Sunday, September 28, 2014


Dear Loved Ones,                         28 September 2014

Two weeks have passed since our last family letter and it has been mostly sunny, warm, colorful, and busy!
On Monday 9/15 Addie and I joined the community choir and will be singing in a Christmas Concert on December 7th. Mark Mills from our ward is the director and the music is beautiful! So we have choir practice on Monday nights now, and Rich has meetings every other night of the week, so we have to do Family night on Fridays or Sundays. Tuesdays Rich has to go to a scout leader training thing in Belgrade for several weeks in a row, so the kids and I quick did homework, had a pancake dinner, and watched a movie (Hobbit, of course).

Wednesday was such a happy day. My dear friends, Rob & Georgia, welcomed their new daughter into the world. They have been married for 24 years, hoping for children of their own, and finally they were chosen to raise sweet little Moxie through an open adoption. It has been so fun to follow their journey the past 10 days and remember the life-altering experience of having our first child.  Wednesday was also the first night I sent all three of my big kids off to activities together, with Daddy doing scouts: Young Women, Activity Days and Cub Scouts—hooray! The little boys and I snuggled and watched The Roosevelts on PBS Roku.
Thursday 9/18 was a rainy day. We had all the Jones kids over for a playdate—and I had one with their mom, Robyn, too. They are sooo much fun, we had a great time! Aunt Angie came to visit us from Boise. She was in town for a wedding, so she came and had soup and bread with us on the only night that we were all home that week! It was so fun to introduce her to Ammon!

Friday Rich left for Camporee at 4:30 pm and they kids and I had breakfast for dinner and a Lord of the Rings movie marathon over the weekend. Saturday morning we got up and did some chores, and then we went to Helena to visit our Postum cousins and pick up Cousin Cody so he can stay with us and work and save up some money. We had a fun time—we miss Postums a TON! Uncle Matt was working but he came to the park and showed the kids his police truck and uniform. Niles was fascinated. We got home from Helena just after Daddy got home from Camporee. We made a quick dinner, got Cody settled, and got ready for church the next morning.
Sunday morning we left the house at 8:30am. Rich had to give a talk in Gardiner and I had to lead choir practice. So I took all 5 kids to the church and did choir practice, then we went to 3 hours of church, and met Rich back at home for a quick lunch and nap. At 4pm we started making some yummy Korean food—pork stir fry, cucumber kimchi, and regular kimchi—and had the Jones Family over for dinner (we really like Robyn and Lope, plus our girls—Addie and Eden and Clara, and Heidi and Jeanette— kind of had instant girl crushes on each other, so they are always wanting to get together; they also have 3 younger kids who love to play with James and Niles, so it’s fun for all). Brother Jones was just called as the new Young Men’s president and Rich is his 2nd counselor (Jake Tyner as 1st counselor). They’ll do great with the boys! I had a good visit with Cody while we put laundry away and prepared for a new week.

Monday 9/22 was back to the grind; I started to feel really tired and sore throat and achy while cooking dinner, so I dropped everything, chugged and emergenC, and went to bed. I had to skip Community Choir, but Addie went. Rich got the kids to bed and I slept off the beginnings of a cold, all the way until 11am Tuesday.

My sweet friend Robyn brought me green smoothies Tuesday morning while I was asleep. Cody started working with our builder, Mike, who is building a house next to us. It’s not a lot of work, but it’s something. He’s been really helpful at home, too. Rich had to go to Belgrade again, so the kids and I had tacos for dinner and did lots of reading and snuggling. The girls and I made 5 “fangirl”  T-shirts that night, designing them on the computer, printing out iron-ons, the ironing them and peeling them and being super excited (each girl made 2 Sherlock T-Shirts, and Addie made a “Camp Half-Blood” shirt from Percy Jackson to wear on character day at school).

