Thursday, June 30, 2016

BOOKS AND CRAFTS - LOVE THEM BOTH!

Yesterday we crafted with our friends again!  It was so fun to watch these kids be creative.  And each candle holder turned out so unique and beautiful... just like these kids!
While on vacation last week I finished two books.  Here are my thoughts:
Key Lime Pie shared her book, The Only Pirate at the Party by Lindsey Stirling with me.  I thoroughly enjoyed it.  Key Lime Pie is a huge Stirling fan, and by default I like her music too. While this book is about Lindsey Stirling, violin super-star, it introduces you to Lindsey Stirling, the actual person with weird quirks, funny friends, awkward moments, etc.  I found Lindsey's struggles to be very relatable.  We all face demons and deal with disappointment, and it was nice to read her perspective and the lessons she has learned through her trials and experiences.  I really liked getting to know her.  I read this book in 2 days.  It's easy and lighthearted.  And I was inspired by it.  I can easily recommend this book to friends.
The other book I just finished wasn't as fun, but was very interesting.  It was a much more difficult read, but I'm glad I read it.  Why We Get Fat: And What to Do About It by Gary Taubes was incredibly educational about nutrition.  I was already convinced that sugar wasn't good for me (and neither was a lot of bread and pasta), BUT I had never questioned the calories in/calories out theory.  I learned that glucose drives insulin and insulin drives fat.  I also learned that it doesn't matter if you are eating fat or glucose -  your body will convert what its got to what it needs.  I think I really believe what this book says, but I'm not sure how much it will "change" the way I eat.  Our family has decided to cut back on our carb and sugar intake.  I think we'll feel better and healthier.  But we're not going to go crazy.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

SWEET 16 = DRIVING AND DATING


Kotten Kandy turned 16 on Sunday.  She is such a great kid!  I miss the cute, little girl that she was, but I truly love the beautiful and talented young woman she is becoming!  We are so grateful she is part of our eternal family.

Monday afternoon she got her driving permit after passing her written test.  She was so nervous about the test, but she did GREAT!  And after spending an hour and a half at the DMV, she got the precious card.

And Monday night she went on her first date.  (Tradition in our family says that the first date is with dad!)  They went to Red Robin for dinner and milk shakes (which is Kotten Kandy's favorite treat ever).  Then they went bowling.  She actually drove home after the date.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

DeGOOYERS UNITE!

I'm struggling with this post... although I should be excited to share the events of the past week with you.  Why am I struggling?  My computer lost my pictures.  I lost over 200+ photos of the DeGooyer Family Reunion.  I am dramatic by nature - but I literally sobbed for over an hour.  We've tried to retrieve the pictures with help from many people, but they are gone.  So...  Although I want to share the fun activities and the wonderful times we had with Scott's family, I'm also feeling discouraged and sad that I can't share priceless photos with everyone.
Without (and despite not having) my own pictures, let me just say:
Seeing and spending time with the DeGooyers was AWESOME!  We stayed with Kevin and Kelly.  Stacey and Whitney organized the events.  Mom and Dad (aka Grandma and Grandpa) made the trip despite bad health.  Kerri and Mark hosted the 35+ people for an awesome lasagna dinner at their home.  Brett and Alana made the trek all the way from Arizona to join in.  And everyone had lots of time to visit and laugh and enjoy one anothers company.  I'm so glad we drove (24+ hours straight through) to share the time with everyone!  Families really are FOREVER!  And I'm so blessed to be a part of this one!  They are great!
Father's Day was the first day of the reunion.  We met at the LDS tabernacle to listen to Music and the Spoken Word.  It was fantastic!  The choir sang my favorite song 3 times: a rousing, acapella rendition of Joshua Fit the Battle of Jericho.  Then we walked around temple square.  Key Lime Pie and Kotten Kandy don't remember doing it when they were younger so it was fun to show them everything!  Then we went to the May's home for lasagna, visiting and some family pictures.  We were the last ones to leave because we enjoyed spending time with everyone sooooo much!  (Incidentally: It has been WAY too long {5 years} since my daughters have gotten to see their DeGooyer grandparents, cousins, aunts and uncles.)
(Thank you, Alana, for sending me a pic of our family... at least I have one to share.)
Monday we all dressed in red, white or blue and took a HUGE family photo (39 people).  Then we picnicked, played games, visited some more, etc.  Since Mom and Dad DeGooyer will have been married for 50 years this August, we played a game getting to know them.  Turns out their pet names for each other are:  Raymond and Dear.  I LOVE pet names!  (Incidentally:  Scott calls me Brightness and I call him DeGooyer.)
Tuesday we spent the day at Lagoon Amusement Park.  Scott and Kotten Kandy were SUPER excited!  They love roller-coasters.  Key Lime Pie even got in on some of the action, although she's REALLY scared of heights.  We played ALL day!  And had a blast!  Scott and Kotten Kandy especially liked riding "the Cannibal" with Kevin, his daughter and Brett and his daughter at the end of the night.  The ride operator let them ride that fearful thing 3 times in a row.  They were pumped.  (Incidentally:  Kevin and Scott were both hoarse after a full day riding coasters - apparently , even when they are lame, you are supposed to scream as loud as you can.)
Wednesday was technically the end of the reunion, but we didn't stop playing.  We toured 4 different temples so the girls could see them and take pictures in front of them.  The new Provo City Center temple was AMAZING!  We also stopped for ice-cream at the BYU Creamery.  Then that evening we had dinner with Mom/Grandma's brothers and sisters and their kids.  And we ended the evening watching an outdoor movie at Kevin's house - one of our favorites: Zootopia.
(I stole this picture off of FB.  Isn't Kai cute?  Isn't my niece adorable?)
Thursday morning was my favorite activity of the whole reunion:  We convinced Mom and Dad to have breakfast with just us before they left to go home.  We met them at Ihop and the 6 of us were able to visit and spend some quality time with them before they took off.  I REALLY, REALLY, REALLY miss my husband's parents.  (I don't like to use the words in-laws because I really think of them as my parents too...)  After breakfast we toured 5 more temples as a family and stopped at the warehouse for Scott's work in Utah.  Then we met up with the Larsens.  I am soooooooooooooo bummed that I lost that photo.  It was great to see Lemon Drop, Doritoes and the gang.  And Nettie Melanson also showed up!  I miss all of those wonderful people!  (Incidentally:  I set up my nephew on a blind date with Nettie.  We all hope it works because they are two of the coolest people in the world!!!!!)  Then we had pizza with Kevin, Kelly and Haagen-Dazs.  Haagen-Dazs also got a new puppy.  She named him Kai.  He is really cute, for a dog.
Friday we said goodbye to Kevin and Kelly and met up with Stacey in downtown Salt Lake.  We got to see the new interactive Family History Center.  It was truly AWESOME!  We could have spent hours there.  We also toured the Church History Museum.  And we visited 3 more temples on the way to North Logan to spend the evening with Stacey and her family.  (Incidentally we saw and took pictures with 12 temples on this trip!)  Once we were at Stacey's, my nephew, Kendall, and his girlfriend came over (so we got to see them too) and we played games.  It was fun times!
Saturday we left to come home.  We again drove straight through and got home on Sunday afternoon.  (Incidentally:  Kotten Kandy's 16th birthday was Sunday.  I'll post about that in a different post.)
We had a great trip!  I'm sooooooooooo glad we went!  Families are Forever!

