Stage Fright

28 September 2012
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A few weeks ago a lady in the ward approached me about Tanner being in the middle school musical. I laughed it off and didn’t give it much thought. Tanner is a goof ball, but not really a performer. After many years of piano lessons it has become quite obvious that keeping time and rhythm is not a strong talent of Tanner’s, although, he is really good at making any piece of music sound like a funeral march, a really loud funeral march. So I didn’t give it another thought. A few days later, Danny approached me and asked if I thought Tanner should try out for the school musical. I looked at him like he had no head. He quickly moved on as well. Without much thought, I mentioned it to Tanner and the next thing I know the boy has landed a part with multiple solo’s. I asked him why he did this and he said he has stage fright and he’s decided he’s going to conquer his fear.

I’m still shaking my head at the whole turn of events. The play is Into the Woods, and Tanner is the Baker. He has a kissing scene and I can’t wait to see how this all turns out. I will be sure to record it–sink or swim, I’m sure he’ll learn something, I just hope it’s not to avoid all things drama or public performing in the future.

He did come home from practice the other day asking me if I thought his hair was soft. I felt his head and assured him that it was soft, not sure where this was coming from. I guess the girls have been rubbing his head and telling him he has soft hair. Maybe the boy is smarter than I give him credit for. Looks to me like he’s got middle school figured out. With all of that said, I’m pleased to announce that he’s off fishing tonight with his Dad and friends.

Fifi–the newest member of our family

28 September 2012
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Our Jazzy dog died about a year ago. We haven’t gotten a new pet yet, mostly because no one will commit to taking a dog out at 6:00am when it is 10 degrees below the big fat ZERO! Fences are not common in the mid-west, no more just opening the door and letting her out to go.

I agreed to get Aubrey a Hamster for her birthday. As much as I think paying money for  a rodent and keeping it as a pet is weird, I have been pleasantly surprised by this personable little creature.

Aubrey’s Baptism

28 September 2012
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Aubrey was baptized on her birthday, September 8, 2012. Grandma and Grandpa Titcomb came out from Utah and my sister and her family from Virginia were able to make the trip also. Aubrey asked her primary teacher give a talk on the Holy Ghost and her Aunt Eva gave a talk on Baptism. It was a beautiful morning and I’m proud of her decision. She’s a wonderful child, helpful and happy and her smile can light up a room.

She wore the same white dress that Grandma O’Barr sewed for Emma’s baptism. After the baptism we went to the Der Dutchman for lunch. She wanted a hamster for her birthday so Grandma Titcomb took her to the pet store to pick out her gift.

The Glad Hatter

27 September 2012
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Awesome article about an awesome young man in our ward, Josh:

http://www.lds.org/new-era/2012/10/the-glad-hatter?lang=eng

And you can’t forget his little brother, Spencer, one of my Deacons Quorum presidents and patrol leaders.

Round and Round we go!

27 August 2012
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Another year is upon us. A time for reflection and goal setting, a time to mourn the loss of another summer and simpler schedules. It happens every year, you would think it would get easier. I love that the kids are in school, they are growing and doing just what they should be doing and for that I am grateful, like every year, I wasn’t quite ready for it to come to an end.

We spend a day up at Cedar Point for our end of the summer celebration. Kids adored it, I can see why it is one of the best amusement parks in the country.

Emma:

High School Freshman

Flute student and marching band enthusiast

Early morning seminary

Tanner:

7th grade smartie

Super Student taking Algebra this year

Created his own comic website with his friends

Aubrey:

3rd Grade

Con Brio Choir

Moves from fife to flute this year

Alyssa:

Sassy Kindergartener

Hallie:

Overall trouble maker

Mommy’s helper

Hallie got a haircut, we cut it SHORT. She looks adorable, but this is the only picture I have of it yet.

Life is good and it should be another eventful year!

