Saturday, October 31, 2015

Fall Fun

Fall is such a beautiful time of year, and this year we were a little fall obsessed. The weather stayed nice for so long, giving us the chance to take Jonas to plenty of fun fall activities!

Our first festival was going to Cornbelly's at Thanksgiving Point in Utah, which I shared pictures in my last blog post. This was by far the best place, and most expensive. They had a kids corn maze, corn pit, hay ride and other fun rides, lots of jumpers and jungle gyms, and other fun stuff for kids and adults. 

Next we went to the Tree House Nursery in Hibbard (just outside of Rexburg) for family night with some of our neighbors, it was lots of fun! They had a hay ride, pumpkin cannon, corn pit, and enchanted forest, it was like a mini Cornbelly's in Idaho.

Our third fall festival was a simple pumpkin patch in Rigby, run by a family of farmers. They had plenty of pumpkins, we bought three for under $4, and a kid sized straw maze.

A boy's first time carving a pumpkin, or more like "helping" dad with the pumpkin while mom tries and fails at getting good pictures. Although it was a success because Jonas loved helping clean the pumpkin!

Jonas has been learning how to scribble, so we had fun coloring a fun haunted house picture! 

We had a fun neighbor lunch and made this fun spider hat for the kids! Jonas likes to have it around but doesn't love to wear it, haha.

JT and Matt, dressed up as an inside joke from work on the Friday before Halloween. Basically everyone at the office is Mormon because we live in East Idaho, and for the last few months both Matt and JT have been trying to get more people to integrate GIT--I don't remember what JT told me about it because everything he tells me confuses me--so some co-workers joked they were trying to convert everyone. Hence, the "costume".

Finally, Halloween! We got to enjoy going to the "Hocus Pocus" event in Rexburg, Trick-or-Treating for Jonas around the block, and we enjoyed dinner and some movies with Britt and Jason! Which of course Jonas loved because Aunt Britt shared some extra candy with him!

Hobos. I didn't want to put any effort or money into costumes because I would rather put the money towards Christmas, so this is our no-cost costumes! It worked out since I got the shopping cart for Jonas as a toy a couple months ago for super cheap. (You can also see that we only ended up carving one pumpkin, oops!)

This is my mom fail. I have been really bad at checking the mail, which is only a 2-minute walk from my front door. After Jonas was in bed on Halloween my mom asked if we got her package, so I ran over and found these goodies! So Jonas gets an extra Halloween in November this year!

Lastly, a really scary picture of Jonas. In years past JT has taken cute pictures of us to photoshop and made them creepy. I had the idea that he use a picture we recently took of Jonas to make it a Halloween picture, and he made this....super creepy Joker picture. So no I didn't take the time to put make up on Jonas for this picture, I'm far too lazy. Happy Halloween!

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Shutt Wedding + Cornbelly's

This weekend we got to go down to Utah for a quick trip, my longest friend/cousin/sister had a small wedding in Salt Lake and we were blessed to be apart of it!

We have known Bekkah since we could talk. I do not remember life before the Rayborn's, they are family. Like the family friends you go on all your vacations with, family. Bekkah looked beautiful, and of course her make up and hair were perfect. It was also nice to finally meet Justin! They had a small ceremony outside in Salt Lake, and the weather was perfect since October thinks it's August this year, followed by a delicious lunch at the Joseph Smith Memorial building. We were so lucky to be able to be there for the wedding, and I am so excited to meet her little one!

Since we came down to Salt Lake for the wedding, we got to enjoy some time at City Creek (my favorite mall), and spent time with siblings that live in Utah, Paige and Jordan. Unfortunately we weren't visiting for very long, so we didn't see a lot of our family and friends. Sorry!

First train ride! On the Utah Trax so we didn't have to drive through traffic.

Beautiful view of the SLC temple during lunch.

Jonas had fun cheering on Uncle Jordan at his Ultimate Frisbee game. Lately Jonas always runs around with his arms behind him, and here he was also "yelling" to cheer Jordan on with the rest of us.

It was nice to visit Provo to see Jordan! And eat at JT's favorite pizza place, Slab.

On Saturday we went to Cornbelly's at Thanksgiving Point with Aunt Paige, Jonas had so much fun! They had so many kid friendly fall activities, we definitely want to go back next year when Jonas is older!

He loved the big legos!

Our last stop on the way back to Idaho was to visit Logan, since we didn't have much time we just stopped to see the Udalls. We hadn't seen them since Jonas was three weeks old! It was fun to catch up, and we are excited to meet their little girl in a few months! (I swear everyone we know is pregnant!)

Heading back home we stopped at this monument, for Jefferson Hunt, whom JT was named after,  Hunt was a general in the Mormon Battalion.

