Monday, December 14, 2015

Football season is over and we have had a great season.  We were able to go to the championship game.  We lost in a close game.  Hyrum did very well this last season.  We was able to learn his left guard spot well.  The offensive scheme was challenging.  they expected Hyrum to cut block and and pull occasionally.  He picked it up really quick.  he is undersized for this age group but held his own.  He would be great if he could find a way to get mean.  I don't think he has that in him.  I'm very proud of how well he did this last season.

I took Tiffany to San Fransisco for our Birthdays.  we thought that Emma and eve are old enough to handle the family/house while we were gone.  It was fun.  I want another shot at the city.  I feel like we got the tourist stuff out of the way.  We spent a lot of time on the Piers, we went to Alcatraz and saw the Muir Wood National Park.  It was crowded.  We walked a lot the first two days and felt we would be ok walking many miles each day.  After the first day we were very tired.  I got us lost as we were trying to walk from the hotel to Fisherman's Wharf.  It was a great scenic view but required far more time than we had allotted for.  We took two days to explore the city.  San Fran is supposed to be a great food city.  We were disappointed with the places we ate at in the city.  We had a couple of ideas on where to eat and relied on Yelp to help us out.  It didn't work out as well as we had hoped.  The last day we went back to the airport and got a car and went to see Muir Woods.  It was great to get out of the city into an environment we were more familiar with.  We went north of the bridge and got a few pictures.  when we got to Muir Woods the parking lot was very crowded.  we had to walk over a mile from where we parked to get to the park.  they wanted to park in a park and ride that would have added about 1.5 hours to our trip.  The park was awesome.  Almost required reference.  On the way back to our hotel we stopped in Sausalito to kill some time.  We went to aprk that Tiffany saw and it was a fundraiser for a local music school featuring some Creole music/food.  It sounded cool until we walked in and saw that everyone was drunk and partying it up.  The food trucks were shutting down. The food did not look that good anyways.  we walked down the road a bit and ate at a restraurant with a blue roof.  I had the best seafood dish I have had to date.  this helped me feel better about the food experience we had been having up to that point.  Except for Ghirardelli's.  that place was awesome.  Salted Caramel sundae!!!  It was fun to get away with Tiffany without anything to do.  I want another shot at that city.  I want to plan our food tour a little better.

 October is always a bit of a crazy month for us.  Between birthdays and Tiffany's witching it gets a little crazy.  I think this will be Tiffany's last year working for gardner Village.  All the witches she has started with have moved on.  She is no longer feeling like she is needed.  With hyrum in football and her witching it feels like we don't have much time to celebrate the birthdays.  It will be interesting to see what happens next year.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

August has started off as a challenging month for us.  Hyrum has started football tryouts.  It is a challenge for me to watch him struggle.  My competitive side is struggling to watch him be in the wrong spots.  He still has not gained all the speed he lost the last few years.  He is really strong and competes well once he is engaged.  He is picking up the knowledge piece of football quickly.  He just needs more time.  He got on a large team.  We have 22 kids total.  They had a coach back out.  We have a good team but finding playing time for everyone will be a challenge.

