Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Small Sacrifices!

This week mom and I were talking and she told me about the lesson she gave in church. The topic was "SACRIFICE." By definition sacrifice is "the act of giving something up." She even went further to say it is the act of giving something up for something better. I have been thinking about that a lot lately! Jordan came home a couple of weeks ago and announced that she made the JV softball team at Boyd!!!! WAY TO GO JORDAN!!!! Last Thursday Jordan broke the news that the JV team would be practicing a couple of hours before school. Friday would be their first early morning practice. For any ordinary kid this would be just fine....but for Jordan this meant that since practice started at 6:45 she would have to attend the 5:45 church seminary class rather than the 7:00 class she was currently attending. Does the word sacrifice come to mind??? What a huge SACRIFICE for Jordan to make. She knows the importance of attending seminary and is also excited to be a part of the softball team, which is why she is willing to sacrifice her time and sleep so she can do that. Now on the other hand, you can imagine my own personal selfish feelings on this subject. Since Jordan has to leave the house at 5:30 - who do you think is taking her??? Yup...ME! Did I wake up Friday morning with a smile on my face and positive attitude. Sad to say...nope I didn't. I crawled out of my warm bed, grabbed my pillow and blanket - and when we got to the church I climbed in the back seat and tried to sleep while Jordan was in class. As I tried to sleep, I noticed a group of ladies joined together getting ready to run. My immediate thoughts were....are they crazy!!! It's way too early to run, and way too cold! Monday rolled around and I adjusted my attitude a bit. I did something absolutely out of character and I decided to join the ladies running. Yes it was way too early and very cold. The route we ran was approximately 3 miles. Did I run the whole time....absolutely not. But proudly I would say I ran atleast 2 miles of it. For those that know me - I am NOT a runner! I don't like running and quite frankly on Monday I wanted to throw up multiple times. But when it was all said and done, eventhough I could hardly breath and my lungs were on fire - it felt good! Monday night and Tuesday I was paying for it. I was sore in places I didn't know I could be! Wednesday morning came and I'm happy to report I didn't back down and ran again. I'm hoping it will get easier each time. SO - I have decided if my daughter can sacrifice, I should be able to also! I am sacrificing my sleep for my daughter's growth in the gospel. (which is definately a something better) AND I'm also trying to learn to love running! Will this sacrifice be easy???? I am going to have to say no! 5:15 every morning will be tough, but totally worth it!
As parents most of us sacrifice a lot for our children. We sacrifice many different things, but I think now - I will I sacrificing something good for something better???? I know while some of these small and simple sacrifices seem hard, they are totally worth it!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Great Wolf Lodge!!!!

