Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Tuesday Driving

Tuesdays are crazy days for driving.  This is usually how it goes:

1.  Sam stays at school for the girl's basketball game (see BASS below).
2.  I pick Sam up at Millcreek, bring his baseball gear, and drive him to the high school for practice.
3.  Isaac needs a ride to St. Olaf's where he meets his ride for baseball practice, which is downtown.
4.  I pick Sam up at the high school at 6:15 (not always done at 6:15, so bring a book) and run in home, where he quickly shoves something in his mouth before...
5.  Sam needs a ride to his other baseball pratice which starts at 7:00.  I either drive him and his friend down at 6:40 or I pick them up at 8:30.

I feel like I don't have a minute to myself during those two hours.  Craig goes straight to Isaac's practice from work, so it's all up to me...when will Sam be 16?

Sam and his friends at Millcreek have started a group:  B.A.S.S., which stands for Bountiful Athletic Student Section.  They are mischief makers at the girl's basketball games.  They do lots of loud cheers and barely escape trouble from Mr. Muna.  They often infuriate the opposing crowd and just as often infuriate their own cheerleaders because more people pay attention to them than they do to the cheerleaders.  Someone flipped them off this week.  But they have a blast. 

Monday, January 30, 2012

Mt. Fuji

Today I had to run downtown to Pottery Barn, so I went to lunch with my better half.  We enjoyed Italian soda and thin crust pizza.  I had lots of garlic on mine, so I'm going to smell for awhile.  Then when I went to Pottery Barn, they were closed for Inventory.  Lame.

Finally at 10:30 last night we heard from Evan.  These last two transfers have not been great for him.  His companion is not a hard worker.  In today's e-mail he could hardly contain himself.  He's been made a senior companion and transferred to...Mt. Fuji, one of the most beautiful places on earth.

He could not be happier.  I'm so excited for next week's letter--I hope he has lots of pictures.  He was also happy because he played in a stake softball game and hit two home runs and two doubles.  He was voted MVP of the game. 

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Dinner Guests

Today was a regular Sunday.  But we did have a fun dinner.  We invited our friends the Johnsons to eat with us tonight.  Keith has taught Jake, Evan, and Sam how to hit baseballs (he did a great job).  Now he is the manager of the Salt Lake Bees.  He works in the Angels organization, so Sam loves to pick Keith's brain and find out all about what's up with the Angels.  We had a great time visiting with Keith, his wife, Malena, Kory, his son, and Mya, his daughter.  Fun people to be around.

Usually by now (it's 9:13), we have heard from Evan.  He writes us some time on his Monday morning, which is Sunday evening for us.  Today we haven't had anything.  It's transfer day, so I'm starting to wonder what's up in Japan.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Jimmer Is In Town

Jimmer came to town this weekend.  He's a King now.  In fact, they were selling t-shirts that said, "Got Jimmer?" on the front.  And "We do!" on the back.  Craig bought four tickets to the game and took the boys to see Jimmer.  He did alright.  He wasn't amazing, but had a few amazing moments.  He had a chance to tie the game with a long three-point shot with four seconds left in the game.  He shot an air ball.  Unfortunately, there were a lot of Utah Ute fans at the game who decided that since Jimmer had once played for BYU, they hated him.  They boo'd every time Jimmer got the ball.  I think that's pretty low budget.  I have never and would never boo for Andre Miller or Andrew Bogut.  The Jazz won, but I wanted the Kings.

Craig washed all four cars today.  We kind of just worked around the house today and caught up on some things. 

Friday, January 27, 2012

Dress Shopping

I was so tired this morning from sleeping (or not sleeping) at the hospital.  I decided to lay down after the kids went to school and woke up three hours later.  Kind of a lost day really.  Jake took a ski day and described the snow as "sublime".  In the afternoon, Caroline and I went shopping for a dress to wear to the Valentine's Dance.  We took her friend, Breanne, and her mom, Jenny, with us.  We had a great time.  We spent a long time at Nordstrom and tried on lots and lots of dresses.  Caroline settled on two to bring home and choose from.  We also got some shoes at DSW.  Craig wondered why she needed new shoes.  He doesn't get it.  Here's the amazing dress:

Haha.  You'll get to see it in two weeks just like everyone else. 

