Monday, March 31, 2014


My parents came up to spend Saturday-Monday with us.  It was great spending time with them.  We appreciate them coming to see us.  On Monday we went to Mr Mac. to get Alex outfitted for his mission and then spent the rest of the day in Provo at BYU.  Our first stop was Brick Oven for lunch.  This is one of our favorite places since Eric and I attended there.

Jarem wanted to take the picture since his face was swollen and sunburned.  He was nicknamed, "Red beard" by Alex

It was delicious!
 Then we went to an amazing exhibit at the BYU Art Museum.  It was original altarpieces of Christ from all different churches.  Many were borrowed from Sweden, Denmark, and other parts of Europe.  There were also some from a famous cathedral in New York.  It was truly amazing.

Then we walked around campus and hit the BYU Bookstore for some BYU clothing and accessories.

Jesikah is all stocked up now

Showing some sas!

I love this one!

Tessa found a skirt on clearance and a scarf to match that weren't BYU at all, but still cute.
My camera battery died before I got Jarem's picture, but he got he got 2 shirts and a pair of shorts.  He loves it.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Mission Call!!!

We received Alex's mission call around 11:00am on Saturday morning at the hotel.  We were all very excited and anxious!  We were planning to meet my parents and my two brothers and their families for the "opening of the call" at Temple Square in Salt Lake.  As soon as we got there, Alex was ready to open it! We found a pretty location by a fountain and we gathered around while he read it aloud!  He was called to the Salt Lake City-East mission reporting to the MTC June 11th!!  It was exciting to finally know where he will be spending the next two years.  I am relieved to know that he won't be too far away, and I have lots of extended family closeby if something happened and I couldn't get to him.

After he opened the call, I suspected that he might be a little disappointed.  Most missionaries have a secret desire to serve somewhere foreign and I was afraid Salt Lake East may seem too ordinary to him.  When I had spoken with him before opening the call, I asked him if there was anywhere he would be disappointed to go.  He said..."the Nashville TN mission" (since that is the mission we live in).  Truth be known, he was surprised, but happy to serve anywhere.  He loves the West and always has.  The only thing that bothered him is having to tell people he is going to Salt Lake and having them go, "Oh".  What got him even more excited was the fact that he has a good girl friend who used to be in our ward currently serving in that mission.  One of his best guy friends is serving in the Salt Lake-West mission.  He was able to get in contact with both of them through email, and they both LOVE their missions.  When they told him all the great things about the mission, he was getting more and more excited!  Oddly, the last missionary that left from our ward went to the exact same mission just a couple of months ago, so he will know him as well.

In his own words, he is "eager to serve the Lord".  And that is absolutely true.  He can't wait!!

As we sat in church the next day in Utah, I looked over the ward bulletin and their ward has a missionary serving in OUR mission in Tennessee.  I thought, "We send ours to them and they send theirs to us."

We are very proud of his worthiness and desire to teach the gospel.  He is a great boy and will be a wonderful missionary.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Skiing and Snowboarding-Days 2&3

The girls went to a full day lessons the first day.  They lucked out and were the only 2 in their class.  Jarem did full-day lessons both days for snowboarding.  He decided that he wanted to be like the other boys in our family and snowboard. :)  

Eric and Alex enjoyed snowboarding together.  I did pretty good the first day until Eric and I went down a run together that was above my level.  I really struggled getting down and fell several times.  One of the times I injured my knee which I was worried would prevent me from skiing the next day.  I iced it, and soaked in the hot tub, and rested it.   
Picture from our room window
 While Micah was sleeping on the first day, I was watching out the window for the kids and saw that girls!

So I zoomed in...the purple jacket is Tessa and the bright pink in front of her is Jesikah, in front of them is their instructor

Day 2: The next morning I felt pretty good, so I gave it a shot.  The girls and I went out and skied first.  It had snowed the night before and the snow was great.  We had a wonderful time going down all the easy runs.  We don't like the hard stuff, so it worked out great!  It was fun to see the girls' personalities come out in their skiing styles.  Jesikah likes to go slower and is very cautious.  Tessa likes to go faster and is more adventurous.  I loved being with them both.

Picture of the mountain going up the lift

Jesikah on the lift

Tessa on the lift

The three of us at the top of the mountain

Later when Jarem got out of his lesson, he showed us his moves!  He did really well and was so cute coming down the hill snowboarding.  It reminded Eric and I of another little boy who started snowboarding about his age. (Alex) Jarem loved it and decided he was going to save all his money for a snowboard.  He begged to go back to lessons for yet another day. :)

After a tiring day of skiing and snowboarding, Jarem and I got smoothies and soaked in the hot tub.It the perfect end to a perfect day!

Around 5:30 that afternoon, we got word that "the package" had arrived at our house!  The Fullers picked it up and overnighted it to us in Utah!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Utah Vacation Day 1

For spring break, we told Alex he could choose a place (within reason of course)where he would like to go for his senior trip.  He chose a ski trip to Utah, so that is what we did.  It was a WONDERFUL vacation.  We fit in everything.  We had two places where we wanted to eat while in Utah:  In-N-Out Burger and Cafe Rio.  We hoped to get his mission call while there, which we did. (More on that later) We hoped to ski, enjoy the hot tub, have some down time, spend time with family, and get some mission shopping done at Mr Mac.  We did it all, and it was SO fun!!  It was a great last vacation together!

