Tuesday, December 14, 2010


Service club for November this year took place at the library. The children gathered together to make place mats for Meals on Wheels for Thanksgiving.

Both Kate and Dawson went, but the picture of Kate was blurry. Also, Faith was not feeling up to going, so she stayed home. Dawson was heart broken about not being able to take them home, but we are sure that whoever received his place mat had a smile on their face and love in their heart.

Monday, December 13, 2010


Last year, Faith missed 19 days of school due to illness. This summer, I had our doctor take a quick peek to tell me what he thought. We scheduled an appointment in November along with Miss Kate and headed down to Utah.

Here are the throat nuggets.

We did an x-ray, actually 3 because the guys couldn't get it right. There really wasn't much discussion with the doctor, except scheduling the date for surgery. (I happened to be thrilled about this because they were constantly covered in pus pockets, she was always complaining, and then she misses so much school.)

Middle of November came around and Faith was pretty anxious about the whole surgery. Just the word made her cringe. Brandon gave her a blessing to help calm her down. We asked for our family and friends to pray for her (thank you). We had help from our family with Dawson and Kate (thank you again guys!) and drove down that morning at 4:30 am.

Once there, she was given the Versed (a medicine that helps you relax). It did more than that, but since she is 10, we will save her from embarrassment. (Love you Faith!) Off she went to surgery. The doctor came out a little after an hour and told us that she did great. Not only were her tonsils huge and blocking her throat, but her sinuses were 80-90% blocked. No wonder that she couldn't breathe! The doctor told us that this was 'not elective', even though we didn't mention anything like that.

I asked to see the tonsils, I mean, throat nuggets after the surgery. (I know, I am weird. Faith tells me that everyday.) They looked like big bouncy balls with brains in them (that was the infection part.) Probably one of the worst things that I had ever seen.

Now we are about 4 weeks out and she is doing great. We went through a bunch of creamies - something that she wouldn't try for at least a week. (I know, she is weird. I tell her that everyday.)

Back to school, and better than new. Here is a post-op picture. (She wouldn't let me take a picture of her throat this time, but take my word for it --- no more throat nuggets!!!)

Wednesday, December 8, 2010


Christmas has a way of sneaking up on you. I start in June, planning, buying, thinking. But then, before you know it, Brandon and I have had another anniversary, Thanksgiving dinner is on the table, and it's time to put up the tree. And then I look at the list ... my list ... and I wonder where all the time went.

Yesterday, as I went to some of my favorite blogs, I saw reminders of what Christmas is about.

It is about the birth of our Savior, not the beautifully wrapped presents.

It's about giving of ourselves and serving, not the jaw dropping decorations.

It's about spending time with family and those who matter most, not the twelve hour rainbow jello (which happens to be my favorite).

My Aunt Sondra put on her blog things we can do to put Christ back into Christmas.
(All ideas were from lds.org)

Replace some holiday decorations in your home with reminders of Christ.

Politely decline requests that will take you away from family.

Play more Christmas music.

Donate gently used items to a thrift store.

Go Christmas caroling.

Avoid “mad rush” shopping times.

Say thank you as often as possible.

Schedule a night to help another person or family.

Call someone you normally wouldn't to wish him or her a Merry Christmas.

Delegate some holiday preparations to children or other family members.

Trim the gift list.

Simplify a traditional activity.

Find quiet time to pray.

Write down great memories as they happen.

Set and stick to a holiday budget.

Forgive a grudge.

This one came from a blog that I go to on occasion - another faith promoting blog.
(I can't figure out how to get the whole videos - if you can help me, let me know!)

Where's the line to see Jesus?

And then, as I read the Sullengers post, I felt love. That love that you feel at Christmas time. Every Sunday, we watch one or two Mormon ads before/after our scripture time. This Sunday, I will share this one, and hope that they feel that special love that Jesus and our Heavenly Father have for each one of us.

So, now on to working on how to simplify the holidays. I would love to hear how you are doing it.


Every year, we do a gift of love for our children. It is something that is homemade. I love this, because it makes us make time to do a gift that hopefully they will treasure. Last year, I made bean heating bags for the kids (cause they always still mine.) It was fun to pick out the fabric and put them together. A very simple project. They looked like this, but each child has a bag that matches their personality.

