Thursday, April 30, 2009

Cannonball!!

Today was a good day. I'm too lazy to write but here's a pic and a movie:


I've never heard Rachel laugh so hard in her entire 15 month life. She was thoroughly enjoying the cannonballs.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

My New Friends

Today I stole a moment to go outside by myself and put the garbage can out for tomorrow's pick up and I saw my geese friends. I ran inside to get my camera to get some pictures of the new baby goslings because they grow up so fast. Geese are interesting birds. The adults are monogamous and live to be about 20-25 years. They have an average of 5 babies per year. Can you imagine? They are very protective of their babies and will hiss at you if you come too close, so I used my camera's zoom. I love watching the geese at this time of year. So meet my friends:

Family #1
The Waddles
This is Chuck and Gertrude and their five children Sally, Rosemary, Genevieve, Charlie, and Bob.


Family #2
The Webbs
This is Gary and LaKeshia and their 5 children Gary Jr., Arnold, Bradford, Shirley, and Laverne.


Family #3
The Looseys
This is Henry and Lucy and their 3 children Hank, Esmerelda, and Carlos.

The geese were way more exciting than my kids today, except for when Jason fell asleep on the family room floor, flat on his back with no diaper, but I didn't take a picture of that.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

The Book Mobile

This morning my husband went out to run some errands and I had lots of library books to return. It always amazes me that we are able to collect them all after they get scattered throughout the house during the 8 weeks that we usually have them. However, this morning we weren't so lucky and were missing an otter book. I put out a reward of a mini Tootsie Pop for the hero who found it. Nobody did. Right before my husband backed out of the driveway in his car, I thought to check the van. Out of the 50 books in there, the otter book was not one of them.


Yes, there were literally 50 books in the van. They all went back inside the house. And we did eventually find the otter book after turning the playroom upside down, but we will have to pay the $0.15 fee for being a day late. It's coming out of the kid's piggy bank.


This evening as I tried to get the playroom back together, I locked the kids outside with their Daddy, but easily got distracted and took a bunch of pictures of them playing at the front door.



Jason is realizing he can't pick his sister's nose through the glass.

Jason is trying to tell me that it's time to bring in the the Christmas snowmen door mat.







Now I'm going to have a fun-filled evening of getting the playroom back in order!

Monday, April 27, 2009

I love modern technology.

This is what I do to my kids when they are driving me crazy:

I force them to watch TV. Sometimes I just need the life to be sucked out of them so I can get a few moments of peace and quiet and avoid further messes, arguments, noise, and nagging. It gets to the point where I would rather hear Dora shouting than 5-6 real life voices shouting in my background.


They sat through one kid's show episode and ditched this poor guy 30 minutes later for more entertaining computer games.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Old Proverb


Plant a seed, plant a flower, plant a rose

You can plant any one of those

Keep planting to find out which one grows

It's a secret no one knows

Mmm bop,

ba duba dop ba du bop,

ba duba dop ba du bop,

ba duba dop ba du

~Hanson

Rachel Makes a Friend

My brother and his family were here for a visit and they brought their dog. Pets are a huge novelty for my kids, because we do not and will not have a pet for a VERY long time!

"He looks so soft. I think I want to touch him."*



"Trust me. My fingers taste really good."



Rachel shared her free hand, but only one finger. The dog agreed that they did taste good.



"Hmmm. My finger has been slobbered by a dog."



"I think I'll have to suck my wrist now."



*Dialogue has been fictionalized.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Expanding My Music Selection

Tonight Sarah came downstairs before going to bed so I could put some ointment on her eczema. She heard my computer playing music. She didn't recognize the music and said, "Mommy, why aren't you listening to ABBA?" I laughed and told her that sometimes I don't listen to ABBA. She appeared a little bewildered, but attempted to comprehend.

