Sunday, December 27, 2009

10 or so for Christmas

(I just wanted to make a note here, that I LOVE the updated editor for blogger.  I may have gotten a little carried away- it made inserting picture so easy!)

1.  What it looked like after Santa came.

2.  What the kids thought.  They are still so excited to be saving all the wrapped gifts (ie. not from Santa) until we can open them with Scott at the end of January.  They are pretty amazing kids!

3.  What our living room looked like at 10:30.  I worked really hard and was COMPLETELY packed-up 2 days earlier.  1 Mom and 3 kids packed into 3 checked bags (all well under the weight limit) and 4 carryon bags (1 extra bag incase we got stuck in Denver where we have to change planes) and 1 stroller.  I originally had everything packed with only 2 checked bags, but decided to leave some space for the potential inspections and for anything we might accrue on our journey.  I admit I am proud of myself.

4.  Half an hour later, our flight was cancelled because of a pesky little 2-day blizzard (that's my neighbor's driveway, I think maybe some of our snow ended up there since our driveway was completely clear without shovelling).

5.  So, the next day we did what we should have been doing instead of the last-minute preparations for our trip. We played with our loot some more.  Eden baked and decorated a couple cakes, thanks to the Kennards (they had the C batteries that Santa forgot the day before).  I actually took the ipod speaker dock out of the box and used it!

6.  For the first time in too long, I updated my playlist.

7.  I need ideas for workout/running music.

8.  I also need ideas for getting an awesome workout at home.  Easy access to the gym is probably the #1 sacrifice I'm making to homeschool Eden.  I'm considering P90X- any thoughts???

9.  The outfits you see on our header were for Tricia's wedding, which we will be missing.  Aren't they adorable?

10.  The earliest we could get re-booked is January 1st.  ONE WHOLE WEEK after our original reservation.  But, we also get to stay later (thanks to homeschooling Eden).  Can't wait to see everyone who is still there when we get there! 

11.  And since we're all packed up and the house is so clean (we finally scrubbed the bathrooms), I find myself contemplating A) some new luggage after noticing how beat-up some of ours is, and B) some new clothes for all of us so I don't have to unpack anything for the next 5 days.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Gifts for Jesus and The First Christmas Story, according to Eden & Andrew

We thought of gifts for Jesus this year as part of our advent activites. Eden did hers all by herself- she is growing up so fast! Andrew wanted Jesus to have Star Wars Legos (and he'll try to love everyone too). Jake might have had a little help- he's going to be extra good for Mommy on our airplane trips. :)

This is a part of what I got when I asked the kids to tell the story of the Jesus's birth. Pretty cute, even if not totally accurate.

Saturday, December 19, 2009


Andrew had been counting down to this day for a long time. (It doesn't bother him at all to have a birthday close to Christmas, even though it stresses me out. I should try to remember that.) His special day happened to fall on a Saturday and it started with opening presents.
Do you think he was happy with what he got? Just a little! Andrew is so expressive and so genuine in his happiness. Look at that smile!
Checking out the details on his Ben 10 Alien Force game (similar to Perfection if you know what that game is) with Eden.

A picture of the sugar (over)load that day. Frosted Flakes for breakfast and a candy bouquet from Daddy.

We spent most of the day playing with his new toys, and enjoying the menu Andrew picked out:

Breakfast: Frosted Flakes

Lunch: Chicken Nuggets

Dinner: Fish & Chicken

(Andrew actually wanted to GO FISHING for his birthday, but I was able to convince him to have some of the trout from the freezer that the kids caught with Scott before he left. And then we ended up saving that dinner for another night because we snacked on junk during the day and had a late lunch, so no one was hungry!)

Snacks: mini Chips Ahoy! cookies

Ice Cream Cake: Berry Rainbow Sherbet with Vanilla Cookie Crust- no toppings, no coolwhip, just some Star Wars Heroes on top! (and 5 candles!)

The first time we sang, Andrew blew out the candles halfway through. So, this is from our second go at it.

He also got to have a 'friend party' at Chuck E. Cheese's a few days later, but we have no pictures. I completely forgot the camera! Oops! At least we do have some evidence that Andrew did indeed turn 5 this year. Happy Birthday buddy, we love you!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Christmas photo shoot..... first round

For some reason, the captions won't show up on the blog, so I will narrate. 
Eden was trying so hard to be a good helper and keep Jakey happy and still for the pictures.  Andrew IS smiling and saying 'cheese', apparently its almost unbearable.

This is what I got after I asked Andrew to look at the camera and smile with his eyes OPEN.

