A Little of This and That in April

May 21, 2018

April might just be my favorite month of the year. I love the warm weather and the flowering trees and the rain. I love the memories of Aprils past: the end of the college semester, graduation, my wedding day, Ian's birth. I relish the added minutes of sunlight each day. And . . . I'm always super annoyed when it snows. But it always does. So at least now I just expect it.

Our April was filled with . . .

Going . . . to General Conference on Temple Square. It was Maxwell's first time to go to the Conference Center, and the look of wonder and excitement on his face when we walked into that majestic hall was priceless.

Working . . . in the mornings. I mentioned a few months ago that I got a job as a manuscript reviewer with Deseret Book. Now that I'm several months into it, I can tell you that I am enjoying it so much, and it has fit into my day just exactly like I wanted it to. I get up at 5:30 in the morning and read/write for about an hour. This translates to about three manuscripts a month. I have only read a couple of things that were truly painful or tedious to get through, and a few have been quite exceptional. It's been a great way to start my days, and I'm grateful that I'm able to work just the amount of time that I wanted.

Getting . . . in a few more hugs from Mike's parents before they flew back to Germany.  Their visits are never long enough, but we sure try to pack in as much time with them as possible.

Spending . . . time with Mike's cousin, Laura, and her ten (yes, ten!) kids. We went to his family's cabin and spent the day roaming the woods, roasting hot dogs, and talking. Most of the time, I feel like I have a pretty big family with five boys, but that day, I felt like a total slacker! But really, it was so much fun to spend time with them, and all of my kids had a friend (or two!).

Being . . . released from my church calling. For the past three-and-a-half years, I have been serving as a counselor in my ward's Relief Society presidency. It was a wonderful, stretching experience for me. By far, my favorite part about it was getting to know all of the dear women in my neighborhood. I will treasure those relationships forever. But, I'm not going to lie, I'm feeling pretty free now without so many responsibilities!

Losing . . . a first tooth . . . and a second tooth . . . and a third tooth. Actually, the third tooth didn't come out until the beginning of May, but Bradley lost all three within a period of ten days. That's a pretty fast way to make money for a six-year-old. Two interesting and related facts: Maxwell has still not lost any teeth (and so Bradley lords it over him just a bit); Ian has exactly the same three teeth Bradley does not have (which we all find incredibly funny).

Listening . . . to audiobooks. Last year was not a great audiobook year for me, but this year, I'm back on the bandwagon and loving it. I find myself justifying knitting for an hour if I can get through an hour of an audiobook at the same time (actually, two hours, since I listen at double speed). That's a suuuuuuper productive way to maximize my hobbies, don't you think?

Dyeing . . . Easter eggs, one week after the fact. This was a lesson to me about not forcing activities into some preconceived time slot. We didn't have time to dye Easter eggs on Easter weekend, and rather than trying to cram it into a fifteen-minute window or just giving up on it all together, we just decided to wait until things had calmed down. And it was so great. We dyed them on a quiet evening with no other plans, and the kids literally worked on them for two hours.

Hosting . . . our 4th Annual Pie Party. In the past, we've tried to hold it as close to March 14th as possible, but every Saturday in March was either rainy or snowy or booked with another activity. So it didn't happen until April 21st, which also happened to be Ian's first birthday. He took a nap through most of it, but it was quite a party: 44 pies and over 180 guests. And the most beautiful sunshiny weather we could have asked for that was well worth the postponement.

Realizing . . . that having older kids is not half bad. In fact, it's pretty awesome. One day Aaron needed a book from the library, and the library closest to our house didn't have it, but another branch did. I was out with all the kids, and I really didn't want to get all of them out of their seats for just one book, so I sent Aaron in alone. And even though he had never been in that library before, he found the correct section of the library, located the book, and checked it out all by himself. That's just one small example, but it totally made my day.

Celebrating . . . our two April birthdays. Mike got a cherry pie (that he made for himself), and Ian got a chocolate kitty cake (because his first word was "kitty").

Starting . . . a couple of new knitting projects: a little dress for a new niece (which I've already finished) and a shawl for one of my aunts. Oh, and buying yarn for three more projects.

Attending . . . my sister's graduation at BYU. She received her masters in piano performance, and I am so proud of her (and also a little sad that there will not be any more concerts or recitals to go to).

Scooting . . . in an unusual way. Ian decided it was too difficult to go from sitting to crawling, so he decided to just scoot around on his bum instead. He wiggles his hips from side to side and gets around pretty quickly if he's on a smooth surface.

Going . . . on some fun dates, including to a performance of Riverdance and out to dinner for some Aussie barbeque with Mike's brother and sister-in-law. Making weekly dates a priority is one of the best things we've done for our marriage.

Suffering . . . through one of the worst colds of my life. I thought it was just going to be a mild spring cold, but then it moved into my sinuses, and it felt like they were filled up with concrete. I was so miserable, I actually went to the doctor for an antibiotic (which I hadn't done since I was pregnant with Bradley).

Getting . . . away for the weekend to celebrate our thirteenth wedding anniversary (and the successful end of our diet!). Dates are great, but mini-vacations are even better. This one was just to Park City and only for one night, but it didn't matter. We weren't on anyone's timetable except our own. We ate like kings. And we slept in until 7:30! (Our kids have us trained, and we couldn't stay asleep longer than that.) Our friends met us for dinner, and then we wandered the nearly empty streets because we timed our trip perfectly for the off-season (bad if you like skiing, good if you don't like crowds). Oh, and did I mention the weather was perfect?

Playing . . . with friends: Clark, all day, every day. He never has had enough of friends, and this introvert is having a hard time understanding it.

Watching . . . the boys in their Hamilton performances. The drama teacher at the boys' elementary school taught each class a song from Hamilton, which they then performed during Art Night. The performances themselves were very well done, but Art Night was so packed and chaotic and crazy that we almost missed both Maxwell and Aaron.

Hearing . . . Ian say "bye-bye." He might not be walking (or crawling), but we're hearing a new word every few days, and I love it. One of my favorites from April was when Mike was leaving for work, and I said, "Bye," and then Ian waved and said, "bye-bye" like he had been saying it his whole life.

Reliving . . . some of my happiest days. When I was down in Provo for my sister's graduation, I had a glorious walk across campus all by myself. Mike dropped me off on the south side of campus at the base of the long flight of stairs I must have climbed a thousand times over my college career. As I started walking up them, I experienced this overwhelming rush of happiness. It was as if every single happy memory converged in that moment and instilled itself into my soul. That sounds extremely dramatic, I know, but I can't think of any other way to describe it.  Even though I can't take a good selfie to save my life, I had to document the moment. I was simply elated.

I think that's a wrap on April. And now May is far enough gone, I might as well get started writing it up, too!

What did you do in April?


  1. In that photo of 15 kids I only spotted two girls!! Boys running strong there.
    Can't beat an Aussie BBQ :-)

  2. I don't think I remember reading about your new job! That sounds perfect! And it sounds like your April was PACKED, but in a good way :)

    And seriously, that pic of the 15 kids...y'all are rockstars, and I can't believe you got a pic of all 15 mostly all looking!

  3. I love Park City. I've only been there for day trips, but I've spent a few nights in Sandy while my brother & SIL took a minivacation there. Almost as good :-)


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