Mohican State Park

1 August 2012
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Family vacation, new tires, Emma’s band camp = the poor house–smile. If only I could get the ocean out of my mind. I want to live right there on the beach… OK, back to reality. I had to find some local amusement so off to Mohican State Park for a hike. It’s close to home and I love outings where the kids can just do what they do best, be kids. Hallie hiked the full two miles. Picnic lunch and a reluctant Hallie who refused to get into the river (darn Netflix documentaries about killer fish)=an overall delightful day.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Family: A Proclamation to the World

1 August 2012
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We, the First Presidency and the Council of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, solemnly proclaim that marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God and that the family is central to the Creator’s plan for the eternal destiny of His children.

All human beings—male and female—are created in the image of God. Each is a beloved spirit son or daughter of heavenly parents, and, as such, each has a divine nature and destiny. Gender is an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose.

In the premortal realm, spirit sons and daughters knew and worshipped God as their Eternal Father and accepted His plan by which His children could obtain a physical body and gain earthly experience to progress toward perfection and ultimately realize their divine destiny as heirs of eternal life. The divine plan of happiness enables family relationships to be perpetuated beyond the grave. Sacred ordinances and covenants available in holy temples make it possible for individuals to return to the presence of God and for families to be united eternally.

The first commandment that God gave to Adam and Eve pertained to their potential for parenthood as husband and wife. We declare that God’s commandment for His children to multiply and replenish the earth remains in force. We further declare that God has commanded that the sacred powers of procreation are to be employed only between man and woman, lawfully wedded as husband and wife.

We declare the means by which mortal life is created to be divinely appointed. We affirm the sanctity of life and of its importance in God’s eternal plan.

Husband and wife have a solemn responsibility to love and care for each other and for their children. “Children are an heritage of the Lord” (Psalm 127:3). Parents have a sacred duty to rear their children in love and righteousness, to provide for their physical and spiritual needs, and to teach them to love and serve one another, observe the commandments of God, and be law-abiding citizens wherever they live. Husbands and wives—mothers and fathers—will be held accountable before God for the discharge of these obligations.

The family is ordained of God. Marriage between man and woman is essential to His eternal plan. Children are entitled to birth within the bonds of matrimony, and to be reared by a father and a mother who honor marital vows with complete fidelity. Happiness in family life is most likely to be achieved when founded upon the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ. Successful marriages and families are established and maintained on principles of faith, prayer, repentance, forgiveness, respect, love, compassion, work, and wholesome recreational activities. By divine design, fathers are to preside over their families in love and righteousness and are responsible to provide the necessities of life and protection for their families. Mothers are primarily responsible for the nurture of their children. In these sacred responsibilities, fathers and mothers are obligated to help one another as equal partners. Disability, death, or other circumstances may necessitate individual adaptation. Extended families should lend support when needed.

We warn that individuals who violate covenants of chastity, who abuse spouse or offspring, or who fail to fulfill family responsibilities will one day stand accountable before God. Further, we warn that the disintegration of the family will bring upon individuals, communities, and nations the calamities foretold by ancient and modern prophets.

We call upon responsible citizens and officers of government everywhere to promote those measures designed to maintain and strengthen the family as the fundamental unit of society.

This proclamation was read by President Gordon B. Hinckley as part of his message at the General Relief Society Meeting held September 23, 1995, in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Jersey Shore 2012

17 July 2012
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Friday July 13 was probably my favorite day of the trip. How do you top NYC was my initial thought, but spending a day at the beach, with the ocean waves was magical. There was no amusing the kids, no keeping them close, it was perfect, everyone was content the entire day.The kids have never been to the ocean and didn’t know what to make of the salty taste to the water. Eventually they got used to it and everyone had a great time. Hallie didn’t care for the waves AT ALL, and spent her time in the sand. We had sand everywhere and sea weed was falling out of our swimsuits but it was all worth it. Next time I will be renting a beach house and we will spend more than one day at the ocean. The beach we went to was called Avon by the Sea.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Summer Vacation 2012

