Sunday, May 29, 2011


Warning Hanna: This post is a book!

It's offical. We are finally residing in Alton, Utah.

This past wed we left Hurricane around noon. Kory was driving his truck pulling the trailor and I was driving the van packed to the rim. We arrived and were unloaded by 4pm. Kory had to work that night but it was so nice having him around for a few hours. Instead of having to leave by 3 to get to work on time he left about 4:50. It was great. That night however when he got to work he discovered one of the tires on the truck was flat. After gathering the tools he needed he fixed it. A couple hours later he went out to the truck to grab something and discovered a different tire was now flat. He was able to fix that tire temporarily before coming home. When he climbed into bed that morning at 3 am he said, "that was the best drive ever." I am so glad he doesn't have a 2 hour commute each day anymore.

Thursday I spent the day putting my kitchen together. Unfortunately the house wasn't clean ans so I had to vaccummn out coupboards and drawers before filling them up with our stuff. When I got up to fix breakfast that morning I discovered that my oven wouldn't heat up above 180 degrees. Being Kory was asleep I figured he'd be able to figure out the problem. After a cold cereal breakfast I tried taking a shower but had no hot water. The water up here isn't even luke warm it's just plain freezing coming out of the taps. When Kory got up he quickly summed up the problem. The propane tank was empty! Kory then spent several minutes on the phone trying to contact the correct propane comany. Lucky for us the propane company had a driver in the area and would be able to fill us up later in the afternoon. Kory spent the afternoon taking notes on what needed to be fixed around the house. There are many broken, not working repairs that are needed. Being I was working in St. George the next day he compiled a list of materials and tools he needed me to pick up for him. Being he didn't get a chance to fix his trucks tire he took the van to work that night. When he got home at 4 the next morning he told me I would never believe what happened. The van had a flat on his way to work. That's 3 flats now in less then 12 hours. He changed the tire with the spare donut we had but I would need to take the tire into Discount Tire that morning to have the tire fixed. An hour later I was on my way into town.

