Monday, September 28, 2009

A Peek at our Week~

Our week started out with having the Burkinshaw family over for pizza night. Mitch and Jake had them in awe with their magic show. Mary even offered a 20 dollar bill if they would reveal how they performed a trick. It was a fun night and they were an awesome audience! We love this family and have loved the opportunity of home teaching and visiting teaching them over the years. Our friend Chelsea Robson was the opening performer for Chuck Wicks. We loved watching her perform and thanks to her we were able to go to the concert for $10 dollars. It was an amazing concert and he performed one of my favorite songs, "Stealing Cinderella"

It was fun for Wade and I to have a date with Laurisa.
Grandpa took the boys to the Diamond back game. They didn't win but I heard it was a pretty exciting game, since they entertained the crowd. Grandpa will think twice next time about taking these three boys, if he doesn't want to get kicked out
Spirit week is always fun around the Whiting household. Laurisa left a great tradition that the boys love being apart of. They dress up every day of spirit week. I was able to capture a picture of pirate day. I think it helps that they get extra credit in their classes for dressing up. Laurisa loves painting t-shirts on the boy for the home coming football game! "We got Spirit, yes we do, we got spirit---How 'bout you???
One of my favorite things was helping with Kaylynn's Bennetts shower. She has long awaited this day and her twins are almost here. It was the most incredible shower or party I have ever been apart of. I loved helping and learning from these amazing women. They are some of the most talented, creative, fun women I know. Everything was planned to the smallest detail.
Some of my favorite people~ Kim Dover, Susie Dover, and Jamie Breinholt. These women could be professional party planners and I want to be their assistant.
All day Scrapbooking~! This is a first for me and now I'm hooked. You'd think a whole day I could really catch up, but I'm still behind. I'm not worried because that means more fun days with my friends. It just happened to be on homecoming day. Mitch asked Lexi Trausdale and her mom taught the class so she had them come stop by our class. They modeled for everyone. Thanks Kathy and Kim for inviting me to spend a fun day scrapbooking, eating, laughing, and catching up!
2009 Homecoming

These kids all know how to have fun! Mitch planned the day and night and did such an awesome job. They went to bounce u for the day date and had dinner at the Allen's( our cousins old house), went to the dance and then came to our house for dessert. They are all such amazing kids. I just love being around them and their gratitude is amazing. They must have thanked me a million times!

In between all these activities we had a company party in Cave Creek, and Laurisa had a singles ward Luau at our house with 150 plus singles. I hope I can breathe next week. Nobody told me how busy teenagers would be, but we wouldn't have it any other way.

Monday, September 21, 2009

They are not our friends!

These little guys are not our friends, in fact if found in our home they get tortured, limbs cut off, electric shock treatment and sometimes smashed flat with a shoe. For entertainment, when the teenagers come to party at our house they usually end up on a hunt for these little guys in our backyard. They can easily be spotted using a florescent black light. They light up just like a glow stick so they are a stand out in the dark.Jake has been trying to make them his friends. He discovered one the other day while putting the central vacuum in the wall. He noticed that with his tail stuck in the outlet he was harmless. So now the boys love to make these little creatures their pets by snipping off the tips of their tails. Jake even made me pet the little guy, he used the old, "you're not afraid are you". It's amazing that they can keep boys entertained for hours. They have become defenseless in our home and are no longer a threat, but a fascination!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Apple Empanada (family night treat)

After a lesson and a fun game of yahtzee we ended with a family night treat.
This time of the year I always order a box of apples from Utah and try to come up with several different ways to eat them. Although they get eaten pretty quickly just by slicing them up and eating them all by themselves. The boys love to slice them up with our apple slicer. So tonight I came up with a fast apple dessert.

Apple Empanadas
apples peeled and sliced
maple syrup
uncooked tortillas

Core, peel, and slice apples Saute in pan with cinnamon, maple syrup, 1 tsp. vanilla extract and a few tbls. water. until soft.
Cook uncooked tortillas (from Costco)Spread butter on tortilla and sprinkle with a little cinnamon sugar(optional) Place apples inside tortilla and wrap up burrito style.

They are so yummy that it is hard to eat just one. It is a perfect way to enjoy your fall apples.

Birthday Celebration!

We surprised Laurisa with tickets to Beauty and the Beast for her birthday. I kept it a surprise until the day before when I did a tap number to the rhythm of "Be our guest" and she guessed it. I was in awe that she could guess it by just a few beats of a song! She was ecstatic, because it is one of her all time favorites ever since we took her to New York to see it on Broadway a few years back. Laurisa has always wanted to be Belle and was able to one Halloween.
We had a great night, the musical was amazing and a fun way to Celebrate Laurisa's 19th birthday!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

A Birthday Shout Out for Laurisa!!!

