Saturday, April 30, 2011

Women's Conference

What a spiritual high!!

Yesterday I attended the awesome-est, best-est conference ever! No really. It was the best-est.

I LOVED being back on the BYU campus, feeling like a college student again running from class to class.

The classes had varying topics ranging from single-parenting and marriage, to rising above depression and overcoming addictions. There was something there for everyone.

The theme this year was "By Small and Simple Things are Great Things Brought to Pass", which refers to a scripture found in the Book of Mormon (Alma 37:6-7), and I decided that's my motto for life.

I actually decided on that motto a year ago, and I don't find it coincidental that I was able to attend this conference where the theme was "The small and simple things".

At this conference, I felt a burden lifted, like I could actually trust God with the plans He has for me. I don't have to do it on my own! Duh, right?!!

I felt His spirit teaching me...opening my eyes, even waking me up from this mortal slumber. We're all asleep, really...and God is just waiting for us to turn to Him so he can wake us up...little by little. So he can open our spiritual eyes to greater things.

While there, I visited the BYU Museum of Art where many of Carl Bloch's original paintings and sketches are on display.

The museum was packed, with lines, lines and more lines...but the amazing part was the stillness in the rooms...the reverence.

These two paintings especially moved me.

The one on the left shows Christ's loving, protective relationship with the child as He affectionately touches the his cheek and gestures towards him, suggesting an invitation to become as a little child. And the painting on the right shows Bloch's interpretation of the scripture in Luke 22:41-44 where an angel appears to him 'strengthening him', while in the garden of Gethsemane. His hands hang down in a position of submission to his Father's will, and his robes are red representing his 'blood as it were great drops of blood'.

These painting were the size of my walls, even taller actually, and there was no glass to protect someone from touching, breathing or bumping into it. I could get 6 inches away from it to see the details. Amazing.

I visualize that moment now, as if I were examining the Savior in real life...His hands, his face. During his life, He wasn't known to hide behind palace walls, protected from the 'dirty' or 'clumsy' traveler, like myself in that museum of art. He invites all to come unto him, because He has already paid the price for us. No amount of 'dirt' can keep him from loving us.

My dear family friend Cindi Webb from Alabama was in one of the same classes I chose to attend, and what an awesome reunion! It was so great to see you Cindi!

Later in the evening, we participated in one of the many service projects they had prepared. We tied the ends of blankets, but my question is, why do we even do that? The sheet of felt was just fine as a blanket before we laboriously snipped the ends in 1-inch pieces and ties little knots all along the edges. Are we that desperate for service ideas? Or is there a thought out reason for this? Just thinking out loud. Other service activities included assembling hygiene kits and quilting.

I drove alone to this conference, but was certainly not alone during it! My wonderful friends Maile (NJ), Mary (FL) and Bev (CA), were there, and I had a blast with them!!! Thanks for letting me tag along!!

The concert that night was amazing!!! Pianist Josh Wright and singer David Osmond were my favorites!

This conference is 2 days long, but I only went to one day. Next year I'm back for more! Woot! Oh, and of course, thank you Robyn for making it possible by watching Bella all day, and my supportive hubby, Ty, for giving up some work time so I could party all night long, too! I have some great people in my life. :0)

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Thanks Gramma Judy!!!

Thanks Grandma Judy for dressing me so well!

She was hilarious to watch open her package. Prior to this package, was another package from her great aunt Jeanne full of hair accessories, candy and other clothes were obviously not exciting. haha...

These People...

...are awesome!

My dear Florida friend Sienna made time for us while visiting Utah, and it was a lovely relaxing visit indeed.

I love these beautiful women!

Phelps family. Grandma Tamara is the awesome grandma I mentioned before who is all into the March Madness and hollers at the tv with her grandsons, etc. Love it!

Bella said goodbye to her love, Eamon, but only for a short while. They move to Trinidad and Tobago for two years, so hopefully we'll be able to make a visit!!
I am so blessed with great friends! Best of luck to you and your family Sienna! Love!

