Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween!

 Halloween is always a favorite around our house. Well, except for me. I'm to excited for Christmas to really plan to much for Halloween. But we always seem to get a few traditions in, in spite of me.
Ben was going to be THING 2 but then he found the parrot that meant the world to him at the DI. He then became a pirate so that he could continue to carry around the parrot today.

Zeus. Those lightening bolts hurt.
James in true form.

Mark was/is THING 1.

Watch out. Who knows what he's going to do!!!

He actually skipped trick or treating so that he could finish his book about Gandhi.  Besides that, he graduated from trick-or-treating a couple of years ago. He was going to go to a party but Gandhi won out.
THING 1 and 2 together!

We went to the library  story time. The kids love Halloween games and the funny Halloween stories. This was a version of musical chairs.

Doing the hokey pokey!

Brothers together!
Ben thought this was so much fun. "How can I eat it with no hands!!"
Bobbing for cookies. Best game of the day!
We played at the park to get all of the super-excited-can't-wait-to-go-trick-or-treating wiggles out. Wow. There were A LOT of them!

  We handed out sample soap and lotion to the trick or treaters here. It was different and if I don't buy the can't I won't eat it!! We had mixed reviews. Some kids were pretty upset over the no candy but the little girls were super excited to have their own tiny bottle of lotion.

Happy Halloween!!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

TJed retreat

Every year I love hosting a retreat for homeschooling moms that choose to use the principles used in the book A Thomas Jefferson Education.
Each a year the retreat is unique. This year there was something super special about it and the synergy was A.M.A.Z.I.N.G.   It was a very powerful weekend. 
However it started a little.....snowy.
 When we left sunny Southern Utah we were..concerned..that it was going to snow on us during our travel up the mountain. When we arrived at the cabin, near Brian Head, we could feel a slight sense of snow in the air. And not just because we had to shovel a foot of snow off of the driveway to get into the cabin.  Thankfully the main part of the snow held off until that night when the ladies had already arrived.  It was eerie to hear the snow fall off the building with thunderous applause.  But don't worry, because I have about 500 Christmas songs on my iPod for situations just like this one. I think we listened to almost all of them.

We picked these before we went up the mountain. Which was brilliant since all of the leaves were gone when we arrived at the cabin. They were replaced with SNOW!
 Our presenters this year were very inspired. They taught about forgiveness, gratitude, overcoming challenges in our homeschooling, health and many many other things. We brainstormed, we laughed, we cried, and we ate. We had the most amazing colloquium about the book Anne of Green Gables, had a nature walk and enjoyed musical talent. A perfect perfect weekend.

This was lunch...tomato basil, cheddar vegetable, and chicken with wild rice. Yum yum!

Many new friends.

The sun was shining and it was a beautiful day just before we left.

We had to dig our way out. It was not fun. Just cold.

Saying goodbye to the cabin. When I was taking a moment to soak in the weekend, I had a great feeling of being part of something great. I may not be a great presenter that is able to inspire many to change their life for the better, but I can help create an environment to support it. It was a great sense of accomplishment.

 I'm already planning next year! 


Thursday, October 25, 2012

Be you be beautiful event..and a cool story.

 A few weeks ago I was able to attend an event titled Be You Be Beautiful. It was put on by renowned author Carol Tuttle. She is the author of the very powerful and popular book Remembering Wholeness. I am a bigger fan of her Just my Nature book. Her new book, The Child Whisperer, was available for us to purchase at the event and seriously, it is the best parenting book ever. EVER!

Here is her preview of it...its changing our home and maybe you'll learn something too. 

I enjoyed the event quite a bit. I loved learning more about myself and my loved ones....but I think I had more fun with my family. I love being with them and this scenario was perfect for us.
Me, Katy, Auntie Em, Mom, Anna, Aunt Kristy, Tex (aka Sarah)

Katy and me--my new sparkly scarf that I don't dare wear in public. However I recently, and oddly,  decided to wear it on Sunday for the primary program. I think the kids will be able to keep their eyes on me. ;) 

My younger sis and Tex Sarah. They are so fun together. I'm so glad that Sarah was able to fly out from Texas and join us.  And doesn't Anna look HOT!! Shazam!

In light to get autographed. Yippee!!

With Carol Tuttle herself.  When I grow up I want to be genuinely happy like her. She really an amazing lady.
With my mama. She is pretty freaking amazing too.

Hot Anna, Mom, me and Katy. This was at the end. I don't think I can hold still for a picture. I'm always doing something different.

The whole party!
The best part of the weekend was the feeling that was in the room with all of those ladies. I only knew my family there, but the ladies there were probably the most accepting women I had ever been around.  They truly honored each other, they were not judgmental -even when I wore that super sparkly scarf (however i saw several other wearing that scarf and that just boosted my courage in wearing it.)  It was a great feeling to feel so accepted among strangers.

Ok here is the more interesting story of the weekend.

I love to be social in small groups. Large groups..not so much. But a handful of people I love!

On the way home I was driving by myself. I became lonely. My hubby was busy at home and so he wasn't very chatty and there was only so much singing I could do with the raido to entertain myself. I remember exclaiming that "Its so much more fun when I'm with friends!!"

Well....I arrived in Fillmore, Utah. There isn't much there at about 10pm. I stopped and got gas, stretched my legs, went to get into the car and....NO!!!! There were my keys, danging in the ignition.

Well crap. So I said a little prayer to have my Heavenly Father help me out of this mess I had made and walked into the store. There was nobody around. In the fast food place that was connected in the store, there was a small table with three, large men. I felt impressed to go beg for help. >deep breath< and I went for it.

"Do any of you guys know how to break into a car???" I said with my biggest, cheesiest smile I could muster.
"Actually we've broke into three today already! Lets go get a rock!!"
They were totally joking around and laughing about it in a friendly way. I took them out to my car and the fun began.
It took about an hour for them to get my car open. But during that hour we had a great time. They happened to be in Fillmore as part of a filming crew for the LDS church. One of them was even an actor that claimed to be in Touched by an Angel. He even showed me the David Archuleta video that he's in! (The Everybody hurts video...he's the dad with the daughter getting married.) They ended up breaking off the antenna of their boss's truck and getting it unlocked. It was seriously a fun time. They were super nice genuine gentlemen and I was so glad for the interaction.
When I waved farewell, I busted out laughing. Not only did I get my car unlocked fairly simply, but I had an hour of fun social time that I wanted. I love that I was laughing about my keys getting locked in the car.

It was a great weekend and I am so thankful I was able to have such a great time with so many different people.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

King James!!

James is currently taking the Shakespeare class at our local commonwealth. This is his first year at the commonwealth and so far he is really loving it.
Part of the challenge of the Shakespeare is reading the plays. In order to complete the conquest of the class, the scholar has to watch, read, or listen to 7 Shakespeare plays. 
 Admitting, I have been very nervous for James to take the class. He has struggled with reading in the past and so I was unsure how he would react to reading the difficult plays. He did AWESOME!  His mentor has him all fired up and so not only did he fulfill the Conquest requirement of completing 7 plays, he completed the above and beyond level of completing 17!! 
This means that James will be crowned a KING in his class. 
He is so excited that he was able to finish this difficult task. AND James did it in only 5 weeks. I think that is very amazing.