Pictures for my mom

My mom won't stop harassing me until I put up pictures of the kids in her Christmas present. And just so the phone will stop ringing every 5 minutes. . . here you go!


Merry Christmas

So my Mother-in-Law calls me yesterday and says she's been worried since I haven't blogged in 2 weeks. OOPS! Who's had time to blog?

For those checking in -- still no baby and no baby news. Give it a few weeks. I'm sure this one is going to stay inside as long as possible.

Other than that we've been BUSY! Everyone is always so busy so I'll spare you all the details, but my sister is in town (that's her and Ellie ready for Church. Ellie is wearing my mom's dress from when she was a little girl) so we're having a blast. Just finished cleaning up from our annual Christmas Eve party (once again so much fun and a huge success). Dustin is in our room wrapping my Christmas presents so I'm just waiting for him to finish up so we can put the presents under the tree.

Surprisingly, Ellie was fast asleep within minutes of going to bed, and it is Nate that is up singing in bed and shouting, "Merry Missmas."


Fa la la la la

I can't even remember the last time I updated. I had probably been super productive. It's all gone down hill from there. I turned into a complete bum. As you can see from the picture, the kids have followed suit.

Dustin has been really busy getting the house together, so it's just been me and the kids. With everything for Christmas pretty much done, I've lost all my desire to be productive. So the kids and I pretty much do as little as possible to make it through the day. I'm still trying to think of ways to get out of getting dressed every morning.

Friday I had a doctor's appointment and of course they found something strange during my examination (I'll save you the details). That lead to a weekend of worrying and crying. Only to find out today (they made me come back in to re-check everything) that everything is going to fine. Why do they do that to pregnant women? Have they no hearts? Didn't they realize I'd freak out all weekend? I did get another ultrasound out of the whole deal. Still a girl and still right on schedule. She's not huge or anything, so I doubt she'll be early. She does have incredibly long legs though, and lots of hair!

The bad news -- this morning I woke up and used all my anxious energy to clean the neglected house, only to come home from the docotr's to find it completely trashed (I still love my husband). And all the good news has caused me to sink back into my lazy slump again. So I doubt anything will be cleaned again until right before my sister comes.

And for a quick recap of our weekend (when I wasn't being hysterical)-

Friday night we went out for dinner with friends. So much fun but of course I ate too much, too late and paid for it with cramps all night. YEAY for me! You'd think I'd learn. Dustin worked on the house all day Saturday, running home to come to an hour of the Ward party with us. We had breakfast with Santa. Nate liked Santa but refused to sit on his lap -- typical 2 year old. Ellie reminded Santa that she asked for a doodle bear and too much make up.

Saturday night was the beginning of Nate's throw up fest -- which was really fun. He never quite got the concept of trying to throw up in the bowl. He appears to be doing a little better today, but still no appetite.

Sunday Ellie and I braved Church. Ellie of course developed a fever and slept on me all of Sacrament meeting. I then had to run home and put her to bed and make it back in time to do Sharing Time.

And so there you have it. Thrilling, I know!


December crunch

Here’s what we’ve been up to lately:

Hung out with old friends. Some good friends from BYU, the Pauls, were in town. They live in California and we don’t see them enough. Their girls are adorable and it was so great to just relax and catch up with old friends.

Got to see more family. Dustin’s youngest brother and wife weren’t able to get time off for Thanksgiving, so they missed the big get together. Luckily for us, they ended up having a 10 hour layover in Phoenix so we got to hang out with them on Saturday.

Ate myself sick. At a friend’s surprise birthday party, I ate way too many sweets way too late at night and spent the nice sick to my stomach. Lesson learned – mashed potatoes, rolls and honey butter, and chocolate mouse cheesecake at 8:30 at night are not a dinner.

Relized at 3:30 in the morning that I’m totally unprepared for the baby. No name, no coming home outfit. . . I don’t even think I own a diaper bag anymore. I haven’t registered for the hospital and I decided to switch doctors at the last minute because I don’t like the showers at the hospital they deliver at. I also need to find a new pediatrician since I don’t think I’ll ever make it to Scottsdale again.

Licked and stamped my Christmas cards. After searching all over for paper I liked for my Christmas letter, I settled. I hate settling, but at least they are done. Of course after I’ve licked and sealed 5 envelopes, I realize that I totally forgot to sign the letters I put inside. DUH! Mailed off my Christmas packages and bought stamps. Glad to have that over with.

Spent the morning trying to buy Dustin’s Christmas present – with no luck. Nate and I trekked all over town only to find sales people that had no clue about the product so now I actually have to RESEARCH something.

Trying to get Primary organized for the New Year. My head is swimming. Luckily our last baptism of the year is this weekend. So I’m off to drop of his gift and talk to him about Saturday!

Counting the days till Christmas Eve. I’ve got so much stuff going on between then and now that I can’t wait to relax with friends and know that the madness is about to be over. And then have a baby and never sleep again. . . I changed my mind. I think I can wait.

Hope your enjoying your December as much as I am.


Christmas Survey

OK, we all know I hate these, but this one's about CHRISTMAS! How could I resist?

1. Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate? BOTH please!

2. Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree? Wraps -- I loooove to wrap presents!

3. Colored lights on tree/house or white? White on the tree and white on the house. Ellie loves colored lights so much, I bought a colored light tree for our Advent tree.

4. Do you hang mistletoe? Nope

5. When do you put your decorations up? The day after Thanksgiving. . . if I can wait that long

6. What is your favorite holiday dish? Anything with sugar!!! Especially sugar cookies

7. Favorite Holiday memory as a child? Spending them with family, my brother and I unrapping our gifts and rewrapping them to see what we got, the year my family tried to trick me by filling a box with trash. . .

8. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa ? When I caught my parents playing the Tooth Fairy. . . I figured out everything in the same night -- Santa, the Easter Bunny. . . it was a hard night and I STILL remember it.

9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve? Pajamas from Santa

10. How do you decorate your Christmas Tree? Breakable/pretty ornaments up top, the ugly/less breakable ones on the bottom and then the kids usually add a few of their own (ie toys) and rearrange the bottom ones as the weeks progress.

11. Snow! Love it or Dread it? YUCK! That's why I live in AZ thank you very much.

12. Can you ice skate? If you can call it that.

13. Do you remember your favorite gift? I don't think I have one. Anything that's an actual surprise and not something I specifically asked for.

14. What’s the most important thing about the Holidays for you? Being with my kids -- doing the Nativity Story, listening to Christmas Carols, taking gifts around to neighbors. . . I just love doing it with my family.

15. What is your favorite Holiday Dessert? Did I not say sugar cookies?

16. What is your favorite holiday tradition? Christmas Eve dinner with friends -- good food, good company, having the kids act out the Nativity, making sugar cookies, getting the PJs from Santa and then putting out all the gifts :)

17. What tops your tree? Nothing :(

18. Which do you prefer giving or Receiving? Giving (but who doesn't like to get stuff too)

19. What is your favorite Christmas Song? Away in a Manger. It's so beautiful and simple.

20. Candy Canes! Yuck or Yum? YUCK


Arizona Thanksgiving

Yes, that picture was taken last week -- the end of November! Dustin's whole family (less Casey and Sarah -- we missed you) came out for a week to celebrate Thanksgiving and it was so stinking fun. We rented a house so that we could all stay together. It came with a heated pool, but the trade off was that it was all way in Avondale. If you're not from around here, it's reeeaaaaaalllly far away from our house, plus it's in the West Valley and we're snobs out here in the East Valley. The pool was totally worth it though because the kids went swimming at least 3 times a day. Easy entertainment.

So what, did the 17 of us do for 8 days. Everything. We ate too much, stayed up too late, made waaaay too many trips to the store, went to the park, made crafts, had a gift exchange, ate too much again -- mainly cookies and ice cream this time, got manicures and pedicures, swam a lot, went to Build-A-Bear on Black Friday (call us crazy), played the best board games -- Chris always has these really clever, yet obscure games to play. So stinking fun. Ellie was ecstatic to have her only girl cousin here for a week long sleepover. Nate had a little bit of a harder time sharing his toys with Wyatt, but he'll grow out of it as he gets older I'm sure. One thing they could agree on was their love of the movie Cars, their thumbs, and their blankies. They're so stinking cute!

As usual, Jennifer had to show us all up in the gift exchange by getting us all the cutest handmade gifts. She's the Sister-in-Law who gave us all those matching purses one Christmas (the brown one with the dots that everyone loves). This year it was these stinking cute aprons! I don't know if I'll ever use it for fear of ruining it. Ellie's matches mine, so you'll just have to imagine how cute mine is. I won't be posting any pictures of myself :)

And one last picture of Nate loving the Gingerbread house. He mainly loved the candy and the frosting. I ran upstairs to get Ellie ready for bed and came back downstairs to find him on the table covered in frosting and the gingerbread house all over the place. That was fun to clean up :)

I think the older nephews had a good time too. We hardly saw them between the pool, their gamecube, the pool table and soccer in the garage. It was just fun to be together. Plus I got all my Christmas cards addressed (just have to write the letter now) and I read an entire book. I love vacation!



So Saturday I come home to find my lawn COVERED in trees and my windows spray painted. It appears that even though my birthday was over the Thanksgiving holiday, I had been struck by the Birthday lawn fairies. My sidewalk was covered in fake snow (which has since made its way into my house -- evil evil fake snow) and there was even a mini Christmas tree (also covered in fake snow) by door with a bag full of Christmas decoration goodies! If course the batteries in my camera were dead and Nate and Ellie decided to be helpful and picked up all of the trees while I was trying to unpack the car. When I came out I was so bummed that Ellie started putting the trees BACK in the ground. In the end I stopped her, because I didn't really want to bend over and pick up all the trees myself and we all know the kids weren't going to do it again. The trees are now in the office by my LIAR sign from my birthday last year (I told you I kept it Michelle). The best part of getting your lawn done is reading all the funny little things everyone has written. Love that. Of course I'll never live down lying about my birthday, but I can live with that. It was such a fun surprise! Usually you kind of know it's coming, but being a holiday and the fact that I was in sunny Avondale, I figured I'd slide by, but I guess I have FABULOUS friends. So thanks for thinking of me! LOVE you guys.

The tree has since made its home in Ellie's room since she loved it so much. And the Christmas decorations made their homes around my house. I was in such a Christmas mood, I made Dustin get out our Christmas tree on Sunday and we are now ready to go for Christmas. Hopefully you are all out decorating for Christmas now too!



So we're at Costco grabbing a gift and we wandered past the curio case where they keep all the glass statues and all that gaudy stuff that you can't imagine ever buying. Ellie is just in love with the stuff because you know kids can't get enough of kitsch. We keep hearing, "Wow! WOW! Oooooooh," etc. and Dustin and I are just laughing because we can't believe she likes this stuff so much. Then she realizes there is an entire other side to the glass case and she runs over and gasps, "WOW! Even MORE Grandma stuff." OK, sorry mom, she's not insulting you, just the taste most old people have. :)

Her other funny came earlier in the day when she was whinning and driving me CRAZY! Dustin had mentioned the other night he wished there were a fable about whinning, kind of like The Boy Who Cried Wolf. So I decided to make one up on the spot. It was pretty lame, but it was about a little girl who was made of sugar and spice and everything nice, but everytime she whinned she lost a little and eventually she lost it all and she turned into a boy full of snips and snails and puppuy dog tails. Ellie was of course horrified and stopped whinning immediately. After a few minutes of thought she looks and me and asks, "But Mom, what happens to little boys who whine too much? They're already boys." Smart little girl, what would happen to boys? They're already made of everything disgusting. So I told her they turned into toads with lots of warts.

