Thursday, December 3, 2009

Temple experience

Have you ever been at the temple and laughed so hard you almost peed your pants? I have. We went to the temple last Saturday to see my cute niece sealed to her parents. After, we were outside taking pictures when someone made fun of my husband for wearing a beanie hat. He protested that it was cold when you're bald and everyone needed to give the bald people a break.

Jared's mom agreed that we needed to give the bald people a break (for those of our readers who may not be aware, she is one of the bald people currently, due to chemotherapy), and this somehow led to her suggestion that the bald people switch headgear, and the following occurred:

And then:

Thanks Mom! You are a great sport. I can't remember the last time I laughed that hard.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Senior Moments

I don't know why, but I have been having a lot of senior moments lately. I'm blaming it on the kids. The other day, I spent the morning making yummy bread, only to realize after it was all cooked that I had forgot to put the salt in. I never do things like that.

That was bad enough, but today, I got ready and went to the store and then to lunch with Jared. As I was getting ready to head to SEP's with kids, I looked down and this is what I saw...


Sunday, October 25, 2009

Our Baby Is 9

Kyla turned 9 today! I was asked to do the birthday party blog, because Lynette has a sore back and is enjoying (hopefully) a nice tub soak right now. In case you were confused by this photo, please note that Kyla actually has a normal 9 year old skin complexion and that this is a "costume" with "makeup."

Oh yes, and she has glasses now, in case we forgot to blog about that.

I wanted to point out for our readers my wife's awesomeness in the field of birthday cake construction. One of her best efforts to date, this Halloween/ Birthday Haunted House Cake may have fetched four figures at the Cub Scout bake sale. Unfortunately, this work of art was cut up and consumed by a ravenous horde of party guests before I could properly preserve it and put it up for auction.

Friday, October 9, 2009

This, that, and the other thing!

Time flies when your busy! And we have been busy this fall. Here are a few of the things we have been doing.

1. Volleyball. Games every Tuesday and Thursday, practice every day. They have been playing great and have won the majority of their games!

2. Flag Football. Jayson just finished up a winning season. The championship games were Thursday night and they won both games 26-0.

3. Gymnastics. Kyla had an intersquad meet in September and will start competing in December. She practices 3 times a week for almost 3 hours each time. She also practices her routines just about everywhere we go. She can be seen dancing down the mall, at Target, Sam's Club, etc.

4. Scouts. Bryce and Jayson have been working on several meritbadges and finished several up for the court of honor we had a couple of weeks ago. Seventeen merit badges between the two of them. Jayson received is 2nd class scout. Bryce might have decided on a eagle project (if he can get it approved). Keep it up boys!

5. ETC...What can I say?! There has been canning, religion classes, photoshop classes, my calling, and all the normal everyday things for me. Jared has been busy with work, his calling and an occasional fishing trip. Life is just busy. I'm sure it is no different at your house. Anyway, that is a little of what we have been doing this fall.

Friday, August 21, 2009

And they're off!

Hard to believe, but summer break is officially over! The kids all headed back to school on Wednesday. Luckily, so far, they like their classes and teachers. Already we are full swing into homework and activities. Busy, busy, busy! Here are the traditional first day of school photos.
Amaya, 10th grade

Bryce, 8th grade

Amaya trying to pose and show off her whole outfit.

Jayson, 6th grade

Kyla, 3rd grade

Jayson and Kyla

Thursday, August 13, 2009

And now a word from our sponsor...

Participation fee:  $45
Spandex:  $15
Knee pads:  $15
Sweats:  $70
Shoes:  $70
Equipment bag: $35
Socks:  $10
Game day t-shirt:  $15
Practice t-shirt:   $15
Numerous camps leading to this point:  $$$$$$$
The look on Amaya's face when she found out she made the Sophomore volleyball team:   PRICELESS!!!!

(This was not the priceless look, it is just a tired reenactment)
CONGRATULATIONS AMAYA!  We love you and are so proud of you!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Oh the shame!

Oh, the shame of it all! Jack was forced to wear the CONE OF SHAME this week, and it was hilarious and sad at the same time.

