My Reasons

My Reasons

This Is Where It All Begins

This Is Where It All Begins

Monday, July 17, 2017

so far this summer....

Here come a loooooong post.

Ready. Set. Go.

I can't seem to find much time to blog this summer, and before I know it, I have a lot to blog about, but no time to do it.

Hence, the long post here.  I am just going to blog about our summer so far.

In no particular order...

Cupcake Sales
Mary's phone randomly quit working a few months ago.  In order for her to get a new one, she had to pay 1/2.  In the main time, we were sharing my phone. 

I would NOT recommend sharing your phone with a pre-teen. 
One morning, during a run, I was listening to music, and my phone literally started dinging every second.  It was interrupting my music, and my "groove." This went on and on and on.  Mary received 68 texts during the time I ran a couple miles.  I was ready to declare war.  ugh! 
Not to mention, that every single time I asked Mary for my phone, it was usually hovering around 1 percent battery life left.  What the!?! 
We were both desperate for Mary to get her own phone again.

Last summer, Mary and her friend Eden did a cupcake sale, and made a ton of money!
This summer, Mary decided to do it again, but with a different friend, Alina.

They printed up and laminated a menu with different cakes, frostings and toppings.  They also printed up an order form.  Then they set out into the neighborhood.  The amount of orders they got was astounding!

We went out and got all of the ingredients, and then they went to work.  And it was WORK!
lemon cake, cream cheese frosting and raspberries

red velvet or chocolate cake, cream cheese frosting and oreos

chocolate cake, chocolate frosting, mint chocolate chip sprinkles

confetti cake, rainbow chip frosting, sprinkles

They made dozens and dozens of cupcakes.  They baked all afternoon.
They delivered the cupcakes that very day, all warm and fresh.
Total success!

That very night, after the cupcake sale, Mary had her very first babysitting job.  It was going to be a long one, so Alina was invited to help her. 
I ended up being 4 crazy boys for about 6 hours!  What a break in to babysitting!
It was a huge day for Mary and Alina, but when they counted up their money the next morning, it was all grins!

Mary has since decided to start babysitting more, and holy moly, has that been a success!  Within one week of babysitting, she had enough money to get a phone!  They definitely pay WAY better than when I was 12.  Geesh!

This summer, I decided to sign Luke up for the neighborhood T-ball team.  You would think I would have learned my lesson by now, with the older three kids all signing up, and never once playing, or even putting on the shirt.  In fact, in Sam's T-ball team picture, all you can see is part of his arm and his leg, as he is running away from the camera and the team, crying.
The struggle is real.

The day of Luke's first game, I had zero expectation of Luke putting on the shirt, much less even going to the game. 
I was completely blown away when I told Luke it was time to get ready for his first T-ball game, and he actually got excited!  WOAH!

4-5 year old T-Ball is probably one of the cutest sporting events a person can watch. 
They all have their shirts down to their knees, the helmets over their eyes, their gloves on the wrong hands, and they almost always run to the wrong bases, WITH the bat.

It is hysterical and adorable all at once.

Luke looked so adorable out there, and I was so shocked and excited that one of my kids was actually participating in T-BAll! 

Luke was actually very good at smacking the ball of the Tee.  He was also great at catching the ball out in the field.  He definitely needs to work on actually using his arms when he runs (he gets shy and runs like a robot with his arms stiff and perfectly straight by his sides, hahaha!), and on throwing the ball once he catches it, (he would get the ball, and then walk over to his coach and give it to her, hahaha!) but he did great, and it was so fun to watch his cute little team.

It really helped that all of his best buddies were on his team as well.  I think that made the whole thing for Luke.

By the end of their little season, Luke wasn't liking the sport so much anymore, but I am so glad he gave it a try!

He is an extremely athletic kid, but he is also very, very fast paced.  It was just a little too slow for him.  It was great while it lasted though.
Left to right:  Shauna Goates (coach), Joey Goates, Deakin Case, Dawson Boone, Ian Johnson, Luke Phillips, Cubby DeLorey, Kai Russell, Rowan Boone, Luke, Rocco DeLorey and Becky Phillips (coach)

the helmet is so big!

Popcorn Ball Sales
William and Sam saw how much money Mary and Alina made by selling cupcakes, and they decided that they wanted to sell something too.
There are about 5 lemonade stands in our neighborhood at any given time, so that was out of the question. 
They wanted something unique.
They decided to do popcorn balls, with candy in them.  It was a favorite childhood treat of mine, and they are very cheap and easy to make.  It was a great idea!  Sam's buddy Blake wanted in on the action too, so he agreed to provide some of the ingredients.
So, we gathered the ingredients, and we set to work.
I did not realize that my children had never seen a popcorn popper in action before!  How is that even possible!  Good grief!
As soon as the popcorn started flying out of the popper Luke and Molly started shrieking and yelling in pure excitement.  Sam and William couldn't stop laughing.
It was hilarious to see their reactions.  They loved it!
We turned on some music, and they popped the popcorn while I melted the marshmallows and butter.

