Homeschool Conference!!!

Look at all those beautiful little feet two people can create!

Look at all those beautiful little feet two people can create!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

I AM

Today my hubby called me while he was out working (thankfully he does that a lot) guess he knows how much it means to me to hear his voice throughout my day...anyway, he called me with a purpose. He wanted to share a thought he had and together we will make it happen. It's really something so very simple, but the effect of it can be so grand ~ and that is our hope and desire. So, I will share it with you:

But first, I want you to think about this quote, because it is so fitting...

"Whether you think you can, or think you can't, you're right." Henry Ford
Don't you just love that??? It is so true!

So our goal is to penetrate within our children's hearts and minds all of the positives we see within them...we want them to always see before their eyes that they can, that they are, that they have the utmost potential in this life to do or to be anything and everything they have the desire to become. We hope to enable these thoughts within them by posting throughout our home sweet reminders of just how great they are.

In the boys and the girls room and in the main area of our home will be prominently displayed the following ~

I AM
followed by all of the important things
they need to know and remember.
(Some of the top ones for me are:)
incredible ~ strong ~ courageous ~ worthy ~ positive ~
unique ~ virtuous ~ breathtaking ~ valiant ~ talented ~ brave ~ amazing ~ insightful ~ creative ~ adventurous ~ extra-ordinary ~ wishful ~ inquisitive ~ special ~ joyful ~ compassionate ~ energetic ~ loving ~ of infinite worth ~ peaceful ~ sensational ~ gentle ~ gracious ~ faithful ~ trustworthy ~ kind ~ divine
My mind has just been filled with joy since Chad and I talked about this earlier today...nothing is more important to me than for our children to grow up knowing who they are and how very special they are ~ and every little thing we can do to empower that...we will do with all of our hearts!
I'll show you what I come up with ~ doing this next weekend at my Retreat...cannot wait to put this together...it just speaks to my heart!
Please, please, please share any other special words you might come up with...I'm sure I'll be losing sleep over this one, I better keep a notebook handy cause they just keep popping out at me!
Have a beautiful week and remember
"Whether you think you can, or think you can't, you're right!"
YOU CAN!!! You are amazing and wonderful!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Homecoming...

Well, this wonderful daughter of ours, who is about to turn another year older, informed me just a few days ago that she is not planning to turn 17, she'll just go back to 7. Well, I cannot even express the relief I feel at that! I might even throw a little celebration party and you are all invited! I am pretty darn sure that if she turns 17-- 18 or 19 is just around the corner and she will surely be snatched up by some sweet young man who is just dying to spend the rest of eternity with this adorable daughter of mine and my heart is just not ready for that!


So bring on the 7th birthday again!!! I could not be happier! :)


Okay, so since I truly am aware that I am in dream land, I guess I'll go ahead and share her beautiful photos from the Homecoming Dance a couple of weeks ago. She and her date looked simply adorable together. Such a pretty girl...I'm pretty lucky to be her Momma. Sure do love her!

Time to do the "Do". Our friend, Jessie, came right on over and spent the afternoon playing with Danielle's hair ~ she did a beautiful job. Thanks Jessie!!!! Getting in a couple shots before "the boy" shows up!
Cute :) Goodbye sweet girl of ours ~ have a wonderful time! By the way, when did you grow up???

You didn't listen very well all those times I asked you to just stay little!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

The HAPPIEST Place on Earth!!!

Well, for those of you who've been so very patient with me. I am FINALLY getting pictures from, you guessed it, DISNEYLAND on my blog. Oh how I have wanted to, but I'm not sure where my time has been going.
I loved looking through the photos, but deciding which ones to post was so hard. The really sad thing was that for so much of the day my big kids were off doing big kid stuff and I was hanging out with my little ones doing Princess and little people stuff. So, I have very few photos of the big ones and I am sad about that, so please don't think I have favorites, cause they actually all think they are my favorite! And they are right...I have 7 favorites!!! How lucky am I???

