Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Merry Christmas 2011

We haven't sent Christmas cards in many years.  We've loved many of your cards and posts and we'd like to respond in kind.  It's a little strange as many of you already know many of our goings on via facebook, but maybe you'll still hear something new.
We're in the middle of our fifth year here in Okinawa and we still love this beautiful, small town place.  We still don't know where we're going next year.  The latest possibilities are DC, Camp Pendleton or another year here.  They all sound good to us.
Elijah just turned 8 and was baptized.  It was a wonderful experience with many dear friends, though we missed our extended family across the ocean.

Summer 13 is in middle school.  She's a great student and especially excels at art.  Unfortunately her artwork rarely fits on the scanner. ;)  She can always be found with a baby in her arms and her babysitting skills are always in high demand.  She and Brenda took a mother daughter trip to Tokyo in March for a swim meet that was cancelled due to the devastating earthquake and tsunami.  We were not alarmed when we felt the earthquake but were heartbroken  later to discover how bad it really was.  Thankfully Summer was still able to do baptisms for her first time, in the Tokyo Temple.  The Marines flew us home to Okinawa on C130s.

With cousin Evelyn

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Birthday Season!

We have four birthdays in our family between August 6th and September 21st. Summer celebrated her 10th with a party with all our neighborhood friends. We have large families in our neighborhood. The Murphys on our left are a Baptist family with 5 kids (including twin daughters). The Aherns on our right are a Catholic family with twin boys (12) and twin girls (9). Continuing down the street are the Sanchez with 4 kids, Bussels 5 and Boards 5 (they go to church with us and have only 1 daughter too). We all share a connected back yard area and the kids have so much fun. They jump on the trampoline (way too many at a time), especially in the pouring rain. They they slide down a big hill on pieces of cardboard and boogie boards. And they sometimes stay up too late playing "Murder in the Dark," "Manhunt," or "Whose line is it?."

We invited the older kids to a combined party for Zak (13th) and Brandon(15th). We played party games and tried some "Dance, Dance Revolution!"

Brenda had very relaxing 43rd Birthday lazing around after church with her beautiful family. You'll notice that Elijah is in charge of the cake toys. We all choose toys to put on top of our cakes, regardless of our age or "coolidity." Then of course the toys are for Elijah once we cut the cake. He loves that arrangement!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Maeda Point May 2008

Last May my family went to Maeda Point while I stayed home to work on our Income Taxes!  I'm so proud of Joshua and David that they took such beautiful pictures.  Can you tell whose silhouette is whose?

Friday, September 19, 2008


This is our new favorite "Engrish" t-shirt.  Mom gets off-base with E.T. a lot, but the rest of us are just kind of left to fend for ourselves culturally.
Does anyone want to play happy like

 Gotta love those comfortable, lucky days when the sun twinkles!

And for those of you who haven't seen one before, they even labeled the clover for you.

That science has definitely raised my spirits!

What was that gentle breeze?

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Shocking Elopement!

We got to see the courthouse near Monroe, Utah where Grandma and Grandpa Julander eloped!  Grandpa was 18 and Grandma was 16!  They are David's mother's parents.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008


Here's Zak shooting with Grandpa Jones!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Julie Beck Mothers Who Know

Wow!  I just reread "Mothers Who Know," the talk given by Julie Beck in October 2007 General Conference.  I find that talk so inspirational!  I love to be reminded that all the mundane things I do around the house are sacred acts of service that I do for and with my husband and children.  These acts of service are an expression of my love for them. I also appreciate Sister Beck's reminder to do less, to be selective about how I spend my time and energy.  Instead of trying to do it all, I'll try to choose the few, most important and beneficial activities for me and my family.  The righteous power and influence I may exercise in the world or community are good, but the righteous power and influence I exercise in my home are BETTER.  Nothing is more important than learning and living the gospel of Jesus Christ in my home and sharing that experience with my husband and children.

Saturday, February 16, 2008


Zak broke his arm on January 5th. Then on the 24th Elijah sprained his left arm too. They were very excited to be twins! Zak just got his cast cut off on February 11th.
"What then do we live for, but to make sport for our neighbors, and laugh at them in our turn. "

— Mr. Bennett, Pride and Prejudice