They mixed the popcorn with the mixture and added the candy to the mix, and then formed the balls.

They also put them into individual bags.  It was actually a lot of fun, and insanely sticky!

They made about 50 popcorn balls, and then they drug a table, chairs, a cooler, the popcorn balls, a sign and a money jar out to the corner and began selling.  They took turns going door to door, with the popcorn balls in backpacks, and sitting at the table on the corner.  Pretty good sales tactic!
William, Tyson Muhlestein, Blake Sweat, Sam

They sold almost every single popcorn ball within 2 hours!  haha!  How cool is that!

Not only did they have fun, and make some money, but they were entertained for an entire day.  I will call that a win, win.

4th of July
Ben had a bike race in Sun Valley around the 4th of July this year, so we decided to make a trip out of it, and go to Pocatello for the holiday, or actually the weekend leading up to it.

Last minute, my sister Kelsey and her husband Taylor found out that they had work off, so they decided to drive from Washington and spend the holiday in Pocatello too!  How awesome is that!

Aside from Christmas, the 4th of July has always been my favorite holiday.  I have some of my very best memories of my childhood, and adult years, from 4th of July celebrations.  We always spent it at the flag ceremony and ward pancake breakfast in the morning, and then on the lake in the afternoon, with lots of close family and cousins, tons of great food, loads and loads of fireworks, and then watching the local firework show that night on the roof of my cousins house.  So many fun times and awesome memories.  I also love the patriotism that is in the air and all around.  I love this country, and I am so grateful for the freedom I have.  It is a big deal to me.

This year was smaller, and with just me, my sister, and my parents and our families, but it was still just as fun.

Of course, we went out on the lake....twice.  The kids love it more and more every year.  It is to fun to see them grow to love something that I have such a passion for.  Luke could not go fast enough on the tube.  He just kept asking to go faster and faster, and to have more and more waves.  He ended up having to ride with Kelsey, because Mary and Sam and William were to scared to go as fast and Luke liked to go.  He is a total maniac!  He just grinned and laughed his head off.  It was so stinking adorable!!!
All of the kids had a great time!
I skied, but my leg is still very off balance from my injury at the marathon, and I could not get a feel for the ski. I was so wobbly and off balance. I had a pretty hard crash.  (double front flip)  It didn't hurt at all, but it made me pretty nervous to ski again, until my leg is stronger.  It was still so much fun to be out there though.
ummm, yeah.  I love her.

watching their momma ski.  Luke is giving me the sign to go faster.  ha!

legs for days

Aside from boating, we watched movies, had fires, set off loads of illegal fireworks (ah yeah!), played out in the yard, and just had fun being with family. 

I also did my first outside run since the marathon.  I did my very first run post-marathon/injury, earlier that week, and felt ok, so I decided to give it a shot.

I was able to run up on the canal by my parents house, which is very significant for me.  It is where I very first started running long distances, and it is where I trained for my very first marathon.  I have put miles and miles and miles up on that canal.  It is the birth place of my running.
It was mentally healing to get up there, and to just get back to the simple part of running.  To forget the racing, the timing, the injury, the goals, the worry and the fear of re-injury, and to just to run and breath.
It was flipping hot up there, but it was still a really good run.  It built up my confidence a little bit more with my injury, and reminded me why I love running.
As always, every time I run up there, I really, really miss my dog, Tess.  She ran by me for years, and when she got too old to run, she would float down the canal next to me.  By the very end, I would have to get down in the canal and push her out at the end of the run.  I loved that dog.

We actually ended up driving home the evening of the 4th.  We were kind of bummed about missing out on the big firework shows, but we soon discovered that we had the best seat in the house!  Right as the sun went down, we were driving right though Salt Lake.  We were able to see about 5 different firework shows happening right by our car!  We even found the right radio stations that were playing the music for the shows!  It was so cool!

As we got to the mouth of Parleys Canyon, one firework show was literally right over our car.  A firework went off wrong, hit the bank of road by our car, and it burst into flames.  We had to pull over, while the firefighters started putting out the fire.  There were actually three fires that started within 30 feet of our car.  The road was closed, but our car was right in the middle of it, so the firetrucks parked around us.  Luke was thrilled!  Molly was bawling, William was very scared too.  Mary was videoing it with her phone, and Sam was asking a million questions a minute.  I was loving the fire, but also pretty nervous about the smoke filling our car.

Once it was somewhat safe, a police car finally slowly escorted us past the fires, and we got on our way again.  It was definitely a firework show my kids will NEVER EVER forget.  We even made it on the news the next morning.  They were showing footage of the fire, and there was our pathfinder, right in the middle of it all!

It was a 4th of July well spent.

P.s.  Ben had a good bike race in Sun Valley.  He said he did really well, and learned a lot.  I wish I could elaborate more, but maybe I will convince him to make a post of his own.  He is become really good really fast. 

