Sunday, December 5, 2010


Before the onslaught of December has become too crazy, I am going to do some catching up of sorts...obviously not in any particular order.

I have been so blessed throughout my life to cross paths with some incredibly remarkable and fun women. These pics only represent a small number of them. This past summer I had so much fun catching up with some friends from quite some time ago, plus getting to know some new friends quite a bit better.
OK, seriously, if you want to get to know someone really well, spend a week with them at Girls' Camp! This is a pic of Deor Jorgensen, me, and Dana Waggoner and we served the Young Women of our stake while camping during one of the hottest weeks of the year in Missouri. We had so much fun teaching and hiking and singing and spending time chatting with each other and with the girls...loved it! I have LOVED my new calling working with all of the other wards in our incredible O'Fallon Stake!!
One of the first people that we met upon our arrival in Bellingham , WA on a very, very dismal and rainy day was Dawn Hatch. After meeting Dawn, I knew that everything was going to be just fine. Dawn makes me smile - just love being around her!!
So, while at Girls' Camp and chatting with Deor we made a connection from our past - Carol Jean Bishop! Carol Jean and her husband were dear friends when Rich and I first started dating. Deor and her husband Neil met the Bishops when they were at the University of Utah doing graduate work...such a small world! Deor, Carol Jean, and I had a yummy lunch together!!
I'll have a "forever" connection with this amazing lady! Jenny Hawks and her husband served a mission in St. Louis and lived in our basement for a little over 6 months. I LOVE her!! I think she likes to shop as much as I do!!
This is SUPER funny - so no laughing! This picture is of my good high school friends. I married first and was obviously pregnant here - just can't remember if it was with Amy or Chris. Anyways, the four of us met up this summer for the first time in 25+ years...and
...we look just a tad different...older, but definitely wiser! (Lisa, Gail, Yasemin, and Alison)

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Claire Was Here - Evidence Abounds!!

My goodness...I can't believe how long it has been since I've updated my blog! I guess it just comes down to the fact that I've been having too much fun to actually sit down and document it all...but I must because I don't want to forget a second of it. Needless to say, it will take several posts.

I came home from Utah last night - and wow, it just seems a little too quiet! Claire & Company arrived on September 22nd and it has been non-stop since then. I'm walking around the house seeing various pieces of evidence that Claire was here. Also going through pictures -lots of proof!
Claire loved my bathtub...sometimes we had a bath twice a day. Amazing how much I could get done while she was occupied for a few minutes in the bathtub.
Some mornings when she woke up she was particularly happy to see Caleb - and occasionally she would pose for a picture with him...Claire loves to be outside. I have a hammock on the deck that she quite enjoyed playing and relaxing in. The weather was pretty much perfect for their visit, and therefore, Claire wanted to be out there most of the time. We tried to fence her in - rather unsuccessfully. She quickly learned how to move the chairs and put them back as they were so we wouldn't notice her escape. One morning I looked out a kitchen window only to see her headed into our neighbor's yard without a thought to look back. The girl is fast!
She loved, loved, loved playing the piano and loved, loved, loved entertaining us on the drums!
Claire loves powder! After every bath we have "powder time" and she puts it on rather generously. Well, one Sunday morning we couldn't find her as we were trying to walk out the door. We did, however, find a powder trail that lead to my closet where she was hiding. She had managed to get the bottle of powder and I guess she found it rather entertaining.
Claire loves to play with rocks - there's just something about rocks. She loves to pile them up, put them in her pockets, put them in a bucket, or line them up creatively.
This is pretty much how my living room looked for about 3 weeks. I have waited to be a grandma for a long time and have been stashing things away. It's way fun for me to bring it all out and I didn't mind one bit that she'd go in there and bang away on the pots and play with the dishes. She did, however, manage to get a spice jar off the kitchen counter (I think it was the tarragon) and dump it all over one morning.
We had the funniest experience the last night she was here...ok, so it was probably one of those moments that was much funnier had you been there in person. Claire was not about to eat her stew, even though she generally likes everything it was made with. We all tried everything we could think of. In desperation Katie tried to reason with her, showing her that the elephant was more than happy to eat the stew...didn't work...clearly didn't work!
Ummm...walked down the stairs. I thought FOR SURE I had put away every marker and pencil and pen I had. Wouldn't you know I missed a couple of them. And wouldn't you know that she'd feel the need to further decorate my pretty wallpaper! Oh Claire, Claire, Claire...
I'm not sure that I'm too anxious to remove her artwork - it's a sweet remembrance to me. I love her!!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

He's Here, He's Here, Baby Caleb Has Arrived!

I made it to Utah late Saturday night, August 14th - just in time for a fun get together at Jayne and Ta's fun to see Mandy and her sweet family, Jayne and Ta and Poppy, AND my oldest sister Sharon and also my sister Becky, plus Lindsay and all the Brewers. Too fun!

