Friday, August 28, 2009

Finders Keepers

Earlier in the week, I threw away the 'princess stamp' that met Mike's underwear somewhere during the spin cycle. Why not my underwear I wonder, but no, had to be his!?

(Laundry Disclaimer: Underwear in our house get washed alone, but somehow Ellie's white shorts accidentally got put in the batch too. Thus pink splotches . . .)

The next day, I removed the debit card from the dryer. It got me thinking, what really goes in the washing machine and dryer?


I love laundry.
I love the sorting.
I love the switching.
I love the folding.
I don't really like the putting away.

I do not like and I DO NOT check pockets.

So, if you don't want your temple recommend, or your toys, or your $20 bill birthday money, or your pocket-knife, or your receipts, or some important phone number washed, THEN REMOVE THEM FROM YOUR POCKETS.

Note to Cabelas-I am very impressed with your pocketknife/flashlight combo. It can be washed numerous times and still work. Just a thought, maybe I could earn some extra spending money and advertise for you?

Note to Husband-How in the world are you ever supposed to spontaneously show up with flowers or chocolate for the Dear Wife, when your only access to any money is the debit card that has been sitting in my "finders keepers basket" for almost a week?

Does everyone else check pockets or am I just lazy?

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Our Piano Man


The lower G on our piano no longer sticks. And overall, it just sounds better.

Perhaps it has something to do with these things Mike (finally) pulled out of our piano on Saturday afternoon!



The piano got put back together again very nicely.

The children were sternly instructed that only piano books go on the piano.

And Mike was rewarded very well for the good work.

The sound of music rings more clearly in our home once again.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Another Year

The mother who didn't go to bed one single night in high school or college without first laying out her clothes has somehow passed on that genetic trait/mutation to her children.

Though, this has happened before on several occasions, last night, with the underwear, socks and backpacks completing each outfit, it really made me smile.

These pictures are almost as cute,
As these traditional "valve box" pictures,
Ellie-Kindergarten, Megan-5th Grade, Luke-2nd Grade


No one said they were nervous last night, except Mom.
No one cried at the bus stop this morning, except Mom.
No one cried at the school today, except Mom.

I'd blame the nerves and tears on being the PTA President this year,
but honestly, I've cried every year...

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Happy Birthday BFF!

(March 1993, after "walking" to Mexico in dresses)

Who would have ever thought that 19 years after my junior year in high school math, that the girl who used to apply lip gloss while looking into her 'Guess' watch (that happened to double as a mirror), would become and still be my best friend!!??!

We were best friends during high school, best friends during college at the University of Utah, (even during her brief stint at Iowa State, oops, I mean Weber State), best friends as newly weds, and still best friends as moms.

I could go on for hours listing some of the highlights of our friendship over the years. Some happy, some sad, and some in-between. And though, most reading this will not get any of these. Melanie will-and as it is her birthday, it is she that I will make smile (and probably laugh!)

49 cent special at Taco Bell
Firefighters
Spanish Bread
Bert
Tyler & the Chicken Pox
Grapes with bumps
Total Eclipse of the Heart
One of us moving to Texas (can't remember which one?) and thus having our photo taken at Olan Mills. (I searched HIGH AND LOW for that photo!!!)
Singing Consider the Lilies in Sacrament Meeting
Our cookie list
'Borrowing' bagels
Temple hair

There are other things I could mention, but I'm not sure the statute of limitations on some things, and therefore I will keep quiet . . .

I would like to say that we have grown out of being 'Mel and Tiff', but one my kids walked into the computer room a couple of months ago and saw us laughing our heads off while 'chi-ing' our hair in front of a You-Tube video, I know we will always have the ability to be 'Mel and Tiff.' But for the most part now, we have to be responsible grown-ups! I was never blessed with a sister, Melanie is the closest thing I've got!

(Pathetic this is the most recent photo of us together and it was taken in January 2005!!)

HAPPY 35TH BIRTHDAY
MELANIE MEG!!!!!!
(Meet me at ZCMI)

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Who?

Who makes sure everyone wears their swimsuits for an outing to the canyon?
Who takes a picnic to the canyon, but then sit separately to eat it?
Who is not interested in playing in 50' temperature water, and instead finds entertainment in self-portraits?
Who thinks they have to work while playing, and has kids moving rocks to make the waterfall higher?
Who sets up the dinner station in the middle of the canyon creek and precariously sets up a chair for the mother and baby?
Who enthusiastically encourages the kids to want to sit in a "hot tub?"Who uses a Tupperware container to fish...
And actually catches a fish (tiny one by his thumb)?


