Sunday, December 28, 2008

A White Christmas

Not only was it Mique's first Christmas, but she also got a white Christmas. We only took her outside for a minute, but I had to take her out in the snow for her first time.
Asher loved to walk around in it and giggled about it, but that was about the extent of his play. He did help with the snowman as best as he could.

It was Jamison's first snow angel. At first she did not know what to think of being thrown down in the snow, but she caught on quickly and loved making an angel.

Caleb loved the idea of a snowball fight until he got hit in the face the first time. Thank goodness it did not keep him from launching more snowballs.

The snowball fight with the kids turned into more of a snowball fight between me and Grant. It was so much fun playing like a kid again. I do not love driving on the snow, but I sure love playing in it...especially with my family!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Jingle Bells

I love it when little kids sing, especially my little kids. I used to have Asher sing I am a child of God all the time because I thought it was so cute. The newest is Jingle Bells, and I just had to share. My sweet little Asher Boy and his sweet little singing voice.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Things I do not want to forget about my kids

As I was getting Miquelyn down for a nap I was thinking about a few things and wanted to write them down so I do not forget.

Jamison: I never want to forget how cute it is when she asks me very sincerely and so sweet, "So mamma, what did you do today while I was at school?" It makes me feel like we have a friendship and just like I want to know what she did at school, she want to know what I did at home. She is my sweet little peanut!

Caleb: Yesterday I was reading him his Christmas card from his teacher and at the end of it she wrote: Love Ms Michelle. He immediately said, "I do love Ms Michelle." This kid is such a lover and so sincere. He is a tender soul and I love that about him.

Asher: Even when he is trouble he says, "I need you Mamma." It melts my heart. He was supposed to be taking a nap today and I had to go in and put him back in bed. He said, "I want you to seep with me Mamma." So I laid in bed with him and wrapped my body around his chubby little one. It did not take long for him to give up. The sound of his voice saying, "I lub you mamma" melts my heart.

Miquelyn: She is a busy little body and never stops moving. When she is not happy or does not want to go to sleep she stiffens right up. Today I wrapped her in a blanket and decided to lay down with her to get her to sleep even though I had a million things to do. She was not looking to tired, but seconds after we laid down she relaxed and not long after dosed off. I am so glad I stepped away from my chaos, shut off my mind and just enjoyed the feeling of my baby snuggled up close and kissing her sweet head. Those are feelings I never want to forget.

It is impossible to write how much I love these little Munchkins, but I hope they always feel it and know it!

8 things

I got tagged and actually like doing this, mainly because I like to learn about other people, and think a little more about myself. Here is goes:

8 tv shows I enjoy watching:
1. THE OFFICE (my all time favorite!)
2. The Mentalist
3. CSI New York
4. Numbers
5. Survivor Man
6. Whale Wars
7. America's Next Top Model
8. Project Runway

8 things that happened yesterday :
1. I made Caramel corn (and ate a lot of it too)
2. For FHE we delivered goodies to friends
3. I went to Walmart in my pjs
4. I forgot treats for Caleb's school party, but managed to round them up
5. I read a letter from Johnathon..happy day!
6. I got all the beds made
7. I changed innumerable diapers
8. I kissed my husband as much as I could

8 things I am looking forward to:
1. Christmas time meals...mmmm cannot wait
2. Watching my family open their presents
3. A day to sleep in (wishful thinking I know)
4. Christmas break and having Jamison home with us again for a couple weeks
5. The half marathon, mostly running it with Grant
6. The body I will have when I lose the weight
7. Talking to JD on the phone
8. Being together as a family for a whole day without any pressing business

8 things I love about winter:
1. Fires in the fireplace
2. hot chocolate
3. Christmas
4. a change in wardrobe
5. snuggling up under blankets
6. The peace outside when it has snowed
7. Soups!
8. Summer is just around the bend!

8 things on my wish list:
1. That my kids will all outlive me
2. That Grant and I will grow old together
3. That I will feel like I find my mind and sanity
4. That my kids will always know how much I love them
5. That my kids will always feel comfortable talking to me
6. That the economy would balance out
7. That I could make my Heavenly Father proud
8. That people around me would know how insanely happy I am!

8 people I tag:
1. Sue
2. Amy
3. Kimberly
4. Ashley
5. Britney
6. Rachel
7. Janae
8. Holly

Have fun and I will await your responses!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

A Name and a Blessing

On November 30th Grant Blessed Miquelyn. It was one of those experiences I look forward to for so long, and before I know it, it is already gone in a blink of an eye. Asher was kind of throwing a fit, but I still managed to write down some things with which she was blessed. The problem is now I cannot find the paper...go figure. If I ever find it (or my mind, has anyone seen it lately, because I have not in quite a awhile) I will post what was said. A few of the things I remember are that he blessed her to know what a joy she has been to our family and that she has brought so many smiles to our family. He blessed her that her organs would function properly and that she would be healthy. He blessed her to be a profitable servant of the Lord and an awareness of the importance of the gospel in her life. I wish I could remember more details, but this will have to do for now. Miquelyn, your smiles are unmatched and they truly bring innumerable smiles to our home. I love you little peanut butter and am glad you are with us now!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Calling in sick

