Sunday, December 30, 2007

Naughty or Nice?

I went grocery shopping on Friday with the kids. I normally go to 3-4 different grocery stores (depending on the ads) each week, to get the maximum bang for my buck. But, I've got it down to a science, and I'm normally done in under 2 hours.

On Friday, it took almost 5! And you're probably thinking that it probably took soooo long because Adam threw tantrums and whined, and Grace spent the entire time trying to escape the cart. And normally, you'd be correct. However, it took so long because they were both so freakin' good! I literally had 10 people (count 'em... 10) stop me, and comment on how good my kids were, and what terrors THEIR children/grandchildren were, and how lucky I was, and how cute the kids were, and then I'd have to hear the life story of the person. I don't mind talking to people (I rather enjoy it, actually), but 5 hours of shopping and hearing about so-and-so's life is a BIT much. And it was like, the more that people stopped, the more charming and polite Adam and Grace were, and I really think that by the end, they were plotting against me. I could almost see their little minds working, "Ha! We'll show her what she gets when we are good!"

I have always wondered what it would be like to HAVE those kids who are angelic in the grocery store. But now that I've been there, I think that being nice may be just as bad as them being naughty. Not sure which I'd rather have... But at least the next time that they are being horrible, I can look back and think about this time, and that it wasn't so great. The grass is always greener, right?

Another Weekend, Another Accident

But at least this one (fortunately) didn't cost us an expensive ER visit.

We got ready for church this morning, left, and Mike buckled Grace into her car seat. She began screaming and screamed the entire way to church. I noticed that she wasn't moving her right arm, but didn't think too much of it. Nothing I did appeased her, though, and I was a bit worried. Mike nervously asked me, "Uh, is she using her right arm?" Apparently, when he was buckling her in, she twisted her arm away, and it made a "popping" noise.

Her arm was limp, and nothing I did made her move it. We got to church and I went to find our Primary President, to tell her I was leaving to take her to the ER, thinking she had dislocated her shoulder. She took her into a room, and examined her, because she's a physical therapist. She thought it was fine, but went to find Brother Jones (he's an orthopaedic surgeon) to be sure. He looked at her for 2 seconds, turned her arm over, bent it, and popped her radial head back in, which had dislocated from her elbow joint. She laughed and ran off, and was completely better. In fact, about a minute later she realized she had the use of both of her hands and ripped out her hairdo (I suppose having your child unable to use her arm DOES have its advantages... her hair was way cute until then).

We were so blessed to have people in our ward willing to help us (and save us the $100 ER visit). He told us that it's a fairly common injury and not to feel bad. She is completely fine, and he told Mike how to fix it in the future, should it ever happen again. It won't. :)

Like Son, Like Father???

Hope everyone had a great Christmas! We sure did. I will post some pictures soon of ours in Las Vegas. But, just wanted to tell a few quick stories before I head off to a meeting.

Yesterday I asked Adam to clean his room. I went back in 20 minutes later and nothing had been done. I asked why, and he replied, "I'm thinking about what I should pick up first!" I laughed and left.

That night, I asked Mike to take out the trash. We had several bags waiting, because I did some major cleaning yesterday. I went to take my shower, came back and he hadn't moved. His reply? "I was deciding what would be the best one to take out first." I hadn't even told him what Adam said!

Now I KNOW where Adam gets it from. :)

Friday, December 21, 2007

The Stockings are Hung on our Entertainment Center with Care

It's our Christmas Eve tonight. Yay (or, it was last night anyway... I guess it's officially our Christmas now, oh well). We spent the day cleaning and doing laundry and packing. After all of the boring stuff was out of the way, Adam and I decorated cookies, did a puzzle, and sang Christmas songs. His favorite is, " I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas." He complained and complained about me having Christmas music on all of the time ("because it's not awesome) until he heard THAT song. Then he was completely okay with it.

After Mike got home from work, we had to go to temple recommend interviews real quick (they only do them one day a month, unfortunately, so it had to be tonight). After that we came home, had some hot cocoa and acted out the nativity. I wish I had gotten a picture of it on the digital so I could put it up. It was SO cute! Grace was Mary, Adam was Joseph, and I played the shepherds/angel/wise men (I am tres talented). Mike read from Luke 2 while we acted it out. A doll was used for baby Jesus. It was adorable! I just put little pillowcases around their heads. Grace LOVES putting things on her head and she LOVES babies, so as Mike read the scriptures, Grace alternately shouted, "Pretty!" "Baby!" "Pretty!" It was soooooo cute! Even Adam had fun (though he really wanted to play the "bad guys"-soldiers that he saw at the live nativity with swords, what else?).

After that, they opened their Christmas PJs (they LOVED them... Adam got Spiderman, and Grace some cute pink-and-white ones). Too cute!

Then they left out the cookies and carrot for Santa and Rudolph, and went to bed, and they actually didn't take too long to get to sleep. Yay! My checklist is dwindling down:

-the lasagna is prepared for tomorrow night's dinner and waiting in the fridge
-the cinnamon rolls for tomorrow's breakfast are in the refrigerator, ready to be baked in the morning (I used this recipe, and they look GOOD... I think I gained 5 pounds just smelling them while I was making them :) )
-the frosting is mixed and ready to be spread on the cinnamon rolls
-the bags are packed
-the camcorder and cameras are ready to go
-the house is clean
-the presents are under the tree and the stockings are stuffed

I just need to finish washing the dishes, and we are set! Hopefully the kids sleep in a bit so I can get SOME sleep. Even if they don't, that's okay... being Santa is the best job in the world! I wanted to have as much done as possible so we can spend the day tomorrow together, just playing with the kids' toys and games and having fun. Tomorrow afternoon we are picking up the rental car, running some last-minute errands, and driving around looking at Christmas lights. I am SO excited for the kids to open their presents and spend the day with them! Please, Christmas, don't be late!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Christmas Campout, DI Christmas, and Watch Out!

Our Christmas campout on Sunday night was SO much fun! We popped a bowl of popcorn and watched The Polar Express. I had never seen it, and it was pretty cute. Not my favorite holiday film, but fun. After brushing our teeth and our nightly ritual of reading a Christmas story and singing a Christmas song, Grace went to her crib, Adam and Mike got on the floor in the sleeping bag, and I slept on the couch (I totally chickened out, I know). We kept the Christmas lights on the tree and around the door on all night. Adam (surprisingly) went to sleep right away. It was a LOT of fun and definitely something we will be doing every year. Adam wants to do it EVERY night. :)

Today we went to the DI Christmas party. A little background: a few weeks ago we had our ward Christmas party, and they had ham to eat for dinner (how unusual... :) ). I guess maybe Adam has never eaten ham before (?), I don't know. But he LOVED it! It is normally hard to get him to eat and he went up 3 times for more ham! Too funny. Anyways, last week Mike invited us to the DI Christmas Party, and he mentioned they were having ham. Adam was so excited at the thought of having "his most favorite, delicious food!" LOL! We went down there for lunch and had a ton of fun! They had a really neat musical program and a slideshow. Sometimes I get frustrated with Mike working so far away and being gone so much and how much he gets paid, and then I go down, and see him around his employees and how much he loves them and loves his job, and it makes it totally worth it. They had ham, fruit, and multicultural dishes (everyone made something from their own culture): chow mein, Creole, and a spicy curry dish. They assigned Mike to bring mashed potatoes... I guess he has no special culture. :) For dessert they had pie and blue cupcakes... guess which Adam chose?

