Friday, November 29, 2013

Civil War

There was a free Civil War Reenactment going on down the street so I stopped by with Eden and Tucker and we met up with Kolby who had gone on a run with Sam.  Tucker was freaking out at first but of course he loved it, he especially liked the cannons.  All the kids enjoyed seeing the slow death antics of one of the soldiers and Eden was especially fascinated by the whole thing. I hope this becomes an annual tradition!

Thursday, November 28, 2013


Eden was so happy to start activity days at church the week she turned 8!  Her first activity was to make this cute banner that is so fitting to remind us of all the things we are thankful for this day!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Family History Now

As I started blogging my Grandma's diaries I had the thought, "I'm going to be teaching about this some time!"  Of course I thought that might be years down the road not a couple of months!  When I was asked to teach a family history class at the Relief Society Activity (the woman's group) I was not really surprised.  I mean it is the last class I would have ever thought I would be asked to teach as I've hardly done any official family history work, but I was not surprised because of the journals.  I was actually asked to talk, in my interpretation about the other ways you can do family history work.  I was sure that hardly anyone would be there but there turned out to be a fair amount of people. I had to teach it twice and I think the first class went well enough but I'm not sure about the second time around!  In the end, it was fun to research and I'm glad it's over with!  By request, here are the handouts I made, the first is the other ideas summed up and the 2nd is a list of interview questions/journal prompts (if you need it for a lesson or something, let me know and I can send you the documents):

“No matter your situation, you can make Family History a part of your life now.” - Elder Russell M. Nelson

  • journal - there are various ways to journal besides the typical
    • do one line a day
    • keep a calendar and mark important events and details
    • keep a journal online - in a file on your computer, in emails or on a website
    • carry one with you all the time and jot things down as they happen
    • include extra details- recipes, locations, clothing
    • write a personal history
    • journal prompts
  • pictures
    • blog- share pictures with family:, wordpress, typepad
    • print blog books- keep pictures and journaling together,
    • scrapbooks- paper or digital
    • print pictures- label them, can print from smartphone to
    • scan or take picture of children’s artwork
    • take a picture at the same place on the same date every year
  • relatives
    • interview about their life- write it down, tape record or videotape
    • type up journals and documents now so you can ask questions
    • ask questions about the relatives they remember
    • encourage them to write their personal history
    • have family reunions, reach out to less known relatives
    • family facebook group or other online group
    • when someone dies, write down the details and the stories that are shared
    • write letters - to living relatives there is a better chance of lasting, to children to be read in the future
    • organize what you or a relative has - make family history book, scan documents, put it all together
    • recipes-collect and organize favorite family recipes
    • internet search- just spend some time browsing some family names online to see what’s out there
    • include family history on the back of heirlooms
  • kids and youth
    • keep their own journals and scrapbooks
    • tell them the stories of ancestors often
    • record family interviews - interview kids each year and write down what they say or videotape it
    • have kids interview relatives-be sure to ask about everyday life
    • have the kids write or draw about the family, a summer vacation or major event
    • print/copy your records for them
    • take the youth to the family history center
    • summer of sleuthing- one ward did this challenge
    • indexing- perfect sunday activity, they use technology anyway, this is perfect for the youth
  • Church resources

    • byu site- take the religion class, see what projects they are working on
    • create your own fan
    • print fan for kids and spouse
    • focus on just one ancestor a year
    • invite others to use it
    • go to the family history center
  • Temple work
    • go more often- put it on your calendar, choose a regular time to go
    • submit names
    • watch someone’s kids so they can go
    • let others know when you are going and carpool

Interview Questions/Journal Prompts

A great way to uncover clues to your family history is a family interview.  These same questions can also be great for writing personal histories or for journal prompts.  By asking the right open-ended questions, you’re sure to collect a wealth of family tales or personal experiences.  Use this list of family history interview questions to help you get started, but be sure to personalize the interview with your own questions as well.