Can you call in sick when you are a mother? Well I found out yesterday that I am oh so lucky enough to be able to do just that. On Monday I went to Urgent care to get an infection looked at that I thought might be MRSA (a nasty strain of infection.) Sure enough it was so they put me on two pretty strong antibiotics. On Tuesday I was feeling achy, but figured the medicine had not had enough time to kick in. By Tuesday night I was chilling, very achy and very nauseous. By Wednesday morning I as a mess. I did not even think I was going to be able to get the kids ready for school. I called my mom first thing in the morning and within minutes she was by my side and ready to take Caleb to school. We packed the rest of us up and spent the day at her house so I could rest, and she could take care of the kids and me. What a great mom huh! She ran me a warm bath and got me a soda and made toast for me...she even gave me one slice with Cinnamon sugar on it (does she remember how much I loved that as a kid.) Unfortunately my stomach was not feeling good and I could not even get the whole piece of plain toast down. She made me chicken noodle soup for lunch. Wow, it was like being a kid again, being babied and waited on hand and foot...only now I have four babies she was caring for as well. She is so good to us. Once a mom always a mom. I had planned to go eat lunch with Jamison, but there was no way I was going to be able to. I got on the phone and Chelsey was more than willing to take my place, and James was probably more excited to have her aunt than her mom. What an awesome sister I have. She also made dinner for us along with my good friend Britney. It is so nice to have such good family and such good friends there for me and taking care of our family. I am truly blessed beyond what I deserve. Thanks to all who help, I love you all! P.S. I think this is a beautiful picture of my Mom!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

A Conversation with a Five Year Old

The other day I picked Jamison up from school. The conversation went something like this:

James: So Mom, what did you do today while I was at school?
Me: Well I picked up the house and talked to a lot of people on the phone.
James: Who did you talk to?
Me: I talked to aunt Amy for awhile.
James: Okay what did she say? And who else?
Me: I also talked to aunt Kimberly.
James: Did you talk to anyone else?
Me: I talked to aunt Chanel today too.
James: Oh, what else did you do?

I could not help but chuckle at how grown up she sounded. It really hit me hard that she has been paying attention to how I talk to her and was emulating that. A gentle reminder that I am teaching my kids by example (whether good or bad) and need to keep myself in check so the conversations we have are ones of which I can be proud. And by the way, James...slow down, you do not need to grow up so fast!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Back to Normal

Well, Chelsey and Scott are back so Harley and Noah have left back to normal I suppose. The kids were great, it was a good week. I have learned a few things this week while taking care of Chelsey's kids:

1. I could do six kids. I took them all to the mall one day and I managed. I got many a strange looks and even had one man brave enough to ask if they were all mine. I could do it...but I still only picture our family with five...sorry Sue.
2. It is amazing how quickly six kids can make a huge mess...but it is no big deal when they clean it up themselves.
3. With that many kids little entertainment is requested from me.
4. Jamison and lack of sleep=getting in major trouble at school.
5. Noah can live perfectly fine without his DS.
6. At age nine, family is still preferred over friends.
7. The food is always better somewhere else.
8. Favorite moments are found in unexpected laughs (like a spider that Noah though he killed, but started crawling towards him. I hadn't laughed that hard with Har and Noah ever!)
9. How much we need family! It was great to be able to do something for Chels after she has done so much for me! It was great to have Perry and Christi there to help as well. There is no way we could do as much as we can without family, and those moments and memories are everything!

So I guess back to normal now, with a new knowledge, appreciation and understanding!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

What Farm?

So the other day Asher came running in to the room, and doing something that made me laugh. I do not even remember what it was, but I do remember the conversation that followed.

Me: Asher did I get you from the funny farm?
Asher : Nooooo
Caleb: Mom what farm did you get me from?
Me: I got you from the sporty farm.
Caleb: Oh Yeah...I like that.
Jamison: Mom what farm did you get me from?
Me: I think Igot you from the pretty farm.
Jamison: No, you got me from the princess farm.

Without their funny little inflections, it does not do it justice, but I got a kick out of it. So from what farm do you come?

Friday, November 7, 2008

Last night was a momentous night for our little family. We finished reading the book of Mormon for the first time as a family. It took us 2 3/4 years to do, but we did it! I am so proud of us! At Stake Conference, that long ago, an area authority gave a talk in leadership meetings that really hit Grant. I do not remember all the details, but the gist of it was that it is easy to put off reading as a family, but if we do not start now, than when? Needless to say we started that following week. With the exception of very very few nights we read every day. I am pretty sure the kids did not get much of anything out of the words, but they have gotten something from it. If nothing else they have learned the habit of daily scripture study. They know the routine and let us know that after brushing teeth it is time for scriptures. They are becoming familiar with the terminology. They love to see the pictures of Christ. We bought the above Book of Mormon not far into our adventure, and it was the best investment for our family scripture study. I would highly recommend it to all families. It breaks each chapter up into subject sections, and makes it a manageable read for the kids. It has wonderful pictures throughout the book of the subject matters. Our kids love this Book of Mormon (it is evidenced by the wear and tear and broken binding.) I hope our kids grow to love to read it over the years and discover their own testimony. We are trying to help, but this has been just as good if not better for me. I am proud to say that our five year old and three year old have finished the Book of Mormon and that our two year old and 2 month old have heard it every day of their lives. We are starting over again today with the testimonies and a renewed effort (for me) to get more out of it this time. It is a great thing for our family, and I hope our kids grow to understand the importance. But for today, I am just plain proud of them!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The Rocker and the Cheerleader...the perfect combo!