Back up to about 1 week ago. I was going to bed one night at about midnight. Jared was downstairs doing whatever he does down there until the wee hours of the morning, so I couldn't use him as back up when my non-surround sound hearing heard a cat fight. Usually Jack is in the backyard, so I checked there first. Nothing. Then I check the front. Nothing. Then I went to bed. About 2 days later, we noticed that Jack had a big scab on his nose and a smaller one above his eye. A day later, his nose was swollen some, but we decided to just watch it. Sunday after church, Kyla noticed something purplish dried up by the scab on his nose. I decided it needed to be cleaned with a little hydrogen peroxide, which led to a whole lot of pus draining out. Thus, a trip to the vet for antibiotics... so I thought. I took him in Monday afternoon, thinking we would be able to get the drugs and leave. No such luck. Anesthesia, surgery to drain the abscesses, 2 penrose drains, and a night in the hospital later... THE CONE OF SHAME!!!!
Poor Jack has looked so sad.  We feel bad for him, but we just can't help laughing as he walks around bumping his cone into everything.  The chairs, table, doors, walls...  The funniest thing, however, was when he decided to get a drink... from the toilet.  He got stuck.  He kept trying to pull his head out, but he was too close to the seat, so he would lift up... bonk... try again... bonk... again... bonk... over and over again until we quit laughing long enough to help him out.  We only wish we could have been thinking enough to grab the camera.  Here is one more picture of the poor kitty with the drains.

Don't worry. Jack is on the mend. He got his drains out today and no longer has to wear the CONE OF SHAME.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Jayson Hits A Walk-Off

Jayson had the baseball highlight of his life tonight with a walk-off game winning hit in the city tournament championship game. Here's the pressure situation he found himself in:

Jayson's team, the Marlins, was playing their nemesis the Dodgers (both teams undefeated except against each other) for the championship of the Salem tournament. It was a close game with good pitching and defense, with the Marlins leading 2-1 going into the last inning. The Dodgers, the visiting team, scored one on an error in the top half of the inning to tie the game.

The Marlins were playing one player short and had to take an automatic out each time their 9th slot came up in the order. Jayson, batting in the 8th slot, came up with runners on second and third with two out.

Because of the automatic out, Jayson would be the last Marlins batter of the inning and so it was up to him to get the winning run in. If Jayson got out OR walked, the inning would be over because the spot after him was the automatic third out. (The other team could have intentionally walked him and ended the inning, but decided to be good sports and pitch to him straight up).

The count went to full, so the intensity level was high in the bleachers. Jayson's coach told him he COULD NOT walk, he had to hit the next pitch no matter how good or bad. Under this kind of pressure, Jayson got a difficult low outside pitch and smacked a sharp grounder that made it through between first and second, scoring the winning run.

Jayson got a big cheer from his teammates and everyone said "JAYSON" instead of "CHEESE" as they posed for the photo op with their medals. It was a pretty proud parent moment. We're saving the game ball.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Let's Go!

Get in, sit down, buckle up and get ready for the ride of your life!  Amaya is on the road!  I can hardly believe it myself, but it is true... she is old enough and yesterday she passed the test, earning her learner's permit.  She is very excited to finally be able to drive like all of her friends have been able to do for a while now.  Just watch for more gray hairs to be appearing on my head soon!  

Thursday, May 28, 2009

16 Years!


 Sixteen years ago we were married for time and all eternity in the Manti, Utah temple! The time has really flown by, yet it seems as if we have always been together!  It has been a very busy, adventure packed 16 years.   We look so young, skinny and hairy in these pictures (okay, the hairy only refers to Jared).  
Anyway, I am so thankful for this wonderful husband that my Heavenly Father blessed me with.  He is a good father to our 4 beautiful children.  He works hard and long hours to provide for us.  He is a worthy priesthood holder and blesses our family with that priesthood.  He fulfills his calling and loves it (I am occasionally jealous of all the fun things he gets to do).  He loves me with my flaws, shortcomings, annoyances and all... and I love him with his!  Thank you Jared for all you do for me and our family.  I love you very much and look forward to many, many more years of happiness with you!

