We Need Each Other

"It well may be that we will never meet again in this lifetime,
So let me say before we part,

So much of me is made of what I learned from you,
You'll be with me like a handprint on my heart;
And now whatever way our stories end,
I know you have re-written mine by being my friend:

Who can say if I've been changed for the better?
I do believe I have been changed for the better.
And because I knew you, because I knew you,
Because I knew you, I have been changed for good."

As I sat in church today, my feelings were tender and full of gratitude for the loving relationships I am blessed with. My thoughts took me to (of course!) a song -- "For Good", from the musical Wicked. I can't say it any better than this.

Because of loving friends, I have been changed for good. And I have the handprints on my heart to prove it. Thank you!


How True is This??

This is a little hard to see, I know, but check it out and tell me if I'm wrong here - I think it's 100% accurate!

Hearts to Understand

Today I had the privilege of attending the baptism of a wonderful little 8 year old boy and helped by providing music for the occasion. (I love baptisms and this one was special because of Jack and his family).

The bonus for me was the special musical number, sung by an amazing male soloist. The whole baptism was lovely, but for me, the best part (besides the baptism itself) was feeling the words to the song as I played for him. The song, "Hearts that Understand", came from the old "Hold to the Rod" video series (you may have seen them in seminary). The words really spoke to me -- and I think that the outpouring of the Spirit came from the combination of the beauty of the music, the beauty of the words, the beauty of the singing itself, and the beauty of the baptismal ordinance. It was a wonderful hour, feeling the Spirit and watching Jack become a member of the Church.

"Have you been blessed to know someone who hears what can't be heard?
Who sees the Lord in things unseen and understands His word?
Each man can know the things of God and know that they are real.
And every soul can learn to know, and hear and see and feel.

We must have ears to hear the word of the Lord,
And eyes to see His plan;
Feet to follow in His path,
And hearts to understand."
(words by Even K. Jones)
I am striving to have those ears, eyes, feet and heart. Feeling the Spirit as I did strengthens me and lifts me up. I'm so thankful I was there. It was a sweet blessing for me today.


Happy Reminders

Natalie's 'mirror images' jewelery find reminded me of something I ran across yesterday and loved. Lisa Leonard takes silver and hand-stamps it with a variety of things (see above) and makes necklaces and bracelets.

My favorites? The one that says 'blessed' (which I am, greatly) and the one where you choose a word (the example above says 'sparkle') that you want to remember and to live by. I'm not sure what my word might be. I do like 'sparkle', but I like 'radiate' too. Maybe 'love'. What word would you choose for your upcoming year?

Why I Only Weigh in Private



"I like to swim, but there are some days I just don't feel much like doing it -- but I do it anyway! I know it's good for me and I promised myself I'd do it every day, and I like to keep my promises. That's one of my disciplines. And it's a good feeling after you've tried and done something well. Inside you think, 'I've kept at this and I've really learned it -- not by magic, but by my own work.' " (Fred Rogers)

I love this quote. It took me to the definition of self-discipline, which refers to the training that one gives one's self to accomplish a certain task or to adopt a particular pattern of behaviour, even though one would really rather be doing something else.

Do I have it? Maybe. Sometimes. Sometimes I hang in there, wade through stuff and keep on going, and other times, I just don't. When I do, I love having the feeling that I have really earned something -- whether it's a skill, or the sweat that pours off me after a workout and the physical fitness that is the result, a hard-won relationship, or even the satisfaction I have when I know I have actually finished something. I remember when I participated in my first 5K walk/run -- it wasn't really a race, but I got antsy plodding along with the pack so I left Mark walking (with his blessing!) and took off jogging. I ended up being one of the first finishers -- and it felt good. How fun it was to run through that finish line!

I realized then I like being a finisher and I like the learning and self-discipline that comes through finishing. I also realize that I need more work on it. Sigh.

I'm Cameo

Since it's clear I'm a fan of the color orange, I was pretty tickled to find this blog linked to Natalie's blog. Apparently there is someone else who really like the color orange. When I found her link to the quiz "what color orange are you?", well, there was nothing I could do by head over there and take it. Me? I'm Cameo. Nothing wrong with that. What are you? Go here to check it out.


