Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Jeeping and Diving and Bikes, Oh My!

This is Ryan.  During this school year, I have done quite a bit. I was on the dive team, I went offroading a bit and we got a motorcycle! During the dive season, I got a chance to go to many invitationals. Although I never placed, it was a fun time! The highlight of the season for me was learning a reverse 1 1/2. I was at one of the invitationals and they accidently signed me up for doing that dive but I never learned it. Instead of asking the judges to change it, I just learned the dive ten minutes before the meet started! It was kinda scary but I didn't even belly flop; that's always a plus!

On Black Friday, I got to go hang out with my dad and some guys from our church when we went offroading. We  only got stuck once, luckily our buddy had a winch to pull us out. We got some good mud thrown on the sides of the jeep as well as some inside... we forgot to roll up the windows! I drove the whole time, and had a great time! Cant wait to go out again.

A few months ago, my friend let me ride his motorcycle. It was a little Ninja 250 but it was tons of fun! I told my dad that we should get one and he was all for it. We took the Team Arizona riders course and learned all the basics of riding safety. My friend then sold his 250 so that he could upgrade to a Ninja 500 right before we took the course. Sadly for him (but not for me), soon after he bought it he found out that he had to move to Mexico and he couldn't take the bike with him! My dad and I went in together and took it off his hands and now we are the proud owners of a Ninja 500. It is tons of fun to ride! All those hours working as a bag boy at Sprouts are paying off.  :)

Monday, December 23, 2013

Advice From an 8th Grader

Since I am an 8th grader at a Public school, I learn a lot of wisdom from my peers. I want to share  some of this wisdom with you.

1. Don't do drugs. Especially in the school bathroom because you will be caught, and suspended, as I have witnessed.
2. Have a wide circle of friends. So when one group turns on you, you have lots of other people to go to.
3.Be confident. Everyone loves someone who is proud of who they are.
4. Be yourself. The grass isn't always green on the other side.
5. Smile. Everyone loves a happy camper.
6. If you're going to get in trouble, make it a big thing.
7. Flirt with boys.
8. A lot.
9. Singing and playing piano is actually cool, so do it!
10. Be creative because life is better with art.
11. Don't let anyone tell you how to live your life. besides your parents. ALWAYS LISTEN TO THEM!
12. Make memories, time flies and you'll never be in 8th grade again. Unless you get held back... but we'll hope for the best.
13. Always listen to your parents. They know everything!
14. Take Pictures because you will have many once in a life time experiences.
15. HAVE FUN!!


You're A Good Man Charlie Brown

Hello! As some of you may know I decided to jump on the band wagon and try musical theatre like my siblings. In the fall I auditioned for "You're a Good Man Charlie Brown". To my surprise I got the part of being Sally's understudy and a member of the Peanuts Gang. I had so much fun learning two different parts and learning Sally's song "My New Philosophy."  Although I didn't get to be Sally, I really enjoyed the parts I did have. This new experience was so much fun and I made lots of new friends and unforgettable memories. I am even thinking about doing another musical soon!

EAC Round 3

If you follow me on Facebook, you are probably sick of all my post's about what I have been doing at college. I like taking pictures of all our shenanigans so that I can go back and reminisce  when I want. The semester started off with a bang when I made the Acapella Choir at school. It was really fun, but really challenging semester being in that choir. On the first day of class, we grabbed our folders, and all they had inside were 13 pieces of sheet music, and a tuning fork. Dr. Bishop started class by saying we wouldn't be using the piano at all. He was telling the truth because we really didn't! We trained ourselves to find our notes from the tuning forks. At first it was really difficult. There were times where I thought, "What the heck am I doing here?". But now it is something that me and my friends will do for fun because we are a bunch of choir nerds. :)

Speaking of my friends... I don't know what I did this semester, but I got super lucky in the group of friends I made.  I started the semester being the only girl in a group of guys. Each of these boys has become like a big brother to me. But as the semester went on our group has expanded more and more. We have a lot of fun and we like to cause all sorts of trouble. For example, one weekend half of our friends went to the valley to see The Lion King. While they were gone, the other half of us were trying to figure out what to do with ourselves. I remembered a video that my Aunt Kathleen sent me a few years ago about a guy who went out of town and while he was gone, his roommates wrapped everything he owned in wrapping paper. I suggested that to my friends and we ran with it. With the help of their roommates, and the bribing the right people, we were let into each of their rooms. It took almost 4 hours and $25 in wrapping paper and tape, but it was so worth it and fun to see their faces when they got home.

