She’s amazing and. . . she’s my mother!

my favorite

One of the greatest things hands down of moving to Utah has been living close to my parents. My mom turned 79 years old today and we celebrated this morning by taking some quick pictures. Here are 79 reasons why I love her so…

  1. She makes the best rolls ever,
  2. she is an amazing artist,
  3. best waffle maker,
  4. comes from Holbrook AZ,
  5. a lady of great great faith,
  6. gardener,
  7. good at watercolor,
  8. amazing school teacher,
  9. loves to read,
  10. has a beautiful soprano voice,
  11. made the lead in a play in St. George after having baby number five (you go girl),
  12. she wears red lipstick,
  13. has beautiful silver hair,
  14. has a crazy-fun sense of humor,
  15. she says double damn (inherited it from Grandma Gibbons),
  16. has worked with the BYU alumni for years,
  17. taught me how to sew, crochet & quilt,
  18. can put food away & stay rail thin,
  19. aren't they cute

  20. has the cutest little bird legs,
  21. would practice herkie jumps with me when I was trying out for cheerleader in high school (she was in her 60’s people),
  22. used to play make me laugh with my girlfriends until we would cry with laughter from her famous gorilla face that she could make,
  23. makes the best German Chocolate cake,
  24. shares her birthday with her older sister Sandi and Michael Elcock,
  25. she had 9 children (God bless her that she didn’t stop with 8),
  26. she has a crazy fun sense of humor,
  27. she can work like a work horse,
  28. she’s effortlessly beautiful,
  29. she’s part of the “Greatest Generation”,
  30. lived through the depression,
  31. just a peck on the cheek

  32. is thrifty and frugal,
  33. can make a meal out of anything,
  34. has held numerous callings within the church all while raising a great family,
  35. is a sweet companion to my father,
  36. taught us to be honest always,
  37. played the piccolo in jr. high and was a majorette,
  38. didn’t know how to make a sandwich when she got married,
  39. killed a rattle snake with a shovel,
  40. taught me to love tomatoes, mashed potatoes, and squash,
  41. found her on her knees many a time,
  42. is politically knowledgeable and not “apathetic”,
  43. wants to jump hurdles and play basketball in the hereafter,
  44. her eyes sparkle,
  45. crazy BYU fan,
  46. never told me I couldn’t do something,
  47. has volumes of journals,
  48. always believed in me and expected great things,
  49. best foot massager in the world (sorry Brian),
  50. she is loved by many,
  51. wants to make everything better for everyone,
  52. I remember her rocking me in the rocker when I was little and she still tries to rock me on occasion,
  53. has 42 and counting grandchildren,
  54. she loves the ocean and jumping waves,
  55. taught me how girls should behave,
  56. let me wallpaper my room and pick out my own carpet when I was in high school (wow),
  57. was girls camp director @ age 67 and made it so much fun!,
  58. lucy in her element

  59. truly makes the best raspberry jam in the world (Brian will vouch),
  60. I was her do-it-yourself grandchild,
  61. I watched her care for her mother with a horrible bout of cancer,
  62. she chased my brother, Jim, in a foot race several years back & caught him,
  63. has amazing arm muscles,
  64. is spontaneous (like jumping in the hot tub with all her clothes on just for kicks),
  65. always had FHE & daily scripture study,
  66. is a genealogy nut,
  67. loves animals,
  68. loves to camp,
  69. has a tender heart,
  70. can clean like a hurricane running through a house,
  71. makes awesome potato salad,
  72. put up with me as a teenager,
  73. used to play Candyland over and over with me when I was 5,
  74. she would wake me early in the summer and make me work in the garden,
  75. devoted and unwavering in her faith in God,
  76. loves this great country,
  77. can calm Lucy Ann like no on else can,
  78. served a mission in Thailand,
  79. saw 9 kids through CLOTH diapers,
  80. she comes from a musical family and she loves music,
  81. she makes a mean taco,
  82. I love her because she’s true blue one of a kind and she’s mine—my mother!

How lucky am I?!! I love you Mom!

making them laugh

Happy Birthday, Michael–we love you and miss you mucho! For more photos of my mama:

Hogle Zoo & softball too!

We got to go to the zoo with the first graders on Friday. We were surprised to see all the parent volunteers there. There were so many we had one other student (Ashton, Grace’s friend) and Grace. We didn’t get to the zoo until 10:30 and were wondering if there would be enough time. It turned out to be a great trip and just right. The zoo is not very big–so two hours was plenty of time. The elephants were a real hit and so was the leucistic (without pigmentation) gator. Brian and I juggled the babies a-ok and all in all it was just right for everyone.

good try grace

where are we going?