More Cakes (that I'll never make)

As a follow-up to the post about the fun cakes from Woman's Day magazine, apparently many people sent in pictures of the cakes that they actually made -- and that I will never make. Cute, right? I think my favorite is the tea set. Check all of them out here. (take a good look at the ham dinner -- amazing. Not sure I could eat it, even if it is cake.) Lots of fun inspiration for someone who likes to do that kind of stuff.


Enduring Life's Lemons

The hard chapters of our lives show God’s power in a way that the happy ones do not. Brokenness moves my story forward in a way that peaceful times do not. It’s in difficulties that I become desperate to really know God, to cry out to Him.

When everything is going well, we often can’t hear God, because the music all around us is turned up too loud. But when the party stops – in those moments of crashing pain, sorrow and sudden silence – we begin to hear His voice. I’ve learned that if I listen and lean on His strength, He can help me climb out of the wreckage. As I do, I have new perspectives about what is precious and what is truly important
(Denise Jackson, from her book “It’s All About Him – Finding the Love of my Life”)

I'm not a huge Alan Jackson fan (the book is written by his wife, Denise) -- his name wasn't what attracted me to the book. But it's a good book - well written by a spiritual seeker which is what drew me to the book.

Life is about learning, and brokenness does teach more lessons than peace does. Her insight about learning to listen and lean on His strength is also a point we need to focus on. It's hard to look at the painful parts of our lives and be grateful but that's what she has learned.

As for me, I'm working on it. "Be still, and know that I am God . . ." (Psalm 46:10)


Low-key humor for sure but it did make me snicker -- and still does. Nothing intellectual about me!


Lincoln Logs -- and Mark

Today while shopping at Sam's Club with Natie, I ran across something that I had sworn that 'if I ever find these at Costco or Sam's I will buy them!' -- Lincoln Logs! I played with them in Dallas with Daniel and Ben last month and loved them (I know I must be disadvantaged because I have never played with them before!) and I wanted them for our upstairs loft/kids' play area. We already have Tinker Toys, we have a race car set, puzzles, giant Mr. Potato Head, Legos, wooden beads to string, many books for storytime, finger puppets, balls, etc. etc. etc. We have a lot of good stuff up there. (I forgot the b-ball target and the reindeer chair!) But I wanted Lincoln Logs. So today, there they were. On a day when I am feeling broke. And they are in a huge round tub, advertised on the front as the 'biggest set we offer', that contains 304 pieces. It's a town! Stonybrook Town. How do I not buy these today?

You have to understand that on Saturday I snapped at Mark for wanting to spend $20 at Home Depot -- for stuff he needs for the yard -- so today I'm spending $50 on Lincoln Logs. Right. I'm the luckiest person in the world though -- he came home for lunch and got so excited about our big huge tub of Lincoln Logs. "I know you've been wanting those for the kiddoes! Yay!" was his comment. What a good man.

I love the new Lincoln Logs! And I love my wonderful husband who never ever makes me feel badly about anything. He really doesn't.

So I guess this post is really not about Lincoln Logs -- it's about how lucky I am to have such a lovely husband in my life.


When I Run out of Birthdays

As I have spent time with Miss Maya over the past nearly 4 years of her life, we have grown close and have a great love for each other. She has asked many times about dying and told me that she didn't want me to die because she would miss me. (and I would miss her - more than she knows!) I have talked with her about the fact that our family can be together forever but I don't think I've handled it as well as was done in this talk I just read by Ardeth Kapp. (It's long-ish but well worth the time to read through it.)

"I had gone to Tucson Arizona to spend a few wonderful and memorable days with my niece Shelly as she gave birth to her fourth little boy. Prior to delivery, three young boys waited anxiously for the arrival of their little brother who was making the transition from his heavenly home to begin his experience on earth. Now, he had joined them and each little brother took turns reverently cradling this tiny baby in their arms for a time. It seemed to me like they already knew him in an interesting way.
Soon after this moment of reverence and celebration, I was sitting at the kitchen table with these young children painting rocks, making birds and fish and bugs and other creative possibilities. Six-year-old Josh, holding his paint brush and looking very serious, asked the question: "How many birthdays do you have left, Nana Ardie?"

I smiled and asked, "What do you mean Josh?"

He reached out his arms to give me a hug and said, "I love you and I don’t want you to ever die."

At that moment, the reality of mortality and immortality swept through my mind like a glorious drama in which we all take part. We enter this life as a baby and, in what seems like so few birthdays, there comes a time for us to return. We each have our time on stage.

