Thursday, January 29, 2009

A favorite MOMENT...

I gotta SECRET for you MOM...
This is now one of my FAVORITE times of day....and usually it's when I'm in a great BIG hurry...I have a gazillion things on my TO DO lists...and Brooklyn has been wrapping her arms around me saying....I gotta a secret for you, a SECRET...It's your FAVORITE...I take a deep breathe and PAUSE and listen as she ALWAYS tells me I LOVE YOU mommy...followed by a GINORMOUS SQUEEZE...well, BIG for a three year old. I am loving the little things that make the other STUFF not seem SO important. What a blessing it is to have children around as reminders...

Getting out of the COLD

A MOVIE anyone?
Hotels for Dogs....and Bedtime Stories...
Grandma Fritz came and rescued some cabin fever onset
Sometimes a flick or two is all we need
My niece and nephews gave us an excuse to double up on the treats
Thanks grandma!

Princess PARTIES



a PRINCESS slide into the princess HUT


Princesses, Princes, Knights...and even the dog was dressed up for the occassion.... the best part was Brooklyns new vocabulary word that stuck from all the parties...FANCY!

Stringing along FROOT LOOPS

Bowls of Fun

Jaren and Reagan making endless strands of edible ropes

Brooklyn & Aubryn ATE atleast three necklaces each

Ricki & Michael from Texas joined in on the brightly colored cereal craze

Sewing with cereal makes small hands and little mouths HAPPY!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

A little Marshmallow Roasting

Snow Caves and Snow Forts
Have endless possibilities...

Who would of guessed a little outdoor snack could be so much fun!

Roasting mini -Marshmallows over a candle using toothpicks and trying to get them a TOASTY golden brown

I think we found a great outdoor snack

The taste is sure DELICIOUS

Loving the SNOW

Family TIME
Our passion to hit the slopes isn't as often as we would like

Seth & Brooklyn hit a flat spot....hang on

Brooklyn (Age 3) goes out for the first time at Alta ski resort

No tow ropes....just straight for the lift...AAAAAUGH...Mom was nervous!

Seth says not to worry...he will teach her in no time!

Despite the cold and the wait in was a gorgeous day to spend outside.
Driving up Little Cottonwood and gearing up seemed a long wait...yet, the spectacular mountain views and the laughs we shared together was worth every bit of it!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

In our JOURNEY treasures are sometimes taken....enjoy them before they leave...

Great Grandma Butler-Swenson gets lots of love from family

Grandma Swenson-Butler has a tumor in her stomach that has been growing non stop...her abdomen appears to be nine months pregnant ...and counting... due to her very large tumors. It is hard for us to watch her go through so much pain and discomfort. I will continue enjoying her while she is with us. I have very fond memories of my grandma who once lived across the street where I grew up, I love the advice she gave me, the warm arms that embraced me and the kind, patient loving example she has shared over the many years I have known her. My amazing grandma has always had a room just for genealogy...what a passion she has for it too! When she moved into an assisted living a few years ago, with two rooms...she chose to have her bedroom in the kitchen area and the bedroom was made into her very own genealogy office....I adore her for her passion! Go Grandma! My grandma has always been there for me when I needed her...I cleaned her house several years before college....starting at the age of 11. This woman taught me about makeup and shared much of her own. I love listening to her stories and can't seem to give her enough hugs!

The loss of a Best friend

Today was a hard day...My mom lost her first cousin and her dearest best friend. Julie Larsen has been my mom's friend ever since I have known my mom. Julie even dormed with my mom in college...they shared their lives together and I have seen so much goodness come from their great relationship. Julie died from the same disease that my mom has...pulmonary fibrosis. Julie was a remarkable lady and she will be missed dearly. During her last days, my mom helped her do mountains of wash that piled up, she helped take care of her, she washed and styled her hair. I love the bond that these women had. I know my mom will miss her tremendously. I am grateful I can still enjoy the time that I can with my mom...even if it is during trials such as these...what a great blessing it is to be able to share the good and bad times. As long as it is together. My heart is full of gratitude for the people that come and go from our lives...the people that nurture us and lead us along the way....those that love us and stand by our sides throughout this journey.

Being together...makes the journey

Mom, Brooklyn, Me & Brittney

My mom has 5 plots just a few feet away from Julie...someday she will join her. I know that someday they will reunite. In the meantime I will enjoy my mom and be grateful that she is a part of me.
President Monson said it best, "there is no tomorrow if we don't do something today." Send that note to a friend you've been neglecting, give your child a hug; give your parents a hug; say "I love you" more, always express your thanks. Never let a problem to be solved become more important than the person to be loved. Friends move away, children grow up,loved ones pass on. It's so easy to take others for granted, until that day when their gone from our lives and we are left with feelings of "what if" and "if only" said, Harriet Beecher Stowe. The bitterest tears shed over graves are for words left unsaid and deeds left undone.
May the Lord watch over me as I adapt changes in my life, and realize what is most important, try to remember to express gratitude always in this life, and hopefully I can continually seek finding joy in the journey that lies ahead.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Inauguration DAY

