Friday, July 31, 2009

Are You a Gestapo Mom!

I have this need to talk about something that I am currently working very hard on and needed some advice from my blog readers out there...all 2 of here goes.

I am finding that turning back the hands of time is something I soooo wish I could do right now, why you ask? Not, because I want to change diapers or worry about babysitters or even to have my pre-baby body back!

I wished that I was a better mother, a more patient and kind mom. I spent way too much time worrying about how the house looked, how my kids performed and their grades in school that I took no time to really help them pursue their own interests and desires. I know I had them in church every week and we had family prayers and FHE but was that enough? I hope so! I have heard the apostles and prophets counsel us to do those things and our children will learn it and get it, sometimes it just takes some longer then others.

I feel inadequate and just plain ol' sorry! I know that all I can do now is move on and make the best of what I have done. I am NOT sorry for raising my kids the WAY I did, I just think more sorry about the execution of some things. I was more a gestapo at times then a loving and nurturing mom. I was that way because I thought that was the way to raise obedient children. Kind of the, "Put the fear of God and me", in them and they will never stray. So years later I find this didn't work and that they ultimately make their own decisions and choices!

I want to know is there a way to make this better or am I just wishful thinking here, is it like putting a band-aid on a gaping wound? If there is and one of you know it, then please share that with me!

This is not a feel sorry for me post either, rather a, "I want to enlighten any future or reigning gestapo moms" post or truly a "If you have a solution to my problem" post! LOL!

I hope you are all having a great summer, at least whats left of it!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Finau Family Missionaries!

Growing up I never thought we would produce so many missionaries from the Saula and Tilini Finau clan! Maybe partly because we had 6 girls and it was a rarity for sisters to serve then. But I am happy to say that we have had many from this immediate family of ours and I am so proud! Michael (Loni and Grants son) just boarded a plane this am heading to SLC for a week of fun with the family and then off he goes to the MTC for 3 months to study and learn Spanish to teach the people of Argentina, Bahia Blanca Mission!

So far from this family we have...

Loni Finau Jones(sister) served in Sacramento, Calif. 1982-1984
Filipe Mausia (adopted brother) served in Prove, Utah 1988-1990
Thomas E. Burke (nephew) served in Denver, Colorado 1996-1998
David J. Kaminski (nephew)served in SLC, Utah 2000-2002
Travis Outly (nephew) served in Auckland, New Zealand 2001-2003
Joey Kauvaka (nephew) served in Panama City, Panama 2003-2005
Grant Jones II (nephew) served in Sydney, Australia 2005-2007
Loni Anne Nock (daughter) serving on Temple Square 2008-2010
Alexis Jones (niece) serving on Temple Square 2009-2010
Michael Jones (nephew) serving in Argentina 2009-2011

What a blessing their service has been to our family! I am grateful to missionaries who give of their time and talents to helping those come unto Christ!

We have recently been in touch with one of the missionaries that taught and baptized my husband and let me tell you, our lives are forever changed because of Eric Barden and Derron Bowyer! I hope they realize the impact they have left on our forever family!

So, I wish my sweet Michael the very best mission experiences possible! I pray that Heavenly father will keep him safe till he returns home! I am grateful for Sisters Nock and Jones and their desire to serve at this time! They are beautiful, bright and spiritual young ladies inside and out! My dad and mom are so proud! I know it!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Sweet Dreams

Donnie and Baby Lyla came over last night and they crawled into bed with Dan and I last night.

They felt so good with their soft baby skin and that yummy baby powder smell. They gave me kisses and said sweet things like, "Nana I love you" and "Papa so funny".

We watched about 15 minutes of Disney and before I knew it I felt Baby Lyla's little body go limp on my left arm, and then I heard Donnie snoring in my right ear. My stretched out arms ached a bit, longing to go back in the curling position while lying on my side but, I just couldn't let these sweet babies go. They are only this small for such a short period of time! These are such precious times and memories! I LOVE being their Nana!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Boys will be Boys!