I can't believe it has been a week and I haven't is a little crazy right now :) Last week the kids had a four day weekend, so we wanted to do something together as a family. We had thought about camping, or going somewhere, but we had to be here on Saturday for basketball games. SO - we decided to surprise the kids and take them to the GREAT WOLF LODGE. We have been wanting to take the kids for a while now, but could never find the right time to go. It was perfect! What made it even better was that the kids had no idea!!! When school got out on Thursday they came home with plans of hanging out with friends and sleepovers. I told them we were going to go to grandma's house and have some family time! They really wanted to hang out with friends, but agreed to give me one night of family bonding!!! We left the house and began our drive to grandma's house. They noticed immediately once we passed grandma's house. I told them we were going to meet Rick for a bit....(since Rick works over that way, they totally believed me :) We kept driving and the kids were getting a bit ansy. Once I was close to the Great Wolf Lodge I turned down the radio and asked the kids if they would like to stay at Grandma's or asked if they would rather stay "here." Just then we were pulling into the Great Wolf Lodge parking lot. The boys started shouting..."yes, yes, yes." Paige got a big smile on her face and was speechless, and Jordan smiled then started to cry. I wasn't sure if she was excited or not. (I'm pretty sure she was excited!) We did have some other friends of ours that were going to be there that night also. These friends of ours have boys Jordans I think she was a little worried about what I had packed for her. :)The front of the hotel was awesome...two gigantic wolves in front!!!! Of course it was the perfect picture op!
We parked and walked inside. The kids LOVED it!!!! The hallways were painted like a forest with fun things on the walls. Little did I know, but Rick had gone over on his lunch hour and checked in for us already. Once we got to our room, he had a cookie cake waiting for us and a sweet note for me. The kids went crazy! Our room had a small log cabin looking area for the kids with bunk beds and another twin bed in it. Immediately they "called" who was sleeping where. They also had a little fun climbing all over everything! Once we unloaded all our stuff, we jumped right into our swimming suits! The Great Wolf Lodge is a hotel with an inside water park. The waterpark is awesome! Lots of things to do for kids of all ages! They even have a hot tub for adults only! (I loved that :) They also have arcades, spas, restaurants, and a really neat Quest for the kids to go on. The hotel is totally kid friendly!!!! Right when you walk into the hotel there is a great big window for you to look in and see the water park. They also have a huge clock. This is where they have storytime everynight for the little kids. Once we got into the waterpark, we weren't sure what to do first! The kids found their way over to a fun area where they had lily pads and logs tethered to the bottom of the pool. It was so fun to watch the boys hop along the lily pads....Chase squatted down into his frog position and jumped across those lily pads like it was nothing. Cody would get ready to start across them and if I turned my head, he was already done! Jordan was determined to make it all the way across without getting wet. BUT - her very first lily pad, she so gracefully hopped on and tipped herself right over!Paige was a natural and was very careful to make sure she didn't splash in the water.
The kids also had fun trying to all fit on the log....they would all climb up so carefully, then Chase would find a way to tip everyone over :)Our favorites were the water slides. Even Cody went on the ones he was tall enough for. He wasn't sure at first, but once he gave it a try, he loved them! One waterslide was called the tornado. This is what it looked like from the outside. (most of the waterslides would start inside, then make their way outside, then end up back inside.) The tornado was CRAZY!!! Five people could ride in the round tube. The ride started just like any waterslide, then you would go down a big drop into the round swirl....the tube would slide up and down the sides of the swirl, then you would shoot out back into the slide and make your way to the end. What made the ride fun, was the fact that Rick and some of the other guys we were with decided to jump out of the tube while we were in the swirl. They would jump out completely with the goal of making their way back into the tube before the end....OR, they would jump out while still holding on to the tube and pretend like they were surfing! Yes, there were a few bumps, bruises, and even some blood drawn, but they had a blast!!! Rick is slowly realizing he may be getting too old for that stuff, but won't admit it!!! :) I have to give kudos to Jordan for hanging in with all the crazy boys. She was right there in the middle of it all, not afraid to be crazy with them!
That night we went out for dinner (since the hotel restaurant was crazy expensive). When we came back, the kids wanted to just run around and play. Thank goodness the hotel was SUPER KID FRIENDLY! It was nice having our other friends their because they all had kids my kids age. Rick and I hung out in the main lobby playing checkers and tried to keep an eye on everyone. Later that night, I pulled out the ligretto cards and connect 4x4. Then we decided to play spoons.....THAT IS WHEN THINGS GOT CRAZY!!! Rick, myself, the kids and about 8 friends all played spoons. It was somewhat manageable until Jordan had the great idea of playing ultimate spoons. We were in the lobby right by the stairs. There were three flights of stairs, so the kids would put the last spoon on one of the stair landings....or there was a little "clubhouse" type area they would hide it in. Oh my gosh - it was so fun. Jordan was climbing over the couches, sprinting up the stairs! I even had to race her once....(note to self, take off the boots before running up a flight of stairs.) We had such a great time....yes, we were crazy and probably very loud...BUT we had so much fun! Finally at midnight, Rick and I called it a night. I think we were all finally in bed asleep around 1:00 AM. The next morning we packed up our stuff and loaded it all in the car. We had to check out, but we could stay at the waterpark all day. Another neat thing the hotel has is a MagiQuest for the kids to do. We bought a wond, and they send them on a quest. This goes throughout the whole hotel. The kids point a wand to different things....if they point it to a box, it will open. If they point it to a book, it will open. If they point it to the wolf it will stand up. If they point it to a sun, it will sparkle. Chase and Cody loved it!!! I think they spent a good 3 hours with their buddies trying to conquer their quest....they finally conquered the first one!!!They were running around the hotel while Rick and I were in the water park. I turned to him and asked, "should I be worried the kids are running through the hotel??" I guess if it were any other place I would have been. We ended up staying until 8:00 that night.... We had such a great time! I loved our family bonding weekend. There was something for everyone and we were able to have some much needed time away. Can't wait to go back!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010


Paige is 11 today!!!!! Boy how time flies!!! I remember when Paige was born. We didn't know if we were having a boy or a girl....when the doctor said, "GIRL" - Rick and I were so excited!!!! We love our girls! We were talking today, thinking about Paige, and we realized what a great kid she has been. I honestly can't think of a single time when she has been SUPER NAUGHTY! (knock on wood) She has been such a joy to have in our family. I would describe her as the second mom of the family! She is the one that always makes sure everyone has what they need, everyone has a lunch, homework done, teeth brushed, and hair combed. I can always count on Paige to get things done if I am not home.
Tonight we took Paige to dinner at the Olive Garden. She has been begging to eat there for quite some time....One of her cute little friends, Kalee came with us along with Grandma...we had a great time!!! Here we are with the birthday girl! She already looks so grown up!Thanks for coming with us Grandma! We had fun laughing with you!! :)Paige opened her presents and thought she won the jackpot with Kalee's present! THANKS KALEE!!! I'm sure Paige will find something she will love!Paige also got some cute new clothes. BUT.....
She was super excited to open the bright yellow coat from Grandma!Paige has had her eye on this coat for a little while now. She loves yellow and immediately loved this coat....I must say, it does look pretty cute on her.
Paige was excited, but also a little embarrassed when the Olive Garden staff came in with a cake for her....they all sang (along with us of course!) After the song she took a nice big breath and was ready to blow out the candles.....BUT, they were MAGIC candles!!!!They kept coming back and coming back!!!! All the kids had to help her blow them out.......but they kept coming back and coming back....Finally, they pulled the candles out and put them in a glass of water! Paige was lucky though - she got to make lots of wishes!! It was so cute...when we were serving the cake, Paige assured us there was no spit on the cake from all the blowing. (I'm not sure I believed her :)


