Imagine what you could do if you knew you could not fail.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Funny Teachers

Yesterday was character dress up day at school. This is Samantha's costume. Can you guess what she is dressed as?
When Samantha came upstairs all dressed and ready for school, I remembered it was character dress up day, where the kids can dress up as their favorite character from anywhere.

I asked her, "Don't you remember it's character dress up day?"
She said, "Yes! I AM dressed up!"
"What are you?"
Her reply . . . "I'm the mom from twilight."

LOL! That rocks! She is dressed up as Esme. Samantha was happy as a clam to go to school "dressed as" Esme. It didn't even phase her that she was wearing all her normal clothes.

After school I asked her what the teachers thought of her costume. She told me that the teachers didn't know who she was supposed to be, so she told them. Then Samantha got the biggest kick out of the fact that her teachers thought she just wore her normal clothes to school! Funny teachers.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Hershey Track Meet

This is Athena's first year participating in the Hershey Track Meet. She was so excited for me to come and watch her. Unfortunately Alexandra has been sick with the flu since Sunday, so I had to tell Athena that I didn't think I was going to be able to make it. She was soooo disappointed and was crying about it the night before.

The morning of the track meet, Alexandra was still sick and I really wasn't sure what to do in order to please them both. Sometimes it's so hard to be the mom! I decided to let Alexandra sleep for the first part of the morning. Then I packed her and Nathan up in the stroller and walked over to the track to meet Athena.

When I got there, she was sitting on the bleachers eating her lunch. I snuck up and surprised her! She was so happy that I came!! So, I'm so happy that I went!! :) Athena had already completed 2 events, the long jump and the 50 meter run. I did make it in time to see her run in her last race, the 100 meter. Here she is running (she is in the red circle).
Here is Athena after she finished her race. I'm really happy I was able to come and show her that I support her. It turns out she finished last in her race, but I'm proud of her for trying hard. Like mother like daughter I guess. I was always last in my races when I was little too! She didn't seem to care about that, though. She just seemed to be having fun. :)

While I was there, we went to the snack shack and I got her some nachos, and some skittles for Nathan. Then I had the luxury of checking Athena out of school early (it was only noon) and she got to walk home with us. Alexandra ended up falling asleep in the back of the stroller, so it turned out to be not so bad for her either.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Another One of My Jobs

I got to give haircuts to Jeremy and Nathan again this weekend. :) I know, it isn't perfectly even . . . but then I never went to beauty school so what do you expect! Jeremy was taking pictures because Nathan was being cute. I got around to his bangs and told him to close his eyes so the hair wouldn't get in his eyes. Here he is taking this advice to heart.
Overall it did turn out really cute and I'm glad it's done until next time!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Oh What Fun It Is To Blow

Fun Fact: You probably didn't know this, but when I wrote out the title for this blog, I was thinking of the song "Jingle Bells".

Last Friday I heard a lot of loud little gut laughs coming from the kitchen. Of course I had to run in to investigate. Any time 2 little toddlers are laughing THAT hard, it has to spell trouble! I came in to find them both on the kitchen table, sliding around and around blowing the little foils that wrap up foiled chocolate Easter eggs. One of them would give a good, hard blow, and the foil would skitter across the table. They they would burst into giggles all over again!

Oh what fun!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Elaborate Phone Message

Athena wrote down her first phone message for me. I was gone to aerobics on Thursday, and when I got back, this note was sitting on the bar.

Dear mom,

Sister Duke called and gave me a message, and the message was that you need to bring a gallon of milk.
Because you promised.
That's all.


I thought her message was really cute! It's better than her forgetting to tell me at all!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Walter Wick for Spring Break

Spring break was unfortunately dismal. The weather was cold and snowy and there was nothing "Spring" break about it. I let the kids play a lot at home, we went to a movie one of the days. Then on Friday, Jeremy had work off, so we took the kids to the Walter Wick exhibit at the BYU art museum. It was so cute! Walter Wick is the artist who publishes the I Spy books. His art is very colorful, creative, and fun. Each of the kids got a paper at the beginning of the exhibit of things to look for in the art. We spent over an hour looking at the art and even Alexandra was entertained!

After the art museum, we took the kids to the eatery at BYU and got them some lunch. They all thought it was so neat to be eating at BYU with all the students. :) Jeremy and I didn't eat with the kids. Instead we opted to make a special trip to J Dawgs for their "famous" gourmet hot dogs. MMMM They were tasty! It was so big I could hardly finish it, though. I was proud of myself because I tried the sauerkraut. I didn't know what it was, but it turns out it's just pickled cabbage, and it's actually pretty good!

