Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Mid-Winter Break

I decided to take the kids to the aquarium during their mid-winter break.  It turned out to be pretty stressful. First of all, I hate driving downtown, especially in the rain. We made it down and finally found parking after driving around for like thirty minutes!

I also didn't realize that they were bringing in a giant octopus that day and that tons of people were there to see it, even a news crew. I couldn't believe how crowded it was. We waited in the rain in a line that wrapped around the building. It was cool when we finally got in... I guess. The aquarium just isn't really my thing. I think that fish are kind of creepy. 

 At least we had a cool view as we waited to get in.

There is a huge tank right when you walk in. It's super cool.

We watched this fish for way too long. It was so weird and creepy and we thought it looked like a zombie. It was missing an eye and swimming straight up and down.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Super Bowl and Blessings

Today after church my parents came over for dinner and to watch the Super Bowl.

Grace made this yummy Super Bowl dip!

As my dad was leaving he was sort of hanging around the door, hesitating for some reason. Finally, he told us that he really wanted to give Mark a blessing before Mark leaves for Russia and asked if that would be okay. Of course we thought it was a great idea and they came back in and my dad gave Mark a beautiful blessing. The spirit was so strong and we all felt such gratitude for the blessings of safety and of protection that were promised.  By the time it was over we were all in tears.

Later my dad called and told us that he felt prompted earlier in the week to give Mark a blessing. As he was getting ready to leave he almost felt like he couldn't walk out the door and he knew he needed to offer the blessing.  Mark has been so worried about leaving us alone for six weeks and also stressed out about performing well in his job where he doesn't speak the language or even know anyone. Mark and I were so touched that Heavenly Father is aware of us and our worries and concerns. I'm grateful for my dad's love for us and also that he listened to that prompting.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Gracie Bakes

Gracie is becoming quite the cook.  She makes all kinds of things and nothing intimidates her. She makes simple dinners for us like sloppy joes, eggs or pizza.  She also bakes all kinds of yummy treats!

She made these cream cheese snickerdoodles.  They were sooo good!

She also made these awesome cheese burger cupcakes for my dad's birthday!

Wednesday, February 3, 2016


This year I have been doing a co-op preschool with five of my good friends. I only have to teach one week out of every six. The kids are so cute and it's actually really fun even if it is a lot of work.

This picture was taken after we had done a unit on Insects.

From left to right: Tate, Taylor, Chelsea, Quinn, Layla and Miriam

One day we took them to the children's museum. Tate especially loved the train track and the vet office.

We also took them to the grocery store where a guy there gave us a really cool tour. The kids even touched the crab and lobster. I think they are weird and gross but I tried to play it cool in front of the kids!

Tate, however, was scared of this coconut that the guy made him hold.


Quinn turned nine years old this month. She is such an awesome kid so for her birthday that I decided to list nine things that I LOVE about Quinn!

1) I love Quinn's enthusiasm. Ever since she was little she has had a zeal for life. She is happiest out exploring, playing, running and experiencing. Quinn is never on the sidelines. She is the one out dancing the hardest, riding the scariest ride and laughing the loudest!

2) I love that Quinn is so funny!  She is always making us laugh with her quirky, crazy sense of humor. She loves Nacho Libre and Napoleon Dynamite and quotes them word for word to the family. Not only does she make us laugh, but she is easy to make laugh - and she has an awesome laugh! She has a fun, spunky personality.

3) I love how much Quinn loves to read. You can always find her with her nose in a book. She loves Road Dahl and has read almost all of his books. She also loves Shel Silverstein and Harry Potter.

4) I love how much Quinn loves soccer and running and exercising. She has played soccer for two years now and is really starting to get good.  She is super fast and loves to run.  She LOVES the monkey bars and has the callouses to prove it!

5) Quinn is the best cleaner in the house. If I give her a job she will get it done right. She actually enjoys it. She will wipe down cupboards and chairs if I ask her to clean the kitchen. On her primary spotlight she wrote that she wants to be a house cleaner when she grows up but has since changed it to waitress!

6) I love how determined Quinn is. She was struggling with math but she worked extra hard to learn all of her math facts and did her homework every single night. Eventually it became easier for her and now she is doing great. If Quinn puts her mind to something she is going to make it happen!

7) I love how much Quinn loves her brothers and sister. Grace and Quinn are best friends and it's so cool to watch as their friendship grows as they get older.

8) Quinn is so good with little kids. She always takes time to listen and play with them. She makes them feel special and they are naturally drawn to her. 

9) I love Quinn's caring heart. She is friends with everyone and works to make sure everyone is included and happy. She is a cuddler and loves to snuggle with Mark or me or her grandparents! She is grateful for anything you do for her. She just makes you feel good when you are around her.