A Day in the Life 2019

5.29.2019

Welcome to the 7th annual Day in the Life post!  I can't believe I've been doing this for so long.  I have enjoyed documenting a day each May.  It's a lot of work, but I cannot believe how much changes from year to year.  It means so much to me to be able to click on this label and see our lives evolve right before my eyes.  Time seems to be speeding up faster and faster, and though I dig in my heels to reign it back, time marches on.  I really am trying to notice and cherish the little moments -- enjoyable and not so enjoyable -- every day.

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This year, I picked Tuesday May 21st as the day to document.  Since wrestling season ended in March, we don't have anywhere to be on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons.  It's really nice!  As much as the boys enjoyed wrestling, they also got tired of not having any significant down time during the week.  It's been a healthy break for the boys.  However, baseball games begin in June and so our Tuesday and Thursday evenings will be full again, but it'll be summer!  

To document for my sake, this school year Levi has piano lessons on Mondays from 4:15 - 5:00pm.  On Wednesdays, I pick the boys up from school armed with snacks and a water bottle.  We go to Jed's ukulele lesson at 4:00pm.  Afterwards, we often hit up the Twin Falls Library.  Sometimes all three boys get their hair cut.  Then I cook dinner and drive Jed into Kimberly for Scouts.

But let's talk about last Tuesday...

The 3rd Annual Nelson Camp and Climb

5.26.2019

I just made that title up, but I think it's about time this little shindig of ours got an official name.  Yes, this is the third year in a row that the Nelson crew has gotten together in the month of May to camp near Castle Rocks and go climbing the next day.

This year, Kaleb found this awesome teeny cabin with a kitchen, bathroom, and one room sleeping area in the drop dead beautiful valley of Elba, Idaho.  (In fact, if we could just pick up and move there, I might just do it!)  The cabin he rented sits on a few acres and is meant for camping and group get-togethers just like ours.  Access to some electricity, running potable water, and a bathroom made camping that much nicer.  Way to go, Kaleb in heading that up!

Unfortunately, this Spring has been the season of the never ending rains.  Rain storms have rolled through every day for nearly two weeks now and it looks as if it's going to keep on raining for another week.  Nooo!  I've been wearing a jacket everywhere because the temps are hanging out in the 40's and 50's.  Brrrr.  Idaho please reclaim your happy, sunny, dry desert self!  We miss you!  

My Feral Toddler and Spring Cleaning

5.16.2019

The weather is beautiful which means I can no longer hide my feral child under warm layers or within the walls of our home.  Conrad's new favorite activity: get naked and play in the dog water.

Remember, he poops he pants and loses his shoes too.  Wherever we go, even though I am prepared, I just can't seem to be prepared enough for whatever he throws out.  

Two is both the best and the worst age.  On one hand, Conrad is so stinking cute!  The way he talks and thinks and all the unconditional love he gives just melts me to a puddle on the floor.  (Those kisses!!)  On the other hand, he is sooo exhausting.  Conrad throws a fit over things I cannot control (Sorry, it's Thursday), makes all sorts of messes in the name of independence... poops his pants, and loses his shoes.  Heaven help me, I struggle to keep up.  But he makes me so incredibly happy.           

Spilling the Details About My First MCO Concerts

5.14.2019

Remember when I auditioned and joined the Millennial Choirs and Orchestra back in February?  Well, everything turned out better than I could have ever anticipated.

First, I have to say that the MCO repetoire has exceeded all of my expectations.  I love making music and being a part of something so much bigger than myself.  The music is legit; some of it is challenging to play -- which makes it all the more fun for me!  The repetoire's energy and emotion coupled with the solidifying testimony of the spirit is overwhelming.  It gives the production a purpose.  And since that purpose is so near and dear to my own heart, it feels worthwhile.  

The website says, "MCO was founded for the purpose of teaching and encouraging excellence in quality sacred and classical music. Its primary purpose is to fulfill the need for more refined music performance education in our communities, with a focus on God and country. Similar to the music of the masters—Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms—we are bringing God back into the concert hall with the sacred/classical music that is such a rich part of the history of the world. We feel this is vital in today’s society, particularly for the youth of America."

Spring Stories

5.09.2019

Spring is here!!!

::  Sometimes when I want to shoot just for me, I attach my old and not so reliable 50mm lens with the intent to capture what I can and practice free lensing.  It helps me let go of my perfectionism and just shoot from the heart.  My boys feel it too because these are the moments when I often capture some of my most favorite photos of them.

We had so much fun last night playing outside together on the "bike track" the big boys are obsessed with.  Some kids with a four wheeler and dirt bike put in the track on a small piece of "no man's land" a few weeks ago and now Jed and Levi (as well as their friends Caleb and Josh) have claimed it as theirs.  They've carried a shovel out there a time or two after school to make improvements.  These kids have the life!