Laurisa's friends for years have loved decorating her room!Laurisa is 19 today and enjoying every minute of life. Laurisa lives up to the meaning of her name, "the Cheerful one" Her family nickname has always been Sunshine girl. She truly emanates sunshine through our home and all that come in contact with her. Her positive attitude on life is contagious and draws people to her. In high school, "Everyone", was her friend. She had friends from all groups and walks of life. She loves people and knows how to cheer anyone up when they are having a bad day. She gives the most amazing hugs. I hear friends comment how they need a Laurisa hug. She is a developer of others, and listening to her with her friends you will catch her building them up with positive comments. She believes the best in people, and is not afraid to show her love for them.She lives in the moment and enjoys life to the fullest. When she is away from home, it is hard to get her to call home because she is so busy enjoying where she is at. Her senior year she would come home from school and say as she walked through the front door, today was the best day ever. When asking what made it the best day ever, her reply simply would be, "I don't know it just was!" Everyday is the best day ever for Laurisa because she sees the good in everything and everyone. In first grade when it was a Saturday,she would say," I wish school was today!" What child wants to go to school on the weekend! She loves learning and works hard to get good grades. In her whole education process she received all A's. We thought she was going to receive her first B her senior year but to no avail the teacher rounded it up when report cards came out. We decided she doesn't know how to get a B. She is so independent, we have never had to help her with her homework. She is very consistent and is such an example. She is so obedient. We have never had to punish her. She has been such an easy child to raise because she makes good choices and obeys with a smile. She is an example to her siblings and her parents.She is brave and courageous and has no fear. She will try anything (like eating live crickets at girls camp) and has fun doing things that may seem impossible to others. She is a leader and will coax you into trying crazy, fun things. Good thing she is a leader for good, because others follow her example. Every teacher since kindergarten told me she was the leader in her class. It was fun to witness her leadership as cheer captain, and leading the Student Body at her High school. She has had many letters from piers over the years, saying what an influence she has been to them and how they want to be more like her. She makes a difference in the lives of others..This is one of my favorite pictures I've ever taken of Laurisa, because it truly shows her personality through her smile. Laurisa thank you for your example, love, enthusiasm for life, loving nature, positive attitude and willingness to obey and serve your parents and Heavenly Father. We feel so blessed to have you in our lives and are better individuals because of YOU!!! We celebrate you and shout out~HAPPY BIRTHDAY to you, beautiful Laurisa!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Paradise found!

A tradition we have done over the years is escape on a "mini" moon on our Anniversary! This year Wade whisked me up to the Pine Mountains for a romantic retreat. We spent two nights at the cabin. It was so fun to be there, "just the two of us"! The best part about the whole thing is that our kids are so independent, so that we can be spontaneous. Wade and I decided to leave, the morning of, we were already there before the kids could be told. I don't think they even minded. We weren't planning on staying two days, so when I called Laurisa to see if we could stay, I told her we were having too much fun and weren't ready to come home, she said, " You don't have to come home, you can stay." I'm so glad that we got permission!
We really enjoy hiking together and usually spend our Anniversary on a hike. Driving to our hiking destination we missed the turn off by about 20 minutes. We were so glad because we found a hike called, "primitive road". It truly felt like paradise. It was so breathtakingly beautiful. We hiked down a canyon with a running stream in the ravine. Once we reached the stream we played in the water for hours and never wanted to leave. We were the only ones on the hike all day. The sign before entering the hike said not maintained, hazardous to public use. If the ranger had not told us about this secret place we would never have found paradise. It truly felt like we had "paradise" all to ourselves!
We played games, road the 4 wheeler, watched movies and dined at charming outdoor lodges! It was a great way to celebrate 22 years~

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

22 Wonderful Years!!!

When I say 22 "wonderful" years, it is because of the growth we have experienced in our lives together, not that it is all just fun and bliss, but that the whole package of reaching together and knowing that as a team we can get through anything with each other is what makes the experience and journey so "wonderful!
bears all things
believes all things
hopes all things
endures all things
1Corinthians 13:7-8
I have always hesitated sharing my feelings about Wade publicly because they are so sacred and special to me, and partly because I don't want anyone to compare their relationship with mine. But because this is for my children to read when I compile it in a book, I thought it appropriate. First of all I think it is important to realize that no two relationships are alike and therefore can't be compared.
All I know is that I cherish the relationship I have because I married the "perfect" man for "me". I feel so blessed to have found my best friend 22 years ago. He is who I enjoy spending every minute with. He is truly the fun in my life! I was told by family members on my wedding day, that by marrying Wade my life would be filled with fun and adventure, and that it has! I am so glad that I get to experience life with this man because he makes me a better person. He stretches me and helps me grow in ways I never thought imaginable. He always believes in me and is my biggest fan. He always puts his family first and is the most amazing father! He makes you feel like you are ALWAYS his first priority.

