Thursday, January 31, 2008

Brooke's list

Here's what Brooke wrote during our FHE activity:

Kamryn - bubbly, cute, sweet
Jared - hilarious facial expressions (makes me laugh), adorable smile, sweet
Taylor - friendly, smart, photogenic
Justin - funny, smart, good at any sport
Mom - fun to be with, makes friends easily, creative
Dad - his laugh makes you want to laugh, genius, really calm ALL the time

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Paul's list

Paul's list which is titled "Thoughts on family members - things I like/admire"

Mom - loyal to family, party girl - loves to have fun with people she loves, smile, dedication to church and calling, pretty
Taylor - smile, good at making friends, handsome, smart, not afraid to try new things, good at being in the middle, sticks up for me
Justin - smart, handsome, good athlete, likes a lot of the same things I do - sports & music, no anger or rebellion, funny
Brooke - talented piano player, volleyball player - she's well rounded, smart, pretty, smile, good friend - gets along with everyone, disciplined, no anger
Kamryn - loving, happy, excited, friendly, no fear, strong, monkey, forgiving, friend to Jared
Jared - thinker, friend to Kamryn, forgiving

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Justin's list

As I mentioned in yesterday's post, we had a great FHE activity on Sunday. This is Justin's list of what qualities he likes in the members of his family:

Dad - hard working, self sacrificing, and smart
Mom- helps us with school, friendly, patient ( I couldn't believe he said that )
Brooke - reads a lot, good at piano, and smart
Taylor - friendly, smiles a lot, good with Jared & Kamryn
Jared - tells the truth (says "she did it"), good talker, likes to read
Kamryn - gives hugs and kisses a lot, photogenic, fashionable

Check back for another list tomorrow.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Family Night

We had FHE last night (Brooke has volleyball on Monday nights) and it turned out really great. Paul and I are attending the Marriage and Family Relations class during Sunday school and yesterday the teacher had us write down 3 characteristics about ourself and our spouse. Then she had everyone read out loud what they had written down. It was a great activity and i mentioned to Paul that we should do it for FHE. So we did. We gave everyone plenty of time to think about what they wanted to write. Our instructions for our family doing the activity was for everyone to write at least 3 positive things they liked about each member of our family. Then we all shared what we wrote. I am going to share one persons list each day this week.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Sad News

Tonight Paul was on the phone with a member in our ward and was told that President Hinckley had died. We couldn't believe it. Someone on the news said it perfectly when she said "It shouldn't really come as a shock to hear about President Hinckley's passing since he was 97 but he was so vibrant until the end and seemed invincible."
We watched the news for hours and enjoyed the special that KSL aired about his life. What a great man who lived a very self-less life. We love him and will miss him. I'm really not too sad about it though because I think about him being back with his wife and meeting with other great prophets - Joseph Smith, Brigham Young and others.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Sleepy boy

When we finally came in from our snow play today, Jared freaked out because I wouldn't let him bring in the snowball maker he'd been playing with. He cried for a long time and then I thought that Justin had gotten him to settle down. NO. Brooke came and got me and said to come see. This is how we found Jared:

It was 5:30 on Saturday afternoon and I couldn't let him have a little nap because I needed up to go to bed early because we have early church. So I woke him up and he was not happy about that. Luckily Justin worked his magic and got Jared to be happy and have dinner with us.

It's SNOW fun

Kamryn excited to go out sledding.

I just liked this picture with Kamryn in her cute pink hat and gloves.

We've had fun playing in the snow the last two days.

Yesterday, Susan and her kids came over to go sledding. It was a bit challenging for me - the only adult out there with Jared and Kamryn. But we managed. I held their hands to help them walk up the big hill and then all 3 of us went down on the sled together. They loved going down and we went down about 3 times. Then we went over on a little hill and made a whole pile of snow balls to throw at Justin when he was walking home from school.

When Jared and Kamryn were done sledding they played in their playhouse and on the swingset. The cold never bothers them and they love it outside. I should definitely get out there with them more often.

Taylor had a blast with his cousin, Jadon and friend, Michael. They were out there for about 3 hours straight. It's so great that we have this awesome sledding hill right behind our house.

Today we went out sledding again in the afternoon. It was so pretty and sunny that we couldn't pass up the chance to be outside. It was a lot easier this time because Paul was out there with me. We went down about 3 times again with Jared and Kamryn. This time when they were done sledding they found their lawn mowers and turned them into "snow blowers" After helping their dad clear some snow they decided to take off on a walk with the lawn mowers. I just followed them and kept asking them where they were going. Jared kept saying "I don't know" and was following Kamryn. They of course ended up at their Grandma and Grand-dad's house for a short little visit. It was great to be outside with them and I can hardly wait for spring and summer.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Can we say "scary"?!!

