Thursday, October 27, 2011

Get jenibelle blogging again!!

Hello everyone!!! This is Lauren, Jeni's daughter. My mom has been absent on the blogging scene lately and is needing an extra push to get her blogging again. So everyone needs to comment and encourage her to come back!!!! In the last few months she has become a grandma AGAIN (thanks to me) had her baby start HIGH SCHOOL, had her son-in-law (my handsome hubby) graduate from college, had my dad in and out and in and out, ect ect...of the hospital, Jeffrey start his senior year AND be elected to homecoming court, and her and my dad were voted as Grand Marshals of the homecoming name a few things! I know everyone is SO interested to know about all of this and more so give her a kick in the butt!!!! I miss her blogging and I know you all miss her witty-ness as well!!!! COME BACK TO BLOGGING MOM!

and for your viewing pleasure: My baby girl Ellie Claire, Jenibelle's new grandbaby!

Monday, June 6, 2011

In an effort to make you feel smart.

One of these days, I am going to get the "stupid" tattoo removed from my forehead.

But not yet. I obviously still am living it.

In January, let me repeat, in January, I signed my boys up for EFY in Provo for July 4-9.
At least I thought I did.

Saturday I got an email reminding my EFY goer, that would be singular, EFY enrollee, that the session they signed up for was next week.


So I look up the confirmation that I have had SINCE JANUARY.

Sure enough!

Scotty is going next week and Jeff is going July 4th.

Um, who doesn't notice a collossal mistake like that !?!?!?!?!?

Me obviously. Me with the "stupid" tattoo on my forehead.

So now I have scrambled for transportation, paid twice as much as I would have driving BOTH boys to Utah at the same time and having fun with friends while they were safely tucked away at BYU. I had great plans and dreams of no-kid fun shopping at cutesy little shops and quilt stores. I had planned on meeting/visiting bloggy friends. Oh, I had made my list of what I would do ALL BY MYSELF/Childless in Utah. Only to have to ruined by my own stupidity.


(So I looked up stupid tattoos on Google images. Oh my.
Not shareable.)

This little guy thinks I'm a genius, and gorgeous.
Ah, the innocence of youth.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Say it with me...Awwww

Hey!! Remember me? The one who used to blog?

I'm back.

Here's the deal. In March Byron became quite ill with a serious infection, a life-threatening one. It was terrifying. He spent 12 days in the hospital and then another 10 at home recuperating. I joked with the Dr. that we had 'dodged a bullet'. He very seriously looked at me and said that "no, it was a grenade". During this time in the hospital we found out that Byron was also suffering from Congestive Heart Failure with left valve regurgitation and a seriously enlarged heart. It is non-operable. This revelation took the wind out of my sails and truthfully, I have struggled ever since. This year my allergies were awful and my asthma out of control. I am sure it is stress related, but what's a girl to do?

I am trying to come out of my stress-related life coma. Byron's health consumes my every thought, which totally irritates him. He is trying very hard to live as normal as a life as possible, including going every day to work. Watching him struggle with very small things is heartbreaking. And for one who lives their life on Hyper-Drive, (me), it is also hard to be patient when he is not at his top speed! I'm trying.

So, life does go on. Carter is getting big and so, so, so cute with the most darling personality. He is the light of our lives. A new baby is coming in early September. SHE doesn't have a name yet, but we are so excited for a little girl. Yes, shopping is fun for her!! Haven't bought much yet, because of my coma, but slowly, I hope to emerge.

A lot of fun things have happened in the past six months. Jeff was elected ASB VP for the next school year, his dream come true. He also got his license, which he is LOVING. He had a fun season playing Volleyball and he was selected to represent our high school at California Boys State. (This is a 70 year old nationwide program sponsored by the American Legion. The boys go to Sacramento for a week, all expenses paid, and learn about Government and Leadership.) It's a big deal and we are thrilled that Jeff was selected. He also went to the Junior Prom with a darling young lady, Abbey. The girls in his Seminary class organized a group and they had a blast. The kids first went to ours (Liberty's, because Jeff is the class Pres) and then went to the other high school's (Heritage). They ended up at one of the girls' house and roasted Starbursts. And in the braggity, braggity, brag section...or the are you kidding me? section, Jeff got a 30 on the ACT. Who knew he was a little whiz kid? He tries hard to hide it.

