Friday, May 21, 2010

Part 4 - Heber reception

Well, well, well... where did we leave off? Oh yes. After the luncheon we headed straight to the Lacey's church building in Heber for the reception.

The cultural hall looked lovely and the wedding party was ready to greet all guests who were able to navigate the snowy roads. Some roads were even closed.

The next two pictures tell a funny story if you know what you're looking for. Anyone who knows David at all knows that he has no patience for waiting in reception lines. He hates to wait. At most receptions we attend, if there is any sort of wait to greet the couple, he bypasses the receiving line and heads straight to the food table. His limit for waiting in lines is about 5 seconds. No lie. Wouldn't you think that his own receiving line would be different?

Look at the picture below. David and I are on Kristy's right and we have just greeted a guest and there are obviously more coming but - oh no - there is a gap... and it looks like it is possibly more than 5 seconds long. Oh dear! Can he make it? Is he older and wiser and more couth now that he is the father of the bride for the second time? 5... 4... 3... 2... 1!

And... he's off! Notice David exiting to the left? Mind you, this was in the first 15 minutes of the reception so it's not like he is exhausted or starving or anything like that. It's just that his 5 seconds were up and he lost interest. You gotta love him!

LuDeen was there in Utah for all the festivities and she seems to get younger every year. How is that possible? Please don't tell me it's hard work because I don't plan to work as hard as LuDeen does at her age. I have a lot more sitting and relaxing in mind. Dare to dream!

The Dance! As we were planning the wedding, we talked about whether we should have any dancing or not. We had dancing at Kacey's reception and it was really fun but it was a different set up and crowd that lent more to dancing. (And by crowd, I mean Tom's family - instant party!) So we talked about maybe just doing a wedding waltz. Then I got the idea of maybe doing a reception dance with the whole wedding party. It was a random thought considering that Kristy is our only non-dancing daughter in the family and Trevor was not a dancer either. The more we talked about it, the more it sounded like fun. I thought it would be a longshot to get Trevor to go for it, an even longer shot to get my boys to go for it, and an even looonger shot to get Trevor's brothers to go for it.

Well, it turns out that I did not give the Lacey men enough credit! (I'm talking about their bravery, not their dancing skills!) They came through with flying colors. With the help of Courtney, who is our resident ballroom expert, she choreographed a waltz for Kristy and Trevor. (In her defense, she did not have a lot to work with!) So we had the idea for this wedding dance for some time but actually getting around to doing it was another thing. We started on it only days before the wedding and the one and only practice with the wedding party was in the Relief Society room just minutes before the reception.

We had sent some of the moves out on Flip video so the rest of the family could learn them and join in at the appropriate time. We had Doug's family (and Corbin) representin' in Heber and we had Angie and Qiana representin' in Moses Lake. (We also had Kelsey who was pulled in at the last minute after just having returned from her honeymoon and had no idea what the hec we were doing but she was a good sport and just tried to follow along.)

The group we had was pretty good, but if we would have had all the Earls in one spot, we surely would have totally rocked this reception dance! And if we would have had time to practice with our wedding party, that would have helped too!! As it was, it was still so much fun. I am so proud of Brad, Bryan, Collin and Cameron for being willing to do this for Kristy and Trevor or for me or for whoever was bribing them to do this. What great guys!

The Waltz - "Fascination"

The dip.

The music change - "I Gotta Feeling"

The guys. (One important thing to keep in mind is that these boys did not have the benefit of alcohol to help them lose their inhibitions and find their groove! So they get double kudos!!)

The girls.

The wedding party.

The whole gang.

More dancing...

Note to Brad's future wife: He has a long list of things he will not be doing at his reception. I told him, "Good luck with that" because you actually get less than 50% of the vote! He is such a good son, though. He does so many things for me that he would never do otherwise. What a good guy! Or maybe he is trying to atone for the time he told me that he hated me when he was 8 years old. (Oh yeah - he was accountable!) Whatever his reasons, it makes me happy to know that I can always count on him.

Courtney caught the bouquet!

Looks like the wedding party has lost interest! Must be time to go...

Time for the couple to make their getaway.

What is this? Oh those crazy Mormons and their non-alcoholic shenanigans!

Kristy and Trevor finally get away! They spent a couple of nights in Utah and then stayed in Boise on their way to the Moses Lake reception. It was a good day!

Stay tuned for Part 5... the crazy cake lady!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Happy Birthday Courtney - thanks for the memories!

Courtney turns 20 today!

Look at that sweet face. Was she not just the cutest thing on earth?

I just love everything about Courtney. It has been so much fun watching her grow and progress throughout the years. Courtney would have been a great athlete if she had chosen that route. She has always been naturally strong and lean with lots of muscle.

