Wednesday, September 2, 2015

A Half Century of Gratitude...

I turned 50 last week.
It was awesome (snicker, snicker)
(Actually, since my Forties was the decade of the dog bite and Rheumatoid Arthritis, I am hopeful that my Fifties will be kinder to me...)

The best part about any birthday is the outpouring of love.
And I felt it.
Especially from my daughter Bethany who went to great lengths to plan a surprise party for me.
And I was surprised.
And almost embarrassingly blindsided by it, but it was super sweet.

One of the treasured gifts I got was my Grandma Brown's beautiful personal history. 
It was wonderfully put together by my Aunt Joan with the help of my sister Kathleen. 

I read it from cover to cover in one sitting.

I laughed.
I cried.
Seriously I did.

Mostly I just rejoiced in the blessing it is to be part of her posterity...

I was reminded of a letter she sent me when I was studying in Jerusalem...

Grandma Brown had a way of making you feel that you were the most important person on the planet to her. 

I'm pretty sure all of her grand kids felt that way...

Sometimes I wish my kids could really understand how they won the lottery with the family they were born into. And what a great opportunity that they have to draw upon the strength of the magnificent people that are part of their great heritage. 

From their own Grandma and Grandpa Brown, and Grandma Kaneshiro, all the way back to those who crossed the ocean to get here. 

What a blessing of faith and strength. 

And even with a half a century under my belt, I feel that from my head to my toes, and deep in the corners of my heart.

 I am blessed. 

Here's to 50 more years.
Ugh. Just kidding. Maybe just 35 or so?

Friday, August 28, 2015

Pro-Life. ALL Lives Matter.

Every color.
Every size.
Every age.
All lives are valued equally.
Or at least they should be.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Post 40 Problems.

Someone said something really funny.
If we weren't all over 40, we'd remember what it was.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Independence Day

 The week prior to the Fourth, found 
Hannah and me scouring places from which 
we could have an awesome view 
of the Stadium of Fire fireworks...

 ...we found a great little mountain side spot 
that seemed just perfect.

 We watched a few breathtaking sunsets.

In the end, we skipped the fireworks but 
were so happy to have found this great spot. 

 On the actual day of the Fourth, Grandma Tomi, Will, and I were the only ones cool enough to go to the Provo Freedom Festival Parade. It was pretty dang awesome.


 I mean Storm Troopers--

 and Senior Missionaries!


After all that work Hannah and I did to find the
 perfect fireworks spot...we settled on our own show, right in Angie's driveway. 

And there you have it. 
Happy Independence Day.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Of Reunions and Such.

 Once upon a time, I lived in Hawaii with my 
tiny little family of five.
Well, truthfully, we were a family of two, then three, then four and finally five.
During that whole process I had a great friend-- Nicole. 
When we met she was single-
then she became a missionary-
and then she brought her new husband back to Hawaii.
She had her first baby there too.

We had quite a few adventures together:
We were both nannies in the same neighborhood--
each Friday we left work and drove to the temple.
There, we met up with Michael who was 
just getting done with a long day of classes and work.

I opened her mission call while 
she was working on the Big Island...
She said, "I will be happy to go anywhere but Utah."
I got to tell her that she was going to Salt Lake City... :/

We pushed strollers together while we
talked about the gospel, motherhood, and losing baby weight.
We even battled lice together. Yay!

Fast forward 15 years and we finally met up again last month.
So much catching up to do--
but it was almost like no time had passed at all. 

Her little family had grown to a family of seven just like ours.
Missing their oldest who was just dropped off at Utah State.
 I took one picture and then Will got a hold of my camera...

Awesome job Will.
Even after all these years, we sure love these guys.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

On the Second to Last Day in May....

On May 30th, 2015, my last child officially became a teenager. 
(You can probably guess how I feel about that). 
This is the same kid who told me 
he wouldn't turn 5 if it made me sad. :) 
Unfortunately, aging is beyond my control 
and so it happens whether I agree with it or not.

This year, Will asked for a cake in the shape of the Mexican flag
 in honor of Jordan, who usually celebrates
 his Sunday birthday with him.
Jordan is serving a mission in Mexico.

Will's birthday request was a new suit. 
I was super happy to oblige.

As always, we gathered with family to celebrate...

At the ripe old age of 13, Will has dwarfed his grandma.

We sure love this kid!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

She's Twenty-One!

Happy Birthday to my niece, Meghan who officially turns 21 today.
Sunday, we celebrated with a chocolate Oreo cheesecake
 and a whole slew of family. 
I took this one picture at that party. 
Having just recently finished her third year of college, 
Meghan has switched gears and has decided to to go on a mission! 
She is smack dab in the middle of doctors' appointments and bishop's interviews etc.
We could NOT be more excited for her!
Happy Birthday Meghan! 
Great things are in store. :)