Friday, July 19, 2013


We had a very successful family reunion last week at Big Bear Lake in the mountains of Southern California.  We had all six children together for the first time in 4 years.  All ten of grandchildren were there too!   We were sad that Sariah and Joey could not make it!

Some of us camped at Serrano Campground on the North Shore of the lake.  And, some of us stayed in The Cabin, a really cool accessible cabin on the South Shore.

"The Cabin"

Big Bear Lake had lots of fun things to do, from a cool alpine slide, to paddle boats and hikes around the lake.  But, the best thing was just being together.  Being family!

Amy made us all shirts!  I think they came out great!!

Here are some pictures from our four days together!!

All the grandchildren. Joshua, Cindy, Andrew, Mike and Callan, in the back row. And Kyle, Spencer, Aiden, Joanna, Leah, Corbin and Thomas in the front row.  This was NOT an easy picture to get!

All our children, David and Evan in the back, Katie, April, John and Rachel in the front.

Amy, Callan, Aiden and John

Kyle loved the big bed in the master bedroom of The Cabin!!  It was so tall you had to climb a step stool to get on.

Auntie Rachel is the best Aunt ever!!  She took several rides down the Alpine Slide, this one with Thomas!

Katie and Brad guarding the deck from little run-a-ways.

David taking aim! Spencer and Andrew loved the pool table!

The little ones loved the little bridge out front of The Cabin.

Rachel, Aiden, Corbin, April and Thomas just strolling along.

Awe, siblings!! 

Joanna decided to push her own stroller!

Rock climbing with cousins is always fun.

The ever smiling face of Spencer!!

Andrew reminded me of Katie, always wanted to be in the picture!!

Thomas, Andrew and Corbin, just hanging out on a log!
An unusually large mustache!

Katie, Kyle, Joshua and Brad at the Discovery Center.

Paddle boating was harder than it looks.

Unless you are sitting in the back.

Katie holding on to Kyle for dear life.

David just hanging with his sweet girls.

Joanna was a dirt magnet but an adorable one!!

Andrew was our fire builder.

Brad's dutch oven cooking was yummy.

Auntie April and sweet little Callan.

  Matteo and Evan getting ready for a rousing game of Uno!

The best way to travel.  Notice Joshua's forehead??  He got the award for biggest goose egg ever!!

By the way we had several injuries from David and Leah crashing on the Alpine slide, to Evan tipping his wheelchair, and little ones crashing into each other and over their own two feet! Nothing serious happened though.

Kyle and Joanna just chillin' on the asphalt!

Leah was all smiles on the go-cart with her Daddy!

Enjoying dinner together.

Yikes!  A Bear!!

Time to ponder life!

Hey, guys how about some pool!
Leah had fun with all her cousins and I still knew how to french braid after all these years!

Corbin just being Corbin!

Thomas sharing a story! It must have been a good one because Aiden looks surprised.

Thomas had fun decorating cookies!

David speeding on the race track.

It is amazing how a simple thing like a little bridge can entertain children!

Well, this is one way to cross a bridge.  I was amazed the bridge didn't bust!

Sunday, July 7, 2013


Forty years ago today I married my one true love! 

Here is my letter to him today.

Dearest Mike,

How does forty years go by so quickly?  This year, I believe is the first year we have been apart on our anniversary.  It just seems like yesterday that we were married in The Chapel of Flowers in Covina.  Our wedding was very small with just immediate family attending.  That is what happens when you plan a wedding in two weeks.  But, I would not have had it any other way.  It is the ceremony and vows that are most important and we have been very happily married all these years.  It doesn't take a big wedding to make a marriage last. It takes patience and forgiveness and unconditional love.  I am so glad you have all those qualities.  

Thank you for letting me go to Provo to help David's family. I am sorry I can not be with you today.  But, we will definitely be making up for it later this summer in Hawaii.  I am looking forward to our trip. 

This week I have taken the opportunity to get out and walk early in the morning.  Many of the homes here near BYU are very old, as you know.  I love the architecture. Many are converted into multiple apartments. Does that sound familiar?  I have been flooded with memories.  It reminds me so much of the first year we were married  and our apartment in Pocatello, right down the street from Idaho State University.  We lived in the bottom apartment, one of four, of an older two story home.  I loved how the kitchen and living room were one big room and that big claw foot bathtub was so fun! It was our place just the two of us, and I fell more in love with you. Such sweet memories that first year of our life together. 

Our First Home

I also started pondering how our love has grown and been added onto in ways that I could not have even imagined forty years ago.  Just think, from the love the two of us have shared we now have a family of 23!  And it keeps growing! I have continually loved watching you play with our children and now our grandchildren. They all love you so much! It warms my heart. 

Thank you for forty wonderful years.  I am looking forward to FOREVER with you! 

With all my love,

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