Wednesday, April 28, 2010


Just for the record, I hate the way Canoeing is spelled. The 'e' should be gone. It bothers me.

That comment had nothing to do with anything.

So yeah. We went canoEing with our friends - the Bates family. WAY fun!

Bella takin' a nap. She slept through us fishing for waterlogged branches (nice), and my sisters screaming at the large and scary spider (hilarious).

We were all hoping the gators would eat the drunk people instead of us, who were jumping out of a tall tree into the very shallow water. Free entertainment!

The seriously hilarious and wonderful Bates Family!

Gearin' up to go!

The Crew. Isabelle caught the mating Dragonflies on her arms, while Savanna worked on her tan (or lack thereof), and Ty did all the paddling. Thanks hun.

Many passing Canoe-ers said this was 'cheating'. (Their Canoe has a motor!)

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Speaking of Bugs

A spider. On my bathroom wall. Big No No. I tell those spiders to keep hidden from my view, or they will visit their Maker. I told the spider, "This is your one free-bee. Next time I see you....well...I'll have my brave husband get you!"

Bella doesn't like spiders either.

Speaking of Bugs!

Look at this lovely one I found in Bella's mouth! Yummy!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

An Inspiration to All

These girls are an inspiration to all! I went to church today expecting the same as usual: Sacrament meeting first hour, Sunday school second hour, then off to teach the Young Women for third hour; but there was a slight change to the program. The BYU Rugby team was here visiting!

Typically during Sacrament meeting (after the ordinance where we partake in the bread and water) we hear from members of the ward who have prepared talks on a certain gospel topics. Today was unique because we got to hear from the coach (Tom Waqa), the team captain (Kirsten Siebach) and a team member (Rebecca Bunnell), who all shared their testimonies regarding their recent experiences.

They were ranked 6th in the nation and had a really good shot at making the Quarterfinals in the national playoffs this weekend. Due to an oversight, the playoffs were scheduled on a Sat-Sun instead of the promised Fri-Sat. Because of their beliefs to keep the Sabbath day Holy, this team unanimously chose not to participate in the Sunday round. These girls raised $10,000, bought nonrefundable plane tickets and had hopes of winning the rugby national championships, and I can only imagine the despair they felt.

The BYU Rugby team visiting our ward (Longwood, FL.)
Coach Tom Waqa pictured on right.
Kirsten Siebach pictured kneeling on far left.
Rebecca Bunnell pictured standing on far left.

Coach Tom Waqa (from Fiji) bore a simple and powerful testimony of the Savior and how he's so happy for their decision, despite how heartwrenching it was. He knew they were making the right choice and was proud to be their coach. He also said how strengthening the girls' examples were to his testimony.

Kirsten Siebach (a "Super Senior") shared her feelings about the situation and overall had a very gracious and positive attitude. She said if she could send one message to all, it would be to "Stand for something right, then stick to it." Her honest words and heartfelt testimony was powerful.

Through tears, Rebecca Bunnell spoke for the team when she said they wouldn't want to be anywhere other than where they were today. She said for the entire team it wasn't even a question of "IF". When they found out the news, she said they all "just knew" they wouldn't play. Growing up, she always heard that she should choose now what her standards would be and choose now to live them later when the time of trial came. For her and many others, that time came, and she was glad to have listened.

Their unity and friendship was inspiring as well. During Sunday school, I sat in front of a few of the girls, including Kirsten Siebach, and they played with Bella and were so sweet while she climbed all over the pews and threw Cheerios at them.

Turns out I have family on the team! Chenel Arts is my sister-in-law's niece. Very awesome to see her!!

The New York Times picked up the story. Click to read.

These girls truly are an inspiration to so many, and to me! You don't have to be a Latter-Day Saint to have standards and to stick to something you believe in. Stand for something and stand tall.

These girls stood tearfully, but proudly knowing they were standing for something bigger than a rugby championship. They were standing for Christ. I hope I can be a little more like them! Thanks for inspiring many!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Recent Hilarities (is that a word?)