Friday morning I prayed during the 1 1/2 drive that my little donut would make the long trip. I went by my parents house to pick up a tire for our little car that had a nail in it that also needed to be fixed at Discount Tire. When I got to my parents house I discovered the donut I had been driving on was flat! Thankfully my dad was around. He filled it up for me, helped me load the little cars tire and then off I went into town. I had my mom follow me just in case I had another mishap with a tire. We love discount tires. They have a life time warranty on there tires. So both tires were fixed for free. They even put the donut back in it's place for me for next time. After work that day I drove back out to Hurricane. Our plan was to finish loading the van with the odds and ends that we had left behind. My parents were also going to follow me up to Alton, My mom was going to drive our little car, my dad his truck pulling our 2 pigs that our scheduled to be slottered this coming week. So the van's loaded, the car is loaded we get the pigs loaded and off we go. We can't drive through Zion (our normal route) becuase they charge $25 to drive through plus they charge an extra $25 for an escort through the tunnels if your pulling a trailor. My dad didn't want to go over Cedar Mtn. becuase it's almost all up hill and his truck doesn't have a lot of juice. So in the end we decide to go over the Cane Beds. The cane beds is our shortest option then going through Fredonia and Kanab and then back around. However despite being a National Park the roads are TERRIBLE. It's about 25 miles of which only 4 (but seems like 20) is a dirt road that is lucky to get graded every couple of years. The asphalt after the dirt road isn't much better as there are too many large pot holes to count. At the last minute my dad decides to go the longer route becuase of the pigs. He was worried about the bumpy road and all the dust. He didn't want the pigs to suffocate on all the dust we'd surely encounter. My mom and I went ahead and took the cane bed road. After my mom and I have finally gotten off that horendous dirt road my mom signals to pull over. We both pull over to the shoulder. She was hearing a noise that's not normal and wanted to make sure she wasn't loosing the bumper or maybe even a tire after that dirt road. We get out walk around the car and can't find anything a miss. So we both get back in our cars and TRY pulling away. I can't! I pulled off onto the shoulder too much. My van has sunk into the soft sandy shoulder. Well crap! My mom's phone has no service and my borrowed cell phone is dead! My mom gets behind the van and try's to push while I accelerate. NOTHING! So I put the van in neutral and both of us try to push, NOTHING! I then find a long dead branch and am lying on the ground trying to dig the sand out from underneath the van. Just then a truck drives by and pulls over. An older man probably pushing 80 gets out with another older man who's both arms are crippled. They come walking up asking if they could help. I wanted to laugh. Looking at them I didn't know how they could possibly be of help. Well help they did. They had a chain they were able to put under the van and helped drag me back onto the road. They were great. We talked on the side of road. Found out they were from Valley (part of our new home) and we knew some of the same people. After a while my mom gets in the car and I in the van and off we go following our good samaritans. Seriously not 5 minutes later I look in my rear view mirror and see smoke coming out from behind the car my mom's driving. She immediately pulls over. I take my time turning around so as not to get to close to the edge. I was NOT going to get stuck again. I get back to my mom to discover we've had a blow out. SERIOUSLY! In a 48 hour period with three different cars we've had major issues with 5 tires now. My mom and I are just standing there. I mean come on what are the odds? We hear a truck coming and look up to see our good samaritans coming back again. They get out and come towards us asking , "now what"? AAAAAAAHHHHH! Obviously the tire is a gonner. They ask if we've got a spare. Uh huh we do! Only it's in the back of the truck that my dad is driving and he chose to take what was suppose to be the long way. There are no other options. We'll just have to come back for the car later. So we pile crap from the van into the car to make room for my mom. 45 mintues later we finally get to Alton to discover my dad already there, so much for the short cut. We decide that before we unload all of our stuff we had better go unload the pigs. We drive down the street to my borther-in laws house. He tells us where to put them. We open the back of the truck, we start to unload the closest pig which was the biggest. When he's crawling out of the back we notice the other pig isn't moving. Uh oh! Can this day get any better? Nope that 2nd dang pig died during our 2 hour trip! What was it thinking? We called the butcher and asked what we should do? I won't go into details. I don't think I'm quite ready for the farming life. Lets just say in the next hour we drove that dead pig to the butchers and it was decided we may not get alot of pork chops or rump roasts out of it but we will be getting a lot of cured sausage. After my dad I leave the butcher's we head out to fix the car's tire. We've borrowed a jack and the necesary tools, we've got the tire and hope it won't take more then just 15 minutes. We get to car just fine. My dad starts trying to jack the car up to find very quickly we've parked ourselves in an ant hill. We brush ourselves off and drive the car up as much as we dare away from those blasted ants. The jack we borrowed is just to big for the car. We can't get the car high enough to put the jack underneath it. Knowing Kory's had a flat before we decide to empty the trunk of our belongings to see if we can find a different jack. HIP HIP HOORAY! We've got a much smaller jack to work with. Along with the jack we find a spare tire. If I would have known about the spare we could have changed the tire right after it blew out. Oh well, 15 minutes later we're both back on the road. Hallelujiah we both make it back to Alton. By the time we got home it was after 10pm. My parents immediately leave for home since it was so late and they've still got a 2 hour drive ahead of them. I asked them to be VERY VERY careful. The fates were truely against us this day. The last thing we needed was for them to hit a dang deer on the way home. I'm glad to say they made it safely with no other mishaps for the day.

The best part of the day was that after my parents had left and I had crawled into bed my husband came home. He took a 20 minute break after hearing what had happend during the afternoon and into the night to come home and check on me. I felt loved. It was a day that started way too early and ended way to late. I was just very thankful that we had survived the day. I'm hoping next weeks trip to St. George for work won't be quite so event full. Now seriously, thanks Mom, Dad and Hanna for your help that awful day!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Small Town

For a few months now Kory has been working for the Alton Coal Mine. He works the night shift 5pm-3am 5 nights a week. When he 1st started he worked 10 hours a day mon-sat during the day shift but was then bumped to the night shift. The coal mine workers are suppose to rotate shifts so that the same people aren't always on night duty. However, so that I can continue to work 2x a week and we not have to pay for day care Kory volunteered to remain on the night shift. He's been commuting back and forth all this time. If he drives through Zion National Park it can take 1.5 hours-2 hours to get to work or he can go over Cedar Mtn. which takes about 2hours. During the winter it isn't to bad to drive through the park. During the summer it's a different story due to all the tourists. He spends close to 4 hours in the car a day and about $350 a month on gas.

We've been contemplating moving to Alton just for the summer and then before school starts move back to Hurricane. Then we would move to Alton after next years school year on a more permanent basis. Doing this would allow the older kids to see him during the week. Right now Kory's sleeping when they get up and he then leaves for work 45 min. before they get home. Madelyn and Hunter see him friday afternoon for about an hour, sat afternoon and then all day sunday. Moving would also let us save on gas money. We'd also be able to get to know his side of the family better. His parents, 2 sisters, 1 brother and another brother (next month) all live in the same town.

