Thursday, March 31, 2011

Freedom Friday, a little early

I have my scout camp out Friday so I'll be busy getting ready for that. The dads spend the night we just organize it with the boys doing most of the teaching. Anyway, I just watched this and thought I'd post the link here. Sobering but important to remind ourselves we HAVE to stop spending like we are and borrowing. We need some solid answers to our economic problems and taxing and spending are not going to lead to economic growth. Pray for our leaders and us citizens that we will all be willing to sacrifice for the good of us all.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Jane Austen, March Madness, Soccer

Well, I was really lame this week with picture taking. I could have done a better job! Owell...back to our week! Monday I was at the school helping in Zane and Micah's classes. Gwen was at my mom's as usual, having a great time so my mom brought her home later so I was able to get ready for scouts and stuff. I had scouts and then for family night Micah had taught our devotional Sunday so he had the activity Monday. He chose freeze dance! It was fun and funny! Timo wasn't very excited and Taran was glad he missed it. He had family night with his friend Stephanie's family, sort of...anyway...Tuesday Stephanie's girls were sick so I didn't get to go to the temple so we planned for Friday. Meanwhile my friend Linda's daughter came over, she's just a few months older than Gwen, while Linda helped with NOVA graduation at the school. Gwen was thrilled since she didn't get to play with Zoe. Then Linda took Gwen over to her house after and I ran to do my grocery shopping. That was nice! That day my nephew Cristian had surgery at Primary Children's and was doing well so it seemed like he would be home Wednesday and we were glad about that!

Wednesday Gwen had preschool and playgroup. I ran to the bank and Kohls--I had some Kohl's cash I had forgotten about. I ended up buying some shorts for 99 cents! I tried to have a nap since I was going to be up late. Izak had soccer practice that afternoon and Micah had an ice cream party with his basketball coach soTIm came home early from work since Timo was working for Taran because Taran was at a choir festival in Brighton. Emily was in the Science Fair at BYU and needed to go set up between 5-7 PM so we planned to meet my mom and dad for dinner at the creamery after we set up and then we went to Persuasion. It's a play based Jane Austen's book. It was amazing! We got home very late but it was worth it. Emily enjoyed it as well. The next day Emily had to be at BYU by 9 AM so Tim took her. I went visiting teaching. That was fun as usual, I had missed our ladies it seemed so long since we had had a good visit. Taran came home for lunch--he had left for school early because he had a sectional choir practice he had to lead. He then told me how he got a scholarship to BYU. He only got half-tuition--I admit I am a little disappointed because eight years ago my neighbor's son with the same ACT got 4 years tuition and books paid. BYU did something different this year they had all the scholarship applicants apply with their parents' financial info as well and divided up based on need and merit of those applying and accepted. Because we have no one else in college or on a mission it hurt Taran even though he is paying for himself. They don't have you show how many dependents there are living at home. Owell, I guess it'll all work out in the end. One of Taran's friends in the Chamber Choir got the Monson scholarship at BYU--full ride all four years. He's so burned out on applying for scholarships that he won't apply for anymore. What can we do? That afternoon both Izak and Micah had birthday parties. I also had to get Emily from BYU. I also ran to the bookstore while I was down there and got Taran a sweet 16 t-shirt. We watched the BYU vs Florida game at our friends (Linda). Boy was I so disappointed. Jimmer their star point guard was off as was most of the team--and they were in the game despite it! Unfortunately they beat themselves and Florida came away victorious in overtime! They really could have won it. If they had played their best game and just got beat by a superior team I would be reconciled but I still feel they should have won but it wasn't meant to be. I felt so bad for Jimmer, who is a brilliant player check out the photo in this blog! Sports Illustrated put this on their cover--jinxed, I believe it! Owell, hopefully he'll have a successful NBA career so we can still watch him play!

Friday I went to the temple Gwen went to Stephanie's, she was so excited! Before I had to go to the high school and pay for Taran to take 2 more AP tests. And choir tour--which he will reimburse me. I was planning on meeting some women from my ward and have lunch after but I was there earlier than them. I would have had to wait an hour for them so I went home. Gwen stayed at Stephanie's since the girls had planned to eat mac-n-cheese and watch Scooby Doo--it was snowing so this was a fun thing to do that day! I was able to rest since I was cold and felt chilled since the day before. My leg with nerve damage was cramping a lot that day. The rest did me good. Emily and the little boys had a piano group lesson that afternoon which they enjoyed. Micah's soccer practice and Zane's soccer practice were canceled due to the weather which was a relief! That night Tim took Micah to his parents' to cut out Micah's pinewood derby car. They also sanded it and then painted it. Meanwhile Emily went with a friend to see the musical Pride and Prejudice that the high school is putting on. She loved it so now is a Jane Austen lover! She ended up going with my mom Saturday since she loved it so much. Timo, the little boys and I watched more March Madness--NCAA basketball tournament. Crazy stuff--Duke out and Ohio State out who were both 1st seeds! My bracket is toast but I love it! Go Butler and VCU!