And... don't say I didn't warn you, but I got this package in the mail yesterday afternoon. They recently restructured the DI program, and Mike is supposed to be talking to everyone about DI and really focus on rehabilitating his staff. Well, apparently these movies may be part of it his plan. Don't put him in charge of any holiday entertaining this weekend or you just might get the DI lecture! :) (I'm just teasing you, Mike! Love you!)

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Grace's New Word

Grace has been folding her arms during prayers for a few weeks now. It's pretty cute. She normally walks around while she does it, but still. Anyway, during the closing prayer in Sacrament meeting on Sunday, Grace was folding her arms and sitting on Mike's lap. Apparently she was a bit too anxious to get to Primary, and the prayer was going a bit too long for her, because suddenly she sat up and started yelling, "Amen! Amen!"

She's NEVER said that before then. And she's only said it one time since. But, wow... it was really hard not to start laughing. Our friends behind us had a hard time, too.

Our sleepover around the Christmas tree was SO fun! Adam told me that it's the most fun he's ever had in his whole life! LOL! I will post pictures a little later today. Just had to share our latest adventure. :)

Monday, December 17, 2007

Too Bad I've Wrapped All of My Presents..

I got sent this link tonight for these printable gift tags. They are funny! How many times has everyone actually thought all of those things? I know that I have more than once. Maybe I'll print them out and put them on the $1 gift exchange we are now doing at the Wilkins... because I'm going to definitely be thinking "I was starting to really run out of ideas here...". Too fun.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Christmas Mishaps, Dancing, and Adam

It's beginning to look a lot like..... my Christmas decorations are falling apart! Aagh! The other night I came home from going on a walk and discovered that the back of the gingerbread house had collapsed! I am 99% sure that it was because Mike and Adam were playing ball in the house, but I have had NO confessions. I seriously feel like I have 3 kids, except Mike is worse, because he CONVINCES Adam to break the rules ("Really, Mommy won't mind if we...."). Terrible.

We have had several ornaments broken, including this ballerina (isn't it morbid?) one that I've had since I was 4. Not sure what happened their either. AND I had several salt dough ornaments that I've made through the years ruined. Grace loves to EAT them! Gross (and probably not very safe!). I had to throw most of them away and put away the rest because she climbs up on things to get these off the tree. Yuck!

I like to do ALL of our laundry at once. I spend all day Friday washing and drying it. Then Saturday morning, Adam and I dump all of the baskets on the floor and fold them. It's probably not the best way, but it works for us. Anyways, we always check a movie out of the library to watch while we fold. Today, we watched High School Musical. And it was as cheesy as I thought it was going to be (but fun, too... Adam had really wanted to watch it for some reason... lol). But, the funniest part was Grace. She danced throughout the ENTIRE movie! It was hilarious! She's danced a bit here and there, but never this much! She pretty much puts her arms out, and rotates back and forth like crazy. Sort of like weird 80s aerobics. Too funny. Adam couldn't stop laughing!

And speaking of Adam... ever since his tantrum earlier this week, he has been incredible. I'm not sure whether it's that he's worried about Santa not coming or that I'm just a fantastic parent (I'm leaning more towards the Santa theory), but he's been great! He shares all of his toys, has been super kind to Grace, has cleaned his room every day without complaint, etc. He's been so great! Maybe he just needs to get all of his anger out once in a while... I don't know. But whatever it is, it works for me.

I have been putting off going to the store (don't want a tantrum repeat), but we were absolutely out of food, so I decided to brave going to the store with them yesterday. He was perfect! Yay! He said the funniest thing, too. We were in the produce section at Smiths, and I called for him to hurry up. He ran up and said, "Mom, but I was being good." I asked, "What were you doing?" He replied, "Cleaning up some fruit that had fallen on the ground so that the workers didn't have to pick it up." I was thrilled, and said, "Thanks, Adam, that was really nice of you." He replied, "Of course, I WAS the one who knocked them on the ground in the first place..." LOL! The produce manager was stocking oranges and overheard and thought it was the funniest thing. He said it had made his day.

He is getting SO excited for Christmas! He loves hanging up the ornaments on our Advent calendar that my Grandma made for me years ago... he runs every morning to do it. Too fun!

Tomorrow night (Sunday) we are sleeping out in the living room by the tree! Mike doesn't have to work Monday, so I thought it was the best day for it. We borrowed The Polar Express from the library to watch beforehand. On Monday we are decorating our sugar cookies (oh, boy!) and making up plates and bags to bring around. Can't wait! I tried a new recipe for the sugar cookies and they are GOOD!

Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend! I can't believe next weekend we will be in Phoenix seeing all of you! Aagh! :)

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Santa Surprise, DI Present, and Primary Present

A few Sundays ago, Adam sat down with Mike and wrote his letter to Santa. He asked for a few things (one of which is a Hot Wheels car with 80 spoilers... I guess this makes it go really fast?). Anyway, he was concerned about us being in Phoenix, so he asked Mike to tell him Grandma's address. He put it outside that night. The next day, Santa left him and Grace a letter with 2 candy canes! He told them that because they would be out of town and Adam has been SO good this year (this was before the tantrum the other day, though, who knows how Santa feels now :) ), he would make an extra special trip and come on the 21st to leave their presents! Adam was SO excited! He carried the letter with him for days, until it got really gross, and I took it. I love that he's at an age where he's getting excited about all of this stuff. And, I don't want it to be a problem with Adam already getting visited by Santa when we go to Phoenix, so I talked to him about keeping quiet about it, because he doesn't want to make anyone sad that they didn't get an early trip. He understands, and because he will be getting plenty of presents in Phoenix, it shouldn't be a big deal. Just wanted to let everyone know what was going on.

Mike came home the other day with a Christmas present from the First Presidency! I was kinda surprised, because he had been told that they don't do bonuses or Christmas parties. It's a really nice "Special Edition" of the Bible in actual leather, with a Christmas card of the First Presidency. I'm not really sure what the "Special Edition" is about (maybe I have to read it to find out...), but they are seriously nice scriptures. They are so nice that Mike said, "I don't want to actually use them and mess up the pages!" So funny. I guess he missed out because LAST year, everyone got a "Special Edition" triple combination. So, he will never have the complete set. Oh, well. It was really nice of them to do that.

Mike and I are co-CTR 5 teachers in Primary in our ward. I seriously love Primary. I have only ever had 1 calling that was NOT in Primary (Enrichment Committee years ago in Phoenix). I don't even know what I'd do if I wasn't in Primary... it would be weird. I absolutely adore our class. They are so much fun, and I was kinda getting sad about it being the end of the year, and having to let them go. But on Sunday, they gave us a Christmas present-an ornament with the pictures of all of our kids on it. So sweet! I love it! They gave us the new manuals and class lists for next year, too. We have the cutest kids in our class (they put Adam in the other CTR 5 class, which is good, I think), and I have the cutest idea of a little something to do for them to welcome them to our class. They don't do Primary quarterly activties in our ward, and I'm used to having one at the beginning of the year to welcome the new kids and introduce myself. Because we aren't having one, I baked an extra batch of sugar cookies with a "shield" cutout. After Christmas, I'm going to frost them green, and write CTR on them in white, put them in little bags, and bring them around to our class members, and tell them how happy we are to be their teacher. It should turn out cute. I'll post pics when I get them done.
It's actually been cool here the past few days and with our Christmas decorations up and all of the cookie baking it's really beginning to feel like Christmas! Yay! We have some fun Christmas plans this weekend, but I will have to blog about that later. Have a great day everyone!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Bad Day

Today was a bad day. Oh, so bad. It started with Adam coming in my room at 5:30 this morning and YELLING at me to make him breakfast. Time out. Then after breakfast, while brushing his teeth, he hit Grace. Time out. He then colored on the table with permanent ink marker. Time out.