About 3 weeks ago we decided that there was really no point in moving to Alton this summer, back to Hurricane for another school year and then move again to Alton next summer. I hate moving and that would just be too many moves.

Alton is a very small farming community that most people have never heard of. Even with the mine now up and running it hasn't caused to many families to move in since they hired many of the locals. I've been asked how many people live in Alton. Kory usually says "about 100". I

wanting to know more then "about" looked up the census report for 2010.
Drum roll please.......
119 people

+6 (my family)

+5 (Kory's brother and his family next month)


Told you it was small. The town is so small that you don't see stop signs. This is what you see in it's place.

Not having a large population kinda makes it hard for a new comer to find a place to live. There are no apartments, no condomeniums and no town homes. In fact there were only 3 homes that was a possibility for us to live in. One wanted more than we were willing to spend on rent, another was O.K with us living there temporarily but didn't want us to stay too long as the house is used for family vacations. Luckily our 3rd option was willing to rent to us for something we could afford. It's a corner lot and this WHOA sign stands on our corner.

Like all houses they each have the good and the bad. This one's not any different. What I'm really really looking forward to is this front yard. It's HUGE! I took this picture standing on the wrap around porch (another thing I like). It doesn't have a garage but it does have this shed.

I took this picture last tues. When I got to the house to look around it was pouring outside. By the time we left is was hailing/snowing out side (not looking forward to the cold weather).

This is our new garden spot.

The kitchen.

Emily was with us and she fell in love with the attached bar stools.

I'm looking forward to having more cabinets and just a bigger kitchen in general.

The stove sits in the island and has 5 burners. Ooh LaLa.

The master bedroom's bathroom doens't have a normal shower/tub but a sauna.

I don't spend much time in the bathroom but come this winter when it FREEZING outside the sauna just might become our favorite place to be.

On the 2nd floor there are 2 bedrooms. One for the girls and one for the boys. Each room has it's own bathroom. The girls room has pink carpet that's one of the reasons we chose that room for the girls. The boys bathroom has this.....


Who puts a urinal in there house?

As you can imagine my 8 year old is in love already.

I hate cleaning bathrooms and am not to thrilled with having the kids bedrooms having there own bathroom. However, on the bright side I think my oldest 2 children are going to have a little more responsibility when it comes to cleaning bathrooms. No more just cleaning off the counters, washing the mirror, counters and sink. They're going to learn to do a little bit more!

Both kids rooms have there very own loft. While Kory and I wandered the house these 2 stayed up here. I can see the hours of fun spent up here already.

We were planning on moving Memorial Weekend but once schools out there's not much keeping us here. The sooner we move the sooner we get to see more of our dad and not spend so much money on gas. So we've decided to move the day school gets out. That's in 8 days.

Alton has it's own church building. If it didn't the nearest chapel would be about 20 miles away. We will never have church at the most dreaded time (2 pm) like we did in Prescott. Church has always been and will probably always be held at 9 am year after year. My mother in law wasn't joking that the Primary would be almost doubling once we and Kory's brother moved to town. One of the members of the community turned there garage into a post office so that we don't have to drive 30 miles to get mail at the nearest post office. There are no stores in Alton, no movie theatres, no banks, no real place of buisness. We do have a town park that will be across the street. Yeah! The neareast gas station is about 10 miles from town. The kids will be bussed to school about 30 miles away. We don't have to worry about choosing our teachers this year as there is only one teacher per grade. Living is such a small town/community is going to be different. We will become much more self sufficient. I'm not going to quit working and that's a bit of relief knowing that I will be going to the "city" at least once a week. I will have to start planning my weekly menu's again as there won't be any. "Running to the grocery store. Be right back, hun!"

We're going to miss Hurricane. It's been GREAT living closer to family again. The kids love there grandma and grandpa and aunts and uncles. It's been fun to be innvolved with the little things that we've always missed. Despite the tight quarters it's been a true blessing to live in my parents basement apartment. It's been a good year here. I know we're going to miss it. We've made friends and I hate to see us leaving and having to start over AGAIN. Yet it's also a relief to be moving too. Living where we've been has always been a temporary resting stop. A place that would help us get back on our feet. It has really helped us. We've known we'd be moving either this summer or next. By next summer we'll all be settled in, have made friends and we'll have a routine again. Next summer I'll be glad I'm not preparing for another move. The move will already be behind us. We hope to make Alton our home and be settled for the next few years.