We had the Stake Triathlon last weekend.  This has been a bigger challenge this yea because we have included more stakes and have tried to divide the work.  I woke up around 4:30 so I could be at the church (Transition 2) at 5:00 for a triathlon start at 7:00.  for T2 we needed to have chairs put up for each participant so they had a place to put their bike and start their run.  We need to have the number they were assigned on the chair.  We need to create a bike in and run out from the church to the street and the finish line.  Last year I directed most of this.  we had help setting up all the chairs and providing the numbers.  I created the in and out of the all the signs needed for the run.  This year I was the liason for the other stakes that were assigned this area.  The chairs were out on time.  The numbers that were created were wrong and had to be redone.  We had many people show up to put their running shoes by there chairs and we did not know where they were supposed to be yet.  we had a guy from the Draper Region that had done these in his area trying to help set things up with at T2.  he had not been to any meetings and had a different vision on how things should be.  we needed to tear down everything he did and recreate it.  He explained what we needed to do and left him to it.  He set it up wrong and we needed to tear it down again.  this happened four times before I just took care of it myself.  Once we got the race started I did have much to do.  I received a text that we had an accident.  The text read that the person will require and stitches.  This was followed up with a notice that it was Eve.  I came unglued.  i'm a worrier and immediately thought of the worst.  I contacted the medical people to come to T2 where a I assumed Eve would be taken.  Tiffany drove the van to T2 but had no Eve.  She told me that Eve demanded to finish the race and took Tiffany's bike and continued.  I felt horrible when I heard that Eve's crash was due to an equipment malfunction.  He brakes did not work as she was going down a steep decline.  She crashed into a fence and some bushes.  Pres. Markus had a scooter and took Tiffany to see if they could find Eve.  They found her almost towards the end of the bike.  When I saw Eve I started to cry.  She was banged up.  A lot of road rash up her right side and a large wound on the left by her hairline.  She had a large bruise started on her thigh.  We had a nurse check her out and start attending to her wounds.  Soon a doctor came and made sure the wounds were treated right.  The paramedics came and Eve got to talk to some handsome firemen.  I handed off my responsibilities and we took Eve to the hospital.  The stitched her up and cleaned her wounds.  The girls were still wet from the swim and got very cold.  They brought Eve a warm blanket.  I was very impressed and proud of how Eve handled everything.  She was very positive and upbeat.  She was a great example of how to handle adversity.  We had a large outpouring of love towards Eve when we got home.  Pres. and Sis. Markus asked what her favorite treat was and Eve told the Tomatoes and other veggies.  they raided their garden and brought Eve a large bag of tomatoes.  Pres. and Sis. Saunder came by for a visit.  Eve's YW leaders came by.  Eve was still smiling through it all and still looked beautiful.  The wounds made her look really tough.  We were concerned about Eve's Oakcrest trip this week.  She is starting to heal quickly and is doing well.  She will likely be mostly healed by the time she gets back.

Tiffany is dealing with some problems with her visiting teaching partner. She has a companion that has come out and said she does not like Tiffany.  It seems like every month she has a physiological battle with this lady.  she is known to be a challenge to work with and I guess the RS leaders feel Tiffany can handle it.  I have been very proud of Tiffany and how she has handled this challenge.  She has been very patient and tries to be understanding.  If this had happened to me I would have spoken my mind a long time ago but Tiffany handles things like this better than me.  I learn a lot from her in these situations.  Her companion claims that Tiffany offended a lady they teach by calling to check up on her and to set a VT appointment.  Her companion in flat out crazy.  I know this from the Bishopric days.  She needs meds but does not have any.  Tiffany is a great example of kindness and understanding. 

