Tuesday, January 31, 2012

24 Hr Trip

Last Friday we loaded up the Pilot and drove to St. George as soon as Nate got off work. I am always amazed at the amount of planning and work it takes to get our family somewhere, even for one night. We were meeting Steve and Jody there to go to the St. George Winter Bird Festival. The plan was...Nate, Steve, and the kids: camp. Me, Emmy, and Jody: hotel.

The kids had been so excited to go camping and had been talking about it all week. Unfortunately, it got a little too windy, and they did NOT want to camp anymore. Steve and Nate convinced them to at least try it. They drove out to the campsite and began setting things up (the kids had fallen asleep in the car on the way.)  When they woke up after not too long, they were even more deadset against the camping idea. They all came back, and all 7 of us slept in the hotel room. Hahahaha. Emmy was our alarm clock of course.

The hotel did have a pretty yummy breakfast:
 We made it to the festival in time for a presentation on raptors. Emmy, Jody, and I slipped out quickly...this was not a good place for a 16 month old.
 We had a really nice time walking on some nearby trails. Emmy fell asleep, and I settled down on a bench and relaxed with her. 

 Here we are at Lytle Ranch...our big destination for the day. One website describes this place as "an oasis in the deserts of southwestern Utah." It's owned by BYU. We really enjoyed the few hours we spent exploring.
 Since the  "camping" hot dogs didn't get used, we ate them for lunch in the parking lot at Lytle Ranch.

 This sweet dog joined us in hopes of some scraps. He must live there. I think all he got were a few Oreo crumbs. :(
 You hear people say that the desert has a beauty all its own. I think that's definitely true. 
We were back in Utah a little after 5 pm on Saturday. An awesome 24 hours.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

School Lunch

 I like the idea of sometimes having lunch with Jansen at his school, but it's right when Emmy is ready to nap. The lazy bum (Emmy) slept in till like 7 one morning, so I thought it would be a good day to pop in and see him. He didn't know we were coming, and he sure brightened up at the sight of us. 
We made some room for Natalie, and she squeezed in and ate her sandwich with him.

While I was there, I overheard a faculty member that helps in the lunchroom YELLING at a student. I heard her do it at least twice. This was not just a raised voice or a needed reprimand. This was, to me, cruel and mean and out of control. I was NOT okay with her speaking that way to a child. 

I left my name and phone number with the school secretary and asked her to have the principal call me. I missed her call later that afternoon, but I was able to reach her later. I was nervous because I feel like I am very non-confrontational, and I don't express my feelings and thoughts well when I am upset. But I was a mom on a mission, and thankfully the call went very well. The principal was very receptive and helpful. I hope the situation improves. I'll be stopping in more to observe, but I was proud of myself for standing up for how I felt!
 Little Emmy was there too. :)

Friday, January 27, 2012

After School Snack

Oh, and Jansen blogged: http://jansensblog.blogspot.com/
He's such a great kid.

Monday, January 23, 2012


Jansen and Natalie came up with something called bumshells. And little sister Emmy couldn't be more pleased to be a part of the bumshell family. 
 There's not a lot I can say...you'd have to ask them about the details...but I think a bumshell is some sort of creature. That has a shell. On it's bum.
 And after a certain number of days, the bumshell sheds the shell.
say it 3 times fast, "bumshell sheds the shell, bumshell sheds the shell, bumshell sheds the shell."
 Sometimes there are genetic mutations.
I love it when they come up with stuff like this on their own. I can't wait to hear them in 10 years, "Remember when we used to play that thing called bumshells???"

Thursday, January 19, 2012

At the School

I finally got to go help out in Jansen's classroom for a couple hours today. I've been wanting to all year, but it's difficult to ask someone to watch the girls. It was an interesting experience. His teacher is pretty mean. There are very few teachers that I've had or observed that are as negative as she is. She was giving me a knot in my stomach just listening to her. It seems to be the trend at his school, and I'm not sure what to do about it. I've heard the choir teacher really rail on a group of children and I was horrified. Doesn't anyone there know about the power of positive words and encouragement? 