Monday, May 25, 2009

"I'm 15 for a moment"

Fifteen years ago today, I became a mother!  It is hard to believe she has grown so fast!  My petite little 9 lb. 1 oz baby is all grown up!  Happy Birthday Amaya!  Amaya is a joy to have in our family.  She is helpful, responsible, funny, kind, talkative, and just fun to be around!  She is a very good student (4.0) and very talented.  She is becoming quite the seamstress and is also becoming quite adventurous.  She got a wetsuit for her birthday and immediately asked if she gets to take scuba lessons now.  I didn't expect that one!  Anyway, we love her very much and are very proud of her and all she does!  Here are a couple of pictures from the party!  
(This was her imitation of Barbie in a wetsuit... notice the new wedge shoes!)

(New bedding... she is doing a bedroom makeover as part of her personal progress!)
Happy Birthday!  We love you!!!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Remind Me, Dear, Why Was It Again We Decided To Build A Pond In Our Yard? (With a Poll!)

Like many of you, I find that as we get older and more experienced in life, we learn many things. One of the things I have learned is that I was much dumber in the past than I am now. For example, when we were putting in our yard in about 2001, Lynette and I decided for some reason that it would be a good idea to have a "water feature" in the yard. I guess we wanted to be able to relax in lawn chairs on our deck on a summer evening and hear the peaceful sound of the bubbling waterfall, which would then make us have to go to the bathroom.

Allow me to summarize for you some things I have learned about having "water features" from my own experience:
1. They are always a mess.
2. They are really a lot of work to build.
3. They are even more work after you're done building them.
4. I will never build one again.
5. They are always a mess.

Gaining experience in life is wonderful. My 40 year old self would love to have been able to tell my 30 year old self what an idiot he was for deciding to build a pond.

This brings me to today's experience. The Bingham Pond has been getting a little out of control the past couple summers. The lily pad colonies had grown beyond the combined biomass of an acre of rainforest and this made it impossible to see through the water or keep the algae under control. Lynette told me that if I would remove the lily pad planters from the pond today, she would thin them and replant them.

Naturally, I decided that the easiest way to do this would be to just barefoot wade into the pond and start tossing stuff out. Big mistake.

I waded around in the black mucky water for about ten minutes and managed to toss out most of the excess plant material. Then upon exiting the pond I noticed this (you really need to click to zoom in for the full effect):

That's just one side of one foot, so if you count both feet I'm estimating that is 500+ leeches I picked up in a few minutes. And in case you were curious, no, they did not just rinse off. They were firmly attached with their little suckers or whatever and basically had to be scraped off individually. They did not leave big bloody sores like in the movies, but I think they were working on it. On the bright side, yesterday I was starting to think I was coming down with something, but now I think maybe all of my evil humours have been sucked out and I'm all better.

For some reason, the biggest thing that bothered me about this episode was, how did this thriving colony of thousands of leeches get started? Do leeches just magically appear in any icky, scummy pond? Our pond started out with clean water and we haven't put anything into it except lily pads and chemicals. The nearest standing body of water is Salem Pond, a mile away. Do baby leeches in Salem Pond climb up trees, spin little silken parachutes, and drift away on the wind like in Charlotte's Web? To me this seems like evidence for the theory of spontaneous generation, which I thought had been disproved. We're interested in commentary from our many readers who may be expert leech biologists.

With the new leech infestation, we're trying to decide if having a pond is worth it. Here's what the area looks like after I pumped out most of the water today:

As you can see, the area looks like it has potential, as long as you have a full time crew of Mexicans gardeners, or an extra thirty hours a week, to keep all the weeds down and everything pruned. As it is now, it looks pretty raggedy up close. We'd like your help deciding where we should go from here. Check the poll in the right hand column and cast your vote! We will wait a week until all 2 of our readers have responded, then throw away the information and choose whatever seems like the laziest option. After that, we will wait 10 years, then look back and make fun of how stupid we were when we were only 40.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Spring Break

For the first time in I don't know how long, we actually did something for spring break. Our nephew, Parker, was getting baptized on Saturday (in Grand Junction), so we decided to make a trip of it and go to Arches National Park on our way there. We spent 2 days hiking around the park and saw some incredible sites! It was BEAUTIFUL! The last time I had been there was when I was 8 and it was in the dead of summer... HOT! This was a much more enjoyable time to go. It was a first for Jared and the kids. Some of Jared's siblings joined us the second day. We had a great time and there was very little complaining.