Awww. Little Jeffy is Big Boy Jeffy. So handsome.

Scotty is also GROWING up. He is now taller than me with huge feet and very hairy legs. How does this happen? Scotty will be 'graduating' from 8th grade in a few days and it's on to high school. NOOOOOOOOOOOO! He had an awesome soccer season this spring. He played goalie half the time, which added gray to my already silver head. He loved the challenge, I hated the stress. He has an A in Geometry and will be starting high school in Algebra II, hope he doesn't expect help from me! He's looking forward to all the adventures that high school brings, and seminary. He's really looking forward to that, ha! (Actually, he is my only child that gets himself up and ready with no fuss. I deserve him.) Oh, and I think he might be noticing girls. maybe.

Awww. Did I mention that his comb is his most valued possession? The whole house is in a turmoil if he can't find it. No kidding.

And for your viewing pleasure....the cutest boy of all!!


Sunday, January 2, 2011

The year in review, slacker edition

The year in review, that sounds like a whole heckuva lotta reading!!

Lucky for us that due to my advancing age, I can't really remember a whole lot of details!
2010...glad it's gone, looking forward to 2011.

We had some family pictures taken, was a disaster. We didn't get a good/decent picture of the whole family, Rachel was totally on one. But there are some good pictures of everyone individually. So I'll give a little review using the pictures.


Rachel is 27. 27!?!?! How can that be? I only feel 35ish.
Rachel is the most precious of our children. We are so thankful that she is here with us despite of her many disabilities. We finally found a good care home for her. She is well taken care of and seems content. When I go to get her, she hops up squealing. People ask all the time if she knows people, I can say definitely "yes", she knows us. Rachel is going to a special day class everyday where she does little art projects, goes into the community, has an exercise class etc... she loves our kitty Scout and is totally fascinated by Carter. She's just like the rest of us, we're all fascinated by him also!!


Ah, my handsome son. Mitch is 24 and we think finally he is on his way.
He moved out with a friend to a house in a nearby town and started school this year. He thrilled and surprised us by getting a 3.5 gpa!
Mitch loves music and spends time perfecting his drum playing. His goal is to be a sound engineer; not quite sure what that is, but he assures me that it's a real career. Hopefully this is the start of good things for him. Now if we could just find the right girl for him....


Lauren is loving life! All she has ever wanted is to be a mom, and she loves every second of raising Carter. The Evans family lives in Rexburg while Skyler finishes his last two semesters at BYU-I. Then it's off to warmer climates for them! Lauren is loving learning new things like cooking, home decorating and child development. She continues to be the ***spark***in our family, life is not quiet when she's home! We all love and miss her so much and look forward to her visits. We are so proud of our beautiful daughter.


2010 was a very eventful year for Jeff. He transformed into a different person! No braces, contacts, growing about 7 inches all in one year. He was elected Jr. class President, played Varsity Volleyball, got his Driver's permit, was active in Leadership at school, interns/job shadows at a local grade school once a week, spreads Jeffy Joy all over campus, was on the selection committee for our new Principal...Jeff was busy learning some great Leadership skills. He's got an exciting year ahead of him...running for an ASB office, playing either tennis or Volleyball, getting his license, first date (I had to say that because he will get really mad at me and that cracks me up) and the beginning of his Senior year. I also can't give a synopsis of his year without mentioning the single greatest event of his year. The Giants winning the World Series...we can also look forward to watching 162 games again this year. Lucky us. His four favorite words are: Rude, Giants and Panda Express.


Scotty is 14 and the changes are freaking me out!! Scotty boy has grown about 6 inches, is taller than me.. :( He is talking to me in this strange low mannish voice and the peach fuzz on his lip is mysteriously gone, and he's only in 8th grade!! Scotty loved soccer this year and had a great season. He kicked 24 goals and made the All-Star team again. He has been on the Yearbook staff at school, is taking Geometry, and gets excellent grades. Scotty is well liked by everyone; he's a little on the shy side but he is really centered and goal oriented. He is setting his sights on a career someday in Science. Just to totally tick off the rest of my kids....Scotty is very loving and affectionate (and is a champion brown-noser). Nothing wrong with a little brown nose.


