Thursday, April 3, 2014

~Oops! How could I forget to report on "Dinner!"

Thanksgiving was great.  "Dinner" turned out to be 37.8 pounds after all was said and done.  It took 8 hours to cook that bird!  It was huge.  Adam has quite the story of how he rode that turkey bareback to slit its throat, all the while his adoring fans (the boys) cheered him on.  Adam had the boys help pluck Dinner.  Jett managed one feather.



Simon had to have a leg.  Kinda grossed me out! We shared with the Fullers.
My favorite part of the ward Christmas party was the Nativity.  Noah was an upset shepherd, Jett was an unhappy little lamb and Simon LOVED being a donkey. lol  The little stinker kept turning around and doing a donkey kick while the kids were singing their Christmas song.  It was hilarious!!  Wish I would have gotten a picture. Simon being Simon
The Primary Presidency asked Noah to be Joseph, right before it started.  I think he managed to give all of them a dirty look as they scurried around dressing kids.  He said he would stand there but not sing.  Then after it was over he went outside and cried.  He thought everyone was looking at him AND he had to stand by girls.  Heaven forbid.  Simon loved dressing up and wore his donkey suit everyday for a week. Its interesting how different my boys are.
I was not thrilled with my decorations this year.  I truly disliked the plaid table runners and the centerpieces were...well there are not words....  Why did I choose plaid??  I kept waiting for bagpipe players to come in.  Not one of my best.  The only thing I did like was the garland I put on the stage.

~End of December 2013, bitter sweet

For a while now I've known my time as yw president was growing short.  A little birdy gave me a heads up so I knew my release was coming. (Thank goodness.  I don't do well with change so I appreciated knowing beforehand.)  The Bishop came over after Christmas. He gave me my "two weeks notice," literally.  I felt relief and sadness, but I also felt it was right.  The presidency had planned a kidnap breakfast the following week. The day of the breakfast was weird and confusing for me.  To my surprise, I began to feel very protective of these girls. One by one, as we picked them up, I felt there was no way I could be done.  I LOVE THESE GIRLS! My heart was breaking.  But, being that I knew this was one of the last times I would be with them, I held it together for a few hours.  It was a fun, quick breakfast and then we took girls home.

Since I was getting released I decided to throw caution to the wind (we all know I'm a rebel at heart ;)).  Before I took the girls home, I let the girls drive my (new-to-me) car. heehe...  Oh boy was that fun!! We went to a big parking lot and I let them take turns driving around light poles.  
Oh my...hahaha 
All the girls that drove had their learners permit :)
Ashlee, very cautious, but did great.

Liz, the professional

McKinley, barely fit in my seat...long legs!  She did great.

Mary, oh Mary.  She asked which pedal was the gas and which was the brake.  Then she almost wrecked into a light pole.  Between the screaming and laughing, she said the pedals in her moms car were switched. Really Mary!?!  How does this girl have her permit?  I haven't laughed, screamed and been that scared in a long time.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

~More December - Noah, Christmas, Haircuts

Adam and I celebrated our birthdays.  He turned 37 and I turned 36.  He got me a Kitchen Aid and I got him trapping and snaring supplies with snowshoes.
Dec. 22 was our wards Sunday, Christmas Sacrament Meeting.  I was asked to speak and the young women were asked to sing a special number.  It was a normal Sunday morning mixed with a little chaos trying to get to church early.  Anyway, we made it.  Church started and just as the sacrament ended I look over at Noah and watch him slowly bend over.  I didn't think anything of it.  I continued to watch him fall off the bench and roll out into the aisle.  At first it was funny and I thought, "whoa! he's going to be embarrased for falling off the bench."  Then in the next second I realized he wasn't moving and instant panic set in.  I tried lifting him, but sometime in the last 9 years HE GREW and was REALLY heavy and unconscience!  Adam was right behind me and scooped him up and left the chapel.  I turned to the people sitting behind us and quickly asked them to keep an eye on the other boys.  By this time Adam had Noah in the foyer and was laying him down.  I was confused as to what was happening.  Things weren't registering very fast.  I knew Noah had passed out but after that, I wasn't sure.  I remember kneeling on the floor with Noah and realized someone else was sitting beside me.  It was Sister Evans and next to her was her mother.  They both have medical training.  I then realized more people were standing by.  I saw Brother McGee, Brother Hardman and Sister Wright was walking out of sacrament meeting.  It was an Emergency Response Team! Instant comfort fell over me.  I knew right then, Heavenly Father sent the most qualified people to help Noah.  All of these people (except Brother Hardman have medical training).  Noah started to come to.  He was upset and was confused, not knowing what had happened.  Seeing Jeanette was there (she's a very high-up ER nurse), Brother McGee, Sister Evans and her mom went back into sacrament meeting.  As Jeanette was looking him over,  I saw, to my surprise, there stood Bishop and Brother Wright.  The second wave of the Emergency Response Team!  Again Heavenly Father had sent the most qualified to assit with Noah.  This time to administer to his spiritual and emotional needs.  As tears streamed down my face, I could feel Heavenly Father's love for Noah and our family.  I immediately knew that Heavenly Father was aware of what was happening and was providing everything we needed at that moment.  Bishop, Brother Wright, Brother Hardman and Adam gave Noah a priesthood blessing.  After the blessing big, tall, Bishop got on one knee,leaned over and gave Noah a hug.  It was so sweet.  In that moment, I thought of the Savior.  He would have done that.  I thought of how he left the 90 and 9 to seek out the one.  I thought of how the Savior didn't discriminate.  He loved the saint and the sinner, the old and the young.  He administered and then loved.  And to see that Bishop and Brother Wright would leave the stand, in a packed Christmas sacrament meeting, to be there for the one...for Noah, my little Noah who the world would see as an average 9 year old was overwhelming to me.  That's what the Savior would have done.  All of these people who had come to help Noah were following in the Saviors footsteps.  In a matter of minutes, my spiritual eyes had been opened once again to Heavenly Father's individual love for each of his children.  I know without a doubt, He was aware of Noah and what was happening.
Continuing on...
A few minutes later, Jeanette had to go back into sacrament meeting to give her talk.  Then she walked right back out to be with Noah.  I went back in briefly to play the piano and then give my talk. It was really crazy!  I'm not sure how I played the piano and then walked right to the pulpit to speak, but I did.  I'm sure there was Divine help there also. On my way back out to be with Noah, one of the young men was waiting by the room where we had moved Noah into. He handed me a sandwich (which he had brought for himself) and offered it to me, to give to Noah, hoping it would help.  The acts of service and love just kept coming!  Adam took Noah and the other boys home.  I had to stay and teach yw's.  I'm afriad I was a little distracted during that lesson, but somehow made it through.  When I got home, Noah was fine.  He had eaten a hamburger and was watching a movie.  All throughout the afternoon and evening, phone calls and texts came to check on Noah.  This boy is loved! 
Christmas was great!  It was a cold one though. -40 and our pellet stove hasn't been working.  Thankfully Adam installed a little wood burning stove when I was in Arizona.  It's been keeping the house at a comfortable temperature.  On Christmas Eve we paid $400 for a cord of wood.  Ugh...  There are a lot of times I wonder why we are still living here.  When we have to load the stove every 2 hours, day and night, the thought crosses my mind often.  I miss home.
Christmas Day
Simon loved his karaoke machine.  He loves to sing and ham it up!
Levi just went around eating chocolate out of everyone's stockings.  He got blocks, a new sled and some other small things.  He's easy to please.

