Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Lookin' Back

As 2008 draws to a close, we have many blessings for which we are grateful. Counting you among our friends and family is one of the greatest.

The Rock ~ is teaching math, coaching girl’s and boy’s tennis and instructing Driver Education at Fremont High School. He often works 12 hour days and somehow has still found time to start his Master’s Degree program (teaching with technology) this fall. In June he took all of his nephews on his side of the family on an “Uncle Rock” trip to southern Utah. He taught them how to rappel in Red Canyon, did a fun little slot in Zion called Key Hole and then ventured out into the Escalante desert to explore some more slots by the name of Peek-a-boo and Spooky. They all had a blast! I hope they continue the tradition! Later in the summer, he and my brother Tristano headed to Colorado to hang out with my brother-in-law Brandon. They caught a Rockies game, rafted the Arkansas River and hiked Mt. Elbert, the highest peak in Colorado. And he is still enjoying serving in the Elder’s Quorum Presidency.

Shematite (20) ~ completed her first year at SUU in May. She came home for the summer and worked at Lee’s Market in the deli. She enjoyed the summer at home, even taking a little bit of time off to go to Lake Powell with us in June. In August she headed back to Cedar City. Unfortunately some health issues led her to put school and work on hold and she moved back home in November. We are glad to have her back home and hope to help get her back on her feet and reaching new goals! I am especially glad to have someone in the house who laughs at my jokes!

Scout (18)~ is busy with friends, boys, Chamber Quire (vice president), A Capella Choir, AP Art, AP Psychology, and volunteering at an Elementary school in downtown Ogden. She bought herself a video game this summer called Dance Dance Revolution and is queen of the dance mat. Thanks to Bryn, our eye-foot coordination is better and our cardio vascular systems are happy! Bring on the DDR! She received her Young Woman Recognition Award and is excited to graduate this spring. She is thinking of going to Dixie State College to study art and boys.

Michex(16) ~ got her driver’s license in July and is enjoying her junior year at Weber High. She has a heavy load of classes including Chemistry, Math 1050/1060, AP American History, Choralaires, Honors English, and Advanced Drama. She and Scout both were in the cast of the WHS musical this fall – Peter Pan. Michex has lots of friends and invited one special one, Brittany, to join her on her belated Birthday outing this summer. Last year she asked us to take her through Mystery Canyon in Zion but the back country closed down with forest fires. I scored the 6 lottery permits allowed each day in this canyon and told Michaela she could invite a friend. Aaron & Kim, our friends, joined us on this little adventure and we had an unforgettable time in this breathtaking canyon. About 10 rappels, with the last one dropping you right into the Zion Narrows where all the tourists watch you rap down a 100 foot waterfall! Great fun. We love her sly humor and sense of adventure!

Mayflower(10) ~ enjoys her tumbling class and has started playing the piano. She spent most of the summer at the pool turning her blonde hair green. She is becoming quite a good swimmer. She loves her dog, Milo and has lots of friends in the neighborhood and at school in her 5th grade class. She backpacked into Coyote Gulch with us Memorial weekend and was truly a sight to behold. I loved watching her cute little legs underneath that big backpack, heading off into the desert! She probably doesn’t remember much of the trip because she ended up running a fever and sleeping for almost a whole day in the tent. After a priesthood blessing and some Tylenol she was able to hike out the final day on her own. What a trooper! And because she is such a good swimmer/trooper, we decided we could take her through one of our most favorite canyons – SUBWAY. She practiced rappelling off the front porch and watched plenty of “game film” from previous expeditions. We invited her buddies McKay, Annie and Nicole along and they all had a wonderful time on probably the warmest water day I have ever felt in that canyon. Blissful.