Saturday Izak had a merit badge class that our stake was putting on at 9 AM, Micah had his first spring game at 9:30 AM in Lehi, Zane had his last week of Lil' Hoopsters in Pleasant Grove at 11:30 AM, Izak had his first spring game at 12:15 PM in Lehi. Crazy morning! Micah also needed to check in his pinewood derby car so in between stuff Tim helped him fix it and get it checked in. Emily went to the matinee with my mom--wish I could have gone. When Emily got back we went to Texas Roadhouse for dinner before the Young Women's broadcast. We went there because she had gotten a $30 gift certificate to there from the BYU Science Fair but it expired on Monday so this was our chance! The meal cost me $5 plus the tip! not bad! She had a full rack of ribs--not that she ate it all! We had Fast Sunday the next day so she wanted to load up! It backfired she ended up with a tummy ache in the end. If you've never been tell them and they will give you complimentary food--they gave her a half rack of ribs and some steak fries while we waited for our order! Crazy! The broadcast was fabulous, sooo grateful for leaders to guide us in these sometimes trying times. The kids watched Dennis the Menace with Tim on Clearplay and they loved it. After I folded all my towels and watched the musical Out on the Town. It's an old one with Gene Kelly and Frank Sinatra. It is set in NYC so that was fun! But I got to bed super late. Taran and Timo did stuff with friends but got home on time.

Sunday I didn't feel well at first but by the time it was time to get ready for church I was feeling better and I am glad I went. The meetings were all great. The lady teaching Relief Society told about her daughter who is on the Lone Peak High School cheer squad. They went to California for a cheer competition and got to the finals. They dropped out because the finals were scheduled for Sunday--awesome girls eh? Unfortunately the only cheer teams ridiculing them for their decision were from Utah County, Utah! Yes, it's usually your own who make fun or put you down for living your religion. I am so proud of them--two are in our neighborhood. We had a Trek fireside kick off tonight, Taran and Timo are going. I wish I could go!

Here is a collage I made of Tim's family from our reunion last summer. I had an 8 x 10 made of it. I thought I'd share it. It turned out really cool--I thought. Have a fabulous week! Last one of March! I hope it warms up...more soccer coming!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Freedom Friday

I may be the only person who struggles with so many 'good' things I feel I should do. As I get older I realize it is okay to say no and not do everything but even at that I feel like my own expectations for myself are still overwhelming at times. I just finished reading a great book that has given me a new found "freedom". I want to post some quotes from the book here, the ones that really spoke to my heart.

From Mary, Martha and Me by Camilla Fronk Olson

"When this highest love of God comes before any checklist obedience, humility and gratitude accompany our sincere efforts, and we are empowered beyond our natural ability to "go and do" what the Lord commands..."

Later she quotes President Howard W. Hinter: "If our lives and our faith are centered on Jesus Christ and his restored gospel, nothing can go permanently wrong. On the other hand, if our lives are not centered on the Savior and his teachings, no other success can ever be permanently right"

She goes on to write: "We may not accomplish number ten or even number three on our daily list but well most assuredly get to number one."

Then later:"Putting God first supplies direction to our quest for balance, for finding the One Needful Thing whose gifts cannot be taken from us. Seeing Mary and Martha contentedly engaged in serving the Lord, using talents and spiritual direction they were gifted to offer, is yet another marvelous example of the miracle. All are blessed when their hearts are turned to the Lord. All are blessed with reverence for Jesus Christ because they desired to put Him first. Rather than compare and rank their different modes of service, they loved God first."

It's such a great book but these are my most favorite parts. As I put God first, his will, I will have done the "One Needful Thing" thus whatever I do after is guided by the spirit and also sufficient. I can be content when I put Him first, I am free--remember the scripture the truth shall set you free...there you go! So my post is about freedom that can not be taken away but obtained through our obedience. I have sensed this at different times but I like how she helped me think about it. I know this is true I have tested it and I am trying to make it a permanent part of who I am. Have a great day!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

I won, I won!!!

Okay, today was sad because my BYU cougars and their star Jimmer lost. (March Madness--NCAA basketball). I blame SI for putting him on the cover--jinx. They killed themselves but onto the good news. I won a giveaway on this amazing website The Idea Room. I just started following this website a couple of months ago. She has great ideas for ALL sorts of things. She gets lots of traffic so she has at least a giveaway or two a week and this week...I WON! I get $50 to spend at The Simple Stencil! I feel so blessed, now what to pick? We'll see and maybe I'll post the end product! Don't forget to check out Amy's The Idea Room for great things!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

St. Patrick's Day, Math March Madness, March Madness...

