Oh man, life is marching on.

Here are some things that happened in September, mostly according to my iPhone:

Got this awesome picture from my sister-in-law who hosts ALL the cousins who are up in Utah for dinner every first Sunday of the month.

Are you kidding me about how awesome she is?

And also about how many cousins there are up there?? So many are married now to the number has expanded and they all love to go have dinner together and they come up with all kinds of games like this one above (I have no idea what it is, but it looks like fun!)

I am not the greatest cello practicer but Dave caught this pic of me getting to work right before my workout one day:

Oh my fingers are numb and I’m making SLOW progress, but I’ll still take it!

Claire and I brought back “Tuesday Night Swim Club“…

…for only one Tuesday, but still, we’ll take that too. Loved swimming together in that velvety evening.

Dave and I took a little “work trip” to California:

(more on that over HERE).

We got to accompany some friends to escape the heat up to the mountains:

We had to come a lot later than everyone else for some reason or another, (I think some Relief Society stuff), and I remember being bleary-eyed when we got there.

But we still got some great time bonding with those good families. We had a little devotional around the fire pit one night and man alive, I’m so impressed with the youth these days. They shared some pretty amazing thoughts.

Did a little paddle boarding at a lake the next day before we headed out:

The desert was SO GREEN this Fall! It was incredible after so much rain!

High school has been a mighty big adjustment for Lucy.

It got to the point where Lucy was running away from her helpers at school, poor girl. And poor helpers. We had a conference call with all of Lucy’s teachers to explain what was going on with her syndrome and to get in sync and I think it helped so much!

I love everything Brooke Romney writes, and sometimes I take screenshots:

Would definitely recommend following her.

Love this picture my friend shared:

Sometimes don’t you think you can get so bogged down with “good” things that you forget to hold on to God? Life can be so complicated sometimes.

I talked about the beginning of the volleyball season HERE, but there was a LOT more volleyball in September.

Boy howdy.

**post edit, I forgot to add this video when I posted, but here we go…we saw a lot of this:

…which is so fun.

We had some tough losses and some glorious victories.

That sport takes over our lives. But we sure love it.

We hosted the girls for dinner at our house before a couple of the games:

I had to take a picture of this hymn at church one Sunday:

I Love the third verse where it talks about the “gifts” we bring to the sacrament: our broken hearts.

Isn’t it interesting that broken hearts are such an avenue to bring us closer to God?

Finally, after lots and lots of work, I finished my online college course I have been taking for about six months.

I learned SO much about the attachment theory, the essential bonding between mothers and their babies.

I talked a little about that back HERE with the “Welcoming Response” as well as HERE with the “StillFace Experiment.”

(Ok, that was longer than six months ago! Maybe part of that was from the other class I took about developmental psychology, both were so good!) I want to share a lot more from these courses somehow. I think they were both filled with such beautiful information.

Speaking of certificates of completion, let’s check out this fancy hoity-toity one:

Yeah, he pretty much rocks.

Still awaiting the official graduation ceremony (it’s supposed to be next week but put off one more time).

I feel like every weekend in September was so nutty.

This one in particular.

I spoke at this women’s conference:

(Loved it, all about that back HERE.)

Then ran to watch Claire in a volleyball tournament, then ran over to this baby shower I was semi-helping with:

One of Elle’s friends is having a baby!!! Love all these cute girls so very much!

And so happy for this sweet mama-to-be:

Then I ran back to the new school where the tournament had continued (higher bracket because of the wins).

…where Claire won the “All Tournament Team” award (left below). She ran home and switched it out for “American” spirit night at the football game (right below):

I raced back and joined Dave to meet up with friends to go to the Immersive Van Gogh exhibit:


My new fav. song was in it, as well as so many thoughts and feelings wrapped up in all that beauty.

Lots more about that HERE.

We went to dinner after…with some photo bombers there at the end:

I searched for rosin one day in our old violin cases and the memories rose like the dust from those small violins, the bow strings all frazzled, Elle’s name written just like she always used to write it on the chin rest.

BooHoo, I miss those days with all my heart.

Loved this quote:

The Turkey Trot planning meetings commenced:

Lu and I had some dates.

Dave and I had a special date to L.A….

Where the main attraction was a Yo-Yo Ma concert (for our belated anniversary celebration):

Oh man I loved that. Lots more over HERE.

Max, Elle and Grace’s beloved third grade teacher showed up at one of Claire’s volleyball games:

Oh man I love that woman. She was the best teacher and it was so fun to see her again!

I spoke at this online event:

(All about that HERE.)

Lucy let me try a new “twist” with her daily requested braid, and this is the best picture I could get of it:

Snuck Claire out on a little date:

Fed the volleyball girls again:

A little baby shower for our Bishop’s wife:

Dave got to go on his annual golf trip…

…and look who he got to see!