Sunday, August 2, 2015

We just completed a great vacation.  We took the family the Yellowstone.  We were concerned that the trip might not be as fun as some of the trips we have taken in the past.  It was a great trip.  We left Monday mid day and planned to take our time driving up.  We stopped to visit the Idaho Falls Temple.  We ate at Rexburg.  We took a scenic route from Ashton to Island Park.  we saw a great waterfall and some beautiful farm land.  The acres of wheat were impressive.  We stayed in Island Park at a home we rented.  It was on a island which made for a lot of driving.  Once we booked this trip I wondering if having a lease on our van was such a good idea.  Our cabin had a teepee, fire pit, and a trampoline.  We spent two days in Yellowstone and saw everything it had to offer.  We came across a herd of buffalo, saw the geysers, waterfalls.  the best part of our time in Yellowstone was a small stream we came across while hiking between the falls.  it was a picture perfect steam, small falls, cave area.  we spent about 20 min just trying to soak it all in.  We also stopped at a lake and skipped rocks for 30-45 min.  We visited a great wolf/bear museum in West Yellowstone.  We were lucky to be in West Yellowstone the same time they were having a mountain man rendezvous.  We floated the Snake river on a raft.  It was supposed to take 2-3 hours.  it took a little over 4 hours.  We took a side stream and it didn't work out very well.  Tiffany was concerned about us getting lost.  The stream got so slow I had to get out and push.  The stream was heavy in vegetation which was making us slow down.  I was struggling in mud up to my mid thigh and water up to my mid chest.  We eventually got to the mainstream again in time to see a moose and her calf.  We were very late to our lunch we had a Boondocks.  we had reserved some sweet rolls and were concerned if they would keep them for us.  they did.  they were delicious but Tiffany's are better.  Tiffany had us do an activity in the teepee.  she was trying to impress the importance of power of words on the kids.  I was assigned the popcorn but when I made it out to the teepee she was leading the kids one at a time in silence.  We read some poetry from "where the sidewalk ends" and ate the popcorn.  It was a very cool experience.  We did something similar our last night at the cabin.  We read the poetry, ate smores, played a themed song game.  hyrum started singing so loud I had to threaten to with forcing him inside if he can't control his volume.  We had a great experience but I'm grateful to be home.  Hyrum starts football tomorrow.  We just heard the high school needs a boy Hyrum's age to play Michael Banks in Mary poppins.  Hyrum is interested but it will conflict with football.  It will be interesting to see how it all shakes out.

Sunday, May 31, 2015

It has been a long time since I wrote here.  We had trouble with the blog that kept me from coming back.  That is all fixed now.  Tiffany did some wonderful things for me for Valentine's day.  each day she had something prepared for me with a cute saying.  She takes very good care of me. 

We got through another basketball season.  We did not get the help from the committee we were hoping for.  I have two members I can rely on and two that never showed up.  It was a long season this year.  We got an extra month to work with.  I was there every Saturday for about 5 hours.  It was fun.  we just watched basketball for 5-6 hours.  We lost our ref coordinator which meant that I reffed many games.  Normally about 2 a day.  I got some extra exercise out it.  As soon as we were done with basketball we moved into dodgeball season.  We get a completely different group of kids for dodgeball than we did with basketball.  That required less man power and less time.  Region was a bit of a disappointment.  It was poorly organized and they let a lot of talking go between the kids in the game that I would not have let happen.  We might not participate in region and just do a Stake Playoff ourselves. 

Hyrum is playing baseball this Spring.  He is on the Indians team.  We have a great team.  Good players that get along with each other.  A really good patient coach.  they don't practice much.  Hyrum has great hand-eye coordination.  He can hit the ball with some good force.  He has had to learn how to throw.  At the beginning of the season he struggled with even a basic throwing motion.  He does well with a football but a baseball has been challenging for him.  he is getting far better with throwing but still needs some work.  We have considered getting him some gear but I'm concerned he will move on to something else.  Looksl ike he will.  he has announced that he will give lacrosse a try next year.  I have often thought I would have done lacrosse instead of soccer if it were available way back when.  Hyrum was very brave and begged his coach to let him pitch for an inning.  We worked on it in the backyard.  I had him pitch to me on 4 different occasions and he seemed ready.  He pitch a full inning and didn't do as well as he was hoping.  He walked a lot of batter and didn't strike anyone out.  The team was already down by 6 runs and when Hyrum was done they were down by 13.  He took it hard.  I had a bad experience pitching in little league and was hoping he would have a better experience than I did.  I could not talk him out pitching.  The team rallied and came back to win it with a grand slam home run in the bottom of the last inning.  it all worked out but Hyrum will likely not be back.  I took him to watch AJ play rugby to see if he had any interest doing that next year.  His plan is Lacrosse and then Rugby the following year.  I tried to be an Asst Coach but we has so many Dad's volunteer that I made room and sit in the stands.  Might not be bad to have Hyrum play and not have his Dad be a coach.