So Monday no one was sick, yeah and there was no school. It was a snow day that we never used so we got it off! So we made big plans...not really. Taran got up early and worked on some of his online classes. I took Micah and Izak to do some scout requirements and shopping with their birthday money. We stopped at the bank--Micah's requirement then shopped they both got new athletic shoes with their money--mind you I just bought them new high tops the beginning of Jr Jazz, owell they put some money in savings and paid their tithing what can I say? Then I dropped off Micah and Izak and I went to the local National Forestry center so he could find out what they do etc as a federally funded entity. Can I tell you the more I know about what they do the more I think we could really streamline some of these things and save a ton of money! After that I made lunch for everyone then went ran to Walmart and got Megamind for the kids to watch. The weather was bit nasty so some of them didn't go outside. It was actually pretty funny. I went shopping to get things for the prizes I was in charge of for our school's March Math Madness program. And was home in time for fixing dinner then we watched Megamind for FHE! We got our dollar's worth from Redbox. And even Taran and Timowho rarely go to movies or watch them at home laughed at it! That night Zane coughed so hard he threw up, twice time for the codeine! Then he slept fine

So it was Stephanie's turn to go to the temple but she had sick kids and Zane was still coughing pretty strong. Micah was running a fever again. So I stayed home with them, it was fun for Gwen to have their company. I wasn't able to do the normal shopping until later when I picked up Emily from her Musical Theater and Theater Company tryouts. I dropped her off and ran to Costco and Target. That night was Micah's last Jr Jazz game so we let him go, his fever was gone but he was on ibuprofen too! Tim said that you could tell that he wasn't 100%.

Wednesday Micah still had a fever but Zane was better so he went to school. I had found out the day before I would need to do playgroup for Gwen and her friends and I also had the girl twin that day as well which worked with playgroup. Micah was up for awhile then by the time I got home with the girls he was in his room asleep and slept the whole time they were here. In the collage you can see a floor covered in books that is one of the many creations the girls did that day, a new carpet Gwen doesn't think so!:) When they left I went in and checked on him (I did every hour) and this time he was awake and said that he felt better. He still ran a slight fever the rest of the day and let us know at the end of the day his back gums were sore--we are thinking 10 year molars! That night I put together the prize bags--as much as I could for the Math program.

Thursday was St. Patrick's Day and the leprechaun's left candy (rolos and mints) in our shoes. It was also the rootbeer floats for the classes that won the March Math Madness challenge for their grade--both Izak and Zane's classes won. My friend Linda was in charge so I helped her along with other moms. Gwen ate lunch with Izak and he brought her to me when he went out to recess. She had fun seeing kids from the neighborhood and sitting with Izak and Zane while they had their floats. Gwen even got one! The teachers were very appreciative of the program, my friend had done a fabulous job. This was the first time our school has done this--we always have a reading program which we did in the fall, so she had a lot to learn and do! She is the type of person to ask to do this so it was great! But I don't think she'll do that again anytime soon! I got home with Gwen barely before the kids, we went around and announced winners in the classes after the rootbeer floats. I ate lunch then we were in a mad dash to get the absent homework done. I didn't make Micah do all of it but he was overwhelmed! Meanwhile Timo had his friends over working on their Spanish video--I was not aware of this until they all walked in the door! I made Irish Stew and Irish Soda Bread for dinner. It took me awhile to find recipes without Guinness (a beer) and red wine in them! They turned out really good and we had brownies and mint ice cream for dessert. Then BYU played their first NCAA game and won but it was not pretty! After watching Gonzaga destroy St John's BYU's hopes for advancing were looking slim! At about 11 PM I finally got the prizes from my friend who contacted businesses and got discount movie tickets and other prizes to give out to the kids in the bags I made up--over a hundred of them. We awarded 1st, 2nd and 3rd for each class--35 classes, plus a few ties. We also had a participation prize for all the students who did it. I stayed up until 2:30 AM doing them! My friend's daughter's birthday was that day and her son the next so I don't fault her with getting the prizes to me late I could been more prepared for them than I was--live and learn! If you look in the photo collage Zane got his hair sprayed green at his friend's house--pretty fun. All the face shots didn't really show it very well.

Friday Gwen and I were back at the school giving out prize bags with my friend who got the prizes, we split up and took them around. Again the teachers complimented the program. The principal took the top boy and girl from EACH class out to lunch! He got a school bus and parents came with. I hear that the kids that went had a lot of fun! We ran to Walmart and then to pick up the twins, their mom got called in that night before. So we went to the grocery store and got free ice cream bars with tickets my friend had leftover for all the participants! They thought that was fun then we went home. I spent over an hour cleaning the kitchen because Timo had told me 3 times that they were filming at our house again right after school. BTW the movie turned out quite funny! Tim came home early to help Izak put together a rocket for his Space Exploration Merit Badge class. He ended up helping Izak's 2 friends since their parents were busy, it worked out just fine, more fun for Izak! I also made a card out of posterboard for our friend Jason who was turning 40 that day. It read "40 isn't old...if you are a TREE!" (I got it off the internet). His wife (the one in charge of the Math Program--yes she had a big week!) planned a few surprises for him. This card was for a dessert gathering at another friend's so people could sign it there later that night all the neighbors and their kids were invited--he's the YM President. She also had some of us gather for dinner at Texas Roadhouse--he was surprised. It was a blast too bad I forgot my camera! Taran even missed a camping trip with friends to be there--he also had a friend Chad's birthday that night and they went out to dinner. It was a long day but full good stuff!

