Tuesday, December 30, 2008

More fun in the snow!

Welcome to North Dakota! Heavy Duty Parka's a must!
Ben had the day off today(work was cancelled) so we played in the beautiful snow. We were having so much fun we didn't really think of the temperature. But when we came back inside to drink our hot chocolate, we found out it was -25 outside. I guess you just get used to it or your brain just freezes.



Christmas was spectacular. And especially white. This is Gracie's favorite present!






Sunday, December 14, 2008

Hybernation

For those of you who may secretly desire to have an adventure in Antarctica, despite the cold, may I suggest an alternative: to come to Minot, North Dakota. I assure you, your experience will be a winter adventure of surviving sub zero temperatures and terrible windchills. If you come at the right time, you can even experience the Northern Lights. The one advantage to coming to North Dakota is that there are people here, including us. And we could, of course, visit and put you up in some decent lodging during your stay.
We are currently hybernating in our home. A blizzard decided to come our way, snowing several inches, all of which is blown in huge drifts, causing closed roads etc. The wind chill has been anywhere from -25 ranging to -60. Wind gusts have been around 50 mph. I really don't see any disadvantage to seeing North Dakota unless you were planning to seek out the penguins.
Here are some fun pictures of this hybernation period. The boys thought it was really cool that there was ice on the inside of their window. They loved scratching their names into it. (Don't worry, their rooms are still heated, but the old windows can't take that cold!) The other picture is of our huge mound of snow. Ben, Jeffrey, me and Willy all worked on shoveling the driveway. What a feat!

P.S. For anyone interested in viewing Ben's new piece of art, and the other jr. artists working in our studio, visit his blog, using the link on the right. It's fantastic!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Recent photos


I truly enjoy my children. They are such blessings to me!
Grace is our Christmas queen
Wow! What joyful dramatic boys! Dallin and Little Ben enjoying breakfast.
This was funny! We heard Grace make a few discontent noises, and when I came in the living room, she had just laid down and fallen asleep by our basket of books, then Aja (the dog) laid down by her. We thought it was very cute.

Jeffrey, Abel and William playing "Twinkle, Twinkle little Star" for us on the bells during our Thanksgiving music program.

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Grace is such a joy! She has found her "fake" laugh. She tries to laugh now and it cracks us all up!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The center of attention

The boys love their little sister. As you can see, most things revolve around her. What a sweet blessing she is to our family.

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Thursday, November 13, 2008

Learning is fun

Homeschooling is sometimes challenging, but mostly fun. I realize more and more how fun learning can be. My children are always teaching me, and trying to teach them improves my learning as well. One benefit of homeschooling is that it can be imaginitive and fun, and individualized for strengths and weaknesses. Today, the boys wanted to learn about Africa and "built" an african jungle full of animals. We read stories from Africa, learned about their lives, made hunting masks etc. We also learned about humanitarian efforts in some parts of Africa. It was great!




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The other day I threw a pizza party for my sunday school class (ages 14-18). They were all here playing games. Jeffrey was playing a game called "Gobblet" (which we highly recommend - it is a game of strategy, not quite like chess, but similar in reasoning strategies) with some of the older kids. They just couldn't beat him! They would play again and again, with no luck. Finally, with a combined effort of 7 people, including me, we finally won. He is quite an intelligent child, and a little smart alec too. Heehee.

Here are a couple of other pictures.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Addendum


Ironically, after writing Ben's tribute about his last alert, it looks like his last alert turned into two alerts. We are currently experiencing somewhat of a blizzard. Because of the conditions, they are making the crews stay for a double alert. Can I survive one more night with him gone? If I've been doing it for four years, I suppose I can. My dreams of the last alert crushed!:) But now, only about 24 more hours! Such is military life. The wind is blowing at about 50 mph. The snow is blowing, creating huge drifts. We can't open our back door! The joys of not only military life, but of Minot, ND! At least it's not -60 yet!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Tribute to my man




I am sure Ben will feel ill at ease when he reads this, but I think he deserves a tribute. Today he left to go to the missle capsule for his last alert. His job as a "crew dog" in the missle field has been indescribably difficult. He has fought a good fight and has gone out with a bang. Not only is Ben the kind of person that does his job well, but he tries to make it better for others. Although he is moving on to an office job (actually it's in a vault, but it is not 70 feet under ground.) he is still trying to improve the work enviroment and training for others who are wearily going to the capsules. He is a wonderful officer and a true mentor and leader. I am so proud of him for serving his country, for moving forward the cause of liberty, for protecting our freedoms and for sacrificing for the benefit of his family and for others. I am thankful for all those who have and do serve in the armed forces, but I am most especially thankful for Ben. I love him! Perhaps he has flaws, but he is perfect for me. We are excited for him to be home with more scheduled hours and to have him sleep at home more than a few nights a week! Thank you, Ben!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Halloween
















Here are a couple of pictures from Halloween. Jeffrey was Harry Potter, William was a ghost, Abel was a pirate, Dallin was a green monster, Benny was a horse, and Grace was a pumpkin. I don't know about anyone else, but it seems like when I was growing up that it was so rare to get a little candy bar in our small town. We always got life savers and smarties. Boy is it different now. By the time we trick-or-treat for about half an hour it looks like we stole the whole candy store! Almost all the candy they get is what we coveted when i was a child: candybars, soda pop, even bags of cheetoes! They had tons of fun and I think the candy will last a year! (It should, but I am sure it won't.)





The night before Halloween we were carving pumpkins. The boys did a great job. Dallin was a hoot. He was watching me scoop out the inside of a pumpkin. He decided to help and said while looking at the inside exclaimed, "Oooh. That's disghosting!" That seemed to fit very well for Halloween!

Monday, October 27, 2008




It's finally here





















With several requests to start our own family blog, I finally decided it was time. We hope that those of you who want to keep track of our growing family will find this a good way to keep tabs on us. However, I hope that such things as blogs never take away from personal communication. So, for this first blog, here are some recent pictures.

Friday, October 17, 2008

We'll take a crack at this

It's about time we made our own blog. It seems I don't have much time to get it going, so I will post some soon and get this thing going.