Congratulations to my good friends Becky and Jeff on their recent marriage. Over the past few months working together I've come to love these two and I'm so thrilled they tied the knot.
Joe’s birthday request in 2016 was a pair of running shoes because he said the coming year was going to be his “year of running.” He wasn’t kidding! In 18 months he’s completed two 50-milers, two marathons, and two half marathons; paced a friend through a third of his 100-miler; ran 43 miles from one rim of the Grand Canyon to the other and back again; and finished his “first and only”100-miler. He found something rewarding in testing his physical limits and forging friendships with running companions. Off the trails, he continues to help clients buy and sell homes at Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate, the local brokerage he owns and manages.
Heidi is cherishing infancy with our baby, toddlerhood with our tot, public school with our kinder, and the fleeting days of childhood with our pre-teen. She leads children’s singing time at church—an unexpected opportunity for one with little musical experience. She loves the messages in the songs and spending that time with Kate and Anna. She’s dabbling back into the art world she studied in college by teaching The Great Artist Program in the girls’ classrooms. Her parents live just down the street, which is a huge blessing to our family.
Kate (10) and Anna (almost 6) appreciate being at the same school. They come home thrilled when they’ve gotten to see each other in the halls. They participated in running club and, inspired by their dad, jointly completed a 50-mile cumulative mileage goal. They put our craft room to excellent and frequent use— mostly making gifts that get stashed under their beds for upcoming holidays and birthdays.
Ruth (almost 3) has no tonsils following a recent surgery, but does have big girl underwear that she keeps clean and dry! She likes to listen to music, and any time there is a male vocalist on the radio she’ll say tenderly, “Mom, I love this guy,” or with great admiration, “Mom, that’s Johnny” (the gorilla with a soft heart and bad-boy image in the musical, Sing). Precursor to teenage lovesick days to come? TBD.
James (born May 10), with his heart-warming smile and deliciously kissable cheeks, is as pleasant as they come. He’s eating solids, growing in all directions (before Ruth ditched the diapers, they were both wearing a size 4), and not drinking bottles (alas!). His cuddles are unrivaled, though our Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Wilson (almost 2), who sees every lap as an open invitation, provides some competition.
While troubled by the natural disasters, religious and political divides, and hateful violent acts frequenting headlines, we are buoyed by our faith and by love of friends and family. “For God, who commanded the light to shine out of the darkness, hath shined in our hearts… We are troubled on every side, yet, not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; … cast down, but not destroyed… though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day” (2 Corinthians 4: 6, 8-9). May you find light shining out of any darkness you face.
The Willis Family
5 Star BBQ in Orem is da Bomb! If you’re a BBQ person, you’re a 5 Star Person. 70 Geneva Rd. Orem open 11am -9pm.
I got the behind the scenes tour of 5 Star at 4:30am on thanksgiving day. We smoked turkey, prime rib, and tenderloin. To die for!!!!
It’s been a while since my last blog post and seeing my 50 mile run made me realize how much running I’ve done this past year. Since completing my first 50 miler I also completed timp trail marathon, the Park City 50 mile endurance run, rim to rim to rim of the Grand Canyon (44miles), the St. George Marathon and...the Rio Del Lago 100 mile endurance run in Folsom California. Whew! I’m tired just typing it. I ran over 1000 miles between races and training runs this year and looking back now I'm feeling rather proud of myself. There’s something thrilling about setting a difficult goal and working to go achieve it.
Since Better Homes & Gardens was my sponsor, I feel like it's only appropriate that I share my running adventure on our blog. Here's my 2017 50 mile Buffalo Run on Antelope Island play by play.
We've been hosting a Dave Ramsey class every Thursday for the past 4 weeks. What a great group. Last week was credit card night. The group got real! Several shredded credit cards right then and there. Way to go crew! Anytime someone gets out of their comfort zone, sacrifices and strives to better themselves I'm impressed.
I'm committed to running my first 50k this coming March. Training has been brutal with the harsh winter that we've had. Rain, sleet, or snow hasn't stopped us yet although I'm getting really tired of it. Where's the sun! Last week we ran 4 miles Monday, 4 miles Tuesday, 6 miles Wednesday, then 16 miles Friday and 10 miles Saturday. Two weeks ago we were running in -3 temperatures at 5am. It's been a beautiful, horrible, wonderful, and terrible experience and the tougher runs are coming up this month. I'm determined.
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