Saturday, November 29, 2008

Girls night

Tonight Millie had a few friends spend the night. We made some holiday treats and then decided to go out to the Town Square and look at the the lights and window shop. The girls had great fun at the Sephora store trying on all of the make up. The night ended with watching What Not to Wear. The plan was to stay up all night. You can see how well they did!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Turkey day/ Part one

Football...Joey's true favorite.

Monday, November 24, 2008

We miss Hannah

The lunch bunch just isn't the same with out you!

We hope you are having fun in Oregon.

Look at theses faces.

Have a great trip, but hurry back! We miss you! I miss you! Hardly anyone likes to talk about books with me!!!!!!!

Friday, November 21, 2008

ah Weekend

So while the rest of the country was focused on the small stuff, like who the next president of the United States would be, my family, those in middle school in particular, were campaigning for MUCH mores serious elections. The Lied Middle School student government officers. Youngest daughter threw her name in the ring along with 4 others at her school to be the school historian. Well after a few weeks of speech making and poster hanging, the ballots were in. Millie came out victorious! We celebrated Friday night by, going to the theater. the Cheyenne HS play that is. Many of the youth in our ward were performing. They did my dad's all time favorite, Arsenic and Old Lace.

Doug and the boys were down at Loyola this weekend for the Top 200 lacrosse weekend. Joe's coaches were, get this, the head coach of Yale and the head coach from Towson. I know, right. he was so excited to be amongst these folks. He took a hard hit during his first game but was iced up and went back out to play. You should see the bruises. I swear, between Joe and Bret and their collective lacrosse endeavors, one could think Doug and I were beating the boys!

Jenna spent the weekend with her mother so that left just Millie and I to hang out and get things done. Again, I was delighted and saddened by the quiet of my house. Delighted because I was able to get soooooo much done, but saddened by the prospect of such a quiet home in the not so distant future. I do miss all the kids and their pals when they are gone!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


So , yes, I was there. I saw the premier of the film Twilight with Millie and Jenna and Jenna's mom, Susan. Oh the jealous cries that are going up in blogoworld. It was a great love story. Enough of a ...yes there will be a sequel ending to keep all of the young girls, okay and their mothers, interested.

Honestly, Edward is handsome, but Dr Cullen, he is a heartthrob, you know if yo are forty or so.

Anyhow, it was a fun night out for the girls. None of us had ever been to an opening of a movie before, so it was a new experience. We talked with some others in line and waited for close to two hours before being let in to the theater. Dinner was pocorn and nachos, but nary a complaint form any of the teens in line. They were all just itching to get in to see the love story unfold.

I don't think this show will be a big hit with the guys, but every teenage girl who sees will dream of vampires. The Edward type that is!

My students will be waiting with baited breath for me to tell them about it tomorrow.

Jori posted this on her blog and I took her challenge to spend 5 minutes watching it. I am so glad I did. Not only did it put a smile on my face, it brought tears to my eyes. Watching this fellow dance with all of these people, people from all over the world, from all walks of life, reminded me that WE ARE ALL CHILDREN OF A HEAVENLY FATHER. He loves all of us. He wants us to love each other too.

ENJOY and remember who your Father is. Remember that everyone you meet today is your brother or your sister. Treat them like you love them Better, Love them.

Where the Hell is Matt? (2008) from Matthew Harding on Vimeo.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

A Week at the Meeks!

Monday to Monday, with the Mechams.
We had no school last Monday or Tuesday. As I mentioned in an earlier post J and B were visiting their mom so I was here with just the big guy and the 2nd to biggest guy for the entire time.

Our usual chaotic family night involved just the three of us. It was very peaceful and gave us an opportunity to enjoy just teaching Joe. We also grabbed a little something for dinner instead of the usual big dinner we make on Mondays.
Bret came back Tuesday to go hunting with Doug and we met up with Jenna Tuesday night at our ward volleyball game. By the way, we won and are now moving on to the championship game. Doug got back in time to go to Roundtable.
Jenna and Bret went over to the mom's Wednesday after much discussion about what to get her for her birthday, we settled on getting her a Red Robin gift card. Just try asking a kid what their parent likes to do. You will get the funniest answers, even from a 13 and a 12 year old. Somehow I don't think their mom needs another Magic know in case she wants to make a smoothie and a milkshake at the same time.
Wednesday night we had a joint activity for a super service scavenger hunt. It ended up being great. Joe invited inactive boy to come out and he did! Joe is the Teachers' president and Jenna is the Beehive president so they were both big in the planning of this activity. On another note, Joe 'remembered' at about 3pm Wednesday afternoon that he had a chemistry project due Thursday. The project involved creating a mole ( a mole is a unit of measurement). His mole had to be a character and involved SEWING!!! Now I can cook, but sew? Nooooooooo. His mole was Spidermole, and it took us a while to work it out, but we did.
Thursday night found me at a RS activity. It was a lot of fun even though I must admit, I was like, really, three nights out in a row is too much this week. We all brought food to share. I made a yummy creamy ham and potato soup, but my favorites were Darla's wheat chili and Cindy's cauliflower. We ate soups and painted Christmas decorations. A shout out to Katrina Hunter who put it all together. My stars were pretty lackluster, ( I am craft impaired) but I did get to see the handiwork of some really creative folks. Doug was home alone with Millie so they went out on a daddy daughter date and discussed her campaign. Millie is running for school historian. Joe, well he had lax, what else?

