Happy Easter!!

>> Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Happy Easter! I love this time of year! The cold winter is behind us and everything is beginning to bloom. The winter blues subside and I start to feel rejuvenated and ready to tackle some goals. :)

I also love reflecting on what this holiday is about. Pondering what my Savior did for me and how miraculous that is. It's an act of love and sacrifice that is hard to comprehend at times. I don't think I'll ever fully understand what He went through for me. His grace and mercy are tremendous gifts. I know I fall short in so many ways but through Him I can have a second, third, and fourth chance through repentance, and try again. How I love Him so!

The boys are getting older now and they don't really want to participate in some of our traditions. However, this beautiful girl still does! We had fun dying eggs together. :)

This year we had Easter at Mom and Dad's house. Our church doesn't get out until 1pm which means  it was about 3pm by the time we got there. Everyone had already eaten. Mom and Dad got pizza this year! It's easy, cheap and quick to clean up! :)

 I got Mom some flowers. They aren't the prettiest but they smelled AMAZING!!!!

After we ate and chatted a bit the kids had their Easter egg hunt. 

Dad was super smart and put all the candy in the freezer before the eggs were hidden. Here in the desert chocolate melts wicked fast! Not this year though!!!! All of the chocolate survived! :)

Grandma Lovenia had her children in from back east. They joined us for Easter. We had a nice relaxing day. The weather was BEAUTIFUL! 

 So thankful for these moments that help me slow down and take a time to appreciate all I have. My healthy family, the ability to worship how I choose, a loving Savior who cares for me, a  Heavenly Father that wants me to return to Him. And the blessing of eternal families!!! <3 <3

Happy Easter!


Cruisin' The Open Road!

>> Monday, March 28, 2016

Now that Walker passed his permit test he's legal to drive on the open road!!!

He's driven me around the church parking lot and our neighborhood but this was his 1st time going over 20 mph. LOL!!

I needed to get water on Saturday so he drove us down to Water 'n Ice on the corner. I have to admit I was a little nervous...so was he...but he did great!!!

We ran our errand and made it home safe and sound! 

Yesterday he drove the whole family over to my Mom and Dad's in northeast Mesa which is about 12 miles. It was a good long stretch of time for him. I think that's the best way for him to learn. 

It just takes time behind the wheel so he can get a real good feel for everything and get more comfortable with it. Exciting times!!!!


Our Gardener

>> Sunday, March 27, 2016

We usually have cats claw growing on our front porch. About once a year we have to cut it down to the ground so it doesn't over take the entire house! LOL! 

This is how it typically looks. :) I love it!

A few weeks ago we chopped it down. Jared got extra aggressive and chopped it down to a stump. We didn't see any signs of new life so Alayna and I went out and bought a new one. It wasn't until further inspection that we saw 2 little new shoots coming off of it. Jared wanted to go ahead and replace it though. The base of it had become a tree trunk. LOL! 

New vine. 

We didn't really know what we were getting ourselves into! Alayna and Jared started digging the old one out. They dug and dug and chopped and sawed and dug some more!!!

That think did NOT want to budge!!!!

FINALLY they got it out!!! :D Alayna was so excited!!! 

You can see the root system where Jared is pointing. It was about 3 inches around and had dug itself under the house! Crazy thing!

They planted the new vine and it looks great! :)

I'm glad to have a new one starting to grow. Everyone who has come to the house the past few weeks keep saying...."I wasn't sure if I had the right house with the vine gone." LOL!!! :D 



>> Friday, March 25, 2016

Last night Eli invited a couple of friends over to hang out. They then hatched a plan to invite a few more friends over to play 007. Somehow Jared and I got wrangled in and we were the drivers. :P

007 is like the spy movies and hide and go seek that's played in the dark. The "hiders" start out at "base" (the house) and try to get to a pre-determined location that's far away from base (the back canal gate) and then back to base without getting caught. 

The "finders" drive around in a car or bike with flashlights/headlights trying to find them. They hide in bushes, behind cars, trashcans, whatever it takes not to get caught. 

If you find them they get in the car with you and help you find the others or if they make it back to "base" they've won. 

This is what happens when you ask everyone to hold still for a quick picture.....LOL!

Dorks! Haha!

 It's a lot of fun and Jared and rock at this game! :P We are awesome spies! LOL!!

Alayna was stoked she won the 1st game and Eli won the 2nd game. Some of the boys need to brush up on their skills...LOL!!! It was pretty funny they would get so mad when we found them! Hahaha!

What can we say...we're good!


You Can Do Hard Things

>> Thursday, March 24, 2016

I want to just take a moment and recognize Eli's hard working nature. He absolutely amazes me!!!

