Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A "Flash"back to Utah

Homer Family (We were only missing 5 cousins and 1 spouse - pretty good!)
Event: Homer Family Reunion

Date: July 30, 2011

Place: Provo Canyon

Best Part: The Cousins' FlashMob Dance (are you familiar with flash mobs?  Check out this one and this one)

Dancers: 22 cousins and 4 great grandkids

Music: Party in the USA/Single Ladies/Wavin' Flag/We are Family

Audience: Grandparents, Aunts & Uncles, and anyone else in Provo Canyon

The Details:  We sent out instructional videos and choreography via YouTube.  We did have one practice the night before in the parking lot at Thanksgiving Point.

The Set up:  My mom is explaining how to play a version of musical chairs.  KK starts dancing to the song, and mom tells her to stop and sit down.  Before you know it POW!Its a flash mob!

The Video:

Doesn't it make you want to do your own Flash Mob?

Friday, August 19, 2011

Worst Plane Ride Ever

KK -

I know I told you in person about my worst plane ride ever.  But let's share it again with the rest of the world because it is such a great story.

Extremely early on a Thursday morning, we woke the boys up from their peaceful sleep and loaded them in the car to drive to the airport.  T Bear became giddy with excitement because Utah was the place were all his wildest dreams were going to come true (he doesn't know about DisneyLand yet).

We arrived at the airport a little bit later than we planned to, but rushed in to check our bags and car-seats.  Then we headed to the security lines which is where we made our biggest mistake.  We got into the slower-than-a-snail line.  A new TSA person was training, therefore bags had to be checked at least 17 times.  By the time our bags finally were scanned, my plane was boarding.  I told the TSA persons that we needed to hurry, so would they please do their triple extra check on our baby food quickly.  My simple request was bluntly ignored.

When we had finished redressing ourselves, and loading our bags back up, Big D carried the boys and while I started sprinting (in a dress) to the gate.  I arrived at the gate and knew that our plane was gone.  The lady at the counter confirmed that our plane had departed without us.  I bursted into tears.  Big D finally caught up with me at the counter and talked to the lady about getting me and the boys booked on another fight.

Once we were booked on the next outgoing flight, Big D tried to console me.  Still crying, I told him "One more minute with these boys is like an extra hour!" (all drama intended)  I was not prepared for a later flight, especially since it was not a direct flight.

After some breakfast, Big D left us and we boarded the plane.  The first flight to Boise went somewhat smoothly.  As we left Boise, things started to get rough.  Without too much commotion, we made it to Salt Lake City.  I got off the plane and walked Troy to the bathroom.

In the bathroom, I discovered that my period had leaked through my dress.  I don't mean just a little leakage, I mean a lot of RED BLOOD EVERYWHERE.  Ugh.  Panicking, but trying not to cry again in front of my boys, I walked out of the bathroom.  I walked down to the baggage claim trying to pretend that no one could see my strained dress.

At the baggage claim, I found a corner to hide in.  B-town (youngest brother) showed up with an adorable welcome sign and balloons.  You should have seen B-town's face when I told him that my period leaked all over my clothes.  It was definitely a TMI moment for a 22 yr old guy.  B-town was kind and gathered our luggage, which included 2 car seats and 1 small suitcase.  In that suitcase, I had only packed a few things for the boys.  There were NO CLOTHES for me because Big D was flying in later that night with our other luggage.  

When we got to B-town's car, I asked him to use his GPS to find the nearest clothing store possible.  We drove to a Target and I ran inside to find some clothing.  Since I was bloody everywhere down there, I couldn't exactly try on some shorts or pants.  So I grab a Maxi dress and a package of panties, bought them, then went in the bathroom and changed.  I tried not to even think about what the cashier must have been wondering (or the people BEHIND me in line).

With clean clothes on, we went to my lunch date with my dear college friend Roo.  It was a relief to sit with Roo.  You can always cry, laugh and calm down with best friends from college.  We enjoyed a great lunch. 

Luckily my day (and trip) went much better.  It was a red and rocky start, but I survived.  I have not had such a humiliating period experience like that since high school.  AH!  Can you believe it?  

Thanks for the humiliating/funny experience Red Fairy

-Miss T

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Home again, home again, Jiggity Jig

Hi Miss T,

I am home again. Back in the states. The best part of it all so far has been getting caught up on blogs. That picture of Troy in the swimming pool is beyond classic! I happen to be showing people just to share in the silly joy that comes from seeing that.

What I miss most are the $0.50 ice cream cones at Mackers (McDonalds...which by the way everyone, and of course when I say everyone I"m exaggerating, but barely, loves McDonalds in Australia!). I had one every day except Sundays, and sometimes I had two. Why not?

Have any good cheap treat substitute ideas for me?
Love, Ice-Cream Cone lover

Friday, August 12, 2011

Now You Can

Early in the morning, I brought Baby Cub into bed with me.  Big D had already left for work, so I didn't mind sharing the bed with Baby Cub.  He started rolling around with adorable coos while I watched half asleep.  Baby Cub pushed up onto hands and knees and scooted his bottom back until he was in a sitting position.  I thought it was utterly amazing that he figured out how to do that on his own.