Saturday Izak and 2 friends were going to their last week of merit badge classes at BYU and it was our turn to drive. Tim drove them down and another dad brought them home but he took them to lunch first--pretty fun! Meanwhile Zane had his little hoopsters clinic, which I want to see this week since Tim thinks it's such a kick! Then Emily had her championship Jr Jazz game. They won, but it was their closet game ever and lowest scoring game. Pretty fun. Tim took a photo of them with their trophies on his phone so the quality isn't too great. Then we got back in time to get ready for the BYU game. Timo was asked to Spring Fling by a girl named Lindy this is her in the collage with him. He had a blast, it was a dance but at an ice rink and so they could dance and skate and they mostly skated. He got a huge blister on his foot. Taran did not go he has a sort of girlfriend so no one would ask him and we feel like they need to not be too exclusive and they agree so she asked someone else to Spring Fling and he went with someone else to Sweethearts last month. But it still makes it so no one thinks they can ask you. They will be going to Prom together, I think. Taran is very realistic about it all and open so we feel okay with it right now. What's the problem some may ask? We just feel you limit your associations and experiences by being too exclusive at this young age. It also can invite other temptations down the road if you cross the line. Back to Saturday's BYU game, wow! What a game if you don't follow the NCAA mens basketball tournament you will not understand the excitement fun in BYU beating Gonzaga quite convincingly even though BYU was picked to lose. I actually started to cry when BYU went up by 20 with 8 minutes left. I had thought they could have a game like that it was just awesome that they did! My bracket really stinks-- lots of crazy games this year but I did pick BYU to win that game and I will be thrilled if they beat Florida! GOOOO cougars! Hopefully Jimmer wasn't jinxed by being on Sports Illustrated!

Sunday church was great, super talks, all of them! I taught, never quite sure about my lessons but I do work really hard on them! We had a nice Sunday I had Taran finish up on some Duty to God stuff and Izak did some scout stuff. Micah taught our devotional tonight it was unique! Anyway, have a fabulous week. I am hoping spring comes back! I want to get some pansies for my pots, I have a giftcard from my
birthday last year I should use!

2 things I forgot, sometime this week Emily found out she's in the Musical Theater class and Theater Company! We also got a weird call from BYU last week asking m=why she had not registered for the science fair there! Because she didn't win... well we have her stuff from the school district and she is suppose to come... does she not want to? No, we just didn't know. Well, register her right now and she can come. Okay, we will...weird...she's going to the science fair at BYU again! Apparently it's super fun so good for her! I wonder what happened, did they forget to call her name? Owell...

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Tim's birthday, sick kids...

Last week is a bit of a blurr! It's amazing to me how much I don't remember anymore, I used to remember dumb details but now I barely remember important things. I know it's just that I have a lot going on but I sometimes wonder if I will develop Alzheimer's like my dad.

The highlight of last week was Tim's birthday. Other than his special breakfast of his favorite granola (it's pricey) and dinner of salmon with red potatoes and Costco chocolate cake there wasn't a lot exciting going on that day--he went to work. We did watch the rest of Pee Wee's Big Adventure which we had started on Family Night. It was fun to see Zane laugh at the silly parts.

Monday I had scouts--Izak's first time with us and Zane had a birthday party at Chuck E Cheese. That night about 10:30 PM, he threw up. Food poisoning. So I kept him home just to be sure. Emily had bad sinus headache and stayed home too. That made it so I could do my regular shopping trip Tuesday afternoon. Tim's present arrived (an ipod touch) so that was nice since his birthday was the next day. He's been having fun with it ever since! Micah had a Jr Jazz game and he did great!

Wednesday was Tim's birthday and Gwen had preschool and playgroup. My visiting teachers came that morning then I went shopping for the salmon and chocolate cake. I also went to Kohl's, I had a 30% off coupon and got the kids some spring clothes and Tim some white shirts for some great deals! I got me something too.

Thursday I stayed home and got some stuff done around here--organized the junk drawer, art cupboard and the cupboard above the desk in the kitchen. Hopefully I can continue the trend to organize and de-clutter! That night was our RS Meeting and they did a great job! Good speakers, yummy dinner and a CD of information about each sister--I stayed up late reading all of them!

Friday I watched the twins and my neighbor's daughter and I took them to the dinosaur museum with Gwen. They had a lot of fun. We have had beautiful weather so they played outside before and after. Zane came home with a fever from school. We have been so lucky not to have anything much this whole winter. He just laid around. Tim and I went out to dinner with a gift card he won at work. We were able to watch the first part of the BYU vs. New Mexico game. We had some things to take to his parents' and we stayed watched the game with them. We were so glad BYU won!

Saturday Taran and Timo had a young mens game, they won. Zane was better but still had a fever off and on. Micah had Jr Jazz practice. Emily had a Jr Jazz game part of a tournament they are having. They won by forfeit--I don't think the other team wanted to get beat 4 times by Emily's team. I am not being rude, I just think the league should have looked at the scores and not tortured the other team. It's not that Emily's team is amazing it's just that the other teams don't really know how to play, they are learning. I ran errands and got back in time to go to Stake Conference at 6 PM. Tim took our kids out to my mom's to watch the BYU game since we don't get the channel. It's just as well we missed it since they got spanked! Jimmer still had some 30 points...amazing player! After Stake Conference Tim and some men practiced a song for priesthood leadership the next morning! Then he ate dinner and we ran to my mom's to get the kids. We had told our teenagers to be home by 10 PM because of daylight savings.

