Monday, October 31, 2011

The thrill of Halloween

Thank you to Laurel for providing the Thriller photos.
Her daughter Sylvia threw an awesome
zombie party a while back.

We were the lucky neighbors
who opened our door to the zombie apocalypse.
Pretty dang freaky.
It's no wonder somebody called the cops.

The other day, I was driving to the grocery store
with my 8 year old Bella.
Thriller came on the radio.
I turned it up and rocked out.

It was dark outside and we were waiting at the red light. Next to us was a big silver truck. In the passenger seat was a young man between 18 and 20. Driving looked to be his old man. They wore hunting garb. I wouldn't have noticed them at all if it wasn't for a silly exchange. They must have been listening to the same radio station because as I turned my monstrous arms towards my driver's side window in a classic Thriller dance move, the boy stared straight at me and started cracking up. He turned to his old man and said something. The old man veered over and smiled as I sheepishly put my hands back on the wheel.

Bella was instantly mortified. "Man, mom, you even got his dad looking at you!" I laughed and kept enjoying the music, with just a little less subtle dance moves. It was two weeks from Halloween. It was dark outside. The moon was almost full. I had just one of my kids in the car, and Thriller was playing on the radio. What's not to love? I just had to dance. And sing.

As my daughter's face was bright red and I continually fought off her attempts at turning off the radio while simultaneously putting forth my subtle Thriller moves, I thought to myself, "These are the mothering moments that I love the most." The ones that are so easily forgotten unless I write them down.

Yes, it's moments like these that are the thrill of being a mother. The Thriller moments happen so few and far between. The moments when as a mother I know I am just one big grown-up kid and I am cool! All it took was a mortified 8 year old daughter and two grown hunters to seal the deal.

It's just the Thriller.....(c'mon you know you want to sing along)

Happy Halloween y'all.
I hope yours is just as thrilling
as I am sure ours will be.
We started the day
with a before dawn wake up call
for costumes, make-up, hot cocoa, and orange eggs.

Don't forget.
Today is your last day to leave a comment 
for a chance to win my copy of the book
Lunch Wars.
Please eat all your Halloween candy in honor of Amy Kafala.
She will love it.
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Sunday, October 30, 2011

The Uinta's

There is no better day than Sunday
to post a bunch of photos
of my family
and God's great earth.

I love them both.
Thank you God

for my amazing life.

Feel free to join us on our drive
from last weekend.
It's pictures like the one above
that make me want to 
oblige the girls
when they tell us we need to have another baby.

How bout it honey?
Rock on rock.
Or as Caroline says it
big rock, little rock.

I love girls with pockets.
I love pockets with souvenirs.
I love free souvenirs.

I can hear your sigh.
I wish you could have come with us too.

Just imagine what I could do
with a camera that costs more than $100.
My birthday is coming up LG.
(hint hint)
Yeah right. 
We all know he ain't spending more
than $100 on me for my birthday.
A girl can dream though.

We love you Uinta Mountains.
Especially in the Fall.

Thanks again to a God
who is the ultimate artist.

You take our breathe away.
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Saturday, October 29, 2011

Book Review - Sounder

SounderSounder by William H. Armstrong

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Consequences to the smallest of actions. Consequences that effect others.

The faithful lives of the poor and downtrodden.
The inequality in the lots of life.
The injustice of upperclass and lowerclass.
The origin of the southern term "the dogdays of summer."

The love of a dog for his master.
And the love of a dog from his masters.

The hatred and cruelty in some people.
The kindness in others.

The love of learning and the joy of reading.
The love and significance and beauty of Bible stories.

The resolve of the challenged.

The resourcefulness of old-timers.

Hard work ethic.

All lessons I want to teach my children.
In words it was emotional.
A good emotional.

It got me thinking about who has told me stories that may seem insignificant, but are really just masterpieces waiting to be told.

View all my reviews

Friday, October 28, 2011

HeroMom needs your help

I recently told you about my cousin DeAnne and how I nominated her for AllState's HeroMom of the year.
The recap is DeAnne is an amazing mom of 16 children. Most were adopted and many are special needs.

Well, we are competing against a bigger blogger to be able to surpass into first place and we are struggling.

However I never go down without a fight. I have been campaigning pretty heavily on facebook and at one point we got within 80 votes behind. They have now upped their game and we are straggling behind between 200-300 votes.

So what I am trying to say is I NEED you. I desperately need every single one of you to help me here.

