Sunday, December 28, 2008

Happy Birthday Michael!

Happy Birthday to my wonderful husband Mike. We have been married for 18 years and I am so blessed to have him to spend my life with. He is so understanding, patient, kind, and supportive. He's loved me whether I was fat or thin, cranky, stressed, and the list could go on. He's supported me in my church callings, which have been demanding at times. He's supported me through school and surgeries. I guess what I am trying to say is that he's always been there for me. He is an incredible Dad! Our kids are so blessed to have a Dad that supports them in all the things they are involved in. He is the calming voice in our family. I am so glad that our children can talk to him about anything. I love how he makes me laugh. He came into my life when I really needed to laugh and he's kept me laughing for many years since. I hope he always knows how much our family loves him!!

Christmas at the Keils!

We had a fun filled Christmas at our house, which began with the kids opening their traditional Christmas Eve PJ's. The picture above shows a glimpse of the evening. We played guitar hero and Apples to Apples. Frank, Mike's Dad took a liking to the game and ended up winning. Mike's parents flew in from Texas on the 18th to spend Christmas with us and will be leaving tomorrow. It's been a lot of fun playing games and watching movies together.

Even though we have teenagers they still want to get up at the crack of dawn to open presents. Since Grandma and Grandpa were here we told them we wouldn't be getting up until 7:00 a.m. Eric tried to persuade me to let him get up at 5:00, but that was not in the cards. Eric didn't sleep much and resorted to looking for a snack at 1:00a.m. in his gym bag, but no luck. He kept saying that he didn't know why he was so hungry during the night and I told him it was because he was awake all night. Our kids always sleep in the same room together on Christmas Eve so Katy didn't do much sleeping thanks to her little brother. Anyways...when 7:00 a.m. finally hit we went in to get them and they had actually went back to sleep so for the first time in many years we had to wake the kids up to open presents. We had a great time and enjoyed our day together. Katy has been wanting a deep fryer for years and her wish came true. She hasn't put her ipod down since she got it either. Eric was happy to get his Xbox and war game (why did I buy a war game)? The electic shaver was a hit for Eric too (is my baby really old enough for a razor)? Much fun was had by all. Playing Rock Band was a highlight and the traditional Christmas nap was had by most. It was just a great day to spend together as a family and reflect on our Saviors birth.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Gift Idea!

So many of you know that I am not a crafty person and I don't come up with many ideas on my own, so here's an idea I stole from the Oprah show (I love that show.) Last week she had a show on her favorite things and made all the gift ideas very inexpensive and this was an idea. She talked about getting boxes and decorating them and then putting notes in the box telling the person what you love about them. I loved the idea so that's what we did. Every Sunday we have a family meeting and at the end we go around and tell each person what we love about them so this was just an extension of our meeting. The great thing is that this time we wrote them down so everyone would have them forever.

So this what I did I went to Walmart and bought little square boxes that had lids (they cost .97 cents) and then we decorated them with things we had around here. Paper, flowers, ribbon, cotton balls, and stones. Katy, Grandma, and I had a good time decorating them. This may turn into a tradition for our family. Maybe we'll make a new box every year.

Keil Christmas Party

Last night we had our Keil Christmas party at our house. The party consisted of Mike's parents, his Uncle and lots of cousins. I think a fun time was had by all. We had lots of food and fun. I counted 37 people here, which made for a great time. I especially loved having little kids at the house. They are so fun and I love having them around. I really appreciate all the help Mike and the kids gave me to get ready for the crowd. I couldn't have done it without them. The white elephant gift was a hoot too.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Missing my Family (The Caldwells)

