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Tuesday, July 28, 2009

What to do, what to do?

So amazingly I got a call last week from the school that Miles is suppose to attend this fall. I had called the district offices a week or two earlier to find out some information about kindergarten ("K" for now on), as I wasn't sure if K was going to be full-day or half-day (they did not know at the spring registration). The district was not sure either (weird, to me), but told me I could call the school and leave a message and hopefully somebody would get back to me before August 10th. So I was very surprised to get a call "so early."

But then I found out that our school (not the whole district mind you) if only doing full-day K. I strongly oppose that for my family. So now I have a dilemma, what do i do????

I could send Miles to his school and just take him out 1/2 day each day. The gal from school thought that would be totally okay with the school and teachers. But I worry about this because I don't want Miles to see everybody else stay full-day and he has to leave each day. And, please, don't tell me to let him stay all day if he wants to, because this is actually something I feel strongly against, for a variety of reason. Even if he wants to, it is not something I support. But I would feel bad if I had him go in the morning and the afternoons are all the "fun times." So do I send him in the afternoons for the fun stuff, and continue to teach him academia at home? Do I do 2 mornings, 2 afternoons, and 1 full-day each week? Too confusing and/or unstructured? Would teachers totally be opposed to that? Or just do either mornings or afternoons, but let him stay all day on Fridays?

Or. . . do I have him go to another school altogether? One where they only do half-day - which is every other school in our district. At first I didn't like this because I would probably have him switch back to our school come 1st grade. I was worried about transitioning him back to a new school, having to make new friends, etc. But some friends I talked to told me that making friends wouldn't be a big deal seeing as a 1st grade class would differ significantly than the K-class anyways. Am I making sense? Would I hate the 10-min. "commute" to his school each day? Etc., etc.

So, please, any feed-back, opinions, comments, etc.? I would love to hear them. Except to send Miles to full-day. I'm not doing that.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

An Emmy-First

So Ben used to paint my toenails - not super often, but every once in a while. It had been, though, probably a couple years since I had polish on my sad little toes. So yesterday I told Ben I was going to pick up some nail-polish at the store and he was going to paint them for me. So he did and my toes are once again happy. Yes, Ben is really that great.

Emmy saw the polish this morning and was instantly drawn to it, even though she didn't know what it was. I showed her my toes and she was all excited about having that done to herself. So I painted her sweet little toe-nails and finger-nails. Her first time. Probably not her last.

This is something that could not wait until after breakfast.


Here's Emmy admiring her nails.


She's just too cute. Seriously.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

ABC Hopscotch

Summer school at its best. I drew this yesterday and had the kids throw a rock and then tell me what letter it landed on. I think I had more fun drawing it out, but the kids did like it. Jonas especially. He doesn't know all of the letters, but he does know most of the sounds they make - thank you Letter Factory.

Learning can indeed be fun.

Emmy taking a turn.


And Jonas.


And Mr. Miles.
Here's how it looked right-side up.


And here's where ya stood.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Re-creative



I like this term my sister came up with - at least I credit her for coming up with it. She has always claimed that she is not a creative person, but rather a re-creative person. That is, she sees things she likes and then she copies the idea and creates her own. I, too, am re-creative - though not nearly as much as my sister.

But I saw this the other day and instantly loved it and wanted to do it: light switch covers. And you know what? I acutally did it. Wow. I have so many things I would love to do but 2 things really get in my way darn it: 1. Time and 2. Money. But as this didn't cost me any money and I had all the supplies on hand and had time as my kids joyfully played, I did it this morning. One for Emmy's room and one for the Boys' room.

I really liked how they turned out - yet I am still critical of them. Emmy's is bubbly as I just don't do super well with Mod Podge apparently. Also, as I was screwing in the little screws, a little bit of the paper bunched, so to say. Perhaps that's do to my impatience and the mod podge might have not been totally dried? And the boys' turned out pretty good except for the location of the screw. It was the only picture of a boy and it was hard to space it any other way. I thought it would be okay. And it's probably okay, but not the greatest.

