Wednesday, December 30, 2009

A note from Dr. Stroud

In another strange "small-world" turn of events, Jaymeson is the oncologist for the former owner of our home. Marilyn - I hope I'm not violating some HIPAA law by mentioning her - is a most amazing woman. We met her the day we signed on the house and she was crying. She hugged us all and told us to take good care of the place. She told us it was made to hold millions of wonderful family memories. As you know, I want to hug my house everyday, and because of that, I feel I knew her well even though we had just met. This house is her and I love it with all of my heart, so of course I love her.

She has been battling cancer and came up an unexpected survivor. She beat incredible odds due to her faith and amazing attitude. She has inspired so many people. Unfortunately, she has been called to battle again. Jaymeson has been around patients and cancer for years. This is the first time I've really seen him pace and worry and care so very much. He loves Marilyn. He wrings his hands and wonders if there is more he can do or more he could have done and worries about her constantly. A couple days ago I caught him at his computer writing down his thoughts. I don't know if he was writing to her family or just getting it out of his system. I asked him if I could share them on here. He is a good man and a good doctor and I'm blessed to even know him - so blessed to be his wife. I'm amazed at how he is able to handle the sorrows that come with his occupation. (He becomes "partner" in a couple days!!) I want to remember this and also have his voice recorded here on the blog as well as my own.

If you’ll bear with me for just a moment, I’d like to share some thoughts about a wonderful person that I’ve recently come to know very well and feel like I’ve known forever. It is not by chance that we have come together in this life. Our Father in Heaven knows us well. He loves us and wants us to return to live with Him someday. And as such, we are brought down to this earth to gain physical bodies and to be tested and tried to see if we will remain faithful to God or forsake our faith in Him. We are all faced with trials and adversities in life, but it’s how we endure those tests of our faith that is important. In fact, learning to live happily and faithfully despite life’s unexpected difficulties, in my opinion, is one of the great lessons and purposes in life. Some of these trials can be very difficult, but I believe God will not give us any trial that he does not think we can handle. I see this as a testament to the strength of Marilyn as a person that God would allow her to go through so many trials in her life. She is a true survivor.

Of course a loving Heavenly Father would not leave us alone in our afflictions. We have family and friends to help us. Sometimes new friends are placed in our paths to help us through specific trials. I count myself blessed to be a part of Marilyn’s journey and I, too, believe this was not a coincidence.

With my wife recently going through her own battle with cancer, I learned from her a valuable lesson about survivorship. No matter what your trial, you can be a survivor or a victim. Even though we cannot choose our trials or the physical outcome of our trials, we can choose whether we become survivors or victims spiritually. A person like Marilyn who has fought valiantly and lost the physical battle with cancer can still be considered a survivor and even moreso in my book. A survivor, as my wife sees it, uses everything he or she has to come through to the other side of a trial with his or her spirit intact. Not everyone will survive physically. In fact the opposite is true. Everyone will not survive physically. We all pass through this life and at the end, leave our bodies behind and take that great step into the eternities. Our spirits survive even if our bodies don’t. We will see each other again. Of that, I am sure. So the ultimate test is how we spiritually endure the hardships we face in life.

I love the example of Job in the Bible who lost everything from his property to his children to his health. He was accused of sinning by his friends who turned against him. But he remained faithful, gave thanks, praised the Lord and said with all humility and sincerity, “For I know that my Redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth.” Job was a true survivor. We cannot predict what trials will come in life, but if we are prepared spiritually and endure well the hardships we face, we will be remembered not for whether we win or lose the battle but how we spiritually endure.

Not long ago, I was reading in a sports magazine an article titled “The Greatest Game Ever Pitched”. It told of the game Harvey Haddix of the Pittsburgh Pirates pitched against the Milwaukee Braves on May 26, 1959. The story picks up in the bottom of the ninth with two outs. “The Pittsburgh Pirates left hander tugged at the bill of his black cap, glared at his catcher from underneath and nodded. No one said anything but everyone knew he was one out away from pitching the seventh perfect game in history. The 78th pitch blew by the batter for the final out of the ninth inning. He had pitched nine perfect innings… but the game was not over. The score was still zero zero. He went on to pitch twelve perfect innings and then lost the game.” Sometimes, you can do everything even to perfection and still lose the battle. Though the game was lost, the title of the article stills says it all – “The Greatest Game Ever Pitched.”