WE DO and WE LOVED EVERY SECOND OF IT!!!
Farmington Canyon

Friday, August 21, 2009

A Few Loves


I love that Drew's face lights up when he sees me.

I love Joshua's put together sentences that require so much effort to say; "Ellie. won't. get. me. an. otter. pop."

I love that Ellie's response when asked, "Why did you cut part of your hair?" was, "Luke did it." (Luke wasn't home.)

I love Luke's exactness and quickness to clean up and organize a room.

I love Megan's creativity. Her closet door is covered entirely with co-ordinating scrapbook papers and looks very nice.

I love that last night I walked into the kitchen and there on the counter was a love-letter from Mike.

. . . . . .

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Few Facts About Joshua

I taught Joshua to say his name early this summer. I was so proud of myself that when I asked, "What's your name?" He would reply with his version of Joshua.

Only problem is. His version has stuck and has become his nickname.

We say it more than we say Joshua. We are so used to it, that we don't think anything of it, until we say it in public and people look at us strange when we call him by a girl name.

"Sasha"


"I fissing. It biting. Time go home now."


Current things to remember about Joshua:

Most frequent request: "Want holds"
2nd most frequent request: "Want chocolate milk"
3rd most frequent request: "Want more Otter Pop"

Most frequent sound: whining
2nd most frequent sound: giggling
3rd most frequent sound: "Dewie wake"

Most frequently found: In Luke's shadow
2nd place most frequently found: In Drew's face
3rd place most frequently found: Whining at mom

Everytime we see the temple the dialogue goes like this:
Joshua: "I see temple. Go there someday?"
Mom: "Yes Joshua, to...?"
Joshua: "Feel holy spirit and OBEY"


Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Dewie


'Dewie' as Joshua has so affectionately named Drew, is seldom the center of camera attention. I am ashamed to even admit how few photos have been taken of him.

Drew is a good, mellow little boy, I guess you have to be when you are the fifth child.
We love his smiles, we love his giggles, we love his excitement to see one of us.
We loooovvvveeee Baby Dew.

Drew is my only child that I think looks like somebody specific. I think he looks so much like Mike's baby photos.

(I know this is a poor quality photo. I took a picture off of the TV, from our wedding video. I can't find the original photo. In fact, as I was taking this photo, Joshua said, "Dewie on TV!")

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Summer Synopsis: Megan & Luke

School starts in less than a week. I can HONESTLY say that during the 10+ weeks of summer, I have never heard the words "I'm bored" from my children.

(Besides the fact that "I'm bored" is a phrase that receives punishment or chores at our house,) I think it is because my kids take after their father. Their attitude:

"There is ALWAYS something to do."

We don't own a single video game system, we have no cable/dish network, and we have never purchased a DVD for our children. Our TV has probably been on less than 5 hours the whole summer. With a new baby and a toddler, we don't do a lot of field trips. With a seasonal job, we don't do a lot of summer vacations either. Surprisingly, we get negative comments from a lot of people for these things.

Though I may be biased, I have yet to meet any other children with quite as much personality, creativity and uniqueness as my own.

Megan's summer has been filled with cooking (thus Monday's bake sale). Last week we ate homemade chicken enchiladas courtesy of Megan. (YUM!) This summer, Megan has helped sew herself a dress, almost learned the original version of 'Memory' on the piano, and has had 4-5 babysitting jobs (not counting her own siblings!). She carefully planned out and hosted a late night with 5 giggly girls, complete with crafts, games and food. If Megan isn't playing with a friend, the sounds of the piano are always filling our house.
We love Megan. She is responsible, she is kind, she is polite. We know wherever she goes, she will behave well.
Megan. Really, is there a better first-born child than Megan?
Luke lives outside, he is usually dressed and out the door by 8:30am, he eats lunch outside, we usually eat dinner outside, and so grudgingly, by 9pm he is dragged inside the house.
Yesterday, was a typical example of how Luke has spent his summer. He called Daddy at work to ask if he could build "a wall." Next thing I know, he has this little wall/desk/hiding spot/cave/whatever else a 71/2 year old boys calls things.
Yesterday afternoon, no neighbor kids were around. It was quiet in our neck of the woods. I went outside to check on Luke and there he sat, with his notebook open, drawing on his wall-turned-desk. He even invited me to peek inside. All the supplies he may need ready at his disposal:
(We won't even mention the 'clothes line' he hung in the yard to hang his coyote skin, racoon hat, etc. from.)