So tonight is my family Christmas party and I couldn't make it down to Cedar City to be with them, so today I have been reflecting on childhood memories. I grew up in a large family and at the time I thought it was annoying, but I am so glad to have each one of them. As I reflect on my childhood memories of Christmas at the Caldwells (realize my memory is going) so this could be a figment of my imagination. I remember that my Mom had made us these great stockings. I loved them and thought my Mom was the most crafty lady around. We had an advent calendar that I thought was truly wonderful. The only thing I didn't like was that with 6 kids it seemed like you had to wait so long for your turn to pull the next surprise out and hang on the tree. My Mom always decorated the house so warm and cozy. I still love going to her house at Christmas and feeling that same feeling. We acted out the Christmas story a few different years at FHE. With 6 kids there never seemed to be a shortage of a baby Jesus. Every year we helped my Mom make hard tack candy. It was so fun. It probably was a big hassle for her, but we loved being in the kitchen with her. Every Christmas Eve we got to open one present(I think it was usually PJ's). It seemed like every year my Mom was explaining that with a big family we wouldn't be getting as many presents as other kids in much smaller families. We usually got three presents, which I think was just enough. I wish I had stuck to that quota with my own children. More isn't always better. My Mom was always making gifts for my grandparents. Money was tight with a big family and she was always tried to do something meaningful for the grandparents and still save money. I remember her crosstiching, making quilts, and some kind of dough project that she baked after. I know that description doesn't do the project justice, but it was once again another crafty thing that only a very crafty lady can do (why did I not inherit this trait?) On Christmas Eve Mom made lots of snacks and we got to eat up and I think we even got to drink pop, which was a real treat. We played games and before we went to bed my Dad always read the Christmas story out of the bible. What a dear memory...the whole family together listening to the story of the birth of our Savior. After that we all "slept" together in the same room (I don't recall much sleeping.) We watched the clock every hour, knowing we could not wake Mom and Dad until 6:00 a.m. Then we were able to get up and each of us watched as each of us unwrapped their presents. Of course we always had our traditional quiche, bran muffin, and wassil breakfast. Mom spent so much time baking and cooking to make the holidays nice for us all. I guess that's why I feel like I need to do the same. Mike always tells me to do something easy for Christmas breakfast and I insist on following in my Mothers footsteps. Although I really don't like wassil so that is not a part of our tradition.

So I guess the point of this long post is to let my family know how much I love each one of them and how grateful I am for fond memories of Christmas' past. Thank you Mom for putting all that time into making everything so nice. You probably wondered at times if it was worth it and I think it was. Thank you Chris, Jon, Robyne, Tom, and Kari for the long chats on Christmas Eve wondering if we heard the reindeers on the roof and what our gifts may be. Thank you Dad for reading to us from the Bible. Reminding us what the real meaning of Christmas is. I love all of you and wish you all a very Merry Christmas!!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Christmas Traditions at the Keils!

So my friend Miriam suggested jotting down our Christmas traditions so here we go...
(The kids were not amused about the picture in front of the tree. I think the hat pushed Katy over the edge.

1. Every year the kids get a new ornament for the tree. We write their name and the year on it. Then when they move out they will have some of their own ornaments. My tree will be bare, but that' okay. It's been fun to see how their interestes have changed and the different ornaments they pick the older they get. Katy picked out two of the same Winnie the Pooh two years in a row. I guess she really liked him.

2. The kids always open one present on Christmas Eve. Usually it's either PJ's or a game that we can play that evening.

3. We always have a big breakfast Christmas morning, which usually consists of quiche, cinnamon rolls, and crab dip. My Mom always did this growing up and I loved that tradition so we've continued it in our family.

4. We always stay home on Christmas morning. We let the kids play with their new toys and spend time together. This is a tradition Mike insisted on. He didn't want the kids to be ripped away from their toys to go visit family so we do that later in the day around dinner time.

5. On Christmas Eve we have lots of snacks and play games. There's always Christmas music playing and after we do games Mike reads the Christmas story out of the Bible and he also reads "How the Grinch Stole Christmas". When the kids were little he started reading the Grinch in this silly voice and they loved it so now they insist he still reads it that way.

6. The last few years this has become a tradition...Katy puts up and arranges the nativity scene abd Eric puts up the Christmas Village. I think they look forward to their specific decorating job.

7. Every year I buy each kid a special book that has a special message that can relate to their life. This has become so fun for me and I hope it is special to them. I spend lots of time at Deseret Book looking for just the right book and then I always write a special message inside the book for them and date it. Hopefully someday they will enjoy reading those books to their own children.

Well that's about it for us. I think this year I am going to copy Miriam and start wrapping the stocking gifts too. I liked that idea, because we all know kids love to unwrap things. Thanks for the idea. Anyone else reading this let's here your family traditions. It's fun to see what other families are doing.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Thankful for Special Times With Family!

