December 31, 2011

Gratitude and the New Year

Take a few minutes today, at the end of this year of 2011, and see just how many things there are to be grateful for!  When you get done, email me the list and I will compile everyone's and email them back!

  1. 1. 
    Write 10 physical abilities you are grateful for.
  2. 2. 
    Write 10 material possessions you are grateful for.
  3. 3. 
    Write 10 living people you are grateful for.
  4. 4. 
    Write 10 deceased people you are grateful for.
  5. 5. 
    Write 10 things about nature you are grateful for.
  6. 6. 
    Write 10 things about today you are grateful for.
  7. 7. 
    Write 10 places on earth you are grateful for.
  8. 8. 
    Write 10 modern inventions you are grateful for.
  9. 9. 
    Write 10 foods you are grateful for.
  10. 10. 
    Write 10 things about the gospel you are grateful for.
When we make a list like this, we discover that a list of 100 doesn’t even begin to scratch the surface of all the things God has given us.

(This idea came from the December 2011 Ensign)

December 25, 2011


There have been LOTS of fun activities over the past few days. . . puzzling, hedge trimming (thanks, Brand!), horseback riding, birthday parties, cuddling, and MORE puzzling!  We had so much fun BEFORE Christmas, we weren't sure it could get any better!!

Horseback riding with Nikki (and everyone else!) was a blast!  Nikki's favorite thing to say as we were galloping along was "FASTER!"  Nat would ask Nikki, "What do cowgirls say?" and Nikki would quickly call out "YEE-haw!"  She LOVES the horses and riding.

And of course there was our Christmas Eve Party at our house with the Schrams. . .

And the Christmas Program was one of many "firsts!"  The "hula gang" did a great job as we all sang Mele Kelikmaka, Hans played a Alto sax solo...a first after 12 years!; Brandon played a trumpet solo...a first after MORE than 12 years!; the "hippopotamus" song was a hit with everyone, especially Nikki; Amelia, Holly and Kristy sang; and Dal and Nat played a violin duet.  Lots of singing along, too!

And of course there were pictures. . . but where was DAD?!?!  (And of course we missed Jaimi and her family, and Denzel and his. . . )

And then there was Christmas Day. . . and I didn't take hardly any pictures!!  But this gives a little taste...We all enjoyed watching Nikki open her presents!  She LOVED the hippopotamus Hans and Mil gave her...everything else was cake!!  Dad's eyes "bugged out" at everything, and, of course there was lots of eating!  But the best thing of all was celebrating Christ's birth on Sunday, going to church together, feeling a wonderful spirit during the Christmas program, and then getting to be there as Dallin was ordained an Elder in the Melchizedek priesthood.  It was a wonderful day!!

December 20, 2011

Too Much Fun!!

Brandon and Tannya got here Friday the 16th. . . and we have been entertained by Nikki ever since!! She LOVES the horses, likes the chickens and Hank...her favorite word is "Kod - e - ack," she always wants to go with Grandma to feed the horses, she wanted to go for a "nudder one" after our first horseback ride on Silverado, she had a blast at the pool celebrating her 2nd birthday on the 19th, and, when she and I went to feed the horses this morning she said, "Grandma, slide! Splash splash!" We had lots of splash fights at the pool as well as going down the slide together about 10 times! She is too cute!!

Dallin and Erika got in Sunday, just in time for dinner...hooray! We went horseback riding with "da boys" and Erika did great staying on Silver...actually, it was just the boys who seemed to be screaming all of the time. Strange. . . and we forgot the camera. Drat! Oh well...good times. Can hardly wait for Nat and Kristy to get here...and Denzel, Anna and Bridger arrive Christmas night!!  (We'll be thinking of Jaimi, Mike and the kids in Texas!!)

December 11, 2011


What makes a friend?  Is it a term we use loosely, or does it have deep meaning?

We each experience things that give us a better understanding of what a "friend" truly is.  I have to chuckle when I look at Facebook sometimes.  Some people have 3,000 "friends", others have less than that, but still in the 1000's.  And it makes me think, "Are they truly FRIENDS, or are they acquaintances, or people someone is just friendly to, etc., etc?"  Along those lines, I also consider what kind of friend I am?