My friend (the other Britney) has a son just weeks older than Jamison. We have often commented that we would be way okay if someday Jamison and Andrew got married. How fun would that be. For awhile only Andrew and Caleb would play together, but now that Andrew and Jamison are in the same kindergarten class together...things have changed. Jamison and Andrew are now swinging buddies. They love to swing together on recess and at the park. Andrew thinks of the silliest things to say to make Jamison laugh, and Jamison will laugh at whatever Andrew says. When I ask Jamison who her best friend is, without hesitation she says Andrew. He takes good care of her. I am not saying they have to date when they get older, but I do hope that they stay good friends. Britney was telling me the other day at lunch Jamison sat down, unzipped her lunch box, got out her two tootsie rolls and handed one to Andrew. Andrew unzipped his lunch box, got out his Kit Kat, broke it in half and handed it to James. You cannot get much sweeter than that. Thanks Andrew, I owe you!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Canning Maniac

Maniac is about the best term to describe what we did! Since Grant and I are on a big food storage kick this year I asked Chelsey to teach me how to can her famous apples. So she jumped on board and we talked Christi and Mom into it too. We really got started at about 9 am and went basically straight to 6 pm. We got yummy yummy apples from Kirby's orchard locally and went to town. All growing up my mom would tell us about how she hated canning when we were younger, so i just assumed I hated it too. I was so wrong. I really enjoyed it. Although my feet and legs were aching by the end of the day and I was all sticky and gross, it was more than worth all of it. I had a blast being with fam and chatting. I loved the finished product and the feeling of actually doing it myself. I am not ashamed to say I am proud of what we did. We canned 112 jars, and I am so excited how it looks in our storage. I am even more excited to consume it. I am even planning on doing it again next year, and possible expanding our inventory to pears and peaches...we will see.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Halloween Fun

I failed miserably at trying to get them all happy at the same time, so this is my best effort!
Lil cheerleader...isn't she a cutie!

Beesball Asher would pronounce it.

Go Packers! Their biggest little fan.

The cheerleader for the football Caleb informed me.
This was the first year Jamison loved trick or treating, but it did not take Caleb long to have all the candy he wanted. Asher just trailed along and Miquelyn slept through the whole thing (Grant wishes he could have done the same.) As always the evening seemed rushed, but it was good!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


Kimberly Tagged me to share 6 things about myself that you may not know or even want to know. I had fun reading hers, so how can I not share...and ask others to do the same. These are random, but they are a part of me.

1. I love to clean out my ears. I love the feeling of the q-tip in my ear just after getting out of the shower. I cannot explain it, but I love it. The funny thing is I do not love it when Grant kisses my ear. It is just best if he stays away. I cannot explain that one either.

2. I cannot start a project and not finish it. I can actually get slightly obsessive about it. The problem is that I can also get impatient, which often leads to not doing as good of a job as I should or could.

3. I enjoy doing our family finances. I kinda have a thing for numbers. This leads into wanting to go back to school for a business degree. (Poor Grant I am sure he is rolls his eyes just at the thought of it.) It will be many years before I get to do that, but it is something I want to do. So why did I do Social Work? Your guess is as good as mine. I suppose I love feeling like I am contributing to helping others have good lives since I have been blessed with an amazing one. Mostly I think I needed to do it to help me be a better mother and wife.

4. I like taking pictures of my kids husband and scenery, but I hate being on the other side of the camera. It is not often that there is a picture of just me for two reasons. The first is I feel goofy posing and waiting for the flash and am always worried I will have a cheesy fake smile. Second, when I look at a picture of myself I always find the things that I think do not look good...and this girl does not need that drama. I will occasionally appease Caleb and allow him to take a picture of me. The following is some of his work.

5. I have a fear of dying in a car accident. I suppose you might not know it by the amount of driving I do by myself and the distances that I travel, but that is one way I just do not want to go. I am not even sure why it bothers me, but I am sure that is a fear of mine.

6. I am very particular about the way in which the toilet paper roll is put on the holder. I always have to have the toilet paper coming over and off of the top, not under and from the bottom. (I am not sure if this is making sense.) I try really hard not to change the tp at other people's house when I use their bathroom, but it does occasionally happen.

There now that you know more about me than you wanted too, I want to know too much about Britney, Ashley, Chelsey, Chanel, Janae, and Christi. Have at it ladies!

Friday, October 24, 2008


I have been feeling slightly guilty lately that I am not at the school at all helping Jamison and doing things with her and her class. I try to keep tabs through Chelsey and Britney, but I am not physically there. I was telling Chelsey I wish I could be more involved, but it is a choice that Grant and I have made to have so many little kids so close in age. She responded that they would rather have their siblings than me at the school. It got me thinking about my own siblings. There was a time when the though crossed my mind that if it had been just Chanel and I how much more we would have, but there is no way I would trade the brothers and sisters for anything. If you would have told me 10 years ago (give or take 6 years) that I would be as close to all my brothers and sisters as I am, and how much I would love them and their friendship, I probably would not have believed it.) I love that I can count on good advice, help with kids, a reason to laugh, good conversation, an excuse to get out of town, a game night, a listening ear etc. My brothers and sisters mean so much to me, and I would not trade them for my mom helping at the school. Thanks Chels for keeping me straight. You know what else is great...that through marriage I have gained even more siblings. I really feel like my in-laws are real brothers and especially sisters. I am so lucky and blessed! So in short, I hope that our kids, someday, will be glad that mom had their brothers and sisters even if it meant she could not be at school as much as other moms.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Sleeping Chronicles

This is Asher one Sunday right before dinner on a day that he missed a nap. AS soon as he really heard it was dinner he popped right up and was at the table with all the energy of a two year old. It was hilarious!