I found this hilarious picture on Facebook.  It looks like Jake and his friends have really been working out:
The kids are off tonight watching Bountiful (hopefully) beat WX.  Sam is a friends.  And Craig and I are home all alone.  

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Free Ride

I went to an afternoon movie with my friend today.  Other than being freezing and having to wear my scarf around my ears, it was a great time.  The movie was sad, but we expected that.  I quite liked it:  Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

Caroline had her allergy shot today and an hour later broke out into hives everywhere.  Then her lips got a little bit swollen and her throat and chest were tight.  I immediately went into "anaphylactic shock" mode.  I've had lots of practice with this!  As I called 911, I gave her a shot of epi in her thigh.  Then we were off on our "free ride" to the hospital.  Acutally it probably wasn't free.  Here's my view of the ambulance:

When we got to Primary Children's, we were shown to the Resuscitation Room.  By then, the crisis was really over and Caroline was breathing fine.  The ER Chief told me I did everything exactly right.  I even threw some sweats and my iPad into my purse, so I was ultra prepared.
Unfortunately, though, we had to spend the night in the Rapid Treatment Unit.  It's hard to sleep in a hospital.  I heard Caroline's machines beeping all night long. 
Isaac was the most interested in the whole event since he's very experienced at this.  He was on his way home from skiing when she got sick, so he called later and asked for a description of all of Caroline's symptoms, then he compared what usually happens to him.  It was funny.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Carpet Choices

We have a lot of great carpet choices for Caroline's room.  Craig is also letting me sneak in new carpet in the little upstairs family room.  The carpet Caroline liked the best was going to be $1500 just for her room.  To be fair, it was my favorite too, but I just couldn't justify it. 

Four basketball games tonight.  I may or may not have gotten in trouble at one of them.  The refs at Isaac's game were soooooo bad.  I really only said a couple of things, but at one point they stopped the game and asked me if I thought I could do better.  I said I thought I could. Craig thinks I should have said, "Stevie Wonder could do better than you're doing".  I'm gonna be good from now on and forever.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Busy Busy

Today was seriously the busiest day.  I felt like I didn't have time to breathe.  Craig was busy too.  He's working on a big case and might have to work into the night.  As usual, Jake was only home for an hour or so after school before he went back for an activity.  Tonight was region drill.  Sam and Isaac both had baseball practice.  I ran lots of errands.  I had fun hanging out with Stacey and Hanne for an hour getting pointers on some knitting.  I paid it forward by helping my visiting teachers for an hour with some crocheting. 

The best part of the day was Caroline getting asked to the Valentine's Dance.  She's already planning her shopping trip to look for a dress.  She is exccited to be going with Josh Calder.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Stocking Up

I have decided to make this the year of preparation.  I'm making sure our food storage is up to snuff!  I know someday we'll be glad we stored food, medicine, blankets and other miscellaneous useful items.  Today I went to Smith's and bought things on their add that were a really good deal.  I got Jell-O, pasta and soap for $1 each. 

Craig spent last night and all of today in St. George for a hearing.  Caroline and I had tickets for "Game's Afoot" at Hale Centre Theatre.  Even though it was really snowing, we made the trek to West Valley City.  Coincidentally, my mom was there so we sat with her after intermission.  The play was a riot.  Caroline and I always enjoy a good play at Hale Centre.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

News From Japan

Evan wrote an awesome letter this week.  He had an amazing week.  He was invited by President Baird to a leadership conference this week.  He was told that the top 20 missionaries in the mission were invited and only two of them, Parry and Ellsworth, were junior companions.  His confidence has been down some because Japanese has been so hard to learn, but this conference perked him right up.  He said he learned a lot to help him be a better missionary and teacher. 