Mari had a bday and I ended up painting some little girl's toes.  They all got a kick out of that.  Emma and Eve were taking too long so I stepped in to help to make sure we did nto get backed up to much on the schedule. 

We have had a few recitals/concerts over that last few months.  Tiffany had her violin students play.  It was great.  Tiffany's recitals take less than 30 minutes.   Perfect.  Eve did great at her recital.  It was 2 hours.  It was a good thing that Eve did so good.  Emma just had her dance concert.  It was her last time dancing with CVAC.  At least that is her current plan.  She wants to branch out to try other things in High School and is concerned about how much time CVAC takes.  HE is very good and dance and did a great job.  It will be interesting to see where her new path takes her.

We opened the cabin up for the season last weekend.  It was very cold.  We have had a very dry winter with hardly any snow.  We got the snow shovels out in NOvember but not since then.  We have had a very wet May.  It has rained almost every day.  I have not turned on the sprinklers yet for the year.  Eve has told me she ran over a sprinkler head so i know I have that to look forward to.  The cabin was fun.  We were forced to stay very close while it was cold outside.  We tried to go to church in Kamas but a beaver had knocked down a tree in the road so we just went back to the cabin.  I made up a story and had the kids draw pictures.  It was very fun.  The first day was rough.  A chipmunk found a way in and tried to make a home.  The animal waste a little bigger than usual.  they found the dead rodent int he couch.  Tiffany was so grossed out she wants to either replace the couches or burn the cabin down and start over.  It can be rough opening the cabin.  I would rather it be us then Mom and Dad.

We had a great Priesthood meeting this morning.  We talked about duty.  We have accepted the challenge of the preisthood and now it is time to do our duty.  President Saunders challenged us to study more from the scriptures and journal what we find.  Makes me want to get a desk in our bedroom. 

Working on the Triathlon now that dodgeball is over.  Susan Coon got released so all her work is now mine.  I have no idea what I'm doing.

We finally organized the garage yesterday.  Tiffany asked me if the garage makes me feel more manly.  I didn't know she associated an organized garage to manliness.  We are currently considering a few updates to the house.  Tiffany has decided that we either need to move or remodel.  We can't find a home that will give us any land so we will remodel.  She is getting quotes for the deck, kitchen.  We are considering a shed and I'm actively looking for a smoker.  I can't decide if I want to go big or not.  Yoder (pricey) ot Traeger (not so pricey and what most people have).  I want it soon because I want to smoke for father's day.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Emma got her braces off today.  she is very excited and smiling all the time.  I have just entered back into the world of teeth correction.  Keith has been talking to me about correcting my bite.  I have a tongue thrust that has pushes my teeth out so my bite no longer closes right.  He installed Invisilign.  It is suppose to be a clear mouthguard.  He put button on my teeth and lockes with the mouthpiece.  I get a different mouthpiece every two weeks.  So far it has been hard.  I try to muscle through it but my tongue issues interferes with the mouthguard and my tongue gets cut up. 

Super Bowl yesterday.  Party and Mom and Dad's.  Didn't care who won but good to be with family.  Keith was apologizing for the problems I have been having with these trays.  not his fault.  I figure it is just part of the process. 

In the middle of basketball.  Saturdays feel like all basketball all the time.  Taking about 6 hours at the church for Stake ball and then Mari and Hyrum each have games.  It is fun but does nto leave much time for anything else.

Tiffany is doing 14 days of Valentine's for me.  Very sweet of her.  First day was Pringles.  She knows I love them.  Second day was toothbrush and past for work.  I'm supposed brush my teeth every time I each before I put my trays back in.  I haven't been but now I might. 

Friday, January 30, 2015

By Guest Blogger Emma
FullSizeRenderWe’ve all been down that path. You know, the one where we are feeling so down on ourselves because nothing seems to be going right. Everything seems to being going exactly opposite of what’s planned and we can’t see anything but the negative.
Sometimes we fail. That’s life. Often times when we’re not successful we look back and start throwing out the “Would-a, could-a, should-a’s.” We start asking ourselves what we could have or should have done better in order to succeed. Maybe you were cut at tryouts for the basketball team. Maybe you didn’t get the job you applied for or didn’t place in your competition. Whatever it is, just because you fail to succeed at something doesn’t mean you’re a failure.

