Monday, December 31, 2007

Goodbye 2007

When I started blogging, I didn't expect to "meet" such wonderful fellow bloggers. You are awesome and I appreciate your encouraging comments and I also enjoy reading your blogs. And I also appreciate family members who comment on my blog and tell me personally how much they appreciate being kept up to date. I needed this boost to continue blogging, so THANK YOU!

It is 7:14pm and the kids are in bed. It crossed my mind awhile ago to let the kids stay up tonight to welcome in the new year (those who could stay awake long enough), but I came to my senses today and realized that by 7pm I am more than ready for them to be in bed and to have adult time with Matt. I am so glad I never mentioned my silly idea to the kids! Especially since I have no desire to stay up that late myself. I think I'll be lucky to see 9pm.

Zoe is feeling better today. Emily woke up complaining of a sore throat, but she has been fine the rest of the day. I have been wiping Zach's nose all day.

This evening Zoe realized that it is Family Home Evening night as we were playing a game of Trouble (Matt, me, Zoe, and Emily). We were planning on visiting some friends this afternoon, so we didn't plan on our normal Family Home Evening for tonight. We didn't end up going to our friends' home because it has been snowing all day. So Zoe couldn't understand why it was Monday night and we weren't having our lesson, scripture, game, and treat. It's nice that our kids enjoy Family Home Evening and they look forward to it. We do need to get back into our routine since we didn't have it tonight, last week was Christmas Eve and we were at my parents' home, and the week before that we put up our Christmas tree.

Eleanor spent the day in her pajamas. She tends to get neglected in the morning when all the kids are home because she is busy playing and she hates to stop to get dressed and by the time I get Zach and Kate ready for the day, I don't have the energy to fight with Eleanor. I think she would be content to stay in her pajamas all the time. She was happy this evening when it was time to get pajamas on and she didn't have to change!

Kate had fun with the toilet paper this morning. Every once in a while she will venture into the bathroom and discover the roll of toilet paper on the floor, so she tears what she can into little pieces until someone catches her.

Matt got paid some money today, so we treated ourselves to Chinese food for a late lunch, early dinner. I must be feeling better because Chinese food actually sounded good, it tasted good, and I don't feel sick now. The kids always turn their noses up at Chinese food, so they ate tuna fish sandwiches and chips before Matt got back with the Chinese food. Matt and I were able to sit together and eat peacefully...except for Kate who was more than willing to try Chinese food and loved it of course!

So tomorrow is a new year. I love starting a new year! There are a few things I would like to improve on this year like being more consistent with Thank you cards (I'm good at birthday cards, but thank you cards have never been a strength) and I'd like to be more giving to people around me who are in need or who have special events going on in their lives. We are blessed so much by things our friends and family give to us and I want to help others more and let them know that I care and am thinking of them. Often times I will have a thought to do something, but I don't act on it because of finances or I think what I have to offer isn't good enough, so my goal this year is to make those thoughts happen.

I'm getting the feeling that 2008 is going to be a good year for us. I'd really like to end the child-bearing, trailer-living chapter of our lives and move into the raise the children we have, live in our new home chapter. I joke that my new year's resolution is to stop having babies (of course that would be after July!). I feel like if Matt sticks with his job and we are patient that things are going to start falling into place. I really hope that it works out that way. So here is to a great 2008! Cheers.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Why I blog

Having a blog appealed to me because it gave me one spot to share what is going on in our family with our other family members, especially Matt's family in Utah. Before my blog, I would sit down at night to write in my journal...and then some of those things I would write about on our MyFamily site and then write the same things to family and friends through e-mail. I started to dread writing about things because it was such a long process. The blog idea would simplify this process and I would use it as my journal. It was a bonus that I could share pictures and movies too. Lately I find myself not wanting to write because things around here are just not that exciting and do people other than our family really want to know every detail that goes on around here? So today I had the thought of digging out my "real" journal and start writing in that again. But then I realized that that wasn't the solution, I just need to stick with my original reason for starting this blog which is to record history and share with family and friends. I have been keeping a journal since before I could read and write. I go through phases in my writing where I'll write every day or once a week or months go by between entries, but I have always kept a journal. This is my strength...and I was quite pleased when I realized this strength of mine because I have always wondered what my passion in life is. It is record-keeping. I love looking back and reading what I was doing a year ago, 5 years ago, and so on. It seems silly at times to write about the everyday things that are going on, but in the future I will appreciate what I have written. It's hard for me to believe at times, but I will not be changing diapers, nursing, feeding children every 5 minutes,...forever, so the record I keep now will be cherished as I sit in an empty house (which really sounds good to me at this point in my life!) and read about my crazy days as a mother of young children. I'm going to do my best to write every night, to recap what went on that day. Details get forgotten so quickly!

So, here is the unfinished igloo that the kids and Matt made yesterday.




Zoe loves to be outside, so she gets excited when Matt has a project outside for the kids to do, like camp Bravo. Emily tolerates being outside. She goes along with the project because Zoe is doing it...and because Matt doesn't give her a choice in the matter. She always has fun and wants to do it again...until the next time comes. Eleanor gets excited about the projects, but then loses interest the quickest. She was the first to come in from building the igloo. Zach wasn't too far behind her as he got tired of standing out in the snow watching his sisters and Dad build an igloo. He lasts much longer outside when it's warmer. Kate gets the privilege of staying inside with me...until she can walk and is woods qualified. And I suspect in the future we will all be outside together, but right now I'm not willing to be outside with a non-walker. Every season has a reason...too cold and snowy, too buggy, too sunny, too chilly. Carrying a child around outside is not fun, especially when you live on a hill! I'm hoping that as our little ones get older, I will like being outside more...it could happen.

Zoe has a bad cold, so she stayed "home" with my Mom while the rest of us went to church. My Mom opted to stay at her house with Zoe because I thought I was going to be in charge of Primary today and staying with Zoe sounded much better to my Mom than taking my place in Primary. But I was pleasantly surprised when the Young Women President and young women showed up the 3rd hour to take over Primary so the Primary leaders and teachers could go to the combined Priesthood/Relief Society meeting. So I didn't end up being in charge and I can use what I had planned for this Sunday next Sunday. :-) And going to the combined meeting made me appreciate my calling in Primary. Primary is much more fun! (Sorry Courtney, your lesson was very good, it's just hard to sit and listen when you're used to singing and playing)
Kate was entertaining as she displayed her ballerina moves, which I have never seen before. She would lift a leg up behind her or off to the side, put it down, and then lift up her other leg. It was so cute, she looked just like a little dancer.

Kate wasn't so cute during Sacrament meeting as she was screeching and trying to crawl up to the stand. I ended up going into the Primary room with Zach and Kate to listen to the talks. It wasn't that long ago when Eleanor refused to sit through Sacrament meeting and now she lasts all through the meeting with no problems. This helps me to remember that Zach and Kate will get past this wiggly stage too.

I love, love, love that Kate goes to bed with her siblings now and she sleeps through the night. It is so nice!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Another tooth!

Matt discovered Kate's new tooth yesterday. She has her 2 front bottom teeth, so I've been checking on top in the front, but haven't seen anything. Somehow Matt saw a tooth coming in next to her front top tooth . Shouldn't the front ones be coming in first? I think she's going to look funny with no front teeth on the top and one in on the side. Hopefully her front teeth will come in soon!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!

