A Little of This and That in March

Apr 13, 2018

Sometimes when I sit down to write these monthly update posts, I suddenly realize I don't have any photos to go along with our activities. That . . . is not the case with March. It was a busy month, and I didn't forget my camera for any of it.

In light of that, this is going to be a picture-heavy update. March's activities included . . .

Celebrating . . . Maxwell's eighth birthday. I went on a field trip with his class, Mike made him an iridescent beetle cake (because bugs are still his love language), and he got to eat salmon and roasted asparagus for dinner (his choice).

Attending . . . my sister's graduate piano recital. Oh man, she was sooooooo good. Max and Aaron came with us, and afterwards Max declared that it "felt like it was only ten minutes long," which was the highest compliment he could think of. Later in the month, she also rocked her oral exams, so I'm pretty proud of her (and I'm dreaming of the day when, maybe, I can take piano lessons from her!).

Going . . . to Music and the Spoken Word with my parents and siblings, specifically to hear Brian Mathias in his debut performance with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. I mentioned a couple of months ago that Brian, one of my friends from my college days, was hired as a new Tabernacle organist. It was amazing to hear him play with the Choir. I even teared up a little. It's just pretty thrilling to see someone catch their dream, you know?

Forgetting . . . about St. Patrick's Day. I mean, it's not like I was planning a big celebration or anything, but we usually pull out the green tablecloth and candlesticks and let the boys eat a couple of bowls of authentic Lucky Charms. So at 7:30 am (when we realized our oversight), Mike rushed to the grocery store, we scattered some gold eggs (the store was out of gold coins) on the table, put a few drops of food coloring in the milk, and called it a win. Plus, that night, Mike actually made corned beef, cabbage, and soda bread, so I guess we did more than I realized.

Steeking . . . my cardigan. In knitting, a steek is used when you knit something in the round and then cut down the center of a column of stitches to open it up--essentially turning a sweater into a cardigan. Most of the time you reinforce the stitches around the steek (I definitely did with mine), but even with that, I was terrified (and almost physically ill) at the prospect of cutting up my many hours of hard work. Two things gave me the courage to finally do it: 1) I kept repeating this mantra in my head: Knitting doesn't like to unravel sideways, Knitting doesn't like to unravel sideways and 2) I wasn't going to be able to wear it without cutting it, so it was worthless to me whether I cut it and ruined it or just left it alone. So I gritted my teeth and did it, and it all worked out (see below).

Finishing . . . my cardigan. After the dreaded steek was over, all I had to do was knit the collar, and it was finished! This was the Watkins Cardigan by Whitney Hayward, and the yarn I used was Quince and Co. Puffin. I love the way it turned out. It's big and squishy and so, so warm. Since we've been having such a cold spring, I've actually been wearing it quite a bit, and it makes me happy every time I put it on.

Racing . . . in the pinewood derby. Both Maxwell and Aaron made cars this year, and Aaron came in 6th overall, which was an improvement over last year. Basically, they're happy if they win at least one race, which they both did, so it was a good night.

Going . . .  to one of BYU's family concerts. Every year, BYU puts together a series of several concerts that are designed for children. They are shorter than normal performances (under an hour) with lots of interaction and opportunities to move. There is no age restriction, and they are absolutely free. We decided to go to the one by Men's Chorus and Women's Chorus since my sister sings with Women's Chorus. It was a fantastic program, and all of my kids loved it.

Showing . . . off BYU to our kids. Mike and I always have the BEST time being back on campus, and it's even better when we have our kids with us and we can relive the glory days, as it were. This time, we went to the Eyring Science Center, where Mike lived for most of his college career. The foyer is filled with a bunch of hands-on exhibits, and we spent a good hour playing with them. The boys especially loved the vortex cannon.