So, I would recommend taking your kids to the art exhibit. It's there until August and it's free!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

This and That

This morning I woke up and realized I was dreaming that I was on American Idol. I was all dressed up nice and ready to go out on stage when I realized that my makeup wasn't done. I went in to hurry and put some makeup on, and in my rush I put on a blob of blush that made a big orange circle. I didn't have time to fix it because I also realized that I didn't really know the song I was supposed to sing. Then I started freaking out because I didn't know the tune or the words. I copied down the words on a piece of paper and was going over and over them in my head trying to make them stick before the curtain opened for me to go out. Finally they called my name and I stepped out onto the stage, trying to dazzle the audience with my beautiful dress. The music started and I looked over to the side of the stage to see one of the other contestants (the most popular contestant) playing the accompaniment for me on the piano. Then when it was time for me to start singing, she started singing my song brilliantly into her microphone! I don't know if she was trying to cover for me because I didn't know my song or what, but as soon as she started singing, Simon jumped out of his seat and started screaming at her for singing my song. She jumped up and ran backstage and there was this big deal over the whole thing. I do remember it got me out of singing my song! Later in my dream she died. Huh?

- - - - -

I've been trying to get the kids to eat oatmeal. I know it takes a few tries for kids to get used to something new, so I've been giving it to them in small doses. :) Yesterday morning I made oatmeal and toast for them. I gave each of them a very small portion of oatmeal and they gobbled it up. Then they surprised me by asking for more! So this morning I asked them, "Do you want cold cereal or oatmeal for breakfast?" All 3 older kids yelled out in unison, "OATMEAL!!!" Wow! I made double the amount as I made yesterday and they all gobbled it up again. Hooray! This is a success in my book!

- - - - -

As I sit here typing on my blog, Athena is in the shower and I can hear her singing "The Little Mermaid" song. I wonder if her eyes are watering because of the beautiful tones in the shower and the tears are being wiped away by the falling water. It's cute to hear her singing in the shower!

- - - - -

This morning when I went to get Alexandra out of her crib, I noticed her diaper was sitting on the floor. She was still wearing her pajamas and they were all the way zipped up, like normal. I felt her little bum and sure enough, no diaper! She had taken off her dirty diaper, threw it on the floor to get rid of it, and dressed herself again. She was sitting there happily playing with her dolls. Hmmmm . . . to potty train or not to potty train?

- - - - -

Why on earth is the ground covered in snow when it is supposed to be Spring Break??

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Second Easter Egg Hunt

Every year we do at least 2 Easter egg hunts. One with my side of the family, and one with Jeremy's side. They both happened to fall on the same day this year. We hosted the party at our house, but because the weather was cold and stormy, we all opted to have the hunt indoors, in our basement! We don't really have that many places to hide eggs in our basement once you take out the bedrooms and the storage room, which I did. Those rooms were off limits because I didn't really care to find eggs in those rooms a few months later! Needless to say, we had about a million eggs and nowhere for them to go. The kids didn't really seem to mind anyway, so it turned out to not be a big deal.

I feel a little guilty that most of the pictures I got of our hunts this year were of Nathan and Alexandra. Admittedly, they are just the most fun to watch! Little kids get so excited about that kind of stuff. :) Here is Alexandra finding an egg by the baseboard. We let the little kids go first, again, followed by the bigger kids later.
Athena and Samantha are scouring the bookshelf for eggs.

Nathan reviewing his spoils, and uncle Mike doing some taste-testing. I'm glad I got this picture of Nathan with Mike because Nathan absolutely ADORES his uncle Mike. He always asks if we can go and visit him. Every time Mike is around, Nathan is right by his side. It's so cute! It makes me happy that they have that relationship.

Alexandra and Samantha are checking out all their eggs.

I was beside myself with how cute Alexandra was on this 2nd Easter egg hunt. I have never seen a little toddler as eager, excited, and aggressive as she was on this hunt. From the moment we let her down the stairs her eyes were darting around the room faster than her feet could follow. She ran from egg to egg saying, "Egg! Egg! Egg! Egg!" She found the ones down low, she found the ones up high, she even found the ones that were secretly hidden behind pillows and books! She found her allotment of eggs almost immediately and wouldn't stop gathering. Within just a couple of minutes she had swept through the library picking up eggs and then into the theater room. She had so many eggs that Jeremy had to keep sneaking handfuls of eggs out of her basket and re-hiding them so the big kids would have eggs to find when they were let loose.