I don't like going a week without writing, but we have been busy, busy as I'm sure you have been too! Where did I leave off?...oh yeah, last Wednesday night the kids and I made sugar cookies and Christmas cards for Zoe and Emily to take to school on Thursday. Thursday ended up being a snow day, so they brought the cookies and cards in on Friday. Friday was a half day. Zoe and the other 3rd graders put on a Christmas concert/play that Matt, Eleanor, Zach, Kate, my Mom, my Dad, and I went to that morning. Zoe was a bell (Sol) and she did great remembering her 2 lines and singing the songs. I wish I would have brought my camera!
My Mom watched the kids for me while I went back to the school at 11:00 to help out in Emily's class while they made sundaes. Then I left with Zoe and Emily, which made them very happy because they are always wondering when they can be picked up from school instead of riding the bus. We spent the day with my Mom and I made Matt applesauce cookies that I gave to him today as a gift. He thought this would be his first Christmas without his favorite cookies and he was happy that he was wrong! Christmas surprises are so much fun. :-)
My Dad's birthday was on Friday. My Mom bought him a picture that he really wanted, so that was a fun surprise for her to give to him.

Part of Saturday was spent delivering cookies and Christmas cards to friends (Andrea did you find yours?) and we went to a Christmas party in the evening at Don and Terri's. Matt rents his office from Don and they are fast becoming great friends. Eleanor loved their dogs and Zach loved climbing up their stairs and sliding down on his bum. We ate a lot of delicious seafood and other food and left there very full!

During the 3rd hour of church on Sunday, the primary children put on a Christmas play for everyone. Eleanor was Mary, Zoe was an innkeeper, an angel, and a wise man, Emily was an angel and a wise man. They had a great time performing and it went well...even though I had them sing a song before they were supposed to.

Yesterday was filled with excitement and anticipation for Santa and opening presents today. The kids and I made more sugar cookies in the morning and then I made Kate's ornament. The girls each have a red ball ornament with their name, date of birth, and white dots and Zach has a blue one.



The kids and I spent the afternoon at my parents while Matt wrapped some gifts he had bought and he delivered cookies to some families from church. Matt joined us for dinner and we enjoyed a lasagna dinner with my parents and my grandmother. We watched "How the Grinch stole Christmas" before coming home. We read the last of our Christmas books, including "The night before Christmas" and put sugar cookies out for Santa before the kids went to bed. They were very excited for the morning to come of course! I spent the rest of the evening putting our sausage/egg casserole together and putting the bread ingredients in the bread machine pan to cook in the morning. We put gifts under the tree and I remembered that I hadn't wrapped my parents' gift, so I did that before going to bed. Matt still had more wrapping to do, so he stayed up a little later. I think Christmas Eve is just as much fun, if not more so than Christmas day because of the anticipation for Christmas morning. Plus we are usually together and spending some time with my family. It's always a fun day.

We were up at 5:40 this morning. The kids opened their stocking gifts and waited for 7:00 when my parents would arrive for breakfast. They did really well considering how long they had to wait to open their gifts. We ate our yummy casserole, bread, and cinnamon rolls and then discovered that Zach had unwrapped a few gifts after he was done eating (I guess he had waited long enough!). He opened one of Zoe's gifts, but the gift was still in the box so luckily she couldn't see what it was, and he opened my grandmother's gift. By the time all the presents were unwrapped our house was a complete disaster. But the kids were happy with their gifts and they were anxious to play. Zoe and Emily love their new American girl dolls, Eleanor loves her My Little Pony toys, Barbies, and playdoh, Zach loves his front end loader and race track, and Kate has been checking out all the toys. I have been trying to keep up with the mess, but finally gave up this afternoon! It has been a fun Christmas and I hope your Christmas has been fun, too!




Thursday, December 20, 2007

Trying to save some money

In my last post I mentioned using Duncan Hines frosting on my sugar cookies. Well, usually I use Pillsbury frosting and I have discovered that with the Pillsbury frosting my sugar cookies are delicious, but with the Duncan Hines frosting my sugar cookies are okay. I bought Duncan Hines this time because it was cheaper...big mistake! I have learned my lesson.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

"12-Christmas-Things-About-Me-Hoopla"

Before I get to the Christmas hoopla I have to comment on a few things. First, Zoe informed me this morning that the reason she didn't have homework yesterday was because 6 kids in her class were absent. I knew this couldn't be good and asked her if she knew what was wrong with them. She did and it was as bad as I expected...the stomach flu. It was tempting to tell her she would be staying home the rest of the week, but instead instructed her not to touch anyone and Matt added to wash her hands a thousand times during the day, he may have even said a million times, we do not want to be sick!!!!

And secondly, last night was the first time in 10 months that all of our children slept through the night. It was so nice!

Okay, now for the 12 Christmas things about me hoopla that Kristen tagged me to do...

1. The Christmas season starts on December 1st for me. The past few years I have started to listen to Christmas music the week after Thanksgiving, but I just can't truly get into the Christmas spirit until the calendar says December...so you can imagine how annoying it is for me to see Christmas decorations up before Thanksgiving!

2. I love having my kids do different activities to countdown to Christmas. My favorite is our numbered bags that my Mom bought for us. She intended for me to put candy treats and little surprises in each bag for each day, but I decided to use a doll instead that we move each day. It's fun to see the doll get closer to Christmas Eve and it helps the kids know how many days are left until Christmas.
The kids love unwrapping a book every night before bed and having it read to them.


3. The Christmas season would not be complete without my sugar cookies. Actually, I should give the credit to Betty Crocker for the sugar cookie mix and Duncan Hines for the vanilla frosting. The most work I do is mix the cookie mix, butter, and egg, bake the cookies, put frosting on them, and then add the sprinkles. I haven't met anyone who doesn't love these sugar cookies. :-)

4. Christmas lights that blink drive me nuts! I think it's because I love looking at the lights and when they are turning on and off all the time it's hard to enjoy them.

5. I love having a real Christmas tree. We always had an artificial tree when I was growing up, but I have insisted on a real tree since Matt and I have been in our home. Matt would gladly switch over to an artificial tree, but he hasn't convinced me yet.

6. For some reason we always end up getting our tree a week before Christmas. I always hope to get it 2 weeks before Christmas, but it never happens. So what did we do for Family Home Evening last night? You got it!





Kate was very happy to have something new to play with.

Our tree is a little on the small side, but it fits perfectly in our little house and it smells so good! We all love it.

7. Our Christmas tree consists of lights, ornaments, pipe cleaner candy canes, and sometimes real candy canes.

8. Christmas is the best when there is snow. It is really annoying when we have a brown/green Christmas and then it snows the day AFTER Christmas. I want snow on the ground and on the trees. I'm hoping for more snow before Christmas...without the rain and ice!

9. Watching the cartoon version of "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" is a must on Christmas Eve.

10. We always had a big breakfast on Christmas morning before opening presents, which has become a tradition in our family. A few years ago we gave the kids the option of eating first or opening gifts first and they chose to eat first. Matt has yet to adjust to this tradition, but he goes along with it every year. We have simplified how much cooking we do to save on time with a sausage egg casserole that I make. It is so good! If you'd like the recipe just say so and I'll post it.

11. We were able to open our stockings before breakfast when I was growing up and we let our kids do the same. We wrap the presents and candy that are in the stockings.

12. I love all the gifts that my children make for me. I keep a few of them up all year long. I even saved some wrapping paper that Zoe made to wrap one of her gifts with a few years ago and she was surprised to see it hanging up on the wall this year. My children have Matt's artistic abilities and I love to look at their creations.

