Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Sick Baby!

Josh woke up with the typical croup bark yesterday.

All of my kids inherited my bad lungs, and we've dealt with croup with Adam and Grace several times, so I began the whole steaming/cold routine, humidifier, etc. However, he was still breathing poorly, and since croup is always worse at night, Mike brought him into the doctor for a breathing treatment to get him through the night.

He was instructed to do the treatment every 4 hours, and we did. By the next afternoon, though, he was so much worse. Just laying down, only using his stomach to breathe, and the skin below his neck sucking way in, which are all signs of NOT doing well. I so, so wanted to avoid an ER visit. We said prayers and tried to have faith, and Mike gave him a blessing. And I guess I'm a terrible mom, because the blessing was all about how the doctors in the emergency room would be blessed to help him, and that that was what he needed.

I guess I need to be hit over the head once in a while.

Mike took him to the ER, and they got him in right away. He was diagnosed with bronchiolitis/croup (can you have both, I don't know), and given several breathing treatments. In order to go home and not be admitted, he had to go two hours after the treatments without wheezing. Well, that didn't happen with the first 2. He and Mike were there a LONG time. ;)

After the third treatment, he was able to stop wheezing and came home! Thank you to those who kept him in your prayers! He is doing so much better!

(And what a good lesson for me of being thankful for the blessings of medicine and science that Heavenly Father has blessed us with!)

ABCs of Christmas

I know I haven't caught up on November yet, but today begins our ABCs of Christmas, so I thought I'd share the ideas (plus, have them handy in a list for me that I can't lose... ha!). I got the idea from a friend and I love it! Such a fun way to celebrate!

We're also planning on doing our Christmas book countdown, serving one another as a gift to the Savior and placing "hay" in the "manger" for each act of service, and (maybe, I hope) the 12 days of Christmas for someone. There are so many fun ideas out there! Love it!

A - Angels (making these angels and talking about the angel Gabriel)
B - Bells (making jingle bell necklaces and singing "Jingle Bells")
C - Candy canes (making candy cane ornaments and cookies)
D - Dear Santa (writing Santa letters and mailing)
E - Elves (our elf game will begin, make pinecone elves, and watching Elf)
F - Fire (roasting marshmallows and singing carols around the fire)
G - Gingerbread (decorating small gingerbread houses)
H - Ho! Ho! Ho! (making a fun Santa craft and playing "pin the hat on Santa")
I - Icicles (making icicles for our windows)
J - Jesus (making a baby Jesus craft)
K - Kris Kringle (talking about the different names for Santa and making a craft)
L - Lights (looking at the lights at Ethel M's and around the neighborhood)
M - Manger (making a manger for our baby Jesus)
N - Nativity (making this nativity)
O - Ornaments (making salt dough ornaments)
P - Presents (finish buying/wrapping our family presents)
Q - Quest (talking about the quest of the Wisemen and play a game about the Wisemen)
R - Reindeer (watch Rudolph and make a reindeer craft)
S - Star and Shepherd's (talk about the star and the significance of the shepherd's, make/decorate star cookies, craft)
T - Treats and Trees (delivering treats to friends and playing this tree game)
U - Under (sleeping under the tree)
V - Visit (visit with friends for a Christmas craft/treat)
W - Wreath (making a wreath... not sure what kind yet)
X - Xmas (Xmas comes from the Greek spelling of Christmas, so we'll do some "Christmas Around the World" treats/crafts)
Y - Yule Log (dessert after Christmas Eve dinner and party!)
Z - Zzzzzzs (after a long, fun Christmas day!)

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Thanksgiving Trip Day 5: Home

Not too many pictures. We said our good-bye's. Loaded up our car. Began the long drive back. Hit some traffic. Had less (but still way too many) rest stops. Had a little carsickness. Had been planning on being in Las Vegas for dinner, but were in Kingman at 7:30, so we stopped at Burger King.

The kids were starving or something.



Josh really, really loves ketchup. Apparently.

We pulled in at about 9:45, un-loaded and tried to get the kids bathed and in bed (we had church the next day so bed time could NOT be negotiable).

Mike and I crashed pretty soon after that.


We had such a FANTASTIC trip! It was so wonderful to be able to spend so much time with everyone!!! We are so blessed to have such wonderful families and that Mike was able to get the time off of work, so that we could spend time with them!

Thanksgiving Trip Day 4: Temple Lights

On Friday we spent the day with the Rice side of the family. Adam and Grace loved hanging out with their aunts and uncles, great-grandma's, and Grammy and Papa, playing on the playground in the backyard, feeding the chickens, and playing with Grammy and Papa's (and Nathan's) toys. Adam was even able to earn some old toys of Nathan's by being his special Christmas lights helper.

Grace, Adam, and my mom put on a puppet show. Grace called everyone to, "Gather around and take a seat." She began (what seemed like) a nice story. Adam jumped in and the puppet show took on a more, uh, violent tone. ;) The zebra began attacking the other puppets. We all had a good laugh out of it.