Speaking of lax, Friday night Joe tried out for the Vegas Starz lacrosse team. It was something he wanted to do, but we were unsure about his chances. There was about 80 kids for 36 spots and it was mostly older players. Many seniors and juniors were out there and Joe was one of a handful of younger sophomores. They sent the kids home and told them to check the website in the morning to see if they made it. HE did! He was very pleased and is excited about being part of this team. It means lots of trips. Doug and Bret are also excited as they accompany Joe on all of them!

Bret was off at a camp out with the scouts Friday night and got back late Saturday afternoon. His pal Coop broke his wrist on the bike ride. Ouch!
Jenna and Millie raked in the cash this weekend babysitting. Friday night they were over at McCormacks, Saturday they were watching the cousins over at my brother's house and Saturday early evening Millie went over to the Hancock' house to watch Jesse while they went out for a quick dinner.
Joe invited me out to lunch Saturday for a mother /son date. He said, 'I'll buy if you drive.' We went out and got some sushi at our favorite Sushi Bar. Joe had seen an ad that let him know it was customer appreciation day and all prices were half off. We ended up getting all you can eat sushi for $20.50 total for both of us. It was so cute when the tab came and my young man reached out and took the check. The waitress just grinned fro m ear to ear and so did I.
Later Saturday, I got all of my Christmas shopping done . Before you get too jealous let me explain, I got the gifts for everyone except the kids and Doug. Teachers, friends, visiting teaching gals, Doug's home teaching families and also, my folks and Doug's mom. I am so happy to have that finished! This weekend I will get them put together and put away in the storage room til it is time to give em away!
I also got my 10 by 10 recipes finished. Q.T. (Queen Tif), has started our ward on a new mission. If we all get the ingredients to make 10 dinners ten times in our food storage room we will have a three month supply of dinners. I have slowly been hammering away at this. Not just getting the recipes together, but also gathering the ingredients. Oh and by the way, I really like that Tif's new nickname can be CUTIE too , get it Queen Tif=QT=Cutie. Anyhow, more about this 10 by 10 idea in a later post.
Saturday night our neighbor's came over to practice a song for Sunday. Doug ended up playing the piano for hours while all the girls sang. Have I mentioned how much I love love love that he plays the piano. Madison and Grace sang for me in my Gospel Doctrine class Sunday. They did a great job!
Speaking of Doug, he spent a lot of the past weekend at work, but he was able to get some painting done. I figure we started the painting on Labor day and with the way both Doug and I operate, maybe we will be done by Memorial day.

Sunday we had a youth fireside over here. Again, Joe invited out that same boy from our ward, and he came. It went really well. You can only see about 1/3 of the gang in this shot. There was no way I could get them all in!
That brings me right back to Monday. Today we saw the dentist for teeth cleaning. Millie ended up having to go to the Doctor after school to have her check on a recurring stye.
Tonight for family night it was back to the chaos that I love. Millie planned a charades activity and we all had a lot of fun guessing the scriptures that we took turns acting out, with out any props. I talked to the kids about why we keep our eyes closed while we pray. What was born of an impromptu conversation with Bishop became a very meaningful lesson for our family.
All in all it has been another great week in paradise!
Oh and one more thing. Jenna won TWILIGHT tickets last weekend while at her Mom's house. I am glad she won 4 tickets because that made room for me and Millie to go with Jenna and her mom! Oh and I almost forgot the best part. We get to go to the show TOMORROW NIGHT!!!!!!!