One of our last dates before everyone went home for the Christmas break was a girl ask guy event and we decided to make it a Winter themed date. After our classes for the day, the girls piled into a truck, and we told the guys we would have a surprise for them when we got back. We drove up Mt. Graham and filled the back of a truck full of snow. After only getting the truck stuck once we brought the snow back to campus where we surprised the boys with a snowball fight and snowman building contest. After that, there was a talent show at the institute. My date, Eric, kept telling me he had this really cool talent but he wouldn't tell me what it was. He ended up calling me onstage and serenading me in front of the entire institute. Needless to say, we are going to have to dispel some rumors when we get back to school. After the talent show, we went to see the Eclipse concert in Safford. Eclipse is an all acapella men's group from Utah. They were really talented and so fun to watch. The original plan was to then go to the school's Winter Formal dance. But we were all so tired from such a fun day that we decided to have a pajama party at my house with cookie dough and Christmas movies instead of getting all dolled up. I think we made the better choice.

All in all, I am loving my time in Thatcher. I am really sad that I only have one more semester left. But I know it is going to be an exciting one full of new adventures and good times! Merry Christmas to all!

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Christmas Update - 2013

It has been a wonderful Fall at our house.  The kids are all doing well in school, keeping busy, and seeming to be happy.  Megan is in her 2nd year at EAC, in the Acappella Choir, and looking forward to wrapping things up there in the Spring.  She hasn't decided where she will go next to finish her degree.  She just made a quick trip back to Disneyland, so she's gotten her fix for a few months.  We feel blessed that she has an incredible group of friends, family and teachers there who love her and support her as she is out on her own. 

Ryan is enjoying a low-stress Senior Year.  He only needed 2.5 credits to graduate, but went ahead and filled up his schedule.  He is part of Jazz-Mad choir at Desert Vista High School, and had a great season on the diving team.  (Diving Board, not Scuba Diving).  Their choir will be going to New York City in the Spring.   His creativity has expanded in his Ceramics class.  He makes beautiful pottery, and now we have an extensive collection of gorgeous glazed pots.  One of his favorite things to do is take the jeep 4-wheeling, but he's always out doing all kinds of boy stuff with his friends.   We are fortunate that he still likes us, and spends time with us, too.  It will be fun to see him graduate in May. 

Cameron is our ever-stylish 8th grader.  She is getting straight A's, and enjoys school.  She was recently in "You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown" and sings in her school Honor Choir.  They are going to Disneyland in March and she's very excited.  Cameron is the energy in our house.  She's always "hatching up" something to do (as Grandpa Woods would say).   She loves to play the piano.  At her Christmas recital, she played a Jon Schmidt version of "Stars Were Gleaming" that was more than difficult.  It was beautiful, and it was fun to watch her tackle that piece for the fun of the challenge.  It's incredible to think she'll be in High School next year. 

In November, we added a new family member.  A lovely girl named Jacque, who is a junior at Desert Vista, was in need of a place to live.  We had an empty bedroom, and we have enjoyed having her stay with us.  As a bonus, she brought her dog with her.  We have never had a dog, but we have fallen in love with Tina, the Rat Terrier. 

Trish is still teaching in the Library at school and still in the Primary Presidency.  Mike is having great success at his Lobbying firm, and serving as High Priest group leader.  Our whole family is getting excited for the opening of the Gilbert Temple.  Ryan and Cameron will get to be in the cultural celebration, and we have invited several friends and coworkers to take the tour in the next few weeks before the dedication. 

We hope that this season of remembering our Savior is filled with happiness and love for all of our friends and family.  May 2014 be a wonderful year for all of you!