Brownie Updates

Brownie Updates
this is the life

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Grandpa's Funeral

 The main reason I returned to California again this summer was because my Grandpa Brown passed away. As sad as it is, it is also great to get to see everyone. My immediate family was going to get together in July already but getting to see all of our extended family was a huge bonus.

The funeral was really nice. There was time allotted for people to share their memories about my grandpa and I think that was my favorite part because lots of people from the town where they lived as well as his siblings and cousins shared stories I had never heard. It is funny to learn more about him because it makes me see how similar he and my dad are. Don't get me wrong they are really different but also so similar. My grandpa was really hard working, he loved to joke around, he worked all day and then came home and worked more, he could fix anything, he was loyal to his family, he provided for his family, he loved his garden...sound familiar:)

And I almost died laughing right there at the funeral when my uncle Peter showed up wearing Velcro shoes, the exact pair my dad and grandpa wear.It does run in the family. I can't wait for my brothers to start wearing Velcro shoes.

Here is my grandma and all four of her kids
Her kids and their spouses
 All of her 10 grand kids. I was so happy everyone could make it!
 Her three great grand kids. Little Autumn hates pictures, as you can see from the one I did get, she refused to join the great grand kids shot. But she is adorable.

 Her oldest daughter Janice and her family. I will also add that Janice housed all of the Brown's for the funeral, no small task. It was much appreciated.

 My Dad is the second child. He is the one with all of those big boys to hopefully carry on the family name.
 Apparently we all need to check each others bags before we go to a funeral. Here is what we forgot: My mom forgot her shoes, Sam forgot his shoes, Ben forgot church clothes and didn't have any pants, Anthony left all of his clothes in Aaron's car when it broke down on the way to the funeral. That is a lot of things to forget. The great thing is that it does not matter. The most important thing was that we were there for my grandma and my dad. Which we were despite how we were dressed.
 My brothers make me laugh.
 All of the Brown kids. I love being around my brothers it is the only time I ever feel small, obviously I love being around them for other reasons as well.
I didn't get an individual shot of my Dad's brother Peter who is the third child. And last but not least Virginia and her son Cody.
 Our extended family has faced a number of challenges the past few years and I just love how we support each other. Trials come to everyone but it is so great when you have a support system. Family is so important and my grandpa and grandma believed that and because of the way they lived their kids and grand kids believe it as well.

And my favorite little girl.

I am back!

 I have been on vacation!!! And it was great, but I was super happy to sleep in my bed last night. Three weeks away is too long. So this is just a post about my niece, mainly so I can remember how much fun she was at this age (like I will forget).
For example in February when I was home she called me Nell, but now it is just LaNell. Growing so fast.

 My mom is lucky to live close to Olivia and so Olivia knows her. When my mom walks in that little girl lights up. And she calls my Dad Papa and loves that he will do anything she asks as well. She always asks to play with his train and she likes to go with him to look at the garden.
Olivia has a new little brother. She loves him. My favorite thing she does is says, "Braxton .... he so cute," and then she kisses him. ADORABLE!
And she totally runs like a girl while her Dad yells at her to pump her arms.

And sometimes it is super hard being two. And your little world comes crashing down, luckily she recovers in like 1 minute. But her Dad said sometimes you have to say no because you don't want her to grow up and be a terrible person. There is definitely some truth to that!
She is just so pretty, in my opinion. She is super social and has lots of big people to love her. I loved how this trip she called Amanda, Panda. How cute is that? And I know it will change probably before we are all together again, sad.
She is super sassy. Ben and Katie were gracious enough to let her sleep over with me. She woke up looking out the window and talking. I suggested she lay down and sleep a little longer. Her response, "No you shush." SASSY, but oh so cute.
 We ran in the sprinklers, and went jogging, and I followed her all around the yard. She loves being outside and loves to have someone to boss around. And I love to take her picture so it all works out.
More posts to come about all the fun I had.

Sunday, July 8, 2012


 I have been a blogging machine lately. I need to go on a vacation soon so I don't blog so much. Today was just a good day. I am SUPER sore. Dan and I lifted weights two days ago, in case you were wondering I never lift weights, my arms still kill. Then yesterday I thought it would be a great idea to bike to my soccer game. I thought it was 10 miles to the facility. It was 13.5. Then I played a little indoor soccer = running my guts out, and then I biked home. Oh yeah after I had kayaked earlier in the day. I was exhausted last night and today. So back to why today was great instead of exercising: 1) I worked for almost three hours in my yard. Yes my 12x12 foot yard had that much work. Pathetic but it looks so nice now. 2) Lunch with my cousins, Katie and Sharee, and Dan. At Winger's, always a bonus. 3) Found my Dad's birthday present:) 4) Played tons of games at my Aunt Nancy's house. We played Qwirkle (a new favorite for me), Ticket to Ride Europe, and Telestrations. We played for hours straight and it was so fun and there were tons of laughs.