My Danny went on a mini mission last week and I really missed him! He was only an hour and a half away but that was far enough. I know that when he goes on his real mission I will really miss him but will be so happy he is serving the Lord. He got to ride his bike, knock on doors, watch the elders administer to the sick and broken hearted, ate at member's homes, plan, study and even allowed to teach part of a lesson at a less active members home! His week was awesome filled with fun, hard work and sweat interviews, splits and zone conference! He came home Saturday and he stayed up talking to me about it all for about an hour. He expressed to me his excitement to go on his real mission. He did miss us and Emily though. I pray he will continue to have a great desire to serve the Lord!

Spencer went to scout camp and said that in his 4 years of going that this was the worst year ever! The camp site was really kind of a joke! The food was worse then school lunch (I can't even imagine). The weather was OK but they did get rained on so badly one night that all their bedding got soaking wet! the up side to this all was that he went to dinner and a move w/ the troop and the dads on wed. night! I was so glad when he got home and I just want him to do this long enough to get his eagle scout! He has all his badges but plans on getting a few more and then we need to find a great and worthwhile project!

John is in a summer league baseball team! He is playing 3rd base and is hitting off a pitching machine...this is the first time for him to play that way. I went and got his baseball equipment and he thinks he is such a tough guy now! I really enjoy watching his games, even if it is hot and has lots of mosquito's! Nothing like watching your kids have fun!

Summer seems to be flying by and before we know it, it will be football season! It will be my Danny's last year playing in high school! He is the captain of the team this year and has been conditioning for the last few months! Hopefully, we have a great season! I love my boys!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

"So, come what may"

I must say, life has been crazy lately! I feel sometimes overwhelmed by it all. I am writing this in hopes that its just me looking at this thing anymore! LOL! I am unsure sometimes of what I am supposed to be learning from all these trials, and then I hear of someone else's trails and once again, grateful for mine! All I can say is that my life has taken unexpected twists and turns but, for some reason I and I alone KNOW why! My life is a direct result of my choices in my earlier life. And that's ok, I understand that I am still loved by my Heavenly Father and that I do have a wonderful and supportive family.

I just want to understand why life can be so AHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!! ya feel me? Well, like President Hancock says (my stake president), "We can do hard things"! I believe that, I know its true I just need to remember it!

Sister Nock told Sela in January at Temple Square, "I believe in Christ, so come what may". I feel the exact same way, I just need to remember it! That's all...

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

M. I. A.

Yes I have been MIA and for good reason! No computer at home and only a blackberry to do what I need to do online is too hard!


Sister Nock is in Montana and doing fabulously well! She returns to Temple Square in June! She is happy and working hard and loves being a missionary! We have truly felt the blessings from her service and grateful she is part of the Lord's army!

Sela is home for the summer and brings much laughter and help into our home! She is sassy, funny, beautiful and a peacemaker! Love that she is home!

Danny loved Lacrosse and has earned his Eagle Scout rank! He will receive his award at church on May 31st in Kinston if any of you want to come! He is a Co-Captain for the football team next year and is the secretary in SGA! He is driving all over Kinston and works for the Kinston Indians selling programs and whatever else they want him to sell!

Andi is working at Kinston Indians too and just finished their spring play at school! She is in no rush to drive and will gladly let her siblings (including Spencer) drive her around town!

John John has done remarkebly well in 1st grade and has met his AR goals all year long! He is playing T-ball right now and loves it!

Jaz and the babies are doing good and Donnie and Lyla are growing like weeds! They are so funny and smart and make us smile all the time!

Dan and I are working and the kids, callings and community keep us busy and on our toes!

My mom had surgery last month and is doing well and recovering! She is getting stronger everyday!

Other then that life is life and we go on everyday living it as best we can! I will try to do better on my blog!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Tuesday Tell All

Topic for today is...

"What do you like most about Spring? Do you have a Springtime memory to share"?

These are things I love about springtime...

The weather (IT IS PERFECT)!
The flowers blooming everywhere are so beautiful
Spring Break with the kids (we don't even have to go anywhere)
Shedding the sweaters and jeans
Easter and hiding the baskets and, watching John John start to freak after everyone else has found theirs! Plus, my father in law usually comes down and visits which is always so fun!