Now here are a few rules for Cindy, PJ, Gabriela, Courtney, and Janae because I know they want to participate, right?!

1. List 12 random things about yourself that has to do with Christmas
2. Please refer to it as a 'hoopla' and not the dreaded 'm'-word
3. You have to specifically tag people when you're done. None of this "if you're reading this, consider yourself tagged" stuff is allowed...then nobody ends up actually doing it. The number of people who you tag is really up to you -- but the more, the merrier to get this 'hoopla' circulating through the blogosphere.
4. Please try and do it as quickly as possible. The Christmas season will be over before we know it and I'd like to get as many people involved as possible.
5. If you want to -- please give me, Andrea, some link-love as the 'Hoopla-Creator'. I love new blog-traffic.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Since I last checked in...

Matt made a new bed frame to put our new futon bed mattress on. It still needs some finishing touches, but we have been sleeping on our new bed the last few nights. :-)

I went Christmas shopping with Zoe, Emily, Eleanor, Kate, and my Mom for cousin gifts, school gifts, friend gifts, and sibling gifts. It is sweet how anxious Eleanor is for Zach to open the gift she chose for him.

Kate has been sleeping in the crib since Friday night. The kids tend to her when she cries before they fall asleep and then Matt is in charge of tending to her when she cries in the middle of the night. She seems to settle right back to sleep after he checks on her. Zach is taking this change harder than Kate. He slept well Friday night and last night, but Saturday night he was up throughout the night. I think part of the problem was the dark he woke up to since the Christmas lights we have in the kids' room weren't on. Zach is our first child to be afraid of the dark.
He takes advantage of any opportunity to push Kate over and lay on her. When Kate is sitting on my lap, Zach wants to sit on my lap, which also goes the other way. One of them cannot be near me without the other one noticing and making a fuss about it. I really hope they outgrow this phase before the new baby comes!

We only had Sacrament meeting yesterday because of snow. We had our Christmas program, which was very nice as usual. We enjoyed cookies and cider after church before heading home in the snow.

I put 50 Christmas cards in envelopes and got them ready to be mailed out or given to family and friends.

Zoe was very disappointed this morning that she had school. I'm sure she was very happy when she heard that school would be getting out early today because of a broken water main in town. They are now happily watching a new Scooby Doo movie my Mom bought for them. And now I have more laundry to put away, and you are up to date.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Does this toy belong here?

The good news for my children is that I spent the day cleaning/organizing their room, the bad news for them is that I'll be following them around for awhile like a drill sergeant making sure they put every.single.toy back where it belongs!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

"Steel Appeal"

Our family and my mom went to Zoe & Emily's school last night for a steel drum concert. The band members are mostly teachers from the school. The kids had a great time dancing and singing. During the intermission, the kids were able to test out the drums. Eleanor and Emily had a great time playing them. Zoe tried them out, but she didn't stay at it for long. Eleanor was right at home on the drums when the band came back to play. Zach had the most fun jogging from one end of the gym to the other. Eleanor of course made new friends. She is definitely the social bug in our family. She had a couple of the older girls trying out her dance moves and hanging out with her. The night proved to be a success when we got home and the kids got ready for bed quickly and fell asleep right after their heads hit their pillows. :-)

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Say "Cheese"

The kids occupied some of their time on Sunday afternoon taking pictures of each other and things around the house.






Our wall of birthday pictures starting when Zoe was a newborn in the hospital. The top row is Zoe, 2nd row is Emily, 3rd row is Eleanor, 4th row is Zach, and 5th row is Kate.

I bought cheaper frames for their latest pictures and they keep falling down, so here they are individually.



Here is the Christmas picture we had taken of the kids a few years ago.

It came out so perfect! I know, I need an updated picture, but at this point I guess I should just wait until the summer.
Matt cut off the kids' picture taken when he noticed them taking pictures of pictures. I think they're going to enjoy the digital camera my Mom bought them for Christmas!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Baby pictures

Zach is not convinced that there is a baby in these pictures! We are having 1 baby and the baby looks healthy and active. Seeing the first ultrasound pictures always makes the pregnancy more real...feeling sick just doesn't seal the deal for me, but these pictures do.


Matt and I are celebrating our 11 year anniversary today! We actually celebrated Friday night when we had a peaceful and delicious dinner together at Pizzeria Uno and then we went Christmas shopping. We have had 11 great years together and I'm glad we have many more years plus eternity to look forward ! I love you, Matt. :-)

Thursday, December 06, 2007

10 months old

With all of the mischief this morning I forgot that Kate is 10 months old today! She has really changed a lot in the last month. She is no longer a clingy, mama's girl, yay! Of course she still has her moments, but I am able to leave her with family and friends now and she loves to crawl, cruise the furniture, and explore. It is amazing that she has changed so much so fast! I must admit that I am liking it. I love being able to go out without a baby, especially since it is cold outside now. I will enjoy my 7 months of freedom! You can win Kate's heart by giving her food. She LOVES to eat. She better be tall and active because the girl can pack in the food. She only has 2 teeth, but she'll eat just about anything. She has mastered the sippy cup. She's getting better at not completely soaking herself when she drinks.
It's fun to watch her play with her siblings and laugh with them. She dances to music and claps when she sees other people clapping. She points when she wants something or she holds her arm out. And of course she is cute, cute, cute! We love you, Kate.

While I was in the shower...

Kate crawled into the bathroom and fell asleep on my towel.


Eleanor got the paints down from the top shelf in her closet, filled 2 cups with water, and painted...herself.


Zach painted himself.


This day is already proving to be interesting!

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Back to school

It finally quit snowing sometime last night, so Zoe & Emily are back to school. They weren't disappointed at all when I woke them up this morning to get ready. I think they had their fill of snow days...and I did too. I did get a nice break yesterday when Jenn called and invited the girls to go over and play. I made the pie while they were gone, Zach played on the computer, and Kate took a nap. I was even able to rest and read a bit before Kate woke up and the girls came home. But you wouldn't have guessed my pretty easy day by the end of the afternoon when the house was a disaster with toys and Christmas decorations everywhere and everything the kids did annoyed me. And I think trying to figure out where to put our decorations and needing to clean every spot that I wanted to put something was annoying me too. I was one happy Mom when Matt called to tell me that the young men's activity he was going to was canceled, so that meant I was free to go out to dinner and go Christmas shopping with my Mom. The break I was hoping for was going to happen, yay! It was quite delightful and our shopping was very productive.

Today I have been cleaning. I have had no desire to clean and still don't, but it needs to be done.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

As I suspected

Zoe and Emily have another snow day today. It is still snowing. The kids are already out playing in it this morning. Here is Zach getting ready to go out.

I get him all bundled up and then he goes out for 5 minutes and then comes back in. Then he gets mad when I won't get him dressed to go outside again as he watches the girls play in the snow.
Speaking of bundled up, here's a picture of the girls Saturday night at the parade.
Did I mention how cold it was?

Here are the girls getting ready to slide down our snow covered lawn.

And Eleanor walking through the snow.


Today will be less hectic than our laundry day yesterday. We have plans to make a pumpkin pie (Matt didn't get his fill over Thanksgiving), dig out the Christmas decorations, and decorate. We may even fit in "It's a Wonderful Life". We'll be busy, but it will be a fun busy.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Snow and more

We are getting snow today, so the girls don't have school. It is snowing lightly right now, but it's supposed to get nastier as the day goes on. I suspect they won't have school tomorrow either since it is supposed to snow tonight and snow showers are predicted for tomorrow. Looks like I have some laundry helpers today (hahaha).

