Saturday, April 29, 2017


Daughter and Mother - Working Hard!
Anyone who knows me knows that I do NOT enjoy yard work.  I've tried it a couple of times...  (I mowed the lawn once when I was about 12 years old and I tried gardening with my husband in 2004 once.  I didn't enjoy it.)  But desperate times call for desperate measures....  My husband is hurting and our lawn was in bad shape.  So Kotten Kandy and I dawned our work clothes and ventured out to serve.  (And I didn't mind it because I felt like I was speaking my husband's love language: service.)  I did want proof of this rare sight: me getting sweaty and dirty.  Soooooooooo:
I probably mowed about 1/2 an acre.
I have blisters on my hands now...
And I'm sunburned.
I'm soooooooooo sweaty and dirty.
Kotten Kandy planted 2 lilac bushes and 2 hydrangea bushes.
And she did a lot more dirt removal than I did....
But she also took time to sing....
Forced, exhausted smiles....
After 3 hours of working hard, Kotten Kandy and I got cleaned up and then I decided to do some canning.  (I'm a glutton for punishment.)  I canned 14 pints of chicken.
Hopefully pint size cans will work out better for our smaller family.
It's nice to have chicken on the food storage shelves again!
Actually... all this hard work was also a bit selfish.  I'm TRYING to stay positive and "doing good" often helps.  Right now I just feel exhausted.


It has been a somewhat difficult week for me.  I'm a bit over extended with some of my commitments and I've been worried about my sweet husband's injuries/health.  And combined with some lingering depression, I've been struggling a bit.  BUT I'm really trying to remember my father's wise advice:  When you do good, you feel good!  So I've been exercising and trying to stay busy doing good things.  It helps.  And it helps that I am often surrounded by happy kids (my daughter's friends and my friends' children)!  I really do love young people!  Here are some pics that have helped me try to stay positive (and I'm sorry if I am being to "sad" for this posting on my blog... I'm just trying to be honest.):
Good friends are essential for a healthy balance in life.
Choose only those who can enrich the quality of your life.
Kiara was so grateful for these words of affirmation from her employers!
I'm glad they see her great worth!
I actually took a good picture of this AMAZING, AWESOME family!
I sure do love my Bettenhausens!
Walking brings me a sense of peace...
And these clouds were so beautiful that I had to snap a picture....
No storm came, but the clouds were gorgeous!
I also have realized that I haven't been very good about sharing my reading with you....  So here are my book reviews for the past month and a half:
Soooo, Scott Kotten Kandy and I decided to read all 7 of C.S. Lewis' books together so we could talk about them together and have a family book club.  I'm so glad I did.  I hadn't read these books since I was a young girl.  (And I don't think I ever read the last two books until this time around!)  
I LOVE C.S. Lewis and the world of Narnia!
Narnia has everything: journeys to the end of the world, fantastic creatures and epic battles between good and evil!  For the past 50 years, these books have become a part of classic literature for a good reason!  Each book is wonderful (although The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe is definitely my personal favorite and the last two books are my least favorite)!  And I love that there are Christian themes throughout!  It made me grateful for my faith and the stories helped strengthen my love of my Savior!

I also re-read Elantris this week.  Wow isn't a strong enough interjection to express my love of this book!  The characters are fantastic!  I loved Serene and think she is the best woman Sanderson has ever written.  Raoden is such a great role model despite his trials and tribulations.  Hrathen is perfectly evil with a hint of redemption.  And Dilaf is beyond scary.  The plot is creative and had a great ending despite all the twists and turns.  It's amazing!  And this book belongs on my all-times favorites book list.
Too much kissing for my taste.  - And that is my review.  I finished this book because I started it.  But it wasn't as good as Shanon Hale's other books... in fact, I was disappointed.  The characters weren't that relate-able to me.  And the plot was a little trite.  And although I love Jane Austen... this book was not that.  Oh well....

