Monday, December 22, 2008

I can't believe Jake is old enough to be sitting up, time flies! It really seems like it just happened over night. Thanks mom and dad for the early Christmas present with working video and audio (not to mention much better image quality). I actually was very frustrated last night because I thought audio for our video clips still wasn't working and must somehow be a computer problem (which I had ruled out before), then this morning Eden went to play on NOGGIN and said she couldn't hear anything. Turns out the computer had been muted, I have no idea how, but it must have happened in the last few days. (That's what I get for sharing the computer with my kids.) Any way, I did shorten the clip using my camera before I put it on our computer, but now I realize its still a bit long, hopefully I will get lots of practice and make more action-packed clips. But for now, you can enjoy 35 seconds of Jake sitting and being stunned by Bumblebee's sting-rays.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Heat Wave!!! Brrrrrr...

With the cold front and mini-blizzard that moved through over the weekend, our temps were below zero, even for the highs, for a few days. On Monday we had a wind chill advisory, telling us to bundle up in layers and informing us that exposed skin could freeze in a matter of minutes, temps with the wind chill were as low as 30 or 40 below- terrific. I debated for a long time weather to take the boys (mostly concerned about Jake, really ;)) to the gym or not. I finally decided not to brave the super-cold. But, it turns out it wouldn't have mattered, because when I went to start the van so it could warm up before we left to pick up kindergarteners later that morning, the battery was completely dead! Thankfully Teralyn was able to go get the girls- thanks again! (Scott went and got a new battery that evening.)
Today we finally broke past zero , and as I type this my weatherbug tells me its a balmy 29 degrees outside (that's the heat wave to which the title refers)! Yay!!!! Unfortunately, another cold front is expected this coming weekend. :( Just thought you all should know what REAL cold weather is... and weatherbug just changed to 24...

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Merry Christmas and other December Happenings...

First set of random December pictures: I caught Eden trying to read one of Scott's books for his International Law on-line course, Andrew loves to help feed Jake, and Scott is 31!

Second set are just some pictures of the Christmas preparations going on at our house: English Toffee, Jacob's first Christmas ornament, our tree that Scott and the kids picked out, Peter Peeps, an advent calendar idea I copied from an old issue of The Friend, and we decorated the tree in the open space by our house.

Eden and Andrew at our shortened-because-of-the-impending-blizzard Ward Christmas party. Everyone was invited to dress up like a nativity character, Eden was an angel and Andrew was a camel (he had a hump on his back too).

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Andrew is 4 now!

All week, Andrew wanted people to say "Happy Birthday Andrew!" So he was telling anyone who would listen that his birthday was coming. On the big day, he got to open one present in the morning, a zipper tie (he really was excited since he is an odd sort of boy who actually cares quite a bit about clothes). Then that afternoon we opened his other present- a big wheel, which Scott put together and Andrew got to try out for a few minutes. Then we headed to WATIKI, an indoor waterpark, we also stayed at one of the attached hotels, which was at least as exciting as the waterpark for our kids.
So we played all evening, then we had cake. Then in the morning we played as long as we could with the passes we got with the room- good for the evening from 4-10pm and then the next day from 8-10:30 am. We all had a fun time, but since one of us was with Eden and Andrew, and the other one of us was holding Jacob, we didn't get any pictures at the waterpark. Since I forgot the matches (I'm not sure we could have used them anyway in the hotel room), we cut a nice big chunk of cake for Andrew after lunch the next day and let him do the candle-blowing-out a day late. Oh, and those are transformers on his cake, his new most favorite thing.
Happy Birthday to a wonderful tough and sweet boy! We love you, Andrew!
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Friday, November 28, 2008

Count Your Blessings

I started this post a couple days ago, and now its the last day of November, so I am going to finish it tonight!

I got a little behind on my gratitude list, partly because...

....Scott came home Saturday before Thanksgiving! And we are all so happy and thankful that he survived the training and his back with us again.

I am thankful I wasn't at Walmart this morning. I did go to Target when they opened at 6am, and while I stood in the super-long checkout lines, I talked to some ladies that had been at Walmart earlier- complete chaos, borderline anarchy. I don't think I'll ever be brave (crazy) enough to do Walmart on Black Friday.

The only reason I even made it to Target this morning is because Scott set up the baby crib yesterday, and Jacob slept in his room for the first time! He slept all the way till 5am!!! That may not sound so exciting to some, but for me it is wonderful. I slept from 10:30 till 5 without interuption, plus he went back to sleep until after 7am! So I even came home to a quiet house (Eden and Andrew were watching cartoons, but all was calm).

