Can you see the resemblance?

These are my sisters.  I love each of them with all of my heart.  I am so blessed to have them in my family.  I am never standing alone because I know they are always standing right beside me.  Somehow, they each understand me.  I don't know how it works...  They each know me by heart.  They are my best friends.  Each one of them is so strong and beautiful in her own way.  Each has a testimony that strengthens mine.  Each is so creative and works very hard to serve those around them.  And I swear each of them becomes more beautiful each time I see them.  I am truly priviledged to know them. 

This post was spurred on by the fact that I was able to spend the day with most of my family today.  We had lunch together and enjoyed catching up with one another.  We even braved Ikea on a Saturday with 7 kids together!  (If you can do that, you can do anything!).  My parents split off after Ikea to catch up with old friends, so the rest of us went to dinner and then went swimming together.  There was watersliding, picture taking, and laughing.  It was so much fun!  I really enjoyed seeing Kathy and her family.  She sure is a great mother.  I love her kids so much it hurts.  :)  Seriously, I get chest pain when I think of them.  She is a great example of faith and strength to me. 

Whitney and Cody were able to make it to swimming... late.  Okay, okay, it wasn't their fault but I still had to put it in there.  It was really fun to goof around with them as well.  Whitney is such a great example of service as well.  She is always so willing to help out and is really great with all the kids.  She is so fun and energetic and we loved having her and Cody there with us, even though it took huge effort to actually get there. 

Cheryl was not there because her family is still in Utah until December.  My Dad wanted to call her at lunch and tease her that we were all together... well, not really because it makes her cry I think.  But, I know he was thinking about how much he wished she was there.  I wished she was there as well.  There always is such an absence felt when Cheryl and her family are not there...  Cheryl still touches my life even though she is so far away.  If I read a really great blog, I think of her and how she could do whatever the craft is.  She can pretty much do anything, and look good doing it too.  She would say no, but that is just her modesty talking, which makes her all the more beautiful. 
Each of these women make me stretch.  They see potential when even I don't. 
I felt like I needed to write this post because I love my sisters and wanted them to know, I wanted my parents to know that because of their teachings I have cultivated great friendships with my sisters, and I want Lily and Lexi to be able to read this one day and appreciate that they have a sister as well.

Every now and then I have a desire to return to those earlier days when we were 6, 7, 8 years old, just for a day...  when it was just us.  We would play house like the old days and Cheryl would start out with 7 dolls that were her kids and then she would get tired of dressing them and carrying them and she would slowly start "losing" kids.  I also remember us locking ourselves into a bathroom at a store and putting green gum on our eyebrows and not wanting to show our mom.  We had "patchy" eyebrows after that because apparently green gum is really hard to get out of eyebrows and I question how much effort my mom put into being gentle while taking it out. :)

Or when Cheryl or I would sit on Kathy and the other would tickle her until her face turned purple.  I remember thinking Kathy was "so cool" when she would paint her nails with sparkly blue nail polish and listen to Ace of Base.  I remember when she first got her driver's license and it was so fun going to get milk because Kathy was driving.   

 I remember hiding in the closet when Whitney was in bed one night and flashing a flash light onto the window by her bed.  I would watch her look out the window curiously trying to figure out what the flash was.  Finally, she got scared and started down the ladder from the top bunk.  That's when I realized I was going to get into trouble for not being in bed, so I jumped out of the closet to stop her from getting our parents, and ended up making her scream at the top of her lungs.   Needless to say, I did get into trouble, but Whitney appologized later for screaming and getting me in trouble. 
I am thankful the FHE, family dinners, family prayers, etc. that made our family close and helped me to see my sisters for the wonderful people they are.  I know there is a physical resemblance between us.  I can only hope there is an internal resemblance as well.
(Don't judge the physical resemblance by this picture.  Whit was ready for grad and I hadn't even showered yet).


Song of the Week-ish

Alright, so I am semi-copying Aunt Tami's Photo of the Week-ish, except mine is a song.  :)
And this is it....

Amos Lee - Colors

I don't know what has come over me lately...  I am just not that into the "fella" music, as Taylor would say.  Taylor thinks "fella" music is all the music that came out in the years Sloan grew up... all the way up to now.  ....As in, music that has come out within the last 10 years or so.  :)  In my mind, it is anything that is a whole heck of a lot better then what Taylor listens to, since "fella" music is my music too.  (But we don't talk about that much).  :)    Anyways, I have gotten side tracked.  (As usual).  As I was saying, my taste in music has been slowly changing, until I don't really recognize it anymore.  I don't know what happened.  Jazz is now one of my favorite sounds.  I will hear a song and fall in love with it and find out it is Jazz.  Not the super Jazz, although I can appreciate what talent it takes to make music like that.  No, easy jazz... if that is a thing.  I don't really know.  It is all new to me.  I don't even know that many jazz singers, but I like the sound when I hear it.....
Jazz isn't my only favorite kind of music.  I think I am pretty well rounded when it comes to music.  It just surprised me when I looked at my playlist and I had just under 20 jazz songs.  (That may not seem like a lot, but I thought I hated that kind of music, so it is surprising).  I even got Lily to like Billy Holiday...  and that is a really old sound.  But she actually requests it. 
Every now and then I find a song that matches what I imagine my soul would sound like if it came out in music....  and this song by Amos Lee seems to be it right now.  Sort of melancholy, but hopeful.  :)
I wonder what Sloan's favorite song is right now.  :)


Serge Me Silly!!