A Boy and His Gun
Sam decided that he wanted to spend his popcorn ball money on a BB Gun.  He has wanted one for quite a while, and he finally got the approval from Ben.

I have never seen him light up so much as when we walked into Sportsman's Warehouse and he saw the guns.  It was so adorable! All three of my boys went nuts in there.  It is like a boy Disneyland!  Molly just wanted to "pet the animals." (the deer and elk heads mounted on the walls)

We spent a lot of time there while Sam looked at everything, and read about each gun.  He was just soaking it all in. The wonder in his eyes melted my heart.

He finally picked one, and by the time we got home, it was out of the box, and he was ready to go.

Maybe it is because I have so many memories of watching my brothers shooting BB Guns out in the pasture, but there is just something about watching Sam with his gun that just melts my heart.  It is just so... well... "boy," I guess.  It is like a childhood rite of passage for a boy his age.

He and his friends have spent countless hours this past week shooting soda cans, milk jugs, cardboard boxes, and anything they can get their hands on.

Sam even convinced me to by a 24 pack of soda, which I have NEVER done before.  He didn't even want the drink, he just wanted the cans.  I walked in the house one afternoon to find Sam and all of his friends chugging the soda as fast as they could, their guns were all ready to go, they just needed targets.  I just let them go at it, because frankly, I wanted the soda out of our house.  The burping that followed that is a completely different story.  Holy Moly.  They all thought they were pretty funny.  Boys.

We now have a "target stash" under our back porch.  Normally a giant pile of garbage on our back porch would make me cringe, but this one makes me smile.

It is so great.  It is a summer Sam will never forget.  The summer with his first gun.
Jace Phillips, Gabe Phillips, Sam

Girls Camp
The very next day after we got back from Pocatello for the 4th of July, Mary headed out to her first Girl's camp.  She was nervous, but so excited!  We got her all packed, double and triple checked everything, and I drove her to the church.
It was going to be Mary's first time away from home for more than one night, and with her anxiety in full swing right now, this was a HUGE deal for her.  I was so impressed with how brave she was, and with how calm she was.
I dropped her off at the church, gave her a huge hug, and then headed back home.
Out of nowhere, I completely broke down!  It was so crazy!  I realized that I was really going to miss her, and that it was MY first time without her too.  It was such a weird moment.  I was close to tears the rest of the day.
I thought about Mary all week long, and wondered how she was doing.  I missed her like crazy, but I knew she was having a great time, and I was really excited for her.
When I picked her up Saturday afternoon, she looked really happy...and really tired. ha!
She talked non stop for the next few hours about camp, and I just sat there listening and smiling.
She had an amazing time!  I was so happy for her to be able to experience something to fun, inspiring, spiritual, bonding, and neat.  I was also so proud of her for facing her fears and her anxiety and letting herself have such a great experience that she otherwise would have missed out on, had she let her fear get the best of her.
I love the Young Women program so much.  Mary has only been in it for 6 months, and she has grown so much already. The church is so, so good.

I had a major desire a few weeks ago to finally plant a few trees in our yard.  So, I drove to our local nursery and bought a few.

 I brought them home, and started planting them.

I can't describe it, but I absolutely loved it!  I ended up planting 7 trees, about 15 bushes/flowers, and 6 lilac bushes within the next 5 days.  There is something about planting, digging in the earth, beautifying my yard, and growing something that just hits home to me.  It calms me, makes me happy, excited, peaceful, and feels so fulfilling.  I also finally finished planting everything we need in the dry river in the front yard, and put in the wood chips/bark.  It looks amazing!!

I love looking out on our yard now, checking on my trees every day, watching the bees pollinate our new apple trees, and just seeing how things transform, grow and beautify.  I love to sit out on our porch in the evening, smell the flowers, listen to the fountain, and just look out at all of the hard work I put in, and see how pretty it all is.

I have always loved to work outside, but I never really realized how much I love planting and growing.

With all of this goodness, let us not forget that we live on a dry river bed, and digging a hole to plant is no small feat.

not kidding. All I needed was a small hole to plant a lilac bush.  argh!
For Real.

It's very much worth it though.  We are now that much closer to completing our yard.  My vision of it all is finally starting to come together, and it is so exciting and fun for me.

We have eaten a ridiculous amount of these this summer.  Record breaking heat this month all throughout the Midwest/west.  We are no exception.

Luke is in a phase where he will only wear pajamas, because his regular clothes, "look weird" according to him.  He did, however, decide last week that ski boots, a ski helmet, sunglasses, and a police jacket look simply amazing, and must be worn all over the neighborhood while riding a bike.  I LOVE this kid!

We had a fun Sunday picnic/fire with some friends, and the kids made this killer fort!  I love summer in the mountains!

Mary and her friends at a cheerleading party.  Mary is LOVING cheer!

Messy hair, don't care.

Mary got a Venus Fly Trap, and it has kept us all entertained for a few days. I'm still not sure whether to be horrified or amazed.

I saw this the other day, and about died of laughter.  William and Luke on the motor scooter...keepin' it real.

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