Sunday, March 29, 2009

Carmina Burana

These are my Alto buddies right before the concert on Saturday

I didn't bring my camera so luckily my alto friend brought hers and took this for us.  It's not very often we are dressed so sharp.  We had such a fun performance last night with the American Festival Chorus.  During the dress rehearsal we went through the whole thing for the first time with the soloists, the Cache Children's Choir, USU Chamber Singers (dressed as monks), and the USU Ballroom dance team.  I finally started getting the piece.  When we first started rehearsing this piece I was sceptical of the value of this music.  For me to really like a piece I have to have some emotional connection to it.  I found my self falling asleep in rehearsals!  Wednesday night we practiced on stage with the orchestra and I started getting excited, then Saturday, wow this is going to be awesome!  Craig Jessop was so into the rehearsal I didn't dare make a peep because he expected everyone to be completely focused.  He kept saying diction, spit your words out.  I was glad I had music because it acted as a shield for the people in front of me.  I kept spitting on my music while I was singing.  Craig was so intense during rehearsal that at one point he threw his baton into the orchestra.  He does not miss a second of rehearsal.  He will not waste time.  In rehearsal we have learned that you do not ask questions.  He will answer the question eventually but in his on time. There has only been a couple times that he thanked a person for pointing something out.  That is one reason I just love being in the choir because I never get bored in rehearsal, you have to be on your toes with your pencils ready in hand.  If you miss a rehearsal, it is really hard to catch up because we cover so much.  One thing I have been doing is writing down some of the sayings that he says a lot.  I just think they are gems of wisdom.  
During the performance there were some trilling points that came off beautifully.  I really wonder what the audience thought if they really appreciated the time it took to polish this piece.
 The translation of the music was in the program and I found some really cool parts.  One part I really liked was in the baritone solo, Estuans interius.  To put this in context.  The man is in a tavern drinking.  He gets really drunk.  This is his solo.
"Burning inside with violent anger, bitterly I speak to my heart: created from matter, of the ashes of the elements, I am like a leaf played with by the winds.  If it is the way of the wise man to build foundations on stone, then I am a fool, like a flowing stream, which in its course never changes.  I am carried along like a ship without a steersman, and in the paths of the air like a light, hovering bird; chains cannot hold me, keys cannot imprison me.  I look for people like me and join the wretches.  The heaviness of my heart seem like a burden to me; it is pleasant to joke and sweeter than honeycomb; whatever Venus commands is a sweet duty, she never dwells in a lazy heart.  I travel the broad path as in the way of youth, I give myself to vice, unmindful of virtue, I am eager for the pleasures of the flesh more than for salvation, my soul is dead.  So I shall look after the flesh."
Lots of symbolizm in here.  But so many truths in this.  This man is so lost.  He doesn't have a foundation, or a source of direction spiritually in his life.  His heart is heavy and His soul is dead. Strong words, I wonder how many people feel this same way.  The Wheel of Fortune, sometimes we are up and some times we are down.  Fate is the only determining factor in our happiness? This secular piece of music made me reflect on my own life.  I'm grateful I believe in something more then just fate or luck.  
The variety of music in this work by Carl Orff is amazing.  The contrasting jumps from simply beautiful, to immensely intense and then frolics happy.  If you ever have the chance to hear this live, do it, you will love it.   
For those of you that live in the area, our next performance will be April 25th.  We are singing Beethoven's 9th Symphony.  Memorial Day we will be singing with Donny Osmond and his band. The tickets will always cost money-so far they have all been $10. USU students will always be free.  You will never be disappointed in going to one of the concerts. Craig Jessop guarantees a brilliant and multi-dimensional concert.  

