Saturday, December 14, 2013

Taking pictures

Look who I found at the park!
the Oliverson Family

 Just look at these melt your heart eyes!
 Such a stud muffin!

These pictures need to be edited, but I love this family and I wish I could figure out how to edit on my own...maybe that's my next class (NOT).

Thursday, December 12, 2013

My boys

 So maybe I shouldn't give my kids cookies right before church...
but they are so cute eating cookies.

It's a Christmas tree

Living in Utah is a learning experience for this Island girl.  At home you buy a Christmas tree and they trim the trunk so that it's fresh and then they tie it to the roof of your car (for free) with twine.  Here in Utah they look at you weird when you ask how tall they are, laugh when you ask if they have twine and just stand there when your shoving it into your little car.
  Anyways, the boys had fun sharing the car with our 6.5 foot perfect Christmas tree.  The tree was covered in snow and left beautiful pine needles and the Christmas aroma in the car.  Now the tree is sitting in the corner of our living room with a lifetime of ornaments to remind us why we do all this crazy stuff.  It was fun watching the boys and 2 neighborhood kids put up the ornaments and telling them the stories of how they came to us.  I still have ornaments from my grandmother and her mother; ornaments that I remember placing on my tree in my parents living room.  I can't wait to continue to expand our collection and then share with my kids.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Carson is a dancing fool!

 Carson's class had a sweet little Christmas Program to celebrate Christmas in Hawaii.  The kids sang Christmas songs, danced and each one had a line about Christmas in Hawaii. Carson was really cute in his sunglasses and for one song they even had little blow up guitars. 

 I love that cheese-ball smile of his!

 Classic nose picking picture!

 At the end of the program the kids were shocked to have Santa come.  Carson was so patient (he was one of the first people in line, but everyone else had more family then he did) he was the last one on Santa's lap and asked for a Dinosaur for Christmas.  Santa tried to convince him that he wanted cars or Legos, but Carson stayed firm on those dinosaurs (hint, hint mom!).
I am so grateful for the program that he is in.  He might not be learning a second language, but he sure is having fun!

Monday, November 11, 2013

Veterans Day Parade

Parades seem to be a big deal around here! Maybe its the small town girl in me, but it seems like once a month there is something that needs a parade to celebrate. Oh and there are lots of local princesses from surrounding towns that get to sit in old cars wearing their pretty dresses.  Today Logan had the opportunity to be in a parade that I can actually stand behind.  I am so grateful for our veterans and there love of country as well as sacrifice. My father, grandfather and grandmother all served in the armed forces and I loved knowing that they served our country well.
 We waited  for 45 minutes for the parade to start and he didn't complain...much.
 There's that Valor Hall Banner we've all been waiting comes Logan (finally)!

 He just spotted his brother! There's my Loganito the second one from the end with all the other 4 and 5 year olds with hats they made to honor the Red, White and Blue.
There's my Loganito the second one from the end with all the other 4 and 5 year olds with hats they made to honor the Red, White and Blue.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Street Art

I love living a big neighborhood with lots of kids the same age.  The boys have so much fun playing outside with the other kids when they are with their parents.  The afternoon started with having 2 Oliverson boys added to our mix with 3 Simkin kids and of course the neighborhood kiddos (mostly boys).  I did feel a little like a Polygamist when we were walking to pick up James from the bus stop.  I had an 8, 7, 5, two 3 year olds and an 18 month old in tow walking back to our house. When the Simkin kids came over that added a 10, 6 and 12 month old to the mix (that was a rough afternoon).  But everyone left fed and happy! I even got M&M's out of the deal.  Sister Simkins knows me well and pays me with candy every time I watch her kids. Oh and I learned that Brogan is kinda a bully.  He did not like that other little guy and kept pushing him down and sitting on him! It was pretty hard to discipline and not laugh.

It's great that we have this fun dirt hill right outside our door so I can set up camp in a comfy (or not so comfy) chair and watch out for dirt clumps.
 Carson struggled getting up the hill, our sweet neighbor Alex helped him up while James made fun of him!
Someday there will be more houses here and my house will be much cleaner! That red dirt does end up everywhere in everything.  The best is when they empty out all that glorious red dirt from their shoes in my kitchen.

 Lulu and Logan worked hard to decorate the driveways of everyone in the fourplex.  Lulu will be eight soon, but her talent is that of a much older person.
 Because there is constant construction all around us there is a constant source of trash.  This time they found plastic to pull the motorcycle with.  Carson pulled that thing up and down the driveway for 20 minutes.
Making a Turkey!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Trick or treating Utah style

I do love myself some Halloween.  We were never allowed to celebrate Halloween the way the rest of the world does.  Usually my mom would have us dress up and we would go to our grandparents house and then return home to enjoy a communal bowl of candy.  We never had anyone knock on our door because of where we lived so we never saw what it was like for anyone else.  Being with my family is true to how I grew up.  We spent a lot of time together and I always felt close to my brother and sisters because of it.  Now that I have kids I feel so much pressure to fall into this commercial holiday.  We have to buy the costumes and buy lots of candy, for what? So that our kids can have fun for a few minutes and then be sick for 2 days? 
Either way Halloween was fun this year! The boys are finally getting old enough that we get to have a lot of fun together.  Curtis was able to join us from Wednesday to Friday and actually helped James with his costume. Each of the boys had class parties that we were able to help out with, amazingly, and a Ward Trunk or Treat. 

