Sunday, May 20, 2018

APW - Coop's BIG day!

Coop had been counting down to his twelfth birthday were several months.  He's been SO excited to be done with primary!  Coop didn't have to think long to decide his special birthday dinner - homemade pizza!!
I don't make homemade pizza very often but everytime I do the kids beg me to open a pizza shop.
This is our first lego architecture set.  Coop loves to learn and share his knowledge about the world so this set was an easy decision to get for him.



Some how I got possessed and bought a laser tag set for Cooper.  Until about two years ago we didn't own one gun (fake or real) but somehow we've collected several nerf guns recently and now...a laser tag gun set.  The kids have had so much fun playing together in the evenings.

Making a wish!!
THEN....a couple of days after Cooper's birthday we celebrated A.P.W. (Aaronic Priesthood Weekend)

A day of dozens!!



Inside each balloon was a special note written just for Coop about why that person thought Cooper would be a wonderful priesthood holder.

Headed to church to be ordained with the Aaronic priesthood.  Tyler was able to stand in the circle to ordain Cooper while Birch did the blessing.
Everyone who stood in the ordination circle.

Popping each balloon to reveal a special note. 
 Such thoughtful things were written to Cooper:

  • Coop will be a great priesthood holder because he is a great communicator.  He puts people at ease and makes them feel comfortable when he speaks with them.  Congrats Coop.  –Uncle Ryan
  • His ability to make people laugh and smile from the joy he feels in life will make him the kind of priesthood holder that others want to be around...and when you are around people, you find more opportunities to serve...and that's what the priesthood is all about: service. – Uncle Logan 
  • Congrats Cooper! We are so proud of you and know you will honor your priesthood and work hard at using it to bless the lives of others around you! I was really impressed last year when you're mom said that you had made a goal to read the Book of Mormon and beat your goal by, what? Two months? That was amazing! That diligence and dedication to the Book of Mormon and to completing goals are both such great qualities that will continue to bless you. I know that as you continue to read and study the Book of Mormon you will have the Spirit with you more and more and it will help you as you use your priesthood power. Wish we could be there to celebrate! Love, Jessica 
  •  I love Coop for many reasons and know that he will make an amazing priesthood holder! Cooper has an enthusiasm for life that will help him as he serves others in his quorum, at school, in his family and all around him. This enthusiasm is infectious and makes you smile just by being in his presence. As he serves his smile and zest for life can help to lift the down trodden and lighten others burdens when they feel Cooper’s spirit and positive vibes. Heavenly Father smiles down on you! I love you! Sis Cobia :) (I know all the other Cobia’s feel the same way!) – Tara Cobia 
  • Coop will be a fantastic priesthood holder because he is inquisitive and learns lots of things about lots of things. love ya bud – Uncle Luke 
  • Cooper definitely is qualified to be a holder of the Priesthood because he has a great heritage and  has proved himself to be an outstanding righteous young man that loves his Heavenly Father. Cooper You are loved by Great Grandmother........................ Sister Rose Harvey 
  •  Yay Cooper!I’ve noticed that Cooper looks for the good in people and in situations. Seeing the best in people is a very Christlike characteristic!Wish we could be there on your special day! Love, Julia  
  •  He’ll be great - quite simply because he is a “son of God” and has a great family who have raised him to know and appreciate that knowledge.  All the best Coop! – Uncle Geoff   
  •  Cooper, I think you will be an amazing priesthood holder because you are so easy to like! People won't hesitate to ask you for help because you are so friendly, outgoing, and fun to be around. –Aunt Jenna
  •  Cooper-You're going to be such a great priesthood holder. You're kind and thoughtful and you always seem to know the needs of the people around you. Those are such wonderful traits to have as you serve the Lord and those around you. -Uncle Juje  
  •  God needs all of us to do his work. As they say in west Africa, "man is God to man". Coop, you are a unique person with unique gifts and strengths, God has called you to this special responsibility because he needs YOU. The priesthood helps us not to be different people, but better people. The world is lucky to have the light, humor and love you bring to it! -Uncle Seth  
  •  What a special time this is!  I think one of the reasons Cooper will be a wonderful priesthood holder is because he likes to understand things  so he can then do what is expected of him.  He wants to be responsible and follow through.  –Ami and Poppi
  •  I know Cooper will honor his priesthood because of the examples of his own family before and his maturity now in knowing the sacredness of what he will hold.  He's a responsible and loving young man...both things the Lord needs! – Uncle Matt  
  • Because he is kind to people and knows how to put their needs before his own.-Uncle Kelly 
  •  I’ve always been impressed with how good Cooper is with my babies.  He loves to hold and play with them- that’s a pretty awesome trait for a pre-teen boy! Love you! Congrats! – Aunti Blayre
  • Cooper will be a great priesthood holder because is joyful. –Aunti Camilla
  • Coop will be a good priesthood holder because he is humble. -Nate
  • Cooper will be a wonderful priesthood holder because you are great around people.  Making others feel comfortable around you is an important trait as it will make you more easily approachable and help provide more opportunities to use your priesthood.  –Love momma 
  • Cooper! You are a gifted, talented, delightful, kind, and obedient young man.  I am so thankful to be your father.  This next step in your life of becoming a holder of the Lord’s Holy Priesthood will help you in your further development as you become more like Jesus.  Cooper, I admire your ability to have fun and be happy, as well as to make good friends.  Thank you for being a great example.  I look forward to learning from you and helping you grow in your priesthood service.  Love, Dad 
  • Cooper is always super happy.  You will be happy to do your priesthood duties. Love, Chloe 
  • Cooper will be a good priesthood holder because you recognize when people are in need.  Love, Alysee 
  • Cooper will be an excellent priesthood holder because he thinks of others.  He has a natural talent of engaging and connecting on another’s level which will help him be able to serve in a meaningful and specific way to each individual. Love Aunti Emi 
  •  I think Coop will be an awesome priesthood holder because he has a creative mind. Being a priesthood is all about serving others, so he will excel in finding creative ways to exercise his priesthood power! –Elder Alex Ditto
  • Cooper will be a good priesthood holder because he knows what is right. – Abbey Cox 
  • Cooper has been taught by example of what a priesthood holder does and how to honor his priesthood.  Because Cooper has had this is whole life, he is able to follow this example and honor and respect his priesthood.  So excited for him to receive the priesthood and watch him continue to grow into a young man. – Love Brooke Cox
  • Coop always tries his best.  He cares for others.  –Tyler
  • The Lord needs young men who are not afraid to live the gospel of Jesus Christ with boldness and courage.  Cooper is just the guy to do the job…and he’ll make you smile and be glad you are on the Lord’s side while you’re doing it.  Cooper is a leader, a mover and a shaker!!  He has been ready for this for a long time.  Congratulations Coop!!  Be honorable!  I love you…Grannie