Anyway, enjoy your weekends and holiday weeks! My house is clean, girl's night tonight, company is coming tomorrow and I doubt I'll be around much. Happy Thanksgiving! Gooble gooble gobble

Totally random question

So I was thinking about my girlfriend, Shanna, who is getting married next week and I remembered something my mom taught me when I was little. She told me to never say or write, "Good Luck" to a newly married couple because it would insinuate that they needed luck. Congratulations was always more appropriate. Of course then I've heard the whole adage about "Congratulations" to the Groom and "Good Luck" to the bride. Am I making any sense?

Anyway, I was wondering if I was the only one who had heard of this and what you say. Anyone? Anyone?


Best feeling in the world. . .

Seriously, is there anything better than counting down the minutes until you pick up the sitter? I'm completely antsy waiting until I can leave! tick. . .tick. . .tick


Ho ho ho

Beth's Starbucks cup post got me thinking about the holidays and how much I love them. I wish I could start celebrating Christmas in July. Dustin just doesn't get the fuss, however, so we compromise and do our decorating the Friday after Thanksgiving. It's one of those days that I look forward to all year. This year Dustin's family will be here for Thanksgiving, so my tradition isn't going to happen this year. I suggessted to Dustin that we should decorate the day after Halloween this year instead. He vetoed the idea and told me could wait until his family left which means DECEMBER! Gasp! How could I wait that long? I end up whinning Kerry about the whole situtation and plotting to secretly sneak Christmas decorations in one day at a time.

Fast forward a few weeks and it's two days after Halloween. I'm driving home from picking Ellie up and I notice something funny on my wreath. When I get out of the car, I realize it's a Christmas Ornament! Kerry had "Ho-ho-ho-ed" me! And so that is my one and only Christmas decoration up right now. I'm sure people are confused when they come by, but I feel like I've won a victory over my Scrooge of a husband.


Ah, the irony

So the other day after taking pictures, I ran into the computer room to download the pictures. When I came out, I found Nate asleep on the living room floor. I'm sure it was because he was sick and hadn't been sleeping well for almost a week. Of course yesterday he and Ellie start feeling better. They both had lots more energy and Nate even slept through the night without waking up. Buuuuuut, wouldb't you know how it works. I couldnt' sleep last night because I was starting to feel sick. And sure enough I feel like crud this morning. The kids however are as active as ever.

Seriously, how does that work? Why can't we all get sick at the same time so we can all lay around and be lazy together??? Anyway, just thought I'd post the picture because it's EXACTLY what I wish I were doing right now.

PS On a more upbeat note, I couldn't be happier with the election results. I'm almost giddy. If only I had someone to celebrate with. . . darn conservative friends.


Weekend Update

So Thursday morning I get a call from my Aunt and Uncle in Idaho. They’re on their way down, but they’re only staying until Saturday morning. This led to a frantic Thursday, mainly because I needed to wash and fold the 2 weeks of laundry piling up in my room. Seriously – how do we have that many loads of laundry sitting in baskets and still have closets full of clothes? Nate helped out by lounging on me with his 103 degree fever.

Friday was a whirlwind of fun. The kids loved the dog, Disney Princess (I’m not kidding that’s her name) and giving her treats. We played and played and played some more. My Aunt brought down my Grandma’s cedar chest for me filled with little goodies including a bunch of dresses that she and my mom wore when they were Ellie’s age. I’m completely sentimental, so I love that sort of thing. I made Ellie try on all the clothes. She loved the petticoats the most, followed by mom’s robe. Ellie also fit perfectly in the black velvet dress my mom wore, so Ellie’s wearing it for Christmas Eve. Kristine had one in a smaller size which I tried to get Nate to put on, but he wanted nothing to do with it (maybe there is hope afterall)! She also brought down my Grandma’s doll, which Ellie has named Mely. Mely now sleeps with her every night.

We also went to Joe’s for lunch, visited my Grandma’s brother and his family up in Mesa, Dustin took Dave to look at some property he was looking at buying, and we did Chino Bandito for dinner. By the end of the night my kids were WIPED out, but it was totally worth it.

Saturday I spent all morning at a Stake Meeting while Dustin cleaned the carpets. YEAY! Then that afternoon we headed out for a barbecue with some of Dustin’s mission companions. They were all sweet enough to switch to Saturday when we had to cancel for Friday. The barbecue was fun – all of the kids were the same age as ours (and all four wives were pregnant) so they did their own thing. Once again we wiped our kids out with no naps and a late bed time.

So you’d think I’d let the kids relax a little bit this morning. But nope, we went off shopping for winter shoes for Ellie and then I forced my kids to take pictures for our Christmas cards. UGH! What an ordeal. It always is, but at least last year I didn’t try to take the photos myself. I got them to sit still at the park for about 10 pictures. In half of those Nate isn’t looking at me and in the other half, Ellie is staring at the grass. So after coming home and trying to sweeten them up, I decided to put them in front of the door for one last attempt at anything halfway decent. It’s not amazing, but it will do. I put in the order at Costco because I can’t go through the torture again, so no mocking the picture unless you want to deal with my wrath!


