Friday, April 29, 2011

I love this relationship.

We love our kids. Truly, we do. But sometimes it seems that they don't love each other so much. They don't get along so well. I know that this is typical, but our kids just seem so completely different. Chad and Luke have never really gotten along well. Their personalities are just so different. Chad is totally D, all about Star Wars, video games, making movies... Luke is more me. Wanting to play with friends, play games, make up games, run the games, boss the games, change the rules when no one is looking (see where I am going here?)...

But Chad and this little man love each other. Reed is totally Chad's Mini-Me. He loves Chad, and vice versa. He waits for Chad to come home from school every day, and then can sit and watch him play video games for hours. They will discuss them, discuss Star Wars guys, discuss Lego guys, discuss Star Wars and Indiana Jones movies. I am so thankful for this relationship in our family. It definitely brings some joy to my heart.

No more baby seats.

We'd been talking about Reed getting a new carseat. He really was getting too big for his old one, but it was just one more thing in our crazy life right now, so we figured it could wait.

Then a friend put out a plea for help. The general manager of her warehouse just got custody of his 2-year-old son and needed a carseat. Did anyone have an extra carseat to give away? It's like it was meant to be! Out with the old (and totally for a great reason)...

And in with the new! Reed's new big-boy booster seat! He loves it... but's it's very weird not to have a big, bulky seat behind me anymore! And I hope that he still loves it when he has to sit in it for 16 hours driving to California in July!!! It's not quite as cushy as his old one. Oh well... that's what pillows are for!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Peep Wars.

I love Peeps. Derrick hates them. He thinks they taste like cardboard. Still, I love them. Especially after they've sat out for a day or two and gotten a little hard. Yum.

Haley came home from school and wanted to blow up some of my precious Peeps. I had driven all over town looking for leftover Peeps (none at Target or Walmart, finally found a few at Fred Meyer), and she wanted to blow up some of them. Stick them in the microwave and see which one would blow up first. I was sad to part with said Peeps, but all in the name of science... and she did end up eating them after all.

Hoppy Easter!!!

A letter was put out the night before Easter asking the Easter Bunny to please hide the Easter baskets. It even told how hard to hide each individual's Easter basket (this letter was written by Haley after all). So the Easter Bunny agreed, and hid them all. Truly, not that hard, but it was early and for some reason Chad just could not find his basket... hiding behind the curtains.

There's candy in these!!!

(Sorry there's so much about Reed, I just spend the most time with him. He's cute though, so it's okay!)

Our ward had an Easter Egg hunt. They said that they hid 700 eggs, and there weren't that many kids there, so hunt away. There was an area for the 4 and under, and then up to 12. (So granted, Luke "helped" a 7-year-old, and Chad just picked up a few eggs. They all had fun.)

Reed just thought it was so cool that all his eggs had candy in them and he had to break them all open, dump them out, and check out all the candy.

Toast please.

Mr. Impatient got tired of waiting for me to make him toast one morning, so he went right ahead and started it. Got the bread in the toaster and had butter on his knife, ready to go. Such a funny kid.

The Legos guys are invading.

And with all the packing, sorting and moving, comes the new obsession. Lego mini-figures, otherwise known as "Lego Guys" in our house. Luke and I took a field trip to a Lego store right before Reed's birthday. (He LOVES Lego Guys after all, and we were hoping to just buy him some cheap guys.) Well, this Lego store is one that people can turn in their old Legos, find hard-to-find sets, guys, whatever, just a sort of speciality Lego shop. So I thought we could get some "used" Lego Guys for cheap. Not so. The cheapest ones, that you put together yourself, were $2.50 each. I was thinking more like $1 or something, but no. Legos are totally were it's at. (When my children have fully outgrown them, if that ever happens, I am going to be rich selling all the Legos we have in our house. Or maybe I can pay for their college educations with them???)

Anyways, what we did find were these series of Lego guys. A little grab bag. Still pricey, $3 each, but whole collections of them. You don't know what you're getting, so it's a bit risky, but D is pretty good at feeling through the bags and figuring out what they are. This guy at Toys R Us also sent me a text he had that had codes on them, and that makes it a bit easier also. So, this has become the new obsession. Luke has spent birthday money on these, the Easter Bunny has brought them, I think the Tooth Fairy has also. Not really what we need right now, one more thing, but truly, they make me happy too, and sit in my office so I get to enjoy them!

