Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Blessing #11

I have lot of blessings that I have been meaning to write about but because I am behind and because of my schedule right now, I am going to make this short and "sweet"! Cookies! Ahhh Cookies! Not only are they one of the only things that I can make in my kitchen well (except choc chip...Calli makes those better than me), but they are amazing therapy for me and right now...I really need some cookie THERAPY!!! This morning, I made it down to my kitchen to make something and these cookies are what I created to take around to my VT sisters on the last day of the month! Hopefully they understood! I ate 6 for breakfast (plus 3 more with the dough snacks) Blessing #11 COOKIES!!!!!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Blessing #10

It was my birthday on Sunday and although this weekend was a little hard watching my dad struggle, it was still a day to celebrate and to reflect on my 35 years of life. It was especially a day to reflect and remember because I have again been reminded about how fragile life is. For this reason, my blessing this week is the wonderful 35 years that I have spent in mortality. Here are 35 moments that have happened in my life that have helped me to become the 35 year old that I am. Some things mean more than others of coarse, but the others are fun fillers that also mean something to me or random memories that I thought of while thinking about this blessing.
1. Being Born to goodly parents under the covenant.
2. Moving to Fort Wayne, IN when I was 4. That is where I learned to be who I am today.
3. Jumping in the Indiana leaves after we raked them up.
4. Singing solos that sometimes I didn't cry through when I was very young.
5. Becoming friends with Gretchen, my childhood friend and forever friend. She will always have a special spot in my heart.
6. Playing Star Wars in the crawl Space below our home.
7. The many times that I made Michael carry me on his shoulders, sing songs with me, and pretty much doing anything I wanted him to. I had such a great time with him.
8. Gymnastics in our back yard, in the living room, on the gymnasium floor at the school, at church, & on the HS team.
9. Attending my first Young Woman Broadcast with my mom and the necklace that she gave me that night (I still have it).
10. The 6 Girls Camps I attended growing up! Still one of my favorite places to be! Back flips off the diving board, late night giggles in the tent, skit night, bugs in cups, etc. etc.!!!!
11. A talk I had with my dad at Concordia Seminary.
12. Youth Conference when I was 15. Jon Bytheway was one of the speakers. I played Volleyball with him and he told me that he had heard I was the prettiest girl there at that YC. I totally believed him...He probably said it to all the girls.
13. Traveling out west to visit family with two adults and seven children in our station wagon! My parents are saints!! That is all I have to say!
14. Playing cops with Gretchen.
15. Being in Charisma and singing and dancing my heart out! Loved it!
16. Spring break my Junior Year!!! Sigh! I HEART Jeff Nelson!
17. Failing Algebra my Senior year and then acing it my freshman year in college????
18. Saying good-bye to Indiana and our friends there and yelling hello to Idaho and all of the new times and friends here.
19. Hanging out with Jeff that whole summer and falling in love! Remember the candles babe?
20. Rooming with my cousin and other hilarious and wonderful roommates my year at Ricks.
21. Getting engaged to the man I had always loved after dating many and getting kicked in the booty by my mom-"You'd better get him before he gets away!" she said to me.
22. The day that I got married to my best friend.
23. Moving to Boise and defining who I was even more there.
24. Starting to scrap book. Saved my life! I love it!
25. Having my first child-Quentin.
26. Graduating from Boise State with my bachelors degree.
27. Managing the apartment complex-taught me a lot of life lessons.
28. Having our second child and only daughter Callianne.
29. Building our home together and buying our first house! Those were the days.
30. I have a lot of dear friends in Boise-but meeting my friend Valerie was truly life changing!
31. Having our third child Just Mack!
32. Moving to Idaho Falls-bitter sweet leaving our friends in Boise but moving to new friends and amazing times with our family here.
33. Galen Nelson's accident and how it brought our family closer.
34. Seeing my first Broadway show!! Wicked was Wicked!
35. Serving in a lot of different capacities in each ward I've been in. Learning that service is the true way to show my Heavenly Father and my Savior my commitment to them.

There are so many more that I could write about-here's just a few-35 to be exact! That isn't very many he he! I love getting older. It really doesn't bother me and what a blessing these 35 years have been! Here's to at least 35 more!

Pay it Forward!!

How it works: The FIRST THREE people to leave a comment on this post will receive at some point during this year a gift from ME. What it will be and when it will arrive will be a total surprise--to both of us.The CATCH is that YOU MUST PLAY TOO! Before you leave your comment here, write a pay it forward post on your blog to keep the fun going (you can cut and paste these instructions). Then come back and let me know that you are going to play, and sit back and anticipate the arrival of your gift. It's THAT easy!Remember, only the FIRST THREE comments will qualify. Yea!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Bitter Sweet

