Saturday, October 10, 2015

Cousin Camp 2015

 July 23-24th. We had lots of fun at this years Cousin Camp. We were missing 2 of our cousins because Kurtis & Lindsey moved to Virginia. (I'm still really sad about it!)

Day 1 was filled with LOTS of water games. We did an obstacle course, a dice water game, a water balloon game, and a water sponge game where you try to hit the sponge in the circles. We had a lunch of sandwiches and fruit and then the kids were all so tired we went home for naps.

 Day 2 we headed to our house for some pioneer just so happened that ALL the dads were out of town! The kids rode "horses," made pioneer toys, had potato sack races where I may or may not have wet my pants, and had a doughnut eating contest. The kids have such a fun time and look forward to it each year. My mom and sisters really put a lot into it!

July 4th Weekend

 July 3rd - Since the 4th of July was on a Saturday this year, Ben had Friday off as well, so we decided to go to the new Black Bear Diner that was just built by us. The wait was really long so the kids were super hungry. Isaac ate the whole plate of food. We had to go Winco after words and he had eaten so much that he needed to puke! Thankfully he made it to the trash can!
We love the fireworks that Uncle Ryan puts on every year, so we could't miss it this year. This is the best fireworks show around.
 On July 4th we started out our day by going to check out swingsets. Then we went for doughnuts. After we got back we headed to the park for fun on the Monster Slide.
 We had to take our annual 4th of July pictures!

 Then as tradition we headed to the Speirs house for  a BBQ and fireworks. This year we got some from Uncle Ryan, so we had quite the show as well.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

June Phone Download

 On the last day of school every year our neighborhood has a "Schools Out" party. Everyone brings goodies to eat and things to play. This kid had 5 cupcakes, 2 cookies, 3 cups of punch and a popcicle. By the time we went home he was totally in a sugar coma. I bet you can't guess what color the cupcakes were!

The first week in June Isaac received his Bobcat award in Cub scouts. He was so excited to get it and then to also get to pin mom. It was also the night of the Pinewood Derby! We were so proud of Isaac because all but actually cutting the car out he did it ALL himself. He designed it, sanded it, painted it, put the wheels on and everything. That wasn't something most of the other boys could say. He was pretty disappointed that his car didn't come in 1st place, but he didn't come in last place either.
Since Ben has been in the Stake Presidency, they have done a Stake Carnival during the summer. It is a BIG activity and gets a great turnout. My kids were so excited to go this year. They boys spent most of their time in the bounce houses and obstical course. Isaac also decided he wanted to do the dunking booth and the kids loved getting their face painted. I loved the picture booth!
 We decided to get season passes to Lagoon this year, so we've spent a good deal of time at Lagoon in June. Usually going we when got off work, that way it wasn't too hot. We have learned that both Kayleb and Kelsie are thrill seekers and love the fast, high rides!
 This little guy just LOVES to put on the goggles! He's not that happy that all the kids except for him, get to take swim lessons this year.

Father's Day was also in June and we are so thankful for Ben. He does so SO much for our family and we would be lost without him!

Ben took the boys to the Stake Father's & Son's so I took Kelsie for her 1st pedicure/manicure. SHE LOVED IT! Although she can't hold still very long, so the had to paint her twice because she kept messing it up! Then we headed to Amanda Speirs and had dinner and watched Pitch Perfect. After the movie we came home and Kelsie slept with me in our big bed...not something we usually let our kids do, so it was a treat for her. It was a fun night with just us girls!