Funny thing is, Jansen never complains about his teacher or school. He loves his friends there. He loves riding his scooter to school. But I wonder how this type of teaching is affecting him. I don't need a teacher who is only rainbows and roses, but I hate to think that half of Jansen's day is spent in that atmosphere. I've got some thinking to do to decide where I want to go from here.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012


The kids fight about who gets to sit by Emmy at dinner. I have no idea why, the girl is a tornado and constantly grabs for their cups and forks even if she has her own. In no uncertain terms is she ever allowed to have spaghetti again. And blueberry muffins have been ousted from her dining choices. As for cornbread and rice, we won't even go there. She honestly doesn't eat much unless it's something I put in her mouth as she's walking around during the day. That's how I feed her. A bite here, a bite there. I will eventually help her understand the error in her thinking, but for now, food's just not a priority. Unless the goal is to crush it, smash it, crumble it and then drop it. 

Thankfully, she loves her bib. These bibs cost like $10, but I love them so much, and I can put them in the washing machine. I just barely threw one away that we've had for probably 4 years.

Natalie pretty much insists on saying the prayer every night. I'm glad she likes to. Emmy has started "folding her arms." What it looks like is little hands resting beneath her chin. Since she has no interest in eating her food, she likes to feed it to everyone else. Here, have a bite:

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Nate's Phone

I haven't been taking a lot of pictures lately for some reason. So I thought I'd check out the pictures Nate has recently downloaded from his phone and blog about some of those.
Problem is, all I found was stuff like this...
 And this...
 And this...which is incredible (he did it)...but still...
 And this.
I guess he doesn't realize that he has the possibility of being a source for my blog...but he's going to have to get some humans in those photos. Seems we focus on very different things when taking a picture. I'll give him another chance next month. :)

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Holy Hike

Looking back on it all, I must not have been in my right mind.
Nate offers to take all 3 kids alone on a hike and instead of choosing to bask in some free time I decide to go with them???

Looking back on it all, Nate must not have been in his right mind. 
Tackle this hike with 3 small children???

Poor guy looked like this most of the way...2 little girls hanging from him one way or another.
 Another example:
 Hate graffiti. Took picture with smiley face graffiti.
 Stopping about 2/3 of the way to the end to have some snacks. It was so steep and so rocky. I was feeling quite mountain goat-ish. The kids collected so many rocks it was ridiculous. We would make piles of them to pick up on the way back, and I secretly banked on them forgetting about the piles. We did bring home PLENTY to get polished.
 And another example of our tougher-than-nails daddy:
 Well, we may look tough in this picture. But really I'm angry. See that peak behind us? With the towers? That's where we still needed to get to.
And we did it. You could see all of Las Vegas from the top...Lake Mead, the Strip, Nellis Air Force Base...it was awesome.

 We basically slid our way down. Imagine a family of 5 all holding hands and tumbling down a mountain. 
 And, as is always the case, it was worth it. 
Hard is always worth it. 
Being together is always worth it.
Sometimes you don't realize how special the moments are until they become your memories.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

A Must Read

All you moms out there that think this parenting thing is about the toughest job EVER...you'll enjoy this:


But really, it's applicable to all of LIFE.

And it struck a chord with me in ways I can't begin to describe. I feel kind of liberated...and it finally makes sense to me why I think 10 times a day "this is so hard..." and yet I wouldn't want to be doing anything else in the world but be a mother.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Carpet Cleaning

This day was spent cleaning our carpets.
We bought a carpet cleaner so that we could do it at our own pace on our own time.
Unfortunately, it stopped working after one day. Natalie constructed her own version during the afternoon, and it's very possible that it's more reliable.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012


I wanted to post some leftover pictures from the camera.

I finally took Jansen and Natalie to their first dentist appointments. I actually had one as well, and all three of us were being seen at the same time. They kids did great. Jansen got some sealants, and there were no cavities. After looking at Jansen's xrays, the doctor said one of his teeth had the biggest nerve he had ever seen. Hopefully we won't ever have to do any work on that tooth.

 Emmy getting all dolled up...
 It was a Kripsy Kreme morning one day last week. I really regret my choices though. We should have just gotten their original glazed.
 As I'm looking at this picture I'm realizing that's the same bag of almonds we've been eating all week.  After being dumped on the floor. Oh well. I've never been one to boast of my clean floors, so we'll just have to watch and see if anyone gets violently ill.