Matt and I had our first date night alone together in about 10 months on Friday night. It was so nice! My Mom nervously agreed to watch all the kids for us (bless her heart!). Kate was very good and the other kids were on their best behavior too. Matt and I ate dinner at Taco Bell, we got some Christmas shopping done for Zach, and we enjoyed some ice cream before coming home. It felt good to be out as a wife and to have a complete break from the kids. :-)

We went to the Creche exhibit Saturday afternoon. The theme this year is Christmas from around the world. The had the nativities grouped together in the different countries they are from. Everything looked very nice as usual. Zoe and Emily sang in the children's choir. Eleanor practiced for an hour with the choir, but then refused to get up and sing during the performance. Zoe's teacher from school came to hear the girls sing and Jenn & Andrea and their kids came too. That meant a lot to us. The children sounded wonderful!
We watched the live children's nativity before we left. It was fun to see the children in the play since I know a lot of them and I haven't seen them in awhile.
Matt took Kate and Zach home and then my Mom treated Zoe, Emily, Eleanor, and me to lunch/dinner at Governor's. It was so yummy! And it was nice to eat out with just the older girls. Then we watched the parade of lights...in very cold weather! When we left the car to watch the parade it was 19 degrees and when we got back into the car it was 17 degrees! We had layers and layers on. Eleanor wanted to go back to the car before the parade was over because she was so cold, so my Mom happily brought her. In our rush to get out of the house in the morning I had forgotten to pack Eleanor's boots, so I bet her feet were pretty cold. We tried to keep her feet bundled up in a blanket, but she kept taking the blanket off from her. I think the parade was shorter this year, which didn't disappoint any of us! The people driving the Harleys braved the cold and showed off their bikes decorated with Christmas lights. I'm glad they did because they are always fun to see.

Okay between laundry and children it has taken me a few hours to write this!

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Computer Time

On Monday I started limiting Zach and Eleanor's computer time and they now have to wait until the afternoon to get on the computer. I don't even turn the computer on until the afternoon so we're not tempted to play on it all day. My turn comes first and then they can each have a turn. Eleanor and Zach have stopped taking naps for some time now, so this is my new way of having some time to myself in the afternoon and it gives me a break to look forward to. On days like today when we are home all day, the morning is filled with different activities like playdoh, painting, and games, which can wear me out bouncing from one thing to another, but it helps to know that my afternoon will be more relaxing.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Getting ready for the countdown

It has become a tradition to wrap up 24 Christmas books and let the children take turns picking one out for their bedtime story each night in December before Christmas. They love unwrapping the book and the surprise of what the book is going to be. We have some Christmas books, but I get most of them from our local library. I am fortunate that our librarian doesn't charge me when our books are overdue, so if I have a few books out for 4 weeks instead of 3 it isn't a big deal. :-) I have asked my Mom to help me wrap books this year, so we will be getting together sometime before Saturday to have our wrapping party.

I like to have more than one countdown activity, so each child can have something to do each day in December. They take turns, so every day they do something different. We have a string of 24 red mini bags that we use each year to keep track of what day it is and how close we are getting to Christmas. We start with day 1 and move a doll closer to the 24th as she sits in each bag along the way.

I found a nativity puzzle that I printed on paper that I'm going to use for another countdown activity. I will cut the paper pieces and then the children will pick a piece each day to place on another paper that will have the outline of the whole puzzle, so they will match their piece to the one on the outline.

I need one more idea, any suggestions?

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Thanksgiving Break

Zoe and Emily had a full day of school yesterday and a half day today and now they are home for the rest of the week. It is snowing lightly outside which makes it feel like the holidays are here. We are heading to church tonight for pie night. A night of eating as much pie as we can stuff in and visiting with friends. I love this time of year!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Are you CRAZY?

I'm beginning to think so. I'm sorry I have been neglecting you, but morning sickness leaves me with little energy and I stay sane these days by letting the kids play on the computer all day. By the time the computer is free to use, I'm either asleep or curled up in my chair wishing these blah days would end. I must say that I don't think I am feeling as bad as I did when I was pregnant with Kate or Zach, but I'm still feeling crappy and tired. It is sad that food doesn't sound good during this time of year when there are so many good things around to eat! I do hope that I am able to enjoy our Thanksgiving feast at Dysarts on Thursday. That's right, no cooking or cleaning around here on Thanksgiving, we eat out. :-) I'll be baking pies tomorrow night and then my work is done. So you want pregnancy details do you? or do you just want to say "So I guess it's congratulations, or is it?" (what kind of question is that?...I have heard it a few times now and it makes me wonder if people think this new baby is unwanted. I know we are ahead of schedule here and Kate is still a baby, but yes, this baby is good news, and yes we're hoping for a boy...as Zoe puts it, it would be SO unfair for 5 girls to have to share a room together and for Zach to have his own room!) I am due the end of June, so we could very well have a 4th of July baby...it will be weird to celebrate a birthday in the summer. And yes our timing of having all 6 kids home for the summer is wonderful, isn't it? I refuse to think about it. Oh and as you've probably guessed by now I'm not losing weight anymore, my last weigh in was a few weeks ago where I weighed 124.4. It feels good to start this pregnancy 14.4 pounds lighter. :-) House plans? At first my thought was how in the world can we build a house when we have another person to take care of and we can't keep up with all the expenses now, but in the last few days I have caught house fever and we are looking at the steps we need to take to get a house ready to live in by next winter. It may not be finished, but if we can live in it and watch this trailer burn to the ground then I will be happy (Don't panic, we would have the fire department burn it down. It is a moment we are all looking forward to! ) So all I want for Christmas (besides the new mattress my parents have already bought us for Christmas) is the house plans, which would complete step 1 to building our home. It is time.

Have I rambled on enough? Are you still wondering about my payback plan for the wound up kids at bedtime? Well I didn't manage to wake them up early, but the next night Matt rigged up a gate using a board and buckles so Zach could get out of bed, but he couldn't escape the room. Once Zach realized he couldn't leave the room, his interest in getting out of bed disappeared. We didn't have to put the board up tonight, Zach stayed in bed and went to sleep. :-)

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Bedtime Blues

Zach has learned how to get out of his crib and he refuses to stay in bed. Matt is at a meeting and the girls are wound up. I am getting angrier by the minute here and am plotting to pay them back by getting them up at the crack of dawn. We'll see how happy and giggly they are then!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Birthday fun

Playing with dinner

Lobsters awaiting their fate

Dinner time!

We are too full for cake, but the party must go on!


Emily went to a birthday party this afternoon at a local YMCA where she swam for an hour and then played games and ate a cupcake with her friends. The Dad of the birthday girl showed off his artistic talent as he painted whatever the kids requested on them. It was a big hit! Emily wanted a fish to go along with the ocean/fish theme of the party.


I was impressed with Zoe this afternoon when she told me that one of her friends had invited her to go to the Y tomorrow for a birthday/swim party, but knowing it was on the Sabbath day when we go to church and spend the day together as a family, Zoe didn't even ask if she could go. She knew we would say no, but more importantly she knew the right choice was not to go. I'm proud of you Zoe!

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Happy Birthday to me!