Angel and Demon

Asher has never been our best sleeper (a nice way of saying he is our worst.) We have spent time in the last six months trying to help him stay in bed and sleep better. He does pretty good, but recently we have adjusted nap time to help him even more. He is such a little angel when he is sleeping (as evidenced by the first picture), but quite the demon when he is not ready to go to bed (as evidenced by the second picture.) One night he was not ready to go to bed, but I just let him scream for awhile. Eventually I went in to check on him, and this is what I found. He had taken everything in his bed and thrown it out, but that was not good enough...he had to strip the sheet and throw that out too. That is my little Angel Asher.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

One of those weeks

Have you ever had one of those days, or even one of those weeks? Well, I did. It was a crazy one. Monday I was getting our family ready to go to ABQ for another appointment. I started the laundry, but did not get very far. We left that night. I got the kids dinner before we went to Grant's work. I did not get them soda as to avoid possible sticky messes. When we stopped at Grant's work I said they could get out of their seats and have a sip of mine if they did not spill. I am sure you can see where this is going...yep a big ole spill all over my car. What do you do? Grant had to take a car for a dealer trade, so we had to drive separate, but it was a good drive.

On Tuesday we had James's appointment and fantastic news, she does not have glaucoma! Wahoo!!! She does not need to go back on eye drops, another bonus. We will see that Dr again in a year and her other on six months. She is doing so great and we are so excited for the recent news. We played with Justin and Ashley for a bit and then headed back home. No more laundry found its way to being clean that day.

On Wednesday I got Jamison up and off to school and then at 9:30 met friends to take the kids to the Pumpkin Patch. There we played in a corn playground, did a corn maze, picked pumpkins, learned about the different kinds of pumpkins and squash, took a hay ride and the boys ate lunch. I made it back in town in time to pick up James from school. I went home for an hour to get Grant and I lunch, and then off again to take the kids to a Primary program practice. I was going to drop the kids off and go run errands, but when I got there I decided to stay and help with the practice. After that it was off to Walmart to get James's new glasses ordered and do a little shopping. I got home at 6:00 just in time to make a frozen skillet meal and then get the kids shipped off the bed. Once again laundry was not done and beds were not made (which almost never happens in this house, it is kind of a sanity thing for me.)

Thursday I finally got around to finishing the laundry (four days in the making), but still did not get around to the ironing. Friday I did a major house cleaning and then took a needed break and went to Chelsey's house to scrapbook. I did not get much done, but I just love being with Chels and Christi and hanging out.

Saturday we had a full day. The whole family (except Mique of course) cleaned out the garden and cleaned up the looks great. Grant winterized and then he went running. When he got back I went running. After showers and lunch the boys went to the golf course to putt and the girls went shopping to try and find me some cheap pants to hold me over until I lose the extra baby weight. We all met up at Sams and did a major grocery/food storage shop.) After that it was off to Safeway for more groceries and Petco for dog food. I think Grant got a taste of why I hate grocery shopping so much with four kids...maybe he will be even more appreciative of the fact that I do it all the time by myself. Productive but exhausting day.

On Wednesday I was feeling a little down because I felt like I got nothing done around the house. I did not even cook a real meal. I kept telling myself that someday my kids will not remember the house being clean that day or doing the laundry, but they will remember that Mom took them to do something fun, and stayed to help them at church. I hope they will know that I do things for them so they can be happy. Even though I did not get the things done I normally do, I accomplished the important things!

Saturday was a great family day. I love it when we work together as a family. Thank goodness the kids still think it is fun. I know it will not last, but girl can hope and wish! Hopefully we are not only having fun, but teaching the kids the importance of work. Looking back on my week, it was a week, a really good week!

Monday, October 13, 2008

You call that a dream?

Grant has a dream to one day own a ranch were we have a huge garden with all manner of vegetables, fruit trees, chicken, cows, horses etc. That sounds like a nightmare to me...all the work that it would require. Not to mention, I do not consider myself much of an animal person. I told him he could have his dream if I did not have to take care of or clean up after the animals. I asked him why that was a dream and he explained that the thought of being self-sustained was very appealing to him. Since we cannot do to that now, we are doing our best to use what we have and be prepared. We have a peach tree and this year it produced a lot of fruit. So as not to waste what we had, we skinned, sliced and froze a great deal of peaches. The picture of the peaches in the bags are just a portion of what we have in the freezer. We also have been talking about getting our 72 hour kits ready for almost a year, and we finally got it done! The rest of the pictures are of the stuff we got for the kits in the grocery sacks, all laid out, and in the bags we will have to take in case of an emergency. We tested it all out to make sure we can carry them and children if necessary. It all works, and we even were able to get plenty of water in there too! It is amazing what needs to be taken for little kids and babies. It does feel really good have heeded the words of the prophets and be prepared just in case. I guess I can get a glimpse of why Grant has the dream he does.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

The greatest husband EVER

So the greatest husband ever happens to belong to me! Let me back up. The other night I had a melt down (and for anyone that knows me, I hate feeling like I do not have control over myself or my emotions...or much of anything actually; so to openly admit I lost it is kinda a big deal. But it does demonstrate why Grant is so good!) Anyhow, I was having a day due to numerous things that are impacting our life and mostly due to sleep deprivation. Grant was trying to get me to talk to him. Unfortunately that is not always an easy feat, especially if I feel the tears welling. He was persistent and I eventually let go and told him everything that was on my mind, and there seemed to be a lot of various concerns. One that escaped my mind and mouth was that I am tired of taking care of all of Jamison's medical by myself. We have to go to ABQ to see her doctor and had to go there when she needed to go under for her exams. In the four years we have lived here Grant has been able to go once. I was in ABQ last week and have to go again this week with all four munchkins. It is not that bad of a drive, and I have done it by myself with all of the kids more times than I can count, but the lack of sleep was clouding my ability to deal with the pending trip. I kept telling Grant that I would be fine once I got some sleep and a new day begun. He took the time to get me to talk (which even though I do not always want to is the best thing for me) listened and gave me hugs.I am the kind of person that once I purge all my concerns I can move on. I purged and knew I would feel capable of handling all the next day. So the next day came and I was good. We were on with life as normal. Or were we? Grant came home the next day and slyly informed us that he was going to go to ABQ with us. He was gone 3 days of work last week at a meeting, so for him to take a day off this week is unreal. He is not easily persuaded to take off time. It just reaffirmed to me how much he loves me and that he would do whatever was humanly possible to make me happy. I could have easily made the trip myself, but it will be so much better with him as my companion. He takes such good care of me and does all he can to make me the happiest person ever, and little things like this make him succeed. So yes, I have the greatest husband ever!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Sweet dreams

