Today is my sister Dianne’s birthday. She turned 39, so that’s 12 years older than me. She is married to Troy Denter and has 6 kids (Gregory, Elizabeth, Jacob, Brianna, Sarah, and Vance). They live in Taylorsville up the street from my parents.
Since there are so many years between us, I don’t have many memories of us when I was real young, but I do have a few. I have more memories during my teenage years. Here they are:
- I remember her taking me to see Willow in the theater when I was pretty young. She met a guy there (I’m not sure she was supposed to…hehehe) and the movie totally freaked me out. I decided to go sleep in the car and wait for the movie to end. To this day, I will not watch that movie.
- She moved into an apartment down the street from my parent’s house and she let me have sleepovers with her. She was so grown up to have her own place. During one of those slumber parties she showed me one of her favorite snacks, at least at the time. It was saltine crackers dipped into frosting. Kinda weird, but tasty!
- I remember getting the crib and everything ready when she was expecting her first baby. I was so excited! That feeling was repeated 5 more times throughout the years and I’ve just loved visiting her in the hospital after each one. She’s shown me that babies are beautiful blessings.
- Speaking of babies…she has big ones. She is one tough lady. Greg was over 10 lbs!! She even had Sarah naturally at home and let me be there to witness it. It was such a cool experience. I credit her with diminishing my fears and anxiety about giving birth to my firstborn (NOT naturally) because I knew what to expect and that it was doable.
- She moved to Germany for a couple of years while her 1st husband was stationed there in the army. After they separated, she flew all the way back to us by herself with 2 toddlers. See…tough chick! We met them at the airport and I was so happy that she was back!
- Many of my memories revolve around her visiting with her kids at my parents house. A family function isn’t a family function without her and her family present. With 6 kids, there have been a lot of blessings, baptisms, ordinations to the Priesthood, birthdays, etc. We’re so blessed to be a part of all these important occasions.
Some other notable things about Dianne now:
- She loves to be around family and wants her kids to be close to us all, especially since they’re not that much younger than us. We all just sit around and chat and enjoy each other’s company. It seems we could talk forever before we ran out of things to say.
- She is a fantastic mother and she is raising fantastic kids. I’m not sure how she juggles all the stress and responsibility, but she does. She’s fully present and participating in their lives. She teaches them to be responsible and obedient, to trust in their Heavenly Father and His plan for each of them, how to recognize and listen to the Holy Ghost, and the importance of family.
- She always tries to help those who have less than the ideal family and living situation. She has taken in quite a few of her children’s friends who don’t live in a loving home. Sometimes they’ve been in her home for a few hours, but other times it’s been for months. She shows them that someone cares and loves them. She has provided meals, new clothes, and someone to talk to. It’s also such a good example to her own children on how to care for others in need. I think that is an amazingly charitable gift she has and I know she’s changed lives by her efforts.
Happy Birthday, Dianne!! I love you!!