Oh my word ... I just watched one of the scariest movies EVER!!
I watched it with Justin and Brooke and I was definitely the MOST scared! I watched most of the second half of the movie peeking out through my fingers. It was a good thing we were at home - there is no way I could have watched that in the theaters.
(The first half is also great - funny, funny - would watch that part again but never the second half).

Thursday, January 17, 2008

8 things . . .

"I'm the king of eight and i'm here to state that everything here has to total eight."

8 things I'm passionate about:

1. my husband
2. my kids
3. reading
4. chocolate - all kinds
5. Good teachers for my kids
6. being warm
7. eating out
8. watching my kids play their sports

8 things I want to do before I die:
1. Visit the Mediterranean
2. Cruise the Hawaiin islands
3. Run in some kind of race again
4. Finish all of my sewing projects
5. Go sky-diving
6. Go on a mission with my husband
7. Get caught up with scrapbooking
8. Become a regular journal writer - again.

8 books I have read recently:
1. A Thousand Splendid Suns
2. A Memoir: Three Weeks with My Brother
3. Eclipse
4. New Moon
5. Twilight
6. Forever Blue (4th sisterhood book)
7. It's All About HIM (Alan Jackson's wife, Denise's biography)
8. Sidetracked Home Executives (S.H.E.)

8 things I often say:
1. cool
2. do you want a spanking?
3. I'm going to count to three (and then Kamryn continues counting on from 3)
4. I'm freezing!
5. I'm done with winter
6. Can you tend? (said almost daily with our current busy schedule)
7. You are a big boy, not a big girl (trying to convince Jared he is not the big girl).
8. Have a good day - as my husband and kids go out the door.

8 things that attract me to friends:
1. Good company
2. Love of eating out
3. sense of humor
4. loyalty
5. good listener
6. likes to just hang out
7. good listener
8. Likes to have fun

8 songs and albums I could listen to over and over:
1. Let Them Be Little -- Billy Dean
2. I'll Go On Loving You -- Alan Jackson
3. For Good - Wicked Soundtrack
4. Almost any Keith Urban song
5. King of Sorrow and
6. Pearls - both by Sade, the live versions on her DVD concert
7. Love Song - Sara Bareilles
8. I'll Be Around - the Spinners

8 things I learned this year:
1. I can survive driving with my 15 year old.
2. Competitive volleyball is HUGE.
3. Two 2-year-olds can undo anything you do in half the time.
4. Teenagers are great!
5. I continue to exercise daily but it doesn't seem to make much difference - until you stop for the holidays.
6. Reading others blogs can make you feel connected to others going through similar things
7. Having 2 two-year-olds is a lot of work but I wouldn't trade it for anything.
8. I'm not very good at helping my kids with school projects.

8 things you Might not Know about me
1. I don't like to be up in front of people but I'll do it when I have to.
2. I love living in Arizona but not enough to stay there and be away from family and friends here.
3. I am scared of the dark.
4. I have serious dental phobias
5. I would rather read all day, than do pretty much anything else.
6. I HATE confrontation, but if I have to do it, I am willing to fight for myself, my husband and kids.
7. I have serious mice issues.
8. I went on a mission to San Diego - I can't believe it about myself.

If you are reading this, you are tagged.

A surprise HOLD

I went to the library the other day to pick up Austenland which I had on hold. I noticed there was another book with my name on the slip. It was this book

I did not request it but it's fun to look for ideas and I told my husband it is a sign that it's time to start the planning stages of remodeling our kitchen/dining room. I'm sure it will be a VERY LONG project, considering it took over a year to finish the bathroom in our basement.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

New blog

I'm pretty slow at times and unobservant. I just picked up Austenland by Shannon Hale from the library. I was reading the inside front jacket about the book and then read the back one about the author. She lives here, in SALT LAKE CITY! Of course, that was not news to my daughter, she just looked at me like, DUH, MOM!
So I went to her website and read her bio and noticed she has a blog. Great, another one to add to my list of blogs to spy on.

Monday, January 14, 2008


We're back into the volleyball world.
Brooke had her first tournament over the weekend. She is playing with Club Utah this year and is one of the older girls on her team. She played a lot during the tournament and did very well. Her team has only had 3 practices so they were just figuring out how to play together. Several girls on the team have never played club volleyball before so this was a new experience for the girls and the parents. I got nominated to be the Team Mom, which will be fun. It was a good excuse to get to meet the parents. We all had a good team watching our girls.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Owen Bytheway

We went to a stake youth fireside tonight and the speaker was Jon Bytheway. We went 1 1/2 hours early to get seats from and center. Our ward sat all together in the first 4 middle rows - we were well represented.
Bro Bytheway started out talking about his name and how you have to be really careful naming your children when you last name is a prepositional phrase. He has a new 10 day old baby at home and shared the naming of some of their children and all the "clever" comments he has received from people about his last name.
When he was at the airport the security guard checking his ID and boarding pass asked him if he was going to name a son "owen" (say both names out loud together).
He talked about how if you have his last name and you give your child a verb for a middle name then their name would be a sentence.
When his wife was expecting their 5th child (they have 6 total, 3 of each - just like the Brady Bunch) she said how about Isabelle for a girl? He said no way, not only would her name be a sentence but it would be a question!
this was how he began the fireside but then moved on to his topic which was on how to grow your testimony and he related it to growing a garden. Very good fireside!!