In fact, if you have ever been in one of these situations, I congratulate you. You are now an official member of the “I-failed-and-have-learned-something-from-it-so-I’m-going-to-move-on-and-keep-trying” club. Because you have failed, you have really succeeded in many ways. First, you learned something from the experience, whether it be how to do something better or simply how to deal with disappointment. You’ve gained a better understanding of yourself, your abilities, your strengths and your weaknesses. Second, you’ve learned that because you didn’t get what you wanted, Father in Heaven has something even better waiting for you. God only wants us to be happy and He would never take something we wanted away from us unless it was for our own good or to replace it with something better.
When I was nearing the end of my freshman year in high school, many new opportunities began to open up for me. In my school district 9th grade is still a part of middle school so becoming a sophomore and advancing to the high school was a pretty big deal. Finally I would be able to participate in all the many fun things I had only heard about but not yet had the chance to experience. This year would also hold many changes for me as this would be the year that I was able to start dating, driving and obtain a part-time job. I looked forward to this year with much excitement and as I learned more and more about the opportunities for various activities within the school. I began to apply for countless clubs, committees, productions and ensembles. I was looking to have the most fun possible. In the past I had been an Student Body Officer, Dance Company President, and maintained a good GPA. Surely I would be able to get in to most of the clubs I applied for. I campaigned and prepared my skit hoping to become a Class Officer only to find out I was not elected. I auditioned for the Dance Company twice and was turned away because I wasn’t what they were looking for. I submitted applications for many other clubs and my inbox began to pile up with emails saying I hadn’t made any of them. I was so frustrated at this point. I began to be a little bitter with Father in Heaven asking him, “Why would you limit me like this? You’ve blessed me with all these talents, why aren’t you letting me use them?” I had one last application to turn in. With this application for yearbook staff came a lot of prayer and pleading. “Please Father in Heaven, I want to be involved in something this year.” I patiently waited for weeks until my online schedule became available. I was so nervous as I clicked through the various windows trying to see if I’d been accepted on to the yearbook staff. During all of the waiting I had a prayer in my heart. I was extremely anxious as I clicked the last window only to find that I had not made yearbook staff. I was furious. I was mad at everything. Mad at myself for not being good enough for anything, mad at my parents for telling I could do it when really I couldn’t, and mad at my Father in Heaven for not helping me when I needed it.
It took me a few days before I got out of the funk I was in. I realized how childish my anger was and I went before my Father in Heaven and asked for forgiveness. I realized I had been so caught up in my own pity that I wasn’t able to be receptive to the comforting assurance of the Spirit.  As soon as I knelt by my bedside and opened my prayer I felt an overwhelming amount of love from my Father in Heaven. I hadn’t even said a word and yet I knew that he was there listening and that he truly loved me and cared about me. He may not have cared about these clubs but because it mattered to me it mattered to Him.

I was overcome with peace and I knew that everything was going to work out, I just had to be patient. I remember him saying “Emma, yes I have blessed you with these talents for a purpose. You may not know why yet, but I have a plan and you need to trust me.” These words brought such a sense of clarity to my mind. I was no longer bitter about my failures. I accepted them as small speed bumps on this road called the transition between schools.
I went about my summer having a great time then one day I had a feeling to check my online scheduler again. I did and sure enough, I had made yearbook staff after all. I had misunderstood directions on where to look to see if I had made it the first time I checked. I felt rather foolish as I went to my parents and celebrated followed by an immediate prayer of thanks. As I began my sophomore year even more opportunities came about, I joined DECA, FBLA, Kindness Crew, and SuperFan club. In addition I’ve been able to play powderpuff football and perform in the school musical. If I would have made all the things I had tried out for over the summer, I wouldn’t have had time to do all these other things that have proven to help me meet new people and have more fun than I ever thought possible. The Lord really does have a plan. We just need to trust Him.