There is nothing much sweeter than sleeping children, especially newborns. Miquelyn is so sweet when she is sleeping. She loves to sleep on her stomach. Lately she has been having a hard time relaxing and crashing out, but as soon as I lay her on my chest she melts. I love it when she just cuddles up to me like that and fades into dream land. She is starting to smile at me, and I love it. When other people are holding her and she hears my voice she starts searching for me. I think she knows she belongs to me, and I definitely claim my little beauty.

Friday, October 10, 2008

I need you

How can you not want to kiss those little lips? I can never resist, and for the most part he smacks back! He is such a little lover with a huge personality. This morning he was wondering around the house and decided he wanted oatmeal (his new favorite food of choice, no matter what time of day). So I hear this, "Momma, I need you." I do not know why, but I love it when he says that. Last night he cried it in his sleep and it was the saddest little I need you I have ever heard. He is sure growing up and more often than not now he will say something that rings as clear is a bell and I have to do a double take to see if Asher said it or Caleb. He is not my little baby anymore. It cracks me up when he says OK because it comes out "otay" in a little rascals kind of way. Yesterday Grant called him to come inside and he replied, "alright, I am coming," with a little attitude behind it. I think he gets it from his sister. Since my sister-in-laws little nephew (who was just weeks older than Asher) passed away, every time I look at Asher I am just a little more grateful for his place in our family and his personality (I even try to remember that mid-tantrum.) The two's can be terrible, but little moments such as mentioned above make them absolutely terrific!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Little golfer

Explanation below

Oh Caleb

This kids whole face lights up when he smiles. I have to admit it is contagious. He is a funny kids. A couple little things I do not want to forget. The ivy in our backyard is starting to change colors, turning red. Grant asked him why the plants were turning red, his reply was "Because they do not want to be green anymore." We were at the park last week and he runs up to me with another boy at the park and told me he was playing football with him and said, "He is my bestest buddy." I said, "Really, what is his name?" He said, "I don't know." Caleb is friends with everyone. He was playing with another kid, but could not remember his name either. This boy is 3 1/2 years older than him, but Caleb does not know it. As we were leaving he sticks his hand out for a low five and says, "Hey my friend, see ya later." How can you not laugh at that. What a ham. His latest passion has been golf, hence the video clip above. He did all the actions on his own, without provocation from his father. He loves to watch golf on tv and is very much a visual learner...and the result is above. What a fun character to have in our family!

Monday, October 6, 2008

I believe in Miracles

First of all I love Jamison's smile, but it is sometimes hard to get a genuine smile out of her. That is why I love this picture. Even though she is not looking at the camera, that is her real smile...the smile she wears when she is in her happy place...swinging.
I will back up and give a quick history of Jamison and why I believe in miracles. When she was born we had all kinds of surprises. One being that something was wrong with her eyes. After spending two days thinking she was absolutely perfect in every way, the doctor told us they were bringing in a specialist because they could not get a good look at her eyes. The Opthamologist told us after examining her twice that she was definitely blind in one eye and most likely totally blind. Shock set in! It also brought a rush of a bunch of different doctors to examine her again. After talking to a geneticist, we were told she might also be mentally retarded. A lot to take in in a matter of hours. We did not even know what to do. We were blessed enough to have a great deal of support there with us. After seeing another doctor the next day we discovered that most likely she could see out of one eye. It is not take us long to know that she was not mentally retarded, so we moved on with life...just like normal (at least normal to us.)
We had more doctors appointments than normal, but since she is our first it just became common place. She had a therapist come to our home and work with her biweekly to help her develop properly and adjust to having sight in only one eye. At two months she was diagnosed with glaucoma, which required eye drops in both eyes twice a day to make sure her pressure did not escalate to the point of needing surgery or losing her eyesight in her one good eye. She was a trooper and we started her on the eye drops a two months of age. Later we were told her eyesight was pretty bad, even to the point of being legally blind without glasses. We just rolled with the punches and went forward the best that we knew how.
Here comes the part that never ceases to amaze me. Just under a year ago we took Jamison off her eye drops for the first time in four years. Now, to put that in perspective, glaucoma is not curable, yet her pressures were doing well enough to take her off. We are not sure if she actually has glaucoma now, but the fact that she is doing so well is a little miracle to me. She had an appointment today, and her pressures were up a little, but her optic nerve (which with glaucoma manifests damage) looked totally normal. We will be back in ABQ in a week to see a glaucoma specialist to have a consult, but it is still a miracle to me that she does not have damage or out of control pressures considering where she came from five years ago.
The next little miracle. Today we had her prescription checked, and it improved dramatically once again. Her original was +3.50 (which means little to me because I do not wear glasses) and now it is +.50. Now I am no genius, but I do know that is a huge difference. The doctor said that she basically needed to wear her glasses to protect her eye at school (after all she only has one eye with vision and we do not want to risk damaging that), but at home it is not all the necessary to wear them. This is amazing to me considering how bad her vision used to be.
Jamison teaches me little things all the time, but today she reminded me once again that miracles exist today. Some people might say it is coincidence, but I say it is the blessings of our Heavenly Father!