We had lots of errands to run today. Bank, Ritz Camera, Post Office, and Michaels. Last night, Mike decided that he wanted me to make ornaments for his employees. I was just going to make the clothespin-nativity ornaments, and attach them to a bag of cookies. I'm busy, but I want to support him, so I agreed to make them. This afternoon after lunch, Adam was behaving a bit better, so we headed out. He was absolutely fine until we got to Michael's. He saw a toy there that he wanted and asked for it. I told him no. He immediately started throwing the mother of all tantrums. I kid you not. He threw the toy across the aisle. Started screaming, "I hate you, I hate you!" and kicking. He was SO loud. I don't do tantrums in stores. You throw it, we're done. I told him we were leaving. He then proceeded to kick and scream and scream and hit and yell. I put him in the back of the cart to leave, and he jumped out (this is kind of sounding funny now that I'm writing it) and ran. I grabbed him and Grace and started to leave. I managed to drag him to the front of the store (a kind store employee opened the door for me), went outside and opened the car door. He hit me again and ran back inside. I dragged him out AGAIN and pushed him into the car. He then turned and bit my arm SO hard I started crying. I was hurt and SO embarrassed and I didn't know how I was going to buckle him into his carseat.

Then, a heaven-sent couple walked up to me. The man grabbed Adam, and held him down in the carseat while I buckled him up. His sweet wife took Grace and calmed her down. I was bawling afterward, and she gave me hug, and said, "Don't worry, we've all been there. Lucky for 5-strap harnesses, right? Now he's stuck." It was the most PERFECT thing to say. I love little random acts of kindness like this. I don't know what I would have done without them.

Adam is pretty much a great kid. He throws a tantrum like this occasionally and the they ARE bad, SO bad, but they are getting fewer and further between. I talked to him the whole way home, and he is suffering some major consequences for his poor choices (he is most upset about no basketball tomorrow). We talked about good ways to express sadness and anger. He is learning. I can handle the tantrums (well, besides the bawling-my-eyes out part, but it WAS very stressful). What I can't stand is the looks I got, and the comments I overheard, as I took him out of the store. I mean, really? What am I supposed to do? The older (forgetful) customers said things along the lines of, "He just needs a good spanking. Mothers today don't discipline their children" and the younger (naive) customers, "My child will never do that. And did she just spank him? I would never spank!" It is rough being a mom in today's world. You're criticized if you do, and criticized if you don't. And there should be NO criticism period. Kids have meltdowns. They throw tantrums. I've seen grown adults have meltdowns and tantrums PLENTY of times when they don't get their way in the store. Why would a tired 4-year-old be any different? Ugh.

I love that song that goes, "You've had a bad day." On days like this, it's my mantra.

And on the bright side, since I'm NEVER going into Michael's again, I don't have to worry about making ornaments on top of everything else that I have to do. So sorry, Mike! :)

Sunday, December 9, 2007


I LOVE scrapbooking! Seriously. I've been doing it since I was in 7th grade. However, when Adam was born, I stopped for a while. I was busy with him and then we moved to Flagstaff, where I was busy with school. I did a page once in a while, but nothing serious. Then, about a year ago, I looked at my photographs (each in little ziplocs, waiting to be scrapbooked) and I realized how much I had to do. It was overwhelming. Over the past year I've gotten my stuff out, been absolutely overwhelmed with how much I had to do, and put it all back about 10 times, without doing a thing. Well, no more. On Friday, I decided I would just catch up on Christmas. So, I got the pics out of Christmas 2004 and 2005. I would do 2006, but those aren't developed yet.

But ANYWAYS, I got up a few hours early Friday, Saturday and today, and I scrapbooked 11 pages! (11 pages for 2 Christmases... I'm in trouble :) ). I am so proud of myself for catching up a tiny, tiny bit. They are NOT the BEST pages and they certainly aren't winning any awards, but the point is, I've done them.

And the best part of it is, that it felt SO good to do something just for me, something I loved. I was a much better person because of it. I had more patience with my kids; I got the house cleaned in about half the time Saturday; when Mike took his 3-hour after-church nap today and left me with the kids, I wasn't as irritated as I usually am (hey, I'm NOT perfect), and I know it's because I took the time to do something for me. It's made such a difference. I was happier, so Adam and Grace were happier. We've all been happier these past few days. Seriously.

So, I'm going to encourage everyone who reads this blog (all 2 of you :) ) to do something for yourself. Get up a little earlier or stay up a bit later or Benadryl your kids at naptime (jk) ... just do something for yourself. I always thought I was being selfish before doing something for myself, like I was neglecting my family, but it's made a huge difference in how I feel and how I act.

Tomorrow I'll blog about Adam's Santa surprise and our Christmas cookie making. Until then, have a great day, and do SOMETHING just for you!

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Nativity, a Surprise in the Mail, and We've Arrived

The live nativity last night was SO good! I have seen a lot of nativities acted out, but this was one of the best. Grace LOVED the live animals. There were dogs, sheep, chickens, horses, and (her favorite) a donkey. We had so much fun watching it. At the end, they invited all of the kids to come up and visit baby Jesus/Mary/Joseph in the stable. Adam was SO excited. Unfortunately, he was very disappointed to learn that it was not the real baby Jesus. He was pretty sad for a bit. So sweet!

Yesterday we got a package in the mail. My mom made Adam and Grace Christmas pillowcases. SO cute! Adam was SO thrilled! It actually made him go to bed on time, because he was so excited to sleep on it. Isn't that a cute idea? And it's super easy to sew. I'm thinking of making them one for Halloween and Valentine's Day, because they loved it so much!

And.... we may be absolutely broke. And we may live in a less-than-ideal place. BUT we feel that we have officially arrived, because... Mike has his own business cards! Yay! :)

Oh, and in the pictures, Adam has a Kool-Aid mustache, in case you were wondering. That stuff will not wash off! Oh, well. Have a great one, everyone!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Time Outs and Gingerbread

So, Grace had her first "time out" the other night. No, I would never send a 1-year-old to time out (pointless) but she ended up there anyways. We decorated our Christmas tree the day after Thanksgiving. Ever since, Grace has made it her goal to un-decorate it daily. Seriously, you should see my poor tree. By the end of the day, the ENTIRE bottom half of the tree is bare. The first time it happened, I asked Adam to hang all of the ornaments back UP at the end of the day. He hung them ALL (about 30) on 2 branches. I SO wish I was kidding. So, I had a half-naked tree with one spot of dense ornaments. Lovely. Since, I've just put a basket by the tree. As I find the ornaments around the house, I toss them in there, and re-decorate when I can. ANYWAYS (do I go off on tangents or what???) the other night, Mike was home to witness her literally grabbing and throwing them as fast as she could. He joked, "Grace, go to time out." She paused. Her eyes got huge. She laughed, clapped her hands, and gleefully went over and sat in time out (the hallway). She sat there, clapping and laughing. She ws THRILLED to be in time out. Mike and I couldn't stop laughing. It was like she's seen the hundred of times that Adam has been there, and has been awaiting the privilege. It was hilarious. Now, anytime she does anything wrong, she goes over and sits herself down. I'm pretty sure she's deliberately doing naughty things so she can go there.