Sunday Micah woke up with a fever and headache. Tim was at priesthood leadership early 6:40 AM more like 5:40! YIKES! Anyway then we went to Stake Conference, left Micah home since he said that he would be fine. He watched Sunday shows and played some from the Friend online. He was doing better by the time we had to go to Katie and Charl's to celebrate Izak and Tim's birthdays. We brought meat and dessert. Everyone brought yummy stuff. The kids had fun and some played outside even though it had gotten cloudy. It was a nice visit but I was beat from daylight savings! By the time we got home I had no energy to blog. At about 11 PM Zane coughed so hard he threw up then he did it again about a half an hour later. I got him some cough medicine with codeine after the last time. He slept fine through the night. Tim cleaned up the first mess and I the second. Kids are tiring!:) That's all for now! Have a great week! Enjoy St Patrick's Day! Do something fun!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Freedom Friday last minute post

I have read a lot today and finally found something I felt was uplifting. Here are the words of an Islamic Patriot, he has great courage and integrity. He is trying to improve his country (America), and fellow followers of Islam in a positive way. Take time to read his testimony to Dept. of Homeland Security.


Sunday, March 6, 2011

Home Again Home Again Jiggety Jig!

So the kids were happy to see me in the morning as I walked around in a stupor. It was Steph's turn for the temple so I had Zoe which was nice so Gwen could play while I unpacked and rested. Gwen had a party in the afternoon so Steph took her and I picked her and Zoe up. Taran and Timo didn't have school that day which was nice esp for Taran! The juniors were all taking the ACT. Nice, huh! The first year they have done it but they paid for them all to take it. Also Taran found out he got into BYU but we weren't surprised just waiting on the scholarship amount! So Taran and Timo slept until 11 AM! That afternoon Julie H and I had scouts but it was a quick one to just test 3 boys on their Tenderfoot physical test. It was the only way to fit it in! Micah had a Jr Jazz game that night.

Wednesday I went grocery shopping. Then I had play group here. Gwen and her friends had fun for the most part, we celebrated Dr. Seuss' Birthday with cupcakes. Then for dinner we had green eggs and ham (bacon) hashbrowns...yum! Tim, Taran and Timo went to the BYU vs New Mexico game that night which was a bummer because BYU lost by a lot. News of Brandon Davies dismissal on Tuesday was not a good thing but they pulled out a solid win Saturday. The Jazz lost too to add to the misery! Emily got to wear her pj bottoms she made for their pj party with beehives. Clever PJS stands for prayer, journal and scriptures.

Thursday Gwen and I went to the mall in Sandy to get Izak's present, Jazz paraphernalia. I also stopped at a clothes store and got some jeans for the little boys and a spring dress for Gwen. That night the 3rd grade had a fun Math Night. So I took Micah. Taran and Timo had a choir concert. I always enjoy those. It was late for the little kids but they survived! Emily had the district science fair that night from 6=9:30 PM! Long night to find out she did not move on! Taran and some of his choir friends came over to our house and hung out for a little bit. Love those kids!

Friday I tried to get things back to normal--for us! Then I watched the twins I usually watch. My dad hung out while my mom went to the temple. We had a nice visit and he rested. Taran went to Weber State to watch Lone Peak basketball play Freemont in the 5 A semi-final. We lost to them in the football semis last fall so this was nice to win! Timo came home and worked on a paper he had due Monday--so responsible! After they left I went to Walmart with Gwen and we bought stuff for a surprise late night for Izak in honor of his birthday. He was totally surprised but had a blast. They watched Hoosiers. They enjoyed Tim driving them home after!

Saturday we got up early because Izak wanted to open his presents before he went anywhere. Taran and Timo had a YM basketball game that morning early. Izak went to the BYU Merit Badge Pow Wow at 8:15 AM with his friends. He enjoyed it then Granny picked him up and went to lunch and shopping. Meanwhile Taran and Timo headed up to the Lone Peak vs AF (their rival) for the 5A final. on the school buses. Zane had lil' hoopsters at PG rec center at 11:30 AM. Emily had her last Jr Jazz game at 1:30 PM~ they went undefeated and she made a few very cool baskets! Izak had his last game at 2:30 PM and they also went undefeated this year! He also made some sweet shots. BYU won and Lone Peak and the Jazz so it was a sweet day for the fans at our house! We had pizza for dinner then off to the cousins to celebrate all the family birthdays from January thru March! We had dessert, Izak picked peanut chip brownies and ice cream! It was a fun visit but cut short by Timo's paper. Maybe next time we can visit longer! I watched Seven Brides for Seven Brothers with Emily and Tim when he wasn't helping Timo.

Today we went to church and I ended up bearing me testimony. I wasn't planning on it but I felt like it part way through. Now I can sit a rerun the whole thing through my head and think of what I should have said. Owell. I really enjoyed the testimonies I heard. Of course all the classes were great and uplifting. So grateful for all my many blessings.