Ok.  So I have been looking on Kijiji for months...  I've checked local stores, online, and even checked to see how much a serger would cost after shipping it from the States... And it has always amounted to too much, since I am only a beginner at sewing and I didn't want to buy anything I would regret later.  Well, thanks to Evelyn from Southwest Calgary, I finally found me the perfect serger at a perfect price!  No longer will I have unfinished edges!!  Yay.  Wanna see it?  (I know you don't, but I am so excited about it that I am going to show you anyways!)
In addition to the instruction manual, Evelyn had taken a class back when she bought the serger and she kept all the notes and examples.  She asked if I wanted it.  Uhhh... yes please, since I have no idea what I am doing yet...  She also gave me a bag of thread to go with it as well. 

And this is how excited I am....
I found some really great houndstooth fabric that will make some cute sunday dresses for the girls and a skirt for me.  But that project can wait until next month when I actually have a real sewing space.  My mom is even contributing a great little sewing table to help me create my masterpieces.  Woot woot!  And Evelyn?  She wished me luck with my new serger and hopes I put it to good use.  Me too... :)



Dictionary.com defines family like this:
1. a basic social unit consisting of parents and their children, considered as a group, whether dwelling together or not: the traditional family.
2. all those persons considered as descendants of a common progenitor.
3. a group of persons who form a household under one head, including parents, children, and servants.
4. Slang . a unit of the Mafia or Cosa Nostra operating in one area under a local leader.
3. Linguistics . the largest category into which languages related by common origin can be classified with certainty: Indo-European, Sino-Tibetan, and Austronesian are the most widely spoken families of languages (I HAD to throw this one in because I am studying Linguistics right now... call me a nerd if you wish).
5. not containing obscene language: a family newspaper

I thought I would write some of my own definitions.  :)
1. A family is a group of people who can laugh at one another and can be laughed at without consequences.
2. A family is any individual or group who you lean on, and who lean on you.
3. A family is usually noisy.
4. A family is filled with people who accept you for who you really are.
5. A family encourages you and expects you to succeed.
6. A family is eternal.

Home really is the best place to be.  :)  Even though my parent's new house is not quite finished (though it is painted on the inside now), it is still considered "home" because it's where they are.  :) 
I am kind of sad that Mom and Dad Leavitt's house is sold, but only because that is where most of my memories with them have happened.  I know there will be lots more.... and hopefully a lot of them will be during the awesome Cardston renovation project.  :) 
I am not going to lie...  I have not truly enjoyed our current apartment all that much.  That does not mean that I have not appreciated it or been extremely grateful for it...  I am just excited that we can now provide Lily with a home that has room for her to grow.  But, no matter where we live, I love being with Taylor and the girls.  We have moved a lot so far in the 6 years we have been married.... but each place has taught us something and has been a good experience because we experienced it together. 
So, as my Grandpa Myers would say, "There you go".... 

Here are a couple pictures of the girls in the awesome swim caps I bought them... (they like to just wear them around).  teehee  In case you can't tell, Lexi's is a shark and Lily's is a Clown fish.

 Here is a preview of Lily's picture day outfit.  Isn't she sooo beautiful?
 Here is is a picture of something that makes me so happy!!  (I have been searching for them in Canada ever since we left the States...  and today that search ended in success!!)
 And here is the joy that huge bag of suckers brings....

 And that's all I wanted to say.  :) ... ... ... Actually there is one more thing... Just something I want to remember.  Last sunday, between sessions we made banana chocolate chip bread.  Lily helped of course and when it was time to pour the chocolate chips in, she did that part.  She decided the first bunch wasn't enough so she threw in a bit more.  Then she looked at me with her goofy grin and said "Don't mind if I do" and proceeded to pop a handful of chocolate chips into her mouth.  Yup, that's my girl.  
OH... AND... :)  I have been watching episodes of one of my favorite shows lately...
Anyways, I guess Lexi picks up more than I realize because she started singing Smelly Cat.
Here is her version:
" 'Melly cat, 'melly cat
  Why you R E S
'Melly cat, 'melly cat
Is not fall DOWN"
She sings the last word so loud with her mouth so wide.  It is sooo cute.  But maybe I won't be allowed to snuggle Lexi and watch my favorite show from now on.  :)



