Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The Moments That Count

I've heard that while it's a lot of fun to do big elaborate things with your kids like Disneyland, it's the little moments they remember the most.

When I was a kid I remember having picnics on the kitchen floor for lunch. I thought that was the funnest thing ever. I don't always remember the reason why was because my mom was in the middle of a sewing project and didn't want to move it for a 10 minute lunch.

Here's a glimpse of our little moments today. Normally we go to the park after lunch. Today we took silly pictures.

I saw Gwen sitting on the sun patch in the middle of the hallway and couldn't resist grabbing the camera.
I only got the one picture of her sitting there looking so cute. She spotted the camera and headed straight for me. This was the turning point. I could have stopped at 2 cute pictures but decided to play with the camera instead.

I know this one is out of focus but how funny is Gwen? I have a whole bunch of pictures like this where she is trying to grab the camera from me.
Parker couldn't be left out. He asked for me to take pictures of him too. I love how dirty Gwen's socks are. It looks like I don't take care of my kids! They start out clean. I promise!

Gwen is always trying to stand up. She looks like she's about to plow into the fridge runner style.
Parker asked me to get pictures of him running around the circle. I love how creative Gavin and Parker are with picture ideas. They love to be photographed.

The circle is complete.
And we're right back where we started. In the sun patch in the hallway.
Lately I haven't been getting anything useful done during the day. I spend most of my time with my kids. That's not a bad thing! They're funny people.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Gwen

Lately Gwen has been doing this funny head dancing thing. She does it when I feed her in her booster seat. There doesn't always have to be music. It's like she's dancing to the music in her own head. Today she was doing it again and it was cracking me up! But I thought that if I tried to get video of it she would stop. She always stops cute stuff as soon as the camera is out. She was standing at the bricks in front of the fireplace head dancing to the music. It was so cute I grabbed the camera. Of course she stopped standing at the bricks by the time I got there with the camera! I'm not sure it's as funny on video as in real life.

The second video is a typical scene of our life. Gwen crawling and spitting up. I love the orange carrots all over her clothes and now all over the floor. When do babies stop spitting up? I think I need to call in for more Axid because she spits up more on the days I don't give it to her. (We're trying to wean her and it's not really working.)

Sunday, September 28, 2008

So I don't forget

Today in Sacrament meeting Heath noticed Gwen had a tooth. He laid her in my lap. I opened her mouth and saw not one, but two teeth! Way to go Gwen! Thank heavens I'm not nursing!!! I love that my kids never have any symptoms when they're teething. All the sudden they have teeth. Pretty easy that way.

Friday, September 26, 2008

The Almost Lost Files

Why I'm behind in my magazine reading.





Leftover Seattle stuff. The almost lost files.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

The Next Stage

We are moving into the next stage of babyhood. The high maintenance but oh so fun stage. The stage where baby is mobile, curious, and has the manual dexterity to pick up teeny tiny objects that go straight into the mouth.

Gwen almost doesn't even care if anyone is around playing with her as long as she can get down and move. She views the exersaucer as a torture device. Funny how every kid is different. Parker loved that exsersaucer from 4 - 12 months. Gwen is trying to crawl through the bottom. She knows she can get free that way. But she gets high centered and stuck. Then she whines and cries because she's frustrated and bound and determined to figure it out.

Gwen seems to be easily bored by her toys. She's been playing with them for a few months now. She wants something new and exciting to look at when she's crawling around. Like the boys did at this mobile stage, she has found the electronic equipment. Why haven't we found a way to cover that stuff up after all these years? Because there is too much of it. Too much to put up high and out of reach. (Plus, it's amazing how fast kids grow to where high up objects are totally within reach) Too much to fit into dinky little TV stands, electronic shelves, or entertainment units (ok affordable ones!). It's like the manufacturers are making these items for people the polar opposite of Heath. Who only has a DVD player with their TV?

Sorry I get sidetracked easily. I have been setting Gwen down in places I would never have thought to put a baby before. I let her crawl around the hallway downstairs. She loves it. Especially in the morning when the light from the window is on the wall or the floor. Kids love touching that. It's warm.

