I grew up in a racist world. When I was in first grade, I remember reading from the Dick and Jane books. One of the books or chapters was called "Our Colored Friends."
The title now seems quite racist, but I imagine it must have been quite revolutionary for 1968 to be showing African-Americans as friends and peers to white people. Nevertheless, I also witnessed much bigotry and hatred toward blacks. Sadly it usually came from fellow members of my religion--people who should have known better. Happily, my parents seemed to never tolerate any racist behavior or words.
This past week, when our nation elected Barack Obama as its next president, I felt such pride and excitement for the promise of better things to come. Pride for a country that is starting to finally live up to what Dick and Jane taught me 40 years ago. Excitement for what this new president's election will mean for the future.
My children and grandchildren will truly be living in a differnt world from the one I grew up in. They will know that any man could truly grow up to become president. Now, if only my daughter and future grand daughters could have proof that they, too, could aspire to whatever they hope for and work for.
Last weekend may have been a bit drizzly and chilly, but that didn't stop the fun for us. The family went to Park City and had a great time. One of the best things of the weekend was that the Chinese teachers came with us.
We all arrived at the condo in time to fix dinner. I may not be a great cook, but I taught everyone how to make pizza. We had pepperoni and black olive pizza and sausage and mushroom pizza. It was delicious. After dinner, we played Apples to Apples.
Saturday morning we all went to Main Street in downtown Park City. It was drizzly and cool, but everything was even more beautiful than usual. We strolled, took photos and did some window shopping.
At noon, we left and went to Park City Mountain Resort. There, we all rode on the Alpine Coaster ride. I was one of the last riders to head up the hill in my little "coaster car." I was so excited to start my way down. . . until I heard the screams. As I approached the top of the hill, the others started coming down. First to go were Jing and David. I could hearJing screaming as she careened down the hill.
"What have I gotten myself into?" I wondered.
Then came Tingting and Qingling. They were both screaming, but I also heard them laughing and saw huge smiles on their faces as they zoomed above me. We all had a blast on the coaster.
After our exhilerating trip down the hill, we went back to Main Street for lunch. We ate at Bandits Bar & Grill--a pretty good place for cowboy grub--then spent the rest of the afternoon at Tanger Outlet and TJ Maxx.
Sunday morning was a special treat for all of us. We slept in then ate a huge, American breakfast. Doug made Belgian Waffles. I made hash browns, bacon and eggs. I've got to say. I am so glad that these teachers have come into my life. They are smart, funny, adventurous and kind. Having them teach our children is such an amazing blessing. Someday, they will return to their home and families in China. When they do, I hope they will have good memories of their time in Utah. They always will be welcome back.
Taylor, our favorite missionary, requests that I update this blog. Good thing he's keeping me on my toes.
Despite the uncooperative weather, we are doing out best to get ready for Brittany and Cortney's wedding reception--which is just 30 days from now! Ten months ago when they told me they would be getting married, I thought I had all the time in the world. Well, things certainly have a way of creeping up on you!
Cortney's graduation ceremony was last weekend. It was great to see him receive his diploma. Later, we had dinner with his parents and grandparents and really enjoyed getting to know them better.
One of life's greatest blessings has got to be seeing your children marry someone who loves them and be adopted into a family that loves and accepts them as their own.
Garrett will graduate from Davis High School in a couple of weeks. Yesterday he finished his last AP exam (AP STATS). He and Kami Keck, his girlfriend, also had a great time at the Prom. Valerie Nye cooked the whole group a great dinner. The high class mode of transportation was a rented U-Haul trailer which the guys furnished with a huge selection of sofas.
Just last Sunday, Garrett was ordained an Elder. There is no doubt that Garrett will honor his priesthood in all he does. He has always been an example of love and kindness for all of us.
Austin and his mom just returned from a great week in Washington DC. He loved photographing all the beautiful sites and buildings. Some of his favorites were the Capitol Building, the White House and the Library of Congress. But, more importantly, he saw more cool cars than you can believe. He was in car heaven!
Taylor has passed the one year mark for his mission. He has also been transfered out of the city of Curituba for the first time. While he's had many transfers--they have all been in Curitiba. The temple there is almost finished, so I'm sure he will return.
To see more of our adventurous Taylor, go to You Tube.com and search "Elder Flint." He has two videos there for you to see. We are so proud of the hard work he is doing and, despite missing his crazy sense of humor, we are thrilled to have him serving the Lord.
Here are some of the latest photos of Taylor on his mission. They are cute because they show the true Taylor.
Christmas this year was just terrific. We went on a weeklong ski vacation with our wonderful neighbors, the Nyes. Here we are at Big Sky resort in Montana. The trip was a surprise for all of our kids (their two boys and our two boys). We didn't tell them until Christmas morning.
After talking to Taylor on the phone (he's doing great was a bit homesick due to the season), we all packed up and headed north to Island Park, Idaho. We knew we were in for a great, snowy week.
We arrived at the cabin around 10 on Christmas night. We would have arrived earlier, but when we stopped at Grandma and Grandpa Flint's house in Rigby, they had prepared a wonderful dinner of homemade chicken noodle soup! It was delicious and the homemade jam was the best ever. We we got to the cabin, it was surrounded by so much snow! The picture to the right was taken when we got there. The road to the cabin hadn't been plowed, so we had to wade through thigh-high snow to get to the door. Because it was near zero degrees, we couldn't leave anything in the trucks, so we spent the next hour trudging through the snow with all of our suitcases, groceries, coolers and such. We laughed the whole time. What a great memory!
The next day, we relaxed, ate at Trouthunters (which has the best fries ever!) and arranged for snowmobile rentals for the week. On Thursday, we headed north for Big Sky resort in Montana. When we left the cabin, it was 8 degrees below zero. As we drove north through Yellowstone Park, the temperature dropped to -14 degrees. I knew we were crazy. Luckily, when we got to Big Sky the temperature had risen to a balmy 10 degrees. We had such a fun time. Austin landed his first 360 ever! This is a picture of the actual event!
The following day, we went to Grand Targhee in Wyoming. It was such a beautiful drive. The skiing was great. Garrett, as usual, amazed us with his skiing ability. He is a beautiful skier. Here, he is doing a rodeo or a Lincoln--Mom's don't know the difference. He flies off the jumps like it is no big deal. Wouldn't it be great to be able to do that? Later that night, Brittany and Cortney came up to join us for the weekend. They also brought Garrett and Seth's girlfriends. You can imagine how happy that made those cute 17-year-old boys.
On Saturday and Sunday we snowmobiled like crazy. Garrett and Austin hadn't snowmobiled much, but they were so good at it and had such fun. Saturday it snowed and snowed while everyone drove around the amazing trail system in Island Park. On Sunday the sun came out for the first time! We were thrilled. We planned to drive the snowmobiles to Mesa Falls. The trip was so amazing and the falls in winter were breathtaking. When my friend Valerie and I kept tipping over in the powder, we laughed until it hurt. We really provided comic relief for everyone.
Oh, the pics to the right: Garrett and Seth at Big Sky and Austin doing his first ever back flip off a