"Therefore, let us glory, yea, we will glory in the Lord; yea, we will rejoice, for our joy is full; yea, we will praise our God forever.  Behold, who can glory too much in the Lord?  Yea, who can say too much of his great power, and of his mercy, and of his long-suffering towards the children of men?  Behold, I say unto you, I cannot say the smallest part which I feel."
Alma 26:16


Well, not too much has been happening lately.  Poor Lily and Lexi were stuck inside all afternoon while I studied for an exam.  Atleast they got out when their dad got home.  In fact, they went to the park AND the play place at the mall.  And they brought home tiny buckets of Kernels popcorn.  I know they must have had a blast! 
Anyways, it is now October and time to start thinking about packing boxes and halloween costumes.  Lily has finally settled on a Parrot.  I think I know how I am going to attempt that... but you will have to wait and see.  And I have narrowed it down to Tender heart bear or a shark for Alexis.  She would be cute as either one I am sure.  :) 
I also got to watch conference and it was so good.  It gave me a lot to think about and work on.  I kind of felt like it was just for me, which makes sense I guess.  :) 
I have also been starting to think about Christmas.  I have some great ideas, but I can't share them because then it will give away the surprise.  :)  So.... not too much to say lately.  But here is a picture of Lily's favorite hair accessory...
And here is her cute Curlie Sue look...

It eventually relaxed throughout the day and was actually really cute.  And she LOVES curly hair.  At least this way is fast and easy...  (nowadays, that is really important)  :)



I don't know where the time goes.  My girls seem to be growing like weeds.  Tonight Lily asked what "valuable" meant.  It turned into quite a conversation about monetary value and things that are of worth (since they are not always the same).  It was a glimps into things that are valuable to Lily.  For example, knowing the button on the elevator that gets you to your house is valuable.  This is so she always knows how to get home.  :)  Yeah....  *gulp*  I was surprised by that answer, but it made me feel good that she values knowing how to get home.  :)  This all turned into a lesson on family and the gospel and how our knowledge is very valuable, even though it isn't "worth" much.  She is so bright and smart.  I am pretty much amazed by her. 
This is a picture of her showing off her Terry Fox run tattoo.  :)  She said she ran sooo fast and proceeded to show me just how fast.  One minute she was running as fast as she could and the next she was flat on her back.  :)  She's going to be that girl on the basketball team that falls all the time and then jumps up to say "I am fine". 
We have been up to a lot lately.  I had my first tests of the semester on Thursday, which had me stressed of course.  I even went so far as to question why the heck I am going to school right now.  Especially when it would be so much easier another time... and the fact that I can't even think about another baby right now, because I don't want to be sick and prego and working and going to school and taking care of my babies.  :) Oh how I wish I could just stay home and cook and clean and do art projects all day with my girls and have babies and write in a journal and actually read the old testament all the way through and....  Well, you know.  But even as I write this, I feel that inner strength.  The kind that doesn't come from me.  It comes from somewhere deaper....  It's a quality that is built into each of us and "kicks in" when we need it the most...  I have struggled with the question of whether or not this is selfish...  What do my girls have to give up?  What do I give up?  What could be different...  But, as I study and learn, I am reminded that this is my path right now.  It won't always be this way, but for now it is right.  I am grateful for family that are so willing to help...  You make it that much easier for me... that much better.  I have been looking for ways to tell you how much your love means...  There never seems to be enough in the words I could say.  But I can tell you, my heart bursts a little at the support I feel from each of you.  I love you.

And in the middle of tests, a really great hockey game, stool samples, and questioning my life path :), I was able to accomplish one goal I set.  Do you remember?  The skirt.  Yess, I finished 3 skirts into the wee hours of the morning of the last day of September...  Talk about procrastination.  But I did it!!  Although, I did change it a little.  I heard somewhere that if you set goals that you realize you cannot accomplish, that doesn't mean you failed.  Just re-evaluate those goals and make them into something attainable.  So that is what I did.  Instead of making the cute skirts from sewing in no man's land, I made whirly skirts from danamadeit.com.  I am just excited I did them.  They really are nothing special, but it got my creative juices flowing again, and that is all that counts.  Here they are:

The one with the pink flower is Lily's and the yellow one is Lexi's.  I still want to sew a pretty button onto the center of the flower... 
And here is my version...  Cute.  Atleast I think so.  :)

It looks kindof funny because of the way it is hung, but I couldn't think of any other way to take a picture of it since its so big.  :)  I really wanted to take the girls out to the bird sanctuary in the city and take their pictures in them around the trees and leaves and bridges and ponds.  But, I am slowly learning to just "roll with it".  This was the best I could do.  Lily and Lexi both love them though.  (I am just not sure we can all wear them the same day...  might be a little too much.)  :)

PS> Not to brag or anything (ha!) but I got my first test mark back today and I scored 94%.  :)