Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Thanksgiving and more

Christmas is in 11 days.... E.L.E.V.E.N days! Seriously? Wow! Where has the time gone? I have no idea.
Well, before we get into the thick of the holidays I decided I better do a quick update. Otherwise it would have to wait until after the holidays which would then make the post forever long and would probably even bore me.
Thanksgiving was great! It was our year to be at the Merrill's and got to go with them to Pasco WA to celebrate with Dillon's gparents and aunt and uncle that live there. One of Dillon's other uncles came too with his wife. It was a long drive with lots of us crammed into the suburban but we made it there and back. We definitely enjoyed the time we got to spend with some of Dillon's family that we don't get to see all that often, but we did miss Taya and Chase who stayed home to celebrate with Chase's family.
We spent our time playing lots and lots of games, eating, playing/watching people play Michael Jackson dancing on X-BOX (which was hilarious by the way), bowling, eating and hanging out. The meal was nothing short of delectable. Dillon's aunt Lisa is an AMAZING cook :) We were sad when the time came to pile back into the suburban and make the trek back, but we were so glad for the time we were able to spend in WA. Thanks again Lisa and family for letting us invade your house and eat all your yummy yummy food! And for everything else, we love you!

Here are a few pics of our fun, but just a few cuz I'm not so good at taking pictures sometimes.
Most of the crew bowlingThe ladies (Aunt Lisa, Momma Merrill, Grandma Merrill)
The men, minus Uncle Todd (Grandpa Merrill and Papa Merrill)
Grandma Merrill showing off her mad bowling skillsTosha bowling, Logan (boyfriend) enjoying the view :)
Uncle Todd and me taking our turn
Dillon bowling another strike I'm sure
Such a cute couple. If I do say so :)
And I did make sure to pull the camera out during the dancing.... here are a few of the best moves :)

Dillon's dad showing us how it's doneMom's turn
LOVE the face Lisa :)
And the best pic I snapped.....Dillon's cousin Kyle.... hahaha
As we wrapped up the Thanksgiving fun we were only 3 short days away from picking my little brother up from the airport. After spending 2 yrs in the Philippines he was finally coming home! On November 30th the ENTIRE Brough family was together at the Idaho Falls airport to welcome Elder Cody Brough home!

HE'S HOME!Huggin mom
Huggin dad
The entire herd back together again!!!
After enjoying a little food I jumped in a car going to SV and Dillon headed back to Blackfoot to finish the week at his internship before coming to join in the fun. We spent the weekend helping Cody speak English again, hearing all about the Philippines, eatin lots of food of course and even tasting a little Filipino food. We also managed to find time to go watch Abbi Jo play basketball and even drug Cody into the freezing cold to chop us down a Christmas tree. Basically we just had a blast hangin out with my little bro again! :)

Cody made us some yummy Filipino food then taught the little ones how the Filipinos eat with their hands. They LOVED that :)
#22, Abbi Jo
Cody freezing. He said that it never got below about 20 degrees celsius his whole mission. That's 68 degrees fahrenheit. He was COLD! :)
Our tree
That's it for now ... MERRY CHRISTMAS and HAPPY NEW YEAR :)

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


Thanksgiving is almost here. Just 2 short days away. I think it's time I sat and made a list of a few of the things that I am thankful for this Thanksgiving Season.
  • I am thankful for all the bills that come with living in a home. It means that we have a home to live in and are not crammed into a little apt. It means that we have a little yard and an area where we can have Skeeter.
  • I am thankful for student loans because they mean that we are able to have the money that we need for Dillon to get a good education and that we have the money we need to buy groceries and pay our rent.
  • I am thankful for my part time job because it means that I have a job. It means that I have a job doing what I love, teaching and working with preschoolers.
  • I am thankful for my trials and struggles because it means that my Heavenly Father loves me. It means that he trusts me and has confidence in me and knows that I can do hard things. It means that I have the opportunity to study the gospel and the scriptures more thoroughly. It means that I am more earnest in my prayers, thus bringing me closer to my Heavenly Father.
  • I am thankful for my family and for Dillon's family. I am thankful for the love and the support that they give to us. I am thankful for the sacrifices they are willing to make on our behalf.
  • I am thankful for my husband. I am thankful for his continual love and support. I am thankful for his calm personality. I am thankful for his hard work and his dedication to getting a good education. I am grateful for the sacrifices that he is willing to make to for us. I am grateful for the man that he is and for the opportunity I have to be married to him for time and all eternity.
  • ....and the list could go on and on....