 I also snuck in a few more pictures of the cute kids.

 These pictures are all from telestrations. Too many laughs. If only you could hear all the giggling.
My drawing of a sperm whale was definitely a highlight. I thought it was very obvious, unfortunately I had a youngster sitting next to me and she is not quite old enough to interpret my drawing of sperm.
 I should probably go to bed but I am just loving all the pictures I got to take. Good times.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

4th of July

 The 4th was a fun day spent with family. I woke up and ran on my treadmill. I should have signed up for the freedom festival run but I was not sure if I was going to be in town so I had to run my own 5k. After my morning jog I met Sam and Amanda at the parade. I am not a huge parade person but it was fun.

Only in Utah would the missionaries march in the parade. It reminded me of when we would march in the kiddie parade at feather fiesta days and sing primary songs. Good times.
The Orem institute of religion had a nice float. Stand a Little Taller and then they had all these amazing people: Gandhi, Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King, President Monson, and the David Archuleta...are you kidding me that made me laugh.
 There were a ton of bands and it just brought back so many not so great memories of marching band. I hated parades, maybe I still haven't recovered. Notice the band uniforms have not changed much in the past 14 years.
 I was at the parade and it was super HOT!
 Sam and Amanda were there
 Pizza Pie Cafe handed out really sweet coupons so we went there for lunch. Watched Independence Day. Got ice cream at the BYU creamery. Had a barbeque with family. Then I came home early and cleaned my house. I didn't even do fireworks. Lame I know. My stomach was upset for a few days after camp and I have just been tired so I finally had the energy to get all my junk put away. I love love love having my house clean!!!

Did you know it rained today in Provo? Let me tell you why this is amazing. 1. There are a ton of fires burning in Utah 2. In church Sunday they asked members of the church to pray for the firefighters as well as help to get the fires out 3. I have checked the weather all week and it never said it was supposed to rain, but today I woke up and hopped on my bike because I could tell it was going to rain. And it did, lots. 4. The rain really is a miracle. I was reading in Alma in the Book of Mormon today and I believe it was chapter 30 where Korihor is trying to convince everyone that there is not a God. While I was reading it just made me think how sad it is that so many people don't believe in God. But then miracles happen and we can say the same things Alma said "All things point that there is a God" I believe that and I believe the rain is both a miracle and an answer to so many prayers.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

A Sample

 This evening my Aunt Loralie had dinner for lots of people at her house. Like all of her kids and all my siblings that are in Utah. What a house full? But super fun. I tried to get a snapshot of each child. Missed one I will have to catch him later on this week. I think there were 14 little kids. Here are some of my favorite.

The twins Kylee and Tara holding the twin cousins Alex and Peter!

My mom's mom was a fraternal twin and my aunt Loralie now has two sets of twins as grandchildren. So cute and so fun, although their mom's may not agree to that the first few months. But sooo cute!!!

Camp Stakehouse???

 Girls Camp was this last week!!! It ended up being quite the adventure. I must say there is a learning curve it was very interesting to see how camp is run outside of the Gridley California Stake. I had to try really hard not to compare but it was also really tricky trying to plan for something you have never seen. The week leading up to camp was CRAZY. Just trying to get everything ready. I was definitely over-prepared but that is better than under-prepared...right?

We camped as wards. Our Stake theme was be a s.t.a.r. (stand for truth and righteousness). Our ward value was choice and accountability and our scripture focus was 1 Nephi 18:3.
The week became more interesting on Wednesday when we learned we were being evacuated due to the fires. So we headed straight to the Stake center and got special permission to camp in the building, apparently that is not allowed anymore. It ended up working out great. Not as awesome as being in the mountains but still an opportunity for the girls to meet people, grow spiritually, and increase their testimonies.

One of the crafts we did was make lanterns. They were super cute. I loved using pinterest to find cute ideas for girls camp crafts.

I should have gotten a picture in the dark because they looked very cool all lit up.

I was reminded of how much junk you eat at camp and I just have a hard time being off my normal exercise and diet routine. But I survived and it was a lot of fun, hopefully the girls had fun too:-)


Amber and I decided we needed a weekend away. We debated for awhile on where to go. In the end Moab was a great option for us. I could bring...