Friday, December 30, 2011

Falling off the grid

I can't believe I haven't posted since before school started!!  Where does the time go?  Well, I guess I know the answer to that, I've been extremely busy!

First up, *I* started school!  I took the first semester of Anatomy and Physiology and I got an A.  It took a LOT of work.  It was a little more stressful than I thought it would be, but worth every minute studying when I got my final grade.  :)  Add to that shuffling around 5 kids to the places they need to be, cleaning, laundry, my flower business, and working part time as a medical assistant, and I think you can begin to understand why I haven't updated very frequently.  I also started running and that has helped to keep me a bit sane.  Life is a bit stressful, very busy, but a lot of fun mixed in.  :)

Second up, Goose started middle school and honestly its been a huge adjustment for all of us.  Waking up earlier and keeping track of 6 different classes/homework/papers has been rough.  After a mid semester crisis, the teachers stepped in and have been giving him better support and we've made some changes at home to encourage him as well...  Here's hoping the rest of the year goes a bit smoother.  He is still an amazing reader and very smart.  He LOVES his baby sister and is a huge help with her.  Twister wants to be just like him and Goose is good about trying to include him when he can. 

Sweetie is in fourth and doing really well.  She is a good student and doesn't need a lot of monitoring to get her work done (and done well at that!)  She is a great helper with her siblings and really just fun to be around.  She was thrilled to have a girl close to her age move into the house next door this past summer.  They have had a lot of fun together, and jump on the trampoline and play outside frequently.

Tank is in first grade and also a big help and fun to be around.  She has so much spunk in her!  I love to go plays or other events with her because she is so animated about how much she loves it.  :)  She is getting pretty good at reading and is doing great in school.

Twister started preschool this year and is really at a super fun age.  When I was talking to him just the other day he said..." Mom, did you know when it gets dark outside, that I can see lots of Christmas lights??!  Its kind of like magic."  He is very charming and very cute.  Anyone else think that spells trouble?  :) 

Cinderelly is another charming, and cute little one.  She is talking up a storm and thinks everyone ought to be able to understand her.  She smiles and waves at everyone, but is wary of anyone wanting to pick her up... she is much too independent for that. I recently caught her practicing faces in the mirror.  Let me tell you, she doesn't NEED any practice!  LOL!

Benson . . . I could write a novel about him.  He is wonderful and amazing and my best friend.  In addition, he has really been struggling with a variety of health issues for a year and a half now, and every test seems to come back mostly "normal".  We are in the middle of some more testing, so we will see what that shows.  It seems like each specialist is able to find something worth treating, but no one has answers as to what is causing the symptoms and how they are related.  Despite the frustrations of pain, fatigue and other issues, he is working hard and pressing on.  He is very valued at his work and seems to get more responsibilities as they realize how much he is capable of. 

So, there is a quick recap of our last few months.  We haven't completely fallen off the grid, just took a small break.  :)  Here's hoping to a 2012 full of more fun, more busy-ness and maybe a few answers. 

Monday, August 22, 2011

Last day of Summer

Many of my friends had their kids start school today, so you may have been expecting the traditional start of school pictures. However, today was actually our last day of summer. My awesome dad offered to help me take the kids to Morton Arboretum. They had a blast!
Hanging out in a TINY doghouse.  LOL!

So grown up.  *sigh*

Just after this picture was snapped, Twister fell into the pond behind us.  Opps.  At least he was in good company, Goose fell in too.

Goose was insistant that Cinderelly be involved in the spider web.  He would carefully step over  a few chains, then pick her up and place her in another hole.  She thought it was funny. 

My cute little spider.

He insisted on wearing his sunglasses all day.  He looked so darn cute in them.  Though, he would correct me and tell me he looked cool, not cute.  Cute is for girls. 
This much fun is exhausting. 

My favorite picture of the day. My kids LOVE their Papa!  And he is SO good about letting them know he loves them too.

It's been a good summer. Tomorrow starts the craziness. Goose will start middle school. Sweetie starts 4th, Tank starts 1st, and I start an Anatomy class to work towards my nursing degree. AGH!!!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

My Mini Me

During the past couple weeks, I've had so many comments on how much our little Cinderelly looks like me.  This is all very new to me despite her being my 5th.   :)  What do you think?

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Some things never change

Some things never change, isn't that great!!  This weekend I got to meet up with my old college roommate and her family.  It had been about 8 years since we last saw each other, but before we moved apart, we we nearly inseparable.  :)  Its amazing to me how so much time can pass, and it doesn't seem to matter.  We stayed up much too late catching up and reminiscing.  I think that must be what heaven will be like.  Good friends sharing their joys and trials and what they've learned.  Here's a few pictures from our adventures in Nauvoo, IL where we met up.

Our families have expanded quite a bit in the last few years.  The kids got along great, which made the whole weekend that much more fun.  It was rewarding to see the kids bond the way we had years before.  :)

And Nauvoo was just as fun as it has been every time we have gone. The kids love the pioneer pastimes area. 