We went to the splash pad for the 1st time this summer and it was a hit! ALL the kids had a great time and it was so fun for me to be able to see them play and not have to worry about them too much!
 Isaac & Kayleb had their summer piano recital and did so well. They each had their pieces memorized and they did a great job performing.
 At the end of June I got to go with Issac to Cub Country. It was a really fun day. He got to joust, shoot a BB Gun, play games and ride a Go-Cart. It was also fun that I got to spend some one on one time with Isaac.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015


I feel like sometimes in social media all we see are the good times that people have and when you view peoples posts on Favebook/Twitter/Instagram/Blogs all the talk about are the good things that happen and the fun things that they do. I think that's all good, but sometimes its hard because all we see are the perfect posts and perfect pictures and not the real life...everyday stuff. I have been struggling the last month or so. There has been so much contention in my family  and household within the last little bit and it is driving the spirit from my home. I'm pretty sure it's just the end of summer stuff going on, and the kids are getting on each others nerves so they fight..ALL.THE.TIME. I feel like over the last little bit there has not been a time when someone is NOT fighting or yelling or pestering. I know most people would say it's just kids, but I feel like it' more. My kids just CAN'T get along and in turn all I'm doing is breaking up a fight, putting someone in time out, yelling myself because no one is listening. I am at my breaking point. I hate having the contention in my home. I hare yelling myself. I hate feeling like I can't wait for my children to go to school because THEN I'll get a break.

I try all I can to invite the Spirit. I listen to music and General Conference talks, I read my scriptures and Ensign, we read scriptures as a family, and I pray ALL THE TIME that my kids won't fight. I pray for patience, I pray to know how to help them, I pray to know what to do, I pray to have the Spirit.I just don't know what to do anymore. I'm SOOO frustrated and feeling like there isn't an end in site.

Thursday, July 16, 2015


Over the last little bit, there have been so many things that I have seem...whether on Facebook or other things that have made me realize and think about how precious and short life really is. As I see these family in who have lost loved ones or who are experiencing trials my heart hurts for them. My heart hurts to see them hurting, but my heart is also hurting to reflect on my own life and trying to put myself into their situations and relalizing that I take so much for granted. There are nights that I kneel to say my prayers and I just want to cry because I haven't been the mom or the wife I want to be. I've let my temper get the best of me, I've said things that I haven't really meant, an I've treated people ways I would never want to. As I look at the families that are experiencing loss or trials I want to be a better person. I want my kids and husband to remember me always lifting them up, not being short in my temper. I know that we always compare our bad with other good, but I want to be better. Life is so precious! Just before my grandmother passed away I heard a song that has stuck with me through the last 10 years...sometimes I have to listen to it to keep myself in check. The last verse always gets to me....

When all is said and done
When my eyes can finally see
Will i glory in the sweet release
And will mercy fill my soul with peace
Will i kneel and wonder at the savior's feet
Will i hear him say, "well done"
When he sees who i've become
Will i live with him
When all is said and done

I want Him to be able to say "well done" to me and to be able to say I lived a happy life and that I did all I was sent here to do.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Kisses for Kycie

Several months ago I, like so many others, learned about the Terry family and started following @kisses4kycie I feel like I took a special interest because I could relate to their family. I only have one daughter myself, she too was the same age as Kycie. She too has beautiful blue eyes and blond hair. She too has a house full of brothers. She too is a sassy, spunky little thing. The first time I heard of Kycie's story my heart ached for her parents. I tried to put myself in their shoes. My prayers and fasting for Kycie and her parents started months and months ago. I faithfully read each post her parents made and even though they were in such time of trial, their posts lifted and encouraged me. They taught me to love my children a little deeper, be a little bit more patient, enjoy every single moment, and to be more specific in my prayers. Last Sunday was fast Sunday and again I fasted for Kycie and her family. As we were sitting around the table later that night my 8 year old son asked me what I was fasting for. I told him about Kycie, my husband mentioned later that night that it was such a great thing to show my children that we can pray and fast for people we don't even know. Today my heart broke as I heard that little Kycie Terry passed away early this morning. The prayers and fasts will continue for her family. However, I am so thankful that her parents have shared this experience with all of us. Anyone who has read and followed the story know how strong her parents are. My testimony has been strengthened by reading their words. They, as do I, know that families are forever. They WILL see her again and she will be that spunky little girl, perfect in every way. 

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

May Dowload

Time for the May download....

