We had a great month in September. We usually go camping Labor Day weekend, but we took a vote & the girls decided they wanted to camp in the backyard instead of hauling the trailer out to go camping – which worked out fine because it rained most of the weekend anyway. The first night, we set up the portable DVD player & we all watched The Princess and the Frog & then Jason slept out there with them. The next day, we headed to the Iron County Fair in Parowan. We went on some rides, but within an hour it started to rain – and then pour. We waited in the van for a while, then went out to eat, hoping it would clear up, but it never did, so we headed home & had ice cream. Sunday evening, we got out our fire pit and had a fire in the front yard. We had a great time roasting marshmallows and singing songs. It was a beautiful night. The girls slept by themselves in the tent that night. The next day, Monday, we had a yummy breakfast & then headed back to the fair to use the rest of our tickets. Unfortunately, it was raining when we arrived, but after about 15 minutes it cleared up & the girls went on rides and got to see the reptile tent and all the exhibits. We also enjoyed some homemade ice cream and cotton candy while we listened to live music. It was a fun day. After that, we headed back home & got some pizza and headed over to the lake at the hills & did some fishing. The girls just wrapped a baited hook line around their finger and dropped it in the water & pulled up those fishes like crazy! It was so much fun. On the 7th, McKinley had her friend birthday party at the bowling alley. There were 13 kids all together in 3 bowling lanes with 2 adults. A bit crazy! But really fun. McKinley got some great presents & we got to meet some of her new friends from North Elementary. The 9th was McKinley’s actual birthday and she had a great time – see her section for more details. On the 11th, Heidi and Kezia flew to Minnesota to have a week-long visit with Aunt Tiffany, Uncle Adam & Maddy (we also got to meet the Potts, Cindy, and GG Tew at City Creek for lunch on our layover in Salt Lake – so fun!). In Minnesota we had a great time playing with the cats, going to the lakes, playing at the parks, going to the mall, going to a book store with live animals, eating yummy ice cream, going to church, watching movies, going on beautiful walks, visiting with each other, taking naps, and topping it off with a visit to the Minnesota Children’s Museum, where they had a Dora exhibit. It was a wonderful time! Thank you Aunt Tiff & Uncle Adam for being such GREAT hosts! We loved our time there. Meanwhile, back at the ranch, daddy did a great job holding down the fort with the older girls. On Friday, the 13th, the Matthews came & stayed & Robyn ran the Cedar Half marathon on Saturday morning. Saturday evening they went to Chloe’s (McKinley’s friend) birthday party at the aquatic center. It was great to be a family again on the 18th and tell each other all about our adventures. On the 20th, we headed up to Pine Valley for a weekend of camping with the Bensons. It was beautiful weather and we all were able to sleep in the trailer! We had fun talking and laughing around the campfire, roasting marshmallows, taking walks by the lake, going fishing (LOTS of fish were caught!), playing games, and just enjoying being together. We were so glad they were able to come down. The 24th was Uncle Jeff’s 40th birthday party & most of us headed down for his party – happy birthday Uncle Jeff! On the 27th, we had family pictures taken at Woods Ranch. It was pretty cold – 45 degrees – so the girls weren’t so happy about posing for pictures, but hopefully we have some that turn out cute! The 28th was a beautiful day!! Another wonderful blessing & miracle for our family & Jason’s entire family. Grandpa & Grandma Devenish were sealed to each other in the Manti Temple! We are so very happy for them and thankful they chose to be sealed! After the sealing, we came back to grandma & grandpa’s for a BBQ & visiting. We left about 6:30 and headed for home. The girls’ primary program was on Sunday – and mom was on the stand, too, to support her class. Each of the girls did a GREAT job! It was a wonderful program – filled with the spirit.
JASON: Jason was so good to watch the girls while Heidi went to Minnesota. Heidi even heard about his elaborate hairdos that he did J Great job! Things were pretty busy this month at work for Jason. He did get some overtime. However, at the very end of the month, Congress did not agree on funding and Jason is now furloughed. We are not sure how long this will last, but are trying to be patient and trust that everything will work out! He was so thankful for the day his mom and stepdad were sealed & truly felt Link nearby.
HEIDI: This past month was a bit more emotional for Heidi. She was really missing her baby boy. Heidi really enjoyed her time with Tiffany in Minnesota. It was neat to visit the lakes and just see her home and meet some of her friends. It was also neat to have that one-on-one time with Kezi. The only bummer was she left her camera in Minnesota! So… sweet Tiff mailed it to us and we are thankful to have it back. Heidi read a couple fun book this past month. She also has finally started to learn more about family history. The new family history site is really amazing with pictures and stories and everything. She’s excited to do more with finding names and doing indexing.
-On the 6th, mom & McKinley met Nikki Nelson at the St. George temple for her baptism pictures. It was so neat. McKinley looked just so beautiful in her white dress and flower that grandma & aunt Trisha made from Heidi’s wedding dress. It was a beautiful night with a beautiful girl! Looking forward to attending her in another white dress at the temple in several years J
-McKinley’s birthday party at the bowling alley was a lot of fun! The friends that came: Kaylee, MJ, Kiersten, Olivia, Addison, Kloe, Lindsay, Mahina, Jackson, Brecken, and her sisters. She got LOTS of fun gifts, including some PJ & slippers, Lego friends, Fancy Nancy books, a pillow, craft jewelry box, My Little Pony, and Monster High Doll stuff. On her birthday, she got a tablet & headphones from mom & dad that she has really enjoyed. For breakfast she wanted Krave cereal, homemade corn dogs for lunch, and McDonald’s for dinner.
