Friday, March 27, 2015

Stuffety Stuff

Let's catch up on some Cazier adventures and the randomness that follows us from day to day.

First, shall we rewind five years or so? I went to a garage sale and found some wooden hearts on posts. I bought five thinking it would be really fun to paint them and put them up around Valentine's Day, outside maybe. I was going to paint one for each child. ( the time, I may have been planning on painting four for the children I had, and one for myself. Either way, it worked out.)

But I kept putting it off and then they got hidden somewhere in the garage.
And then we moved.
And then they were hidden in our current garage. (Really, when I went looking for them, they were in the attic storage above the garage.)

It seemed it was about time to get them done. (Who says I procrastinate projects?) However, now the girls were old enough that they didn't want me to make one for them. They wanted to make them themselves.

Fair enough. Out came the paint and brushes and creativity and this was the end result.

Awesome huh? I never would have made them so different and original. I'm so glad I waited for the kids. Left to right, who painted them: Ivory, June, Robyn, Daisy (of course) and Pearl and Mom did the last one. I really love them and can't wait to put them up next year.

I have mentioned whined in the past about all the projects June has to do for school. I see some things she works on head out the door, but other things she will just tell me about because they are finished at school. Today I stopped by school to bring her a mathbook she forgot and it was fun to see some of her projects on the wall.

This one is built from assignments throughout the year, starting with the self-portrait that was done months ago to the writing assignment finished last week.

This next project was done in art, I believe. The dessert stand was a somewhat 3D project, followed by the clay project in which they made cupcakes. They looked so cool.

Here is June's a little closer.

Here is another wonderful rendition of a skeleton child done with dominoes, except this time Dad flipped out because Pearl had been sick and he made June sanitize all the dominoes. Less fun. (Even less fun was the week that she couldn't keep anything down. Hate throwing up.)

Some wild turkeys live near Ivory's gymnastics. We took a picture of them before. But this particular day, they were in the parking lot, and right outside the car.

Ivory jumped out and told me not to move because I would run over a turkey. One just circled my car for a while. Not the brightest bird in my opinion, and I heard they were clever.

Finished another dessert plate. Five down, three to go.

This is a great picture in my estimation. It proves that I curl hair every once in a while and take the kids out for treats.

June kept telling me Costco had three Gelato scoops for only $1.50. I finally caved. I think everyone approved of my moment of weakness.

Here is my carpool buddy. She is a bit sassy, but usually I don't mind her company.

March is annual flip flop buying month. I'm sad to say that they aren't $2.50 anymore. The price increased a dollar. Blah. Stupid inflation. But flip flops must be bought.

Things change too quickly. Just last year, my flip flops were the biggest. (Barely.) This year, June's are bigger and Robyn's are the same size. Crazy.

Several of my friends are building houses right now. Thankfully, I am not jealous at all. I love my house and I know we are where we are supposed to be. But as I get occasional tours, I still see things that remind me that I want to make some changes around here. One thing I desire is a mud room. In our entryway, there is no place for backpacks and jackets. We do have a standing coat rack, but it gets overloaded and the backpacks just get shoved in the closet in the most haphazard way. Yikes. It is awful.

I asked Tyler about letting me take over some space in the garage. I could build some locker type area where kids could stash their backpacks and coats.

He said "NO!" (Something about not wanting me to take over more space in HIS garage. Blah, blah, blah.)

Next, I thought about redoing stuff in the closet. I took out the top part of the little bookcase. But I couldn't fit five backpacks on there. I just wasn't feeling it. This is the picture mid project. It doesn't begin to show how awful it was with all the backpacks piled in front, plus coats and such hanging from above. (Which I had already removed.)

I had mentioned putting some hooks inside the closet, but I wasn't sure how I wanted them, and there is always the problem of support and making sure they aren't going to just tear holes in the wall. (I am not the best at finding or caring about studs unless you count the one I caught fifteen years ago.)

Suddenly Tyler was in project mode. He got out some wood we had in the garage and put the kids to work.

(The paint choice was mine. When you have girls, you just embrace pink.)

Boards finished, he bought hooks and assembled. Look how fantastic!! (And those babies are secure!)

I took out the shelf and let backpacks take up space at the bottom.

And now for the final reveal...

