22 December 2010

Things That Scare Me

Spiders
Mice
Serial Killers
And Chase saying, "Mom I just created a new invention in the bathroom!"

21 December 2010

Snow Day

It snowed. A lot. In fact it is still snowing.


This morning Michael walked out the door with the intention of driving to work.  Instead he ended up shoveling the driveway and helping the neighbor get his car back in his garage after he attempted to go to work.  So Michael decided to work from home today and I decided the kids didn't need to attend the last day of school before winter break.  Besides it is only a half day.  

Madison had a school party to go to so she caught a ride with a neighbor who wasn't stuck.  When I told Kai to hunker down and prepare for some fun at home he cried.  HE CRIED!  What is it with my kids and school?  When I was in elementary school I told my mom our break started a WEEK before it actually did so I could get out of going to school.  I would have gotten away with it too if my friend hadn't told on me (I'm talking to you Jessie).  I told him most kids would be happy to miss school, "I'm not like those kids mom!  I love school!"  I kept him home anyway.

So to make the best of a bad situation they bundled up and got ready for some serious time in the snow.  Chase was even willing to wear a thermal shirt and snow pants.  I am learning that if you know the right price Chase can be bought.  Did I mention that he said I could cut his hair if  I gave him ice cream? That should happen later today.
Even though they had to miss school they had a blast in the snow.  Chase and Kai had a pretty serious snowball fight.


Kai made a very impressive snow angel.

And, because the snow came up to his waist, Davis spent most of his time trying to stay upright.

Maybe missing a little school isn't the worst thing that ever happened.


17 December 2010

The Boy Needs Pants

The boy needs pants.  And not size 5 either.  Nope.  He needs a 6 or 7 because he is GROWING out of the pants he's worn since kindergarten!  It's about stinking time.

08 December 2010

Cheater Cheater Pumpkin Eater

Kai (watching Madison do her math): Uhhhhh . . . does mom know you're cheating?
Madison: I'm not cheating.
K: You're using a calculator.
M: I know.
K: Sooooo . . . that's cheating.
M: No its not because my teacher said we can use them.
K: Do you just not know how to do the math problems on your own?
M: I know how!  She SAID we can use a calculator!
K: If you know how, then why do you need a calculator?
M: Because they are complicated and with out a calculator they would take FOREVER!
K: If you know how it shouldn't be complicated. 
M: It doesn't matter! She said we can use them so I'm not cheating!
K: Just because you CAN use them doesn't mean its not cheating.
M: UGH!  GO DO YOUR OWN HOMEWORK!

05 December 2010

Decorating the Tree

Someday I'll have a big beautiful tree covered with pretty bulbs and fancy picks.  But right now I'm loving the charm of a tree that is covered in ornaments made with paper, salt dough, and pipe cleaners.

02 December 2010

Its a Thankless Job

Yesterday Madison gave Davis a Cheeto and asked, "Who's the best sister in the whole wide world?"  Davis just stared at her while he crunched. 

"You know, you don't have to say its me.  There are a lot of people who are sisters and I'd understand if you thought one of them was better than me.  But I am your sister.  Your only sister. " Nothing.


"I just think you should think about all of the things I do for you.  I give you piggy back rides, and I let you listen to my mp3 players, and I strap you in when we get in the car."  Still nothing.

"And, remember, I get you Cheetos!  So who's the best sister?" finally he spoke,  "Hmmm.  Can you give me more Cheetos?"

23 November 2010

A Few Missed Moments

I was going through pictures today and realized there are a lot of things I was going to blog about that I just never did.  Here are some of them.

This year we went bowling and Davis' bowling ball took so long to get to the pins that he literally had time to sit down and watch it roll.
 

On the first day of kindergarten I wrote "I ♥ Chase" on the napkin I put in Chase's lunch box.  He was NOT happy.  In fact he took the napkin out of his lunch box and ripped it into tiny pieces.  So like every other loving mother I put a new "I ♥ Chase" napkin in his lunch box everyday until he stopped complaining.  When he stopped I stopped.  Then one morning he said, "mom, you know how you used to put that you loved me in my lunch box?  I liked that." 

I took this picture at the Big Red Barn and I love it.  Its just so typical of Madison.  All the little boys are off messing around instead of waiting for the hay ride back to the barn.  But Madison is right where she's supposed to be with her pumpkin in her lap. 

