Thursday, April 29, 2010

VROOM!

Have I mentioned I love living across the street from the church parking lot?  Oh I have?  Ok, just making sure. 

McKay is trying out his birthday present for the first time:

We need more good weather so we can spend more days out here.  (It's been cold and windy the last few days.)  In the meantime I guess I could get some spring cleaning done. I'm actually planning to have some friends over to help me declutter--  I need fresh perspectives on all my "stuff" that I don't need!   (And yes I'm forshadowing a future decluttering post!) 

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Big Sigh of Relief!

Whoa, these past two weeks have been a whirlwind!  This NATSAA (National Association for the Teachers of Singing-- Artist Awards) event has had me a little bit panicky for the last few months, and I can't believe it has finally come and gone. 
Last Friday was my concert here in Tri-Cities to make sure my entire program was competition ready. (14 songs!!! In 5 languages!!!)  It went well and lots of family and friends came to support me. I was actually a little overwhelmed by the support, love, and flowers that I received, and spent the rest of a sleepless night realizing how lucky I am.  Especially with Jason.  Man, he was amazing that night.
I then spent the week analyzing the video, meeting with my voice teacher, and getting ready for Saturday.

The next Friday we left the kids and drove 3 hours East to Coeur D'Alene to spend the night.  I met with my pianist to rehearse for a few hours, and then we had a romantic evening going out to dinner and staying in a lovely hotel.  Here's a picture from the restaurant overlooking Lake Coeur D'Alene:



And here's a picture of what we saw when we arrived to check-in to the hotel:

=The economy must not be that bad if HE can get a job.  =)

The next morning was the auditions at North Idaho College to make it to round 3 in the competition.  I had 15 minutes to sing, and only got to choose my first song.  Then I got really lucky.  The judges picked most of my best songs and then offered me a choice between the remaining English songs.  Luckily I wasn't very nervous (Jason was nervous enough for the both of us!) and was able to get my air underneath me pretty well.  They excused me and deliberated for awhile, then brought me back to let me know they were sending me to the National semi-finals in Salt Lake and giving me $500 funding.   They were also nice enough to sit down with me and discuss what I could do before July to improve. I was braced for some tough criticism but then I heard words like "spectacular" and "engaging" -- compliments I never get from my own voice teacher!  They apologized before I left if any of their comments were too harsh, but I explained that my own voice teacher is ten times as harsh on a weekly basis!  I have to admit it felt extremely satisfying after all that hard work to get so much positive feedback. 

On our way home we stopped at the Post Falls Cabelas, aka "Disneyland" for Jason.  I had never been in a Cabelas store before and was a little dumbfounded at how much STUFF they have and how long we ended up staying there.  Jason was in heaven:

They had a shooting gallery so I challenged him to a round or two.  Yeah, he beat me. 

That's right, this trip wasn't ALL about me!  We even stopped at a place in Spokane called Gunarama.  Apparently they have a law enforcement section that I have a feeling we'll be spending quite a bit of money at...

We met up with Omar and Tiffany's family for lunch at an Indian restaurant where we got our money's worth at the buffet.  It was worth the trip just to watch Tiffany eat her weight in Gulab Jamun.  She kept cleaning it out and everytime they brought more she would clean it out again.  It was hilarious. 

Omar was done at the hospital for the day, so we went back to the house for awhile to play with the kids  and let Jason and Omar go at each other in the basketball court. 



We didn't want to leave but we had to get back to real life.  Something I've been neglecting for the past month!



Wednesday, April 7, 2010

A Concert


(Designed by Anjuli Boyce)

I  won't be getting back on blogspot until this is over so I can prepare and get my rest.  (It's not you, it's me.)
Wish me luck, and if you happen to be in Eastern Washington this weekend you're invited!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Easter

Pictures are few this year due to the early hour in which our Easter began. 

The kids got me out of bed at 6 am for their egg hunt and Easter basket excitement.  Eggs were hidden around the house (we don't do it outside--it's too darn cold) so the hunt began as soon as they were concious, (and WAY before I was concious).

Truth be told, I snapped these token pictures and went back to bed. 

Their baskets were filled mostly with books, so that kept them occupied until I decided to become fully awake.
Jason had to work that morning, but he made it home in the afternoon for our traditional Easter dinner.  This was the first Easter we haven't either had company or been at Grandma's house, but I set the table for Easter anyway. 

At first I was bummed that Easter shared a Sunday with General Conference this year, but it turned out to be rather nice.  It was nice to stay home with the kids while they enjoyed their Easter spoils, and then listen to the prophet and apostles speak about Jesus and the meaning of Easter. 

 I even tried to teach the kids about Easter by showing them Living Scriptures DVDs. I searched through them to find the right one only to find out later that the DVD in which Christ gets crucified is NOT the same DVD where he gets resurrected.  Hunter came into my room with tears in his eyes and said "Mommy, they killed Jesus!"  He already knew this, but I guess seeing it in a movie was rather shocking to him.   I said, "Keep watching and he'll come back to life."  He said, "No he won't, the movie is over!"  I went into the family room and sure enough, the movie ended with the crucifixion.  I searched through my collection of DVDs and soon realized that I didn't have the "He is Risen" DVD that I needed to finish the Easter story.  My children looked at me with troubled expressions as I explained what happened next.  I don't think they were very satisfied with my version.  

 Man, I really wish I had had the right movie.


Saturday, April 3, 2010

Easter Eve

 I guess it's good that the weather has been cold and windy 'cause we spent a great day indoors watching conference and getting ready for Easter Sunday.  After the second session we dyed our eggs.  A lady in our ward has chickens and a surplus of eggs so I bought 3 dozen off her and we ended up with several different colors.  They were great for dying and we got some beautiful shades this year.  
Once they were dry we gave them faces.  Here's some the boys were proud of:

We also made bird nests and put candy eggs in them.  I kept handing out more and more eggs because they kept mysteriously disappearing. 

I wasn't sure if we'd get all our Easter traditions in this year since McKay's birthday fell so close, but we were able to do it all in one day.   I've even got everything ready for Easter dinner and hopefully the Easter bunny will stop by and hide some eggs!  (Assuming she doesn't fall asleep early after this exhausting weekend.  Creating memorable birthdays and holidays are sometimes tiring, but always, always worth it!)

Star Wars Cake!

No surprise-- McKay picked out a Star Wars cake for his birthday.  We had a few friends over for cake and ice cream and then he got to open his presents.

He got some great outdoor toys like a scooter and a lawn mower.  Too bad it was pouring rain all day long.

Overall a great birthday!

Friday, April 2, 2010