Peoples moods just seem to change and they seem happier
Attending my kids recitals
The soccer, lacrosse and t-ball games! Yes! I love them all!
Spring Cleaning, I know this sounds weird but, I LOVE going through my stuff a few times a year and decluttering the entire house!!! Spring is always one of those times! Feels so good!
Kite flying with Pap! He always gets a very nice kite and takes it to the beach with the kids!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009


Tuesday Tell All

Topic for Tuesday 17th March - Procrastination!

"If it weren't for the last minute, I wouldn't get anything done."

Are you a procrastinator? What things do you to procrastinate? Are there some thing you are glad you procrastinated, or some things you wish you hadn't? Do you have any tips for overcoming procrastination?

The reason for this topic is because last week was "National Procrastination Week", is that something to celebrate? I thought it would be more appropriate to approach this topic a week late:).

Oh my goodness I do not know if I have the time nor energy to tackle this one so I will just have to get back to it later!!!

YEAH! that's the truth and that is how I live my life...some people may call it irresponsible or some may say I am living life on the edge...but I beg to differ...I say I work best at the 11th hour! I am great under pressure and I actually do better I think!

Ok, some things I procrastinate daily are...
waking up
getting dressed
making dinner
doing laundry

grocery shopping
getting gas
updating my blog

paying bills
visiting teaching
my RS lesson
paying bills!

that dreaded appt. with that dreaded doctor (you know the one)
my annual ward Christmas party (last minute all the time)!
oh so many more but those are the ones that stick out!!!

So, what do you all put off till the last minute?

Tuesday, March 10, 2009




SISTER NOCK, ME AND SISTER LOR (her baby...1st trainee)



Wednesday, February 25, 2009


I just got off the plane from SLC to JFK and made a pit stop to the restroom. As I was reapplying some make-up, a woman and girl ran into the restroom screaming, "Macy?! Jordan?!" The woman standing next to me just looked at me and together we mouthed, "OH MY GOSH"! As I walked out of the restroom I see the woman crying frantically as she is telling others about it and they join her in her search for the 2 kids. I see her a few minutes later being approached by a plain clothes security man and she was telling him her 2 boys walked into the men's restroom and after awhile they didn't come out so she went in and they were gone! Now, I see all kinds of security people walking around still looking....I stopped and said a silent prayer asking Heavenly Father to please help them find the kids and that they are safe! This is truly my worst nightmare

Monday, February 23, 2009

A Beautiful Temple Wedding!

My nephew Ala got married to a beautiful young lady named Mary Lou just last friday! They were married for time and all eternity in the beautiful and majestic Salt Lake Temple!

There were about 60 of us in the temple to witness the couples special day!

Then about 3 hours later there were about 500 of us at the reception partying, dancing, eating and having way too much fun! I was honored to have emceed the great reception! The talents that were displyed that night were wonderful and it never ceases to amaze me at how talented my family is!

I saw so many members of my amazing Fonua Family and we had a wonderful time together!

My cousin Sela and hubby Sia (Parents of the groom) my favorite cousin!

My handsome nephews and their boys!

Handsome cousin Al with his wife Jen

My Sela Belle dancing the night away!

Dan and I

The little Fonua girls dancing to "Wishin', hopin' and prayin'"! too cute!

But, by far the best part of the day was knowing that two of Heavenly Father's sweet children kept themselves pure and clean to enter this holy place and marry the way that He has asked us to!

Mr. and Mrs. Ala Brown!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Missionaries ROCK!

Sister Nock, Sister Lor and Sister Jones

Sister Jones and Sister Nock

We have been fortunate enough to spend some time with our Sister Nock! First on Monday which was her P-Day. We went to lunch, she took us on a tour of the Beehive House! Which was awesome, she had the right balance of history, humor and of course her testimony which made it a great tour!

Afterwards, we took her and her companion shopping at the local Wal-Mart which was unlike any I have ever seen. It was normal on the inside but it was located in town so it had an upper and lower parking garage. We parked on the upper level and after we brought the groceries Sister Nock took the cart and placed it in an escalator made just for it and we hopped on the other one! I was impressed...can you tell I live in the sticks?!

She took her groceries to her house and then we met her at the conference center and just talked, looked at pictures and listened as she told us of the great importance of her work! She reiterated to me that we need to do all we can to build the kingdom of God on the earth! She is such an amazing missionary!

