang out and support Caleb, then pick up Sarah, have lunch and then we'd all (except Adam who traded his recital ticket for the Friday night show) go to Sarah's afternoon dance recital together. O.K. this could work....
THEN, on Tuesday I found out that my great Aunt Dorothy (who lives in Snowflake) passed away.  On Wednesday I found out that her funeral would be guessed it...Saturday the 28th. My grandparents would be coming into town to stay with us for a few days on Thursday, while several other family members would be arriving at various times on Saturday....
So, here's how it all went down..We woke early on Saturday and after breakfast, all the kids got showered and dressed. Caleb in his scout uniform, Sarah in her dance costume and Eliza, Adam and I in regular clothes. We all got our Sunday clothes laid out. Adam for his trip to the Temple, and the rest of us for the funeral. We skipped the Scout-o-rama and Adam took Caleb to go get his car weighed in and registered for the Pinewood Derby while  I helped Sarah get ready for her recital and My grandparents,(bless their hearts) got breakfast all cleaned up and helped make the house presentable for the other visitors who would be arriving that day. Adam left for Mesa, and I loaded the kids in the car and dropped off Sarah at the Social Hall. Then we took Caleb to the P.W.D. race. The race was an hour late getting started. grrr. By the time Caleb had raced in his first heat, it was time to pick up Sarah from her recital. So, I left Caleb and Eliza at the race by themselves and picked up Sarah. We went back to the races (where Sarah was mortified to be seen in her recital costume), and cheered for Caleb for a couple more races. It was clear that the races were going to continue for a while, So the girls and I left Caleb at the races and went home to change into our clothes for the funeral. My brother Paul's family was at our house, and after some quick hugs, we got dressed, then grabbed Caleb's clothes and took them to him to change into just before the funeral. Poor Caleb had to leave the P.W.D. races before they were done, but it was clear that he wasn't going to place anyway, so he hurried and changed in the bathroom and we got to the church for the funeral just in the nick of time. The service was beautiful.  But Sarah and I had to skip the concluding service and internment so we could get Sarah to her evening recital on time. My Parents kept Eliza and Caleb with them during the internment and luncheon, and they all arrived at the recital in time to watch Sarah dance!
Whew!!! We did it!!
At one point during the day, the girls started bickering. I told them My stress level was at an "8" so they better stop. Eliza asked what would happen if my stress level got to a "10"?... I told her my Head would explode.... Sarah started whimpering, and Eliza kept whispering "Oh no!" over and over. I realized they actually believed me, but I didn't care. I just let them believe it, and for the rest of the day Eliza would ask me where my stress level was at,  just to make sure it wasn't getting any closer to that dreaded "10"! Hahaha! I'm so mean!
Anyway, the day is done.  I'm now enjoying a nice, peaceful Sabbath. My stress level hovers between 2 and 3, only because I've got dishes to get done. But I'm definitely out of the danger zone!

Here are some pics. from Sarah's recital. They were actually taken during the dress rehearsal. I forgot to take my Camera with me yesterday. Can you blame me?

Sarah did an awesome job at every performance! We are so proud of all her hard work and dedication. Way to go Sweetie!

The Sound of Music

The Trio have been so into Musicals lately. They love "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers", "The Music Man", "Calamnity Jane",  and their latest love..."The Sound of Music".
A few weeks ago, while I was on a girl trip in LasVegas watching one of my favorite musicals, "The Phantom of the Opera", Adam took the Kids to go see one of his favorite musicals "The Music Man" at the local high school. They absolutely loved it.
Last weekend Show Low High school preformed "the Sound of Music". So we took the kids and to be perfectly honest, the kids didn't love it on stage nearly as much as the movie, but we had an enjoyable afternoon together.
I love that as a family, while we may be a little rough around the edges, we enjoy having a cultural experience every now and then and that together we all enjoy the sound of music!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Fun Times With the Andersons

Last weekend we had a fun visit from the Andersons. They were only here for about 24 hrs. but, somehow, we were able to fit in SO MUCH FUN!!!
Shortly after they arrived, Adam and Macey (age 13) decided to make Deviled eggs. It was hilarious because they kept deciding to add new ingredients.  By the time they were finished with them, I think every spice and herb in the house had been added to their concoction. And boy, did they look appetizing! NOT!
The famous deviled eggs! Notice how they were cut in half the wrong way! Heather and I  could not stop laughing at the sight of them!
I refused to try them...I don't even care for "normal" deviled eggs. They got a few of the kids to taste them but after a bite they would pucker up their faces and claim that they were too salty! Luckily we have an endless supply of eggs around here so it was no big loss. In any case, we all got a good laugh out of it.
While Adam and Macey were busy in the kitchen, Heather helped me make my girls some Easter dresses. It was a fairly easy project.... Just a couple yards of fabric and a t-shirt. Heather made the flowers for the bodice as well as some sweet hair bows that matched. The girls loved them!