The baptism was also very nice.  Parker looked handsome in his suit and his white jumpsuit.  Bryce and Amaya provided the prelude and post-lude as well as the opening and closing songs.  They did a very nice job.  Apparently, baptisms are very tiring.  This was the scene at Lori's house after the baptism.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

You made my day!

So, yesterday I was doing a little blog surfing when I noticed that had a post about Easter eggs.  I always enjoy looking at creative ways to do eggs and she always has creative things on her blog, so I clicked on the link.  Imagine my surprise when up pops a picture of eggs done just the same way that I do eggs.  I thought, "How cool!  She does eggs just like we do!"  Then I looked at the picture again, a little closer this time, and thought, "Hey, those ARE my eggs!!!"  I then clicked on the link and up comes my little, hardly ever read blog.  Surprise!!  Thanks to design mom and all her readers who have visited and made comments!  You made my day!  

The other thing that made my day was the Scout/Young Woman fundraising auction that we had last night.  I donated 2 items.  Item #1 was sewing on scout patches for 1 year.  That item went for $70.  The second item I donated was this "flirty" apron that I made.

The apron went for $50.

It made me feel good that my items helped donate that much. Thanks!

Monday, April 6, 2009

The Egg

Easter eggs are a thing of beauty, especially when done the old Swiss way. My mom's side of the family is from Switzerland. Her grandfather came across the plains in a handcart. She grew up coloring her Easter eggs in this way, as have we. Pas is for wimps. This method takes great skill and artistic skills.

Step 1: Gather interesting shaped weeds, plants and flowers. You will want a wide variety. You never know what is going to work the best.  A couple of flowers that never fail are mums and daisies.

Step 2: Take a raw egg and tie your plants to the egg with thread. Make sure you secure the leaves well.

Step 3: Add as many leaves and flowers as desired, but leave some white parts showing and tie them securely (don't worry about using too much thread, the dye get under it).   Wrap all the eggs you want colored and set aside.

Step 4: (you have actually started this step ahead of time) Have a large pot of brown onion skins boiling on the stove until the water is a dark brown. Carefully place your wrapped eggs deep into the pot, covering them with water and skins.

Step 5: Put a lid on the pot and bring to a boil and then boil the eggs for 20 mins. Then carefully find your eggs and remove them from the pot and place them in a sink filled with cold water.

Step 6: Carefully unwrap the thread and remove the plants and flowers.

Step 7: If you want to shine them up a bit, put a little vegetable oil on a paper towel and rub your eggs with it.  Behold your eggs!

One year older

Happy Birthday Jayson! Eleven years old! It seems like it was just yesterday that I gave birth to that cute BIG baby (10 lbs 3 oz)! Jayson is so much fun to have around. His smile is contagious and he has a great personality. He is also sensitive and kind. We love you very much Jayson! Hope you have a great day!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Ospreys and a Bonfire

Our Varsity Scout team had a great activity yesterday working with the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources. I copied this post over from our Scout team blog in case anyone found it interesting, since I haven't posted anything else lately.

The DWR maintains a 50-acre preserve in the Lake Shore area near Lincoln Beach. Some towers have been put up there for nesting habitat for ospreys. The area used to be farmland, and some plowing work a few years ago inadvertently turned up a large amount of old baling twine. The problem with the twine is that ospreys tend to build it into their nests, and their chicks tend to get tangled in the twine strands which can lead to their death.

So we spent yesterday morning scouring the area and cleaning up all the baling twine. It was a cool morning but everyone worked hard and had a good time. We ended up collecting several giant garbage bags full of twine as well as some large bundles that were too big to bag.

(you can click images for a closer view).

Some of the bundles of twine were too big to haul off, so our wildlife officer gave permission to start the Biggest Scout Fire Ever.

This fire turned out to be too big to roast our hotdogs, but they tasted just as good cooked on the Bingham's grill back home. We had a good crew of workers and it was nice to have them out on a crisp spring morning to accomplish something useful.