Being . . . tourists in our own state. The boys were on spring break at the same time Mike's parents were here from Germany. This had many advantages, of course, because we had the freedom to see them as often as their schedules would allow. But it meant that we couldn't exactly go anywhere for spring break because we wanted to stay close to where the action was. So we decided to go on a day trip and see some "Utah" things we'd never seen before, namely the Hill Aerospace Museum (before we even got out of the car, Max declared, "This is way cooler than I thought it was going to be!"), Promontory Point (which involved a history lesson as well), and the Spiral Jetty (a large-scale art piece on the salt flats of the Great Salt Lake). It turned into such a fun day, and it was pretty obvious that we weren't hitting the usual spring break attractions because we didn't fight a single crowd.

Spending . . . time with Grandpa Paul and Grandma Jill. As I already mentioned, Mike's parents were here for the couple of weeks surrounding General Conference. Even though they have a lot of kids (nine) and even more grandkids (thirty-four), they are always so good to give each family some one-on-one time, not to mention packing in the family parties. Always a treat.

Being . . . baptized. That would be Maxwell, but the rest of us were all there to support him, including aunts, uncles, cousins, grandmas, and grandpas. Max happened to be the only child being baptized in our entire stake in March, so we got to plan the whole program, which made it even more special. Aaron and Grandma Jill gave the opening and closing prayers. Cousin Steven played the piano; Uncle Gordy led the music. Grandma B and Aunt Sonja gave the talks. Aunt Angela and Aunt Anna played a piano duet. And of course, Mike baptized him. It was a beautiful, special day, and Maxwell beamed with happiness.

Hosting . . . our third annual neighborhood Easter egg hunt. We invite anyone (12 and under) who wants to participate to bring over a dozen filled eggs the day before. Then we hide them in our yard plus three other neighbors' on Saturday morning. Everyone comes over, we divide the kids by ages, and they have a great time finding twelve eggs. It doesn't have the frenzied, greedy feeling that so many egg hunts seem to have, and everyone hangs out afterwards playing and chatting.

And that's a wrap for March! Tell me about your month in the comments!


  1. What a busy, busy month! I would have been sick cutting your jumper, so pleased the cardigan turned out!!
    Question "So of course Mike baptised him". why of course? Is this a father ritual, or is Mike a 'leader' or?? intrigued

    1. Sorry, I definitely should have clarified, so I'm glad you asked, Erin! In our church, all worthy men are eligible to hold the priesthood ("worthy" meaning they are keeping the commandments and their covenants, have a testimony of Jesus Christ, etc.). Through the power of the priesthood, they have the authority to baptize. Which means that if a father holds the priesthood (which Mike does), then he is generally the one to baptize his own children. Hope that helps to answer your question, but let me know if you have any others!

  2. Wow, it looks like Maxwell had a great birthday month, down to the museums you dragged him to exceeding expectations! (I remember a poor child almost crying when he heard our plan to go to the Children's Museum, since the two history museums we had already hit that trip had not been to his taste. Who knew four year olds weren't into Lyndon B. Johnson?)

    Your pictures always show such great experiences and memories. I hope they work as family albums to enjoy them decades from now!

    1. Well, I left out the part about 3-year-old Clark getting bored long before everyone else and complaining, "I'm done! I want to leave NOW!" So it definitely wasn't everyone's favorite!

  3. I'm impressed that your 8-year-old requested salmon as his birthday dinner of choice! Like, REALLY impressed. I'm only recently getting to the point where I'm "okay" with some seafood/fish, so I'm always impressed with moms who introduce them young and often enough that their kids actually love it. So, go you!

    And we love visiting our old alma mater as well (USU), though it probably happens more often for us, as we live just ten minutes away :)

  4. I think these are always my favorite posts of yours! I love seeing the joy you have in your beautiful life! Why are your parents in Germany? My son is serving a mission there right now…

  5. Amy, your knitting amazes me. Knitting has always seemed like sorcery to me. My brain can't fathom putting together a patterned sweater with a ball of yarn and two sticks. And I loved the adorable cat you shared on Instagram. So jealous.


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