Thursday, July 30, 2015

Families are Forever

Vicki requested that all the family get new clothes for the funeral. It was a great idea and the girls felt so special wearing their 'Grandpa clothes' as they called them. I thought they looked mighty cute, but I'm not sure any family could look as sharp as Kolby's family. There is something about guys in suits. So classic and pristine.

Since they were all dressed up, Kat requested a quick family photo shoot. I think her family looks great.

Two of my favorite people.

Hinckley is still going through chemo treatments. I have not talked a lot about his journey here on the blog. Mostly because I feel it is his family's story to tell. They have been very open about the process and are good about keeping everyone updated. And Hinckley just shines. He is so patient and positive through all he is going through. I'm so impressed with his strength of spirit. The muscles in the right side of his face are still not as responsive, so he has a crooked smile right now. I think he is as cute as ever.

All the boys in the family wore pink socks in honor of Barry. I like this photo where Tyler made the colors pop. (All these boys are fantastic kids. They are funny, helpful, and so good-natured. They get that from their mom.)

Kathryn picked out purple accented ties for the boys. They all looked amazing. Check out this special knot that Kolby does. When I asked Kaysen the name of the knot, he called it 'The Great Kolbe.'

Kolby and Kathryn are a really great couple. They both work hard. Kathryn amazes me with her strong quiet endurance and never ending kindness to others. And they are such a handsome couple.

It is always great to see them!

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Barry Cazier (1953-2015)

This post seems harder to write every moment I wait, so I'm just going to get it out there. My father-in-law, Barry Cazier, passed away on July 22, 2015 from pancreatic cancer that he was diagnosed with in Nov. of 2014. I feel honored to have known him and be part of his family. There are few people I respect as much as Barry.

It was not a terrible shock to hear he had passed away. We have been expecting it for a while, but it doesn't lessen the reality that he is no longer here with us. I am so thankful for my knowledge of the gospel and the assurance that this isn't the last time we will see him. Because of our Savior, we will all have the chance to be resurrected and be with those we love in heaven if we are faithful.

Barry was a tremendous man. He was able to mix just the right amount of humor with everything he did. I frequently laughed, but I also appreciated the wisdom that came with Barry. I have learned many life lessons from him. He was kind and a hard worker. He never gave up and he lived life fast...literally. He raced motorcycles, cars, horses (once), remote control cars, you name it. And he was good at everything he tried. He was an excellent shot, he was a trick pilot for remote control airplanes, and he was quite the golfer.

I'll remember him cheating while we played games. I'll remember his love of moose. No one can forget his liquid was drinkably delicious. It will be strange not to have him write my kids' names on their foreheads when they visit. I'm really going to miss him. I picked out some of my favorite photos of Barry.

Going to Idaho for the funeral was a very bittersweet time. It was so nice to see family again. Jami is expecting a new addition in September and I hadn't even seen her baby bump. It is always nice to catch up with Kathryn and I really missed seeing Vicki. It seemed like a big family reunion. In fact I saw lots of Vicki's cousins that I have never seen before.

We had a special viewing with just the immediate family. We held a special FHE and let the kids ask questions and work through their emotions. (I don't really know what they are going through. I didn't attend any funerals as a child.) Later in the evening, the adults came back for the public viewing. Tyler and I were able to stand in line and thank people for coming. I was so impressed with how many people came to pay tribute to Barry. He was a well loved man.

Vicki had this amazing idea for the flower arrangement on his casket. I have never seen anything quite like it, but that is what I expect from her. Since Barry had such a love of motorcycles, she gave a tire to the florist and per her instructions, they made this. (They later added a sign that said 'Moving On'.)

The day of the funeral was wonderful. I feel like everything went as well as could be hoped for. Vicki seemed to think of everything. She had wrist corsages for the all the girls and boutonnieres for the boys.

Barry asked me to speak at the funeral. I gave the Life Sketch. It was fun to put it together and hear so many fun stories about Barry. I won't deny that I was very nervous, but luckily the wheat wheel obstructed my view of Vicki and that was all I needed to get me through. Jami spoke after me (yes...the daughters-in-law got picked on...or honored. I guess it is how you look at it.) Bro. Avondet also spoke. It was a very special service.

After the service, Vicki had gotten limousines to take us to the cemetery. It was the first time for many of us to be in a limo. Somehow the kids ended up in one limo and we adults had the other. No complaints there.

