Decking the halls...and hitting the malls!

We've had a great break together, filled with all of the things we love...
- family time
- friend time
- ice cream
- turkey dinner
- shooting (real guns and darts)
- shopping
- tree picking
- tree decorating
- Layton Lights
- Grandpa's chorus performance

The kids are a little bummed to go back to school tomorrow, but I'm thinking that with all of the Christmas activities and holiday hustle and bustle, Christmas break will be here before we know it!


It's been a great Thanksgiving!
A month ago I was really struggling with what I was grateful for...I knew I was extremely blessed, but I was down on my physical health which spreads to all other areas of life.  I've had a 2 1/2 month battle with nerve problems and still have no diagnosis (which can be really good news), but it's mentally exhausting and almost a "mind game" to pull yourself out of the doom and gloom of chronic pain.
I still hurt and still worry, but this past week has been really good to me.  I have the best people in my life and Heavenly Father has given me so many tools to find happiness and hope even during trials.
I still hope and pray everyday that I can released from these physical trials, but in the meantime I'm also taking it a day at a time and trying to have an attitude of gratitude, despite the struggles.

In Sacrament today I heard again the much-loved quote by President Hinckley...
"I am asking that we stop seeking out the storms and enjoy more fully the sunlight".

That's my goal for this holiday season.  Be happy- today.  Seek out the good things.  
Because I know if I do I will find them.

Happy Thanksgiving!

"Let it Snow"...or no.

We had our first snow of the season last week.
The kids woke up Sunday morning to a super thin blanket of snow on the backyard.
The boys literally threw on hats and boots with their jammies they were so excited!...
Stella made me help her get all of her snow gear on....she was ready!
The funny thing is they got all of the summer toys out (Pool noodles, sticks and frisbees) to play in the cold snow.  I think they hardly remember this freezing stuff from last year.
And I guess it's a good thing because it ended up being almost 60 degrees for the rest of the week!
Mother Nature isn't sure what's going on out there but I'll take glimpses of cold and warm as long as she wants to keep delivering it!  It's the best of both worlds!

{Instagram 2014: Week 46}

 {The first real snow of the year- the kids were ready to play!}

 {Late night Yogo made them loco.}

{On the way to preschool I asked these cuties what they were thankful for.  Stella quickly said, "Dexter, aren't you grateful for Jesus? He made your life."}

 {Pie Shmie.  We Ponds do ice cream.}

{Thankful for these 3 turkeys!}

{AFTER celebrating Thanksgiving, Janelle and I conquered our Christmas shopping.}

{We went commercial this year.  It's been good to us.}

{Instagram 2014: Week 45}

 {Typical Sunday night.}

 {Thanksgiving lunch with my first grader- so thankful for him!}

 {My RB's pulled through with the magic- peach puree for my favorite fountain Coke!}

 {Henry's soccer team got to train with Mansally last night.  The boys were thrilled!}

 {There's a party going on in heaven- temple work is done for 5 great aunts!}

 {We were spiritually and physically fed at TOFW...now off to bed!}

{My kids are obsessed with Voxer- I'm a little annoyed by it.}


{Instagram 2014: Week 44}

 {Good Burnt Almond Fudge. Bad RSL.}

 {Morning Voxing with Dad, karaoke style.}

 {It's a hot cocoa kind of day.}

 {My kids loved having a baby at our house for a night.
Stella cried herself to sleep because she wanted to "keep Baby Wes Wes forever"}

 {Wrong shirt for today, Missy!}

 {Fun Friday at the Dartside! What started out as watching the kids play turned into all out war.}

{So happy we have old friends!  It's been 20 years and we still love laughing together!}


{Instagram 2014: Week 43}

 {A flashback to the scariest thing I saw on Halloween night...}

 {I cleaned for hours today while this girl gestated a balloon.  She really babied that belly.}

 {This kid got to come to scouts yesterday to help with the Bears.  I haven't seen a smile this big from him ever!}

{The van is equipped, now I just need to talk my heart into it.}

 {Sunset racing.}

{Mexican with mi amigos.}

{One-on-one time with this Stud at Big Hero 6.}


{Instagram 2014: Week 42}

 {Boo Bumgarner...we really wanted a KC Royals win!}

 {Blind Burger Bandits after gymnastics}

 {This girl wanted to make me lunch & I happily obliged.}

 {Pumpkin Carving Party!  Let the Halloween fun begin!}

 {Scary Hill}

 {The best weather ever for Trick or Treating!  70 degrees!}

{Here at the RIOT the battle hymn's begun....we're here for RSL!}


Summer of Soccer

A lot of our summer nights (and days) are spent at soccer practice, goalie training, soccer games, RSL games, backyard soccer and shopping for soccer gear.  We are in the throngs of soccer life.
My boys cherish their nights away at Rio Tinto cheering on RSL, as well.  
It's really fun to have a family hobby to share, but it keeps us super busy.

Say Days

We love when the Says come to town!
Our kids are always asking when they can see their Kansas Cousins,
so visits from them are extra special!
Sleepovers.  Hiking.  Playing.  Games.  Constant Fun.

And time with my sister is always enjoyable!

FINALLY...Disneyworld done.

I'm on my tri-annual scrapbooking weekend,
so I finally sat down and scrapbooked the rest of our Disneyworld trip.

The book is being printed as I type and I can't wait for Stella to see it!
I think she will have a new favorite bedtime story.