Friday, January 20, 2017


 Saying goodbye to my grandma was really, really hard, but the trip to California was really wonderful.  Being able to travel completely alone to a place that holds most of my childhood memories, and the place that brings back thousands of memories of my grandparents was just what my body and spirit needed.  I was able to spend and make lots of memories with my brothers and family, visit one of my best friends, and see cousins and aunts and uncles who I never see.  It was exactly what I needed and I felt more like myself than I have in a very long time.  The best part of the
 trip what I really felt my grandma.  Eric and I flew together and got in Thursday evening.  There was  big rental car fiasco that involved us going to the wrong rental company and then lugging all of our luggage around the streets of LA until we met up with Mark a few hours later.  It was hilarious, and probably a little dangerous, but I still laugh my pants off when I think about it.  Friday we went to the Getty museum with my dad and Mark.  Then Eric and I did a session at the LA temple.  Saturday was the service and a family luncheon.  Loved, loved, loved having time to catch up with my cousins.  Then I got to hang with my best friend of over 20 years and then my brother Michael, his wife Gabby, Eric, and I stayed up laughing and talking until 2:30 AM (we had to catch a shuttle at 4 am so it wasn't smartest thing, but my heart needed that laughter and I would do it again in a heart beat).  I missed Jeff and the girls like crazy and I am so grateful they let me have that time to process and heal a little.
 Another added bonus of the trip is that I think they all missed me a lot and appreciate me just a big more after not being around.  I'm so very glad I was able to make the trip.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

saying goodbye

Last weekend I traveled to California to say goodbye to my sweet grandma. I miss her so much. She and grandpa were a big part of my life growing up.  I am so, so sad that we won't get to see her when we head west next year.  My uncle was kind enough to make some copies of some pictures I asked for and had them ready to give me at the service.  I am so glad that he did that for me.  I have always loved her wedding pictures.  She had such interesting life and I am sure that she is so happy to be with grandpa again.

 The service was nice and the weather could not have been more pleasant.  It was the most beautiful California day and the plot they have in Hollywood Hills is so pretty. My brothers and some of my cousins were the pallbearers and the service was small and simple.  It was a beautiful day to celebrate the life of a beautiful person.  I know my grandma loved me, Jeff, and the girls.  She was so proud of me and loved to hear from me and about me.  The last time I talked to her was at the end of September when my dad was out visiting and she wanted to do a FaceTime call.  
 She kept telling me how beautiful I was.  She always made me feel good about myself and she was always excited to see or hear from me.  She used to make me laugh and she loved to tell me stories from her past.  She liked court shows and I remember her watching "The People's Court" when I was there one time.  The judge's name at the time was Judge Wapner. She said, "You better be careful or Judge Wapner is going to wapp you."  I thought it was sooo funny and we laughed and laughed.  I remember being in the back of her car as a little girl travelling from Idaho to Michigan.  I can still smell the car.  I can still hear her voice and see her face.  I still cry when I think about the service and about losing her, but I know time will make the emotions a little less raw.  I hope I can tell the girls enough about her throughout the years that they feel close to her as well.  She was a wonderful grandmother for me and I'm so grateful I had her in my life as long as I did.  I love you, grandma!

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

little reader

Heidi has become such a great reader!!  She was doing really well before Christmas, but since she got her nightstand and beginner readers for Christmas, she is unstoppable.  She absolutely loves reading new books and wakes up early and stays in her room reading until her alarm goes off.  She also spends a lot of time reading to Caimbree and Savanna. I am so, so glad that she is so motivated and excited to learn.  Her test scores at school are off the charts and it is because she is so driven to learn. We are so proud of her and love watching her progress!

warm and cozy

 After playing all morning in the snow, the girls were ready to get warm.  We made hot chocolate and then turned on the fire and snuggled around it with books to read.  Heidi and Savanna wanted to pretend to sleep!  They didn't last too long in their spots, but we were able to read a few books and it felt good to warm up!

snow ice cream

All of our friends here make snow ice cream when it snows so we decided we would try it this year!  Heidi ran out and collected three bowls of snow and they all helped measure out the snow we needed and add the sweetened condensed milk and vanilla.  Pretty easy and pretty yummy!  They especially loved decorating their ice cream with sprinkles!  It was a fun activity for our first snow!

first snow

 We got our first snow a few weeks and the girls were so thrilled!  We didn't get as much as we did last year and we are hoping we get at least one big snow before winter ends, but we made the most of what we got.  Winter and snow seems so much more tolerable to me here because I know I don't have to deal with it for weeks and months on end.  The girls could not wait to play in the little we had.  We took the sleds out and rolled around making snow angels.  Heidi especially is my little snow girl.  She would stay out
all day if she could.  We had a lot of fun together and we were extra glad that school was cancelled so we could enjoy it all together!

Saturday, December 31, 2016

baptism new year's eve

 We had a great day to close out 2016! Last night we went to a friend's house for a New Year's Eve Eve party.  It was fun and the girls had an absolute blast.  They were not happy we were the first to leave the party, but we had a big morning today and we wanted to get them in bed at a decent hour.  This morning we woke up and got ready and headed to Kentucky to our nephew Hubert's baptism!  We are so glad we only live 2 hours away now!  I was asked to give a talk and Jeff was a witness.  It was such a great day and we were so happy we could support Hughie.  We had a nice luncheon after the baptism and then headed home.  We decided to invite a couple of families over for an impromptu New Year's Eve party. It was a blast!  The kids were in
heaven playing with their friends. 2016 really has been an overall fun year for our family. We are grateful for the friends, family, and love that have surrounded us this year and look forward to what 2017 will bring.  Happy New Year!