We could be our own moving company.

Seriously, with 5 kids, maybe we should start our own moving company. Granted, some of us aren't worth a whole lot right now, but Chad is all over it. Every day he comes home from school, and says, "come on, mom, let's take a load over to the storage unit." Of course, he knows that helping me will benefit him with a refreshing beverage, but I will still take all the help I can get!

Enjoying some sun.

Last Saturday, we had a nice, beautiful, almost warm-ish, sunny day. And while some of us were working on cleaning the garage, packing a moving truck, sorting the crawl space, etc... others were doing the right thing and just enjoying the sun.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Family of 10???

And in the middle of it all, we had some of our friends staying with us while their parents were in England picking up his parents from their mission. We love them, and we loved having them with us... but totally gave me an idea of if we had 8 kids, like there were in D's family when he was growing up. Totally need a bigger table and more chairs! But a game of telephone around the dinner table is always entertaining... and for some reason the answer kept being "Chad is so cute" (I think that Chad might have been changing it as it was going around the table!).

Super overwhelm.

And this is where a lot of my overwhelm comes from. Not only do we have a 3,100 square foot house to pack up, we also have a 3-car garage and a large crawl space, all teeming with stuff. And when I thought I was doing okay with all of it, I see D and Chad pulling stuff out of an attic space I wasn't fully aware of. This is about when the tears started. It's better now. A lot has been put into storage... but sheesh, does everybody own this much stuff? I don't think so!

More box forts.

Boxes seem to be piling up all over our house, and what's a little boy to do but push some aside and find a great place to play Legos and Star Wars guys.

Minka too.

And since Cooper was in the last post, here's one about one of our cats. This is our sweet cat who likes to cuddle and spoon with us while we sleep. This is Minka. She likes to find nice places on my desk to sit in our "sun" and just hang out.

Rocky, our other cat, who we also love, don't get me wrong... but he likes to kill things... and leave body parts all over the place. Seriously. Almost daily we come out to find mice heads on our front porch. Intestines in our driveway. Whatever. Like Cooper and his sweet tooth, Rocky is not picky about what he maims.

And life resumes...

One of the daily tasks I have is making sure there is nothing left on the counter for Cooper to confiscate once I leave the house. You don't know how many sticks of butter this dog has eaten. Cartons of Country Crock, cookies, bread, meat, dozen cupcakes, Girl Scout cookies, whatever. He's not picky. Anything he can get to when no one is looking. So, it completely doesn't surprise me to come home and find our box of Krispy Kreme donuts sitting on the floor, mauled, completely gone. There were still at least 6 donuts in the box.

Here fishy, fishy.

And our final field trip during Spring Break was an outing to the aquarium. D got some cheap tickets on Groupon, we had never been there before, and we all really enjoyed it. Last year we went to the Aquarium in Seattle, and it just doesn't compare to what I'm used to from Cali. This one was a lot closer. Still no whales or dolphins like Sea World, but we still had a great time!

And more hiking.

And we also went hiking. What can we say? Sometimes we just love the outdoors, and it really is beautiful where we live... when it isn't raining so much. But truthfully, the rain helps with the beauty! That's why it's so brown in California... no rain there!

Sandy day.

One of our Spring Break days we took a drive out to the beach. It was BEAUTIFUL!!! Cold... but, oh, so pretty! And we love hunting for the perfect sand dollars!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Happy Birthday to Reed!!!

Our little man turned 4!!! Can you believe it??? He is such a joy to have in our family and we are so thankful every day that Heavenly Father decided that we NEEDED one more kid!!! Our family would definitely not be complete without him!!! He is mischievous, still needs naps (although he refuses to take them!), totally has a red-head temper, but is such a love and brings so much pleasure to us! We love you Reed and love the little person that you are turning into!!!

Playing a bit of catch up.