I am 33 today. Zoe is REALLY happy that it is my birthday today...we get lobster tonight. :-)

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

9 Months old!

Kate loves to crawl around and find lots of ways to make a mess! She loves to play with anything that isn't a toy and that she shouldn't be playing with. She's taking notice of other people now and is liking her Daddy more and more. I spend my day making sure all the choking hazards are picked up off the floor as Kate crawls from one adventure to another.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Weekend Update

The kids stayed at my parents' house Friday night, which was very nice. Matt and I got caught up on "The Office" and we watched an episode of "Life" which is another show we are hooked on.

We had Stake Conference this weekend. Matt went to his Priesthood meeting from 3-5pm on Saturday. The kids and I went to the Stake center at 4:30pm so I could help prepare for the meal our Branch was in charge of in between Priesthood meetings and the adult meeting. The kids played in the nursery until Matt was done his meeting and then he left with the kids while Kate and I stayed to help with the meal and to listen to the adult meeting. The theme this weekend was unity and the talks Saturday night were very good. We left Saturday night in very cold, windy, rainy weather. We woke up Sunday morning with no power, so Matt got the generator going (after a trip to the store) and we warmed up and got ready for the day. But conference had already started by the time we were ready, so we stayed home. Our power came back on around noon time. We went over to my parents for a late lunch/early dinner and talked about the new changes in the stake. There is a new counselor in the Stake Presidency because President Hatch is now the Patriarch. One of Matt's counselor's was called into the Stake so now Matt is trying to figure out who his new counselor is going to be. There just aren't a lot of Priesthood brothers to choose from in our branch!

Zach likes to wear his church clothes all the time now. He shows me what he wants to wear in the morning. All of my kids decide around the age of 2 that they are going to be in charge of what they wear. I think this is happening because I was pretty picky as a child/teenager about what I would wear for clothes. It's sad when really cute clothes sit in the closet unworn because my kids insist on wearing the same 2 or 3 outfits over and over again. *sigh* At least Zach has good taste and looks really cute in his church clothes.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Halloween fun part 2

Matt returned home last night. :-) He had a fun trip, but claims to be glad to be home. I'm glad he's home!

We had a fun Halloween yesterday. I took Eleanor, Zach, and Kate to storytime in the morning. I dressed Kate up as an Angel, but Eleanor and Zach went as themselves. It didn't take long for Kate to take her halo off and her wings got in the way when she tried to crawl around. But she looked so cute and I'm glad she got to wear the costume once. I have pictures, but I'm still trying to figure out how to get the pictures from my Dad's camera onto my computer. I'm happy that Matt brought my camera home fixed, thanks to his brother, Jon and now I can use my camera again.

I went into Emily's class to help out with their Halloween party for a half hour in the afternoon. I was in charge of the apple bobbing. Yes they used separate water for every child and I got to refill buckets. I had to leave before the food part of the party, which was a bummer because there were a lot of yummy goodies to eat! I actually went to Emily's school without Kate. :-) She was asleep when I left, so my friend was brave and kept her. Kate woke up about 10 minutes before I got home and looked at my friend a little strange, but didn't cry. Kate is doing better with other people, especially if she can't see me. She is learning to like my Mom and leans over for my Mom to take her when Kate sees her now. Big improvement!

The kids and I met my Mom at the mall last night for trick or treating. Eleanor wondered where the party was as we walked around and collected treats. She thought just walking around was pretty boring. Eleanor thought one of the young women passing out candy looked just like a princess and she told the young woman so, which was so cute. Zach tired of just collecting treats after awhile and decided it was time to eat a lollipop. He looked just like Emily at that age in a bear costume, carrying around a bucket, eating a lollipop. Very cute.

I hope everyone had a fun, safe Halloween!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Favorite part of the day

Is it wrong for me to LOVE the time when all of my children are sound asleep in bed? It is so quiet, peaceful, and relaxing.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Back to the doctor

Kate has conjunctivitis in her left eye. Whether or not it is viral or bacterial is yet to be determined. Right now it's looking viral with a clear discharge, but the doctor said viral conjunctivitis most of the time occurs in both eyes, whereas bacterial conjunctivitis occurs in one eye. I was happy that this doctor wasn't quick to put Kate on an antibiotic until we are sure it is bacterial, she called in the prescription and I will get it if I need it.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Kate

Kate heard her first "No" this evening as she was playing with the printer cover...she would open it, I would shut it, then she would open it again. It seems like I was just going through that with Zach!

Kate is at the bumps and bruises stage. At church today she pulled herself up to standing as she held on to a table. She did good for awhile, but then she lost her balance and landed on the floor. Her mouth was bleeding and of course she was not happy! She bruised her upper gum.

Kate discovered my parents' stairs today. She would have succeeded at climbing them if she didn't have tights on that were too slippery on the hardwood floor and step.

This evening Kate was bugging her siblings as she tried to steal the toys they were playing with. This did not make them happy and they were not thrilled with the idea of having to move instead of having me pick Kate up. Personally I'm enjoying this new independent Kate! So her siblings will just have to deal with their new annoying little sister!

Halloween part 1

The kids and I went to our annual Halloween party at church this evening. It was a success as usual. When I asked the girls what their favorite part of the evening was, Zoe spoke right up and said, "The singing!" (brave adults dominated the karaoke machine while the kids danced and watched). The girls all agreed getting candy was a highlight and then Eleanor in a very excited voice summed it up, "EVERYTHING was the best!". We ate pizza for dinner, sibling pictures were taken with a polaroid camera and then the kids decorated a page to put their picture on (of course Zoe & Emily argued over whose page the picture was going on since they had each done a page, so I claimed the picture and put an end to the argument, and there was a pinata. Poor Zach missed out on everything as he slept on the couch the entire time. I went around and filled his bucket full of goodies at the end, so he had yummy treats to eat when we got home. By the time 9:30pm rolled around after baths and getting them ready for bed, the kids were pretty much begging to go to bed! And now it is almost Sunday morning and I must get to bed myself. Goodnight.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Just me and Kate

Kate & I went on a field trip with Emily this afternoon to the Fire station and the creative playground. I was afraid it was going to be a nasty day today, but it turned out to be beautiful. It was funny to see all the boys in Emily's class hovering near everything at the fire station that was talked about and asking TONS of questions! Emily tried to see things, but she was usually in the back behind the boys. I think some of the girls weren't interested at all and some of the girls got tired of the boys asking question after question after question. Emily can now say that she has been on a fire truck and she saw a truck shoot water. We walked to the playground and the kids recited a poem they know about leaves as we walked through a pile of them. When we got back to the school, Emily's class got together with their 4th grade reading buddies, so I listened to Emily read. I think Emily might have a crush on the 4th grade boy who is her buddy. As she was leaving she was sad and said she misses her buddy already. I couldn't believe how big the 4th grade class looked! Do they really change that much from 3rd grade to 4th grade?

I think we are ready for Halloween! We dug out the Halloween boxes at my parents' house this afternoon. Zoe is going to be a cat (although she doesn't like the cat ears that Mom and I came up with...they were red devil ears that Mom put black socks over to make them cat ears that we will attach to a headband with an elastic, worked for us!), Emily is going to be a witch, Eleanor will be a dancing witch and she has agreed to wear a witch hat, which I think will complete the outfit, Zach will be a bear, and Kate is going to be a pumpkin. Everybody has everything they need and we are set for another year. :-)

Kate and I are home alone! My wonderful mother is keeping the kids overnight at her house. Kate and I are going to watch the movie "Gracie" and enjoy the quiet. :-)

Weigh In

Goal Weight: 121
Weight last Friday: 128
Weight today: 127.4

You didn't know that?