We made our gingerbread houses last night. It was a blast! Yes, there is frosting all over my walls. And yes, there is sprinkles permanately ground into my carpet. And yes, my kids were on sugar overload and wouldn't sleep last night. But, it was a LOT of fun! I love the house that Teresa made. It is adorable. It's definitely something I want to do every year. And, I've got some great ideas for traditions (talking to friends and looking around on the Internet). I've decided we are going to go to a live nativity (tonight, our stake's putting it on), camp out under the Christmas tree one night, read a different Christmas book every night, watch at least 1 holiday movie together, act out the nativity, bring Christmas cookies to our friends, go look at Christmas lights, and I'm looking at a few others. I found this blog through my friend Heather and she is SO cute and is posting a different tradition to do daily, so I'm going to use a few of hers. So fun.

Hope you are all having a great week! I'll post pictures of the nativity later. It should be fun.

Monday, December 3, 2007


Okay, so for the past few days I've been a little bummed about missing all of the family Christmas activties. Like, the Hansom Christmas Party, the Rice Christmas Party, going to the Mesa Temple and seeing the lights, etc. My friend Teresa came over tonight to bring over the gingerbread house that I won at Enrichment (we're decorating it tomorrow... it's so cute!) and I was talking to her. All of their family lives in Utah, and she only gets to see them once a year (either Thanksgiving or Christmas) and it completely makes her sad, too. However, she decided that this was HER family now, and she needed to make it good for them, so they started their own traditions, like the gingerbread houses.

So, I know that this isn't rocket science, but it's like a lightbulb went off in my head. We are here, and we are our own family (despite how much we're missing everyone) and need to make the best of it. I decided a long time ago that no matter how much money I had or how sad I felt or how rough a time I was having, I was never going to let my kids have to feel it, too. I mean, I don't want to be unrealistic with them, but there's simply no reason for my children to have to worry about those things. The only promise of childhood is that it will end, right? They deserve a wonderful Christmas. And starting our own traditions is a perfect way to put my thoughts into action.

So, tomorrow for FHE we are decorating our gingerbread house, and I'm going to get the recipe from her so we can do it EVERY year. I'm trying to think of some other fun traditions... any ideas, anyone? What did your family do that was special (besides having parties with extended family... lol). Caroling? Baking cookies? Crafts?

Sorry for going so many days without pictures. I've got some cute ones, it just takes forevah to download them on the computer. I'll post Grace's first time out (there's a story with that) and our gingerbread houses tomorrow (or is it today, it IS rather late, hmmm...)). Until then, make it a great one!

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Low Carbin' It

The appointment was just about as bad as I imagined it. Actually, it was a bit worse because they gave Adam his shot before Grace had her well check. He screamed and kicked, so Grace decided that if Adam hated the doctor, she would, too. She screamed the ENTIRE time-getting weighed, getting her head measured, the doctor listening to her heart, and ESPECIALLY the shots. Goodness! She screamed and screamed and curled into a little ball on my shoulder and gasped for breath. The nurse freaked out. Adam freaked out. The doctor ran in. Oh... boy.

She is such a little actress. I wish I could describe it. When someone comes up to her and says hi, she cocks her head to the side, grins, giggles and says 'hi.' When she's in trouble, she just completely melts and sobs. When she's in pain, she won't breathe. She's hysterical.

So, she weighed 21 pounds and is 31 inches long. She's in the 25th percentile (again) for weight, and in the 90th percentile (again) for height. The doctor (I need to find a new pediatrician, because seriously, I'm not lovin' this one) said, "Are you feeding her?" Really, was I supposed to do that? Man... kids should come with an owner's manual! I said (very nicely), "Yes, she eats all of the time." She looked at me like I was a liar, and said, "Well, do you give her meats and cheeses or just fruit and vegetables." And I swear, I was thisaclose to saying, "Actually, all she eats are meats and cheeses. She's on the low carb plan."

But of course, I didn't. Maybe I should've though... I wonder what she would have said. :)

Thursday, November 29, 2007

I've Got Some Serious Thrill Issues, Dude

I got a call from the pediatrician's office today, reminding me of Grace's 15-month-well-check tomorrow, and Adam's booster shots. At the same time. By myself (Mike's working). I laughed when the receptionist told me, and this line from Finding Nemo came to mind.

My kids do not do well with immunizations. To be fair, I worked at a pediatrician's office for two years, and most kids don't. But, my kids are a little more difficult. Grace literally gets a panic attack each time. The poor thing screams and then gasps for breath. Doctor's freak out, thinking she's had an allergic reaction. Nope... she's just a princess (she does this whenever she's in a lot of pain). Adam has already threatened to kick the doctor. When he got his 4-year-well check, they had to have 2 nurses (plus Mike) hold him down. It doesn't matter how many books we've read about doctor's or how any times we have sang "Just Say Owe and It's Over" he still hates them.

I must have serious thrill issues. I mean, why else would I have thought, "Hmmm... scheduling both appointments at once while Mike's working is a great idea! I need excitement in my dull life, and holding a panicked-non-breathing one-year-old on my hip, while holding down a screaming 4-year-old is exactly what I need!"

At least tomorrow won't be boring. :)

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Not Yet!

Grace threw her first official tantrum yesterday. Since the accident, I have tried to be more careful about watching her on the chairs. She is SUCH a climber, and it's proving really hard to keep her on the ground. She has been climbing out of her high chair for months, so we put her in a booster seat, and it's STILL a struggle to get her to sit. This is probably why she's so stinkin' skinny. She'd rather climb during meals than eat.

Anyway, she was trying to climb out again, and I was trying to hold her with one hand to keep her seated, and feed her with the other hand. She stopped struggling, sat there, and for a second (a brief second, albeit), I thought that I had won. So naive. Then she started SCREAMING, rocking back-and-forth and banging her head against the back of the chair. I thought she has caught her leg or something, so I took her out. The crying immediately stopped. Put her back in. Another tantrum. Goodness! Is it possible for the Terrible Two's to start at 15 months? Yikes! It seems that my oh-so-easy Grace days are over. She has seriously been a dream. Besides the weight-gain issues, that is. She's happy. She goes down for naps and bed very easily. She slept through through the night at 2 months. She's been a wonderful baby. But if these tantrums are any indication of the future... fantastic. :)

Monday, November 26, 2007

Thanksgiving, the ER, and Yet ANOTHER Adam Funny

We had a mah-velous Thanksgiving! We got to celebrate it twice (lucky us!). Once with the DI crew and the other, just our little family. We had a blast with everyone at DI. And our Thanksgiving was pretty fun, too. I had really mixed emotions about the day. I kinda fluctuated from smiling "It's nice to have a calm, homey Thanksgiving" to blubbering "This is my first Thanksgiving away from family." But, all-in-all it was a good day. We each chose our favorite side (my mom's cranberry salad, my Nano's stuffing, sweet potatoes, and crab puffs sans crab-this is Adam's, not sure why he chose it... lol).