That night we all went to the Christmas lights at the Mesa Temple together. My parents loaded up their 15-passenger van with everyone and we headed out there. We made it just in time to watch the lights being turned on for the first time that season. Way cool!

Adam and Grace (and Josh) have never been to the temple lights and Mike and I were so excited to be able to bring them. There's no better way to bring in the Christmas season than being at the temple and remembering what Christmas is really all about.

We got back late, but Adam and Grace fell asleep right away. It was such a fun day!

(All pictures taken by my brother, Doran. Thanks!)

Thanksgiving Trip Day 3: Thanksgiving

On the last Thanksgiving that we spent in Phoenix (when Grace was just a few months old), we decided not to do both Thanksgivings. It's just too much. So, we spent that one with my side of the family.

And then we spent the next 3 in Las Vegas.

This year we were FINALLY able to make it down again, and we spent it with Mike's side of the family. I love being able to stay the entire time at one Thanksgiving, rather than switching off... so much easier!

We had such a great time! Everyone met at the church for a big Thanksgiving potluck. Almost 100 people came and it was CRAZY fun! Adam and Grace LOVED being able to run around with their cousins, and I loved getting to talk to everyone. It was so wonderful!

Plus, seriously, it is so ridiculously nice being in charge of just one dish, rather than the entire meal.

I think we're just going to have to make it down for Thanksgiving every year.

Not sure how Mike's co-workers are going to feel about that one. ;)

Afterward, we went back to Mom and Dad W*'s house and spent some more time with cousins and family. Too, too fun!

Mike and his Dad carving the turkey. Don't ya love totally obvious captions?

Kids table with (a few) of my cute nieces and nephews.

Adam is a meat-potatoes-roll kinda guy on Thanksgiving. No colored veggies allowed.

Yeah, that's MY pie, Josh.

She was NOT born in a barn. However, she may just have been raised in one. At least, that's how it feels to me some days.

All little girls love their Uncle Patrick. Seriously. He has magical niece powers. And a cool phone.

This is Josh with his his cousin, Matt. Matt really wanted the car, and kept trying to trade Josh for it by rolling the ball away, so that Josh would leave the car and go for the ball. Unfortunately, Josh has 2 siblings who have tricked him out of numerous toys his entire first year, so he's wised up. ;) It was too cute to watch, though!

Thanksgiving Trip Day 2: Park & FHE

We went to the park on Wednesday morning, and hung out with my side of the family. It was a really fun park, and the kids got to fish, chase ducks/birds, play on the playground, and with their aunts/uncles/grandparents/great-grandparents. It was SO great to see (almost) everyone! We had so much fun!

We had a yummy lunch and a mini birthday celebration for Josh. He loved his cupcake!

Oh my stinkin' heck he's cute. I love his little scrunchy face - Adam and Grace made the same exact one when they were his age (if I had a scanner, I'd prove it).

Mike and I may only make one type of child, but at least it's a super-cute type. ;)

Anyways, after the park we headed over to my brother and sister-in-law's house and hung out for a little while, before heading back to Mom and Dad W*'s to get cleaned up for that night.

Every month Mike's side of the family has a big Family Home Evening night. I'm always so sad that we miss it, but we were able to go to the November FHE that night. We had a lesson about gratitude and then exchanged our Jesse tree ornaments for the year.

Picture by my sister-in-law, Tiffin

I LOVE the Jesse tree ornament tradition! It's so fun to go through them every year and talk about what they all mean.

Grandma W* also makes all of the grandchildren an ornament (and a special fun bag) every year. This year's ornament was a cute Santa one:

I love it! In the bag she gave Adam and Grace she had made a really fun treat... a marshmallow gun! We've had SO much fun with these!

We ended the night with some treats. Josh thoroughly enjoyed his. ;)

I love being with all of my nieces/nephews and Mike's siblings. It's always fun with them. We had such a great Wednesday with BOTH side of our family. We are SO blessed!

Thanksgiving Trip Day 1: Flagstaff

We just got back from a FANTASTIC trip to Phoenix for Thanksgiving. Seriously. We had so much fun and I loved it all.

However, it is nice to be home.


We left our house Tuesday morning bright and early at 5:00am as planned.


We had some technical difficulties.

(By technical, I mean, "snooze button".)

We finally got going at 8:00 and arrived in Flagstaff at about 2:00. It was actually a really fun trip. We had downloaded some "Junie B. Jones" books to listen to from the library, and it made the time go fast. Well, except for the approximate 7,092 times we stopped for Adam and Grace to alternately use the restroom. We would literally pull out of one city and another one would yell, "I need to go NOW!"

Drinks are now banned on road trips.

Our plan was to go to NAU and get my diploma problems figured out and then go to a park and have a picnic lunch. However, NAU is being most uncooperative about my diploma (that I should have gotten YEARS ago), so we just drove around and showed the kids our dorm, the hospital Grace was born in, the parks we played at, the different buildings that Adam would tag along with us to go to class at, the church, etc. I was surprised at how much Adam didn't remember. That shouldn't surprise me; we left when he was 3. I just have so many memories with him there, so it kind of made me sad that he didn't remember.