My family has a reunion coming up July 4th weekend.This year it just happens to be held across the high way from Alton. Now we all don't have to camp out, rent a hotel too many miles away or find a spot on the floor in Uncle Kyle's cabin with the other 100 people planning on coming. We are moving just in time. We'll make room for whomever wants to stay with us. It'll be fun to have family come visit us in our new home.

Randomness about Madelyn

It's almost been a year now since our family moved from Prescott Valley to Hurricane. In the beginning I think we all struggled a little bit with the change. All of our kids were been born in Arizona. In the 8 years we were living there despite our many moves we always remained in the same ward. We were one of the oldest families that belonged to that ward. We knew EVERYONE and they all knew us. We loved living in Prescott Valley. We left many friends that had become like family to us. I guess thats what happens when you live in one place for so long.

Of all my children, Madelyn, suffered the most. She didn't mind living with Grandma and Grandpa but everything else she didn't like. I purposely moved the kids and I to Utah a few weeks before school started. My hope was that my kids would make friends and have familiar faces when they started a new school with new teachers and new class mates. She did not like our new ward. She didn't like her primary teacher or the kids in her class. I threw a small water party and invited kids from each of my childrens primary classes hoping to start new friendships. Madelyn had fun but didn't want to invite the little girls back to play. She wanted to go back to Prescott.

Very quickly I started to cringe come Sundays. It got so bad that Madelyn would be crying/screaming out of control in the hallways at church. When a Primary worker would try to console her she'd turn her back towards them or push them away. She just refused to go. My biggest mistake was allowing her to come with me or Grandma for a few sundays.When I put my foot down and told her she'd have to start going to her own class the phrase, "all hell broke loose", came true. What a fight it was. She fought me ALL morning about getting ready for church and just getting to church. She'd be crying before sacrament was even over. I tried spanking, time outs, taking her home for a cold shower, taking her home and putting her to bed, yelling at her. I don't know how many times I left her in the hall way at church crying and I myself hid in the mother's lounge crying so she wouldn't see how upset she was making me. It was a HORRIBLE first few weeks at church. I was so embarrased on Sundays becuase of the way she acted. It didn't matter what I did I couldn't stop it. Kory wasn't of much help because he was still in Prescott.

Soon school started. To my embarassement she acted the same way those first 3 weeks of school. I ended up leaving her in her classroom every morning throwing a temper tantrum like a two year old not the 6 year old she was. All of the class room doors have an outside door and we could hear her screaming out on the sidewalk. My parents were great at trying to support me with Kory not being around. Every day my mom would walk the kids to school with me and offer her moral support when I had to leave my screaming child throwing her tantrum. Her teacher said she continued to be uspet for about 5 minutes and then would calm down. Needless to say I so very THANKFUL that she doesn't act like this anymore.

This is Mrs. Seese. Both Madelyn and I ADORE her. And Mrs. Seese ADORES Madelyn. She is the best and I mean the best teacher we've had. She is always doing fun things with her students. She has a sense of humor, she is quick to give praise and is patient with her classroom of 6 years olds. When I asked for a picture she knelt down by Madelyn and wrapped her arm around her. We love Mrs. Seese. We will miss her in 2nd grade.

A few weeks ago Madelyn lost her 2nd top front tooth. When she came out of the bathroom from rinsing her mouth out she was almost laughing hysterically. When asked what was so funny she gave me HUMONGOUS grin and said see! Nope I didn't see anything so funny. Finally she told me..."My tooth left an M for ME or Madelyn". What a funny girl.

Madelyns asked me to post this picture. Since I posted Hunter's last school project she didn't want to be left behind either. For the past 6 weeks Madelyn has had to complete a short book report weekly. Along with the book report she usually had to do some sort of small project to go along with it. With each book report she earned "things" for an ice cream sundae. For instance the 1st week she earned the bowl, the 2nd week the spoon, then a scoop of ice cream followed by different toppings, etc. Her very last book report project was to create a puppet to go along with her book. Madelyn's chosen book that week was about a balerina. Thanks to, we came up with this.

I drew the ballerina (I am not an artist and will never claim to be). She then cut it out, colored some clothes on along with all the facial expressions. We then took a small piece of bubble wrap and used it as her tutu. She was very proud of her ballerina. She came home from school the next day with a bursting ego. Everyone thought her puppet was the BEST!

Way to go Madelyn. We love you.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Pre-School's Out!