We spent the first part of our day hanging out together ~ we all checked out Peter Pan and TINKERBELL! She was high on the priority list! Then we made our way over to the carousel...horses cannot be passed up by this family...LOVED that all my boys were riding along with us! Had to take a bunch of photos ~ got 'em all, babies and grandbabies!!!



and then when it was time for the teacups and princesses -- well, the boys thought it was about time to make a run for it! I did get Wyatt on the Teacups with us...and man can that little guy spin a tea cup!
Try as they might, that sword just would not budge!!! LOVE THOSE BOYS!
Just after our Teacup moment -- The Big kids, including the biggest kid of all (DAD) were off for the afternoon hanging out doing their big kid stuff, while the little girls, Shealyn and her little ones and I headed to find ARIEL and CINDERELLA!
IT IS SO PRINCESS TIME!!!


LOVE that sign..."Where happily ever after happens every day"

Well, let me tell ya, it was a very happily ever after day for my little girls on this day. We waited in a very long line, but it was so worth the wait. Natalie's dream came true, she met her favorite Princess ever and talked and talked and talked with her. Ariel was delightful!
She listened so intently as Natalie told her "You have been my favorite princess my whole life!" They talked about Flounder and Sebastian. It just could not have been better for this little girl! And now that we've returned Natalie prays everyday that Ariel will be safe and happy in Disneyland and that she will be sure to take care of Pooh, and Tigger and the Heffalumps and Woozels.

Another magical moment...Cassie's very favorite princess has always been Cinderella!!!
Cassie has become so quiet...but her blue eyes just lit up when she saw Cinderella. I wish I had a sweet photo of just the two of them together, but the camera-man was pushing us along. I should have been more assertive and said, hold on just a minute, she needs a photo, luckily she is such a sweet little girl and is just as happy as can be with this one. She had a few minutes of time to visit with her, but Cassie just looked at her with the most wonderful look of awe on her face, what a precious little child she is! She had wanted so much to meet Cinderella (I sure wish I could have just put myself right into her thoughts at that moment, I'm sure it was full of wonder and magic for her because again, her eyes just sparkled as she looked at her!) Cinderella's autograph was just as beautiful as she was and I think Cassie will be practicing to make her name look just as magnificent!
Our last princess photo shot...
Alyce had her little photo moment...what a little cutie pie!!!

While we were visiting the Princess World, the girls saw Belle and Snow White and I can't even remember who else, they danced and sang with them and just had a truly magical time...it was priceless! They would have stayed right there the remainder of the day had I not drug them off to see other things.

We ventured into Toon Town and I took the little girls on a roller coaster ride...it was a bit fast, but I wasn't really sure how fast it might have felt for the girls. Have a look at our before and after...Hysterical, sad, but hysterical all the same!Check out that awesome smile! Cassie is so ready for this ride! Natalie, on the other hand, wouldn't even turn around to see me sitting right behind her...I think the fear hit the moment she sat her little buns down. And just as we stepped off the ride, this was the reaction! I didn't know a little heart could pitter-patter quite so hard! She recovered quickly and we were off for more adventure!

We met up with Dad for a little fun ~he joined us for one of my favorites and now one of the girls favorites! IT'S A SMALL WORLD! Even the walkway was magical...

We were singing away for hours after this sweet little ride...wish I could have gone on it again and again! I think I must still be a little kid stuck in a big persons body!

After our It's A Small World Moment...it was a mad dash to meet up with all the other kids for our SteamBoat ride. Dad took a shot of me with all our kiddos! Still can't believe they were all with us...Yippee!!! What a wonderful treat!
After our steamboat ride, we headed out for some real excitement!