Cindy tagged me so I get to tell you 6 things about myself that most people wouldn't know and then tag 6 people and leave a comment on their blogs. If you check out Cindy's list, I am #2,3,4,6 too. I suppose I need to come up with my own list though. I thought about going into my wild past, but I know none of you would believe that I would ever do such things so I guess the dorky side of me will have to come out.

1) I like listening to the music from "Jack's Big Music Show" and "Doodlebops" as much as my kids.

2) I like listening to talk radio. It doesn't happen very often since trying to listen to the host talk while your kids are trying to talk to you is a recipe for a very grumpy mother who has no clue what is being discussed on the show.

3) I like watching sports and if we had tv I would find watching a game quite relaxing in the evening. I actually enjoy sports more than my husband does. Go Red Sox!

4) I am not a talker. There are many days when I have to force myself to talk to my family because I get too content lost in my own thoughts. I like being quiet...unlike my children!

5) Traveling abroad does not appeal to me. I'm quite content being in this country. But having said that I do think it would be fun to visit Prince Edward Island.

6) I still like to dress up in a costume for Halloween parties. It's fun!

So I'm supposed to tag 6 people, but I'm not playing by the rules...tell us 6 things we don't know about you and then leave a comment here so I can check it out. :-)

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Beauty all around

I've lived in Maine almost 33 years now and I think this Fall season has been the first that I have truly noticed the beauty of the Autumn leaves. I have always been a summer fan, so I think in the past when summer was over and Fall was here, it bummed me out because it was getting colder and the dreaded winter was coming. I focused on the weather. The older I get, the more I love the Fall season and I am so thankful to live in such a beautiful place this time of year! The colors of the leaves are now gold, yellow, brown, and maroon and I enjoy looking at them as I drive around.

We went to Walmart this afternoon because I thought Zach was getting low on diapers, but after returning home I realized that it was Kate who is getting low on diapers. Dang! If I was the type of person who saved everything I would still have the receipt to do an exchange, but I'm not and I don't. Oh well, at least Kate can wear Zach's diapers if we completely run out.

Matt will be proud to know that I stopped at Exxon today to buy gas instead of Irving. Our town's newly re-opened Exxon now has full service at self service prices and this came in handy today when I had cash and didn't have to leave 3 sleeping kids in the car to go in the store to pay for the gas...I mean get 3 sleeping kids out of the car to pay for the gas.

My Mom treated the kids and I to kids night at the Ground Round this evening. Kids night is great because the kids' meals are cheap and our table noise blends in with the rest. Kate had her first experience with the "balloon man" and her reaction was to panic for a second and then keep looking at me to make sure this weird guy wasn't going to take her away. She actually did better than Zach used to when he was in the high chair. Zach would cry and insist on getting out of the high chair to sit with me. But tonight Zach enjoyed the "balloon man" and the dinosaur balloon he got. Zoe got a flower balloon, Emily got a butterfly balloon, and Eleanor got a rabbit balloon. Eleanor refused to eat until she had a balloon and Zach stopped eating as soon as he got his. The food was delicious as always and there were no tears the entire time...even when Zach spilled my water all over Zoe. There were tears however after we got home when Eleanor's balloon came undone. Zoe & I fixed it the best we could and I drew on 2 more eyes and eyelashes since the other eyes disappeared. Then Eleanor noticed that the belly button was now on the back of the rabbit, so Zoe did some more twisting and made the rabbit look like it is laying on it's side. Acceptable. Eleanor was now willing to go to bed. Survival of day 2 complete.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Daddy or a cat?

Checking out at the grocery store today Eleanor was telling the cashier something, but neither one of us could understand her. That turned out to be a good thing since she was telling the cashier that when her Daddy dies she'll be able to get a cat. I'm not sure the cashier would have understood the fact that we tell our children that they are never getting a cat as long as Matt is around because he hates cats, but if he dies, well then we could get a cat. I think going down the pet aisle triggered this thought in Eleanor today. BTW~Matt arrived in Utah and is alive and well. :-)

We received "Mary Poppins" in the mail today from Netflix, so the kids watched that this afternoon. I always wondered why I didn't remember much from that movie and I think it's because I lose interest about half way through. That is one long movie! Zoe and Emily really like the movie and stayed with it until the end. Eleanor did pretty well too, but Zach wasn't impressed and wanted me to read books to him.

I bought 98% fat-free Turkey hot dogs for us to eat for dinner tonight (that are only 1 point each!) and the kids did well eating them considering Zoe is the only one who likes hot dogs. I even expected Zoe to say that the hot dogs tasted different, but nobody said anything negative about them. Lately I've been giving the kids a little bit of whatever we're having for dinner and telling them that if they eat what is given them than they can have dessert. I've never been one to cook different foods to please everyone, but I do allow them to eat whatever they can get themselves or foods that are quick, but that was starting to bother Matt, so now they are expected to eat whatever is made for dinner. It is nice because they are trying more things and eating more than just bagels and cereal.

Flying solo

Matt is on his way to Utah. He's spending today and tomorrow in Utah where he'll get to spend time with his family and then he's driving to South Dakota with his Dad and his brother to go pheasant hunting. He'll be home in a week, on Halloween night. Wish me luck! My morning has already had the challenge of listening to Zoe and Emily argue over who is going to be a cat for Halloween. Zoe had the idea first and now Emily wants to be one too, but of course Zoe doesn't want Emily to copy her. Having the same costume is NOT acceptable. I really wish they would have found their costumes at the beginning of the month when we first went shopping. I am just not the creative sewing mother who can whip up whatever they want and I no longer have money to spend on costumes. We'll have to see how this all works out.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

In training

Eleanor has taken an interest in washing the dishes. This has Zoe and Emily very excited because on the days that Eleanor washes the dishes before they get home from school then they don't have to wash dishes on those days. The 4 year old passion for washing dishes doesn't last forever. Since Zoe was supposed to wash them today and Eleanor just washed them, she is going to be one happy child! I'm happy too because the more children I have washing dishes, the less time I spend washing them. :-)

Monday, October 22, 2007

Monday update

Let's see...what has been going on? We had an activity at our church Friday night. We ate pizza and salad and then had a financial seminar. I think most of what was said was a review for me, but a review is always helpful. The thing that keeps sticking in my mind are the definitions of needs and wants.
Needs sustain a life.
Wants sustain a lifestyle.
Can we afford the lifestyle we currently have or are we continually going into debt to maintain it?

Zoe, Emily, and Eleanor did a great job yesterday during the Primary Program...all the children did. We heard many comments about how well the children did and how much the people enjoyed it. I really didn't stress about the program until I woke up yesterday morning after having a dream about the program where everything was going wrong. In the dream we started out singing last year's songs and the dream ended with us singing songs from High School Musical (I think I've been listening to those songs too much lately). But in real life everything went pretty near perfect.

Kate is officially crawling. She can sit, then crawl, then sit again. She got into her first mischief last night. She pulled out Matt's church mail basket and almost got into the papers that were in the basket and then she discovered the paperback books that were next to the basket. So now we have Kate's toys in what used to be Matt's church mail basket and I'm still trying to decide where to put his mail.