We love Luke. He is active, he is loud, he is excited. He has an enthusiasm for life that even surpasses his dads.

And that is pretty hard to beat.


Tomorrow: Drew...

Monday, August 17, 2009

'Poor' Megan

Note to Megan: If your father has a college degree in ECONOMICS, don't tell him you are going to do a bake sale to earn money.


After Megan's long, busy day of baking, packaging and delivering, she was anxious to count her money. Mike however, had other plans. First, Megan got a 45 minute lesson in running a business.

(Though Megan wasn't really interested), she learned about income and expenses. Mike made a big long list of all the overhead expenses; electricity, oven, mixer, spatulas, etc. and then the direct expenses; butter, salt, sugar, flour, etc.


Megan sat patiently in her seat as the list kept getting longer. Her quiet glances at me said, "Are you on my side or his?" Her only out loud question was finally, "Are you going to charge me for all of that?"

Megan and I both waited with bated breath. Is he?

No-he was simply teaching her a lesson.
(She was charged only for the four ingredients we had to specifically go to the store and buy.)

Even after savings and tithing, her income wasn't too shabby. When questioned whether she'd do it again:

"I don't know."

Not sure if her uncertainty to repeat the bake sale is because of the economics lesson or all the clean-up Mom made her do!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

What a weekend!

The Good, The Bad and The So-So...

Davis County Fair
Megan's Dancing
Megan did an excellent job
It was 50 degrees on August 15th!
Had to find a hand-me-down box to get some "winter clothes" for Drew to wear.

Fair Activities
Kid's loved the pony rides. Luke LOVED riding the "kinkanikan" bull.
Mom's camera battery and video camera batteries both died!
The children held scorpians, legless lizards and touched snakes!
Dad's Journey to the Fair
Work meeting got over at a reasonable time to be able to meet us at the fair.
Was driving home in his big, tough work truck.
Got rear-ended on I-15
UHP officer radio's in that a man in his late 20's was rear-ended.
Really though, what is a little whip-lash when you've already got a broken back?!?

Rodeo
We LOVED everything about it.
Drew cried at every loud noise
Was a very late night.
Ride Home From Church
At one point there was no fighting in the car.
Suburban completely dies.
The Ox was in the Mire.

Birthday Celebrations at Mimi's House
Lots of good food and good company.
Left the three older kids to come home later with Nana and Grandpa and had a couple of hours of no fighting at our house!!
Had to leave early so we could fix the only car we own that fits our whole family!
Entertained Drew & Joshua while Daddy (and kind neighbor) fixed the car.

Suburban alternator (which was still under warranty) was replaced and fixed by 8:30pm Sunday night.
What a weekend!






Saturday, August 15, 2009

The Sowby Gene

Of our five children (although in all fairness, Drew is still undetermined), Ellie got that horrible, Sowby gene that causes EXTREME STUBBORNESS. She has her father to thank for it, and I have her father to blame for it. (There's no telling where he got it.)



Aside from her stubborness, and temper tantrums that make her voice hoarse, (this is no exaggeration, two nights ago, we could barely understand her during her prayer and last night she went to bed with a "ruined voice" too), Ellie is a joy to have around.



We love Ellie. We love that she is giggly, imaginative and loving.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Where Are We Going?

We loaded the children in the car Sunday evening, and took a spur of the moment field trip to the International Peace Gardens.
They weren't anything spectacular.
We should have invited my dad to come with us.
He has a concealed weapon permit.
We were glad when we returned to Utah.
I mean home.
That's all I'm going to say about that.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

It is MY camera!

I'll make the story short.

#1. Mike volunteers to go to Moon Lake in the High Uintahs to pick up young men and leaders from a 50 mile hike.

#2. Mike takes the opportunity to take Luke and Joshua and go early and FISH.

#3. I gladly volunteer the camera; the scenery and setting of my boys fishing will make for some spectacular photos.