Jett got a 2DS and Skylander Swapforce and Noah got a tablet with some other random things.

Noah was a little disappointed because he didn't know what his tablet was capable of and Jett got what he wanted.  After we loaded some games and showed him how to use it, he was a lot happier.  The picture shows how he was feeling.  Made my heart sad.

He's climbing again!  This time on a pogo stick that's turned upside down.

Simon has a real talent for writing and illustrating stories.  One of his most popular tales (with our family) is called, "One-eyeball guy."  While in AZ I saw this eye-ball hat and had to get it.  Now he can wear his hat while he does his bookreadings :) 
Haircut time!  Before and afters...
Levi-I like his hair a little longer, but Adam likes it short and since they are boys...short it is! 


 Noah's hair grows so fast.  He needs a trim every two weeks.

I wish I would have learned a few things from the in-laws while we lived in AZ.  I took for granted that grandma and grandpa own a barbershop.  Hindsight.  Thank heavens for clippers cause I just wing it!

~December 2013

Our traditional trip to see Santa was fun, as always.  Simon really wanted to go first :)

Levi was excited too!

After 9 years Noah is starting to warm up to Santa.  He stood by the big guy this year without tearing up. ;)  Go Noah

I printed up some cute little papers that said "Merry Christmas" to the Blacks and Jeremy's kids.  When I was in Arizona they sent letters back with me to hand-deliver to Santa. In both pictures he is holding their letters.  Really cool!  I printed the pictures out, framed and wrapped them.  Then mailed them as an early Christmas gift to each family.

This years ornaments
After Santa Claus house we made candy cane reindeer for an afternoon activity.

Always climbing on something, little stinker.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

~Young Women in Excellence, Nov 2013

I really loved the decorations for this YWIE (thank you Pinterest).  November is not the season for these colors, but with a little creativity, it worked.  Thanks to Tamera for sharing her pictures with me.  I never think of taking pictures of the finished product.  The night was very nice and the girls did a great job performing and showing off their Personal Progress Projects.  I still can't get over how cute the tables looked!  We probably should have moved the chalk board and extra tables out of the background though...oh well. 

The pinwheels were fun and easy to make.  I hot-glued them to wooden dowels and then attached them to painted 2x4s.  The wood was a little tacky, but I was on a budget.  I tried to hide most the bases with white cloth.

Most of the food was non-healthy, cute and yummy, but we did provide a few alternatives for those with allergies, i.e. fruit and veggies (everyone needs a treat right?)
The centerpieces were mason jars.  It took several coats of paint and then with a little sanding, they were done!  I really wanted hydrangeas but didn't want to pay the price (they are expensive!), so I purchased some fall flowers that were on clearance at Joann's.  I took apart the plastic pieces underneath so the petals would fall open a bit more and make the flower look fuller.  It worked.

Also, on the tables with the centerpieces were chocolate (of course), the program outline, and these cute little boxes.  There was one box for each girl.  Inside each leader had written a way in which that yw displayed a value or gave an example of something she was doing well to live the gospel.  I really wanted to the girls to know that they are doing good things and we notice when they make good choices.  Anyway, they turned out pretty cute too!

The banners turned out FANTASTIC!  I cut the shapes out on my cricut and Kim put them together.  Love, love, love!  I also made the stands for the banners to hang off of.  They turned out ok too, for a one time use thing.

My favorite part of the night was when the YW spotlighted a woman in their life that displayed a Value.  It was fun to hear each of them talk about their moms and grandmas.  I love these girls and can see what great women they are going to be someday.