Wednesday, October 31, 2012

pictures speak a thousand words

 Brandon and Cori sent us this gem! Jason's twin!

 Luke's favorite trick.  Rootbeer in a soy sauce...he waited a long time for it to be empty for him to do this!

just wanted to show that yes our kids are learning piano.

 crazy hair day at school.

baylie pushing ivy in a stroller while jason cleaned the garage

 reading is what luke does 50 percent of his life.

paisley rocking the stylish outfit.

 i was a zombie and we did the thriller dance at our ward trunk or treat.

go big or go home right?

 ivy with her little buddy at church.  happy halloween!

Missions are hard work!

I know it must be really hard not knowing the language but you can't be falling asleep during discussions Mom! Looks like your companion has some issues to bring up during the next companionship inventory....

Just kidding Mom, I love and miss you! (We'll post some pics of our Halloween activities here shortly)

Halloween Carnival

So the youth were in charge of the annual carnival for the primary kids tonight so we went to that for some fun and games. Brynn was our little pirate lassy and now we get to eat her candy!! Her bum says "i've got a loaded booty" which is usually true these days since eating "real" food. Tomorrow we're going trick-or-treating and she'll be a monkey so i'll put pics up of all of us. I always forget to include me and dal in photos. I love halloween, i bet they don't have it there huh? xos!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

40 degrees means Hot !

Well, yesterday we spent much of our P-day cleaning and straightening up the meeting house -- a nice good-size brick building on the east side of town.  But we paid for it later since the air-conditioning wasn't working right and it was 40+ degrees outside !!  I know, you say so what -- but that's 40 degrees centigrade which equals 104 degrees farenheit !!  So we were dying by the time we got home and spent the rest of the evening sitting in front of the air-conditioner.  Ahh, the joys of missionary work. 

But before we get too far along here, want to thank you for putting so many great pics on the blog -- starting with Amanda's sweet birthday present -- G's list of 30 things he loves about you.  We heard from G and it sounds like things are still very preliminary.  But it doesn't really matter what the diagnosis is, we have the priesthood.  Then there's Cori's post -- thank you for bringing us up to date, and don't ever feel sheepish about putting stuff on the blog -- that's what it's for.  (We were hoping you would get on board pretty soon.)  Looks like you're right in the thick of things, with kids going every which direction.  Enjoy this time -- it goes fast.  And I think Erin must own stock in Disneyland by now !!  But why not? -- you only live once.  Those were some great shots of the park too -- even if your "hiking" was on a paved walk.  Congratulations on your calling too -- it's always fun to work with the youth of the Church, especially when some of those youth are your own kids.  And finally, we have Dal trying to teach little Brynn how to put on a game face.  I think she's already got it down though -- she just looks totally confident and unimpressed with the competition.

As far as news from our end -- we're really busy trying to put a branch back together and get a new district presidency up to speed.  We'd forgotten how much work is involved in running a ward or a branch, but I already have a counselor to help so things are looking up.  Just finding leaders for the various organizations is a challenge.  And then there's the District (stake) -- we now have a new president who's 31 years old and only been a member of the church a couple of years, but understands the nature of his calling, is teachable and eager to learn.  What a difference from the previous guy !!  The missionaries in our branch are baptizing up a storm -- we've had a dozen baptisms in the last few weeks, completing 4 families and yielding 6 potential MP holders.  So they're not just baptizing women and children, which apparently has been the case down here for years and years.  There really needs to be a re-focus on retention and strengthing the local units -- but I guess that's why we're here.

I have to say this has been one of the most challenging experiences that we've ever had.  It's hard to describe, but here we are in a totally foreign environment -- foreign language, foreign culture, foreign church in some respects, without many of the conveniences we're used to, no car, no peers, no family near-by, in a city full of litter and clutter, poverty everywhere, oppresive heat, and people who are nice enough but just seem to be "oblivious to the obvious" -- and all this coming on the heels of a wonderful eight year experience in the Graham WA Stake.  There's so much here that needs fixing, it's deprssing at times.  Those of you who have been on foreign missions understand what we're talking about.  Yet we know this is where we're supposed to be.  The Lord knows just how to tutor us, so the rendering down and spiritual insights have been invaluable.  I guess what it teaches us again is that there is a price for discipleship -- if we would follow Him, we better be ready to wade through whatever.  And so Mom and I remind each other almost daily that it's worth the price if it gets us there. 