With my arm around this little blonde headed boy and realizing that Easter was upon us, I said, "Josh, I have something wonderful to tell you. I don’t know how many birthdays I have left but that part doesn’t really matter. What really matters is to know that Jesus came to this earth like your little baby brother . He did what he came to do. Then he died and was resurrected because of his great love for everyone. He made it possible that there would never be an end to our love for each other. Just like when I say good-bye to you and go back to Utah, we still keep loving each other and look forward to seeing each other again. When I run out of birthdays, I will go back home but we will still keep loving each other and look forward to when we will be together again."

What beautiful words. We will keep loving each other and we will be together again -- if we do the things we should while we are here. Just as the tulip fields pictured above seem endless, so is our family. It can be endless and eternal. What motivation that is for me to be obedient, to follow the prophet, and to uphold the standards and principles of the gospel.

I want to be with every one of my family members again -- even when I run out of birthdays.


Fun Lunch Indeed!

So today Natalie, the kiddoes and I piled into one car, Kristi put Braden into her car, and we caravanned (is that a word?) to Brenham which is close to a half-way point between Houston (where Heather lives and Hayley is visiting) and Austin (where Natalie, Kristi and I live). After a few turn-arounds and wrong roads, we met up with Hayley, Heather and Hope at Chili's and had lunch together. Can I just say that it was like meeting up with dear friends that you haven't seen in a while? Of course, we had never met before but that's not how it seemed. It was such a fun time, just to sit, visit, get to know each other in person, and understand that we really did already know each other. We just hadn't met yet.

Thanks, ladies for letting me be part of such a fun friendship. Another 'tender mercy', I think. We take friendship so much for granted, and need to realize that it's really such a sweet blessing.

**NOTE: Because I am totally retarded, I was the only one who showed up without a camera. Sigh. One day I"ll learn. Till then, check Heather's blog, Hayley's blog, Natalie's blog, or Kristi's blog for documentation of the event. It was great.


Sunday will Come

"Each of us will have our own Fridays—those days when the universe itself seems shattered and the shards of our world lie littered about us in pieces. We all will experience those broken times when it seems we can never be put together again. We will all have our Fridays. But I testify to you in the name of the One who conquered death—Sunday will come. In the darkness of our sorrow, Sunday will come. No matter our desperation, no matter our grief, Sunday will come. In this life or the next, Sunday will come." (Joseph B. Wirthlin)

What a wonderful reassurance to all of us. I know I have had some of those Fridays in my life and looking back, I would never have thought that the pain and grief could fade enough that I could go on and be happy again. How thankful I am that it is possible. How thankful I am for Jesus Christ, who bears all our burdens and makes it possible for us to continue on. This is such a beautiful, comforting promise, and the real beauty is that it covers every one of us.

Sunday will come. A promise made by the One who always keeps His promises.


Building a Better Me

" Your task? To build a better world," God said.
I answered, "How?
This world is such a large, vast place,
So complicated now.
And I so small and useless am,
There is nothing I can do."
But God, in all His wisdom said,
"Just build a better you."
(Author unknown)
Isn't this the truth? So much of the time we are worrying about the big things and maybe even minding business other than our own, when what we really need to focus on is doing better in our own lives. There are so many small areas that need improvement in my life -- scripture study (getting better again, but far from great), fervent, personal prayer (again, OK but not great), housekeeping (bad!) and the list could go on and on and on.

So when my critical thoughts move to someone other than myself, I need to keep that mantra in mind -- "Build a better you!"

If I Knew You were Coming, I'd have Baked a Cake (well,maybe!)

I think these are the cutest cakes I've seen in a long time. I'd like to say that I'm planning on whipping one up, but nope, it won't happen. I sure enjoy looking at them though. Note the cheeseburger cake however -- many years ago, when our Chris was a Cub Scout, he and his dad made a Big Mac cake much like this for Chris's Cub Scout cake auction. As I remember it, it sold for over $100 and boy, did that make Chris's day! I'm sure it didn't hurt the Cub Scout pack's budget, either, as it was their fund-raiser. Fun stuff! You can find more pictures and instructions here as you browse through the newest Woman's Day magazine.