Jake left church a little early today because he caught "Ravenitis".  Unfortunately for him, he answered his phone when Craig called and told him to come back for Priesthood.  Sam was put in the Teacher's Quorum Presidency today.

After church we went home and watched two really good football games.  The Patriots beat the Ravens when the Ravens missed a short field goal with 11 seconds left in the game.  This was after the Ravens dropped a TD pass in the end zone to win.  Then the 49ers lost in overtime to the Giants.  I had sad boys.  Sam is a Niners guy and Jake and Isaac are Ravens fans.  We watched most of the second game at The Mother Ship.  This is usually what happens when we meet up there:
Craig left in the early afternoon for St. George.

Saturday, January 21, 2012


Today was a very weird weather day.  I woke up to the sound of pounding rain.  It didn't let up for hours.  Around midday, Caroline mentioned that her carpet was damp.  Well, the "dampness" quickly turned into a flood.  We called Uncles Ryan and Steve and recruited Jake and Sam.  The six of us moved everything out of Caroline's room as fast as we could.  Caroline isn't too excited about her room being located to the sewing room for a few weeks until we can get the leak fixed and new carpet in. 

In the afternoon, the rain turned to snow and within minutes, road were treacherous.  Craig and Isaac had gone skiing at Park City with the Hales and they barely made it out of the canyon before it closed. 

After shoveling patrons out up at the Bountiful temple, Jake and his friends made a pretty creative snowman.
Jake drove around with "Alfonzo" the snowman in his truck for a few days until it melted and a picture was even featured on Channel 5 News.

Friday, January 20, 2012


Craig's dad retired recently.  I'm sure this must be a big, huge life change for him.  He's still working on one case out of an office near his house, but he's going to be completely done soon.  He just had knee replacement surgery--something he's been putting off for years.  And he and Linda just went on their dream trip to Israel. 

Craig's circumstances made him the likely person to get Doug's office furniture.  Doug has beautiful furniture, collected over many years, much of it antique.  It looks fabulous in Craig's office.  In fact, a new associate at Craig's firm came by and proclaimed that no one had furniture quite like Craig and wondered why.

Craig and I visited Doug tonight to say hi following his surgery and he offered us some artwork from his office.  I had to let Craig choose, and I was mostly happy with what he picked.  We got this beautiful oil painting and hung it over our bed:

This is a page from the original King James Bible published in the 1600s.  It's hanging in Craig's office at home.
And this little oil painting is in the living room.  It was painted by President Marion G. Romney's mother.
It's great to have some family remembrances.  Craig's office at work looks especially nice.  Pictures to follow.

Thursday, January 19, 2012


Sam had a Deacon's game tonight.  If we hadn't reigned people in, we could have won by 50.  Instead, we got up by enough to win and then tried to make sure everyone on our team had a chance to score.  We have some kids who don't play a lot of basketball, so they were excited about their scoring opportunities. 

Before I left for the game, I watched the beginning of the South Caroline Republican debate, but I thought I was going to go crazy after only the first five minutes.  I want Mitt to win so much and think so much of him.  Newt Gingrich was really on a high horse tonight and definitely shouldn't throw rocks in that glass house of his.  Mitt did not perform well tonight.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Thinking About Japan

I could not stop thinking about Evan in Japan today.  I hope everything is okay with him and this isn't some sort of empathy link.  This has been a pretty slow eight months for me. 

We had two basketball games tonight (only two!).  Sam's team came from behind and got a big win against a much taller team.  Sam played great and proudly wore Jimmer's BYU number--32.  Then we went to Jake's priest game.  They waited too long to get things going and lost a game they could have won.  Oh well.

