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Thursday, August 9, 2018

November church-related items of possible interest


Ohhh man, choice in how we respond to situations is one of the things I'm extremely passionate about drilling into my children's sweet heads. Things are going well, you can choose to feel entitled and special or you can choose to be humble and grateful. Things are rough, you can choose to feel victimized and bitter or you can choose to be hopeful and grateful. I'll hop off the ol' soapbox now ;).

Adventures at church! I subbed in Clyde's primary class and also kidnapped Ila, so she came along too and sat with Clyde :). Grace had a super cute 'vacation day' as primary chorister so everyone else took turns leading the music and I loved watching both Will and Clyde do so! Also Clyde miiiight have had a slight bike crash on the way home, whoops.

Clyde's newly inherited suit made its church debut! Pretty lucky kid to be two years younger than a stylish, generous cousin named George. And Carma.... is Carma haha.

Let the record show if I'm taking pictures of my crazy kids and you photobomb said pictures... you will end up on the blog. Not super sure if that serves as encouragement or a deterrent -- Jason?

The Brothers Izatt (older generation ;) ) hit up the Meridian Temple Open House... not the Idaho Falls Temple haha... with Carma along to keep them in line. I love the varied facial expressions - Lee looks somber, Chuck looks tolerant, and Carma looks tentatively happy but also okay to party on outta there...

Also the Meridian Temple was dedicated! We were able to watch a livestream of the Youth Cultural Celebration on Saturday and it was SO amazing and fun and we loved it. I don't mean to name drop, but we had pretty close connections to three of the numbers sooo that made it extra cool to watch!

The Cub Scouts were able to welcome an Idaho State Trooper as a guest speaker one evening and the boys were totally mesmerized. Jack listened attentively from the hallway and was pretty psyched to receive a hat and be welcomed in for the group picture:

I instagram captioned the picture on the left with "I have a decent record of ISP troopers letting me off with warnings but I feel like this guy will be the one to buck the trend and ticket me 😳🚔😔👮🏻😅🙇🏻‍♀️" .... the picture on the right is Jack laughing as he looks into the future and sees my ISP-issued ticket in January ;).

Workout class awesomeness - Nicole came while she was in town and (as always) jumped on stage and was adorable and bouncy and energetic and I just love her so much. Also I stalked Karlina to her car after class one day until she took a picture with me haha. Also BLACK LIGHT ZUMBA! Soooo fun.


Solo spiritual sojourn in sepia.


My dad found this cool history of my great-great-great uncle John Price Clifford and shared it with me:

Oh man, more wisdom about how gratitude leads to happiness. Love it.

I loved reading this section from an October conference talk - I think so often it's tempting us to wonder what our church ward/congregation has to offer us when we should be looking for ways to lift where we stand and create the ward/congregation we want to have.

Pretty perfect note to end on ;). 


Wednesday, August 1, 2018

november: Chuck and Jana go to Utah!


Continuing our semi-annual 'abandon all responsibilities and goof off for a few days' tradition, Chuck and I celebrated his birthday a couple weeks early with a trip down south...east...



We crashed at Courtney's house Sunday night which was awesome. We loved visiting with them the next morning and made a quick stop later in the week on our way home for a photo op.

Next up we headed further south... okay, just across town... and met up with Chuck's sisters for lunch! Apparently we're all grown-up or something because our lunch conversation legit sounded like a commercial that airs during Wheel of Fortune or the Matlock - mortgages, refinancing, insurance premiums, retirement hahahaha. I was seriously laughing so hard and waiting for one of us to say, "I had the same concerns. Then I called 1-800-WE-ARE-OLD and now we have life insurance for pennies a day!" or something ;). But seriously, so so fun to sit and talk to Amanda and Melissa without the million interruptions when all our kids are in tow. 
We sneaked in a little bit more time at Amanda's; Chuck and Amanda spent some time brainstorming about future family reunions and campsites. I left them to that and opted for reading books with Emmy and James. We missed the school kids but were able to sneak in quick hugs with Lily and George and Courtney during our stop on Thursday.

Our travels Monday ended in Lehi where we got to see Quinn and Eden's new house for the first time! Quinn formally welcomed us by torturing me on his tire swing while Chuck video taped me screaming and flailing. Here are some screenshots for your enjoyment:
Quinn and Eden hosted us for the rest of our trip, and our time with them was spent eating at Chik-fil-a, cheering Isaac and Leila's antics on the tire swing, and using the family search app to figure out that Eden and Chuck and pretty closely related, although not as close as me and Quinn: he's my brother! Crazy. OH AND ALSO binge-watching season one of Stranger Things. In the dark and sans cell phones, per house rules. 

Tuesday morning Chuck and I set out adventuring! We honestly have such a good time driving around and just being on our own schedule and stopping where we want and getting lost but not caring (I KNOW UTAH'S STREET SYSTEM IS SUPPOSED TO BE SUPER EASY BUT WHATEV, I'M NOT VERY SMART) and talking and laughing and just hanging out together.