#4. I don't have my camera with me to take a picture of my BFF riding along the trail by my house in a triathalon. Instead, I just proudly wave and cheer her on.

#5. I don't have my camera with me to take a picture of my girls getting their hair cut for the first time at a "hair cutting place."

#6. 'Oh well,' I think during my missed opportunities; the scenery and setting of my boys fishing will make for some spectacular photos.

#7. I was kindly serving a friend at her daughter's reception with Megan and was not home when they returned from their trip to Moon Lake.

#8. As I get out of the car when I return home, I see Luke pedaling his little legs as fast as they will go to get across the cul-de-sac at record speed. As he approaches me I say in a horrified voice, "What in the h*!@ are you wearing on your head?"

#9. Mike and Luke excitedly ask me to view the photos on the camera. I gladly take the opportunity. Afterall, the scenery and setting of my boys fishing will make for some spectacular photos.

#10. There are 4 photos on the camera.

#11. I gasp in horror as I am viewing 2 photos of my son cutting the tail from a dead fox on the side of the road in the High Uintahs. (After the suggestion from a man I (used to) think highly of in our ward!)
(Photo has been cropped to be less offensive to potential viewers!)

#12. After returning home, Mike and Luke visit our neighbor, Dave to remove the bone from the fox tail and check for disease.

#13. After our neighbor gave the tail the all-clear and explained to Mike and Luke how to "cure" it for a few days, the neighbor decides to give Luke this Coyote fur? head-dress? skin? thing? he just happened to have?! The coyote fur? head-dress? skin? thing? made-up the other 2 photos on the camera.
#14 This is what I get for passing up photo opportunities of my BFF in her first triathalon and my daughters getting their first haircuts at a salon. And, I didn't see a SINGLE spectacular photo of the scenery and setting of my boys fishing.

My husband is grounded from church duties for a while!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Permission. Not Granted

Megan has been planning a "Late Night" with several of her girlfriends before school starts. She has carefully been planning the day and time, the girls to invite and the activities to do. I the mother, have approved each step along the way.

Saturday afternoon, Mike and I left Megan and Ellie home while we ran an errand...

Saturday evening Mike and I were both very tired. We had been up until 1am the previous night, yet got Luke out the door at 5:55am. Mike had just been diagnosed with Strep throat. You get the picture. It was a lazy Saturday evening and we were anxious to get the little ones in bed by 8pm...

While laying on the couch, I heard a knock at the door. I was greeted by my next-door neighbor who was asking if the 'Late Night' for Kinzie and Ellie was still happening at 8 o'clock.
"What?" I exclaimed.
"Mike has strep throat, our kids our going to bed soon... In fact, Ellie is getting her pajamas on as we speak." I confusingly explained.

Eric, with a smirk on his face, proceeded to tell me that Kinzie had received a homemade invitation from Ellie. Kindly, Eric invited Ellie to come over to their house instead and watch part of a movie with Kinzie for a while. Great, fine by me. I'll postpone bedtime just a bit so that Kinzie is not disappointed.

I'm not quite sure how the rest of the evenings events followed. I was too dazed, too confused, too embarassed of my parenting skills (or lack of...)

I do remember as I turned into our cul-de-sac at 8:04pm from picking up take-out curry for Mike and me, I see a neighbor leaving my driveway. She has a daughter, that Ellie is friends with...

As I saw her, and stopped my car to talk to her. My worst suspicions began to come true.
My neighbor's first comment was along the lines of, "I was going to call you, because the invitation didn't look quite as perfect as the ones you usually make."

Her daughter had received a homemade invitation made by Ellie. I obviously didn't see the invitation, but it read something like,
'SeeSee' Late Night 800 Ellie.
Ellie spelled her friend's name Cecy, by herself. When questioned she told me, "I know how to spell see, Mom so I wrote S-E-E-S-E-E." Ellie was smart enough to copy Megan's invitation to get the spelling of "Late Night." And I guess 800 sounded good to Ellie.

Megan's 'punishment' for not watching Ellie closely while babysitting her? Entertaining 3 little girls for 40 minutes for a 'Late Night."

My punishment for not paying attention to where Ellie went on her 'little walk' with Kinzie's big sister and cousin? Nobody in bed before 9:45pm!!!

At least Ellie didn't pick 1100.

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