The best part of today was the e-mail that came from the elementary school.  Apparently, they are instituting some rules about what they deem to be appropriate winter clothing.  Police state came to my mind.  I guess Craig had the same thought because he fired off a return e-mail that was quite entertaining.  Here's one of the better sentences:  "Now that you have determined that parents are irresponsible, ignorant and incapable of themselves ensuring that their own children are dressed in such a way so as to prevent frostbite and hypothermia (for that matter, when was the last time a child at Valley View suffered frostbite at recess?), what Orwellian regulation is next?"  Haha.  I wonder what Isaac will be wearing to school tomorrow.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

BYU Quarterbacks

I think former BYU quarterbacks flock to me or something.  We met Steve Young over Thanksgiving and yesterday at my gym I got to meet Ty Detmer.  He's still got quite a southern drawl and he's still pretty cute.  My kids were jealous.  Once upon a time I met Jim McMahon too.  He's my favorite. 

Last night I continued my "Year of Preparation" or whatever.  I'm not really settled on that name.  But in any case, I went to the cannery and got some good staples for the storage room.  I am going to be prepared of we have a disaster.  We're gonna eat good.

Craig is busy at work.  In fact, we didn't talk once on the phone today.  He's happier when he's busy though so I guess that's good. 

Monday, January 16, 2012

50 Hats

Today I completed my 50th hat for our stake service project. 

It's been fun crocheting these cute little hats.  I did a whole bunch of them on my flights to and from Germany.  It's time to move on to something else though.  Jake needs some help finishing the 150 baby booties he has knitted on the loom.  Busy hands.

No school today.  Craig went to work and after I cracked the whip in the morning and saw results with a very clean basement, the kids all went off to do their things and I curled up to catch up on Downtown Abbey.  Can't believe I missed all of last season.  Very cool series.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

"Is That a Hive?"

We had 11:00 a.m. church today.  It's a lame time.  Really the only good time is 9:00 a.m.  Today it was especially lame because there were two more play-off games.  During sacrament meeting, Isaac was itching and coughing.  We had to try, but we found a few random hives.  And the coughing, well, that was our ticket out of there.  Helllooooo Ravens v. Texans.  A marginal excuse, given that Isaac coughs every single day of his life.  I was punished for leaving though.  Texas lost.  And I hate the Ravens.  The late game was good though--the Giants upset the Packers.  And I realized that Craig and I cheered for opposite teams all weekend long.  What does that say about us?  Probably nothing.

We heard from Evan.  He is still positive despite the fact that his companion doesn't like to work and they had pretty low numbers this week.  In fact, I'm amazed at his level of optimism.  He is blessed to have a Mission President who he loves.  Transfers are coming up in a week and a half, so maybe there will be a change.  Evan thinks either he or his companion will be transferred. 

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Skiing & Football

Jake and Caroline went skiing today.  At different resorts.  Jake was at Snowbird with Dallin and TJ:

Caroline was at Park City with Breanne:
What little snow we have was reportedly bad, but they both had fun days.

Craig, Sam, Isaac and I stayed home and watched maybe the best NFL game of the year.  The 49ers beat the Saints with seconds left in the game to advance to the NFC Championship.  We made cookies for some friends.  We did lots of wash.  The boys had basketball practices.  I pretended like I was on vacation since I didn't get to go on vacation.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Long Weekend

Today is the start of a four day weekend.  It's our turn to have the condo and I really want to go, but my kids pretty much refused to go with me.  They gave super good reasons:

1.  Caroline was going to go skiing with eight friends and they all crapped out except one, so she stayed home to ski with that friend.
2.  Sam wanted to have a sleepover every night.  Sleepovers are awesome for getting sleep and being cheerful.
3.  Jake had dance practice.  Yep, dance practice.
4.  And Isaac had...a poker game.

Super important stuff.  Craig finally took pity on me and said he could go for three days but then he said it was always boring to go to St. George.  At that point, I let the dream go.  But if one person says they are bored this weekend, they are getting a chore list with 20 things on it.