Sunday, March 22, 2009

This is what the kids and I did while Devin was gone. We went to Thomas Edison Charter School Talent show, where the kids played their instruments. Conrad played Allegretto by Suzuki and Traeden played Whoop de Do. They both did a great job. I was happy that all the kids actually sat and listened to all the talents. Samantha towards the end got up to get close to the MC's sparkly purple dress. She wanted to touch it. One of the things I love about the charter school is the closeness I feel to the other families being a smaller school. Everyone is so nice and helpful. The principal was there and interacted with all of my kids. He is very supportive of all the extra curricular events. Afterward we went to Tyler Vance's Art exhibit. This was an amazing masters project. He is a friend of ours. In the picture you can see the kids munching on the yummy refreshments they had at the art show. If you want to see more about his project work visit his blog. It was really neat to see it up close and personal. The food Shanell (his wife) prepared and arranged was also scrumptious. She should get a degree for the work she did to support him! She made Baklava, English toffee, caramels, crackers and cheese, pork, veggies, fruits. I can't even name everything. It was my dinner for the night. Yum Yummy! I let the kids stay up late so they could say hi to Grandma and Grandpa when they came home that night.

Saturday, Devin built me another planter bed in the garden. This one is for raspberries we are going to plant next Saturday. I need to get some good dirt for the beds this week. Then we went to the Temple to do sealings with my family. It was neat because the sealer recognized our last name and asked if we new a missionary that served in Europe. He was David's temple president! What a spiritual man he was. Afterward we went to the Indian Oven for dinner. That was an authentic experience.
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Julie's Wedding

Devin went to Twin Falls this weekend with Mom and Dad Overly, Derek and Morgan. They had a great experience visiting with all the Hyatt family and attending the temple for the marriage ceremony. Brent and Jan's family has been so supportive of Devin's family through all the years, attending all of their missionary events, wedding and such. Devin really wanted to support their family for Julie's wedding. Grandma Hyatt who is over 90 years old was able to attend as well. I really like the colors that Julie choose for her wedding. I'm experimenting with the collages. It's kind of fun.
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Thursday, March 19, 2009

First Sign of Spring

These little flowers were the spark of my day yesterday! It was the first day I noticed them. These little crocuses have been so fun. I planted them several years ago and they are always my first sign of spring. You can even see a weed growing to the left of them. Endless gardening will be in my next lot and I'm really looking forward to being out in the sun.
It's about time for a little update on the family. Abigail is crawling! She took her first crawls today. She still does more combat crawling but she is learning that the bonafide crawl is a bit faster.
Samantha has informed us that she is now "Sammy." She has said several times the last couple days that she likes to be called that. I think it's pretty cute because she came up with it on her own. I think nick names are fun, as long as they are appropriate of course.
Conrad started asking to play the piano. So everyday he has me teach him a few things on the piano. He says the Violin is just too hard to get out of his case and the piano is always there ready to play. Good point but I still am going to have him play the violin because he is so good! He can just do both if he wants! The boys have started picking up dog poops in the yard everyday. We have a whole winters worth of them. Fun fun fun.
Traeden just got a superior at Federation! He did a great job playing "Allegro" by Suzuki and "Whoop de do" by Kim Williams. Three judges listen and give him a rating. We were all really proud of him. Devin and I are having a hard time finding ways to motivate him to do his homework, piano, and jobs around the house. We have been reading books, and brainstorming ways that will work for him. He is not easily motivated. If anyone has an idea that has worked let me know. I'm getting desperate!
Devin gets a little time away this weekend to go to a cousins wedding in Twin Falls. It will be fun for him to be with his parents and Derek and Morgan.
We just got our plane tickets to Florida. We are going on a cruise in a year! This will be our belated 10 year anniversary and we are so excited. Well that's all for now, I got to help the kids with homework, they just got home.
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It's Recording?!