So that was fun. I think most women (people, perhaps?) have this want and desire to create something. My something was small and simple today, yet it completely satisfied me.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

1st Family Camp-Out of '09

Wow, crazy that we haven't been able to get out camping as a family until this past weekend. But go we finally did. It's always good just to go up with our little family the first go-around so that we can iron out some of the kinks. It was a pretty fun camping trip. Not super great, truthfully, but good. It's always good to be out in the great outdoors. It was real quick, though, seeing as Ben doesn't get off work until 5:30. And our drive to where we camped was 2-hours - but worth it (this time at least) as I just think Lake City is a neat place.

The kids are anxiously awaiting s'mores.


Emmy is eating her first s'more ever. Wow, check out that fire!


Now getting ready for bed. Doesn't she look tired? She loved, loved the tent and was just all giggles and runs in the tent. As it was already 10:00 it was way passed what I had planned: put Emmy down around 8, boys by 9, mom and dad 10. So we just decided to all go to bed at the same time. It went. . . perfectly. Amazing! Emmy was all snuggled up in her blankets, the boys in their bags, the light turned off, and bedtime stories shared. (my story was dumb, ben's was pretty good, miles' was short, and jonas' was surprising long and wasn't just filled with gibberish words.) Then there was pretty much silence. Not a peep from Emmy, except maybe once or twice a "mommy?"


Jonas trying to figure out how to put on his shirt. 9/10 times he gets it (and his pants) backwards.


Look - Miles' hair even looks that way sometimes before going to bed. Love it.


Now it's a good morning. Good morning Jonas!


Good morning Miles! Miles begged us to take his pic like that. (so sorry that it's upside down. and i can't fix it or it will mess everything up. dang google chrome, i really like you but not for doing my blog. then i hate you.) (erin can you fix it? it's not upside down in My Pictures)


And Good Morning Emmy! Too bad that was Emmy's best moment of the day. She got a little fever and wasn't feeling super-uper good for the rest of the day.


The boys getting the morning fire started.


We had an unsuccessful fishing excursion. The boys were more interested in playing. Emmy always wants to fish and hold the pole. It's great. And the line coming down from the tree? I think that was mine that I casted up there. Whoops.


Then we went hiking. Miles and Jonas were so in to trying to catch the grasshoppers, which were hopping everywhere! We deemed them uncatchables, though. They were tough to get.


Emmy hiking with her daddy. Oh I love them.


This never happens in my family - kids falling asleep on me. Even when babies. So you know that 1. Emmy went to bed 3 hours after her regular bedtime and 2. She wasn't feeling good. It was a treat for me.


Ants on a log. Cute ants indeed.


We found this little area off the hiking trail and the boys explored it for a good 30-40 minutes. It was perfect. Emmy slept on me the whole time. Miles told Ben he really wanted to climb across the stream on the log - and he did. It was fun watching my boys be. . . well boys.

On our way back home we stopped in the actual town of Lake City and played for a bit at the park. Then we walked on the boardwalks passed the shops. We stopped and got 2 cream sodas to share - yum! Then the kids just had to do a ride on the itty-bitty carousel. That's a post for it's own, though. Then we drove home.

A good time. Good enough that I want to do it again. Soon.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Updates

Preface: This is really long. More like a journal entry. For my sake. You can read it, of course. But, again, it's long.

Youngest to Oldest:
You had me at Mommy
That pretty much sums up Emmy. While it is totally flattering, it is also exhausting to be wanted so much. Dang. But she is just too darn cute to refuse. Seriously. Ben was going to give me some much-wanted and much-needed "alone time" at Target but as I was heading out and Ben and the kids were all on the porch reading a book, Emmy kept saying, "Want Mommy." She came with me. I need to dress her real ugly or something.

She talks a lot right now. My favorite word she says, don't ask me why, is "monkey." It's adorable and she says it at the right times. Love it. She has to, has to, has to do everything her brothers do. When we go to t-ball practices or games, there is Emmy doing the stretches with the rest of the kids (touching her toes, etc.) and even running the bases. When the game starts she gets real mad that she can't play, too. But she does get to sit every once in a while with Big Bro Miles on the bench. Miles and Emmy love that.

Emmy has what appears to be a great potential for being a great gymnast. Even in nursery last Sunday one of the dads in our ward saw Emmy doing some crazy stuff (like climbing in a play house and then going out the window - head first. several times.) and said, "She'll be a great gymnast." With some of her birthday money we'll get her into a gymnastics class for a bit.