Craig and I went to visit Doug tonight.  He had knee replacement surgery this week.  It was fun to visit, especially because he was a little loopy.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Deacon's Ball

Sam is playing deacon's ball again this year, even though he is officially a teacher.  We don't have a teacher's team, so he had to either play with the priests or the deacons.  The priests are Jake's size so that wasn't going to happen.  Sam was told by the stake though that he could only play at 75 percent.  I'm not exactly sure if Sam's going to play at 75 percent.  Tonight we won by oodles.  Sam had me keep his stats and they were pretty good.  Church basketball has been so fun for my boys.

Today was also the last day of the semester.  Caroline is extremely happy that debate is over.  She can put it behind her and never speak of it again.  Jake is also pretty glad it's over.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Three Basketball Games

Tonight we had three basketball games.  Jake had a priest game, which went better this week.  Jake had 18 points and no fouls.  I guess the secret is to win by a lot and then it's not necessary to take people out.  President Eyring was there again and I had to ask him if he was trash talking after someone on the other team missed the rim with his shot and I heard President Eyring behind me say, "air ball".  He said he wasn't trash talking, just helping our defense.  Haha.  It was pretty funny. 

Isaac's first game of two on the night went well.  It was his comp game with the usual crew.  These kids are used to winning every sport every season.  They aren't humbble.  We won be quite a bit.  Between the first and second of Isaac's games, we went to Yogurt Stop.  The second basketball game went even better.  It was a rec game, so the kids have less experience than comp kids.  At one point, Isaac counted down 3-2-1 to try and get the player on the other team with the ball to throw up a prayer shot because he thought the clock was winding down.  It worked.  Isaac is naughty.

Craig is very busy at work.  He started working on a new patent infringement case that will hopefully keep him busy for awhile.  He spent the better part of five hours today listening to a Russian man explain complicated technology with an accent.  Craig said his head was spinning at the end of the meeting.  I wouldn't have lasted an hour.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The Beginning

Today is the beginning of the best time of the year.  I love what starts now and continues until July.  I love baseball season.  The only thing that could be better than getting two awesome boys off to baseball practice would be getting three awesome boys off to baseball practice.  Yes, Jake has made it official.  He is choosing to spend his spring doing other things--which is entirely his decision, but still a sad one for me.  I thought after taking his junior year off, he might come back to the fold. 

Sam is playing with the high school and also another Bountiful team with some of his friends.  He will be busy and I'm interested to see how much he enjoys putting so much time into baseball this year.  Isaac is back on the Monarchs this year, but Craig and Jerron Hale are helping coach.  We have some great new kids and they all excitedly meet at St. Olaf's to carpool into downtown for practice two nights a week.  When I dropped Isaac off tonight, I heard kids from the carpool car start yelling his name as soon as he got out of my car.  He's a popular guy in some circles.

Boys and baseball.  There's always lots to talk about there, but Caroline has definitely hit a milestone or sorts.  She has decided after careful thought that it's time to end her violin career.  Since she has started high school and been busy with AP classes, new friends, volunteering, and other homework, violin has taken a backseat.  We decided if she couldn't practice more, it wasn't going to be worth the money.  She's a little worried that she won't know what to do with herself, but I suspect she will have enough to keep her busy.

Monday, January 9, 2012

National Championship

OK, really, who wants to watch two SEC teams play for the national championship.  I guess SEC schools and fans are okay with it, but I wasn't.  Tonight's game was Alabama vs. LSU.  The first time they played each other this season, the final score of the game was 9-6 in overtime:  NO ONE EVEN SCORED A TOUCHDOWN.  Tonight's game started with a slew of field goals until finally, toward the end of the game, we were treated to an actual touchdown.  Bama won 21-0.  I would say that the evening was completely boring, but we had great company. 