Thursday, November 13, 2008


I will admit when I am wrong. Not that that happens too.. okay, so it happens all the time. Nevertheless, I must give credit where credit is due. It seems that a certain someone felt somewhat slighted when I gave a little shout out to the Queen herself. Later I tried to make amends by giving him a title of nobility. Duke, I think it was. But when Queen Tif filled me on an his savings bonanza, I had to reevaluate the titles I am so casually tossing around.
Hear ye Hear ye!
Through a special session of the savings and thrift committee I have been granted license to appoint Chuck Bennion Emperor of Savings, Sheik of Thrift, Sovereign of Frugality, Czar of Penny Pinching!

Plus he is pretty funny too. I did not say funny looking, I said funny!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Saving for a hungry day!

One of the reasons Doug loves me is I am a good shopper. Doug is very frugal (read cheap). He likes to save money and he especially likes it when I jump on board the savings train. I do my part with grocery shopping. And work on keeping my food stoarge up to snuff. When Doug added on the 'media room; I insisted I get a food storage room out of the deal. Love it! Take a look!
I learned this saving skill long before joining the church from my ultra wise shopping dad. He is the KING, absolute, hands down, no one better, the best. He was shopping 4 or 5 markets a week using coupons back when I was a kid. We ate like kings and always had plenty, but I know my folks did it on a tight budget. I have never spent a lot of $$$ on food and in recent years it has become a game for me. How much can I save this week? I always try to 'save' more than I spend. Another trick old Grampie taught me is NEVER buy anything you don't eat/use just because it is on sale. A few weeks a go a bloggy friend did a post about her savings at the grocery store and I thought, Oh good, Another thrifty shopper! Now the Queen of thrift is Tif, but I will declare myself Princess. Take a look at this weeks score.181.00 (and 16.95 of it is for the cat litter. Ugg). I also got 30.00 in 5.00 off coupons at Albertsons for my purchases. How's that for you?

Monday, November 10, 2008

Music Memory Monday Exta Long Post WARNING!!!!

A lot of you know our story, but some of you do not. I am the luckiest, most blessed girl in the world. Thanks to Jori over here for coming up with this Music Memory Monday idea. What a great way to share.