She still loves her "sleepies." But calls them "Boos." I don't know why, ask her. She likes her yellow one best. She no longer wears them, just carries them everywhere. She also no longer sucks on them, just uses the cuffs to tickle her legs, arms, etc. She loves to be softly tickled and it is part of her bed-time routine.

She had a great "mine, "no mine," "no mine" verbal fight this week with the baby in front of us at church. It was amusing, but also not. She's got some serious sharing issues. All you need to do is look her way and she'll declare ownership.

Oh, and she has a great scowl face.

She's nuts and we're nuts for her.


Sink or Swim?
Jonas decided to sink. It was probably one of my most scary mom-moments and I doubt I will ever forget the image of Jonas under water. Even now I want to puke just thinking about it. The boys had swim lessons last week M-Th from 12-12:30. Ben took the boys on Monday. I went on Tuesday and came home telling Ben I was just sick watching them as I was just nervous and didn't feel like they were being watched closely in the water. (but i figured that was just me being paranoid) They do most of their lessons in the therapy pool - a 10x10 pool. In the middle of the pool there is a red line - indicating a foot and a half drop, 2 feet to 3 .5 feet. Kids are told not to go past there as they could not touch the bottom. The kids understand it, but as the teacher would be working with a child I felt the other kids were just playing around in the pool pretty much unattended and something could happen. (There is another "helper" in the pool with the class, but I don't know what she "helped" with?) Something did happen, but not my child first. The youngest kid in the class on Wednesday fell off the red line and luckily his mom was watching him and shouted at the teacher to get him out. I was chatting with his mom and told her she was brave (as she didn't run over to him as I told her I would) and her boy was brave. I was sick after that. Did not help my nerves.

Anyways, (long story, sorry) on Thursday the teacher had the kids standing on a shallow part in the pool and then they'd jump to her. She then would place the child on some bar in the pool and let them hold on while she helped the next kid jump. Well. . . I guess she thought Jonas had gotten a hold of the bar, but he hadn't. And she had gone to help the next kid. So I'm talking loudly (no, really, I don't think I was screaming. I should have been.), "Get Jonas! Get Jonas!" as I'm running towards him as he is head-under flailing/splashing in the water. (My kids don't know how to swim at all - hence the lessons.) The teacher finally realizes what is going on and grabs him out as soon as I get there. He barfs up a lot of water as well as his pink lunch. Beautiful. I don't know how I held in the gazillion tears, but I did. Perhaps pride? The tears held off until I got to the car, though.

So that was the last class for them. Not that I don't want them to learn to swim, or to get back in the water, because believe me I do. But not in that class because, to me, I feel it is very unsafe. 2 kids go under? That is 2 too many.

Anyways, more about Jonas. He still remains our funny kid. He makes us all laugh. He's a goof and a good goof. We don't have much problem with Jonas - except for whining. He whines a lot. But usually he saves it all for home, and for mom. Sometimes his whines are loud, loud wailing screams. I hate them. But not him, of course.

He got the hang of riding with no training-wheels. Kind of. Miles didn't get it at all - we'll try again next year. Jonas was real nervous about falling, though, and so he mainly liked to ride on the grass. He'd start on the sidewalk and then veer off to the grass and ride all around it. He was actually very, very good riding on the grass, which is pretty hard. We started to get him to stay on the sidewalk and he did improve, but to stop he would still curve on to the grass. He went fast, too. Real fast, that's how he liked it. We'd tell him to slow down, but he just wouldn't. Funny kid. But, alas, we put his training wheels back on because we don't think he's quite ready mentally. There's no way I could take him riding to Main Street on sidewalks, stopping and going, etc. But next year? Wow, he'll be cruising all around town I have no doubt.

Jonas' interests vary a lot from Miles. They have a lot of similarities, too, of course: the sandbox, trucks, and the basement swing. They both love books, too, and can sit for a good 30-45-minutes while I read them books. But Jonas likes things like motorcycles and skateboards. Yep, he's going to be a "skater." A nice one, of course. When we went up to Ouray they have this tiny skateboard place and Jonas' attention was just grabbed up by the boys and their skateboards. Jonas really, really wanted to go and ask the boys if they would let him use their boards. It was really sweet.