And finally a pretty good one (minus Jake mid-blink), they actally look like they love each other and just love taking pictures for Mommy!

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Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Theo's back!

Some of you may remember Theo, our colorful, thankful turkey we created during a blizzard in November of last year. Well, we pulled him out yesterday for Family Home Evening, and had some catching up to do. (I can't believe how fast November is flying by already!) It's awesome to see the kids being so self-motivated about it this year. They constantly want to add feathers to Theo, and work together on it a lot better than other things they try to do together. I am so happy this has turned out to be a meaningful family tradition. It makes this Mommy proud!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Eden decided she wanted to be a cowgirl after we bought the black boots in our school shopping. She thinks they're cowgirl boots, and I wasn't going to argue. The hardest thing to find was a cheap cowgirl hat (there are lots of places around here that sell nice 'real' western hats, even for kids). Luckily I found hers at the seasonal Halloween store in the mall for $8, so her costume was pretty cheap and pretty easy. Andrew had said he wanted to be a padawan, so I was going to make a brown cloak like he used in his Jedi training at Disneyland, and he already has a light saber. But, being the indecisive 4-year-old boy that he is, he kept changing his mind. We ended up buying the Boba Fett costume, at least he's happy! Jake is a tiger (Andrew's old costume, actually from the last time Scott was deployed). Coincidentally, Scott is deployed with the Tigers right now!
This was the best 'portrait' I got during our 'photo session'. At least cute kids look good even if the photographer has zero skill.

Andrew is pretending to be dead, I thought it was pretty funny.

Strike a pose!

And this is the best evidence I can provide that Jacob has decided walking is actually kind of fun (finally, at 16 months!). I have some cute video clips but can't get them to load on Blogger or YouTube. Sorry Daddy!
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Sunday, October 11, 2009

Badlands Excursion

Back in September, when we still had summer weather, the kids and I tagged along with some friends for a Badlands excursion. We explored a bit in the Badlands, had a picnic lunch there, then headed to 1880's town. I think they hadn't cleaned parts of it since 1880, there were lots of cool spiders and webs. It was fun and we enjoyed sarsaparilla and snack at the saloon. Then we went to Wall Drug for dinner on the way home. Considering we had 8 kids under 7 (it was before Eden's birthday), we all fared quite well. Thanks again to the Kennards and Shirleys!

Since I don't know how to load more than 4 pictures and keep them in the right order.... Jake figured out how to put is fingers in his ears on the way home. I don't know if he just couldn't sleep with everyone around him, he should have been plenty tired. But he kept his fingers in his ears for a while. He did spend a lot of time in his stroller, but this is what he really wanted to do- explore, explore, explore! It would be a little cleaner if he could stay on two feet, but how could I deny him a little happiness?

Andrew and his buddies, they found the perfect hideout! Getting ready for lunch- yum!
Andrew and Creed at Wall Drug. Lucy and Eden at 1880's Town. We all had a great time!
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Monday, October 5, 2009

Preschool already?

For Andrew, it was more like 'Preschool, finally!' since his preschool didnt' start until a couple weeks after Eden started. He was so happy that he got to take 'school supplies' too. It really is hard to believe he'll be 5 soon and in kindergarten next year.

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First Day of School, First Day of School!

(Time for a September update)
Eden was super-excited to wear her new boots, despite the summer-like weather. Going from half day Kindergarten to a full day of school was a big change this year. Andrew was so excited for her too- what a sweet brother!

This last one was taken at the school when she line up to go inside. I'm pretty sure she was thinking "Why are you still here, Mom?"
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Tuesday, September 22, 2009

We saw it ALL!

One thing we don't have in Rapid City is a complete zoo, so the kids and I packed a lunch and spent almost the entire day at the Woodland Park Zoo. We saw EVERYTHING! Jacob spent a lot of time in the stroller, and did really well up until the last few exhibits. And, yes, we did see real animals! But it was a lot easier to get cute pictures of the kids with the many sculptures at the zoo. One of their favorites were the chimpanzes that were hiding under cuts of burlap.

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Home-made Slip & Slide!

I have some catching up to do.... so we're going back to our summer in Washington. Everyone loved Grandpa's home-made slip & slide, even Jakey!

Utah, Summer '09

Before heading to Washington, we spent a few days with family in Utah. The timing was great for taking the kids to the Oquirrh Mountain Temple Open House. The kids were very excited, and Eden loved reading the signs posted throughout the temple explaining the different areas. Andrew's interest seemed to only last about 30 seconds. I was so impressed that BOTH of them retained a lot of that experience, and even shared some of that in Primary in my parents' ward.

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