First day of Spring Break

Today was the first day of Spring break, and we had a very laid back day. Well, Abe had his usual crazy day at work, but Ammon took a four and a half hour nap, so this afternoon I was in bed for…a long time.

I asked Lydia what her favorite part of the day was. She played a lot with Mary, watched Lady and the Tramp, helped me make pizza for dinner, and had a fun FHE learning about chocolate and playing Junior Monopoly. But guess what her favorite part of the day was? HARP PRACTICE. No joke! That is she told me! Our harp practices have been getting better, but I was shocked that she loved it so much today because we put in over an hour and did some hard work practicing some new material. Anyway, I am just so happy that she is learning to love the harp.

Here are pictures from FHE.

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Ammon wanted to play Monopoly! He played with the car piece and rolled the dice for me when it was my turn. He's is a very lucky roller--I won!
Ammon wanted to play Monopoly! He played with the car piece and rolled the dice for me when it was my turn. He’s is a very lucky roller–I won!


Conference Weekend

This weekend we had General Conference. Usually I love Conference because it is such a nice break–we just sit around listening to church leaders talk all weekend, eat a lot of family meals, and take lots of naps. I did love Conference, but I felt so physically wiped out that I honestly slept through most of the talks. Good thing I can still read them online!

I did love the talks I heard, though. Elder Nelson gave a great talk reminding us that the atonement itself is no powerful amorphous entity. Instead, it is Christ who is the source of cleansing power, and we should not use the terms “atonement” or “enabling power of the atonement” in place of referencing Christ directly. It’s doctrinally incorrect. I loved this clarification. And, of course, I loved Elder Holland’s denunciation of material inequality and exhortation to care for the poor better. I am so, so, so guilty of self-indulgent behaviors, and it is always helpful to hear these reminders about what really matters in life.

When we weren’t sitting in front of the TV and radio listening to awesome talks (or sleeping through awesome talks…yikes!), I spent a lot of time reading Gordon B. Hinckley’s biography. It is astounding. I am in awe of what this humble, great man accomplished through prayer and hard, hard work.

We also spent some time outside. Here are pictures from the weekend:

Checking our sprouts.
Checking our sprouts.
Making German Pancakes.
Making German Pancakes.
Digging in the dirt.
Digging in the dirt.

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Lydia got tired of riding her bike on our after dinner walk, so Abe took over. :)
Lydia got tired of riding her bike on our after dinner walk, so Abe took over. 🙂
The girls were amused.
The girls were amused.


Chocolate tasting with the Harmons

Today Abe and I celebrated the last day of the quarter by going to a chocolate tasting with our good friends, the Harmons. We had so much fun with them. You know how some people are just easy to be around? That’s the Harmons for us. We can just be ourselves and have fun when we are with them, and we had a great time tonight.

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We learned so much! I thought I already knew at least a little about chocolate after I took Lydia to a candy factory last year for her birthday. Nope! I learned that I actually knew very little, and it was so fun to learn tonight.

After the chocolate, we had vinegar and olive oil tastings. The vinegar was actually my favorite part (aside from visiting with Steve and Blair, of course!!).

In other news, the girls attended a fun dinosaur birthday party this afternoon. They played “pin the poor herbivore on the carnivore’s mouth,” among other fun things. It was, apparently, a blast.

In the morning Mary, Ammon and I went to the library and then visited Abe at Qualtrics. Before that, I spent a lot of the morning yelling because Mary refused to follow simple directions that had been uttered (calmly) over twenty times, and Lydia had a break down because she couldn’t remember Cricket Song. I wasn’t mad that she couldn’t remember Cricket Song–in fact, I totally understand why she forgot it in only one day. Yesterday all we practiced was Lightly Row, a song that requires her left hand to do an Alberti bass pattern. Cricket Song calls for broken chords in the left hand, and today she couldn’t remember how to switch back to those broken chords.

At any rate, every time she had a problem (which occurred with every note), she would start screaming in frustration. I honestly just wanted to help her, but since she was screaming, I had to scream to be heard above her screams. (That is my excuse, at least.) Before I knew it, I was screaming at Mary to please just brush her teeth so we could go soon, and I was screaming at Lydia to calm down so I could help her reprogram her left hand. Then both girls told me I’d scared them, and I felt so bad. Sigh. It’s really hard to get this parenting thing right!

The rest of the day was great, though. The girls proceeded to be angels for the rest of the day. I wanted pictures of them sitting on the counter eating pizza, swinging their little legs and whispering to each other, but my phone was in the car. They were so, so adorable, and I just felt so proud of them for being so sweet and kind to each other all day.

I also spent a lot of Ammon’s nap researching our May trips. It has been so fun to plan them!