Doug and I were married 6 years ago after being 'fixed up' by my bishop who happened to be an old friend of Doug's. At the time, I was a single mom. Life was hard and even though I had the church, great friends and two wonderful kids, I knew I needed to find an eternal mate. Not such an easy thing to do. As I just mentioned, I was 30 something with two kids, a recent convert to the church and as you all well know, it is not like there is an abundance of unattached Moronis out there.
About being a convert (this is an important part of the story). When Joey and Millie were young my husband and I were very friendly with our LDS neighbors. As such, these neighbors and friends regularly sent the missionaries our way. Set after set, they would come, we would feed em and they would try to share the message with us. We loved them all, but there was one, one elder, that shared his message with us, and when he spoke, I felt the spirit confirm to me that the Gospel was true and that Joseph Smith was a prophet of the Lord. Alas, my husband had not felt that and even though I knew it was true, I held all of it in my heart. Days turned to weeks, weeks to months and a year or so after this elder left, my husband and I divorced. The missionaries kept coming and I kept listening, but that feeling from long before was buried in my heart. Over the course of the years I had become very close with three families. All of these wonderful families made room for me and my children in their homes. In short, I was not with out MARVELOUS examples of the way to happiness, yet, it was not their example that finally helped me to decide to be baptized, instead when I finally did decide to get baptized, I knew that the message was brought me by that missionary years before. He carried the holy spirit to my heart that day. I joined the church and never looked back. MEANWHILE... Doug was living across town. After having served a mission and returning to BYU, he married in the temple. His marriage lasted several years, but deteriorated. He struggled greatly with the prospect of being apart from his children, even for just one day. But in the end, there was nothing he could do. Decisions were made and regardless of his desire to remain married he found himself a single father. Spending half of his time alone and the other half left to raise his toddlers. He sought the advice of his priesthood leaders who told him that while he could not change the course of action of another, he had to hold to the rod no matter what the circumstance. He did. He kept attending the temple and serving in the ward in which he resided. He was quickly called to be the elders' quorum president and then a few years later to be the ward mission leader. During these years, friends set him up on countless dates, but he never found a suitable match. In January of 2002, Doug got a call from an old friend wondering if he would like to go out on a date. "A date with who?" Well, it was me. This same family had tried to fix us up the summer before but Doug had told them he wasn't interested because I was not yet a member. When he heard I had been baptized he agreed. The rest is history.
Now about that missionary:
A few months after we were married, Doug asked me how I came to join the church. He laughed saying, I mean you were hanging around with these great people for years, yet you never joined the church. What did it? What was it that finally compelled you to be baptized? That night I told him about Elder Beatty. My missionary. The one that was able to bear witness to me of the truthfulness of the Gospel and the one that carried the spirit of the Lord to my heart.
Doug sat up in bed. "This Elder Beatty", he asked me, "where was he from?" I told him he was from Georgia. Doug started to cry. Not just cry a little, but really cry. When he was able, he told me this story:
When he was single, he had served as the Ward Mission leader. because he was single, the missionaries were particularly fond of him. He gained the title of , Brother Mecham, the only true and living ward mission leader. It was a joke in the zone and one that the elders made every time they met with him. On a winter night after he put Jenna and Bret to bed he heard a knock at the door. Two men stood in the doorway, one an elder, the other a man Doug did not recognize. The elder assured Doug that he had permission to be out late this night and the mission president was aware of his whereabouts. Doug invited the two men in. The missionary asked Doug if he was Doug Mecham from Marietta Georgia. Doug said he was the same. The missionary then went on to tell Doug that as a young boy he had been in and out of activity. One Sunday he had spent the night at a member friend's house and the deal was, that he would go to church with him the next day. That day, That very same day, Doug, a young returned missionary, was speaking in that ward giving what was his 'homecoming talk'. The young boy, inactive at the time, felt the overwhelming desire to serve a mission. He made a promise to himself that day, that no matter what he had to do he would live worthy to serve the Lord by serving a mission for the church. That young missionary took Doug's hand and shook it. "I want to thank you, Brother Mecham," he said. "It is because of your willingness to serve that I am here serving this day."
Well, you guessed it. That missionary was MY missionary. Elder Eric Beatty.
I never tire of sharing this story. I never tire of pondering it and its importance to my family, but further, its importance to all of us. Heavenly Father is always mindful of us. All those years ago when Doug was doing what he SHOULD be doing, the Lord was blessing him. Little did he know that even in his darkest hour through his divorce, the Lord was mindful of him because he was doing what he SHOULD be doing. As Doug kept his covenants, the Lord blessed him. The way was prepared for him, I was prepared for him. By the same token, I too was prepared. Upon accepting the Gospel, and doing what I SHOULD do, the Lord was mindful of me and He blessed me.
Heavenly Father doesn't have to open these windows for us. He does not have to let us see how He works. But every once in a while He does. He lets us know that He blesses the road we travel on.
So every time I hear this song, I think about our story and the fact that God truly blessed the broken road that led me to Doug.

Doug isn't much of a lyrics guy. When he likes a song it has a lot more to do with the music than the words, but this one is special to both of us. Our favorite verse:

I think about the years I spent, just passing through.
I'd like to have the time I lost and give it back to you.
But you just smile and take my hand
You've been there you understand
It's all part of a grander plan
That is coming true

Broken Road= US

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Finally my pictures are here.

Personal progress night! Girls just want to have fun

So I have a little problem with my memory stick in my camera. I can't get it to work with my desktop computer. It used to work, but recently, it has stopped working. Now I have to wait for Doug to bring the lap top home from his office so I can upload my photos.
Because the pictures of the kids and the updates about their happenings are my folks' favorite part of this blog I am going to add a few photos from the girls' happenings this week.
We had a personal progress, mother /daughter activity night this week in our ward. We made puppets and I am soooo not not not crafty, so my puppet was seriously lackluster. Millie did pretty well. Each girl was to bring a display to highlight their personal progress thus far. I am so pleased with their progress. Millie just started and already she is working on her first project, and Jenna and I have gotten 4 of her value projects complete. Check out the posters.

Thursday night found me baking a volcano cake with Millie and Regan. Those two! They remembered they had a project due a little late, but we got it done. Regan ended up spending the night (on a school night, oh the delight). They presented the next morning and I was able to go over to their class and snap a few photos.

Finally, here is why most of my days are filled with smiles and laughs. Welcome to my classroom, before during and after school! Millie, Bret and Jenna, in and out with all of their friends.
This photo just shows the girls. Bret was working on something with the boys!
On a totally different note, today I am still just mom to one. Doug at work and Joey at lax all morning left me painting the kitchen. I have been saying I wanted to paint the kitchen red for about 5 years. Well, I finally did it. Photos to come later!

My Quiet Weekend

A quiet little home.