While Adam and Macey were busy in the kitchen, and Heather and I were busy making dresses, Caleb and Braunsen were busy trying to burn down the house.
Let me explain...Caleb and Braunsen share a love of all things mechanical, and electrical. Caleb's room looks more like a mad Scientist's lab than a bedroom. It's filled with pieces of broken appliances, small motors, batteries, wires, tin foil, and.... model rocket parts!  Which brings us to our story.
One eye witness described hearing a high pitched  "whooshing" sound and then saw Caleb and Braunsen run out of the room pale faced with their eyes as big as saucers. Smoke starts billowing out of Caleb's room and Adam ran in, then ran out with a smoldering model rocket engine on an old baby blanket. The  smoke alarms all started going off  which sends the rest of the kids all running outside, where Braunsen explains that he "accidentally dropped" a 9 volt battery on some wires that just happened to to be connected the the rocket engine.
It was really hard to reprimand the boys because their story was so dumb and their faces were so funny that we had to keep trying not to laugh while telling them how dangerous those rockets can be.
We do feel VERY blessed that neither of them were hurt and the only damage was to the blanket.
I hope they learned their lesson. We'll See....
On Saturday morning, some of the kids decorated Easter eggs. They had fun and the eggs turned out really cute.

At around noon we packed a picnic lunch and rode the buggy  to "Knuckle Butt Canyon".
It was a perfect day for being outdoors. 
Laughing and singing all the way!

Sorry I caught you on the down chew Heather.

Eliza and Jewelanna found a secluded spot to enjoy their lunch.

When we got to our favorite climbing tree, Adam and Heather's sibling rivalry kicked into high gear and each wanted to out-climb the other. Even amidst cries from their worried children below, higher and higher they went. Heather was eventually thwarted by an attacking ant colony, and Adam was the victorious climber.

It's hard to tell, but Adam is about 30 feet up in the tree. YIKES!
When we got home it was time to say goodbye. We hope we they can come play again soon.
We had a blast!

Pinewood Derby

This month Caleb participated in his first pinewood derby races.He designed and made his car with just a little help from dad.
Before racing, Caleb had to take a written exam to prove that he was qualified to race.  He passed with flying colors!

Anxiously waiting for his first race.

His sweet "Flaming Bullet!"

Getting His 3rd place award!
His car turned out great, and it was really fast! He ended up winning third place over all and gets to participate in the district races in a couple of weeks.
Way to go Caleb!

General Conference

We enjoyed a relaxing and uplifting General conference weekend a couple weeks ago.
This year, I borrowed an idea that I saw on-line to help the kids stay focused during conference.
We filled some jars with various kinds of candy and put key words on the jars. Whenever a key word was said, the kids got to get a piece of candy from the jar. If the "magic word" (Hyrum Smith) was said, the kids would get an ice cream sandwich from Dairy Queen on Monday!
It worked like a charm. The kids listened to EVERY talk given during conference! Even though no one said Hyrum Smith it was still a fun game.

I love treating Conference weekend like a holiday. With special homemade waffles with all the fixings, no meetings, and playing games between sessions. It's a great time to enjoy each other while strengthening our testimonies and learning from prophets and apostles.
We are already looking foreword to the next general conference holiday. Can't Wait!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Tree Hugger

I LOVE trees! I've always dreamed of living in a home surrounded by trees. When we bought our lot, and started building our home on it, it only had one tree. A beautiful cotton wood tree by the wash on the back of our lot.
So while Adam was building our house, I was planting trees. Apple trees, peach trees, pine trees, willow trees and poplars.  I had planted over 50 trees!
I would tell Adam that we could never move because these trees were my "Horcuxs'" meaning that a little piece of my soul was put into each tree I planted (read "Harry Potter" if you still don't understand).
Lately though, with winter still hanging around a bit and with most of my trees still missing their leaves, I decided I needed just a FEW more Evergreen trees around here......  So I bought 35.

Actually, they are seedlings. But with a little care and a lot of patience, they'll become trees. And according to Eliza "We'll live in a forest."

To celebrate our new forest, we decided to build a campfire and roast hot dogs and marshmallows!

Happy Campers!

A Happy Hello

Many of you may remember our "Sad Goodbye" when we said farewell to our beloved old Ranger.
We took our time replacing him because we wanted to find one that was a perfect fit for our family. It took many months, and just when we were starting to wonder if we'd ever find what we were looking for...we found her!

 It was truly love at first ride with this beauty. She's fast, she's strong, she seats 9!!! And, most importantly, she sparkles like a Cullen!

One of the first rides we took her on, was to our favorite canyon nearby. It's only about a 20 min buggy ride to get there from our house and we love all the trees and rocks we get to climb on.

Even the new Ranger did a little rock climbing!
We know we will have lots of grand adventures with her, and if anyone would like to join us just let us know! (Did I mention she seats 9!!!)

Search, Ponder,....and Snooze!

Several Months ago Caleb asked me if I could get him a reading lamp for his bedroom.
"Why do you want a reading lamp?" I asked.
He replied, "Well, I really want to be a good missionary so, I need to start reading the Book of Mormon every night before bed, so I can teach people about it."
Of course, I got him a reading lamp. True to his word, he reads the scriptures every night before bed. I never have to remind him. This is something he does all on his own.
 Adam and I found him like this a few weeks ago before we went to bed.
I am grateful, and truly humbled that this spiritual giant (in a skinny little body) was sent to our family. I know that he is, and will be an amazing missionary.