So one last note, Tim did a great job while I was gone. He had help from my mom and friend Stephanie. While I was gone: Timo got his braces off, worked for Taran at Taran's work, Timo took Izak to his basketball game, Tim took Emily to her's, he went to Emily's parent teacher conferences, he took Emily to a birthday party she had Friday night...he made a roast for Sunday dinner. He's the best. I enjoyed talking to him each night. I wish he could have gone but I am glad that he let me go! At least he got to go to Disneyland last year for A Capella Choir tour! Did I ever tell you how lucky I am?????

Choir Tour Day 5

Most of the kids just wanted to go to Chinatown. So after we packed/tidied up we headed to their hotel and all ventured to Chinatown/Canal street. The prices weren't as amazing as we'd heard but it was fun to see anyway. It reminded me of Tijuana, bargaining and the tiny shops lined up selling similar stuff. I got most of my souvenirs there. One of Taran's friends got a black market watch, crazy! They had to be back by noon to get their stuff and load it onto the shuttles to the airport. Taran and I traded things. He only took a carry on since it's $25 to check in luggage on Delta and I got one bag free check in on Jetblue. We said goodbye to the kids and our one roommate who was flying back with them. We went back to our room and checked out but stored our luggage, did mention how awesome the staff was there? Breton Julie H's son was coming back with us--she got him a one way ticket since standby on Jetblue was full so he got to go with the group. We went to an old church and then to a bakery we heard had great cupcakes--mmm, not as good as Dippedee here in Utah! There our roommate Robin realized she had left her wallet at the church while trying to find her glasses. So we cut the sightseeing short to go back, then she went to the hotel when it wasn't at the church. We went to a couple of stores to get something she wanted then onto a store where I got some things. We met up with her at the hotel. On our way there she told us that the guy who found it called and was taking it to his wife's work in Brooklyn. So we grabbed our suitcases and headed on the subway to Brooklyn. Many people helped us get to our destination and she got her wallet without any trouble and we were back on the subway. We got help getting to the airport on the subway--we had to change lines. We found the people of New York friendly and helpful every day! Our plane was leaving at 8:30 PM and we made it to the check in at 7:30 PM! Tender mercy! And it was delayed! We ended up not leaving until after 9:30 PM. We got into SLC at 1 PM. I really didn't sleep great but this time I was not in between two guys and no space so I did sleep some. Tim picked us up. Julie's husband is ill so I felt it was the least we could for getting me a buddy pass! So we got home around 2 AM. I had to talk to Tim until about 3 AM we got to sleep! Owell, I am feeling more caught up now, I was zombie Tuesday! I feel so blessed for the amazing experience. I am so grateful that Taran had that opportunity. What a huge blessing to have these experiences available to them!

Choir Tour Day 4

So Sunday we went to church at 11 AM in the Singles Ward in Manhattan--the meeting house is located in the same area as the temple. A very ingenious design. Some of the young men from the choir prepared, blessed and passed the sacrament. They were having fast and testimony meeting since they were having Ward Conference today. It was great. Some of the parents of choir members and some kids bore their testimonies. Taran was feeling better by now. One of the dad chaperons gave him a blessing Saturday. Part of the meeting was a confirmation of a newly baptized young man. It gave a great feel to the meeting. After sacrament meeting we went to Rockefeller Square and took photos and then the choir director wanted the kids to go to the hotel to rest. I had gotten Taran some food but forgotten to bring it with so I decided to take it to him after we got back to our hotel. We had planned to rest then go listen to the choir practice with the other choirs. No one else needed to go so I went alone--if you know my sense of direction this was a little risky! I was fine but did get lost and I had forgotten my map. Even though I had ridden the subway a gazillion times thus far some of the lines run different on the weekends and they were announcing the changes but I didn't have my map so I got off after at the first stop. I walked the wrong way coming out of the subway but once I realized I headed back the right way and got there just fine! Taran wouldn't answer his phone so I waited in the lobby until I finally got one of his roommates to take the food up to him. I called my roommates to let them know I made it--they were worried about me, with reason as you can see! I told them I was just going to hang in the lobby because now it would mean I would get back in time to come back! So I rested in the lobby chair, not too bad. All the choirs were staying in that hotel so they could practice there for the performance. We listened to their practice. This was it before Carnegie. The choir president and president elect had gotten the kids pizza to eat after the practice. They let us join in. It was yummy. Then they returned to their hotel to dress and get ready to go to Carnegie. We returned to our hotel to rest since we had a couple of hours until we needed to be at Carnegie. We rested and talked--it was just a slumber party of fun and also good gospel conversation. Julie H and felt so lucky to have these great moms to be our roommates. We all got along great. Carnegie was pricey and they didn't let you take any photos or recordings. But a lot of parents were doing it all over! I did sneak a photo of Julie H in front the staircase. It's such a beautiful old building! Thanks to Isaac Perlman they didn't tear it down. The concert was great. All the songs were religious so I am thinking this festival catered to religious groups may also explain why the concert was on Sunday. There was a childrens choir of combined choirs and a featured choir. They sounded like angels. Then Lone Peak's Chamber Choir--Taran's choir went on after. We were sitting in a box seat with a family from Atlanta whose younger son was in the childrens choir. They let us up front when they were trading places on stage. They were a great family--apparently their son was in this children's choir and came to Carnegie 2 times as a kid. He still sings and was going on choir tour to England this week! (And we thought this trip was expensive!) Also I forgot to mention that the composer of a compilation of songs the childrens choir sang was sitting next to us--in the next box. Taran's choir was incredible, his director said that they were perfect in every way. They stunned everyone! The spirit was so strong as they sang. We got lots of compliments and heard people commenting. Apparently the composer came to Ms J the choir director on the plan and let her know how amazing he thought they were and that they should be the standard for all high school choirs! I think most of the schools were private so I think they would have been surprised to know we are a public school! Anyway, I was able to give the family from Atlanta the Book of Mormon I had prepared with our family photo in it and our testimony. They were so awesome I felt strongly this is who I needed to give it to. After the concert the kids were elated! They had had an amazing experience. Taran says that it was his highlight of the tour! Me too! What a great end to an amazing experience. I guess it's tradition they go to Carnegie deli after the concert so we met up with them there. It's the same place we got the 'melo'. Ms J treated the kids to whatever they wanted. Taran and his friends got the melo and cheesecake! We saw that family from Atlanta and their group there too. It was a special evening.

