celebrating the family video

Oct 13, 2015 by

I saw this video yesterday and have to share it because I love it so much! I set a goal to memorize The Family: A Proclamation To The World this year in our homeschool and even had an awesome giant poster printed (thanks to Valena!) in the weeks right before Blythe left, but we haven’t started yet. I haven’t even hung the poster up! But today that is changing. Today we begin! This video gave me the nudge I needed to get back on track with this goal.

If you want to make your own giant 24 x 36 poster, here is the pdf file. The awesome Valena also made a matching poster for The Living Christ. You can download that pdf file here.

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yes, i know, silence isn’t golden

Jul 19, 2015 by

Oh my good heck, it is July 19. Serious problems blogging on any kind of regular basis over here. I’m pretty sure I will develop a more regular posting habit come fall, but at this point, I am not promising anything…because I hate breaking promises and I try not make a promise I am not 100% sure I can keep.

In the meantime, here is an update.

Health
I am doing pretty well. I am moving better and functioning better and it is visibly apparent to those around me. People give me high fives and big smiles when they see me walking at an almost normal pace in normal shoes. I have been out of my knee brace for several weeks and while my knee is still sore, it is improving. It still hurts to drive and it hurts to be up on it for a super long time, but it is good for the first hour or so. My face, neck, jaw, ribs, and back are still suffering from January’s car accident whiplash, but they are slowing improving as well.

As far as passing out goes, it is improving as well and I actually was starting to think it was a thing of the past, though I have had two small episodes in the past 24 hours, so now I don’t know what to think.

I have been exercising on the Elliptigo for a few weeks and am up to 3 minutes – BIG WAHOO! It feels absolutely amazing to feel my neglected muscles working and growing. Three minutes doesn’t sound like much, but it is hard. It about knocks me flat. Keziah gets on and rides for 30 minutes…someday, someday I will be there.

Mission
Blythe has been working her butt off all year putting money in the bank for her mission and we both have been searching and shopping for some fabulous mission clothes. We have most of what we need in that department and are now starting on the long list of other supplies – first aid kit, books, bags, sewing kit, pens, temple clothes, personal hygiene, and a gazillion other little things. It feels like we have very little time left to pull all of this together, but I am confident with Amazon Prime and some improvisation we can pull it off.

Home
We have undertaken a massive project this summer (which is primarily responsible for my poor blogging) and while there is light at the end of the tunnel, it is has kicked my butt and left our home in a terribly messy state of disarray. Ever since the summer of 2011 when we were dealing the breast lump, we have been in full-on survival mode – which means each day we try to love each other, teach each other, and feed each other…and not much else gets done. Stuff does not get dealt with. Stuff builds up. Stuff gets knocked over and left. Stuff takes too much time to sort and process and organize, so it gets shoved here and there for another day…and that other day doesn’t come and after awhile there is a garage and a storage room that are completely inaccessible to any human that values their life.

And that is where we are at…or were at a few months back. I started the Stuff Project by having every single piece of clothing currently in Fisher’s and Annesley’s rooms brought upstairs for me to sort into Keep, Give to Mikelle (my baby sister with wee babes), Give to DI, or Trash. That project was huge. We finished it the day before Swim Camp back in June.

Then we tackled the school room. We went through each book down there and did the same thing, Keep, Give to someone specific, Sell to a used book store, Give to DI, or Trash. Books are sacred to me and I don’t part with them easily, but we did it! We were able to get rid of 6 big boxes of books! We also created a new computer area for the big girls, moved my Elliptigo and deep cleaned the whole area.

With that success under our belt, I decided to hire Keziah to clean out the storage room. I really wish I had a before picture so you could see how awful it was because there are no words to do it justice. None. Picture a grocery store, special events store, and clothing store being on the fault line of an earthquake and then being abandoned to the survivors who would climb over the piles of stuff, dig through it for the treasure of the day, and knock more stuff over on their way back out. And then picture that earthquake happening several years back and the survivors risking their lives to go in and dig through everything to find a can of diced tomatoes or a pair of size 1 shoes or the Christmas decorations. Oh my, frightening, don’t you think?

Well, this job was ginormous. I offered Keziah $100 to clean, organize, and completely dejunkify. Really, it should have been about $500 for the amount of time she put in, but $100 was all I could come up with (and to be honest, I haven’t even paid her for it yet, she may have to wait until October when Richard starts getting paid again).