Skyler is the fun in our family. We love this son of ours and we are all so happy that Lauren had the good sense to marry him!!! Seriously, he cracks us all up constantly; he made me laugh so hard I had to pull over to the side of the road to avoid getting in an accident. He is finishing up his studies in Business at BYU-I and then who knows? He loves to fly-fish and I cemented his love for me by giving him a Bass Pro Shop gift card and actually taking him there. Skyler is a wonderful husband and Dad. He loves his little family so much and we are so thankful for him.
I scare him all the time by telling him that I want to live next door. I'm kidding, kind of.

My favorite boys!


I could talk about him all day. He is the light of our lives, we are fascinated by him and every move he makes. His hair is the prettiest copper penny red, his eyes are so blue and his little smile lights up our world. We are so thankful for him. He is a spunky, full of personality little guy. We're lucky he's ours to love.

Byron & Jeni:

Could this be a more unflattering picture? Oh well.
"How's Byron?" is the most asked question in my life.
He's hanging in there.
2010 was a tough year on him, and me by default.
In November of 2009 Byron was diagnosed with prostate cancer to go along with his lymphoma and rheumatoid arthritis. 2010 was spent seeking treatment. So far, nothing has worked out. The three "common" treatments are impossible because of other health concerns/factors. #4 treatment is rare and usually a 'last ditch' option. We are waiting to hear if he can have this treatment. In the meantime he developed a condition called rheumatoid vasculitis, a very painful condition as it means he develops large, deep wounds on his legs. Byron has gone every week since June to a wound specialist and has had his legs cleaned and wrapped in soft casts. He has also had problems with swelling and lung function. We feel that we have spent the year dodging bullets, one serious condition after another. It has been difficult and sometimes it's hard to have a sense of humor, but we're plugging along. He IS still working, going to school every day. He is exhausted at the end of each day and the weekends are spent catching up on energy for the next week. I admire his fortitude. We are thankful for the prayers we know are said on our behalf,

ME! I too am plugging along. This year has had many highs and lows. Every minute spent with Carter are the highs and watching Byron struggle is the low. Also this year, my niece Lacey passed away at 34 from cancer. She and I had a special bond from the day she was born. Spending the last few days of her life with her was precious to me but also very scary. It was a special time as some family broken fences were mended and Lacey regained her lost faith. One of the tremendous highs for me was going on a 12 day trip with my two friends Vicki and Pam and Pam's daughter Shaelie. We went to the church historical sites, which for me was a dream come true! It was a time of fun, laughter, peace and strengthened faith for me. I was so blessed to be able to go. I am still at Liberty High, although I have a new "boss" and new responsibilities this year. I also still teach Seminary, a real blessing in my life. I love being busy and I am. Life is challenging and humbling...but as my mom always said..."it sure beats the alternative!"

Monday, November 1, 2010

Cute pictures of Carter preempted by....



It's a good thing you really can't die of happiness, I'd miss Jeff!

Oh yeah.

PS. Thank you Dave Harlow. We, the loyal Giant's fan obviously owe it all to you.
Lincecum, Cain, Posey, Uribe, Huff, Ross, Torres, Renteria, Wilson...
All minor players compared to Dave "the beard" Harlow.
Lot of Happy.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

We got the fever!!!

We love baseball at our house.
We REALLY love the Giants.

I am pretty sure that we have watched or listened to every single one of the 160 regular games and were GLUED to the TV for the 10 post season games.
Dying of heart attacks.

A highlight of Jeff's year was 5 trips to watch his team play. This time with a bunch of friends from school.

For his birthday all he wanted was to go to AT & T park, even though the season hadn't started.
While there he added two shirts to his collection. I think we are up to about 19-20 Giants shirts in our house. (almost a month's supply....)

The first trip baby clothes shopping we bought a Giants outfit.
Gotta train 'em young!!

Now we are the National League Champions!!!!

You may know this boy as Jeff....

But tonight he has a new title....

The happiest boy alive!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Road Trippin' it with the BFF's!!

So....I did something totally selfish and I have to admit, I loved every minute of it.
I have gone to girl's camp a bazillion times, but that is actually church service.
I have gone on sisters trip with my sisters, but that is family bonding time.

I realize that most people hate reading other's vacation blogs...but oh well. My feelings won't be hurt ( much), I read yours after all! I was completely selfish...left my ill husband and my two teen-aged able bodied sons and didn't really feel too bad about. Sometimes you just gotta take care of yourself. right? (I need validation here folks!)

