Wednesday, August 26, 2015

School Year: 20015-2016

I am officially the mom of a senior in high school! I really just can't believe it. I'm not quite sure what it is, but all of a sudden i am feeling the urge to be a better mom than I was. I think it's because Ryan will be leaving home the end of this school year, like in 9 months. That's the plan anyway. 

I made sure to take the day off work so I could be with them. I got up at normal time and made them breakfast, pancakes were on the menu. To my surprise only 2 of them wanted them...isn't that how it always goes? 

I wanted to get pictures to document, so I did. Of course they all grumbled about it. While taking these, a friend of mine was chasing down her jr high schoolers. She reached them at the bus stop! heehee! "See, I'm not the only one!" I told them.

Ryan, 12th grade

he wanted a picture of the cat shirt...he really likes this shirt!

Aaron, 10th grade (really hates getting his picture taken)

Grace, 8th (love her pants!)

Kate, 6th (last year of elementary, lover of comfy clothes)

Becca, 4th grade (loves pictures!)

Britten, 2 1/2 (not in school, but didn't want to be left out either)

Hoping for the best year ever for my kids. Last year they were all new. This year I hope they feel more comfortable to be the great kids that they are!

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Quick Trip to Grandma's Land

 When referring to Grandma's Land, we are talking about Dustin's Dad's mother (if that makes any sense). Karl and Coleen live in Fruitland, UT. You pass Park City and Heber. Keep going east. I believe it is in Duschene County. It's beautiful and relaxing up there.

We haven't seen them in such a long time. Britten wasn't even born and he's named after Karl Britten Merrit, so we figured it was time. We have a lot of fond memories. Our kids throw rocks in the Red River that runs through their property. One year we even grabbed some tubes. There will always be shooting practice. I'm sure that is where my boys shot their first gun. Maybe even Grace. And there is the yellow swing. It is a child's swing that hangs from a very large tree. Everyone of my kids have officially swung in it now.  The kids love it because they go so high.

We also quilt there. I have made several of my kids' baby blankets there. When we owned a motor home, Grandma made one for our bed in there. I kept us quite warm in Yellowstone. It now keeps Ryan warm on his bed. Someone is always tying a quilt!

It's a wonderful place where you can get away from the city and just enjoy family and nature. I wish we escaped there more often. It's only a 2 hour trip. Well worth the travel! You get lots of advice. Some wanted, some not. Grandma shared with my kids the importance of thanking God for all you have been given. She reminded us that all blessings come from him. And Grandpa...well, he just calls you names, but really they mean I love you. He's one big tease! Yes, I like that little place. It's a gem!

gathering rocks to throw

the Red River

Sunday, August 9, 2015

More Important Than Shoes

About a month ago was the July Fast and Testimony meeting for our church congregation. There are no formal speakers. If you have the disire to share your testimony you can go up to the pulpit and share. I knew at the start of the meeting I would go up and share. I knew because of how I was feeling inside. My heart was beating, I had a lump in my throat, and my thoughts were crazy fast in my head. Dustin leaned over and whispered, "You're going up, huh? You have your Testimony face." I never knew my face changed, but apparently it does.

For some reason I kept rationalizing that I didn't need to go up. And I kept doing it, the whole hour! I came up with a lot of reasons, but the last was that I was wearing these 2.5 inch heels and if I try to go up, I will just end up tripping. I chuckled as that image came into my mind. Then a thought entered my head, "Are you really going to meet the Savior one day and explain to Him that the reason you couldn't bear testimony of Him was because of your shoes?" That's all it took!

As I stood to go to the pulpit, my husband gently grabbed my arm and pointed to the clock, "Hun, it's over." I knew I shouldn't be standing because I would be lengthening the time of the meeting, but I had to. I basically ran in those shoes and I made it without falling over. There was no way that I was going to let a pair of shoes be the reason for not sharing my love of Jesus Christ. His first words to me will not be, "Larae, the shoes?? Really?"

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Bear Lake 2015

My kids got out of school right before Memorial Day weekend this year. That's pretty early for us, but I kind of like the idea. We always leave for the Taylor Family Reunion that is always over the holiday weekend. This year we rented some cabins at Bear Lake. We were the very first family there, so we took in some sights because we were so early. I have to tell you I fell in love with the idea of one day owning a vacation home there. The lake is beautiful, the beach is sandy, and they have the best shakes you will ever have! My favorite was the chocolate brownie, but Ryan's was cheesecake. They took a whole piece of real cheesecake and blended it up in the ice cream. Too much for me, but he loved it! Yes, I could visit there often!