Last week was way exciting for the Brewer family. Joseph's dad was able to be in attendance at his graduation from BYU...a significant milestone...yay, yay, and double yay to my fantastic proud of him! I think he is so relieved and proud to be a graduate, but he is even more proud to be the father of a beautiful son...Caleb James Brewer...born Monday, August 16th. About 20 minutes before he was born all of us in the room started trying to guess what his weight would be. Joseph was right on the money...8 lb. 10 oz. Not bad for being a week early!
Katie's looking a little worn out in this pic, but she actually is feeling pretty darn good...compared to Claire's delivery, this one was a piece of cake. I'll spare you all the details and just say again what an incredibly wonderful experience it is to witness the birth of a child. Tears of relief and tears of joy just sprang to my eyes. I'm so proud of this little family!!
As previously mentioned, Joseph's dad was able to be here for his graduation and to meet baby Caleb. Earlier that day we went out and did some errands. Claire ADORES her Papa - particularly because he loves to give her rides on his shoulders! She was so cute putting her head down on top of his while we were going through the store.
Claire wasn't much for enjoying the hospital room, except for playing on the bed and with all of the buttons...we LOVE pushing buttons!
Can I just say how fantastic it is to meet a doctor that absolutely and thoroughly enjoys what he does??!! Dr. Holmes is so kind and soothing and patient...Katie is so lucky to be in such good hands! This is Dr. Holmes, proud papa Joseph, and baby Caleb!
Aunt Lindsay came over at the end of her work day just in time to be there for Caleb's birth! She's in love...again!
This is the most precious child! He actually looks pretty awake in this picture. That has been, so far, the biggest issue...getting him to wake up! He seems so mild, so content, so peaceful, and so clueless as to how much we are all in love with him!! Welcome sweet baby!!!

Friday, August 6, 2010

August 6, 2010 - An Historic Day Indeed!!

It has been an historic least in the world of Lisa Bowerman! What could possibly make this an historic day one may wonder? Well, I filled out my LAST set of school registration papers and went over to Edwardsville High School with Sarah to register her as a SENIOR! Yahoo! And I have to say this - Edwardsville High School has it down to a science. I've gone to lots of schools and lots of registration days...we were in and out of there in about 15 minutes! Smooth!! So, the first pic is Christopher's Kindergarten picture.
Such a cutie!

And the following pics are of my baby girl as a SENIOR! These pictures were taken by our dear friend Katharine while we were out in Utah in June. I think they turned out so well. She captured Sarah's personality to a tee!

I can't say it enough, and I know she's tired of hearing it, but I am SO glad I have one more year left with this girl! We are going to have a great SENIOR year together!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Happenings...lots and lots of happenings!!

July 4, 2010

Happy Birthday to my country...I feel so blessed to be able to live in the "land of the free and the home of the brave"! Sarah and I saw a fantastic fireworks display last night--right here in Edwardsville!!

I can't believe that the last time I did a post was Mother's Day...crazy! The last two months have flown by. Lots of end-of-the-year activities for Sarah, trips, concerts, friends, parties, on and on...So I'm making an attempt to catch up just a bit. The entries are all mixed up, but basically most everything mentioned has happened since May.

The family was recently out in Utah for several reasons, which I'll get to later. While there, though, my sister Trish that lives in Orem let us know that she had breast cancer. That I was there and able to facilitate and take part in a certain doctor's visit, a super fun shopping trip, and a rather memorable sister dinner was...well, I'm learning more and more to not look at happenings as coincidences, but more and more as "tender mercies". We are currently waiting for the final diagnosis, but Trish has had a lumpectomy and some serious (long-awaited) reconstruction. Her future will include a rather aggressive chemo and radiation regimen, but so far things have gone well.
This is Trish and her good husband, Cliff, at Chris' wedding last November. I love her and know that with her very positive and determined outlook she'll get through this and come out on top!
Ah yes! Guess what I got Rich for Father's Day?? Tickets to Michael Buble! Wasn't that nice of me??!! So the concert was on June 25th...and let's just was a-m-a-z-i-n-g!! We haven't been to a concert for well over 30 years, so this was pretty darn fun. Fortunately we had some great seats and the folks in front of us didn't stand up very much, so we didn't need to, either. Such a great evening...he's an amazing performer with a fantastic voice!
Happy Birthday...and let's have a Tea Party while we're at it! Kirstin and Heather, here in Edwardsville, have fairly close birthdays, which are always fun to celebrate. As I was thinking about those that would like to help celebrate, I realized that almost all of them had little girls, so I decided to get another good friend, Melody, to help me and put this little event together.
Our little girl friends had such fun getting dressed up and playing with all the "girl" stuff that I've collected over the years.
Bella was particularly happy to find some clip-on earrings!
The group! Thanks fun to put this together. You are all such great friends and moms to your wonderful daughters!
Last year my good friend Karen Wall, who has a yard that pretty much looks like the Garden of Eden, introduced me to the many varieties of lilies that exist. I had NO idea! She shared several with me last year and I've waited so patiently to watch them bloom this year. Here are some of beautiful!

