Monday, April 21, 2014


I think that going to Boise is one of our family's favorite vacations. For the past 2 years, we have also missed Dairy Days (2013 was because it was canceled; 2014 we were picking out our dog). It's just our special place. We also have the best family that lives there. And for all of those reasons, it is the best!

When we got there, Brandon was telling Aunt Sondra that he is now a vegeterian. I couldn't help but snap these pictures during their intense discussion.

My Aunt always decorates so cute for holidays too!!! She had one duck (Dawson is holding) that sings Old McDonald had a Farm with quacks. The kids wouldn't stop and Brandon was dying!

Sondra brought 2 different groups to The Village in Meridian, which is an upscale shopping center. They had a cool fountain area along with playground area for the kids. She took some excellent pictures. Thanks for letting me use!

Playground pics

The cool fountains

The bridge over the water with Aunt Rhonda and Autumn.

Seating area

And the giant chocolate bunny with my honey!

And with Kate and Dawson

Another part of the discussion and fun was talking about ginger shots. Ginger is really good to promote health. Brandon bought a juicer a couple months back and even made me a couple of shots as well as drinks when I was sick. It totally worked. So, when Autumn told us that she was having a sore throat, we figured this 'cure all' would be just the trick to help her before Wicked!

Here are the 5 shots!


Wowzers!!! These shots are not for the weak!!! But definitely a fun memory, right Sondra, Rhonda, and Autumn???

Right after Wicked, Grandma Cindy, Sondra, Sharon, and I set out to spread out eggs for the hunt. I think that Faith gathered in the fun at the last minute too...

The Jolley 3 are ready!

Just missing Kaylor in this picture!

On your mark, get set, go!

I'm such a mean mom, that I made them stop for a quick picture!!!

A little more action

Tag even wanted to find the eggs for the kids!

Kaylor getting help from Grandma Cindy

Bristol and me hunting for some good ones

A couple pictures please

And they are off to see what goodies that they captured! Thank you Aunt Sondra and Grandma Cindy for all of your plastic eggs! The kids had so much fun!!!

Saturday evening, after all of this fun, the boys set up the basketball hoop. It was all hands on deck for sure!!! Dawson couldn't help himself! He laid in the box, just enjoying himself with his candy. Aunt Sondra got the pictures of the basketball hoop going up, so I'll try and post those as well.

The Easter bunny came with a book, boogie board (LCD e-writers) and toothbrush for each of the kids. And then they each got a couple of really fun goodies, but no candy!!! (Which they definitely didn't need after the Easter egg hunt the night before.)

We went to sacrament together in Robyn's ward, where Grandma Cindy sang "I Heard Him Come," the song that I consider to be her classic. I accompanied and it went off without a hitch! Robyn also prepared a ham and funeral potatoes (which were delicious) and was gracious enough to feed our big group. It was a blast!

It was also Jadyn's birthday that Monday! We can't believe that this girl is already 8 years old! She is so sweet and one of Kate's favorite cousins! She was able to open some of her presents and have a 'mini' celebration on Sunday because we were all there.

I always try to get a picture with all the kids. Kaylor really didn't want to be in it, so this was the best I could get. I love cousin pictures!

Sunday, April 20, 2014


It was decided clear back in about July 2013, that we would spend Easter in Boise ... and watch WICKED!!! We watched Wicked when it was in Boise last. It is such a good show, that we decided to go again! I put together a group order that we placed October 1st. Part of Faith's birthday was a ticket for Wicked (in October.) I'm not sure how excited she was at that point. We decided to splurge and get the 'good' tickets, and boy was it worth it!!! We also upgraded my mom's ticket for her Christmas present. Again, not sure that she was that excited, but I think she was super happy that we did it and got to sit together! 

My Aunt Sondra was gracious enough to let our group of 5 stay with her again! She put together baskets for all of us going to Wicked that included some of these things, plus green nail polish. The boys got keychains and the girls got earrings that she also made for us! We felt super special.

We even tried out the glasses straight away!!!

Wicked cupcakes - delicious!

The night before, we prepped ourselves by watching The Wizard of Oz. Super fun to be able to remember the story and then get ready for WICKED! Here are all of our tickets!

What should we do???

Show off the green nails!
Faith, me, Aunt Sondra, Aunt Rhonda, cousin Autumn (nicknamed Olive by Kate)
and Kate

Dawson wasn't really into it, but we got a fun picture with just dad and the girls!

We dropped off Dawson and Kate to be with the Royce family, watching soccer games and headed to the Ann Morrison Theater. Once we were there, I ran into a couple of familiar faces! 

Sheree, looking gorgeous as ever!

And one of my besties Jenny, with an awesome photobomb from cousin Amy!

Intermission!!! We should have taken a picture to show you how close we really were!

Our group wanted to take a picture after!!! Jason and Sharon are in the back and I know that they LOVED it! Also, take notice of the genuine smile from Faith! She LOVED, LOVED, LOVED it!!!