He missed a quarter of school and had zero teacher instruction and class time because of his illness. He's in Honors classes and is typically a straight A student so we've always known hes a smart cookie. :P 

However, grades were just posted for last quarter and I'm in awe. He managed to get all A's & B's!!!!! I'm so incredibly proud and impressed with him! He was sick and I mean really sick and he still managed to stay on top of his studies!!

He basically figured out all of his assignments on his own for 9 weeks and he finished with flying colors!!! Who does that???

I'm pretty sure if it was me I would have failed everything! He is such an amazing example to me. He never gives up and I love that quality about him! <3 <3 <3

P.S. For those of you wondering, he's doing so much better on this new RX and has been back to school all week!!


What a Beauty!!!

>> Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Alayna was cleaning out her backpack this morning and casually hands me her school pictures. Not totally sure how long she's had them in there...LOL!

I took them and looked at them and I saw this young lady budding right before my eyes! She looks so mature and grown up! She is BEAUTIFUL!

Not just on the outside. She is beautiful on the inside as well. She is so smart and LOVES math and reading. She started writing a book this year complete with illustrations. She loves art too! She is a good friend. She's always sticking up for others and she is not afraid to speak her mind. She is funny and makes us laugh all of the time. She loves music and has started writing songs. She also has a strong love for her Heavenly Father and Savior Jesus Christ. She reminds us often to hold Family Home Evening and she has made a goal for herself this year to read her scriptures every day. 

I am so blessed to have her as my daughter. I love hanging out with her and having "girl time" together. If I wasn't her mom I'd want to be her friend! I'm lucky, I get to have her as BOTH!!! <3


He Passed!!!

Yesterday I took Walker back to retake his permit test. Thankfully when you go back you don't have to wait in line to get a number. You take your paperwork straight to the front, get a number, and you head over for a new picture. Then you head right over to the testing area. 

When Walker was taking his photo he kept closing his eyes. I couldn't stop laughing. The guy was like, "try to keep your eyes open!" So he was making all these weird contorted faces trying to keep his eyes open. Hahaha!!! What the man doesn't know is Walker always has his eyes closed in pictures! :P

Once that was taken care of we went back to the testing area. They wanted to put him back on the computer again but he asked for the written test instead. I was proud of him for speaking up! :)

Time passed and he turned in the exam. You are allowed to miss 6, he missed 4. The guy let him look over the ones he missed and 2 of them I think I would have missed too. They were hard! :P But the important thing is....HE PASSED!!!!!!!!! I am SO proud! :D

He told us to have a seat in the waiting area and someone would call our name when they were ready with his permit. 

We should have known that was their way of saying this was going to take a while. 

So while I was once again trying not to poke my eyes out from having to wait, and wait, and wait some more, I tried to get Walker to take a pic with me. He was being a dork! :P

He's such a funny guy! He makes me laugh! :)

About an hour +  later we emerged with that hot little piece of paper in his hand!!!!

We now have a driver!! It's hard to believe! 

Way to go Walker!!!! We are so proud of you! 


Spring Break Part 2!

>> Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Saturday came and I couldn't believe the week was gone! We hadn't really done anything "actually" fun and I was going stir crazy being cooped up in the house for months. So we went to Joe's BBQ for lunch and then headed over to Golfland!

The kids had never done the go carts before so we took them over there 1st to try it out. Eli wasn't really sold on the idea. He didn't think it was going to be fun. Walker was totally on board and Alayna was mostly nervous! LOL!!!

Turns out....Eli thought it was totally rad and wanted to do it again and again! LOL!!! He has a "serious" driving face. It's pretty hilarious! He means business!

Apparently Alayna was justified in her nerves. She said Dad drives like a crazy person and she feared for her life the entire time! This picture kills me!!! Hahahaha!!!!! 

 Walker loved it! Which is pretty awesome to find something a teenager likes to do...LOL!

After the go carts the kids were hot and sweaty so we went inside and cooled off with some ICEE's! :D

Then it was time for some serious Goofy Golfing! :) 

We ended the day with bumper boats which was a first for everyone. :)

I think they got each other a little wet with spray cannons! LOL!!!

Nothing like having to wring out your clothes!! Hahaha!!

It was dinner time and Alayna picked her favorite place to eat.... Rigatony's! 

She loves their salad. She calls it "meat salad". LOL! It comes with salami on it. She loves her meat! :P

It was a nice day out with the family. I wish we could have done something out of town and on a beach but what can ya do? :P I was just grateful to get some sunshine and see these kids with smiles on their faces. Love them to pieces!!! <3 <3 <3 


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