1. I was getting Bella's more accurate temperature with my handy dandy thermometer, and while Ty's holding her down making hilarious turkey noises and dancing like a goon, Bella toots. The entire situation was just hilarious - definitely one to go on my list of "Instant Replays" when I die.

2. Ty was carrying Bella on his shoulders near the pool, and forgetting there was a step down, he fell into the pool. Bella was fine and luckily stayed on his shoulders, but Ty was soaked from chest down. Way to go hun.

3. Bella bit herself. On the arm. And she cried. And I laughed. Poor girl.

I LOVE the following song. I would say that it very accurately describes my feelings about Bella growing up. I think many can relate to it. It's the first song in my playlist on the right - listen to it! Or just read the lyrics. (I like the techno remix, but there is also a version that's more like a lullaby. Both rock.) SO AWESOME.

In My Arms
by Plumb

Your baby blues
So full of wonder
Your curly cues
Your contageous smile
And as I watch
You start to grow up
All I can do is hold you tight

Knowing clouds will rage
And storms will race in
But you will be safe in my arms
Rains will pour down
Waves will crash around
But you will be safe in my arms

Story books full of fairy tales
Of kings and queens and the bluest skies
My heart is torn just in knowing
You'll someday see the truth from lies

Knowing clouds will rage
And storms will race in
But you will be safe in my arms
Rains will pour down
Waves will crash around
But you will be safe in my arms

Castles they might crumble
Dreams may not come true
But you are never all alone
Because I will always
Always love you

Clouds will rage
And storms will race in
But you will be safe in my arms
Rains will pour down
Waves will crash around
But you will be safe in my arms

Monday, April 5, 2010

Planes, Traines, and a Rental Car

Bella's Great-Grandma Connie, Savanna, and me.

Cousins, Aunts and baby Bella. Such fun!

Uncle Jaime showin' me how to rock like a real guitarist.

Bella's Great Grandpa Lou

It's our third day here in Las Vegas, and we are finally getting adjusted to the time change. It's much colder and windier than we anticipated, but a quick trip to the store solved that. We spent Easter Sunday at my Uncle Jaime's house and had a blast. We were all packed in that house like sardines, but that made it all the more fun.

Bella didn't like the Easter basket on her head. Is it obvious?

After our first day here, Bella got a little fever in the night, and all yesterday we spent inside resting. This is her first time being sick, and it's so sad! She's not her usual perky self and wants to be held while she sleeps on your chest. Poor girl. Today her fever is gone, but her boogies are sure flowin! It's all the signs of a cold right now, so there's not much you can do. She's feelin' better today for sure. We're going to have lunch with Grandpa Lou and Grandma Sheila today! Yay! Then tonight I think the family is going to see Cirque du Soleil. Fun!

Chillin' like bob dylan. This was the first of many very LONG and LABORIOUS plane rides to come.

The plane ride was long. We had a 2 hour flight to San Antonio, TX, a 40 minute layover, then another 2.5 hour flight to Vegas. Whew! I was crossin' my fingers that Bella would sleep the whole time like when she was 5 months old - NOT! She's definitely more busy, and sleep was not on her agenda. Okay, I take that back. She slept, but only AFTER we landed. Little stinker.

Bath time with 3rd cousin Noah. Oh what fun.

Havin' a ball at Universal Stuidos with the Navarros and Grandma. Yay!

We had so much fun at Universal! We were so lucky to get to go on a private guided tour throughout the two parks (Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure) where we skipped all the lines and headed right to the front! In one hour alone we rode 5 different rides! Our favorites were definitely The Mummy, Rock-It Rollercoaster, and Dueling Dragons!! I don't think I can go back to a theme park ever again after having this experience!

Bike rides have this effect on little people.

My new buds, Michaela and Noah.

Dad is happy when he has a baby on each hip!
We had a blast with the Navarros, Grandma Jettie, and Michalea and hope they come back soon!! :0)