School's Out for Emily.


Two weeks ago I had my last teaching week. Our theme was flowers/gardens and mothers.This worked great with Mother's Day being that weekend. I had each child plant 2 cups. One with a flower already bloomed and another with a seed. I'm hoping the other children had more luck with there seed cup then Miss Emily did. After preschool we left her cups outside on the sidewalk, since it was "accidently" watered too much. Without us knowing Brayden dumped the cup out and scattered the dirt and the eeny, weeny, tiny little seeds all over. Lucky for us he left her b;ooming flower alone which has since been planted in Grandma's flower pot. The children's gift to there mother's was a laminated picture book mark. The kids got to color and write there name on the back.
This past tuesday was graduation at someone elses house.
The kids decorated there very own cap with tassle.

While the glitter glue was drying on there caps we made t-shirts for everyone.

The mom had bought a white t-shirt for each child. Each preschooler chose a paint color and then left there hand print on each shirt. The mom's then wrote the children's name under the hand print. I loved this idea. Emily has had a lot of fun this year making new friends. She loves her shirt with all there hand prints on it.

While waiting for all the paint projects to dry we celebrated the school year being over by having an ice cream social. We then had the kids go outside with their hats and diploma's for a group picture. There were 5 in our group but one of the boys wasn't participating/cooperating very well. He wouldn't be nice to his friends so his mom took him home early. So unforunately we didn't get a full group shot.

It didn't seem to matter which direction we had the kids stand in as the sun seemed to be in all of there eyes all of the time, so they claimed. Emily looks like she's throwing a fit here but she wasn't. She was just complaining with the rest of them that sun was too bright. This was the only picture I have with no one covering there face with there hands. Yet notice how each girls hands are pretty close! It's amazing I got this one.

I'm so happy that I was able to put together a preschool group this year. Taking part in this kind of "mom co-op" is very satisfying. Emily loves attending school but I don't have to pay for it. I don't have to be the teacher every week but I do get a turn at teaching. I enjoy having my turn to teach. I love finding creative and fun ways to teach the kids something they don't know already. I love seeing the excitement when they can tell me the letter of the alphabet correctly or when they write there name by themselves for the very first time. I love there excitement to learn. Our preschool was succesful this year. It was more then just a play group that got together twice a week. I'm thankful for the new friends we made because of preschool this year. Till next year...


This past Saturday Hunter was baptised.

Our lives are changing ever so quickly. I'm feeling older knowing I have an 8 year old. Isn't he hadsome?

I'm not sure what to call him anymore. He's definetely not my baby. He's not a toddler nor a little boy either. He seems to old to call him my big boy. I've always considered Youth 12 year's or older. You know when they reach the age of YW or YM, when they can attend YOUTH Conference. I was looking at a clearance rack the other day and noticed that a shirt in his size was labeled Youth Small. However I don't think I can tell others about him by claiming him as my Youth Small. So for now I've decided he's my son. No need to have little or big or youth involved. Just my son!
Hunter and his Dad.

I took this idea from a friend's baptism last year.

I had a large matted picture of Hunter along with a marker. Everyone who attended signed there name. This picture was taken at the beginning so not alot of names yet. Now that the baptism is over it's been fun to look the picture over and read everyones name that attended this special day for Hunter.

After the baptism we held a luncheon under the pavilion. All but 1 of Kory's 8 siblings were present. The kids had plenty of cousins to play with. This is Hunter with 2 of his favortie boy cousins his age.

This is Emily with her Grandma and Grandpa Heaton. I loved her smile so thought I'd include it too.

Having Hunter baptised has been a fun and exciting experience but it's also been a little scary. As a mom I find myself trying to protect my children. I want to help them as much as possible. I only want the best for them. Knowing that he is now held ACCOUNTABLE for his actions with his Heavenly Father is a little unsettling. I know our Heavenly Father is a loving Father and he too only wants whats best for all of us. However, I'm not sure I'm ready to have Hunter be held ACCOUNTABLE. I know I'm not perfect and neither is Hunter after all he's 8 and a boy. Need I say more? I only hope I have taught him and will continue to teach him that there are more important things in life then his skate board, army men, computer games and his bike. I hope I have taught him right from wrong. I hope I have taught him enough about the atonement, and will continue to teach, that he will know what he needs to do when he has done something wrong and needs to ask for forgiveness. I hope I can continue to teach him how to be ACCOUNTABLE for his actions, his words and his deeds.
I am proud of you Hunter.

I love you!