Today she was crawling around the livingroom. My livingroom has always been my sanctuary. My room where I go to escape it all and feel peace. I have had many spiritual moments in my livingroom. I never really meant to ban my kids from this room. But we used to live in a tri-level house and I didn't feel comfortable having my babies crawl around the hard floor in the livingroom and kitchen knowing they could easily fall down 2 different sets of stairs that I couldn't block off with a baby gate. So the living room became the room we read books in, had home teachers in (ha ha we rarely saw our home teachers!) or visiting teachers in. This house is set up so differently. I never knew what a magical baby playground my livingroom could be!

Gwen is also standing up. She's at the stage where she tries to push herself up on really unstable things. But she's managed to stand up on her own next to the bricks in front of the fireplace and in her crib. I went to get her after her nap yesterday and she was hanging over the edge looking down at the floor. Heath lowered her mattress last night! I don't know why we didn't do it sooner. With Gavin and Parker we were so by the book with everything. With Gwen I think we just assumed she would develop at the same pace as her brothers. Not the case! My mom once said that maybe she'll potty train pretty fast because they say girls train faster than boys. I told her yeah, we'll see. I'm not holding my breath!

Even though Gwen is into things now more than ever I love this stage. This is my favorite time with my babies. (I hope I don't eat my words tomorrow!) I just love watching babies this age problem solve and explore. It reminds me that the world is a really awesome place.

For my own record, Gwen is still on Axid. We're trying to wean her off of it since she is out of refills. She spits up a lot less now that she's not solely on a bottle. Of course whenever we think we're safe to have just one cute little burp cloth she proves us wrong as only a spitty baby can!

I tried to take away her morning nap because it's so short and seems to confine us to the house. I'm reinstating it tomorrow. She did fine yesterday but today she was so tired and mad at me I ended up giving in and putting her down. It was over an hour later than when I should have just given her the nap. So our routine was a little off. It worked out though because Gavin had a homework assignment he had to be in his bedroom for. So putting the little kids down later was no problem.

She is starting to show stranger anxiety. Which is kind of sad after she's been such a super flirt for so long. But she still captivates everyone who sees her. I don't know how she does it. She's just adorable and we love her.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Adventures With Beary Bear

September 24, 2008

Dear Diary,
Today I met the Westover's. I got to spend the day with Gavin. He's a really nice guy. He has a brother named Parker (3) and a sister named Gwen (7 mos).

When we got home from school Gavin and Parker played with me and showed me their room. Then Parker and Gwen took a nap. They sleep for a long time so I got to spend a long time with just Gavin. We played with Legoes. Then I watched Gavin do his homework.
He read to me. Our favorite book was Smile A Lot. We played outside and
played a board game called Wild Woods.

When Gavin's dad came home we had lasagna and salad for dinner. I thought it was yummy but Gavin didn't eat much. He wanted to play at the playground! Gavin and Parker were so excited to walk with me to the Sports Park.

We played on the swings. They pushed me.
And we went down the slides over and over.
Gavin's mom and dad took a lot of pictures!
I'm so tired now after all the fun I've had. I'm glad Gavin and Parker are done with their bath so I can sleep in Gavin's bed with him.
. . .
I had to handwrite all that in a journal. I hate my handwriting. Then Gavin was supposed to color the capital letters green and the sentence end punctuation red. My handwriting is small and messy. This is why I type all my scrapbook journaling.
It was 8:30 pm and I couldn't see myself being patient enough to wait for Gavin to decipher my chicken scratch and try to find punctuation in any form. So shh!! Don't tell! I pointed out each thing he had to color and told him what color to do it in. Then he chose a picture for the journal. He picked the picture of him holding Beary Bear while playing Wild Woods. I put it in the book while Heath got boys into bed and I wrote the caption "Gavin helped me with my turn during the game." Then I used my left hand to color the capital G and the period. Shh! It's a secret!
We saw some friends at the playground and when we told them about Beary Bear she acted like that was the most annoying assignment she had to do with her kindergartener last year. I thought it was fun. I just ran out of steam for it at the end of the day with Gwen screaming because she was tired. Now that the house is quiet again I really enjoyed the assignment. It was fun and the boys loved Beary Bear. Parker tried hogging him until I stepped in. Beary Bear was shown a good time and I think he had fun!
The best part about our trip to the park was that I found the Flip video camera!!! It was in an outside pocket in the camera bag. Heath and I were ready to give up on that thing. We figured we either left it at the stadium after the football game even though we were pretty sure we put it back in the bag. Or it was lost somewhere in Dawn's living room. But now we found it. Yay! There were some cute videos from the Children's Museum that I'm glad we found.