Please go and vote for DeAnne. You can vote every day. What would help us the most is if you will get others to go and vote too. I know that is asking a lot, but I someday can return the favor.

Share this link where they can vote with anyone and everyone. Tell them to vote for DeAnne.

Or promote the vote with the facebook event.

I love you my readers. Thanks for always being there for me. I love having my blogging friends who I know I can always be honest with, vent to, and beg for help from.

Thank you all so much.

You are mean.

Our girls bicker from time to time.
Here is the evidence.

I hate it when they bicker
and call each other names.
Especially when they are right
in their accusations.

There are worse things in the world
than raising a kid who is bullied.
Like raising a bully.

Oh no, I have one of each.
Now what do I do?
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Thursday, October 27, 2011

Mormons and Music

A few weeks ago we attended
Abigail's informal
choir performance.

I was astounded!

For just a few weeks of school,
this 7th grade choir
sounded amazing.

I love how in this song
Abigail misses the first clap.

And seriously,
this middle school has enough talented pianists
to accompany all their choirs.
Check out this accompanist.
She's so young
and inspiring.
Watching her accompany the choir
made me emotional and proud
and she isn't even my kid.

I am grateful that our girls have the opportunity to go to school in Utah.
The choral music programs here are remarkable.

As evidenced by the recent Mormon ties
in the popular show Sing off.

Everyone knows that there is no better choir
in the world than
The Mo Tab.

What about The Osmonds?

The Jets are my personal favorite Mormon musicians.

I recently read about Brandon Flowers,
also a Mormon musician.

There are so many amazing Mormon musicians that I could do this for months.
I haven't even gotten into Mormon contemporary music.
I recently shared Hilary Weeks and Michael McLean.

The Hinckley brothers are personal friends.

Here is one of my new favorite singles
by a new favorite Mormon musician, Stephanie Mabey.
LG and I had the privilege of seeing her in concert recently.
I really liked this song.
Weird but catchy.
I dare you to watch this
and try not to find yourself singing
along with the lyrics
"If I were a zombie,
I'd never eat your brain."

Do enjoy some less known Mormon music on me.

I have a thing for the smooth harmony
that only Polynesians can produce.
These Polynesians must be Mormon
because they are singing two of our most beloved hymns.

Here are 21,000 Mormons singing together. Powerful stuff.

Last but not least,
some crazy Mormon missionaries.
Their mothers probably died when watching.
It's a miracle that these 19 year old boys don't all kill themselves.

From the uttermost part of the earth have we heard songs, even glory to the righteous.
Isaiah 24:16.

One really has to think for a moment about the possibility of the Mormon church truly being inspired.
How else could it motivate so many to sing such glorious praises?
And we do it so well.
In my humble opinion.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Beautiful Heartbreak

I've experienced heartbreak.
More than one.
I remember vividly a day years ago when my friend Lindsey
walked in my front door
to find me completely debilitated,
inconsolable, defeated, and heartbroken.
I was on my couch crying uncontrollobly
while my three small children
were running around neglected.
When I told Lindsey what was going on
she cried too.

Earlier in the day, I had tried to go to the library
to escape the pain,
my toddler was a monster,
surely responding to her mom's emotional state.
A mean old man confronted me
and told me I was a horrible mother.
Of course, that day I was a horrible mother.
It was all I could do not to shoot myself in the head.

He didn't see all the other days.
The good days.
The days before the crippling pain.
But the other mom did.
She was usually by my side for weekly storytime.
She rushed out to my car and prayed for me
while I bawled some more at the wheel of my car.

You may think I am just some dramafied attention mongrel,
but you will never know.
The heartbreak is one I have shared with very few.
But it was awful. It is something I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy.

I have worked for years to overcome that pain.
The only thing that finally gave me solace
was turning it over to the Lord.
Over and over again.
I have become
an expert at handing it over.
So much so
that I have become a new person.
A better person.
A stronger person.
A happier person.
A more peaceful person.
And a person who seeks the Lord.

I have experienced a beautiful heartbreak.
More than one actually.
I have experienced a repeated heartbreak
until I gave it to my Lord
so many times that it
became beautiful.
Just because I shared it.
And He turned it into beauty.

So, I loved this song this morning.
Even if Hilary Weeks
stole it from this life-changing blog post.

I hope we can all be Lindsey's
or praying moms,
but really sometimes we may
be moms who neglect our kids
or ornery old men who are mean and critical.
And hopefully other people will just remember
that we might be at the bottom,
or trying to hike our way out of the
beautiful heartbreak.

