Jul 29, 2020

Guess Who is Going to Graduate from UVU?

We are so excited for Dog Walker! After all these years of hard work and determination, he is finally about to be awarded his Bachelor of Science degree from Utah Valley University!

He actually completed all of his coursework and received notice of graduation back in December, but for him, nothing is complete until he places that motorboard on his head and wears that beautiful green gown and his magna cum laude medallion and has a chance to shine in front of his peers.

When he was first diagnosed with Autism, I put this dream on the shelf and barely dared to glance at it until he had finished his Associates. Then, when he decided he wanted to try University studies, I still only glanced at this possible outcome every now and then. For many years, it seemed impossible. 

This entire journey has been continuous, including summers, since 2012. The Dog Walker is truly living proof that if you want something bad enough, no matter who you are, that with faith and help from Heaven (and maybe your mama), you can achieve anything!

So proud of you, Dog Walker.

Jul 25, 2020

The Championship Game

You know that since Utah moved to "yellow," Curly has been able to play baseball. He loves this sport and he does a great job on 1st base and the pitching mound.
Sorry, wrong side of the fence for me.... 

Anyway, they had their tournament this week. They were the 6th place team and no one expected much.
They won their 1st game on Tuesday, then they scored back-to-back wins on Wednesday. Suddenly, they were playing in the championship!!
Curly had been in a bit of a batting slump, ok, it has been a challenge for the past month, but when he stepped up to the plate in the final game, he pounded it into left field where it cleared the 12-foot fence.
Slump over!
But even his awesome performance on the mound could not ]stop the dogs from beating them.

Still, 2nd place isn't too shabby..

Jul 21, 2020

Guest Blog - How COVID-19 has Affected Me and My Family by Baby Doll

I don’t get to see some of my family anymore like my sister, Princess and her family. She is pregnant and worried about her baby, so she stays home. During COVID we got a volleyball net so we could play volleyball games in our backyard since we can’t play at the church anymore. I miss playing ball at the church. 

Also, when my dad goes on work calls we have to be super quiet. That is hard for a family who is loud all the time. Our family is doing this really cool thing called Summering in SoJo and it has been really fun. Each week you watch a movie and then you do the activities and there are points. Out of more than 100 families, we are in 5th place.

Our whole family gained a bunch of weight during the first part of COVID because we were all scared and sad and we ate lots of treats to help us feel better. My sister, Crafty, took charge and made up a sugar diet for two weeks to help us get off sugar. As a treat for those who do it the whole time, she is taking us to lunch at Chick-fil-A. Speaking of Crafty, she had to come back early from her fun mission in the Philippines that she loved. She couldn’t even bring her suitcases, just one little carry-on. She got in a van and she rode with other missionaries toward Manilla. She had to wear her mask the whole time. Then they all got on planes and came home. She has this whole story written up if you want to read it yourself  After that, she started making Filipino food for us. Our favorite is adobo. It is this chicken and sauce served over rice. 

At the beginning of COVID-19, I did dance with ZOOM. It was a little weird at first and annoying because I couldn’t see my friends and I had to dance in a small space so I could stay on the camera. Finally, we got to go back to the studio for a few weeks before our recital which we had in the parking lot on a big stage. My parents were the only ones who could come from my family and they could only stay while I was dancing. I had 6 dances, so we had to go home in between each one. It was annoying.

I’m not sure how I feel about having church at home all the time. My dad doesn’t want us to come to the church on Sundays because my mom and my grandpa are high risk. I miss my teachers and all the cool talks that people give. I miss primary and the leaders and the fun singing time. I miss my friends.

We never get to play with friends. I went over to a friend's house once, but other than that, I only hang out with family. We can’t even have girl scouts. Every time we are supposed to have a troop meeting, my mom and I help put together a cute little bag for each of the girls. That’s the same way we have Activity Days. It’s fun, but I still miss being with my friends.

Since we couldn't ride big horses as planned for Scouts, the girls received these cute little horses so they could learn to take care of them. This is Baby Doll giving Flower a drink at the dance performance. It was so hot out there!
Also, I hate online school. Because I don’t get to see my friends or my teacher and at home I can’t focus well because I just want to play on my trampoline with my brother, Curly. My mom made us sit at a school table covered with paper in the living room. Sometimes we put cute pictures in the spots where we put our chromebooks. My sister used her spot for notes and math problems, so she got mad if we wrote in her area.

Another fun thing we have been doing as a family is going to Lagoon once a week. We got season passes for Christmas and it has been interesting. You have to wear a mask most of the time except on the rides. I have been on almost all of the rides in Lagoon. It is super fun that all my family at home except Grandpa and Crafty (because she works or hangs out with her boyfriend) go together. Even Dad can arrange his schedule so he can come. 

