Tuesday, April 26, 2022

Dirty Boys

Today the boys jacked up the truck,
took off the wheels and took out parts and pieces
then fiddled around under the belly, getting dirty while I
 fed them pieces of Otter Pop.
The car runs excellently, and I am so grateful. 
Next: fix the left side runner on my car that has been stuck
in down mode since 2020!
I am so grateful for good smart boys who can fix ANYTHING
and don't mind getting dirty.

Friday, April 22, 2022

Packing, Preparing & Portugal

 This evening I went to Jane's room, and together, we went through her
clothes.  She made three different piles:
1. Take on the Mission  2. Store while I'm gone  3. Giveaway
We went through almost everything she owned
and put clothes in the appropriate pile.
She's already started shopping for new clothes to take on her mission,
and with those clothes, we put outfits together.

But she doesn't plan on taking everything, so we folded
other clothes up nicely, and I packed them in two huge containers
for safe storage, just like Claire and I did when she was preparing to leave.

We had some good laughs together and then
we got really hungry and went downstairs and made
burritos, which is a Nielson favorite on the weekend.

Thursday, April 21, 2022

As Fast as a Cheetah

 After school today, I spread a blanket on my front lawn
and watched Lottie rollerskate around.
The weather is divine!
Sometimes she asks me to watch her, and sometimes she asks
me not to watch her and just read my magazines so she can talk to herself.
I did the SAME THING when I was her age, and she reminds me
of myself so much!  The difference was that I had a younger sister, Lucy,
to hang out with all the time.
We'd dress up and pretend to be ice skaters in the Olympics.
We mostly skated around the kitchen, banging up the dining room
chairs and slamming into the refrigerator.
She doesn't know it yet, but while she was skating around,
I ordered myself some skates, too.
Cheetah print with black wheels.
They come in a few days.

Wednesday, April 20, 2022


 Today Ollie's black tux suit arrived. He's going to look
 so handsome at Prom next month.  
Tomorrow we will go to my favorite seamstress
and have her take it in so it will fit like James Bond's tux.
He and his cute friend, Jake, reserved a place for dinner
and an activity to do together for the day date.
Apparently, they don't do day dates here because that idea was shot down
hard and fast by the girls.

I mean, not to brag or anything, but for my prom day date,
we FLEW to St. George, Utah, to go hiking, then FLEW home, 
where a limo picked us up for dinner at Sundance.
It was over the top amazing, and I realize that.
But I have to admit, dating these days is kinda bleak.

I also realize that the Nies are romantics like their parents.
But bring back the 90's!!

I'd share my Prom photos of this extravagant date but
they are packed away, plus my dress was super ugly and immodest
which really embarrasses me.

Tuesday, April 19, 2022

Easter 2022/ Because He Rose

Today we celebrated Easter and the beauty and significance 
of this restorative and miraculous day.
After church, a few guests enjoyed an Easter meal together
with my family.
The best part of the evening was going around the room and
each taking a turn to finish this sentence:
"Because He rose..."
Everyone mentioned something different and unique to them and 
their personal relationships with Christ.
But Lottie said, "because He rose, I will be able to see Topher again."
Then I got choked up and teary.
Then I cried through everyone's responses.
How lucky I feel to have a Savior who loves us and offers us grace,
and mercy, and who makes it possible to see our loved ones who've gone on.
When it was my turn, I read a little from one of the
 most beautiful talks given by
 Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin called "Sunday Will Come.":
"Each of us will have our own Fridays—those days when the
 universe itself seems shattered and the shards of our 
world lie littered about us in pieces. 
We all will experience those broken times when it seems
 we can never be put together again. 
We will all have our Fridays.
But I testify to you in the name of the One who conquered death—Sunday will come.
 In the darkness of our sorrow, Sunday will come.
No matter our desperation, no matter our grief, Sunday will come. 
In this life or the next, Sunday will come.
I testify to you that the Resurrection is not a fable. 
We have the personal testimonies of those who saw Him.
 Thousands in the Old and New Worlds witnessed the risen Savior. 
They felt the wounds in His hands, feet, and side. 
They shed tears of unrestrained joy as they embraced Him."

Sunday, April 17, 2022

Easter 2022/Good Things to Come

This photo of my family was taken 14 years ago in front of our Arizona home
 just five months before the accident. It's mindblowing!!
I look at myself, and it feels like a whole lifetime ago...
almost like it never really happened.
I get overwhelmed when I think about the mountains my family 
have climbed together since this photo was taken.
And I get overwhelmed when I think about the grace and goodness that
 God has shown us along the journey.
I can tell you with an absolute surety that mountains are much easier to climb with God.
I look at myself here, and I want to yell out Elder Jeffrey R. Holland's words:
"Don't you quit. You keep walking. You keep trying. 
There is help and happiness ahead. 
Some blessings come soon, some come late, and some don’t come until heaven; 
but for those who embrace the gospel of Jesus Christ, they come.
 It will be all right in the end. Trust God and believe in good things to come."

Friday, April 15, 2022

Friday's with Jane

Each Friday, Jane and I take a Barre3 class
then after mozy on over to Whole Foods, where we pick out a delicious
weird drink with a baked good of some sort.
Or we pick up a salad and park in the parking lot to eat it
while we listen to songs about weekends.
It's such a fun tradition we have together, and it is one of the 
things I look forward to all week.

I'm going to miss this so much when she goes.

Wednesday, April 13, 2022

Spring Break 2022

(These are the only photos I have of our outing).

 Today kicks off our glorious much-awaited spring break!!!
We went to a movie to celebrate after school, followed by
shakes and waffle fries at Chick-fil-A.
We're excited to stay up late, sleep in, clean out the garage,
work on Jane's mission prep, and for the boys;
fix the truck's suspension, and discover why my car squeaks.
It's going to be fantastic!
Actually, the Nies isn't too happy about our spring break plans
especially since their friends are going to France.
Obviously, I can't compete with that. 
But hey, I bought a Ninja Creamy!!
Licorice ice cream, here I come!

Tuesday, April 12, 2022

Jane's Gift

Today Christian and I took Jane to the temple to receive her
We have taught Jane and all our children that receiving their temple
endowment can be one of the most sacred events of their lives.
Christian and I have tried to teach and prepare them for this special day 
because we know it will be more meaningful and powerful.
And my Jane has been ready for this day for a long time.
She's studied, prepared, prayed, and taken temple classes to learn
more about Jesus Christ and this beautiful ordinance in His holy house.
While in the temple, we met another family from Virginia
who had come to the North Carolina temple with their daughter, 
who was also receiving her endowment as she 
prepares for her upcoming marriage later in the summer.
where they usually go is under construction, so they go to Raleigh.
It was meant to be because, as it turns out, we're best friends
and instantly hit it off.  We even went to lunch, 
 exchanged phone numbers, and took photos together.
I'm feeling grateful for the temple, families, Jesus Christ, 
new friends, and fantastic children!

*Jane's first temple experience in Provo was when she turned
twelve in 2015:

We Will Not Forget...

Today I got a text from my sister, Lucy, with a photo and message:
"Sally just said, "I'm Aunt Stephanie."

I sent her back a photo of my hand:
I don't see my nieces and nephews very often and think
it's so funny that they remember my missing pinkie!

Bookmark and Share