But even though I don't have a video made about me
or I am not an inspirational speaker
or a famous blogger,
I can testify
with all the honesty of my heart
that God will bring us through
our worst pain.
He may even take us through it on purpose
so that we can have a new and beautiful vista
when we reach the top
where we have learned to
stay right by His side.

P.S. Help DeAnne not to experience the heartbreak of coming so close to first place as HeroMom of the year and not winning. Please go vote now. If you get someone else to vote, besides you, leave me a message and tell me who you got to vote and I will add you into a real special post coming up very soon.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


I have funny friends.
They make my facebook world wondrous.

Here are some great shares from this morning.
They are telling about American life.

 Even American Chinese food isn't always safe.

 Health departments nationwide
are having an influx of crazies and marital strife.

Cookie monster says get your own job
and pay for your own cookies.

Monday, October 24, 2011

The BeaUty of Utah

My post is late today.
I prayed this morning that God would help me prioritize
and use my time wisely.
I seem to have this issue lately with being attached to my computer.

I guess my prayers were answered
because I got all three of my bathrooms cleaned.
And boy did they need it.
They needed it before I was sick last week.
And now every member of the family 
has had their turn being sick,
except for Abigail;
she never gets sick.
She is like an alien or something.

I am so glad I didn't clean bathrooms before everyone got sick.
So much better to clean them after.
Instead of cleaning them both before and after.

God is always watching out for me.

As I was cleaning bathrooms today
God was with me.
Weird I know.
How do I know he was with me?
I felt a deep sense of joy and gratitude.
Those are fruits of the spirit.

I was so grateful for my bathrooms.
LG and I have our own half bath now
and it is a luxury to us.
Our bathrooms are all recently remodeled
which makes them really easy to clean.

I was grateful for my man.
He went to work today
even though he is still a little sick.
Thank you LG
for being the provider for our family.

I was grateful for our neighbors,
most of which are also church friends.
Only in Utah.
I am so excited about
trick or treating
in a three block radius
full of people
we know and love from church.

I am grateful for my kiddos.
Sophia just turned 10
and I see her growing into a lovely
young lady, just like Abigail.
Bella is such a great worker.
And Caroline is keeping us young.

I am mostly grateful for my new life in the Lord.
I have a much deeper and greater relationship with Him
because of the trials I have faced in the past decade.
I know He is with me. Always.
He makes me happy,
and I have such a positive outlook on life
because He helps me overcome my weaknesses.

So on to the photos.
I have a bunch of new Autumn landscapes
waiting on my camera
for download and publish,
so I guess I better give you
the last of the summer shots.

You could probably find a photo like this on every block in Utah.
It just makes me giddy to think
about all the good people going to church
at the foot of the strong mountains.

This was a messed up shot
when Bella was swinging at the park.
I thought it should be metaphorical for something.
Any ideas?

I imagined NieNie out on this boat 
at Utah lake
with her family.
LG and I rode our bikes down on the trail
a few weeks back.
We rode through a bunch of burs
and got all four of our tires flat.
A nice nice woman stopped to get me
and take me home
so I could come back and pick up LG.
That's what it's like in Utah.
Good people everywhere.

I love sunsets.

Sunset at the park during football practice.

I think I should win some kind of award for this shot.

The tents at the Timpanogos Storytelling Festival.
We got to play in them when they were empty.
We rode our bikes as a family down the canyon.
A lady in the public restroom gave me tips on how to have a boy.
They had four girls and she was pregnant with a boy.
Only time will tell if her tips were true.
Because Scouts honor she says they were tried.

Another day, another sunset.

We may not be beaUtiful to you,
but we are beaUtiful to us,
and that is all that matters.

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Sunday, October 23, 2011


Two weeks ago in Sunday School
we talked about King Agrippa.

I think I relate with him
when I say
"Almost thou convertest me."

Thank you Marta for the facebook share.
Southerners: I need your eyes.
Pretty pretty please take pictures of church signs for me.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

DIY Dining Room Frames

Remember the post
where I told you about
my thrift store picture frames?

Well, here are the photos of the finished product.
Just for my mother-in-law.
She won't be visiting any time soon
to see it for herself.

My father-in-law
will be serving in the
Columbia, South Carolina
LDS temple presidency
and my mother-in-law will be
assisting the temple matron
for the next three years.

We are so excited for them
in their new calling.

I think I need to redo this one 
so that the lettering is darker and easier to read.

Your love is better than ice-cream.
And African safari animals.

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