This is not a great picture of me because I can't seem to keep my eyes open when I get my picture taken, but it's a good one of Chris, Kari, and Tom. This past weekend we had a great Thanksgiving with my Mom, Don, and 3 of my siblings (we missed Robyne, Sharon, and Jon). It's always great when we can get together and spend some time eating and chatting. I am sure many of you know that I am the oldest in my family and I have been accused many times for being the second Mom, which for years I took offense too, but I love my Mom and am proud to know that my brothers and sisters considered me as a second one. I don't think they always loved my bossing them around or giving advice, but I hope they all know how much I love them. I would do anything for any one of them. They have grown into responsible adults that I am proud to call my family. When I was growing up I wasn't sure I loved having such a big family, but now I wouldn't have it any other way. I wish we could have all been together, but life takes us different places and that's not always possible. It just makes it that much more of a treat when we all do get together. I am grateful we got to spend time with my Mom and Stepdad. I always love sitting and talking to my Mom. She's one my best friends and I am so blessed she's mine. I also love being with all the neices and nephews. I love being an aunt and love when the kids call me Aunt Angie. I am so glad my brothers and sisters blessed me with the privledge of loving their little ones. There's nothing greater than being with family. I will miss not being with them at Christmas, but I am glad we got to spend Thanksgiving together.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Making Pies

This morning Katy and I made pies for our Thanksgiving feast. Yes I know it should be a day of rest, but today was the only day we were going to get it in. We made two pumpkin, one cherry, one apple, and one peach. I really wanted to just buy them, but Katy really wanted to make them so we did. Yes, we made our own pie crust. I got a great recipe years ago at a Homemaking activity and have used it ever since. Hopefully they will taste yummy at our Thanksgiving feast.

Date with Katy!

So this is not a picture of us on our date, but she wouldn't let me take one of her last night so this is a fairly recent one of us. Last night Katy and I went to the Gateway and did a little shopping and then went to see the Twilight movie. I haven't wanted to say a lot about the Twilight series fearing I would sound like a freak, but I loved the series. Now I am not a reader. If I read it is usually a self help book (because I need help in many areas) but Katy had read the series and begged me to give it a try. My Mom and Katy are good readers. My Mom constantly has a book in hand and Katy Loves to read if it's a book she's interested in. I am so glad she picked up the reading passion. So after Katy's pleading I gave the first book a try and fell in love. I continued to read the other 3 immediately after. I have 2 chapters left in the 4th book and hoping to finish this weekend. I can't believe how much I have enjoyed these books it is so unlike me, but it has been so fun for me and Katy to discuss them as I have read slowly along. So we have anxiously been waiting for the movie to come out and we bought our tickets the other day and went last night. We had a great time and really enjoyed the movie. It was such a fun date for us girls. After the movie we chatted the whole way home about what we liked about the movie and how we had pictured certain characters differently then they looked in the movie. It was a great Mother Daughter time. My sweet little girl is growing up way too fast for me and every minute that we spend togehter is a treasured one!!!

Just a side note while we were on our girl date the boys had a date to watch the Utes and Cougars play. Us girls knew it would be very loud downstairs (another reason for us to leave). Yippee the Utes won! Mike and Eric were very happy.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Our Family's Grateful!

So I know it's not even Thanksgiving, but I am excited for Christmas so I had to change my blog to a Christmas theme. I've wanted to do it for days and finally when my sister Robyne gave in and did it so I decided I could too. I am going to put my decorations up this weekend. I went visiting teaching yesterday and the sister we went to visit is so decked out for Christmas. Her house is so darling with all of her Christmas things. Anyways...

Since Thanksgiving is around the corner I wanted to write down some of the things we are thankful for...

Eric says he's thankful for health, his family, and his soccer playing abilities. Katy is grateful for her family, freedom of speech, her friends,and the right to vote. It's interesting how things have changed from the days when Eric was grateful for horses and Santa. Katy was grateful for barbies and her Dad playing barbies with her.
I am thankful for so many things, but especially to be a Wife and Mother. One thing I know for sure is that true happiness does not come from the things we own, but the time we spend with our families. I love being with my family. They make me so happy abd I love them. I am so thankful that Mike has a job that provides for our family. I am grateful for my testimony and the comfort it brings to me. I am so grateful for good health. Last year at this time I had just had surgery and felt rotten so I am so grateful to feel good and to do the things I want to with my family. We are truly blessed and I am so grateful for all that Heavenly Father has blessed us with!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Happy Birthday To My Bestie!

Today is my best friend Colleen's birthday. Colleen and I have been best friends since I was 12 years old. We met at Young Womens, I was so excited and scared to go in with all the girls, but Colleen instantly became my friend. I felt so cool because she's two years older than me and actually wanted to be my friend. We have been best friends ever since. What I love about Colleen is that I can tell her anything and know that she will never judge me. She makes me laugh everytime we're together. She's never too busy to listen. Colleen is one of the most optimistic people I know. She's always looking for the positive side of everything. She's not afraid to be honest with me and let me know when I've made a mistake. When I am with her I want to be a better person. She's a great Mom to 3 cute boys and a devoted wife to her very busy Husband Terry. Every year Colleen and I go to the BYU Womens Conf. together with my sisters and Mom. She's just a part of the family. I love going together because it's always a great time when we're together. I owe Colleen a lot, she's kept many of my secrets,helped me laugh when I wanted to cry and best of all she introduced me to my husband Mike. Colleen is the best and I am so blessed to have such a dear friend!!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

One more year in my 30's!

