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Too Many To Count Two

Saturday, January 29, 2011

typical saturday

starts with some soccer. These three are best best friends. Now they are over playing at our house. The only problem with them is that when one suggests some ridiculous plan there is no voice of reason, no suggestion of something safer or quieter. When the three of them are together there is nary a synapse snapping between them.
The rest of our day, will consists of some play dough (not for them), a trip to the library and the grocery store, some cleaning up, movie watching tonight and a date for Big and I.

Friday, January 28, 2011

no title

Lu's teacher told her to wear her pajamas inside out and backwards to make it snow. She did, and it worked:) The next morning instead of going to school we had a day off and she got to spend her time painting her jewelry box and sewing stuffed owls.

It's been a busy week. I started work. It's been good. My little class is cute. It's been an interesting week. The kids are low, and have a lot of struggles, but they are anxious to please.
I am tired, I have to get used to working.

Michael and JaNee announced their engagement. They are getting married in March and Big and I will fly out there to celebrate with them. I am excited to see everyone.

well, the week is over and now we are in bed with all the kids watching Star Trek. A good way to end the week.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


This little snickerdoodle is such a doll baby! She makes my heart ache, I miss her. Thank goodness for skype. She's such a funny thing, she says lots of words and dances around. Her newest trick is to "fall down" on her bum and complain about being hurt. This is so funny and her aunts, uncle, and grandparents gathered around the computer screen all crack up, which of course encourages her. Poor Dani. She has to fight all our bad habits! Grandmas should live close to their grandbabies, the only thing that makes the miles bearable is that Dani is such a good momma. She is much more thoughtful and deliberate than I was. Meaning, she reads books and thinks about parenting and has a philosophy. I sort of flew by the seat of my pants for a long time. She is careful and scheduled. Tate is a lucky girl, she has goodly parents. She loves to skype with us :), the only sad part is when she tries to give me things through the screen and I can't take them. It's kind of funny and kind of sad at the same time. :)

The wonderfully unexpected thing that we have been blessed with is more visits than I anticipated and I am thrilled about that. Dani has flown to see us a number of times and it's really been wonderful. And as soon as this brother proposes to this beautiful girl I will buy a ticket and go see them all! The family rumor mill is anticipating a late March wedding! JaNee is not only beautiful but she is also kind and fun. I am looking forward to having a new sister!

Emily is also getting married, in less than a month actually, to Jose. I haven't met him but my mom told me he was very nice and helpful and really seems to love Emily and Tal. I won't be able to go to their wedding :( but I hope I'll get to meet him at Michael & JaNee's. It is really hard to live so far away from all my family. Emily has had a tough situation and I am happy she will have a husband to share her life with. Little Tal is adorable and she deserves a good dad.

And since I am making a list I also need to see these two nephews of mine. Baby Reggie is stinkin' cute and I haven't got to cuddle him or kiss his little cheeks or bite his little baby toes (gently of course) or hear his fabulous laugh in person. He's not very brown, I thought he would be, but he sure is handsome!