What has been fun about Courtney is that she has been involved in a few activities that I was not in charge of so I got to be just a mom and not a coach or a director. And they were activities that I really didn't know anything about so all I could do was keep my mouth shut and cheer for her.

One of the activities she did was gymnastics. I never dreamed that any of my children would be good at gymnastics because genetically we are tall and not very flexible. I was the one who signed my kids up for gymnastics when they were little in the hope that it would help with flexibility. I fully expected nothing more than mediocrity from them in this area. Imagine my surprise when they wanted Courtney on the team! Seriously, one of my kids?

She only did it for a couple of years because she got too busy with dance after that, but it was so much fun just to be a parent in the stands. I was so proud of her and everything she did amazed me. I didn't know enough about gymnastics to be able to give much advice so I just sat and enjoyed watching her do it. What a treat! (for her too, I'm sure!!)

For some reason, I couldn't find any of her gymnastics pictures except this little group shot. Courtney is 4th from the back.

Then we were back to me being teacher/director/mom which is still pretty fun but for my girls it means Mom constantly telling them that they are doing something wrong (in a variety of areas) and/or always telling them they can do better. "Mom - the coach" is definitely harder to please than "Mom - the parent who knows nothing about the sport"!

Even so, I enjoyed so many years watching Courtney dance and she often amazed me even when I knew the proper way it should be done.

Courtney is like a team's silent weapon. She is quiet and not at all boastful, about any of her skills. She just silently does a superb job.

The next treat that Courtney gave me was ballroom. Another opportunity I get to just sit and be a mom. Ballroom is a whole other form of dance and I know very little about proper ballroom technique (other than what I learn from watching Dancing with the Stars!) So I just get to sit and do nothing but enjoy watching her twirl around the floor. It's so much fun!

She first got bit by the ballroom bug when she was at BYU Clogging Camp as a sophomore and they watched a performance by the Ballroom Camp. She came home and told me all about it with her eyes full of awe and said that she wanted to do ballroom so bad. I tried a couple of different times to get her some ballroom training. We had her signed up to go to the BYU Ballroom Camp but it turned out that the state junior miss program was at the same time. She knew that if she won Moses Lake Junior Miss that it would mean she would have to pull out from ballroom camp and so it was definitely a bittersweet victory. I also had her signed up for a ballroom camp in Seattle and they ended up canceling that one. It seemed that ballroom was not in Courtney's future.

Well, she went down to BYU and started taking ballroom classes. She didn't start at the bottom, though. She went straight for the mid-level classes and, didn't necessarily lie, but was evasive if she was ever asked about the prereq's. No one ever suspected she hadn't taken the prerequisite levels but she often had to "fake it til you make it." She was confident that she could pick it up and she was just in such a hurry to progress. (By the way, did I mention that BYU has one of the best, if not the best, ballroom program in the nation? Yeah, we're not talking about small potatoes here! She is worming her way into classes with kids who have been doing ballroom since they were in elementary school!!)

A few weeks ago Courtney found out that she made it onto the BYU Back-Up Tour Team! I'm still not sure exactly what she gets to do on this team but I do know that it's an honor to be chosen. The Tour Team is headed to Blackpool England to compete in a couple of weeks. They get to go there every three years.

I am just so proud of her. She just set her mind to it, worked hard and made it happen. I am so looking forward to watching Courtney dance again next year as just a mom who is impressed by everything she does! Who says middle children are born losers? (Oh, that may only have been David. Forget I mentioned that.)

Happy Birthday, Courtney!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day to me!

I am really starting to love Mother's Day!

When my kids were young, Mother's Day was... nice. It just seemed like it always brought just as much work as any other Sunday and often more.

The primary kids singing was always a treat unless you were the one who had to teach them the song and try to get them to sing it in a way that would make their mothers cry - in a good way!

Having a special meal made just for you is another special treat until you find out the kitchen mess is yours too!

And don't even get me started on the gifts! Handmade wonders that are mine to dust forever and ever!!

Of course, I'm kidding. I did love every sweet little sentiment whether written, verbal or clay!

In our beloved First Ward (which we miss so much!) it was tradition to have the Young Women, Young Men and Priesthood take over primary so that all women could go to Relief Society on Mother's Day. That was a really nice treat for those of us who worked in primary and I loved it. I couldn't help but think, though, that what would have been really nice is not making young mothers come to church at all! No crying babies and squirming toddlers to contend with, no crayon fights to referee, no cheerio clean up on pew 9, no trying to stop a kid (who is sitting 3 kids away) from attempting to take an extra sacrament water with just a stern look and the list goes on!