So I'll conclude with that and tell you all again how much we love and respect you.  With all these holidays coming up, we are going to miss you for sure, but please put lots of stuff on the blog and we'll enjoy the times together that way this year.

XOS, love you, love you, kiss, hug,
Dad and Mom/G-pa and G-ma 


Monday, October 22, 2012

Dal's B-day

Well we celebrated on Sat. by spending the day at Bishop's house (i had a board mtg. and he helped tile) watching the BYU game and relaxing before our night on the town. I took him to Porque No? which has been tradition now 2 years in a row, then met up with his cousins for a ping-pong tourney. His cousin's husband works at this insanely awesome advertising building and i just might try to get a job there so i can drink free pop, play bball on my breaks, lounge in the huge sofas and work in the 6th floor bird's nest. I was in the championship of course but dropped my last 2 games to Lance Harrison....i'm shamed.

Then yesterday on his real bday we just had church as normal (no ditching for us). Started out with some ward council, more meetings for Dal, i had to teach YW's then home to watch Madagascar 3, eat Jambalya and the chocolate trifle i made. He got your card which was funny plus a pass to the Nike Employee store, a Darth Vader shirt which he didn't like (he claims to be a big fan) and some other stuff that hasn't come in the mail yet. All in all it was a fun weekend. Now on to the rainy season and some super fun holidays. We are now a 2 crib owning family and the closer to Feb. it gets i keep thinking "how the heck am i going to have 2 babies?" Brynn is super chill but busy of course and it'll just be a little crazy. Wish we lived even closer to family but hopefully some day. 

They're 4-0!

She breaks the rim daily...

Welp, is it starting to get nice there yet? How did the reorganization go? What do you want for Christmas? Miss you guys! XOS!

Updates from the Morley's

Hey there!  We've had a couple of interesting weeks.  The kids recently had a 2 1/2 week break from school and I tried not to go crazy. Ha Ha We spent a few days at Disneyland.  We just can't get enough of that place I guess.  I suppose there will come a time that it loses some of it's charm, but we're not there yet and bonus: everyone loves it!  So that's a fun place for our family to visit, though I did threaten to go solo with the kids next time since Rob is the Ride Nazi!  He's all about the efficiency of riding the rides and I'm a little more about the ambiance. So, if you can believe it, we are at odds occasionally! But we manage to enjoy it nonetheless.

We spent several days at home lounging around.  What good is a break without a few days of no agenda? The kids enjoyed that.  Then we spent a few days in St. George with two of my friends, Julie and Claudia and their girls. We had talked several weeks ago about doing something together over our school breaks.  St. George was the result.  It was really fun.  Saturday we spent the day at an outdoor market.  I gave the kids $20 and said when it's gone it's gone.  It was funny watching them agonizing over wants and prices. But they didn't ask for another dime, so I guess lesson learned!  Alex got himself a pocket knife and a rabbit pelt.  Vienna got herself some hair clips and some bracelets and Reagan actually spent her own money and got a nice little ring and some banana bread. That night we went to the outdoor theater there and watched the play Hairspray.  Lots of singing and dancing and very entertaining.  We also spent some time in Zion National Park, a place I've never been.  It was a beautiful day and we did some nature walking.  You can't really call walking a paved path hiking, but the kids loved it.  We saw, and stopped for, many squirrels that are closer to being tame than wild and they'd come right up to anyone hoping for a morsel of something tasty.  You're not supposed to feed or touch them, but some nuts from our backpack sorta fell out right near a squirrel and darn it all, if he didn't find them and stick them in his cheek!  He kept sniffing around for more, and then decided he'd found all there was to find and went to nibble on them on a brick ledge.  And darn it all, if he didn't brush right up next to Reagan's hand!  We also caught sight of some white tail deer and got some great close shots of a herd of big-horn sheep.  Amazing!  We were so close to them.  We also toured Brigham Young's Winter Home.  It was pretty cool.  Alex was SOOO impressed that there was a waffle maker in the kitchen.  Apparently he didn't notice the wood-burning stove, no running water, no counters etc.  Just the important stuff!  We all had a good time.  I'd love to go back and do some serious biking and hiking without worrying if the kids will fall over a cliff.