  1. What is your full name? Why did your parents select this name for you? Do you have a nickname?
  2. When and where were you born?
  3. How did your family come to live there?
  4. Were there other family members in the area? Who?
  5. What was the house (apartment, farm, etc.) like? How many rooms? Bathrooms? Did it have electricity? Indoor plumbing? Telephones?
  6. Were there any special items in that house that you remember?
  7. What is your earliest childhood memory?
  8. Describe the personalities of your family members?
  9. What are some favorite memories about your father?
  10. What are some favorite memories about your mother?
  11. What kind of work did your parents do?
  12. What kind of games did you play when you were growing up?
  13. What was your favorite toy and why?
  14. What was your favorite thing to do for fun (movies, beach, etc.)?
  15. Did you have family chores? What were they? Which was your least favorite?
  16. Did you receive an allowance? How much? Did you save money or spend it?
  17. What was school like for you as a child? What were your best and worst subjects? Where did you attend grade school? High school? College?
  18. Who was your favorite teacher? Why?
  19. What school activities and sports did you participate in?
  20. Do you remember any fads from your youth? Popular hairstyles? Clothes?
  21. Who were your childhood heroes?
  22. What were your favorite songs and music?
  23. Did you have any pets? If so, what kind and what were their names?
  24. What was your first car?
  25. What was your religion growing up? What church, if any, did you attend?
  26. Were you ever mentioned in a newspaper?
  27. Who were your friends when you were growing up?
  28. What was your social life like as a teenager?
  29. What world events had the most impact on you while you were growing up? Did any of them personally affect your family?
  30. Describe the town or city that you grew-up in.
  31. Describe a typical family dinner. Did you all eat together as a family? Who did the cooking? What were your favorite foods?
  32. How were holidays (Birthdays, Christmas, etc.) celebrated in your family? Did your family have special traditions?
  33. Describe any special gifts you received as a child? As an adult?
  34. How is the world today different from what it was like when you were a child?
  35. Who was the oldest relative you remember as a child? What do you remember about them?
  36. What do you know about your family surname?
  37. Is there a naming tradition in your family, such as always giving the firstborn son the name of his paternal grandfather?
  38. What stories have come down to you about your parents? Grandparents? More distant ancestors?
  39. Are there any stories about famous or infamous relatives in your family?
  40. Have any recipes been passed down to you from your family members?
  41. Are there any physical characteristics that run in your family?
  42. Are there any special heirlooms, photos, bibles or other memorabilia that have been passed down in your family?
  43. When did you first leave home?  Did you ever travel or live away for an extended period of time?
  44. What was the full name of your spouse? Siblings? Parents?
  45. When and how did you meet your spouse? What did you do on dates?
  46. What was it like when you proposed (or were proposed to)? Where and when did it happen? How did you feel?
  47. Where and when did you get married?
  48. What memory stands out the most from your wedding day?
  49. Describe your first home after you were married?
  50. How would you describe your spouse? What do (did) you admire most about them?
  51. What do you believe is the key to a successful marriage?
  52. How did you find out you were going to be a parent for the first time?
  53. Why did you choose your children’s names?
  54. Describe your children.
  55. What was your proudest moment as a parent?
  56. What did your family enjoy doing together?
  57. Describe your grandchildren.
  58. How many places have you lived? Describe the different places.
  59. What were some of your memorable vacations?
  60. What are some different ways you have used your free time?
  61. What was your profession and how did you choose it?
  62. If you could have had any other profession what would it have been? Why wasn’t it your first choice?
  63. What are your favorite books? Your favorite quotes?
  64. Have any of your family members died? What do you remember of their death and what were the circumstances of their death?
  65. What kinds of hardships, tragedies did your family face growing up? In your married years?
  66. Share a few memories of your grandparents.
  67. Describe any special memories of extended family like aunts, uncles and cousins?  Did you see them often?
  68. What medical issues have you had to deal with throughout your life?
  69. List 20 or more things that make you happy.
  70. Share a few deeply moving (spiritual) experiences you have had in your life.
  71. If you could go back and change one thing in your life what would it be?
  72. Of all the things you learned from your parents, which do you feel is the most valuable?
  73. What do you see as your personal strengths?
  74. What accomplishments were you most proud of?
  75. What is the one thing you most want people to remember about you?

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Studio C

The kids are still obsessed with Studio C, the comedy show on BYUTV.  We don't have regular TV so we all crowded around Sam's computer to watch the season premier for family night in October.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Award time

These pictures all look the same, but when we look back someday I don't want to forget these moments! Kolby had 4 awards at the recent assembly.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Wordless Wednesday

Monday, November 11, 2013

Halloween Festivities

These are totally out of order but I'll just describe each picture.  Above is at the end of trunk 'r treat at the church.  I was looking all over for the boys and couldn't find them anywhere. It turns out that they had hid away in a classroom with a bunch of their friends and had their candy all spread out for trading. This was after they started cleaning but there was a lot of candy on that floor.  Although I, and another parent that came in to get his daughter, was not happy that they didn't tell us where they were, it was fun to see them all hanging out together.  They have a great group of friends.  (One night in the church foyer before mutual they had a group of about ten or more 11-14 years sitting in a large circle all playing scum, that is all the boys do with their friends now at school and campouts but this time even the girls were joining in!)