I Want to be a Helper

"When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, 'Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.' To this day, especially in times of 'disaster', I remember my mother's words and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers -- so many caring people in this world." (Fred Rogers)

Yesterday in Primary, I had a sweet experience with a little Sunbeam-aged boy. He is a member of a family that loves him but Mom and Dad are either divorced or divorcing. At any rate, he is in our ward pretty much every other week, and his Dad brings him to Primary. I have loved watching the very apparent love between this dad and son, but ached as I saw how hard it is for this little guy to let his Daddy leave him. And I understand. At least I think I do. This is a sweet, tender little boy whose dad and mom don't live together anymore and he doesn't see his Daddy daily like he is used to doing. How difficult that has to be for a 3 year old to understand.

Anyway, Dad was trying hard to extricate himself and leave his son in Primary and the little boy was resisting. So I went over to sit near them and when Dad got up again, I told him I'd take good care of the little boy and asked the little one if it was OK if he sat on my lap. He did -- cuddled right in and sat the whole Sharing Time with my arms around him. I loved every second of it -- there's nothing I don't like about a good cuddle, that's for sure. And I loved feeling that maybe I was helping this sweet, precious little boy feel loved and more secure in our Primary.

I talked with his Dad in the hallway after he went (willingly) off to class with his teachers, and his Dad thanked me for caring about his son. Even as I write, I'm feeling the same love I felt yesterday just wash over me again -- and for me, it was such a gift to be able to be part of loving a little boy whose life has changed. What a precious half hour that was to me. I'm hoping I can be one of Mr. Rogers' helpers, because I care. I care a lot.

And it hit me last night that as I love and cherish this precious little boy who needs it so badly right now, I'm doing exactly what the Savior would have done if He were here. Maybe I am a helper. His helper.


Happy Sunday to all!

"If the Lord wanted to punish me, I can think of nothing that would hurt me more than to be denied the privilege of meeting with the members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints". (Marjorie Pay Hinckley)

I love this and as I look towards Sunday, and the opportunity to sit in Sacrament meeting with my ward, spend a couple of hours in Primary with my little ones, and then participate in choir with my friends there, I feel her comment deeply. It really is a privilege to have these opportunities every week -- and that is even without mentioning the blessing of partaking of the Sacrament. What gifts we have been given and how grateful I am.
Have a wonderful Sunday, everyone!



So today I had to run over to CVS to pick up prescriptions for both Mark and I (and I hate it when it happens this way -- they all run out at the same time and it's expensive! It doesn't hurt quite so much when you refill them a few at a time!) and I dreaded it. The pharmacy there has not been a fun experience in general -- they are slow, they ignore you while you stand there (I can understand being busy - just acknowledge my presence and I'll happily wait!), and then they're cranky when they finally get around to helping you.

Not so today! There was a new pharmacy tech who almost immediately saw me, told me she'd be right there, and then when she got to me, she smiled. Amazing. She was so friendly and so nice that it really surprised me. Which is sad, really. We shouldn't be surprised when people are nice to us!!

It reminded me of a quote I read that doesn't address this specifically, but you'll see the connection, I'm sure.

Today I bent the truth to be kind, and I have no regret, for I am far surer of what is kind than I am of what is true.” (Robert Brault)

There was no truth-bending involved, but what a treat to run into someone who was sure of what was kind. She really made my day, with very little effort. I need to keep kindness in mind -- and I will!

Still Thinking About Kids

When I got up this morning, I still had kids on my mind and remembered a story I read somewhere about a kindergarten teacher whose class was drawing pictures. She would walk around the classoroom and look at each child's artwork. She got to one little girl who was working diligently and asked her what she was drawing. The little girl replied, "I'm drawing God." The teacher was kind of taken back and said "But no one really knows what God looks like." Without a pause or even looking up from her drawing, the little girl replied, "They will in a minute!"

I love it. I love the faith of a child. And honestly, who better to know what God looks like? I know when I hold a newborn, it's clear to me that they can't talk for a reason. They'd tell me all about where they just came from and how hard it was to leave the presence of Heavenly Father and Jesus.

When Maya was tiny and colicky, I would hold her, walk with her, sing to her and talk with her all night long (so Chris and Natie could get some sleep), and for some reason, every night, I would tell her that I knew how hard it was for her to leave her home in heaven and that I knew her brother Jesus was missing her. Whenever I would mention heaven and Jesus, she would quiet down for a little while. It was amazing and (obviously) very touching.