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


I hate the wind.
When I was 5 I was at the Lincoln County Fair with my family when a micro-burst came thru. We were under the big top when it hit and somehow I got hit in the head with one of the poles holding the big top up. I remember 3 things about that night.
1. Sitting with my family and an EMT in our suburban after it happened.
2. The ambulances were all full so the EMT rode with us to the hospital.
3. I had to stay the night in the hospital (I had a concussion) and I wanted my own PJ's so a family friend (Jean Mace) brought me my PJ's and some hot chocolate.

So, for as long as I can remember I have hated the wind and actually get scared when it is blowing really hard and there are things that could potentially fall on me.
Well, as it turns out, I am not the only member of the family that hates/is scared of the wind.
This young man does NOT like the wind.
One evening the wind was blowing super hard and I had to leave for a Relief Society something or other. So as I was leaving I went to put Skeeter in his kennel and noticed that his dog food thing (a big garbage can) had gotten knocked over by the wind (it was almost empty). I set it back up and called for Skeeter and told him to get in his kennel. Usually he will just tromp right on over and get in with no problem.
Not this time.
He wouldn't come within 20 yards of his kennel. It took me 15 mins to get that dang dog in his kennel and I literally had to half pick him up/half drag him into it.

Now whenever the wind is blowing really hard Skeeter starts acting all weird and "clingy" and jumpy. He acts all scared, doesn't stray too far from the porch, and barks at things the wind blows around or down. He has recently discovered the side of the house that gets the least wind and on any given windy day, that is where you will find him.
Right now the wind is blowing 32 mph and and right now this is what Skeeter is doing.
Curled up in a ball on the side of the house waiting for the wind to die down.
Good luck with that Skeeter, we live in Idaho.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011


In the spirit of the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, here is a little story that helps me remember how blessed I am.

The other day Dillon came home from a morning of doing farm work for his cousin. As usual I asked him how his day was. As usual his response was "It was fine." Dillon went and got in the shower and I got busy doing things around the house. That was the end of our conversation until later that night. As we were gettin ready to say the prayer before dinner Dillon says, "So...I almost got my arm ripped off at work today!"
WHAT!?!?!?! That doesn't sound like a "fine" day at work!
He then proceeds to tell me what happened. Him and his cousin were moving wheel lines across the fields to be next to the fence for winter. Well they were moving this one particular line that is really old and breaks down a lot. As it was moving the drive line wasn't working right and it was really crooked. So Dillon starting walking along the line, pushing against it to straighten it out. As he got farther down the line pushing, something happened one of the times and his arm sleeve got wrapped up in the drive line.

*Just to clarify the drive line is the little thing that runs the length of the line that the motor spins really really fast to make the line move*

He was yanking his arm as hard as he could and trying to wave to his cousin to kill the motor. Just as it was starting to hurt his arm, the motor turned off and Dillon was able to free himself. After they were finished and Dillon got back to where his cousin was he told him thanks for saving his life. His cousin kinda laughed and asked how he'd done that. Dillon proceeded to tell him what had happened and that he had turned the motor off just in time. To which his cousin replied, "I didn't shut it off."
Dillon started to tell me how it was an old motor and something is wrong with it and it randomly shuts off for certain reasons when they are trying to use it. I quickly interrupted him and told him, "Um NO! It shut off because your Heavenly Father was watching over you."
Boy am I ever grateful that He was and that Dillon was able to keep his arm.

