Month: April 2011


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    Ben brought me flowers yesterday! Just because. I like just because flowers. I’m thinking he was inspired – yesterday was just one of those days. I feel like I was going going going all day and then it was bedtime and it looked like I hadn’t gotten anything done. I think the ultimate source of the lameness around here is living in half a house. I will be so happy when my bedroom can just be my bedroom again and not double as the family room and the living room is doubling as the toy/guest/ everything else room and all of the kids room are storing computers and blankets and whatever else usually has a home downstairs. I’m hoping next week will bring us new carpet and then all will be right in this Nettesheim home πŸ™‚

    Categories: General, Jana



    Packer is 4! He has been so excited for this birthday which has made it exciting for all of us. We celebrated with all of the Utah cousins on Saturday. We had a barbeque and Easter egg hunt and then we celebrated Packer and Amanda’s birthdays with presents and cake and ice cream …

    Packer is in this pic somewhere - - -

    He didn't waste any time getting his presents open

    Pac requested Angry Bird Cupcakes!

    Enjoying a yellow Bird

    Today Packer woke us up nice and early to start the celebration. We opened presents and just played with them all day…

    ready for my presents!

    Rose was excited for the 8am fun

    Fuzzoodles, Hi Ho Cherry-o, Rocket Launcher and Stackable Robots ...

    The Robots were a hit for all 3 of these kiddos

    We ate pancakes for dinner – one of Packer’s favorites. And then we hurried off to Trafalga ( we had planned on going to Chuck E Cheese but Packer changed his mind and really wanted to do “Glow Up Golf” ). So we played some miniature golf and then rode the carousel and the airplanes and played some more outside golf, then it started to rain so we hit the indoor play place before coming home.

    posing during mini golf

    Playing Glow Up Golf!

    Flying High

    enjoying the globe.

    We came home and had more cupcakes and opened one last present – Despicable me PJs and Story Book, which ended the evening perfectly and the happy birthday boy fell soundly asleep.

    Making one last birthday wish

    Packer is a happy go lucky little boy. He loves to be given a project, is our social one, and still loves tickles and snuggles. He is growing up way to fast. I don’t want my little brown eyed boy to get big yet πŸ™

    Categories: Packer

    Easter EGGS

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    Posting our EGG pictures. We colored eggs on Saturday and hunted lots of eggs with the Utah cousins. Then we hunted some more eggs Sunday after dinner with the Falabella cousins. The kids had a blast and have Over Loaded on candy.

    Dyeing our Eggs !

    Cali and Anna!

    Packer and Sam!

    Benji and Packer helping Alessandro.

    Rose wanted the candy so bad...

    love this face

    and this face



    The End of the Egg Hunts for 2011

    Categories: Nettesheim

    Happy EASTER!

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    Our Family

    I was nervous about getting to church on time on Easter morning but we made it! and we even had time to take a picture before we left!! I know we’re amazing πŸ™‚

    matching girls

    cutest smiles ever!

    Brewer even got in this one.

    Cali's photography skills - I liked it.

    I’m grateful for Easter and how it helps me focus on my Savior. I know that he suffered death but he did rise on the third day giving us all the gift of resurrection. Our kids are still young but I wish we would have spent more time on the meaning of it all and the real celebration. Next year we will do better.


    Packer and Benji


    Categories: General

    Family In Town

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    This passed week I got to spend time with my parents and 7 of my 11 siblings! My parents and Michael came out for my brother Ryan’s graduation from the police academy. Shannon finished another year at BYUI! (her 3rd) Tracie flew in from Alaska to support Ryman and be with the fam. So, they all came Sunday night when we got home from St. George. Joel, Brady and Kelsey all go to school out here and were all finishing up their semesters. The week went too fast just like always… On Monday night we had a family get together with my mom’s side of the family. We ended the night with a cousins soccer game – and I’m not talking about my kids, it was Ben and I and all the siblings I mentioned and my cousins Bracken, Colby, and Jeremy. We played barefoot and all came home with bruised and/or blistered feet. The next day we were all hobbling around at the graduation πŸ™‚ Tuesday we spent at Ryan’s graduation and we ate out at the Olive Garden. And that night we lost most of the group – Dad, Mike, Tracie and Ryan’s family all had to leave. My Mom and Shannon stayed until Friday morning. We played Nertz and Rook and learned how to make duct tape bows. We let mom cook for us and went out for ice cream. My dad fixed my hot tub (really I just had the valve closed instead of open! lame), so we’ve been swimming. To end I just need to thank the little white car that flashed its lights at me to let me know about the cop on 600 West, my mom had never heard of the flash your lights communication so I was telling her about it as we putted down the road at 25mph and sure enough mr police man was there waiting. Now Easter and Packers Birthday and all this with half of a house… hopefully a post very soon will be of my new carpet downstairs and no more signs of the flood.