This is the last picture I have of the boy before they put in his NG tube.  I miss that face.

12 November 2010

Yes It's Been a While . . .

. . .  but I've been very busy doing things like starting fires while trying to make rice crispy treats.  There really are good reasons I've been banned from the kitchen.

We've decided to take a weekend off and went to Vegas to visit some awesome friends.  After a great weekend eating amazing food, playing games, and swimming in a slightly chilled pool, we were not all that excited to return to cold rainy Utah.


Even the playgrounds are better in Vegas.

29 October 2010

Halloween 2010

Today is the school Halloween parade.  As you know Chase and Kai are going as clone troopers, Madison is going as a pirate, and Davis is going as Chewbacca.

I tried to make clone trooper helmets for the boys but they ended up looking like something out of Nacho Libre so had to come up with a new plan.  As it turns out Kai has a friend who has a really nice Clone Trooper Rex helmet he is going to let the boy borrow.  But that still left me high and dry when it came to Chase.  Then Michael said, "um, why don't you just knit one."  Freaking brilliant.  WHY didn't I think of that.

I am excited to say that in the wee hours of Wednesday morning I finished the last of the Halloween costumes.  Unfortunately I am sorry to say (though not surprised) that Chase doesn't actually like his costume. He does, however, like the clone trooper hat.  So this is what the kids looked like as they walked out the door this morning.  Kai isn't wearing the helmet because masks that cover the face aren't allowed at school, but he'll wear it trick-or-treating and I can get a good picture then. So between the two boys you have one complete clone trooper costume.


Of course, I made the boy try on Chase's hat so I could see the costume all together. 


I took notes as I made the hat so as soon as the Halloween craziness dies down I think I'll write up the pattern.

The last few days the boy has been in the hospital having an NG tube put in (the tube you see coming out his nose) and I have to say it goes with his costume quite well.  In fact I think some people might be surprised when he still has it on when he goes back to school on Monday.  However if we'd know he was going to get the NG tube before Halloween we could have sent him as Darth Vader in the scene where he takes his helmet off--because that would have been AWESOME.

And just because he's cute here is Davis in his Chewbacca costume.

15 October 2010

Brotherly Love

Me:  "Hey guys, I'm sorry but we're running short on time so we're going to have to get lunch after Davis' appointment."
Kai:  "That's fine.  I care more about my family than I do about not having lunch and dying from starvation."
Me:  "While I appreciate your sentiment, I don't think waiting an hour for lunch will kill you."
Kai: "BONUS!"

12 October 2010

Say Cheese


Just more evidence that it is impossible to get a good picture of all four of them at once.

11 October 2010

I Swore This Wouldn't Happen Again

Every year I swear I will not make the kid's Halloween costumes the following year and every year I end up making them anyway.  

Chase and Kai have decided thy want to be clone troopers.  Davis is going to be Chewbacca and, because heaven forbid she go with the theme, Madison is going to be a pirate.  I even showed her an AWESOME pattern for knitted Princess Leia buns and she still wanted to be a pirate!  Okay so, I don't really mind that she is going as a pirate.  Pirates are easy.  Chewbacca shouldn't be too hard either. But no way was I going to make one clone trooper and much less two!  That is, until I found out how much it would cost to to buy one.  As it turns out I'm cheap. 

Anyway I started my first clone trooper this weekend and all I can say is hand stitching through duck tape is not my idea of a good time.  That being said, so far it looks awesome. 

07 October 2010

06 October 2010

I ♥ Scotch Tape

Chase is super excited about Halloween this year-- which is pretty cool because in the past he hasn't really been too thrilled with the idea of dressing up.  He and Kai are both going as clone troopers.  NOT storm troopers, CLONE troopers.  They have made this distinction very clear . . . several times.  I think they are worried about my lack of Star Wars knowledge.  Seriously though, last year I made the boy a ghost of Obi Wan Kenobi costume so I think they should cut me some slack.

Chase comes home from school every day and says, "Mom.  Its almost Halloween."  He is a little frustrated that I haven't started to decorate yet.  In fact yesterday he took matters into his own hands.  A little imagination and a roll of Scotch tape later he presented me with "Mummy Windows."


He also discovered he could use same technique all over his face, hands, and feet to turn himself into a mummy.  But he wouldn't stick around long enough to let me take his picture.

02 October 2010

Guests

Yesterday one of Kai's best friends, Noah, came to visit.  They managed to get the hospital's toy robot to close the privacy curtain, they watched a little TV, and even broke out the laptop for some serious computer game time.