Sunday, April 24, 2011


We really didn't do a whole lot for our Easter Sunday - not even dinner was planned! I'm so lame. I kind of wish I was a little more intentional about our traditions, but now I've got a whole year to plan for next time, right?!

We hung outside with Tina and Lauren (our awesome neighbors) right after church, while Bella rode someone's bike in her easter dress. She loves bikes!!

I did a little egg hunt with Bella and her cousins on Friday, but nothing big. Then today my awesome friend Robyn organized a little egg hunt in the field nearby. Bella FREAKED out - with joy, of course.

When she realized what we were doing, her entire face lit up, and she took off with lighting speed. It was amazing to see her move so fast!!!

I think Ty was as excited as Bella about the treats!

I taught the lesson in young womens today at church about the Atonement, and I think it went pretty well. I certainly felt the spirit of Christ during the song "I Stand All Amazed".

We talked about how the atonement covers ALL pains. I based it on this talk from General Conference a few weeks ago. So good!

Today I felt a greater appreciation for my Savior and the hope that He gives to all.

My heart is full. It was indeed a Happy Easter.

Tulip Festival

Enjoyed a brisk spring day at Thanksgiving Point's own Tulip Festival!

Not all 250,000 bulbs had bloomed, but we didn't mind.

We ate kettle corn.

And ran off-path through the gardens. I LOVED having Ty all to myself, and I think Bella did, too. It was a nice break fo' sho'. The Brooksby cousin reunion in Provo following the Tulip Festival proved equally fun and entertaining!!

My digital camera lens that I brought decided to break upon arrival. Heavy sigh.

But luckily I brought along an old Nikon 35mm film camera that my Grandpa Buddy gave me long ago...Where did I get the film, you ask?

I dumpster-dove in my neighbor's trash this morning. Yeah, you heard me.

And guess what I found? 5-year expired 35mm film, still in the shrink wrap! It was a 7 pack, too!

I was planning on stopping by Walgreens on the way out to pick up some film, so I feel like that was a lucky snag...or dive...or something. I'm not encouraging dumpster diving, bytheway. It's a neighbor AND a friend, who I plan to inform about the film's quality. Be cautious if your neighbor has a gun and doesn't like your yappy dog. lol.

800 speed film makes it look pretty grainy, but hey - it was free! And not to mention, much better than no pictures at all!

I called my grandpa to get some pointers on using all the cranks, knobs and numbers, and it was really helpful to pick his professional-camera-man brain! Thanks Grandpa Buddy for helping me out today!

And thank you Raquel, my neighbor, who puts great junk in her garbage!

Cheers to a great day!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Bean Queen

Bella ate almost an entire can of black beans today.

She swatted at my camera just before this shot and got goopy bean juice on the lens. UGH!!!!!


For breakfast she drank a "Green smoothie", had some crunch berry cereal, finished my cracked wheat, AND two pieces of buttered toast. What the!? Growth spurt much?

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Baron Bash

Eamon, Sienna and beautiful baby Cosette

Bella and I visited our friends visiting from Florida today - SO FUN! It was so nice to see them again. Sienna has the coolest grandma! Not only did she join her grandkids in passionately cheering on her basketball team, but Grandma Tamara also welcomed us into her home for dinner and let Bella contribute to the toy tornado.

It was so good to see my dear friend Sienna and her kiddos! Bella was sure happy to see her man, Eamon, again!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Tickling Cousins

We haven't seen these darling cousins in a few weeks and we've missed them!

Jacob, Emelia, and Eliza

We had a tickle fight for the camera. Always a good option to capture smiling kids!

We can't wait for more cousin fun next week!


Look at her go.

I think it's time for the big girl bed!

Right after I paint it brown!

Friday, April 15, 2011

This horse...


He was very interested in my stroller.

He had a taste of my water jug.

And a carrot.

Bella fell asleep, so the horse helped me wake her up!! I was dying laughing!!!

After much squeezing of cheeks and tickling, she opened her big eyes to see a huge horse head in her face! It was the best reaction face EVER!!!!!!

Tickled pink to feed the curiously friendly horse.

And how about a nice smile at our departure!