Sunday, November 29, 2009

SO Thankful!

I had planned to spend the whole month of November blogging about things that I am thankful for... but as you can see it never happened. That seems to be the story of my life these days. Lots of good ideas... not a lot of execution... I will try to do better. I feel so unorganized in all aspects of my life. I need to spend a few days this week getting some good lists made and a game plan to get things done, or else I am going to be a mess come Christmas. I didn't plan to write about my struggles, I was going to write about things I am thankful for! So here are a few...

Wonderful Husband!
Great kids
Ashley home for the weekend
Awesome parents
Loving family
Gospel of Jesus Christ
Good health
Husband's job
My work with Stacy
YW Calling
New Computer
and the list could go on and on...

Here are a few highlights from our Thanksgiving weekend. We had dinner at our house and had a wonderful day! Don't get confused by the guest list... We had My brother Scott, his wife Jenn, Afton, Jenn's mom Joanna, Joanna's sister Debbie and her husband Danny and their son Aaron and his wife Crystal. Then Danny's cousin and his wife came for a little while. It was great to get to know Jenn's family better. They are so funny! We were laughing the whole evening. Scott and Jenn are in the middle of moving and so is Aunt Debbie, so they were all homeless for the holidays... so we invited them all over. Everyone helped with the cooking, so it went really smooth.
I love this man!!
The girls...
The boys... and Afton (Jenn wanted Thanksgiving pictures with Afton)
John carving the turkey...
Joanna and Danny...
Table 1 (Joanna, John and Danny)
Table 2 everyone kept moving from table to table... Mitch, Tanner, Scott, Jenn, Aaron, Crystal and Debbie

I know... bad picture... but I wanted to remember this...
Aunt Debbie loves my Aunt Janet's rolls and she had one in each hand! and she didn't stop talking about them... So funny! (they are a tradition in the Westra family! Can't have Thanksgiving without them!)

John set up some games in the spare room. The boys had fun playing...

My chocolate cream pie that didn't set right... it was totally lopsided.

Tanner made this Jello-cookies and cream pie!
Friday John and I got up early and did some shopping. We went to Fashion Show mall and found a few good deals. We had been saving for new computer and we broke down and got it one because it was on sale. We have been fighting over it all weekend! We got this. It's is an early Christmas present! I am So happy! I hope you all had a Great Thanksgiving!! I am thankful for all of you!!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Mommy and Daddy

My mom and dad came to visit last week. We had a great time with them. My brother Scott is buying a house and they came to help clean the house and get them packed up. The house has great potential and they got an amazing deal on it, but as you can see it needs new carpet, paint and LOTS of cleaning.

John was scraping ceilings...

We spent many hours just cleaning the kitchen! It was sick. I think they had food fights or something... food all over the walls.

After a few days of working, we did have some fun.
My dad was addicted to the Wii... it was so funny.
As you can see in the picture,
he and Mitchell are bowling.
Mom loved the warmer weather and spent time outside reading a book.
Scott and Jenn came over Sunday and it was Afton's 8 month b-day, so they took some pictures.

My mom LOVES the fountains at the Belagio... so of course she made a trip down there!
I Love my mom and dad and love it when they visit!!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


There is always something wonderful about returning home after you have been away. I love my family and love my house... it is HOME. I had a interesting string of thoughts about "home" while I was at church on Sunday. I was sitting in my old ward looking around at familiar faces and was feeling a little homesick for my old home... then I was sitting in Relief Society singing the opening hymn and it took me to Camp Stimson, sitting in the amphitheater with all of my YW and all of my friends in Vegas and I got this overwhelming feeling of peace. It was a little reminder that home is where my family is and Vegas is home. I LOVE our ward and stake and all the friends that have come into my life here! Isn't life wonderful! It takes us so many places and we get to have amazing experiences and friends all along the way!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Girls weekend...

I am up in Spokane hanging with great friends. Last night was my friend Megan's 13th annual Christmas card party. I have been to about 10 of them and look forward to it every year. What could be more fun than staying up late talking, eating, laughing, catching up and crafting with wonderful friends?

Michelle, Jenna and Christine working hard...
Mindy and Michelle relaxing... (Mindy came from utah)

Lots of yummy food to eat...