School Spirit

Last night we went to Red Robin for dinner. The school had sent home a flyer saying that 15% of our bill would be donated to the school if we ate at Red Robin on that date. So we went. Who are we to pass up an opportunity to let someone else do the cooking! It was a lot of fun to recognize so many families that we see every day. There were a lot of kids from kindergarten whether they were in Gavin's class or just in the morning classes. Red Robin was walking around too. The boys thought he was pretty cool. Gavin was disappointed that Red Robin didn't come to our table while we were eating. Gavin also insisted that the restaurant was Red Robin's home! He said this on the way there before he ever saw Red Robin.

I personally don't like restaurants like Red Robin, Applebee's, Chili's, etc. I know, I know. Don't send me hate mail or toilet paper my house. But I must say that of those types of restaurants, Red Robin tastes the best. I haven't hated my last two Red Robin experiences. Eating on one of the piers in Seattle was fun and last night was fun too. Good Diet Coke both times too! I love good fountain Diet Coke. I crave it sometimes but have learned that 7-11 or fast food hamburger places do not satisfy my cravings for fountain Diet Coke. So I get really excited when I have good Diet Coke from a restaurant when I wasn't expecting it.

We also have a guest tonight. His name is Beary Bear. Gavin's class take turns having Beary Bear over at their house for the night. He has to write about his experiences in a journal and go back to school the next day. I hope Beary Bear is having fun at our house!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Wisdom

At least according to me! I haven't done an I've learned post in a long time. Maybe about a year or so. I hope you get a good laugh from some of them. Life is supposed to be joyful. "Men are that they might have joy." 2 Nephi 2:25

1. I've learned that some pictures of myself aren't as bad as I think.
This picture was taken last October. Heath was playing around with his new camera. Until Gwen was born I was his favorite female subject for the camera! I like how I look so thoughtful. Fitting for this post.

2. I've learned that I look really young in this picture. This was December 2006. I had just turned 29. Maybe it's the long hair that makes me look like I'm the babysitter and not the mom. The fluffy tummy makes it obvious I'm the mom though!

3. I've learned that doing crunches on a fitness ball works your abs 50% more than regular crunches on the floor.

4. I've learned that when the fitness ball crunches start working and making a difference it can really hurt.

5. I've learned that it can feel like your muscles are being ripped apart and the pain may wake you up in the middle of the night.

6. I've learned that if you take too many days off from your fitness routine your abs don't hurt anymore but they don't look any better either!

7. I've learned that kids really can be grateful without being prompted. I organized the toys in the boys' room because I have toy OCD. Heath asked if it was that time of the week again! When Parker came up at the end of my organizing frenzy he thanked me profusely for cleaning his room! When I gave Gavin some fruit snacks for his afternoon snack he said thank you emphatically as if I never give my kids fruit snacks.

8. I've learned that I didn't need to cry about my baby growing up and being in Kindergarten.

9. I've learned that the emotional roller coaster would actually be from watching him experience life.

10. I've learned that I shouldn't have judged parents who want to step in and make their child's life better. I am now that parent.

11. I've learned it's ok to feel that way but it's not ok to take away the opportunity for a child to learn for himself. Even if we gave our kids all the answers they wouldn't listen anyway. I know because I was a teenager once with deaf ears to parental advice.

12. I've learned that it's not ok to share food. Just toys and surprises.

13. I've learned that sandals are now against the elementary school dress code. I learned it the hard way. When I was a kid we weren't allowed to wear shorts to elementary school unless it was field day at the end of the year. I don't remember it being against the rules to wear open toed shoes. I think the first time I heard that rule was when I got my first job at MacFrugal's.

14. I've learned that when it comes to fashion, kids think haute couture is food smeared in their hair, eyebrows, ears, and from fingertips to elbows.

15. I've learned that even though sunshine contains some chemical that keeps people feeling happy, there can be too much of a good thing. Rain for only 2 months out of the year is not enough for me. I could use a good rainstorm right now.