The next day I headed out at 4:00am to do the Black Friday thang. I got Grace a baby at Wal-Mart (she's ALL about the babies these days) and Adam a remote control car (he's wanted one forever). And I'm done with shopping. Yay! We decided to just get them one toy each this year from Santa, plus a pair of pajamas (Wal-Mart for $5 yay) and a box of cereal from us. They get SO many toys from everyone else, so we try not to overwhelm them. We decided to celebrate Christmas on the 22nd this year. We've been doing this the past few years. I know that other people who live out of town from family, somehow load up their Santa gifts without their kids knowing and celebrate out of town, but I can't figure it out. And I know it's really weird, and who knows how long we will be able to keep it up, but I seriously love it. I love that we get our "own" Christmas Eve and Christmas morning. We get to enjoy being with each other and talk about the reason we celebrate Christmas and play with the toys and have fun. It's great. I LOVE being with our family in Phoenix, but I'm afraid if we celebrated it there, it would turn into one big gift-opening frenzy. So, we do it this way, and though it's unorthodox, it works for us.

We had SO much fun spending 4 whole days with Mike! The kids were ecstatic! However, what weekend would be complete without a trip to the ER? Grace fell off a chair and bit a hole in her mouth the size of a dime, so I took her in. Lovely. :)
And... last thing for this HUGE blog (I'm quite the talker tonight), another Adam funny. He seriously cracks me up. We were cuddling on the couch Sunday night, and I told him, "I heart you, Adam" He turned around and looked confused. "You hurt me, Mom?" "No, no, I heart you, you know like heart, love, I love you." Pause. "So, you love to hurt me?"
Poor kid.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

He's Doing WHAT to My Joint?

A few months ago, I noticed a lump in front of my ear. It was slightly painful. I also started having some ear pain, too. I really didn't think it was a big deal, so I put off going to the doctor. Then, being the paranoid person that I am, I looked it up on the Internet. Which made me start freaking out that I had a tumor or something, so last Friday, I headed to the doctor.

Upon telling me it wasn't a tumor (yay!), she asked if I gritted my teeth much. Ummm... only every single day since Adam turned 4. Well, apparently this has caused my TMJ to begin popping out of place. Wonderful. She told me to stop doing it, or I was going to cause serious damage to my joint.

I love Adam to death. He is sweet, imaginative, hilarious, and a great kid. However, turning 4 has made him (at times) have a terrible case of the Forgettable Fours. He whines. He tells lies (though I know they aren't really lies). He has such an attitude (wonder where he got THAT from :) ). Most of the time he's great, but about once a day, he does something really, really awful, and I grit my teeth so I don't blow up or tie him up or something.

But... sheesh... now that I know my way of not killing my son is ruining my jaw, what am I supposed to do now? Count to 10 or something healthy like that? :) I considered telling him that if he doesn't shape up, he's going to owe me money for jaw surgery and plastic surgery (to rid myself of the stretch marks he brought during pregnancy), but, that's not something I exactly want him bringing up in Primary. And he would. :)

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Super Fun Enrichment and Cute Adam

Last night we had Enrichment Night in our ward. I have NEVER had so much fun before at an Enrichment. We had a really, really good dinner. Everyone brought their favorite holiday appetizers, sides, or dessert. It was SO yummy! I have been absolutely craving Spinach-Artichoke Dip for FOREVER (not sure why) and someone brought it last night! Yay!

After dinner, we had a service auction. I have heard about people doing these in Enrichment before, but had never been to one. Everyone donated a service to perform for someone else, and we bid on them. We received bidding money by filling out a worksheet that had things like, "If you went to church on Sunday 5 points," etc. The list included year supply, temple attendance, random acts of kindness, and making a new meal for your family.

The auctioneer was this completely cute sister in our ward, named Rochelle. She is normally very funny, but last night she was just hilarious. We were all literally crying from laughing SO hard! I donated an FHE book with 10 lessons based on President Hinckley's "Standing for Something" book. I'm sure a lot of you have seen it before. It's cute. I'm just waiting for the rest of the materials to arrive from Salt Lake in order to finish it.

I really, really, wanted to win the "Eye Brow Wax", "Cut and Highlight" or the "28-page Scrapbook", but I didn't have enough money (darn year supply! :) ). BUT, I ended up winning 3 totally fun things that I am SUPER excited about: a gingerbread house, frosting, and candy (to decorate with the family); 20 homemade Christmas cards; and 2 of these really cute crayon holders. Yay! Adam and Grace had fun in the nursery, and I had SO much fun meeting some new people and laughing. I haven't laughed like that in SOOOOO long! Wow!

Adam also had a really good day yesterday. He got a letter in the mail with a dollar in it, had a grilled cheese sandwich for lunch, went to nursery and played with his friends, and won a gingerbread house. Last night as I was tucking him into bed (late, Enrichment ran WAY over until 9:00!), he told me, "This has been the absolute, BEST day of my life. Wow!" LOL. So cute! Little kids aren't hard to please, are they? :)

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Halloween Pictures and Adam's Christmas Present

We had a very, very fun Halloween. I wasn't sure how it was going to turn out. Grace is SO scared of Halloween, that I figured we were going to have to cut the festivities short and go home, but she did A LOT better than I thought!

The kids dressed up like a Super Hero Bat (Adam) and a Lady Bug (Grace). We went to a puppet show at the library that morning. It was really cute. I love our librarians. They do SO much for the kids. After that, Mike and the kids waited in the car while I had my appointment (fun, fun). We made dinner-in-a-pumpkin for dinner that night, and went to our ward's Halloween party. Grace was so cute, every time someone gave her a piece of candy, she reached in her bucket and handed them one. So adorable. She is just THE sweetest thing. After the party, we hit a few streets, because Adam was loving the candy, and simply didn't want to stop. We all had a lot of fun.

I absolutely LOVE Halloween. It's my favorite holiday. I know this sounds corny, but my favorite thing about it is, trick-or-treating. I love that once a year, everyone opens their doors, and gives candy to the kids. Communities get together and have parties. For one night, it seems like there is a whole sense of giving and love. I know that's SO strange, but I love it. It makes me feel kinda nostalgic, I guess.

Adam got a bunch of candy, which he unfortunately couldn't eat. BECAUSE... he had to go to the dentist in the morning and get 2 root canals. Can you believe it? I know I wasn't the best mom about not putting him to bed with a bottle when he was a baby and wiping his gums with a cloth, but I swear, as soon as he got teeth, that stopped. I brushed his teeth vigilantly, and he hardly ever gets soda or juice. But, his teeth are horrid. He did really well, though. And since he couldn't eat his candy, it meant that I got first dibs on the chocolate. :) I call it the "Mommy Tax." Once a year, he pays me for ALL that I do for him and provide for him... in chocolate. :) Just kidding (kinda-I did take a few Milky Ways). But, since his root canal cost us $300, I told him that it was his Christmas present... for the next 10 years. Luckily, he was still groggy when I told him that and doesn't remember, because it really wasn't a nice thing to say. And his teeth aren't his fault. Oh, well. Someday we will be out of debt. :)

Friday, November 2, 2007

Happy Day!

Happy news today. Yay!

So, my appointment went great. The doctor told me that there is a less than 1% chance of the tumor coming back and turning cancerous. There's a good chance it will spread, but normally that happens in 5-10 years, and it's very, very rarely cancerous. The appointment was made even more awkward by the fact that the oncologist is a teaching doctor, so there were several students at the appointment, too. Oh, well. After you have kids, what's the point in being embarrassed anymore, right? :)

And my awesome sister-in-law Amanda brought me some clothes for my kids, from her daughter and my other sister-in-law's sons this past weekend. So, Grace has a bunch of really adorable clothes and a pair of shoes, and Adam has some really "awesome" (I'm not allowed to call his things 'cute') clothes as well. Thanks Amanda and Shoni! We love them!