Choir Tour Day 3

Saturday the kids had practice all day with a few breaks. We went to the New York Public Library to an exhibit called 3 Faiths about Christianity, Judaism and Islam and how they are similar in their having Abraham as part of their religion. That is it in a nutshell but they also had cool artifacts, old scrolls and books hundreds of years old. We went to the temple after that but missed the endowment session--they only do 1 an hour so we did initiatory. Julie H. was feeling bad so she went and laid down in the church which is accessible from the temple. After we went to a bakery then back to the hotel and rested. That night our other roommate Julie went with her daughter and others to see Phantom of the Opera. We took 12 kids sightseeing and shopping. Taran was sick so I got him dinner and he stayed in his hotel. It was a cold night so that was smart. I found some great deals shopping. We stopped at the Toys R Us in Times Square it was huge it had 3 levels and a ferris wheel inside it! We ended with a trip to the Brooklyn Bridge. We saw Alexander Hamilton's grave on our way. I wish my camera could have done it justice!

Choir Tour Day 2

Friday we woke up to a lot of rain. Julie stayed at the hotel to get rush tickets for that night and sleep in! So the three of us met up with the rest of our group to go to the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island and 9/11 Tribute Museum. The Festival organizers had arranged tour guides to help us take the subway all the way to the dock. It was a great experience despite the rain. The guides were darling. I am mad I did not get a picture of them! They led the kids in the Lone Peak fight song and the national anthem at the steps of Ellis Island. It was stirring! From there we took the subway over to the 9/11 Tribute Museum which is across the street from the area the towers resided--now they are rebuilding some but the twin towers will have a water fountain in their spot with the names of the victims engraved in the stone. The museum was touching as footage and stories were told and artifacts displayed--an air plane window, high heels, id...It was real, it was tragic the heroes were the amazing part of the story. They had a lady tell her story of that fateful day and that of her daughter who worked in Tower 7 which came down after the Twin Towers. So much that I did not know about what happened that day! It was amazing and we must not forget it. From there we went a few stores down to a deli and they served up in 15 minutes (40 of us!) and then one of the main workers told his story, he was a teenager when it happened! It was a great time. From there the kids headed back to the hotel to change out of wet clothes and get ready to go to the Lion King. We went on our own and saw some of the sights. Then we went back to our hotel and met up with Julie. I guess I should say we had 2 Julies: Julie Hallsted who works for Jetblue and Julie Fonbuena another mom who joined us. Julie H. had gotten us tickets to Memphis which had won the Tony in 2010 for best musical. We checked the kids to see if they were hungry and since we had a big lunch. They weren't allowed to go out on the subway without a chaperon and they had to go in groups of 5 and had to have some boys in it if they went without a chaperon. By now Taran wasn't feeling well but he sucked it up with meds and went to Lino King which was part of their tour cost. He loved it, he said that it was life changing! LOL! We enjoyed our show too. But we did a little sightseeing and came to Saks 5th Avenue for a little stop to see the $200 hats! Robin got a hand massage and ended up buying some expensive stuff. The saleman was so cute how could she resist? He gave us all samples and gave Robin and Julie H each a free bag! I got hungry just before the show so I bought a peanut butter brownie at a bakery by the theater. Julie H was getting sick and bought some meds while I was in the bakery. As I said we enjoyed the musical but just a heads up if you go there are c couple bad words, not a ton. I would have left and I think my friends would have also had it been that bad. Otherwise it was very entertaining. I did notice some people were enjoying it a bit much, they were drunk. Really it was good enough without being drunk!