Marilyn is a perfect example of someone who has lived her life in faith and happiness, despite the trials she faced. She did not have a why-me attitude but instead seemed to ask why not me. She looked for the small miracles in her life and has continued to thank God and praise Him for blessing her. I am truly grateful to have come to know Marilyn. I have never felt so close to a patient. Of course, I think of Marilyn as a good friend. I’m sad and frustrated to not be able to help Marilyn physically, but I’m happy to see another small miracle that she is not in pain. Thank you for allowing me to be a part of your lives.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

I'm Sorry

I love this blog. I love blogging. I'm overwhelmed. Every time I think about posting I think about all of the stuff I haven't blogged about yet and get tired and run away and hide in the tree house. I need to finish the summer and Camryn's baptism and the most amazing night of my life which happened in Arizona this past summer. I need to blog about Charlie and his funeral. I need to mention that I retired from Bazzill Basics Paper and the bittersweetness of that. I have hundreds of pics. Thousands of words. The tree house is calling to me even now. But I think I'll just start. It'll be a big jumble chronologically, but a year is a year, right? So I'll get started... tomorrow. Or maybe the next day.

The Leaders of Tomorrow

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

A Recipe

It seems like with all of the new diet "low-fat", low-cal" foods hitting the market these days, not to mention the increase in exercise happening all around that some people are not getting their daily nutritional value of both fats and sugars. Over the summer I tried really hard to be conscious of maintaining and even exceeding my daily values in these areas. I have been successful to the tune of 13 pounds. Impressive, I know. All it took was being a little more careful about how much green food I ate and trying harder to fit in those foods containing whole cubes of butter.

It's not hard. Here's a recipe to get you started:

1/2 cup butter
1 yellow cake mix
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup oats (so you can justify the rest)

Mix in your lime green kitchenaid until crumbly - as if you were going to use it for the topping of a peach or apple crisp. Next, being sure to scrape down the sides as you go, use a spoon to scoop all the crumbs carefully into your face. Repeat until bowl is empty.

More Epic Summer: FLORIDA

Erik & Brittany

We went to church only to find out it was stake conference and just getting over. Still counts?

Ells Bells and Ms. P

We pretty much had to sleep this way to fit us all in condo, but that's what family is all about, right?

Arrgghh. We took our kids on a pirate ship. Mason got to "mop the boat". Dreams do come true.

Look at his stomach. He's five. Ridiculous.

So late June, We drove down to the panhandle for some sand (via Atlanta). We stayed in a condo with Brittany (Jaymee's sister) and Grandma Jinky. Shane (jaym's bro) and his family came down for a couple days, too. It was a great place. We spent the entire week swimming at the beach and then going back to swim at the hotel. The sand is like powdered sugar. White and soft. They have Sonic AND Krispy Kreme donuts there. What's not to like? We ate much crab. We did much boogie boarding and got stung by many jelly fishes. Tiny ones. They floated like bubbles but stung like a bee. A hive of bees. But the sting didn't last and we decided it was worth it. Same time next year?

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Luke Pettit's 5k & Relay for Life

For his Eagle Project, Luke Petitt put on a 5K to benefit Shriner's hospital. It was HUGE. I can't believe how organized, planned and executed it was. Good job, Petitts! We were all going to run but my stroller was awful and Mason and Preslie gave up after the first mile. Jaym and the girls finished it, though. Preslie really ran almost a mile! She kept looking at me and saying,"I'n still running! I'n still running, Mom!" Those are little legs to run so far on.

Camryn fell down part way through and lost her running mojo. Brock Cima was running with them but had to move on when Camryn's complaints became such nonsense as, "my tears are making my face hot! waaa!" What? We'll add that one to our collection of stress-induced weirdspeak with the other gems like,"I can't hear you if your hand is over my mouth!!" and "You tell me to take a bath because you don't want me to take a bath!" But she finished and I'm proud of her for sticking it out.

The next weekend Jaymeson's work sponsored a Relay For Life. He went as a cancer doc and I went as a survivor. I walked the track with my "caregiver" Camryn. It was a little emotional. I don't like being forced to think about that stuff. I'd rather just move on and forget it, you know? But it's a good cause and ended up being a fun night.