And baby Joneaux, not a baby any more. By the time I see him I'll have to chase him down, and he'll probably run faster than me :), and grab him and tickle him and read him a book and give him a kiss or 100. My sisters make cute kids!
Here is the #2 reason I got a job, I need to see mi familia more. I haven't seen my parents in almost 3 years! It's just wrong wrong wrong. Wish I could work for an airline but a) it's too far away, and b) it's not the right schedule for me and the kiddos I have at home still. But I can buy a ticket now and then, and I can load up the suburban and buy gas to trek across the country in the summer (some summer that is)
#1 reason, "will work for tuition" is what my little cardboard sign would say.
#3 fun family time for Big and me and the kidlets who will join us.
#4 soccer shoes, swim goggles, sports fees, new jeans, propane :),
I have a list, it's a mental list of "things" that I would buy, if I ever had the money. Things like another vacuum cleaner, a new camera, a couch, a new bumper for the suburban, a monthly pedicure for me (selfish, I know). Print my blog to book, I have one year done and love it. I have 4 years to go, shelving for various places in the house, lighting for the living room, and paint paint paint :) I have a suspicion that the list isn't going to be hammered down too quickly since #1-4 is much more important to me. Although I think I will buy a camera.
Anywho, I meant to report on the weekend, which was lovely. It was stake conference. I didn't go to the adult session on Saturday because Beloved was sick sick sick. Poor guy, he was sick for about 5 days and 2 trips to the doctor later he is finally back on the grid and back to work.
Sunday I did load up all the kids and take them. It was a wonderful conference. Driving there with the children all dressed nicely and all quietly absorbed in their own DSs of iPods I felt very blessed and happy. The conference was wonderful and a real shot in the arm of inspiration and good thoughts.
Some of my favorites were Bro. Cooper's conversion story, the absolutely gorgeous musical numbers and Brother Volks talk. His was excellent. Also Pres Matsumori's.
" the grass is greener where you water it ". Love that.
"Advice is like snow; the softer it falls, the longer it dwells upon, and the deeper it sinks into the mind." Samuel Taylor Coolridge. Really pertinent for me. I have been carrying a rather heavy stick of late, in response to some frustrations with big kids not making choices I want them to...but I need to change that and just love them and let my advice just softly snow on them....harder said than done. Impossible?? hmm, maybe.
peek at my inner dialogue: I am pretty sure I know best, and am 100% right, but it's not my life. I want to save them pain and suffering and the agony of heading down the wrong path, in one the other I just want the good associations, strong testimony building experiences and a joyful carefree college experience that I missed. But it's their choice and I love them and support them no matter what. But I am the mother and it is my responsibility and obligation to lead them, guide them, walk beside them. But I taught them correct principles, in a flawed but well intentioned way, and it's time for them to govern themselves But, And, But, And, But, And.....someone around here needs some Zolof .
Cloth or disposable
breast or bottle
immunize or not
TV or not
home school or public
broccoli or spinach
football or soccer
prom dress picking
cell phone plans
these are just the foundation for the really agonizing decisions that come later.
And is it too much to ask that they serve missions??
another tangent
back to the weekend
Yesterday was a day off of school for the kids. The girls and I went shopping, R recovered, J went out with friends for Pad Thai and to her college class. E played with Webb and John. Cameron came over. Big and I watched "All About Steve" dumb. Lu put together 2 100 piece Fancy Nancy puzzles, painted her new jewelry box, sewed a stuffed owl (with my help and it turned out so cute!), read many books, and made rock candy. We met Liz and Izzy for lunch yesterday and every other kid in the county was there. It was crazy! but fun. And had FHE, where I didn't feel like making a treat (mostly because we are out of eggs) and so picked out the candy eggs out of dinosaur egg oatmeal and tried to pass it off as the treat, then the children cried, and Big came to the rescue and took them out for frostys and even brought some home for J and I, except Lu didn't go because she happily ate all the eggs and was upstairs brushing her teeth when they left and she was asleep when they got back and was none the wiser and was happy with the eggs in the first place.
and today I have. Two more days of freedom. I'm going to go hear my friend Amy speak about mental health, and get a base pass and buy some hot glue and tonight we are going to Salsa's because J wants to have Lu be sung to with a sombrero on her head and you can't really celebrate a birthday too much :)

Saturday, January 22, 2011

the party

We celebrated Lucy's birthday with a Fancy Nancy party. It was "tre magnife". All the girls arrived in their fanciest attire and we sat down for a wonderful story, Ruby's Tea Party. It's so cute. After we adjourned to the dinning area for a fancy dinner. We had servers (Chelsea, Hannah and Jenna) who brought around many delectable dishes of fancy food. We served pink punch in fluted glasses, cheese cubes on frilly toothpicks, heart shaped PB&J sandwiches, small egg salad sandwiches with an olive on top, strawberries, grapes and chips. It was very lovely and they all used their best princess manners.

We danced, played "pin the crown on Fancy Nancy", played musical chairs, made froot loop necklaces and had a nail salon.
The girls were all so sweet and Lu had a great time and was very excited to get nice gifts and to have all her friends over :)

new to us car

Big took Thursday off of work to go to a car auction. He wanted to surprise J with something great, like a cute slug bug. He spent all day but kept getting out bid. Which was disappointing. He did report that the auction was very interesting. We learned that it takes about 5k to walk away with a decent used car.
At the end of the day he ended up with this little civic for half that price. It's not all that snazzy but it has good gas mileage and will be a good little car.

I am grateful for a husband who takes the time and effort to make sure we all have what we need, and who loves all the children, mine, his, ours, it doesn't matter.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

You've had a birthday, shout hurray!!

little Lu is 6 years old! She was very excited for this day. She got to wear a birthday crown at school and I brought in a happy meal for her lunch and sat at the table with her and her friends. She got to play at Julia's house after school and then when she got home she helped me make a birthday cake!!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

I got a job!