 Since the beginning of September when the boys had their crazy hair day, Kelsie has been BEGGING her teacher at preschool to have the last week of school they FINALLY had one. She was So SOOOOOO excited about it!

We were out of town in Hawaii on Kayleb's last day of Kindergarten, but Shayla was kind enough to take a picture of Kayleb and his cute teacher Mrs. Osborne. We have LOVED her as a teacher and are so sad she isn't coming back to our school next year. She is having a baby boy in August and found a job closer to home.

The day we got back from Hawaii this little guy would NOT leave my side.

We have been trying for almost 7 years to grow strawberries. This year was FINALLY our year! I think all the rain we got in the Spring helped. We got about 4 bowl fulls and made some yummy ice cream with it!

Kelsie had her pre-school graduation and will no be attending kindergarten in the fall. We have LOVED Mrs. B and it will be a little weird to not have one of the kids with her next year. Taysom has one more year before he can go.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Kelsie Dance Concert

 This little Sass-A-Frass had her Spring Dance concert the night before we left for Hawaii. She did so SO good and she just LOVES being in the spotlight and having the attention on her to perform. I am so proud of her that for being so young she has memorized all her dances. They do NOT dance with a teacher in front of them. She has also been working so hard at home to get her leaps better and she has. Love this little one!

Hawaii May 2015

Back in March I was checking out our condo website to see if I could find anything for my brother who was planning a vacation to Hawaii with his wife. Well there was one that came up for the big Island of Hawaii. I told my brother about it, but he wanted one on Oahu. Well the more I thought about it, the more I decided I wanted to go. So then I talked to my mom and asked her if  they wanted to watch our kids while we went, or if they wanted to come with us since it was a 2 bedroom condo. So they decided to go with us. It happened to workout (for us) that my sister and her husband were building a home and living with his mother, so we asked them if they would come and stay with my kids while we went.  So we had it all set......that is until our vacation bad luck set in. I don't know what it is, but NO MATTER what we do when we go on vacation something bad ALWAYS happens! Our flight was set to leave on Friday morning at 6:50 AM. My sister was going to come Thursday night to stay at the house so she didn't have to get up super early. Thursday night while I was at Kelsie's dance concert I got a text from my sister saying that  one of her girls has started throwing up and could we find someone to take the kids the following day. Well thanks to a prayer and some girls in our ward home from college we got it taken are of.

So Friday morning we go on the plane to Hawaii. We first flew into Phoenix, AZ where we had a 2 hr layover and then a 6 hour flight to Kona HI. We flew into Kona about 2:00 PM. When we first flew in and got off the plane the first think I felt was the humidity and heat and the first thing I smelt was the flowers!. We got our car rental and headed to the resort.I started to get a little nervous because all I saw was dessert and volcanic rock! I THIS Hawaii? Well driving just a bit further down into Kona we finally hit the tropical area. IT WAS GORGEOUS and everything I thought Hawaii should be. We got to the resort and were met with Pina Coloda's as we checked in. We took our things up to the room and then headed out to find a place for dinner. We ate at a Hawaiian Grill and it was YUMMY! We came back to the condo and then headed down to a beach that was just across the street to watch the sunset. There is something magical to me about watching the sun set into the ocean and listening to the waves crashing. I was truly amazing. We walked back to the condo and Ben and I took a little walk around the resort to familiarize ourselves with it a little bit. We were all pretty tired from traveling and the 4 hour time difference was hitting us so we headed to bed about 8:30.

Saturday morning we woke up super early because of the time change. We tried to sleep a little longer, but by about 5:45 we decided to take a walk. We walked down the street about a mile and headed to a beach. We stayed there for a little bit and then ran the mile back. It felt so good and it was so fun to run with my husband and it was such beautiful scenery! We got back showered and then headed to a little welcome breakfast that the resort puts on to tell you about all the wonderful things you can do while staying on Hawaii. After going to that we set up a few tours and were excited for the rest of our stay. We headed back to eat some lunch and then went to the pool to practice snorkeling. That got me excited because I actually like swimming and being under water, but I was a little scared to because I;m not so excited about getting in the ocean. As we were walking back we noticed that there were banana trees growing at the resort. After swimming we decided to walk down the main street to see the attractions there and to find someplace for dinner. We saw the Kings Palace, and there was also an Iron man competition going on. We stopped at a flee market and Ben bought some Lei Chei which is a little like a grape...only it tastes better. After walking a bit, we found a Mexican restaurant for dinner. Then we found another beach to watch the sunset. Yet again it didn't disappoint. It was gorgeous!