Friday, October 3, 2008

I am not sure what it is about little babies and all their parts, but I love them. I took a bunch of pictures of little Miquelyn and some of her little parts, so I thought I would share. She is already getting bigger, and I never want to forget all her beautiful little features. These are only a fraction of the pictures, but plenty to share. My sweet little Miquelyn, I love every part of you!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The precious moments

This morning I was feeding Mique. A lot of times in the morning I will get back in my bed and read a book while I feed her. I let the boys kind of run wild and do their own thing. This morning after I fed her she was pretty groggy, so I decided to put her on my chest and just snuggle for a little bit. I could think of a million things I wanted to do and should do, but I did not move. I put down the book and just enjoyed having my little baby near. I was laying there thinking that I need to take these moments with her because she will grow up quicker than I want and this will not be an option. I can always clean the floor later. I was also thinking how good it felt to have her cuddled up to is one of my favorite feelings in the world. Before long Caleb found his way on the bed and laid next to us, just nuzzling up to me. That put a smile on my face. Just a few minutes after that Asher was on the other side of me. He leaned over gave his sister a d kiss and cuddled in next to me too. There is no way to describe how I felt at that moment. That made my day! The only problem was James and Grant were not there close by too. If I would have gotten up to clean I would have missed out on the precious moment. I am glad I took time to be a little lazy and really enjoy my kids!

Monday, September 29, 2008

A Testimony is found in the bearing of it

Yesterday we had kind of a cool sacrament meeting. I was in the mother's room feeding Mique when four of the young men got up together and bore their testimonies in English and then in Spanish. They worked on learning it and were challenged to share in Sacrament meeting. They did a great job, and I found myself feeling a little jealous that they were able to learn a little Spanish. I wish I spoke it so badly, but obviously not bad enough to actually learn it. Shortly after that I walked back into sacrament to sit with my family.

Shortly after that I look up to my dad on the stand and he mouths something to me. It took a second to register, but he was telling me to come do it in Dutch. I did not hesitate to shake my head and tell him NO WAY! I am not that great about bearing my testimony anyway, let alone in another language. Though, it did not take long for my wheels to start turning.

I had not shared my testimony in over nine years in Dutch. I knew it would not come out smooth, and what if I struggled for words? I have only kind of spoken Dutch out loud three times in the last 9 1/2 years. Then I think if those boys had the courage to do it in a language they really do not know, why should I not have the courage to it in a language that I do know, though a bit rusty.

Then I think about how someone mentioned they knew their mother's testimony because they heard her bear it often. I want my kids to know I have a testimony, yet I do not bear it often. I do not want them to be scared to go up if they feel the prompting. If that is the case, then I need to be an example, as much as I might not like it.

Then I thought, what is the point of sharing in Dutch, no one will understand. There really was no purpose. That though was quickly shattered. I realized there are some things of which I wanted to bear testimony, but they are so personal I would not actually do it in sacrament meeting. This was a great opportunity for me to say some tings out loud that I want my Heavenly Father to hear. It was a way for me to say those things out loud without feeling uncomfortable due to the personal nature.

Okay, so all my reasons were washed away and I knew it was something I should do. I needed time to formulate in my head and make sure I felt comfortable with most of the words I wanted to use. I waited until the last, but I made myself get up and do it. I am not sure what it is about getting up there, but I forgot to say several things I intended. I am very confident that my thoughts and intention were know by Heavenly Father and he understands what I wanted to say to Him.

I have always loved the following quote by Boyd K Packer, and feel its power even more today:

"Oh if I could teach you this one principle. A testimony is to be found in the bearing of it! Somewhere in your quest for spiritual knowledge, there is that 'leap of faith,' as the philosophers call it. It is the moment when you have gone to the edge of the light and stepped into the darkness to discover that the way is lighted ahead just a footstep or two. "The spirit of man,' as the scripture says, indeed 'is the candle of the Lord." It is one thing to receive a witness from what you have read or what another has said; and it is a necessary beginning. It is quite another to have the Spirit confirm to you in your bosom that what you have testified is true. Can you not see that it will be supplied as you share it? As you give that which you have, there is a replacement, with increase!"

It was something I needed to do, and of course something that strengthened me. I originally thought there was no point, but I was quickly reminded that there always is a reason, and yesterday the reason for for my own benefit!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Love Hate Relationship

I was thinking today that I have a love hate relationship with several things. Just a few are: Grocery shopping, cooking, cleaning the bathroom, and runnning. Let me explain further:

Grocery shopping: Yesterday I went on my first full on grocery shop with all four kids by myself. I knew it was inevitable, but I was still dreading it. I have always hated grocery shopping, but now it is much worse with all the kids. By the end of it all I was a little frazzled and very impatient. I HATE GROCERY SHOPPING! But, I love having fridge full of food, snacks for the kids, and most importantly ice cream in the freezer.

Cooking: I have never been a real fan of cooking. It is not so fun at the end of the day when I am rushed to get it all done with four kids yelling at me for different reasons. It is a fine balance with the baby making sure she is not going to be hungry right in the middle of it. Asher usually is hungry and screaming at me by then...last night it was for marshmallows (which he did not get.) Jamison and Caleb are fighting over what they want to watch (tv is necesarry for my sanity at this point.) So what do I love about cooking? There are two things. The first is making a meal that pleases my husband. I love it when he enjoys the food I have prepared. The second is cooking with my husband. We are trying to have a date night at home where we put the kids to bed early and he and I prepare a meal together which we have planned together. It is really nice to work side by side and then enjoy the fruits of our labors. Last night we enjoyed baked shrimp that was dipped in olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper and then coated in a breadcrumb, garlic, parmesan mixture. Next was Marsala chicken with angel hair pasta and sauteeted carrots, squash, zuchinni and onion. Oh so yummy! Our dessert fell through, so we just had Ben and Jerrys. It is a good time for us.