So here' a not all-inclusive list of the things I think:

A friend. . .
. . . listens to you when you need to talk; sometimes they will give you counsel, even when you don't ask for it, but they aren't offended when you say "I wasn't asking for advice!  I just need you to listen!!"

. . . is there for you when you need something, even if you didn't schedule it two weeks in advance.  And you KNOW they would have been there for you if there was a good reason they couldn't be there.

. . . rejoices in your success even if it is something they wish they were able to do but haven't been able to.    They are truly happy for you and share in your delight.  (Like going to Australia!  Or winning an Ipad!!)

. . . never tries to undermine your goals to improve yourself.  For example, if you're trying to lose weight and they are really skinny (or not!), they don't tempt you with a piece of chocolate cake saying, "Oh come on.  Just enjoy yourself!  It's not that big of a deal!"  The same holds true with much heavier things like stopping drinking or doing drugs.  Why is it that "friends" try to pull the recovering addict down instead of encouraging their sobriety?  And I don't "get" how people can be so BLIND to the fact that a REAL FRIEND would NEVER do that.

. . . does not care more about themselves than they do about you . . . and vice versa!

True friends aren't usually found in the thousands or hundreds.  They are rare and should be treasured!!

I am SO grateful for my friends!!

December 8, 2011

Counsel from General Conference

Hi Kids!
General Conference was held a little over two months ago.  Do you remember any of the counsel given?

 Here are a couple of segments from Elder Packer's talk:

"If the adversary should take you prisoner due to misconduct, I remind you that you hold the key that will unlock the prison door from the inside.  You can be washed clean through the atoning sacrifice of the Savior Jesus Christ."
"I say again that youth today are being raised in enemy territory with a declining standard of morality.  But as a servant of the Lord, I promise that you will be protected and shielded from the attacks of the adversary IF you will heed the promptings that come from the Holy Spirit.  Dress modestly; talk reverently; listen to uplifting music.  Avoid all immorality and personally degrading practices.  Take hold of your life and order yourself to be valiant."
"As one of His special witnesses, I testify that the outcome of this battle that began in the premortal life is not in question.  Lucifer will lose."

I hope this is a helpful reminder.


December 7, 2011

All in 24 hours. . .

Dad and I hit the road IMMEDIATELY after school got out Friday afternoon...there weren't many cars in front of us at the light!!  We drove up to Provo, where we met up with most of the fam at the Marriott Center to see the BYU Folk Dancers' Christmas Around The World Show.  It was great!!  Dallin & Ericka (his girlfriend that we like a lot!), Nat (minus RJ due to the bowl game the next morning), Kristy and Nikki (Brand & Tann couldn't come, but they let Nikki come with Kristy, which was SO fun!!), were there, but we missed Anna and Bridger, who weren't feeling well!  

After the show we went over to Dan's and Janet's to visit, and then spent the night...Dallin had 6:00 a.m. rugby practice.  UGH!!!  The rest of us enjoyed a leisure morning, including a "service project", then we drove to Rio Tinto Stadium to watch Snow College (RJ) in the Top of the Mountains Bowl game.  It was VERY cold, but it was fun being together, and we even saw RJ play some!

As soon as the game was over we all said our good-byes, and then hit the road back to warmer climes!!  What a great little get-together!!  Wish Denzel could have been there with Anna and Bridger!  And, of course, Jaimi, Mike, Ben & Kristen!  Oh well, we'll be happy with what we can get!!  Love you all!!

December 6, 2011

Who is THIS?!?!

AND there is Bridger . . . although I had to steal this pic off of Facebook!

Air Traffic Controller practice . . .

And, of course, the two Blondies!!

 (I need PICTURES, please!!)

Love our Texas babies, too!!

Against amazing odds. . .

Sometimes we may think our lives are hard...that things aren't going our way, and we don't see how anything will "work out."  I love this video, not just for the amazing performance, but for what this young man represents in his ability to survive and succeed from a very young age.  Wow!  (And it's cool because its Korean!!)