Saturday, May 28, 2011

G'Pop's Co-Pilot

Well, we are here in Arizona now and the move went as smooth as any move could go. The kids were good sports through all of the driving and the unpacking and we feel somewhat settled. The nice thing about my dad coming to help us move the day before we left, was that by the time we got to AZ and got unpacked, he still had 5 more days to hang out with us. Brighton and Porter can't get enough of him. Brighton drove with him in the u-haul truck so she was his little co-pilot and loved every minute of it. G'Pops also taught her how to shave his head which she has become a pro at and tried to do to Porter's hair but we stopped her before any damage was done. They've been reading books, going to the pool, and just having a lot of fun together. He'll be back in December with my mom so until then we'll just have to remember the fun time we had moving with G'Pops. Thanks so much dad for all you're help! We honestly couldn't have done it without you!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Final Endings

Not only was it our last full day to be in Midland, but it was also Brighton's graduation from preschool. I can't believe she'll be starting public school next year! They had a little ceremony and she actually got to wear a robe and gown so she was pretty excited. She was the first one to walk down the aisle to the stage so at first she was a little apprehensive, but she sucked it up and didn't cry (a big accomplishment for a timid girl). We were very proud. We were especially lucky because my dad flew in to help us move and he arrived about 5 minutes before the ceremony so Brighton was super happy to see him. Afterwards they had a little circus in the parking lot with a train ride and they loved it. Porter thought he was super cool riding around with his shades on. We got to say goodbye to a few friends there and it was a good way to end our chapter in Texas and Brighton's chapter in preschool. After that, we headed home for last minute packing and we're off to our new home in AZ tomorrow. Wish us luck on the trip!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

The Miss and the Not so Much

As we were visiting our favorite park for one of the last times, the reality of moving hit me so I started thinking a lot about what I will miss and what I'm okay with saying goodbye to when we're gone. I've come up with an even 5 on both sides. So here it goes:

Things I Will Miss About Midland

1. Good friends- we've made a few great friends here that I feel like I could truly rely on in times of need. They have been our family while we've been away from family and they will be truly missed.
2. Having a garage- I know it sounds lame but we've never had a garage before and now that we are going back to being garageless, I don't know what I'll do. It's my storage unit and my extra room. It will definitely stink without one.
3. My young women- I've posted about this before, but I will miss the sweet, quirky girls that I teach. They're great and it was one of my favorite callings ever.
4. Running- this might sound like a weird thing to miss, but I will miss running in Midland because thanks to the flatlands, there are absolutely no hills to run on. It makes races quite fun and makes me feel faster than I probably actually am.
5. The sunsets- The one perk about no mountains as far as the eye can see, is that when the sun sets, it goes on for miles and the sky is painted with pinks and oranges. It's gorgeous.

Things I Will Not Miss About Midland

1. The scenery- I know I just got done saying I will miss the gorgeous sunsets, but the truth is, the other 12 hours out of the day that I'm awake, there is nothing but oilfields and tumbleweed to look at. Coming from Alaska with the mountains and Utah with the red rock, that's just not the prettiest picture to me.
2. The water- the water here is so terrible, they advise you not to drink from the tap. We would have to go out and buy gallons upon gallons of water all the time and it drove me nuts! Goodbye to nasty agua!
3. The Air Conditioning- This was a constant argument in our house. Since the place we rented was so old, the AC (and heating for that matter) were awful. Kyle would sleep during the day upstairs where it's stifling hot and I would be stuck downstairs with 2 freezing kids and some very cold tootsies. I will definitely not miss living in 2 stories and will not miss being frozen out of my own house.
4. Kyle working nights- We've made it through 2 years with Kyle working nights, but seriously enough is enough. We never really get to see him and he's always recovering from work. Don't get me wrong, we understand that he needs to and he's working hard for our family and we appreciate him, but we hate it. And he hates it. It will be a nice feeling to go to bed knowing that Kyle is next to me (Even if he's studying into all hours of the night).
5. Being Texan- This might sound really rude, but I just don't like saying I'm from Texas. I feel like it was a great place for our family to live these past 2 years, but it never really felt like home. I really feel like we were transplanted there for a little while but it's definitely time for us to leave and sadly I will still say I'm from Alaska (or maybe even Utah) but we just lived in Texas for a bit.

Overall, Texas will be missed but the journey ahead seems too exciting to look back. Arizona here we come!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Grandpa Carl

My grandpa passed away today. It was a little bit sudden but it was for the best because he was in a lot of pain in the end. I have been so lucky to have my grandpa be a part of my life and to have had a good relationship for as long as I've lived. I was so blessed to have 2 kids who have met him and loved him. I've been reminiscing a lot about the memories I have of my grandpa and I just wanted to write them down for personal history. Excuse the scattered writing, but I'm just writing as I remember so it's a smathering of mems.

*My grandpa and my grandma would travel all
over the country in their RV to visit us and they would stay for months and plan outings and do all sorts of fun things with us. He would drive us hours away to go camping in the RV and go to amusement parks. He would always be the one to take Sarah (my sister) on all the little kiddie rides while my mom was stuck on the big roller coasters with me. Then we'd all go back to the RV and Grandma would have dinner ready for us.