Big changes for me, DB, began in January. My Uncle Brad passed away and I think of him often, especially when I’m out in the desert somewhere. Working full time for Dr. Major, an ENT, has been a big adjustment to my schedule, my kids and my laundry! I am extremely grateful for the employment and like my job in the billing department. I have great co-workers which make having to go to work enjoyable. I also got my first Botox injection back in January for my voice (Spasmodic Dysphonia – rare neurological disorder affecting the vocal muscles). I get a treatment every 3-4 months at LDS hospital voice clinic and I am in it for the long haul or until something new comes along. That was such a struggle to come to terms with! Ugh! But I am extremely blessed to be where I am and to have learned what I have learned. I am still the Beehive Advisor in the YW program and YW/YM choir director. They are extremely patient with me and my lack of voice on and off. Love them all. I love all our adventures together as a family and continually look forward to planning more of them. The Rock and I road-tripped up to Lava Hot Springs in September for our anniversary. We found a yummy Tai restaurant and a new favorite get-away. We were also able to make a quick trip Moab in March and to Colorado for Thanksgiving to visit my sister Bethany.
We are so grateful for the blessings of the Gospel, for our family and friends and the time we have been able to spend together and for the wonderful holiday season.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Working Full Time and...having lots of fun!

December 2008 ~ I love all the excitement during the holiday season. I'll rest in January!
Desert Star Theater dinner and show, thanks to Bob & Karen.
Mayflower's school Christmas choir performance.
Rock & I playing in the Co-ed region volleyball tournament for our ward, played 3 hours the first night (seeding), lost our first match the 2nd night, had to come back through the loser's bracket (played 4 hours this time) to win the dang T-shirts and the championship!
Shematite - keeping the house warm and toasty for us all when we come back home tired and cold.
Scout - singing her guts out with Chamber Quire performances all over town including at the Church Office Building where President Uchdorf stopped and said hello and my office Christmas party. Dr Major (my boss) was so impressed that he handed me a check the next day to donate to the Chamber Quire. :)
Michex - busy with AP classes, Math 1050/1060, Choralaires and all that stuff.
Mayflower - sat on Santa's lap at the ward Christmas party "just to get a candy cane" she said. Narrated our ward Christmas program today with her Dad and gave a talk in Primary. Did a great job:)
Went to Weber High Christmas Concert Thursday.
Caroling with friends and neighbors Friday night on the hay wagon.
Yesterday - Went shopping, made stew in the crockpot, did laundry, cleaned house, helped Mayflower and Shematite cut out snow flakes for the windows, wrapped gifts, helped hang Scouts curtains and re-arrange her bedroom and caught a couple minutes of the BYU game. It is now 12:06 Monday morning and I am going to bed now. I will figure out how to get my printer to print addresses on Christmas envelopes tomorrow...I mean later tonight:)

Family Photos

Thanks to Sayyadina & Dreampacker and the beautiful background at Mountain Road Ranch we were able to squeeze in the annual family photo shoot. Shematite has moved home from Cedar City and has put school and work on hold while she deals with some health issues. We are sure glad to have her home:)

Monday, December 1, 2008

Thankfully

Wed. 4 am. - Drove through windy Wyoming to Bethany's beautiful homestead out on the prairie east of Denver. Shematite got a new "do". Pictures forthcoming. We made shrimp alfredo/pasta from scratch, Kassidy made pumpkin pies and we played a little Dance Dance Revolution while we waited for the Wild Bunch.

Thurs. - 8 am. The Rock, Brandon & Wildman donned the required Turkey Bowl outerwear and headed out the back door to the fifty yard line for a little flag football with the rest of the neighborhood men. Since our pom-poms have since been traded for Nikons and Minoltas, we women shot action photos. Hopefully Bethany will post some favorites.
1 pm. Yum! Food! Glorious Food!
Quote of the year from Mitchell when taking a look at finicky Mayflower's choices on her plate, "Don't you like food?"

More yumminess, games, talking, laughing.

Friday - Took the kids to the recreation center where we took a swim in the pool, lazy river, water slide, hot tub and steam room. The guys caught a game or two of raquetball also.
Friday night date + Shematite. Caught the new flick "Australia". Sigh...Hugh Jackman in the outback...what's not to love?

Sat. - headed into Denver to the free candy factory tour. A little bit of Christmas shopping and back to Bethany's for more movies, games, fudge-making and such.
Sun. 8 am - snowy, windy blizzard condtions. Wyoming starting to close down. Decide to head home over Vail pass instead on I-70 and squeak by before it closes. 11 hour drive home. Safe and Sound...Thankfully.

