Sunday, January 1, 2012


Hello Blog World! I hope you will all forgive me this year long sabbatical I have taken. I'm sure all 8 of you that actually read this blog were very disappointed... :)

Because this is my blog, and I can write about whatever I want, I want to ramble for a minute about how this last year has felt, and why it feels so good to be back. You know those funny Geico commercials? Well, there is the one that starts with "Are you living under a rock?" That is where I have been for the last year...under a rock. I am ashamed to say that I let circumstances of life push me under a rock. The last 2 years have provided our family with some very difficult financial circumstances. We have gone through 2 job losses due to the bad economy, and then a took a job with a company who hired Derick, but had hidden the fact that they were on the verge of financial ruin. They stopped paying us, and we are still in a battle to get the money they owe us.

**(Side note- Forgive me if this sounds like me whining...this is therapeutic for me...and it is all part of the explanation of my journey to where I am today...I know so many others who have far more serious trials)**

As a result of these financial difficulties we have lost a vehicle, have moved into a little rental house across town, and are in the process of short selling our home to avoid foreclosure. PHEW! I SAID IT! I don't know why that has been so hard! These circumstances have taken me on such a journey. I don't know why, because there are so many people who are in our exact situation right now, but when you are going through these kinds of things you feel so alone. Satan has a way of wrapping so much shame, and embarrassment, and "you're-not-good-enough's", and "I-wonder-what-everybody-is-thinking-about-me's" ect, into my thoughts that I finally, for awhile, let him win. Despite that our situation didn't stem from us having loads of credit card debt, and buying expensive toys, or living lavishly beyond our means...even though I knew that we just hit a really big (or several small...depending on how you look at it :) ) pocket/s of bad luck, I let him get to me.

And I'm here to tell you all that I'm back. I'm not letting him win anymore. I'm not letting him take away relationships I've had for years, but have been too embarrassed to keep-in-touch with because of embarrassment. I'm not letting him cause me to hide my face at the grocery store in fear of what people in my wonderfully small town are thinking/saying.

In short, or semi-short :)... I am not letting him dictate who I am, or my self-worth anymore!! Because through all of these things, I have honestly learned that THESE THINGS DON'T MATTER!!! MONEY doesn't matter!! I have missed out on so many things because I have let myself believe that they do. And they DON'T!

The most important thing I have learned this last year, is that my faith cannot be circumstantial. And I would go through everything all over again to learn this lesson...though I hope I won't have to. :) My Heavenly Father, my kind, gentle, very very very patient Heavenly Father, ALWAYS knows what I need. The chorus to one of my very favorite songs says " I prayed for strength, and I got pain to make me strong...I prayed for courage, and I got fear to overcome...I prayed for faith, my empty heart brought me to my knees...I don't always get what I want, but I get what I need." This mimics my feelings exactly.

For those who have hung in this far...I am almost done. :)This New Year=New Beginning's for me. I hope that in some way I can pay forward all of the things I have learned this last year, and not let them go to waste. I know that the trials we face in this life are our Heavenly Father's mercies in disguise. (Stolen from another song :))
Love you all!

Thursday, December 30, 2010


We have had a very blessed and fun Christmas season this year. With Derick in-between jobs it has given us a unique opportunity to spend more time together than we would normally have been able to spend together, and we tried to enjoy every minute of it. We were able to really slow down and reflect on the most important aspects of Christmas, and we really enjoyed teaching our kids more about the importance of the Savior in our lives. We were also very deeply humbled and blessed by the generosity of friends, family, Secret Santa's, and neighbors who so willingly blessed our family in a difficult time. I don't think I will ever forget this Christmas and what it has taught me personally, and how it has changed my relationship with my Heavenly Father and my Savior. Here are some pictures from our Christmas Season...hope you enjoy them as much as I did!

The party with the Hofheins side of the family! The kids loved all of their presents from Grammy and Grampy!

Grammy Bake Day! Every year my mom does a special Christmas bake day with the kids. They look forward to it every year, and so do I! This year they did their own cakes shaped like gingerbread fun! Thanks mom!

Christmas Eve PJ' of my favorite traditions!!

The Nativity Scene with the Hofheins cousins...another favorite tradition...

The girls in the aprons I made for them...yes--I DID just say that I made them! (Don't look very close...)!

Dyson opening his presents...he always opened presents with one hand, and ate candy with the other!

Everyone in the family got a new bike! We went on a Christmas ride as a family and lasted about 20 minutes because it was so cold...but we had a blast!!

Dyson on his big boy bike! He also got a bike trailer that he can ride in, and he loves that too!

The tree!

Fun opening presents at the Turners...thanks everyone for your awesome, thoughtful gifts!

Having fun at Jason and Katya's...

After we opened presents at the Turner's, we went over to Jason and Katya's house and did some awesome karaoke-ing...later in the evening I did some Britany Spears...but I won't share those pictures...

