Monday, December 13, 2010

Happy Birthday Michelle!

My little Michelle is 20 years old today!

She loves her daddy.

She loves her mommy.

She loves her big brother.

And her other big brother.

She also loves her big sister.

And her little brother.

We will all see you this week and we all love you! Aloha!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

2nd Annual Cookie Exchange

My friend Susan (hi Susan, can you start blogging again, pretty please?) hosted cookie exchanges in her home and it was always fun. She hand picked her ladies which makes it nice if you were asked to participate. And if you weren't asked you didn't know because, well, you weren't asked, so how would you know? Anyway, obviously I was asked because I know about them. Ooooh this sounds a little under the table, secret society kind of a thing. Not really. There are different ways of hosting cookie exchanges. You can invite a certain number, they bring that many dozen, you go home with 1 dozen of that certain number of guests. Get it?

Last year was my first time and you live and learn right? I had 8 women and they brought 3 dozen ( yah, I know, not enough) so we each took home 3 dozen cookies of 7 different kinds because you don't get any of yours. This year I had 16 women ( Lou Lou came, yea!) which I was a little worried about. They each brought 7 dozen cookies (84) and went home with 15 different cookies (5 of each kind). But the really cool thing was, which was totally unexpected......extras! We made plates up and some of the women took a plate to someone in the community. It was really really neat how that worked out. Not quite sure how that happened, but it did and it was nice.

We had all kinds, and no duplicates.

Ambience of course. Thank you Barb for taking all of these pictures. It was nice to not have to do it. It seemed a little weird for me to take pictures of my own party at my own house so thanks a bunch!

If any of you know a different way of hosting a cookie exchange let me know. I know you can get pretty carried away with having rules like, 1) they have to have flour in the recipe, 2) no bake cookies not allowed, 3) no store bought. You can also make personal invitations and even have little gifties for everyone and so on. But this is a fun way to include anyone who would like to join in. And everybody who came today left very happy with containers full of cookies-15 different cookies!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Our Thanksgiving

We had a great Thanksgiving this year. Brad, Laurel, Michelle, their two cousins, Jake and Trinn, along with my father were all here this year and what a crowd it was. There was a bed for everyone though and food galore! The weather turned cold just as they arrived and stayed for awhile but it didn't stop those boys from hunting, hunting, and more hunting. All Brad wanted to get this trip was a coyote, but luck was not in his favor, however, and Trinn got a nice one in our backyard. They got two deer as well, and Brad now knows that when you shoot a deer, you clean a deer. No thank you! It's a good thing my father was here to guide the way in gutting it and yah, there is still a mess in the shop, but then what is a shop for right? I will spare you the photos :)

Lou Lou made some yummy cinnamon hard candy so Laurel and Grandma are testing it out.

Jake enjoys his computer and that's all I'm going to say about that.

I suppose Brad does too.

And the group too.

Oh, and Mark and I. BUT we were "skyping" Clark so we have a good excuse. We missed you Clark. We will make up for it in a few weeks. ALOHA!

We played a new card game called, the worst game ever. It was a fun one and we all played quite a few rounds during the week.

The cousins + Lou Lou.

Just some random shots of the meal.

Oh Laurel, you're so dramatic....and we love it! "please don't make me sing" snl

Left to right....Trinn, Janson( Kelly's bf and Trinn's old missionary companion, and yes a coincidence), Kelly, Neal, Brad, Michelle, and Michael. Michael is from Simi Valley going to BYU who was up with some friends that live here. I'm telling you, there are conections all over the place in this area. It's crazy.

The "grownup" table. Mark, his mom, his Aunt Edna, cousin Tressa, my father, Chris, and me.

Chris and Lou Lou. Nice pic Lou!