Halloween Hangover

I can't be the only one experiencing this. The kids are cranky, my house is trashed, and of course Joy School was here this morning. The day after. UGH! Nate has been searching for his pumpkin basket all morning. He still hasn't forgotten his stash of candy.

Last night was a BLAST! As always, we tried to pack too much into one night. We had a whole Halloween themed meal for dinner at our friends house. I brought the Wicthes Brew meatballs and Monster Eyes deviled eggs. There was also skull shaped pudding, blood punch with an ice cube hand, monster finger carrots, monster toe hot dogs (complete with red ketchup toe-nails), spider bread, intestine pasta, mashed potato ghosts. . . and I don't think the kids ate a bite of anything.

So after realizing we weren't going to get the kids to eat, we headed out trick-or-treating. Ellie is at such a fun age! She and the older kids ran everywhere and were so excited but still polite. Nate was adorable. At first he wasn't sure about the whole deal, but once he got the first candy bar in his pumpkin he was good to go. He walked the entire night. Just toddling along with his pumpkin. The big kids hit 2 houses for every one that Nate and the 2 year olds made it to, but they didn't care. I think the 2 year olds actually got more candy because they were so stinking cute. Everyone kept giving them more and more candy.

After over an HOUR of walking (please note the glazed over expression on the little ones' faces from pure exhaustion), we hurried back because we had to run over to another firends house to watch a Halloween movie -- during which the kids broke into their candy baskets. Always what you want to happen at 8:30 at night. We stayed there way too late, but it's only once a year right? So we now have waaaay too much candy and some badly taken pictures because I was too busy having fun. Luckily the kids got really yummy candy (lots of chocolate) so whenever I need a jolt I can just dip into that.


Happy Halloween!

We've just been partying it up over here. The kid Halloween party went well, except for Nate not wanting to wear his costume, and then we celebrated the rest of Dustin's birthday in style -- take out for us and cereal for the kids. Saturday I had Pack Meeting, so Dustin took the kids out for breakfast and then we spent the rest of the day shopping. That night we went out to celebrate Dustin's birthday with friends. We did dinner and a movie. I'll save you the boring details but it was a fun night -- good food, good comapny, good movie. . .and most importantly: good dessert.

Sunday we celebrated Nate all day. He loved all of his presents and loved his cake even more! It's ice cream cake from Cold Stone, so don't give me any credit for it. Nate loved hearing people sing Happy Birthday to him so much that everyone who called had to sing it multiple times. And he loooooved blowing out the birthday candle (a large pumpkin candle since he looooves pumpkins so much -- he was sad when we went to Target today and all the pumpkins were gone). I can't believe my baby is two!

Today Nate played with his birthday presents some more while Ellie had a little party at school (please note he is wearing ANOTHER Halloween shirt in the picture) and now we're gearing up for the evening. We have a Halloween party/dinner to start. I'm actually MAKING food to bring -- including "Monster Eyes" deviled eggs. Another shocker I know. Then we've got Trick-or-Treating and then we'll finish up the night watching a movie at a friend's house.

Oh, and I HAVE to share what I'm eating right now since a few people who read this blog were MOCKING my love of food this afternoon. YUMMMMM! So delicious. Someone brought me these cookies this afternoon, luckily both the kids were asleep. Hee hee hee.


Happy Birthday!

Yeay! It’s birthday weekend at our house. Today is Dustin’s official birthday and Sunday is Nate’s. We started off the celebration with a birthday party for Nate yesterday. Since he’s only 2, we just did a lunch with a few of his buddies at my girlfriend’s house. I put Ellie in charge of the games and she did a great job telling the “babies” what to do.
Nate helped me make cupcakes that morning, but I guess he got full from eating all the batter because he no interest in actually eating his cupcake when the time came. Instead he smashed his car into the frosting and drove it around the table. Gotta love boys.

He got a little tired towards the end, so that should explain why he has a blanket and his thumb in his mouth for the group shot. He knows what makes him happy.

This morning we did the whole birthday thing for Dustin. I made breakfast (SHOCKING) and then the kids gave Dustin their cards and gift. Then he had to take out the trash and now he’s off at work. Lame birthday huh? I had bigger plans, but the whole no grass thing ruined my party plans (and there is no way I’m fitting 50 people in my house), so instead we’re going out to dinner with some of our good friends tomorrow night.

Luckily for us, though, the partying continued today with a Halloween party with friends. I've got pictures from that to share too!


The Party's Over

. . .And thank goodness for that! Well, let me rephrase that: The party's over until this weekend. I am convinced that October is the worst month of the year. It always seemed chocked full of stuff. I will, however, buck up and deal with it and enjoy it like all mothers should!

So I guess you can tell that our weekend was crazy. We were running from one activity to another, which is better than sitting around being bored. So here are a few high lights.

1. Primary Program practice -- Almost every child was there. I was so impressed! And they had their parts ready to go. Two hours was a little long for them though so by the end the Sunbeams were sprawled out on the floor, the CTRs were all asking, "When do we get our cookies?" and the Valiants were stone faced. But what else can you expect? They perked up when we went outisde to eat cookies and wait for parents.

2. Seeding our lawn -- While Ellie and I were at church, Dustin and Nate were helping set up for the Ward party that night and mentioned we were seeding our lawn that afternoon. Two of the Young Men were sweet enough to volunteer to come over and help. So we got the work done in half the time (OK, maybe the same amount of time because the boys were talking so much, but they were so darn cute). So now the kids get to chase birds and we get to enjoy the smell of manure. Mmmmmm.

