Monday, November 24, 2014

Nathan Turns Two!

Our Nathan turned 2 yesterday! I can't believe it has been two years already. Wow.

We had been hyping him up for a week or so that it would be his birthday on Sunday, so when we woke him up and told him it was his birthday TODAY he was so excited!

We made the cake before church. Can you tell the kids were pretty happy about it?

Of course he got to lick the frosting beater after church... I should have made him take his shirt off first. Oh well, it was his birthday! Thank goodness for Shout.

We relit the candles several times so he could blow them out as many times as he wanted.

And he opened presents, of course. When he opened the first present Ellie took a big breath and said "look what it is, Nathan!" So when he pulled the paper off of the second present he looked at the paper and said "look what it is!" It was pretty funny that he was so excited about the paper. I don't think he fully understood the point of presents.

But he got a little bin full of beans and a little bag of farm animals to play in it with. He LOVES it. Though I let him and Ellie go a little crazy with the beans yesterday. I'm going to have to watch them a little more closely next time... Let's just say that getting beans that are the same color as our carpet wasn't exactly my brightest idea ever.

This little boy absolutely thrived on the extra attention he got yesterday. I think being the middle child (with an older sister that commands attention 24/7) he doesn't always get as much attention as he deserves. But his cute little eyes were lit up all day long yesterday, and I'm so glad he got to have a day that was all about him. Happy Birthday handsome boy! We are so glad you are part of our family!

Monday, November 17, 2014

I Love Being A Mom

I love finding things like this around the house:

I'm so incredibly grateful for the opportunity to be a mom. I love it.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Walking in a Winter Wonderland

It's crazy how fast the weather changed here in Rexburg this year. Last weekend it was 50 degrees and sunny and this weekend it is 27 degrees and snowy. We have spent the last few days inside because it had been too cold to be outside, but it was warmer today so we ventured out to the front yard. Besides, the kids just couldn't resist the snow! 

It's one of those beautiful days where there is no wind, and the snow just falls in big flakes.

Of course they had to catch snowflakes on their tongues!

And of course it ended the way it always does: with someone falling in the snow and deciding they were done.

The only disappointment was that our attempt at building a snow man didn't go well - it was too cold. That's alright, we have the rest of the winter to do that!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

We Have A Climber!

I'm not sure how I feel about this...

But he's pretty proud of himself!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

The First Snow

We woke up to this yesterday morning:

Ellie and Nathan were so excited they could hardly contain themselves. Of course we had to celebrate by having pancakes with "snow" (powdered sugar) and listening to Christmas music.

We needed to get out of the house, so we decided to go to story time at the library. Ellie chose her own outfit, complete with the snow boots. It made me laugh. This was the best picture I got because she was mad that Nathan wanted to be in the picture...... Yeah. 

The boots complete the ensemble, don't you think?

Now that there is snow, Ellie keeps asking me when Christmas is.... 

Thursday, November 6, 2014

God is the Source of Light We Seek

     "Even if you cannot always see that silver lining on your clouds, God can, for He is the very source of the light you seek. He does love you, and He knows your fears. He hears your prayers. He is your Heavenly Father, and surely He matches with His own the tears His children shed...

     "No, it is not without a recognition of life’s tempests but fully and directly because of them that I testify of God’s love and the Savior’s power to calm the storm. Always remember in that biblical story that He was out there on the water also, that He faced the worst of it right along with the newest and youngest and most fearful. Only one who has fought against those ominous waves is justified in telling us—as well as the sea—to “be still.” Only one who has taken the full brunt of such adversity could ever be justified in telling us in such times to “be of good cheer.” Such counsel is not a jaunty pep talk about the power of positive thinking, though positive thinking is much needed in the world. No, Christ knows better than all others that the trials of life can be very deep and we are not shallow people if we struggle with them. But even as the Lord avoids sugary rhetoric, He rebukes faithlessness and He deplores pessimism. He expects us to believe!"

     "He knows that for the faithful, things will be made right soon enough. He is a King; He speaks for the crown; He knows what can be promised. He knows that “the Lord … will be a refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble...