 The group went on a wagon ride without me, since I've developed an allergy to horses that has only ever manifested itself on that same wagon ride in the past.  Call me a party pooper if you will, but I prefer breathing to a wagon ride anyday. 

We were afraid the pageant was going to be rained out.  I teased Benson that it looked like the Heavens were not as happy with this new pageant.  We came to expect miracles there, the sky's always seemed to clear in time for the show.  Well, it may not be the City of Joseph pageant, but I suppose the Lord is happy with this new pageant as well because the sky cleared just in time for the show to go on. 

We also visited many of the pioneer homes.  We stopped by the blacksmith's shop and got our prairie diamonds and the brick yard to get our Nauvoo brick.  I always enjoy hearing the history the missionaries share.  Those pioneers went through so much during that time.

On Tuesday we went to Carthage. 

There is always such a special spirit there.  My kids are blessed to claim both survivors of that day as ancestors.  Willard Richards saved John Taylor's life... and it is through their lineage that we are here today.  Pretty cool.

So Nauvoo was cool and spending time with my good friend was priceless.  Hoping its not another 8 years before we can align the stars and meet up again.  Thanks for a great weekend Mer!!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Catching up a bit

So, I didn't post about our family gathering last month.  My brother came to visit us with his 4 girls...  So we had 17 of my parents 24 grandkids in town.  :)  So much fun.  So, one of our big adventures was to take everyone downtown  to the Museum of Science and Industry.  It was so much fun.
They had a few areas like this where you actually interact with the image they are projecting.  In the picture above, if you hold your hand still enough, one of the butterfly's will actually land on your hand.  In another one, some balls would either gather into your arms, or fall to the ground below based on what you were doing.  Very cool.
Twister was completely intrigued by the ball suction thingy.  He went back and forth grabbing the balls and watching the vacuum suck them up up and away.  :)
Cinderelly was pretty entranced by the floating ball.  No barriers were going to stop her!!
The baby chicks hatching were pretty amazing to watch.  They know the exact gestation of the eggs, so they put the eggs in the public incubator on the day they are scheduled to hatch.  Could've spent all day there watching them, truly miraculous.  :)
The weather science area was really fascinating as well.  They have this neat vortex thing that looks like a giant tornado.  At one point, a few of the kids were invited to stand in it!  Very cool.
There were a lot of other really neat random things as well.  The raining fog here made a really neat effect.  Eventually all good things must come to an end.  And there was no exception here:

We pushed the kids to their limit and it was time to head home.  They slept beautifully through the huge traffic jam as we headed home.  I feel so blessed to have the family that I do.  The kids LOVE their cousins, they are really best friends.  I can't wait to see how they interact as they head off to college and stuff in the future.  :)

Anyway, since they left, its been back to the summer grind.  We play outside in the heat, and hide inside when we can't take it anymore.  We've made forts, camped in the backyard, caught lightning bugs, played at the park and more.  Life is never dull with 5 kids.  :)  And since I can't leave this post with such an unhappy picture, I'll leave you with this:

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Chicken Pox

A quick story to lighten the mood today.  We saw some turkeys in our yard this morning.  I pointed them out to Sweetie and Tank who were sitting in the kitchen.  The conversation went like this:

Sweetie:  Oh look, there they are!! 

Tank:  Cool!

Sweetie:  You have to be careful if you are outside with them because they bite.

Tank:  I know!!  Mom even got a bite on her forehead once.

Mom:  No I didn't.

Tank:  Yes you did, you showed me that mark!  The one on your forehead.

Mom:  You mean the scar that I have from chicken pox??

Tank:  No it wasn't chicken, it was from the turkeys.

Mom:  I think  you're confused... my scar is from chicken pox, which is not actually from a chicken (or a turkey), its a type of rash. 

Well, it made me laugh anyway.  :) 

Summer has been crazy around here.  Crazy weather, and lots of restless kids.  Its hard finding things to keep them all occupied.  They like to play outside but the mosquitos are horrendous this year, so we have to be relentless on the bug spray.  Especially since Twister has such an allergy to them.  Have I shown you this picture before??

He swells up like crazy with a single bite.  The picture was from last year, but we've had some doozies this year as well.  It helps when I get some hydrocortisone on it immediately. 

Anyway, this summer is going well despite our crazies.  :)  We're excited for next month when we are going on a small vacation and meeting up with my old college bestie and her family.  :)  It will be a blast!! 

