Wednesday, August 31, 2011

What Is Important

I have always loved the quote by President Harold B. Lee: "The most important work you will ever do will be within the walls of your own homes."

Yet I know that "work" does not end when those children are no longer within the walls of the home because they have grown up and left home. My love, concern, and hopes for them continue FOREVER. I'm so grateful for the opportunity I have to stay connected through phone conversations, texting, facebook, e-mail, skype, with my children/grandchildren.

As I was reading this last month's Ensign, I was so touched by the article "God Sends Us to Earth As A Member of A Family". I loved the last paragraph: "As family members give encouragement and praise to one another, feelings of confidence and love grow. Successful families show hope and persistence in sustaining each family member in individual needs and in helping each other learn and work together in love. Their goal is to become a joyful, eternal family unit."

We have a family website and that is part of the reason it is important to me. I love to see the interaction on it--when they give encouragement to one another it makes me feel so good.

Just the other night we had a chance to iChat with Neal because we had a couple of questions regarding Allan's iPad and Neal is our go-to guy ; ) It also gave Neal's family a chance to wish Allan a happy birthday--they had called on Allan's birthday, but this way they were able to do it "face to face". As well, we got to chat with Garrett which is always a treat. He is such a cute little guy--so very smart and so fun to talk with. And, of course, we got to see how much little Lauren has grown up. I agree with Macy, she is growing up way too fast.

We are heading out to Indiana to visit a couple of Allan's daughters. It will be wonderful to spend time with them and to have a chance to see a couple of our grandchildren and even our great grandson--it seems like it has been forever since we last saw them. It will be a great trip.

And then in less than two weeks we head to Switzerland and will have a chance to spend time with our granddaughter, Amanda, and her husband, Darren. I am so excited. While we are there, Amanda will have a birthday. We'll have to plan something really fun for that day.

I am very happy because this means we have visited almost all of our children/grandchildren this past year. Unfortunately, we haven't seen Chris and Heather and that makes me VERY SAD. I think I missed them by a few hours when I flew to Austin to help when Lauren was born ; (

Just recently I was re-reading a General Conference talk by Elder M. Russell Ballard where he quoted President Joseph F. Smith: “Our [family] associations are not exclusively intended for this life, for time, as we distinguish it from eternity. We live for time and for eternity. We form associations and relations for time and all eternity. … Who are there besides the Latter-day Saints who contemplate the thought that beyond the grave we will continue in the family organization? the father, the mother, the children recognizing each other … ? this family organization being a unit in the great and perfect organization of God’s work, and all destined to continue throughout time and eternity?”

I'm so grateful to know that our family is forever. I take to heart President Monson's counsel to "express (my) love to (my) children". Some seem to have a hard time hearing those words--I don't know why. I never want to be one of those people who says, "They know I love them, I don't need to tell them" and, in fact, I will continue until I breathe my last breath telling them I love them BECAUSE I DO.

I'm grateful, so very grateful to be a wife and mother.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Happy Birthday, Allan

Saturday was my sweetheart's 68th birthday.

Besides Allan's birthday, it was also my sweet little granddaughter, Hannah's birthday. I love that she and her grandpa share a birthday. When I was a little girl I shared a birthday with my Uncle Stan and I LOVED IT. It always made me feel close to him. I'm sure Hannah thinks it's pretty neat that she shares her special day with her Grandpa. (This was when everyone came to Winnipeg to celebrate Allan's 60th

But back to my hubby. We went to Regina and got back in time to head off to a wedding reception, so this post is a little late.

Last year I did a post about some of his great qualities. You can read it here.

He is an amazing man. I wish I was better at writing so I could really help you all to see what an incredible guy he is. I still remember being so excited the day he called me up to ask me out. I really wanted to keep pinching myself. And to this day I still know how lucky I am to be his wife.

Some of my favorite photos.

What a face. Yes, at one time he did have hair.And when I think of him having a hair I remember a story from many years ago. He was the Bishop in our ward in Brampton and was conducting during our Primary Program and was talking about when he was in Primary. And one of my friend's daughters said, I can't help but think of this little bald primary kid ; )

Look at that smile. I don't care what is going on all around us, he has that smile. He can always see the positive in everything--and believe me there are days that is very helpful.

He is such a family man. He loves his family. Here he is with his dad--he and his dad were so close. I know he still misses him.

And, of course, with his mom--his "angel mother". Goodness we miss her.

And I think he is a great brother. He has two sisters who look up to him--LITERALLY ; )

OBVIOUSLY, I have to include pictures with his kids. There are way, way too many to choose from. Neal did a really fun video for Allan with some great shots. Here are pictures of him with the kids:

A favorite of mine--he and Neal when we were visiting in Boston. They are so much alike. In fact, the older Neal gets the more he looks like his dad (and it's not just because he's getting "the hairline" ; )

With his daughters, Wendy and Nancy.