Monday, April 24, 2017


For FHE we helped Scott move dirt.  He can't right now....  So...
Yay, for Kotten Kandy and Taffy!
The whole gang helped!
"King/Queen of the Rock!"
And look!  I even did some digging! PROOF:
I prefer indoor work...
But I'll do anything for my sweet husband!
Maple is one of my favorites.... even if she kinda likes my dumb dog....
Maple and Karmel
This girl is so cute!

Sunday, April 23, 2017


I have so much to be grateful for today...  and every day.
He's cute!
First I want to give a shout-out to my sweet husband!  He has been hurt for over a week.  Apparently, after x-rays and doctor's visits, we've discovered that he has arthritis in his neck, a pinched nerve in his shoulder and bone spurs.  Despite being in pain, he has managed to go to work, and provide for our family.  He rarely complains, but this time has been a bit much.  (So... please keep him in your prayers?!)  Today he spoke in church.  And the Spirit was so strong as he spoke.  He has grown into a great public speaker and I was really proud of him.  I'm sooooooooooo blessed that he chose me 22 years ago!  And I definitely see Heavenly Father's hand in our marriage!  I really love this guy!
Rexburg Temple
Shaved Ice, Gary, Mariah, Shanae and Kiara
Love these girls!
Spencer and Kiara - They'll always be besties!
Last week, Kiara got to go on a QUICK trip to Idaho with my sister and her family.  Thank you, sister, for including my daughter in on the fun!  She also got to see Spencer (our awesome friend from Kentucky!)  She had a great time!
You haven't heard great music until you've heard these two making music together!
Love their voices!  Love their talents!  And love that they are willing to share!
And I'm also truly grateful to the Coolbears!  They helped our family in a time of need this weekend (with Scott's injuries!)  Scott said that he thinks they are awesome and share the same values as we do!  I'd have to agree!  They just "fit" right in with all of us!  At one point, while we were working, Kotten Kandy and Taffy serenaded us!  Music definitely makes me happy!  And seeing these two create their own made my heart glad!
I didn't want to embarrass Kiara too bad so this picture of her
post surgery eating a banana with a spoon seemed OK....
Key Lime Pie also had her wisdom teeth out this week in Colorado!  My mom is the BEST EVER!  She nurtured and loved my daughter through the ordeal when I couldn't be there!  I'm extremely thankful for her!!!!!  I think I must have the best mom in the entire world!!!!!  Kiara is doing well.  She's healing faster than anyone I've ever met!
I've got lots of random pics I wanted to share:
Kiara created this collage of Kotten Kandy's first Prom and her first Prom!
Lovin' this group of kids at Prom last week....
Two of Kotten Kandy's best friends:  Sweet Tarts and Apple Jacks
Apple Muffin giving me a much needed hug!
Texas Roadhouse with Fig Newton!  YUM!

Tuesday, April 18, 2017


I love Easter!  I'm not really talking about the secular side of Easter, although I do love the Easter baskets, the egg-hunts and the cute decorations!  I love the real meaning of Easter.  The part about celebrating the atonement and the resurrection of Jesus Christ.  Easter is a holiday that is full of hope and joy.  And I love celebrating with my family (and extended/adopted family!)
This year I did not do Easter dresses for my daughters.  They went to prom the night before so I let them use those dresses for Church....  But the Easter Bunny did make baskets full of special Easter goodies for them....  (And the Easter Bunny even mailed one to Colorado!)
The Easter Bunny made these two girls close their eyes
as it put the baskets, books and shoes in their laps!
English versions of Fig Newton's favorite books!
Kotten Kandy is excited to read the Leven Thumps series.
And Key Lime Pie is excited to own her very own set of Gregor the Overlander series.
Stuffed bunnies, candy, shoes... Who could ask for anything more?
Colorado Kid agrees!
Scott loved his basket too!  YUM!
And the Easter Bunny remembered me too!
I got a new game - and I LOVE it!
And my favorite:  Cadbury Creme Eggs!
Amy had her annual Easter Egg Hunt for FHE.
Kotten Kandy and Taffy helped Jelly Bean hunt for his eggs....
And Marmalade loves looking for eggs....
Raisin could hardly contain her excitement!
Apple Pie, Jelly Bean and my sweet daughter!
Best Friends helping little boys!