Political Activists

Nate and Tyler were courageous enough to run for school offices this year.  Nate went up against seven other young ladies and sadly lost.  He felt really good about his speech and lots of kids told him that he had the best posters.




Tyler ran for ASB Vice President -- he ran uncontested and guess what...HE WON!!!




Super proud of my kids being courageous and wanting to be a leader!

Friday, May 18, 2018

MoPro 2018

What's not to love about Mormon Prom?!!!  A gorgeous venue, an amazing dinner and dessert, decorated to the hilt, unlimited Italian sodas, surrounded by uplifting dancing and music...and did I say FREE!!  Isn't that amazing!!  I'm so grateful that the Yakima and Selah stake years ago decided to take on this beast.  We rotate doing the dinner and decorating and then the other stake does the Italian sodas.  This year it was out turn to "host" - we actually have it at the same location every year and the Tree family is just so generous to share it.  The following day the regional single adults host a similar daylong activity and so we are able to double dip in the rentals of the tent, chairs, and tables.

Anyway, Tyler's lovely date was from Sunnyside.  She is not a member of our church but he did meet her through some mutual friends at a church activity.  Molly seemed super sweet and the two had a great time together all night!
Red Carpet Runway

Tyler and Alex doubled with their dates

We were some of the lucky ones that got to chaperone.  I felt extra blessed because really all I did was eat a wonderful dinner, dance, and then help clean up.

First time feeling like celebrities


We had around 200 kids attend the evening!

Dinner was smoked tri-tip steak or chicken, rolls, caesar salad, and baked potatoes with toppings.  They also had a commercial soft serve ice cream machine with lots of toppings that the kids enjoyed all night long.


