Merry moments: 6 photos of merriment in Utah Valley

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Show us your merry, we said. Show us your very, we said. Show us your year-round very merry, we said. You read. You red. And the joy you spread. Check out this thread of eight merry photos submitted by readers and photo leaders. Your heart just might grow three sizes today.

Mckenzie Deakins won our photo contest with her Christmas card from last year. “I saw the Santa beard and Rudolph photo booth props on Pinterest and decided to make some of my own. Maybe you didn’t notice at first, but my boy, Harrison, is sticking his tongue out of the Santa beard. That’s the downfall of being the parent and photographer — no respect!”

(Photos by McKenzie Deakins of Orem)

“I saw the Santa beard and Rudolph photo booth props on Pinterest and decided to make some of my own. Maybe you didn’t notice at first, but my boy, Harrison, is sticking his tongue out of the Santa beard. That’s the downfall of being the parent and photographer — no respect!”

(Photo by Summer Perkins of Orem)

(Photo by Summer Perkins of Orem)

 “The kiddos had just finished decorating and then gobbling up cupcakes,” Summer says. “The sun was streaking through the windows and everyone was happy and content. It was one of those ‘ah-ha’ moments when everything was right in the world and I just wanted to capture the feeling and bottle it up for a rainy day. This is what ‘merry’ means to me — being happy and content in your life, surrounded by the ones you love … and of course, dessert makes everything sweeter.”

(Photo by Natalie Smith of Santa Cruz, Calif.)

(Photo by Natalie Smith of Santa Cruz, Calif.)

Family makes hard times merry. After experiencing 12 months of challenges, the Fraser siblings enjoyed a week-early Mother’s Day meal with their mother, Neeta Fraser, of Alpine. (The Frasers from left to right: Gavin, Larisa, Neeta, Maya and Nisa.) The moment was captured by Nisa’s friend, Natalie Smith.

“Our family went through a lot in the past year and this was one of the first photos we took that represented how far we had come,” Nisa says. “We had all come together to help my mother have the best Mother’s Day possible, and we were all genuinely happy in that moment. I smile when I see this photo.”

(Photo by Porscha Shiroma of Orem)

(Photo by Porscha Shiroma of Orem)

“My family was celebrating not only Christmas, but the ‘merry’ of adoption,” Porscha says. “This was the first Christmas with my son, Teddy. It was the best because we were able to celebrate his adoption as well as the holidays. It was a very Merry Christmas in our house.”

(Photo by Helen Kepo’o of Pleasant Grove)

(Photo by Helen Kepo’o of Pleasant Grove)

Merriment can even be found while waiting for dad in the car. “This is pure surprise laughter from my daughter, Violet, when I told her a joke as we were waiting for my husband to shop at Walmart,” Helen says.

(Photo by Natalie Pope of Spanish Fork)

(Photo by Natalie Pope of Spanish Fork)

“This is a photo of my son, Landon, who happens to have Down syndrome. He is the sweetest, happiest baby and just fills our lives with joy — and merriment!” Natalie says.

(Photo by Raul Garces of American Fork)

(Photo by Raul Garces of American Fork)

Elizabeth Garces brought “merry” to American Fork High when her dad snapped this gem. “This was a merry moment — a look-at-what-I’ve-accomplished moment,” says Steffanie Garces, Elizabeth’s mother. Elizabeth is now serving an LDS mission in Concepción, Chile.

(Photo by Jalene Taylor of Salt Lake City)

(Photo by Jalene Taylor of Salt Lake City)

Meet the Hendricksons! Newlyweds Riley and Chelsea Hendrickson of Saratoga Springs met in their LDS Church ward and were married in the Salt Lake Temple, Sept. 20, 2013. “He says I stalked him, but I didn’t,” Chelsea says. “I saw him at church and then FHE. Shortly after that, I added him as a friend on Facebook. He messaged me a few weeks later, and the rest is history! ‘Marry’ and ‘merry’ — it’s the same thing!”

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