"Energetic, purposeful work leads to vigourous health, praiseworthy achievement, a clear conscious and refreshing sleep. Work has always been a boon to man. May you have a wholesome respect for labor, whether with head, heart or hand. " Ezra Taft Benson.

I have always felt that work is important. My parents are both hard workers, and I like to think that I am too (although I know that I lean a little on the side of lazy sometimes).
My first "job" ever was when I was in Jr High. I would walk to the Dopp's house after school and baby sit baby Bryce. I did this two days a week and really I loved it. Bryce was the cutest little guy, although he cried a lot, and I loved Val who was my Beehive advisor! and Durk, who was super funny and sometimes Mark, who I had the biggest crush on in the world, would stop by.(not to see me, but to play with Durk) Anyway, I made some money and got to go to the movies or buy a shirt or whatever. I did that for a long time. Years.
Then in HS they had these work training classes, career prep or something, I don't exactly remember what. I took Bank Telling. My friend Shellie took office assisting. When the class was over she got a job at a doctors office. I didn't get a job but I thought to myself "I can do that". So I went to the office complex where she got her job and walked around to the 20+ other doctor's offices there and said "I heard you were hiring after school help". Of course that wasn't exactly true, but one of the offices said that while they weren't looking for anyone they could use someone...and so I got my foot in the door of the glamorous world of filing medical charts and making appointments. It was a good job and the staff was really nice.
Then my Senior year I had a class with a girl who worked at Howard & Phil's, the store the won the west. I love cowboys as much as the next girl and I thought that would be the perfect next job for me. "hey there cowboy, wanna buy a rope??" I applied and was very happy to be hired. Again it was pretty fun. I was good at stocking stuff, and running the register and making displays. I wasn't much of a salesman, although I was friendly, so I never got stellar commissions but I think I usually made the quota and I worked there for about a year or so. Until Dani was born.
Then I began my most important, but lowest paying job, being a mom.
I was really lucky because Mark was a hard worker and I was able to stay home with baby Dani. When she was about a year old I wanted to go back to college ( I had finished a whole sememster already and didn't want that to go to waste :) ) so I began doing day care. That always went well. I kept Becky and Brittan, Dani's cousins who were so cute and fun. We went to the park and the library. The only hiccup we ever had was when Becky out grew her naps, and I didn't know it so was still putting her down. She was unhappy, once Val told me she got to stay up and I don't think any permenant damage was done. They were cute. I also had Andrea and Emily, Ryan, Rachel, Cherokee, Ashlyn, and Kelsea, Megan and Brian and a few other little ones. My girls always enjoyed the friends and I was always happy for some extra money to buy text books, happy meals and other things with. I never had more than a couple extras at a time so we could go to the park or library or McDonalds. Those were the big three places we liked to go when the girls were little. We went to McDonalds probably every week to play on the play set, eat french fries and collect the happy meal toys. I remember one time they had the Little Mermaid toys and I found out what days they got the new toys in and we were going very regularly trying to get the whole set. We had a great collection. We had Ursula, who stuck on the bathroom wall, flounder who shot water out of his mouth, Ariel, we had them all, except the Prince. We wanted Erik but he never hever came, and then they swtiched toys. Boy was I upset. I actually asked to talk to the manager. I told him we had been coming and collecting the whole set and where was Erik? Turns out their store never got him but the manager gave me the one from the display case and Dani had a full set! (such a good mom I was :) )
So went my career days. I was in college and baby sitting and being a mom.
Then Mark and I divorced and I had to kick school into high gear. When I got my Bachlors I got a job interview at Edwards, thanks to the help of Gary Black, who was in my ward. Why he thought I was qualified in any way to recommend I know not but I was grateful. I was interviewed and I remember being asked about my computer skills. At that time I did not have a computer, but I had used one for some basic word kind of stuff, writing papers mostly. Well, I got the job and I did learn how to be a scheduler. Divine Providence if ever I saw it. There was a really nice guy, Tony, who was assigned to "help me". We met every morning at 6am and he would train me until regular office hours. We did this for close to a month. I really liked that job, I learned a lot and got to dress up and it was fun the only down side was that I was gone from the girls a lot. One day I was at work when I got a phone call from a principal at a school near my home, although not the one where my girls went. She said she was hiring and heard that I was interested. I wasn't looking, or even planning on looking...but I said yes and went to interview. She hired me and I began my career as a teacher. Completely unqualified, not an education class to my name. Sort of crazy. I did go back to school and got a credential, I also eventually switched schools to the one where the girls went and there I worked until I met Big. I can really really see the hand of the Lord leading my life during that time. Those job finding stories are unbelievably crazy, yet they happened.
So thanks to that teaching job I got to spend a lot more time being a mom and I got to meet Big.
When we moved to TX I stopped working and began my life of leisure as a stay at home mom. Had three more kids, cleaned and cooked and read library books. Swam in the pool, took the kids to soccer and did my church work. It was a good life.
Since our move to MD I have felt like my days at home were numbered. It's expensive here, but more than that I really want to help kids with college and have the ability to do some fun stuff as a family and there is always someone who needs something in our little family, whether it's new shoes, school supplies, paino lessons or library fine money (alright so the library fines are mine..but still). So I have been looking. I am picky though. I only want to work while the children are in school.
Well, today I got a job offer. It's not at the kids school, but it is at the school where E will be next year (assuming he gets into STEM) and the hours are perfect. The pay is more like a volunteer position, but that's education for you, and it will be worthwhile, enough to send my $ and my daughter to BYU, and enough to build a little cushion. I am excited. It's a Title 1 school, which means low income, high needs but that's okay. I will be doing something worthwhile.