Yesterday morning Dan and I got to do a session with her in the beautiful Salt Lake Temple and then had breakfast with them and we said goodbye to her so she could report back to her work.

After we left her at Temple Square we met our family back in Eagle Mountain and took our niece Alexis to the MTC (Missionary Training Center)! There were 14 of us there to send off our amazing Sister Jones to serve at Temple Square too! She was radiant and excited to serve the Lord and we were happy and sad to leave her at the MTC! She will be an amazing missionary....I just know it! By the way, it was exactly 28 years to the date that Loni, my sister (Alexis' mom) entered the MTC to serve her mission in Sacramento, Calif.

Now, on to today, we will meet our Sister Nock for a scheduled tour of Temple Square at 1:30! We are excited and ready to see her in action again! I am so grateful for these 2 sweet women in my life that will bless our families so much through their service! My missionaries ROCK!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

The trek west....

begins like this...

Left on Friday morning

Got to Cookeville, Tn. and died...literally just died...

Left at 6:30 am from the hotel and decided no more stopping if we were to make it to Utah by Sunday night!

Stopped in Oklahoma City, Ok. for a Valentine dinner and continued our all night driving with me at the wheel...

By morning we were in Albuquerque, NM

That afternoon we were in Arizona and decided to make a stop at the Grand Canyon!
Beautiful! Breathtaking! We were at the tower pictured below and it was so interesting and wonderful to be able to go! We can't wait to take our kids and Dan's dad there this summer!

Funny thing happened while there, the crows there were as big as chickens and as you can well imagine, they must eat VERY well at this national park. We got back to the car and there was a crow right by the car, so I start video taping him and then Dan throws me 1/2 a cookie and says to throw it to the, I the crow rushes to the cookie and puts it in his mouth, he makes this noise and all of a sudden the sky turns black and it is literally a scene from Alfred Hitchcock's movie, The Birds!!!!!!! they are swooping down all over our car and I am screaming and trying to roll up our window before one of them flies into the car and plucks out an eyeball! It was all caught on video and is quite comical...when I get home I will see if Jaz can upload it for you all to see!

We continued our drive to the Beehive state and finally made it to Eagle Mountain at 9:15 pm to a houseful of nieces, nephews, Loni, mom and Sela!!! What a happy night!

So glad we are here and safe and that it wasn't as long or as hard as the real trek across the plains!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

On the road again!!

So, my hubby and I leave tomorrow morning and make our way across this beautiful country in my mama's Cadillac! YES! folks she got a caddy for Christmas from my sister Loni and Grant! Dan and I get to take it to SLC for her and we are excited for several reasons....

1st we get to be alone for a couple days,

2nd we are driving a caddy cross country (that doesn't need any explanation),

3rd, we are going to see our girls, Sister Nock and Sela,

4th, we are going to hit up some sights along the way,

5th, we are going to take Alexis (Sister Jones) to the MTC,

6th, we are going to the temple and also a temple wedding so we will see TONS of my family!!!! (Ok, maybe I'm a little (LOTS) more excited to see them then he is.

There are so many more but those are definitely the highlights! I will keep you all posted on our trip and will post pictures soon! WHOOOO HOOOO UTAH HERE WE COME!!!!!!!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Coming to UTAH!!!

Hi All, I am so excited to be leaving this friday to go out to Utah!!!! I will actually get to see my daughters Sister Nock and Sela!! My nephew is getting married in the Salt Lake Temple and I am going for that and I am driving my mom's new car out for her! So, to all my Utah friends give me a call and lets do lunch, dinner or whatever!!!! Love you all!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

America what have you done?

What do you all think about the stimulus plan Obama is trying to push through?

How about his choices for his cabinet? And why they keep withdrawing?

The only thing I like about this guy is the fact that he's a Steelers fan...but I think that is ONLY because they campaigned for him....

Sorry Obama fans but this is getting ridiculous and eventually it'll all come out in the wash....just you wait and see...

Wednesday, January 21, 2009








Read what happened the last time we went to the Superbowl!!! (copy and paste this link)

To say our family is fanatical over the STEELERS might be bit of an understatement!
Oh, and to all the STEELER haters reading my nephew Mike says, "Keep hating cause the STEELERS feed off of it, and we're HUNGRY"!!!!!!


