July 16, 2018

On Moving

We said our goodbyes last night at farewell party with people from our Church Ward. Even though we still have two weeks to go it was better to play it safe. We loved seeing everyone- including some of our favorite faces and saying goodbye, mourning the fact that we had only been here a year.

I feel a little overwhelmed with all that I need to do, but I know that it will work out. Reserving the truck, getting 7th grade shots for Asher before we go, picking up more boxes.

Josh and I spoke at Church yesterday on Faith. He did such a good job. Faith starts with our thoughts- as a seed- and then grows and grows. I gave just a short talk as usual with mostly stories of our trials and how our faith grew during them.

Wish us luck! We have found a home to rent in Gilbert that we love. It has a green kitchen, a piano room, is directly across from a cute park (Declan will love that) and a pool built into the deck.

Now we just need to get there!

July 13, 2018

Arizona will be Awesome!

We've had a hard time finding a rental home in Arizona this time around. The market is extremely hot- literally!- and rentals go as fast as they get put on the market. I just applied for a home today- here's hoping we get it!

Our future is based on our thoughts.If we think positive thoughts, we will have a positive future. If we think negative thoughts, we will have a negative one. Despite having a hard time getting into a home, we are excited and thrilled about working for ASU and for living in Arizona!

July 12, 2018

Asher's birthday day

Headed to Church and soon to get the Aaronic Priesthood (something 12 yr olds get the chance to have and use when they turn 12. They take care of the members of our Church and pass the Sacrament.)

We were all laughing at Declan's face right here.

 Opening presents. The boys all went to the dollar store and pitched in to buy Asher some presents. He liked them!

Happy Birthday, Asher, we love you!!

July 10, 2018

Hearst Beach and Elephant Seals

An hour North of here, lies Hearst Castle- a castle built by a very rich man who loved Paso Robles and felt that it was the perfect place and Heaven on Earth (which I can see!). He bought zebras and made perfect pools at his Castle.

Across from the Hearst Castle, is Hearst Beach and the Elephant Seal beach. The Elephant seals are so funny to watch! These were teenagers and they would bump chests to fight. Hearst beach is my kids favorite because it's not as crowded as other beaches and the waves are a pretty good size! We spent the afternoon here boogie boarding and having a blast! We showed Chloe the beach and she enjoyed getting a tan. Great beach visit!

Our Foreign Exchange Student

We signed up to have a French Foreign exchange student stay with us for the month of July. Elizabeth takes French in school and I thought it would be a great way for her to improve her French and a fun way to spend the summer.

We found out we were moving all of a sudden in the beginning of June and I emailed the program director to let her know we could no longer host a student. I got a letter back from our student, Chloe, saying how excited she was to meet us. 

She was so sweet and we decided that since we live in a smaller home and most of our stuff was in storage (in the garage) already, that we could make it work.

So, she flew in last Thursday and we picked her up Friday night. She is super sweet, loves to be involved and go places and she understands a LOT of English. Declan loves her already and says "I have two sisters!" He is going to be so sad when she goes!

Life is quite the adventure!!

July 8, 2018

Asher turns 12!

I have two babies in our family. #1- Asher. He is the youngest of the big kids and was my baby for almost 8 years until Declan came. #2. Declan. He is officially my baby and will be so for awhile. Actually, all my kids are my babies and they always will be! Even after they are married and having babies of their own.

And without further ado- my baby Asher is turning 12! This is pretty weird for me! Babies? Turning 12? How can this be? Just a short while ago I was in Orem Community Hospital, pushing out this strong, strong baby boy while my sister Amy and the Dr were rushing into the room. They almost missed his birth, but they got there- in the nick of time! 

The Dr said "This baby boy sure is STRONG!" and I said "Tell me about it! He's been kicking me for the past several months! No wonder he's strong." 

I love Asher. He is happy. He is positive. He loves soccer and track and field. He's a great mathematician, writer, maker of friends and care taker of his Momma. Once in a while the bigger boys will have a bone to pick with me and Asher will stand up for me and say "Don't talk to Mom like that!" (Of course, my big boys are just generally sweet as well).

He likes making lego ships, playing with his cousins, reading and has started playing a little piano as well.

He gets to get the Priesthood on Sunday as a 12 year old and I'm super proud of the decision he has made to do that. God is so proud of him! He's sad he missed a Temple trip by two days (they can go inside when they are twelve).

Happy Birthday, Asher! We love you so much!

July 7, 2018

California is SO Beautiful!

 I love how bright pink flowers will just grow out of the ground here in California!

 A bent, twisted oak tree. Our town is called The Way of the Oaks, so there are a ton of Oak trees around.

There are also a lot of vineyards and wineries around too. We have the perfect weather for growing grapes! 

 Right near our home.

A Spanish style home.

A local flower.

A neighbor's home and bike.

 I love living in California!

July 5, 2018

Happy 4th of July!

We went to the local 4th of July Parade in Templeton and had a lot of fun people watching and float watching as well! Declan got lost for a few minutes there and I felt so, so glad that we found him safe! That can give you quite a scare! 

We’re still looking for homes in Arizona. It’s a hot market over there and a lot of the good homes get snatched up really quickly. Wish us luck!

We’re also getting a French foreign exchange student on Friday. More about that to come!