I'm grateful we could get together with some friends from Scott's flight for Thanksgiving dinner. I was a little sad not to be with family, but it was an enjoyable afternoon for everyone and there was plenty of yummy food, I love T-day leftovers!

Last year, we had SO many spiders coming in from the cold during the fall, lots of big hairy ones too (wolf spiders, I think?) Anyway, I think we're past that time of year now, so I'm grateful that we haven't had nearly so many, and none of the big brown ones like last year.

I'm so thankful for the peace that the knowledge of the gospel brings to my life, even in times such as these. We may not have world peace, but we can each have peace with us. It helps me to know our family is forever, so the time that Scott has to be away, while sometimes sad and/or difficult, is such a tiny fraction of the eternity that we are together.

I'm truly thankful for this challenge, I really think it helped me to be a happier person, especially while Scott was away for a few weeks. It reminded me of the promises proclaimed in the hymn, "Count Your Blessings" (Hymns of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, no. 241):

When upon life’s billows you are tempest-tossed,
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost,
Count your many blessings; name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord has done.

Are you ever burdened with a load of care?
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?
Count your many blessings; ev’ry doubt will fly,
And you will be singing as the days go by.

When you look at others with their lands and gold,
Think that Christ has promised you his wealth untold.
Count your many blessings; money cannot buy
Your reward in heaven nor your home on high.

So amid the conflict, whether great or small,
Do not be discouraged; God is over all.
Count your many blessings; angels will attend,
Help and comfort give you to your journey’s end.
Count your blessings;Name them one by one.
Count your blessings;See what God hath done.
Count your blessings;Name them one by one.
Count your many blessings;See what God hath done.

Friday, November 21, 2008

More to be thankful for

Today I am thankful for:

the awesome parking spot I got at the gym this morning- right in front of the doors! I don't think we could've parked any closer!

Eden- she loves to read (even to Andrew, she should have be getting ready for school), and she loves to help feed Jake. What a great big sis!

Andrew- he has a natural gift of gratitude. He says thank you for even little things spontaneously (even months after the fact, he'll remember gifts and be genuinely thankful for it all over again). Plus, he has some mad Ninja Turtle/Kung Fu Panda skills!

Jake- what's not to love? He may not be sleeping through the night yet, but he naps like a pro! He's been eating solids for a few weeks now, but I just never got a picture until today.

my sister, Robin- she always remember to call me when Scott is gone and doesn't mind when I do almost all the talking. Thank you! Love ya!

Some more pics of what we've been up to lately, since I haven't been posting as many photos this month:

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Name them one by one...

I'm thankful for the chance we had to live in Hawaii. We've been gone for a year and a half now, and we really are enjoying South Dakota, but here's what brought this to my mind: On Friday, my watch broke. I know it doesn't look like much, and it only cost $5 at the BX, but it was my special watch that I used when I went surfing. Initially I thought it had just come unlatched while Jake was playing with it. But, later when I found it was broken, I sat on the couch looking at it, remembering those fun surfing days and all the great friends we made there. After feeling a little pitiful for myself(I didn't realize that the watch meant anything to me until that moment), I remembered that we were just so lucky to have that opportunity. It sounds kind of pathetic, but I think I might put this watch in my scrapbook...

I'm thankful for good books- this was the book for this month. I really liked it- enough that I went ahead and ordered my own copy after reading the one I had borrowed from Amanda. And the company was great too!

I'm thankful for brownies from the box. I have yet to find a recipe that can compare, they are just so good! These are my favorite.

I'm thankful that the kids and I have survived our last Sunday at church without Scott (at least for a while). Yay!

I'm thankful for good music. I've been listening to this CD lately.

I'm thankful for people who know how to do coding stuff for blogs. I wouldn't have been able to play around with making my blog "cuter" (its a work in progress) without their talent and willingness to share.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Thankful Thursday again!

It's hard to believe a week has gone by since the huge blizzard and as I look around and still see piles of snow (it is finally melting), I remember that we actually had really nice weather for Halloween. It was nice for the kids not to be bundled-up to the point that you can't tell what they're supposed to be. I'm also thankful to kind friends who took my kids out trick-or-treating so I could stay inside with Jake. Thanks Rocknak's and McCarty's!