16. I've learned that laughter is the best medicine.

17. I've learned that kids are smarter than we think.

18. I've learned that if a baby is still crying after you have done everything in the world to stop it, 99.9% of the time they are still crying because even they don't know what they want.

19. I've learned that for right now I can "lock" Gwen in the space the sectional couch makes by putting her exersaucer in front of the opening.

20. From experience with 2 other babies I've learned that the exersaucer won't be a road block for long.

21. I've learned that setting the timer for homework is actually a good idea. Thanks Kody's mom for the idea!

22. I've learned that the proverbial saying is true that you can catch more flies with honey than vinegar.

23. I've learned that I don't always remember the honey/vinegar thing but I'm getting better.

24. I've learned that I need to find a real doctor like Dr. Gavin. He can fix anything! Cure for autoimmune disorders anyone? How about a cure for the social problems that plague the world?

25. I've learned that no matter how early I wake up and no matter how busy I am, I still have trouble falling asleep and staying asleep.

26. I've learned that Gwen has one specific purple shirt that makes people question her gender. I have not learned why.

27. I've learned that kids can't keep secrets.

28. I've learned that I spend a lot of time writing about my family's life. I hope I never regret how I've chosen to spend my time.

29. I've learned that neglecting spirituality affects every part of life.

30. I've learned that praying doesn't always solve problems but it does make them easier to handle.

31. I've learned that it is necessary to tell a child not to throw their wet underwear in the garbage.

32. I've learned that a house needs to be clean enough to be healthy and dirty enough to be happy.

33. I've learned that Phyllis Diller was right when she said that cleaning your house while you have small children is like shoveling while it's still snowing.

34. I've learned to be ok with an imperfectly clean house because some days it's not worth the fight.

35. I've learned that a lot of women say their husband is perfect, but my husband actually is . . . perfect for me.

36. I've learned that we all fall victim to completely missing the point of a story because we got caught up in the details.

37. I've learned that true friends are those who always make you feel special.

38. I've learned that it's annoying when people solicit gifts (wedding reception, etc) and don't say thank you. I don't even need the formality of a card. Just an acknowledgment that I gave something.

39. I've also learned that I'm too nice to not give gifts to people who don't say thank you!

40. I've learned that comfort food is still tempting but it usually doesn't even bring me joy while I'm eating it.

41. I've learned that sleeping in till 7 am on a weekend is a luxury.

42. I've learned that people who say you should never use TV or movies as a babysitter has never raised kids! I used to be one of those people until I had my own kids.

43. I've learned that people who claim that cable TV is evil and they don't pay for it because they don't watch TV, really watch more TV than they let on.

44. I've learned that seeing the world through a child's eyes can be very enlightening.

45. I've learned that I should wonder more.

46. I've learned that a fire extinguisher really can explode in a fire and put it out at the same time. (Mythbusters last night)

47. I've learned that it's hard to come up with so many nuggets of wisdom and end on an even number. As soon as I do I think of another thing I've learned. That said, I'm just going to end now without making it to 50!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Having a Ball

Miss Gwen is 7 months old today. We are enjoying every day with her. She is such a sweetie. It's amazing to think that 7 months ago today she was born. A year ago we didn't know she was a girl. Our lives changed forever the day we found out a baby girl would join our family.


She is such a little flirt. She loves smiling at people and they all melt. I used to think it was a girl vs. boy thing, meaning people like looking at baby girls more than baby boys, but I think Dawn had it right when she said that people love seeing a baby smile. Gwen will play games with people by cocking her head to one side. If the person copies her, she's won!

I've said it before that Gavin and Parker are so in love with Gwen. They love playing with her and giving her toys. Ok, they love piling toys in her lap thinking that if one toy is good a lot must be better. They also love thinking they know why she's crying. "Gwen needs a bottle." "Gwen says no, Mommy." "Gwen is hurt. I need to give her a kiss." The kissing thing is funny and annoying all at the same time. They don't really even kiss her. They put their face on hers for several seconds until I remind them to give her short kisses and then back away.