Sorry... our life is crazy right now. We are trying to pack up our 3,000 square foot house, put 99% of it into storage and move the balance, plus the seven of us, a dog, two cats and a hamster into my brother- and sister-in-law's basement next weekend. So, life is off right now. Whatever. We all have our problems. Ours is just (as my Uncle Billy would say...) this giant tree, blocking the rest of the forest right now, and I just have to be patient, get around the tree, and then see the rest of the forest. I'm trying, I swear... but sometimes that tree just seems to be the "giantest" (I know that's not really a word!) tree in the WHOLE WIDE WORLD!!! So anyways... a bit of catch up.

We had Spring Break a few weeks ago. The kids and I did the whole "let's-check-out-some-of-the-cool-places-to-eat-in-Portland" field trip. So here you go... the Grilled Cheese Grill and Voodoo Donuts. And this counts for three days... cause I haven't been so good at all my pictures of the day right now. And I have three pictures that I want to include in my book. Fun places.

Grilled Cheese Grill. They have two locations. One in a school bus and one in a double-decker bus. We went to the double-decker one. Fun. You order outside, then take your food (any kind of grilled cheese you could imagine and so yummy!) and go inside and eat. We sat upstairs and the kids loved it!

Then, always a favorite, crazy Voodoo Donuts. They have some funky donuts. Some with names I won't even say, but it's always an adventure and the Maple Bacon Bar is pretty darn good if I do say so myself!

Monday, April 04, 2011

Breakfast for dinner please.

It was Macy's turn to do dinner. She wanted breakfast for dinner. She planned the menu. French Toast, bacon, eggs. Funny thing? We've never made French Toast, believe it or not. I made it as a kid with my mom, but have never made it as a parent (or adult for that matter. Can't even remember the last time I had it). D and I both knew that you needed milk and eggs, but that's about it. So, I pulled out a recipe book, Macy and I got to town, and the French Toast turned out super yummy! It will definitely be made more often now!

Stake Conference.

I Belong to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints! (And am proud of it!) Sing it loud and proud!

Part of Saturday and Sunday was spent at home, in our pjs, watching General Conference. Every 6 months our church broadcasts messages from our prophet and his apostles and other leaders. I love this time and love hearing what they have to say... even though sometimes I am fighting to hear over the kids!

Sunday walk.

The rain had stopped, so we headed out for a nice walk around Round Lake. Us, our five kids and Cooper, along with five other kids and Duke (they're parents happen to be out of town right now, so we are kind of looking after them, and they are kind of looking after Duke). It was a nice day for a little hike and the dogs loved it!

April Fools!

Dropping off Haley and our friend, Garrett (who's also backwards!), at school, with Reed and Garrett's brother, Tyler.

For April Fool's Day, Macy and Haley's school decided to have "Crazy Dress Day", so Haley put her entire outfit on backwards, including backpack, had on two different shoes and a crazy hat. She thought she was so funny!

Sensory Fair.

In Reed's preschool, the 3s class always does lessons on the five senses, and at the end of it, they have a Sensory Fair. So, I got to go to school with Reed for a while, where we smelled different things; tried to guess what things were by their shapes; played sound bingo; made different noises with musical instruments; tasted salty, sweet and sour items (always one of the favorites!); and were "blind" doing puzzles and building towers. It was a lot of fun, and I had a great time with my little man!


Derrick told me we were going to pick up dinner. It was Taco Tuesday at Del Taco anyways so this didn't come as a surprise to me. He passed Del Taco. He told me he had another stop first. He kept driving and wouldn't say anything, so I just went along with it. He pulled into a strip mall driveway. I asked him if we were getting the car washed??? Although it was raining and the car wash was closed... but we were there. Then I asked if we were getting new tires? Another place we passed by. Finally he stopped at a Hawaiian restaurant. I asked him if he ordered food from there? He said yes. I asked if it was expensive (something I always want to know). He said yes. I checked out the menu in the front window, wondering if they had Puka Dogs (something we ate last time we went to Hawaii - so yummy!). We went inside, me still assuming we are picking up food, totally not paying attention. In front of us is a table of people, all holding their menus up to cover their faces. Still paying no attention. But then some of the hair looks familiar, and all of a sudden they are yelling "surprise"! And let me tell you, I was!!!

Totally made my day! Thanks to Miriam, Wendy, Megan, Kristi, Shauna, Liz, Allison, Kris, Susan, Lisa, Carrie, Patti, Joy, Michelle and Laurie for making my day! Love you guys!!!