We flew into Salt Lake City late Tuesday night and stayed at a hotel in East Salt Lake that night.  The next day, we took our time eating breakfast and lounging around. We stopped at Mr. Mac to get an idea of their prices and what Alex might need.  On our way to the Park City resort, we stopped at In-N-Out Burger for lunch. Below are some pictures of eating at In-N-Out Burger:
Eric showing Micah how to dip his finger in the ketchup

He thinks it's fun!

Yummy burgers!

Getting ready to eat

Alex enjoying his burger

And yes, even a rare picture of me!

We made it to the Park City resort!! 
It couldn't have worked out more perfectly!  There was a pool and hot tubs below.  When you walked out the gate from the pool, there was the ski lift RIGHT THERE!  I can't tell you how great it was for our family.  With Micah, we could trade off taking care of Micah while skiing/snowboarding in between.  The breaks were a welcome relief and the convenience couldn't be beat!

Jarem checking out the TV

The girls checking out the view

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Soccer Friends

This is Alex's 4th and final year playing soccer on the High School team.  It has had its ups and downs for him.  It all seems to depend on his playing time.  Some years he has had lots of playing time and other years (like last year), he hasn't gotten much time on the field.  This year has been pretty good.  It's amazing how much that affects a boy's self esteem.  Jesikah said yesterday that boys base all their self esteem on how good they are at sports.  She does have a pretty good point.  He definitely gets down when he isn't playing much or not doing well.  And, when he has a great game, nothing can get him down.  Sports in high school is a double edged sword.

He has made some really great friends on his soccer team over the years.  These boys in the picture are all seniors and friends, and just good kids.  I am impressed with how nice the seniors have been to all the younger kids on the team this year.  It isn't always like that.  They are good to each other and play well as a team.  It makes all the difference.  I am really glad that he has had the opportunity to play soccer in high school.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Toothpaste Commercial

I hate it when its 10pm and I'm ready to crawl in bed and suddenly one of my kids comes running to me in a panic saying, "I have a project due tomorrow".  Then I feel obligated to help them because it is already late and they are in a bind.  And in this situation, Tessa was making a video commercial, but did not know how to use the camcorder or transfer it to a jump drive.  I was pretty much stuck. Mad, but stuck. 

(To qualify it, the 3 oldest really keep track of their homework well and are very responsible, but there are always those moments.)  

So, VERY GRUDGINGLY, I proceeded to help her put together this commercial.  What made me even more frustrated was the fact that she wanted Jarem to be IN the commercial.  I've been really struggling to get him to bed on time, and it was already way past his bedtime.  But, I put my anger aside and we proceeded.

In the commercial, Jarem was getting ready to get his soccer pictures taken.  In the first picture, he smiled like he was embarrassed and Tessa said, "Have you ever gotten your picture taken and been embarrassed of your yellow teeth?"  Then, she said, "Not anymore".  Jarem held up the toothpaste and smiled big for the camera. "With ________ toothpaste, you can now smile with confidence".

It was cute and simple really and didn't take long at all.  Here's a couple of pictures that I got of Jarem during the commercial.


Embarrassed of yellow teeth smile

Not Anymore

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Mr Ansberry

Mr Ansberry has been the girls' band teacher for the last 4 years.  He may be a little quirky, forgetful, and odd, but when it comes to teaching music, he is amazing.  Alex knew him as the weird teacher who always wore rainbow suspenders.  But the kids in his class like his quirkiness, and he can teach them to play from never touching an instrument to mastering it.  I am so impressed with all my girls have learned in band without every having had a private lesson.  He pushes them and puts in extra time after school for select bands such as: symphonic and jazz.  

Tessa is in the symphonic band, which is his select band.  For this band, you have to be invited to be part of it.  Tessa was invited as a 6th grader, which is pretty honorable.  

These pictures were taken at their symphonic band competition this past Friday.  The band performed very well.  I'm glad Tessa has had the opportunity to be a part of this. 

The thing that I don't like about band is that I can never see my child in the pictures. :)

Friday, March 14, 2014

Alex's Academic Awards Banquet

Alex was invited to this District Academic Awards Banquet for having an A average all of high school and never receiving a semester grade below 85.  It is a great accomplishment.  There were about 35 from his high school that were invited of 333 in his graduating class.  We are very proud of him and his academic accomplishments.

Receiving his certificate

Alex shaking hands with superintendent of schools

Shaking hands with Mr Myers, his school principal, as he hands him his award. Alex's soccer coach was announcing names

Holding certificate and award

Alex with his soccer coach and other members of the soccer team that also got the award

Alex with Josh and Steven (his soccer buddies)

Alex and Reid
I was glad that we got this last picture because Alex and Reid have been good friends since 8th grade.  She has been one of his best friends through the years.  They have been on a few dates and almost dated a few times, but didn't like each other "in that way" at the same time.  I think it is best for both of them that they just remained friends.  This year things have been more complicated since Reid started dating one of Alex's best friends.  I am grateful for Reid in Alex's life.  She has helped him through some hard times.