Kids. I just love 'em!
**The above pic is actually me with Mason, soon after he arrived-- for some odd reason, I can't come up with a pic of a newborn Maya with me although I know I have some. I guess the point is the same!



I love kids. I really do. I love my own kids. I adore my grandkids (see Daniel, above. What a sweetheart!). I love my piano kids. I love my Primary kids. Many people who move into a new ward will use that as their opportunity to avoid Primary (as in "I'd love any calling except Primary!") but for me, it's all about starting the campaign to bust into the world of the kids. My first six months in this ward were spent teaching 16 year olds in Sunday School which, to be honest, I really enjoyed. They were a great group of kids and I always love studying the scriptures as I prepare a lesson. But -- I missed the kids! Thank goodness I was called as the Primary chorister (the ultimate calling, in my book!) 6 months later. I loved it. And now I still get to be in Primary every Sunday and am really getting to know each of the children. It's a gift.

"Nothing you do for children is ever wasted. They seem not to notice us, hovering, averting our eyes, and they seldom offer thanks, but what we do for them is never wasted." (Garrison Keillor) It's true. They do notice and even if they don't offer a verbal 'thank you', their hugs and smiles are tangible proof that our efforts are valuable. They are so bright, so funny and so in tune that it's really a privilege to be even a small part of their lives.

Walt Disney said, "Our greatest natural resource is the minds of our children." I agree with that but I'll take it one step further -- I think our greatest natural resource is the minds and spirits of our children. And I will continue to find joy as I spend time loving them, cherishing them, smiling with them, teaching them, enjoying them, and learning from them.


A Person of Value

"Try not to become a success, but rather try to become a person of value." (Albert Einstein)

So what does that mean? If I were to break it down, I think a person of value lives a life of integrity, courage, perseverance and gratitude.
Integrity means you have a conscience and listen to it. It means that you do the same things whether people are watching or not. It defines the quality of your life. As Martin Luther King put it, "The time is always right to do what is right." I've heard it said that some people do things right while others do the right thing -- and that is integrity.

"Courage is resistance to fear, master of fear . . . not absence of fear." (Mark Twain) For me, courage comes in knowing that Heavenly Father is with me. Psalms 34:4 says "I sought the Lord and He heard me and delivered me from all my fears." I love that and I love that it's clear that we are responsible to seek Him out and then we will be delivered from our fears.

Persistance means to keep on keepin' on! "One is defeated only when one accepts defeat" (Marshall Foch) explains it perfectly. Hang in there. Being knocked down is no disgrace as long as you continue to get back up and press on.

Gratitude is key. "Nothing is more honorable than a grateful heart." (Seneca) My life is so rich and I have so many blessings and I'm so grateful. I love what Anne Morrow Lindergh said about payback: "One can never pay in gratitude; one can only pay 'in kind' somewhere else in life." I need to watch for those opportunities to pay 'in kind'.
To become a person of value is my goal and with the above as my blueprint, I will get there -- slowly but surely!



It has been lovely to spend the past week with my family -- the entire 'original' Erickson family. My mom, dad, 2 brothers and sister were all present to celebrate Eric and Jacquie's wedding. It was such a gift to spend time where I grew up, to see where I came from, and to be with the people who have known me and loved me from the start.

But I am so happy to be back home in Austin, with Mark and Math. I missed them and I missed our home here. Home is such an interesting concept and I've really considered it as I traveled from one 'home' to another.

Our real home is, of course, back with our Heavenly Father, which, I think, explains the feeling of homesickness we have from time to time. The world we live in reminds us daily that this really is not our home. On this journey we are taking, sometimes we are tempted to pull over to the side of the road and explore. Our bodies aren't big enough to sustain our spirits and we get tired. The good news is that we have our eternal address etched in our hearts and despite the pull of the world, we continue to wend our way back to our heavenly home.

I've seen it written somewhere that God never told us that the journey would be easy, but that the arrival would be wonderful. Judging from how I feel about being home now, that arrival will really be something to celebrate!


Families are Forever

My younger brother Ross, me, my sister Val, then my mom, dad and brother Brian

My sister Val (mother of the groom), my mom and me.

My older brother Brian, my sister Val and me.

Nephew Ian, nephew Eric (the groom), the bride Jacquie, and my sister Val and husband Keith

Jacquie and Eric -- the happy couple! Love to see the family together!