 I love this Tow Mater truck! This is a random corner in American Fork... that is just down the street from the American Fork D.I., so let's be honest: we see it every time we're in the area haha. 

We went all the way down to Provo (D.I.!) and Orem and took a lovely walk and found the bridge where Chuck proposed circa 13 years ago!

Instagram caption: Went on a walk and found the bridge where this brave fella proposed to me a million years ago! (Spoiler alert: I said yes 💍😎)

Remember in junior high and high school when you'd hang out with all your friends and there was that one suck-up friend who would go in and chat with the parents for a while? Spoiler alert: that was definitely me. Still is ;). So when we found ourselves a few blocks from Shelly's parents' house ON Ann's birthday it was a no brainer - we had to stop by! It was a lovely, quick visit; just enough time to give her a gift and stand in the kitchen and talk and cry and hug and take a picture:

And a picture with Jamie because I loooove her!

Then we literally drove down the road and over a bit to Dan's parents' house! We piled in their car and headed for an endowment session in the Provo City Center Temple and it was so, so lovely. The temple has such a spirit of hope and peace and comfort. Brenda and Gary were very indulgent of my need to take a picture afterwards... that turned into like twelve pictures because the dang light was not cooperating haha.
We headed back to the Swensons' house for dinner. As we pulled in Brenda mentioned she could use my help in the kitchen getting everything ready. I quickly set her straight that my assistance would be disastrous and offered Chuck instead ;). In the meantime, Gary showed me all the awesome family pictures in the living room - including this set of Dan and each of his sons! Probably the cutest thing I've ever seen, let's be honest. And then we ate and it was delicious and we talked and it was therapeutic. Such a nice evening and I only had to halfway force Gary to hug me at the end of it ;).

Wednesday morning snuggles with Jett and Leila before we headed out for the day! Leila and I had matching straight hair because Eden is the sweetest and straightened it for both of us.

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We had lunch with Dr. Sam! It was way fun and remained way fun because I opted not to make Sam take a picture with me haha. So this shot of the place we ate will have to suffice - oh yeah, it was like a Very Famous Diner, no big deal. 

Our next stop was Temple Square for a few hours of wandering and admiring and a few selfies:

 We didn't make it to all of the museums and displays but we loved what we were able to see. This was one of my favorite quotes. 

Thursday = time to go home... but not before we stopped to see Nicole and make her do my hair haha. It's perfect that chemical straightening takes so long because that way we get to talk and talk and talk hahaha! 
Chuck ran errands (so weird that he didn't want to hang out and participate in girl talk, whatev) but made it back in time to take these special pictures of us; I don't remember why I thought we needed to hold hands while we sat in Nicole's cute pink chairs but obviously it worked out loads well ;).

We drove home nice and slow, stopping in Kays to see all those folks and at any and all D.I.s we could and also once because a nice Idaho State Trooper was concerned for our safety when I was going 86 instead of 80, whoooops. We waited until after he said he'd give me a warning to name drop our buddy who's a trooper in that area because we're classy ;). Also, the trooper really was super nice. Also, I'm 98% sure he's the same trooper that gave me a warning a couple years back when Carma and I were coming back from a girls' trip to Utah... and I probably deserved the ticket that time. Basically the stretch from the junction to Burley is where I just need to bond more with my cruise control...

 And then we were home! As always my mama took AMAZING care of our four little yahoos in our absence - here are some of the pictures she took haha. Chuck and I are very aware that escaping away as often as we do is an extreme luxury and one that wouldn't at all be possible without my mom's generosity of time and love. Thanks Mama!! 


Monday, July 23, 2018

October. All of it.


All about efficiency here, because it's after midnight and I'm withholding sleep from myself until this post is done haha. So here's a million pictures of cute Carma from October! She slept! And climbed trees! And fixed bikes!

Jack and Carma are pretty cute little best friends. 

Jack continued to loooove kindergarten. Both Park Ridge boys got awards for attendance AND Jackers received the 'kindness' character trait certificate for his class:
The assembly fell on Chuck's day off so we alllll got to attend!

Jack was disinclined to come closer for pictures at the school, so these couple I got as he rode up to the house that afternoon will have to suffice ;).

 Pretty proud of our kind little boy. For as worried as we were about how he would transition to kindergarten, we love that he's doing so well and being kind and helping classmates too.

I love this more than I probably should haha:

E'ery time.

Will was on real homophone/homonym kick there for a while; he spent a couple general conference sessions brainstorming as many as possible and hitting up Grandma Pam for a few more, then he created this amazing story: 

We're generally hit and miss for dress up days at school, but y'all know we were in for Sunglasses Day.

 Favorite Disney princess, favorite level of kids' screaming ;) (besides none of course....)

hahahahahahaha. I debated about including some of these, but Clyde's feedback re: the blog lately has been that these are his favorite part, so here's some more!

 Hopefully he'll think this one is funny....

I literally might make this sign for the laundry room.

