Thursday, June 30, 2011

it's coming . . .

It's not done yet, but I just wanted to update all my Lowe relatives that the family cookbook volume 2 is in production and our mouths are watering. Kristi has been typing like a mad woman, and if I remember correctly, I think there are 270-ish recipes in 9 categories. We will let you know the cost as soon as we have it, and you can pay for how many you want. It's time to get excited, people.

Second, we were in Sacramento last Saturday watching Austin play in a basketball tournament, and we had some time to kill in between his four games (the first of which began at 10:00 am and the last at 8:00 pm). SO, there wasn't quite enough time between games to go to the Sacramento Zoo, or to a movie, or to find a mini-golf course. But there was enough to time to find a yummy barbecue joint to eat lunch at, and to throw some rocks into the American River, and to track down a certain missionary and take him and his companion out for dinner.

Doesn't he look great?? It was so wonderful to see him and it made me feel just a teeny bit closer to Elder Shaffer somehow. It warmed my heart!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

extended family fun

Well it seems things have slowed down a little for me (not being at work every day) because here I am, posting again! I just saw some pictures on Keith's camera that I had forgotten he had taken and they need to be shared!

Over Memorial Day weekend we had a visit from Steve and Becky and some of their wonderful kids: Nathan, Jeannine & Jon, Michelle, and David. We were so happy to have them come, and appreciated their l-o-n-g drive across the desert to make it happen. We especially appreciated Michelle's extra long drive that began in Rexburg, ID that same morning!

We had planned a few things to do and see while they were here, and assumed the weather would cooperate since we are known here in northwestern NV for our blue skies and lack of precipitation. Well . . .

The day dawned unseasonably cold, but the skies were fairly blue. We drove up to Lake Tahoe, around the south shore, to a beautiful spot called Emerald Bay. It had been cold in Carson City, but 1500 feet higher it was even nippier. And windy.

But did it dampen our spirits? No way.

However, nobody wanted to stand still and pose for a picture for very long!

Hoping to get out of the wind, we walked a mile-long trail that took us down to lake level. We had our picnic in backpacks and were planning a nice lunch by the shore. We saw some pretty mountain blue jays on the way down that were very willing to have their picture taken.

By the time we got to lake level, the sky was getting grey. The wind was better but it was still cold! Michelle and Kristi are still having fun . . .

This current BYU-I student, and the one who will be joining her in the fall had some time to catch up and talk about seeing each other at school in the fall!

Michelle, Jon and Jeannine decided to be brave and take a dip . . . notice the worsening weather.

Oh charming. Is it really snowing on May 28th?

The storm did not pass through quickly, as Keith had suggested it might.

and although smiles were still being given for the camera,

the fun was beginning to wane.

So we drove around the rest of the lake and over to Virginia City, one of our other tourist attractions here, just in time for Dallin and Austin to ride in the camel races.

Safe and sound at home later, it was game time.

And then the fun turned a little giddy . . .

But Michelle and Austin were mere amateurs. Look what Jon can do.

Well, Kristi couldn't do that, but she does have some sweet skills of her own:

44, was it? Ouch.

In addition to the craziness, we also had a nice Sunday together where I actually got to introduce MY relatives in Sunday School (when does that ever happen to me?), and then the Lowes were nice enough to join us for Kristi's seminary graduation that evening.

It was such a fun weekend! Thanks for coming, Lowes!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

I crack myself up.

I am pretty easily amused.

Brennan recently asked for a mini-photo album of some "life before mission" pictures to share with his companions. So I put one together but had some extra pages at the end. I couldn't leave it like that because I am my father's daughter, and just like how he always had to even out the brownies if someone had left an uneven edge in the pan, I had to fill the album to its even end. So here's how I did it:

I hope it brings a smile to my missionary's face when he opens the package and remembers how dorky his family is. hee hee!

Monday, June 6, 2011

fanfare . . .

W h e w.

Thirteen years of pencil lead, eraser shavings, alarm clocks, heavy backpacks, overall diligent effort (and some occasional stress, blood, sweat and tears) culminated on Saturday with Kristi's high school graduation.

For a student like Kristi, I can barely describe how both proud and relieved we are that it's finally over. She is a combination of smart (i.e. she took honors and AP classes and did unbelievable volumes of homework year-round), social (i.e. she prioritized a little fun every day), somewhat disorganized (i.e. "I can't find my ______", or "I forgot to tell you about ______" or throwing in a load of laundry at midnight), and independant/stubborn (i.e. her work habits are her own - "I've got it under control!" or "Don't worry mom, just go to bed!"). We have been both exhausted and in awe watching her live her life.

Kristi's gown was bedazzled with her accomplishments. She wore a Nat'l Honor Society drape, and wore braided cords for student government, academic achievement and something else I can't remember. She graduated in a class of 419, but was one of only twenty who got to wear this:

I know you can't read it very well, but it says "Top Twenty". I think she got one B in her entire high school career (AP Calculus gave her a run for her money). She also decided to decorate her cap so that she could find it after she threw it in the air. And true to form, she can't do anything simply.

Here she is on her way to graduation on Saturday:

The Top Twenty marched in first, so she had a seat on the front row.

She performed the senior song with two other girls - Kristi on keyboard, one on guitar, and the third sang vocals.

Kristi had a great senior year. She has a thousand friends and was very involved, and so now that it's over, she is feeling some sadness along with the happiness and relief. She is looking greatly forward to college, but I think she will have many happy memories of her years growing up in Carson City.

And I'm not sure I've mentioned it here before -- after MUCH thought, stress, and prayer, Kristi decided to attend BYU-Idaho in the fall rather than BYU-Provo. This is not the decision she thought she would make, having wanted to attend Provo her whole life, but when the dust settled from the decision-making process, Idaho came out on top. And then the stress vanished. She is super excited and knows that great things lie in store for her there. And we couldn't be happier. Anything that begins with BYU makes us happy happy happy.

Kristi left yesterday for Disneyland and Huntington Beach with some friends for a senior trip, and I imagine she is having a wonderful time. CONGRATULATIONS, KRISTI!!! It's been an amazing ride.