Friday, October 29, 2010


you just need a little cool whip.


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Simple Pleasures

Now that’s a little boy having one good time!  It is funny how entertaining
doing something so simple as pushing your sister can be!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

A Birthday Party

I am ashamed to say that these pictures are from over 3 weeks ago!  But well, it is better late than never to post them :)

Luke invited us to his birthday party and it was one of the cutest parties I have ever been to.  It was entirely themed Star Wars from start to finish.


To start the party, they had to learn to become Jedi knights.  Their first task was an obstacle course to build their skills.

IMG_8808 IMG_8811

Upon completing the course they earned their light sabers.

IMG_8815 IMG_8819

And then of course, they needed to learn how to use their light sabers!  Bubbles make fantastic targets to practice with.

IMG_8825 IMG_8827 IMG_8831 IMG_8820

Upon successfully learning to use their light sabers, they graduated and became Jedi Knights!

 IMG_8837 IMG_8838   IMG_8840

After refreshing themselves on Yoda Soda and Galactic Pizza, they were put to the test with their very first mission.  Find and destroy Darth Vadar and the Death Star!

IMG_8842 IMG_8847 IMG_8851 IMG_8856 IMG_8859

After their utter and complete victory they celebrated with this awesome cake.


It was good times!

Monday, October 25, 2010



Layton can be so ridiculously cute sometimes.  Last night we went for short walk outside after dinner.  The kids all kept wanting to run up ahead of us, so in order to keep them from running too far, we decided to try a game of red light, green light.  On green light they ran and on red light they stopped and waited for us to catch up and on yellow light they walked really slow.  After a little bit, every time we yelled out “Green Light” Layton would yell back “Blue Light”.  Then when we said “Red Light” he would yell back “Purple Light”.  Then he would switch up with “Orange Light”, “Pink Light”, and I think he even called out “Black Light” once.  I know he is mine, I know I am prejudiced, but honestly he is just so cute!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Goodbye Mama Doris

IMG I was looking through some pictures yesterday and found this one.   Mama Doris had sent it to me while I was on my mission.  On the back she had written:  “Somebody gave me this and I thought you might want it – its not too good – but it can remind you of me.  I love you, Mama Doris”

The funny thing is that I would never even need pictures to remind me of Mama Doris.  Crazy right – me admitting that I don’t NEED pictures.  But it is true.

I am reminded of her each time I eat grape jelly.  She knew it was my favorite and she made it for me almost every year.

I am reminded of her each time I see an electric blanket.  During high school and college, I lived with Mama Doris.  Her house was heated only by a small gas heater in the living room.  So during the coldest winter nights, she and I would sleep in same bed together under an electric blanket.  It was good times!

I am reminded of her whenever I receive a letter.  She wrote me everyday for 18 months while I was on a mission.  Each week when we got our mail, I could count on getting 7 letters from her!

Doris 1950
I am reminded of her each time someone mentions an alligator.  Which, considering where we live, happens a lot.  She had a pet alligator that followed her around like a puppy dog and ate right from her hand.

I am reminded of her whenever I see the Reader’s Digest.  I think she may have been their most faithful subscriber.  Remember when they used to offer “condensed books”?  I am pretty sure she bought every single one.

I am reminded of her each time I change my sheets.  When I lived with her, she knew how much I loved the smell and feel of freshly laundered sheets – so she would surprise me sometimes when I came home from school with clean sheets!

I am reminded of her whenever I eat a blackberry.  Her blackberry dumplings were a favorite of both mine and my dad’s!

I am reminded of her whenever I journal about our lives.  She wrote in her journal notebook every single day.  Over her lifetime, there are literally stacks of them!

I am reminded of her whenever I eat all kinds of different foods – fried turkey breast, congo bars, chocolate ice boxed cake, roast, mashed potatoes, fried sweet potatoes, field peas, creamed corn – those are some of her signature foods that she was a master at cooking.
I am reminded of her each time I sit down in a rocking chair.  Each and everyone of her grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and even her one great-great-grandchild, have all been rocked to sleep with her patting our backs and singing “In the Sweet, By and By”.

I am reminded of her each time Layton watches Bambi.  He loves that movie and she was the one who made sure our children had that and many other movies that they love.

I am reminded of her each time I read a book to my children.  She read so many to me as a child and she kept that tradition going with her great-grandchildren.

I am reminded of her when I read the Book of Mormon.  She read it daily up until the very end, when her eyes didn't really let her anymore.  I am pretty sure she has read it more than a 100 times.

I am reminded of her each time I play the piano.  She faithfully took me to weekly lessons for YEARS.  While I never became a master at it, because of her dedication I can at least plunk out a few church songs.

I am reminded of her  - ALWAYS.  Her life is so completely woven into my life that they would be impossible to separate.  Forgetting her would be forgetting myself.
IMG_1972 copy1
Mama Doris passed away last night.  She has lived one amazing life.  We love her so much and will miss her terribly.  But, we know that she is with those she loves right now.  She has been waiting for over 30 years to be reunited with the love of her life.  How happy they must be right now!

For those interested, her funeral will be a simple graveside ceremony held at Gregory N. Gentry Cemetery, tomorrow October 21st, at 4:00 p.m.  All are invited to attend.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Mama Doris


This is one elect lady!  She is not doing very well right now.  We think it may be getting close to time for her to go home.   I’m pretty sure she’ll have her congo bar recipe ready should there be any question of her status in heaven :)  But honestly, if there is anyone that I know that deserves the highest degree of glory, it is her.