Eden had fun going around to trunks with her friend Sidney who is also in her school class!
At one point I found Tucker busy chatting with his cute little friends, when I asked to take their picture Tucker was trying to be funny by eating out of his bowl.
We thought Eden had an original costume until we got to the activity! And there were even a few more at school the next day!

These two are both Doctor Who with the weeping angel, you can tell why these three are friends!

We were all ready for the trunk 'r treat. The Minion is a boy from church that I watch once a week after school but he was hiding in the picture. Jordan added a fez to make him more recognizable.  There were still a lot of people who didn't recognize him but the ones who did loved it and took pictures to show their friends!

Tucker wanted to be a scary clown.  At first I said no, but as I started to do the make-up I realized it was looking kind of scary anyway so I went with it>

Eden was super excited to have her make-up done.  She especially wanted the red lipstick!
There was a trunk 'r treat in the park the weekend before.  I was attempting to take Jordan to a play so I wasn't there (I won free tickets so Jordan and I drove out to OC only to find out the play had been postponed a week.  We made the best of it and had some fun getting snacks and shopping around at a few stores). Sam took the kids over and it sounds like they had a lot of fun.  Brady decided to go as a tourist this time because it would be more comfortable.

I took this picture from my friend's post of Eden and her friends during the costume contest.
Tucker decided to be Zurg for school.  It seemed like a good idea at first because it was really cold in the morning but then it got hot.  When he came out for the parade I had to hurry and put his hood back on and then again when the class took some pictures.  Of course the costume came off as soon as they were back to the classroom.  I didn't stay for the party in his class but I did help get it organized.
The 6th graders don't wear a costume, instead they do a performance.  This year they performed the One-Eyed One-Horned Flying Purple People Eater.  I got this picture of Kolby and our friend Alisia while they watched the parade.  (Notice our friend Thomas in the background who was dressed as a big foot!) Hopefully I'll add a picture of Kolby when Tucker came up to dance it with him the second time around when I get it from his teacher.

Tucker was super excited to help make the mini mummy pizzas.  He put the olives on for the eyes and the string cheese.

We had a great Halloween night but I didn't' take any pictures.  Tucker went as a scarecrow this time. We first stopped by at a neighborhood friend's house that was having a little court party.  They had rented a bounce house and had food and we had a quick visit. Then we headed to another friend's house where they were projecting movies onto their garage and they set-up a fire pit in the driveway.  The mom's all sat in the driveway and passed out candy while the dads took the kids trick-or-treating. It was one of the best Halloween's I've had as an adult!  When the little kids got tired they came back and watched the movie and somewhere in there we had a little dance party when they played the "What Does the Fox Say?" video and the "Gangnam" Style video.  The boys took off with their friend Noah and were gone for 2 hours.  They brought in quite the haul and were pretty exhausted!

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Pumpkin Patch

After so many years of not being able to go on many field trips because I had Tucker at home, I was finally able to go to the pumpkin patch.  Tucker's class went to a cute little field trip put on by one of the high school's agriculture program.   It was a long morning but of course Tucker had a great time, even though I think the thing he was most excited about was riding on a bus for his first time! (these are in reverse order so the last pictures are the arrival shots)

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Spooky dinner

The Halloween festivities started a little early this year with a youth activity at the beginning of the month.  We only found out the night before because Jordan got a call asking him to have a part in the murder mystery at the spooky dinner.  We had to scramble to get it all together but luckily we had planned at the end of the summer and already had most of what we needed.  

They were supposed to bring food, something spooky if they could. so the boys made these too take.  Maybe they were a little too spooky because not many got eaten but that was OK, the kids had fun eating them the next day!
I pulled these other pictures from a facebook post about the activity. Jordan and our friend Amanda both had parts and I hear they did a good job.
And Brady won one of the costume prizes, this is the 2nd year in a row! It was a great activity!