It has been so fun to hang out as a family doing all kinds of things. We have watched movies, had cookouts, played volleyball, and done some projects we had been planning for a long time. But I still want to do pottery and a few other things. Right now I don’t have any extra activities like dance. I just stay home so we have chores and Dog Walker has been reading the Harry Potter books to us. We are in Book 7. Dog Walker’s graduation from UVU was cancelled and he was very sad, but now they are doing a crazy drive-through graduation in August. He is just excited to get his cap and gown.

We have also been getting free lunches from the school for the kids. It is always something fun to look forward to.

My sister, Teach, is gone now. She and her family moved to New Jersey the first part of July. I cried for a long time and so did Scout. It is so sad to have part of our family be far away. Our family has been using an app called Marco Polo to keep in touch and we have been video-calling. My family is really important for me. At first, Beauty and The Beast kept their family away from all of us, but now they come around. The hardest part has been not being able to get together with everyone like we always have.

Hopefully things will get back to normal soon. I just want life to be normal again.

Jul 17, 2020

Happy Birthday, Skittles!

Yesterday, my cute little grandson, Skittles, turned 2. That is such a fun age and amazing things are happening in his little world. At home, they have been totally redoing their yard!! They have ripped out the grass (and I use that term loosely) and leveled  a large pine tree that was destroying their lawn. They have also dropped their sagging fence and they will be putting in a new one. It will be a wonderful place for a little guy to play. Pics to follow (unless Bossy has some to upload now.)

On Monday, we took Skittles and his family to Lagoon. We had so much fun riding with him, but mostly watching him ride pretty much every ride he was tall enough to get on. I will leave you with a bunch of pics, but I just wanted you to know that we love this cute little guy. He is so precious to us and we love giving him new experiences and helping him have fun.

Love you, Buddy!!

Riding with Mom
Riding with Dad
Riding with Burrito's friend
Riding the teacups with Grandpa and Grandma
One of the first rides of the day and he didn't quite seem to get it.
Hey!! It's not your birthday, Burrito!
Really, Baby Doll, Really? It's not your birthday either.
There's our birthday boy.
Thanks, Dog Walker, for not letting us forget about COVID-19.

Jul 13, 2020

Backyard Volleyball

We have had so much time to hang out as a family during this pandemic! That's why I bought a new volleyball net.
We have had a great time getting all the family out to play, even Grandpa. Although sometimes we tend to get a little too competitive...
How are you all keeping your families entertained?

Jul 9, 2020

5th of July Celebration

Bossy loves the month of July. She always has; the parades, the fireworks, everything. That's why she and Gamer decided that if we were going to small town Utah for the 4th, they would have another celebration on the 5th.
We started the evening with a barbecue.
Then we played lawn games. Drama Queen beat both me and my sweetie in a rousing game of Yahtzee played with 4-inch wooden dice.
There was a watermelon seed spitting contest (they are still arguing over who won...), and lots of fireworks!
Thanks, guys, for a terrific party!!

Jul 6, 2020

Happy Independence Day!

We had a great time celebrating the birth of our country! Because there were no parades this year, my sweetie's sister decided to make her own family parade and she invited us to come. 
There weren't very many of us, but we had so much fun covering about six blocks of my sweetie's hometown, doorbell ditching treats and watermelons.
We had Bossy's boys with us and it was our job to keep an eye on Skittles as he rode his little powerwheels 4-wheeler. After the parade was over, we had a barbecue at my SIL's house.
The grownups spent plenty of time visiting while the kids played games.
We got the very last hotel room near the park so we could watch the fireworks show put on by the city.
Happy 4th of July!

God Bless America and please keep us safe and healthy.

Jul 3, 2020

Our Last Full Day With Twizlet

Wednesday was a full and amazingly fun day as long as I could keep my mind off the fact that it was the last day we would spend with our darling little granddaughter for a long time.

As many of the kids as could manage to get off work and join us made the trip to Lagoon. We were a group of 12 including those who live here, Taco and Burrito, Drama Queen, Crafty's boyfriend, and Twizlet. It was the first time we had ever taken Twizlet and at first she was a little nervous about the rides.

I couldn't even get her to drive a little car by herself!! It seemed that if she went with someone, like Baby Doll, she was fine, no matter how big the ride.

Soon she discovered that the rides were fun! She went on the teacups with Scout.

She always loves the carousel!

This was her very favorite ride both with Baby Doll and then later on with Taco.

She rode the little boats just like her mama did when she was a little girl.

We hadn't planned to spend our entire day at Lagoon. Our reservations were for when it opened and we didn't leave until they shut down all the rides. She just kept running from ride to ride until it was finally time to go home.