3. The Ward Party -- So much fun. Dustin made DELICIOUS chili (even though it didn't win), I made corn bread (GASP! I cooked!), and I even got to be a judge in the pie contest. YUM! We put the kids in their matching pumpkin shirts (I told you every picture of my kids for the next 2 weeks would involve some sort of orange shirt) so we'd be able to spot them on the field and I'm glad I did. They were all over the place. Ellie got her face painted, went fishing, ate way too many sno cones and sticks of cotton candy. She also went on the 4 wheeler ride a few dozen times. One of the Grandpas in the Ward brought his 4 wheeler with these big hollowed out buckets attached to the back and took the kids around the field at the speed of light. Nate got to sit in his lap for a few turns, but I made him get off once the rides started getting wilder and wilder. He then headed over to play football with the Dustin and some other dads. Ellie spent the rest of her time jumping in the bouncer, eating more candy, trying to peek inside the haunted house (she refused to go in) and being freaked out by the Fear Factor booth. I got to sit and chat. WOO HOO! By the time we helped clean up it was 9:30. Luckily our kids were wired from all the sugar, so they were able to stay awake for a much needed bath. Unfortunately the paint from the face painting stained a little bit, so Ellie still looked a little funny Sunday.

4. The Primary Program -- So the kids were a little tired from all the partying the night before, but they did a great job. Almost every kid with a part was there, YEAY! And they did awesome. Only one little girl got stage fright, and Ellie did turn the microphone off in the middle of a talk (grrrrr, always the Primary President's daughter), but the kids were so sweet and the spirit was so strong. I was so impressed with them. Afterwards we celebrated by giving the kids MORE candy, because who doesn't want to be in a room with 70 hyped up kids?

5. Meetings -- And of course, it wouldn't be the longest weekend ever if I didn't spend over 6 hours in 3 different meetings on Sunday. Ward Council, Key Scouters and Stake Leadership. All on same day as the Primary Program. Luckily I was still hopped up on all the sugar and left over cookies, so I made it through until I got home at 9:30 last night.

So today I plan on spending the morning in our PJs (Nate is still asleep) and doing as little as possible. Ellie has dance and a birthday party or else I'd REALLY be lazy.


Halloween Shirt #2

It's technically Halloween shirt #1 since it's the first one I bought (the Target one), but the second I've shown. You can look forward to seeing all of the shirts over the next 10 days because Nate will be wearing them MULTIPLE times. I think we'll just rotate through the 4 until Thanksgiving ;)

Other than that, we are crazy busy this weekend, so you won't hear form me until Monday at the earliest. I can't believe October is almost gone!

Oh, and can I add that I got a SUNBURN from sitting outside at playgroup today. Can you believe it? I know I can't complain about the weather since it's finally cooling down, but who gets a sunburn in the middle of October?


I think my kids are funny

Because the Primary Program is on Sunday, we have been playing the Primary music CD non-stop in our car. I just don't think it would look right if the Primary President's daughter didn't know all the songs. We've actually been playing the CD off and on for 6 months, but pretty much non-stop for the last two weeks, which means Ellie gets to hear each of the program songs at least twice a day. So today we're headed over to pick up Ashley for carpool and the song, "Dearest Children" is on. One of the refrains is, "Cherish virtue, cherish virtue, God will bless the pure in heart." Suddenly Ellie pipes up from the back, "Mom, why does it say Cherries Hurt You?" I couldn't help but laugh. Poor Ellie has probably been worried about that for months. And then of course I had to spend 5 minutes explaining exactly what "cherish" meant, which was easier to explain than the "virtue" discussion. Phew, I think we need easier words in the children's songs!

And Nate is also pretty funny too. I picked up my mail before heading out to get the girls from school. While we were waiting in the pick-up line, I started looking through all the magazines. In the back I can hear Nate begging, "Please, please." So I hand him back an Oreintal Trading Company catalog figuring he'd like to look at the toys. Nope. He's still straining in his car seat, "Please, please." After trying Pottery Barn and the ads, I try the Harry and David catalog. Sure enough, it's what he wanted. He looked at that thing the whole wait, the whole ride home, and even after we got back. All the time mumbling, "Mmmmmmm, berries" or "COOKIES!" So if any of you are wondering what to get Nate for Christmas this year, I believe he has picked out quite a nice wish list from Harry and David.


The Great Pumpkin Caper

One day while Nate and I are on our bi-weekly Target run, I see the CUTEST Halloween shirt for Ellie. Seriously adorable, so I have to buy it. Which is weird since I actually HATE Halloween because it gets done to death every year. But the kids are super into it and I know Ellie will like it, so I cave. Of course then I feel guilty for Nate and cruise over the toddler boy section. The shirts are hideous. Really disappointing, but I want him to have a shirt too, so I buy this weird Monster Rock shirt since it's the only one in his size. Whatever.

Of course we get home and I show Ellie her shirt and she loves it. The only down fall -- nate loves it too. He's chasing her around, begging to put it on. So I go get his ugly shirt and he of course rejects it, just as I would have if I were him. So for the next few days he keeps bringing Ellie's shirt to me and begging me to put it on him. He cries, "PUMPKIN" anytime he sees the shirt. So of course I realize I'm going to have to buy him his own stinking pumpkin shirt. I can't get him one like Ellie's since hers is REALLY girly, puffy sleeves and such.

So Tuesday rolls around, Ellie's at school and Nate and I set off in search of a pumpkin shirt. We try Wal-Mart first -- no boy Halloween shirts. Can you believe it? There were some cute girl ones, but not one stinking boy shirt -- at all. Not even with skulls. So I try a few other stores around our house. Nothing. We're talking 4 other stores. I resign myself to treking up to Old Navy. But guess what -- nothing cute at Old Navy for boys. GRR! Can boys not have pumpkins on their shirts? Nate does see a GIRL Halloween shirt with Pumpkins on it and insists on having it. It's not *as* girlie as Ellie's shirt, but it does have capped sleeves. He loves it however and wears it for the rest of the day.