Now only one question remains...who will do the laundry????

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


our new toothbrushes.
Lu demonstrating the proper prayer posture.


Last night for FHE we talked about prayer. Something that is always good to discuss. We briefly went over the mechanics of how to do it. Which of course the children are already familiar with, and when to do it, any time. We talked about Daniel and the lions den, and Shadrach, Meschach and Abednigo and their commitment to worship God and pray to Him no matter what. We discussed their example of faith. (plus a little fiery peril and man eating beasts are always good)

Then we talked about how prayer helps us.

Finally I handed out new toothbrushes to everyone onto which I had attached a small tag that said "pray now". Sunday night at BYD the Bishop spoke to us about prayer and about a challenge he received years ago to pick a thing he does every day and in his mind connect that with prayer. He choose brushing his teeth. Every time he brushes he also takes time to kneel in prayer. I thought that was a great idea and presented it to the children, and Big. Everyone agreed, and everyone was happy with their new toothbrushes, except E who didn't want a sponge bob one.
Then we had fruit pizza for refreshments.

Monday, January 17, 2011

don't draw on the wall...

unless you are the mom.

I painted this cute little elephant for my elephant girl. It was fun to do and turned out kind of cute.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

getting started on this years deductable

our family practice doc is never available and our kids are always sick. Not a good combo. I miss the days of the CVS walk in nurse clinic. What a brilliant money saving idea that one is.

So Han was sick Sat-Tues. E got sick on Tues and is still sick today. Lu had a one day mystery virus that went away.
Big started us off a couple weeks ago. I have in now. S & J have been sniffle, cough, cold free (knock on wood)
E has been lingering and lingering so we're off to do a strep culture.
In other news H went to a fun B-day party for her friend Julia and Lu went to a fun party for her friend Emily. Emily's family rented out the base movie theater and invited the entire Kindergarten class and their families for movies and popcorn and drinks and cake and present fun. It was a wild time, much enjoyed by the munchkins.
It's cold out. Millie isn't getting walked, due to the inclement weather (a-hem) and now is eating stuff in the house.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

this and that

Brrr...going to school this morning, wearing a tee shirt, a sweater, a fleece coat, and a jacket. Still a little a chilly.

Sierra got a new hair color, she liked the blond that Dani did better, but this does look nice.
Jenna salvaged her car. this is the part she kept :)
Kids have been taking turns being sick.
I don't want a turn.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

in short

  • it's snowing

  • two kids are sick

  • laundry is almost done

  • dinner is in the crock pot

  • school is having a two hour early out, because of the snow

  • my littlest sister got engaged, I hope it goes well for her

  • we may have two weddings this spring (one sister, one brother)

  • raising teens is tough

  • seeing eye to eye with hubby is hard

  • vacuuming is cathartic

  • reading a good book, "I Still Dream About You" by Fannie Flagg

  • wishing for chocolate, and chips and salsa

  • Tea for Ruby is Lu's favorite new book, and luckily it's a good one becasue we've read it a lot :)

  • H is sorting socks

  • E is tucked in my bed with the heated mattress pad on...he is cold

  • over

Sunday, January 09, 2011


eyes are closed because of the flying pillow.
E had a soccer game, his team was spanked. He was sad.