*My grandpa was a Navy Seal (before they were even called Seals) and he was the one who taught me how to swim. I remember the anchor tattoo on his forearm from his Navy days. It was faded and old, but I loved it because it reminded me of him.
*I'll never forget his sneeze. It was the loudest, scariest sneeze you'd ever heard. Anyone would jump in their seat when they heard it. It always made me laugh.

*They owned a summer house in Florida and the home my mom grew up in in Michigan and we would normally visit Michigan in the summer. I have such great memories of their home in Michigan. During those summers we would go to the Bing Cherry Festival in Traverse City. We would pick apples, blueberries, and raspberries at the local patches. We would go to the Cider Mill to drink fresh cider. He would take us to our very favorite place in the world: Cook's Dairy Farm. They had the best ice cream of all time and we would get to see all the cows that produced the goods. My grandpa was the biggest ice cream fan and I'm sure that's where I got my love for the treat.

*He worked for Ford as a test driver for 30 years and would take me practicing before I got my license. He was a lot more patient than my dad and wouldn't freak out like my mom. I enjoyed our lessons.

*My sophomore year in high school our cheerleading squad was going to Hawaii and my family couldn't afford for me to go. I was the only cheerleader on the squad not going and I was heartbroken but I understood. The last day our money was due for the trip my mom called me into her room and said that my Grandpa wanted to pay for me to go. He knew how important it was for me and just couldn't stand the thought of me not being able to experience that. I will never forget his ridiculous generosity. He was the best Grandpa a girl could ask for.

*When I was getting married in Salt Lake, he drove his little Ford Tempo from Florida to Utah just to see me walk out of the temple. He wasn't able to go in but he knew how important it was for me to be married there and wouldn't miss it. On that same trip he even hiked up the Timpanogos Caves at age 76. That's an impressive feat to me.

Even though we never lived close and didn't talk a whole lot, I knew his character and that made me proud to be his granddaughter and made me want to emulate that character. Growing up I only had one Grandpa but I was lucky enough to have such a great one who was well worth more than 2. I loved him so much. I'm just so glad we were able to cultivate a lasting bond that I know didn't end when his life did. I love you so much Grandpa.

Pictureless Moments

This weekend we had quite a few events and sadly my scattered-brained head didn't think to bring the camera to any of them. So for one of the few times, I am posting pictureless. First off, Kyle has had a friend at work who has been engaged most of the time that he's worked there. I was able to do her engagement photos and they are a great couple. This weekend they finally got married invited us to the wedding and it worked out great because he was able to say goodbye to quite a few friends before we head off to AZ. The wedding was beautiful, the bride was gorgeous, and our kids were great. The whole evening was really fun. I have never been to a cowboy wedding and here in West Texas, that's how they're done. Don't get me wrong, it was still super classy and nice, but I loved the fact that all the groomsmen wore cowboy boots and the second the ceremony was over, their 10-gallon hats were right back on. We had a blast. I do have to say my favorite part was seeing Brighton and Porter shake their booties on the dance floor. They went crazy! No one else was out there but B & P didn't care. They were loving their lives dancing the night away. Brighton even begged me to take her out in the crowd with the single ladies to catch the bouquet but luckily a single friend of Kyle's took her out there for me. It was a great family night for us.

The night after that, Brighton had her little preschool ceremony to wrap up the end of the year. Her actual graduation will be this week but they had a ceremony and gave her a bible that night. It was a good chance to see her little friends and wrap up some more goodbyes and friendships before leaving. It was a great weekend that brought our little family a little closer and I love those moments. I just wish I had a pic to remember a little better!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

My Girls

One of the things I will probably miss the most when leaving Texas is my young women. I have grown to love these girls so much! I teach all of the young women (seeing as there's only 2 official girls in our ward) so I've gotten to know a lot about them. We would always talk about the boys they like, the frustrating things in their life like siblings and school, and of course the gospel. I really have felt like I can relate to them and I am someone they can turn to for anything. For their activity tonight they threw me a little going away party and we all went out to Rosa's for dinner. It was fun to see them one last time and so sweet of them to think of me. I love them and will truly miss them!

Sprinkler surprise

It's been getting hotter here in Texas so we thought it might be a good idea to take the kids to our pool. We psyched them up for it all day, got our suits and sunscreen on, went out with our pool toys.... and it was closed. We were so bummed and felt bad that the kids had gotten so excited about it, that we decided to turn our sprinkler on in the backyard and that was about as good as the pool to them. They loved it and after about 10 minutes (which is probably the same amount of time they would have been in the pool) they were cold and done with the water. It worked out perfect but I can't take much credit for it because it was Kyle's idea. Way to be an inventive daddy Kyle!

Saturday, May 07, 2011

Let's Rock it one last time

I did a photo shoot for a friend the other day and in return she gave us tickets to see the Rockhounds baseball game this weekend. It really made our day because we were sad that we weren't going to get to see them before we moved and it's one of our favorite family activities. This time around Porter was a little bigger so he was in love with the game and made us all "keep our eyes on the ball" whenever someone was batting. The other thing Porter was in love with was the soda. He must have had a full 8 oz. of Sprite (clearly we don't drink much soda in our house) and he had to go pee after every inning. That's 9 times in about 3.5 hours. It must have been a record. Anyway, the kids really had a great time and it was great to be able to see the good ole' Rockhounds one last time.