Both my boys do not have an ounce of hustle in them. It's quite comical, really. So Miles is still doing t-ball and Jonas had a 3-day intro-to-t-ball thing. And neither one of them ever, ever hustled. All the kids hustle around the bases, but my kids just leisurely run. La-de-da. I don't care. T-ball is not their passion and not something they care about shining in. But believe me,both my boys will shine in something good. I have no doubt.

Slap Him Silly
Miles, Miles, Miles. I don't know what all to say about him. I don't want this to be negative, but I think that is where it will head. He has given me so much trouble and grief lately. As well as church teachers. I'm scared for what will happen when Kindergarten starts next month.

But he's a good kid. Seriously. Not just because I'm Mom. He is. He's smart, inquisitive, tender hearted (yes, he really is), and although his actions are far, far, far from it - he doesn't like "naughtiness." I know that may not make sense to anybody else but me because I am His Mom. But, really, I understand it completely. Not that I understand him, though. Oh I wish I did. I wish I could help him figure out why he's been acting up so much lately.

Sure, I could totally blame it on no more naps. Because honestly and truly that is when his downfall started - about 2-3 months ago. He's never been a perfect child, but he's never beenthis crazy. I think it's a phase. I hope it's a phase. I hope, hope, hope and pray it is a phase.

What does he do? I can't describe it all. But on Sunday I got him delivered to my nursery door screaming and kicking our 7-month pregnant Primary Sec. (again, sorry M.) I had to take him outside as he was causing such a ruckus. Then I finally had to bring him back in and deliver him, still screaming and kicking (but, no, I'm not pregnant), to his dad so I could return to my nursery kids. Then I found out today that he spat in his teacher's face a while ago. That made me cry (when I got off the phone, of course. Dang that pride.) and I went down and calmly, though crying, talked to Miles. I told him that I know he is sweet and smart and good-hearted, but dang, he needs to show it to other people too. Let other people see the good in him, not the yuck. Yadda, yadda. He hugged me. I don't know if anything will change.

Though he seems to lack self-control, he is so far from that. I don't know many kids that will get a bag of candy and not eat it right away - and trust me, food is very loved by Miles, especially the not-too-often treats. Sometimes he'll "save" the candy. Sometimes he'll say something like (if he got the candy in the car), "I won't eat this until we get back home," or "I won't eat this until we get to the store," etc. And he won't. I just need to harness this self-control of his for good. And I feel like I'm failing in that regards, as well as many others for him.

But love him I do. And I'm lucky to be his mom. I get to see him do all the good, sweet things he does. Like blowing kisses to his daddy as he rounds 3rd base. Like getting Emmy her boos when she's crying. Like looking at the freshly checked-out library books at home for a good hour. Like reading his beginning-to-read books. Like playing with Jonas for 2 hours straight (right now) without a cry or fight. Like loving to read the Book of Mormon Reader every night. Like the crafts he's always making. Like his imagination that creates amazing play-times. Like his love of birds. Like telling me, unscripted and unprompted, that he loves me. I'm lucky indeed.


Up and Down
That pretty much describes me. I have some really, really good days and then some really, really bad days. Yesterday I had a really bad day in the morning and then it got better in the afternoon. So I guess I can even have really good and bad days all in one day. Wow, how exhausting is that!

I'm still "working" at the hospital but have literally been called off the past 3 months. The patient census is really low (meaning the number of patients on the floor) and so that requires less staff. The full-time staff has also had many hours cut. It's crazy. But there is a job opening here in town that offers an 8-hour shift. I want it. Real bad. Only I don't know if they need/want a once-a-week only nurse. I haven't heard back from them so I'm guessing they don't. But I'll call tomorrow and try to convince them they do. Comprende?

Summer is nice for exercising because I get to do a little "cross-training." So instead of running 6 days a week, I get to run 4 days and on the other 2 days I road-bike for 30 minutes and then come home and jump-rope for 10. I love it. It feels good to get another type of physical exercise. I'm slow on the bike, but that's okay. And today on the jump-rope, I only tripped up once. You might not be freaking out, but I was. Usually I trip up about 1-2 dozen times. And I don't pee my pants like I thought I would.

Nursery is okay. Don't hate it, but don't love it. It's my turn to be in there and so I'll gladly do it.