We all wanted to ride Pirates of the Carribean. Well, the line was a little long and before we knew it, three kiddos were sacked out, Shealyn's babies and our little Natalie. Thank goodness for strong Daddy shoulders and arms, she is getting way too big for me to carry around and hold!It had been a long day up to this point full of so much fun and excitement, they just needed a little snooze to keep them going strong the rest of the day! Pirates was a hit! They all loved it. Next on the list...INDIANA JONES. I was a little worried this one might be a bit much for my little ones, but they loved it! Shealyn had to sit this one out, her little ones were just a little too little.
Dad and all the kids headed over "to test out just what they had" on the Buzz Lightyear Ride...they are some pretty good shots. Somewhere I have photos of this...but I have to check with my kiddos who forwarded them to our computer. If I can ever find them, I'll be sure to share!
We were lucky enough to be able to watch the Fireworks display and Fantasmic! Beautiful shows, Fantasmic -- well, a little too scary in some places, so we just covered eyes, wish they could have left out the scary and only included the magical...but who am I? Oh that's right, I am a Mom and that is why I think of these things. My guess is that a Momma is not in charge here or some things would be changing! The magical would be taking over!!!
Speaking of Magical...our last couple of stops before leaving this wonderland were mighty important. The boys had a couple of wishes and so did the girls, so again, we split up for just a bit.
The boys hit Splash Mountain and a couple of other big kid rides. We have the greatest photo ever of all my boys coming down Splash Mountain. I need to take a photo of the photo and try to upload it...you'll all love it!
The big girls went off to do a little window shopping :)
As for the little girls, we still had two very important stops to make...We hadn't seen Winnie the Pooh or Pixie Land. Perfect place for a few more adorable photos!


We had our last ride of the night just as the park was closing. I grabbed all the little girls and Danielle and we loaded up on some airplane sorta ride...sorry, don't have the foggiest idea what it was called, but it was a fun one to end on with all the lights flashing and being way up in the air.
I think we're all starting to feel a tad bit tired...oh, but what a fabulous day!
We saw this adorable Mickey as we entered the park and just had to have this for our memories! That just might be the very best Jack-o-lantern ever! Good-bye Disneyland!
Thanks for the magical moments...today was truly the perfect day...
a dream come true~all of my kiddos together at
The Happiest Place on Earth!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Movin' on...

"Everything will change when your desire to move on
exceeds your desire to hold on."
-- Alan Cohen

This quote could not have made it's way into my life on a better day. While in the midst of dealing with a really hard situation, I came across this gem. Not really knowing whether moving on and doing what was required at my hand to enable moving on was worth it or not, I was posed with the thought, or rather the question, do I desire to hold on to this hurt or do I desire to move on???

Well, that's an easy one. I so totally desire to move on. So, I gathered my bag of M&M's, the laptop, pen and paper, and headed back up to my room, still in jammies (all this after giving my kids very precise instructions for the next few hours time) I probably should have done without the chocolate, but I believe it gave me the strength I needed :)

I propped myself up with pillows and had some quiet pondering time and then took care of the hard business that was just waiting for me.

Now I am ready to move on and let yucky things be in my past! How freeing...why didn't I do this a few weeks ago, why did I choose to hold on (I think maybe I needed time away to do a little soul searching and I definately had that while in Nauvoo) but after returning this little issue has haunted me during my waking and sleeping (or non-sleeping) hours.

So if you are dealing with something unpleasant in your life, you might just take a moment or two and ponder this same thought...
Everything will change when your desire to move on exceeds your desire to hold on.

Now, I'm ready to head out for a fun date night with my hubby and some great friends, along with our daughter and her date :) Hope I don't get lost in the corn maze!

Monday, October 18, 2010

The innocence of a child

"Momma, is it true that if I wish upon a star that all my dreams will come true?"
...pause...
"Cause I just saw a star and said, I wish, I wish, I wish that no one will ever be mean to me."

Oh how I wanted to reply back, "I'm sure your dream will come true,"
instead, I just smiled and gave that little angel of mine a kiss and a hug
and told her that her wish was beautiful.

With that, she smiled and was satisfied...

Wouldn't the world be a better place if wishes like this really could come true?

Palm Trees & Beaches & Castles...Oh My!

I've decided that the best thing about blogging is that I can write down all the adorable things my kids do and say and never forget them...

I've tried writing it all down in notebooks and journals and such, but inevitably I lose those things, and here I can just scroll back through things I've posted and love every moment of it!!!