Many friends slept over.

We made a rainbow of pancakes colors in the morning.

Big took the sub for an oil change, found out it has some kind of a leak. (READ: $500 repair)

We made Lucy's birthday party invitations and handed them out.

Little went to a bowling birthday party.

H was sick :(

Big and I chaperoned the stake dance.

Our ward was in charge of decorations so we got to go early and stay late. It turned out nicely though.

J has a new friend, who is a boy, who is cute and tall. I tried to take their picture but they were busy ducking from Ethan launched projectiles (pillows, ping pong balls), he was quite obnoxious (E) Cameron was quite nice.

Went to church.

Talks were good.

Went to cub committee meeting and VT interview.

Big is going to go help prepare Bro Smith for burial and then we are going to the Wilson's for dinner.

Time flies.

Friday, January 07, 2011

cookies and cars

Tonight's baking project! All the kids begged for one more sleep over, since it was finally the weekend. Sydney, also joined the gang tonight :) They are baking cinnamon muffins, and already we've baked oatmeal cookies. I think it will be a sugary night.
Last night J was driving home from work and a little old lady pulled out into traffic and into Jenna :( She had to call the police and luckily a very nice couple stopped to help them. Poor Rasputin (her car). J is smiling in the photo but she wasn't happy she actually suffers from a terrible personality disorder that she inherited from her mother~ when something goes wrong she laughs. When I broke my ankle I cracked up, when I hit my neighbors cat and killed it I laughed my head off, when I am upset or angry I smile or laugh. It's embarrassing and inappropriate and apparently hereditary because J does the same thing. Sorry J. Anyway, she was upset and shaken up but unhurt. We have had some bad car karma lately.

Thursday, January 06, 2011

"sleep" overs

A beautiful winter day. Lu is a pink puff ball running around outside :)
this was a couple of days ago.

This is only allowed to happen when you are 5 :) We have had the Martines kids spending a few days with us. It's been going really well, they are cute and well behaved and my kids think it's the biggest treat to have sleep-overs on school nights. The only hard part is no one wants to sleep :)
Tonight I tried tucking these two little ones in earlier to fall asleep in the hopes that the big ones would tip toe in and quietly go to sleep when it's time.

So far I still hear running and laughing upstairs, and the big one's movie is almost over so I am not sure it's going to work out so well :)

These two bakers made dessert tonight.

Tuesday, January 04, 2011


We are half way through the school year and already Lu has learned so much. They say "everything you need to know you learn in kindergarten" and I think that might be right.
Besides reading and math, which she is learning very nicely, here are some important things our little Lucy has learned:

1) it's what's on the inside that really matters.
The week before school started I took her shopping for new tennis shoes. In the summer we don't wear shoes, it's strictly flip flops and sandals for us, nothing that requires a sock :); so she needed a pair. We went to Payless and she spent a long time looking and picking just the right pair. She actually ended up with two, one that was light pink with velcro zig zagging stripes to hold them on. The other was a dark pink with shoe laces. She was very happy until she got to school and saw that "all the other girls" had twinkle toes.
After school on about day three she asked if we could go to the store and get twinkle toes. I said no. She had brand new shoes that were perfectly nice.
Every day after that she longed for twinkle toes. She just knew that everyone else had them and were in fact mocking her for not. If only she had some then stinky Christopher wouldn't stick a straw in his nose and wave it at her, and she would always get first choice of centers and no one would ask her to let them get on the swing when she wanted it. So with the persistence of a pit bull, or a 5 year old, she asked and asked for twinkle toes. Every week. Every time we went to the store, and sometimes randomly when she just thought of it she would beg. Every time I said no. Gently and kindly but firmly because a) she had perfectly good shoes and b) I knew what she did not, that twinkle toes would not change her life at all.
Then along came Thanksgiving and a trip to Ohio to visit the family which included a shopping trip with Uncle Brian.
Guess what Lu got?
Yep, twinkle toes!
She was ecstatic!
She was thrilled!
She sparkled and danced her way through life waiting for the first Monday back to school. Monday came and she hopped up bright and early, got dressed all the way down to her twinkle toes and skipped off to school.
Monday afternoon she got off the bus looking forlorn and upset and walked up to me with the saddest face. When she traversed the 10 steps from the bus to me she couldn't take it a minute longer and burst into tears! "No one noticed my twinkle toes!" she cried. It turned out they had no magical powers after all. Christopher still was stinky, she still had to share and no one cared about her shoes.
As gently as I could I told her that was because her friends liked her for who she was inside, not for what kind of shoes she wore. People are important and special just because they are, not because of what they have.
She listened, sighed, and kicked her shoe on the grass. Then we headed home a little sad, but also a little wiser and ready to make some cookies. (secret lesson #2 making cookies helps a lot of situations)