Gwen loves her brothers. She lights up when they are around. She watches them run and jump and play and I can see in her eyes she wants to be a part of the action. In fact, she is starting to stand up now. I believe she's motivated by her brothers to do whatever they can do. Gavin started rolling with a purpose one night when Daphne and Calvin were over. He wanted to be with them so badly he started rolling. Gwen loves to crawl to her brothers' toys.

This picture is proof to me that every once in a while my kids can look like me. Or at least members of my family. This looks like a Tyson face when he was little.
Gwen took her time actually crawling anywhere. Now she crawls all over the place. It's a challenge to keep her safe while allowing her to explore her world. For now we put a baby gate in her doorway and she's content to play in her room. Heath pulled out the ball popper the other day. Parker was so excited he insisted on being in Gwen's room with her. That ball popper has been a great toy for our babies. We got it for Gavin on his first birthday. The video of him and Calvin playing with it is priceless. Obviously Parker loves it too.

This is my favorite look. This is what Gwen looks like when a smile isn't enough to show how happy and excited she is. She waves her arms and makes cute baby sounds. She will do this when we put her in her booster seat at the table. She knows what happens in there. Food. She does this when she sees we've made a bottle for her. She does this when she sees the camera or people she loves like Dad, Mom, Gavin, and Parker. She didn't quite do this when she heard Grandma on the phone last night. I think Gwen couldn't figure out how she was hearing Grandma but not seeing her. But she knew it was Grandma.

When I found out I was having a girl I just knew that she would balance us out somehow. That the boys needed a sister. And she needed them. How blessed is Gwen to have two older brothers! I think everyone needs an older brother and Gwen has two.

Yep, Gwen continues to grow and learn and we keep loving her more and more every day. For all my friends expecting babies, enjoy every moment because you won't believe how fast time flies after your baby is born. It gets faster with each baby too. Some moments feel like they will never end but then the next thing you know you're looking back at the last 7 months with your baby realizing time flies while you're having fun and you're having a ball!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

I am a child of God

Right now Heath is at a meeting. My boys have finally gotten dressed and are surprisingly no longer fighting. Gwen is screaming her eyes out because she is tired and needs a nap. Late church is hard on her. (She doesn't like to fall asleep in someone's arms.) It's easier on us to get 5 people ready by 1:00 pm instead of 9:30 am but it is really rough on the kids to go so late. I cleaned my house so well it sparkled for a baby shower for a friend on Thursday night. I have kept it clean all weekend. Right now you wouldn't believe I did anything to clean my house! I am taking a free moment to unwind as I blog.

This morning I had this conversation with Gavin.
Gavin: What do you do in your house when you are hungry?
Me: I eat when I'm hungry. What do you do?
Gavin: When my boys are hungry they say, "Food, food, food!" and I say, "I'm making you food!"

Gavin is completely obsessed with growing up. He doesn't want to be an older child or a teenager. No, he wants to skip all that and be a man. I guess he wants to be a father with boys to tell in exasperation that he is cooking for them. He wants to be Heath! He is also obsessed with Gwen growing up. He wants her to "be a talking girl." Then in the next breath he's asking if she will have babies in her tummy when she's a mother. Forget about walking or being old enough to play with Gavin. No, he expects her to go from talking to being a mother. He talks about this stuff all the time. It's interesting. I like to believe Heath and I are doing a good job as parents for Gavin to want to be a dad and Gwen to be a mom.

Last night I watched Gattaca with Heath. I love that movie. These are my favorite lines.
Ethan Hawke: My name is Vincent Anton Freeman and I'm an In-Valid, a faith birth, a degene-erate or whatever you want to call it.
Uma Thurman: You're a God child?

Anton (the brother): You've committed fraud. You're in a lot of trouble Vincent. I can get you out of here.
Ethan Hawke: Do you have any idea what it took to get in here!

I just love that movie and the theme that you can do a lot of things. You can "have discrimination down to a science" but you can never tamper with the human spirit. People's spirits are always stronger than any opposition.

I also love how Uma Thurman sounds when she asks, "You're a God child?" In the movie being anything but genetically programmed and chosen is the worst fate ever. But she says it as if being a God child is miraculous. Which it is. I don't think we realize how special we are that we are children of God. It's easy to forget the power each of us has to make a difference. It's easy to forget that with God all things are possible. Being a God child is miraculous. If in the future we really can genetically order our children in a petri dish before they're born, those children will be just as special but I think we forget some of the amazing miracles in our everyday lives. Like children being born at all.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

It's a Conspiracy!