Saturday, January 10, 2009


Dan, John, my friend Teresa Patrick and I decided at the last minute to go to the land of the STEELERS for New Years.
It was a whirlwind trip but so much fun...3 days!

We arrived and of course ate at...

Tokyo Buffet

shopped at...

a normal mall
the STEELERS store and

But, sadly did not get any yummy Pittsburgh donuts or gems, and no Primanti Brothers sandwiches!

We spent NY Eve with Pap,Annie,Dave and some of their good friends! We played a game, ate yummy food and watched the ball drop with! Pap was grinning from ear to ear the whole time and was so happy! I loved seeing him and just being there!

The snow was so crazy and the frigid FREEZING temps were bone chilling! Literally my bones HURT!!!

On the way home we stopped at the beautiful Washington DC Temple because, Teresa had never been there. We saw the lights and surprised Loni Anne's best friend from BYU-Idaho who is currently serving at the Washington Temple Mission, Hermana Garcia is an amazing missionary and she is just beautiful!

I am so glad I went even if it was just for a couple of days!


Sunday, January 4, 2009

My Company!

An update on my company! I wanted to wait till I went private before posting this! Love to you all!

December 2008

To Our Dear Family and Friends,

Happy Holidays to all of you! We hope this Christmas update finds you happy, healthy and enjoying this beautiful and joyful season.

I really can’t believe that this year is over and 2009 is right around the corner. It has been quite a year filled with many highs and many lows! However, we have come out of it much stronger and filled with gratitude for the blessings we have received!

Some of the highlights of 2008~

Jaz and babies moved back home!
Loni Anne went on her mission in July
Fonua Family Reunion in Utah
Finau Family Reunion in Idaho
Andi went on tour with Melissa from NY to Idaho promoting Melissa’s CD
Moved to a different house
Moved Sela from Pittsburgh to Utah
Lyla started working at the post office

As you can see life is business as usual but, of course it is mixed with lots of fun, sarcasm, way too much laughing and of course the occasional (daily) heated debate! Here is our 2008 update!

John-7 and in 1st grade, loves school this year and has played many sports, and perfected more video games! He has lots of friends at school and church and can hardly wait for Christmas! He enjoys reading, watching cartoons and playing on the computer. He keeps Dan and I young!

Spencer-13 and in 8th grade, is loving school and is very much a leader among his peers! He played football this year and, he is the basketball team manager. He loves scouts and his friends at church! He also was the water boy for Danny’s football team! He absolutely LOVED that, even though he heard many wise cracks from the bleachers…compliments of his awesome family and friends! Spencer continues to excel in his “people” skills and I am convinced that if he isn’t an ESPN reporter one day, he will be a politician (an honest one of course)! He was given the most prestigious award at his school last May. They told him that he exemplified everything the school stood for! I was o proud!

Andi-16 and in 10th grade, is doing well in school and is still very involved with her drama and music! She landed the lead role for the local community college production of High School Musical! She was an awesome Gabriella! She is now auditioning for “Thoroughly Modern Millie”. She placed 2nd place in a talent show at the high school, and just wrapped up a semester of voice lessons. Andi is a social butterfly and her calendar stays packed with events and outings with her friends! She has turned into my right arm (much to her dismay) and it seems as if life and home run smoother with her in charge!

Danny-17 and in 11th grade, is attending Parrott Academy in Kinston. He and his cousin Clark Jones are together and having way too much fun in my opinion! He is there on a football scholarship and played very well this last season. He made many great plays and it was neat to hear his name over the loud speaker so many times! He is now working on his eagle scout project and will hopefully have the work done for it by January 2nd. He is still very much a kid at heart when it comes to video games and sports. But, then he morphs into this young man when he is driving, lifting weights and dating a sweet young lady named Emily, who we have just grown to adore. It’s crazy to think he will go on his mission in just 2 years!

Sela-19 and a sophomore in college , is now living in Utah. She was attending Utah Valley University in Orem but, this semester she has transferred to LDS Business College in Salt Lake City. She is having the time of her life hanging out with her cousins, making great friends, shooting videos at 1 am in downtown SLC and going to a dance every weekend! She also has learned the hard way how NOT to drive in the snow as she slammed on the brakes and hit a median. Thanks to her our insurance agent LOVES us even more! She also does many responsible things too like, working at a marketing company, homework and attending church! Sela is very independent and hard working and we miss her so much when she is away from home!