Also, I received a new calling today in church. Drum roll please....... First Counselor in the Young Women's. No matter where I go this calling seems to follow me.  Except this time Reagan will be right there with me.  I had a nice break with Primary for the last two years and now it's time to hang out with the yw again!  I've literally served in yw's in every ward I've lived in.  Twice in our last ward.  But, I honestly don't think there's a better place to serve than with the yw of the church.  My patriarchal blessing says that my influence will be especially great among the youth and after nearly 20 years of serving in the church and most of that spent with the youth I feel blessed to keep working with them.  I hope I can serve them well.  Most of the Mia Maids have recently turned 14, Reagan included, so I have a pretty steady group to work with and I hope we can really become a family.  I will miss my little Primary class and my little girls in Activity Days though.

Our prayers are with you.  We love you. We miss you.  It seems like you've been out longer than you have and maybe that's just wishful thinking as the holidays approach and we know we won't see you.  But you are in our thoughts and prayers.  Talk soon......

Friday, October 19, 2012

keeping my promise.

hello from las vegas! 
mis match day at school. that would be funny if they dressed like that every day! say DER grandpa!
east side. enough said. but i will say....2 doors down, police were out WITH THEIR GUNS DRAWN. i skee-daddled out of there and drove around the block, and this is the backyard. guns out standing on cars.  never a dull moment.
mackenzie's float for homecoming! 

cannon having a party too on his float on the back right!
see who's taller?  i think its keaton by the hair.
brinkley crafting while we listen to campaigns. we miss you grandma!
brinkley and beck. aww little beck. we went to go get nacho's and popcorn at LVHS football game!

we promised we could you posted on things going on under our roof! hope you can see we are still alive and well here in las vegas! i know we email and you know more of the details so i wont go into details here. i feel all sheepish posting pics on your blog! we love you and you are in our every prayer! i love seeing the WHOLE family here too! 
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Tuesday, October 16, 2012


Feels like we've been a little MIA posting to your blog. Hopefully you have been looking at our blog and seeing that we are still very much alive. G's been busy with work and this new fish tank they bought to make the work enviornment nicer. Turns out they didn't do their homework on big fish tanks and expensive fish and ended up killing a couple and had to send the rest to a fish guy until the tank resettled. A true Fish Fiasco! I told him the next time they want to amp up the work attitude they need to just hand out gift cards with funny jokes attached.

My family was all in town for my brother's sealing, the Utah State game and Conference Weekend. It was sooooo much fun and bit exhausting. My brother let me plan, decorate and make all the food for the luncheon (of course my mom and sisters helped prepare the food). It turned out really nice and we had a great time. As we all know there is nothing like having that sealing power bless your marriage!

Oh and I turned 30! Thank you for the bday card - I put the money towards a new lens for my camera. Your son took me out for a wonderful dinner and showered me with gifts, including this very tender list of reasons why he loves me.

Thank you for your email and your prayers. We have felt so much power and peace just from the prayers of everyone around us this past week. And thank you to all that fasted and prayed for G on Sunday. We felt a reassurance of God's love and His plan for us - can't say what that might be but we know He is in control and will bless us how He sees fit. We go back in next Wednesday to review test results and probably have more tests ordered. Whether this trial is short or long we are grateful for the increase in Spirit and faith that it has already taken place in our home. We love you all and continue to pray for you in Argentina!

XOS Garmanda & Emma
ps- check out our blog for latest pictures of Emma!

