Monday, November 30, 2015

T-Day Weekend

For Thanksgiving this year, we got to host some of our dearest friends, the Joneses! We only got them Wednesday afternoon through Friday morning because they were on their way to Disneyland, but we were thankful they came!! I made my usual dishes: frog eye salad, sweet potato pie, and heavenly cloud 9 rolls.

I offered to host dinner this year since our friends were coming, but my mom graciously volunteered to host everyone, and we had a beautiful dinner outside by the lake.

After dinner, the kids put on a Thanksgiving play for us. Cast picture!

Sweet little pilgrims.

Rough seas on the Mayflower!

The captain meets the Indians.

After the play, we hopped on the party barge for a really slow cruise around the lake to see Christmas lights. We had to go at a snail's pace because the batteries were almost dead for some reason, but it was still fun.

The next morning, it was time to say goodbye to our friends. My kids have fond memories of one of their kids sporting a purple afro wig in our last goodbye pictures, so we decided to bust out the Halloween bucket and give everyone crazy head wear this time.

We even managed a picture of the grown ups this time. Friends forever!

Our friends have this weird tradition where they do "The Fig" for the people who are leaving... we're good with weird.

The Monday after Thanksgiving, we got a chance to meet up with my cousin's family, who were in town from back East for Thanksgiving weekend. Just say Joe's BBQ, and I'm in!

Someone got a hold of my phone and took about a hundred pics of me while I wasn't looking.

And another hundred of Russ.

And maybe two hundred of a baked potato. It was awesome. So awesome. I love my family. And friends. And food. So thankful.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Kindergarten Thanksgiving Program

You gotta be quick with those Kindergarteners. We were five minutes late, and we only got to see them perform one song.

He was just glad we made it.

I love it when they're at the age where you can have them wear a paper turkey on their heads, and they love it.

Afterward, we returned to the classroom for a celebration of friendship.

His card was too sweet! He's thankful I washed his sheets? Such a small thing, but man they really needed a good washing!

He insisted I get a picture of the outside of his note, too.

I don't know what made him so thankful for his bed and bedroom that day. Funny boy. He's right, though... where would we be without a warm bed?

We finished off the morning with snacks. Kindergarten rocks!

Friday, November 20, 2015

Rise Against

Packed. Loud. Awesome!

Standing room only!

40 and still loving to pack in like sardines and dance to my favorite music. Life is good!

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Let's Roll!

Poor little Paigey. Just because of the fact that she was born on my birthday, there are some years when her birthday is overshadowed by mine. This was one of them. Not wanting to forget about her big day, but faced with a busy schedule and Thanksgiving around the corner, we reluctantly planned her birthday skating party for a school night. Thankfully, all her friends and cousins came to make it a great time for her. One of these days I'm going to plan a real party for her. I owe her!

He's got it! He's got it!

He don't got it. All those falls didn't seem to slow him down.

She looks happy.

Pizza time!

And then some games.

Nice haul!

Decisions, decisions.

The girls sang the 12 Days of Christmas in the back seat at the tops of their lungs. Yeah, I think I deserve an award for putting up with that. In a rush to get her friends home before bed time, we had cupcakes in the car. Paige told me she had a great time, and that was all that mattered to me! Happy birthday, sweet girl! Can't believe you've grown up so much!

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Turning 40

A month late and hopelessly behind. Sometimes I think I'm not that far behind, but then when I unload the pictures from my phone, I realize I'm WAY behind! You know what they say, though... better late than never! Yeah, and I'm going to backdate them... and a bunch of other ones so that they can all be in order. Here we go.

On the day I turned 40, I woke up to streamers hanging on my bedroom door and sweet cards from my kids.

It was a slow morning, so I had to drop the kids off at school. These two bicker all the time, so it is a true birthday gift to see them walk off holding hands.

Russ was my double agent that morning. I had planned for months to sabotage my friends if they tried to hang bras on my house like they do for all the women in the ward who turn 40. It was either that or move, and moving is much harder. I figured I was going to have to stay up late and watch for them to come, but when the ringleader contacted Russ to set up a time when I was supposed to be out of the house, I knew it was definitely going down, and I knew it would be easy. We waited around the corner with silly string and water balloons, watching as their cars arrived. A few minutes later, it was GO TIME! We pulled up quick, jumped out, and started lobbing the balloons. Then I chased them around with the silly string. They were a little confused, a little stunned, and a little irritated. But I think they have forgiven me. Or not. I hope they can love me just the way I am... immature, a little crazy, and a lot of fun. Mostly.

After that excitement, my mom came and picked me up for lunch. What time was it, you ask???

We went to the school to get Paige since it was her birthday too. Who knew you could get a free sub on your birthday at Firehouse Subs? Not us! Cheapest lunch dates ever!

We finished off the day with dinner at Joe's Farm Grill with my parents. It was definitely a happy birthday.

So, what are my thoughts on turning 40? I didn't like it that much, but the truth is I've had a very blessed life. When I think of all the lives lived on this planet, I feel like I'm in the top 1% as far as blessings go, and that's something to celebrate. Having the privilege of living for 40 years means I've had a lot of experiences that have shaped the person I am today. It means I've been protected from harm. It means I've enjoyed good health. It means I've had enough to eat. Those are the basics, but there is so much more. My family is just awesome. They taught me all the important things without forgetting to teach me to have fun. I married a guy who is willing to go on my adventures, to power my crazy ideas, and to be patient with my quirkiness. That's not to say he won't make fun of me for it, though! There is too much more to list here, but I have to say I am extremely satisfied with my first 40 years, and I'm excited to see what the next 40 bring. I've got big plans on my bucket list!