Thank you Beth & Brandon for all the fun and hospitality. Much Love.

p.s. Keep practicing your skit for the family reunion:)

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Thursday, October 23, 2008

The Singer Within

Found this quote in a book I finished recently titled Message From Forever by the same author that wrote Mutant Message Down Under. I kind of liked it because I am constantly telling the Young Women and Young Men in my ward not to be afraid that someone might actually hear them sing! I think the next time I am teaching them a new song I will have to share it with them:) Here goes.

"Everyone is musical. Music is a part of our own earthly assignment. If you don't sing because you don't think you can sing, that does not diminish the singer within you. You simply do not honor your talent."

Ready. Set. Ponder.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

House of Angels and Home Cookin'

6 am - went shopping @ Walmart. The cute little Asian checker lady said, "You smart! You go shopping ear'y!" Um-hm.
8 am - played some women's church volleyball. I am realizing how refining and patience producing that really is. Did some laundry.
10 am - watched Conference while I put chicken stew in the crockpot. Did some laundry.
12 pm - made homemade caramel to dip apples in 'cause I was craving it. Did some laundry.
2 pm - watched more conference hoping to catch a glimpse of cute little Emily in the children's choir. We saw her eyes and the top of her head! Laughed and cried at Elder Worthlin's talk on the Law of Compensation and Elder Ballard's talk on ANGELS.
Went downstairs to get a can of corn out of the storage room to put in the stew. I glanced at Scout's door to her room. She was gone playing a soccer game in the mud. I decided to see how far she had gotten on cleaning it and opened the door and walked in. Her bed was made, clean clothes were put away, some piles of laundry were still on the floor but it was much improved from earlier in the week. I glanced around and the thought came to me to walk to her closet. At our family council last Sunday we decided to pray for the return and/or finding of her Personal Progress Book (by Saturday - today!) that has been missing for about 2 years. The YW president challenged her to finish by the end of October. It has been extremely difficult for her to finish without it. Every time she has looked and searched, she hasn't been able to find it and got very discouraged. I leaned down and started looking through a small set of drawers on her closet floor. Top drawer - no luck. 2nd drawer - lots of fun dance pictures! 3rd drawer - old sketch pad, pencils, notebook and underneath.... her Personal Progress Book. My heart lept straight to my throat. She was still gone so I just laid it on her freshly made bed. In the whole big, huge universe, the Lord answered a few simple prayers to find a small book.
4:30 pm - Scout came home muddy and cold and hopped in the shower.
5 pm - Ate yummy stew, spinach salad and breadsticks then kissed my honey good-bye as he went to priesthood.
6:30 pm - Sat down to read blogs and ended up writing one instead. Scout passed by and nonchalantly asked where I had found it. I told her. She smiled and said, "Thanks Mom."
I love rainy days. It totally takes the pressure off to GO GET SOMETHING DONE. Now I'm going to go curl up with the book I am reading.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

September 18 ~ 21 years


Happy Anniversary, Honey!
We just got back yesterday from our little anniversary get-away to Lava Hot Springs.

I love autumn! I'm so glad we picked September to get married. The days are warm and the nights are cool and crisp ~ enough to soak in some natural hot springs! Thanks Rob, for an amazing, unforgettable journey through life together. It just keeps getting better and better! Love you:)

P.S.
Tristano, we just thought this sign in the quaint little town of Lava was kind of funny:)

Sunday, September 7, 2008

More Mystery Pictures from Aaron & Kim



And yes! After a few days to air out, our camera survived the fall and is back in working order!

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Mysteries of Heaven

August 30, 2008
Flash flood warning at the back country desk 7 a.m. - HIGH.
Chance of afternoon thunder storms - 50%.
Couln't ask for a more perfect day :)
Special thanks to Amberle for being our shuttle driver!

Aaron and Kim sporting their matching wrist wounds following the thigh-burning descent into the canyon.