Loni Anne-21 is now Sister Nock and currently serving a mission for, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints! She is serving at the Utah Salt Lake City Temple Square Mission. She will be serving until January 2010! She has been out since July 23rd and she loves it! She meets and teaches hundreds of people a week from all over the world! She recently was the director of the, “Call Referral Center” and has had the opportunity of serving with wonderful sisters, leaders and senior couples! One of the highlights thus far in her mission is that she had the opportunity to meet the prophet of our church, Thomas S. Monson along with both of his counselors! She loves this experience and has grown and matured even more! She has also experienced a lot of negative things such as the protestors of the Proposition 8 bill. We are so proud of her and all that she is doing. She would love to hear from any and all of you anytime! Her mailing address is…

Sister Nock
Utah SLC Temple Square Mission
50 N. West Temple Street
SLC, Utah 84150-1006

Jaz and the babies are back in NC!!! YEAH!!! I cannot express the joy we all feel having them back so close! The babies are so big and beautiful!
Donnie is 4 and is following in his Uncle John John’s footsteps. He loves video games, Star Wars and playing with his cousins! He is so sweet and helpful around the house and aspires to be a drummer and a Jabbawockeez dancer! He is such a Tongan!
Lyla is 2 and is so beautiful, sassy and very smart! She is so tender hearted and will usually sit in time out with her big brother even if she’s not in trouble! She loves baby dolls, coloring on herself with permanent markers and dancing! She is very animated and keeps us in stitches or on the edge of a nervous breakdown with her crazy antics!
Jaz is starting a new job in January and will also start school. She is wanting to major in computer programming and architecture. She loves photography, traveling and spending time with her family! She is doing the very best she can as a single mother and we are so proud of her desire to be the very best mother and daughter possible. She is convinced she will never re-marry or date again. However, she doesn’t know that my sisters and I are updating her profile on e-harmony and LDS Singles on a daily basis! (just kidding)

Dan is doing great but, he is getting grayer by the minute! I keep trying to introduce him to my friends Clairol and L’Oreal but he won’t hear of it! He is going on his 13th year (give or take) with Alside Window Co. He is a supervisor but says his job description is more like babysitter to 40 whiney grown-ups! He is serving as the Sunday School president and, as my assistant in every calling or job I volunteer for! He gets so mad at me sometimes and then I show him the pre-nup he signed…where it states that he will assist his wife in all her crazy affairs for the rest of their lives! Poor guy, he was especially HAPPY when I told the rec. center director that he would be more then happy to be John John’s basketball coach! Oh! you should’ve heard the groans at the dinner table over that one! He will do great I know it! He still has a passion for killing poor innocent fish in the ocean and has really taken an interest in genealogy work!

Lyla aka me! I am doing well and I have not yet gone postal! However, I have come very close! I am almost at my one year anniversary with them and it is an interesting and physically hard job! But, I am getting used to it! I am currently serving as a teacher in Relief Society, primary chorister and ward activities chairman! I love all my callings and all those I work with in the church! I am the PTA president at John’s school and I work with the best group of ladies there! We have a blast planning and organizing our kids school activities!

Dan and I are enjoying life with all the kids and the grandbabies and all the different activities they are involved in! We know that everyday with them is a gift from Heavenly Father!

Dan’s dad and my mom are doing so well! They are traveling lots to see their grandchildren do many things! We were so happy to have both of them here with us in July for Loni Anne’s amazing farewell weekend! They are the epitome of selfless love and service to all of us! We cannot imagine our lives without them!

We want you to know we think of you all often and, we thank you for your friendship and love you so willingly show us!

As life rolls by so quickly we are aware of the infinite love and goodness that we feel daily from our Heavenly Father! We cannot imagine our lives without Him in the center of it! I pray that this Christmas season we will all feel His love for each of us as we celebrate the birth of His son Jesus Christ! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all of you!

Love, Dan and Lyla Nock and Family XOXO