Yes, my ultimate fantasy was that the Sunday before Mother's Day, the bishop would get up and announce that all mothers were to stay in bed on Mother's Day and all fathers were to get the kids ready, pack the diaper bag and bring the kids to church. I really didn't care what happened once they got there as long as I didn't have to go - guilt free - for just one Sunday! Am I the only one who harbored that fantasy?

I know. I'm not proud. I should have been more grateful and deep down I really was. It's just that it's so much work day after day after day and there is no rest on the Sabbath for mothers - it's just a different kind of work and it often requires teaching/babysitting other people's kids at church as well! What kind of rest is that? Ha ha.

Those really were good days... but it's so much better now!

I get to sit through sacrament meeting with nobody pestering me and I actually get to listen, and they still bring me a Mother's Day treat at the end of the meeting! Heck, I used to think it was a reward for not abandoning ship (aka heading home) when it seemed that I had completely lost control of the bench. But no! It seems that even if you didn't pin your toddler in a sacrament meeting wrestling match recently - you still get a reward! How sweet is that?

Today was a great day. We had LuDeen and Pat & Lori's family over after church for crepes and Paula Deen's hashbrown casserole that I saw demonstrated on Oprah (it was good.) LuDeen has always been a great mother-in-law and I just love her. She is one of a kind and seriously looks younger every year. How is that possible? We had a good time watching old home movies and playing a little bit of Beatles Rock Band.

My kids who are home treated me like a queen and one by one all of my other kids called to talk to me and tell me what a great mom I am. Scarlet called and sang me "Mother I Love Y0u" over the phone! It was too cute!!

A few years ago, I told my kids that for my birthday or Mother's Day or Christmas, I didn't want them to worry about giving me a gift. It is so hard to find a good gift for a parent or a grandparent that they don't already have. I did not want my kids to ever stress about getting me a gift. I told them that all I wanted on those occasions was for each of them to write down a memory from their childhood and give it to me. It can be about anything. It has been a wonderful thing and I treasure those memories.

Today was just the best day. I loved my kids when they were little and I miss it, but I am so loving them as adults! I am so blessed to have been able to be a mother so many times over and to have such great kids. My heart aches for every woman who desires to be a mother but is not able to for whatever reason. It's not fair. I know that God is mindful of their pleas and that their reward is coming... eventually. I am also sad for all those, like me, who lost their mothers at much too young of an age. It's been 28 years now that I've been without my mom, yet I am still more fortunate than many whose mothers died when they were much younger than I was.

To have my kids tell me how much they appreciate me is the best gift that any mother could receive. (Although jewelry is nice too! hint hint) I am truly honored to be a mother!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Kylie's Senior Prom!

It's prom time! Beautiful dresses, dashing tuxedos, gorgeous girls, handsome guys...
oh to be young and cellulite free again!!

Kylie's date was Dylan Signorelli. Aren't they adorable?

Dylan is a great guy and even though I rarely let him in the house, I really like him. It's nothing personal. I don't let any teenage boys in the house if I can help it!

I've never seen a group more punctual. Kyle Palmer, Breanna Haddican, and Dylan were expected between 5:40-5:45 and the doorbell rang at 5:40. That never happens!

Dinner group: L-R Katelynn Reed, Kylie, Kaylee Steever, Mattie Bergeson, Madi Wilks, Breanna, Jordan Loera, Kyleigh Williamson and Kenzie Baker!

The guys! Standing: Devan Peterson, Kyle Palmer, Jordan Wilks, Lewis Bruneel, Colby Byington, Dylan, Tyler Platt (days away from a mission) Kneeling: Dominic Cacchiotti, Christian Manly, Levi Walpol


Kylie has had a great group of friends to grow up with here in Moses Lake. There just happens to be a big group of exceptional boys and girls her age. Many of them are in this group. I will miss them so much. One thing I can promise you, the future is in good hands with these kids!

Why is it always windy when you have pretty hair?


Kylie's amazing friends - Kylie, Katelynn, Breanna, Mattie, Kenzie

Kenzie & Kylie - BFF

I can't help but stop and think about how truly blessed we all are. These kids are so fortunate to live in this great country and come from loving families who cherish them. We are so fortunate to be able to provide them with pretty dresses and rented tuxedos. We have so much while others in the world have so little. We truly are blessed in so many ways. For some reason, I always pause to think about that at times like these.

I wish there were more movies and tv shows that portrayed the kind of kids that these kids are. Hollywood would have everyone believe that they don't exist anymore and it's absolutely not true! Here we are in 2010 with this group of attractive, intelligent and talented kids having a fun non-alcoholic, non-drug using, non-hotel room seeking, non-smoking prom! And there are lots more groups out there just like them!!

Okay, I am waxing way too philosophical for a simple prom blog but I am so proud of this group of seniors!