It is so nice. The kids don't have to stuff their backpacks in. Everyone has a hook. The coat rack isn't overloaded. The organized section of my brain is smiling.

The moral is to adapt. I think we did pretty well this time.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Pearl's Birthday - Part 2

Kangaroo Zoo is such a weird place; just lots of blow up toys all over the place. Take off your shoes and go to town kids. I enjoy it simply because I really have no responsibilities. I bring a book, look up occasionally, and make sure I don't leave without all my children at the end.

Tyler even took over the camera, so I just relaxed in style. He got some great shots. He found each child in turn.

Some of the kids buddied up to play. Robyn was escorting the birthday girl around for a while.

Here's another pair.

Tyler caught me doing what I do best.

It is hard to catch all five kids at once. This is the best picture we had of all five.

Besides reading, I do cuddle the severely wounded. (Or even those less severe injuries.)

We couldn't leave without getting pictures of the fantastic Captain America, and his sidekick, Daddy's Girl.

They make a pretty good team, even when fighting crime takes a back seat to being silly.

To finish off the evening, we give you Pearl, doing impressions. This one might be Elvis.

I think this is Joan of Arc. CHARGE!!!!

There you have it. Pearl is five. Winter birthdays are in the past. Here we come Spring.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Pearl's Birthday - Part 1

Oops. Somehow I haven't gotten Pearl's birthday on here. It hasn't been a month, so I don't need the cone of shame yet, but it is getting close.

Pearl is a fabulous five now. My baby is five. She will be going to kindergarten in the fall. How did this happen so quickly? (Well, trust times it did not seem speedy in the least.) I feel like I should miss the baby stage, but I don't. I like sleeping too much to miss midnight feedings.  I am saving a bundle now that we are diaper free in this household. And my children act like three year olds often enough that I it brings back enough nostalgia to tide me over.

Pearl had school on her birthday. There had been a light snow so she went out early to play.

Well, I thought she was playing, but she was getting snow to clean my front door. How thoughtful.

It was a low-key day. We went out and got balloons after school. Pearl picked a large butterfly.

Kids came home, we eventually had dinner and finally it was time for presents and cake. Pearl was so patient waiting the whole day. Never thought to put NERDS on a cake before, but they give it a nice zing.

Would you like a little cheese with your cake? This guy is pri-tty cheesy.

We sang and Pearl blew those candles out before I even had the camera in focus. Oh well. There's always next year.

Then it was time for gifts. Pearl was very excited about everything.

She would jump out of her chair and point at the next gift she wanted to open.

We'll have to work on her money identification. She pulled out the fiver and said, "Look, a dollar."

Usually I buy all the gifts and the distribute them for kids to wrap and give to the birthday girl. This year, Ivory already had a present ready for Pearl. She had made her a little bag and filled it with trinkets and treats for Pearl. It was very thoughtful of Ives.

Grandma Dargan sent along several puzzles. Pearl loved them all. And has put them all together multiple times. She is a puzzle fiend.

Robyn wanted to get her a pillow specifically, so we went shopping. She found this funny monster pillow whose mouth can hold items. We put some candy inside for Pearl. She loves that silly monster so much. She named him Cheeseburger and he sleeps with her at night. This is the best picture we had of him.

Pearl had a great birthday, but it happened to fall on Mutual night, so Tyler and June were quickly out the door that evening. So, we planned to go to Kangaroo Zoo the next night. Stay tuned for Pearl's Birthday - Part 2.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Stealing Homework

I see a lot of school assignments come and go around here. Today, I saw an assignment still on the computer, probably printed out in a mad rush before heading to school. I read it and loved it. I thought I would share it with you.

I am From...
By June Cazier

I am from Foursquare.
I am from FHE.
From jamming that pen down my throat.
I am from a warm cosy house where people love me.
From Midgard, and Carnegie Hall, from Atlantis and the Parlor.
I am from my secret closet, with a pull-string light and a broken door.

I am from taking pictures of flowers.
Because I couldn’t think of anything else to photograph.
From baby-sitting and wondering why I even thought
Watching kids was a good idea.

From being called Jitterbug.
From being called Junebug and June Foose and Juniper.
Cross Stitching during General Conference.
Drawing with chalk ‘til the sidewalk is full.
I am from these moments.