I was listening to the Indigo Girls. I thought about high school this week. Facebook can make you do that when you see old high school friend's pictures pop up with their status or comments to your photos. All of which made me think of our senior theme song which was "These Are the Days" by the 10,000 Maniacs. But I was thinking it was by the Indigo Girls so I was looking up their music online. Then I realized that I had forgotten how much I like some the Indigo Girl's music. Here is one of their newer good lesbian love songs that I liked (And no, I'm not a lesbian. I'm hetero as hetero can be. The Indigo Girls are lesbians.):





[Breaking away from sidetrack]


I liked high school. Many people, including my husband, don't have the best memories of those years in their life. But I do. I would never want to relive it, but I hold a good memory. I enjoyed cheer camp, football games, eating cheese bagels and Twix with my best friend Julie on the amphitheatre steps at lunch, ditching school to go to Disneyland, taking on a dare such as swimming in a nasty lake late at night, choir shows, choir trips, miniature golf, mixed tapes, slumber parties, TP'ing boy's houses, etc. Of course there were also the typical awkward moments of adolescence like trying to appear like a B cup when you were actually an A cup and worrying about the cellulite on your legs when you crossed your legs while sitting at your school desk because capri pants weren't in style yet, but I like to remember the good times. In some ways the lyrics to our theme song seem to be quite prophetic when I think of how they relate to my life:


These Are the Days
(by 10,000 Maniacs, not Indigo Girls)

These are the days
These are days you’ll remember
Never before and never since, I promise
Will the whole world be warm as this
And as you feel it,
You’ll know it’s true
That you are blessed and lucky
It’s true that you
Are touched by something
That will grow and bloom in you

These are days that you’ll remember
When May is rushing over you
With desire to be part of the miracles
You see in every hour
You’ll know it’s true
It’s true that you are touched
By something that will grow and bloom in you

These are days
These are the days you might fill
With laughter until you break
These days you might feel
A shaft of light
Make its way across your face
And when you do
Then you’ll know how it was meant to be
See the signs and know their meaning
It's true
Then you’ll know how it was meant to be
Hear the signs and know they’re speaking
To you, to you

It was in high school that I first learned about the Church I now belong to. How grateful I am for that! Because it got me this:


I know this photo is a repeat of April 7, but I'm lacking in the "good family photo" department. Most of our family photos look like this:



It's not my fault

It's not my fault I didn't post yesterday. The cable was out.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Dinner at Melindabeth's


Jason got mad about something after shoving a handful of cheese into his mouth. We never did figure out what he was mad at.


Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Happy Aniveshry!

Nine down, eternity more! (Holy cow! That's a long time!)

Photography by Emily


Don't let the cute clothes fool you. We didn't do anything special this evening. I only wore them for the picture. I'm keeping with the polka dot theme for 2009. Polka dot cakes for birthdays and polka dot clothes for the anniversary. We ate Sonic tonight at home. And it's 10:15 PM as I write this. How sad is that? I guess we're saving up the romance for our 10 year. We're going to go celebrate and watch some TV now. We're way behind on our DVR shows.


Emily made us this card:


Monday, April 20, 2009

Breakfast at Melindabeth's

I think Rachel really needs to learn how to chill.


Sunday, April 19, 2009

Restoring Order

Our family likes to keep the Sabbath Day holy which pretty much means that we don't work, watch TV (except maybe a little Iron Chef because the Food Network is holy), listen to secular music, or participate in sporting events or recreational activities, or weed the garden, etc. Taking a day to rest like God did on his seventh day of creating the Earth is good for the soul. It's a good day to devote time to family, eat a simple breakfast, cook one big meal after church so you don't have to expend energy to cook another meal in the evening, snack on popcorn for dinner, study the scriptures or church lessons for next week, and engage in wholesome family activities. Of course, facebook and blogging are totally fair game.

Keeping the Sabbath holy also means that I don't clean or do my normal chores such as laundry, organizing, vacuuming the couch, etc. because that is my "work" as a homemaker. The only cleaning I do is the normal daily dishes and general pick up after the children. Lately my house has been in extreme disaster mode. I took a few too many days off from regular maintenance and it has caught up to me. I actually consider it unrestful for me to relax in a cluttered home. So instead of cleaning, we did some "restoring order" because the scriptures say:
"Organize yourselves; prepare every needful thing; and establish a house,
even a house of prayer, a house of fasting, a house of faith, a house of
learning, a house of glory, a house of order, a house of God;"
(Doctrine and Covenants 88:119, boldness and larger font added)

So there you have it. Restoring order is a good Sabbath activity! My house is getting there. I put the stack of DVDs that were accumulating on the DVD player back in their proper cases. I brought things that didn't belong downstairs upstairs. I put all the plastic Easter eggs in two plastic grocery bags and set them on the back porch to sit there for 3 weeks until I get around to putting them in the garage. I tried to clear the cabinet countertops in the family room of the clutter, but didn't quite acheive it 100%. It drives me crazy that there always seems to be a gazillion little items in every corner of my house that don't seem to have a home. For example:

