On Jane’s 45th birthday I escaped for a few minutes in the early morning and sat at her graveside.  I had been there a few nights before and captured this photo of the sun setting through the clouds.  
I think she’s close.  I think she cares what we are doing and how we are feeling.  She was always worried when we worried.  She wanted to fight for us and with us and fix anything that was hurting us.  A quiet morning in a cool cemetery may not be the same as having my scrappy sister in my life, not even close, but it gives me peace and reminds me that we aren’t done with our relationship, it just looks different now.  I’d have her back in my life in a heart beat, but I’ll settle for these clouds and fleeting sun rays for now. 

A little bit of AZ in UT

A little bit of AZ spent the week with us in the middle of July.  We were so excited for the Lavenders to visit with us and eat with us.  We have a great time together and we eat the best food.  
I think it says a lot about friendships when you can pick up where you left off and laugh all day long. We literally spent 6 days eating and laughing with a little manual labor mixed in there.  Jesse and Aaron rebuilt our closet so Jesse could hang his shirts without them folding over at the bottom.  Their friendship wouldn’t be complete without a project.  And our friendship wouldn’t be complete without a sheet cake.  
We miss these guys and our date nights.  As much fun as 10 desserts from Taggarts was, I would trade all the desserts to have these guys live close by.  Even the carrot cake, which is really saying something.  

Montana Summer

At the beginning of July Isabel and I made the beautiful drive to Montana to help Abbi with Rigly for the week.  It seems that every time I make this drive I find the most stunning grey skies along one stretch of prairie.  The light breaking through the clouds this particular day was so captivating.  I wished I’d had time to just sit and watch the world float by.  
I had Isabel drive me home through the canyon and was continually finding myself amazed at the trees and the light and the mountains.  I love that there is so much beauty around us and that I have the eyes to see it and heart to appreciate it.  Inspiring and sometimes simple views of nature have given me peace and hope to keep moving through some difficult times in my life and continue to lift me. 


After being home from a week two of the kids dressed in some pioneer costumes and packed a few things and walked for 37 miles across the plains of Wyoming with a few hundred strangers and one cousin.  
You would think that when we picked up these kids we would be greeted with tired faces and exhausted people but the smiles that beamed from them were just that.  Beaming.  They were glowing and energetic and infectious to be with.  They had nothing but positive things to say and would probably do it again in a week or two. 
Isabel and Max had the unique opportunity to do a trek in AZ and UT back to back years.  Sariah had never had the chance to go at all and magically was allowed to go with our stake after they announced that no guests would be accepted.  
Their strength amazes me.  Love these kids!