I call all of my friends and family to complain about the lack of boy pumpkin shirts out there. With each call, it only strenghtens my resolve to find a boy pumpkin shirt. So the next day, Nate and I pick up Ellie from school and head to the mall for lunch with Dustin where we plan on searching for a pumpkin shirt. The first few store we hit are a bust (not that I didn't spend plenty of money on other cute things for the kids) and we finally head for the GAP which turns into me scouring the materninty section and completely forgetting the whole reason we were there. Luckily I brought Dustin along -- and being a man, he doesn't forget the true purpose of the shopping trip. He searches the store and finds ONE last pumpkin shirt. Size 2T, BOY! I kid you not. There was great celebration in the land and much purchasing of clothes for all.

So fast forward to me getting home and checking my phone messages. I have a message from my Aunt, "Maddy, I found a pumpkin shirt for Nate and I'm going to mail it out." (It's actually the shirt he's wearing in the picture above -- he's still sick hence why he won't sit up for me to take a stinking picture little booger). So the person who HATES Halloween, now has FOUR Halloween themed shirts for her son. He's wearing those things until SPRING! Luckily my Aunt got a 3T so we can avoid this whole fiasco next year. And I guess baby girl can wear the girlie pumpkin shirt when she's 2, so not all is lost.

Phew, that was a long story. I'm sure most of you have actually already heard it and were just DYING to rehash the saga ;)


Short Update

It's been a whirlwind of activity over here. If you can believe it, I'm starting the last trimester and all that tiredness is back. So basically when I would have time to blog, I'm sleeping.

But today, Ellie is off playing with a buddy and Nate is curled up on the couch, so I've got a few free minutes. Poor Nate is sick. . .AGAIN. I don't understand how Ellie never gets sick and Nate gets every disease that passes through. Is it the day care at the gym? Is it nursery? Is it from all the shopping carts he touches? I have no idea, but I miss hearing his little voice. All he does is whisper as few words as possible right now.

Yesterday I went out to lunch with some girlfriends and I get a phone call from the sitter, "Ellie and Nate keep telling me they're tired. Do you want me to put them down?" Little stinkers. They've caught the sleeping bug too.

And so now you know where we've been -- either we're out or we're sleeping.


Happy thoughts

So usually I dread this time of year. It seems like things just go insane, but I've decided to embrace the craziness and I'm actually excited. It was Conference this weekend, so that meant NO PRIMARY! :) Not that I don't love the munchkins, but I like a little break now and then. Plus I got so much done. I turned up the volume on the TV and cleaned the house. I got my baseboards cleaned, everything dusted, blinds cleaned, tiles all hand cleaned, the fridge cleaned out, my kitchen cabniets and drawers cleaned and organized, wiped all the shelves in the pantry and re-organized that, did the kids' bathroom, a few loads of laundry, cleaned and conditioned the leather furniture. . . it's a disease I tell you!

And that was the beginning to all the hustle and bustle. I'm getting so excited for everything we have coming up. D turns the big 3-0 this month, Nate will be 2 (sniff sniff), Halloween, Fall Festival, the Primary Program. . . In November all of Dustin's family is coming out for a week and Ellie is so excited to see her cousins, plus Thanksgiving dinner, my birthday and decorating for Christmas (I am getting so excited to get the tree up and buy wrapping paper). . . In December my Aunt and Uncle are coming to visit, Christmas Eve (my favorite party of the year), Christmas, my sister coming to visit and then we'll top all of the fun off with a beautiful baby girl in January. I can hardly wait.

So here's hoping everyone else is as excited as me for all the fun ahead!! :) Come on, you all know you've got some fun things just around the corner.


Check, check check

Well, I did it all. All the icky things I've been "meaning" to do that have been weighing over my head. And the thing is -- they were all easy and pleasant. Is that crazy?

1. I went to the Post Office and mailed off the packages to my family. In my head it was this horrible ordeal of driving to downtown Chandler, waiting in line forever and Nate running everywhere. It was an easy drive, the line was short and Nate just sat there the whole time.

2. I changed my PIN. I don't think I ever memorized my PIN when Dustin and I set up our accounts, so for YEARS I've never been able to use an ATM (maybe not a bad thing). So today on my way home from the Post Office, I swung by the bank and got a PIN!

3. I got my teeth cleaned. It's been way too long and I kept having to reschedule my Dentist appointment, but I finally made it today. YAY! Not a single cavity. Phew. Dustin had to have a root canal a few months back, so I was freaking out imagining what on earth I would have to go through. But I was in and out and now my teeth feel sooooo good.



Well, I don't know where on earth I've been. Under a pile of laundry I guess because I haven't blogged in forever. I can't believe September is almost over. We've just been busy running around and playing. Here's some random pictures of what's been going on when we're actually at home.

Grandma Joachim sent Ellie and Nate some new pajamas

Nate wrote me some love notes.
Ellie found a box of dolls my Great Grandma made for me and decided to keep them for herself. So they now sit in her room and get played with every night.

Nate found the box the dolls were in and made it his new bed

The weather has cooled down enough in the morning that the kids can actually go outside and play, so weekend mornings are so relaxing.
And that's about all the excitement around here.


My apologies

OK, I cannot find where I put my camera. It is stashed somewhere I'm sure, I just don't know where. I usually have to throw it somewhere before one of the kids gets ahold of it. So that's why there haven't been any updates -- who wants to read a blog when they can see pictures of my kids?

