Monday, May 31, 2010

Pretty in Pink.

We matched one day for church.

Michael, the Shepherd

Back in December, Michael was a shepherd in our Christmas pageant. I finally got the picture off my iPhone. Here it is

Michael's Junior National Honor Society Induction.

Here's a video of Michael receiving his award for Junior National Honor Society.


In our valley, there is quite a bit of wildlife, including bunnies. We see them all over our neighborhood, and one night, we saw them while at the drive-thru at In-N-Out burger. They were probably waiting for someone to drop some french fries.


Last summer, I took the family to a place in Burbank called Porto's to eat. We all love it. They have sandwiches and all kinds of fried things that are bad for you, but taste delicious. Among our kids' favorites are the fried potato balls, which are balls of meat filled mashed potatoes, breaded and fried (not pictured because we ate them too fast. We also tried to take a picture of them in the case, but they were out because everyone else ate them too fast.)

Here is some evidence of our caloric crimes. (These pictures are not from last summer. They are from our visit a couple of weeks ago.)

Michael had a potato ball sandwich, so you can get a glimpse of them.

Easter Dog.

In Venice, they don't have Easter bunnies, they have Easter dogs. Here he is resting after a long day of egg hiding.

Actually, a few days after Easter, I was walking back from lunch, and we (me, Keith, Erik, and Pericles) saw this dog on the sidewalk. We figured he either got into the leftover Easter candy, or his owner really wanted to celebrate Easter.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

My Sister Gave Birth in a Parking Lot.

My sister, Erin, was featured on the local news, because her new little boy (born this morning) wouldn't wait until she and her husband reached the hospital. He was delivered in the parking lot of the Gaithersburg volunteer fire department parking lot.

Here's the news story...

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Mouth Off

John downloaded an app for the iphone called "Mouth Off." Basically, if you put the iphone up to your mouth and talk, you can select a "mouth," and it will move as you speak. John wanted to video me using it, so I put it up to my mouth as I called upstairs to Jacob asking if he wanted to come with us to the scripture mastery on Sunday evening. I couldn't keep a straight face.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Stake Scripture Mastery (Scripture Chase to us old timers)

Our stake held their annual Scripture Mastery last night at the stake center. "Scripture Mastery" is a friendly competition to see how well the early morning seminary classes have learned the scriptures this school year. During the four years of high school, seminary students study: The Old Testament, The New Testament, The Book of Mormon, and The Doctrine and Covenants and Pearl of Great Price.

There are 25 "scripture mastery" scriptures from the scriptural work being studied which the students are encouraged to learn, memorize, and internalize, so that they may apply them to their daily lives.

This year, the seminary students studied the Book of Mormon. The scripture mastery scriptures this year are located at this link:

David had a great time participating last night. His team did very well and during the individual face-off, he made the final four. We're so proud of him!

Here are a few photos and a couple of videos.

Playing Catch...

A.J. was thrilled to find that one of his school classmates lives next door to our new home. They've started playing "catch" over the stone fence between our homes.

David's Birthday, continued...

Here's a short video of us singing David "Happy Birthday."

It's David's Birthday! Shout Hooray!

We celebrated David's 17th birthday on Friday. Although he doesn't look to excited in these pictures, he was looking forward to this milestone for a while (talking about it every day).

We are so proud of David. He works so hard and is preparing for his future. He has plans to serve a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and he plans to attend BYU.

This is the Oreo cheesecake I made. I whipped it a bit too much, so it cracked, but it tasted good.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Special Stake Conference with Elder Quentin L. Cook, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

We had a special stake conference with Elder Cook on May 2. It was fantastic! I took pages of notes and thought I'd share a bit with you.

President Lindberg

  • Families are Preeminent
  • Keeping covenants and being instructed by the Lord - 2 most important things for our families (i.e. attending the Temple)
  • The Family is central to the creator's plan for our eternal destiny.
  • What goes on inside our homes is most vital to our progression toward Jesus Christ
  • No other activity should supercede Family Prayer, Family Home Evening, Scripture Study, and Wholesome Family Activities. NOTHING!