Monday, November 7, 2011


Fall is quickly disappearing and winter is coming in.
(As I'm cuddled up on the couch in 2 blankets listening to Christmas music. SHHHH...don't tell)
This fall has been beautiful though and we have had such good weather. It has been pretty chilly but has only snowed once. And that was this weekend and it didn't amount to much of anything and was gone by that night. We have taken advantage of the nice weather and gotten out and done some hunting...
fishing...and rounding up some of the Carter's cattleI haven't been on a cattle drive or even a horse in a LONG time. Like a ridiculously long time. So, I was quite sore for the days that followed but sure had fun! Wish we could have gone more than the one day.

Other than that we really haven't been up to a whole lot. Even our Halloween was lame. The weekend before we made a quick trip up to SV since Dillon hadn't been up there since July. We got to go with my parents to their ward Halloween dinner and trunk or treat which was fun. Then on Halloween night we had witches fingers (maybe? just kinda? ok fine, homemade corn dogs)
for dinner when Dillon finally got home from school then watched a scary movie. And that was it. That was all we did for Halloween. No costumes (unless wearing an orange pumpkin shirt to work counts) , no trick or treaters, and not even any carved pumpkins. LAME I KNOW!! Oh well. We made LOTS of pumpkin cookies and even decorated Halloween sugar cookies earlier in the month. Hopefully that makes up for some of the lameness :)

Now we're just anticipating the upcoming holidays and the return of my handsome little missionary brother in just 23 short days!!

Saturday, October 15, 2011


All the sudden we have flies. Lots of flies. And not just any old flies but the really REALLY annoying ones. You know the kind. A fly swatter has been on my shopping list for some time now but I have yet to get one. I have either forgotten while in town or the few times I have remembered I have been in a hurry and didn't have time to hunt a fly swatter down in WalMart. Seriously, where do they have those things put?? I looked in all the obvious places and when I still couldn't find one I gave up.
It's just like when I tried finding Chicken Bouillon cubes in WalMart. I think I spent at least 4 shopping trips trying to find those darn little things. Walking up and down all the food isles multiple times. Guess where I finally found them? In the Mexican isle. least I know where they are.
ANWAY...back to the flies.
Yesterday morning we were sitting eating the delicious breakfast my hubby made me while I slept in (I just love my husband) and those darn flies would not leave us alone. They kept landing on us, buzzing around our heads, taunting us. So annoying. I told Dillon, yet again, that I REALLY needed to get a fly swatter next time I was in town. We finished our breakfast and went about our day. Dillon had to leave for work while I was in the shower. When I got out of the shower, got ready for the day and went into the kitchen, this is what I found on my kitchen counter.
I couldn't help myself. I burst out laughing right out loud. What a clever and resourceful hubby I have. Who would have thought?
A weinie roaster + some junk mail + a little packing tape = the perfect fly swatter.
We have already killed numerous flies with this thing and it now has a permanent home.Thanks Hubby! :)

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


Seriously? It is already October? Wow. I love this time of year tho. I think it is my favorite. Just like everyone else, I love the chill in the air, the tractors and trucks going up and down fields and roads harvesting, the changing of the leaves, the smell of pumpkin yumminess cooking and the excitement of the approaching holidays. I have never loved Halloween but I love knowing that after Halloween comes Thanksgiving and close behind that Christmas. This year is especially exciting since this handsome missionary (the tall one :) ......will be home right after Thanksgiving. That's less than TWO MONTHS!!! YIPEE!!! I am so excited to see my little and only brother again! :)