Joe, Tim, Michael, Dad, & Jon

Yesterday at Church, one of the speakers compared life to a golf coarse. On a golf coarse, there are a lot of hazards. If there weren't any sand traps, water, trees, slopes, etc...we may always get holes in one. Would that be as interesting or as much of a challenge? Would it be as fun? I am not saying that trying so hard to avoid the hazards or challenges in our life are fun but what I am saying is that I understand that there has to be some bitter to experience the sweet and to improve upon our testimonies of our Savior Jesus Christ and his atonement. Our weekend this weekend was an example of this.
I know that most of you know that my dad has had cancer for over 6 years now. It has been a well fought battle and he has been such a trooper and my mom has been a saint! All of us knew that this cancer would take dad's life at some point. The timing was always the unknown. It still is. However, he has been getting progressively worse and it seems like just lately, things have been happening so fast. He has been spending a lot of time in bed lately-and things that he once was able to do have now become almost near impossible without help or without a great deal of pain. It has been hard to watch, but incredible to see his faith and his continued love for mom, his family, and the gospel and the opportunity that we all have had to spend with him.
On Friday, my mom called me to borrow my crock pot and started crying when I asked her about dad. I dropped Mack off at school and went directly over there to see what was going on. I found her crying in the kitchen and we just held each other for a while and that is when she told me that they were sending Hospice over. Dad had been in such excruciating pain that she didn't know what else to do for him. It has been a huge relief for her and for all of us to have Jill-(the nurse) checking in on him and bringing them whatever they needed and making him comfortable with the pain meds that she can give him. It has been hard to watch him go through this and it was hard for me to realize that we are getting to the end. This weekend two of my brothers came up from Utah to spend some time with us and we had such a good time. Even though it has been an emotional weekend, it was so great to all be together. Ben and Sara were the only ones that we didn't get to spend time with and we missed them dearly! Michael showed off his "rocket show" on Saturday and my favorite part was watching each one of the kids shoot the rocket off and then run as fast as they could do go and retrieve it. It started getting windy and so even when they would run the way they thought that it was going, they ended up turning in the opposite direction to go and get it with the wind change. We did some shopping, some sleep overs with the cousins. played get the Oreo in your mouth by only using your facial muscles and gravity, and ate a lot! We mostly all just spent time together and talked and had such an amazing time together. Friday night dad did perk up a little and was able to come out and visit. He also visited a while on Sunday after the sacrament was brought in for him. That day before Jon went home, he gave dad a blessing with all of the boys standing in and then mom said a family prayer with all of us there. Lots of tears, but lots of love too. The spirit in my parent's home has been so strong. I know that Heavenly Father is watching over all of us and wants us to know that he is there. What an amazing family I have. I am sooo blessed to be able to have a relationship with all of my siblings and to feel of their love-especially at this time.

Michael the Rocket MasterMack and Seth-the Launchers

Jon & Kyla at the Rocket ShowThe kids at the Rocket Show
Get the Oreo in your mouth only using your facial muscles and gravity. Start it out on your forhead...

Eyelashes are useful while the Oreo is lingering around the eye area.

Almost There!!

Got IT!!! So hilarious!! Oh what mormons think of to entertain themselves!!

Jeff and I taking a picture of ourselves because no one ever takes a picture of us!

Aren't these boys just dang adorable??? I am not sure what they were looking at on the laptop-but I was hearing a lot of "DUDE". Kyla said that that was Max's computer talk.

Maddie and Calli-always cute!

This is a horrible picture of it...he didn't want me to take it very badly, but this is a small gash that Mack got right under his eye this weekend. With 11 adults and 13 kids crammed into mom and dads house, it's a wonder that we didn't have more than this and a bloody nose and a few bonked heads periodically. He got this from a piece of licorice-while going to grab some licorice from his cousin, that other cousin was trying to bite his piece and because it was hard, it flicked when the bite released and it hit Mack's cheek just right to give him this litle gash. When I sent him to school today I thought that it will be a really funny story for him to be telling eveyone. I am not sure that they will quite believe him that he got it from licorice!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Blessing #9

What would I do without my friends? I have been blessed my whole life to be surrounded by amazing friends. Now I have friends near and far. Even when I was little, I had the best of friends and have kept touch with them all of these years. Last week, I was just having "one of those days" and while I was making dinner, realized that I didn't have a can of something I needed, so I called a friend around the block and she brought it right over. However, while she was here for those two seconds, she informed me that she was going west in a couple of days and wondered if I wanted to go with her and she would drop me off at Boise (okay-I kind of invited myself-I'll admit it) Do I want to? Little did she know, I was watching Thelma and Loise earlier that day and really thought that I could use a girls weekend about right about now! I called Valerie in Boise and told her I was coming and she rearranged all of her plans (LOL) and we were on our way the next day! (Last minute trips are the best kind. You don't have to think about all of the commitments long enough to talk yourself out of going.) I got into Julie's car that morning and as soon as we got down the road a little way all of the cares of my world seemed to roll off my shoulders and I was on my way to a relaxing weekend with friends. Great conversation in the car that continued all weekend long on any couch in Val's home. We just seemed to move from one couch to the other talking about some things-but mostly talking about a lot of nothings. But, as Meg Ryan said in You've Got Mail...all of those nothings added up to something. What it added up to was me being with friends who lifted me up in a time when I needed them. I have a lot of people that are like that that I can depend on. They each mean something different to me and do different things for me. I am so grateful to them and for each one of them for different reasons-but mostly for the reason for being my FRIEND. If you are reading this, you are a precious friend and I thank you from the bottom of my heart for all of the memories and for all of the times that you lifted me when I needed you. Blessing #9 - FRIENDS.We all need them! Here are Mack and Aiden doing the "friend thing" in Boise. This happened to be the time when they were polishing Aiden's trophy??? They were so adorable the whole time that we were there. We hardly ever saw them! They just played the entire time together and made more memories as friends.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Blessing #8

I am a little behind in my blessings-but this week I have so much to be grateful for that it will be easy to catch up! Blessing #8 is answered prayers. I am so grateful for answered prayers. There have been times in my life when I am praying for something and hoping that I will get this amazing answer and direct communication from my Heavenly Father and receive a clear answer....but then I make my own decisions and realize that the peace that I feel with my decisions and the absence of a stupor of thought IS the answer to my prayer. Lately, I have been lead and guided by my Heavenly Father in a way that I have never been before and so today I am grateful for answered prayers. I know that he knows me and knows what I need and he trusts me and I feel him all the time but lately there have been things weighing on my mind that I needed more and he gave me more. I am so grateful that I am not alone. None of us are. I am grateful to a loving Heavenly Father that will never leave us-all we need to do is ask and we will receive.