The dance was held behind the pool on the tennis court.





I feel so blessed to live in an area that puts on these extra special occasions for our teenagers!!

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Rewrite the Stars

All of Chloe's elementary years she has performed a duet with Birch for the school talent show.  Not even being partial to my own child, I feel confident saying that their musical number each year was one of the bests of the show!  This year was no different!  Chloe is passionate about "The Greatest Showman" and picked a really tricky song due to how low and how high it gets.  The two worked very hard together and did an outstanding job!!

Wish you were there?  Click here https://youtu.be/PrP4TZSRPeA
I had a crazy notion to volunteer to be in charge of the talent show this year.  I really wanted to add the art aspect to the show with displaying the kid's art that they did with the guest artist I brought into the school a few weeks prior.  I had NO idea how much work the talent show would be.  It took HOURS of figuring out details and basically I was like a karaoke machine with my phone.  But I gotta say - the kids loved it all!  And I'm thankful that it was only a one time things for me.
A sampling of the art that the kids did prior with direction from a local artist.

This picture of these Nutella macarons don't really have anything to do with this post EXCEPT Chloe made them -- therefore she is multi talented in the kitchen and the stage!!

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Voice Crush

Don't make fun of me...I've always loved David Archuleta's voice ever since he was on American Idol.  When I heard he was coming TO YAKIMA I was totally like the first person to buy tickets.  At least in the first fifty.  The concert was at the small Four Seasons Concert Hall which was perfect for a small, intimate performance. 

He was AMAZING and his stories (though a little lengthy) made the night so special.  Alysee was supposed to go with us to the concert but because she ended up going to Silverwood with the choir we took Chloe in her place.  Chloe LOVED it and ended up spending most of the concert on the floor RIGHT NEXT TO THE STAGE!  Birch and I enjoyed dancing on the floor for the encore song "Glorious."  It WAS a GLORIOUS night!!!


Chloe getting a high give from David at the end of the concert.

Can you spot Chloe just giggling after actually touching a famous music star?!!

Finale run for Nate!

Nathan had his last track meet of the season yesterday.  Birch was able to go watch him which made Nate super happy!  All season Nathan has been wanting to get 5:35 on the 1600 m.  He WORKED so hard yesterday and Birch said he literally thought Nate was going to pass out at the end.  Not only was it 90 degrees but Nate truly gave it his all!  And HE DID IT!!!  5:34!!!!




Nathan was also awarded  BEST TEAMMATE!!! as voted by his whole track team.  What a kid!!!



Sunday, May 13, 2018

Girl's Night

While the boys are away....the girls must play!  The boys were at the Father/Son Campout (Tyler came home early to compete in Districts Tennis) and Alysee was playing -- just not with Chloe and me.  Alysee was off to Spokane for a music contest and going to Silverwood with the chamber choir and Chloe and I were home filling out time with lots of fun.
Chloe picked Wendy's for dinner.  After Wendy's I thought I would be a super cool mom and surprise Chloe with going rollerskating at Skateland.  After pulling up to Skateland she made some nervous noises and admitted that she was scared to skate when there are alot of crazy teenage boys around.  We decide to take a peek to see how busy it was inside.  It was packed!!  So we hopped back into the car and drove to our besties...the Cobias.  

From 9 pm until midnight we gabbed, ate ice cream, played...repeat.

So fun to have a friend that you don't see often but can pick up right were you left off.  Love this lady!

Girls painted their nails.
Chloe and I crashed in bed around 1 am.  The next morning the Andersen girls joined us for part of the day while Emily was at a work training and Ryan was camping with Truman.
Chloe was so excited to teach the girls all her art techniques she had just learned the past week with our guest artist at school.  

They each used different techniques and medians to paint their cupcakes.

Popsicles and running through the sprinklers
Alysee was off to Spokane competing in a music festival.  They swept the awards and coming home winning six of the top awards.  Then they were off to Silverwood!
Lucy and Grannie were the best and came to listen to Alysee sing and be her cheerleaders!
Lots of window shopping at the mall

Rides at Silverwood


Alysee's first elephant ear!  Her stomach hurt the rest of the day!
 Awesome weekend for all!!