  • a pair of choking hazard Barbie shoes
  • hair bows that need to be fixed
  • kid artwork that needs to be signed and dated before I forget who drew it
  • 9 Easter egg halves that I don't want to throw away because as soon as I take the trash out, I'll find the other half.
  • a scratched up kid's song CD (only a couple of the songs skip)
  • a naked Madonna CD that I need to find it's case for
  • a juggling book that I don't want to put on the kid's bookshelf because it will surely get wrecked, but won't fit on the parent bookshelf because it is full.
  • A Magna Doodle magnet that went to a Magna Doodle that I threw away about a year ago. (I can't throw it away the magnet, because surely I can eBay it for $0.25.)
  • Wendy's birth announcements that somehow resurfaced from unknown location
  • random random papers and articles I tore out of magazines of kid's projects that I will likely never ever attempt with them because they involve paint, my attention or too much planning.

Tomorrow is Manic Monday and I think I'm going to be wishing it were Sunday.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Saturday Pics

I know. Yesterday was kind of deep. Let's keep it superficial today with some pics.

Looks like couch left is also a sleepy spot.



Sarah was my Super Star Cleaner this evening for doing my dishes.


Jason was runner-up Super Star Cleaner for putting the new packages of wipes away.
The tag on his shorts says, "Elegant Boys." Jason is anything but elegant with ketchup all over his face. In fact, I've never thought of any little boy as being elegant.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Faith, Hope, Love

Recently I've been pondering spiritual things. My thoughts have been centered on faith, hope, and love. Those three words are commonly used in churches and in the world. I've seen them displayed on mantels, in foyers, in kitchens or other rooms of many homes.

I remember growing up in the 80's and seeing a triplet of placards on our living room wall, each with one of these words fancily written and decoupaged in pink, light blue, and yellow. When I was ten, I didn't have much to think about them except that they were pretty in an 80's home decor sort of way, but now as an adult I feel like I'm gaining wisdom about the true meaning of these words.

Faith
The Apostle Paul taught:

"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen." (Heb 11:1)

I personally haven't seen Jesus Christ face to face in my mortal life, but I have faith that he lived, died, was resurrected, and still lives. I have faith that I will have the opportunity to see Jesus again and shake his hand and hug him. Which leads me to...

Hope
Knowing I have a Savior, I have great hope for an even better future in eternity. I am grateful for His Atoning sacrifice, that we celebrated this past Easter Sunday, that will grant me a ticket to a heavenly home if I repent of my sins and endure to the end with faith. What a wonderful gift! This hope is what carries me through the trials and icky parts of life. It's going to be so much better when we live in "forever" with a loving Heavenly Father and His son, Jesus Christ.

So, I can deal with some toddler tantrums and unemployment in the meantime, because really this is such a tiny moment in our eternal existence.

and finally...

Love
Love is a word that is flippantly used in our everyday lives. For example, I love popcorn. I love watching The Brady Bunch. I love clean toilets. Now, yes, I do love these things and it is ok to use the term to express my extreme like. But 'love' as the last and most important of this famous triplet of words actually means 'charity'. Sometimes when we think 'charity' we think about donating our used and stained clothing, and toys with missing pieces to Goodwill.

But really, what is charity?

Paul gives a good definition in 1 Corinthians 13 and to summarize:
Charity is the pure love of Christ. It is the love that Christ has for us and that we should have for others. It is the:

highest,
noblest,
and
strongest
kind of love
and the
most JOYOUS to the soul.

(I did not write the summarized definition, but got it here.)

I felt joyness to the soul this past week admist the turmoil of six kids and daily chores while thinking about the people in my life especially my FAMILY and my FRIENDS. These are people that I love unconditionally and that I know love me unconditionally. People who will not unfriend me on facebook (Yes, it happened again, but I'm ok, I recovered from it.) People who care enough to show it through a kind deed, a kind message, a kind comment on my blog, or a foot massage. (Thanks, babe!) This joyful feeling exceeds happiness. It penetates the soul and causes the giver and the receiver to want to bask in it forever. Love is powerful. I believe the feeling of love, true charitable love, gives us a glimpse into heaven. It is good.