This year, I saw a scripture bag on my friend Jenny's blog and thought how awesome that would be to sew a bag.
This is her bag that she made and posted on her blog. Cute huh?

Joann's was moving, so when I took the girls to their appointment with Dr. Finlayson in Utah, I managed to stop by Hobby Lobby and have the girls pick out their fabric. I know that it is absolutely killing Faith that she doesn't know what I am making. (So help me keep the secret please!) Here are the fabrics they chose.



I decided to take a road trip (yes, by myself) and head out to meet her in Kimberly. She spent the entire day with me, teaching me to sew.

I've sewed 1 other thing in my life (Mom helped me with the bags last year), so you can imagine that I would be a little nervous. But her sewing machine was awesome. I would really like one like that ($1800 worth of a sewing machine can get you a lot - who knew???) The machine would beep at me and flash a picture of what I needed to do ... mostly put the foot down.

You'll have to wait to see the finished product.

No onto making Dawson a hat that he will love and wear. This is the pattern that I bought - lower left hand corner will be his. Joann's had an awesome deal, so I saved quite a bit of money on the fabric.
I can't believe I'm saying this, but I actually like sewing. And Jenny, I can't wait to do it again!

Thursday, December 2, 2010


Girls on the Run is SO MUCH FUN!

Faith participated in Girls on the Run this year. Girls on the run is an international program. On their website it says, 'Education and preparing girls for a lifetime of self-respect and healthy living.' It is so much more than running.

The vision of the program is:

  • To provide life-changing, high quality programs for girls
  • To provide life-changing and high quality experiences to the women developing and delivering the programs
  • To promote and provide an environment that allows girls and women to reach their full potential
  • To positively transform how girls and women perceive themselves and their place in society
This is Faith with Bryleigh, both sporting side ponies for 'good luck'

Dawson wanted his picture too

Girls on the Run® is a life-changing, experiential learning programs for girls age eight to thirteen years old. The programs combine training for a 3.1 mile running event with self-esteem enhancing, uplifting workouts. The goals of the programs are to encourage positive emotional, social, mental, spiritual and physical development.

The kids

The ones who ran the 5K!

We ran 3.1 miles on a rolling hill course on Saturday, November 6th. It was a warm fall day - 64 degrees - which was absolutely perfect for running in. We did pretty good, considering that we had to stop a few times. Our time was about 48 minutes. Not bad for our first race.

Congratulations Faith on running such a great race and proving to yourself that you can do anything! We love you!


To fill in and catch up for the rest of October, I thought that I would do just one post.

Faith had a very fun daddy/daughter date in Activity Days where they ate a fun Halloween lunch and then proceeded to carve a pumpkin (which was already gutted.) Faith and Brandon had such a good time. Brandon was VERY impressed with the food (that's the most important part, right?

Faith had to have a frenectomy October 25th. She was very nervous, but it went very well. Her gums on her two bottom teeth were starting to pull away because the frenum was pulling them down. So, we clipped the frenum and are hoping that we will not have to do a gum graph. We will have to see later on. This took about 2 weeks to heal up completely.

That Friday, Chubbuck Elementary had their school party, which was SO much fun! The kids do a parade through the entire school and then have a party. We are one of the only Elementary schools that do it in the district. I consider ourselves very lucky!

Mrs. Ryner (student teacher), Dawson, and Mrs. Chandler

Because I helped with Dawson's school party, I was able to take some pictures of his class.

My plead for the Dora wig at the party.

We had fun making tootsie pop pumpkins (directions here) and then doing hide and seek pictures. It was a lot of fun!

Then on Saturday night, we went Trunk or Treating at our ward building.

Here are the kids as we were getting ready to leave.

Giving the pokemon sign

Misty, our pokemon trainer

The famous Yu-Gi-Oh!

And Dora, Dora, Dora, the Ex-plor-er!

We are ready!

It was a very fun night and also very warm. They had a pumpkin carving contest, so I was very excited that someone did Dora! We LOVE Dora!

Kate went with her friend Maddy (her bestest friend) and then Dawson and Faith went with Bryleigh. I should have taken my pictures inside when we were eating chili.

We had a wonderful Halloween and throughly enjoyed ourselves. We handed out 178 fruit roll ups! Crazy, isn't???