Gavin is on the staggered schedule at school which means he goes to school from 9:35 to 1:35 and eats lunch at school. Today when I picked him up from school his teacher told all the parents that some of the students are getting school lunch when they were not supposed to. This is a true story. She said that the kids were eating their lunch for snack so they wouldn't have a lunch later and could get a school lunch. Or they would just lie and say they didn't have a lunch from home. I didn't know 5 year olds could be so clever! That really cracked me up.

Yesterday I had given Gavin's teacher a note about a few things. The first point I made was about lunch. On Monday I paid for Gavin to have school lunch until the end of the month. The way it works is the kids give their student number and the lunch is paid for out of their account. You can pay daily or for as many days, weeks, whatever you want. Gavin memorized his student number over the weekend in preparation to get school lunch. When I asked him about giving his number he made it sound like he didn't do that but he got a lunch anyway. Then he'd say something about not having any lunch in his lunch bag.

On Monday I sent his snack in a baggie marked snack. He was so mad that I didn't put it in his lunch bag like I did before he started on the staggered schedule. So Tuesday I sent his snack in his lunch bag and marked it snack on masking tape. That was the day he told me there was no lunch in his bag. I tried to tell him again that I had paid for him to eat school lunch. I was so confused! So I wrote his teacher a note explaining that I was afraid he was getting lunch as a freebie because he had some sob story about no lunch from home. I told her I had paid for him to eat and hoped they were taking the money out of his account. It makes me wonder if my note had anything to do with the discovery of the Kindergarten Lunch Conspiracy. I don't know.

Speaking of eating. Gwen has an interesting way of eating. I will put a bite in her mouth and she immediately puts her fingers in her mouth. I was annoyed at first. But I think we've worked it out. She sucks for a minute then takes her fingers out. I put another bite in and her fingers go back in. I don't have to clean up her face as much. She tamps the food in pretty good and not much really comes back out. She's such a funny girl. She also yells randomly. Sometimes it's for attention. She feels like we have forgotten her or something. Sometimes I think she does it because her brothers are so noisy and yell randomly. She's so funny!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

5 is a magic number

I have been tagged.

10 Years Ago I . . .
1. Was at Southern Utah University
2. Was a telemarker at Matrixx Marketing. The name later changed to Convergys Corporation.
3. Had met one of the funniest people I know. I miss Ember H.
4. Was a Stake Missionary. A few years later I was called to that position again even though it was supposed to be a one time calling!
5. Ended a friendship because I had to. Now that my life is going the way it's supposed to, I wish I could run into that person to apologize for the pain I caused. (I still don't regret ending the friendship though and I hope that person is happy.)

5 of my favorite jobs I have had
1. Working in the softlines department of Mac Frugal's (Now Big Lots)
2. Telemarketing. I really hated my actual job. But I met some really fun people that helped pass the time.
3. Student teaching for Mrs. Evans' class.
4. Teaching at Bacchus Elementary and South Kearns Elementary
5. Being a wife and mother (no dress code!)

5 places I have lived . . .
1. Magna, Utah
2. West Valley City, Utah
3. Cedar City, Utah
4. Kearns, Utah
5. West Jordan, Utah

5 snacks I enjoy . . .
1. Chips especially Fritos and Cheetos
2. Candy like Skittles, Starburst, Airheads, or anything sour
3. Snickers (but I'm disappointed lately because there are a lot less peanuts so it just isn't the same)
4. Diet Coke
5. Slurpees (I always want one when we're watching a BYU football game at home or when we're watching October General Conference)

5 things I would do if I were a millionaire . . .
1. Buy a house (renting isn't for everyone!)
2. Buy Heath a Lotus Elise for date night
3. Travel
4. Build a home office in a separate building from our house so Heath can always work from home!
5. Oh yeah, and do responsible things like pay off debt, invest for the future (retirement, college, missions, Gwen's wedding, etc.)

