It’s warming up, the snow is melting. My flowers started blooming. I’m on this down-hill coast to finish off school: just a few thesis edits and a couple of easy classes to finish up. I’ve been reviewing all the work I’ve done over the years and making a portfolio, which has been a lot of fun. And getting ready to move, which isn’t fun when I finally tackle things like the paint that was stuck on the tile since I moved in over 8 years ago.

For Curtis’s birthday, we went to Pizza Pie Cafe, and before that, we stopped at Ogden Nature Center. With friends in tow, it wasn’t hard to convince the kids to do the roughly two-mile walk around the center, and we had a great time. The kids probably preferred stuffing themselves with pizza, but I liked the nature walk.

And as a quick update to the last post, Peter went to the final Fun Shot competition and got second place. Just a couple threes away from winning. It was fun to watch him succeed. Curtis also won a prize by reading a tremendous amount of minutes for school. I love that my kids are good readers, it makes entertaining them a whole lot easier.

Getting Ready to Leave

We were ready to stay here for a long time, so getting the house ready to sell and move is a bit bittersweet.

There are things we probably would have done differently. We did a facelift for the kitchen, and I’m already planning on changing out the knobs. (Mostly to take the new hardware with me when I move.) The greenhouse wouldn’t have been rebuilt, but probably simply taken down.

And there’s a lot that’s gone wrong. The backdoor resist repair and simply needed to be replaced. We found a small patch of moist, moldy drywall that we had to replace. Old windows take forever to repair, and so does painting, cleaning, and fixing the many things that we’ve ignored over the eight years we lived here.

I’ve been trying to enjoy the end of winter. I even went hiking by myself when no one else wanted to go. Going outside regularly helps me to love life a little more. I am very excited for warmer weather and spring coming, even if the moving situation means my garden will probably be small and in flux this year.

For the kids, they are mostly looking forward to moving soon. Peter has been finishing up basketball. We won our first tournament game, and he won the regional finals for a Fun Shot competition, resulting in yet another competition and free Jazz tickets. It was so fun to see him do so well at the shooting competition. He had a perfect strategy and kept draining threes.


About five years ago, we were in a comfortable place. We owned a home, we had three beautiful boys who were no longer infants, my husband had a good job, and we had paid off pressing student debt. But rather than sitting and enjoying that comfortable life, I decided it was time to do more with my life and applied for graduate school.

The last few years I’ve worked on that graduate degree. And when I found another degree that I loved, I decided to not only get one Master’s degree but two. My thesis defense is Friday, and I graduate in May with those two degrees. In the middle of this, we added another baby (This baby was meant to come after I graduated, but a surprise pregnancy had me juggling a baby mid-way through my graduate program.)

Joe and I had talked about how we would no longer be tied to this place once I finished school. We would be free to look for new jobs, new places to live. But at the same time, we did love where we lived and had spent lots of effort getting our home to a good place for our family. We added walls, planted trees, fixed problems, and painted. In the last little while, it feels like we finally got our home to the place we wanted. We love our neighborhood, the kids are doing well in their schools, and we finally have fruit trees that produce fruit for us.

Life would be a little easier once I graduated in May. Comfortable again. Knowing this, we decided to add one more child. I am pregnant (on purpose this time), and we will add a baby to our family in July.

As I graduate and enter a new stage in life, I started to think about my career goals. My husband and I talked a lot about our long-term career goals. I encourage my husband to think beyond his current job, which has been great for our family but lacks any long-term potential. In the last few years, my husband has only had one pay cut, no raises.

So one day, my husband mentioned that he had a job interview for a new job about an hour south of where we live. A bit unexpected, but it was just an interview. Then the interview went really well, and he got a job offer.

We had a big decision to make. To stay where we were in a life we enjoyed, that we were comfortable in, or try something big and new.

We prayed and talked, and drove down to the new location where Joe would be working. Things weren’t perfect. The housing market is good for selling but is horrible for finding an affordable home. We would be moving to a bigger city and liked the small-town setting where we had been living. The financial aspect of it was pretty much a wash: higher income, but also a higher cost of living.

Maybe not the best choice to walk away from the comfortable life we had created for ourselves. And the timing, with a baby on the way, wasn’t great. But I couldn’t feel settled with that decision, to stay where we were.

This job was exactly the kind of job Joe wanted in his career. I would also have more opportunities to advance my own career than I ever would in my small town. And if we were going to move, it made sense to do so before our children were still young, and not teenagers who needed more stability.

Joe and I had many discussions before this about how we didn’t want to stay connected to material things, like our home. I had seen many people who would probably benefit by moving but were too connected to the place they lived to do so. We loved where we lived, and did our best to make it an awesome place for our family, to contribute to our community. But we never wanted to be too attached to it. I like the sentiment in this talk, about the ability to “walk away easily.” I never want to be so attached to any type of material possession that I cannot walk away from it in the pursuit of better things.