Cleaning the Bathroom: This is one of my least foavorite things about being a housewife. Cleaning the bathroom sometimes grosses me out...what with having a two year old boy that often gets distracted while going to the bathroom and all. I am also not a huge fan of hair in the tub, and with a little girl that is inevitable! What then do I love. I love walking into a bathroom that looks and smells clean. That is very satisfying.

Running: Today I went on my first run since Miquelyn was born...well actually my first run in just over four months. I was a little nervous that I was going to die even though I was only going two miles. What did I hate...well when I started the run I felt my back end bouncing all over the place. I hate having that reminder of how out of shape I am and how far I have to go. I loved that I felt awesome on my run and could have easily gone another mile or two. I loved that I was out hitting the pavement again...I have missed it! I loved that my legs did not really hurt much at all. I love my time to myself when I run. But most of all I loved that when I ran up to the house I had a three year old boy greeting me with a cup of water, a daughter that could describe to her father exactly what I was wearing down to the ponytail and stripes on the shorts, and most of all a supportive husband there to ask how it was and look at me with pride as I told him how good it felt. Man I have a good life!

Music Makers

Friday, September 26, 2008

Music is what feelings sound like. ~Author Unknown

In our family music is a feeling of happiness. A couple of nights ago we had the music on during dinner. At one point I look at Asher and he is playing his fork like a trumpet. Too cute!!! The rest of the family joined in and I had to remember it forever with a picture. Music set a tone for that night or enjoyment, playfulness and happiness! Last night I was rounding up the kids to get them to bed. I went out to the tv room to get their teeth brushed. Grant had the music on once again and the two older kids were dancing. It was not long before Asher and Grant joined in. I was in a rush to get the kids to bed and have a little time without them (oh how I need that time by the end of the day). I sat down for a minute and let that rush melt away. I realized that it is more important to enjoy the kids in these moments then rush them away and enjoy those moments without them. Before I knew it I was joining in too. Together our family loves to listen to music (loud I might add) and wiggle our bodies along with it. These are some of the memories I never want to fade.

Music expresses feeling and thought, without language; it was below and before speech, and it is above and beyond all words. ~Robert G. Ingersoll

This is a form of expression that is much appreciated in this family!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

We had a green day!

Jamison was so excited to tell me today that she did not get her color changed and she stayed green. She even wanted to call her dad and tell him when she got home. She was even more pleasant after school today than she normally is. Everyone has been telling us that it is not as big of a deal as we might think and that we need to relax and give her a break, and on some level I know that, but I am her parent and I worry. She really is a good kid, I just want to make sure I am doing all I can to help her be a good person and have success in her life. It was a rough day yesterday, but today has been immensely better. I made myself take a nap today and I have been better able to deal. The kids have been good (probably because the tv has been on a lot today, what can I say a free babysitter. At least most of the time it has been a learning so I tell myself.) I guess I just don't want to ever look back and see that I let my kids down because I did not teach them well enough. I know that I will look back and wish I had done things differently, that I will have regrets, but I do not want to let them down.

On a different not I want to write just a little snippet about each kids that either cracks me up or amazes me. Despite bad days, I do have wonderful/amazing kids (and I know I am biased.)

  1. Jamison: She is the most forgiving child. She can be is such big trouble, like yesterday, and within minutes she is holding tight onto our necks giving us hugs and telling us that she loves us. She is such a smart kid, she just does things on her own terms, she often does not let people know how smart she is. She can be strictly obedient. Yesterday she was told that she could not have dessert. She was in tears because she wanted it so bad, but she would not take it if offered to her because she was told she could not and respected that. She politely talked to her dad and eventually got to have some ice cream, but she sometimes can truly respect what she has been told even if tempters stand right by. I hope she keeps that strength for good always!
  2. Caleb: What can I say, this kid loves the Green Bay Packers. I am not sure where the love affair began, but it is strong now. Last week the Packers game was not broadcast and he was devastated that he was not able to watch the game. This week it was a night game and he was able to watch the first hour of it before bedtime. On Monday morning the first thing he said to Grant was, "Did the Packers win last night?" I cannot even believe that he thought of that, or even cared. Oh, but he did. Football is a big deal to him and he is passionate about it. He is also passionate about his baby sister. He always wants to take care of her and sits by her side to help her stop crying. It is so sweet. He even tells me he wants to change her diapers, if only! His passions run deep, and I love it!
  3. Asher: I have not seen a kid much happier about a birthday present than him when he got his golf clubs last night. The kids has not put them down for more than about an hour since last night...whether he was awake or asleep. Yes, he slept with his club and ball. He loves golf like Caleb loves football. I still have not figured out if the love of sports is learned from Grant or if it is just in them. One more thing about my little Asher-basher. Our primary makes a cd of the songs for the program for that year for each family. I keep it in my car and try to play it for them so it helps them to learn the words. Yesterday I turned it on and Asher was singing I am a child of God. He actually knew a lot of the songs. When a verse would finish he would yell, "more, more, " until the next verse started. I was so proud of him, what a smart good kid!
  4. Miquelyn: She obviously is too small to really show us her personality, but I know it is there. With our kids I have definitely learned that they are born with their own little personalities. I am looking forward to discovering hers. She has been such a good baby so far, thank goodness. It has made this transition so much easier than I thought it would be. I do love the moments we get together when she cuddles up to me and falls asleep. I love the feeling of her close by. She is my little sweety and She has filled her place in our family perfectly!

