Monday, November 30, 2009


This post is going to be without pictures and might even be kind of boring. Just warning you ahead of time. That is one of the reasons I'm not that great of a blogger, I think that each post needs to be something "big" and have lots of fun pictures, or else I can't post. I'm trying to change that frame of mind.

We took our camera to our Thanksgiving festivities, and took not a single picture. We did have a good holiday though. We spent Thanksgiving with the Gunnersons this year. Dorothy made a really nice (candles and crystal glasses, even) turkey dinner and we each brought side dishes. It was yummy and the company was great. We hadn't seen some of our brother and sisters in law on that side of the family for a while, so it was nice to catch up. Mark and Uncle Dan played football outside with the boys, which was fun. It was the first Thanksgiving with out our father in law and grandpa, Gary. He passed away in June. It was sad but we felt his presence there with us and it was nice to be with Dorothy and support her. She just wanted the day to be as normal as possible. It's hard when there's an empty chair where someone used to always sit. I like that quote that says something like, "there will be no empty chairs in heaven."

We spent the rest of Thanksgiving day and the weekend with our Bishop side of the family. Some of Mark's family was in town from Utah, and it was fun to see them. On Friday the brothers and younger boys played basketball at the church for a few hours. They had a good time and Cooper came home with a ping pong sized bump on his forehead. Tyler and his feet got tangled up together. Thankfully with some ice and Tylenol, he was okay. Kamber and I braved the crowds in the afternoon and went out shopping for a while. We grabbed lunch at Subway along the way. We both found what we were looking for, so it was a successful trip, and fun! We met that evening and Brian and Kamber's home for Papa Murphy's pizza, tons of dessert and good company. Aunt Lucy was even there with us. The cousins slept over Brian and Kamber's except for the older boys, who stayed at our house. Mark, Dad, Reed, Brian, Brent, John, Cooper, Tyler and Connor left early to watch the BSU game back at our place. Jen, Kamber, Alysa and I stayed back at Kamber's and played some games with the kids. We played, turkey, turkey, ham instead of duck, duck, goose. Fun times! After the kids went down the girls had fun talking and learning more about each other. Janice didn't join us because she was working on a "special project" at mom and dad's.

Saturday morning Mom and Dad cooked a big breakfast for everyone at their place. Dad got up at 4am to start preparing the food! Can you believe that?! What a good man. Later in the afternoon, some went to the movie Astro Boy. The kids seemed to enjoy it and the adults seemed not to. That evening some of us went to see the Christmas lights in downtown Caldwell. Some may laugh at that, but they are REALLY nice! The city goes to a lot of work to make a really nice display. They have recently redone some things downtown trying to revitalize the area. They've done a good job and we enjoyed walking around looking at them. It was really cold, though. Afterwards we came back to our place for hot chocolate, football and Bananagrams. You can guess who was doing what (boys - football, girls - Bananagrams).

We're all really tired, but happy to have spent so much time with family! Now we're gearing up for Christmas!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

A Comeback

I've decided to try and start blogging again. Hopefully I'm back with more enthusiasm than before. Of course a lot has gone on in the past 8 months, I could even be about to have another baby. But I'm not. I guess life has just gotten away with me. Trying to keep up with it all and make time for blogging is hard, but I'm preaching to the choir, I know. There are plenty of people just as busy as I am that regularly update their blogs with informative and entertaining posts. Anyway........

Mark and I are doing well. We're both quite excited for the holidays. We've got an early start on most everything and it feels nice. I'm looking forward to hopefully relaxing and enjoying the season a bit in December. We're not headed anywhere for either holiday, so that will be nice. Mark keeps suggesting we even get started on wrapping gifts. Good idea, I think. Work is going okay for Mark. He doesn't really enjoy it and still dreams of one day having his own business. I'm grateful though that he works hard for us even when it's not something his heart is in. He just signed up to be Cooper's basketball coach in a youth league he'll be playing in. That will be fun for both of them. Here's a cute picture of Cole about to get Mark in the face.

I feel like I'm having a hard time keeping up with everything. I really enjoy my Relief Society calling, but I've been pretty overwhelmed lately. I'm sure it'll get better. It seems like sometimes things won't be that busy and then other times it's crazy. It just must be one of those times. I really love being so involved with the sisters. I'll miss that, I know. Right now we're planning a big blood drive with the Red Cross next month. The Stake President wants our stake to have three blood drives a year. Come to find out, a lot of work goes into those things. I wanted to put an updated picture of everyone in this post, but I guess the only pictures of Mark and I are of us holding Cole. Good thing he's cute.

John recently had a birthday and is 14 years old now. He still plays piano and has been involved with Drama Club at school. Just today they put on a play called, "How to be a Pirate". It was pretty good. He enjoys doing that sort of thing. On Saturday he plans to go to his second Stake Dance. I thought it was fun taking him and picking him up afterward last time he went. It kind of feels like it wasn't that long ago that I would get excited to go to those dances. I like for him to tell me all of the details, and he obliges. Here he is at a little family birthday party we had for him last month. Cooper has started electric guitar lessons instead of the piano. We are in between teachers right now though. He has also gotten in to learning magic tricks. His interests kind of come and go. He's always into something new. He's also had a birthday recently and is now in 11 year old scouts. This Sunday we go to a Priesthood Preview for him. Crazy. Even though he doesn't turn 12 until August, it's for all boys turning 12 in 2010. Time just flies. Anyway, here he is dressed up at Meriwether Lewis (Lewis and Clark) at the 5th grade state tourist fair. His state was Oregon.
We've had Ella's baptism dress for a while now. I just happened to find one I really liked at the mall a while back. We decided to take some pictures of her at the Boise Temple before the weather got anymore cold, even though her birthday isn't until next month. She's really excited to turn eight. She's been taking this dance class after school on Tuesdays and really likes it. It's one of the first extra curricular activities that she's done and liked. She was involved with a horse camp this summer that she also enjoyed, but doesn't have a desire to do too much outside of school yet. She was brave enough to give her first talk in Primary last Sunday. I was so proud of her. Up until now she's been too shy to give one. She's slowly coming out of her shell and it's fun to see.

Seth is very much still in his shell outside of our home and his family. He is going to pre school two days a week, so that's good. He seems to enjoy it for the most part. He's slowly learning some of his letters and numbers. He's the kind of kid that won't do anything on demand. Then he'll surprise you by doing something you didn't even know he knew how to do. Here he is dressed like an Indian at his preschool Halloween party.

Not long ago Cooper said, "Mom, Dad told me not to tell you something." With a statement like that of course I had to ask what it was that he wasn't supposed to tell me. He said, "Dad said not to tell you, but Cole really isn't a baby anymore, he's a toddler." I thought that was pretty funny. Mark knows how sad it makes me that he's getting older. However, I still don't think he's a toddler yet. He is so loved by all of us! Lately he's been so demanding and needy, so that's been hard. He got all 4 molars at the same time and has had a sinus infection and some colds, so I'm hoping I can chalk it up to that. It's been pretty rough though. He is otherwise sweet and really cute, so that always makes the hard parts a little easier to deal with.

If I keep regular on posting, I won't have such huge and overwhelming entries to do. Right?!

Anyway, I'll leave you with one of the recent shots that our sister-in-law Kamber, took of our family at the newly remodeled Caldwell Train Station. It's not my favorite one, but I like it. We're just happy she took our family picture for us. Thanks Kamber!