Wednesday was my birthday and I woke up to sweet birthday songs from my littles. They all went off to school and I climbed in bed and snuggled Ammon while I read through lots of sweet birthday wishes on facebook. I asked friends and family to post me a memory or a wish as a gift and they were all so sweet. I really felt loved and was reminded what a blessed life I have lived so far. My visiting teachers came to visit and brought me ice cream. Rich took our family out to dinner at Fiesta en Jalisco to celebrate and gifted me with a kitchen radio/cd/Bluetooth player, which I am over the moon about. I get so much done in there if I can listen to my npr or podcasts or mommy jams! The first thing I did was play a conference talk from my iPad thru the Bluetooth for scripture study Thursday morning. Woo-hoo! Rich and Addie went off to YW/Scouts and I took the other kids home. They were pretty good about getting ready for bed, thank goodness. The day ended with some facetiming with my Brother Sam’s family, which I loved so much—Owen and Gavin were the cherry on top of my very nice day.

Thursday we did the final harvesting of our garden. We thought the nasty freeze would kill all the lettuce but it didn’t! I cut lettuce, probably 60 tomatoes, one sad little yellow squash amongst dozens of black leaves, green beans, chives, about 10 yellow onions, lavender, oregano, thyme, and the little boys dug up about 20 small carrots. James had Kinnick Lowe over after school and they had so much fun together. We had pasta for dinner—shells with alfredo sauce, turkey sausage, and sautéed onions, squash, and green beans from the garden, with a gorgeous green salad full of home grown veggies. Niles was especially excited because he helped me plant those starts way back in May.

Friday was Homecoming for Park High school and the whole town was a-buzz. Heidi and James stayed to march in the homecoming parade from 4-5pm. The parade was led by the first marching band at Park High since 1978, which I think is just AWESOME. Heidi had her friend Sophia over for dinner, then they went to the game with Sophia’s family. We got the littles to bed and Addie and I watched LOTR “Return of the King” since we hadn’t finished it last weekend. It was fun to make Book of Mormon parallels with Addie as we watched; what a wonderful world Tolkein created for us.

Saturday (and the night before) was a very rainy, cold day. It had been 95 degrees on my birthday, but it was only 50 Saturday. Rich finished winterizing the sprinkler system and yard while I finished laundry and chilled with the kids. The girls and I left for Bozeman at 3pm to go to the mall and then to the Women’s Conference/ dinner at the Stake Center. Rich and the boys (including Cody) went to Museum of the Rockies and dinner, then came home and watched “Troll Hunter”. I had such a fun time with my girls. They met up with the Jones girls and the Repscher girls, so we had this long table full of beautiful girls, with mamas on each end listening to the joyful middle school chatter. Then we all sat together, plus Aunt Jenn and her girls,  for the broadcast from Salt Lake City which was sweet. Once again, Deiter F. Uchtdorf hit it out of the park with his remarks. I want to tattoo his words on my girls’ eyelids so they can remember how awesome and divine they really are. It made me so excited for General Conference next week.

So today is Sunday, Fast Sunday, because General Conference is next weekend. I loved how President Uchtdorf referred to the Women's Conference last night as the opening session of general conference. I liked being reminded that the broadcast of General Conference is the grand finale of a week of training and learning and sharing for church members from all around the world. Our testimony meeting was lovely, Rich got to sub in James' class and I got to sub for Primary Chorister. We are now giving the kids a history lesson ala "Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure." All is well!
Much Love to all our family! Happy Birthday and baptism to cousin Matthew Melin, and Happy Birthday to Uncle Sam next Sunday. Have a great week!
Love, Rich and Jamie and Family

Aunt Angie and Ammon are surprised! 9/18

Niles writing a "pretty letter" to Grandma Lyn 9/19

Ammon, James, and Niles kept me company while Rich was away on Camporee

Freshly Bathed Ammon

Sweet little teether

I was so surprised to get a calendar from Jane Welch
 in Virginia for my birthday

Ammon looks worried about Niles The Crib Invader

Heidi marching in the homecoming parade (see red arrow) 9/26

The Senior Class Float in the Homecoming Parade--Michaela Claar!

Go, Rangers!

Saturday Morning Snuggles, Niles and Ammon 9/28

Heidi striking a Sherlock pose at Women's Conference

Mallory, Eden, Addie, Clara, and Heidi at
Women's Conference Dinner

Love these girls...even the photo bomber!

Addie and Clara ready for the broadcast

I posted this cute oldie for Throwback Thursday:
Heidi, Jake, James, Sam, and Addie snuggling in 2009

A sweet reminder

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Dear Loved Ones,                                                                                                                          ...