Friday, October 29, 2010

Fun Fall

Before the snow hit, we went for a drive up American Fork Canyon.  It is one of my favorite canyons because the trees make a canopy over the road so it almost feels like driving through a tunnel.  It was pretty chilly, and so gorgeous.  We stopped at the Timp trail and started walking toward the cave- we saw so many colors and had a great time.  My family is so beautiful!

 I feel like I could just squeeze those cheeks!

Evening of Excellence
Last week we had our Evening of Excellence for the young women.  I don't know if I've mentioned how much I love my calling as Young Womens President- it is such a great calling, although it keeps me very busy and a bit stressed.  Our theme for the evening was "Fear not, only believe" and the young women each either shared a talent, personal progress experience or read a scripture or quote.  We wanted everyone to be involved and I think it went really well.  I was amazed at the talent these young women possess and the depth of their testimonies.  They are good girls and I am so privileged to be able to work with them and with the other leaders.
At the end the young women all sang the song "Child of Light" they sounded great!
 We had an amazing group in charge of decorations.  On each table was a different scripture and there were flower arrangements on all the tables as well.

Halloween Party
For the ward Halloween party, I went to my go-to costume and I must say it looked pretty good.  It could actually double as either Frankensteins bride or the White Witch from Narnia.  It's so easy and works so well, I think I should patent the piece that's holding my hair up.  Petter dressed up as Nacho Libre and of course pulled it off nicely (pictures soon) and as a couple we actually won the costume contest!!!! (I'm leaving out the part that only two other couples dressed up- so the competition wasn't really big)

First Snow
 We had our first snow this week! It snowed two days in a row but it hasn't stuck.  Simeon was so excited the first morning that he ran outside in his bare feet!

Olivia has been teaching a little preschool class to 3 little neighbor girls once a week.  This week they had their Halloween party.  Olivia and Jayda made a special video for them to watch, played games and decorated brownies.  It was pretty cute.

Uncle Kristian gave the kids a ride home from Grandmas lastnight and poor sleepy Simeon fell asleep in the car.  Kris carried him inside and he kept on sleeping.

Lastnight we also had one of the most beautiful sunsets.  It looked like the sky was on fire.  My photo doesn't do it justice.

I feel so blessed this time of year for my family, friends and the weather.  

Thursday, October 28, 2010


There's a warm fuzzy feeling I get inside when I'm driving around and I see all the signs up for the upcoming election.  This year more than most I feel a good feeling about those who are running and those who I hope get elected.  Morgan Philpot, Mike Lee, and Jason Chafetz on the U.S. level and of course Howard Stephenson on the local level are the ones I'm rooting for.  Since we've moved away from Draper, I still feel more interested in what goes on there than in my own area (I need to get more involved here).  I am unabashedly a conservative and that, I guess, makes me a republican.  I feel like incumbent Chafetz has already made some big changes and is one of the only Representatives who doesn't earmark and calls Obama on his crap, and I have high hopes for Philpot and Lee who both seem to have the "right" way of thinking.  As always, I am very proud of my dad, Senator Stephenson- he is an amazing man full of honesty, integrity and not afraid to stand up for what's right no matter how many people he offends.  

At Draper Days some of the grandkids rode with him dressed as super-heroes.

That little pink power ranger is just about the cutest thing I've ever seen! And she was so thrilled to be passing out candy.  I hope the polls are packed this year and that the right people get elected.  I loved hearing about the man running against my dad who made flyers that said "Vote Dave Hogue, or don't vote!"  what a ridiculous thing for a wanna be statesman to say!  Please vote, I know I will.

Sunday, October 17, 2010


On Wednesday we went to the Hogle Zoo.  Although Hogle Zoo is a rather lame zoo, we had a great time.  We went with my mom (Nana), Adrian and her kiddos.  Fall is a great time of year to go: most kids are in school and the weather is nice and mild.

Jayda wasn't as impressed by the stench as she was by the turtles.

