Sunday, June 30, 2013


We went to the beach yesterday and met up with some friends.  B slept the whole time.
Right after we arrived and I found my friend, suddenly I was surrounded by some sweet ladies from the ward.  I tried to introduce my friend, not realizing that they were mostly wanting to see B.  I've been to church to work with Primary 3 weeks now, but never brought B.  So I forget that people are eager to see him.
The big kids take their boards and do a good job of not drowning.  It's amazing how they are growing up and able to do so much.  Every night someone wants to help make dinner, even lP.
Last week G went to scout camp.  This was his first mainstream experience.  We were really anxious that he would have a hard time socializing, understanding, or worst case scenario, freak out (which he sometimes does).  He's been doing scouting for 6 months with the other 3 boys in the ward troop.  And it turns out he has mad paper airplane skills.   He had a great time.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Once upon a time...

G and M are having a great time holding B.  It turns out my kids thrive on routine.  Their daily computer time, practice, scripture and prayer awesome.  Add daily time holding B and it's working out great.  They are so good at accepting mom and dad's arbitrary rules.  I think that will be an important life skill.

 Tonight I tried to go to the store and use coupons with 4 kids.  It was hard.  But when corn dogs are on sale and you've got a coupon, the kids are willing to behave pretty good.  B was freaking out at the back of the store and I was so close to walking out.  But M had a bag of cheese that she'd been wanting and had even chipped in her hard earned dollar toward buying.  So we found and empty aisle and waited it out.  I let my kids get a cookie or a balloon, and P always wants a balloon.  But then,  faced with the reality of M getting a cookie, P chose cookie too.

Once upon a time B's eyes were blue.

Monday, June 24, 2013

who needs college?

I came across some sites tonight (at last!) that have the music resources I've been searching for.
Beth's Music is amazing.

I'm glad I went to college.  I approached it very vocationally; I wanted to be a band director so I went and got the degree that would let me do that.  I am so grateful for the things I learned and the experiences I had.  I sometimes wish I'd explored other fields more, but I am glad I learned the things I learned.

I think the best thing I learned in college though, was to balance friends, job, learning etc...  At my school it was really easy to find jobs on campus that worked with a student schedule.

Also, I was feeling a little sad the other day that though I want to someday be on an adult volleyball or softball team, it's not likely.  I only ever played those sports with the Young Women, and that was sporadic.  So I don't have the skills and I'm not so good at acquiring new skills now.

But I am really grateful that I learned to sight read and notate music.  Those skills are a blessing to me and I know I could never pick them up in my current distracted life. 

Those teen and early 20's years are gold.  The things you spend your time and efforts in during that time are life long investments.

Friday, June 21, 2013

beautiful people

 B reminds me so much of G as a baby.  It's so funny because his hair is bright, bright red but otherwise I'm constantly reminded of G.  I don't remember feeling such similarity with the girls.
 lP, she's a gem.  She struggles.  Recently she has such funny explanations and phrases.  I'm pretty sure I am mostly in love with them all the time, but she's been especially endearing lately, when she's not driving us crazy.
 Grandma and Great Grandma came to visit.  It was so awesome to spend time with them.  And they brought delicious food.  I'm so grateful they were able to come.
B is 1 month old today.  G has been counting down the days because I told the kids that they could hold B when he was 1 month old.  We are not a family that lets kids hold babies.  Particularly we don't let kids carry babies.  But at 1 month I will let them sit in a chair with arms, and hold the baby.  They each had a turn this morning.   I didn't get pictures of G and M.  But when lP was holding him it I sent M for the camera, so we have this sweet moment captured.  Then she sang him the ABC's.

game changer

Car seats consume a lot of attention around here.  For each child there is thought extended for what they will sit in.  And as more children came, the how to fit them into the car became more and more complex.  Thanks to the sunshine radian car seat, we have been able to fit 3 seats into our Sentra.  I think we got the first one because G was too tall for the 5 point harness carseat, but not heavy enough for a booster.  Then we got a second one when lP was born to fit 3 into the back seat.

So now we have a van.  M and G have been in boosters on and off but it's always hard for them to buckle in.  The buckle is so far down, it's really hard to get to it.  Bless them for putting up with it for so long. 

I wanted to get another booster so we could use the more fuel efficient car when we could technically fit in it.  Like next week G is at scout camp, so I can use the sentra all week.  But moving car seats is really a hassle.  I was tempted to buy a bubble bum seat, which is the most narrow booster on the market.  But it's $40 and inflatable.  I love the comfort factor of an inflatable seat, but P said, "if it can inflate, it can deflate."

So I got a Harmony booster (not particularly narrow but not a monster) from the consignment store for $8 and ordered 2 seat belt extenders.  The seats are in there tight, but it doesn't matter anymore because the buckle is right there on the seat, easy to get to.  M was so excited to buckle up and exclaim with her signature rapture "It's so easy, Yay!"

Sunday, June 16, 2013

grown ups

We got a van yesterday.  Crazy!  The kids are so excited.  I'm so glad we can all ride together now.  Like, me and all the kids, legally, And P.  We took out one of the middle chairs so there is more room getting in and out. 

Thursday, June 13, 2013

not much sacrifice

 My crazy long hair.  

Just last week I realized I didn't need to wait for it to fall out (post pregnancy hormone shift).  I could cut it off sooner and donate it,  So that's what I did.

This is B above, and G at the same age, below.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

good deal, know your market

I went to the Crocs outlet today to get these shoes, and got a bunch of deals that left me feeling like it is my lucky day and I want to go back and buy more, more, more!