Our 44th President

Barack Obama

This event was as close to a royal coronation as American government gets. It was a day filled with ceremony, guards, salutes, parades, speeches, a party that is still actually called a "ball" and of course, symbolism; of new beginnings, rites of passage, of change...
The United States of America reached a new milestone today, when Barack Obama, standing on the steps of the U.S. Capitol was sworn in today as the country's first black president.
The 47 year old former senator was sworn in today by Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts. Michelle Obama, the wife of the president-elect, carefully held Lincoln's Bible, which had not been used since he took the oath in office in 1861. ( I loved this moment).
Obama gave an amazing speech today whom will enter the oval office facing significant domestic and foreign policy challenges including a deep economic crisis and wars in Iraq and Afghanistan...I cannot imagine the pressures that fall on this mans shoulders.
Although I did not vote for this man, and have some thoughts and
qualms on some issues ... I support him totally and pray and wish the very best for his success while he is our leader and governor of this beautiful country. I love the compassion that this man deems for everyone...I honor him for the words that he shares for us as American people to turn our efforts into an ongoing commitment to enriching the lives of others, in our communities, our cities, and in our country.
Our prayers will continue to be with this amazingly beautiful country. I am grateful for its freedoms and the opportunities that continue to bless us. God Bless America. May we all welcome our new President with open arms.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Little words bring BIG smiles

a little smile started the day...
Seth was so excited this morning as he pounced his way into our bedroom this morning. He was so Seriously cute when he kept saying over and over; Mom, mom, if I hurry and make my bed and get dressed can I please, PLEASE watch a COMMERCIAL this morning....I really, really want to watch a commercial!
Seth's idea of a COMMERCIAL was getting his Saturday morning fix of CARTOONS. Whoops...funny, funny Seth! So darn CUTE! We all had a good laugh.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Here he one and only...

Going through thoughts of the beginning of a new year...I resolved that I need to pick up some more quality time with my adorable husband. Chad has been extremely busy these last few years...owning his own business, Bishop of our ward, a member of the National Advisory Board that resolves problems and issues related to work (which is almost always out of state). A coach and bystander of his kids sports teams and his daughters musicals, a wonderful husband, father....and most of all the BEST forever friend...I feel so blessed to have. The only problem has been quality time together and really finding it and making it matter. I had this idea, since we both like to work out only we are usually on a 2 hour lapse schedule, with me tending to everything else and then exercising. I thought I would try extremely hard to workout with my favorite person and we could start the day off right....together!
Well, getting up a little earlier was a little bit of a challenge, but not as hard as I expected, since how I most definitely am not the greatest morning person. The pounding on the pavement for miles on end brought back fond memories of why running is my least favorite form of exercising! It all came back to me as I was trying so hard to carry on a conversation in between the gulps of air. I figure I can at least attempt his form of exercising, since he has done several workout tapes and counseled me on lifting weights and laughed at me when I'm in some weird yoga move or kickboxing to some strange music. Ever since I have known Chad he hasn't missed a day of running. I so wish I could have that drive! He says it's so he can eat anything and enjoy...Well I have decided I would love to always be able to run with my kids and hopefully grand I will give this a shot, but I am currently NOT loving my lungs that feel like they are going to explode in the process.. With all of the pain, and sweat...and discomfort...I have to remember QUALITY least we are doing things together. Although I am definitely looking forward to the early morning visits WAY MORE than the knee splints and freezing cold air as I try to catch my breathe. What can I say...I LOVE MY MAN! Time together is a blessing, let's just hope I survive!

Friday, January 9, 2009

FIRST Snowball

A party for Jeffrey...a gift from Jeff to Jaren to celebrate Christmas. He decided to round up some great friends play games, do a service project (which I LOVED) (they shoveled my driveway along with several other neighbors),they built snow forts, watched a movie and drank lots of hot chocolate...

a NOTE to self...taking a picture of young boys with snowballs in their prepared to get HIT!! Well, I ran and missed probably half a dozen or so...but...I did get pretty clobbered.



The last piece of Christmas Decorations were put away...
I was a little sad to close another Christmas Season. The kids helped me carefully wrap and put the nativity neatly away. I am reminded once again how grateful I am for everything the Savior has given me in my life. I am grateful for the relationship that I have with Him and look forward to celebrating His beautiful life once again...


A STAR...A SYMBOL of where the Christ child lay

Hmmm...mmm should I frost, or should I EAT!

Globes are MAGICAL...Something to ponder.

Being together is what matters MOST!

Hadley & Jaren act out the NATIVITY...a tradition that keeps with us as we conclude Christmas EVE.

Celebrating with family

Celebrating at the Fritz HOME

Grandpa Fritz, Brookly, Brenna and our newest Great Grandpa Swenson...who added to our family addition when he married our cute grandma Butler at the young age of 92.

Grabbing a hug from Grandma Fritz


A book on how to make AMAZING paper airplanes...Cade LOVED this BOOK. Thanks Grandma & Grandpa!

Holiday FUN 2008

Lots of ponytails & pigtails go to work on some creative
Gingerbread Houses at playschool
Abby, Sienna, Brooklyn & Ashlyn
a MONSTER cookie for Santa...I hope he doesn't get sick! Yikes!

The Hawks bunch came to our house for candy houses, we had fun visiting and tried to build all sorts of contraptions. We skyped Grandma and Grandpa Hawks who are serving a mission in Mt. Vernon Illinois, it was fun to visit with them and keep the tradition alive that they began...

Of course...How could we end the night without a little ALLSTAR wrestling

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

christmas 2008

Christmas Eve
Visions of wonder and excitement surround the kids as they geared up to open their one traditional gift...we couldn't wait until the Eve...however, it was more like mid-day.
Joyful Moments...Pajamas and a toy...just a taste of what was to come.

On top of the stairs on Christmas morning...bearing one more photo the worst time EVER....Can we go yet?

Learning to open the presents was part of the fun...Three gifts were given this year to symbolize the three wiseman that gave gifts to the Savior...and one from Santa, and of course the infamous stocking stuffers!

A Wonderful time to remember...when all the wrapping paper is tossed out and gone...the memories that we created together will last a lifetime.