All I want right now (okay, I'll be truthful - it's not all I want, but is what I want most) are happy and good kids. I need to work much harder on achieving this, but I'm not sure exactly how? That's why this is so hard. I know how to train for a marathon, or plan family dinners for 2 weeks. But how to raise and discipline my kids? I really don't know. I need Help and I hope I get it. Like soon.


Superman
I just bought Ben a shirt with the Superman logo on it. I love it and think he looks brilliant in it. He's unsure of it, but will wear it out of love for me. Ben is still greatly enjoying being back at the surgical center. It's a good place to be. The days are long, but so are the weekends.

He's training for a "century ride" in August. A 100 mile bike ride (110 miles to be exact). It's called the ULCER and stands for something like: "Utah Lake something Epic Ride." The "c" used to stand for century, but doesn't anymore and I can't remember what it does stand for. So he's doing long bike rides on Mondays, sprint/short rides on Thursdays, and 1 1/2 - 2 hour rides on Saturday. He's loving it and loving how he feels stronger and more fit. He also goes "barefoot running" on Wednesdays with a few other friends. He likes that, too, but barefoot running hasn't helped (nor made worse, mind you) his knee-pain that always occurs about 20 minutes into his running.

He's still the elders' quorum president. But I think he should be released to serve with me in the nursery. Seriously, how fun would that be? I guess if it's to be it will be. It's probably not to be, though, dang it.

He put up a light above our sink last nite (the electrical stuff was already there and so we didn't have to pay any money to do it) and fixed our downstair's bathroom's door knobs so that they actually latch and shut (you'll thank him for that, erin and chuck!).

He's so handy and handsome.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Hooray for Ouray

Really and truly I love Ouray. It's a beautiful place. On Saturday after we old people were done with all of our early-morning exercising, we were off to Ouray.

We spent a couple hours hiking in the mountains. It was pretty. And pretty scary, too. Not a hike for little children. Amazingly, there wasn't much complaining from the kids - once from Jonas (a true miracle) a fit from Miles, and some moans from Emmy. That was it. But it was a quite steep climb at times with a couple hundred feet drop-off cliff following along side us for a bit. Won't do that again. But still had a good time.

We then went into town and hung out at the park and discovered that right next to the park and the hot-springs pools there is this really cool pond filled with huge and not-so-huge fish and turtles. I loved this place. So neat.

I'm glad we did NOT check the weather before we left. Had we of we maybe would have decided against going out since there were passing thunderstorms and rain. But we survived the rain and thunder and especially enjoyed the cool-down it gave the town.

The kids eating lunch on the trail.


Jonas eating his lunch - happily.


Emmy being. . . herself.


Finally, a cute picture of Miles. Hard to come by. (not because he isn't cute. but because he just can't do a natural smile for the camera.)


We asked the boys to take a picture of us. Not bad.


Miles was really excited about this clock. Can't ya tell?


The kids all looking for the fish.


My favorite: the turtles!


Miles wanted his picture taken by these buildings. In the 4 or so pictures we have of him in the buildings, Emmy was in every one. :) She is never too far from what her brothers are doing.

Friday, July 10, 2009

A Little R 'n D

We had an exciting week as our friends made a detour on their way up north to visit us and stay with us for a few days. Rachelle was my roommate during college, and Dave was Ben's roommate as well! How cool is that. So they came with their 2 beautiful children - as well as one on the way.

It was grand just having them here. We haven't seen each other in about 3 years - but it didn't feel that way. Crazy, but it was just like yesterday that we were hanging out in good ol' 301. Fun times were had then, and fun times now as well.

Our kids had some splendid moments playing together and then not-so-splendid times. As expected, right?

Dave is still his handsome English self and Rachelle is as lovely as ever. (side note: her 35 weeks of pregnancy looks like my 25 weeks. nuts.) Their little boy is a beauty and loves to giggle and laugh. Their little girl is a doll and a delight to watch - she cracked Ben and me up and made us excited for Emmy to be 2-going-on-3.

I didn't get many pictures, but here our a few:

Watching some smoke bombs.


All the kids enjoying some snack.


The kids all getting ready to go to the park. Nice one Jonas.


Another picture of the same thing.

Hopefully we can all get together sometime soon - sooner than 2012.