I’ve never liked living a comfortable life. I get bored and depressed. Lately, I’ve just felt a little stuck with my life, unsure about the future. (I came to the conclusion that maybe I just needed to travel more. Which would have been a much simpler option than moving.) This opportunity would allow us to grow our life and have a new adventure. Not be stuck in the same comfortable life. And it made sense: we could be closer to family, closer to fun places to go, have a better outlook for our careers.

Joe accepted the job. And now we are working on getting our house ready to sell, thinking about moving. This year, I will graduate school, move, have a baby. Joe will change jobs, leaving the same location he has worked in for the past nine years. I’m a lot nervous, but also a lot excited about new adventures.


We went up Beaus Canyon in Ogden to try out a new trail. It was a great little hike, we went up about a mile, cut over on Bonneville Shoreline, and had a wonderful view.

But I made one mistake. We went right around 11, and I had two kids who were starving and miserable by the end. I left the snacks in the car.

New Year

We started out the new year by spending the evening at my sister’s house for a late-night party, and in the morning, a first-day hike. We walked out to the frozen lake. Pretty short, but it was a very cold day. There was lots of snow so we did sledding and had a lot of fun.

Lately, it has not snowed nearly enough. We’ve been going to parks for fun instead.

Lately, I’m not as busy with school and stay home a lot more, but kids easily fill up the time. We’ve got school, basketball, scouts, keeping everyone happy and fed.

Year Review: 2021

This year was more of the same. More school, more kids, same house. I continued to work on my graduate degrees (I really am almost done), and Joe continues to work at Pioneer Care Center. We did buy a new car right before Christmas. There were some good vacations, two big ones to Arizona and Hollywood. We also did a lot of sledding, hiking, tubing, playing at parks, and at the lake.

Peter continues to adore basketball and played flag football and soccer too. He started middle school and loves it. He joined Young Men’s and was the Young Men’s secretary. Also continued piano lessons, started percussion in band, and joined a pickleball club.

Curtis continued to do Cub Scouts, he’s now in Webelos. He played soccer, basketball, and flag football. He mostly enjoys building legos.

Henry started piano and Cub Scouts and performed in a youth choir. He did a lot of swimming lessons and played flag football and t-ball.

Zack started daycare, which he loves. He loves basketball, cement mixers, trucks, Batman, Pikachu. He’s got a new favorite every week.

We added on an upgraded greenhouse to the house, painted the house, refreshed the kitchen, grew a pretty good garden, and a few other random projects like adding a beam for structural stability, and a backyard pool.

Top 10 Pictures:


It snowed. So we went sledding.

Christmas also happened, although no pictures. I’ve been a little worn out lately. The kids had a good time, and I took an hour and a half nap on Christmas. We had a good winter break, but I’m grateful they are back in school. I’m currently enjoying a quiet house, and it is wonderful.

Longer than Expected

We were going on a mile-long hike to a waterfall, missed a turn, and instead went on a four-mile hike to two waterfalls. This is how Peter felt about it:

There’s no way I could convince the kids to do a hike like this beforehand, so I don’t actually mind that I made the mistake. We did convince the kids to finish when we realized about two miles in our mistake. I sometimes prefer longer, more challenging hikes.

If you are going to Layton to hike the waterfalls in Adam’s Canyon, you have to turn right to get to the lower falls. If you don’t turn right, you will end on a beautiful nearly 4-mile hike to another waterfall. Also cell service on the trail and being able to look up the trail map on All Trails saved us from being totally oblivious to what happened.


I just finished a very busy semester. Five classes, thirteen credits, all graduate level. It wasn’t the worst semester, but it wasn’t easy either. I’m done driving up to school (which takes almost two hours out of every day), and excited to have more freedom with my schedule. (One more easy semester left.) I will also certainly miss all the people that I worked with up at school. It was a wonderful bunch of people that are super supportive of each other, and also not afraid to give critiques when they are needed.

I haven’t been the best at taking pictures, or that adventurous with my time. I’ve been focused on school. Here are some family pictures we attempted to take. I’ve paid for family pictures once, and usually, just have my sister grab some. The kids are not the most cooperative at sitting and smiling. They are probably more fun because of that though.


For fall break, we went up to Pocatello for the temple open house. It was a good experience combined with Pizza Pie Cafe afterward.

The boys finished up their flag football season and did pretty well. I loved a couple of plays where Peter passed to Curtis twice in a row and they ended up with a first down. The kids all enjoyed it. It ended up being quite a long season though, and we are happy to have one less thing too.

One rainy Saturday, we headed to a local corn maze after the rains stopped. We had a lot of fun.

Here are the boys in their Halloween costumes. My favorite is Curtis’s who was extremely indecisive when it came to picking something, and finally settled on a t-shirt that said, “Error 404, costume not found.”