Saturday, February 28, 2015

Bean Museum

We went to the Bean Museum on BYU campus today. It was really nice. Tiny but fun. They had a room with all Pres. Boyd K Packers art and carvings of birds. It was neat to see. Those apostles are a talented lot, and there is not a time waster among them. Good thing to emulate. 
We also went to the sketchers store and Olive Garden. 
One of the bird carvings.
It's snowing here, it's snowing in Texas. It's snowing in Maryland. I'm ready for spring!

Friday, February 27, 2015

Rocket boy

Taking s picture of these cuties is, as one would expect, kind of hard to do:) They sure are cute though.

Today we did lots of fun things like make puzzles, play some games, read some books, hang out with Val, watch a movie, go to the store, have a yummy dinner and tonight while Dani and Greg went on a date the girls and I made pie and played Zingo!
I'm a really great Mimi and let the two year old wield a knife.
Then we all piled on the couch and watched a movie.

Thursday, February 26, 2015


Jodie and Wade drove me to the airport. I am lucky to have awesome friends.
The flight was long and torturous but we landed safely and that is the important thing. 
Val picked me up and we drove thru a lot of heavy traffic although neither of us minded because we were visiting and laughing. We stopped at Zupas for some tasty soup then on to Dani's!
These sweet children are such a joy. The girls were excited to see me and me then. We played and read books and I got to tuck them in for the night.
Marshall is just as precious as can be. Tiny and sweet. 
Penny took some pictures of the two of us:)
I'm grateful and excited for these next days we have together!


Sierra had a sleepover with us last night and this morning she made French toast. We made our plans for the day, which were to go on a field trip and then have Papa and Grandma come over for dinner.
Marshall and Dani stayed home and relaxed and the rest of us traipsed out to the aquarium in Draper. 
It was really nice. Not huge but the exhibits were top notch. We started in the Amazon, and warmed up in the humidity. The girls loved the suspended rope bridge and looking at the birds. In fact Penny said her favorite animal was the little green bird she saw.
Some parts were a little scary, like these giant fish and the sharks.
They had playful otters, cute penguins, poison frogs, sea horses and cuttlefish and jellies and touch tanks and lots of things to look at and enjoy.
After a stop at the gift shop we went to Carl's Jr for lunch then back home to get ready for dinner.
We had a fun but quick visit with Grandma and Papa.  Then cleaned up and read stories and got ready for bed.
The girls are so cute and funny. I like the things they say and that they are happy to have me visit. 

Yesterday we got up early, the three of us, and while sitting on the couch discussed what to make for breakfast. I made several suggestions and Penny really wanted pancakes. Tate told me that they had pancakes the night before for dinner so I said do you still want them today or is that too much pancakes?  Penny shouted "I love too much pancakes!"
It's really delightful to have a second go round with the next generation. So cute and fun! It's also wonderful having grown children that want you around and that you can enjoy time with. I love talking with them and spending whatever time we can together. I am severely blessed!

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Too much fun

This baby boy is darling and I am having a wonderful visit. 

We've been busy crafting and painting and baking. We made the cute bunny garland and a giant rabbit cookie.
We took Marshall to do newborn pictures.
The weather has been great. I love being with the grands and the girls and Greg.

Monday, February 23, 2015

I got a job :)

 By job I mean a paid hobby of sorts.  I am going to be a museum guide, interpretive historian, at historic St Mary's City.  It's during school hours and part time.  I am excited.  It'll be fun I think and on par with substitute teaching for  time commitment and monetary compensation.  We have been there as a family a lot of times and really like it.  Perhaps it will grow to something more.  I can see myself as a museum person.


Tomorrow I am going to Utah!! Can't wait to see these little munchkins! And hopefully be helpful for the next week. The other day Dani sent me a picture of Marshall that looked exactly like Ethan is a baby. I was looking through my blog for the old photo of Ethan so I could send it to Dani. Haven't found it yet but it was a lot of fun to look back through the years. This cute Eastery picture of the girls with their dad is so cute!

Normally when I got to town I like to leave everything spotless. In case I die or something while I'm gone I want to be remembered as someone who kept her home neater than I actually do. Also I like to come home to a clean home. Also I like to welcome friends and family to a clean home. Nana and Abba and Uncle Brian are coming in a couple days to hold down the fort. Unfortunately they will not be greeted by a home that is as neat as I would like. There has been a series of events, one might call them excuses but I prefer to call them reasons, why this is so. First off I was sick last week. I was sick for four days and didn't get anything done. Then we had snow days. A lot of them. I cleaned but not quicker than the laundry piled up and the puddles accumulated and the snacks got consumed and the dishes used and the shoes strewn about.... Then we had the priests laurel dinner dance. This took up two full days. Then it was the weekend where we had more snow and had to recover from the dance and I was gone to meetings and whatnot and the children were home. Hannah decided to clean her room, which is awesome but the debris she got rid of is now in other parts of the house. That brings us to today. I had planned this day to be getting ready, sadly I woke up with a hurting back. This happens from time to time usually several times a month and normally it's not a huge deal. It's not really a huge deal today either as I am still able to get some things done but not as many or as quickly as I would have wanted. Our evening and afternoon are both booked with kid things. Grace is presenting at the stem expo and then we have to deliver her Girl Scout cookies before I leave. Hannah has play practice and I will be in the car a lot. 

