Tuesday, November 7, 2017


Summer!!!  I love Summer!!  I finally don't have to get up at 5:30 am!
 This year we took a trip up to Wolf Lodge in Colorado to celebrate Max turning 12.  Twelve is a pretty big birthday in our house.   Max got the priesthood at church and now gets to pass the sacrament.
 We are all looking pretty hot in our wolf ears!

 The kids loved playing Magi Quest.  
 Then we visited the Air Force Academy, where are good friends from Ohio, the Killpack's met us and did the tour for us.  He is currently a professor at the Academy
 Sam had senior pictures.  I took him to the mall to shop for something decent to wear.  He kept saying no to everything, so finally I just sent him into Express and didn't go in with him.  He came out with this.  Yep, those are fancy shorts, boat shoes and an expensive t-shirt.  That's the fanciest he has been in years!
 Sam went to several football camps, one over in Arizona, while the two younger boys went to Trek- which is reenactment of Pioneer time.  They had handcart teams and had to pull handcarts all day.  They try to make it fun with dances and games and some music.  This one was much more modern than the one Rob and I participated in.  We weren't allowed to have toothpaste or tents and we had to make all our own food pretty much from scratch.  We did not have to kill a chicken, though!  These guys had instant oatmeal and sandwiches and donuts. (Ok, maybe not donuts, but close enough!)  Since Max had turned 12 just a couple weeks before he got to go with the group!

While they were having a good time at camps, I flew to Las Vegas with Robert and enjoyed a little get away.  Rob started working in Vegas in the spring as the interim head of the department up there.  

 Sam got a car- a stick shift.  1) because it's cheaper, 2) in the auto theft capital of the United States thieves will actually pick an alarmed car before they pick a stick shift, and 3) so he can't be on his phone ever while driving!  So Sam had to learn to drive a stick shift
 And Emmmmmmmmmmmaaaa!  Emma came home for a month and learned to drive a stick shift as well- because it's a skill people!

 Sam turned 18!

We celebrated at the movies and at the trampoline park
 We went up to Santa Fe for the 4th of July

 And then up to Los Alamos- home of Fat man and Little boy!
 We played a lot of tennis
 I worked on a a quilt for my Mama
 We enjoyed the Ninja gym

 Joe Turned 15!
 And Sam experienced his first cupping.  I'm not a fan!  That just looks like it destroyed all the capillaries in his skin.  I don't know how that is supposed to help him!
And somewhere in all of that, I got a job and started working two 12 hour shifts every week as well as taking all the classes I needed to renew all my lost certifications!  I still have one more to go in November.  I have to have a lot of certifications!

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Ending with the Best

After football and wrestling, I was pretty depressed about what we had done for our oldest son, but he moves well and showed it.  He went into track with determination and found some amazing coaches that helped him reach for his potential.  Coming out of Stuttgart, I think he only had a 17 sec (something) for his best time at the 110 meter hurdles and maybe 5'8 for his high jump.  Of course it was his first year in high school running or jumping.  He mastered the 3 step technique this year and learned to deal with ice baths.  

Even I became involved with the team, because the coaches were so awesome!  Rob and I tried to make most of the meets.  

So many parents were never there.  They are long and some think really boring, but I have always found track fascinating and it helps when you personally know the kids and their struggles.  We rooted for all kinds of kids, including from other teams, because we learned of their stories, or guessed at some.  A lot of the boys would come say hi to us and give me a hug.  Sam's hurdle coach was also named Debi and so we talked lots.  Such a great group of kids and adults! 

Sam made it to state in the 110 hurdles, high jump and as an alternate for the sprint medley team.  

For those that qualified they had a special dinner.  I was invited to participate.  So amazing to watch! 

 Hats were given out at districts for those who made state

 Goodie Bags!

 The 6A boys track team

 Isn't this cake amazing!

The meet itself was hot but the competition was fierce.  Those kids gave every last ounce they had.  We watched lots of throwing up.  They even had to move the podium because of a big pile of puke in front of it.  Do you know where they moved it- on top of the puke!  NICE!   