When I worked at Now I Can, I helped numerous children try to learn that very skill that Baby Cub mastered on my bed.  The children at Now I Can, usually have some sort of neuromuscular disorder, mostly commonly cerebral palsy.  They have to work very hard to learn how to sit, crawl, stand, walk, talk, and eat.  It was an extremely humbling experience to be part of the children's journey to learn to do these simple yet difficult things.  

As a child would take a first step, or sit independently, we would encourage them to say, "Now I Can."  I wanted each of these children to be proud of the things they could do, instead of feeling limited by what they can not do.

My heart is full of gratitude that Baby Cub does not have to struggle to learn such simple tasks.  My heart hopes that he will learn compassion for people that do go through those struggles.  My heart wants him to be kind and helping to all he comes into contact with.  

A recent visit to Now I Can with Tracey (the Director).  I want to be like her someday!

Now I Can is competing in a competition on Facebook to win some much needed money.  This money would fund scholarships for more children to receive therapy and the opportunity to say "Now I Can" at this amazing clinic.  The voting ends on August 27th.  You can vote 1 time everyday.  Now I Can is not in the lead right now, but they are praying for a miracle.  Now You Can help by please ask everyone you know on Facebook to vote for Now I Can.

With love,
-Miss T

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Australian Oddities to American Eyes

Hey Miss T,

Yesterday I rode on an escalator, and I took a picture. Notice anything strange?

I then returned a shopping cart in the parking lot...or should I say a trolley in a car park?

I also ate a pie. Not an applie pie, or banana cream pie. Can you guess what was in this pie if it goes great with your favorite BBQ sauce?

I paid for some Tim-Tams (our favorite!) with some cash.

(Isn't their money pretty?!)

And rode in a car, me being the passenger on the right side of the vehicle.

So far I'm liking the Auzzie place, even though some things appear odd to my American eyes.

Hahah, it's heaps of fun.
Loving and missing you from down under!


Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Picture of the Day

Should there be a caption?
Aren't you just laughing?
Or are you wondering what in the world and WHY is T Bear doing that?

-Miss T

Monday, August 8, 2011

Malo e Lelei!

Malo Miss T!

Welcome back to the blog...I've missed you dearly.
I am now in Liverpool with my former mission companion Faiva. Originally she is from New Zealand, and her parents are Tongan. So yesterday we went to the Tongan congregation at church, and oh my was I in for a good time or what.
Have you ever heard of AFL? I'm guessing you may be thinking "American Football League" right now, because of course that is what I also thought. This is not correct however (I now see a reason for the NFL and not the AFL...), because it really means Australian Football League. I learned this because at the musical fireside I went to last night, the AFL team from Tonga was visiting. They were all decked out in white shirts with red ties. Wow they can sing!!! Wow wow wow. I need you to hear it. It's almost like sing-yelling, but not as harsh or bad as that sounds. But it is powerful. And all of the speeches and talks given were basically jokes about getting these fine young Tongan athletes married off to the Australian beauties. What an evening of giggles and laughter all around.

Wish you could be here too!
Love, want-to-be-Tongan-KK

Sunday, August 7, 2011

The Lord of the Ragnar


A few weekends ago Big D participated in the Northwest Passage Ragnar Relay race.  It was amazing for many reasons.

First of all, Big D is not a runner.  He read the book Born to Run, and got motivated.  He started training and proved to be more diligent than I when it came to training.  Of course he really needed to train because the Ragnar Relay is a serious race.

It is 190 miles with a 12 person team.  Each person runs 3 legs of the relay with a total milage of between 12 and 21 miles.  They run continuously through the night, so the sleep deprivation is part of the challenge.  They rent vans and drive along the route meeting each runner at the designated exchange spots.

When I heard what this was, I thought HOW STUPID!!! THAT DOES NOT SOUND LIKE FUN AT ALL.  But Big D's friend Dust is an excellent salesman, and so Big D was sold and committed.  The surprising part (and more idiotic part to me) was that their team was going to dress and RUN in full costume.   The team name was Lord of Ragnar and therefore they were each assigned to dress like a character from the the series, The Lord of the Rings.

I called Sally (Dust's wife) and told her that I thought this was so ridiculous that Big D was on his own for finding a costume.  I could not help with this idiotic project.  Sally told me that designing, and making the costumes is what made this strenuous race fun for these guys.  I rolled my eyes, and listened to Big D make a sword in the garage.  

Big D was to be an Uruk'hai (some scary type of Orc).  Unfortunately they do not sell Uruk'hai costumes on the internet like they do for the more popular characters of the Lord of the Rings, so Big D had to come up with his own costume.  

One week before the race, we were driving back from the Warrior Dash with some friends.  Big D started complaining about how his costume was not done and how his own wife was not helping him.  I again told him that I thought it was too stupid to be a part of.  I also said that I would probably be cheering for my Stroller Stride friends who were running the race instead of him, due to being incredibly embarrassed by his costume and team.  