I am from Crack-Offs and F├ęte Day.
From eating pie on PI Day,
From riding the Grom.
From biting my nails and staying up late.

I am from Foot, my bear.
From car keys under the swing.
From Splash Mountain at Disneyland.

I am from food. Key lime yogurt. Spaghetti.
I am from eating all the time.
From asking for more food,
And being called the Bottomless Pit.

The time when I ate eight cupcakes
School projects that I didn’t want to do.
I am from these moments.

I am from pretty rocks and shiny shells
That smile when I pick them up and cheer when I add them to my collection.

From teasing my sisters, then playing with them.
From playing Zoobles for hours.
From winding the Grandfather clock.
And playing board games until no one else wants to play.

I am from a new pink bike and a bright red desk always covered with stuff.
From being messy, but making my bed.

I am from going to church every Sunday, and school all the other days.
From being taught by my teachers and friends.

I am from road trips and seeing new things.
I am from listening to guidance, then doing my own thing.
From stories Mom and Dad have told me,
Stories I wish I could tell.

I am from memories that make me myself.


I am constantly amazed by the individuals that my children are. I claim them all, but they have their own personality and style. They are built piece by piece by their internal genius and the interactions around them.

I hope I add something beneficial for them.

I hope I leave a positive mark.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Top O' the Morning to Ye

Hope you are wearing green today, although the thought of pinching someone just because they forgot something (or didn't care) seems silly to me. If we really pinched people for poor memory, I would be sore from head to toe.

Regardless, it feels good to be blogging today. Last week was a mess of throw-up, late nights, and one sick little Pearl. (Thanks March. I thought we were on good terms...) I don't know what it is about illness, but not a lot gets done. This week, I plan to be more productive.

Starting with a fabulous post full of golden coins stuck to foreheads. You guessed it. It must be St. Patrick's Day! Seamus (our resident leprechaun) has not shown a whisker or the tip of his pipe around here. (Actually, I'm assuming he doesn't smoke since I never smell it.) I never get too worried about him. Some years, he bombards us with puzzles and the like, and other years, we don't hear from him until we deliver the gold.

But we never miss getting out our gold coins and filling a pot of gold for Seamus McDermott. We have been doing this as long as I have been blogging. We rushed through dinner last night so we would still have light outside to take pictures. This is an important picture-taking tradition. It was fun to look back at the blog with Pearl and show her every year where she had a coin on her head, including when she was as fresh as dewdrops at dawn.

Check us out this year.

We dropped the coins from our foreheads into the pot again. It was quite funny since June couldn't get her coin off her head. She sat over the pot and made plenty of faces waiting for the trinket to detach.

Ivory didn't want to miss the pot. Tyler said she looked like she was throwing up instead of depositing a coin. (No more of that, thank you.)

Pearl gave Daisy a good bonk on the head to dislodge her coin. Seemed to do the trick.

The girls wrote cute notes for Seamus.

Robyn -
Seamus, You are awesome! All your green...! You know? That's my favorite color! Green forever! WITH A HINT OF YELLOW! I hope you enjoy this years St. Pattricks day. I hope haven't left us. I enjoy, lovingly your small, joyous, company.
Love, Robyn the Pattrick

June -
Sheamus, Happy St. Patrick's Day! Add these coins to your stache of gold, and wish for no rainbows. Wear green and wish us luck for the next year!
p.s. Sorry I spelled your name wrong.
p.p.s. Leave me a code. I love those the most!
Love, June

Ivory -
To: Shamus You are great! Pearl said in our prayer that you should replace our coins with candy! You really should!
From Ivory E. Cazier Your favorite!

Seamus was ever so obliging. Our coins were replaced with candy.

And there was a code.

The girls made short work of it. The solution is below. If you really want to solve the puzzle on your own, go ahead.

For those of you who don't, it says:

Me appetite fer gold be fed
For ye there is a puzzle instead
The monsters be gone
Thanks to yer leprechaun
It is safe to look under yer bed

The girls did just that and found another small treasure.

I think it has been a good day. And don't hate me for taking everything down tonight and decorating for Easter. It is right around the corner. But know that I have a soft spot for the Irish and their traditions that have been slightly warped here in America. Happy St. Patrick's Day!