Monday, April 16, 2018


Dear Loved Ones,                                                                                                                                
Happy 14th Birthday to our Lynners today! She has made it through a really hard year and we are super proud of her and love her so much! We have been celebrating her all weekend with friends over, plus Grandma Lyn and Aunt Marti and Uncle Ralph visiting…it’s a party.

This week began with a pretty good Monday (4/9). I woke Monday morning ready to get back on the ball and get stuff done. I finally put the suitcases away and finished all the laundry. I attended the Parent Advisory meeting for the middle and high schools and was able to send some good info to the California Melins about next school year because we found out last weekend they are moving here! We super excited. I did a bunch of errands and got home in time to greet kids and make kahlua pork and cabbage for dinner. I snuck over to wish Miss Elanor Jones a happy 11th birthday and cheer her up since her beloved big sis is leaving on a mission next week and she is reeeeally going to miss her. Grandma and Grandpa Melin joined us for dinner back at home and brought a delicious fruit salad. Afterward we shared pictures from California with them for Family Home Evening. That evening I got a message from Rod Casper, Rhett’s dad, about an experience he’d had recently. He called and shared a sacred experience with me about Erin’s work in the Spirit World with other ancestors from his family. It was sweet that he wanted me and Heidi Egan to know about it.

On Tuesday 4/10, I took Heidi to school, then went to the chiropractor, then I finally made myself go to Bozeman and get groceries at Costco and get some fun gifts for Heidi’s birthday. Unfortunately while I was there, winter came back. It got cold and rainy, and then the rain turned to slush by Thursday…argh! That afternoon I changed beds and did laundry and food prep in preparation for Mayberrys and Gram arriving Thursday. I did more of the same on Wednesday, trying to catch up on laundry and get the fridge and bathrooms cleaned up. I didn’t feel great so I had my family help me before and after dinner, then they headed to scouts and young women and I went to bed with the little guys.

Thursday 4/12 I had some writing to finish and last minute preparation for guests. As I was running errands around 9am, it began to snow in enormous wet flakes/blobs. It was dumping faster and long than I have ever seen. Luckily the earth was still pretty warm from recent sunny days, so the snow wasn’t accumulating as much as it does in winter (or we would have been in big trouble). It was during this hullaballoo that Aunt Marti, Uncle Ralph, and Grandma Lyn arrived at the Bozeman airport from Arizona (96*!). Driving through Bozeman Pass in that mess was quite the change of scenery for them. It was so great to have them with us! They got to our house around 3pm. They greeted the kids coming home from school, then took naps until about 6pm. Poor Adeline had track practice until 5:30, then she had to catch a bus with her choir to go compete at regionals at 6:30. We all squeezed in some dinner together before she had to leave, but then she came home an hour later because the bus couldn’t get over Bozeman Pass. They had gone back to PHS and recorded their performance and submitted it online (hooray for tech!).  So we all had a nice visit as a family. Cute Uncle Ralph played airplanes and stuffed animals with the boys, so they are in love with him!

On Friday morning, Marti and Ralph came and read scriptures with us, then they drove down to Rexburg for Natasha’s (their adopted missionary ‘daughter’ from Ukraine) and my brother Michael’s college graduations---so super proud of Michael and his sweet family. I stayed at home and took care of Grandma Lyn and Ammon. Cute little Raef Johnson came over to play for a few hours, then Naomi took him and Ammon to her house for a few hours to play. I visited with Grandma, and we read quietly and I had some time to prepare myself to speak in church on Sunday. Naomi brought Ammon home about the same time the other kids got home from school. They all had snacks and chilled for a while. Addie called us to come pick her up from track at 5pm, so Grandma and I took a little drive and went to get her. All the snow and most of the moisture had melted and evaporated by then and it was a glorious, sunny evening. We came home and had a yummy teriyaki chicken with Asian salad and crab puffs. I made some cookies for Eden’s farewell Open House, as well as some low carb-high protein oatmeal chocolate chip cookies that Gram could enjoy on her low glycemic diabetic diet.  Everyone went to bed pretty early for a Friday night.

