Thursday, June 18, 2015

SURPRISES AND COWS

The girls are at Girls Camp this week.  I have really, REALLY missed them.  But their absence has given me an opportunity to do a huge project for Key Lime Pie, and get to know my daughter’s boyfriend, Twiz, better.
First:  I went to my first “Cow Show” at the Shelby County Fair on Tuesday.  Why?  To take pictures of Twiz for Key Lime Pie.  It was fascinating!  It was fun to see Twiz lead the cows.  He seemed really good at it.  (Although I didn’t understand much of what was going on.)  And it was really fun to people watch too.  I got to meet Twiz’s grandparents.  Who seemed really neat.  And I like his family.  They were all nice to me, despite being really busy.  Guess what?!  Twiz won the grand prize with this cow: 
This is the award winning cow....
Not sure who the girl is... She's holding the sign?!
Twiz's mom, Twiz, ? Girl, and Twiz's PahPaw
Twiz and his little brother
This picture is my favorite!
I know Key Lime Pie loved it!
He smiled just for her!
And yes, Key Lime Pie LOVED the pictures I sent her at camp.  Twiz really is a cowboy!  (Not really.  But really.  He’s a hard worker.)

And speaking of hard work.  Twiz and I spent over 16 hours on a HUGE project this week.  We are surprising Key Lime Pie with a “new” room.  When we moved into this house over a year ago, Key Lime Pie loved having her own room, but wasn’t too fond of the old fashioned wallpaper.  So Twiz and I took it down and painted her room purple.  It was difficult.  It was exhausting.  But it’s rewarding.  And we are both looking forward to Key Lime Pie’s reaction when she gets home tomorrow.  For me it was fun getting to talk to Twiz.  He’s a great kid.  And I think he’s got amazing potential.
See how tall this boy is?
He really sacrificed time and comfort for my daughter!
I hated taking off wallpaper....  But it's done!

DeGOOYER DAY

DeGooyer Day was huge!  Or should I say Jurassic!  We had soooooo much fun!  It’s definitely a favorite holiday at our house!
Scott designed the shirts (like always) and they are some of our favorites.  Unfortunately I've tried to download the "logo" on the back of the shirts but I can't.  It is the Jurassic Park logo but says "DeGooyer Day 2015"  It's totally AWESOME!
We even made name badges complete with job assignments at Jurassic World.  Scott was the Park Director. I was in charge of Animal Control.  Key Lime Pie was the Animal Feeder and Kotten Kandy was the Trainer.  We got multiple comments about our shirts and lanyards/badges.
We started the day with our traditional DeGooyer Day Donuts.  Then took a walk at the outlet mall, since Scott had not been there before.  We also got our lanyards there.
Following our walk, we ate lunch at Red Robin… although we decided we should rename it Red Pterodactyl for our purposes.
Bowling was next!  Scott won, but Kotten Kandy gave him a run for his money.  (Scott said his score was so low because his knee was bothering him.  Excuses.  Excuses.  Just kidding!)  Key Lime Pie always has fun bowling, but she doesn’t usually score well.  We all had a great time!
Dairy Queen has a Jurassic Blizzard out in honor of the movie that just came out.  We had to try it.  I loved it.  Key Lime Pie didn’t care for it.  Scott and Kotten Kandy said it needed chocolate ice-cream instead of vanilla.  But it was fun to get ice-cream anyways.
After bowling, we went home and just visited.  We talked about dinosaurs and Scott got out his childhood collection of dinosaur stuffed animals.  We shot the breeze until time for the movie, Jurassic World.  And the movie was AWESOME!  We screamed.  We laughed.  It was just what we expected from a Jurassic Park movie franchise.  It didn’t take itself too seriously and gave us enough screams to be just right for it’s genre.  It was the perfect end to our DeGooyer Day!

We can’t wait until next year’s DeGooyer Day!  This one will be hard to top!

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

GREAT HUSBAND, GREAT FATHER

This post is about my amazing husband, who celebrated his 42 birthday yesterday!  He is my hero!  (Hence the Captain America shirt.)  And he LOVED the Guarana the girls got him from Brazil.
But first, two selfies Kotten Kandy took.  They are too cute not to post:
Yesterday we celebrated Scott.  Since it was his birthday AND Family Home Evening, we decided to talk about fatherhood and being a husband.  Raising two daughters, it is important to me that they realize the importance of eventually marrying a good man who has good ideals, goals and values.  As we discussed what makes a good husband and father, I realized how truly wonderful Scott is.
Righteous fathers and husbands teach about the gospel and prepare their families for lives of service and righteousness.  I love what President Ezra Taft Benson says when he states:  "Fatherhood is not a matter of station or wealth.  It is a matter of desire, diligence, and determination to see one's family exalted in the celestial kingdom.  If that prize is lost, nothing else really matters."
We discussed righteous examples from our fathers.  Scott is definitely a righteous example of service.  He LOVES to serve.  (In fact, service is his main love language....)  He loves to help others wherever he can and however he can.  He helps Key Lime Pie in the kitchen.  He helps Kotten Kandy in the garden.  And he helps me by working beside me in my chores.  He also loves serving his extended family and his church family.  What a great example my husband is.
Fathers also have an important responsibility to oversee the physical and spiritual well-being of their families.  And I know that Scott is able to receive modern-day revelation to help guide us.  He has used that revelation to benefit us often.  I'm grateful he is worthy to receive it.
My husband also teaches us often of spiritual things.  One of his favorite past times is to have spiritual discussions with us.  We love learning from him and with him about our Savior, Jesus Christ.
Righteous husbands never give up on their families... no matter how flawed they are.  I struggle with depression.  I'm sure that it is often difficult for Scott to stay positive when I am down.  But he strengthens me and builds me up emotionally.  He never gives up on me - or my daughters.
Scott is definitely leaving an eternal legacy for us.  I know that as a mother, I could not raise the two wonderful daughters I have without the help I receive from Scott.  He is my strength.  And I am truly grateful for his sacrifice and love.
I pray that my own daughters will find men, like their dad, who have the "desire, diligence and determination" to help them return and live with their families and Heavenly Father again someday.