Miss Amazing did it. It took her several weeks of working around her other jobs and she completely filled the (once clean) school room with her storage room mess, but she did it. Our burn pile is in desperate need of being burnt to smithereens as we threw away SO MANY boxes. We went through every single pair of shoes in the earthquake residue and gave 163 pairs of shoes and 75 singles to Dando Amor. She reorganized all the food storage, Passover and Christmas items, and the preparedness supplies. She removed the filthy carpet, vacuumed and scrubbed, and then put all the stuff back inside. It looks and feels awesome. We can enter without risking life or limb. We can find things! We can walk around!

Part of the mess in the storage room was the 10 or so big bins of children’s clothes that have been buried and dug through for the past many years. I made the super painful decision that it was time to let those clothes go and to let Keziah sell what she could and give the rest to the thrift store. So she hauled all the bins upstairs and has been washing and sorting and folding the clothes for the past several weeks. So once again, we don’t have a usable dining room. The floor is almost completely covered with stacks of freshly-washed clothes. I still need to go through the clothes and figure out which ones are sellable and which ones need to go to DI.

Then last weekend, we started on the garage. Oh my. Oh my. What a disaster. Richard and I worked for about twelve hours and we probably have thirty more to go. Thirty hours we don’t have before he starts back at his school job again, which means, this job may get left until next summer when he has Saturdays off. Super sad, but that is the reality of only having a few Saturdays off a year – only a couple projects can get done in a year. We could have worked on it yesterday, but we decided our little ones’ emotional health was more important and that they needed to go fishing with their papa.

Throughout all of these dejunkifying projects, I have also been working on my room and closet which is one giant pile of disaster as well. I have been sorting through clothes and facing the strong possibility that I will never fit into my size 6 clothes again and if I do, they probably won’t be in style anyway, so they need to go. And probably the size 8’s as well. And probably the clothes that are too big for me, surely I won’t need those in the future, right? Every few days I send a small load of stuff to DI with Richard or Blythe and bit by bit I am making progress. The floor of our room is all clean along with our bathroom, I just need to finish the back of our closet and the purging decisions.

We still need to build water storage shelves in the garage, clean out the garage, improve the chicken coop, clean up the messes in our yard – the burn pile, the broken cars, and the weeds. I had big hopes of building some swings, staining the deck, and remodeling our camper, but I think those will have to be tabled until next summer as well.

But now all these projects are going to be put on hold because my mountains are calling to me.

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It is that time of year when I go and get recharged by the glacier-fed waters and rugged mountains I love so much.

I will try to get back to the bringing-order-to-my-life-projects when we get back, but my guess is, it will probably be December when I have time to devote to it again as when we return from camping we will be busy with Blythe’s first temple trip, her mission farewell, and getting her on her mission. Then we will start our fall homeschool schedule of Learning Time, iFAMILY, and Homeschool Gymnastics. I am also starting a Liberty Girls group with Annesley and nine other little girls, which is probably a bigger commitment than I realize right now. I desperately want to wrap up all my summer organization projects, but I also have to be realistic about the capacity of my body to work, the needs of my family, and the lack of any extra funds to devote to the projects. It’s all good and I need to keep reminding myself that we have accomplished a massive amount of work already. We just need to get the house put back together so we can eat meals and play games in the dining room again.

So if you are wondering why I haven’t been posting much, this is why – a summer full of big projects and when I have a spare minute that I’m not flat on my back in bed with my ice packs, I take the kids to the lake for an afternoon of kayaking and swimming or curl up with them for read-alouds. I hardly see Blythe and Keziah at all. They are both busy working as hard as they can earning money and my job is to give them hugs and encouragement when they get home.

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yellow squash soup

Jun 17, 2015 by

Last summer when I couldn’t open my mouth to eat at all, my friend Sherry brought over this delicious soup. I have saved her handwritten recipe for the past 12 months and vowed to make it again, but I haven’t done it yet. My face has been hurting significantly since the January 31 car accident and last week a little toddler landed on my head in the swimming pool and now my face is swollen and needing to rest again, so I think I will make this soup soon.

Yellow Squash Soup

2 C. chopped yellow summer squash
1 C. chopped carrots
1 C. chopped onion
4 C. peeled potatoes
garlic – not sure of the amount here…maybe 1 clove?