It was a fun, quick trip! We look forward to visiting again soon, hopefully we can see more people next time too!

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Inspired Messages

This weekend was our Semi-annual General Conference for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Every year I like to share some of my favorite talks here on my blog, because they inspire me to do and be better. This year it has been hard to pick a few of my favorites because they all touched and inspired me so much. So much strength was given to my spirit, and for that I am grateful, I realize I needed it. 

This Conference was really special because we got three new Apostles called after the passing of President Packer, Elder Perry, and Elder Scott in the last six months. The three that were called are Elder Rasband, Elder Stevenson, and Elder Renlund, all great men and you can read more about it from the church here. It was pretty neat because the third one was the 100th Apostle to be called since the church was organized to the restored Gospel.

Watching Conference in our house means toys everywhere and letting Jonas enjoy some extra snacks so we can listen. Here he kept crawling (he does that when he's being silly) up to the subwoofer because he could see himself in the reflection, he would repeatedly say "hi" to himself then kiss his reflection.

The Women's Conference was a week prior to the rest of conference beginning, and it was a great start. For me it held messages of Divine Nature, Motherhood, Bettering Ourselves, Trusting God, Strengthening Our Homes, Eternal Blessings, Finding Joy, and the Family. It gave me such a great reminder that what is most important is family, through His Plan of Happiness.

Elder Holland gave such a beautiful talk on the love of Christ and the love of a mother, I literally teared up a couple times. The best line he gave was at the end, as a young mother I appreciated when he said "To all mothers in every circumstance, including those who struggle--and all will-- I say, 'Be peaceful. Believe in God and yourself. You are doing better than you think you are." I love my husband so much, and our love is always growing, but since I had Jonas I have felt such a great and different love for him. The love I have for Jonas is so strong, I just can't explain it. Sometimes it's so overpowering that I grab him and we hug. Loving Jonas has helped me gain more appreciation for my Heavenly Father and the love He has for me.

I loved, loved Elder Standfill's talk, because he emphasized our choice. We must choose the light of the Savior, it will strengthen us and help us out of the dark. A few months ago I decided I wanted to be a better me. I wanted to try to be more patient, a better homemaker, a better neighbor, and better with my faith. I have become better because I choose to do better, and I have leaned more on the Lord for help. I still have so much to work on, but I am so grateful for the guidance he has given me, because now I feel I am a better mom for choosing to ask the Lord for help.

Such a great talk! President Uchtdorf is just always on top of it. He challenged us to simplify our approach to the Gospel. Such wise and simple words! Lately I have felt discouraged by the world, and seeing so many friends and family struggle and leave the church. Although this has not affected my own testimony, it does feel disheartening. President Uchtdorf reminded us we need to focus on the simplicity of the Gospel, and not all the man-made programs and burdens. Although it was not his intent for me to feel less burdened by what I see on social media, I did. All we must do is turn to Christ.

 I was excited when I saw Elder Clark was speaking, he was the President of BYU-Idaho during my time there and I always found his devotionals inspiring. He was yet another reminder that simple obedience invites the spirit, maybe it's just me but I heard this a few times. Doing our best to obey the Lord will always bring great blessings.

 I absolutely loved when President Eyring said this quote. Personal revelation is so important, it is how we gain our personal testimony of the Word of God. Revelation given to us from the General Authorities is also important, that is why we have them. Sometimes I think this is forgotten. People take too far what they think is revelation and try to convince others, like the woman who claimed to have a dream and told everyone we would be living in tents in Utah by the end of September because the world was ending or something, but surprise it didn't happen because she doesn't hold that authority. (end of rant)

I loved the focus on women throughout conference. So many of our leaders praised the women in their life, reminding us that we matter. I have always felt important and empowered in the gospel, and I give a great credit of that to my parents and my husband, who considers me an equal partner in all things. I also loved when President Nelson reminded us that nothing is more important then our own conversion, this is why I am striving to do better with scripture study, prayer, and Sabbath day observance. 

Lastly, President Monson. I love our prophet so much, he always shares the best stories. This quote has given me strength. As I mentioned before, lately I have felt that among those I know, many are struggling in their faith. But I love the Savior and I have a testimony of His gospel. Living in today's world requires so much faith and courage, and it will be possible if I do my best to follow the promptings given to me and follow the words spoken at General Conference this weekend.

I am so thankful for the gospel in my life. I feel that it helps me become a better person. Through the Savior I am a more loving and compassionate mother and friend. I am thankful for our leaders who took the time to prepare and teach us, giving me a renewal of faith to try a little harder to be a little better.

You can find and watch the talks given at General Conference at