Zoe and Emily have a half day today. When they get home, we're going next door with "the gang" to decorate Halloween cookies. I'm going to bounce back and forth from there and home to keep the laundry going.

Have a good Monday!

Friday, October 19, 2007

Weigh In

Goal Weight: 121
Weight Last Friday: 127.6
Weight Today: 128.0

I knew I would regret over indulging this week.

You're kidding, right?

I read this headline on Drudge and wondered what crazy part of the country is doing that...Middle school OKs birth control...and it turns out that mine is!

A good reason to cry

Kate has been very cranky lately, which I figured was due to teething and/or a minor cold, but it turns out she has Thrush. Which explains why she keeps spitting her binky out lately and she doesn't nurse as long as she usually does and why I have been sore nursing. I started both of us on the medicine today and hopefully we'll be feeling better soon. Kate also has a rash all over her body, but the doctor doesn't think it is related to the Thrush. When the doctor pretty much said that it's nearly impossible to diagnose what is causing a rash I made a mental note to never bring my children to the doctor to diagnose a rash. By the end of the visit the doctor said it is possible that Kate is allergic to yeast which would cause the rash...but who knows. When I looked up Thrush on the internet, I found a few sites that mentioned a rash, so I'm thinking it is connected.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

The good, the bad, and the mobil

Things went pretty smoothly yesterday during our trip to the library for Eleanor's class until we left. Zach DID NOT want me to hold his hand crossing the street to our car. I had Kate in the snugli, the diaper bag over my shoulder, the library bag in one hand, and a limp 2 year old in the other hand while crossing the street. I'm sure it was a sight to see! Zach dropped his book just as we got to the other side of the street and he ended up laying beside it throwing a tantrum. Another Mom stopped to help, which was nice, but there really wasn't anything she could do. I got Zach into the parking lot, but then he plopped himself down again continuing his tantrum. He kept kicking his shoes off, so I had Eleanor pick them up along this long walk to the car. I had picked up free passes to the Children's museum in the library, but by now I was wondering if we should just head home. I finally got Zach in the car and drove up to the ticket booth to pay for parking. The lady inside the booth says to me, "Whatever you did sure made him mad." Yes, insisting that my 2 year old hold my hand while crossing the street DID make him mad.

We did end up going to the museum and it turned out to be a great time. I parked on the same side of the street as the museum so Zach could walk by himself which started things off on the right foot. It was fun to take Eleanor and Zach to the museum because it was a new experience for both of them and everything there was exciting to them. I would like to take Zach there by himself sometime or have Matt come with me, so Zach can stay in one spot for as long as he likes. He would get settled into an activity like the train table and the blocks, but then Eleanor would want to move on to something else. Eleanor really enjoyed the diner and being my waitress.

Kate and I had an evening on the town last night before picking up my parents at the airport. It was nice to get out, but having Kate fall asleep and then get woken up a few times and getting her out of a warm car into the cool air wasn't so much fun. We went to Burger King for dinner (I might regret that decision on Friday) and we went to Goodwill...where else would I go?

Kate update: She is starting to crawl! She has graduated from the sniper crawl to getting on her hands and knees. :-)

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

No good deed goes unpunished

The kids and I have been taking care of my Mom's cat, Fluffy, while my parents have been visiting my sister. We go over to my parents' home once a day to feed Fluffy and clean out her litter box. She is an old cat and reminds me of a grouchy old woman. The kids feel bad that she is alone so much and try to pet her and love her, but she hisses at them and tries to bite them in return. She will however let me pet her and she purrs when I do. It's funny how her personality changes from the kids to me. She sits in my Mom's chair and just glares at the kids (who would love to have a pet of their own and get so excited when they are near Fluffy), but turns into a loving cat when I'm around.

Now a word about Emily and homework. Emily is not as concerned about homework as Zoe and it's an adjustment for me. She'll do her homework...when I tell her to, but then she'll leave it on the table or on the washer where I found it this morning after she had left for school and she was supposed to hand it in today. I noticed that the back page of the homework wasn't done which made me wonder why she told me it was done this weekend when it wasn't. After school I asked her if she forgot something today. She said no and then I mentioned her homework.
Emily: "It's not due back until Monday."
Me: "Today is Monday. it was due back today."
Emily: "Oh"
Me: "I noticed the back page of your homework wasn't done."
Emily: "Oh yeah! That's why I didn't bring my homework back today"...clearly making things up as we go along. It was a good reminder to me that Emily is different than Zoe and younger so I need to be more on the ball making sure she is doing her homework and getting it back to school.

The Lord is my Light

I fell asleep with Kate last night around 8:30, but was then awake from midnight to 2am. Laying in bed wide awake there was nothing to do but think. And thinking about our financial troubles was leading to depression. Being in the dark reminded me of an account I had recently read in the Book of Mormon where the people experience total darkness for 3 days after Christ's death. No light could be seen. I had the thought when I read this chapter that people who take their own lives must experience this darkness. A darkness that is so thick and consuming that it does not make room for hope or comfort. Making life not worth living anymore. After 3 days of darkness, the people in the Book of Mormon heard Christ's voice and one of the things he said to them was, "I am the light...". The word light must have stood out to these people in total darkness. Nothing around them could give them light and I can imagine they were craving both physical and spiritual light at this point. As I was thinking about this last night my depression started to fade and I was filled with the light of Christ. A light that gives me hope and comfort. A light that only comes from my Savior. My financial problems didn't go away, but they felt much smaller and manageable surrounded by this light. And I was able to go back to sleep.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Whirlwind of days

I am finally sitting down and enjoying some quiet. Yesterday was Zoe's last day of soccer, so she had 3 twenty minute games, a luncheon, and awards ceremony. Then we went to Jack's birthday party. Today was a crazy day at church having our last practice before our primary program next Sunday. Here are some highlights from the past 2 days.

Zoe played goalie during her last game yesterday. I must admit I was nervous for her since she wanted to be goalie while playing the white team - the team with mostly 6th graders who get many opportunities to score. Zoe chased after many missed goals, saved one goal, and missed other goals that gave the white team points. There were times when she didn't know what she was supposed to do, but overall she did well. I was proud of her for wanting to try a new position and giving it her best.

I like how Emily makes friends wherever she goes. She was bored at Zoe's games until she started playing with another girl who was nearby. She also made a friend at Jack's party and did not want to leave her new friend!

I was impressed that Emily went to the serving table by herself during the luncheon when she wanted something. In the past she would insist on someone going with her.

Kate had her first taste of cake yesterday, Mom you would have been proud! I was trying to enjoy my delicious piece of ice cream cake, but Kate was upset that I wasn't sharing, so I gave in. Eating cake is much more enjoyable when everyone is happy. :-)

I have an obsession with being in control which is why I ended up being in charge of the primary program again this year. I'm glad today's practice went well because at the end of last Sunday I was regretting my decision to be in charge.

Today was one of those Sundays where I had a list of things I needed to get done at church and a list of people I needed to talk to before I left, so it was busy. I do think I managed to get everything done that I could and of course enjoyed my meetings as well...except during Sacrament meeting when Eleanor decided to express her disapproval of Zach taking her book by biting him.

During some of Sacrament meeting I was in the Mother's room with Zach & Kate. Zach was ready for a snack, but I told him he would have to wait, that he could have a snack in his nursery class. It was so cute to hear Zach say "Thank you Mommy, thank you!" like I had just given him the best news ever!