A Special Girls' Weekend

5.07.2019

Yes, it's as crazy as you might suspect.  I spent three days at home recovering from jet lag (Poor Jessie.  She went to Hawaii.  Haha.) and then turned around to drive to Utah for a special girls' weekend with some of the ladies in my life whom I hold most close and dear to my heart.  It was completely worth it.  In fact, I kept thanking Bron over the phone for putting up with the boys tired and solo to let me do this.  I felt spiritually uplifted, deeply connected to these women, and ready to start fresh with some new goals in mind.

We all gathered at Grandma's house to attend BYU Women's Conference.  It was two full days of food (Rachel's first priority!  I love that she loves food so much.), fun, shopping, laughter, learning, and late nights.  I gleaned a number of great insights from Women's Conference, but my favorite part of the weekend was when Grandma gathered us (+ my cousin Devin) around the kitchen table Saturday morning to discuss with us some things she'd recently learned.  The gathering turned in to a testimony meeting of sorts.  Personal stories and heartaches were shared alongside some really tender spiritual experiences.

I learned three important things on Saturday morning:

1.  Learning never ends.  If my 80 something year old grandma whom I look up to so much is still learning and growing, then I definitely will be doing the same if/when I am her age.

2.  I need to periodically gather my family to openly talk about Christ and things I have learned.  It not only invites the Spirit in to teach my children, but I also become an open book sharing my mistakes and knowledge.  I don't want to be a mystery to my children.  I want them to know of the things their family has been through and ultimately conquered.  I want them to feel loved unconditionally.

3.  Heavenly Father is acutely aware of each and every one of us.  He loves us and has a plan for each of our lives.  Through Christ's atonement, he makes our mistakes and weaknesses okay.  He makes up for what we cannot do in very real ways.  Sometimes we can count those blessings and other times we can only feel His love and the love of our guardian angels.  Everything will work out one way or another; in this life or the next.  We simply need to move forward with faith, trust, and Christlike love.  Christlike love somehow solves all problems.  Oh, if only I could learn to be as wise as Jesus Christ was while he was on earth!            

A Dozen Years Together

5.05.2019

Celebrating 12 whole years together with this handsome man!  I didn't grow up with very many good examples of what a healthy relationship looked like, but this guy right here has patiently taught me how to build a marriage that is much more than just teamwork; we spend our evening hours talking, our weekends on dates, and our efforts attempting to shoulder one another's burdens.  Marriage to Bron is better than I initially imagined it ever could be.

Happy 12th Anniversary, Babe!  I love you!!!

Naughty Puppy

5.02.2019
^^Unsolicited puppy kisses.^^

Misty, our six month old puppy, has given us a couple of scares recently!  Perhaps she's just reminding us about how much we really do love her despite her efforts to dig up the yard and steal every morsel of leftover food from off the kitchen table.  We nearly lost her twice and each time I was so sad at the thought of not having her here with us at home!  So puppy, you have been ridiculously expensive and caused us more worry and stress than we deserve, but we sure love you, Misty!      

Story 1:

One and a half full days before we were to leave on our trip to St. George for Spring Break, Misty followed the boys over into the neighbor's yard and was attacked by their German Shepherd!  It's our fault; we know it and take full responsibility.  It was an awful accident.  

Jed and Levi were playing with the neighborhood kids, and though I had warned them many times not to let Misty follow them, they didn't take me seriously.  However, it took everyone by surprise when Ava, the German Shepherd, literally ripped into Misty as soon as she crossed over onto her turf.  Misty suffered a bite under one leg that was a couple inches long and deep into the muscle tissue.  Misty ran home bleeding.  The neighborhood kids were hysterical.  Jed and Levi were sobbing.   

No adults actually saw the attack.  The Young's grandma was the one who stepped out to put a stop to the dog fight.  Thank goodness!

It was a Friday evening just before 6pm.  Bron and I desperately called around but couldn't find a vet that would take her.  It was so frustrating because she needed help.  Finally, one of Bron's connections got us in touch with a vet in Jerome.  Misty had surgery that night to clean and fix up her wounds.  Thankfully the bite didn't seem to sever any nerves.  Poor baby was pretty miserable that night and felt lethargic the next day, but soon she was up and limping around on three legs.  She also wound up wearing the obnoxious "cone of shame" for a few weeks.

Greg Young graciously offered to look after Misty while we were gone on vacation.  It was hard to leave her, but we knew she was in good hands.

Everything worked out.  Misty is completely healed and back to running and bounding around on the trails.  Whew!

I just hope my neighbors know I hold no ill feelings whatsoever.  It was simply an awful accident.