Our meet had 4 A, 5A, and 6 A.  It was interesting to see the difference.  Sam would have won or come close to winning the races of the 4 and 5 A schools.  He ended up getting 5th in the 110 hurdles for the big schools.

Our team was winning the whole meet.  We had got a good amount of people into state finals, so we were super excited and hopeful.  We lost in the very last race of the day and ended up getting 2nd.  Second in all of New Mexico for running is not bad. In fact it is very very good!  We had a kid high jump who tied 6 other kids in the nation that had jump the same height- only 7 kids in the entire nation! One of our teams racers went on to sign for BYU track team.  I expect him to do great things.  He was the national 400m winner.  I think we are pretty competitive.  But just as every one knows 2nd stinks.  1st you're the winner, 3rd you are happy you are on the podium, but 2nd?  Blah!  It was so sad to watch! It all was quite an experience and they have one more year to try and win it all- at least with Sam on the team!

So glad Sam chose to do track.  He ended with a 15.3 second PR I believe and a 6 foot high jump.  Not bad for a 5'8 kid!  He also ended up with another Varsity letter and another coaches award!  Way to go buddy!
 Coaches award- hugging Coach Nord

The Varsity Hurdling team

Thursday, April 20, 2017

A New Mexico Easter

Here we are in our new Easter outfits.  

I swear I look like I am in pain, but I believe it was just the sun hitting my eyes.  Or maybe I'm just getting old and it shows more when I smile. But I wanted to show my whole dress.  All of that is embroidery!  It comes from a new website that I was introduced to by a friend called eshakti.  They customize your dress for you.  You can change the neck, the sleeves, the length and give them your measurements and they make the dress for you.  Super excited about it!

We had a super low key Easter, but a nice one.  One where we laughed together and enjoyed each others company.  
I taught my class and did the eggs with objects in each one that represent the story of Christ's last time on the earth.  I have changed it a little to focus on the things I think should be focused on more.
My version:

1. Matt 26:26-28 (sacrament cup)  This is the Last supper and the institution of the sacrament
2. Matt 26:14-15 (3 pennies wrapped in tin foil) The 30 pieces of silver
3. Matt 26:36-45 (Olive oil) representing the Garden of Gethesemane
4. Matt 27:1-2 (rope) Jesus is bound
5. Matt 27:18-24 (soap) Pilate washes his hands
6. Matt 27:35 (dice) casting lots
7. Matt 27:50-54 (rocks) the earthquakes, ending with the soldiers believing that Jesus was the son of God
8. Matt 27:57-60 (white linen) burial
9. Matt 27:62-66 (large rock) stone sealed on tomb
10. Mark 16:1 (cloves) to anoint the body
11. John 20:2-9 (small roll of gauze) seeing the empty tomb 
12. Matt 28:6 (empty) he is not here but is risen

I would like to tweak it a little more and put in the part about Mary seeing Jesus.  More than anything I wanted to focus on the fact that he had risen and not so much about the death.  The death is in there, but it's not the main focus.  
What I found was 1. 8 year olds, even my smartie pants kids, have trouble reading long scriptures.
2. They don't understand how scriptures are laid out or are written down on a paper.  They kept saying Matt- what does Matt mean?  I had to tell them more than a couple times that Matt was short for Matthew.  Then they would say 26 dot dot 26 dash 28.  3. They really can't find scriptures.  I had to go around showing them every single time, even though we stayed in the same 2 chapters most of the time.  I had to say, "don't turn your page, don't turn your page.  Stay where you are" almost every single time and then come around and point to the right verse.  So that took our whole lesson!  But at least we talked of Christ and the real reason for Easter AND we learned a little about how to find scriptures!

Saturday, April 1, 2017

April Fools!

Today it was winter in New Mexico- no lie.  
It's been 70-80 degrees for 3 weeks, but today Mother Nature said, "April Fools!"

