Sunday, September 18, 2011

A proud wife

So on Friday September 16, 2011 James was pinned to a chief. It has been a long road for him and we are just so proud of him. He has had 45 days of long hours, challenges, great experiences, a fun trip, and lots of sleepless nights. We have not seen much of James since Aug 1 when he was grateful to find out he had been selected to chief. I knew it was going to be crazy stuff going on but I can not say I was ready for what all he had to go through. James's mom and dad were able to come up and spend Wednesday thru Sunday with us and we had a great visit with them. My grandparents also made the trip up to come see the ceremony. I feel very loved to have had family members be there to help support James and show their support and love towards him. My dad came to the ceremony as well. We let the kids miss school on Friday so they could be there as well. So we had a group of 9 people there to watch James get pinned. But after listening to the speaker I found it funny to hear, " you have a question, ask the Chief" They were stating that this is what is heard on the ships all the time. So it may be our new phrase here at the house. "I don't know, go ask the Chief".

This was all the Chief selects boxes that they made and when put together made this emblem. I thought it was cool.

Picture is a little blurry but I thought it was cool with all the hats lined up like this. there were hats on the other side as well. there were 35 Chiefs pinned with James.

The stage where the pinning was done. Kind of hard to see but James is standing toward the front and on the right hand side.

Kind of far away to see but this was James being pinned. I pinned one anchor and James's dad pinned the other.

James in his chief uniform. I think it looks good on him.

Here is James and I after the ceremony and back home. I was so glad to just have him home.

James in his dress white uniform. I do not think this looks like a comfortable uniform with the choke collar.

Another one of James in his dress white.

James showing off his white socks because he decided not to switch them to show everyone his uniforms.

James and my dad.

James and his parents.

James and my grandparents.

James in his new dress blue uniform. I just have to say I love a man (James) in a uniform.

Again another big THANK YOU for every one who came and supported James through this. And THANK YOU to every one who could not make it but sent James best wishes, and support and help from great distances. We love you all and are grateful for your love.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

My thoughts

Today I had to teach again in Relief Society (women class at church). Lesson today was on temple work and family history. I am so not the expert on this topic, just like most others, but I have never done family history. I always feel life is busy enough right now with out trying to add more to it. I know it is my excuse. And Since I do not do the family history part I obviously do not do the temple work as well. I realize now that James and I have not been to the temple as often as we should over our entire marriage. We have either lived many hours away, or had little babies, and even older kids now but they still need a babysitter, and just busy schedules. James is deployed a ton and I can name a list of other reasons. Some may be valid but I just see all of our excuses. it is not like we are trying to make excuses it just happens. I know now I want to make it such a more high priority. James and I hardly ever go do anything by ourselves and I just think this could be our perfect start. it is how we started our marriage and I want to make sure we continue to always work on the things that matter most to us.
As I think about this day and all those who lost a loved on 10 years ago, I wonder how many of those people have had their temple work done. Are they now going to have the chance to be with their families for all eternity after this mortal life. I know that through our religion we may take for gran it the thought we have an eternal family and we have the opportunity to be with our families for all eternity. Others who do not know our beliefs, just think this is the end of their life and they will never see that loved one again. It is such a sad thought. I could not imagine having to say good bye to someone and then think "this is forever, I will never see that person again." I am eternally grateful for the sacrifice Jesus Christ made for all of us and for the chance to spend eternity with my family.
I feel like I am getting more comfortable about teaching the lessons now. However today the stake Relief Society President was there to listen. Oh the nerves I had. I did not cry today which was my goal. I have cried through every lesson and I really do not even know why. But I was thrilled with the was the lesson went today and I excited that it is becoming less painful every week. That is not suppose to sound bad but more of a relief for myself.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Corn Maze

This was the beginning of the maze. We let James start out leading us the way and he picked this entrance to start. I had never been to a corn maze and I was really impressed. this place does a new one every year an this year was dedicated to he military. It was a lot of fun to get outside and walk through corn.

We would let each kid taking a turn to lead through a section to find all of the check points. Some were able to do it with out much help and some spots were really hard to find. So we all had to help each other read he maps and make sure we knew where we were at all time.

look at all that corn out there behind them. we walked all through there and around.

The kids on a bridge going from one section of the maze to the next. There were 4 n all. We easily walked 4 miles going through the maze. but it really was a ton of fun. The weather was perfect and I enjoyed having James with us and he time we got to just have fun.

Through out the maze there were 24 points that you had to find and you would punch a whole in the bottom of the mp. And if we got 20 of the 24 the kids got a certificate. We found all 24.

We had a doughnut for everyone to have hen we got about half way through. They enjoyed them. Someone passing by offered to take our pic and so we have doughnuts in our hands but corn in the background.

James and I. Bethannie took this picture but I was glad. We hardly ever get pics of ourselves.

Bethannie towards the end of the maze. It was a long walk but she did it and not a word of complaint.

James was DONE. he was so tired he sad he was going to stay in the corn field and he would figure out later how to get out. He was crazy. After a quick rest he was ready to finish. And he finished the walk great.

Mackenzie and her sassy self. I just love that kid. She makes me laugh because you never know what you will get from her. I am so glad I have her around all the time to make me laugh.

Here are my kids pretending to be the statue of liberty with CORN. Really? Who does that. I love them. It is hilarious.