Thursday, June 16, 2016

TEARS

Wednesday was a hard day.  We said goodbye to Lollipop.  She has truly become another daughter to us and we will REALLY miss her.  After saying goodbye at the airport, we all cried.  Last night we kept talking about how much we missed her and what we missed.  Germany and her parents are sooooo lucky to be getting her back.
We cried other tears last night when I gave myself 2nd degree burns all over my left hand.  I was in tons of pain.  We went to urgent care.  I'll be OK.  But I'll be in pain for a few days.  I'm going to a Burn Center this morning to follow up.  Life is never boring.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

BIRTHDAY CANDLES

17 Candles
Sometimes, in life, we take things for granted.  I will no longer take birthday candles for granted....
We celebrated Lollipop's 17 birthday last night.  It was a small celebration but we had cake, games and presents!  Lollipop's actual birthday was last week while she was in California.  But we didn't let that stop us from celebrating when she came "home" to us.  She loved the lemon cake (her choice) and the presents.  But I think she was most excited about the candles.  She had never had birthday candles before!  It was fun to sing to her and celebrate her!  We sure love our German daughter!  And we will REALLY miss her when she goes back to Germany tomorrow....
Opening Gifts.
Scott and I made her a book of her time here in America.
Bracelets and perfume from her sisters.
The Bettenhausens got her a picture book of her favorite state.
We love Lollipop!

Saturday, June 11, 2016

SCOTT TURNS 43 AND A RANDOM PHOTO

Guess who turned 43 on Wednesday?  Scott did!  We are officially the same age for a few months.
I am so blessed to have this good man for a husband!  He is always growing and becoming a better man!  He loves truth!  He loves God!  And he loves me!  I love him back!
Happy Birthday, DeGooyer!
And this picture of Marmalade, Nuts and Kotten Kandy makes me smile!  They are not above being silly - even in a crowded theater before the movie starts!  (We went to see Goosebumps for a $1.  BTW it is a fun movie!)

GRADUATION

Key Lime Pie
My baby graduated high-school last night.  And by high-school, I mean homeschool/high-school.  And homeschoolers are weird by definition - so we through marshmallows at her while she walked to "Pomp and Circumstance."
This picture may be blurry - but I love the flying marshmallows!!!
Key Lime Pie is a good sport!
Delicious spread....
Key Lime Pie is a beautiful, young lady!  Everyone loves her!  She is happy, fun, and the life of the party!  We are blessed that she is part of our family.  She brings laughter to our home and a shares her strong testimony of the gospel with all of us and everyone she meets.  She is optimistic about life and shares smiles with all of us.  In August she is going to college - and her father and I will really miss her!  She has a bright future in front of her.  We are excited about her new adventures!  I really love this girl!
She did it!