Why else do I love this time of year? October General Conference. I really do love General Conference weekend, and not only because I get to be lazy and stay at home for church and watch in my PJ's (although they are all very huge bonuses) but because I get to hear the messages from our living Prophet and his apostles. I love to hear what they have to say and am always touched by the talks that I feel were written just for me. This year was, obviously, especially amazing. Why? Well because of this (as most everyone already knows). We had totally forgotten to turn Conference on Saturday morning and just after 11am Dillon got 2 text messages. One was from his friend that lives in Texas and all it said was something along the lines of "Star Valley Wyoming huh? Awesome" and another one from a friend in his OT program. It said something along the lines of "Is your wife excited?" He told me about the messages and we were both trying to figure out what the heck they were talking about when Dillon said, "Conference. They must have announced a temple in Star Valley." I laughed in his face and told him that was a good one. HAHA. When we realized that was the only plausible explanation we turned on the TV but of course had missed it. I texted my mom and when she didn't respond (she was too busy with her phone ringing and beeping off the hook) I logged onto good ol' Facebook. Holy Cow did I ever get the answer I was looking for. I think it is safe to say that at least half of the people I am friends with from SV had posted one thing or another about the temple. I was still shocked and was having a hard time believing it. When Conference was over we waited a few mins and hurried and looked up Pres Monson's talk from earlier. Sure enough, it was true, a temple in Star Valley, Wyoming. Wow. I am still in shock but am so so excited! I always knew Star Valley was a special place and we didn't need lots of people, a WalMart, a stop light, or a McDonald's to be important :) The rest of Conference was of course amazing. I loved all the talks but you can watch one of my very favorite ones here. I cried thru the whole thing.

Friday night and Sat morning I also got to spend lots of time with these 2 cute girls.
Mar and Georgie.
They came to visit and stay the night as they passed thru on their way to Rexburg for the weekend. Oh how I have missed these girls. We had some GOOD times together back in the good ol' days. Now Mar is all grown up and in Law School and Georgie is all grown up, graduated and a teacher. We spent our time together talking, reminiscing, eating "under the bed bars," and staying up WAY past our bed times. It was great. We realized that the last time we were all together on Conference weekend was 4 years ago when we were living together in Carriage House Apartments. And this is how we spent that Saturday Morning Session.
Yup, that's the 3 of us. We woke up that morning to snow. Lots and lots of snow. So much snow in fact that the TV stations were out and so were the radio stations. So, when you can't listen to Conference and it is snowing buckets what do you do? Go and build a snowman in your PJ's of course!
We were quite proud :)

I always love this time of year but as you can see...this year it is especially amazing and exciting!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

What a week

Well, as you may or may not know, my last post didn't only cause a splash...but a whole Tsunami. Many things went down "behind the scenes" and some very mean things were said; but, then some very nice things were said. So, damage control has been done and life is good again! Although I don't regret what I said in my post, I do think that I probably should have waited a few more hours (or days) to cool off before sitting down to express my feelings.
Oh well, live and learn and then give hugs :)
But thank you everyone for your support and for listening to me rant and rave

But anywho....

This week has been the Eastern Idaho State Fair, right here in Blackfoot Idaho. Dillon's family always gets together at least once during the week to spend some quality time together betting quarters at "the track." Oh how much I have come to love the horses races since they first came into my life 3 years ago when I joined the Merrill Family. And the best part of the 4 hour long horse races? The Indian Relays. I went to take pictures and videos of them this year, but my camera was dead :( So instead you'll have to refer to my post a few years ago here or look them up on youtube. This year we all got together and went on Labor Day then yesterday while Dillon was working I got to go a second time with his family. I was sad Dillon couldn't come but glad I got to go again :)
Once Dillon got done with work we were able to go back into the fairgrounds together and enjoy the free tickets we got to see Ronnie Dunn in concert. It was actually a really good concert despite an opening act that was less than impressive. Lol.
All we had were our phones so the pictures aren't the greatest but oh well, at least it was proof we were there :)Yeah, I know. Dillon swears this is his normal smile but I assure you that it is not. Taking pictures with real smile is something we're workin on :)

This week has also been my first week back to being a contributing member of society. I cannot tell you how GOOD it feels to be back working. And especially to be back working in preschool! It is only part time and I am only an aid, but nontheless, it is a job and it is in preschool. YAY!

This week I have also had many reminders that I live on a reservation. Lol. Sometimes I forget I guess and this week I have continually been reminded of it. So I came up with a list of the slightly 'not so common' reminders from this week.

You might be a white person living on an Indian Reservation if:
1. If you are driving down the road and see your neighbors practicing for above mentioned Indian Relays.