In fact it was right after I took this picture that his mother and I noticed something on Noah's shirt.  A large six legged something. 

Noah's mom:  "NOAH!  Why do you have a praying mantis on your shirt?!"
Noah (not at all suprised):  "Well, I  did put him in my pocket before we came in."

01 October 2010

Its Like a Mini Vacation

The boy hasn't made a lot of progess in terms of weight and height gain so as a last ditch resort before starting growth hormones they have decided to do a super major strict (yes I'm pretty sure that's the medical term) calorie count.  The only way to do that is to check him into the hospital, serve him food all day, and write down what he eats.  Not just any food either-- we're talking bacon, eggs, ice cream, butter, chocolate, you get the idea.  As the boy pointed out yesterday, its like a mini vacation with servants but of course there's no pool.  Though he did ask if they have a track he could run on.  FYI, they don't.

30 September 2010

Hard Work Pays Off

After a frustrating track season all of Madison's hard work is finally paying off.  She has placed in the top three in all but one (where she placed fourth) of her cross country races.  

Way to go Madison, you're amazing.

21 September 2010

Soccer Star

This year Chase decided to try his hand at soccer.  At first he was upset that Levis and cowboy boots weren't part of the uniform, but ten minutes on the field and he forgot all about it.

After a few short weeks he changed from a little boy who stood on the side lines to a little boy who charges onto the field with a battle cry.

It doesn't hurt that he's met a cute girl or two.

08 September 2010

Why Didn't I Think of That?

Davis:  "Mom.  What should I name my bear?"
I offer several names I think are suitable for a stuffed bear.
Davis:  "No.  I want something like Mouse-Mouse or Duck-Duck, but he isn't a mouse or a duck."
Me:  "So . . . Bear-Bear?"
Davis:  "Yeah, thats it! Thanks!"

01 September 2010

More Firsts

Twice a week for two hours a day I have no children. Davis and Chase have both started school.

Davis started his first year of preschool and though he seems to really like his teacher, Mrs. Brown, he said next time he'd like to try Mrs. Yellow.

However, I think he might just be a little upset because he was asked to stop bringing his imaginary friend Dee Dee #2 to school with him.  Dee Dee #1, 3,4,5, and 6 are all still welcome but Dee Dee #2 likes to pretend she's a dog and has a tendency to lick.  Apparently that is frowned upon in preschool.  Go figure.

On Chase's first day we decided to walk to school.  We live less than a mile from the school and we had a good 30 minutes to get there.  I was hoping to arrive early so I could talk to his teacher.  Unfortunately, Chase doesn't actually like walking.  Less than a block from the school Chase sprawled out on the grass in protest.  "I. Can't. Take it.  Any . . . (sigh) mooooore!"  Even with a good 30 minutes in our favor we arrived a few minutes late.

After Chase got home we decided to celebrate his first day of school by going to lunch with Mike.  Mike asked him what he wanted for lunch and he said, "Pizza.  But from a restaurant.  Not Costco."  One day of kindergarten and he's already becoming refined.

29 August 2010

He Has More to Learn About Bribery

Davis:  "Please stop singing . . . . Please. . . . . Listen, if you stop singing, I'll let you get me some chocolate milk. . . .  Okay?  Hey?  Why are you still singing?  I said you can get me chocolate milk!"

24 August 2010

School Days

Summer has come to a screeching halt.



I love the first day of school.


This morning Davis asked Kai if he'd play with him after school.  Kai said, "I'm sorry Davis, I'm going to school now and its a lot of hard work.  When I get home I'll be exhausted and too tired to play.  But I'll still be available on the weekends."

17 August 2010

Next Time Dig Deeper

I believe we are the 3rd owners of our current house.  When you buy a house that was previously owned you find every owner did their own special things while they were there.  Our sprinkling system is a prime example of this.  It is now a hodge podge of three owners worth of repairs. 

This summer a group of men spent several hours digging up our back yard just to get the system running again.  When we discovered to fix things properly they'd have to spend at least another week digging up the front yard, we decided "running" was good enough for now.  We'll tackle "fixed" another summer.  If we ever move the 4th owners are going to be so pleased.

Like I said, this group of men dug up 80 percent of the back yard and left us with a "fixed" sprinkling system.  However, they also left us with a large pile of dirt.  Apparently they dug up 80 percent of the yard, but only put back 70 percent. 