Saturday, January 9, 2010


This past week has been the coldest 7 days EVER in Texas! Okay, maybe not ever, but for sure in the past 12 years I have lived here. I'm pretty sure for the past week I have NOT been warm....The temps for the past two days has not gotten out of the 20's....yesterday with the wind chill it was 9 degrees!!!! I know, I know - for those of you that live in cold weather areas, these temperatures are nothing.....but for warm blooded me.....IT'S FREEZING!!! My family makes fun of me because I am either cuddled up next to the fire with a blanket or sitting with my coat on. I have hot chocolate every night before I go to bed just to warm my insides :) The poor kids aren't used to this coldness! We don't usually have to walk out of the house with heavy coats on, let alone hats and gloves.....The other day Jordan came home from softball with her shorts on, the boys left the house with a light weight jacket, and Paige leaves just wearing a sweater! We need some major adjustments!!!!!
I actually like the cold is a nice change, but if it is going to be this cold, it could atleast SNOW, so we are forced to stay inside!!!! :)

Saturday, January 2, 2010


We are not singing "Silver Bells" at our house, but "Wedding Bells"! Over Christmas Break we had the opportunity to spend a week with Donny's girlfriend, Sarah! She is awesome and going to be great with Donny! She is fun, willing to try new things, willing to be silly with Donny, smart, and a great person! We are so excited for him and can't wait to get to know her better!
Yesterday morning as they took a walk on the beach, Donny proposed! Congratulations Donny and Sarah we are so excited for the both of you! It looks like they are planning a summer wedding! Welcome to the family Sarah!

A Wonderful Holiday!!!

We had a great Christmas break in Texas! I wanted to give you a little preview of all the fun!
Kids singing on Christmas Eve!Rick and Donny having WAY too much fun!Having fun playing cards with the fam!Kristen, Donny, and I having fun together!Fun on New Years Eve!Playing in the snow!Jordan and Grandma and Grandpa!Cody and his Night Vision Goggles!Fun at the Ice Exhibit!

Keep reading to find out all the details......If you want to start from the beginning you will have to go down a few posts!

Happy New Year to ALL!!!!!

Happy New Year!

New Years Eve is always a fun night of games, food, laughter, more games, and MORE FOOD! We definitely had all three of those! I decided we would have a big Bunko game. We had such a good time playing, even the kids got involved! Wouldn't you know who got one of the first Bunkos!!! I'll give you a hint....he is wearing the orange hat! Sometimes the game even got a little serious! Another favorite of the night was spoons. Now this game has proven to get a little ugly and aggressive! But we wouldn't have it any other way. I have some great video of bodies flying over the table, adults stealing spoons from small children, and battles of who was stronger! In the end one came out the winner! Shane deserves the golden spoon!
The kids had a great time playing another favorite...Ligretto! Of course in between the games we would take food breaks to refuel! While we refueled, Jordan was busy getting ready for her New Years Eve dance at the church. I definitely had mixed feelings about this. This would be the first time EVER that she would not be with us on New Years. Trying to handle it...I helped her get ready and do her hair. Should I feel bad she was so excited to go and be with her friends?? Can you tell, I'm trying to handle it. :) Jordan looked beautiful. Once again, it just reminded me of how fast she is growing up! Before I drove her to the church, I insisted on New Year Family photos! I think she took a picture with everyone in the entire house! Jordan had a great time at the dance and even got some pictures of her and her friends while she was there. They are all so beautiful! I am so glad she has such good friends!
Back at Grandmas house we waited for the clock to strike midnight and got everything ready....pots and pans and more importantly our "special drink." (that is what the kids call it. Actually sparkling grape juice!) As the clock stroke midnight we all headed out and in our celebrating fashion....banged those pots and pans as loud as we could...just to make sure everyone heard us. Then hurried inside for our toast and New Year wishes. The cousins had such a great time together. Not a one of them was even tired! As I stood there looking at my family, again I was reminded one was missing....yes I cried! I know, I'm a baby. What in the world am I going to do when my kids go off to college or on missions??? I did get to talk to Jordan on the phone, so that made me feel a little better.
We hope all of our friends and loved ones have a very happy and healthy New Year!
Looking at this new year, I feel blessed to have a family, a husband, employment, a house to live in, cars to drive, and food to eat. There are so many in the world suffering or living on much less than what we have. We are very blessed. The picture above are the "reserved" Petersons! This is how we REALLY are!!!!I am looking forward to a wonderful new year!