Boil in chicken or veggie broth. Add 1 can evaporated milk, salt & pepper, and cayenne. Blenderize till smooth.

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how did we get to june already?

Jun 7, 2015 by

Oh my good heck, it is June 7 and has been over a month since I last posted. I guess I need to let y’all know I am alive.

Yes, I am alive and well. At least kind of well. I am happy and spending lots of time with my kiddos and loving the sunshine. I am also super sore from the blasted car accident back in January. If I do hardly anything at all and just lie around my house the ball at the base of my spine shrinks down to about softball size. If I try to drive or do laundry or cook a meal or sit at the computer or basically ANYTHING, it flares up and knocks me flat for a few hours or days until the inflammation goes down. We have made it through the past several months since the accident by having me do very, very little and having Keziah do very, very much. But all of that has changed over the past month and boy, howdy, am I sore. She is working her butt off trying to earn money to go to Europe and D.C. next year and is hardly ever home which leaves the bulk of the housework in my hands for the first time in over three years. And it hurts.

So, posting has fallen by the wayside. By the time bedtime hits each night I am covered in ice packs and completely exhausted from the tasks of the day…and I am not doing much. Not at all. My normal cleaning standards are quite low in most people’s books and they have fallen even lower over the past while, but somethings just need to be done. Laundry does need washed. Food does need to be prepared and cleaned up. Fisher and Annes have been making most of their own meals and Richard has been cooking most of the rest, but I really want to preparing some nutritious meals for my family and have a sit down dinner with inspiring, connecting conversation instead of the survival mode we have been living in for so long.

So, we are learning and adjusting and trying to figure out this new phase of life with the big girls gone and me unable to do much to keep this house running. It is a big transition and it is going to take some time for all of us to adjust – my hope is my back and neck will improve enough that I can do more and hurt less.

Other news in the last month? I went on a cruise!!!! YES, ME! The person who never goes anywhere actually went on a cruise. My cousin, Tami, took me and our other cousin, Camille, on a cruise to celebrate our 40th birthdays…which were last year, but we couldn’t celebrate it then because I was too injured. I need to do a whole post with all the beautiful pictures and stories from our adventure.

The same week Blythe opened her call, I celebrated my 41st birthday and Keziah had her play, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, which also deserves an entire post with heaps of pictures.

Now it is time for Swim Camp and a family reunion and I have no idea when I will be back on here to post again. We are living and loving and trying to get Blythe ready to leave on her mission.

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starting anew

Apr 19, 2015 by

The buds are coming out, the grass is greening up, the tulips are sprouting, and a tiny kitten was born this morning – spring is here!

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The breath of fresh air spring whispers to my soul is full of hope and healing. It signals the beginning of a new growing season, shows me that new life is possible. As I ponder the lessons of Passover and Easter, see life springing up all around me, and let the sun soak into my soul, hope is growing.

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I have been quite focused on a healing regimen the past three months and while it has been hard and sometimes quite discouraging, it is working. I have just returned home from a second trip to my doctor where he evaluated my progress of the past three months and made a plan for the next three months. My nervous system has calmed down significantly – I have only had three passing out/shaking episodes since he saw me in January – and my body is ready for more treatments. He has me taking a wide variety of supplements to strengthen my nervous, immune, and connective tissue systems and on a clean nutrition plan to give my body the best shot at digesting and absorbing the food I eat.

This regimen is a lot of work. It takes all the dedication and focus I have…really, more than I have as my whole family is contributing to helping me succeed. They prepare my foods for me, help me remember my pills, and encourage me to keep on keeping on when I just want to throw in the towel.

This last week of treatments was good and hard and painful and wonderful all at the same time. I was able to get one injection of my own plasma into my knee and one injection of stem cells into my bottom…both without anesthetic of any kind. Gotta say, that hurt…a whole heaping lot. My butt is still sore, but it is easing up. My knee on the other hand hurts.

Today I start the next phase of our treatment plan and pray that my body is infused with new life just like the plants on this beautiful spring day.

Quote for me to ponder..

Sometimes we give up what we want most for what we want in the moment.

What I want most is an eternal family linked by covenant and happy, healthy relationships. What I want second is to be able to function physically. What I often want in the moment is ice cream, sleep, and long days full of fun and big projects. It is spring and time to start anew focusing on the things I want most.