This pile of dirt and rocks did not go unnoticed by the children.  It became the home to two black beetles the boy found at the park.  Chase used it as a construction site for his John Deere digger, Davis used it to scavenge the rocks he likes to hide in my garden boxes.   And it was in this pile of dirt that Madison and a friend found a little something one of the previous owners left behind--the remains of a family pet.  Bones, collar, and tags.

The men working on our sprinklers HAD to know they unearthed a dog while digging massive trenches in our back yard.  Right?  Maybe Not.  I don't know.  Either way, this particular dirt pile is no longer welcome in my back yard.

Mr. Happy


Please tell me I'm not the only one who finds this particular shirt on this particular boy humorous.

16 August 2010

We're Hospitable

We don't have a lot of guests stay at our house, but we like to make sure those who do get every amenity needed. 

We offer a queen size bed, fresh sheets, clean towels, a basket with soap, shampoo, body wash, even a shower cap.  But the most valuable service we offer is our full service manicure done while you nap.  I just hope our guests like hot pink.

12 August 2010

Another Birthday

On Tuesday the boy turned 8 and it was quite the event.

He wanted to start the festivities early so we went to his favorite sushi place for lunch the day before.  He even dragged his grandparents, who were visiting us at the time, along.  They were good sports and may have even liked it. 

He opened presents first thing on the morning of his birthday.  He had been saving up for a mini laptop and with the money he got for his birthday he had just enough to buy it.  Mike had anticipated this and bought the laptop a while ago.  When the boy realized he had exactly enough money (plus and extra 75 cents) Mike snuck outside, put the laptop on the front porch, rang the doorbell and snuck back inside.


video

I love kids.  He really thinks the UPS man just has impeccable timing.  We did set him straight about not having to spend the money he saved, but he was pleased he still had that extra 75 cents.

That afternoon we went to Jason's Deli, another one of his favorite restaurants.  That kid can really go to town on a salad bar.  He filled up a huge plate of salad and fruit but right as he reached our table he dropped it on the tile floor and it shattered sending glass and food everywhere.  He was devastated and with little tears in his eyes asked, "Mom, do you think they are going to make me pay for that plate?  Because I only have 75 cents and I'm not sure that's enough."

For dinner we had awesome gluten free cupcakes (it was a King Aurthur Flour mix and much better than the Betty Crocker mixes) and ice cream.

After that we went to watch the Owls (our local team) play baseball.  On the way in Kai told the guy taking his ticket it was his birthday.  When the man guessed he was turning 5 Kai said, "Nope!  Eight!"  Mike snuck off again, but this time it was to have Kai's name put on the billboard at the top of the 7th inning.  When they announced it was his 8th birthday he wasn't even surprised.  He just said, "Well I told them I was turning 8 when I came in." Poor Mike never gets any credit.

05 August 2010

Two Funny Things

Chase while watching Frankie the Fish said, "Now, that's a beautiful sea creature!"

Kai after his doctor mentioned his fingers were slightly webbed said, "That's probably why I'm such a good swimmer."

15 July 2010

Music

This morning I had to go in and wake Davis up so he could eat breakfast before swimming lessons. When he was still in the groggy half awake half asleep phase he said, "Mommy, I need a violin. But I need a little one and I want it to come with lots of music."

I've been trying to expose the two little boys to music this summer. We've been talking about beat and mood, and I've been playing all sorts of different styles of music for them.

The week we listened to Motown, Chase covered his ears and put himself to bed. I'm not joking. He covered his ears, walked down the hall to his room and went to bed. I wish Motown had that affect on all my kids-- it would make bedtime a lot easier.

12 July 2010

The Grotto





We try to hike The Grotto at least once a year. It is the perfect hike for kids. In fact Davis walked the whole way with out complaint. Not only is it a short hike, it is shaded most of the way, and has amazing scenery.

09 July 2010

Summer Time

This summer has been completely nuts.  Between Mike's Summer Activity List, baseball games, track meets, swimming lessons, orchestra, garden club, and trips to the library, I feel more like a taxi service than a mother.
Although we've been busy we're having a good time.