Whitney, Cory, Stacy and I

Heather, Stacy and Heidi

Sheryl & I

Megan, Mindy and Kerry

I feel so blessed that everywhere I have lived, I have always been able to make good friends. And I love that we have moved around a bit so I have lots of great friends! When I think of the different cities we have lived in, I don't always think of the house we had, but the friends that I had when I lived there. As I sat at the party last night and looked at all of these ladies, I thought about how they had all been a part of my life when we lived there for 7 years. One was a counselor when I was yw's president, several of us did "joy school" with our little boys, one was my boss and great friend, 3 of us were pregnant at the same time, one made applesauce and canned peaches with me, one swapped baby-sitting all the time, one was very sick when she was pregnant and I remember cleaning her house and I hardly knew her at the time, one had the most beautiful voice and touched my heart with her talent, one hosted our going away party, one had us over for Christmas dinner, one is married to a guy who served a mission with my brother John and so much more! All of them will always have a special spot in my heart. I often talk about missing the beauty of the northwest, but it's the people that I miss the most... so glad I got to spend a few days with these great ladies.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Sweet 16

How could this cute little baby be 16?? I'm not sure how it happened so fast, but it is true... he turned 16 yesterday. Mitchell has been such a wonderful son. He was a great baby and a mischievous toddler, a fun little boy and a now he is a great teenager! We love our Mitchell! I scanned a few pictures of him to share with you... they each show a characteristic of him that we LOVE!

SO HANDSOME! His blessing day...

LOVING: Cute big sister and baby boy!

ALL BOY! Like I said, he was a mischievous little boy! He loved getting into things! I had to get a lock for my fridge... he would go in the kitchen and dump things on the floor! like eggs... (you got to love pictures like this where the background tells so many stories... an unmade bed... 80's wallpaper, a wreath that i made out of dried roses, our very first computer we bought, it was a color mac classic! We saved up for that for a long time! Look how small the screen is... pictures tell a lot of stories!)

FASHION: He has always been our fashion boy... he used to wear khakis and collared shirts everyday in elementary school. I don't think he wore jeans and t-shirts till a couple years ago!

DETERMINED! He spent hours spear fishing in Hawaii! He was determined
to catch a fish and he did!

ATHLETIC AND CHARMING! He is great at sports and the girls love him.
He is the only boy his age in our ward, so his best friends are the girls... (i picked him up from school yesterday and he had a cake, cupcakes, a balloon and a crown that different girls had given him)

TALENTED: He is very musically talented! He loves his guitars and plays them so well! Hopefully someday he will sing again... he used to sing as a little boy... but now he is too shy... Once in a while I stand outside his room and listen to him sing to his guitar... he's great. I probably shouldn't write that or he will stop doing it...

He wanted to go to Chili's for his b-day dinner! It was yummy.

We Love that cake, it was gone in seconds!

Happy birthday Mitchell!! We love you so much!! Thanks for being such a good boy!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Halloween Activities

In case you are wondering, I never put up any Halloween decorations and think this is the first year in my life that i didn't carve a pumpkin... I feel a little guilty about that one. John says that is like having Christmas without a Christmas tree! In spite of the lack of pre-halloween spirit, we did have a fun dressing up and trick or treating...

A few days before halloween, John and I went to a really fun murder mystery party. John was told to dress up like a ware-wolf and I was a grim reaper. We went all out on the costumes and had a great time. It was a bit of a challenge getting the hair off of John's face... I didn't read the instructions for the adhesive very well, it said, "remover not included." oops...

We took advantage of the 4 day weekend (Nevada day and teacher inservice day) and headed up to Provo. We picked up Ashley and headed to my sisters house for dinner and games.

Can you guess what Mitchell was acting out in charades??

Cindy made delicious caramel apples!

On Saturday we drove up to Todd's house so Tanner could go trick or treating with the kids... he had fun chillin on the guitar...

Ashley and baby Justin

The Westra's and Tanner all ready to party! Dallin blended in with Tanner... oops.

On Sunday we went up to Temple Square to entertain Todd's kids while he and Sharolyn went to a special meeting for Salt Lake temple workers. President Uchdorf spoke to them! Pretty lucky. We had a good time looking around with the kids. Grandma and Grandpa were so cute... they need to go on another mission there!

Todd's girls LOVE Mitchell. they would walk around holding his hands! Then Mitchell had his backpack with all of his halloween candy in it!! He couldn't say no to them...

One of my dad's beautiful pictures of the temple!

We got to go in Ashley's room during visiting hours on Sunday. it was good for the boys to see where she was... Ashley treated us to a few meals while we were there. She had $100 on her dining plus meal plan that she needed to use. (you loose it if you go over $100) We got it down to $18! We ate good!

It was great to spend the weekend with family! We love them all! Especially this cute girl! We will see her in a few weeks for Thanksgiving!