    Ryan at Graduation

    the only picture I took of some of the family, mom and Tracie please send me pics

    Ryan, Tara, Taylee, Marlee, Brinlee and Kylee

    mom, ryan and dad

    Arden, Ryan, Elma (love the grandparents glasses πŸ™‚ ...

    Packer Using the Tree

    OK if you made it to the end then you get to hear about Packer Peeing. I am glad that this was the week before he turned 4 because it just seems more OK if it was a 3 year old. So we are taking pictures after graduation and we look over and Packer is tagging the tree RIGHT IN FRONT of the entire graduation crowd. He has been taught to go out away from people IF he needs to go, I guess I haven’t Stressed the part about ONLY IF THERE IS NOT A RESTROOM NEAR BY or IN A PUBLIC PLACE! So there he was this cute little boy peeing on the tree not more than 5 feet away. We all got a good laugh and he got a good talking to.

    Categories: Robertson

    St. George Fun

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    It has become tradition to go to the condos in St. George every spring break… Benji has seriously been counting down since Christmas. We went Thursday night and came home Sunday. We spent all day Friday at Sand Hollow State Park playing in the sand and the cold water. All day on the beach is one of my favorite ways to spend a day. On Saturday we spent the day at the condo – we hit the playground and then swam ALL afternoon at the pool. I couldn’t believe how long the kids lasted. They loved the kiddie pool and then put their life jackets on and loved the big pool. The only downer was when we went to custard that evening and each if my 4 children decided to be whiny and loud and out of control. We discovered yummy salsa and queso at Don Pedro’s, Cali got her first real sunburn, and we just enjoyed our little vacation with family.

    Cali and Mia just playing down the beach.

    Where are my chips?

    love that face, love the sand (but not the redness)

    cousins on the beach = perfect day

    Benji disappears when his cousins are around so I don't have as many pictures of him. But he was there and he loved it.

    Anna, Cali and Mia - love the 2 year olds - when they are happy πŸ™‚

    Cali climbed on and was ready for a ride - YES!

    Packer and Mom, he and Cali loved it, Benji didn't like any speed over idle.

    Rose was an angel baby. She just chilled so Ben and I got to play with the other kids.

    i love this one, having older cousins is FUN

    all the kids loved getting pulled around in the boat. Again - older cousins are awesome.

    proof that Ben was there, even if the life jacket was too small.

    Our Turtle, the boys remembered that we made one last year so we had to do it again.

    Saturday at the pool.

    Good Bye St. George – we’ll be back next year.

    Categories: Nettesheim

    our small house just got smaller this week


    So – – we got home from our wonderful vacation and had a FLOODED BASEMENT. The city turned on the secondary water while we were gone and we thought that we had it turned off but we did not.


    It was really flooded. The entire basement was soaked at ground level. We had to throw out all of our carpet and now we’ve been home for 3 days and we are still trying to get the walls dried out. Monday and Tuesday were spent calling insurance and water damage company and waiting for return calls and people to come over and inspections and… not how I wanted to spend my week.

    annoyances: the constant hum of fans. They have the basement heated up to 95 degrees so it feels like I’m still in Costa Rica. Trying to live in half of our house and that half is very cluttered with things that belong in the other half of the house. Huge machinery is plugged in to all of my outlets so I am without a laundry room and a stove/oven.

    Anyway I just feel like I’m in over my head. We have been working on the toy room and last week we painted our downstairs family room so we have been busy doing those projects at night and neglecting some of the usual. Then we went on vacation and brought home luggage from us and kids which always takes a day or two to recover from. Now throw a flooded basement on top of that and you have a not happy Jana and Ben. We had to get the downstairs stuff off of the floor so we have clutter everywhere and can’t use the downstairs at all. Now we have a St. George Spring Break trip planned for this weekend… hoping our house is dry enough to still go. And my family is then coming to town the day we get back from St. George – our hopes of a finished play room and new carpet are simply a past dream – instead we will be carpetless, with no TV and we just sold our guest bed – sorry family we’ll have to make do.

    we had to pull out all of the carpet and get some air blowing

    we had lots of fans blowing but when a friend came by and showed us the moisture levels a foot or two up the wall we decided we'd better call in the professionals

    bring in the fancy fans

    fancy heat and wind tunnels

    The Clutter! I did some major cleaning today (thanks Amanda for taking my kids) so things are looking better.

    cords running to all the different circuits throughout the house

    this little baby had to feed herself today so that I could get things done

    Categories: General

    Costa Rica! (every little detail)


    Tuesday Night April 5th

    We dropped Benji, Packer, and Cali off at the Falabellas at 6pm Γ’β‚¬β€œ they were so excited to spend the night with their cousins. They happily told us goodbye and ran off to play. Then we headed for a long night of airplane hopping. We left at 8:30pm – Salt Lake City to Los Angeles to Miami and finally into Liberia, Costa Rica at 10am. Not the most restful night of sleep but we did have empty seats by us so we got to bring Rose’s car seat and she slept pretty well.

