Monday, December 13, 2010

warm feet

Did you know that Koreans heat their houses by heating the floor?

Do you know how delightful it is to have your toes touch a warm heated floor when you get out of bed in the morning?

I really miss my carpet, but I am trying to be positive.

And really, are these not the cutest little feet you have ever seen?

Thursday, December 9, 2010


When I saw the cover of this issue, I was very upset (and I turned it over as I do all magazine covers that upset me). Maybe, I should read the article first, but I am pretty sure the answer won't be what it should be, which is......EVERYONE NEEDS MARRIAGE!

Yes, marriage is hard. I know, I am married. But God made marriage for a reason. I wasn't married long before I realized that all I needed to do in this life to become more like Jesus Christ is to be a wife and a mother. Nothing will humble,challenge, and push you harder to improve yourself and draw closer to God then these two roles. And that is truer than any statement I am sure was written in that article.

At church last Sunday, the branch president said that being married is like having a mirror that looks back at you and shows you as you really are. With all of your weaknesses and flaws (he said it in a funny nice way). It is a humbling experience. Would you agree? That's what makes marriage at times uncomfortable (more like painful). If we are by ourselves, we can do whatever we want without judgement. Isn't it great! If we ever want to know something that we need to work on we don't even need to go to Heavenly Father in prayer, we can just go to our spouse. ha ha. When you start to see it in that way, that it is a built in humility safety net, it doesn't seem so bad to have a critical spouse. Not that i do, I mean i meant that in the most positive of ways. ha ha.

excuse me i need to interrupt this post to tell you that rebecca mary just came in at almost 10pm to show me that she had just made an angel out of noodles. Great. You are getting 1 F, a D, etc. you missed the bus this morning because you didn't have a paper typed this morning and you are up making noodle angels? AHHHH. (in rebecca's defense she has since brought up those grades from her progress report, but still, how do you ever get an F in band?

See what I mean. Do you know how patient I am now after 17 years of this child rearing, wife thing.

OK, so the point i want to make is this.......The more we are like our Heavenly Father, the happier we will be. Not the easier our life will be. But it will definitely be more rewarding in every way. I am thankful for marriage. It has pushed me to learn and grow more than i thought possible. I am thankful for a husband who most definitely knows my weaknesses but loves me despite them and chooses to stay faithful and committed to our relationship because it is the most valuable thing that we have. The most enduring thing that we have.

Marriage is a sacred institution given to us by God.
Don't underestimate it's worth.

That's what the cover of TIME should read.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

let's start at the very beginning (maria singing)

OK, so here are some of the first pictures that I took here back in august, but the computer wasn't up and running yet. These are pictures that I took from the car as I drove to the base and home.
#1 -here we are driving onto the base. Pretty much everything is off of this main street here.
#2-First stop, dropping jacob off at the high school for his first football practice. He was so nervous and had a headache and sick stomach from the worry. He made me stop the car way back. He has never asked me to do something like that before. Of course we were a tad late, which made him all the more nervous. I don't recall the details, but it wasn't my fault. smile.
This is him saying mom, get away. I couldn't help it, he looked so cute.

Nervously, asking the coach where to go and what to do. They didn't know what to do with him. What do you say when you have never really played before? I knew all would be well after he had one practice. He worked so hard that the coach pointed him out the first day as some one who works hard and isn't afraid to get hit. Yesterday was an awards assembly at school, and jacob was given the award of "most improved player", and "most valuable player." You don't see that every day. I just couldn't be prouder of this kid.

This is where I thought Rachel's second home would be. Enter high school. She doesn't even have TIME TO READ! Could it be true???? Seminary, harder classes, and cheerleading = no extra time. Jacob is the same. On the weekends they crash, sleep, do homework, and hang with the fam. It is a good way for a high schooler to live. Keeps them out of trouble.
The hospital where Dave works.
Across the street from the library is this!!! Really, how could I miss America too much with this on base. SWEET! Next to chilis is the movie theatre and across from that the BX (Base Exchange, and food court, bank, beauty shop, post office, bowling alley, etc. etc.
Driving back out we pass the high school again. Right next to it is the middle school. Across the street is the commissary (grocery store), the elementary school, and indoor pool. Oh, also the youth center is right after the high school. Everything is so close and walkable. It is really nice.
Driving off the base out the main gate. To the left of this is the thrift store which sadly has been closed because it needs a new manager (it is all volunteer). On the right of this is the gas station, a pizza place, atm etc.
coming out and heading right.
There are little alley ways of shopping everywhere.Turning left at the "triangle of death" as it is affectionately named. This main road out leads to our house.

Over the bridge we go. The train tracks are below. You can of course take the train everywhere. This is Asia you know.
Every day when we would pass this store the girls would oohh and awwhhh, and say that this is the dress that they want when they get married.
cAlmost to our neighborhood. On the right, they paint the wall there. Now it is a field of flowers. McDonalds is a big landmark. Turn left here and you are on your way to the expressway to seoul etc. Everything is off of this main road (the 1). Once we get across this street we are in our neighborhood.
the local favorite ice-cream parlor. It has swings hanging from the ceiling inside.

Paris baguette on the right and the park and dunkin donuts on the left. Nice.

Ill bike down here with Ammon, and stop for a little treat. Wait until you see my sweet ride. smile.
They are always selling things on this corner of the park. All kinds of food, fundraiser stands from the school across the street, even clothes.
We turn left off the main road into construction land. They are building these huge apt. buildings off the main road. We finally have a paved road now.
The entrance to our neighborhood.
Up the steep hill.
All of corners are so sharp we need these mirrors.
Our street. We are the last house on the left up there.My delicious dinner I made that night thanks to Martha and everyday food.
These beans were to die for. You really can't go wrong when bacon is one of the ingredients.