We invited our friends the Gautavai family over to watch the game.  They have three boys about the same age as Evan, Jake and Isaac.  They are a football-loving family for sure.  Their oldest boy is a friend of Evan's, Camree.  He is leaving on his mission next week--Merida, Mexico.  Some of the kids also invited a few other friends and my trainer, Bryce, and his girlfriend also joined us.  It was a good group.  Good think the conversation was interesting, beause they game was boresville.

Afterwards, at 9:30, Craig had to run out to his parents to help give his dad a blessing.  Doug is having knee replacement surgery today.  He wants to get whipped back into shape so he and Linda can go on a mission.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Frustrated in Japan

This morning we had Stake Conference.  Lots of good stuff in conference this weekend.  Now if we can only apply it...

It's a bonus to be out of church by noon.  I took a nap with the doggies.  I'm not sure who lovess those naps more, me or the dogs.  We watched wild card games and most people were happy with the Giants and the Broncos winning.  We had Grandma and Ryan over for hamburgers on the grill.  Caroline made her famous chocolate chip cookies so she was popular. 

Sundays are the night we get e-mails from Evan and we are usually able to chat via e-mail for a bit.  He had a very frustrating week.  His companion won't talk to him and doesn't want to work very much.  I know that he is growing from these trials, but it's hard to see him suffer through them.  Since most wards had fast Sunday today (ours is next week), we had decided yesterday to fast with our extended family for Evan because he has been frustrated with his Japanese.  I'm grateful that we fasted when we did because it sounds like he needed a lift and I know our faith and prayers will help him with his Japanese and also with his trials. 

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Finally, Snow

We have had literally no snow this year.  Even at the ski resorts there are just a few lifts open and the rest of the hill is brown.  Today we were supposed to get a skiff but we woke up to a foot!  Tt was so exciting, like we hadn't seen snow in years, even though last year was the snowiest year I can remember.  The younger boys did some serious sledding.  Here's the hill when I went to pick Isaac and his friends up:

The actually wouldn't come with me though.  They stayed until dark and then walked home.

Today was so busy.  I felt like we were running from morning until night.  We had four basketball practices, errands to run, chores to do, cousins to tend, a ward temple session, dinner with friends and the evening session of Stake Conference.  I was exhaused at 11:00.

Friday, January 6, 2012

doctor again

isaac woke up wheezing and coughing again this morning, so we went to the doctor.  again.  to make a long story short, the doctor wants him to "max out" the dose of his preventative inhaler.  this is a little scary to me because i don't know what to happen if this dose doesn't work.  we shold probably move, but no one really wants to move just so isaac can breathe, which sounds kinda harsh i guess.

i spent nearly two hours exercising today.  i wish all people had been created equal.  because the nearly two hours of exercise is not going to make me look like scarlet johannsen.

the vice principal called today to "apologize" about the incident yesterday with sam, but she had kind of a different story than the boys.  i know, usually the kids have the made up story, but this time, she had a completely made up story.  she treated those boys very badly and this isn't over yet.

all the kids have been collected from the rec center, friends' houses, and basketball games, so i'm going to go to sleep too. 

Thursday, January 5, 2012

"Stupid Eighth Graders"

Today was the day that Sam got called a "stupid eighth grader" by an administrator at his school.  Yep, it's the truth.  She also told him to shut up.  And she called him stupid more than once.  His infraction?  I brought him a burrito from Costa Vida for lunch today.  When he finished eating, he had a little rice left and his friend asked if he could have the rest.  Sam, knowing that the lunch lady is a bit nazi-ish about trash, told his friend repeatedly that he could finish the rice if he threw the trash away.  You can guess that the friend didn't throw the trash away and Sam was fingered for it.  When he tried to explain himself, the Vice Principal said "that is the stupidest excuse I've ever heard".  Hmmm.  I'm thinking a visit to the office is in order for me tomorrow.  Craig has already sent an e-mail.  Everytime Sam tells the story, he laughs.  I'm glad he feels good enough about himself that this is not a big issue.  But, yep, heads are prolly gonna roll tomorrow.  Stay tuned. 

