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Sunday, September 4, 2016


With school starting we spent the week before doing all the odds and ends that need to be done.  I took each kid on their school shopping day where we got school supplies and went out to lunch.  Robyn learned that Zuppas has chocolate covered strawberries with every meal and is now a big fan.  Taylor got all new wheelchair parts and grew his chair so it fits him much better now.  He even got a flame covered seat cushion!

Spencer worked a bunch and we realized we hadn't done many hikes together this summer.  So he picked a hike and we started the Hall death march.  About an hour in of going vertical the whole time, he turned to me and said "This is just insane!"  But he wanted to do the whole loop of Dry Creek Canyon and we did.  We learned spending four miles going up and one mile to go most of the way down makes for a very scary hike.  Spencer came home with two black big toes and we are waiting to see the nails fall off.  We also learned that 5.7 miles sometimes can take much longer than anticipated and we needed a lot more water.  Luckily God sent angels in the parking lot who saw us stumbling out and gave us water - Spencer guzzled down a half gallon on the spot.

Since we were  no where near done with the hike when it became time for Robyn's school open house, Jeremy came home and took her to meet her teacher and see her classroom.  She thought that was a fantastic turn of events.

We had a Mucho Macho Nacho night where we invited friends over for nachos and to watch Nacho Libre outside.  We have never seen that movie and I was surprised that we were the only ones!  Many quotes now make much more sense to me.

I took the kids for one last daytime family activity where we went to BYU bowling and out for ice cream afterwards.  I think I have learned the trick to this.  We need to bowl two games so we can get all the snarkiness out of the way during the first game and then just have a great time playing.

School started on a Monday this year for our kids.  That worked out great for Mom Monday as I make breakfast and lunches that day.  Three of our kids were ready to go as Jeremy left for work so of course I begged for first day photos.

Taylor was a little slow getting ready or rather I was so he got stuck with a mom photo.

The bus system dropped Taylor off their list so I needed to drive him the first few days.  That ended up working out great as I also worked every day for that first week.  Taylor has a new teacher this year who is an intern.  I went to the school open house and couldn't believe how young she was.  Allison came with me to get Taylor and said she really liked Taylor's new aide.  She was blown away when I said that was his teacher.  But she seems to be doing a great job.  Taylor has started eating again which makes life better for everyone.  He is still thin but doesn't look quite as bad anymore.

Robyn, Jasper and I got to walk to the elementary school the first day.  But since then she has been cruising past me on her bike with her friend and we only get to be with her till the end of the block.  She has an amazing teacher this year (plus some squirly boys sitting right next to her).  I have never seen her so motivated to get all her homework done and she has been the first kid awake every day so she can shower first thing.  Every morning her teacher has the class recite this poster:  "I am responsible for how I feel and what I do.  Nobody can make me feel anything.  If I have a rotten day, I am the one who allowed it to be that way. If I have a great day, I am the one who deserves the credit for being positive.  It is not the responsibility of other people to change so that I can feel better.  I am the one who is in charge of my life."  Isn't that just an awesome philosophy?

Allison and Spencer were both pretty comfortable with starting back to school.  Spencer is only working at Chubby's on weekends now.  He is feeling quite overloaded with homework.  Calculus and chemistry are him trying to drink from a fire hose.  But he is getting back into the groove of it.    Last Friday he and I got to go to the Renaissance Fair at Thanksgiving Point.  We had a rocky start as we had to wait for Taylor to get home and the new bus he had just started ended up being really late and then the freeways were closed with an accident.  But despite much gnashing of teeth and some wailing we got there.  Spencer loved watching the jousting and fire breathing and people selling armor and everyone dressed up.

We have been slowly trying to pick our garden.  We got most of one apple tree picked and stocked up our freezer with apple crisp.

And Taylor got to enjoy coming to ladies night at Kneaders for Saturday night dessert while Spencer worked and Jeremy was gone.

This last week we had a very special experience as Spencer received his patriarchal blessing.  It was awesome to see him fast on a school day and take it so seriously.  It really changed some of my perspective on him and I think changed his own perspective on his purpose in life.  Today he bore his testimony about it.  Still couldn't believe that we were at this point in our lives as I sat on a couch holding Jeremy's hand while the patriarch blessed Spencer.  One of the coolest things we have been a part of.

School started for me this week so I was back to class three nights a week and lots of homework.  One of my classes has me teach in a school every day but that doesn't start for one more week.  So although its busy, its not as busy as its going to be!

Jeremy has had some neat opportunities these past two weekends.  We have done some shopping trips as he has been looking for his "thin" outfit.  Much shopping and comparing involved but he found a good looking outfit that fit.  Last weekend he was able to go camping with a friend through Las Vegas area and bike, relax and take photos.  This weekend he flew to Florida for the MLM convention to show off his new figure, look at the ocean and eat a steak.  We will be glad to have him back.  Between the two trips and a bunch of working photo shoots he has been pretty busy.  We are impressed and proud of what he is accomplishing.  Jeremy also got a road bike in exchange for some photo work and has been biking with a friend in the morning.

This weekend the kids and I (plus Allison's friend Kaori who seems to end up in most family activity pictures!) went to the Timpanogous storytelling festival.  Long, awesome, funny and sometimes filled with complaining weekend.  Kids all come home saying they loved it so I try to focus on that part instead of what it took to get there!  (changing Taylor in the car after a blowout, Robyn having a melt down over not being able to play with friends, Spencer deciding that everyone needed to shut up right now, Allison not liking meal  plans) Nope just not thinking about that part at all but the part of spending 13 hours sitting next to Spencer and him talking to me whenever there wasn't a storyteller.  Or Taylor sitting up and clapping for all the laughing stories.  Or Robyn wanting to cuddle with peach shakes.  Or Allison just curled up with Kaori smiling and laughing all night long.  Yep thats the part that I need to remember.