We were so lucky to come to Boise to see this AWESOME show! I highly recommend it and can't wait to see it again!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014


Faith really wanted to go the the Walk with Christ. Since we had never been, I thought that it would be a fun night. We waited in the cold with skirts for almost an hour before we made it inside. It was so cold and windy!

All of the signage was in this cool foil and vinyl.

You could definitely feel the spirit. The walk took you through his life.
The birth.
The ministry.
The last supper.
The garden.
The judgement.
The crucifixion.
The tomb.
The resurrection.

How grateful I am for a Savior, Jesus Christ. Because of Him, we can live again. This was definitely a fun way to get ready for Easter this week.

Note - don't plan on going quickly on Tuesday (mutual) night. It just won't happen. :)

Tuesday, April 8, 2014


Conference is always such a fun time for our family and I love listening to the general conference talks. This time, the overall theme that I heard was that we have made covenants and commitments, so we need to do what we've promised that we would do. I also find it fascinating when there are repeats, such as the Martin Harris story. Something that I definitely need to go back and study more.

Although all of the talks are fantastic, I always like to highlight my favoirte. Here are my top 3 conference talks for April 2014.

Linda S. Reeves 

I felt her strength and conviction of protection our families from the evil that is in the world. She truly touched my heart.

From her talk: Brothers and sisters, how do we protect our children and youth? Filters are useful tools, but the greatest filter in the world, the only one that will ultimately work, is the personal internal filter that comes from a deep and abiding testimony of our Heavenly Father’s love and our Savior’s atoning sacrifice for each one of us.

How do we lead our children to deep conversion and to access our Savior’s Atonement? I love the prophet Nephi’s declaration of what his people did to fortify the youth of his day: “We talk of Christ, we rejoice in Christ, we preach of Christ, [and] we prophesy of Christ … that our children may know to what source they may look for a remission of their sins.”
How can we do this in our homes? Some of you have heard me tell how overwhelmed my husband, Mel, and I felt as the parents of four young children. As we faced the challenges of parenting and keeping up with the demands of life, we were desperate for help. We prayed and pleaded to know what to do. The answer that came was clear: “It is OK if the house is a mess and the children are still in their pajamas and some responsibilities are left undone. The only things that really need to be accomplished in the home are daily scripture study and prayer and weekly family home evening.”

Brothers and sisters, because I know from my own experiences, and those of my husband, I must testify of the blessings of daily scripture study and prayer and weekly family home evening.

Elder W. Craig Zwick

I loved his initial story about the semi cab filling with smoke and his wife jumping out with his infant son before he was completely stopped. He exclaimed, "What were you thinking?" Her reply? "I was just trying to save our son!" I loved how he talked about our communication with each other. I think that this will definitely be one that each family needs to study during family home evening.

From his talk: Paul warned, “Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but [only] that which is good [and] edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers” (Ephesians 4:29We all regularly experience highly charged feelings of anger—our own and others’. We have seen unchecked anger erupt in public places. We have experienced it as a sort of emotional “electrical short” at sporting events, in the political arena, and even in our own homes. Children sometimes speak to beloved parents with tongues as sharp as blades. Spouses, who have shared some of life’s richest and most tender experiences, lose vision and patience with each other and raise their voices.

When our truck cab filled with smoke, my wife acted in the bravest manner she could imagine to protect our son. I too acted as a protector when I questioned her choice. Shockingly, it did not matter who was more right. What mattered was listening to each other and understanding the other’s perspective.
The willingness to see through each other’s eyes will transform “corrupt communication” into “minister[ing] grace.” The Apostle Paul understood this, and on some level each of us can experience it too. It may not change or solve the problem, but the more important possibility may be whether ministering grace could change us.
I bear humble witness that we can “minister grace” through compassionate language when the cultivated gift of the Holy Ghost pierces our hearts with empathy for the feelings and context of others. It enables us to transform hazardous situations into holy places. I testify of a loving Savior who “looketh on [our] heart” and cares what we are thinking. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

I truly believe that our attitudes affect everything that we see in this world. It's important that we are positive and have a grateful heart. 

From his talk: Sooner or later, I believe that all of us experience times when the very fabric of our world tears at the seams, leaving us feeling alone, frustrated, and adrift. Everyone’s situation is different, and the details of each life are unique. Nevertheless, I have learned that there is something that would take away the bitterness that may come into our lives. There is one thing we can do to make life sweeter, more joyful, even glorious. We can be grateful!

It is easy to be grateful for things when life seems to be going our way. But what then of those times when what we wish for seems to be far out of reach?
Could I suggest that we see gratitude as a disposition, a way of life that stands independent of our current situation? In other words, I’m suggesting that instead of being thankful for things, we focus on being thankful in our circumstances—whatever they may be.
So now that I have shared my top 3, share your top 3 with me! Which conference talks stood out to you this time? Which ones are you most excited about studying again?