My 39th birthday was on Friday the 14th. Yikes only one more year in my 30's! On Friday Mike, Katy , Eric, and I went to dinner at Cafe Rio and then went to see the movie Forever Young. We went to see that movie because parts of it were filmed out at Grantsville's football field. Katy was there that day so she was sure she was in the movie. We looked hard for our own little movie star, but no luck. We did spot a few of her friends though. It was a really fun night and I really enjoyed the 4 of us being together. Time goes by so fast and I feel like our kids will be out of the house in no time so I love when we can all be together. Then on Saturday Mike took me away for the night (that was my present from him). He surprised me by taking me to the Zermat in Midway. We had been there once before and he know I loved it so he took me there again. We had a great night just the two of us. I am so blessed Mike is my husband! He's always so good to me and I appreciate how thoughtful he is.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Happy Birthday Baby Brother!!

Today is my baby brother Tom's birthday. Tom is 7 seven years younger then me. When we were growing up we all called him Tommy. When we were growing up Tom was very adventurous. He was trying to fix things. He loved to go to Bishop Jeppson's house and help him tinker on his car. He loves hunting, fishing anything outdoors. He loves horses and even made his own fake mechanical bull. He always kept us laughing. Once when we were driving to Texas to visit our Grandma we stopped at a Dairy Queen he went in dressed in shorts and cowboy boots and said as loud as he could "they got a john in here?" We already had all eyes on our large family not to mention our out spoken brother. Tom has grown into a wonderful husband and father. He adores his 3 girls and his wife Chantyl. The thing that I love about Tom is that he is always the first one there to help anyone. He is such a hard worker and helps whenever he can. He helped us put our yard in, laid cement, helped us build our basement and I could go on and on with the things he's helped us with. He gave up his whole summer to help Mom and Don build their cabin. Tom is always calling me just to check in. He's a great brother and we are blessed to have him in our family. I love you Tom!!!

It's Great To Be An American!

Well, it's finally here...election day. My purpose for this post is not to voice my political view points, but to say how excited I am that our country has come along way. Years ago we wouldn't have had the opportunity to vote for an African American for president or a woman for vice president. It has been fun to get our kids involved in discussion about our country. I am just so glad that we live in a country that we have so many opportunities. So if you haven't already voted get out and do it today!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

I've been tagged!

Seven weird/odd things about me!

1. I love purses. I am always wanting a new one. I just get bored with the same one. I get teased by my kids all the time about having a new one. Although Katy likes the one I have now and wants me to get tired of it so she can haveit, but I still like it so it will be a little while before she gets it.

2. I am terrified of heights. I hate being up high. You will never catch me on a roller coaster...hate them. So when we go to amusement parks I sit and watch while my family does all the roller coasters.

3. I am a basket freak. I like buying baskets and then figuring out what I can put in them around the house. Whenever I go to Michaels or Ross I stop to look at them. I have to stop myself from buying them we don't need any more.

4. I always wear earings. I feel naked without them.

5. I atill worry about what other people think of me. You would think at my age (38) I wouldn't care anymore, but I do. Maybe by the time I am 40 I won't care anymore.

6. I hate to put my head under the water. I love to be in the water I just don't like gettting my eyes in it. I hate this and want to conquer this annoying thing about me.

7. I really like sleeping in a tent. Now I'm not saying I love to camp, but I do like sleeping in a tent. I guess I feel like a kid when I do it. I like putting the tent up in the backyard and sleeping it it. It doesn't happen often though.

