Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Trip to the USA

On September 28th Elle and I finally left on our trip to The U.S.A!  We flew out at 10:30 at night and were so happy to find that no-one was sitting next to us on the plane which meant I got a great nights sleep stretched out on the seats while Elle stayed up watching movies.  Once we got to LAX we had a 5 hour layover and then we were winging our way to Salt Lake City, Utah to meet Mum and Dad.  It was great to be with them again and we talked for a few hours before hitting the sack for the night.

Thanks Mum and Dad for the matching pj's
 The next day we walked up to Smiths supermarket with Mum and then spent the rest of the day at the Gateway Mall while mum and dad went to meetings.  That night we went out for dinner, had a little look around the Joseph Smith Memorial Building and went shopping at our favourite U.S Store: Walmart

Joseph Smith Memorial Building
Elle got tired so Grandpa pushed her in the trolley
On Friday we did more shopping at The Brickyard which had some more of our favourite stores - Ross, Khols and TJ Maxx.  We shopped all day until Mum & Dad came back to pick us up, and then we shopped some more! 

Ross, oh how I've missed you!
Saturday was General Conference so we were up early to get to the Conference Centre.  It was awesome to finally attend a live session of General Conference - and even more awesome to be there and see Dad sitting on the stand.  We had a quick picnic lunch afterwards and then met the family who had come to listen to Dad speak.

Waiting for Conference to start
Elle & Dad
Lunch between sessions - I'm surprised Dad could even eat knowing he was speaking soon!
Family photo after conference
That night Dad & Wade went to the Priesthood Session while we hung out with Jess and the kids.  We had dinner, went to the Deseret Book 'Ladies Night' and visited the Church History Museum.

We're pioneers
Sunday was a busy day.  After breakfast we headed to the conference centre for Music and the Spoken Word and then conference.  In between sessions we got to go through the underground tunnel on the church golf carts to the Church Office Building for lunch.  It was awesome! 
Salt Lake Temple
After the Sunday Afternoon Session we headed down to Provo to visit cousin Kim!  It was so good to see her and to hear of the awesome time she was having at the MTC.  She will be a great missionary.

All pointing to where we live
Next we headed to Orem to have dinner with our good friend Gil Elegante.  She put on a beautiful meal for us and we had a great time reminising for a few hours with her.

The next few days weren't so busy for Mum & Dad so we got to hang out with them a bit more.  The highlight was definitely Tuesday when we went to the Temple to do baptisms.  Elle was able to baptised for a family name she found herself.  It was a really special experience followed but lunch at the General Authorities lunch room where Elle got to meet the Prophet!  She even got a hug.  We also went for some lovely (albeit adventurous) morning walks, went shopping, ate too much and then it was sadly time for Mum and Dad to go back to the Philippines.  The week went by too fast but we had the best time together.

Park City

Before Temple Baptisms

Cheesecake at Olive Garden
We had 5 more days after Mum & Dad left.  We spent the first night at Tracy's and then went to Wade's for a couple of days.  We had a great time hanging out, eating too much (again - who can resist a 59cent donut), shopping and carving pumpkins! 

On Saturday it was in the high 20's, on Thursday it snowed!

Pumpkin Patch in Logan

Elle's jack-o-lantern

Then it was back to Tracys for a family dinner, last minute shopping and lunch at Aunty Judiths.  We stayed our last night at Aunty Judiths house and she dropped us to the airport.  30 hours later we were finally home.  We had a great trip but it was good to be home with the boys.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Farewell Sister Farthing

Cousin Kim left for her mission on Monday.  We went up to the airport to farewell her as she headed off to the Missionary Training Centre in Provo, Utah.  She will be there for the next three weeks and then will start her mission in Arizona.

We are so proud of Kim and her decision to serve the Lord as a missionary for the next 18 months.  We know she will be a great missionary and will touch the lives of many.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Temple Baptisms

Particuarly ugly picture of me but the camera went flat so its the only one we got - outside the door to the Temple
On Tuesday Elle was able to go to the Temple to do Temple Baptisms.  She's been waiting since she turned 12 in May!  It was a lovely experience especially since Jonathan was the baptiser.

The next time she does Temple Baptisms will be at the Salt Lake Temple.  19 days to go!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Stake Glee Fest

Elle and Ryan both participated in our Stake Glee Fest on the weekend.  They spent lots of time practicing with their groups to learn their song and dance moves.

Muffy, Terina, Tiana, Shavaria, Elle, Maddy & Ilai - waiting to go on stage
 Elle sang "Say a Little Prayer" with 8 of the Young Women.  They looked lovely and sounded great!  Ryan sang with 6 primary boys "Blame it on the Boogie" - They looked great in their 70's costumes (sewn by yours truly - a stressful day on Saturday sewing 6 pairs of flares) and were pretty smooth up on the stage!

Ryan looking pretty happy in his afro
It was a great show all round but in my opinion I think our ward had two of the best acts of the night.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

School Performance

The Fijian Group
The kids school performance was held this week, with 2 shows on Wednesday and one on Thursday.  This year was a Polynesian Culture theme and Elle and Ryan chose to be in the Fijian group.  Unfortunately their tutor never showed up so Elle was assigned to teach the girls group and the boys group learnt their dance off You-tube!  They both did a great job - it was a very entertaining performance.  Kelly and I sewed their costumes which we think turned out quite well considering we were only given a roll of material and just made up the pattern.

They also performed with their school Kapa Haka group which was fantastic.  They practice hard and give up their Friday lunch times to be a part of the group.

Kapa Haka - couldn't get any pictures of Ryan - the boys were at the back

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Let it snow, Let it snow, Let it snow!

Yesterday it snowed in Temple View.  SNOWED!  The whole country has been hit by a severe wintery blast and since Sunday it has been snowing in strange places like Taupo, Wellington and as far north as Auckland!  Mount Pirongia had a nice dusting of snow in the morning - something I've only seen three times in my entire life! 
Snow on Mount Pirongia - the most I've ever seen it covered
The day was very cold but it had a different feeling to it.  Somehow I knew that if it was ever going to snow in Temple View, yesterday would be the day!  I kept looking out the window to see if it had started yet.  About 12:30 we got a pelting of hail.  Then about 1:00 I thought - I'm just going to have one last look out the window and luckily I did because lo and behold fine white flakes of snow were falling down from heaven!  I quickly called Crystal then ran outside and jumped around like a crazy person.  It was amazing!  Soon there was enough to build a snowman and we had a huge snowball fight!  Well I wish that happened, the truth is it melted as fast as it fell and stopped after about 2-3 minutes!  But I don't care.  I am 32 years old and for the first time in my life (maybe ever?) IT SNOWED IN TEMPLE VIEW!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Beehives President

Elle was called and set apart as the Beehives Class President yesterday.  It was lovely to attend her setting apart and to hear the encouraging words of her blessing.  As I listened to to the Bishop I was reminded of when I was called as the Beehives president - 21 years ago!  Even as a 12 year old that calling taught me leadership and responsibility and helped to prepare me for the many church callings I have had and the many more which are still to come.  We know Elle will do a great job in her first church calling.