The 4th Saturday in October is always 'Make a Difference' Day for Modern Woodmen. The Youth Service Club got together and handed out care packages to residents of an assisted living center. This was my kids' favorite project last year, and this year was no different.

Here are all the kids, but the teen club with us outside of Cottonwood Cove.

And here is our group going to visit one of the residents who was blind. She was very kind and invited us to come in and visit for a few minutes. We enjoy visiting with her and I think that she enjoyed having some company.

I am grateful for the opportunity to go with my kids each month and do acts of service in the community.


I had an opportunity to serve on jury duty the beginning of October. I've had to call in before, but I have never had to go. So, on Tuesday, October 12th, I headed for the Courthouse.

Little did I know that I would be there for 5 1/2 hours. They called 300 jurors to be at the courthouse that day. They had us watch a short video and then called 36 prospective jurors up into both the juror box and seats that had been set up below. Once the questions started, I knew two things.

#1 - This was not an ordinary, easy trial --- it was a criminal trial.
#2 - We were going to be there for a long time.

They asked a lot of questions, such as "Have you ever been charged with a DUI?" I was SHOCKED at how many people raised their hand. Out of the 36, I'm sure that at least 8 raised their hand. (No, I'm not over exaggerating.) A few of the questions, both the prosecution (state of Idaho) and the defense (Cody McDermott-Reid) AND the judge, juror, etc. went into the judge's chambers because of privacy. I have to say that this was very interesting.

At 11:30, the judge stated that normally we would have taken a break by now, but he really wanted to get a jury seated so that the trial could begin after lunch.

At 1:30, we were free to leave the court room. I had a friend who served on the jury to tell me that the verdict was a hung jury. I was grateful that I didn't have to see crime scene photos and sit through 4 days of court just to have it end in a hung jury.

Here is the original story in the Idaho State Journal:

Posted: Thursday, January 28, 2010 12:20 am | Updated: 12:18 am, Thu Jan 28, 2010.

POCATELLO — The driver of a vehicle that failed to negotiate a turn on McKinley Avenue late Tuesday has been charged with felony vehicular homicide after the death of a passenger.

Cody McDermott-Reid, 22, of Idaho Falls, is being charged in the death of Angie Large, 24, of Idaho Falls. McDermott-Reid is alleged to have been under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of the accident.

McDermott-Reid’s northbound vehicle rolled after it failed to make the corner where McKinley turns sharply at the Z Street intersection to cross the railroad tracks. The vehicle came to rest approximately 100 yards north of the intersection next to the train tracks.

Large, a passenger in the front seat, was thrown from the vehicle and was pinned underneath it when responders arrived. She died at the scene.

Another woman was extricated from the vehicle and transported to Portneuf Medical Center with what were believed to be multiple fractures to her pelvis, but an on-scene responder indicated her injuries did not appear life-threatening.

A train was stopped on the tracks north of the scene, but was not involved in the accident as previously reported in the Journal.

McDermott-Reid was treated for his injuries and booked into the Bannock County Jail. He was arraigned via video link Wednesday afternoon in magistrate court, and his bond was set at $100,000.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010


In October, our baby, Faith, turned 10 years old. Yep, a decade old. That's SO old!

We had fun having family over to enjoy the Strawberry Cream Cheese Sheet Cake, to open presents, and to sing happy birthday to our beautiful daughter. Brandon threatens every year to ground her if she grows anymore. By next year, she will probably be as tall as I am!

Yep, I'm 10 and you are here to celebrate me!

Let the present opening begin!

Ohhh, a Webkinz! How did you know??? (wink)

Dawson is just as excited!

A helmet!

And riding gloves. These are very important!

She also got lots of fun bath stuff from Grandma Zoey and clothes and puzzles. But that's not the important stuff! Right before her birthday, she said that she knew that she was getting a bike, so we had to play up each and every moment.

We sang Happy Birthday and started eating cake.

That's when Brandon rang the doorbell with the brand new bike for Faith.

He's not excited or anything!

I thought I had a better picture, but immediately, she was off riding her bike on our street and enjoying every minute of it!

Each birthday wish
I've ever made
Really does come true
Each year I wish
I'll grow some more
And every year