Loved this little text that Lucy sent me one day:

Saturday jobs:

I finally got my office all cleaned out. I had told my friend my goal to get it done and she gave me some sunflowers to set on my clean desk once I got there. It was a great motivator.

I might need to purchase myself more of those suckers to motivate me again. Man a lot of “things” come across that desk of mine!

Elle gave the devotional for the Come Follow Me app…here’s Dave setting it up after church so we could have her teach us a thing or two:

(More about Elle’s devotional and that app back HERE.)

See that stuff on the left up there? That is ready for all the Relief Society ladies to come over for ministering interviews.

We had two different groups come at two different times that Sunday, loved meeting with them. Have I mentioned how much I adore the women in our ward? I’m so grateful I get to associate with them in so many ways. They teach me so much!

Bo shenanigans:

Our neighbors invited Claire over to give a little report about her time in the Netherlands:

Love any chance kids get to talk about experiences like that. And loved hearing more details about that amazing opportunity she got.

A guest post from Claire about her experience is HERE.

It was my turn to host our “podcast group.” I love these women and their minds and thoughts they share so much!

Lucy requested these big scriptures to read to keep up in seminary. I love seeing them open on her desk in her room:

We had a crepe breakfast at some one’s house for Relief Society. Love that we get to gather a little big again!!

Cutie sisters:

So much practicing by this girl. She is sounding so good on the piano!

I met up with these wonderful ladies for an adventure in the South!

I wrote all about that adventure, but didn’t include our funny exploration to try to get on the roof of our hotel (didn’t work) and how Aja maneuvered us all around so seamlessly:

Some extra snippets not included in that other post:

So many talks in this spot:

ALL kinds of details about South Carolina and Kiawah Island back HERE.

Watched this short film on the airplane on the way home (highly recommended by my sister). It was one I want to watch again with my girls…look it up if you can!

Got back just in time for this little girls’ big choir performance:

…right smack-dab in the middle of a huge volleyball game for Claire. That was one memorable night running from one to the other over and over again. But the best night. I talked all about that back HERE.

My missionary:

Oh I love her!

She got a new companion she is training over there in Texas, and living her best life.

Phew! September was one for the books!

More detailed posts about what happened around here in September:

Exploring the South with my mom and sisters

Some big volleyball shoes to fill

Yo-Yo Ma in concert

Claire’s summer internship in the Netherlands {a guest post}

Elle’s devotional for the Come Follow Me app

The Immersive Van Gogh Exhibit

Women’s Conference Talk

When Choir and Volleyball Intersect

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  1. Hey Shawni, could you please ask Abi if there are any other books (anthropology based) that she recommends. You previously mentioned Sapiens, which I ordered and read. I really enjoyed it. Thanks

  2. I absolutely cannot believe how busy you are :). Quite exciting things always going on. I was thinking about the challenge Lucy has with accepting help. Perhaps you can remind her that God calls these people to be her help and to serve her. That even though it is their job, God has chosen them to be with her. It can be so difficult to accept that we need help–but we all do at different times–and God wants us to be able to accept the service of others. We are called to both serve and to accept the service of others. I’m sure it’s rough for you and Dave. You are such great parents.

    1. I love this Lissa…wish you could come be a little angel on her shoulder to teach her these things! We have tried teaching these truths from every different angle and I do think sometimes it comes better from others than from the parents (falling on deaf ears at this point:(. But I so believe what you’re saying and hope she will too some day! She is accepting help a little better right now, but that could change tomorrow! She has a fun new development at school that I’m waiting to share to make sure it “takes,” Oh! I’m sure crossing my fingers!! Thank you for sending love and lift, sending love right back!

  3. Thank you for sharing the Come Follow Me app. I downloaded and I have come to look forward to studying each morning. This morning’s devotional was so cool…someone I knew but what he spoke about. Recorders. Recording history and how important the Temple Recorder is. I listened to the talk that was recommended and just was a beautiful way to start my day.

  4. Thank you, Shawnie. I love your blog and I learn so much. If you are so inclined, I’d love to read a post about how you keep your energy and spirits up. I so admire how much you get done and how you handle all that’s on your plate with such grace. I really struggle with overwhelm and burnout – any tips?

    1. I’m trying to figure this out myself! I do feel like I’ve been about to break lately, too much coming at us these days. But I do think gratitude helps so much. I don’t know why, but I’ve always just felt like it didn’t help anything to dwell on that tough stuff, and I try to look at the goodness around things, sometimes enough that it drives my husband crazy:) Ha! I am right there with you though, on the overwhelm and burnout, and I personally am trying to change some things that have helped this week: morning prayer every morning and reading the scriptures for even a few minutes. It really does seem to help in my days. Also, my friend was telling me about how meditation has changed her perspective so much, and I am set on trying that. I’ll have to write about what she told me soon, because it was powerful. Not sure if any of that helped, but I am sending over lots of love and hope and encouragement your way, that you will find your own personal balance.

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