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a moment of normal

Nov 13, 2014 by

Tonight I feel like a normal human being. A human being who doesn’t pass out, can walk through the grocery store, and walks at a normal speed. I haven’t felt this normal for weeks and especially not for the past five days since the shaking incident on Saturday. I spent Saturday – Wednesday in bed recovering. Then yesterday I was moving vvvveeeerrrrryyyy slowly as I made my way through the halls at iFAMILY and then to the Cross-Country Awards Banquet and then the Evening of Excellence program last night.

Jeremy worked on my inguinal ligament again today and said all the shaking on Saturday set me back on my healing time quite a bit. He would really like me to find a brace to hold my hip socket in place and give the muscles a break so they can heal. And while all of that is kind of depressing, I walked normally today. Normal speed, normal gait, normal heart rate, normal everything.

AND I TOOK MY BOY ON A DATE! Like a normal mother. A date with yummy food, a trip to the bookstore for a new Star Wars book (goodness, he is obsessed with all the Star Wars stuff!), and a quick trip into Sam’s Club for some staples like cheese, sour cream, and tortillas.

Oh, my stinking heck. What a blessing to feel like a normal human being for one afternoon.

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stuffing

Oct 13, 2014 by

The day these bad dreams started was the day I stuffed down a comment about being molested. It seems to be a pattern in my life: I don’t say things that will cause others to feel guilt or feel hurt. I protect other’s feelings by not speaking up.

Now don’t get me wrong, I CAN and DO say hurtful things. Far too often thoughtless comments burst out of mouth and I end up wounding someone deeply. But it seems to be the pattern of my life that I excuse other people’s behavior by not saying “You have hurt me!

I have been trying to figure out why I do this for many weeks now. The counselor I had an appointment with tried to get to the bottom of it and decided it is because I don’t value myself enough to say something.

That didn’t sit right with me. It could be true, but it doesn’t feel true. Richard and I have talked and talked and talked about it and it doesn’t feel true to him either. I think that is often the reason people don’t speak up, but it just doesn’t seem true for me. I do value myself. I have great self-esteem and believe I can do pretty much anything I set my mind to. I am not at all the picture of a victim.

And yet, I often stuff my feelings deep down inside and refuse to tell people how horribly wrong their behavior has been or how terribly they have hurt me. I even have one person in my life who continues to abuse me in many ways and I allow it to happen. It infuriates me that I will not stand up and put an end to it.

And see, see what I just did. I won’t name names. I won’t call this person out into the open.

WHY??????????????????????

I do feel lighter than I did several weeks ago and I am really truly smiling and feeling joy again, but the pain is still here. I woke up on Saturday night with ANOTHER kidney infection…the third since this all started. And Sunday night was another sleepless night. I prayed and prayed and prayed for sleep to come, but instead I lay there tossing and turning all night long with numb arms (something must have moved out of place in my upper back and is causing my arms/hands to be numb) and wide-awake mind. And now it is Monday night, nearly midnight, and I can’t sleep again.

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grl 2014

Aug 25, 2014 by

grl 2014

We have been home from our camping trip for over two weeks and I FINALLY got my pictures uploaded. I’d give you a list of excuses, like laundry and health and a very long to-do list, but really, I just haven’t done it before today.

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This year I was able to be in my mountains for 16 glorious days. The first six days we only had my mom and three of my kiddos. It was so, so lovely to eat super simple meals, lay around camp, read, watch the children swim and kayak, and just. be. still. The weather was beautiful without a cloud in the sky on Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday. Then on Tuesday it rained for 12 hours straight. We stayed in our tent all day long and played games, read books, and told stories of Grandma and Grandpa for the My Family project our Stake is doing right now.

Our home away from home.
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Wednesday night my brother Scott arrived, Thursday my sweetie and Keziah showed up, Friday my sister Mikelle and her family joined us, along with my brother Stephen a bit later in the day.

After those first four days of perfect weather, we had rain. Lots of rain. Rain for days on end. Puddles and mud and raincoats and umbrellas were plentiful. As soon as the rain let up to drizzle mode, everyone would burst from our tents ready to play or fish or do ANYTHING but stay in the tent. There were non-raining moments and sometimes hours every day and we used those to kayak, fish, and warm-up by the fire, but it seemed every day had some rain (or hail!) packed into it.