Tea Party

I went to a TEA party in the spring and was so glad I did. I looked around and saw thousands of people just like me. Nobody was screaming or obscene. It was families and grandparents. People brought their kids and their dogs. I felt safe there. I felt like I wasn't alone. I have felt somewhat alone in my views because the media makes you feel like everyone else in the country feels the same way they do. It's not true. I saw thousands of others who yell at their tvs just like I do.

I don't know how things are going to go down, but I want be able to feel like I stood up for what I believed and fought the good fight.

Mason graduated

Mason went to a semester of gymnastics (we're trying to channel not squash his desire to climb everything). At his graduation, he performed such feats as walking, crouching and walk-crouching. Thank you, Little Gym. The best part of the night, however, came when Mason got to stand on a podium and receive a medal for his hard work and dedication. They hadn't even finished putting it on him when he leapt off the podium and ran to give it to Preslie. "Here you go, Babe! It's a medal I got for you." He loves her so much.

When she was born, I was afraid to have him brought to the hospital. He's got so much energy that I thought he'd try and climb my IV pole or jump out the window. Instead he put a hand on her little head and stared at her the entire time he was there. He didn't make a move or a sound. It was love at first sight and it has remained that way. You can't give anything to Mason without him giving her half. He calls her "Babe". "You want me to get you some fruit snacks, Babe? Wanna paint the mirror with fingernail polish, Babe?" 

Epic Summer

I wasn't going to be one of those people. You know - the ones who have abandoned their blogs to write one liners about their life via facebook or twitter. I said to myself,"Self, sentences like 'Man, I have a lot of laundry!' does not a life-record make!" but then, here it's been two months without a drop of blog. Sorry, Self. I'll do better. Thank you. You're welcome.

I'm going to try and catch up. Enjoy!

In May, Mason and his fiancè Taylor had their birthday parties together and invited Babaloo! to come. He's our favorite. He's so funny. He's figured out the perfect amount of potty humor to keep 5 year-olds laughing non-stop.

Why didn't sombody in my family figure this out? Leaf blower + paint roller + toilet paper! Sweet. Thanks, Babaloo.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

2009 Summer Bored List

We finished our Bored List a while ago but I'm of course only now posting it/printing it out for the kids. These are our summer goals. All of the kids contributed and now each one has a copy to check off. Their's are cuter than this. If we accomplish the entire list we get to go out for a fun night after school starts up again. Some are easy. Some are hard. Some are free and some aren't. Some are completely ridiculous. I don't judge. It's their list. The good news is that when my kids say,"I'm bored!" I know where they can look for ideas: (I'll BOLD the ones we've already checked off)

Bored List
1. go swimming in three different bodies of water 2. read Harry Potter 3. read scriptures 6 nights a week 4. learn a new boardgame with the Youngs 5. Blow bubbles 6. ride bikes 25 times around the circle 7. kids cook dinner 8. watch Spongebob 9. be quiet for an hour 10. dig a hole for trampoline 11. play Club Penguin 12. breakfast for dinner 13. talk to a boy on the phone 14. make mom’s bed 15. eat krispy kreme donuts 16. play on the DS 17. jump on the trampoline 18. go to SONIC 19. Play Wii 20. ride bikes to Gators 21. go night swimming 22. listen to iPod under a tree 23. don’t lie for a whole day 24. don’t tattle for a whole day 25. talk in whispers for one day 26. dance party in the basement 27. go to Six Flags 28. go fishing with real worms 29. See Harry Potter 30. make blackberry pie 31. get alfalfa pellets for the deer 32. ask mom if you can help 33. play with the cats 34. sleep in a tent 35. go to Lagoon 36. make tshirts 37. draw with chalk on the driveway 38. write an email 39. write a letter to jaik 40.learn about an animal 41. do a book report for the library 42. catch fireflies 43. watch Anne of Green Gables 44. blow up a balloon 45. play spy with brady 46. cook smores in the firepit 47. pronounce “Jerusalem” as “Juice-slam!” 48. have mason teach us a mobap song 49. write a love letter 50. don’t kiss anyone besides family for the WHOLE SUMMER 51. go to the dentist 52. sing a song 53. walk to church 54. look for shapes in the clouds 55. babysit for one hour 56. write a story 57. learn the lyrics to a Kina Grannis song 58. teach mason to tie his shoes 59. potty-train preslie 60. stay in jammies all day 61. build a fort 62. sleep in until 9 63. lick the mirror 64. make a video and put it on youtube 65. wash the car 66. win a prize 67. run a 5k 68. go to the cabin 69. play grandpa’s game 70. kiss a dog 71. buy something on ebay 72. paint/color a picture 73. mismatch clothes day 74. climb the rockwall at the Y 75. take a picture 76. get your top score on bejeweled 77. make a play 78. run around the house five times 79. go ice blocking 80. slip-n-slide 81. get a tan 82. whiten our teeth with crest whitestrips 83. a private date with mom and dad 84. do some service 85. sing karaoke 86. learn to say,”hi” in four different languages 87. don’t kill dad 88. cure some cancer 89. invite a different family to BBQ and swim 90. Hawaiian clothes day 91. make a list of 50 things you’re grateful for 92. learn a new trick on the diving board 93. laugh until it hurts 94. say tree something random heart sometime 95. play hide and seek 96. stay up past midnight 97. go to a beach 98. collect something 99. make a baby laugh 100. watch fireworks