Now I tag...Kari, Robyne, and Miriam

Friday, October 31, 2008

End of the Soccer Season

Well the end of another soccer season has come. This is a picture of Eric, Mike, Keith, and Andy. Keith is the assistant coach and Andy's Dad. I really appreciate all the help he has given Mike with the team. He's a great guy and puts a lot of time in to make things run smoother. As many of you know Mike has coached Eric's soccer team since he was 5 years old. We signed Eric up when he was 5 to play soccer and no one else would volunteer to coach. Mike didn't want to do it because he never played soccer he was a baseball player, but he wanted Eric to be able to play so he decided he'd learn the game. He's spent so much time certifying to be a coach, being on the soccer league board, preparing practices, tracking down uniforms, leaving work early to make it to practice, running many soccer errands and so much more just to make the game fun for Eric and the other boys. Mike tells me this will be the end of his coaching, but I can tell it is a hard decision for him. His job has gotten much more demanding and his time to do soccer is not there. Everytime he's gotten frustrated with coaching I've reminded him that he's doing it for Eric. I know that Eric will never forget all the time he spent with his Dad doing soccer together. I really appreciate that Mike has sacrificed his own time to spend it making memories with his son. He's such a great Dad! So we'll see if this is really the end of the coaching or if he can't stand it and ends up doing it again. No matter what happens I love him for being such a great Dad and Husband.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Fall Pictures: Take 2

I'm still learning my way around this blog thing so with a little help from Katy here's a better look at the fall pictures we took...

Friday, October 24, 2008

Fall Pictures

We went last weekend up South Willow Canyon and took some pictures. I have to admit it is a little easier getting the family together, but it's hard to get the kids to smile about doing it.

Husband Tag!

1. Where did you first meet? My friend Colleen and Mike's friend Terry were getting married. Mike was the best man and I was the maid of honor. We met while addressing their wedding invitations. I instantly thought he was so much fun to be around.

2. How long did you date? We dated for a little over a year before we got married.

3. How did he propose? One night we went for a drive and he took me up so we could see all the city lights and started playing a Luther Vandross CD "Here and Now" (Katy says this part is cheesy) then he asked me to get him a napkin out of the glove box so I did and there was my ring. I was so happy!!

4. How long have we been married? 18 years. That sounds like such a long time, but it has been a wonderful journey together. Mike is the best!

5. What does he do that surprises you? The way he is with our kids always surprises me. He is always there for them to listen and help them with homework. It shouldn't surprise me after all these years, but I am blown away with the kind of Father and Husband he is.

6. What is your favorite feature of his? I love his green eyes and his laugh. It makes me smile.

7. Does he have a nickname for you? Just hun.

8. What is your favorite quality of his? I can't list just one...he has always provided for our family. He is a great listener. He's never too busy to listen to me or the kids.

9. What is his favorite color? I am assuming it is red since he loves UofU football.

10. What is his favorite food? I am pretty sure it's sushi (we both love it).

11. What is his favorite sport? When he was younger he loved to play baseball and tennis. I think now after coaching Eric's soccer team for the past 9 years it's soccer.

12. When and where was your first kiss? It was in Colleen and Terry's duplex (sorry Colleen)

13. What is your favorite thing to do as a couple? We love to go out on date's and get sushi and see a movie. I love just getting to talk to each other. It's always fun just to be together.

14. Do you have children? Yes...Katy is 17 and Eric 14.

15. How old is he? 42

16. Who said I love you first? It was him. I was way too chicken. I knew I loved him way before he loved me, but I was too afraid I would scare him off so I held it in.

17. What is his favorite type of music? 80's rock.

18. What do you admire the most about him? I love how accepting Mike is of people. He never judges a book by it's cover. I wish I could be more like him in this area.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Katy's Car Repairs

As some of you may know Katy had a "mishap" with the garage and the drivers side door. This is a picture of her newly repaired door. Let's just say she'll be in debt to us for awhile. Notice the Obama sticker on her door, Grandma and Grandpa Keil will be proud!

Eric's First Swim Meet!!

Thursday night Eric competed in his first swim meet agains Riverton High. He's been working really hard to improve his time. He had a lot of fun competing.

Sunday, October 12, 2008


Homecoming was on October 4th. Katy went with her friend TJ. They went to PF Chang's for dinner, then the dance. She also went to the Homecoming game the night before. The Cowboys played Bear River. Unfortunately it was a loss for the Cowboys... Again. The girls all cheered from the stands. This will be Katy's last Homecoming :(

Real Salt Lake in their new "Rio Tinto" stadium

On Thursday night our whole family went to the Grand Opening of the Rio Tinto Stadium and watched the Real Salt Lake soccer team play. As you can tell by the picture of Katy, it was a little chilly. It was fun to see the team in their own stadium. It was a fun family night. We went to Olive Garden and then the game. It was just fun all of us being together. It doesn't happen very often anymore.

Eric's Swim-a-thon

On Friday night Eric had his first Swim-a-thon. He was earning money for the swim team. He ended up swimming 48 laps in two hours! His first swim meet is this Thursday. He's becoming quite fit with all this swimming.
You go, you little swimmer!