I fell in the shower and dislocated my tibia a few days before we left, so I had to be super-duper careful the whole time. My whole knee was sore and the ligaments weren’t holding it in place well at all, so I spent most of my time lying in my chair or tent. I was able to kayak down the river three times – twice for five whole miles. Oh, the joy! I love kayaking and it was heavenly to get out on the water and actually move instead of lying around like a stuffed lobster.

Fisher spent most of his time fishing, searching for frogs and snakes, kayaking, and avoiding the camera. Here is one of the few photos I got of his whole face.

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This is what usually happened the moment he noticed the camera pointing his way.

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One day I had to go to town to register the children for their iFAMILY classes and brought back ice cream in a cooler for a fun camping treat. Since there is no way to keep it frozen, we had to eat 12 creamsicles and a box of ice cream in one sitting. Poor us, eh?

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Since I was not able to do much of anything, Blythe took over my mom duties and took the kids on hikes and other adventures. While I was gone to town Blythe took the little ones on a short hike to the cave and big rock. Another day she took them both on a kayak trip to the other side of the lake – two miles across! I didn’t think they would make it, but they rocked it.

After the rainy days started, we woke up to crazy fog each morning. Mom liked to say we were “socked in.”

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Umbrellas and rain boots were a staple.

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Foot soaks to get the filthy feet clean were enjoyed every few days. I can take a lot of dirt, but even I have my limit and must insist on children’s feet being scrubbed clean before they can enter the tent.

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We also had full bath days and several shampoo the hair days, but somehow I made it the entire two weeks without a single bath or hair washing. It felt really, really lovely to bathe all that dirt away when we got home.

We celebrated Blythe and Andie’s 18th birthdays with presents and fake pudding, raspberry cheesecake for Blythe and a fancy store-bought cake for Andie’s.

Blythe wasn’t too happy about turning 18.

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Andie gave her a skirt from Nepal. Miss Andie is a world traveler and recently spent three weeks working in a school in Nepal with her mom.

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Grandma gave her a set of Holy Tabbs, an awesome scripture marking program I can’t wait to implement in my own scriptures.

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My mom has called her Sooger or Shooger Bunkin since the day she was born. It was her name even before she was named Blythe.

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Blythe’s yummy, but totally fake raspberry cheesecake with 18 candles making an 18.

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We had our favorite camping meal of fried potatoes, onions, peppers, and zucchini for her birthday dinner and then topped it off with some fish.

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The two girls went on a kayak adventure on Andie’s birthday morn and I caught a pic of them as they came back to camp.

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Then we had yummy cake.

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We gave Andie a big bag of our homemade granola. She loves it and we try to make her some every time she comes to visit.

During the sunny moments, lots of fun was had at the lake.

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Fish were caught and mostly released, but quite a few were brought back to camp to eat for dinner.

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The girls went on a heart kick, wove flowers in their hair, and tried to make hearts out of their bodies.

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This all fell apart into pure silliness.

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Then they settled on a beach heart.

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On our last day, we took the kiddos over to the lodge I lived in as a little girl with my grandparents. I told them all sorts of stories about their great-grandparents and the magical times we had together.

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These are the steps my grandfather made…forty years later and they are still there!

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This is the double-seater outhouse up on the hill that Camille and I always used when the lodge bathrooms were full or we were playing on the spaceship rocks.

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The rock we used to run up and down. You knew you had “arrived” when you could do it without hands.

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I spent a lot of time staring at Square Top this year. I was supposed to climb it to celebrate my 40th birthday, but my body is not able to do so. It has now been three years of camping without even being able to go on a small hike. A few times when I was left alone at camp, I sobbed tears of heartbreak that I wasn’t on top of my mountain. I was supposed to do hard things, see new vistas, and have an amazing girl adventure with all my bestest friends. I let the grief pour out of me and really mourn the direction my life has taken. It felt good to really, really cry. To really, really admit how hard and how sad this all is. I can see the blessings and I can put on a brave face, but I am sad, deep down to my little toes, so sad that I cannot climb my mountain or do so many other things I love.

Goodbye to my mountain for another year.

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We ended up leaving about 9:00 pm on Saturday night so we could make it home for church on Sunday and as we pulled away, we finally got a full moon. Goodbye moon. My favorite moon.