After being so blunt and slightly harsh, I felt bad and decided to let my strong opinions go for the sake of my marriage and help Big D with his costume.  Now, I am proud to said we made an awesome costume.  At 4am on the day of the race, I woke up and painted his face and gave him a supportive slap on the butt and told him to "Go get 'em!"  Then I got back in bed and prayed that this stupid race would not be the cause of an injury or accident to my husband.

The Lord of the Ragnar started their race at 8am on Friday morning.  Saturday morning I took the boys with me to Whidbey Island to see Big D run the 33rd leg of the 36 total leg relay race.  When I arrived at the exchange point, I realized that The Lord of the Ragnar team was the most popular team there.  Everyone LOVED them, and were in total awe of their costumes.  They were seriously celebrities.  

Surprised, I decided to NOT pretend like I didn't know my husband, but instead cheer for him proudly. At each exchange, the guys acted out a fight scene that drew all sorts of attention.  Big D had only gotten 2 hours of sleep in a stinky car, but he ran his last 7 miles like a true Uruk'hai.  I followed him along his trail.  We would pull over and let T Bear stand on top of the car and cheer for him (and other runners - #80 was a favorite).  At Big D's finishing point, there was another epic battle.  When they finished a lady runner asked T Bear if that was his Daddy.  T Bear said, "Yes.  My daddy is the strongest."

All the members of the team ran together across the finish line together.  The director of the race turned on the theme music from the movie, and spectators pulled out their video recorders and cameras.  Big D and his crazy team created a HUGE battle scene as they crossed the finished.  People were coming up and asking to take pictures with them and telling them how awesome they were.  It was a total boost for their egos.

Big D had so much fun, he said he would do it again.  I conceded that I was glad I participated in this event with him.  I was proud of him too.  

Be sure to watch the video - it is so well done.  Thanks to Dust and his crazy family for getting us in on the fun.

-Miss T

Scary!  His friend made him fake teeth to wear as well, but they were not that easy to run with.

Strangers slowed down to take pictures of them running.  Doesn't Big D look good in those Women's Leggings?

FYI - The results came in.  And apparently if you do a theatrical show at every exchange you're not likely to WIN the Ragnar Relay.  The Lord of the Ragnar  team averaged a 9:30 minute/mile for 190 miles.  I thought that was impressive until Big D told me they were in the last 25% of the finishing teams.  The winning team averaged a 6:04 minute/mile pace.  INCREDIBLE!  This is definitely a race for the serious (and certified crazy) runners out there.  

Friday, August 5, 2011

I'm Back with Face Paint

KK -

I have been having major issues with Google/Gmail.  I think I have finally figured out my blogger account and all other google accounts.  So I am back and ready to blog.  I have so many good stories to tell you.  Like..... The Lord of the Ragnar,  a Flash Mob, my worse plane ride ever, running a red light, and more.  

For now, enjoy our face paint.  If you are ever bored, play with face paint.  It will turn a boring afternoon into a memorable day with lots of laughter.  I dedicate our Harry Potter baby to Bert - don't you love it?

Hope you are having fun down under,
-Miss T

PS If any of you friends have private blogs, please send me a new invite.  Send it to tenleypickett(at)gmail.com  I am still using my cutlercrew email address, just needed a different email to use blogger.  Thanks!  I want to read your blog too.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

G'day Mate!

G'day Miss T!

I am officially in Australia, and I guess I have been for nearly 2 days now. In keeping with the season of engagements and weddings (3 of my friends were engaged two weekends ago), I am now in Australia for a very important wedding. It is the jumpstart to the season of weddings I have coming (Kace, T-man, L-Fo, and S.H.).

My dear friend and mission companion Smeili is getting married this Saturday in the Sydney Australia Temple.

It just so happens that I went to this very temple today. The best part for me was the wonderful Samoan lady I met. She had the dearest New Zealander accent, a warm hug, and silly giggle. She told me that yesterday was her birfday (f's replace the th's in Poly-talk), and that she was 63 years old. So I of course wished her the happiest day-after birthday, and felt tickled to be there with her. It was a lovely day to be in the temple, but the best news is that Saturday will be an even lovelier day to be in the temple. I will get to watch Smeili and her Tasmanian man (Tazzy as they call it, with fondness) make promises. Promises to each other, and to God, that they will be loyal, faithful, true, kind, and loving to one another for all the rest of their days on this earth, and for all of eternity. I will be a witness to their covenant, and one who will know of the power that God will supply in times of need and hardship in their future, because He is as invested in their relationship as they are. How wonderful to have such a sacred and beautiful house as the temple to witness this in.

And then I will get to wear a lovely red dress, take pictures with the wedding party, play with her new little neices, and drink some sparkling cider out of wonderful IKEA goblets. Yes, we did buy all 90 of these goblets today. Good fun!

I wish you were here with me, but since you can't be I'll take as many incredible pictures as I can, and I'll keep you posted on the funny goings on here.

Toodles, Kk