Sunday morning we woke up and went to church. The church was also right next to the Kona Temple. Church was was nice to actually be able to listen to the speakers instead of having kids crawling all over me and to go to Relief Society. They were all so welcoming and they had even made all the visitors a Lei. After church we ate some lunch and the Ben and I went to some meeting where they tried to sell us on being Timeshare owners....we only went for the gift card and the discounts on all the tours! Then we headed back to the temple so that we could spend a little more time there. We came back and ate dinner out on the deck. It was so nice and we really enjoyed it.
The first tour we had scheduled was for Monday morning. We were going on a 5 hour snorkeling tour. We had to be there at 8:15. Ben and I had gotten up early again and walked down to a little doughnut shop to grab some breakfast. We got back, got our suits on and headed to the marina. My mom was so SO nervous about going out on the boat. She didn't was to go snorkeling and we almost didn't get her on the boat. But we got on and headed to our first stop which was at the City of Refuge. We stopped and and they let everyone get out when they were ready. I was super nervous. I think more nervous about getting in the water than actually snorking. So I got my gear on and they told me the best way to get in was to slide off the side. I held onto the rope and slid....only problem was that me arm got stuck and I ended up with a HUGE bruise on my arm. I got in and started to panic a little bit. I'm a pretty good swimmer but I got really anxious about being in such a large-deep body of water. After I asked for a noddle to help me float and calmed down a bit I put my head in and was amazed at just how beautiful and calm it was! I had never been snorkeling before and it was amazing. The coral reef and all the little colorful fish. My dad even saw a shark! That scared me a bit! We stayed there for about a half an hour and then went onto the next site. This was where a lot of the sea turtles are. the water was pretty choppy at the 2nd stop and I started to get a bit sea sick. So I decided it was better to get in the water than stay in the rocking boat. Again is took me a second to get used to the water and to get calmed down. At this site there wasn't as much coral reef, but we did get to see a turtle. I got back in the boat and I was pretty sea sick. It took a little bit to get feeling better. We were then off to our final site Kealakekua Bay. This was by far my favorite site. It is actually the place Disney went to when the were going to make Finding Nemo so that they could get ideas and such. It was AMAZING! The coral was beautiful, the fish were so bright and amazing! This was also the place where Captain Cook monument is. After we were done there we got back in the boat and had some lunch and then headed back to the dock. It was a little bit of a ride. On the way back we stopped at some caves, and to see some water spouts. We also got to see some of the volcano paths and the different color rocks. As we were headed back both Ben and I saw some fins in the water. We tried to get a little closer to the, but they went under and we watched them swim away. At first we thought the might be dolphins, but as they were swimming away they were swimming from side to side and not up and we assume they were sharks! A little scary!!

After snorkeling we came home, cleaned up, took a little nap and headed to the Luau at the Royal Kona Resort. It was so much fun and BEAUTIFUL! There really isn't anything better than to watch a Luau on the beach with the sun setting and YUMMY food! It was such a nice night!

Tuesday we had scheduled a night volcano tour. They didn't pick us up from the resort until 11:00 so we went and did some shopping at one of the flea markets. We got back and then headed south. Our first stop was at one of the Kona Coffee Plantations. Now I don't drink coffee, but it was still interesting to see how coffee beans grow. I seriously had no idea the grew on these little plants and they are actually green in this gel stuff. We had lunch there and then headed to the Pubalu'u Bake Shop which is the Southernmost bakery in the USA. It was yummy and they had some REALLY good ice cream too. Our next stop was the Black Sands Beach. This is also where alot of the turtles make their nests. We were lucky enough to see a turtle there on the beach.