July 2, 2018

I am Thankful

I am thankful for all of the friends we have made and the good times that we have had while we have lived here in Paso Robles, CA. While we have been here:

Josh learned how to teach 7th grade Math
Elizabeth learned how to navigate a new, rough, but talented High School and in High School band.
Ethan and Jonah learned through all their honors classes with their cousin Dallin.
They tried out and made district honor band and had a blast!
Asher excelled in soccer and in class and track and field and district band as well.
Ethan and Jonah also excelled in cross country and band.
Declan became best friends with Kate and close friends with Avery and Chloe and Nolan.
We got two Betta fishes- Turquoise and Sparkle. Turquoise died.
Megan played the piano for the kids for two different wards.
Our wards were divided a month ago and we learned how to navigate that.
Josh was in charge of the Sunday School teachers and was in the Young Men's Presidency and Scout Master.
Megan joined Moms Club of Atascadero and made a lot of new friends.

We learned to rely on the Lord for temporal blessings and good and tender mercies. We loved living near Mom and Dad Abbott as well as the Andersons and the Kleinmans and the other Abbotts (an hour away).

It was a great year! One that we will always remember.

June 28, 2018

Santa Barbara Visit

 All of us, with Doug taking the picture
 Doug and Sheelah and the kids

My Uncle and Aunt- Doug and Sheelah (on my Dad's side) live two hours away in Carpinteria, CA near Santa Barbara. Doug is a chiropractor and Sheelah is an acupuncturist. They have lived in the same home for over 25 years and we love to go visit them and visit the beach too! 

This past weekend we took the kids and had a blast! Even though it was cloudy, we walked along the bluffs, checked out the tide pools and the place in the rocks where the natural tar bubbles up. It is the second biggest spot in California for tar deposits besides the La Brea Tar Pits.

After we got back and rested awhile, Doug took me out for a drive on his Harley and it was the first time I had ever been on a motorcycle. He has some super cool heated jackets and it wasn't too cold or windy at all. I had a blast and I told Josh he can get a motorcycle anytime!

For dinner we had a BBQ Santa Maria style- aka bbq Tri Tip. It was lots of fun and we loved spending time with family!

June 23, 2018

Grover Beach Trip!

For Memorial Day we decided to take a trip to the beach. We live in sunny California and feel that we pay for the good weather, so we like to get out and enjoy it. Plus, we love going to the beach! 

We arrived around 3:30, played in the sand and a little in the water (it was super cold) and then started a fire pit an hour later. You dig a hole in the sand, build your fire inside the hole and you've got a lovely place to keep you warm and cook your dinner. Good thing too because it's chilly! 

It was a lot of fun! We found a perfect spot for our fire pit and had some great hot dogs and roasted corn. To roast it, we just wrapped the ears of corn in tinfoil and placed them near the hot coals for ten minutes. Perfection! So warm and yummy! The kids were impressed!

June 21, 2018

End of the School Year, 2018

It's been a wild and crazy year this year! We moved from Lehi, Utah to Paso Robles, CA and jumped into the school system with all ten feet- four of my kids and my husband too! 

Elizabeth blew 9th grade away! She took the clarinet section by storm in the band and tried her hand at Honors English, French, Math and History. Way to rock 9th grade, Elizabeth!

Ethan and Jonah took 8th grade in Lewis Middle School by storm too! They started in all regular classes and soon switched to all honors classes. They got almost straight A's and simply rocked it!

Asher did amazing in 6th grade at the middle school- qualifying for GATE next year. 

Josh was the most impressive of them all. Never having had any formal training in teaching, he taught 3 classes of 7th grade math to 12-13 yr olds who struggle with math, as well as a 6th grade class and a remedial class. Every day he showed up, even though he wasn't sure how the kids would act that day. He overcame struggles and challenges and came out on TOP!

Declan and I stayed home, with Declan going to the Kids Club while I went to the gym to work out. We made trips to the San Luis Library, to the park, play dates with Moms club and picnics on the porch.

It's been a great year! This summer we plan to head to girls camp, scout camp and have a french foreign exchange student. Let's see how this goes!

April 27, 2018

In 5 seconds

I have 5 seconds to write before I whisk my 15 yr old daughter out the door and on to her Church Seminary class. I wake her up at 5:30 and she's out the door by 6:20 am. And so what do I want to say in those 5 seconds? Live life to the fullest!

Just do it!

Don't worry about who's watching

Or if anyone said you could.

I said you could.

I just turned 40

So I should know!

Love to you! Xoxoxo


April 25, 2018

California’s CSET test

So, my husband is currently teaching 7th grade math in california on a provisional license. They asked him o really to his current job but if anyone else applied that was certified, they would get the jo. He decided to apply for a teaching credential program at our nearby Cal Poly.

And so, he has completed the application process and only has two cset tests to complete. Looks like we’re back on student loans and state insurance for a short time. All this means no dental insurance nex year and while I was saving a special root canal to be covered next year, I decided to get it done yesterday. It was long and arduous, although my dentist and hygenist were wonderful, and I came home to drop a glass full of fermenting kefir all over the kitchen floor right before diner, and embedded several pieces of glass into my feet- one of which is still there.

Lesson learned- call your PA bother in law and don’t go to bed with a piece of glass stuck in your foot.