-McKinley started activity days! She went for the first time on the 16th and made a WAY cute little witch hat.
-McKinley was one of about four children selected to give a talk for the primary program. It was from a previous talk she’d given in primary about the plan of salvation. She talked about trials & blessings and about Link. It was really neat & she did a terrific job!
-Mom met with Mrs. Hardin for SEPs at the end of the month & she just talked about how smart McKinley is and how high she is scoring in all of the categories and what a good student she is. We love to hear it!
-When we went camping with the Bensons, she watched “Journey to the Center of the Earth” with Zach. She didn’t say anything till after the movie, but apparently it really scared her. She was sobbing afterwards. She still says she thinks about it & it scares her L
-McKinley says “I’m starting to like school more. I liked going bowling for my birthday party. We all got jewels from mom from Minnesota and I like mine because it has an ‘M’ on it. My favorite part of school is going to math for some reason.”
-Ireland still likes her teacher & class, but still has a hard time getting excited to go to school. She says it’s too long and she hates math. We’re trying to get her to let go of that attitude because we know she is a smart cookie & is doing well. At the end of the month, mom got to go to Mrs. Comstocks SEPs with Ireland. It was a lot of fun because mom got to go to all the centers with her (science, math, spelling) and Ireland showed her how to do everything. Mrs. Comstock said Ireland is very artistic, smart, and a great friend. She said that she is a great reader and she loves having her in her class. We are so proud of her and glad that she is doing so well despite being the youngest in her class.
-Ireland is big into spelling things out lately. Instead of yes, she says y-e-s. Instead of school, she says s-k-o-l (we’re still working on the correct spelling J
-We’re working with Ireland on not comparing and not trying to outdo people. Ireland’s friend, Mahina, comes with us to school in the morning and she told us about her 3 friends that she had over the night before. Ireland piped up and said “Yeah, well I have had 2, no THREE friends over before, too – and it was WAY fun!” We have had to explain that it’s not nice to treat our friends that way.
-Ireland was in charge of FHE one time & it was so cute. She made all these papers with pictures of feelings & taped them to the wall. We were supposed to go and punch the one we wanted & we learned about feelings and she also talked about bullying and cyber-bullying. It was really cute.
-Ireland says “I love my mommy. I like my teacher. My friends in school are Drew and Kyree. My favorite part of school is recess, lunch, and going home. At lunch, Mrs. Colleen says EAT UP! EAT UP! And I don’t like it. I didn’t like it when we got our pictures taken because it was freezing cold.”
-Kezia sometimes says she doesn’t want to go to preschool, but every time mom goes to pick her up, she says “I loved preschool!” and tells mom all about what they did and her friends. She seems to be having a great time.
-Kezia was pretty nervous about going in an airplane to Minnesota. She talked about fears of falling out of the window. We got to the airport and she was still nervous, but loved to see the plane come in. Mom told the flight attendant that it was her first time on the airplane & she made a big deal about it. She got her a wings pin and announced on the airplane “We have a first-time flyer with us today. Her name is Kezia.” Kezi was cute & waved to everyone. After the plane took off, the worry went away and she was enthralled with looking out the window and seeing everything. It was fun. She loved going to Tiffany, but her favorite part was Simba and Fiji, the cats. They didn’t really love her, but she wouldn’t leave them alone. She loved to get close & try to pet them. She loved going to beaches and she really loved playing at the Dora Exhibit in the Children’s Museum. Mom loved getting to spent lots of one-on-one time with Kezi, but didn’t love sleeping in the same bed with her. Kezia is a CRAZY sleeper – complete with rolling all over, kicking, talking, and YELLING in her sleep. Mom was glad to have a separate bed when we got home.
-Kezi is just really a sensitive girl. She will say something cute and we will all laugh and she will get really mad and cry and say “it’s not funny!”
-Mom was telling the story of Joseph and the coat of many colors. Mom said that Joseph was sold into slavery and taken into Egypt. Kezi and Ireland weren’t paying attention. They were laying on the ground playing with each other. So, mom asked “Kezi – WHERE was Joseph taken to?” Kezi said “I dunno… maybe Walmart?”
-Kezia is usually really good when mom says she needs a Kezi kiss or a Kezi cuddle & is happy to comply.
-Kezia is usually really good when mom says she needs a Kezi kiss or a Kezi cuddle & is happy to comply.
-Kezia says “Um – happy birthday Kezia – surprise! It’s going to be my birthday. I like preschool because Kalli plays with me. I want to make a birthday cake.”
Our sweet baby boy. How we miss you. Mom had an especially hard month missing you. It’s now been six months. Half of a year since you left. The memories grow fainter and the pictures and videos grow more precious. It’s looking more like your headstone will not be here by your birthday and that is very heartbreaking. Please forgive us. We will still try and make that day special, though, and pray you will be close. THANK YOU for all your missionary work you have been doing. THANK YOU for being a part of your grandparent’s sealing day in the temple. Many of us knew you were there. It was such a special day. THANK YOU for helping to turn our hearts more to family history. We know you will help us find those people that are missing “links” in our family chain. One very special part of our month was receiving our “Link Bears.” They are the bears that are made from your clothing – complete with a seam where your surgery scar was and a spot where your birthmark was. They are treasures. Your sisters sleep with them every night. Mom & Dad love our bear, too, and it will forever remind us of our Link. We miss you. We love you & are so thankful for the time we spent with you in mortality and await the time we will get to be with you again.