Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Girls Night at the Conference Center

Also on Easter weekend (but distinct enough to deserve it's own entry), we attended the General Women's Session of conference at the conference center in Salt Lake City. My stake had received a small number of tickets, so I hesitantly asked the stake Relief Society president if I could have seven. She said she had only allocated three or four per ward, but last year they had tickets go unused, so she didn't mind giving me that many. I was so excited! Not only would I get to attend the women's session with family (I've been going alone for the last several years) but we would be in the conference center, which is always cool. I knew it would be a neat experience for Amy, Emma, and Madi, too, who are rarely in town over conference and able to attend. I also decided that since this was a special occasion that wouldn't likely be repeated soon, I would take Savannah as well. She is still a few months shy of her 8th birthday (the minimum age to attend), but I didn't think anyone would mind that she was there.

She had a great time being one of the "big girls" and did pretty well through the session. I brought her a notebook to keep her quiet, but it actually had the opposite effect as she was constantly writing notes to us and whispering loudly as she passed them down the row. Despite her distractions, it was still a lovely conference with a service-centered focus and some really touching video presentations.

Afterwards we went to Leatherby's for a late dinner and ice cream. Madi and Savannah shared a huge banana split. It wouldn't be a true girl's night out without some ice cream!

I know it sounds cliche, but I am so incredibly fortunate to have such wonderful examples in the mothers, sisters, and nieces of my Pendleton family. It was such a treat to get to spend this perfect evening with them.

A Hunting We Will Go

Easter weekend was a whirlwind. I generally don't have too many complaints about the calendar, but if we could get rid of daylight savings, move Christmas to January, and pick a static date for Easter I would sure appreciate it. It sneaked up on us this year and so we had to cram everything in at the last minute.

Luckily Grandma Pendleton is a Easter expert, and she always plans amazing egg hunts and makes sure we have plenty of eggs to dye. This year we tried some shrink wrap on our eggs which was actually really cool, super easy, and not messy at all. But when it came time to peel them.... it was completely the opposite.

We got all the grandkids together (including the Katschkes who were in town for spring break) for a big egg hunt. We had to designate certain areas of the park for different age groups, but even the littlest cousins figured it out by the end.

Our kids have the best cousins in the world. It melted my heart to see them team up and help Savannah get an egg out of a tree. 

The next day (Easter Sunday) Jeff and I spoke in church, then we booked it over to listen to his aunt and uncle give their mission homecoming address, followed by an extended family lunch. Although it was busy, it was a wonderful day full of family and smiles. Another highlight was the chance we had to attend a performance of Rob Gardner's Lamb of God before the weekend. Lamb of God has been one of my favorite Easter traditions for several years, and this was a spectacular production. We invited Jeff's parents, Grandma Smith and the Rodas' to come with us, introducing several of them to the music for the first time. It was a moving experience, made more so by the team of dramatic signers that interpreted the entire production. The whole week was a wonderful time to reflect on the life of our Savior and what that means to our family.