Monday, June 1, 2009

Get Well Soon, L'il Fellas

Anyone who knows me knows I love animals. I do. I have many in my house in my care. That is why it makes me so sad to see them suffer. My only hope is that Amy and I can be a glimmer of brightness in what appears to be a really bad day.

Get well Soon.

Monday, May 25, 2009

My Mother's Day Tradition

I have a strange Mother's Day Tradition. Every year I try my hardest to get out of anything remotely related to mothering. I was raised in a home where this particular holiday was scary at best. The Saturday before we could already see that the next day was going to be a disaster. You could hear the ticking. Tick tick tick tick. The house wouldn't be clean, (tick tick) we kids would probably fight (tick tick) and hide one of our church shoes some place. One of use would break her obligatory sacrament meeting carnation. (tick tick) Or everything could go pretty good. (tick? tick?) It didn't matter. Mother's day was a day when Mom cried. BOOM!! Why? I don't know. What is even harder to explain is why I carried this tradition on into my own home. I'm terrible. I don't like my presents - even if it is a very thoughtful breast pump or vacuum. I'm mad when I have to make my own dinner. Don't EVEN get me started on breakfast in bed. Why would i want to eat cheerios in my bed with four kids climbing on me begging for bites? It's an unwinnable day for my family and so now as a special treat to myself, I try to be as far from my children as possible. 

I've done pretty good. I was in Arizona a few years back for Courtney's baptism, I was in France two years ago for a medical conference with Jaymeson, I was stuck penniless in Barcelona and London last year and this year I was supposed to be in Mexico. Stupid swine flu wrecked that. We had to cancel our cruise and I started panicking. What? Home for Mother's Day? No way. Jaymeson was relieved by the cancellation because it really was bad timing for him due to the fact that his boards are in a couple weeks. He decided to keep that week off work so he could study. That's when the wheels started turning. A free babysitter for a week (I conveniently didn't hear the part about the studying). Just for fun, I looked up flights to Hawaii. Sara lives there and said I could come visit whenever. Just for more fun, I booked a $350/RT flight and took her up on her offer.

I went to Hawaii ALONE FOR A WEEK. Best week ever. Not only did I cross the Pacific and got to a whole new place, I went back in time. I was in college again. A little older and frumpier, but oh so happy. Sara goes to BYU-Hawaii. We did all the things you're supposed to do in college: we broke into resorts to use their hot tub; we climbed up onto the roof of the apartment to watch the stars; we took silly pictures of ourselves with strangers on campus; we ate way too much and slept way too little. It was awesome. 

When I got there, the rental place's computers were down, so they gave me a Jeep. We became fast friends. We spent the week in the sun listening to music together. It played "all of Hawaii's best music- not just some of it." It didn't have ONE fruit snack in it. 

(this is us in the LOST trees)

I love Oahu. I felt like it was my home. I want to live there. The first morning I was upside down in time so I got up and went for a walk about 5am. I tried to find the beach but I found the temple instead.  It was Mother's Day and I was leaning up next to a palm tree at the temple in Hawaii watching the sun rise. There were hymns playing from a speaker at the base of the tree. The whole time I sat there, nobody patted my arm to get my attention so they could tell me that Mason was naked. Nobody asked me for a sippy full of milk. Hallelujah! Hallelujah! 

