Category Archives: Friends

Tristen’s 15th Birthday


It has almost been a year since our last get together so, I was overjoyed that each member of RAATH (Abi Rawlings, Abbie Arnold, Julia Alix, Tristen Thomas, and Heidi Haase) was able to make it to my 15th birthday party. We began the evening by making Emoji pillows while listening to our favorite tunes and catching up on each other’s lives. For dinner, we had lasagna and Angel Food Cake with ice cream for dessert. Senior High (a once a month get together with my fellow high schoolers from church) happened to be on the same night as my party so since I did not want to miss it, I took my party guests to D-Group (Discipleship Group). Although we had a blast there, it was when we returned home that the real fun began.

After giving each other a makeover, my girls and I danced along to “Single Ladies” before sitting down to watch old videos of us. Next, Julia and I acted out “Defying Gravity” with her as Elphaba and myself as Galinda before all four of us danced along to “22”, the main highlight of the evening. Of course, we did much more than all that before falling asleep in the middle of my documentary on Alaska at 5:00 am. I had so much fun with my girls. Fingers crossed in hopes that we will be able to get together before my next birthday party!

Canning Peaches and Burning Flesh



On August eighth, a few of our friends in the Patteson family came over to our house to help my mom, Ansa, and I can peaches. Box after box of peaches we peeled, cut, canned, de-air-bubbled, sealed, and sealed again. Mrs. Patteson, Emma, and Patricia left around 8:00 but the Thomas girls continued working until midnight.

As we came to a stopping point, I was walking across the kitchen when Ansa, who was passing in the opposite direction, bumped me. The force with which she pushed me with was ever so slight but enough to cause me to step to my left. This little movement caused me to press the left side of my left thigh against a lid Mom had just removed from a pot of boiling water and set to cool on a stack of crates beside the pantry door. “Ouch!” I exclaimed, quickly stepping to my right. “That’s hot!”

I examined the contact point and discovered that some of my skin was peeling away. I sat down and picked it offpicmonkey-collage which revealed a burn about an inch wide and two inches long. Mom had me hold an ice cube on it and then she pulled out the mustard (which we’ve heard helps with burns). It had never occurred to me that, when mustard is applied to a burn, it stings. I was doing fine until we applied it and, oh my, how it stung! I was unable to hold back my tears and so let them flow freely. I protested against more mustard, despite my burn not being completely covered, but Mom succeeded in squeezing out another dollop before I drew back and waved her away. Once the tears stopped, I slowly spread the mustard evenly over my burn, flinching as it came in contact with my flesh. Several minutes later the mustard had dried and fallen off in flakes and my burn, despite being swollen, was feeling much better.

As time passed, my burn slowly began to disappear. It is truly amazing how our bodies can heal themselves. Today I received this burn very close to exactly four months ago and yet you can still clearly see it. There is a good chance this accident has scarred me, but at least we have learned to no longer leave hot pots or pans in reach of bare skin XD.

To view more pictures from this event, click here. Once in Flickr, click the arrow on your right to view the next picture. Thanks!

Pool Time



On July 26, we went to the pool with the Rawlings family. We played several games including but not limited to Marco Polo, Blob Tag, and Statues.  There was one specific round of Marco Polo when Abi was dead set on getting me tagged. She followed me around like a shark before locking me in her arms. Haydn, Ansa, and I have always played with “no sacrificing” as a rule so several times during my struggle to free myself from Abi I exclaimed, “Surely there is a rule somewhere against this!” Abi and Noah, both very entertained by my struggle, were each faithful to give me a “no” in reply. When I realized talking Abi out of sacrificing me was getting me nowhere, which I realizedimg_9820 when the gap between me and Joshua was quickly shrinking, I kicked things up a few notches. I began to squirm, kick, and wiggle which, for the first couple of times, allowed me to successfully free myself and I managed to swim away before Abi was able to catch me again. The third or fourth time she ensnared me yet again, Haydn joined in. With Abi immobilizing my arms, and Haydn a hold of my legs, I gave up. I was already breathless and the energy it would have taken to shake off Haydn, who is stronger than me, in addition to Abi would have taken much more energy than I was already using. Still, when they approached Joshua I gave one last kick so that Haydn ended up being the closest to Joshua and so most likely to get tagged. Although it would have been cool if that had happened, Joshua had already tagged another swimmer and so the game continued.

On August third, Hunter broke our “how long a human tower can stay standing” record. This is not something we time, we just knew.

img_9826On August fourth the Heffernan family (my youngest Uncle, Aunt, and cousins on my mom’s side) were in town so we spent the day with them. I had a lot of fun with John and Joel. They are six now so the usual simple answers and exaggerated facial expressions one does when talking to little kids no longer convinces them. I’m sure their IQ has shot up since we last saw them. We spent the afternoon with them at the pool. John spent most of his time atop a human tower before plunging backward into the water. Joel was usually found in the corner testing the limits of his breath-holding abilities. I was very impressed by how brave John-John was and by how long Joel could stay under the surface.

To view more photos from this event, click here. Once in Flickr, click the arrow on your right to view the next picture. Thanks!