Well, I'm going to have to post later today about Halloween, because Grace is up from her nap. So... that means my break's over. :) Have a happy day everyone!

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween! It's my absolute FAVORITE day of the year! Aagh! I am SO psyched! Unfortunately, the day is slightly marred by the fact that I have to go to the oncologist. But, whatever. What better day of the year to do a scary thing, right? LOL.

I will post pics of the costumes and activities later. Have a happy and safe Halloween everyone!

Friday, October 26, 2007

He's Back!

We picked up Mike from the airport last night. The kids were SO excited to see him! Adam ran halfway across the room, almonst knocking over several people in the process, to hug him. Grace was jumping and blowing kisses like crazy. I was just happy that I no longer had to deal with 2 busy kids in an airport by myself. :) Just kidding.

He had a lot of fun. He ate at The Roof, which is this nice restaurant at the top of the Church Office building (I think that's where it is). It has a really great view of the SLC Temple. He made some friends. Took a tour of Temple Square. And got some studying in, too. He definitely passed the written portion of the exam (yay!) but it will take 2-3 weeks before he finds out the results of his QWAR Interview and Skills Training (they videotape it and review it). And he found out that they are going to be making some adjustments to pay. Right now, the pay is based off of the cost of living in Utah. Ummm.... which is WAY different than Las Vegas. So, the executives were wondering why no one stays in the Job Coach position very long in Las Vegas... and kinda figured out that no one can live off of what they pay. LOL! So, they are adjusting it. Yay! They didn't say when, but hopefully it's soon.

And hopefully Mike still HAS the job, so we can enjoy it. :)

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Total Nervousness!

Aagh! Tomorrow's the big test day for Mike! I am SOOOOO nervous! The test is divided into three parts. At 10:00, he has to do an interview/baseline review with an actress, whose playing the role of a DI emloyee with issues. Then he has lunch. Then at 2:00, he has a written exam. Then at 4:00 he has to train the same actress how to do a task at the local DI. He's SUCH a great manager and he's SO smart, but I'm still way nervous.

Why? Because Mike refused to set up a "just in case" plan. Just in case he fails, and loses his job (which I KNOW won't happen), I wanted to just have a tentative plan. But, everytime I mentioned it, he got a hurt look on his face, and asked, "You think I won't pass?" I KNOW he will pass. But, I'm a "Be Prepared" kinda girl (I would've made a great Boy Scout... if I were a boy), and I HATE not having a plan.

It doesn't matter I guess, because he's absolutley, positively going to pass, and NOT lose his job. Right?

Halloween Crafts Part I

My camera is working again, yay! So, here's the first part of the Halloween crafts we did/are doing this week. The pumpkin painting is something we always did in our dorms at NAU, and Adam really loved it. I just bought the .50 mini pumpkins, and then let them have at it with my paints. Adam had a blast. His pumpkin already has about 6 layers of paint, and once it dries again (if it ever does), he's going to add "just one more thing." Grace was more into finger painting than actually using the brush to put paint ON the pumpkin. LOL. She had fun anyway.
And these are the Tootsie Pop ghosts. You just take a Kleenex, wrap it around the sucker, and tie it with a bow. Adam drew the faces. Grace is terrified of all things Halloween, so Adam drew a "happy face" on one of the ghosts for her. So sweet! They are super-easy, and Adam loved getting to draw the faces. Grace pretty much just loves ripping them apart.

Today, we are going to brave making sugar cookie cut-outs and decorating them. Oh, boy! Wish me luck! :)

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

To Die or To Laugh...

A definite plus of Mike being out of town, is that I get the car. This afternoon, the kids and I went to the park for a couple of hours. Afterward on the way home, we passed by Target. I haven't been to Target in forever (not sure why), so I thought it would be fun to stop. I didn't really need to buy anything, but I thought it would be fun for Adam to get to look at the toys and Halloween decorations without having to rush anywhere.

On the way to the toys, we passed through the Lingerie section, and I stopped to browse through a clearance rack of bras. I really didn't think anything of it. Adam, anxious to get to the toy section, said (rather loudly), "Why do you always bring me to places where I am surrounded by pictures of women's chests?"

My first reaction was to bust up laughing, because it was such a ridiculous thing to say, and it was so weird for HIM to say it. I've never taken him bra shopping or ANYTHING like that. After a few seconds I stopped laughing, and started to die of embarrassment, as I realized other shoppers who overheard probably thought that I raised my son in a brothel or something, and were calling CPS at that very moment.

Sigh... if nothing else, 4-year-olds will keep you on your toes. That's for sure.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Updates: Cars, Clothes, Business Trips, and the Primay Program

I CAN'T believe it's been a week since my last post. Crazy! Where does the time go? We had a pretty good week. Our car hasn't been running since May. And the apartment complex finally figured it out and threatened to tow it, so we took it in this week to get it fixed. And... it's only going to be $600 to fix it! I know that sounds SO horrible, and it is. I mean, we're going to have to put it on the credit card and all. But, the initial report on it was that there was something loose in the engine, and we replaced the engine just a year ago (still owe my parents $3000 for that), and they estimated that it was going to be several thousand, so I didn't know what to do. But, we were very blessed, and it's only going to be $600. So, even though it's still completely ridiculously expensive, I'm happy. :)

Wow... those are some run-on sentences in that paragraph, but I'm too tired to try and edit them. Oh, well. :)

We finally sold Adam's old bed on And I used the money to get warm clothes for the kids (I was going to say winter, but I'm pretty sure Las Vegas doesn't have an actual winter :) ). I went to Savers (a friend in my ward told me when to go, because they have $1 deals on stuff on certain days). So, I got a jacket, 3 pairs of jeans, 1 pair of overalls, 5 long sleeved shirts, and a cardigan (all for Grace). And 2 new church shirts for Adam... all for under $20! Yay me! They didn't really have any jeans Adam's size, which I figure is because after a 4-year-old boy is done with his jeans, they probably aren't sell-able. :)

Mike is leaving tomorrow on business. He has to take this big test in Salt Lake, and he won't be back until Thursday. If he doesn't pass, he loses his job, so I'm REALLY hoping he passes. I'm really nervous with him leaving town. I hate being on my own with no family or close friends nearby. I just am hoping that the car doesn't break down or no one breaks a leg or something. It's going to be such a long week this week. Mike's "day off" is tomorrow, but he has to leave tomorrow morning for SLC, and then he won't get back until Thursday, and has to work on Friday and Saturday. I think that if he's traveling for work, he should be getting paid for work, or at least get another day off. I guess his company doesn't roll like that, though. :) Oh, well. After this test he can focus on studying to get into the Master's program. Because for some reason, we still believe that it pays to get your education. :) We are SO naive!

I have lots of fun stuff planned for this week. I saved all of the Halloween crafts and activities especially for this week, because I know it's going to be hard on the kids with Mike gone. We are going to decorate mini pumpkins, make Tootsie pop ghosts, make caramel apples, make egg carton witches, and make/decorate pumpkin cut-out cookies. I'm SO excited to do all the fun fall crafts with the kids. It's fun to have them at an age where they like that kinda stuff. I'll post some pictures of our crafts this week (if I can get my camera to work that is :) ).