We're so boring anyway. Went to the gym this morning, came home and had Girl School here (which is now actually girl/boy school, but I'm so used to Girl School that i cna't change over), and then one of the little girls stayed to play until nap time. Now Ellie is sitting naked in her room refusing to clean up the mess, Nate is napping and I jut finished up boxing up some clothes and toys for a charity to pick up tomorrow morning.

Nate did end up with a bloody nose today. I knew it would happen sooner or later. He is always trying to use things with wheels as climbing tools. Today it was using the barbie cars as shoes that did him in. He face planted on the tile and ended up with a bloody nose and a split lip. When I got the toilet paper, he kept blowing his nose. I don't think you're suppose to try to blow the blood out are you? I couldn't get him to sit still long enough to keep pressure on it either so I followed him around for 5 minutes continually wiping the dripping blood (which horrified the two little girls).

I was going to spend the night scrapping, but I made the mistake of telling Ellie she couldn't go to the gym with daddy tonight unless she cleaned up her room and we all know how that's going. So I think I've really only punished myself.

Update wise, I got my little packages all set to mail out to my family with the sex of the baby, but I don't have K's address at school. Will some one e-mail me or call me? You all have to wait until I get it so you might as well. . .


Shake your groove thang

Woo hoo -- Fall is finally here (if someone would just let the weather know) and we're back in the groove of things. Life is crazy, but at least it's organized craziness. I can handle that.

This weekend the kids did not nap at all between a birthday party, a work party and a mission farewell, so you'd think they'd be all tuckered out, but they seem to have some source of endless energy. Not to mention baby #3 likes to kick me continually from 10 pm until 5 am so if I'm not asleep before 10 or if I have to wake up to pee, all hope of falling asleep again is lost.

We finally spilled the beans on the baby, but not the sex. I came up with a cute way to tell everyone what we are having, but of course everytime I go out to buy stuff I completely forget. DOH! I'm pretty sure my family is going to kill me if I don't tell them soon.

Annnnnd, I've officially started my Christmas shopping. Yay! I love this time of year. A valid reason to shop. I bought Ellie a bunch of stocking stuffers and a new backpack which I filled with crayons, pencils, coloring books. . . all those school supplies that are on sale right now. I got Dustin a two presents (which I can't mention here since he can actually read -- not that they are anything exciting), and I got Nate some big boy bedding for when we move him out of the crib (which could be another year, who knows). Poor Nate, too young to get any fun toys, he just gets practical things. Actually, I did buy him a Shake N' Go car which then proceeded to make noise the entire drive home. I also bought Ellie a doll. I was going to splurge and get her an American Girl Doll, but then I found a doll at Target that's the same size for $20, so we went with that instead. And the outfits are $10 each instead of $28. I'm so cheap.

Ellie has obviously caught the Christmas bug too because she keeps asking when we can put up the Christmas lights and the Christmas tree. It's never to early to start celebrating Christmas if you ask me :)



OK, I've been "tagged." I normally don't play along with these sorts of things (not that I'm a bad sport or anything), but I have a feeling I'll be lynched if I don't do this. . .so, here we go:

Somewhere close to a big airport and a beach so we could get away often

my pajamas. I wish I could wear them everywhere.

Eyes and dimples.

I'm so uncool, I don't really buy CDs. I just make my sister burn me all my favorite songs.

With my family

The dentist

My upper back

I guess mind

around 7

The microwave

Whinning about the same thing over and over! Just pick up your toys!

The cello -- not that it is at all useful, but still would be cool

I'm kind of into pink lately



Any books that my Grandma had at her house. We snuck a few back to our house when she passed away, so I love reading them to Ellie. Right now we're really into Miss Mopp's Lucky Day.


Cleaning the showers

I would love to be able to make myself invisible


Puh-lease! I can barely walk straight half the time.

My Grandma. I miss her :(

Christmas -- is there any question

Two flats of bottled water.

Depends on my mood and what Dustin has been making me watch on Fod Network.


First Day of School

WOO HOO! School has officially started and we are back into a fall routine. Add the GORGEOUS weather we've been having (ie it was only in the 90s this morning) and things are only looking up.

Not much else to report. Nate and I did some cleaning this morning, got our hair cut, tried to do some laundry. . . Dustin and I spent the weekend painting our bedroom, and I got some girl time on Friday night. Everything is great :)


Being helpful. . .

Dustin stayed home Monday and Wednesday to give me some time to get around to all the projects that I never seem to get around to. So Monday morning, I get home from the gym, we eat some breakfast and he asks me, "Sooo, what do you normally do on Mondays?" It was then that I had to say, "uhhhhhh. . ." I usually get a bathroom cleaned and that's about it. Other than that it seems like I spend the whole day cleaning up after children, feeding them, running them places, talking on the phone while they insist on sitting in my lap (I admit, half of those calls are just me yapping away with friends), reading stories. . . you know the drill.

Anyway, I got sooooooooo much done with Dustin around to entertain children and deal with Nate's need to always be in someone's lap. I cleaned out the entire office, shelves and all, shredded 4 bags worth of credit card offers, old bills. . . organized and de-junked my linen closet, caught up on all of the laundry, de-junked the laundry room, vacuumed every inch of our house, did all the base boards, de-junked my bed room, sent an entire truck load of crap off to DI so my house feels sooooo much roomier now.

After I accomplished so much on Monday, I decided to be ambitious on Tuesday and tackle rearranging Ellie's room. I quickly realized why I never get anything done with the kids around. They make everything about 5 times messier. They knew I was putting things away, so they were drawn into the room in order to pull everything back out again. For every 5 books I got back on the bookshelf, 10 came off. Everytime I got the freaking Pooly Pockets picked up, I'd find a trail of minature shoes across the carpet. Finally they decided that crawling into the oven of Ellie's kitchen and shutting the other one in was more fun than continually hearing the clean up song. Even though it took me all day to accomplish a seemingly easy task, it was totally worth it. Her room seems so much bigger now. YEAY for me. And yeay for the fact that I should be done with a good cleaning for another year or two.



