Friday, May 20, 2011

Grandma Betty

Dear Grandma,
I wished I could have said goodbye.  I knew when I last saw you that it would maybe be the last time, but I wasn't hoping it would be.  I hope you knew how much I loved you.  You were a wonderful grandma and I will remember all of the time we spent together.  I loved when you took me to Tanner Park and let me play for hours.  I loved walking down that trail with you and exploring with you.  I think part of my love for nature came from you.  I loved playing games with you like Candy Land and Memory.  I loved opening presents Christmas morning and then getting ready to go to your house for lunch to eat ham, potato salad, chips, fruit, and rolls.  I loved your Thanksgiving jello that you made every year.  Your house was always spotless and clean and even though it smelled like smoke it was always in perfect order.  I always thought about writing you a letter when I was little to tell you to stop smoking.  The smell will always remind me of you though, and that's not so bad.  I loved when you took me to ZCMI every year on my birthday to shop for a new outfit.  You thought it was funny when I would pick out blues and greens instead of pinks and purples, but you let me choose what I wanted.  You would take me to that nice restaurant up on the top floor afterwards and I would order a hot dog and chocolate milk, you thought that was pretty funny too.  Even in your old age you pressed on and worked hard, you were so stubborn.  I was grateful we got to live next to you for a few years.  I loved that you called Kinnie "Rosebud" from the moment you first held her.  She loved you too.  She loved going over to visit with you and getting the cookie or pudding you always had for her at the end of the visit.  If you weren't edging the lawn you were inside cleaning under and behind the fridge or finding some sort of cleaning to do.  I am sorry you had to deal with poor health in the end and had to be so unhappy.  I am glad you are relieved of your pain.  I love you Grandma!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

One Whole Year!

Some things about this past year:
  • I have become really good at ironing. Saturday is the only day Landon doesn't need a shirt ironed, so you can see why I have improved greatly in this area.
  • I thought the more we saw family the easier it would get to be away from them.  It makes it harder.
  • I have really tried hard to come out of my comfort zone.  And for one as shy as me, it hasn't been easy.  I am still working on this one...I think I will always be working on this one.
  • The gospel is true wherever you go.  Some things are different out here but the important part of the church, what we believe, is all the same.
  • We go to church in Council Bluffs, Iowa and go to the Winter Quarters temple.  There is a lot of church history out here!
  • I am constantly getting used to the wildlife out here.  Turkeys, snakes, skunks, raccoons, deer, beautifully colored birds, squirrels everywhere, fireflies, rabbits.  I know that is kind of weird, but I really didn't think Omaha would have wildlife.  I grew up next to the mountains so I expected it there but I have seen way more out here and just roaming around the neighborhood.
  • I wouldn't trade where we live in Omaha for anything.  We feel so blessed to be where we are.  It has made living away from family and friends a little easier and we are getting to know a lot of people.  I am grateful for the friends we have made out here!
  • I can't believe that we have another year to go by and then Landon will be a senior and we will be looking for a job and place to live while he finishes up that last year.  This past year seemed to go slowly but now that it has passed it was rather quick (if that makes sense).  
  • Kinnie and Andrew have both grown up so much.  When we moved out here Andrew was only 10 months old and still in a rear facing car seat!  Kinnie has made friends, and done preschool, a dance recital and even given her first talk in Primary.  Andrew runs everywhere, keeps up with Kinnie, and has discovered the wonderful world of trucks, planes, buses, cars, motorcylces, cranes, and tractors.
  • I no longer have to Map quest everything.
  • Have I mentioned we love the zoo?  We do.
  • I always look forward to the next time we get to see family!  I can't wait until mid-July!

 Kinnie and her friend Jack

Friday, May 13, 2011

Grandpa and Grandma come to visit!

She was so excited on the way to the airport!

The glorious reunion.  Kinnie ran fast and hard when she saw Grandma and Grandpa Bell off in the distance.  It makes me so happy when I replay it in my mind.

Tight hug for Grandpa.

We did a lot of this...

We had a lot of fun on a busy day at the zoo.  The weather was perfect.

We went to the school and Landon showed us around.  This was neat because now his parents can actually picture where Landon spends his days.

Kinnie's all time favorite thing to do with Grandpa.  She could do it all day long and go as high as they could get her.  Andrew doesn't like to go quite as high.

The Pedestrian Bridge over the Missouri river.

It was so nice to have them here.  We had a lot of fun showing them some of the things we do here in Omaha and just being with them.  Kinnie was on cloud 9 having them nearly all to herself.  She went to bed late and woke up early and enjoyed every single second she had with them.  Andrew wouldn't let anyone besides Grandma get him in and out of the car.  He showed them just how stubborn and independent he is.  We have all been a little sad since they have left...I think we are going through withdrawals.  I thought it would get easier over time to be away from family, but the more we see our families the more we yearn to be with them.  I guess I can only speak for myself but we miss our time with them.  It is all so worth it in the end and we love the friends and memories we are making out here.  Thank you Justin and Liane for making the trip out here and spending time with us!

Half Way There

Last weekend Landon received his white coat at the White Coat Ceremony.  It is a pretty big deal.  He will now be working in the dental clinic at the school and working on his own patients.  How much closer to being a dentist could he get?  Two more years actually...but he is half way there!  He still has classes but now he gets to do stuff on real people.  I tend to not make a big deal out of things but I got a little emotional as the white coat was put on him.  He has worked hard to get to this point and it was a neat ceremony that symbolized this transition into this next phase.  What is life going to be like when he isn't a student anymore?  I almost can't imagine it but it really is getting closer.  Not that life will all of a sudden be so much easier, because it won't, but it will be different and sometimes change is good.  It was also really neat that his parents could fly out for the weekend and be there for the event.  They deserve their very own post!