 Carson was a cow
Logan making mummies at school with his friend Sawyer (Fanboy from Fanboy and ChumChum).
 Logan was a blue ninja
 Logan helped me out at Carson's preschool party.  As you can see he was a really good example to all 17 of the 3 year olds.

 Enjoying his spoils.
James was a police officer.  I am sad that this was the only picture I have of his costume.  If I was a glutton for punishment I would pull it out of the Halloween box and make him wear it, but I am not, so you won't see a better picture.  
We went around our neighborhood and maybe had 8 people open their doors for the boys and I think some of them gave out lunch snacks.  We had no trick or treaters come to our door so now we know for next year.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

E for effort

This morning one of James friends was baptized and we were invited.   We went to three different buildings before we found the right one, but we were still on time (only in Utah). We sat down in front of James friends family and instantly Carson and Logan started wrestling....I threatened and things were good for a few minutes. Carson was just getting too out of hand, so I took him outside to scream it out. My boys know they need to stay put when I leave, but with Utah baptisms done differently here James left with the second group instead of waiting with his friends family.  I have to say when I got Carson back to a  listening mood and James was missing I was upset at first and then 45 minutes later when I still couldn't find him I was terrified.   I even made an announcement from the pulpit, checked every room, around the building,  my car...every possible place except for driving down the road. There was one room that was doing a confirmation so I just waited outside and guess who just walked out like nothing was kid! No one else left so I don't know if he came out to get a drink of water or what, but that was the crazy.  Talk about being lead by the spirit!  He was sad he missed seeing his friend being baptized so we just left.
No good deed goes unpunished!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

We said good-bye!

I am grateful that Mama came and sad to see her leave, but knowing she will be back in a few months is a good feeling.  We got to meet up with her this morning to share some donuts and milk before dropping off James.
 Rosie helped clean up Carson's face...wouldn't want left overs!

 Such a happy dog, the boy looks pretty happy too!
Last night James cried himself to sleep because he was so sad about Mama leaving.  It breaks my heart to see him so sad, but I think I convinced my mom to learn how to Skype so maybe he can read to her when he's feeling sad next time.  James and Mama have a special bond after spending the last school year together, so we are planning a trip this summer to head back to the Island for some family time!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

I LoVe My FaMiLy!

On Monday we got together for dinner with the Oliverson Family and my mom at the Green Springs Park. I brought a meal for my family and she brought a meal for hers (funny how our families don't agree on food when Nancy and I were raised eating the same foods).  Some how we both managed to bring Jell-O salads to share (layered Jell-O salad and a pistachio salad) and my mom made a apple crisp with apples from Whidbey Island minus the flour, so it was like fancy apple oatmeal!  I had never been there before and I should have assumed it would be beautiful because it is just past the country club.  It was a perfect night for boys to play outside.  My mom got each of the boys a matchbox car, a mustache and a punching balloon.

 Mustaches! It was fun getting the boys together to take these pictures.  Even though one of my nephews wouldn't participate....well Brogan wasn't that hot on the subject either, my boys were sweet as can be and others were...creative. 

 This kids face kills me.  How can one person be so adorable?


 I'm glad my mom is patient with us, cause this was hilarious. 

 Until this little piece of magic happen and then this was even better!

 My new favorite picture of Logan.  It captures his personality so perfectly.

 Easton learned the proper way to blow up one of these balloons...cute kid could not make it work on this end.  Not for lack of trying!

The balloons were almost the same size as Brogan! Sadly between laying on the balloons and the grass only 2 survived! But all the boys went home with a matchbox car to play with. 
Tomorrow my mom starts the long drive home again.  It has been an amazing week and a half with her here.  We have done canning, thrift store shopping, road tripping and spent countless hours talking.  I don't know who is more said that she is leaving me, or the boys.  I am sure this isn't the longest I have not seen my mom, but it just feels so great to have her near by. 
Carson has really enjoyed spending time with my mom's new puppy, Rosie. She is a sweet little dog and we figure she must be about the same maturity level as Carson.  We put her in his carseat and they are both vibrating with excitement.  Carson has been so patient with her too, she still chews on everything including Carson and he just reminds her, "No chewing Rosie. No chewing."
Heading up to Zion National Park was a blast and a good reminder of the beauty that surrounds us even here in this monotone Southern Utah.