I'm thankful for Flu Mist. Today I took the kid to get flu shots today. I explained that I had to do it too, and that it would help us stay healthy and help Jacob stay health too (since he's too young to get the flu vaccine), we were still dreading it anyway. But, when we got there, I found out that we could all get the mist instead. We celebrated our good fortune with TCBY afterward.

I'm also thankful for friends I've made in our moving around. I've been so blessed to know some truly awesome ladies who are such great examples of kindness, charity, and enduring well the hard times. I know our Father in heaven sends His tender mercies through the actions of friends. Tuesday morning was just hard for no particular reason, but reading a quick note (via internet) from a friend lifted my spirit and helped turn the day around.

Monday, November 10, 2008

More thankful thinking

I can't/don't update our blog everyday, but here are some more things I'm thankful for:

1. The durability of the human baby- today (another day of no school) I decided to use one of the coupons the kids got from their swim lessons for free admission to open swim at the pool. All went well until I was trying to get the four of us rinsed off and into dry clothes before heading out into thte cold. Andrew's towel ended up partly under Jacob who was resting on the bench. I had even placed things on either side of him to stop him from rolling. But, Andrew would not wait for me to help him (my hands were full at the moment), and he slid Jake right off the bench onto the hard tile floor. Luckily he slid bum/feet first, so he didn't land on the top of his head, and it was only 15 in. or so and Jacob is fine. (I know of another baby who survived a similar incident from an even higher point once upon a time.)

2. Blogs, e-mail, cell phones, and other communications technology. It's so much easier to stay in touch when Scott travels, and even when he's really out of contact, I'm still able to make some kind of contact with other adults every day. And its great to keep up with friends and family as we move around.

3. Snow plows and the people who drive them. If it weren't for them, we'd still be stuck at home and going crazy. But, even though there's still plenty of snow piled up all over, we are able to get around town fine.

4. The great system of checks and balances that our government has. We can vote for who and what we believe in, but no one has absolute power and control. I may not always agree with the outcome of an election, but I really believe in the design of our founding fathers, and I believe that it works.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Thankful Thursday

I thought I would do "Thankful Thursdays" this month, and then saw this challenge on Amanda's blog (see sidebar), so I'll be keeping a list in my sidebar. Here's the list I had started, I'm trying to be specific and notice things everyday:

1. A warm house with working electricity and heat. Especially when this is what is outside (that's our back door and the house across the street, looks a lot like pictures I took just six months ago!):

2. Nice friends who come shovel front and back and driveway when Scott is gone- thanks Shaun and Cam!

That leads me to...

3. I'm thankful for two 'built-in' support systems I have available to me all the time no matter where we go: the Air Force (ie. Scott's squadron members), and the Church (hometeachers, visiting teachers, etc.).

4. An enclosed garage to park the van in, so I don't have to scrape every time I want to leave the house during the winter!

5. A nice little gym that has a nursery that will take kids age newborn and up. I was a little nervous at first (bud decided I didn't want to shell out the big bucks for a good treadmill), but the lady who watches Andrew and Jake for me is so sweet and she is always so excited to see them, especially the babies. This is wonderful for me because it is so much easier to be a happy person (read Mom) when I am able to exercise.

6. I'm thankful for a great friend who sets up a space for me in the Body Pump class at the gym. It's so nice not to stress about getting the three of us there early every week, not to mention the extra motivation of knowing someone expects to see you there. Thanks Amanda!

7. I'm thankful school is closed today (and tomorrow)- I really don't like driving in the snow until the roads have been cleared well.

Which reminds me...

8. I'm thankful for the good day we had all cooped-up indoors together. This really is saying a lot for one parent vs. 3 young kids! We made a Thankful Turkey (his name is Theo and we're going to keep adding feathers this month) and played games (and watched TV). The kids even said what a fun day it was and how great a mom I am. It's so nice to actually hear them say things like that, even if I'm a "mean mom" again 2 minutes later when I won't let them (actually just Andrew had a fit) have a cookie before dinner. I hope we can have another good day tomorrow!

(That's "baby" Bumblebee Transformer, which Andrew had put down for a nap, he's such a boy, but he can be so sweet! Everything into the mouth for Jake, I keep trying to get one with his fingers in his mouth, but haven't been able to catch him yet.

9. I'm thankful for Scott. He called just to tell me he would be calling later than normal because he has to go back to class this evening- how thoughtful is that!

Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!