With Stephen many, many years ago.

And with the youngest three. They sure love their dad.

Now a few fun shots that make me smile:

Seriously, could Stephen's shorts be any shorter????

Allan is always ready to dive right into whatever is needed

Heidi has always known she was safe in her dad's arms (or hands ; )

Will always be one of Heidi's favorite moments with her dad.

And a very special day for all of us--the day the Winnipeg Temple was announced.

And for me, one of the most special days of my life--the day we were married FOREVER.

We were at the temple this past weekend and that made it the perfect birthday. We stopped at Dairy Queen on the way home and he got a BIG CHOCOLATE MILKSHAKE, so he was HAPPY : )

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Happy Birthday, Brent

This post is a little early, but I want to make sure it gets done.

Tomorrow is Brent's 26th Birthday.

I am so blessed to be his mother. He is an amazing young man. All through his growing up years I learned so much. Most of all I learned about faith and hope.

He was such a fun little guy.Yes, there were lots of speech therapy and occupational therapy appointments, but they were definitely worth it.

It has been so fun to watch him grow up. I have some great memories of some pretty fun things. I remember visiting with one of his teachers when he was young and she told us that when he would take a spelling test he would spell the words out loud. All the kids would listen and write them down ; ) One day he slammed the door of the van on his finger and was in the office during the time that the spelling test would be held. He knew the words and sat down and wrote them all out just as he knew the teacher would read them. Yes, he got them all right ; )


His first birthday.

First day of pre-school in So. California.

This is one of my favorite pictures--when he got home from pre-school one day.

He has always been helpful. This was after Hurricane Hugo--with everyone preparing for Hurricane Irene, I remember how unprepared we were.

He participated in Scouts Canada and earned his Chief Scout Award. One of the things he did was go on a canoe trip down the Blood Vein River. They used float planes to get to the River so it was a pretty exciting trip. Here he is all with his mosquito netting. I think some of the boys thought it was a little over the top, but he didn't have any bites, so I don't think they were laughing at the end of the 9-day trip ; )

He is a great young man. With Pres. and Sister B. When he was on his mission, President B. told us "he was without guile". He is so loving. He was a great missionary. He just can't be unkind. When I would ask him about a companion that I sense he was struggling with, he would write, "He is interesting". I came to know what that meant.

Birthday in the mission field.

This picture so makes me laugh.He is so supportive of Elder Rob while he's on his mission. He is always sending him ideas that worked while he was serving. (I wonder if he sent this picture ; )

Family is so very important to him.

With Heidi and "Kyle" a couple of years ago on a trip they took to Disneyland.

He really enjoys talking with Neal. They both love movies and Neal and him speak the same language ; )
I love this picture of Brent and Stephen. Brent will always have a special place in Stephen's heart.
He loves his nieces and nephews and they love him.

Elder Rob and Brent the day Elder Rob entered the MTC

His birthday a couple of years ago.

I'm so glad we ran our race together in June. It was so fun. I wish some of his speed had worked on me.

Happy Birthday, Bud. I love you. I hope you have a wonderful birthday. Wish we were there to celebrate with you. Whatever you do, I hope it's fun.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The College Drop Off

It seems like everyone is sending kids off to school. I remember sending my three youngest off to BYU. We love BYU. A trip to Utah is never complete unless we step foot on campus ; ) (Notice a very little Elder Rob off by himself ; )

I have to say we are not the only members of the Rob family who do this ; )

Ten Years Ago this week we took Heidi down to BYU for her first semester. I was very brave until we drove away, then the tears flowed. I knew it was hard on her so I didn't want to make it any harder by bawling. (I think she thought it was easy for me ; ) I remember telling her I hated that I was not going to be there for her first day of classes and so I was going to hire a photographer to follow her around and take pictures of her those first few days. (I really think she was a tad worried that I really would do that ; ) Here she is with her sister, Wendy.

I was so excited for her to have the experience at BYU. It was not always easy for her and we were so proud of her when she graduated.

And a few months after Brent returned from his mission, he headed to LDS Business College. He graduated there in April 2009

He transferred to BYU. He loves it there and I am so glad. He is excited to start next week. And Heidi's husband, Daniel, will be starting next week, too.

And then in 2009 we dropped our youngest off. He had a great experience in the dorms.

I think knowing he had Heidi and Brent in Utah made the transition a lot easier.

So this year I may not have any little ones at home heading off to school, but I have one still in college and one teaching school. As far as grandchildren--one in pre-school, two in elementary school, one a senior in high school, and 2 in college.

Sidenote: Last year when I was in Cali when baby Georgia was born, we went to a Giant's game. It was Georgia's first game. This year the family went back. They are some pretty diehard Giant's fans.