28 August 2008

Some more !

Just can't get enough!

seeing the shots of Lagoon: little red tshirts everwhere, little heads pearing over fences---Lagoon is just all about the kids and we love it!

reunion 2008 --some great shots!

just seeing these really makes me smile!

Loves to you all who made such a dag'on blast!

I will ride this road any day!

25 August 2008

After So Long . . . A POEM!!!!

Hey, everyone, it's Annabelle, your long-lost grandchild, daughter, niece, or cousin! In case you've forgotten about me, I used to post poems on here, but I kinda stopped for a while. I am also Amy and Craig's daughter, in case you've forgotten. 

Pinky Pie
A tiny dog
Brown, furry, and cute
Long, fluffy eyelashes
Comforting and wet tongue
Loves to eat human food
Hates dog food
And her all-time favorite food is
My Grandmother's recipe 
Pinky Pie.
Thats her name because
She is my pinky pie
A delicious yet funny friend.

Again, I made this up "right on the spot" . . . hmph.

After 9 Years...

after a 9 year hiatus, Jen was back on the wakeboard scene with a stellar showing at Lake Powell last month; on her first try she was up, crossed the wake and smiled the whole time - what a great picture huh? I would have liked to have tried, but my feet were too big for the boots. what a complete ripoff! - tyler

22 August 2008

Doug and Jodi Update

Dear Family,

I am sure that many of you have either seen the news yesterday(locally) or heard from mom about a very serious tragedy that involved the 4 year old boy of our best friends, Ted and Sharon Mardesich down here in Saratoga Springs. Their boy, Cooper, was born 3 days ahead of Teage, and they have been the best of friends all of their lives. Cooper is often at our house playing, or Teage is at his, and if you were to see both of them together, sometimes seeing one is seeing the other-they are that much alike.

Cooper was struck at the end of our street by a 15 year who was driving the family van. We don't know why he was driving to school, but Cooper was with his mother and was riding his little bike by where the kids were waiting for the bus. Apparently, Cooper found himself in front of the turning van...and you probably can figure out how the rest of the story goes.

He passed away from extensive internal injuries - the accident was much like what happened to Abby years ago, where Cooper was run over twice-the boy accidentally backed over him as well.

We will miss him terribly. His parents represent the best of people. Ted is a counselor in our Bishopric and Sharon is the Stake Young Women's President. Jodi and I have served with both of them in other church callings as well, and they have always been the first to run to someone else' aid. Every time we have had trauma with our children-you guys all know about those stores-our other children stayed with them. Now, it seems they will have to let us carry them for a while.

Cooper was a beautiful, happy, and special boy...and our little Teage and Sasha are already feeling the effects of his loss. Ted and Sharon told us that they will need Teage around a lot-mosty to help with their son Logan, and also it will remind them of Cooper. I told them that will never be a problem.

I have spend some good time with my friend Ted, and he told me Coopers passing was such a positive, spiritual experience for him...it doesn't take away his pain right now...they will just greatly miss him, but now the challenge is living in a way to be together again.

I am also reminded at this time of another Father....who probably in agony, had to stand alone and let His Beloved Son die as well....not for any kind of accident, but to save the rest of His children. How grateful I am for the knowledge that our Elder Brother, Jesus Christ, died so we might all live again. What a glorious truth for all of us to rediscover. I have also thought how fragile life is, and that the time I spend with my wife and children are what is most important-we never know when one of us will be called Home, we just want to be ready. I have made a better resolve not to let the oddities of everyone I know bug me anymore-I know I have plenty of oddities. Hopefully, all of us can take the same challenge. We had such a great time at the LEG reunion with everyone, and I have marveled how the Lord has spared us the tragedy of this kind of loss so far....I know it won't always be that way.

I know that God is aware of us, and knows how we feel. Thanks to everyone for their love and support, and please keep Ted and Sharon Mardesich, and their boys-Ivan(13), Garrett(12) and Logan(6) in your prayers. We love all of you and look forward to being with you again.