Finally when all the eggs were found, we all took a break in the theater room while Grandma Lynda handed out her specially prepared Easter gifts for all the kids. That was very thoughtful of her. Thanks Grandma!

Again, this was a fun evening for everyone! Glad it all went off without a hitch!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Afternoon in the Park

On Saturday we spent the afternoon with my family in the park playing, eating, and having an Easter egg hunt, then playing some more. That about sums it up our activities there. The sky was all clouded over, but miraculously it didn't rain throughout the whole time we were outside! We did have a fun time. :) I always love spending time with my family.

Alexandra just LOVES the swings! Whenever I put her on the swing she just giggles the whole time while I'm pushing her.

Jeremy came along to relieve me from pushing for a little while.

Nathan and Claire on the swings.

Samantha and Athena after a long ride on the slide.

Lisa was trying to push both Nathan and Claire at the same time but found, to her surprise, that her right arm is stronger than her left! Lucky Nathan, he was on the right.

Jeremy decided to give Alexandra a taste of the big times by twisting her swing and letting her spin. She loved this too!

Nathan attemped the monkey bars. He still doesn't quite understand how to get going, so he gets about this far and then I have to run over and catch him. I looked at this picture and wondered why Lisa was in such a hurry. Glad I captured that as well.

After playing for a little while we ate. Katelyn was a little hungrier than the rest of us and didn't have time to get a plate.

Finally after all that playing and eating it was time for the egg hunt. Lucky for us there were hardly any people in the park. We had a huge area to hide the eggs in and it was fun for the kids. Surprisingly all the eggs got found too! I think this is the first year all the kids had the right amount of eggs.

We let the littlest kids start first, then sent the bigger kids last to clean house. Alexandra was really fun to watch this year. She caught on quickly and excitedly ran from place to place picking up eggs. We had to stop her from hunting so some eggs would be left for the older kids.

Nathan also found his share of the eggs quickly and immediately delved in to see what surprises awaited him in the eggs.

OOPS! Now his surprises are all over the ground!

Samantha is proudly displaying her find. :)

And here is Athena in action.

Got it!

Here are Samantha and Alexandra working together. :) Cute.

I love to watch the kids after the hunt. It's so much fun to see them so excited about what they found! A lot of the kids just sat down where they were on the ground and started opening up their eggs to see what was inside.

Here is Alexandra (and Jeremy) discovering all that shiny wrapped candy.
Then, when all the eggs were found and opened, we were back on the playground for more fun.

Me and Alexandra.

I tried playing too. Unfortunately my balance isn't the greatest and I kept falling off. I guess it was fun while it lasted. :)
This was just the start of our Easter festivities. Thankfully the rain held off until just as we were all getting ready to leave. This turned out to be a nice afternoon!

Monday, April 13, 2009

My Little Helper

Lately I've been trying to involve Nathan in as many things as I can to help him to feel more productive - like he is a contributing part of our family. He has really taken an interest in helping me when I'm in the kitchen (which is a majority of my time, it seems!). I snapped this cute picture of him helping me make no-bake cookies. He had endless stirring fun and all I had to do was add the ingredients! :)

Friday, April 10, 2009

Why Are You Doing THAT?

This morning I decided to get up a little earlier than usual and go out of my way to actually MAKE breakfast. Normally on school days I give the kids either cereal or eggs. I thought it would be special for the kids to have a nice change.

I did according to my plan - got up early, showered, and went into the kitchen to start cooking.

I got the pan out and on the stove and started mixing up the pancake batter when curious Athena wandered into the kitchen. She said to me with a little laugh, "Mom, WHAT are you doing?!!"

I said, "I'm making pancakes. :)"

She replied with surprise, "Why are you doing THAT?"

Ha ha . . . well excuse me!! I never should have deviated from the norm. But for the record, the kids loved the pancakes.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

So Obedient

Last week for one of Athena and Samantha's home lunches, I cut up fresh strawberries and put them all nice in a container for each of them in their lunch boxes. I don't usually have strawberries on hand, so I thought they would really enjoy the treat.

When Samantha came home from school she was upset. At lunch time, she was sitting there with her lunch spread in front of her when an older girl came and just dumped Samantha's strawberries out across the table! I asked Samantha why the girl did that and Samantha said she didn't know, she said that the girl just came and dumped them for no reason. That made me so mad!! I told Samantha that it was NOT OK for the girl to treat her like that. I don't understand what makes kids be so mean! I told her that she needs to not let kids treat her that way and she needs to stand up for herself.