They're Married!

Today I was privileged to be there when my nephew Eric Walker married his sweetheart, Jacquie Tagg in the Cardston Alberta temple. The sealing was performed by my dad, Reed Erickson, and it was beautiful. I have always had mixed emotions about my own kids' sealings -- both grandpas (Mason and Erickson) were sealers and neither of my kids felt they could choose, so they didn't and just had one of the regular temple sealers do their weddings. But my dad did a really beautiful job and it was so lovely to be there in the sealing room with my older brother, my sister, my nephew Ian, Jacquie's family and many friends of both families.

The reception and dinner were both beautiful -- all in all, a lovely day! I took a lot of pictures and will post them once I get home -- stay tuned!


Canadian Candy (again -- sorry!)

So this morning I paid a visit to WalMart, Safeway and Superstore and started the obligatory candy stock-up. I got the Kinder Surprise Eggs for Chris and Tara, the Smarties for Math , the Caramilk for Chris and Natalie, the Scotch Mints for me, and then picked up a nice wide variety of different candy bars. To top things off -- I got a big Halloween-sized bag of miscellaneous treats to have around when we finish up all the rest of the stuff. Can I just say I LOVE Canadian candy? I ate a Cherry Blossom today -- haven't had one of those in years -- and it made my mouth SO happy!! I will come back having gained a zillion pounds. Sigh.

My parents are doing pretty well, my sister arrives this afternoon (she lives 2 hours from my parents and I can't wait to see her!) and then tomorrow morning is the wedding. I've even been lucky with the weather - -it's lovely again today. Nice things are happening here. On the down-side - -I miss my little ones and their Mama! I miss Mark and Math. I miss Austin. I miss my Primary kiddoes. I miss my blogging friends but thank goodness for computers. I guess there is no perfect world, right?


Ah! Smell that Good Canadian Air!

I'm up in Alberta with my parents right now because on Friday, my nephew Eric and fiancee Jacquie will be sealed in the temple in Cardston. I couldn't miss that.

And of course, while I'm here, I'll be stocking up on my favorites: Scotch mints, Smarties (not the same as in the US), Caramilk, and KinderSurprise Eggs. My mouth is watering just thinking about that good Canadian candy!
I'll take lots of pics and let you all see the beautiful bride and groom and the rest of the family once I get back home on Monday.

Hug those kiddoes for me -- I'm missing my little ones!


The Little Things

"Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things." (Robert Brault)

Isn't that the truth? Life is full of roadblocks. It's so easy to miss something -- and the truth is that when we have the time to go back and think about life's experiences, we learn, to our great regret, that those little things really were the big things. And we missed them.
Don't do it. Kiss that little one, chocolate face and all. Say hello to someone. Stop cleaning and straightening and build a fort. Bear your testimony when you feel prompted. Pause as you rush down the hall at church to hug a child or a teenager or whoever it is that needs you. Dance in the rain. Share your time. Speak your love.
These are the big things. Really.


Sunday Afternoon Fun

Note the budding chef - -she's making 'fruit punch' in Grandpa's hat.

I may have mentioned in the past that we have slipped into what seems to be a family tradition now (and we love it, in case you wondered!) of having Miss Maya come home from church with us. She has lunch here, changes clothes and plays with anyone who's available, and then when Chris, Natie and Mason come over for dinner, she heads home with them. We love the one-onone time with her -- she's so imaginative and funny.

Yesterday she ended up in one of my t-shirts (the outfit I keep here for her was still at her house and hadn't made it back here yet) which she thinks is cool. She had her KidCuisine lunch (I buy them especially for her - -usually she picks them out herself at the grocery store), a little Arthur and Clifford time (since we're not DVR-ers yet, I tape a variety of PBS shows for her), some dress-up time with Monkey, some fort-building time, and then she and Grandpa had a Perfection tournament. Guess who won? (well, we did, of course, as we always do when we get time with the kiddoes!)
It's such fun to watch her with her uncle and her grandpa, both of whom love her dearly and she returns that affection. Of course, she 'helped' me fix some dinner as well -- she was responsible pretty much entirely for the cheese bread, putting the pie in the oven, and throwing the corn into the boiling water. She does love to cook (and I love the help)!
Something more to smile about -- Sundays with Maya!