Sunday, September 10, 2017

Family Life Weekend


We recently had a very busy weekend for all three of us. John and I volunteered to act in a skit for our church's family service. While this service is usually one service a month, but since it was kicking off the school year, they did all three services in one weekend.

We had so much fun being part of this service. It was fun to dress up and spend time together with running lines, rehearsals and the shows. We also enjoyed hanging out with our church family more than usual over the weekend!
So that Sydney did not have to go to all three services, Aunt Crystal had her spend the night. They went to a hot air balloon event, but it was too windy for the balloons. Sydney did get to stand in a basket, which she really liked. 
They then came to the family service, which was a lot of fun. Sydney knew our parts very well, but she still really enjoyed it. She said we were good actors, so it was nice to see her so proud of us.
Later that Sunday afternoon, we went to the church picnic. It was nice to hang out with our church family. There were games and lively conversation. We've now been a part of this church for a bit over a year, and feel very at home there. It's been nice to continue to get involved and be part of this wonderful place.

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Last splash of the summer

We were surprised this weekend when John had Sunday off work. He rarely is off the weekend of Labor Day. So we decided we wanted to do something fun and out of the ordinary as a family. There is a small family aqua park in our town, but we knew it'd be busy. There is one very similar to ours in a town about an hour away, so we decided to try it out. We didn't tell Sydney we were going. I had packed our things before church without her knowing. After church we told her we were taking an "old fashioned Sunday drive." She was super excited when we pulled up to the aqua park.

We all enjoyed the cool water on a warm day!

The diving board area wasn't busy at all, and they allowed John to tread water so Sydney could jump. We all had a blast. I used to love the diving boards when I was a kid and in high school. So I even got brave enough to jump!

The water park wasn't busy at all, so we enjoyed a very casual and easygoing time.

 This photo is me being very brave! It wasn't something I planned to share publicly. 
I never thought I'd share a full length photo of me in a bathing suit. I shared this with some close friends, but decided it might help someone to read it. I recently lost 40 pounds and am trying to lose more. However, this isn't just about weight. It's about living my best life and having a healthy body and mind. This is some of what I shared. "I'm so proud of ME! I put on my new suit that I love and is four sizes smaller than what I wore to Maui a year ago. Then, I climbed up that big tower times to go down a slide. I didn't get winded, and I was below the weight limit. I even went on the diving board several times, and I haven't done that since high school. I was more than a spectator in my daughter's memories of today. My husband even commented how much fun he had watching me let go and have fun. It was a great day! Looking forward to many more!" 

 This was a benefit for my entire family. They enjoyed me being involved and not just watching from the sidelines. It was a great family day! We all were just so happy and enjoyed being together.

 When we returned to town, we met Aunt Sheila and Uncle Edward for dinner. Of course, Sydney just adored the extra family time!

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Sydney Goes to First Grade

Well, we have a first grader! It's been a long summer, and I think we were all kind of ready to get back into a routine.

The weekend before school started, we had some fun. Sydney and I did face masks and nails, as well as getting some photos ready to put in her little locker.

 A couple of days before school, we went to Meet The Teacher. Sydney just adored Mrs. Heard. She is a seasoned teacher, which I really like, but this is her first year of teaching first grade. She's been a fourth grade teacher for a while. Sydney was also excited that her friend Jonathan was in her class!

Then the big day came! Sydney was so excited, and got up happy and ready to take on the day. Before her feet hit the floor she told me about some advice a friend from our life group told her at church. She said "I'm going to do what Ms. Lamar told me - get out there and make friends!"

The local university football players were at the front of the school, giving the kids high fives and lots of encouragement.

The school had some neat signs outside, as well. Sydney and Klara are not in the same class this year, but they got to see each other in the cafeteria that morning. Sydney is also excited that her friend, Tevin, is in her class.