When Jeremy got home I told him about it and he was just as mad. He said to her, "Next time you see her in the lunchroom, you need to walk over to her, take her food, throw it on the floor, and step on it!" He was REALLY mad that someone was treating his kid that way.

Well, yesterday when Samantha got home from school, she said, "Mom, do you know what I did today?"

"What?" I asked.

She said, "Today at lunch, that girl who threw my strawberries on the table came up to me when I was eating my lunch and she said to me - scoot over!

I said NO! And the girl said SCOOT OVER and gave me a push. And I said NO! Go sit somewhere else! (that girl is older than Samantha)

Then, when she was sitting down, I walked over to her and I took her pizza off her tray. Then I threw it on the ground and stepped on it! Then I threw it in the garbage."

LOLOLOL! I can't believe Samantha actually did that! She carried out her father's threat exactly!

After Samantha did this to that girl's lunch, the girl said, "What was that for?" Samantha told her, "Because you threw my strawberries on the table." Then the girl said, "OK, you win."

I would never laugh about it if she was the first offender or if I didn't know the whole situation, but just seeing it play out in my mind is sweet justice. Samantha is one kid who really stands her ground. I'm hoping this doesn't start a back and forth lunch battle, but serves it's purpose in that Samantha will not be the target of this school bully. I'm proud of her for standing up for herself!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Love "The Sound of Music"?

OK, so I'm cheating. I saw this on Aprilyn's blog and I LOVE IT!!! For some very odd reason, it even brought a tear to my eye. :) I wish I could have been there - I'd have been right in the middle! (Remember to pause the music at the bottom of my blog before you play this video.)

1000 Pieces

I really enjoyed listening to General Conference this past weekend. I love to hear the timeless messages of the gospel and to know that the Lord's high values and goodness remains the same even when the world seems to be going downhill so fast. It gave me hope. :)

We had relatively few meltdowns compared to the last General Conference, so I suppose I could consider it a success!

During conference I love to do puzzles. I completed a 500 piece puzzle on Saturday evening after 3 hours of work. Then on Sunday I got really ambitious and decided to try my hand at a 1000pc puzzle. This is as far as I got.I just got bored staring at the same 200 pieces that all had pink fruit and leaves on them. Maybe a couple of years down the road I'll forget that I didn't like working on such a big puzzle and try it again.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

It's NOT My Turn

Yesterday I needed to do a batch of dark laundry, so I went about the house gathering dirty clothes from all their many places. I went to each of the kid's rooms and emptied their hampers into one single hamper so I could carry it upstairs easier. I dumped all the darks into the washer. Then I went through Alexandra's room, gathering, and put all her dirty darks in the washer. Last I went to mine and Jeremy's hamper and sorted until I got everything I needed into a single pile. Then I carried that pile into the laundry room and threw the last bit of laundry from our room into the washer. As I turned around to get the laundry soap, something caught my attention and I stopped dead in my tracks. I turned back around and looked into the washer to see a DISGUSTING spider crawl out from under an article of clothing, to the top of the pile!
It looked just like the one in the picture! I was about to throw up! I stood there for a minute trying to think of what on earth I should do next. I decided to reach for the spider spray that I keep on top of the fridge and I would spray right into the laundry. I peeked around the corner into the kitchen only to discover that there was NO SPIDER SPRAY! I'm all out!! How did that happen? It never should have been neglected from my shopping list!

There was no way on earth I was about to reach into the washer and start smashing around in the laundry to get a running spider. Nor was I about to try to trap it in any kind of container - that would again, require me to reach my hand inside the washer with that disgusting creature.

So what did I do instead? I looked back into the washer and the stupid thing was gone! I'm sure it crawled down into the clothes again. I slammed down the lid of the washer and turned it on! EWWW!

Then I immediately called Jeremy and told him there was a load of laundry in the washer with his name on it. I refused to carry out the rest of that job. When he came home I made him transfer the laundry to the dryer, and when he gets home today it will be his job to fold it.

I don't have any idea what happened to that spider. I'd like to think it got sucked through the hose that discards all the dirty water. I mostly fear that all of our clothes now have little spider parts woven into the threads. I have to find some comfort in knowing that Jeremy will carefully check each and every article of clothing as he folds it to make sure it meets my family safety guidelines for being spider free. (even as I'm writing this I have a lump in my throat!)
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