On Monday, we went snorkeling at Sharks' Cove and swimming at a beach that starts with a "W". Later we got Thai food and shave ice at Matsumoto's. It was delicious. I think I got Stwauva Gwaberry. I only had to buy one for myself. Nobody spilled. Luxury.

Then I went on a date with a guy who was only using me to get to my roommates. We ate raw salty fish with onions called poke. 

On Tuesday, we hiked and hiked and hiked and finally came to the path that was the beginning of the hike. We hiked some more and made it to Muanawilli (sp?) falls. That was BEAUTIFUL. And scary. Since I was in college again, we took this opportunity to be both brave and stupid. Sara and I climbed up the tallest cliff and after telling ourselves we could do hard (stupid) things, we clasped hands and jumped!! It was three times "where's the water!?" high or maybe about 50 feet? Higher? I'll tell you something else... come closer - it's a secret... when you jump off really high cliffs, keep your legs together. 

We ate some more, went to some beaches and made it home just in time for the night show at the PCC. Sara and Gina (you can pronounce her name so many fun ways in public places REALLY LOUD) work there, so I got in for super cheap. That was cool. Watching ladies shake and men burn themselves. We found out we could take pictures of us with the burn victims. That's when I realized my camera was gone. Sad. Embarrassing. Maybe we took some pictures of ourselves "college-style" in the jungle and we didn't really want people to see them? We must have left it at the beach when that wave crashed over us when we were sleeping. 

So we decided we'd go back and find it the next day after our adventures at the swap meet. Yes!! That was a happy place. Cheap t-shirts and dried mangoes as far as the eye could see. I bought matchy dresses for my girls and a cool carved bone necklace for us to represent our Ikaika-selves that jumped off that cliff. 

We journeyed on to Hanauma Bay. I had told Sara that all I really wanted out of the whole week was to see a turtle. (I have a turtle thing.) We were barely in the water when we found a big, beautiful sea turtle. He was pleased to meet us. He didn't care that we were there at all. We just followed him around and probably touched him. I can't say for sure because it's against the law. He beat out the Jeep as my new best friend.

(not my picture)

We went back to the beach where we had lost the camera and before I even said a word, the lifeguard said,"you lost your camera, right?" Hooray and dang. Hooray for the camera, dang that he had obviously seen the pictures. He didn't have said camera, but he gave me the # of the guy who did. We had to wait until the next day to call him. 

To fill the time, Phil took us surfing! I didn't do too bad, but I lack the upper body strength need to get that long board out past the waves over and over. I felt very wimpy. But happy that I stood up once and that I got to see the sunset sitting on a surfboard in Hawaii. Thanks, Phil.

Then Thursday happened. Let us never speak of it again. It was a bad day. We got the camera back from other lifeguards who had obviously also looked at the pictures but the batteries were missing and all the pictures were deleted. Even the ones of us spelling korean words with our bodies and some random koreans on the steps of the CAC. Sara and I were sad all that day. It was not the right day for me to leave. We knew it but were powerless to stop it. There were no turtles at Hanauma Bay. I had to drop Sara off at a bus station to get home while I got lost looking for the rental return place. When I got to the airport I was so sad. The lady at the counter told me my flight was delayed 4 hours and in typical shelby-in-college fashion, I started to cry. Stupid Thursday. Stupid leaving too soon. Luckily, grown-up Shelby reminded me that I do control my destiny a little. I walked back up to the counter and asked for a redo. This was a bad day. It was not the day I was supposed to leave. Could I stay another day and start over? She said,"You'd do that?? Oh that's great! That really helps us." Turns out the flight had been cancelled while I was crying and they were trying to get everyone on a 7am flight the next morning. So wish-granted, I left the airport to take a scary 3 hour bus ride back to Sara's.

My redo day was much better. We woke up early and got banana pancakes bigger than us. We went swimming again and then spent the rest of the day alone on a beautiful beach. We laid in 6 inches of warm water on sand-pillows. We laughed our heads off and made our plans for next time. When I got back to the airport that night I felt so much better and was ready to leave. It wasn't that I wanted to, but more that I felt I could. My battery-recharge was complete and I was ready and excited to face my real life again.

