I created this blog when my sweet little girl, Kristen, was diagnosed with cancer, for the third time. After fighting for almost 3 years Kristen was called home to that same God who gave her life. I've contemplated on many occasions rather I should quit this blog or not. Each time I am inspired that I should not. One of my favorite quotes comes from Neal A. Maxwell- "Those who "plow in hope" not only understand the law of the harvest but they also understand what growing seasons are all about. True, those with genuine hope may see their proximate circumstances shaken like a kaleidoscope at times, yet with the "Eye of faith" they still see divine design." Kristen blessed lives and continues to do so. Her light continues to shine. As for me, I continue to "plow in hope" knowing well that Kristen is mine for eternity. Families can be together forever! This I know. Our family continues to live and to love and this is our story...

Friday, August 31, 2012

childhood cancer awareness

September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month
I made this video last year and wanted to share it again.
It is a different year, yet the facts remain the same.

*Childhood cancers are the #1 disease killer of children.

*One in every 330 children will develop cancer before the age of 10.

*One out of every five children diagnosed with cancer dies.

This past year 2 of the children featured in this video have relapsed,
both have received a bone marrow transplant and for the moment
are doing well.
You can help by becoming a bone marrow donor.
sign up here

Thursday, August 30, 2012

a few reasons why

I love August...

the harvest

making a fresh batch of salsa using only ingredients
from  your garden

the corn is fabulous

and the peaches and tomatoes are the best

picking yet another 5 gallon bucket of cucumbers
cucumbers anyone?

here is the reason my 5 rows of string beans disappeared

the sunflowers and the smell of fall in the air

my favorite part of my garden has been this row of zinnias
many bouquets have been delivered to Kristen's grave

August is the perfect month to make my favorite 
fresh squeezed lemonade
1 cup of fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 cup of sugar
7 cups of water
lots of ice
boil 1 cup of the water and the sugar
just until sugar is dissolved
add the remaining ingredients
add lots of ice the more ice the better the lemonade
go outside and find a shady spot and sip your lemonade
enjoy the humming birds and the butterflies
that make their way into your yard
you won't be disappointed

it's a great month to bake a fabulous cake for your family
just for the heck of it

the state fair begins next week
tomorrow I am off to the city to spend the day
judging the 4-H items
this should be fun
I promise to be kind and award lots of blue ribbons

what do you love about August?

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

twice as much

Twice as Much
by Linda Ellis 

I have felt the pain of heartache
in the days since you have passed
and never again will I take for granted
how long a life will last... 

Each lifetime has a limit
from the date of its creation.
We only choose our life’s direction,
not its beginning...or duration. 

You lived and loved a lifetime
within the years that you were blessed,
and I mourn, because without you,
I now must live the rest. 

It is I who suffer;
I who grieve.
You are gone, and now content.
And if you could,
I know you would 
erase these tears I’ve spent.

It is I who loved so deeply
and so much of me, is you...
that when you left this earthly place,
a part of me left, too.

Though our hearts are joined forever, 
linked by invisible chains, 
the time has come for me to see
that much of "me" remains. 

Every day you’re in my head. 
Every day you’re in my heart.
Every morning through day’s end,
you occupy a part. 

We walked this earth together;
our lives are intertwined...
so I shall live this life I have
as two lifetimes...combined. 

Twice as long, I’ll gaze at sunsets. 
Twice as many times, I’ll laugh.
Twice as hard, I’ll seize these moments
I now live on your behalf.

Twice as deeply, I will care.
Twice as tough, I'll bear the sorrow. 
Twice as real I’ll live each day
and thank God twice for each tomorrow.

Twice as strong I’ll smell the roses.
Twice this vow, I will renew:
Until we meet again one day,
Twice As Much, I’ll Live For You...

Thursday, August 23, 2012

do I dare say Christmas?

Heck yes I dare
Christmas! Christmas! Christmas!
I guess you could say that I love Christmas.
One of my favorite parts about Christmas is Festival of Trees.
This year I actually have my very own committee. 
Our committee is responsible for many things, one of them is to donate a tree
or something else of significance that will raise money for the children at
Primary Children's Medical Center.
We have decided to donate a tree and the theme of our tree is 
Brave as in the new Disney movie.
Members of my committee have been asked to donate Brave themed items
to be placed under the tree. Yesterday my neighbor gave me a
Merida (the main character) doll to put under the tree.
I was so excited that I seriously skipped all the way home with doll in hand.

I can already tell that the tree is going to be fabulous.
If you haven't seen the movie yet, I highly recommend it.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Half Moon Lake wrap up

One of Kristen's favorite movies was "Magic in the Water."
In the movie the children take Oreo's to the boat dock. They line the cookies
on the dock and during the night the sea monster, Orkie,  comes and eats the cookies.
Ever since Kristen watched the movie she has taken cookies to the dock.
We have continued her tradition of leaving the cookies.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Half Moon Lake part 2

For the past few years during the week of our camping trip Richard's sister, Carrie, 
has planned a themed party. This year the theme was hippies. 
One night we all headed to the beach adorned in our tie dyed shirts and partied. 
It was great fun!
Carrie and Rod

It was also good to know that this old man can still ski...

and Ricky too.

Thanks Rod for taking us for a ride.