Needless to say, a much better day!

Monday, September 22, 2008

I am such a worse parent than I thought I was

My day started out quite well, but it has only gone down hill from there. Today is Asher's and Chelsey's birthday so the girls went out to lunch for Chelsey. Asher was so crabby he cried and screamed at everything. He was also throwing his fork and spoon all over the place. At first I tried to be extra patient with him because it is his birthday, but we quickly got beyond that. I had to take him out 2 or 3 times and eventually had to take him out to the car and wait for everyone else to be done to bring Caleb to me. We are struggling with finding a balance with naps, and today proved to be a monumental struggle/failure. After Jamison got home from school the Relief Society President came to visit. Jamison kept interupting us and trying to tell a story, but never finishing a sentence...very irritating. Once again I was trying to be patient. During all of this Caleb kept making Asher scream. I asked him countless times to cut it out, but to no avail. I finally got sick of hearing it and had to practically chase Caleb to his room because he would not go when he was told. Caleb has developed an attitude as of late, and I have to admit I do not like it. After the Releif Society President left I started talking to Jamison about school.

I need to back up a little for this. In Kindergarten they use a color system. You start out as green and if you get in trouble your color is changed to yellow. If you still get in trouble it changes to red and your parent's get called. Kindergarten has been a very difficult transition for Jamison, but two weeks ago she seemed to be comfortable and doing fine. Last Monday I picked her up from school and she told me that she got in trouble for stealing. I had parent teacher conference that day and sure enough my little angel (devil) got caught stealing crayons and buttons. She talked to the teacher and apologized, but her color did not change. We had a long chat with her at home and she promised to be better. I also found out that she has been sucking her thumb almost all day at school (big no-no.) I told the teacher she definately could tell her to take it out! I was a little stressed at this point. The next day she came home and told me she got her color changed to yellow because she poked a boy in the eye. Once again another talk and she said she would be better. Then the next day came with another yellow. This time she spit in the classroom. I could not believe she did that, she always gets in trouble for spitting at home. At this point I am furious and at a loss. Anyone that knows Jamison knows that there are not barganing chips. Nothing matters to her enough to be a punishment. What do I do??? Well Jamison and I talked about it and we decided that she lost all her dolls, doll clothes, barbies, dress-up clothes and purses and when she got a green she could earn them back one at a time. On friday she earned back a doll, but lost it again by Saturday for poor behavior. What am I to do.

Today I asked her if she stayed green and she told mee yes. WELL...when I looked at her folder she was yellow, in trouble for the fourth time in one week. I still am not sure exactly what she did to get in trouble. She eventually told me that she got her color changed because she touched a boy on the leg when she was not supposed to. I need to talk to the teacher and find out what really happened. I am so frustrated I do not know what to do. I thought that I was doing a better job of teaching my kids...obviously not. I thought they knew how to behave better...another obviously not. I have no clue what is going on with our family, but I do know that I do not like it. I do not know if it is partially a lack of sleep or pure frustration, but after talking to Jamison and not being able to get a hold of Grant I almost lost it and broke into tears. I know there is not manual to parenting kids, but right now I could really use one because I feel like I am failing miserably!

Friday, September 19, 2008

The good ole days

I have a lot of different good ole days, but today as I was driving to the bank I was reminded of one particular type. I was stopped at a light on 20th waiting for it to turn green when I looked over to my right and saw a couple of girls in a red car dancing around and laughing. They looked over at me like we know we are silly, but we are having a blast. It reminded me so much of Chelsey and me in college. We loved to turn the music up in the Celica and sing and dance while driving down the road or freeway. We did not care if people thought we were crazy or silly. We even liked to get a little bit of a reaction. We were just having fun. Oh the carefree days of no major responsibility. Our biggest concerns were: school, getting to work after being up until 4 a.m., what color to paint our nails before going dancing, what boys we were going to hang out with, what we were going to be able to make for dinner with what we already had in the apartment (a very strange green bean casserole that only tasted good that night because we were so hungry!) and making sure we always had a box of brownies and mint cholcolate chip ice cream for late night chats about who knows what (boys?!). Those were glorious days. Then, today I found myself in a car with four car seats (all occupied) driving to the bank before returning home to make dinner for a family of six (funny enough the dinner is a shepherds pie with green beans) while listening to Michael Buble to which my daughter has begged me to listen. There are moments that I really miss those days, but I would not trade these days for anything!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

My shoes

I have been thinking about doing a blog for over a year. It all started last May when Stephanie introduced me to the world of blogging. The clentcher was when she told me that there is a company that will print and bind your blog every year. What a perfect way to journal my life. I have to admit I hate writing much anymore, it makes my hand hurt. Working on the computer is much easier. Well here I am a year later and after realizing I was the only female in my family that did not have a blog, I got on the ball. Grant thought the name of the blog was a little melancholy...I did not think of it that way. I actually found a little humor in it considering Grant has done a pretty good job of keeping me "barefoot and pregnant" for the last 6 years. He actually was ever so kind enough to buy me my favorite flip flops ever (Rainbows-will never own another brand again) so that when my feet got too swollen I was not literally barefoot for lack of shoes in which my fat feet would fit. I am hoping to strap on my running shoes again in the next couple of weeks. I told you I have a thing for shoes. There are already so many things I want to write about, but I will start with this short little blurb. I am online and here goes the story of our family's path through my eyes.