It was a fantastic, fun and food filled week with the gang here. My father was a real champ and hero to drive from SLC with these crazy kids and then to do it all over again on the way home . Not sure I could or would do that at the age of 80. Just a side note: before he jumped in the car in SLC, he had already driven 4 hours from St. George. See? A real champ!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Hello Winter :(

I am really sorry to have to report bad news here, but winter has arrived with a vengeance. The wind blew hard all night along with rain and then started snowing around 7am. It is now sticking with very low visibility and a north wind. Just so you know.

We had a lousy summer but a really great fall and now a wake-up call for winter. One more day of fall weather would have been superb since Mark and Michelle are driving from Utah right now, as I write. The rest of the crew will be here this weekend so I hope this silly storm settles down.

Laurel, you wanted a new post. Are you ok with this one?

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Laurel Rides Too!

Just so you know. I am not the only one in the family who enjoys riding. Laurel caught the bug this summer.

This summer has not been the greatest for outdoor riding. It was really pick and choose the day and hope for the best, but we did manage a couple of fun rides together.

This was the beginning of our ride to the creek. First we work and then we play. See the momma and her baby on this side of the fence? Not good. Laurel and Dixie did a great job getting this pair back to their friends.

"Good job, Laurel, getting the momma and her baby back to the herd. It's fun isn't it"

Look at Old Chief in the background. He is actually in Montana, but we have the very best view of him here in our very backyard. See the winding creek there? Nice!

After work one evening, Dixie and Laurel met me on the road to Red Rock for a quick ride. We rode a little, had a picnic dinner that Laurel made for us, took some pictures (of course) and then continued on our way. It was a bit cool and windy, but we did manage a few decent shots before the sun set too low behind the mountains of Waterton.

Where The Prairie Meets The Mountains.

I'm not sure I will ever get Michelle on a horse. She had a bad experience when we first moved here. She went riding with some friends on a very cold day, and I mean a really cold day, was not prepared for the wind and yuckiness, rode forever and ended up in a cabin in the middle of nowhere with no matches and got bucked off. Yah, not real fun. Maybe next summer we can talk her into it. Ok Laurel?

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Official Results

The results are in and I did better than I thought. I didn't think, or realize, or even know, to look at a score board so I was just guessing on my time. We are all here. Kaylynn, Barb, Dixie, and I. The number after our names are our ages. ( yes, they spelled my name wrong, but who really cares!)

54 29:50:00 106 Kaylynn Nunn 34 F
55 29:59:00 6 Connor Zimmerman 11 M
56 30:03:00 164 Debbie Carnell 58 F
57 30:38:00 74 Tammy Smith 43 F
58 30:39:00 83 Sam Schultz 10 M
59 30:44:00 58 Sienna Wagnon 30 F
60 30:53:00 188 Randee Benson 31 F
61 31:02:00 215 Michael Smith 7 M
62 31:03:00 212 Adam Smith 35 M
63 31:12:00 211 Bob Hayes 84 M
64 31:39:00 220 Erica Olson 25 F
65 31:52:00 30 Kelsey Lee 20 F
66 32:15:00 124 Haley Kendley 12 F
67 32:16:00 94 Hannah Potter 12 F
68 32:36:00 184 Dixie Bevans 48 F
69 32:43:00 125 Laura Kelley 46 F
70 32:58:00 170 Marilee Calhoon 50 F
71 33:14:00 153 Quentin Denton 16 M
72 34:15:00 222 Pat Santos 31 M
73 35:17:00 46 Peggy Young 50 F
74 35:19:00 213 Jennifer Fisher 36 F
75 35:27:00 77 Anita Skane 41 F
76 36:47:00 88 Barb Salmon 35 F

Monday, October 25, 2010

Party In The USA!

I want to start off by saying, Yahoo! Right on! Booyah and YeeHaw!

Guess what I did on Saturday? Ran a 5K, uh huh, me, I ran a 5K with 3 of my friends. Good friends that is. Barb, Kaylynn, Dixie, and I left Friday morning to drive to Polson, Montana for the Live Locally 5k Walk/Run. Barb says that she is her own party, but she invited us "in" and we had a blast chatting and singing in the car on the way down. Barb dances in her drivers seat like I do. Way to go Barb!