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Migraine blessing

As background, I am a migraine sufferer.  Before kids, I would get them a couple times per month.  During pregnancy and breastfeeding, I usually got a reprieve and got them far less often.  I was telling my BFF last week how it had been almost 2 years since I'd had a migraine.  Huge blessing.  :)  However, somewhat ironically, last Friday I got a migraine. 
I'm the Teachings for our Times teacher in our Relief Society (our church's women's group). I was scheduled to teach on Sunday.  For me, the best way to "treat" my migraines is to take medicine when I get the aura, then get to sleep.   So, that is what I did.  Unfortunately, it didn't kick the migraine this time.  I woke up on Saturday still with an awful headache.  I rested, I napped... I took medicine, but I could not focus at all. 
I knew I needed to finish preparing my lesson, but I was feeling completely useless.  I could see the words on the page, and I thought I was reading them, but I could not seem to retain them or make any sort of coherent thought about them.  I wanted to pass off the lesson to someone else, but my "backup" teacher was out of town and I didn't feel right about passing it off so late to anyone else.  So, Saturday night, I sat down at the computer and forced myself to create an outline.  I really don't even remember any of it making sense STILL at that point, but I got some questions ready to ask and made some handouts with quotes from the talk I was supposed to be teaching. 
I went to bed early hoping to kick the migraine and wake up with some clarity of thought so that I could fix the lesson plan I started.  No such luck.  Still foggy and hurting Sunday morning.  Begin super praying.  lol.  really though, I was not feeling capable of teaching, so I prayed as hard as I could muster that the Spirit would teach the lesson that day. 
As I got up to teach, I hoped that the migraine would melt away for at least the time I had to stand up there.  It didn't.  But something else happened.  Despite my feeling as though I couldn't make a coherent thought, and could hardly read the words on my paper, I WAS able to teach.  It was as though my spiritual self took over for those 45 minutes.  I had people tell me that they never would have known I had a migraine unless I had told them.  My body was weak at that moment, but the Spirit was strong.  I honestly don't remember a lot of the lesson, but I know there was good discussion and a feeling of peace and hope in the room. 
The Lord doesn't always remove our physical challenges, but He DOES strenthen us when we are striving to do His will.

Monday, May 16, 2011


So, here it has been almost a month... again... since I last wrote.  Somehow, life is super busy with 5 kids.  :)  Who knew? Lots of laundry, lots of dishes, cooking dinner, sweeping floors, picking up toys.  I could go on, but I know you all know.

So, I've made the decision to go back to school.  I'm starting in the fall at the local community college.  I have a handful of pre-requisites I need to take, then I'll apply for the nursing program there for Fall of 2013.  I'm really excited, but also really nervous.  I took all but 1 of the pre-req's to get into the nursing program at BYU.  I tried to take the last one twice, but withdrew before I failed.  To be clear, I have always been a good student.  I got good grades in HS, and got into BYU.  At BYU, I got mostly A's and B's.  However, when I tried to take the anatomy class there, I failed every quiz for the first few weeks before I withdrew.  Granted, I was newly married and didn't want to spend every waking hour in the lab studying cadavers...  but I DID study and I was failing.  So, as I mentioned, this makes me nervous to go back.  Especially to start with Anatomy as my first class.  But, I have to believe I'm at a more mature place in my life, and I know I can do it!!!  I worked for years as a medical assistant doing most of the things the nurses did, but getting paid a fraction of what they do.  No longer!!!   I will get those magical letters to add on to the end of my name and I will LOVE IT.  :)

As for my business, I've not been doing much with it.  Every once in a while, I'll get an order off of my website or Etsy, but not very frequently.  I don't feel much push to promote it myself.  Its really a hard thing to do online.  I usually got the most sales during the craft shows I would do each fall, but with me starting school this fall, I don't think I can manage juggling shows as well.  So, I'm a bit in limbo about what to do with my business.  I suppose I can just put it on hold and see what happens with life.  It would be nice if I could figure out a way to sell my art without putting all the work into a show where I may or may not sell anything.  I'd also like to branch out a bit and try some new crafty things.  Anyway, I suppose this is just ramblings.  I'm not likely to close up business to the point of refusing a new order if I got one.  So, I guess I'll just see how things roll.

The kids are all doing well.  They are anxious for summer to show up here.  Although, weather wise, we've hardly had spring!   We had 2 days last week when it was in the upper 80's, then 2 days later the high was 45!!  I would love to have more than a fleeting 70 degree day.  Just a week or two in that range is all I'm asking. *sigh*

I'll leave you with a few pictures from the last few weeks.  I feel very blessed, life is good.

 Being three is exhausting

The trampoline is "hair-raising" fun. 
Fun for the boys at Papa's house

Tank's phonic spelling.  Someone is not allowed to touch the remote every day.  LOL.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Digital Scrapbooking

So, I'm way way way behind on scrapbooking in the sense of putting pictures together to make cute photo books.  I think the last page did was for when Tank was born.  She's 6.  Where does the time go??!  Anyway, I'm thinking about digital scrapbooking as an alternative to get it actually done.  I found the shabby princess site that has a handful of free designs available to download and this is what I did today.

I think I could get into this.  :)  Any of you have any great sites you want to share for getting more templates?

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Guess who is . . .

taking steps!!!  Just in time for her upcoming birthday!  I'd say she is walking, but its still not her preferred method of getting around.  Though, she does LOVE the attention she gets for it.  :)

Funny story, she was taking a couple steps between my Mom and I.  As she got close to either of us she would sort of lunge forward and fall into our arms.  Adorable right?  :)

Twister could not handle the amount of love and praise she was getting for this.  So, he says, "Look Mom, I know how to fall too!"  He walked from behind my mom over to me and fell into my arms.  :)  Hilarious.  He could NOT understand why we thought this was so funny.  It was charming and amazing when Cinderelly did it.  Why not him?