Sister Janine Wilson

  • What quality best defines you as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints?
  • Matthew 22:37-40 - Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all they heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as theyself. On these two commandments hand all the law and the prophets.
  • Four Suggestions to love as the Savior loved: 1. Be considerate and sensitive to others' feelings; be encouraging. 2. Be complimentary and genuine. 3. Be charitable. Moroni 7:44 - If so, his faith and hope is vain, for none is acceptable before God, save the meek and lowly in heart; and if a man be meek and lowly in heart, and confesses by the power of the Holy Ghost that Jesus is the Christ, he must needs have charity; for if he have not charity he is nothing; wherefore he must needs have charity. 4. Be grateful - show love and gratitude to Heavenly Father by how we live.
  • Love converts, envelopes, and brings people closer together.
  • Qualities we should seek described in Alma 7:23-24 - And now I would that ye should be humble, and be submissive and gentle; easy to be entreated; full of patience and long-suffering; being temperate in all things; being diligent in keeping the commandments of God at all times; asking for whatsoever things ye stand in need, both spiritual and temporal; always returning thanks unto God for whatsoever things ye do receive. And see that ye have faith, hope, and charity, and then ye will always abound in good works.
  • Heavenly Father knows us by name and loves us and wants the best for us.

Elder Jerryl Garns

  • When we learn by the Spirit, our testimonies are strengthened. When we are listening to a speaker, the teacher should be the Holy Ghost, not the individual speaking.
  • D&C 50:22 - Wherefore, he that preacheth and he that receiveth, understand one another, and both are edified and rejoice together.
  • Teaching received by the Spirit can be perfectly tailored for each individual.
  • Prophetic priorities: 1. Strengthen faith in Jesus Christ. 2. Strengthen Families. 3. rescue, care, and love one another. 4. Priesthood power in the home - honor and be worthy to use and bless.

Elder Quentin L. Cook

  • Be Grateful - We are incredibly blessed.
  • We should not give up on others because they have an "armor" and don't want to hear the gospel: love, encourage, teach.
  • Eternal Families are the key to the church's strength.
  • We follow Jesus Christ, our Savior, in all we do.
  • If we are working, we will be upheld and supported. It is enogh if we continue to work.
  • The Atonement included pains for all the unfair things that happen because of the agency of man.
  • We can be with God the Father and Jesus Christ as families, as a family unit, in the eternities.
  • Jesus Christ lives.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


Michael and A.J. were in desperate need of haircuts, so I cut their hair after Mormon Helping Hands on Saturday.

Here's how Michael started (I forgot to take one of AJ).

Here I am cutting A.J.'s hair.

And here are the results. Don't the boys look handsome?

Mormon Helping Hands, Part 2.

Our family had the privilege of working with other members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints across the state of California last Saturday, May 8 serving our local communities. John, David, Michael, A.J., and I worked at a local park and planted ground cover. We spent a couple hours in the morning and had a great time.

This is the second year we've been able to participate in the Mormon Helping Hands program. I posted something about it last year. You can view that blog entry here.

Front Planting Bed Update

I finally finished planting the flowers (with John and the boys' help). We put down some mulch, and it looks so much better!

Just a reminder, this is how it looked.

Now it looks like this!

Mother's Day Breakfast

John and the boys were so thoughtful on Mother's Day. They made me breakfast (and John made lunch and dinner). I am so blessed to have such a loving, wonderful famiy!

John took a picture of the breakfast so I could share it with all of you.

Michael's a Teenager!

Michael celebrated his 13th birthday last week. He had a great day and got exactly what he asked for.

Crazy Cat.

Our cat, Mia, has some serious emotional issues. She's not dangerous, just needy, yet standoffish. I found her under the dining room table with a doll (a friend's daughter left at my house). She had carried it under the table and was sleeping on it.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Women's body image and spirituality

Several of my facebook friends posted this video yesterday and today. It is about a young women who survived a plane crash:her struggles and joys. It is worth the 8 1/2 minutes to watch it.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

I Killed Them!

My gardening attempts have failed. I was so good for at least a month: watering my vegetable starters, giving them some sun, and bringing them inside in before they got too much sun and dried out. Then last week, I left them outside all day. They went from looking like this:

To This:

David and Mormon Prom

David went on his first date to the Mormon Prom at the Long Beach Aquarium with a very nice young lady who moved out of our stake a couple years ago. Here are a few pictures.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Jacob and Christina

Jacob and his girlfriend, Christina, celebrated their one year anniversary on Sunday. They had pictures taken the day before. Here's the one they selected.