On Saturday, Rich got up early and took Addie to meet the bus at 6:20am to go to the regional Solo & Ensemble festival. I stayed home with Gram and the little boys, Rich took James to see Addie’s performance at 9am. He sent me a video of it; the judges sounded really impressed and Addie’s trio (Addie, Izzi Petry, and Brianna Pittman) received the highest marks (1). Super proud! Heidi had birthday brunch plans with a friend, but they fell through, so Gram and I took her and the little boys  to lunch at noon. She chose Rib & Chop House for calamari and BLTs. I had a little steak with salad and Gram had chicken salad lettuce wraps. They brought Heidi a big birthday dessert which she lovingly shared with her little brothers. We came home after lunch and Rich and James were home. We all relaxed for a bit, then I ran to pick up Addie and grab some strawberries for Eden’s thing. When we got home at 2:30, the Dixons had stopped by for a minute, visiting from Boise with Baby Laney. Of course all our kids were over the moon to see Laney again—she’s so cute toddling around. We sure love them!  Addie had plans to go to Chico with her friends at 3:30, and Heidi had plans to go out with her friend Kara on a birthday date in Bozeman, so I rested for a little bit. I got up and tried to put some thoughts together for my talk. I made some tacos for late dinner—the boys didn’t want to come in from playing baseball! We finally ate around 7pm, and Aunt Marti and Uncle Ralph got back from Rexburg just in time to join us. We cleaned up dinner, then wrapped gifts and decorated for Heidi, and got our clothes and stuff ready for Sunday and said good night. The teenagers watched “the Greatest Showman” at Dennistons, then crashed around 11pm.

Sunday 4/15 was Heidi’s 14th birthday. We woke up and bustled around getting ready for church. Gram chose to stay home, so the priests brought her sacrament during Sunday school. We got there on time and I got to sit on the stand with my fellow speakers, Eden Jones and Sydnie Denniston. Many high school kids showed up to hear Eden speak—I told her she was being a missionary already! There was a wonderful spirit in the meeting as we all spoke about Making and Keeping Covenants & Ordinances. That Spirit helped us all to do well on our talks. Eden bore a powerful testimony and played a beautiful piano number. I was so grateful to be a part of a great meeting. It was nice to sit with Auntie in Sunday school and Relief Society--great lessons all day! After church we ate leftover pizza and rested. I got refreshments ready to take to Jones’ (fruit infused water, a selection of teas and organic honey, and gingersnaps) and delivered them around 3 so we could take our time celebrating Heidi’s birthday, then head to Eden’s Open House from 6-9ish. Grandpa and Grandma Melin joined us and had a good visit with Gram and the Mayberrys afterward.  Heidi had requested authentic ramen for her birthday dinner, so I made some and it was a hit. She also requested a DQ ice cream cake, so dessert was easy. She opened her gifts, and loved the sweet cards, the new clothes, new ukulele, and new art supplies she received. She put on one of her new outfits and we headed over to the Jones’ house. When we drove up, there was a regular hootenanny happening in the yard, with guitars and singing, and kids coloring with sidewalk chalk and playing tag. Inside loved ones were gathered chatting, hugging, more singing, eating good food, etc. We visited for about an hour, then Heidi and Ammon were ready to go home. So I took them and Rich back to the house, while Niles, James, and Adeline continued to play with Jones friends. I visited with Gram and Mayberrys and said goodbye to my in laws around 8pm, then headed back to Jones’ to fetch my kids, which took another hour or so of cat-herding, hugging, weeping, etc. It was a lovely night and we feel so blessed by rich relationships with our people here, as well as our fabulous extended family. We are so super excited for Sister Jones and her mission to Nauvoo. Woo-hoo!

We love and miss you all. We wish you a happy week.
Love, Jamie and Rich and Family

Sam and Maggie Egan on 4/11/18,
the day Maggie entered the MTC.
FLASHBACK to 2001: I just love this pic from our wedding day in 2001
I'm kissing my niece Melanie who is a mama now, and Baby Ally (in Angie's arms)
 is off to college in the fall. My bridesmaids Cousin Candace, and sisters Angie,
Sara, & Amy are all mamas now, too. Time files!

Family White Board adventures, #132

Thursday Snowpocalypse 4/12

Boys with Great Grandma Lyn on 4/12

These two. BFFs, 80 years apart.

Cool Milton quote from "Paradise Lost"

God circumscribing the bounds of the world-etching by William Blake...
familiar truths found in new places.

Heidi's 14th Birthday Eve celebratory Lunch with Great Grandma

Birthday flashbacks... Addie and Heidi in 2004

Party Girl 2013

Dino Sisters 2011

Young Women 2017

Our Cool Lynners 2017
Scenes from Eden's Open House
Seven-Year-Olds Tea Party
*they are Red Zinger fans*

These sweet kids
Mitchell, Mikayla, Sidney, Izzi, Addie, Jeanette...

Izzi cracking Addie up

Eden and Cameron singing with Clara and Nick

Mama Jones at one end of the room, Mama Melin at the other
enjoying the cozy beauty of our babies loving one another

Addie, Clara, and Izzi giddy with laughter and tears

Can't let go.


Dear Loved Ones,                                                                                                                          ...