It is good to ponder. I find it hard to get a moment of quiet to do so, but I try to squeeze a minute here and there while folding laundry, showering, or getting the mail. Pondering helps us to appreciate our gifts and regain an eternal perspective. Pondering releases gratitude and urges us to express it.

I don't mean to ramble my random thoughts to my random audience of readers, but there IS more to my life than poopy diapers, laundry, and my latest and greatest polka dot birthday cake. Just so you know.

And ... I love you.

Even if I don't know you, or haven't met you in person, or haven't seen you in a long time, I love you and I hope to meet you or meet again one day, perhaps in heaven.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

I'm telling you...

... there is something about this corner of the couch that makes one sleepy.

This week I have been working on story writing with Emily. Story writing has never been one of my strong points. I can write a thank you note, a business letter, a journal entry, a blog post, but fictional writing does not come easy to me. As a result I've kind of neglected that portion of Emily's second grade homeschool curriculum. Since it's mid-April I decided to get busy with it. This is the story that she wrote today:

Pie Fight
by Emily


Once upon a time an old lady went to a new pie shop. A clown was there. Uh-oh! The clown threw a pie at her but she ducked. It hit a young girl insted. She had a pie. Uh-oh! She threw a pie at the clown. The clown didn’t duck. The pie hit the clown. They keped throwing pies. They made more pies. When they were at the last pie they said “maybe we should eat these pies.” So they ate the pies.

The End

We are going to expand upon it tomorrow. I think it has potential to be a really good story.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Good night, sleep tight?

I can't imagine this is very comfortable (that's Wendy). I also love that Jason is sleeping with the Ballerina Minnie Mouse. He's secure in his masculinity.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

FINALLY!!!

Bradley lost his snaggle tooth. He is so much cuter now.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter!

This morning after getting ready for church, the kids anxiously came downstairs and found their barren Easter baskets on the kitchen table. I could see some disappointment in their expressions until Emily read this letter he left aloud:

It says:

Dear Emily, Bradley, Sarah, Wendy, Jason, and Rachel,

My basket was getting so heavy this year! I was only able to carry this 1 lb. chocolate bunny and I thought you would enjoy this new movie. Your dad told me how much each of you love to eat candy, so I am also giving you this gift card so you can buy candy tomorrow for 50% off its regular price. That way you can have twice as much candy as I would've been able to bring! Tell your mom and dad to take you to Target tomorrow to get lots of candy that you like best! I hope you enjoy it, but don't forget to brush your teeth! I also gave each of you $1.08 to buy and ice cream cone at McDonald's. (I hear you like those too.)

Love,
The Easter Bunny

P.S. I love your garden! I hope you're growing some carrots and lettuce to leave me a treat next year

Apparently the Easter Bunny feels like holiday candy is way overpriced just like I do. Since Emily grasps the concept of money, she was thilled with the gift card and was willing to patiently wait for twice the amount of candy. Wendy, on the other hand, I think felt a bit slighted (This is the girl who's first sentence at the age of 20 months was "I want chocolate."):






You can see Wendy is very possesive of the 1 lb. chocolate bunny group gift.


The Target gift card.



Jason did get his hands on it when she wasn't looking.

We attempted a group kid photo. I didn't get one really good one, so here is a series:

Jason's not happy and Wendy thinks this is a funny face photo.



Wendy got bored and is picking the carpet.



Not funny, Rachel.



We're getting there.



Jason decides to cooperate.



Probably the best picture we got.



This one was pretty good too.


Runaway baby.


Took a picture without her anyway.



Whoops! Kid fell over!


There he is! But there is an unhappy baby. We quit. There will be more Easters.


Oh yes, and my Sunday School class went well. After a very short lesson, we had triple the fun with plastic spoons and cotton balls. We played pass the bunny tail (cotton ball) around the circle with a spoon. That was a good motor skill development for the 4 and 5 year olds. Then we walked across the room with the cotton ball on the spoon. I related it to the lesson by telling them they had to concentrate on what they were doing so they didn't drop it, which was like walking on the straight and narrow path back to our Heavenly Father. If they dropped the cotton ball, they had to "repent" and pick it up and keep walking. Some of the children had to repent a lot. Then we had a contest of how far they could slingshot a cottonball across the room. I won. Then we quadrupled the fun by gluing the cottonballs onto a picture of a lamb which represented Jesus. At lunch I asked Sarah if she approved of my games and she gave me a big happy nod. I'm so glad to know that I'm a cool mom.
Happy Easter!