Hogle Zoo

So we got home in time to regroup for our softball game that evening. One problem we were short a babysitter. We decided to take the kids (the peanut gallery) and it turned out ok. I found that if I sat Gwen on the bleacher and walked off she just sat there because she didn’t want to attempt to get down–that worked pretty well. We have had so much fun playing with the neighbors and they are a lot of fun too. Brian has proved to be a real asset to the team and I am well…part of the team (they’re good sports)!

your up!


After the game we again regrouped for another block movie projected on the wall of the Richins house. The girls go crazy about this and get so excited. We watched Hook & The Three Amigos and the kids have loved it! We are lucky to have found such a great neighborhood and such great friends. More photos here

watching movies outdoors in the neighborhood

John, Mary, Telina & Joe

Grace, Adelaide, Abigail & Olivia

Lucy’s ready for school “rain or shine”!

I can’t seem to get Brian to post so unfortunately you get to hear from me. Lucy started school today and she was so excited. She had a crazy twinkle in her eyes and toes! Lucy Annso excited she kept jumping off the step

All the girls are eating up their music classes. They are learning the Solfage method of music training. It’s the same method used in the Sound of Music. It is used commonly in Europe and in the US in most colleges of music including the famous Julliard school of music. They are all really liking it but the hardest part about the lessons is that the classes are interactive with mom. Uh, that would be me! I am to be with each of them ALONE singing and dancing etc… once a week! Fortunately Abigail and Grace are in the same class but I still have to juggles the others 3 times a week–can’t bring siblings to class:(!

Today we had some rain and Lucy was running around out in it with a broken umbrella. She wants to be like Mary Poppins–I guess we need to start with a new umbrella! Mary Poppinsa gustone of my favorites

I took some pics of Abigail when she got home from school. She is getting to look so much older even though she’s a flyweight.
serious abigailseriouslaughing

Grace is excited about her upcoming trip to Hogle Zoo with the first grade and HER DAD (couldn’t say no to the big brown eyes). Gwen is literally tearing up my house and has recently become very very picky about what she eats! How about that bow??!!
Gwen with a bow that was WAY TOO BIGcloseuppouting her Great Grandma Amy's lips

Brian got a hangnail (or some kind of scratch) on his right pinky 2 weeks ago and his pinky has continued to swell and get VERY infected. He finally went to urgent care where they lanced it, bandaged it, gave him a prescription and instructions to soak it in Hot (as he can stand) water. He told them I had told him to do the same for about 10 days but that I had told him to add salt to the water. To that they laughed and said, “You’re wife just wants it to hurt a little more than it should!” So…Brian is currently upstairs sniffling about his finger–it really dampens his typing skills. Even he admits he is a big pansy when it comes to pain. We are so glad to have him back from Phoenix…but that’s another story! more photos here

Lindon Elementary here we come!

Last night was back to school night. There was a big turnout and lots of excitement in the air. We did rotations and were able to visit with both teachers to get a feel for their style of teaching. I was able to sign up to help with their classroom parties and they both seemed very excited about that. After that we rushed over to Grandpa and Grandma Jenkins for our monthly FHE. Elder Anthony Jenkins was able to report on his mission and share with us. It was a question and answer type forum. The best question Brian could come up with for him was, “Is it harder to be a missionary when you are a second child?” It made Anthony laugh–I’m always blown away by our spirituality! We topped the evening off with banana splits and socializing. Gwen ate most of the ice cream out of left-over bowls and was very sticky going home. Aunt Amy brought her world famous kettle corn, cotton candy and sugared almonds. The girls were chattering up a blue streak from their sugar high! Some how we managed to calm them down to get into bed for the first day of school in the morning.

grace first gradeabby 3rd grade

The morning went very smoothly. Baths–check, lunches–check, roundbrushing hair–ughh check, pictures–check——–I WANT SUMMER BACK!!! No really it went pretty smooth and we NEED a more scheduled morning. So the neighborhood had a breakfast kickoff at the bus stop and then they were off. They looked so cute and squeaky clean—too bad they don’t stay that way! I had to wipe abby’s d-nut face off before she jumped on the bus. She has better things to do than worry about manners let alone wiping off her face. I think she’s a candidate for etiquette school. Grace on the other hand is more reserved–she told me she was embarrassed to go back to school. She doesn’t like too much attention. Here’s to a smooth first day…wish us luck for tomorrow–the real test!


More pictures at