Well, I'm off to make dinner. But, before I sign off, I have to mention the Primary Program. We had it today in our ward, and it was great! Adam did SO good! He memorized his part, and didn't get scared. Unfortunately, they had all of the Sunbeams behind the Sacrament table. They kept popping up and down behind it, like it was a Whack-a-Mole game, pulling off the cloth, etc. And, if all that wasn't enough... right before they sang the final song, Adam jumped up and yelled, "Mom, I have to go potty... and I can't hold it!"

There's always one, huh? :)

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Natural Cleaning and Basketball Sign-ups

I know that probably EVERYONE in the world knows this already (I'm usually the last person to hear about stuff and try it), but natural cleaners rock! I've been thinking for awhile about cleaning products. They are scary. I have a cupboard full of stuff that I use all of the time... and I got to reading all of the warnings on the back, and thought... how good is it for my kids to be breathing in all of this junk while I'm cleaning? So, I started researching more natural ways to clean, and I got to say, that it's great. I cleaned my stove today with baking soda, and I've never seen it so white. I cleaned my microwave by microwaving a 1/4 cup of vinegar in it for 3 minutes, and all of the gunk in there literally fell off! Using baking soda and vinegar works better than any other cleaners I've used... and it's SO much healthier and cheaper, too! I feel very proud of myself today for discovering this.

A few weeks ago while we were at the library, I found a pamphlet for the Parks and Rec center here in LV. Looking through it, I saw a "Basketball Skills" class for 4-year-olds. I have been wanting to put Adam in something for a while to get him around other kids. Sign-ups were today, and he got in! There was only 3 spots left, so I'm glad I signed up early today. He is SOOOOOOOOO excited! It starts on October 29th, and goes for 8 weeks, I think. It will be perfect, because it's just skills, no games or pressure, and he will make some friends, and get out of the house and exercise! He can't wait! I'm excited, too... but I can't believe that he's old enough to be in sports classes already. That's crazy!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007


I have to go to a gynecological oncologist (say that 10 times fast) for more testing. Blegh! I am SO not psyched about this. Who wants to pay $50 to be poked and prodded?

On a happy note, Mike brought me home a brownie from work yesterday. And I'm pretty sure that a chocolate brownie can fix ANY ailment. :)

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Backlash, Conference, and Projects

Okay, so I've gotten A LOT of backlash from my wanting to move to Connecticut. When I told my mom (or rather, my sister-in-law) told my mom, she was definitely NOT okay with it. Mike's not okay with it. Most everyone isn't okay with it. I still REALLY want to move to the New England area, but there are a lot of closer states with seasons and fun (like Oregon and Utah). But, it's not going to happen. We will probably be here for a while, and why would I get any say in my own life, anyways? :) And just for the record, I wasn't really testing Heavenly Father, I was just making a suggestion. :)

I really enjoyed Conference (as usual :) ). I think that my favorite talk was by President Eyring in the Sunday morning session. Our family has been thrown trial after trial this past year and a half, and I have started to have this "Why me?" attitude. His talk reminded me of the blessings that Heavenly Father has given us, and that I need to use these trials to STRENGTHEN my testimony, and not just wallow. :) I want to do what he did, and start a journal (I know, I should already have one), and write down the little ways that I have been blessed every day. I think it will really help me realize what I have been blessed with, and I will be happier.

During Conference, I always try to work on a project. For me, doing a project while listening, helps me to listen better. I'm not sure why. It's like, if I'm watching it, I get distracted, but if my hands are already busy, I'm listening better. It's hard to explain. I'm SO weird, I know. Anyway, from being in school and busy with kids, I've missed lots of craft days and Enrichments, etc. I have a closet full of projects. LOL. I chose to make this square wreath this time. It turned out pretty cute. I got it right before we moved to Las Vegas, I think. It has 3 squares, and I painted and sanded and stained each of them. Then applied a vinyl quote on each side. Then I sprayed it with matte spray. I then hung the Halloween one in the center of the wreath with twine, and wrapped some ribbon around it. I want to put some Halloween-ish garland around it as well, but I think I'll wait until it gets clearanced. The idea is to change out the ribbon and block for the different holidays (Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Valentine's Day and 4th of July, or The Wilkins, the rest of the year). It's supposed so go on the outside of the door, but I'm pretty sure it would be stolen, so it's on the inside. I LOVE it! Looking at it makes me smile, so happy day! :)

I have to have my semi-annual tumor exam today (yay....). So, I'm off. Wish me luck!

Saturday, October 6, 2007

"Boo-ing," Cute Shoes, a Decision, and Boys

Every year since we got married, Mike and I have had the tradition of "Boo-ing" members in our ward. We make up a ghost, a note, and a couple of plates of cookies, and bring them to ward members. These people pass on the note and ghost with a plate of treat to 2 more people, and so on. It's been SO much fun! Last year was the first year that Adam got to do the doorbell ditching, and he had a BLAST, so he's been begging for a year, to do it again. I have been dragging my feet on this. It's just been hard this year to get into the "Halloween mood" with the weather and all. ANYWAYS, yesterday, I finally got around to making the treats and the signs, and we're doing the ditching tonight after Priesthood Session. I tried a new recipe and they were SO easy and SO incredibly good. I had to share:

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 box spice cake mix
1 15-oz can pumpkin
1 cup chocolate chips (I used milk chocolate)

Mix spice cake mix and pumpkin together. Fold in chocolate chips. Drop in rounded teaspoons on lightly greased cookie sheets. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Enjoy!

That's it. No eggs or oil or anything. SOOOOOOO easy and absolutely yummy. Love it.

Grace got these absolutely adorable shoes for her birthday from Mike. I love them because they can go with dresses and tights or jeans. Yesterday was the first time we've worn them "out" and they are super-adorable! I wish I had a pair! She wasn't so thrilled with them. She tried to get up and walk, and realized that her legs were a big heavier. So she threw a tantrum. She's a drama queen and it was naptime. She got used to 'em after a while.

I have officially decided where I want to live............... Connecticut. I have been researching this a lot. There is little crime. Good schools. Cute small towns. Beautiful older houses. Green trees. Great weather... 4 seasons, not horribly hot summers, and lots of snow. Plus, there are all of the little New England traditions that I've read about my whole life, and never got to do: like picking blueberries, going to apple orchards, having white Christmas-es, roasting chestnuts by the fire. I'm kidding about the last one (I think... do people really do that?). New England just sounds SO romantic and there's so much history and things to DO. Let's face it... growing up, my friends and I never went citrus picking or hiking the Grand Canyon or... what fun stuff IS there to do in Arizona?. No, instead we went "romping" in the desert and pathetically tried to ride blocks of ice down dirt hills and bundled up when the weather got in the 70s. Yeah... I am serious about this. I figure it won't really be too big of a deal, since we don't live by family now and only visit at Christmas anyways. And think of all of the MEMORIES we will make and how much FUN it will be! Mike's not exactly on board, but he will get over it. :) I have prayed and told Heavenly Father that I have listened to His will on the last 2 moves, and it would be NICE if I could have a little input about where we go next. We will see how that goes. :) For now, though, I'm keeping my hopes up.

And finally... why do boys feel the need to put things in their noses? I finally got Adam out of the "put everything in your mouth" stage, and now everything's in his nose. Good grief! He has stuck a marble, a pearl (had to got to the ER for that one), various food and toys... and he came up to me yesterday like this. Goodness!