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Spiritual Experience

Have you ever felt the spirit while talking on the phone with a friend?
I did this morning and it was so overwhelming.
I was talking with my friend and she was sharing with me her experience at a temple recommend interview with our brand new stake president. As she was telling me about her interview I felt the spirit so strongly and was frequently in tears and just overcome with the spirit. It was amazing and I am so grateful to her for sharing.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

New blog on my list

I've added a new blog to my list. It's my friend, Cynthia. She's in my ward and we've been friends for years. We exercise together - almost every morning. If it weren't for here, I'd be very fat and emotionally unstable.
Her son and daughter-in-law "gave" her the blog for Christmas. They got it all set up for her. Nice and thoughtful gift. Now she just needs to learn how to post on it.
Check it out and give her an encouraging comment (of course I'll have to show her how to check the comments).

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

More Christmas pics

Everyone checking out what Brooke got in her stocking.

Justin opening Madden 08

Brooke modeling her new volleyball shoes.


Just wanted to share some photos from Christmas morning. I'll have to do this in a couple of posts - it's the only way I can do it without the post crashing.
Kamryn with her new twin dollies and stroller, cradle and twin high chairs!

Jared with his favorite new toy - the big dinosaur! (it's really cool because it's really light and not hard for him to carry around.)

Monday, January 07, 2008


Brooke and I went to see Enchanted the day after Christmas. What a cute movie! And that Amy Adams, she's a doll. A great mother-daughter outing. I'm looking forward to going again and we will for sure buy it.

My favorite present

My favorite present was the lap top Paul gave me for Christmas. Now don't start thinking he really spoiled me. The cool thing is he won it at his company Christmas party. Every year they have this really nice dinner and entertainment and then a big rafle drawing for really great prizes - big screen tv, trips, PS3, etc. We had never won before and I told Paul this was our year. We checked out the prizes before the dinner and I had decided it would be most cool to win the big TV (the kids would freak) or the trip to San Diego (so we could go to the Utah bowl game). When it came time for the drawing we didn't get the tv or the trip but when they brought out the lap top bundle package (which I hadn't even seen) I thought "now, that would be cool" and then they called Paul's name. I jumped up and screamed and really embarassed Paul. It was so exciting to finally win something. We decided to not tell anyone about our big win and save it for my Christmas present. Paul was so relieved to have something cool for me and he had a lot of fun getting it all set up for me. And I've had fun playing on it and figuring it out. In fact, I'm using it right now to add this post. I'm at Brooke's 2nd volleyball practice for club and we are at Open Court and they have free wi-fi, way cool!!

New Years

We were lucky enough to spend New years eve and day at the cabin. We had 28 people sleeping there and then Parry and his kids came for the day so it was quite a crowd.
Everyone brought lots of good food and we played some fun games. The big attraction was the snow, of course. Almost all of the kids and adults went out sledding more than once.
Poor Kamryn woke up from her nap on Monday with a fever and was sick the rest of the time that we were there. She was a sad little girl but very cuddly. We were all up late and brought the new year in with a lot of noise.

I am still alive

I've been meaning to post ever since Christmas and have many excuses for why I haven't but none of them are really very good.
We had a great Christmas - after being up way too late on Christmas Eve we did manage to get about 4 hours of sleep, I think. Jared and Kamryn got up too early for how late they went to bed but they did get a nap that day, thank goodness and so did I.
Christmas morning was a lot of fun, especially with jared and Kamryn. they were thrilled with their presents, of which they got too many.
My favorite reaction was when Brooke opened a present from us that I had wrapped first in a box with Christmas wrap and then inside that box was another box wrapped in birthday paper. The birthday present we had given was junk and we had returned it and never gotten her anything else. So for a combined present we gave her a nano iPod. She was genuinely surprised to get it, very excited about it and very grateful.
The most shocking gift we gave was to Taylor - a BB rifle gun (like in the movie Christmas Story). He seemed to think it was cool - the only bad part is he hasn't been able to use it yet.
We had Paul's family over to our house for brunch and presents and just hanging out during the day. At night we went over to my parent's house for the Shingleton family get together. Lots of noise, good food and the usual cousin and adult sibling present exchange.
The day after Christmas is my favorite - a day to just be casual and hangout. I did get up at 8:00 to go shopping and actually did most of my returns without standing in any lines.