     "Some blessings come soon, some come late, and some don’t come until heaven; but for those who embrace the gospel of Jesus Christ, they come."

- taken from An High Priest of Good Things to Come by Jeffrey R. Holland.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Come and See! (Why I Share My Beliefs)

     I'm sure many of you wonder why I choose to be so open with sharing my religious and personal beliefs with you. In the October 2014 session of General Conference, a talk was given by David A. Bednar called "Come and See." He articulated my thoughts much better than I ever could on my own, so I want to share his words as well as some of my own to answer this question.

1.  I am not trying to sell you anything.

     I don't know about you, but one of my least favorite things in the world is being used as the target of a sales pitch. Like you, I hate feeling like I am being duped into buying a product because of the risk of offending the seller. I despise it when my friends just view me as a ticket to their next pay raise. And I definitely don't like finding out that an advertisement's promise was too good to be true. 

     Lucky for you, you don't have to worry about any of these three things. 

     "When we invite you to attend church with us or to learn with the full-time missionaries, we are not trying to sell you a product. As members of the Church, we do not receive prizes or bonus points in a heavenly contest. We are not seeking simply to increase the numerical size of the Church. And most importantly, we are not attempting to coerce you to believe as we do. We are inviting you to hear the restored truths of the gospel of Jesus Christ so you can study, ponder, pray, and come to know for yourself if the things we are sharing with you are true." 

     And if you decide not to take this invitation, then you don't need to worry about offending me or compromising our friendship. 

2. I am not trying to put you or your beliefs down in any way.

     By sharing my beliefs with you I am in no way putting yours down, nor am I saying that I am somehow better than you because of what I believe. I am simply sharing with a hope that something I say will resonate with you.

     As Elder Bednar says, "Some of you may respond [to the invitation in the above quote], 'But I already believe in Jesus and follow His teachings,' or 'I am not sure if God really exists.' Our invitations to you are not an attempt to diminish your religious tradition or life experience. Bring all that you know is true, good, and praiseworthy—and test our message. Just as Jesus beckoned two of His disciples to “come and see” (John 1:39), so we urge you to come and see if the restored gospel of Jesus Christ enlarges and enriches that which you already believe to be true."

3. Living the Gospel of Jesus Christ brings me joy, and I want to share that joy with you.

     Above all, the reason I share my beliefs with you is because of the great joy living them has brought to my life. "...[My] desire to share the restored gospel of Jesus Christ with you is a reflection of how important these truths are to [me]... [I] also have experienced the cleansing, the peace of conscience, the spiritual healing and renewal, and the guidance that are obtained only by learning and living the principles of the Savior’s gospel.

      "The Atonement of Jesus Christ provides the cleanser necessary to be made pure and clean, the soothing salve to heal spiritual wounds and remove guilt, and the protection that enables us to be faithful in times both good and bad."

     Unlike many of the sales pitches of today, I can promise you that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is in no way too good to be true. "...His Church has been restored in its fulness in these latter days," and there is so much peace, love, and joy to be found in its teachings. 

     Again, I invite you to "come and see." Come and see what the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints has to offer. Read the Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ. You can request a free copy here or read it online here. What have you got to lose? At the very least, it is a book full of interesting and uplifting stories from ancient times. But it could also change your life. I know it has changed mine. 

     If you decide to read the Book of Mormon, send me an email! I would LOVE to hear your thoughts! To learn more about Jesus Christ, locate a Mormon church close to you, (visitors ALWAYS welcome) meet with the Mormon missionaries, learn more about Joseph Smith, or chat with Church representatives, go here.

Monday, November 3, 2014


This year for Halloween we were Little Red Riding Hood, two big bad wolves, the woodcutter, and Granny.

Sam took the kids around the neighborhood:

I absolutely LOVE watching him be a dad. He is one of the best, that's for sure.

The kids got entirely too much candy, and are still coming off of the sugar high. But they had fun, and that's what matters, right?

And, of course, what is Halloween without nasty, drooly vampire teeth?

Images by Freepik