What's great about that is that I got shoes for a great deal.  The same thing happened around new year when I got a great deal on G's shoes.  So after today's great deal I was thinking, "Wow, the outlets are a great place to get a great deal."  Then I thought, maybe the sales clerks are trained to give people great deals, since that is the sort of people who sop at outlet stores, people who like to get a great deal.

But still, I am excited about these shoes because they are comfortable, cute, slip on (no buckles, laces or straps) and best of all, I won't be getting fire ant bites on my toes!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

How did that happen?

M is turning 6 tomorrow!  5 has been awesome.  What candle can 6 hold to 5.  I don't know.

Today we made the first grand motion toward making the moon room into the girls room.  Mostly that was shifting furniture and clothes and starting with a cleaned floor (and admonition to keep it that way).  The amazing precursor to this was the last month of unintentional prep.  We planned to someday move the girls into the other room.  With 2 boys and 2 girls, it makes sense to have a boys room and a girls room. 

Last month the kids were wild.  It was a week before my mom came, and the kids were wild.  They were banned, again, from playing in the moon room.  And I made a dramatic change in our night time routine.  No more would we have scriptures and prayer at 9, followed by 2 hours of play time in the room.  The kids were waking earlier to get in some bonus computer time (our version of morning cartoons).  So going to bed earlier was good.  The new routine was 8pm all media turned off, play and read with mom.  Mostly they choose to play.  9pm is still scriptures and prayer, but then they go to a dark room and mostly go to sleep.

Baby B is now 3 weeks old.  P is back to work, so I'm off to sleep in another room.  It's sort of funny how co-sleeping for us has more often meant I sleep with the baby in another room. 

So tonight the girls went to their new room, with no lights on.  We sang songs and then they actually went to sleep.  G, now the master of his own room, got to stay up reading.  Hurray! 

Summer Vacation

 So far we're doing great on the summer vacation.  We're doing crafty things.
 This is a thank you card M wrote out herself.  Rather, she started by writing the first letter of every word she wanted to write, then asked for the spellings over the next 30 minutes...  She is tenacious.
The kids are so thrilled to be allowed to play in their buckets of water.  That sounds so sad.  But it's really fun.  This part of the patio is actually never used and I dream that someday we'd put a real pool in this part, with a screen covering that just continues the roof line.  Awesome : )
And this little guy is so crazy cute.  His eyes are more blue/brown than any of my previous kids.  I feel like his dramatic coloring is just here for a limited time.  His hair is so bright when we're outside.

Friday, June 7, 2013


 This is me.  This is me on my princess pillow, with my red headed little prince on me and my favorite blanket all snuggled up.  My hair is enjoying the best 6 months of my life.   Between hormones and Garniers smoothing lotion, it's been awesome.  Too bad I have to cut it in 3 months when it starts falling out gangnam style. 
 This is the window in our office.  Previously we had the computer desk facing the wall and the overhead shelves that seemed to go sensibly with it.  Then we realized we 'own' this house so we moved the shelves, and flipped the desk with the big table.  Now I find myself typing, gazing out the window.  It cost us a whopping $0.40 cents to have G clean the windows.  He's very industrious and always looking for jobs to earn money.  I haven't taught him about negotiating for higher wages. 

He and M (mostly G) love to count and change their money.  He loves turning in his pennies for nickles, etc...  And the ultimate is when he can turn in the change for a paper dollar.  I try not to give him money for anything that is a routine chore, like cleaning the house, doing the laundry etc...  At the same time, it's great math he's doing.  And he's learning to do jobs.  I don't pay him until the job is done.  Another job he's working on right now is scanning his summer work book into the computer so M and P and B can someday use it.  It's 50 pages and I told him I would give him $0.50 cents for it.  But the scanner keeps crashing.  So we've been working on it for a long time.  Here's the life lesson of sometimes a job ends up being a lot more work than you thought...
 So handsome.
Lashes a mile long.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

I can't believe it's not May

Twice today, and probably more like 10 times today, I was surprised by the reality that it is June.

"What, my baby needs a 1 month check up this month?"

"There is a tropical storm already?  I thought that didn't start until... oh, it's June"

Well Hello June!  This month we'll have been married 13 years.  M will be 6.  This life is pretty amazing.
In this Wednesday, June 5, 2013 GOES satellite photo provided by NASA/NOAA, Andrea, the first named storm of the Atlantic season, forms over the Gulf of Mexico. The tropical storm is likely to bring wet weather to parts of Florida's west coast by the end of the week. (AP Photo/NASA/NOAA)

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

what I love

Adult BINGO for Books

June 20:  Undersea Journeys
June 27:  It's Alive! The Wild Side of Florida
July 11:  BATastic! Fabulous Florida Bats
July 18:  Underwater Archeology
July 25:  Swamp Stories
August 1: Turtle Talk

Saturday, June 1, 2013


Last night P told me of a recent conversation with M.  On the subject of college, she said it is important for her to go to college so that after she gets married, if her husband becomes bad, she can take her family away from him, to protect them, and she can get a job to support them. 

I've tried not to let M know about hard things like divorce.  I have talked about a similar situation with her but it involved the dad getting sick and not being able to work. 

Heavy things.

On a lighter note... I have a great new skirt, made from a shirt.  It started as sort of a mu-mu-tank-top with pockets.  With very slight alterations, now it is a skirt, with pockets.  I'd thought of sewing up the pockets, or moving them to a more conventional height.  Then I realized that the low (cargo pants height) pockets are awesome.  1. they weigh down the skirt.  2. they don't add fabric to the belly area. 

That's all for today.  OK, not all, because B is still crazy cute.