Friday, October 12, 2007

Zach update

It is a rainy day here today. Zach & I had a chance this morning to cuddle and read books. It was nice to have one on one time with him. Zach loves to have me read to him, just like Zoe used to...and actually still does since she asked me to read to her and Emily before they left for school. Having Zach bring me book after book after book reminded me of Zoe at that age doing the same thing. Some mornings I hated reading right when we got up, but I'm glad I did it because now they are precious memories.

Zach did great again last night with no binky. He did cry for about a minute, but I think he was saying "drink" when he was crying, but the girls interpreted it as "binky" and then mentioned it, so then he mentioned it. But after telling him that he doesn't have a binky anymore, he cried for about a minute and then he was fine. I think being in the same room as his sisters helps to comfort him and it takes his mind off what he wants.

I love it when Zach asks to sit on me. He says "Sit you". The word "with" is never used in his sentences.

Weigh In

Goal Weight: 121
Weight Last Friday: 129
Weight Today: 127.6

Friday mornings are always filled with excitement and nervousness as I get ready to step on the scale. So far it has always been a "phew" or "yay!" moment when I see how much I weigh. I was more nervous this morning because I've eaten homemade bread a few times this week and I'm not sure how many Points that is. On the Weight Watchers Flex plan you get 35 additional Points a week. I try to stick to my daily Points allowance, so then I'll have those extra Points for the foods I'm not positive what the Points values are...like the birthday cake I will enjoy tomorrow. :-)

Thursday, October 11, 2007

This is too easy

We had another successful night with no binky. :-) Zach went to bed crying, but that was because he kept getting away from me when I tried putting his pajamas on, so I just put him in his crib with only a diaper on. I was tired by then and listening to him cry took less energy than wrestling with him. I had taken the kids to Zoe's practice, but it was misting out and Zoe was the only kid to show up besides the coach and her daughter. So we were there long enough for the kids to get soaked, dirty, and grassy (the grass had just been mowed before the mist and practice). I was on my own for baths, bedtime and finishing up homework. Let's just say I wasn't the happiest Mom by the time the kids went to bed. So, I put Zach to bed, apologized to the girls for having to listen to Zach cry and told them that they could put his pajamas on if they wanted to. They did take matters into their own hands and Zoe came out a few minutes later asking for Zach's binky (Zach had stopped crying at this point). I told her that Zach no longer has a binky and her look of horror was quite amusing. I think she took the news harder than Zach did. She went back into the bedroom and she and Emily gave Zach some stuffed animals to take to bed...and I never heard from them again. Zach woke up fine this morning. Maybe he wasn't as attached to his binky as we thought he was.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

One night down

We finally bit the bullet and took Zach's binky away for good last night. We expected lots of tears, but he never asked for his binky and he didn't cry...until this morning when he woke up. He refused his chocolate milk and if we talked to him or even looked at him he would scream. Thank goodness that didn't last too long and he was back to his old self playing legos. You are getting so big, Zach!

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

On this day...

in 1969 my sister was born. Happy Birthday, Donna! I hope you're having a fun day.

in 2001 our friend was born. Happy Birthday, Jack! We're looking forward to your party on Saturday.

in 1996 Matt and I had our first date. We went to the movies to see "Emma". Matt got a box of Goobers to eat, which is the one and only time I have seen him eat that candy. We had our second date a few days later, got married 2 months and a day later, and the rest is history. Happy 1st date anniversary, Matt!

Monday, October 08, 2007

Uplifted

We had a busy, uplifting weekend. I thought all the sessions of General Conference had great talks and music. On Saturday, we fit in soccer practice for Emily and a soccer game for Zoe before conference and a birthday party next door for Hayden and Connor in between sessions. I was happy that we were able to fit everything in...do I need to hear the talks again about over scheduling??? I actually think we do okay with our scheduling. Saturdays can get busy, but the majority of nights during the week the kids and I are home. Matt thinks we are busy and I can understand that since he is the one away from home the most.

I always love hearing from our prophet, President Hinckley. I'm glad he is still active and still has his sense of humor at the age of 97! It brought tears to my eyes to see Elder Wirthlin talk. I was glad when Elder Nelson stood up beside him to support him. It took great strength from Elder Wirthlin to finish his talk. He is a great example. I really enjoy our new General Relief Society President, Sister Beck. The two talks she has given in the last few weeks have been inspirational and motivating. I look forward to reading her talks again and hearing from her in the future.

We went over to my parents' home yesterday in between sessions for a delicious ham dinner. Then we watched the final session at their house. I'm sure it made them appreciate the 3 childless sessions they watched! The kids had had enough of conference by then and they were bouncing off the walls. I caught myself envying those who could actually hear everything that was being said in a quiet environment...and I'm sure some of those people were wishing for some little ones to tend to.

My parents are on a plane to North Carolina right now to visit my sister and her family. Matt brought them to the airport this morning. We laughed that my Mom woke him up at 3:30 this morning with a phone call to tell him he didn't need to wake up as early as he planned because their flight was leaving later than planned. I was already awake at 3:30 feeding Kate, so the phone call didn't bother me. :-)

Sunday, October 07, 2007

8 Months Old

Kate is 8 months old today! She is still a mama's girl, but she is getting better at letting other people hold her...for a minute or two. She has two bottom teeth. She loves to eat anything she can pick up and feed herself, so if you have any suggestions on what to feed her that is soft and she won't choke on let me know! Right now I mostly feed her bread and Gerber Graduates puffs. She sits up by herself and she can scoot herself forward when she is on her stomach by digging her toes into the floor. I used to be able to lay down with her on my bed to get her to sleep, but now she insists on scooting herself over the edge, so now I need a new plan to get her to sleep. Kate is starting to babble "mama mama" over and over again when she is upset. She loves to stand up and she is cruising a bit...she may walk before she crawls! There are many times when I try to sit her down on the floor and she stiffens her little legs to stand up instead. She likes to walk while we hold on to her hands. She loves to pull her siblings hair and scratch our faces. She has a cute growl and squeal. She would eat a whole stack of paper each day if I let her. It's not fun to change her diaper anymore, she's too wiggly! She is sadly outgrowing the infant cuddling stage and moving toward the active baby stage.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Baa Maa

Zoe and Emily have the day off from school today so we went on an adventure to Treworgy Family Orchards with our friends Jenn & Jeremy, Andrea, and Christy and their kids..."the gang". I kept where we were going a surprise all morning. At one point Emily was convinced we were going bowling and she thought that was going to be boring. Then Emily thought she saw me getting bathing suits, so we were going swimming. On the way Zoe figured we were going to the Children's museum. It's fun to hear their guesses. They were happy when we arrived at the orchard because they have been wanting to go there to go through the corn maze, which we did. The maze looks like a sheep from the sky.

There are 5 stations to go to in the maze and we miraculously found all 5 in the right order! It was also a miracle that we left the maze with all the children we went in with! It took us an hour to complete the maze. Eleanor was hungry and tired of walking at the end and Zach was getting tired of walking, but overall they all did great.

The kids also fed the goats

Zach was nervous at first, but by the time we left he was feeding the goats all by himself.




They "rode" the tractor




We had a picnic lunch and ate yummy ice cream. It was a fun day! The weather was perfect and the kids were good. The only downer for me was when Kate knocked my camera out of my hand and now it won't take any more pictures. I hope it's fixable! This is the last picture I took...

we were getting ready to go in the maze and the kids were playing with the wagons provided by the orchard.
We definitely want to go back next year!