WHOO HOO! The Primary Activity is ov-ah. For those of you who don't know, I got stuck throwing an Activity I wasn't very hip on because the previous Presidency planned it. Then it was supposse to be a Ward party, so I planned on some help and the Activities committee bailed on me last minute. Plus my Secretary and 2nd COunselor were out of town. But boo hoo, enough whinning on my part because it went well. Of course my measure of success was the fact that we didn't lose any kids and everyone left smiling.

So now all we have left is the Elder's Quorum FHE tonight, which Dustin is in charge of. Yes, we're throwing two major Church function within 2 days of each other. You may calll it poor planning, but I'll just balme it on the Activities Committee. Doesn't matter anyhow, we like to live at the Church ;). As one little girl put it, "I get to come to Church three days in a row? This is the best Church ever!" So we're off to Costco later today to pick up 17 pizzas for dinner.




Our friends just got a boat and they were sweet enough to take us along for one of the maiden voyages. Susan just sent me some pictures she took and they were too cute to pass up. Ellie was pretty brave about the whole boating thing. I was suprised when she jumped off the boat and straight into the lake. She was also the first of the kids to ride on the big raft that they pull behind the boat. She had sooooo much fun until Dustin took a turn with her and Nate on the raft. His weight must not have been balanced correctly because as soon as the boat started up, the raft flipped and there was poor Dustin holding onto both children as they floated down the lake. Thank goodness for life jackets.
Nate and Ellie decided not to spend anymore time in the water after that and chowed down on snacks in the boat. Other than that, we just spent the day relaxing on the boat. Susan and Royce water skied, we all went for crazy rides on the raft, the kids played around, went swimming, Ellie even peed in the water for the first time in her life (that was stressful enough convincing her that she could in fact *pee* in the lake).
Nate got a little tired of the wind by the end, so he just sat on my lap and did what little boys do best -- whine unless their mouths are full. By the time we were done it was pretty close to 8, so we had to hurry home, wake the kids up to feed them dinner in the car and put them straight to bed. All in all, one of my favorite Saturdays this summer.


In other news

Ellie got stripey tights. You'd think this was the most exciting thing ever if you asked Ellie. It's probably because I haven't bought her tights since she was 2 and she's just excited to have some she can actually fit in again. Ellie will only wear skirts, so I thought I'd better get something to cover her legs this Winter. Of course, Winter is still months away. . . it's so hard to wait sometimes!

Nate needs a brother. Seriously, the poor little guy is really into too much girl stuff. He *had* to have his toenails painted last week, loves lip gloss and this week we hit a new all time low -- the ballerina costume. Ellie had a birthday party last weekend where she had to wear a princess dress. As soon as we got her dressed, Nate ran into her room and grabbed the pink tutu and yelled, "Pllllleeeeeeasssssse," which is so cute in his little voice. I gave in way too easily, to which Ellie told me, "Dad is going to *freak* out." Luckily Dustin is so laid back he didn't have a coronary. Nate did insist on wearing it Sunday morning as well, but we all thought it would be best if it went into hiding for a little bit after that.


Holbrook -- Part 1

So, I had this whole blog about our trip to Holbrook all typed up and then my stinking computer froze up on me yesterday. However, I snuck in here to do some stuff for Primary and the kids have miraculously left me alone so maybe I can get this up today after all. (Of course as soon as I typed that Ellie started screaming something and I hear them running down the hall. . . oh, they’re laughing, all is good).

My good friend Susan is from the itsy bitsy town of Holbrook. It’s up in the part of the state where the summers are actually bearable so we’ve always talked about going up for a week when school was out. So the time came, I hemmed and hawed, but decided last minute to go for it. So we packed up our 5 kids in her Sequoia and headed off on the three hour drive. It was full of all the fun road trip things you remember as a kid – fights, peeing in bottle, trying to keep the babies awake until we stopped for lunch, are we there yets. . . but just fancier now because all the kids have to be strapped in to the most uncomfortable car seats imaginable. At least we had the DVD players.

Now Susan had told me she lived on a farm, but being a city girl, all a farm means to me is that it has a horse, maybe a cow or two. I didn’t realize she really meant a farm. Her dad owns well over 10,000 acres which is littered with thousands of cows and goats, a few horses, some of those bee boxes you always see on tv and lots and lots of trees. If you look at the picture of Nate, you can see part of her dad’s land in the back. It stretches all the way down to the river, and then East and West for miles. And yes, I realize Nate is happy in the picture. He didn’t cry the WHOLE time we were there. Just 80% of the time we were outside.

The trip can best be described as fun peppered with moments of disaster. I don’t know how we could have expected any less with our combination of kids. We rode horses, ate breakfast at the truck stop (you can see it in the distance in the picture of Nate), climbed hay, chased cats and dogs, got dirty, went swimming in the river (which is a blog all of its own), got lost, let the kids run wild. . . just did the whole country living thing.

One of Holbrook’s claims to fame (or maybe its only?) is the Wig Wam motel. I guess right before we came up, Oprah had been in town and came to visit them. She did not stay in them in case you were wondering. In front of the Wig Wams, they’ve parked a bunch of old cars like from the movie Cars so the kids were dying to go see “Doc” and “Sally” and “Mater.” It was definitely one of those moments of disaster – the kids were all bickering and Nate was crying because it was windy – but the pictures turned out kind of cute. And that’s all that matters right?