GIRLS NIGHT. The best. Tonight we were all about the apps: we all did the family search relative finder - I was thrilled to discover each of these crazies are my cousins! I mean, generally between 8th and 10th cousins, but that's still pretty close. Also, Marco Polo. Total game changer. Kara gets allll the credit for getting us all on there. Amazing.

What's that? More pictures of Carma? Okay, here you go! Cute little preschool girlie waiting for the bus.

Okay so Stephanie is pretty much the glue that keeps workout class running and I loooove her. She NEVER gets on stage even though she freaking knows all the choreography. I don't know how Lorraine got her up there on this random day but I had to get photographic evidence:
Oh man, so October was the month of my drastic, impulsive haircut because I'm dumb. I (of course) ended up with triangle hair, which necessitated me recruiting Karlina to straighten my hair for me until Nicole could do it chemically. THANK YOU KARLINA!!!! Carma brushing your hair was a good trade-off, right? ;) 

Jack got mail from Texas and he was sooooo excited! (cc: Dan Swenson. There, you're mentioned!)

Sundays can be rough sometimes.... luckily Clyde's pretty good about coming up with random things to do with his siblings. This day they baked cakes in the morning and then decorated them after church - I think the general policy regarding frosting and sprinkles was the more, the merrier ;).

The awesome Kelee put together a super fun game night at her house and we had such a great time. It was a fun mixture of people she knew from different places, but THS alumni had a good representation so we took a picture (Ally, me, Andrew, Kelee). Tons of awesome laughs that night!!

Chuck and I find it's important to get out and about to keep our relationship strong - our 8th cousin once removed relationship, that is. Our marriage is pretty solid ;). 

We were so excited to get the boys back into piano this fall after the summer break and (blessedly) they were excited too, especially to be reunited with Ashlee - we have a strict 'Thueson sisters only' policy for piano teachers ;). Ashlee is so great with the boys, and I love that she recognizes their individual strengths/weaknesses and tailors their lessons and her teaching accordingly. She shared this with me one day about Will and then I had to screenshot her post because most of it went over my non-musical head so I knew I'd get it wrong trying to say it in my own words haha:


 Speaking of Will though.....

BOOKS! New bookshelf via craigslist that Chuck was not thrilled about but still patiently paid for/transported/set up and I looooooove it! 

Oh my gosh, this was literally a day where Clyde and I had realllllly struggled over his unwillingness to do his math homework and my unwillingness to nag him all night so he legit went to bed and read. Between this tweet and looking at my new shiny bookcase with millions of books and memories of pretty much never doing homework... I resolved to be nicer to Clyde in the morning. BUT ALSO JUST GET THE MATH HOMEWORK DONE AND THEN MOVE ON WITH YOUR LIFE.

 Carma shenanigans. Instagram caption: Thrilled to announce Carma's new business venture: paper shredding! For a very reasonable fee, your documents will be conscientiously destroyed one small triangle at a time by this emerging new talent in the scissor-using world 👧🏻(I retain the right to peruse said documents prior to the shredding if they appear to have interesting personal or financial details😎). As it takes about an hour per regular sized sheet of paper, we expect to book quickly so don't wait! ✂️📄✂️📄

 Fun fact: Carma no longer needs an adult to help her climb the tree. She does need help getting down though haha.

Seriously though. Screeching is only for blood people!

 I put all my political screenshots in one collage, so it's easily scroll-by-able if that's your thing. 

 Gratuitous selfies are apparently my thing, who knew?? ;) 

Oh yeah, everyone. That's okay, I think it's a good thing that I like my face haha.
Halloween Zumba, woooo! We celebrated twice because we're awesome like that. Friday I was a pirate:


and Monday (
actually Halloween) I was Cookie Monster... I miiiiight have a reputation at workout class for really liking cookies haha. Also I volunteered Chuck to come and do nursery with another husband so all the women could be in the gym, so that's his picture of holding Cora and watching the movie :).

Suzanne
(in the bumblebee costume) recruited her daughter (in the Wonder Woman costume) to come and take amazing pictures of our zumba-in-costume fun - here's the whole group who dressed up:


I pretty much died laughing when I scrolled through the posted pictures and found these; I've been told my facial expressions at workout are pretty entertaining and now I see why!

There's a chance that Jack's and Carma's dentist appointments feel on Halloween day. Might as well start off with super clean teeth before exposing them to all that sugar, right??

Carma got Grandma Pam allll to herself that afternoon, lucky girlie! Grandma got her all ready in her Rapunzel costume, complete with darling flower hair AND makeup AND a manicure from Pamela's cute daughter.

All four Izatt kids - Clyde's a missionary, Will is the Sun, Jack is Captain America, and Carma is Rapunzel!

Trunk-or-Treat was way fun as usual. Clyde won a costume award and tracted into a nun who accepted a copy of the Book of Mormon!

And we'll wrap up October with some Adrienne Hedger Halloween hilarity:


Nothing worse than reaching for a Reese's only to discover it's empty, grrrrrrr.