After school we got did our annual trip to get ice cream. Sydney thought the first day was boring, as they went over procedures and rules. However, by the second day she was much happier and ready for the year.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Amanda's Baptism

While I accepted Jesus as my Savior when I was 13, I was only baptized as an infant. Our church really emphasizes one getting baptized as their own decision. So I've been thinking about doing it for a while. I feel like my faith has gotten so much stronger in the past two years in all the life chaos I've been through. I see God's hand in so much of it. So, as I'm really trying to embrace this new chapter of my life, I decided it was time to be baptized.

Sydney was so excited, she wanted to dress and wear her hair just like me! It was so nice to have Aunt Sheila and Uncle Edward come, too! Crystal, Payton and some friends from work also attended.

Pastor Brandon was the one who baptized me. He means so much to our family, and I was honored for him to do it.

It was a wonderful time, and it was special to see my friends and family so proud of me!

We went to lunch after and had a great time. It was a wonderful Sunday!

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Our 8th Anniversary

This is our 8th wedding anniversary! It was pretty low key, but we sure did enjoy celebrating another year together. While the past year has been one of the most challenging, it's also brought us closer together.

We decided to go the Farm to Table Dinner put on by the local Farmer's Market. It was so neat! We got some plants, ate a great dinner and enjoyed being on the Courthouse Square lawn with our community.

Sydney spent the evening with her friend Jennifer. They played spa - did face masks and a big makeover.

 On our actual anniversary, John surprised me with flowers! 

We had a nice evening together. We had planned to make a nice dinner together, but I was in no condition, as I had a big dental procedure the day before. However, we did enjoy some nice time together.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Girls Weekend

We had a busy weekend! On Friday Aunt Crystal took Sydney for the night. They went and got pedicures, saw a movie and visited Grandma Rogers.

John and I took advantage of that and had a date night at BINGO!

The next day we met Aunt Sheila and Bryntley for a girls day. We started out at Brush with Art!

We also got some lunch!

Then we spent the afternoon at Aunt Sheila's house, making bracelets, chocolate suckers and doing nails.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Family Trip to New Mexico

We've been wanting to go to Red River, N.M. for years. It was something my dad talked about often, but we just never made it. I used to go a few times when I was a kid. We finally made it! It was so exciting for us to get there, and it did not disappoint!

It was fun to walk around town before we could check into the condo. John and Sydney enjoyed some old school Slush Puppies.

The very first thing John and Sydney did once we got to the condo was go fishing. They fished a lot this trip! All but one of the fish we got was caught on her little Moana pole.

Our condo was in such a nice location. It was so nice for Sydney to be able to just hop outside and get her dad in the morning. It was so peaceful and relaxing.

We took a lot of time to relax and have fun. We played games, went hiking and enjoyed the playgrounds nearby.

There were some deer that often popped out at our condo. Sydney enjoyed feeding them each day.

More fishing!

The highlight of the trip was Sydney going horseback riding! It's been a big dream of hers for a long time, and another dream of my dad's, too. She was a complete natural on it. John also went on his own horse. They had a great time on their hour nature trail ride.

We brought our own food and cooked most of our meals. It was so nice to prepare our meals together and enjoy the beautiful outdoors!

John filleted our fish and it made a good dinner, while Sydney would make her own creations.

When we left Red River, we went to Taos, where there is a great non-profit play area/toy store. It was so fun to play and look at all of the fun stuff they had.

We happened to be there when they had a story time and theater class. It was so fun!

We then went to Santa Fe, where we discovered the old town. John really wanted to go to a chapel where there was a historic staircase. It was really wonderful to see. We also loved how lively and vivid old town was.

We also just enjoyed some down time at the hotel, swimming and two of the three of us having donuts!

On our very last day we weren't quite ready for it to be over, so we went to Albuquerque.We got tickets to the aquarium and botanical gardens. The aquarium was a little disappointing, but we still enjoyed it.

The botanical gardens was awesome, although at that point it was really hot and we were really tired. It was a great way to end the trip. It was an awesome family vacation, and we hope to go back to Red River next year!