An opportunity to go on a church history trip with two of my bestest friends was dropped in my lap. After about 12 minutes of thought...I decided to go! Pam, my friend of 25 (!) years had decided that since we are teaching Church History in seminary...she wanted to go see the sights we are teaching about. Vicki, our other BFF, loves to travel so she volunteered to put the trip together. So the two of them planned, reserved, and mapped out the entire trip. I showed up with a suitcase. (really, I did NOTHING to plan at all. They even bought my ticket one night when they found a great deal. Pam just called and made sure she got all the details right and informed me what I owed. Best way to go...!)

After stressing for a couple of weeks and almost backing out several dozen times, Vicki's husband picked us up at 3:30am to go to the airport. Ugh. I honestly couldn't believe I was going to see all the sites I have always wanted to visit! Just the mere word "Nauvoo" makes me misty and now I was headed there! This was truly a dream come true for me and to share it with Pam and Vicki made it all the more special. (Disclaimer: Going with my family would be the optimal trip, but since it is an impossibility right now with Byron's health...going with my great friends was the next best thing.)

Pam & Vicki at our car rental. Our little friend Payton calls us her fairy godmothers.
We are just like Sleeping Beauty's godmothers...the tall one, the pretty one and the round one. Guess which one I am?

I'll spare you the entire travelogue and the 643 pictures I took (not an exaggeration), but I will share some of the highlights of our adventure and some of my favorite things. Because I have major control issues, I drove the whole time. This worked out great, they could see everything and I could be in the drivers seat, literally. One of the great things about going with your girlfriends? If you see somewhere you want to can!! They're not going to argue and tell you to hurry up! If you see, say , a billboard that says "Walt Disney's hometown!" and you want to see it...chances are, so do they!!! It was awesome.

In front of the Visitor's Center in Independence, MO., just outside of Kansas City and the only rain we got the whole trip. It rained for about 30 minutes, we were blessed with great weather.

This is 'The Temple' for the Community of Christ church, which used to be called the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. It was huge and we really wanted to go in because anyone can. We just got there too late. It really is called "The Temple", at least that's what the big sign out front said.

This may look like a vacant field to you, but it is not. This is the sacred site where someday a temple will be built. It was humbling to stand on this consecrated land.

We were driving around Independence and look what we found!! Harry Truman's house! Remember what I said about traveling with your family...perfect example. We saw, we stopped, we high fived! Oh, this is where I need a little shout out for Pam's GPS system that came with us. Awesome, except when I would turn wrong, I need a little help with right and left. The poor GPS girl was always "recalculating" and telling me to stay on the prescribed route. Oops, my bad.

We went to Liberty, MO. Liberty was the place where Joseph Smith was held on false charges for five long months with four other men. This was an exact reproduction of that jail, it was built on the precise place that the original prison was. To see the 4 foot thick walls with two small windows, low ceilings and no real ventilation and to realize that five men survived an entire winter here, is beyond belief. Surely they were sustained by their faith and by angels.

This is a replica of the Book of Mormon, if you are one of my non-LDS friends and want to know what this is....ask me!!!

This is the home of Alexander Doniphan, he was a great friend to the early Mormons, although not a member of the church himself. It was one of literally thousands of cute homes we saw and 'ooohed and aaahed' over!

We drove out to Far West, MO, which holds the remnant corner stones of a temple that the saints had hoped to build. There is nothing here, no old log cabins restored etc...just some plaques telling the significance of Far West. The saints had come here from Ohio, a very long distance, hoping to build it up as a safe place for them. But it was not to be; It was here that the anti-Mormon mobs drove the saints out in the dead of winter, some with no shoes and feet wrapped in rags. How sad and heartbroken they must have been to have to leave this beautiful land that had been promised to them as a safe place. Our hearts were heavy as we walked around Far West and looked at the magnificent landscape; the early Saints suffered so much, would we be as faithful as they?'

The valley of Adam-ondi-Ahman. A very special place indeed. The spirit of God is very strong here, and the tears flowed freely.

Thank goodness they have Diet Pepsi in Missouri.

Cute house huh?

It's Walt Disney's boyhood home!! Who knew he was from MO???
We went downtown Marceline, MO, it looks just like Main Street USA in Disneyland!

Trip to be continued.....