17 July 2012
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We decided to go to New Jersey and visit Danny’s Sister Nancy and her little family. We haven’t seen them since Alyssa was 4 or 5 months old and Loei was 1. He is now a 6 year old happy, friendly little boy and we loved getting to know him better. Alyssa and Loei hit it off, there is a special bond between cousins that make them instant friends. We were also able to meet up with our good friends Shana and Devree in Chinatown, and caught a quick breakfast with my sister and her kiddos on our way back home.
Most of our trips in our Nevada days consisted of driving I-80 for 8 hours through Nevada to Salt Lake City. This trip also consisted of driving I-80 for 8 hours headed East also, instead of sage brush, salt flats and sand, everything is green, lush, and full of life. The highest elevation of the drive was 2250 feet above sea level. It was an easy drive and I can see us taking this trip again sometime soon.
After an evening eating and swimming and a good nights rest we took off for the Statue of Liberty. We left from the Jersey side. The boat ride provided great views of the Statue of Liberty. We stopped on Ellis Island.

Thursday July 12 was spent in New York City. We went to Chinatown first. That was an adventure. We stopped at Columbus Park on Mulberry street and let the kids play for a few minutes. Devree and Shana made it to Chinatown soon afterward so we set off to find them. So much fun seeing them. It was like no time had passed at all, we sat and ate a delicious lunch at a local Chinese restaurant. The Sweet and Sour Chicken was loaded with fresh mango chunks.
From Chinatown we set off for the WTC. We had tickets for the Memorial there. We saw the one and only tree that survived and looked at the massive pools where the old building stood. It was a humbling moment and a great time to teach the children as well.
Off we went to Central Park, but not before riding the subway up there. It was a bitter sweet moment, the subway is an interesting place and not necessarily a place of rest, but we were so thankful for the seats and the A/C that we didn’t mind the dirty germ infested place. The doors opened at one stop and quickly closed as their was a fire down there, you could smell the smoke. On another stop, Hallie made a mad dash for the door, good think we caught her before she got too far, I can’t imagine having her on the outside of the doors as it closed.
We found a shady place to sit for a moment at the park. The kids played on rocks and Hallie left some skin of her knees there, we moved over to the Museum of Natural History. It is free for the last hour. Tanner was going nuts trying to see it all and spouting random odd facts. Shana, Devree and myself… ok all of the girls, had had it. Our feet were tired. We sat at the front and let Tanner and Danny run a muck through the museum. We said our goodbyes to the Hamblin’s and found a fun little restaurant in a posh area of NYC. We were thankful to sit for a few minutes before we hauled the kids back through the subway system, caught a train back to New Jersey, found our car and drove back to our hotel. We went stroller free, but Hallie fell asleep on the subway so poor Danny had to carry her the entire trip back. She stayed asleep through all of the transfers, and in the car and slept the entire night once we got her back to the hotel. We were all wishing we could join her.

Not five minutes off of the train we were walking close to the WTC and a homeless man was headed straight for us. He stopped at my little Aubrey and grabbed her arm, he patted her on the head and made kissing actions toward her face, he told her that she was the most beautiful thing in the city. I could tell he meant no harm, he was honestly in awe of little Aubrey. She took it well. It was a great day, but absolutely exhausting.

 

Escalators coming out of the PATH train

First view of the WTC coming out of the train station

 I encouraged the kids to take pictures of interesting things in the city, this… however is not what I had in mind–smile.

 

 

 

Aubrey buying sunglasses in Chinatown, Hallie eating a Chinese pastry

 Emma and her pastry

 

Spotting Devree and Shana in Chinatown

 LUNCH!

 Hallie warming up with her chopsticks, she later broke one of soup spoons–they were nice about it.

Aw, now there is a cute Tanner smile

 

 WTC Memorial

WTC Pool Memorial

 

 Headed for Central Park

 

Central Park

 

 The girls and their fans, best $2 ever spent

 Museum of Natural History, Alyssa still had some energy

 

 Frustrated Tanner, “faster people, too much to see not enough time”.

Tanner wanted to see the worlds largest collection of shrunken heads, we didn’t make it, but we did find this (next time bud!)

And… we are DONE

Catching the Subway back

Train

I’ll finish the trip in a separate post, this one is getting a little long.

5-year-old creativity

1 July 2012
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image

This was dessert today, and Alyssa’s creative side shown through. Instead of just putting fruit on, she made me an owl.

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