She has learned to be compassionate. At the start of the year the children took turns bringing home "the broadcast box". They had a plastic shoe box that each perosn got to bring home and fill with treasures, then the next day they brought it back to school and could share what they brought. On Lu's turn she stuffed that box with all her cool stuff, she's a very confident little thing. She was very excited and happy on broadcast box day :)
One day I was at school helping and Ms Myers told me that some of the kids were quite shy, particularly Lu's friend Rebekah. On Rebekah's day to have the broadcast box she only brought in one thing and when she sat on the "special stool" to share she just sat there looking down at her lap . Ms M told me that Lu raised her hand and asked Rebekah 2-3 questions about her thing, and really helped her to share. She told me she is always helpful and kind to the other children. Which I am so happy to hear.

She has learned that the cafeteria food, that looks so fabulous, really is not :)

Most recently she learned that you never regret saying something nice...but sometimes you regret being a little snarky.
With the start of the new year that class made a "new year's resolution book". Each child got a page to write and illustrate their resolution on and then they bound them into a class book. Lu thought she would be funny and cheeky and wrote "my resolution is to torture my brother and sisters more". After the book was put together the teacher sat them down and read it out loud to the whole class. The other children wrote things like "I will make my bed without being told" or "I will help my mom". When they got to Lu's page she was quite embarrassed, it was too late though and she couldn't change what she wrote.
When she got home from school she spilled the sordid tale of shame and was a little weepy about it. "I asked Ms Myers if I could redo my page", she said, "but it was too late :( "
We had a little chat about how you will never regret not saying something mean, but the things we let slip out that aren't so nice, whether we are trying to be funny or not ,often come back in a flash of shame that makes us shake our heads and wonder at our own stupidity. I assured her that I know, and Ms Myers knows, that she is a wonderful, kind, sweet, helpful, girl and that no one thought less of her. She told me "next time I'm just going to write something nice". Words are powerful. My sweet girl is learning many good lessons this year.

and she can read "Chicka Chicka Boom Boom" all by herself!

Monday, January 03, 2011

be a beady ant

We have a perfect track record for the year! We have had FHE every single Monday night!!! Lu prepared the lesson, it was on the Lehi's vision. After we played that game where you say words and they sound like other sentences~ try it, read the title out loud. Then we had yummy fruit and dip for dessert. Go us!!After FHE we video skyped Tate and Dani. Love the skype. Tatum showed us the super fabulous and noisy toy that Abba got her for Christmas. Those balls are cute :). We read stories and sang songs. I love technology.

In other news the children went back to school, I did some laundry, the girls had piano lessons and I had a great presidency meeting with much accomplished.

Sunday, January 02, 2011

new year

It's a new year, 2011. Kind of crazy. A new year is a good time to reflect and renew. I actually like putting away the holiday decor. Not the putting away part itself but the clean sweep it gives. An uncluttered looked, a fresh start.

Once upon a time I thought at some point I would have become the person I want to be. I thought that it would have been some point before the second decade of the 21st Century, but I am still working on it. I also thought I'd be a lot more vigorous in my progress on this road than I am. The saying "endure to the end" is taking on a new meaning as I get older. The ability to continue in a sustained effort to better myself, despite repeated set backs and disappointments and to do it with enthusiasm and cheerfulness. That is enduring to the end. You can't get tired. You can't stop. It would be nice to have something down pat by now...but since I don't actually know anyone who does I guess maybe that's not our lot for this life.

so my annual "to do" list:

learn how to make homemade pasta, yesterday we went to the Henrichson's New Years Day open house and she served among other delicious things, a warm and tasty chicken noodle soup that had the best noodles.

lose some lbs

use up my box of Uncle Brian shirts by remaking them into fabulous and fun things.

serve more

invite more people to our home

share the gospel with someone

do a really great job at my calling, and at mothering, and at wifeing.

See my parents

meet my nephews

send J and S off to school (read:BYU)