Your brother,



21 August 2008

When the Relatives Came.....

Here is one of the rooms in moms house that was packed with over 30 people every night......

19 August 2008

Elder S. James Graham August letter and pics

August 18,08
Dear Family,
the time has flown, and Im more than certain Ill find myself unready to return one year from now.
its hard to understand. the times passing I mean. Im sure this isnt a "first" by any stretch of the term.but its cool, being here, and looking back. the views change in drastic ways.
Im serving in Monterrey Valle Verde.
with the wards Valle Verde 1 and Valle Verde 2
my living conditions are great.
Like, I think about my old living conditions, from when I lived in utah. In perfect fairness my living conditions are in comparison pathetic. lacking. an observation I made when I ferst arrived to Mexico. However, worn a little by time and routine, I see them now as normal and very comfortable. No complantes on my part.Im chill.
(its not like we live in the house anyway, we are ALWAYS outside. so I suppose Ill be a happy camper so long as I have a bed to sleep in and a desk to read at. Thats a benefitial attribute. for me at least, who knows how the wife will take it someday....)
My comps name is Elder Mata, hes another dying missionary. Again, Im fine with him. Hes doing the best he can. Its been neet, I adopted this idea that people always do their best about.....2 years ago, maybe it was 3 years ago! To continue, It was very easily said before my mission. sure, "everyone does their best" I would say. but when youre in a companionship with rules expectations both phsyical and spiritual, that term is one that has to be faught for. If I wish to hold to that idea, I have to search on a daily basis to establish its reality.
Hard and very rewarding. my comp is 6 weeks short of his departure, and its been hard for me to watch his focus deteriorate and fade. He will have very little difficulty adjusting to "normal life" again. I feel safe saying that he will not flinch when he is released as a missionary.
Its hard, its sad, its draining, but then again, he is doing his best.
I should also mention that in the short time that we have been companions (8 weeks) hes lost a 23 year old cousin to birth complications, his dad (hefting somebody elses heart) has had multiple close calls, being rushed to the emergancy room on several occasions, family not expecting his return. And unfortunatley, my companions 27 year old sister (and single mother of 2) (who has also had heart complications) had a horrible car accident 2 weeks ago, and is now in the hospital because the central part of her brain has stopped its functoning. and she is not expected to live for much longer.
I have had to hold my comp 3 times in this change, as he would just sob and sob for his families ill fate.
I was never prepared to deal with such heavy emotional challanges. Ive been thrown into those "what can you possibly say?" situations more times than I ever expected.
Its an understandable situation. I pray for my comp.
Im am not yet a senrior companion. My health is wonderful. Im just really healthy.
The work is wonderful, we've been baptizing every other week now for a while.
Its all been a very interesting learning experience.
watching people commit, and then watching what they do when things get hard.
Its all wonderful.
we had a powerful baptism yesterday.
we've seen miricles with him and his family. his wife was supposed to die, and my comp gave her a blessing, and as the husband took on the commitments and preperations for baptism, she has been healed and restored in health.
its more than I can describe in words.
as if his sacrifices to God we're returned as blessings in the curation of his wife.
it was this fantastic parrallel. they were seperate in location but linked in spirit almost.
based on his actions, her phsical state grew stronger or was weakened.
really cool.

life back home sounds fantastic.

Im very happy where I am right now.
Very comfotable.

Dont be surprized if I end up asking for an exstension in time.
I really like this as a whole,

all my love


my Gods blessings be upon you.

18 August 2008

Recent Pix of L-Da Graham III

These are some pictures of Landon contacting with some youth in his Stake. He and his former companion have been planning this Stake Youth Conference from some time, and it finally happened. Some 50 youth from 2 stakes, split up with 4 companionships and contacted for a day, finding inactives, etc. Said it was really fruitful. Check out his smile. He looks happy, eh?

11 August 2008

More England

04 August 2008