Cute Caroline is still enjoying her volunteer time at the hospital and I found out today that she's been getting applications for all her friends so that they can volunteer with her.  I think that shows real leadership.  Or sociability.  But it's all for good, so it doesn't matter what it's called.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

The Tradition of Church Ball

Church ball started tonight.  Church ball is something looked forward to, talked about, and bragged about the whole year.  It's quite the Mormon tradition.  The priests had their first game tonight.  We have a big, quite good team.  Jake is one of the leaders and he is quite aggressive--even for my standards.  President Eyring attended our church game last night because his grandson is on the team.  When he comes to our games, sometimes I find myself wondering if, after he watches our game, church ball worldwide will be canceled.  The games are rough.  I guess the bragging rights are so important that the players go all out.  Jake likes to use his sharp elbows to get position.  And tonight, after becoming frustrating twice another player, he simply pushed the other player away and once the other player was called for a foul.  Hmmmmm.  I had to close my eyes a few times.  But admittedly, I look forward to church ball just like the boys.  The deacons start up next week, so it should be twice the fun!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Waking Up

Today was a hard day for waking up.  To start, I was bummed that no one reminded me it was late start and I could have slept in 30 more minutes.  I didn't even do anything productive with my extra 30 minutes, I just got back in my warm bed and laid there.  And waking up the kids wasn't that great either.  Caroline, who is always good as gold in waking herself up, did great, but the boys were tough.  They all have holiday hangover I guess.  I'm always glad to get back to a routine (not the cooking dinner every night part), but it's hard to have constant parties come to an end. 

Tonight we had G-dawg over for our dinner of Shephard's Pie.  Sam had four helpings.  It's his favorite dinner.  Caroline has decided to quit the violin, which makes me sad, but I'm tired of spending money when she's not practicing.  Jake went on the team bus to the Bountiful basketball game.  Sam and Isaac decided to go to the Jazz game after dinner, so we dashed in and they made it only a minute late.  The most exciting thing about tonight is waiting for the Iowa caucus returns.  We are obviously hoping Mitt Romney wins.  We were in Mitt's ward in Belmont for the four years we lived there.  When I finally called it a night, Romney and Santorum were within 40 votes of each other.  An amazing number when the total number of votes was in the tens of thousands.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Take Down

So today was the great Christmas decoration take down day.  Sometimes I wonder how it manages to take all day.  I think it's because we are interrupted by bowl games, friends, and fondue:

This is the chocolate fondue spread.  We also had a pot of cheese fondue going.  It's a favorite.  When my kids asked me if we could have it more than once a year, I quickly and firmly said, "NO"!  So many calories and so much mess.

There were especially good games on today and somehow Sam thought it was okay for his friends to start arriving at noon, long before Christmas was picked up.  He had five friends over for hours.  Then Jake's friends started to trickle in and he ended up with a bunch for most of the day.  Last time I looked downstairs, Caroline's friends were here.  Isaac partied with everyone's friends.

Back to school tomorrow.  I'm ready, but the kids aren't!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

It's a New Year!

The most noticeable difference for me this year is that I've decided to capitalize.  I know it's a radical change, but it's the right thing to do.  Today we enjoyed a great sacrament meeting compliments of a returning missionary, Sister Eyring, and D. Craig Parry.  They both did a great job.  I'll admit I was wishing it was Elder Parry's homecoming.

Speaking of Elder Parry, we got a great letter from Evan today.  He had a lot of positive things to say, but was a little discouraged about his language skills.  We have decided to fast for him as a family.  He is showing some great leadership and trying to get his companion to work a little harder.  We're proud of him.

None of Evan's pants fit because he's lost so much weight.  I told him not to lose anymore!  He looks great though.