Our limo didn't have the best air conditioning (poor pregnant Jami) but we did have a mirror up above.

Kat got pictures of the kids limo. (Thank you!) They had a great time in there.

Kaysen and Robyn...hand out the drinks. (Don't worry...just water.)

Kat got a picture of us too. My only consolation for not getting a picture of her is that I took family pictures for her earlier, so I'll put those on the blog too. They have such a great looking family.

The internment was very nice too. It was a beautiful day and it was so moving to see the pall bearers carry Barry's casket to the burial spot.

It is hard to say goodbye.

But it was also a very good opportunity to talk to the kids about all aspects of death and what to expect at a funeral.

The luncheon afterward was so nice. I have never been on the receiving end and I really appreciate all the Relief Society ladies who make it run smoothly. Vicki splurged and got us Tri Tip. (It was fantastic.) We finally slowed down enough to get some picture of the girls. They were all dressed in their new clothes they got specifically for this day. (Thank you Grandma Cazier.)

The whole family.

And don't forget these three brothers. They are all fabulous men. I feel so privileged to belong to such a great family.

It was nice to relax with the girls. There is a time for seriousness and a time to smile. We did some of both that day.

I even found a way to take a picture and a selfie at the same time. Don't I look natural up there in that postage stamp?

There were so many amazing flower arrangements there. The girls and I really liked the one from BeaJo (Vicki's sister). She had a flower that resembled Gizmo (or Pip) holding a pink sock in his mouth. Fun.

We helped bring the flowers home. I promise all five girls are in there.

It was such a lovely weekend with family. Kathryn painted my nails. (She is the best nail painter in history.) We ate so much good food. The food just kept pouring into the house. So many kind people brought yummy meals. I was stuffed the whole time.

This picture makes me smile with a tear. Pip is quite the snuggler. She likes to be on people and she especially liked to climb up on Grandpa's neck. Even when he was very weak, he would still lean his head toward Pip when she curled up on him. It was nice to see her snuggle with Tyler.

There is no good way to lose someone you care about. Barry will forever hold a special place in our heart until we see him again. In the meantime, I'll wear pink socks.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Settimana Sette

A week without one of the kids is always strange. When Robyn went to Clear Creek, it felt like someone was missing. (Obviously.) This week was June's turn to go to Girls' Camp. (I have mixed feelings about next year because they get to go But two kids will be missing at I dropped off June bright and early Monday morning. She found friends right away. (Even Hannah was there somewhere since she is in our stake.)

Recognize Jenna? She went to camp with Robyn. This has been a fun year for her.

Load that stuff on the bus and off you go. Have a blast my Junie bug.

The rest of us leftovers had to come up with some amusement for the week. Luckily, we already had some great stuff planned. First up...Sponge Target Toss. Robyn was kind enough to draw some targets for us. Lots of options.

I figured I had to get in on this action. (Better to change into a swimsuit now than have all my clothes soaked. Kids like to come after adults when water is involved.)

Now to the throwing. Nice form Ivory.

Not sure who threw this one, but that is almost the center of the target. Great aim!

It was nice and hot and I will freely admit that we didn't aim at the target on the ground for long. We switched to moving targets — ones that run and scream. Some people just dumped water on themselves.

Monkey see, monkey do. Ahh, refreshing.

The porch was a NO WATER ZONE. I put my camera up there and thoroughly threatened the kids. They did a very good job keeping the water away. Pearl realized this would be a good safe zone for her beauty rest.

Daisy was gone at a movie with friends, but she arrived in time for some of the festivities. I have never seen a child change into a swimsuit so quickly. She was like lightning.

Eva, a neighbor, came up to play with us. She was great at refilling buckets and zeroing in on me whenever she managed to snag a sponge. She finally dumped a whole bucket on me and when I told her how nice it felt, she opted for her own bucket. (I wasn't felt really good.)

Robyn used her spray bottle to write letters on the sidewalk. I asked, "What does ER stand for?"

"Duh mom, Emergency Room. But it could also mean Eva and Robyn."

I see.

Tuesday is usually just library day, but we met up with Jenaca to see her before her family moves to Oregon later this summer. We let the kids play at Classic Skate for an hour. (Luckily, we still had some coupons.) Robyn had a bit of a run in with the floor. She was unhappy about the altercation, understandably.