We went to a park, where it was cold and snowy. The kids went out and played in the snow for approximately 4 seconds before the snow soaked through their clothes and they ran back to the car, with Adam yelling, "I have frostbite! I'm losing my toes!"

No more science books for him. Sheesh.

Doesn't this picture just SCREAM, "We love snow!"

We got them changed and warmed, and then Mike made us sandwiches while standing outside in the cold.

He's such a good guy.

By the way, for some weird reason I've been craving sprouts. I don't know. That's such a weird thing to crave. I packed some for our trip, and this sandwich was the best sandwich ever. It may have been because I hadn't eaten that day, but really, it was so good. It made me think for a second I could open a sandwich shop. And then Mike rolled his eyes at me. Whatever. I heart you, sprouts.

I really miss Flagstaff, especially this time of year (being in a small-town for Christmas is the BEST). I miss the people, our friends, being able to walk everywhere, and the weather. It was really nice to visit.

We eventually got going again, stopped in Flagstaff twice more for the restroom (seriously, WHAT were they drinking???), stopped in every town along the way for the same reason, and finally arrived in Phoenix at about 8:00.

It ended up being a really fun day.

Even if we arrived 4 hours later than I had planned.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

An "Owie" Kind of Day

We had some friends over this afternoon to play. As the boys were racing their Hot Wheels, Grace accidentally was in the line of fire, and got this:

Poor thing.

That night after Mike got home, she was swinging back-and-forth with her arms on the chair, and slipped and hit her head on the entertainment center and got this:

She kept crying, "it's an owie kind of day for me."

She's feeling better and is happily showing off her wounds. She loves how horrified people are when they see her ear.



Friday, November 19, 2010

Thanksgiving Lunch

Grace looks kinda creepy in this picture. But, it's all I got. Sorry.

I made everyone a fun Thanksgiving lunch today, being it's the last day before Thanksgiving break and all.

I thought Adam would love it, but he wasn't very impressed.

He said it wasn't "filling."

I must trade him in soon for a child who is more enthusiastic. And who doesn't require as much food.


Anyways, here's what I made:

Turkey sandwiches = turkey
Potato chips = mashed potatoes
Cranberry trail mix = cranberries
Veggie sticks = veggie tray
Pumpkin cookies = pumpkin pie

I don't know why I bothered writing all of that out. It's kinda obvious now that I look at it.

But I'm not erasing it.

Grace and I really enjoyed our lunch (it filled us up just fine), and I had so much fun making it. I love making themed lunches for the kids!

This Week...

- I made scripture clothes for sharing time using this tutorial and some super-cheap material from Wal-Mart. We've had so much fun re-enacting scripture stories using them. Plus, our family nativity re-enactment at Christmas this year is going to be magnificently realistic.

That is, it will be slightly more realistic than in the past.

Light sabers were really not at Jesus' birth.

- We tried making these as a special Thanksgiving treat.

They ended up looking like this:

So we improvised and did this instead:

Kind of abstract-art turkeys.

- Grace tried being all sweet and made peanut butter sandwiches for everyone for lunch.

And then I caught her licking the peanut butter off of them.

I didn't tell Adam or Mike.

- Josh had his "almost 12 month" blood work done. He screamed and screamed right until they poked him with the needle.

Then he was fine.

- We had a fun library storytime and made Native American story-telling bags.

My kids used them to tell me strange, strange stories of elephants stealing M&Ms while I made dinner.

- We had a good week. However... the best part of all...

Mike. Shaved. Off. His. Mustache.

No picture, but believe me, he's been growing it for a few weeks and I could NOT be happier!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Future Hallmark Card Employee?

Adam made me a whole stack of cards for my birthday.

He presented them to me at dinner.

I'm thinking I have a future Hallmark card employee in my family.

The cards:

Like Hot Things? (outside)

Hope you do because you have a "fiery" birthday. (inside)

I do like hot things. Though one may not appreciation the insinuation that their birthday was going to be "fiery" because of so many candles on one's cake.

Oh Give Me a Home Where We Have Birthdays Always... (outside)

Have a Wild Birthday! (inside)

Does his use of the word "wild" mean that I probably should pay closer attention to the cards he reads in the birthday section at Target? And the buffalo rocks.

Parenting with Love & Logic (outside)

Go Crazy! It's Your Birthday! (inside)

As in "Go Crazy and DON'T Discipline Me Today"? And is that a cane that he's holding? Because that's not what Love & Logic teaches. Unless I haven't read that chapter yet. If that's case, I should. Or is threatening me with a cane Adam's idea of crazy? Hmmm...

Waiting to Fly? (outside)

Because You are Soaring Away with Birthdays! (inside)

Again with the age thing.

There are no words.

However, it's days like this when I really exactly how happy I am that I had kids.

Mike has never made me a card with a buffalo on it.