She is the epitome of this passage of scripture:

Her price is far above rubies,… the heart of her husband doth safely trust in her…, she…worketh willingly with her hands,… she stretcheth out her her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy, …strength and honour are her clothing; she openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.  Her children arise up, and call her blessed; give her the fruit of her hands; and her own works praise her at the gates.

Oh how we love her and how blessed we feel to know her.  We are grateful for her example and will never be able to praise her enough.  We are ever so proud to be part of her family. 

Friday, October 15, 2010



Mandy told me yesterday - “Mommy, my favorite colors are pink, red, and purple.  (short pause)  And brown, because I like chocolate.”  Saying that she “likes” chocolate might just be the understatement of the year, but I sure like the way this girl thinks!

Thursday, October 14, 2010


Dallin has really been struggling this year with his reading tests.  Since they will be taking the FCAT next year, they do an FCAT reading test each week.  The first few weeks he was getting B’s on them, and then his grade began to slip even further.  He was bringing home FCAT tests with C’s and even several D’s.


So, obviously something had to change.  We began working with him and discussing how to summarize plots, how to restate the question and use details from the story in the “essay” portion.  How to use the process of elimination on multiple choice questions.  And perhaps most important of all – an incentive system.  He gets a B – no grounding.  A C = 4 days restrictions for all things digital (no TV, no video games, no computer).  A D = 1 week restrictions.  And for an A he gets a little prize – silly bands, which are all the rage right now.  So guess what he brought home this week -


It really is amazing what a few test taking skills and some incentive will do!  We are very proud of him!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

9 Years and Counting

Just wanted to wish my sweetie a happy anniversary today.  We have recently become big fans of Mindy Gledhill’s new CD Anchor, so I just wanted to dedicated this little song to you Nathan.

My favorite verse in the song is:
You could give me all that I request
And if you fancy, Darling be my guest
But I’ll take less
If more means having less of you
We may not have a big house, or drive fancy cars, or take expensive vacations, or any of the “finer” things of life, but we have so much more.  We have a house full of love, lots to laugh at, adorable children, an open and honest relationship, temple ordinances that bind us – all the things we need to have joy in this lifetime.
I love you Nathan.  Thank you for the constant laughter, great hugs, even better kisses, kindness, understanding, support, and love.  You’re the best!

I just wanted to add a little addendum to this.  Last night as we were going to bed, we did our usual little play fight of "I love you more" and then Nathan hops out of bed because he says that he can "prove" that he loves me more.  He brings back to me a card that has a sweet little sentiment of "Now and Always - the only two times I want to be with you."  Sweet, right?  But get this he hadn't even signed it or bothered to put it in the envelope.  So he snatches it back from me (so nice) and then proceeds to grab a pen and sign it.  But do you think he puts some sweet pet name in there or writes I love you - no way....

And they say romance is dead.  I don't think so - I think romance just got a sense of humour :)  I think I laughed until I cried after that.  But honestly, that is what I love most about Nathan.  He knows exactly how to make me laugh - and we laugh together everyday!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Last Swim of the Summer

I have been meaning to post these photos for quite a while now.  I am just really behind!  Our friends’ little son Marky turned ONE at then end of last month.


So we were invited to join in his celebrations.  My kids of course were ecstatic because it meant that they got to go swimming.


It turns out the very last time that they would get to go swimming for the year because it started to cool off a little after that weekend.  They had a great time decorating and eating candy rings,


watching the dog jump out into the pool to play fetch with them,


playing with lots of little friends,




and watching Marky devour his yummy birthday cake!

 Marky Cake

It was a great day!  Thanks so much for inviting us!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Hard at Work


Don’t they look so much alike????

Tuesday, October 5, 2010


Most of you have probably already seen the pictures that I posted on my photography blog of a wedding that I did about a week and a half ago.  I have to admit, walking into weddings and seeing other people’s beliefs have been interesting to say the least.  I was just so impressed by this last wedding though.  They were Baptists and it was very evident that their belief was sincere and devoted.  Look at how modestly the bride and her bridesmaids were dressed.

IMG_2308-Soft Glow

Isn’t that refreshing to see youth all dressed so attractively and yet completely modest?  They even requested this photo of his ring and this scripture:


What was even more impressive is that they had NEVER even kissed.  Yep you read that right.  Their first kiss was AFTER they were married.  Wow, right?


They were serious about their virtue.  And while I certainly don’t advocate waiting until you are married to kiss, it was so wonderful to see such a virtuous couple.


We may not share the same religion, but it is nice to know that there are people out there teaching the beauty of modesty and virtue – two values that I hold in very high esteem.  

Monday, October 4, 2010


Just wanted to give props to the weather this morning!  As almost everyone I know would say – the weather recently has been WONDERFUL.  Fall and Spring are my two favorite times of the year.  The weather is always just right for doing things outdoors.  Like sitting in a swing and letting your toes run through the grass…

IMG_20151 copy

Happy Fall everyone!

Friday, October 1, 2010

So busy

You may have noticed that I haven’t exactly been my normal dedicated blogger this week.  That is because this week has been INSANE.  If you follow my photography blog at all, you will understand why.  I have been so busy editing photos.  I have wedding photos from one that I shot last weekend that I am still working on and then I have two more shoots that I am doing this weekend!  I think I am going to have to start turning people down, just so that I can maintain my sanity!  And my butt.  Sitting at a computer all the time is of course a rather sedentary activity.


Dallin told me yesterday – “Mom you are little everywhere except your butt.  Your butt is really big.”  Ummm, thanks Dallin.  When your seven year old starts to notice that your butt is big – you might need to do something about it.  But I’m so tired today.  Maybe tomorrow… Or the next day… Or maybe next week…