But it was so fun to see Jenaca and her crew. Hudson is the new recruit. He is well taken care of by his big sisters.

Then of course there was Daisy's birthday. All hail Queen Cakes.

Thursday, we made homemade ice cream. There is really no end to the different types you can make, but since June was out of the picture, we all agreed on Mint Chocolate Chip. (We were doing her a favor really.) The best part about homemade ice cream is how easy it is. I guess it depends on what kind of machine you have, but ours is very nice. Mix together some milk, sugar, and cream. Don't forget a little peppermint extract. Now pour it into the ice cream maker.

Let it mix for 25 minutes, and add some chunked chocolate during the last five minutes.

It will be soft serve consistency at first, but you can put it in the freezer for a couple hours to let it ripen. (Weird word that I'm assuming means letting it harden up a little more.)

Finished product: Fantastic. (Especially if you like mint.)

My kids loved it.

Maybe some loved it a little too much.

Friday, June came home!! She was smiling, but I was trying to decide if she got a wicked bruise or was just really dirty.

Turns out it was makeup. A friend was doing makeup bruises on the ride home. We listened to June tell stories about her adventures. I think we all missed her.

We all watched The Penguins of Madagascar in the afternoon. (I really liked it. Super funny. Maybe my favorite show so far this summer.)

The week wasn't quite finished. Daisy had her party on Saturday. As kids arrived, we played the number game (also called the dice game). We have been using it for years and it never gets old. Something about the chance that they might call your number when the music stops makes it suspenseful. We just played on the front lawn so kids could join as they showed up.

Daisy wanted to go swimming for her birthday. Yes, it is a little daunting to take a lot of little girls swimming, but I figured I could manage. We went to the Rec Center because I am familiar with it and I could limit the kids to one area.

I had already mapped out my plan of attack. I decided not to get in the water because I could watch all the heads easier from the shore. Too bad when I checked in they told me that I had to get in the water. Wait...I had called multiple times and NO ONE had mentioned this. I know younger children have to be accompanied by an adult, but I never heard IN the water. The lady at the desk snipped that they don't list off ALL the rules when people call.

Fine, if I have to be in the water, I will put my feet in.

As we entered the pool area, it was nice because hardly anyone was there. That is great for the kids, but not so great for the mom who stands out like a sore thumb as she herds in a hoard of children. I was immediately accosted by a lifeguard.

"We have a rule that you have to be in the water with the children."

I explained that I knew the rule (now), but did not bring a suit. He said I could rent a suit from the desk or some parents roll up their pant legs and stand in the water. I told him I was already planning on that.

I proceeded to roll up not very rollable capris and stand in the water. I took my camera (to complete the ridiculousness) and watched the kids, counting heads and snapping photos. They are pretty cute little fish.

They all seemed to be having a great time.

About this time, another life guard comes over.

"Madam, I'm going to have to ask you to be in the water with the kids."

Begin explanation again about not bringing a suit. This guy was not to be swayed and he kept calling me madam which really irked me.

"You can rent a suit at the front. The children with you need to be supervised in the water."

I refrained from pointing out that it was easier to supervise from the shore. However I did mention a slight problem,

"If I go to the front to rent a suit, who is going to supervise the kids?"

"I will Madam."

(AHHH, stop calling me Madam. And if you are going to supervise them, as you get PAID to do, why don't you continue doing so for the next 30 minutes while we are here??)

(Deep breath.) "Okay, I will go get a suit."

And I did. I left the building and drove home to get my suit. Since I live very close, I was back in the pool in less than ten minutes. (I clocked it.)

I played with the kids for the next half an hour and probably didn't supervise as well as before, but I was following orders. Sheesh.

Getting kids out of the pool took a little longer than expected, so we raced home (obeying the speed limit of course...I wasn't taking any more chances) and went right to the business of cake and ice cream. Or should I say, ice cream cupcakes.

Daisy was super excited to open gifts, finally. She loved everything.

Amazingly I remembered to get a group shot. Daisy has such fun friends. This is a fun age.

Top row: Sadie, Daisy, Annie, June, Alina, Lizzie
Bottom Row: Pearl, Ivory, Rachel, Katelynn
 And one drowned. Most likely because I was in the water protecting them.

I jest. (But not much.)

It was a really fun week. I'll have June do a guest post and give you the goods on Girls Camp.

p.s. Robyn was at Mo-Mo's birthday party so is not in the picture.