So Rich, Sarah and I headed out to Utah on June 13th. We took Sarah to BYU and dropped her off for BYU Summer Fest - a music camp - for the week. She had a fantastic time. I need to do an individual post just on Sarah and will talk more of her experience in that post. (I'm realizing that these pictures are SO out of order!) Anyways, after her week at BYU and Father's Day, Sarah and I remained in Utah for a couple more days while Rich headed home. We had so much fun with "you know who"! On one of our outings I had bought some M & M's, which surprisingly enough, Claire loves. But, of course, all things come to an end, and she had definitely had enough.
At which point, she gives you this look, "Are you serious?" At which point you show her the empty bag...
At which point she shows her disgust about the whole tears, but clearly distraught.
Claire is such a good sleeper...most of the time...or maybe she's a good sleeper when Mum-Mum is not in town. Katie and Joseph have moved her out the crib and for now her mattress is on the floor, and that works fine. But generally she doesn't fall asleep on the mattress.
She loves things piled on top, and always has something covering at least part of her face. So funny!
Claire also loves to play much as she can talk anyone into taking her out. She's such a social butterfly. Loves to play with any other kids that happen to wander by.
One of my sisters passed on several dresses to Claire. This one was hanging in the closet and I decided she should wear it for Father's Day. I thought she looked like a little angel!
When I brought her downstairs the girls were doing their best to stifle their laughter, which I simply did not understand. Finally they let me know that I was stuck in the 80's! This dress reminded them so much of what I tried (successfully!) to dress them in. I did my best to not show all day how my feelings were hurt. In my mind, some styles are "timeless", and this is one of them! Claire cooperated beautifully and didn't seem to mind one bit that she was a little behind the fashion times!
Claire with Auntie Lindsay!
Happy Father's Day to my daddy!!
The group on Father's Day...Holly is taking the pic and Joseph had gone to work...
Yummy Father's Day Dinner...thanks kids!!
Dinner at the Red Iguana in Salt Lake - night before Father's Day. I love this pic of Chris and Lindsay...let's just say that when I look at this picture I think to myself, "Wow, they've come a long ways!" I'm sure there are some out there that can understand my sentiment. Love these kids!
Rich and our daughter-in-law Holly! Such a good Mexican (Rich's fav!) restaurant...thanks all!!
Grandpa and Sweet Baby Claire!
One of the things about having lived lots of different places is that you meet lots of different friends along the way...and sometimes those paths really do cross again!
Such is the case with Kim Nitta. I knew Kim when Chris and Lindsay were little, before I had Katie. They moved, we moved, but we've stayed in touch over the years. Sure enough, two of her kids now live in the same ward in Provo as Lindsay! Too fun. Anyways, she happened to be in town for Father's Day and it was so fun to surprise her and spend some time visiting.
Lindsay and Heather knew each other well as little girls, and now again! Too fun!!
So, that week that Sarah was at BYU Rich and I decided to spend some time in different parts of southern Utah. We had a great time!
Over in the St. George area is an outdoor amphitheater called the Tuacahn. It is amazing. I stopped there a couple of times with the kids on our journies from southern California up to Salt Lake, but Rich had never been. So we went to see "Cats". It was super fun. Love that place!
Over on the other side of the state is Moab...the Jeep capital of the world! And we found out why. What a neat place...all these amazing sites that we'd never taken the time to see before.
Rich's sister, Rebecca, and her husband, Todd, came up from the Four Corners area and spent one day with us at Arches National cool!
Todd and I decided to brave the sun and heat and hike...
...and hike...
...the 3 mile round trip up to this amazing structure...Delicate Arch! So worth it! All in all we had a very fun and relaxing time together discovering this part of the country.
Several months ago a young lady came to our church building. She was 20 years old at the time and had crossed paths with some of our missionaries. I remember the first time I met her...I remember that she radiated a certain happiness and goodness. I remember thinking, "this is a special, special girl". Over the next several months she gained a testimony of the gospel and made the decision to be baptized, much to the dismay of her family and friends. While I understand that we Mormons are considered by many to be a tad different, I simply do not understand a family that would turn their backs on their daughter because of this. I know that her parents must be wonderful people...they have raised a wonderful daughter. I'm sure it is difficult to watch children make choices that are different than what they desire. But, if anything, she is better. Heavens, look at the good choices she is making every day. Regi has made the choice to go out to BYU Idaho, which we think will be such a great experience for her. In order for her save some money, she came to live with us for awhile.
Needless to say, Sarah and Regi quickly became best friends, and have spent many late nights chatting and laughing together. It has been such a good experience for Sarah, to see how Regi's testimony has grown over the last several months. To see her exhibit such faith until she has fully understood, and then to see the "lights go on" when she understands...amazing.
Red hair, lots of freckles = loads of fun!
A couple of weeks ago Regi's mother and sister came down to visit her...a huge step in the right direction! Their conversation led to Regi thinking that she should go home for a couple of months before she heads out to BYU. They have agreed to let her take the car to church meetings (huge!) and even have church friends come to the house (even huger!). She hopes, and we most certainly do also, that her influence will only bless her family in good ways. Regi left this last Wednesday and we miss her tons already!!
Well, that was pretty much not in any particular on to July! Girls' Camp and Youth Conference are right around the corner...big events for both Rich and I. Marching Band is already in full swing with tons of other events filling up the summer! Can't hardly believe we're reaching Marshall's one year mark!!