It's All Good

Well, first some commentary.  Hope you all enjoyed General Conference as much as we did -- it already seems like a month ago.  We watched some in Spanish and some in English, but Elder Holland's talk was definitely the high-light of the Conference for us.  He is so passionate about his subject and articulate in his delivery!  This next weekend we have our District (stake) Conference too -- it'll be kinda nice not to have to conduct or anything, though I do have to give a talk in the priesthood meeting and Mom's playing the piano in the General Session.  The presidency's going to be reorganized, which we are very happy about.  The outgoing president has been difficult to work with -- he even threatened to charge me with "apostacy" if I didn't disclose the identity of some members who had issues with him -- so he could "purge" them.  Talk about unrighteous dominion!!
Otherwise, the work is progressing -- slowly with little surges here and there, but still very gratifying to see the people try to embrace the gospel fully. 
Meanwhile, thank you all for putting so many great photos on the blog.  First, Baylie's family portrait -- those things are precious.  I'll bet it has been nice to have Jason home more too -- as long as it doesn't go on too long, right?  And Darek's marathon pictures -- number 2371 will be forever remembered.  By the way, who's that Freddy Krueger guy sitting on the other side of the bon-fire?  Do you realize that you actually look thinner in the finish-line pictures than in the before-the-race pictures? -- guess running 26 miles will do that to you.  As for the summer pics -- yeah, why don't you live in CA? -- so we can come visit you there.  Then there's little "blue buns".  Man, that's gotta be some sort of child abuse or something -- covering up evidence of the muchas spankins!
Beyond that, we're thinking a lot about our family of course.  Mom was saying the other day that it seems like we have a kind of symbiotic relationship going on -- we feel the power of your prayers in our behalf and you're receiving added blessings because of our missionary service.  It may not feel like it all the time -- things are still challenging (Garlan, Jason & others), but we feel like our whole family is being watched over and strengthed as we strive together.  We are really proud of all of you and the kind of people you are.  Thank you. 
Now for a couple of pics.


Well, I can't seem to get the other picture to upload so you get two of the same thing -- two guys cutting the grass in front of the vacant house across the street -- Mom couldn't stand looking at it one more day and since she doesn't have her own riding mower down here, she paid these two guys 20 pesos (about $4) to cut it down.  Looks great, huh! 
Well, we'll say adios, nos vemos por ahora.  Besos a todos.  Keep the pics and mensajes coming.
Dad & Mom


family portrait

Artwork by Baylie, kindergarten

Love you, miss you and we are praying for you every day!

Life is good in California!
If only this dang heat would go away for good, bring on the hot chocolate.
Luke is a scoring maniac in football.  I'll try and upload a video soon.
 The girls are building forts and coloring every day.
Its so awesome having Jason home all the time.
Big hugs from us!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

St. George

Friday night at the Marathon Expo
Had so many people asking for my autograph. Weird.
(thanks again Mars for the cool new shirt!)


4:30am Drop-off to get bused 26.2 miles away.

Waiting around at the Starting Line for almost 2 hrs. 
Everyone huddles around dozens of bonfires trying to stay warm. 
Waiting was the worst. Nerves won't go away. Just waiting and waiting in the cold.

Overhearing others' conversations and how this is their 11th marathon, 30th marathon, etc.
A few of us first-timers find each other and bond quickly. "What did we get ourselves into?"

 Everyone gathering to start.
That's the Starting Line in front of those balloons. 
Took 10 mins after the gun just to reach it. Over 7,000 runners (all of us insane). 
I started out running near the 4:30 Pacer. And no, that for sure wasn't my finishing time.

Finish Line: 5hrs 47mins

5,338th Place!!!
...out of 5,696 who finished! 

Only 300-something runners finished after me.
(Waste you 300-something!)


 Thanks again for everyone's support, advice, training music, gifts, well-wishes, texts, and prayers! Thanks to Amberli for supporting me and being my cheerleader.
Definitely needed all of it to finish. 
Marathon's ain't easy!

But glad I did it. 
Just something I wanted to do for me.

 Anyway, where's the next Iron Man happening? 

Monday, October 8, 2012

Conference Weekend

Well I can't say i was out running a marathon or anything that cool, but watching Conference was really good. In between sessions i got a pedicure, my hair trimmed, new glasses oh and of course, painted Brynn's bum. It's official, she's part of the legacy now. 

Hope you enjoyed the sessions too! XOS!