Monday, June 8, 2015

SISTERS... WHAT THEY SAY... WHAT THEY DO...

I love being a mother to sisters! Maybe because I love my own sister so much - and I'm grateful that Key Lime Pie and Kotten Kandy are such close friends/sisters.  And "adopted" sisters are also fun!
Last week my daughters, Jan and I made 157 jars of jellies and jams.  We made blackberry jam, raspberry jam, strawberry rhubarb, grape jelly, apple jelly, pear jelly and multiple other kinds.  We spent two whole days in the kitchen.  But it was fun!  And it was delicious!  And it was nice to spend time with "sisters!"
Last week we also got to see Twizzler and Key Lime Pie for a few minutes before they left to see a movie.  (My daughter took this picture - and since he's smiling... I'm using it!)  Twiz was telling us about showing cows at the fair.  (Yes, Key Lime Pie is dating a REAL cowboy - which I think is totally cool, but he says he isn't a "real" cowboy.)  Anyways... Twiz says he'd show us how he "leads cows."  And Kotten Kandy pipes up and says, "Great!  Key Lime Pie, get down on all fours and be the cow!"  Spoken like a true sister!  We all laughed!  (Key Lime Pie just turned red.)
I finished reading a GREAT book!  I borrowed it from another "sister!"  Trina Fielding recommended "The Unexpected Mrs. Pollifax" by Dorothy Gilman.  I LOVED it!  This book is delightful!  This is the first book in the Mrs. Pollifax series.  It is about a 62 year old widow who decides to volunteer to be a spy with the CIA.  When a mix-up occurs, she finds herself on an adventure that sends her around the globe, tests her patience, strength and determination.  She is charming.  And I truly loved this easy read.  I want to read the rest of the series.  I think Mrs. Pollifax and I are sisters in spirit!
We celebrated June birthdays yesterday with our friends, the Bettenhausens and Thorntons.  We BBQed, ate cake and played games.  Lots of fun!  Happy Birthday, Kotten Kandy, Scott, Mark and Amy!  We love all of you!  (Amy is my sister from another mother!)
Today I spent the day taking pictures of my daughters and their good friend, Muffin.  Muffin is moving.  And so we decided to do a final photo shoot.  There are a lot of pictures, but they are so cute.  These sisters will miss their friend....  Here are a few:
Charlie's Angels?!  :-)
We got the glasses at the dollar store and 
popped out the lenses for a hipster look....
Too cool!
Just chillin'!
Let's Dance!
Beautiful girls!
Qdoba rocks!
Nothing better than lunch.... with sisters!
Key Lime Pie
Muffin
Kotten Kandy
The same pose that is on the shirt...
Cinderella, Belle and Aurora hipsters


Monday, June 1, 2015

JAM, WALKS AND A RECITAL

Another busy week has flown by.  But this time I am going to report backwards... saving the best for last.
Today we made jam with Jan!  We worked HARD!  We made 62 jars.  We made peach jam, blackberry jam, raspberry jam, plum jelly, apple/pear jelly, strawberry rhubarb jam, etc. etc. etc.  It was loads of fun, and rewarding to see the results.  (Thank you, Jan, for sharing your fruit with us.)  We plan on making another 60 jars tomorrow too!
Last week, on one of our walk/runs, we ran into this big guy on the trail.  He was so ugly!  And big.  You can't tell by the picture but he was easily two feet long from tail to head.  His shell was a little over a foot in diameter.
Last week we also enjoyed a BBQ and swim with the Fieldings!  We LOVE this amazing family!  Kotten Kandy had a blast with her friends!  (Unfortunately Key Lime Pie had to work....  So she did not join us.)
My music recital was last Thursday night.  Four of my students couldn't make it due to vacations, illness, and birth of babies.  It was a small event.  I was really proud of all my students.  But my own daughter, Kotten Kandy really shined!!!!!  She has grown so much as a performer.  She is a natural on stage and really makes us smile!  A video link will be coming later... when I figure out how to do it.  She really did a cute job and I wish ya'll could see it.  She sang "I Enjoy Being a Girl" and "Dueto Buffo De Due Gatti."  Both songs were adorable!


Sunday, May 24, 2015

OF BEES AND GARDENS

While I was writing a talk yesterday, my family worked in the garden and with the bees...
The white buckets contain tomato plants - apparently they grow better when they are contained like that.  We have watermelon, cantaloupe, spaghetti squash, pumpkins, corn, carrots, onions, beans, black berries, etc. etc. etc. and I can't remember what else.  Scott and the girls LOVED planting and mulching... but they didn't enjoy the sunburns so much.
We started with three hives.  But Queen Luxa didn't make it.  Queen Navani is thriving!  And Queen Lavina is doing alright.  We love our bees.  We especially love the honey.
Key Lime Pie took the next two pictures.  Aren't they absolutely amazing?