Michaela's BFF Brittney basking in the beauty of this canyon.
Aaron & Kim in the shadows of some narrows.
The crew is all lined up and getting ready for the 8th rappel.
Michaela & Brittney
Kim & Heather

Aaron sitting contemplating life and his lunch.
Little black potholes.
It was around the corner at the next rappel - Mystery Springs - where I accidentally handed Rob the camera just as he was trying to handle one too many things on the edge of the cliff. We both watched as the camera, seemingly in slow motion, bounced to the edge and rolled off, bounced a couple more times against the rock, and then splashed 100 feet down into a pool of water. He didn't even flinch. I was so proud of him! So... I rappelled down behind the boulder, retrieved the camera in it's case and hoped that we could salvage the images off the memory card. The images in this post are off that card:) Pictures of the last 2 rappels will have to be borrowed from Kim & Aaron. Stay tuned.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Hurrah! Hopefully not the last one!

Well, life comes at you fast. School started this week. Summer flew by. I haven't had enough fun yet. So, Rob and I are taking Michaela and her friend Brittany down to Zion to hike Mystery Canyon tomorrow (Yes! I won the permit lottery!). Michaela wanted to go last year for her birthday in July but wild fires closed the back country. She has been patiently waiting for a whole year (and probably a lot longer in her mind!). Pray for clear skies and that the forcasted evening thunderstorms stay that way. In the evening:) Bryn, Quincy and Grandma & Grandpa Stoffers are holding down the fort.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

With my total lack of consistent scripture study, this passage in James had to be suggested to me as study material by a rather strange source. Yes, my chiropractor. Yea, Dr. Meeks! Thank you. It is changing me.

James 1:2-4


"...count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations (JST= many afflictions); knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing."

Isn't it interesting to read that we are to find joy in our afflictions.

I was also taught/reminded that some challenges are meant for us to overcome and some challenges are meant for us to endure. Hmmm. Isn't that interesting.

So here I am, "patiently" sitting here in the refiner's fire. Boy! Sure is hot!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Priceless

A couple of weeks ago...

Fuel for a Sunday drive/picnic with Grandma & Grandpa Stoffers in the beautiful mountains of Wyoming - $75.00

Refreshing soft drink for my honey, the Rock - $1.25

2 new tires to replace the ones that got "shredded" on the dirt road to beautiful Alice Lake (which we actually never saw) - $245.00 (Yep! One on the way up the dirt road and one on our way back to town).


Having kind, generous friends in far away places, with connections (to the guy at the tire shop), on a Sunday afternoon in Cokeville, WY.....PRICELESS!!!


Thank you AnnMarie & Joe!!! We are so glad you knew & found the "tire guy" in town so quickly and helped us:) It was also really neat to see the houses where Grandpa Stoffers was born and lived while in Cokeville.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Girl's Camp Memorial Park 2008

Day 1 - Laurels only. Rappelling into a cave in South Fork.
Scout

Me, DB - checkin' the ropes and coachin' first-timers.

Michex - Dropping into the cave. About 45 feet.


Day 2 - We were joined by all the YW campers and did a little tubing down the South fork. Our Camp was just a few hundred yards down stream from Causey Dam. Any idea how cold the water is that comes out of the bottom of Causey? Bone Chilling. Had to keep moving and stay distracted by the fun tube ride and the water gun snipers that lay in wait for unsuspecting camp leaders.
Day 3 - Hiked up to and around Causey. Very Beautiful.


After the hike, the leaders prepared a skit for the evening's entertainment while the girls plotted the old "cry wolf" lure to get us to come running to some one's aid. It worked. However only 3 brave leaders were foolish enough to join in the ensuing water fight. 25 to 3 are not great odds so we were forced to retreat to the cold river and stand our ground. Brrrrr!
The skit we performed was video taped and may soon be posted. Stay tuned:)

Sunday, July 13, 2008

So, I got home from Lake Powell, worked 5 almost 12-hour days, another week of 10-hour days and then went to girl's camp. I am back now, showered, pumiced, laundered (which took all day yesterday) and preparing my YW lesson. I will post GC pics soon. We had a blast!