Kyler’s Graduation


IMG_5187On May 14th my family and I drove up to Tennessee to be a part of Kyler’s graduation. Throughout the day I told several people that I would not realize how weird this is until I get home. Well, I’m home now, but that feeling has yet to wash over me and I still find myself relating very well to this poem:

We look at you and wonder, where have the years all gone? What happened to our yesterdays? It hasn’t been that long… You stand before us on this day prepared to step into a special chapter of your life written just for you. We look at you and wonder and then we realize the time has come to see you as the man you have become. The one that you’ve grown into is a gift beyond the best, so we congratulate you and count ourselves truly blessed.

We are so happy for you, Kyler, and wish you the best of luck as you begin college this coming fall. Keep up the great work! Congrats!

Blackert Home


On December 26 we arrived at the Blackert’s home in Dearing, Kansas. Mrs. Barbi, or Aunt Barbi as we call her, has been my mom’s best friend since High School, so visits with her and her family are real treats since they now live so far away.

Over the summer the Thomas and Blackert kids performed our own little version of The Phantom of the Opera. We had a lot of fun performing it so, over Christmas break, we attempted Les Miserables. Sadly, this project never reached completion but we had a lot of fun and made many memories while filming what little we did.


It’s insane how much Heide looks like the actress who plays Cosette in the movie.

While in Kansas it snowed so our days were filled with a mix of filming and breaks spent in the snow.

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New Year’s Eve we did our best to stay up all night but weren’t able to keep our tradition as well as we have in the past. Heide fell asleep around 4:00 AM, Ansa around 4:30 AM, I around 6:00, and Haydn around 8:00. I had A LOT of fun with you guys and hope we can visit soon.

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Johnson Home


Friday, December 18th, I got out of school early. I usually get out of school at 1:30 on Fridays but the week of the 18th we were taking exams so (since we only had one exam on Friday) we were released at 10:30. The weather was nice outside. A bit chilly but, overall, rather nice. My family picked me up from school, we drove two hours to Greenville, TN, pulled into the Johnson’s driveway, got out, and it was snowing. Talk about a changed of weather! My first reaction was, It’s not supposed to be snowing! It’s December! We’re not supposed to get snow until March! Ansa said she wanted to go home but I’m sure she was joking, right?


Ellie and I spent the afternoon running around taking pictures (a few below). That evening we went to their old church to enjoy a local Christmas recital that Simon participated in. I had fun hanging out with them while we tried not to freeze to death :).

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Saturday Ellie and I attempted to film a music a video, at least half of one. The boys joined us as we made our way back to the house which is when they discovered large pieces of ice behind the barn. Simon broke a big chunk over his head which looked really painful but seemed not to scratch him. Once back inside we played several games with the rest of the family including dodgeball and Buzz Word. Later the girls decided to open my Christmas presents to their family and they posed for pictures before we retreated to the basement to play more games.

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Sunday came, as it always will, and we had to go our own ways. I had a lot of fun with you guys! Hope we can get back together really soon!

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QOTD: It seems we have always been, and will always be, friends. Time can change much, but not this.

BAATH Get Together (Nov. 2015)


Although two members of BAATH couldn’t make it, I had a lot of fun with the girls who did. Between hairdos, makeup, and Dubsmashes, there really wasn’t any way for us not to enjoy ourselves. Loved hanging with you girls! Hope you can come over again very soon!

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To view more pictures from this event, click here. Once in Flickr, click the arrow on your right to view the next picture. Thanks!


Childs Get Together 11/22/15


November 22nd our friends the Childs family came over for dinner. Afterward, Cameron (the oldest child), Haydn, and I went hiking in the woods behind our house. We went further than I have ever gone before and found an extremely long pole. Cameron hauled it back and he and Haydn measured it up against the house.


After that, we hung out until it was time for them to leave.

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Heidi Hang-Out (11/7/15)


It has been about four months since I have seen my BFF, since we no longer go to the same church. I had a great time hanging out, catching up, almost drowning her dog, you know, the usual (JK).

We had gone on a walk along a path that runs beside a river in her neighborhood. We were getting off a bolder we had taken a picture on and Heidi handed me Oscar’s (her dog’s) leash. Oscar jumped off the rock and then yanked the leash out of my hand as he ran to the river’s edge. Heidi and I breathed a sigh of relief when he stopped but then began to panic when he jumped in.

Because of earlier discussion I knew that Oscar, according to Heidi, can’t swim. I also knew that Heidi really didn’t want to get wet due to my suggestion of crossing the river. Due to this knowledge, I tore off my shoes thinking I was going to have to jump into the river to grab Oscar’s leash. I was kinda hoping I would grab it and then get pulled in (because that would make a really funny story/memory) but, to my disappointment, that is not what happened.

Heidi and I raced along the narrow bank as Heidi called out to Oscar who was doing his best to swim upstream. Thankfully he managed to steer himself to the bank and Heidi was able to grab his leash. I can’t wait for our next get together!


Halloween (2015)


I had a hard time deciding what to wear for Halloween. I tried on several costumes (pictured below).

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I eventually decided to be Queen Sunflower (my role in a game I invented/a book I wrote) for Trailer Park Treating (a Halloween event at school) but promised Ansa to go Trick-or-Treating dressed as Anna.

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Upon returning to the house my siblings and I counted our candy. It took a while but we were able to see who had the most. Haydn came in first with 229 pieces. I came in second with 205 and Ansa in third with 186. I had a great time and can not wait for next year.