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play, puppies, prom, and hmmm, i can’t think of another p word

Apr 11, 2014 by

Disclaimer: I’m sorry my posting has been so erratic lately. Between my family’s needs and wants and my own body’s needs, posting keeps falling by the wayside. I find when I do take the time to post I dump out an entire novel and this post is certainly novel length…at least in blog land. I finally uploaded some pics and now after months of no photos whatsoever, you get to be hammered by a gazillion.

Spring is in the air which means sunshine, wind, and lots and lots of activities! In the past two weeks, we have had our big night at the temple, Homeschool Prom for Blythe, a week of rehearsals for two different plays, a week of performances for Blythe’s play with ACTivate and the Youth Symphony, colloquia, puppies born, music lessons, FHE with our friends who just returned from a humanitarian trip to Ecuador, board meetings for iFamily with elections coming up on Monday, all the usual stuff that normally fills our lives, and not much sleep at all. Thank goodness I have found my camera, my memory card, and my memory card reader so that I have been able to both snap photos and upload them of all our fun.

Whew! We made it. I almost passed out on Monday at board meeting so I forced myself to be very, very conservative this week with all the performances and stay put in my chair. I did not vacuum or sweep or sell concessions or do any of the things I normally do. I limited myself to one hour of being upright at a time and two hours a day total and I stayed true to those guidelines except on Friday when I went over a bit, but I was still good about taking care of myself. Big pat on the back for me – I did not want any of this exciting week for Blythe to be dampened by a passing out episode and my carefulness paid off. The best part is today I can still walk, so YIPPEE! If I can keep this up for another week, I should be back to exercising at my next appointment!

The puppies…oh, my they are so precious. The children adore them and spend time every day toting them around and loving on them. They squeak nearly 24 hours a day and none of us are getting very good sleep with all the noise, especially Keziah who has set up Sadie and her seven pups in a wading pool in her room.

They were born the night of April 2 and morning of April 3 over a period of about eight hours. Sadie will NOT give birth without Keziah sitting right by her, so it was a long night of dog doulaing for my girlie. There are four tan puppies, two chocolate, and one black. Please excuse the blurriness, trying to get a puppy to hold still is difficult, trying to get a child holding a puppy to hold still is nearly impossible!

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Here is Blythe in her Prom attire. My sister, Mikelle, was here and helped Blythe turn her naturally curly hair into lovely ringlets that would stay put all night. Blythe and over 100 of her friends had a fabulous time dancing the night away.

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I wasn’t able to get any pictures of Blythe during the play…no flash photography allowed and pictures in a dark theater don’t turn out. Here is a super silly one of Blythe with her stage make-up and costume and her crazy sister.

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Character shot.

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Both the character shots and headshots were on display in the lobby for guests to look at as they entered the theater – that way they could see what each actor really looks like and compare that to the character shot. Here is her headshot. I think it is my all-time favorite picture of her.

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Crazy cast photo…man I LOVE these youth!

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Last night we had the big end-of-the-year Youth Symphony performance. It was amazing! Three of the pieces were from Tchaikovsky and I fell in love the the March Slave – what a soul-stirring piece! They also played the Violin Concerto in D with an amazing violin soloist and the 1812 Overture with real cannons firing. The harp solo was light and magical – it almost made me want to become a harpist!

You can see Blythe warming-up in front of the big drum in the back. She still has her hairdo from the play she performed in a couple hours previous.

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The whole Youth Symphony! Lots of musicians squished onto the stage.

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In the midst of all the activities for the big girls, I try to keep life for my littles as calm as possible. They generally spend their mornings with me doing learning time. Fisher has set a goal to finish one entire math book during the month of April, so we are spending lots of time working together so he can accomplish his goal and earn a radio-control rat he has had his eyes on for months. Annesley is learning how to read and it is so much fun! Her words she has learned so far are me, meet, I, am, Sam, Mat, Ann, Nan, Mit, in, on, at, sat, sit, the, is, this, that, cat, hat, and mat. She has started noticing these words all over the place and is one happy little sounding out girl. They have been having fun with Annesley’s birthday puzzle.

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Our recent 10″ snowstorm dumped gobs of snow in one night, but by the next day it was almost all melted away. They built these snowmen before all the snow disappeared.

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Now it is time to get ready for Passover and then gear up for another week of Blythe’s play at the end of the month, the end of WUBA for the year, Keziah’s play in four short weeks, and my 40th birthday.

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