Nothing says fun like climbing on a bronze statue of a tiger...
or gorilla.
Taking Olivia to the zoo always reminds me of the first time we took her there.  As new parents with our first child, I felt like it was waiting too long to wait 6 months to take her to the zoo- I wanted her to experience everything and see everything.
Child number three wasn't like that at all.  The poor kid is almost 3 and this was his first visit to the zoo.  It's funny how things change and how you realize that they won't remember it till their a bit older anyway.  I think he is the perfect age for a first visit to the zoo.
Jayda loved the playground and is getting so good at monkey bars and rings.
When we dropped my mom off at her house we did a little produce shopping- in her beautiful garden.  We got leeks, swiss chard, parsnips and carrots.  I went straight home and made some yummy soup.
Friday night I got to go out with some of my girlfriends.  They are the group of girls I grew up with in my same ward.  Heather lives in Emmett Idaho now so we don't see her very often (not that we get together that much with the ones who live close either) so we thought it would be a good time while she visits for her dads 70th birthday (happy birthday Josiah).  We met up at Pei Wei and had such a great time talking, and talking, and talking.  I am so impressed with how those girls turned out.  We all have had our struggles, whether it be financially, with kids or marriage, but they are all strong women with strong testimonies of the gospel who are raising their children and figuring things out.  I love how we all turned out to be hard working, down to earth mommies.  It was great to see them and remember that we were once clueless, rebellious girls.

Saturday Petter decided to take the kids fishing again but this time somewhere they would have some success.
So he took them to a fish farm and they caught some fish!

Olivia and Simeon were the only two who went with him while Jayda stayed home to "take it easy" as she said.  Olivia and Simeon both caught fish, small fish, but still fish.  Petter is such an amazing father- he told me yesterday that he's been trying to figure out a hobby that he can do with his kids and he decided that fishing is it.  I love that he makes them such a priority. 

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Home life,Canning and Fishing

We have had a busy few weeks around our place.  Homeschool is rolling along nicely and Olivia made a huge accomplishment.  She would be in 3rd grade if she were in school, and she just finished up 3rd grade math.  We have started the new 4th grade math book and she is starting to learn division- We love Math-U-See and how wonderfully the lessons are put together and how easy it is to progress from one concept to the next.  Goodbye the Gamma books...

One of my young women came around selling apples for a fund raiser, so I bought two boxes- or in other words 40 lbs.  So I thought it would be a great time to make and bottle applesauce.  I was quickly reminded why I haven't bottled applesauce for about 10 years:  it's very time-consuming and not very cost effective.

So 6 or 7 hours and 40 lbs. later and it only made 12 bottles!!! Needless to say, I was a bit frustrated!  So then I got the brilliant idea of bottling something I wouldn't have to pay for so we went to my in-laws and picked a big box full of grapes to make juice.  This only made 4 bottles but it didn't take very long and was absolutely delicious- so for next year I will definitely NOT do applesauce and definitely WILL do grape juice! :)

Luckily I had helpers and while I slaved (literally) over the applesauce, I watched a movie, so time didn't drag on like it could have.

The weekend of the bottling fiasco was also General Conference weekend.  It was so great to be able to spend time with the family and listen to the Prophet and the Apostles and other leaders speak.  I was touched to tears several times by the beautiful music- it was so inspiring and amazing.  I loved to listen to President Thomas S. Monson and hear his sweet antidotes and stories and to be taught by his wonderful spirit.  He is truly a messenger from God.  While we listened we tried to keep the kids occupied with their hands.  Petter and Simeon hung out on the floor coloring, and building and resting.  I painted Jaydas nails and knitted an adorable scarf for Olivia (in orange, her favorite color)

The following week, the bottling fun continued.  My mom called begging me to take some tomatoes off her hands (they planted a beautiful garden) so she gave me two big rubbermaid boxes of tomatoes and since I had so many empty bottles (from the lack of applesauce) I decided to involve the girls and spend the second half of the day (after we finished school) bottling tomatoes.

We made a great team:  I would boil and peel the tomatoes, and the girls would quarter them and put them in the bottles.  I also realize that my girls need decent aprons (Christmas present idea)

We ended up using all the bottles I had left- about 32 bottles- and we had a great time while Duma (the dog) lounged on the warm tile.

On Friday of this past week, Petter went in to work early and got off early and surprised the kids with a fishing trip.  We drove up beautiful American Fork canyon, up to Tibble Fork and fished for awhile.  Petter had a busy time getting all the poles ready and setting the kids up.

He even bought Simeon (who is obsessed with all things superhero) a new Spiderman fishing pole.
The mountains were so beautiful and clean and cold!  I pointed out some snow on the top of the mountains and Jayda told me that the mountains look so "cute" with a little snow sprinkled on top- hehehe- she's pretty funny.