Friday, October 5, 2007

Sick Kids, Warm PJs, and Homemade Bread

Adam and Grace have had a cold for a few days now. Cough, runny nose, and fevers. Nothing too unusual. I've done this A LOT, so I knew how to take care of them. Two nights ago, however, Adam woke up at 1:00am unable to breathe. I heard a huge "thump" in his bedroom, and woke up and went in there. He was laying on the ground, struggling. I knew right away he had croup (barking cough), so I tried steaming him in the shower, etc. After 10 minutes, he wasn't getting better, and his lips were turning blue, so I drove him to the hospital (nice, because it's literally a block away). He had a high fever and a low oxygen level, so they took a chest xray, gave him 2 breathing treatments, and gave him some steroids. They thought he had pneumonia, but the xray showed it was a severe croup attack. A few hours later, he was MUCH better, and they let him go home. I got home just as it was time for Mike to go to work and Grace was waking up. Isn't that how it always goes? :) We've had to do a few more breathing treatments at night and continue the steroids, but he's on the mend.

There is nothing harder when your kids are sick. But, nothing really makes me love them more. I'm not sure what it is-their being totally dependent on me, their more complacent attitudes, the cuddling, being up all night with them, holding their hand in a hospital... I'm not sure. Maybe it's just that it makes me that much more grateful to Heavenly Father for them, and makes me realize how precious every day is.

So, even though it's still FREAKIN' hot, when Grace got sick, I totally took the opportunity to dress her in her cute warm PJs. I always try to keep my kids warm when they are sick... however, it might have been too much, because she woke up from her nap yesterday sweating. Oh, well. She's too cute anyways.

We have a very tight food budget, so I decided to start making my own bread. I've never been very good with breads (for some reason I always have the water too warm or too cold or don't knead it enough, and it never turns out). ANYWAYS, a few weeks ago, I got my bread machine out of storage (aka my grandma's shed). We got it as a Christmas gift right before we moved to Flagstaff, so we never really got to use it before it went into "storage" (at the 450 square feet that our dorm was, EVERY inch counted... lol!). So, I finally took it for a go yesterday, and IT IS AWESOME! Is there any other invention better than this? It was super easy, inexpensive, and TOTALLY YUMMY and healthy! I'm pretty psyched about it. If only I can find a way to make it calorie-free, then I'm set. :)

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Is This Really Autumn?

I absolutely, positively, LOVE autumn! It's my favorite time of year. I love the sports, the holidays, the smells, the colors, the food, the cooler weather, the leaves changing colors...

Or I would love these things if Las Vegas HAD an autumn! Seriously, I have been SO spoiled living in Flagstaff. I loved that it was actually COOL when I decorated for Halloween. I loved going on walks with the kids and collecting the leaves. I loved watching football games bundled up. It was great.

It was 90 degrees today. It is October 3rd. And it was 90 degrees today. This is NOT autumn. This is some twisted mockery of the season. I should not have my AC on still! It's funny, I grew up in Phoenix, which much like Vegas, does not have a fall season. So, you'd think that I'd be okay with this. I'm not. I never realized how much I LOVED actually having autumn these past three years until now. I am having the hardest time "getting into" the fall holidays. I'm dragging my feet decorating for Halloween. We haven't done our annual "ghost treats" yet. I haven't made anything with pumpkin in it yet. Heck, I don't even feel like baking. I seriously am missing autumn.

And I can't even begin to THINK about what winter is going to be like without snow!

Being sad about the weather has made me come to a sad realization: I don't think that I can ever live in Phoenix again. I am going to put up with Las Vegas for this year. Mike needs his job experience. And then, I seriously want to move to somewhere cooler... like (and I NEVER thought I'd say this).... Utah.

See what not having fall is doing to me? I want to move to Utah. Crazy.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Good 'Ol Days

Last night, we went to an LDS activity sponsored by 4 stakes (none of them were ours, but Mike's employees invited him). Anyways, each stake put on one 20 minute musical (Wizard of Oz, The Music Man, etc.). We sat outside on the grass, had a picnic, and the stakes provided snow cones and popcorn. Despite my suffering allergies today, it was SO MUCH FUN! It was great to be outside in really nice weather, with hundreds of other proud families watching their kids and friends put on the performances. It was fun seeing Mike's employees dressed up and being silly. It was fun to see all of the kids running around. It was just a lot of fun.

And it makes me wonder, what happened to all of the stuff that stakes and wards used to do? I mean, I grew up hearing about the great roadshows that my mom was in. My dad played church softball every week religiously (get it? Church ball religiously? :) ). It was really fun. I have been in one Saturday all-day thrown together roadshow, which was fun, but not the same. I have never been in a ward where they had Church softball. Do stakes and wards still do this kind of stuff, and maybe I'm just in boring areas? Are we all so PC nowadays in the Church, that we can't stand a little competition? I'm missin' the good ol' days now.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Oh, Yum!

So, my secret goal in life is to make THE world's best chocolate chip cookies. I have this 50s-dream of living in a house, in a really great neighborhood, with lots of nice kids, and baking incredible cookies, and having all of the neighbor kids over to eat them. I would be known as the "cool" mom, and my kids would be very well liked. It's not that I have doubts about Adam and Grace being able to make friends on their own or anything, but having your mom be Mrs. Fields, never hurts, right?

So, anyways, Adam and I bake a batch every week (with my own recipe that I change a bit each time). Then I have everyone I know taste-test them. It's fun. Adam loves baking. And Mike's happy because he's guaranteed cookies at least once a week.

Well, last week I was at Wal-Mart, and I saw a bag of Andes Peppermint Chips Baking Bits on clearance for 50 cents! So, I bought them, and mixed them in a batch of my soon-to-be-famous cookie recipe, with cocoa added. They were chocolatey and minty and were beyond incredible. So, now I'm all bummed, because now I have hit on an extremely delish cookie, that would guarantee my children friends-for-life, but I'm thinking that since these bits were clearanced, maybe they aren't going to make them anymore. :( I guess it's back to the kitchen for us.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

5 Things I Never Thought I'd Say Before 9:00am

1) Please stop licking your sister!
2) No, your paper airplane does not have mold on it.
3) Why is there peanut butter on the ceiling?
4) You can NOT start a crust collection! (Adam wanted to start collecting the crusts I cut off of his sandwhiches and pizza).
5) Why are you standing on the kitchen counter naked? (He thought it would be easier to "fly" if he had no clothes on to weigh him down).

It's gonna be a long day. :)

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Lovin' the DI

So, for some reason, Mike working at DI (Deseret Industries) has changed the way that I look at thrift stores. I've never really "looked down" on them or anything, it's just that I didn't really see them as a place to shop. This has totally changed. I got all of Adam and Grace's summer clothes there (can't beat Old Navy and GAP shirts for 50 cents), some really crazy-weird-cool recipe books, and when I was there a few weeks ago, I found a $50 pair of jeans for me for $3! I love that they are already worn-in (I hate the stiff feel of brand-new jeans). They are my new faves. I feel like I've been kind of a snob for never going to thrift stores before. I mean, the kids are going to ruin the clothes either way, so why spend a ton of money on them?

Tuesday, September 11, 2007


So, I've been thinking about doing a blog for a while, to keep in touch with everyone. It's hard to talk on the phone, because Adam and Grace think that a moment that I'm not paying attention to them, is a moment wasted. I also want to keep up with our family history, and journal about what we do, and typing is SO much easier for me than sitting down and writing in a journal. How sad is that? So, I'm taking the plunge and entering the blogging world. Enjoy!