Monday, June 6, 2016

ABOUT PHANTOMS, LOVE AND OPTIMISTS

Key Lime Pie, Marmalade and Kotten Kandy
Saturday we got to see a live performance of The Phantom of the Opera.  It was amazing!  The talent was incredible!  The costumes were fun!  And the sets were awe-inspiring!  I've seen the show live 4 times - and this time did NOT disappoint. The rest of the "gang" had never seen the show live.  They loved it too!
I've also been reading a lot!  Here are two GREAT recommendations:
Trina Fielding recommended "Life is Good" by Bert and John Jacobs.  I read it.  I loved it.  I ordered my own copy.  (I borrowed Trina's originally.)  This is a quick and easy read with a simple, yet powerful message:  The importance of optimism!  The book is organized by Optimistic "Superpowers."  There are 10 of them:  Openness, Courage, Simplicity, Humor, Gratitude, Fun, Compassion, Creativity, Authenticity and Love.  There are inspiring stories throughout each superpower along with fun artwork and playlists.  (I loved the playlists - and have already started collecting my own playlists to keep me optimistic!)  There are also action steps that help you to use the superpowers.  None of the action steps were world-shattering advice, but they are great reminders of how to be happy.  And sometimes it's good to have a reminder.  This book definitely energized and encouraged me.  I would recommend getting your own copy of this book so you can mark and underline....  It's fabulous!  Thanks, Trina!
Fifteen years ago I read "The 5 Love Languages of Children" by Gary Chapman.  I FINALLY got around to reading the original "The 5 Love Languages" this week.  It's amazing!  I'm a HUGE believer that love is spoken in different ways to different people.  I've used the principles in this book throughout my life in all my relationships.  But it was fun to refocus it again and reaffirm how much speaking the different love languages and the different dialects works!  For those of you who aren't aware of the 5 love languages, here they are:
 - Words of Affirmation:
    If this is your love language, you feel most cared for when your partner is open
    and expressive in telling you how wonderful they think you are,
    how much they appreciate you, etc.
 - Acts of Service:
    If your partner offering to watch the kids so you can do something else gets your
    heart going, then this is your love language.
 - Affection:
    A warm hug, a kiss, a touch makes you feel most loved when this is your love language.
 - Quality Time:
    This love language is about being together, fully present and engaged in the activity
    at hand, no matter how trivial.
 - Gifts:
    Giving and receiving gifts (big or small) makes this person feel appreciated and loved.
I definitely recommend this read too!

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

A "REAL" HERO

This is what a "real" hero looks like:
Behind the scenes:  Key Lime Pie and Kotten Kandy thought they could rearrange furniture in their bedrooms without any help.  A few hours ago was chaos, stress and two exhausted little girls.  (Also, a HUGE mess - that I was stressed out about.)  Thank goodness for a dad/husband who has the strength and know-how to fix things!  He saved the day.  And the girls are happy with the results.

Monday, May 30, 2016

BUCKET LIST: 5K (DONE!)

Raisin met us at the finish line....
5K Race!?  We did it!
Amy, Me, Kotten Kandy and Key Lime Pie
For Memorial Day Weekend we traveled to Alabama and ran our first 5K race.  We've been training for over a year for this moment!  It was wonderful!
But... let's start at the beginning....
We left Friday for Alabama and got in just before midnight.  Saturday we went played and went to the park.
At the park...
Crazy boys?!
Love my Apple Pie and Jelly Bean!
Sunday we went to Church and then went to pick up our race packets, numbers and shirts.  While we were picking up our "stuff" we stopped to feed the ducks.  Can you believe we saw the entire Plan of  Salvation drawn in chalk on the sidewalk?  It was cool!
Kotten Kandy and Key Lime looking at the fish with Jelly Bean.
Marmalade and Jelly Bean feeding the ducks.
We are standing at Earth Life.... The rest of the Plan was to large to photograph.
Our new shirts.
Monday morning = Race Day!  We all finished.  And more importantly, we accomplished a goal!  Yea!
Before the race.
We ran the 5K.
(I walked.)
Marmalade, Apple Pie and Nuts prepare for the 1 mile fun run.
Juice is also ready to go.
Exhaustion after the race... but still smiles!
Kotten Kandy's time = 45:39
Key Lime Pie's time = 48:32
My goal was 16 minute miles!  I did it!
49:44 = my time
This boy ran the entire mile!
And he crossed the finish line with a HUGE smile!
These two are proud of their accomplishment!

Dr. Pepper was their drink of choice after the race.
This crazy group ALL ran!  Yea, for us!
We are home now... and a new month is about to begin....