2. If while you are at above mentioned Relays you are able to say that 2 of the 5 teams in a single race are your neighbors.

3. If while at the State Fair you point out your neighbors to someone and it is one of the chubby little Indian children that often play outside in only their underwear.

4. If you start a new job and while meeting all the new people you work with you get asked where you live and when you are done telling them they ask if you get any benefits or advantages.

5. If a stray dog shows up at your house and sticks around for a few days.
(I may or may not have named him "Chief Dum-Dum")

And although Skeeter clearly thoroughly enjoyed having some K9 company...
We now have the BB gun locked and loaded by the front door for when Chief Dum-Dum comes to play since in the short time we let him stick around he taught Skeeter some very naughty things.

6. If when you go to move pipe with your husband and he leaves you standing in the middle of the field alone while he goes back to the car for some tools and from within the hay a pack of 3 dogs stands up and barks and growls and threatens to attack. (Luckily Dillon hurried back before I could get eaten by a pack of wild Res dogs; not my idea of a fun way to die)

and finally...7. If you are standing in your bathroom gettin ready for the day and you can hear tribal drums playing out your window.

Just to name a few :)

Hope you all had as good of a week as I did!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011


It has now taken me over 2 hours to write this post. I have written, erased, read, erased, reread and rewritten this post probably a dozen times. This was not an easy post for me to write or one that I particularly enjoyed writing. But I feel like some things just need to be said. So here goes nothing...

Every time I get on Facebook I see that someone new has posted "I am (x) weeks and craving (fill in the blank)." At first I had no idea what was going on and was really confused when I saw people posting this that I knew were not pregnant. It didn't take me long to assume it was just another stupid Facebook game and left it at that. Then, I came across this article that was posted by a friend: Well, at least now I finally knew what it was all about. But, as the post says, how in fact was this supposed to promote breast cancer awareness? What does it have to do with breast cancer? As an individual that struggles with infertility I wasn't offended by the explosion of fake pregnancy announcements, but find it annoying and slightly insensitive. But, I would just skip over them and keep on scrolling, just as I do with the real pregnancy announcements I see on Facebook almost daily. I let it roll of my back and didn't think much of it or let it bug me too much. Until today.

Today I came across another blog post that was written about this Facebook trend. But, this post was nothing like the post linked above. It was quite the opposite actually and for the first time since this "game" began, I was offended.

"It has come to my attention that several people are getting offended by this game due to the fact that they or someone they know is suffering from in-fertility. First of all, to those people that are suffering from in-fertility, I am SOOOO sorry. I can't imagine what pain and turmoil you are going through in your life.
However, on that same note, everyone has their own personal struggles. Everyone has pain and turmoil in their lives."

I agree 110%. Everyone has their own personal battles to wage. That is why sensitivity is SO important. We know that everyone struggles with something different but we don't always know what that something is.

"Only you can allow yourself to be offended by something that is bigger than all of us. Do you get offended every time someone decides to bring a child into the world? Can't you just be happy for those people?"

"Can't you just be happy for those people?"
Really? REALLY???? You don't think I try with all my might to be happy for people?

"Many may argue that this game has nothing to do with bringing children into the world, and you would be right. This game has nothing to do with having babies. It is about breast cancer awareness. It causes people to take 1 step out of their busy lives and ask the question "What does your status mean?" This gives someone the chance to explain a little bit more about breast cancer and raise awareness."

Right, this game is not about having babies. So why make it look like it is? I have not seen ONE person ask, "What does your status mean?" and get a reply that says, "Oh, it's about breast cancer. Let me give you a run down on what it is and all the stats and signs..." Instead, all I see are jokes about pregnancy. If you would like to promote breast cancer awareness...GREAT! My grandma had breast cancer, it is a real issue and deserves attention. But bring it to attention in a way that is about breast cancer. Make it as corky and clever as you would like. Make it something that people turn their heads to and think twice about. But do NOT bring another person's very personal and VERY emotional trial into the forefront. No matter what that trial may be.

