Afternoon Tea

I hosted a Relief Society afternoon tea party at my house recently. It was really fun to dress up, wear hats and pretend to be ladies. It was insanely hot though and we were doing everything possible to keep shaded. I threw presentation out the window when I hung sheets off my gazebo. I thought they would rather be cool.

I forgot to take a picture of our table--we had a sweet pineapple punch, iced mint tea, scones with clotted cream and lemon curd, berries with fresh whipped cream and a variety of finger sandwiches. I am all about the food. Love it. Elise picked out one of her dresses and joined the ladies. She loved being out there with us.

Kansas continued

I was only in Kansas for one full day, but we sure squeezed in a LOT.

After the funeral, the family that still lives in Great Bend took us on the Amerine tour. We started at the Amerine farm with the house my great-grandfather built and where my grandfather was born. You can see the A on the door and Amerines still live there.

We went on a cemetery tour in three cemeteries to see our Amerine & Doss (grandpa & grandma's sides) history.

Isabella collected flowers. :)

My great-grandmother who I am named after--Amy Christina Bortz
And my grandfather--Fred Vernon Amerine--who built the house on the Amerine farm

We also found Batman's mother and father.... We got a good laugh out of that one

Next stop--Ellinwood Kansas which was an underground "city" of tunnels and shops

An impromptu photo session in the cornfields on our way to our family's insanely awesome farm (12,000 head of cattle, huge GPS operated combines, horses, goats, chickens, etc.) I cannot wait to take the kids there. They will love it!

Okay that was ridiculously long. I was just so grateful for the experience to be there to say goodbye to my grandma, visit with my wonderful family and see my Kansas farming roots!

Fae Amerine

As soon as we arrived in Utah, I got word that my grandmother had passed away. It was bittersweet because as hard as it is to say goodbye, the thought of her meeting my grandfather on the other side is wonderful. I was so grateful to spend quite a bit of time with her the last couple months of her life. It was a touching experience I will always hold dear to my heart. Thank you to all of you that helped with the kids so I could spend time with her. I am so grateful for family and all the wonderful people that have gone before me to pave the way for who I am today! I come from a line of strong women on both sides.

After a lot of back and forth, I figured out a way to go to the funeral in Great Bend, Kansas. I got home Wednesday, furiously unpacked, did laundry, repacked and left Friday morning with my brother. I was SO sick of the car by the end of it all!! But what a wonderful experience to see where my roots are in Kansas. And everyone is so friendly in Kansas. I absolutely loved it.

My grandfather's ashes were buried with my grandmother and next to my grandpa's brother, Loren, as he requested. Very sweet.

With my dad at the luncheon afterwards

We will miss you Grandma! Until we meet again...


Salt Lake City

We went to Utah for a QUICK trip over Memorial Day weekend to attend my cousin's wedding. I loved taking the kids to my "old hood" and Temple Square. I have such wonderful memories of my time in Salt Lake--working, living in my own apartment and having a lot of fun. So much fun that I ran out of money and had to move back home to save up--which is when I met Jared. :)

We spent the first day checking out the conference center and Temple Square then off to Park City for a BBQ. Grey had been talking for weeks about wanting to touch the doors of the temple--so he was pretty thrilled that they were so big! Elise has been talking about how she wants to get married in the Salt Lake Temple.

A trip to Salt Lake is never complete without lunch at Tony Caputos.

We went to the pool every day--the kids loved their QT with daddy!

You probably wouldn't guess that this smiley kid was sick and spent over FIVE hours crying in the night. The only way to console him was for me to stand rocking him. That was a. very. long. night. Thank goodness he is cute.

And the main event---introducing Mr. & Mrs. Castle!
The Oquirrh Mountain Temple is absolutely stunning. GORGEOUS! As you stand out front you can see two other temples. It is pretty amazing to have three temples in such close proximity. I was very teary and I blame it on being in the temple with my wonderful family and watching my sweet cousin make such an important decision. She is like a little sister to me and saved me (as only a 2-week old baby can) when I was a struggling 12-year-old after my parent's divorce.

There are no words to describe my love and respect for my grandparents. I want to be just like them when I grow up. Look at their glowing faces.


End of Season

Grey had an AMAZING t-ball team this past spring. The parents and kids really hit it off and the coach is awesome! Every single kid signed up for this summer again dependent on keeping our coach. We are looking forward to starting up again this week. The team had an end-of-season party to celebrate!

3rd Child

This poor third child--always being toted around town during nap time.