Millie is in Utah at the Ellsworth's cabin. Jenna and Bret are over at their mom's house for a few days. That leaves Joe and Doug and me here alone. I know, three of us is hardly alone, but hey, I was a single mom before I married Doug, and I have only been alone over night once or twice since Joey was born. Strange I know. But true. So on these rare occasions, my brood of kids gets cut to 1/4 of its normal size, it is a happening for me. And very different indeed! Doug had to preside at a baptism Saturday morning and then went to work. Joe was playing lacrosse all day at Nic's house so I got tons of stuff done here by myself.
Maybe I could get used to this.
This is where there should be some foggy/blurry effects happening on the screen like I am going into a dream sequence.
The house I cleaned Saturday morning stayed clean. (choir of angels singing)The groceries were put away before anyone swooped in and opened every package. ( a hallelujah chorus)The laundry all got folded and put away and no one needed me to hurry and wash their favorite jeans. (just the thought of it makes me smile a little)I was able to go work out with out anyone calling me on my cell. ( maybe my service was out, I dunno, but it really happened) I read my scriptures and looked over my Gospel doctrine lesson with out anyone asking me to make a snack or give them a ride or anything. (too good to be true I know)
Sunday continued in that fashion. Doug had EARLY bishopric meetings (hahahaha. Sorry I could not resist), so when he left I was still sleeping peacefully. Joey had a presidency meeting a full hour before church so again, I found myself alone. I was able to make homemade meatballs and sauce for dinner with out any interruptions. I had everything cleaned up and calmly, , quietly, relaxedly (is that a word?) got ready for church. I grabbed my scriptures and hopped in the car and left. It was , I don't know. I really can't describe what it felt like. So, so, so EASY.

It was strange. It was too quiet. It was a little lonely.

I awake from the dream sequence:
Forget it. I want them all to hurry home! I want the mess and the noise and the commotion that is our life. As far as the quiet and the clean and the organized. I will get plenty of that in just a few years. And when that day comes, I will be ready to say bring those grandkids over!

With something to think about...

I saw this on another blog and wanted to share it.

"Make no mistake about it, brothers and sisters, in the months and years ahead, events are likely to require each member to decide whether or not he will follow the First Presidency. Members will find it more difficult to halt longer between two opinions. President Marion G. Romney said, many years ago, that he had 'never hesitated to follow the counsel of the Authorities of the Church even though it crossed my social, professional or political life.' This is hard doctrine, but it is particularly vital doctrine in a society which is becoming more wicked. In short, brothers and sisters, not being ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ includes not being ashamed of the prophets of Jesus Christ. . . . Your discipleship may see the time when such religious convictions are discounted. . . . This new irreligious imperialism seeks to disallow certain opinions simply because those opinions grow out of religious convictions."Resistance to abortion will be seen as primitive. Concern over the institution of the family will be viewed as untrendy and unenlightened.... Before the ultimate victory of the forces of righteousness, some skirmishes will be lost. Even in these, however, let us leave a record so that the choices are clear, letting others do as they will in the face of prophetic counsel. There will also be times, happily, when a minor defeat seems probable, but others will step forward, having been rallied to rightness by what we do. We will know the joy, on occasion, of having awakened a slumbering majority of the decent people of all races and creeds which was, till then, unconscious of itself. Jesus said that when the fig trees put forth their leaves, 'summer is nigh.' Thus warned that summer is upon us, let us not then complain of the heat."--- Elder Neal A. Maxwell

Saturday, November 8, 2008

My dog is a democrat

I know. It is hard to swallow. But it is true. My dog is a democrat. Actually, I think all dogs are democrats. Look at the facts. This is my top ten. David Letterman, eat your heart out.

10. He does not bark at those who pass by our house. He has little or no interest in homeland security.

9. Along those same lines, he does not believe in the right to bare teeth.

8. He sleeps during Fox news broadcasts. He sleeps all the time.

7. He would like to end the war between dogs and cats once and for all.

6. He believes in free veterinary care for all dogs.

5. He wants dog treats for free. He does no tricks. He doesn't even try to learn any tricks.

4. He eats the food that rightfully belongs to the cats.

3.His entitled attitude is evident. He is a dog, yet he sleeps in our bed .

2. He does not pick up his own poop. AND he thinks he should be able to poop where ever he wants to poop. He also believes that the boys should have to pick it up. After all, he is a dog. And as such has dealt with human oppression for years.

And the number 1 reason my dog is a democrat:

1. He voted against a constitutional amendment to ban inter species marriages.

Now I said my dog was a democrat, but I did not say he was a dummy. He knows not to bite the hand that feeds him. Don't worry pal, we'll get em in 4 more years.


Images from Camp 2008