Wednesday, February 24, 2021

St. George


We're in our last week here in St. George! We thought we might have to leave early to miss a snowstorm on the way home, but we made arrangements to stay till after the storm so now it feels like we have these wonderful extra bonus days! Jordan and the kids are about to head out on a long hike for Wednesday adventure day. Yesterday after school we went swimming and played tennis. Tomorrow afternoon the kids are excited to return to the natural mountain biking park they found earlier in our trip. 

What a blessing it has been to spend these winter days in this beautiful sun-shining place!

Wednesday, February 10, 2021

This time last year...

Orchestra rehearsal January 2020

 I was looking for a picture on my phone from an activity last winter, and happened to see a group shot of our lego robotics team and was hit by a wave of --- I'm not sure, homesickness? But, instead of for home, just regular life?

This has been (for nearly everyone in the world) a different kind of year. I couldn't have imagined at this time last year what was to come and the changes that our family would make.  But mostly, I've been fine. And many parts of this year have been even really wonderful. But I think maybe I've kind of forgotten how nice it feels to be with other people... 

One day in the Spring, I sat at the roundabout with a friend and talked, and as I felt myself filled up with such a simple conversation I  realized I've missed this.

We made plans with a few other COVID homeschooling friends to meet once a week and give our kids a chance to play and be together, and I soon found that I was looking forward to those Tuesday afternoon visits even more than the kids were. 

One day in the Fall a friend texted, "I miss YOU!" and I still can't quite find the right way to say it, but it mattered to hear that. 

A few times this year we've been able to get together with family (with some very careful quarantines), and it has felt so nice to be together

Seeing that Lego Robotics club picture feels like another lifetime - did we really do things like that? was that really our life once upon a time? And all the everyday photos surrounding that one felt so special, important somehow... a dinner out, a big group of Ellie's friends all gathered in close for a picture at her birthday party, rollerskating at the Fun Park, a visit with my sister and her family, company and kids' friends at our house, orchestra rehearsal (above), iceskating on hot chocolate club day, a recital, a trip to Disneyland (!), Lego Robotics meetings, bowling with the kids, a winter scout campout for Landon, a trip to SLC with Ellie's orchestra group... what a lot of regular life that very soon after turned into not-so-regular life! 

Next month, I should be able to get a vaccine (!) and we'll start transitioning back into... our old life? regular life? a new, new-normal life? I'm so grateful for the miraculous speed that this has been developed and for the hope it has given us throughout this year, and I'm also a little nervous somehow (sometimes for me change can be hard even when it's really good change). 

I think I've kind of gotten used to the life we've lived this past year. Some things are still challenging, and my heart aches for the difficult times my kids have faced.  And I am also so grateful for all the sweet and wonderful times we have had.  When I found the right RA medications and started to feel so much better, I remember thinking so often something like, "I had forgotten I could feel this good" and I wonder if that might just be how we feel being with others again in everyday life. 

Our Desert Adventure

We have just a couple of weeks left of our desert adventure here in St. George, and I'm just really grateful for the time we've had! Our default activity has been exploring Snow Canyon (still so many new interesting places to see!) The sunshine and blue skies through January and February have filled me up, and every morning I've loved heading out the door on a beautiful morning walk. (One morning I stepped outside and came back in to leave my coat. All through my walk that day I kept thinking 'it's February 3, and I left my coat at home!')  Besides our regular school time routines, we've been swimming, biking, hiking, running, walking, rollerblading, scootering...and even one day of snowman/snow wall building. So much fun adventuring and sunshine enjoying! Visits from Nathan, Rachel & Monty and Kathie & Winslow made the time here even happier. What a blessing to enjoy this beautiful place while we're working/schooling remotely!

Thursday, December 10, 2020

design fun

I made these designs starting with cut-out paper shapes and put them into this wrapping paper mockup!

A few fun things I've been doing and want to share! :)

+ I made an instagram account as a place to share some of the designs and things that I make! I've been doing  the "Holly Jolly Design Challenge" hosted by Olivia Herrick that I did last year, and this gave me a chance to share the projects from each day's challenges with others who are participating. And it has been so fun! I know it's just a silly thing, but each little like or comment from these *real* designers has been so neat for me!

+ I ordered one of my designs on wrapping paper! Kathie sent me a link, and the first Christmas design I made, I just ordered :) (I'm excited for this to arrive in just a few days so I can wrap some presents in it!)

+ I entered my first fabric design challenge on Spoonflower!

+ I ordered some wallpaper with one of my designs! (Jordan gifted me a gift certificate for this for my birthday, and it pushed me to try it out) Unfortunately, I messed up on the design :(  But fortunately they let me know about my mistake after they printed it and they and are going to reprint it for me. And after another several hours trying to solve the issue (which has been an issue for months on so many of my designs -- it's that tiny white line you can see up top on the middle wrapping paper too),  I *think* I may have finally found the solution (crossing my fingers).  

So many fun things! I've been squeezing in time to work on drawings or paintings or patterns or designs whenever I can over the last couple of weeks, and I'm just hoping I'll keep having energy and time for it because it has been so fun! 

Instagram here:

And this week you can vote for my Spoonflower design here! :)  (Try the command-F search on the page for Debbie Brough or "single stroke sprigs" because there are a million (well, 700) patterns to scroll through :) 

Sunday, November 29, 2020

Christmas Pattern Making with Ellie

Wrapping paper made by Ellie!

Ellie and I worked on making some Christmas patterns yesterday and it was super fun! Here's Ellie's project -- 

Here's what we did (and these are all Ellie's): 

1. Cut out Christmas shapes with paper and take a picture on a solid background

2. Digitize with Illustrator

3. Color and lay out in a pattern shape with Procreate

4.Use Illustrator to repeat as a pattern

Then, print as wrapping paper for a little gift and wrap! (first picture above)

Thursday, November 26, 2020



by artist Kate Lee

I'm grateful for the times and ways that I feel the love of Heavenly parents and of the Savior, Jesus Christ.

 Throughout my life, I have been strengthened and upheld as I have felt my Heavenly Father's love for me and felt the reality of being known, seen, and cared for by Him. I feel grateful each day for Jesus Christ and his life, his miracles, and his healing power that is extended even to me. 

Last year, I was struck by the first line of the new Young Women's theme - "I am a beloved daughter of Heavenly parents..." As I have pondered this and other thoughts, I have felt greater than before the love of both Heavenly parents. I'm grateful also for this artist who has shared some beautiful thoughts on this and has helped remind me of how dearly I am loved. 

Wednesday, November 25, 2020


Some fun Procreate projects this year!

And I'm grateful for the the happiness I get from making.

Early this year I started playing around with this great iPad app Procreate and also tried again to really learn how to use Illustrator. (In February I even took my first overnight trip away by myself to see a favorite show and to have a little focused time to work through an online Illustrator class!) My focus has been limited this year though (!) but I feel extra grateful for the times when I've been able to work on making something - whatever it may be. (And I'm grateful for Jordan who continues to cheer for me with all of my 'look, I made this!' comments whether it's a new pattern or dinner on the table :)