Our next stop was at the Kilauea volcano. This volcano erupted not that long ago and created a lake of lava. You can actually still see some of the hot spots were steam is coming out of. We also walked through the Thurston Lava Tube it was interesting to walk through a place that lava flowed through.

We then had dinner at a restaurant that overlooked the active volcano. Unfortunately the was so much VOG (volcano smog) that we couldn't see anything. After dinner we went to the top and waited for it to get dark. When it gets dark you can see the glow of the lava inside the volcano. We were nervous because it was so foggy we couldn't see ANYTHING, but as it got darker it cleared up enough that we could see the glow from the lava. After watching for a bit, we got back in the van and headed back 2 hours to the resort. We got right in bed for our next adventure in the morning.

Wednesday morning we were up pretty early as Ben and I had to be at the airport at 5:00 AM to catch our flight to Oahu. We got on the plane and were in Oahu by 7:00 AM. Our first stop was Pearl Harbor. It really is am amazing place. When we got there the USS Mercy..which is the hospital had been there and was just departing. We had about an hour before our scheduled tour to the USS Arizona so we got to walk around and go to the memorial museums. They were really interesting. It was amazing to see all that there was about Pearl Harbor. As we got in line to do the tour we were told that we were not going to be able to got on the Arizona. Apparently when the USS Mercy was backing out the tugboat hit the dock at the Arizona and now we couldn't dock and get on. We were SUPER bummed!!! I mean how often do you get to go to Hawaii??? They did take us out but we stopped about 100 yards, so we were still unable to see the ship underneath and the oil still leaking from it. It was a somber place to be though and I;m glad we got a chance to go.

After Pearl Harbor we got back on the bus and headed to North Shore. We stopped at Sunset beach where during the winter the waves are amazing and where they filmed Soul Surfer. We also then stopped at the Dole Plantation where I had my first ever Dole Whip.

Our next stop was the Polynesian Cultural Center. We were able to talk out tour guide into going the back way so that we could see the Lei Temple. It was GORGEOUS!! We had lunch at the PCC...yet another YUMMY meal. We were able to see 3 villages and watch the Canoe Parade and watch a 4D movie about Hawaii, I wish we were able to spend some more time there because there was so much to see that we didn't get to see. And I would have LOVED to stay and see the night show.

Our next stop was to a Buddhist temple. Ben and I have been to Hong Kong and we thought the setting was perfect. It really looked like Asia in this spot. We were able to ring the bell and see the river/pond that house a TON of fish!

Our last stop was at the overlook. There are some stories the Hawaiian people have about a battle that was here and how a whole army went over this edge. It was pretty crazy! I think after all the tours and with all the tour guides I know more about the history of the state of Hawaii than I do about the state of Utah. After this stop we headed back to the airport to head back to Kona.

Thursday was the day my mom had been dreading the WHOLE trip. We had signed up to do a Zipline. Actually one of the longest and highest there is. It was on the other side of the Island... the Hilo side which is more rain forest area. The drive was pretty interesting. We started out in Kona which is more tropical, then we went though a farm area and then a desert volcano area and then into the rain forest area. I have to admit that I was pretty nervous too, but they did such a GREAT job at calming your nerves. It also helped that we worked our way up as far as length and height. There were 7 lines and each one was high and longer than the previous one. All in all it was pretty fun. The last zipline was over a waterfall and the view was AMAZING! I'm so glad we did it! Afterwords we went home and went to dinner. Then Ben and I went down to the pool and hung out there for a bit. The pool area at the resort was so nice and the hot tube was interesting. It was the only hot tub Ive been in that had a sand bottom.

Friday morning we got all packed up and checked out. We still had until 7:00 to be at the airport, so we went back and did some shopping, then went to the pool for a bit. then we got us some lunch, went to a movie and then headed back to the airport. It was an AMAZING trip. I'm so SO glad I got to go and experience Hawaii!