I got this idea from Mandi, we used a Zuchinni Meatloaf (recipe from Amanda) instead of Spaghetti for the 'guts' and I didn't have quite enough breadsticks, but our Skeleton Man dinner was fun- and tasty!

For our Young Women activity this week, we had a party and the girls were encouraged to invite friends. I was in charge of food, so I found these ideas online plus Ghoulish Punch from of which I did not get a picture. For someone who hasn't done much 'festive' fare for Halloween in the past and doesn't particularly enjoy cooking, I thought it all turned out pretty good!

Here's a picture of the kids right before trick-or-treating. Jacob wasn't particularly fond of his cute little Jack-O-Lantern costume and the snaps just weren't very secure, so you can't see the face on his tummy, but you get the idea. Eden is a witch and Andrew is a ninja turtle (he was so excited to find out his best buddy who moved to Ohio was a ninja turtle too). I feel a little guilty that I did not even attempt to be creative, and got all the costumes from the store. Oh well...
...they sure are cute! Notice the totally gross pumpkins in the background- we carved them early and have had some nice warm weather on top of that, I didn't even put candles in them, but I decided to leave them out anyway. (The bright and happy one is a WalMart special incase you were thinking it was real.)

All in all, we had a pretty fun "Halloweek", but we did skip the Squadron trick-or-treating, since we already had the ward trunk-or-treat and the YW party (and Eden had a party at school) all in one week. It was fun, but I'm glad its over.

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Tuesday, October 28, 2008

I did it!

I've been thinking I should do something to make our blog 'prettier'. I kept seeing people using the "cutest blog on the block" website, (and along with the moving furniture, I tend to stay up later than necessary doing unimportant things like watching reruns of things like MASH or Home Improvement while on the computer), so tonight I finally tried it out! I can't believe how easy it was! But I better go to bed now, staying up late is so not good when you have one kid who doesn't sleep through the night and two more who think "sleeping good" means staying in their beds until after 6AM. And I'm going to "Body Pump" at the gym tomorrow!

Friday, October 17, 2008

I actually took pictures to do this post right before Jake was born, and never got around to it. I took some more recently on a day when Eden was sick and I let the kids veg infront of the tv most of the day. So, the pictures might not be the most recent and on a couple I posted both, but they weren't "prepped" at all. You can see from the date how long its taken me to finish this post, today's date (the day I actually am posting this) is October 25th. Such is my life right now.

1. Closet
This is the closet in my "craft room" that is slowly being transformed to be Jacob's bedroom. He sleeps in a co-sleeper in our room right now which is just fine since he's still not sleeping through the night very well.
2. Kitchen Sink 3. Bathroom
4. Laundry That's the last clean cloth diaper in the dryer. They never got put away, I just kept grabbing them from the dryer (or asking Andrew to grab one) and now its time to wash them again!
5. Kids Eden was such a trooper! I am STILL such a baby when it comes to nausea/vomiting- I think its just about the worse thing that can happen to a person, just ask anyone who's lived with me. But Eden was very calm and just about took care of herself- what gal!

6. Place I would like to go
I'd love to go back to Kauai (1st pic), especially on a day like today. But, I haven't been to Germany (2nd pic) yet, and I'd also love to go to New Zealand, Scotland, and lots of other places.

7. Fridge
8. Self 9. Favorite Room It's messy most of the time, but we love having a separate area for the kids to play in. Our last place had a 'multipurpose' room at the front of the house, so everyone who came over got to see our mess. I rearranged it recently, so I like it better now, but I'm not going to take another picture right now for fear I may never actually finish this post. (Anyone else like to move furniture when the hubby is gone? I don't know why I do it, since it would be easier to do with Scott and I really don't need to add more "projects" to my list, but I do it anyway).
I really couldn't decide on a favorite becaus I don't really like any of them right now. But this is the craft room that is slowly being morphed into Jake's room. I picked it for my favorite because I like the idea of a craft room, not because I actually get a chance to use this one. That's Scott laptop, he probably uses the room more for his studying than I do for crafting! I'm starting to like this one more too because I've started moving the craft stuff out and its looking more like a nursery.
10. Favorite Shoes
These are still my favorites. I wear the newer version for running, but I really like the looks of these better. I don't think I've ever liked the way my running shoes looked as much as these. Silly I know, but there you have it.
Finally! Its done, I tag anyone who would like to bare all to the blogging world- remember no cleaning or prepping for the pictures allowed! Let me know if you decide to do it so I can come to your blog and see!