This was really funny to me.  I didn't know our new camera did videos so the other day when Conrad wanted to take a picture of Abigail he was having a hard time getting it to take.  I kept saying just push it and I was getting a bit frusrated with him.   Well he was recording video not a picture.  I said "It's recording?  I don't want it to do that."  I was a little more shocked that it could record and then when I loaded my pictures today I was even more amazed that there was sound on it!  I will have to use this feature again sometime.    Everytime my kids and I watch this, I laugh and laugh.  =)  

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Going Green

Some people may call me a granola girl but I choose to say I'm just trying to do my part to not clutter the world as much.   When I went to USU I had a roommate, Robin Wignall, who had boxes in the kitchen for recycling.  She had a box for milk cartons, for paper, and cans.  I got in the habit because of Robin to recycle.  She would take these down to the recycling center every time they got full.  I thought this was so cool.  It wasn't much longer I was married and I carried on the torch of recycling to my own home.  I remember loading up our recycled goods every couple weeks and driving it down to Smiths.  After Devin and I had been married 7 years we moved to Nibley and I kept on recycling.  Our nearest recycling was just up the road but they didn't do everything, so sometimes did two drop offs to unload glass.  The one that really drove me crazy was plastic bags.  I always forget to unload them when I'm at the grocery store so they sit in my van forever.  Now I just use them as garbage liners and I have recently tried to use my own fabric grocery bags.  The hardest thing is just remembering to bring them with me in the store.  I don't always remember but the times I do it makes me fill like I'm helping just a little. 
Now I feel like it's come full circle because I have a beautiful blue garbage can that I put out in front of my house!  They pick that up every other week and it's wonderful. The only thing I still take to the recycling center is over sized cardboard boxes, Christmas trees, and glass.   I am really glad that it's getting easier to be environmentally friendly.  Going green seems to be the cool way of saying it lately.  One thing we are going to start as soon as it gets warmer is composting our fruit and vegetable scrapes for our garden.  I stop doing this in the winter, it's just too cold!  
It takes planning and organizing to recycle and I think that's why sometimes its hard to do.  But God has given us this beautiful earth to enjoy and care for.  The month our Primary has been focusing on D&C 88:119. One of the points of making a house of God is to establish a house of order. We each can make ourselves, our homes, our neighborhoods, and cities a little more orderly. If everyone does their own part we can make a difference.  If you have any ideas that that you have tried lately in "Going Green", please share. 

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Another Great Sunday

This Sunday really was a great Sunday, once we got to church that is.  With the shift of Daylight Savings it was a little difficult to make it to church on time.  We usually go to choir practice at 8:15 before Sacrament meeting but that didn't happen.  I was suppose to meet a family that I was accompanying for a musical number a few minutes before the meeting and luckily I made it just in time to still practice.  
Devin was asked to talk in sacrament about Priesthood blessings.  The whole week we were revisiting experiences he and our family have had that have strengthened our testimonies of the Power of God.  The more we remembered the more humbled we became in knowing how much the Lord has blessed us through the Priesthood.  
Some of the times we remember is when Traeden was 6 months old and had complications with his circumcision.  We took him to the ER after he filled one diaper with blood.  After we arrived there, Traeden was just so upset and we didn't have a Binky to help soothe him.  Devin ran home to get a Binky and thought he would call our good friend Dan to help give him a blessing.  They came and administered to Traeden and the sweet feeling of love, comfort, and healing the blessing  pronounced touched us all.  
When the Kids stared school this year Devin gave Traeden and Conrad a Fathers blessing to help them be calm and ready for a new school year.  After he gave each of them a blessing; Samantha, only 2 years old, went up and sat in the chair and said "my turn."  We chuckled a bit and then saw how reverently she sat there, so Devin gave her the sweetest blessing.  She stayed very calm and reverent during the blessing and the spirit testified of the Lord's love for this sweet little girl.  
I always wondered how the priesthood holder knows what to bless people with.  How do they know if it's the spirit prompting them to say something or is it their own thoughts.  Devin shared this example that help me understand how he does it.  When he was a missionary, his companion needed to see a doctor.  So Devin left the Missionary Training Center (MTC) and went to a nearby hospital.  While at the hospital, they were stopped by a woman who asked them to give a blessing to her 80 year old father who was going to have surgery.  This was a stranger to him and he wanted to be sure he said what the Lord wanted the man to know.  As he started giving the man a blessing he pictured a blank screen and let the spirit fill the screen with the words of the blessing.  The man was promised that he would recover from the surgery and be able to go home to his loving family.  
I am so grateful for Devin's example he shows our children in honoring and serving with the Priesthood. The Priesthood is such a wonderful blessing and I'm thankful to have a husband who is worthy to use it.  