I've never been great at scrapbooking because I just never seem to make the time to make it happen, and pretty much the same with journaling...blogging is the best of both worlds all bundled up in one sweet little package!!! Someone was thinking of me when they invented this little gem!
So one of those precious moments that I never want to forget (so I'll share it here) was when the girls saw palm trees out the window...
Natalie practically yells out in excitement "Are we in Hawaii?"
Took me a second to understand what on earth she was talking about, but it didn't take Cassie any time at all, she thought the same thing just as soon as she saw the palm trees. ADORABLE!
You can see what we did not too long after spotting them...we had a photo moment cause the girls were soooooo excited!

I just had to laugh...they knew palm trees were in Hawaii, but not in California...we just haven't been out enough (but wow have we been making up for it this past month!)

We spent a little time walking along the pier and beaches in Monterey...beautiful...and the sounds were pretty exciting to hear for the kids -- check out where they were coming from :)


The kids were looking around for a barking dog...but what a pleasant surprise...
A couple shots of the kids walking across the rocks next to the shore. The water was pretty powerful here...Wyatt was standing on a rock and all of a sudden his hair was soaked on one side. Time to move away boys and girls...your Momma loves you and doesn't want the ocean to steal you away!

One little side excursion we decided to make...Hearst Castle...beautiful in the distance.




We had hoped to be able to see it a little closer than this view, but this would just have to suffice. And just below are the grazing animals that cover the mass acreage of the castle...Zebra's were one of the exciting ones for us to see.We all wanted a little closer look...Check out the photo of the swimming pool, since I couldn't actually be there to take a real shot, I faked it and photographed the photo. I know, that was a cheater move, but I just needed to dream about swimming in such a pool.
Palm Trees and Beaches and Castles...Oh My...
What could be any better than these? One might think nothing could be better, but I'm tellin' ya there was even more to enjoy ~

stay tuned -- next stop --THE HAPPIEST PLACE ON EARTH!!!

Reno and San Francisco

We arrived in Reno in the wee hours of the a.m. -- all the kids were sleeping and we so desperately needed to stretch our legs and have a little potty break,
so after driving under this fun sign, we found our destination to walk around in for a few minutes...
could have walked through this place for hours. Who would have time to gamble????
There's far too much to look at here! I'd never want to waste my time sitting at
some silly ol' table or slot machine throwing my money away...
oh well, guess it takes all types to make the world go round!

Had to share a few of my favorite photos of the area of San Francisco...
Myles and Preston while we were touring the Golden Gate National Recreation Area...there was a very fun fort that we spent quite a bit of time exploring and walking through and around.
There's my two little ones and my little grandbaby...aren't they sweet!

And here's my two big ones! How did they get this big??? I kept asking them to stay little their whole lives, but they just wouldn't listen!

Here I am with all my girls...what a happy day!
Is that just the cutest photo ever???
Okay, maybe this is the cutest...okay it's a tie!!!
Loved this shot of the Golden Gate bridge...there were so many sailboats on the water!
and there's the whole crew standing at the fort just in front of the Golden Gate Bridge
and then sitting on top of the fort...they did have to crawl all the way up there, I think just so they could say they "did it!" :) But it sure made for a great photo moment!

The kids had such a wonderful time playing at the beach..again, I cannot believe that I didn't think to bring towels, or better yet, to have them change out of their clothes. I guess I was just a tad crazy to think they could just get their little feet wet...what a day!

Check out that shot...I'm pretty impressed I got her in the air...Cassie absolutely loved the water! She was so wet when it was time to leave that her hair was actually dripping!

And there's our little Nattie...lovin' every moment of this water!
This little one doesn't belong to me...but I just could not help myself...
how adorable is that little innocent child!!!
I was a little worried though, that I might turn around to find 2 of my own little naked girls running about...thankfully, they were having way too much fun to even notice this naked little bundle.
As we crossed over the Golden Gate, we had such great plans to walk through San Francisco and show the kids some of the sights, but what we found was more than unexpected....traffic that went on forever and ever...it took us hours to just make our way through the city...this amazing number of people and cars were all due to a special week that we were completely unaware of: FLEET WEEK...full of young men running around in uniform...may have been a blessing that we couldn't find a parking spot...I have a daughter whose eyes may have just popped clean out of her head!
Yes, Danielle I am talking about YOU! :)