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Second Grade!

I cannot believe my baby is in 2nd Grade!! Time flies way too fast! It's been a week and she loves it...everything except for the homework! I think her favorite parts of the day are recess and lunch--she asks me to look up the lunch menu for her every morning so that she can be prepared :) She loves math (don't ask me where she got that from...definitely not from Derick and I...) and she loves to read if I can get her to sit still long enough! I was really happy when she still wanted me to walk her to school on the first day! She even let me take pictures of her at her desk. It's going to be a great year!

Summer's End

As summer was coming to a close we wanted to take the kids out do something fun, so we surprised them and took them to the Classic Fun Center in Layton. They had so much fun! We spent time at the roller rink with scooters, played at the arcade, played in a Pirate's Ship climbing area, bounced on the bouncy slides...and topped it all off with an Icee!! We definitely got our fun's worth...!! It was a great day! I can't believe how big my kids are getting. I'm glad we got to have a day like this before school started again!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Family Camping Trip!

This last weekend we decided to take the kids on a camping trip in the Uintas. I am not claiming that taking an almost 2 year old camping is a good idea...but we did it! The kids had a blast, and it was beautiful. So worth it! We decided to go to Hoop Lake.It was a small, gorgeous lake, and it wasn't crowded at all. Derick's brother Jason, his wife Katya, and their kids Danny and Leeza came with us, and we are so glad they did. We all had a lot of fun together! We all ended up catching a lot of fish, and we sure ate our fill! We came prepared to survive some terrifyingly exciting bear encounters, but much to our disappointment the bears kept their fraternizing to the lake...about 50 yards from our campground site. :) We came home filthy dirty, sunburned, and exhausted...but we have some great memories!! Can't wait for next year!

Dyson passed-out tired!



My 3 greatest blessings!

The awesome view from our campsite

Jason displaying his "family-style" world's biggest tin foil dinner!

Jason, Katya, Danny,and Leeza

Rafting fun!

Dyson splashing in the lake!

Big bear and little bear!

Smokin' hot! I am one lucky woman!

Ashlyn Noel

Brooklyn Kay

Roasting marshmallows and Starbursts

Fishing fun!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Memorial Weekend!

Every year my family gets together over the Memorial Day weekend, and this year was no exception! We decided to save some $$ and camped in my mom and dad's backyard. They have an AWESOME is huge, with a "soccer field" big enough for all the kids and adults to play on. They also have an industrial-sized sand box...(also big enough for the adults...) :), and a swing-set. We had so much fun! Even though I am lucky enough to see all of my family pretty regularly, I still get sad when weekends like this end. We all get along so well, and have so much fun together...we all truly are best friends! I am so blessed!

Talent show dance!

Grampy painting fingernails!

Daddy and Dyson!

Brookie playing the nylon game!

Grammy and Grampy in a 3-legged race!

Ashlyn sporting her style for a relay race!

Grammy leading a parade!

Anna and Angela!

Taylor and Ashlyn!

Grampy and Dyson!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Thanksgiving Point Half Marathon!!

I DID IT!!! I can now say that I've run a half marathon! 13.1 miles! It was definitely the hardest thing I have ever done mentally, physically, and emotionally in my entire life. I am still letting the thought settle in a little bit. I remember writing a post not even 18 months ago, about how my family thought I had died somewhere along the trail of the 5k we were informally running as a family. It's hard to see how far I've come, because I live with myself every's hard to gauge progress and success. But on Saturday, when I crossed that finish line, it was pretty easy to be ecstatic with how far I've come. This has been such a big journey for me, trying to get healthy again. Such a roller-coaster. I have been struggling with my health/weight for over 7 years now...and with each passing year I gave up on myself a little bit more. There was a point that I honestly just stopped looking in the mirror...I wasn't happy, and it affected every area of my life. And then, at some point, I decided I could change, that nobody was going to do it for me, and most importantly, that I was worth it. This realization didn't come as a lightning bolt moment, it happened gradually. It happened every single day as I forced myself to be aware of how I was feeling not just physically, but mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. Awareness and perception have allowed me to take on my struggles a little piece at a time. That, and relying on my Heavenly Father, my higher power. I still make mistakes...a lot of them!!...and I still have a long way to go...but I know I can do it! This half marathon is a monumental doesn't mark the end of my journey, and it definitely hasn't been the beginning...just somewhere in the middle of this life-long process of me remembering who I am, who I can be, and the things and people who are going to help get me there. One step at a time... :)

The last half-mile...My sister met me there with my girls to finish with of the coolest moments of my life!

The last

The big finish!!

The medals...

A piece of my inspiration...

Kiss it...

My biggest support...:)

Me and my sister Angela...she got me through it...thanks Ang!!! Couldn't have done it without you...

The whole fam...

Hot mamas...

The reward... ;)