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Conrad is 6

Composed by Conrad Overly-Typed by Mom
It was Conrad's birthday yesterday, it was on March 7th.  He shares a birthday with his Grandma Overly "Grandma O".  Conrad said to me today, "Mom, I didn't have a cousin birthday party."  So we are inviting them over tonight for cake and ice cream.  Conrad wants to eat the words 6th on his cake today.  Our family has the tradition that the birthday child/adult gets to choose the menu for dinner.  Conrad chose:  The underwater, Macaroni and Cheese, Hot Dogs, and Chocolate Milk.  It actually was pretty yummy.  Conrad got for his birthday:  A book with a CD from Grandma T (the two boys have been reading/listening to it every night), and he got a another book called, "Shake my Sillies out" from G. Grandma T.  He got cards and mission money from G. Hyatt, and G. Overly in the mail.  And he will get a present from Grandma O in the mail soon.  She spent two days at our house this week and took Conrad to an ice cream shop.  Mom and Dad gave him a green and black backpack, money bank, and easy catch ball.  
For fun our family played Wii Play together.  Samantha beat dad on boxing, on Wii Sports.  

Thursday, March 5, 2009

It takes a village to raise a child

I just want to thank my extended family for the love and support they give us as parents.  It is so much easier to raise my children when I have parents, and brothers and sisters who help teach my children just by example and love.  
Both Devin's and my parents have taught my children numerous things.  I see it even more now that Traeden is almost eight years old.  It is the parents responsibility to teach children the gospel principles so they can make a decision to be baptized at the age of accountability.  This can be overwhelming.  I feel like I have done OK but because of Traedens grandparents, aunts and uncles, school teachers, primary teachers, friends and neighbors, he has learned so much more.  
Just this week we have been working with Traeden on a few things.  Grandma O. stayed with us for two nights.  The kids love to cuddle with Grandma in the mornings.  She will tell them stories and ask them about things.  Just hearing bits and pieces of their conversations just touches my heart because I can see the blessing this good influence is on each one of them.  
My parents have continued having monthly FHE's as an extended family.  This has been a blessing in our life.  The lessons have become very child centered and it has helped them be more involved and learn on their level.  We also include the kids in sharing testimonies, talents, activities, prayers, and the lesson.  
I was saddened to see that in a Parenting magazine we got, a survey done where people were asked if they felt their children should be disciplined by other adults.  Overwhelmingly the percentage of parents said that NO, it's not OK for other parents to discipline their kids.  I was amazed with these results.  
I feel that if my child is at their grandmas, aunts, or a friends house, and he does something to break the rules of the home, I want the adult in charge to feel like they can give them a consequence.  I'm not talking about spanking or anything cruel, just something to allow my child to understand that there are boundaries and rules everywhere in the world.  I think we do our kids and other children a disservice if we just bat an eye when they misbehave.  I know I am not afraid of telling visiting children they should stop, if they are using language in our home that we don't use, disrespecting our property, or hurting others.
I have heard several times from teachers that more often then not when they have gone to a parent because a child is misbehaving in class the parent immediately defends their child instead of seeking a solution.  I think this is disrespectful to our teachers.  Our children pick up on this.  
It does take a village to raise a child, these good influences can help our children gain essential experience and lessons that will bless their future.  I thank all of you that make my job easier as a mom and bless my children's lives with your goodness and example.   