Choir Tour Day 1

So after we got over to Delta from the Jetblue terminal we took bus shuttles to the kids' hotel the Sheraton Manhattan. From there our kids helped us to our hotel via subway The Marriott Residence Inn at Times Square--the staff there were amazing! They stored our luggage for us (it was 8 AM) and told us to enjoy breakfast! That was so nice. Then we went back to the kids' hotel. Taran was feeling lousy since he didn't sleep at all on the flight but I doubt I slept more than 20 minute stretches! I was living on adrenalin. We split into groups one group was touring museums, one went sightseeing until they got to the temple to do baptisms. Our group was to join up at the temple but we had time to run to a couple of theaters to see if we could get rush tickets--discounted Broadway tickets for different shows. We ended up getting tickets to Spiderman the musical--which was super fun and the music was by U2 and I loved it! The temple was a great experience. The kids were exhausted but it was a nice contrast to the busyness outside. After the temple the choir was to meet back soon to sing at an Assisted Living Center. So we took them to Central Park for a little look and had gyros from a street vendor--Taran ate them all the time after! We stopped outside of the Museum of Natural History from Night at the Museum. But alas not enough time to see it all. The weather was a bit chilly that day so we used coats, scarves and hats. After we dropped the kids off at their hotel we went back to our hotel to check in and rest. One of our roommates and I were going to use the fold out bed so we opened it up to check it out--it was terrible so Julie called to get a roll-away bed mattress to put on top of it. They upgraded us for free! So we moved there and unpacked and it was great--2 queens this time! One of our roommates and her daughter went with a group to see Wicked. Our other roommate Robin, Julie, her son Breton and Taran and I went to Spiderman the musical. But before we went to the theater we got a giant sandwich the 'melo' named for Carmelo Anthony who was just traded to NY Knicks! It was $24 but we all split it and were full. When we got out of Spiderman it was raining.

Catching UP!

You may not want to read all these posts but hey it's our family story so here it goes!
I didn't have time to write about our Valentine's Day or Micah's birthday. Highlights of that time:

Valentine's Day Tim sent me chocolate covered strawberries, YUMMY, from Shari's berries. We had our date the Friday before so we had a family dinner of pizza--the kids' favorite! We also one of the Costco Red Velvet cakes for dessert. We gave the kids a valentine bag of their favorite candy. I had scouts that day--we took them swimming to pass off the rescues and out for ice cream after. I also helped at Izak's Valentine class party. Forgot we made heart shaped pancakes for breakfast...It was a fun busy day!

Zane earned his 100 books t-shirt. The goal for all of first grade is to read 100 books by the end of March (that was starting in January). At first Zane did 5 books a day but then got up to 10 as he got closer. So proud of him!

The Saturday before Micah's birthday we took him and some friends to see Tangled in honor of it. He and our other boys were not interested when we went in November. They loved it! Taran and Timo have never seen it, they are missing out!

Sunday was Micah's birthday so my family came over for his dinner and dessert. It was a lot of fun and he liked all his presents. Monday Granny took him out for lunch and shopping. He had a great time. Then he went to a birthday party for a girl in his class at Jump On It--a place that has a warehouse full of trampolines. He had a blast. Meanwhile, since it was President's Day I was trying to get ready for my trip to NYC. But I had some bored sad kids so I took them to the dinosaur museum. That was fun and it all turned out fine. Tim had to work so he missed out and I am not sure what my older boys did...

Tuesday I went to the temple then I went shopping for stuff for the family for while I was going to be gone. That night was the Blue & Gold banquet and it was great. Izak got his Arrow of Light award and crossed the bridge to be a Boy Scout! That night my friend Julie who works for Jetblue, Robin another mom going on choir tour and I went to the airport to make an appearance so our chances of getting on Stand By would increase. We got home at 12:30 PM!

Wednesday I packed what I needed still. Julie who works for Jetblue was watching the flight load and saw that we were not going to get on the red eye that night--we found out that New York had the week off so lots of them were flying home that week!
This meant we had to leave by 4 PM to get to SLC airport by 5 PM to catch a flight to Long Beach and then from there go to New York! I kind of got a little panicked but Tim, my mom and the kids helped me out so I could be ready to go. I swear I went to Walmart 3 times that day! Anyway, we got to New York the same time as the kids and they flew Delta-red eye! They caught a tail wind so they made time!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Happy 11th Birthday Izak!

Wow, didn't I just post about Micah's birthday???? Yes, it's birthday time around here. Tim's is next Wednesday! But today it's about Izak! He was born just 2 weeks after we moved into to our house in Cedar Hills. It was crazy and I still feel like I never got properly organized! He has been a delight most of the time. I remember thinking he was the funnest baby we ever had, he was just so happy all the time once the colic wore off. Maybe the contrast had something to do with it! :) He is a great thinker, athletically talented and musically talented. It is fun to see these children come to their talents. He is very tenderhearted and tends to befriend those with no friends. He has become a social bug this year and has spent time in the hall for chatting! I was shocked, our shy guy no longer! He's been doing better with that since I offered to come to school and sit with him. Hopefully the teen years won't break his tender heart, hopefully he'll weather that time well. He is off to the BYU Spring Merit Badge Pow Wow today with some friends. Hopefully he will enjoy the rest of the day celebrating! Happy Birthday to our Mr. Izak!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Freedom Friday

What to Do About High Oil Prices This is an excellent article about how we need to get rid of so much dependence on others for our oil supply. Please read it and let our representatives know we want independence from other countries. Thanks!