    Wednesday April 6th

    the first thing to catch Rose's eye - the humongous fan at the airport

    We got our luggage and made it through security real easy and were greeted by 80ish men vying to be our Taxi to our Hotel. Luckily we had a shuttle waiting for us as part of the all inclusive package from work so they found us and loaded us on a mini bus and Ben, Rose and I with 2 other couples from work headed to the south west to the Riu Guanacaste Hotel. I was surprised at first by how dry everything was, it reminded me of Oroville in the summer. We learned that it is the very end of the dry season so it is as dry as it gets and the rain will be coming soon. (as you will see from our pictures it was still green in lots of areas and very pretty.) The drive to our resort was just over an hour. The dirt road to our fancy hotel caught me off guard (supposedly there was a contract problem between the hotel and the government) and the locals all drive fast on those skinny windy roads but we made it and checked in at the resort around noon. We spent the afternoon checking out the hotel set up. We unpacked, walked down to the beach, checked out the pool area, had our first of many refreshing juice drinks from the bar, and were stopped several times to show off our little white skinned chubby blue eyed baby. At 6pm we went to the Liberian Buffet Restaurant. The food was AMAZING. They had anything you could think of and it was all really tasty unlike a normal buffet. Our favorites that night were the tostadas and mangoes and lots of good meat. That evening we listened to the Riu Band and watched the Ò€œBroadwayÒ€ show. They were both a bit cheesy but we were entertained. We went to bed exhausted after a full day and a red eye the night before.

    The Riu Guanacaste

    ready for the pool

    posing by the waterfall

    Thursday April 7th

    We woke up and had more mangoes for breakfast, also tried cucumber shakes and bacon and eggs. Then we headed down to the beach. We put Rose in her carrier and we just started walking the beach. We went a ways down to the other end of the beach enjoying the scenery, shells, birds and hot hot sun. We walked back towards the Hotel and then went swimming in the ocean. It was so warm. Rose liked it except when the BIG waves came. What I thought was amazing was that it was just the right temperature. I was never cold the entire time even getting in and out of the water you were just always comfortable. The sun would go behind the clouds and it was still perfectly sunny and warm. I loved it.

    walking the beach

    Ben and the palm trees

    one of many lizards

    our hotel from the far end of the beach

    Rose and I posing on the beach


    right after Rose's first swim in the ocean

    So then we went to lunch at the restaurant down by the pool and had the best Guacamole ever! Yes we ate lots of other stuff but I went back several times for the Guac. That afternoon we chilled at the pool. Swimming, reading and eating ice cream. Right at sun down a security guy came by with a baby sea turtle in hand!! He let Ben hold it and then told us Muchos muchos and pointed to the beach. We headed down to the beach and they had about a hundred little baby turtles that had just hatched! SO cool. We watched them squirm around in the ‘cages’ and learned that the conservationists were keeping them until 4am when the hotel lights would be off and the babies would have a better chance of following the moon out to sea. That night we had a company dinner at the Steak House at 8:30. They gave awards to everyone that was there and talked about the company and goals and how each of the employees had gone above and beyond in their role. We didn’t get out of there until 11pm.

    look at this cute girl

    happy Rose

    a few of the baby turtles!!

    Friday April 8th

    Another yummy breakfast to start the day off right. After that we played a little tennis Γ’β‚¬β€œ a little being about a half of an hour before we were dripping sweat and baking in the sun. Then back to the pool πŸ™‚ Yes, it was perfect pool weather at 10am! It was actually a bit sunny but the pool is so big that we were able to keep Rose under the bridge for shade most of the time.

    we love to swim

    We got dressed for the day, grabbed a snack and then headed out on a shopping tour. They took us to a few souvenir shops where we purchased trinkets for the kids. Wood seemed to be their specialty, anything made of wood. Then they dropped us off at the city park in the middle of Liberia. We had seen a Pollo Campero restaurant on the way in and Udine has told us that they have the best chicken ever so… even though we had been eating nonstop for 2 1/2 days we had to go try it, and… It was REALLY good. We walked around town a little and talked about how it reminds us both of our missions in Brazil. And then we sat in the park and talked (tried to let Ben talk) to some of the locals. Then we headed back to the hotel where we had 6:30 reservations for the specialty Chinese restaurant. We were in no way hungry at this point but we helped ourselves to plenty of food and topped it off with Mango Cake. We chilled for a bit and called it a night when Rose got grumpy.