5 things on today's "To-do list" . . .
1. laundry
2. clean my bathroom
3. finish baby gifts
4. play with kids
5. set up an eye appointment

5 favorite Holidays . . .
1. Christmas
2. birthdays
3. I
4. hate all other
5. holidays

5 favorite movies of all time . . .
1. Gattaca
2. Moulin Rouge
3. The Italian Job
4. Remember the Titans
5. Keeping the Faith, How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days, Just Like Heaven, The Devil Wears Prada, Fools Rush In, You've Got Mail, and a bunch of other chick flicks

5 favorite TV shows . . .
1. Burn Notice
2. Psych
3. In Plain Sight
4. What Not to Wear
5. Contests on Food Network like the cake decorating contests

5 favorite vacations . . .
1. Seattle
2. our honeymoon in Victoria, BC
3. Lake Mead
4. San Diego
5. the dream of a Carribbean cruise

I tag Lori, Becca, Heidi, Janelle, and Shani.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Resume

Gavin's class is reading "Brown Bear, Brown Bear" and making their own version of the story. Last week and this week they have been discussing one color a day. They are encouraged to wear clothing that is the color of the day and also bring an item to put on the bulletin board. Today was brown. Gavin doesn't really have brown clothes. His BYU shirt Grandma made has brown in it. He also wore dark khaki shorts.

This morning I ironed his shirt. I think the last time I ironed a shirt was at least 2 years ago, maybe more. The shirt wasn't really wrinkly but it looked sloppy because a few places were curling weird. So I ironed it. The boys were interested in what I was doing for about 30 seconds. I felt better knowing that Gavin looked nice in his neatly pressed shirt. Plus, I seem to deserve the title of Professional Homemaking Queen a little more now that I've done something so domestic and low tech.

I love the Friends episode where Joey says he would love it if one of the skills on his resume were actually true. I don't have a resume nor do I have a list of skills I claim to know how to do. But on my blogger profile I listed Professional Homemaking Queen as my occupation. (Robert Fulghum was my inspiration for the title.) I guess that could imply that I do things I don't necessarily do on a regular basis. Oh well. Today I actually ironed a very small shirt because I left it in the dryer too long after washing it. Yay me!

Monday, September 15, 2008

No need

to send Parker to kindergarten. Gavin is teaching him how to read! Heath said over the weekend that Parker was very interested in reading and wouldn't be surprised if he learns right along with Gavin. Now Gavin is reading his books to Parker. Parker asks, "What does that word say?" Gavin then tells him.

Gavin already taught Parker how to go standing up. My bathrooms are clean as of this moment but with two little boys using them my bathrooms will never be the same again!!!! Lately I have been going back and forth with how I feel about Gavin and Parker being so close. They are each other's world. It doesn't sound like a bad thing but Gavin needs to make new friends. He probably has friends at school but all he tells me is he doesn't know anybody's name.

We're looking into something extra for Gavin. I would love to get him into a cooking class if there is one available for someone his age. I think it would give him the confidence boost he needs. He loves to pretend to cook. He gets excited when we have the food network on. So a cooking class would be fun because he's so interested in cooking and maybe it would be "his special thing" to enjoy.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Solid Girl

Gwen started eating solid food on Thursday. She could have started before our trip but it seemed like an extra hassle we didn't want to deal with so we waited. She was so excited. We have pictures and video of the boys eating for the first time too. It's a fun milestone. But Gwen was really entertaining. She was older than the boys were their first time so she was more excited and less messy. Looking at some of the pictures you may not believe the less messy part. But she did swallow a lot better than her brothers did that first time.

Our kitchen is a decent sized kitchen. It's the biggest one we have ever had. But despite it's size their isn't a lot of room for people to eat. We have a small breakfast nook and there is no room for our large high chair. We thought we would buy some plastic to put under our dining room table to protect the carpet. (good luck right!) But then I remembered our booster chair has a detachable tray. So Gwen sits in the booster chair with everyone else at the table and she couldn't be happier about it.

Enjoy the pictures and video.





I love how you can hear Gavin telling Parker that Gwen is "eating food." Gavin and Parker love Gwen so much. They can't wait for her to grow up and play with them.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Children's Museum Pictures

Gavin and Parker loved this big rig truck so much they almost wouldn't leave to check out the rest of the stuff. Gavin thought everything in the truck was pretend! He couldn't understand that it was all real. I told them my Grandpa used to be a truck driver. Grandpa would be so proud to see his great grandkids playing in a truck.