"I feel like everyone has to make everything about them. This game has nothing to do with in-fertility. It is about Breast Cancer. I understand that people with infertility might feel bombarded by fake pregnancy craving and it might make them feel sad. I am sorry that you are going through this. However, I don't expect you to walk on egg-shells around me because my grandma died of breast cancer. So, if you don't mind, I am not going to walk on egg-shells around you because of infertility."

I don't want you to walk on egg-shells around me. But I do want a little respect and sensitivity. Just as one would get if, say... their grandmother passed away from cancer.

"I am TRULY sorry for your pain, but please, don't be offended by something that had nothing to do with infertility in the first place."

For anyone that has ever experienced, or is close to someone that has experienced infertility knows, seeing "I am 6 weeks and craving tomatoes" has EVERYTHING to do with infertility.

Just a few quick stats for ya:
  • Number of women ages 15-44 with an impaired ability to have children: 7.3 million
  • Percent of women ages 15-44 with an impaired ability to have children: 11.8%
  • Number of married women ages 15-44 that are infertile (unable to get pregnant for at least 12 consecutive months): 2.1 million
  • Percent of married women ages 15-44 that are infertile: 7.4%
  • Number of women ages 15-44 who have ever used infertility services: 7.3 million
  • Infertility affects as many as 1 in 6 couples.
So, to the person that wrote the blog post that I have now dissected...thank you for you condolences on my defective uterus. But, just as you said, you can't IMAGINE what pain and turmoil I am experiencing in my life. When you have experienced infertility...then you can tell me how sorry you are.

And you are completely right, it is a choice to get offended. And I choose to be offended by your post. That is the choice I made and I know I am not alone in my choice. But, just so you know, I did not choose to burst into tears while reading your post. I did not choose to have to stop reading several times to regain composure. I did not choose to start shaking with extreme emotions of all kinds after finally being able to read through the end of your post. And I did not choose the struggle of bringing children into this world that makes me sensitive about this topic. But, I am choosing to tell you, and anyone that shares your feelings, how I feel. Now it is your choice as to whether or not you will get offended by my post. Whatever you choose to do makes no difference to me.

So, next time, maybe think twice before posting something that has the potential of offending 7.3 million people.

Monday, August 29, 2011


So, after gettin some creepy comments on my last 2 posts from people I don't is time to go private. So if you still wanna keep up with what is going on in our lives (basically a whole lot of nothing :), then leave a comment with your email address and I'll send you an invite. Thanks ya'll!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Summer Vacations

Last week Dillon left me behind and went with my dad, his dad, and his 2 brothers up to Alaska for about 10 days. I REALLY wanted to go, but, such is life. It sounds like they had all the fun they could stand, caught LOTS of fish, saw LOTS of bears, and only got rained on a little bit.

One of the many bears they got to see
Dillon's dad with his Halibut
Dillon and his KING Salmon
Landon and his Sculpin
Little brother Beau and his shark
Brothers and their Salmon (I promise Dillon is the oldest, it just doesn't look like it :)
The Merrill men
My dad with his Salmon catches for the day

It was hard having Dillon gone for that long, especially not being able to talk to him much, but I still managed to have a good time while he was gone. I started out my vacation in Evanston WY with my best friend. After 4 days there it was time to head over to Ogden UT to hang out with my grandparents and mom. After a few days there I headed up Ogden Canyon to spend some time with Dillon's mom, sisters, and bro-in-law. And to top it all off I took the long way coming home Sat and stopped in to see my sister and her little family in Logan. Despite all the traveling, it was a GREAT 10 days spent having lots of fun. *Since Dillon had my camera in Alaska, the only pictures I have of the week are a few I stole from my mom-in-laws camera of us up Ogden Canyon.

The Girls getting ready to swim
Swimming, floating and relaxing
The group (minus mom-in-law) packing up after another fun day of swimming
Since we both got home we've just been spending as much time as possible with each other before Dillon has to go back to school and gets sucked into another semester. Oh yeah, and making homemade jam. Lots of homemade Raspberry jam. YUMMMM!!!