I love to see our love grow and can't wait for the the next 22 years and more! Love is an amazing thing to watch grow and expand with time! Wade, I love you more than the day you married me and I look forward to growing old with you! Happy Anniversary Sweetheart---I can hardly believe it has been 22 years.

“For it was not into my ear you whispered, but into my heart. It was not my lips you kissed, but my soul.”
I love you
Not only for what you are
But for what I am
When I am with you

A hiking we will GO!!!

A family that hikes together---has a BLAST together!!!
Hanging out in the hotel playing games and just enjoying being together.
We spent Labor day weekend in Tucson in Sabino Canyon. It was so fun to have Joslyn with us, she was able to stay longer than planned so she could go on our little family get-a-way. She wasn't sure she wanted to hike since she had been sick with a cold all week, but she was a trooper and led the pack. Don't let her size fool you, she actually kept the hiking pace for us and at times it was hard to keep up with her. One of my favorite things I enjoy doing as a family is hiking. I think you can learn a lot from each other on hikes. There is many life lessons to be learned while blazing the trails. Hikes really can be compared to life. Sometimes (like this time) you may take a wrong turn and your two hour hike takes four hours! But it is all about enjoying the journey. Our journey in life is much the same, it seems like it is not always as is expected and can at times be extra challenging, but as long as you end up staying strong on the path you will reach your final destination and the reward will be great. Just being together as a family and encouraging each other is what brings the greatest joy in this life, even through the difficult times.The reward of this refreshing water made the hard hike all worth it!

2nd Annual Girls River Trip! Yahoo!

We got the kids all back to school so it was time to get our swimsuits on and head down the river. We had so much fun last year, that we decided to make it an annual event. I didn't think anything could beat last years fun, but there is something about relaxing down this beautiful river with your good friends when all the kids are in school.The river comes with lots of laughter, eating a potpourri of snacks and spontaneous fun. I love these women and always learn so much from them and feel like a better person just by surrounding myself with them!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Magic is in the Air!

Do you believe in "MAGIC"? Well we have magicians in our midst. It is constant entertainment around here, you can barely walk into a room with out hearing, "you've got to see this trick"! So you can only imagine how excited I was when grandma came to stay with us so they had another captive audience member besides myself. Actually I am quite impressed with the magic that is going on in our house. Both boys look they have inherited the magic gene from their father. They have the same passion, and love to get jaw dropping responses of, "how did you do that"! They had grandma in stitches with laughter and she really couldn't believe her eyes. She was the best audience ever!
They really are quite good and they have this mother believing in Magic!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Team work--- it works everytime!

It is so wonderful to see family come together for the greater good. We moved Grandma Young into her very own place. It took the help of the whole family. My mom found the perfect place for her, found furniture, the boys and men put the furniture together and then Jen and Julie drove her furnishings down from Las Vegas. It all came together as we worked together to move her in. I just love teamwork, especially these hard workers, they make the work go so much faster!
Grandma is so happy in her new home, which comes with 3 gourmet meals served down the hall at a lovely eat in restaurant, it's own hair salon, library, gardens and swimming pool! Wade and I have already claimed our stakes , just 30 more years and we will get to be this pampered! We are so happy and excited for you Grandma and your new adventure. Life definitely is an adventure so hold on for the ride.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Yahoo! Let's Celebrate!!!

I just love blogs for the shear reason of the great ideas I receive. Two of my friends posted how much fun Rustler's Roost was so we decided to try it. I thought it would be the perfect place to take our little "country girl" to celebrate her birthday.
You enter the restaurant by going down a slide, once inside you are greeted with straw on the ground and a live band. The view overlooks the whole valley. We had such a fun time dancing and enjoying the entertainment. The country band had their own rendition to Happy Birthday Joslyn and sang her favorite songs for her special day. It is such a great atmosphere and Joslyn absolutely loved it! What a treat to be back together as a family. We thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it, what a great Celebration!!!Enjoying the sunset. Arizona sunsets are always so beautiful. They brought Joslyn cotton candy with a candle to blow out. It was a hit and entertained this family for hours. Love all the extra hair growth that took place that night!A family that "dances together", "stays together" This family has a blast dancing together so I guess we will be together forever! Thanks Joslyn for giving us a reason to celebrate!