Sam's track meet was canceled after they ran the 3200m and the 4x100m.  Our girls scratched because they false started and then our boys scratched because they couldn't feel anything with their hands being frozen and dropped the baton.  Sam's race was up next when they decided to cancel the meet due to the snow!  That's right- Snow!  I had to laugh when I saw the Petroglyph National Monuments fire danger sign at Moderate!
Max however, completed his football game.  You think that's another April Fools?  Nope.  They have spring football here as well as fall.  We signed up late, but they let us on if we would go to the next town over to play with their team.  They have so few players that even when they let everyone they could sign up late, they still only have 10 healthy players and 2 sick ones.  We figured these guys have all played together since they were like 5 so it was about the only way Max would actually get to play.  He started on offense 

and kick return.  

He also played a little linebacker.  His hands were completely frozen when it was all done.  He couldn't even get his pads undone.
With all this winter weather it made me crave meat which I rarely do- so we went to the best burger around!  And we got to see a little Emma there!

What a start to April!

Springbreak Losers

We didn't plan anything for Springbreak- maybe we had premonitions?  We were planning to do something for the end of the week- maybe Thursday, Friday and Saturday.  But then Rob got in an accident on Monday and we had appointments on Monday.  Then Rob was supposed to be convalescing, so we couldn't go anywhere.  
I did let the kids have friends over to play capture the flag. (I invited the entire YM/YW and only 2 young kids came, luckily Sam had invited all his track buddies so they had enough for a game.  Another depressing thing about this ward- or maybe it's just us.  Haven't figured that out yet.) 
I did take them to a fun center where we played miniature golf

Joe trying really hard to keep his eyes open!
and laser tag (which I got 2nd in) and a simulated video game type thing (which I got dead last on, because I died 4 or 5 times and killed no one.  I couldn't figure out why it kept ejecting me until I realized about halfway through the game that meant I had been killed- who knew!), and did bumper boats and go karts!  It was a fun day.
We also got Sam signed up for his ACT's.  He couldn't get the last thing done- the picture.  It kept rejecting all of them, saying his eyes were closed.  This is the one that got accepted.  

Crazy much?
We also hiked around and on the three volcanos that are just behind our housing area.  It was a really nice hike!
We are a little bit of Springbreak losers like Emma calls us, but at least we did a few things around the area that we had been meaning to do!

New Mexico Driver's are seriously the Worst!

The only driver's I have seen worse than New Mexican's are Roman's and they believe all traffic rules are suggestions.  Well New Mexican think most of the traffic rules are suggestions.  They don't use their blinkers, they cut across 3-4 lanes of traffic at once and expect those they cut off to just react, they drive distracted and they go at least 20 miles over the speed limit at all times!  It's amazing we haven't been in a crash until now.  The other day Rob came home with his hair a mess just 30 minutes or so after he left.  While getting onto the on ramp for the high way a semi hit him while going about 25-30 mph.  

Rob never saw it coming.  He said, at one point he was slowing down and the next he was airborne.  He did a "good combat roll" and jumped right back up.   His motorcycle is a total loss. 

He was acting a little funny when he came home so I really wanted to take him in, but he said he had to go to work.  He only got to stay at work for a short time before the boss told him he had to go to the ED.  He went to the VA and with his report back of what they did and didn't do, the way the doctor acted towards him and the nurses and the absurd amount of time it took (he wasn't home until  4 pm) I solidified my opinion of VA hospitals and how I will never ever work at one!  The doctor never even looked at him, he just looked at his scans and x-rays that were ordered by the triage nurse!  All Rob had to do was take off his shirt and I saw a huge bruise on his lower abdomen.  He made an actually appointment with his primary care physician for a same day appointment the next day to get all the things they didn't check out, checked out!  Luckily the bruise was not not internal bleeding.  He got away with cuts, bruises, a broken thumb and a TBI.  He was forced to take 2 weeks of conversant leave which he thought was ridiculous, but after a couple days realized he needed.   He was one of the only smart people in New Mexico and was wearing his helmet.  His uniform miraculously kept him from getting road rash!  That stuff is made of some pretty awesome material!  I am so thankful that he was kept safe.  This definitely could have been much worse!