So, I have much thanks. I'm thankful for Sara (and Gina - pronounced so many wonderful ways) who let a frumpymomoffour live their life with them for a few days. They were more fun than I even thought they'd be. I was smiling and laughing the ENTIRE time I was there. They are so sweet and fun and happy and good. I love Sara. She's the best. When I met her a few years ago, it wasn't like meeting somebody new. It was more like,"Oh THERE you are! I've been looking for you." She makes me so happy. She also looks gorgeous with a mask and a snorkel. Who does that? She's so beautiful. Inside and out. Thank you so much, Sara. I miss you REALLY LOUD.

And then the other thanks. Thanks to Jaymeson for the best Mother's Day ever. Thanks for taking care of the kids while they wrestled in 12 bananas. Thanks for never complaining or acting like you resented me for leaving. I couldn't have had 1/100th the time I had if it weren't for your love and support. You are too good to me. You can be a jerk-nose for the rest of our life and still come out ahead because of this. I love you so much. Next time, come with me.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

A Quiz

Which of the following DID NOT happen today: 
  1. M & P stripped down naked and danced in a hope chest full of goldfish crackers (and then peed)
  2. The cat ate huge quantities of styrofoam and then yakked it up all over the kitchen
  3. Like a leper, I left a trail of skin throughout my house
  4. My house got pretty darn clean due to yak, crackers, pee and skin everywhere
  5. I laid on the beach for hours reading a people magazine while my skin turned a toasty brown
  6. I found a living hermit crab deep in the dirty clothes in the laundry chute that had been missing for a week
It's hard. The quiz and today.


I know I need to blog about Camryn's baptism and Hawaii but that's overwhelming so here is a Preslie-ism while I procrastinate:

"mom, we have to go get cat food or the cats will drive the car to the Y and the cats will find us and the cats will bite off our heads and then we can't talk to Taylor."

Wouldn't that be the worst?

Friday, May 1, 2009


(Apology to those who follow both Melanie's and my blog, the pics are the same because I took ZERO pictures)

There are those who seek joy and those that create it. My sister Melanie is the latter. We finished our half marathon last weekend. Melanie PR'd it. I LOVE'd it. I didn't even notice the first six miles. We just laughed and mocked and ran and walked. We drank Cytoplasm and ate sliced fruit from unwashed hands. We made it halfway without incident. 

This is us at the half-half:

Still happy, but getting tired. Time for Beans.

Beans, Beans - the magical fruit
the more you eat
the more you HOOT!
The more you high-five anything with a face or paw or hand
the better you feel
so let's have beans for every meal!!

I have carefully worked at building a caffeine-immunity over the years (just in case) but the same cannot be said for one Melanie Wellman. She couldn't have been crazier if she was drunk on being high. "How're ya doin'? How're ya doin'? How're ya doin'? How're ya doin'? How're ya doin'? I've had BEANS!!!!!!" For the next six and a half miles, Melanie (and sometimes myself out of peer pressure and the desire to not be left behind and mostly for a "drafting" effect, really) zig-zagged between the edges of the race high-fiving anything with some sort of an appendage. She smacked hands, posters, cups, little infant hands, faces, dog paws and police officers. She leapt, she twirled, she dodged. She pushed people from behind while shouting her mantra "We can do hard things! Come on!" By the time we made it to the end, my Nike+ said we had gone 15.5 miles instead of the 13.1 we set out for. Seriously. I would have died right there but it seemed like a lot of work. She, on the other hand, began to run around with complimentary bananas sticking out of her ears.

Because of the spectacle, we were easily able to find the rest of our crew all of whom had finished before us (of course, they only went 13.1 miles... I'm just sayin'). Sara came all the way from Hawaii to run with us and then flew right back. How's that for love? I feel I have no choice but to return the favor (minus any running) and will do so next week. (Swine flu cancelled our cruise). Jeff and Jamey came and ran it, too. Jamey might have won - i can't remember. he was very fast. I still can't believe this happened. When I get my flux-capacitor fixed, I'm going back about 10 years to tell us all that we're doing this so I can watch us laugh and laugh. I felt much love. I wish I could be with all of my family and friends every day. That truly is heaven.

Jeff Wellman, Self, Mel, Sara Bosler, Little Jaymee and Big Jamey.

Lexi couldn't run because she fractured her ankle training. (We'll do another one another time.)But she came to cheer and laugh at us. Mom came out because she wanted to cheer us on and also because she can't resist a hotel room - she says they're "sexy". In fact, she paid for the rooms. Everyone pitched in so much and helped make this possible. I am extremely humbled. We raised over $4,000 for Team in Training. I'm sure that it's the lucky dollars that will pay for a CURE!!