Gavin was the first one to sit in the driver's seat. Parker sat in the passenger seat and said, "Gavin is Daddy and I'm Mommy." I thought that was cute and I was glad that he didn't sit in the back and say that!

Doesn't this picture just scream I am 5 years old and having the time of my life!

I think these turtles were my favorite part. There was a boy and a girl and we learned that they fight like brother and sister. The caretakers lowered the water level because they would fight over a rock. With the water lowered they could both fit on the rock easier. But the girl would still push the boy off. They just like to fight. We got to see them eat. It was fun to see how they problem solved to get around the branch in the tank to get to the food. Or how they would spot a piece of food and swim past other pieces to get the one piece they wanted most! Heath said he could be convinced to have a turtle as a pet. I still say nothing live. We have 3 kids, that's enough! My brother and his wife have a pet turtle named Wax. He was their first child!
Gwen had so much fun splashing in the water. Heath kept reliving his childhood by building dams. Gwen and Parker loved watching Dad.
Gavin and Dad squirting water to make things on the wall move. That was pretty interesting. We also got some video on our Flip video camera. I can't find it. I hope I find it soon!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Seattle Aquarium

We did see the big troll first. Isn't that cool? That's a real Volkswagon Beetle. I love weird art. I also love fantasy characters like trolls. In fact, I used to collect troll dolls. Ok, who didn't in the late 80's and early 90's? If anyone ever wondered why my nurseries were decorated with wizards and dragons for the boys and fairies for Gwen, it's because I love fantasy.
Gavin is such a cute and funny kid. He is always coming up with some pose or some setting for a picture. He requested that Dad take his picture on this rock with the information about the troll.
This is a huge octopus. It was fascinating. Can you see his eye? His eyes are what really amazed me. They look like human eyes. That was the most interesting live creature I have ever seen. He was so peaceful too.
I think this is a great picture. I think it's a giant clam. Now I don't remember. Awesome picture though.
Not really asleep. I thought for sure Gwen would eat and fall asleep since we went during her naptime. No, she had a blast looking at everything and charming perfect strangers with her smile.

It's a bird, it's a plane, it's . . .

a whole bunch of fish in the ceiling! An interesting view of the salmon ladder. Who needs the Ballard Locks and Crittendon Fish Ladder now? I think I've only been to the Ballard Locks once when there were any fish to look at in the fish ladder. This was much more exciting.
I'm a mom so I can brag all I want about how cute I think my kids are. I love this picture of Parker.
There was a puddle on the floor from the waterfall. Parker had kid puddle radar and soon both boys were splashing in it. It wasn't a big puddle. Enough to make a footprint kind of thing.
Heath was playing with the camera trying to see different ways to capture the rushing water. I just love waterfalls. This is my favorite picture he took of this waterfall. I had a picture of a waterfall from Red Cliffs in Southern Utah. But when I took the picture there wasn't much water falling. I took the picture in the fall and not the spring. Anyway, I had a caption underneath that said, "Some people drink deeply from the fountain of knowledge while others only gargle." I thought it was funny.

Our Friends

I love that Parker calls his cousins his friends. So cute.
These are pictures from the park after we had a friend do family portraits at the same park. I was impressed with how well those portraits turned out. Six kids, six adults and everyone looked good. Impressive.
Gavin loved to sit on top of this train. I don't know what he imagined his role was because as soon as any kid got inside (whether he knew the kid or not) he would say they were ready to go and ask the kid where he/she/it was taking them!

Parker behind the wheel. They must be ready to go. I can't remember where Parker said they were going. It was somewhere fun like the zoo.
Grandma and Grandpa "soaked" up as much Gwen as they could while we were there. And Gwen spit up constantly. This picture is pre Grandma hosing. I love the look on Grandpa's face in this picture. He loves his grandkids so much. It's so fun to watch him.
This is a fun picture. I like the lighting. Back to front: Garrett, Breena, Gavin, Melina.
Breena is so photogenic. She's only 9 months older than Parker. They act a lot alike.
Miss Gwen loves to swing. She kicks her little legs in excitement and is all smiles. She was all smiles for anyone and everyone the whole trip. Our little social butterfly. Where did she get that from?