James was hungry. Any one else want some? Mackenzie actually picked one up ad did the same thing.

Corn Maze part 2

This was the map of the maze. Sorry it is sideways though. But you get the point.

this was a view of the maze from a look out tower they had. it was around 60 t tall, and when the wind blew you could feel he thing move. Scary. So we took a picture, looked out, and got down.

James on the pedal cart. They all had a blast going around the track seeing who could win.

Mackenzie had a hard time pedaling. She was a little to short. So James had her flying around the track.

Bethannie driving the pedal cart

The family on a hay ride

We had a blast jumping on the "pillow clouds" You would seriously get thrown in the air. It was so much fun. I think James and I had more fun on them then the kids but it didn't matter to us.

This place wa so cool. it has pig races, a playground, 50 ft slide, andin a few weeks we plan on going back to go pick pumpkins. Glad we found it.

All in a weekend

Saturday we took the "last" chance of the season to go up to Six Flags with the kids so we could hit the water park. I was unsure what the weather would be like. Thursday and Friday we in the upper 90's and it was nice. Saturday at some point we were going to get some storms roll through and bring a cold front after. Well Lucky for us the storm did not roll in during the day. So Bethannie James and Mackenzie and I went and enjoyed some water slides. Wave pool, lazy river, and the water playground. The kids had a blast. After we were done there we left the park to go meet up with James. He was doing a cook out for the Chief Selects. So we had lunch with him, and waited till he was done and then all went back to the park. we were glad to just have James with us for a while. We stayed at the park till about 7:30, but around 5 or so it started sprinkling. And it brought the cooler weather. We were definitely chilly by the time we left the park. But it was a good day. So this morning we wake up and it is 50 degrees out. Our high is only 66. Really? it is labor day and we are all in jeans and sweaters or sweatshirts. But we are going to make the best of this cool weather and we are taking the kids to a corn maze. It is 5 acres of mazes. Hope I don't loose any kids. But I am excited to see what they think of it. we have never done this. This place sells pumpkins and does hayrides and all sorts of cool fall activities. So we are going to go check it out today and do the maze and then plan another weekend to go back to do the other activities and let the kids pick out pumpkins. But seriously 90 to 60 all in a weekend. i am not sure about this weather up here yet. But as we get I am constantly trying to make the best of it. I do not know if I will say I will be doing that in January when our high is -15 degrees. But time will tell. We may become home bodies and never leave.

Sunday, September 4, 2011


Gratitude is a state of appreciation, an act of thanksgiving, which causes us to be humble because we recognize an act of kindness, service, or caring from some one else which lifts us and strengthens us.....Gratitude expressed to our Heavenly Father in prayer for what we have brings a calming peace-- a peace which allows us to not canker our souls for what we don't have.

This was part of our RS lesson today. I can not even express what this lesson meant to me. I have been struggling lately with the feeling of ungratefulness. Not so much on my part but my family. I am not by any means saying I am perfect, but I try to show gratitude to everyone and anyone who does anything for me. I am a wife, a mother to 3, a cook, laundry doer, the maid, taxi cab driver, peace maker, bill payer, lawn mower, grocery shopper, and the list could go on. And I do not mind doing any of it. I actually enjoy most of it most days. I try not to complain that I do so much for every one but what hurts is when no one is grateful for it. I am trying to teach my family, kids and husband, that saying thank you goes a long way. I just really do wish that I heard thank you for everything I did on a daily basis more often. I am not trying to talk to bad about my family, I know they really are grateful, but I want to hear it. When we were still in VA, one of the books we read for book club was the 5 love languages. And I was skeptical about this book. How can a book tell me what I need? Any how It was sort of true. I was words of affirmation. I want to hear I do a great job at something. I love hearing I look beautiful. It is not like I need the build up, but I do enjoy it. It makes my whole day for James to say I look beautiful. Sometimes I wish I heard it a little more often. He hasn't really been home in over a month and so he is never around to tell me anything. I miss it. I am grateful for my family and who they are. They are amazing and I could not even imagine them not being part of my crazy life. I want to make an extra effort to show my gratitude towards them, and to let them know I am grateful for everything they do for me everyday.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Freezer meals

So it seems like as soon as the kids get back into school our schedules become much more crazy. So I happened to be checking out at the grocery store and saw a cookbook for fall freezer meals. So I bought it and the went home and really looked through it and started figuring out what I wanted to make to try and do this. So my list ended up being...
hot taco pockets
spaghetti casserole
tater beef bake
make ahead burritos
bow tie ham bake
chunky chicken soup
turkey chili
mushroom corn chowder
broccoli turkey casserole
turkey pot pie
chicken cordon blue bake
mozzarella beef roll-ups
bagel pizzas
chicken pockets
kielbasa chili
empress chili
baked spaghetti

Now some of the recipes are not from the cookbook I bought but instead other peoples blogs and family recipes. I am hopeful that when I am done I will have 30 meals in the freezer. It will be nice to be able to pull out a frozen meal 2 or 3 times a week and not have to worry about what take out we are eating this night. I still have 7 recipes to make but I have only been coking last night and today so not bad. I think I am up to 18 meals frozen already. Any how just wanted to say I am glad I have taken the time to try this. Here's to freezer meals.(as I drink my water)