    Pollo Campero = yummy chicken

    downtown Liberia - in the park

    Saturday April 9th

    the river cruise!

    We had a 7am River Cruise! So we got on a mini bus at 7am, after grabbing a little bread just like I used to eat every morning on my mission πŸ™‚ The bus had a few stops picking up other tourists and trading us to another bus but we had a fun tour guide that told us all about the old town of Filadelphia and explained the way they grow sugar cane and melons and how they thrive on manual labor because it provides jobs for everyone. He showed us Iguanas and different types of birds and about 2 hours later we were at the river. We got on a boat with our tour guide and a boat captain and headed out. The water is brown so you can’t see what is in there but I did feel it and just like everything else in Costa Rica, it was warm. They showed us a few different Night Birds, and a few little crocodiles lounging on the banks. We saw lots of iguanas and bats.

    night bird - i forgot the name already

    hello mr. crocodile

    huge iguana!

    don't bats just creep you out?

    on the boat

    Then we headed the opposite direction and started to hear and see the monkeys. Our captain took us over to one of the trees where they pulled out a banana and started making monkey noises. Within a minute the monkeys just started coming towards the boat. They were white face monkeys about the size of rose but obviously skinnier and with super long arms and legs. A few of the monkeys jumped onto the boat and then in the boat and then there were about 15 monkeys climbing all over us tourists and eating pieces of banana! It was really neat to see them that close up and feel them.


    monkey on the boat?

    monkeys really do like bananas?

    yes i said Rose size - i meant length, not thickness

    aren't they cute?

    our tour guide, Jose.

    the monkeys really did climb on us! i want to post the video if I ever time cause this was really neat.

    We saw a couple of Macaw’s. Thy were super pretty. This picture doesn’t do them justice…

    the macaws

    After that excitement we headed a little further down river and found a 6 to 8 foot crocodile that was in the water! Our boat captain went and grabbed some chicken meat and started luring the croc towards us! He put the meat on a stick and then brought it right in by the boat where he came up and grabbed it off the pole. He started hand feeding him after that. We had definitely never seen a crocodile that close up. Their mouths are long and they have TONS of sharp teeth. Very cool.

    yes that guy is swimming right to our boat! We have a cool video of this too so I'll see what i can do...

    That was the grand finale of our river cruise. We tipped them well and got back on our bus for 2 and a half hours back to the hotel. That afternoon we had another yummy lunch complete with guacamole and ice cream and then went to the shops at the resort to look around. Then the beach was calling us to come swim one last time. Rose was asleep so Ben and I took turns watching her and swimming. I told Ben that I kept feeling something in the water so I got out… he went in and discovered that there were hundreds of little fish right on the shore line! I went back to see for myself and there were Γ’β‚¬β€œ tons of little fish coming in and out with the waves and swimming right into you and not caring. We laid on the beach until it got too hot and then said goodbye and headed to the shade of the pool. We swam some more and relaxed and soaked in our last moments of wonderfulness. Then we did the same at our late dinner. We enjoyed all of the yummy buffet food and drinks and visited with some of the Mozy group. Then we went over to the stage and enjoyed some Michael Jackson music/impersonations before calling it a night.

    our last swim

    goodbye perfect swimming pool

    one more specialty drink, we learned quickly to communicate to the bar tenders 'sin alcohol'

    I loved this view with the moon trying to shine through

    Michael Jackson show

    our little frog friend waiting by our hotel room! Luckily he never made it in. I did come home with quite a few mosquito bites and something itchy on my leg. Hopefully it goes away soon.

    Sunday April 10th

    everyone loves Mangoes - this little girl threw the biggest fits every time we had food and didn't share it with her.

    Our hotel departure time was 11am so we had time to get packed up and then enjoy one more all you can eat Riu breakfast special. Have I mentioned yet that Rose was a celebrity there? Everyone stopped to talk to the baby and tell her how beautiful she is. She got soo much attention and just loved it. We checked out and got on a bus for the airport in Liberia. We paid 26$ per person to leave the country, checked in with American Airlines and then went through customs before buying our 5$ soda to keep us cool in the outdoor airport. We had a 4 hour flight to Dallas and then made it through all of the US customs and declarations and security and recheck your baggage and then our flight to Salt Lake was running late but a lightning storm was coming in so they hurried us out of there but took the longer southern route to avoid lightning. It was on this flight when we went to watch a show we realized we had left our tablet on the plane from Costa Rica πŸ™ boo… But we made it to SLC around midnight, and home around 1am. It was an awesome vacation. I feel like I actually relaxed a little and still got to see and do lots of cool things. The all inclusiveness and all paid by the company-ness were awesome. We loved our vacation to Costa Rica Γ’β‚¬β€œ Pura Vida!

    peace out

    Categories: Ben, Jana