Our views were to die for! We sat right over the harbor, looking over the lake. We had rain the first day, Friday, but sunny and clear the next two. We were able to visit the lake on day #2. It was nice to spend some time outside. The cousins loved it! Moms and dads watched, but a few got in the lake. I was able to get a few pictures. My favorite was of Uncle Dave in the lake:

Pretty humorous! But it captures the fun we had so well. I love my family! Here are a few more from our day at the lake.

We always make sure to attend the local church on Sunday. When I was young, I used to complain about it, but now I just enjoy it! I don't get to go to church with my family every week anymore. Before we left for church, we got a few pictures. One of all who were there and then a couple with my mom and her 11 children. It was the first year in a while that we were all there. I'm so glad we took the time to do it!

I am so grateful to have grown up in the family that I did!! I am grateful that we get along and love spending time with each other. But what makes me most happy is the fact that I know whenever I need any of them, they would be there!!

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Easter Sunday

We spent the day with family. What a treat that was! Since we have moved, we are not very close. My kids were happy to have some cousin time. They had fun in the bounce house and hunting for eggs. I know it wast very focused on Christ, but we were having a big party because we were all together.

How grateful I am for Jesus Christ.
Because of Him, I will conquer death.
Because of Him, I will experience joy now.
Because of Him, I can be better than I am.
Because of Him, my family can be together forever.
Because of Him, I have power to overcome.
Because of Him, I am forgiven and can forgive.
Because of Him, I am healed.
Because of Him, I am never alone.
Because of Him, I can be like Him.
How I love Him!

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Shoe Shopping with a 13 Year-old

I went shopping with Grace yesterday. We were shopping for high heels. Her first pair. She's 13 and ready. Shopping for these shoes was quite an adventure.We actually started last Saturday and came home with nothing because everywhere we went, the price tag was to steep for her. Yes. She was buying her own shoes. Yes. She is cheap. The Apple does not fall far from the tree. You could say I was glowing with pride.

Last week we spent two hours looking for black heels. Yesterday we walked away with a pair of nude heels. A true lady! I'm sure soon we will be on a hunt for a pair of black ones, again. I will go willingly because it was fun. Me and my girl shopping and knee deep in girl talk. Apparently I'm drawn to shoes that a grandma would wear...I'm so not! And Grace believes in destiny like like I do. She was destined to buy the last penguin mood ring at the store. She loves penguins and it was the very last one! It was meant for her. I was glad to witness it.

On the way home we stopped for a few groceries and some General Tso's chicken and a cherry coke. Quite yummy! A good time indeed. I have an amazing daughter! And today she rocked those heels with a super cute dress!

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Welcome 2015

This post is almost 2 months behind. Mostly because our home computer has crashed so the only thing we have is an iPad. It's small and always being used. I just have to wait my turn. Today is my turn. 

I had some down time today. I stayed home from church because I was not feeling well. I'm not showered and it is almost 5 in the evening, but I have been occupied. I read the Sunday School manual. We are discussing the teachings of Pres. Benson this year. I don't remember much of him growing up and reading about him as made me realize I was missing out! I also finished a poem I have been working on. It is the first one in 10 years; I feel so accomplished! 

Usually my first entry for the year is letting everyone know what my word for the year is. Last year my word was LIVE. I wanted to truly live my life on purpose. I just didn't want to survive it. I feel I did okay, but know I could have done better. My word for 2015 is:


I've thought long and hard about this. The reason I chose it is my goal this year is to rediscover my talents. Things about me that make me, well, ME! I'm not wanting to develop new talents  
(although that would be cool if it happens in the process), I just want to awaken the ones that I have been letting sleep inside of me for years. I'm not sure why I allowed that to happen, but I have. It's just time to wake them up!

It felt good to write that poem. I'll be honest, it was hard! I used to be able to write pretty well and quickly. Not this time. It took me over a week and my mind felt like mush...but it's done! And, I'm happy to have taken the first step. Now on to the next!