Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Kelly the artist turns 13 - May 2015

Kelly was in the after school art club at her middle school last year and this year. One of the things the club did was chalk art. Kelly's group drew the NY harbor on the school's sidewalk.

Here she is with a board covered with her artwork...

...and closeups of my two favorites.

 She even won a contest with this artwork that she did in art club.

Last May, she also turned 13 and had a small party with her friends :) Now, we are planning for her 14th birthday next month!

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Cousins and Friends - July 2015

Now that I have a little more time, I thought I'd catch up on some blogging. Last July, my niece was baptized in New Mexico, so the kids and I took a road trip. It was great seeing my brother, sister-in-law, their three darling daughters and my parents. We went to Window Rock and visited the Navajo Nation Museum and Navajo Nation Zoo. I tried steamed corn for the first time. It was delicious :)

Michael and two of his cousins.



All the cousins. I love those smiles...

...and the bear faces. Notice the signs in the two pictures above? Yeah, well, somebody chose to ignore them and here...

...is the bear she PETTED. I am glad no one needed to have their fingers stitched back on.

On the way home, we saw a sign for a souvenir place where you could also feed the ostriches. The kids had SO MUCH FUN feeding the ostriches :)

I love this pictue of Gwen.

One of the other great things about this trip was getting to stay with and spend time with my BFF. 

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Well, it is good to be back!

This is me looking relaxed. Heather took some pictures of me last Sunday because I went to the community college cosmetology school and had my hair bleached - just for fun :) The girl who did it was so nice. We ran out of time for her to style my hair, so she asked for pictures for her portfolio and I complied.

Coincidentally, the Sunday after I had my hair done, and the day I had a chance to take pictures, I was released as RS president, after four years, so that is why I looked so relaxed. It has been a tremendous blessing for our family and for me personally. I have learned so much and am really grateful for the chance I had to serve, and am also relieved to not have the responsibility. I always felt like I should have been doing more, because there is always so much I could have been doing! I am sure I will miss things about the calling, but am also excited for a new calling - coming soon!

So, I thought I'd start catch up on some things that we have been up to. Last month, I drove to Arizona for the wedding of my best friends' daughter, Magan. Here she is - isn't she lovely? She is a delightful person and a wonderful mother, just like her mother :)

It was a really beautiful wedding and I loved seeing so many people I love! It was also great meeting Magan's husband Nick. He's a great guy. Being the introvert that I am, I had to take a couple breaks and hide in the bathroom - so silly. I just needed quiet for 10 minutes or so and I was good to go. One of the times, I resorted to taking selfies and sending them to Stan, who I missed so much while I was gone.

On the way home, I stopped in Quartzite and saw this stuffed bear wearing an impressive squash blossom necklace. I bought stuff for the kids and Stan. It is always fun to bring tchotchkes back from trips.

This picture is out of order chronologically (we dyed eggs the Monday before Easter for an FHE activity), but it is a good reminder that I made it home in time to spend Easter with the family I love so much. These are my two favorites that I decorated. I might have pictures of everyone else's somewhere else, but this is what I had on my phone. The one egg was cracked, so I did faux kintsugi on it and wrote haiku with (mostly) walnut ink on another.

fine porcelain shell
white elliptical beauty
waiting for chroma

Some other things that happened in March, were, Stan going to Tehachapi for work and taking this picture...

...and me seeing this amazing sun pillar on the way home from dropping the kids off at BYD.

In April, Stan and I went to Catalina for an early anniversary trip, or maybe it will a pre-anniversary trip and we'll take another one in July when our 24th anniversary rolls around. It will depend on time and money, like so many other things do. We had a wonderful time, anyway, whether it was our official anniversary trip this year, or whether it was just a trip because we like each other. It was a "free" trip we got for listening to a time share thingamabob, but we did pay for the pain of dealing with the time share people in blood, sweat and almost tears. My they are persistent! We also shelled out for taxes, parking, food and a kayak rental, but all in all, it was totally worth it! We had a great time. One of the things we did was buy some fish food to feed the fish from the kayak, which didn't work too well, but we had great luck feeding the fish from the pier. I love these Garibaldis - they are so pretty!

We also saw a sheephead! I've never seen one before. Stan and I are like a couple of kids when we feed the fish :)

While we were there, I kept up on one of my New Year's resolutions. I am trying to make something everyday. It usually ends up being a drawing because I can be quick, but I've also included some baking, sewing, my favorite - bookbinding, and various other creative endeavors. One even included jelly beans. I haven't missed a day yet, but the quality varies wildly from day to day. I have been having fun! Here are the two I did on Catalina. If you want to see more, I have a blog for my daily makes, which I have been updating every month or so, or if you prefer instant gratification, I post my daily creation on Instagram every day under the name @budgiemakes

Finally, a couple pictures from today -

I found cookies in the back of our second freezer from Summer and Rachel's wedding shower (almost a year ago!) and so we ate them. Gwen made icing and they were delicious.

I snapped this darling picture of my five kids who are still at home hanging out together in the backyard after church. It makes my heart sing when I see my children being friends :)