I really focused on having really good food, and all the time when we first moved here. There is nothing like the comfort of a good meal when you are so nervous about life. The kids were nervous, anxious, but also excited. This made all the difference.

Have you missed the quotes from Marge? Me too. So here you go.
"I like the smell of dinner baking in the oven. Maybe it's the closest I will ever come to experiencing the fulfillment of the scripture: "If ye are prepared ye shall not fear"
(D&C 38:30)

"Food is so pleasurable and powerful that it plays an essential role in creating a home that works. for your home to feel solid, meaningful, dignified, and warm, you must have the means and skills to produce good, nutritious food, to dream up pleasant menus, and to set the table and serve the food in an attractive manner that is familiar and comfortable to guests."
Cheryl Mendelson

Saturday, November 20, 2010

our scary halloween.

The scariest thing around is rebecca's horribly messy room. She isn't that concerned.
this may be even scarier. I found this picture on my computer. Not sure when this was taken.
Every year i say i am going to make halloween cookies, finally we did. We still haven't done the caramel apples or the chocolate suckers. Next year right? (these were decorated by lizzie)
this cookie that Leah decorated was my favorite.

he's still my little boy.
Remember that cute baby pirate? Here are his skallywag of a mom and dad. DAve coveted Ammon's outfit real bad. Ammon had a captain uniform and dave looks like the deck hand. ha ha. (you know how he really truly wants to be a pirate, poor tortured soul.)
by the way, this is at the branch trunk or treat/chili cook off/carnival.
love the poses. love these girls.
They had a haunted hospital and it was pretty good I must say. I wish I would have taken pictures all through out. Above we are waiting to go in and below as we walked out. Can you tell me what movie is playing on the tv in the background?
I love Justin's costume here. Justin and his two teenage sisters just moved to germany. Now my two girls are the only young women in the branch.

Lizzie being Lizzie.
Bless her heart, Leah really wanted to be a "pretty witch," she told me. With our rushing out the door and changing in the car in between soccer practice, and a football game, and leah being...well Leah, it is more like the misfit witch. She is so funny.

Maybe I can move onto november now. Nah, I still have more to catch up on.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

catching up

While football is now over, and jacob just found out yesterday that he made the varsity basketball team (woo-hoo!), I still wanted to update the fam (grandpa's request) on the kids activities.

The kids really are so involved and thriving. I am so proud of them. I can't believe how much they all have grown in every sense of the word this year. My little garden has really blossomed. The Korean climate must be just what they needed, and with a little fertilization, weed pulling, and lots of sun, I think us two imperfect gardeners aren't doing too bad. Maybe we have green thumbs after all.

These pics are from one of the last football practices. Their homecoming game, and last game of the season was Oct. 29th.
I took these as I was sitting in the car waiting for them. Hence the railing. smile.
Everyone stopping for the 5:30pm playing of the national anthem. Love it.

there's jacob in the center, talkin it up, what he does best. I wonder where he got that?
Ammon worked the crowd too. All of the cheerleaders love him, he is such a flirt.

This is the only picture that I took of the game because I was video taping the whole time. I would put on a clip of the game if I weren't so lame with technology. WHY???Well, that and I am screaming so much it is embarrassing on the best clips.
You see, Jacob had quite the game. By the end of the season so many of their starters weren't able to play because of grades, as each starter didn't come they tried jacob in the position. Lo, and behold, he was great at everything they put him in. I drove one day to practice and they have him in a punting contest. He kicked farther than anyone and I hear one of the players say, "Ives can do everything!" I remind Jacob often where he gets his skills. smile.
Anyway, this last game he played so many different positions and only came out for one play of the game. He was pretty sore the next day, but wow what a game! They played him for the first time as a receiver and he made two touchdowns. Their team had never previously made more than one touchdown in a game. He had a fumble recovery, an interception, kicked almost every ball, and made a lot of the tackles. It started to be funny, even the announcer after a complete pass he made said, "Pass completed by, you guessed it Jacob Ives." We were dying laughing. You should have seen Dave's face. I have never seen him look so proud, and you have never heard me cheer so loud! ha ha. It was fun.
Now, don't be thinking that Jacob is going to play in college or anything. He is just in a small school. They never won a game, and Jacob really was upset by it because they work so hard every day practicing. I get it, but explained to him that it really is about playing and having fun (although he insists having fun=winning). Where else would he be able to play as much and have the opportunity to play so many different positions. There is no way that he could have just walked on the team where we were living in Arizona, with no prior experience and him a junior, and been given the time of day by any coach. What a cool thing that he can be taught and given a chance without all the politics as well, and totally devoting yourself to just one sport (which they often expect). He is so sad though because both volleyball and tennis are at the same time as football. The boys volleyball actually won for all of Korea. Tempting for next year but I think the football coach wouldn't be too happy.
Oh yes, and Rachel did great cheering too. Can you pick her out? ha ha. She is the only blonde. They got a lot of laughs in their half time dance because they copied some of the moves from a popular korean music video. Again, if I can figure the whole video thing out, I may just post it. But don't get your hopes up.
So what is jacob's pre- game routine for success. Lots of food, a long shower, and lovins from his favorite roommate and fan.

Saturday night the 30th was the homecoming dance, and jacob's first date. This is his beautiful date Kenzie, who is currently the only mormon girl that is dating age in his high school. Jacob is currently the only boy of dating age (16+). ha ha. Not that he can't date girls that aren't mormon, but it makes things more comfortable when you know that they have your same standards. Being really cute just sweetens the deal. smile.

so sweet. (from a mom's point of view)

they all went out to eat at an Italian restaurant off base, to the dance, and then to an all night 50's type diner after for breakfast. They had fun.

So there you have it. More to come.