We have been preparing for this run for about a month, with each of us training individually, but one Saturday morning we decided to do a run here in Leavitt together where afterwards Dixie made us all a yummy breakfast. Here we are looking "lovely".

From left to right. Barb, myself, Dixie, and Kaylynn.

Just one of those funny shots you have to take. Kaylynn and her family moved here this summer and she is a real gem of a gal. Her husband is the new principal at the Jr. High School and Neals Teacher's Quorum advisor.

Here we are before the run. We are standing with Melinda Owen. She is from Polson and is training for the 2012 Summer Olympics in Track and Field. The sponsor of the Live Locally 5k run presented her a check for $10,000 afterwards. Such a nice girl. Go Melinda!

Here we are looking "lovely" again after the run. We got the greatest goodie bags and then they fed us spaghetti, fruit, and cookies afterwards. So so great!

Oh, I bet you want to know how I did. Well. My goal was to run the whole thing (3.2 miles) without stopping and...........I did! The time was around 33.20 my fastest time ever. I am pretty happy about it. Hopefully I will keep running a couple of times a week to keep it up. I may just want to run another one and I need to be ready.

And of course we had to go shopping. I am not sure you understand how fun it is to cross the line and go shopping in the USA. Everything is cheaper, believe me. I won't go into a price check comparison for you, but just know that I am right. We did the Costco run, the Target, Ross, TJ Maxx run and the Walmart run. And yes, we brought coolers. A trip to the states is not a complete trip without coolers. Butter and cheese prices are crazy up here with a lb of butter selling for over 5 bucks in Cardston. It's real bad.

Are these t-shirts not great? This picture was taken outside our hotel room. We stayed at the Best Western with a beautiful view of Flathead Lake.

So you may be wondering what has gotten into me. Well, it is the Bloom Where You Are Planted thing. No sense in living against the grain. It is much more fun to join in! There are such wonderful people here in Leavitt who are so genuine, caring, hard working, and who don't bat an eye when someone needs help. I have learned what it means to serve each other. People who are perfect examples of everything good and true and right. I feel at home here.

Barb is the one who started this all. In the past year she has lost over 85 pounds and she ran a 1/2 marathon this summer. Talk about an inspiration. She is always happy, friendly, smiling and fun to be around. Who could resist a run with Barb? We had a blast and are planning to do this 5k run again next year. Hopefully the group will be bigger, but not so sure we would have any more fun than we did this weekend.

Party In The USA, our theme song!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Riding and Branding

I thought I had better do an animal post. It has been awhile hasn't it, and so to make up for lost time I am going to post about cows and horses. Nice aren't I? The plan for the day was to just ride to Beaver Lake and enjoy what might possibly be the last day to ride outdoors. It was pleasant when we started out, but you can't get too comfortable around here, so yes, the wind kicked in and the wind was not against our backs, we rode into the wind which is not real fun.

The ride was nice despite the wind as it settled right down and warmed up a bit on our way back. Just Shauna, Dixie and I this go around. Shauna came up to Dixie and I after church and said, "Hey, when are we going to go riding again?" We all three love to ride so that was that.

On our way back we stopped for a picnic/snack break in the trees (leaves have changed color and are gone already) and then headed back to Shauna's place to find her husband and son branding calves. I was sure they needed my help, I was just sure of it.

Have you ever smelled burning cow flesh? It smells awful.

I am not sure what I thought was so funny here, but I guess this just goes to show you that I think branding is fun. I really do feel bad for these calves though. First they are taken away from their mommas and then they are branded-not once, not twice, but three times. My job was to do the number 9 under the other two brands. But I think I feel more sorry for the mommas. Nursing one minute, then bamm, no baby. Kinda cruel don't ya think?