Sunday, February 22, 2015


The rest of our weekend went very well. We had an icy day on Saturday but braved it and went up to Waldorf. We went to Fuddruckers where they had very delicious burgers and milkshakes. We did a Costco run and then came home and grace and Arden sorted cookies ready to deliver this week. Holly and Hannah cleaned Hannahs room. We watched the hunger games and hung out together at home.
This morning was stake council. The roads were pretty slushy on the way up but everyone arrived safely. Rob also had Ward Council, thank goodness Aubrey is always available to drive the kids to church where they can meet up with dad. After the council meeting I stayed for media training and then went to sacrament meeting in the Capital Ward. I've been in different ward so often the last few weeks I wonder if people think I am inactive.
After church we made cinnamon rolls as is evidenced by the flour on my shoe. The Elders joined us for dinner and they also gave us a lesson on indexing and how to do family history.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

A few more pictures

Priest & Laurel dinner dance

This weekend was our  annual dinner and dance.  It is the fanciest event we throw and so much fun!  This year our theme was "An Evening in Paris". We went up on Thursday night, which we haven't done before, to get started.  Some of the YM leaders couldn't get up there early on Friday and we were worried about getting it all done.  We also brought our husbands along for man power and we got a lot done in the 3 hours we were there.  It turned out to be a very good thing as we've had "weather" and the kids had a 2 hour delay for school starting.  It would have made for a very stressful morning for me if I had to try and be at the stake center at 8 like we usually like to start.

Friday we worked all the day and the gym was transformed, it was beautiful.  I'm sad that Hannah is still a few months shy of her 16th birthday.  I wish she could have been there.  The youth had such a fun time and are so good and happy.  Next year!

How the evening works.  The youth arrive and sign in.  We have them go down the hall where we have appetizers set up and they nibble and visit.  After about 15 mins of arriving we divide into two groups and they go to classes.  We have a dance class and an etiquette class.  I think that's always really fun for them. While they are in class Anthony and I played match maker and we assign them their "dates" for the evening. They come in and say hi to Pres. Sakai and his councilors and wives and then are seated. 

Our Bishops all come and act as waiters and washers.  We give them black bow ties and black aprons to wear and they all look so sharp.

Debbie, Becky, me and Jamie
After dinner we have dancing to live music and it's wonderful.  The youth dress up and it's very glam!

So for my remembrance:
what it entails.
flowers: $600.  
food: $610
band: $600, some years it's free because we have all stake members.  Last year it was $400 because we only had to pay 2 people.  This year we had to pay 3.  They play jazz and it's lovely.  
photographer: Jodie did it this year and I can't wait to see the pictures!
Debbie owns all the linens and chair covers, etc.  She has a catering business.
incidentals: $100.  We had to buy paint and paper and some material.  Everything else we made with that.  Jamie painted this beautiful backdrop that we had in the foyer as a wow factor to set the scene, and then we used it for our photo backdrop.  We made the city scape out of construction paper and rolls of table cloth and mailing label stickers for the windows.  Bishop Slade made the lamp posts out of cereal boxes, pvc pipe, pool noodles and paint.  
invitations and stamps: $170

We have such talented and generous people who are always willing to share and work.  It is such a wonderful blessing!

past dances:  2013, 2014

Wednesday, February 18, 2015


This idyllic, Norman Rockwellesque photo of boys playing in our backyard captures a delightful winter scene.  Boys from around the neighborhood gathered on the "pond" in the back for a spontaneous game of hockey.  Boys with sticks brought them, boys who didn't have sticks used snow shovels. There was no ref, no score board and no fancy uniforms but there was hours of fun.
Younger boys drifted to our yard and started building igloos and throwing snowballs.  This mom looked out of the window and smiled.  This is what living in a neighborhood is like.  This is one of the perks of being a stay at home mom, to be there to see the magic of childhood, to enjoy a sunny snow day, to make cocoa and knock snow off boots and shake it off of gloves and drape said items over vents and over chairs so they will be ready for next time.

Ethan is one of the boys in the younger group.  This boy of  mine is such a delight, he's always been good and cheerful and obedient.  He likes to read out loud with his mom, talk to his parents, and do well in school and in sports.  .....But.....recently....there have been some changes.  It started slowly and innocently.  He started to grow out of clothes and shoes at an alarming rate, almost reaching the stature of his mother.  His man muscles began to manifest themselves as he now runs a little faster, throws a little harder.

So all was well outside and I was enjoying glancing out the window from time to time as I paused from my chores to enjoy the fun.  Two groups playing in parallel.  Each in their territory.  When suddenly, was  it a shift in the wind?  a particularly rousing cheer from the ice??  I don't know, but the adolescent primate, newly aware of his growing prowess, due in part to the stink that now comes from his arm pits and soccer gear, the slight deepening of his voice,  (Not to mention the need to be right and tell people what to do, including how to drive (me, because obviously he's much more competent at it than I), how to dress (his sister) and how to chew (the other sister). ) and a confidence that comes from needing to shave a hint of a whisker off his upper lip on Sunday mornings. Anyway, whatever the trigger something changed and all of a sudden a group of bravely foolish middle schoolers gathered ammo (snowballs) and snuck over the little hill to antagonize the hockey players (boys bigger, cooler and holding sticks and shovels...obviously the best choice).

I happened to glance out the window as things became a little heated.  I saw my little Neanderthal leading the charge and a battle ensued.  Snowballs were thrown, water bottles and insults lobbed back.  Maniacal laughter and taunting and shows of dominance displayed.  I hoped that everyone would leave alive but didn't intervene, thinking natural consequences would be best.  Eventually the two groups separated again and no blood was shed.  When did I begin living in an episode of Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom??  When did my sweet boy become so teenagery??

I drew the curtains and went back to folding clothes.  I didn't see this coming.  (head shaking in disbelief)
backyard  fun

In other news: Hannah baked this beautiful cake for Holly for her birthday and since there was no room in the fridge it got to chill outside until we could deliver it. One perk to  our arctic weather!