Builders and Destroyers

Devin and I have mused several times about the two types of children we have.  We have a builder and two destroyers.  One is developing into one and seems to be favoring the building traits.  Builders enjoy putting blocks carefully on top of each other as high as they can and a destroyer would rather push it over.  
Here is some examples that Samantha gave us this week.  
Samantha and her friend were playing while I was making pizza and bread sticks.  The phone rang and I left the kitchen to grab the phone.  When I came back, the can of non-stick fat free (ya right) cooking spray was completely empty and all over my kitchen floor, cabinets, and stools.  This took many washing to finally come off everything.  As I slid across the floor I knew all this spray was just oil.  I think if you use enough of it on your pans when you cook-it's got to have some fat content.  I decided I'm not buying it again-well at least for a long time.  Back to the greasing the pans with shortening or oil with a paper towel.
Grandma O helped Conrad build a fort with blankets and chairs yesterday.  He was so excited to hang out in his fort.  He got all tucked in this fort and then Samantha got in for a minute and couldn't stand it anymore she jumped up and pulled down the blankets.  Conrad was beside himself and decided to make a sign that said, DO NOT DISTURB, SAMANTHA. 
This same day I organized all of the children's books in Samantha's room.  I had all the board books on one shelf and the next shelf had the older kids books on it.  I figured because Samantha couldn't reach the second shelf it was safe.  Not a couple hours later, all the books were on her ground, and in Abigail's crib.  
She also has some cute letter on her wall that spell her name and Devin and I can't count how many times we have put those back on her wall.  They are now on her bookshelf-we will wait for a while to retry it.  
Now don't get me wrong, Destroyers aren't bad or malicious.  They have a zest for fun and excitement.  They are just learning how to express it.  There are challenges to both personalities and I'm grateful we get to raise both.  
I could be wrong but I think I was a builder and maybe Devin was a destroyer as a child?  I think I better ask our moms for that info =)  

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Wet Day

Today was a full full day for me in more ways then one.  Our primary presidency had this great idea from to give our teachers coupons to use during the year.  The coupon is to be used for one Sunday off of teaching so they can attend Sunday School and Relief Society.  A presidency member will teach their class for them.  It has been a huge success so far.  Today was my turn to take a class.  I got to teach CTR 6, which happens to be Conrad's class.  I prepared for the class and was all ready to go and then Sunday morning I had a call from one if the other CTR 6 class teachers (we have three in our ward).  Her and her husband were sick and couldn't come to church.  No problem I said, I'll just put your class with the one I'm teaching.  I made more handouts, no problem right?  Well, we had a great attendance today so I had 13 kids and three of the boys could have easily counted for two kids each because of their activity level.  It was a little crazy but we managed to teach the lesson, and I hope they learned something.  Half way through my lesson one of the girls got my attention and pointed to one another girl across the room and said their was water on the floor.  (The little girl she pointed to had an accident but didn't make a move.)  I quickly changed the subject and no one else noticed and we carried on.  I didn't want to embarrass the girl in front of everyone.  She obviously didn't care to much because she participated throughout the rest of the lesson and even volunteered to lead in follow the leader at the end of class.  She jumped up and down and spinned around; wet and all.  Kids are so resilient!  After class I disinfected the chair and sponged up the carpet.  
After class Devin found me and said we needed to hurry home because our baby was wet.  Not only was she wet but she leaked on to the Bishops wife who so graciously offered to hold her so Devin and I could teach our lessons.   I was so embarrassed and a bit emotional after an exhausting day at church so I bawled all the way home.   It sure was a wet day.

Good News.  My best friend had her first baby!  She just came home with him from the hospital.  She called me today and we talked for over a half an hour.  It was neat to hear her express her love for her baby and husband.  I am so grateful for friends and family whom we can share and grow from. 

This evening I got to hold my infant niece who is just over a week old.  She is darling.  I can't believe all the beautiful dark hair she has.  It's a miracle, life itself is a miracle.  It makes me reflect on my own children and how they use to be that small and close to heaven.  The spirit that those little ones carry just envelopes the room.  No one can deny the Godlike presence and beauty of these children.  I'm so grateful to be a mother.  God trusted me with these beautiful spirits and I hope I can teach them and guide them back to him someday.  
"God gave us families to help us become what he wants us to be, this is how he shares his love, For the family is of God"