It’s okay to be disappointed and upset but life is a lot more enjoyable when you swallow your pride and just let things happen as He sees fit. Elder Neal A. Maxwell of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles said, “The issue for us is trusting God enough to trust also His timing. If we can truly believe He has our welfare at heart, may we not let His plans unfold as He thinks best?”  I know that God loves us and would never challenge us with anything we couldn’t handle. All it takes is faith in Him and His timing for terrific things to happen. After all, it wasn’t raining when Noah built the ark.
Whenever I’m in one of these situations where I’m lacking the faith I need, I always seem to come back to the scripture found in John 14:27 “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.”  What a relief it is to know that if we try our very best and give 100%, the Lord has all things in His hands.  He is listening to your prayers. He may not answer them how or when you would expect, but if you have faith in His timing everything will work out. Elder Dallin H. Oaks, also of the Quorum of the twelve apostles said, “The first principle of the gospel is faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Faith means trust—trust in God’s will, trust in His way of doing things, and trust in His timetable. We should not try to impose our timetable on His. We cannot have true faith in the Lord without also having complete trust in the Lord’s will and in the Lord’s timing.”
I know that if we find faith in times of failure, we will be made stronger and the Lord will be able to lift us up and guide us to where we need to be. I know He has a very individualized plan for each of us and if we follow this plan, we will find ourselves doing what is going to bring us the most happiness in the end.
So next time you’re self-doubting or are unsure, maybe even mad that something didn’t go the way you wanted it to, say a prayer. Don’t be afraid to ask for comfort and the faith to trust in Him and all that He has in store for you. When you find that faith, hold on to it and amazing things will happen.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

I'm not as good at journal writing as I should be.  A lot has happened since I last tried to create an entry.  Our family trip this year was to San Diego.  We went to Imperial Beach.  It was about 30 min south of San Diego.  We did a bit of driving on the trip.  We played on the beach a lot.  We visited a Navy museum inside a Battleship, Mormon Battalion visitors center, waled all around San Diego, ate expensive sea food and inexpensive seafood and could not tell the difference.  Actually the inexpensive was really good.  It was the blue something restaurant close to the airport.  We wanted to rent some body-boards but they were very asking $50 a day for two boards.  Instead we went to a  Big 5 and purchased two boards for $50 a piece.  We spent most of our time on the beach with the boards.  It took us all week before we began to understand how to use them properly.  It was fun but not very relaxing.  we were moving all the time.  there was not much down time. 

I got TIffany and iPad for her birthday.  She has been a bit reluctant with new technology.  I think it intimidates her a bit.  I thought that getting her a tablet would help.  I have no need for one but I think Tiffany could find a use.  Emma has her phone now.  She feels it is very overdue.  I feel like I need to get some protection software for our phone so I can keep tabs on her.  I will need to figure that out at some point.

We got TIffany a new van.  She wnated a Honda.  We have always purchase Dodge vans.  Honda is a massive step up and far more expensive.  We tried a lease this time and are hoping we do not regret it.  The van has a button overload.  Tiffany really likes it.

We have started a new tradition of having the kids go on a trip with a parent when they are 16.  I was hoping that if we had Emma and Tiffany go a trip together that they would be able to create memories and bond a bit.  I want Tiffany to have as much influence on Emma as possible.  Have them chat a bit on how to date, what to be aware of the next few years.  The hope is if you out two people in a battle situation that they will bond in a way that they could not otherwise.  I sent them to NY to spend four days. We had a few cheap deals for NY.  Seems like nobody wants to travel to NY in January.    They were able to see a few Broadway shows, see the sights, and experience thing together we could not have experienced otherwise.  We will be leaving in a few hours to pick them up.  I hope they were able to get as much out of this as I hoped.