Special thanks to all who donated:

Rob and Kathy Frazier 
Lisa Adams Bohne 
Jason and Jennifer Knight 
Canyon Springs Dental 
Ruth Butler 
Lori Nally 
Jodi Gilray 
Mike & Emily Crowton 
Tyson Price 
Cliff & Eileen Henkel 
Ted LeNeave 
Cal Darrow 
The Cima Family 
Alan & Nancy Dickson 
Maegen Martineau 
Jeremy & Sara White 
Brittany Atkinson 
Harmon and Lindsey Tobler 
SPencer and Louise Price 
Apryl Munoz 
Emily McLean 
Christine Holland 
Annette Miller 
suzanne marchesano 
Sara Pack 
Rod & Kandace 
Keri Peterson 
Brent Stoddard 
Marianne Husted 
Sherrie Burt 
Morrow Family 
Emily Price 
Karen Wellman 
Laura Wellman 
Vivian Gardner 
Rita Mueller 
Katie Price 
Karen & Collins Petitt 
Megan Bird 
Jessica Mandile 
Jennifer Crotts 
Shaunna Leavitt 
Dondra Norton 
Barb Jensen 
Stacia Dorny 
heather ives 
Jennifer Hoy 
Angela Cowden 
Pamela Caudill 
Lisa Brennan 
Michele Boyer 
Kristy Munoz 
Teresa Watson 
Tamara Wyatt 
Toni Huskey 
Heidi & Sean Bishop 
Andrea Stroud 
The Noorlander Family 
Christy Hiniker 
Summer Haught 
NAtalie Kidd 
April Leonard 
April Allen 
Troy Slaugh 
Sam Buntin 
Leslie Moon 
Jill Bryce 
Lisa Hardin 
Kathy Nevin 
Chrysta Wellman 
Tamara Gordon 
Cheryl Wellman 
jennette farley 
Amie Haroldsen 
Kristine Barkdull 
Shirlene D. Burt 
Dahlene Mullins 
Amy Waite 
Tiffany Jones 
Suzi Williams 

There are people on that list that we have never met. There are people on that list who don't have an extra dollar but donated anyway. There are people whom I haven't seen since high school. I can't think about it without feeling like I'm going to burst. Thank you. Thank you. I have never felt so loved in all my life.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Mason is ENGAGED!!

Congrats are due. Today on the way to the Baptist preschool, Mason (much like his old man) offered a sincere but spontaneous marriage proposal in the car. Taylor accepted. It's her birthday, so she can do whatever she wants. As soon as her hand was secured they moved on to the most pressing order of business - what to name their kids. I have compiled a list from their suggestions and thought perhaps a vote would be in order? Or maybe, if we're lucky, they'll get to use all of them.

Mason Cima and Taylor Stroud
Proud parents of:

Buttbutt Stroud
Toilet Stroud
PooBooby Stroud
Privacy Stroud

How does one pick? They are all really great names. I can't wait to be a grandma!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Weirdo with a beardo

Mason has decided that he's "going to grow a beard now". He asks me if I can see it yet every day. When I say,"not yet, but keep trying!' he concentrates real hard with his hands in little fists. I'll post a picture as soon as he's successful. He will be the coolest kid in kindergarten.

On a related note, I told Amy I'd give her $20 to draw a little beard on Avery when she was baby Jesus at the Baptist church nativity and she thought real hard and then said, "Jesus didn't have a beard when He was a baby... did He?"

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Monday, April 6, 2009


Mason: Mom, did Jesus make this whole town?
Me: Um, I guess He kinda did. He made the people that made the town and the stuff they made the town out of... So, I guess so.
Mason: MAN!! When I'm Jesus, I'm going to be sooo tired.

I'm thinking maybe the gospel hasn't really been taught in its fullness at my house. Maybe we should have less Family Home Evenings about "HOW TO STOP FIGHTING 101" and more "Jesus is Jesus and you won't ever be Jesus". I'll start tonight.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Robin Noblitt

I have a friend named Robin Noblitt. Say it out loud. Again. Isn't that the best name ever? If I ever go into hiding for the FBI (again) that will be my name. "Nice to meet you. I'm Robin. Robin Noblitt."