And to top it all off, this summer Kai has become an avid reader.  I've been lucky to have kids who love to read, but up until recently it was hard to convince the boy to read something besides Magic Tree House.  He worships the author, Mary Pope Osborne, in fact I think she is on his list of people he wishes he could marry (along with others like Crystal Bowersox and our friend's daughter).  The Magic Tree House series are great books that he finds entertaining but he can read one from cover to cover in about 30 minutes.  I thought he should start reading something more challenging, so when someone suggested he start reading The Underland Chronicles by Suzanne Collins (author of The Hunger Games) I checked out the first book. He devoured it.  Then he read the second and is almost done with the third.

Last week he took one of them to Davis' well check appointment.  When the doctor asked him what he was reading he said, "Its a Gregor book.  They are so good that I made a goal this morning that all I would do today is eat and read."  I'm pretty sure that's all he did too.  When we were grocery shopping I had to put him in the cart because he kept running into walls, doors, and cereal displays.  Apparently reading while walking requires more coordination than his little body currently holds.  But you can't say he didn't give it his very best effort.

01 July 2010

Exclusivity

Davis:  Mom, I love you.
Me:  I love you too, baby.
Davis:  Do you don't love the other kids?
Me:  I love all the kids.
Davis:  *sigh* Darn.

28 June 2010

Spinach Burgers



Last night I made Sparklebot's Spinach Burgers. I even made a couple that were gluten free by replacing the stuffing with rice crispies and some italian seasoning.   I tried them and they taste pretty much the same.

I loved them. Michael ate his and half of Madison's so I think I can safely say he enjoyed them. Davis liked his (though thats not saying much, I've seen him eat some pretty disgusting things).  Madison said "They aren't the best thing I've ever tasted, but I ate it."  Which translates to, "I am going to choke down half of one because I saw how angry you got when Kai gagged as he picked his up."  A teary eyed Chase tasted a very small corner of one and vowed never to eat another green burger.  Kai said, "Fine, I'll eat another, but only if I can put on enough ketchup that I don't actually have to taste it."

All in all I think it was a success.

18 June 2010

Davis Turns Three

This week Davis turned three.  For his birthday he requested lots and lots of cake, not just any cake, a farm cake.  This worked out well for me because not long ago Target was getting rid of old cake decorations. For 23 cents I scored a bag of Charlotte's Web decorations that work perfectly for a farm cake.

Davis woke up the morning of his birthday and with all the enthusiasm a new three-year-old can muster he came running down the hall and asked for his farm cake.  I explained that because the cake was for after dinner, I hadn't made it yet.  He was not happy.  At this point the boy and girl heard he was up and came in to sing Happy Birthday.  Little Davis balled up his little fists and yelled, with all the enthusiasm a new three-year-old can muster, "STOP IT!  STOP SINGING!"  then he looked at me and finished with, "YOU HAVE RUINED MY BIRTHDAY!" He then proceeded to stomp down the hall.

His disappointment didn't last too long.  He even helped me make homemade Root Beer for the party.  Later that night he got his farm cake, along with pancakes and bacon for dinner.


Happy birthday baby.

12 June 2010

The Summer of the Lawn

We have dubbed this year the summer we attempt to take care of our lawn.

This was the situation

This picture was taken after I'd sprayed the weeds no less than three times.

Not only did we have a serious weed problem we had a pretty major sprinkler repair which resulted in trenches being dug all across our back lawn.  When they flipped the fixed sprinklers on, a whole row of sprinklers we'd never seen before popped up.  I'm pretty sure the previous owners didn't know they were there either.  They also told us that we have 5 sprinkler boxes, 2 in the back and 3 in the front.  But we'd never seen ANY boxes in the front.  EVER.

After a lot of digging and stabbing things with the shovel, they found 2 of the 3 boxes.

The two they found are inside the curbing, under the ugly white rocks, and even under the black weed barrier material.  Its really a miracle we found them at all.  We still have no idea what those white pipes sticking out of our patio are for.  We have one in the back yard too.  But like I said, we found 2 of the 3 missing boxes--one is still MIA.

Quick side note: If you're in need of large quantities of white rocks, contact me, we'll talk.

So now the sprinklers are working.  And by "working" I mean they are no longer spewing water into the basement window wells.

But it hasn't all been fun and games.  Michael was dying to make me a new planter box, so I let him.  I'm all heart.

He also built a small one for Madison.  She is very excited to have her own little box and even has a tiny little tomato on one of her tomato plants. 

See the white pipe?  WHAT IS THAT?!!

So there's the yard.  Its a work in progress.  Hard work and slow progress.