Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Autumn and Tools

Photos of the week:

Welcome Autumn.

Okay, so it still feels pretty nice outside, but it has just an edge of coolness. The leaves are slowly jumping off the branches with the promise of Fall right behind them. This is perhaps my most favorite time of year. (One of these years I will really make a decision between Spring and Fall, but it hasn't happened yet. I am totally that lame person all scared of commitment. That isn't like me because I tend to be very opinionated. Okay, I am making my choice. Fall, I pick you. Not because you are happening right now, but because you are so cozy and friendly. You bring Halloween and apple cider. You make the air smell different and I love the crunch of leaves under my feet. You don't have everything because truthfully you eventually make my flip-flops obsolete, but I will embrace you as my favorite season because are.)

I grabbed some decorative pumpkins at the store and was delighted to find they were only 48 cents each. (They were supposed to be 48 cents a pound, but I didn't argue.) Pearl is fascinated by the new additions. Just wait until we carve pumpkins later.

And to keep up on the photography challenge (sorry I keep slipping behind) I'll add in this week as well. The theme was tools, and although I love me a hammer, because I tend to hang things all over my house, my favorite tool would be this:

Don't try to tell me it is not a tool. It is. And I would be lost without it. Take away my TV, and my books, I would rather keep my computer. (But only because I could read the books online. I am so sneaky that way.) Do you have a favorite tool? Eye-Lash Curler, Blender, Pencil Sharpener? What?

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Good News

I won't complain about my lack of blogging, because that is probably going to be the norm for a while (read: 3-5 years), but I will keep up as best I can. And most likely I will fall into a pattern and get my groove back. Goll, you threw off my groove.

But I didn't come here to complain tonight. I wanted to tell you all the great things that are happening. First and foremost...I can BREATHE!! I never did go to an allergist, but I remembered the name of a nasal spray I used back when I only had June. Turns out that they still have the stuff, and my pediatrician felt okay prescribing it to me. (Over the phone even. I LOVE my pediatrician.) It takes a few days for full effect, but those days were swift compared to my misery and now I feel great. This is stellar, because right about now, I usually have a raging sinus infection brought on by my stinkin' allergies, but instead, I am free and clear. It's the bomb-diggity. (I don't know if I am allowed to say that being as white as I am.)

Ivory is thinking about being dry during the night.

It turns out that bed-wetting is a common side effect of having large tonsils. Ivory's body was so busy keeping her alive and breathing that it wasn't too concerned about waking her up to go to the bathroom. The doctor mentioned that she might do better after the surgery. It has been almost two months and I didn't see an ounce of difference. Then one night she woke up to go potty, and then another. After three nights waking up dry, we decided to risk going to bed in just underwear. She promptly peed through that evening. Naturally. BUT, the fact that we are having dry nights at all is good news.

We made it through another school carnival. Granted, we lost a child at this one, which makes it less fun and more embarrassing since everyone knows us. I mean, if we are going to lose a kid, we might as well do it at June's school where none of our neighbors look over and think, Oh, that's not surprising. The good news is that they used real FACE paints this time around. Sure Robyn and Ivory chose a spider because they think it is fun to tease mom, but they washed off easily. :)

Funny spider story if you have a minute. Dad caught a spider in a jar the other Saturday and Robyn thought it would be great fun to shove it in my face. She tried luring me out by saying, 'Mom, I have the cutest thing to show you...come here.' Well, oddly enough, a spider in a jar is just not as terrifying to me, but I still don't want to cuddle with it. I told them to let it go outside somewhere, but instead they left the jar in the garage.

Fast forward two days. I am helping June with her homework and I hear a loud crash in the garage. I ran out to see a broken jar and pieces all over the garage. (It shattered pretty well.) You would think that a little voice would go off in my head warning me why the jar was out there. (After all, we had put all the jars away just so little hands wouldn't drop them.) But luckily, my memory is so bad, I had already forgotten about Maleficent (as Dad so lovingly named the spider.) right up to the point where I was picking up Polly Pocket pieces and found a large spider underneath. Then it all came flooding back, painfully clear. Fortunately, the neighbor boy heard the scream and came and squished the spider for me. Now, I can do my own spider killing when necessary, but I am happy to pass the chore to someone else. But the good news is that had I remembered what the jar was holding, I wouldn't have cleaned up anything at all. I would have left the mess for Tyler to deal with when he got home.

In other good news, the kids are cute and they seem to get along fairly well. June seems to be honing her mothering skills. She is often found helping the littlest minis. I took these pictures because I was impressed with how patient she was being. Daisy's hands often smooshed into her eyes.

But Daisy sure was enjoying herself.

I also tend to be gone a lot of evenings, but I am comforted when Tyler takes a picture like this.

First, at least someone is taking pictures, but mostly it cracks me up because this is a typical moment. Robyn, in the tub. Ivory, reading a book on the potty. And Daisy listening and supplying books when needed. Ivory is getting to be quite a good reader. She won't let me read to her very often anymore.

Lastly, this last picture is just funny. I was making cookies and Dad offered Daisy a bite of the dough. She looked at it for a minute and said, "Whoa...big one." But then she opened wide anyway.

Who can resist cookie dough? Don't worry, we didn't actually feed her that bite, or any dough for that matter. Tyler frowns on it because of the raw egg. I try to honor his wishes and not feed the kids, but that doesn't stop me from sampling the batter.

Oh, one last good news. The General Relief Society Broadcast was fabulous this evening. President Uchtdorf has definitely been blessed with the ability to speak. His talk tonight, centered around the Forget-Me-Not, was amazing.

I don't think the entire thing is uploaded yet, but here are some snippets.

And now I get to go to bed. That is good news too. Sweet dreams everyone.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Amazing and Stupid...Amazingly Stupid

Amazing: I actually find myself with time to blog.
Stupid: I have nothing to blog about.

I have been taking pictures for other people and haven't snapped any around here for days. Thusly, not much to blog about. I could get on my soap box and blather on about how men never wear shirts while running these days. Just because you CAN do something, doesn't mean that you SHOULD. That is probably enough on that subject.

Instead, I decided that I would look back in time and see what was going on a year ago today. (Or at least in the same week.) Now would be a good time to queue the music, that is if you like a little background music while you read this post: Try to Remember the kind of September... We took the girls to Temple Square and even now it is interesting to see how they have changed in a year...especially Pearl. (She was chubba.) 2010.

Then I want back and found this picture of dinner. It was edited so I must have wanted to include it on the blog, but it never made it on here. Look how little Ivory is. 2009.

A year before we put the girls together in a room. Funny that they still sleep together now...just a little closer. 2008.

And then it starts to get weird. Here we are visiting WA for my ten-year school reunion. No Daisy, no Pearl. 2007. I just got rid of those jeans - oh how I loved them.

Even further back in time we go. I didn't even know what blogging was. I had a house full of littles. 2006.

Another year back. We had only been in our house for two years. I was pregnant again. I was probably hoping for a boy. :) 2005.

Keep going. Robyn was a baby. Apparently we took all our pictures in the bedroom. We still have that quilt (from our wedding) but it has some holes now. 2004.

Goodbye Robyn. Goodbye house. Time takes us back to our old apartment and our first baby. Back before she had four sisters. 2003.

And then...we didn't have a camera. At least not a digital one. All June's baby pictures were printed out. I would have to scan one in and I don't have THAT much time today. Well, and actually, she wouldn't be born for another week.

But it was fun to go down memory lane today. Septembers come and go. Kids grow, we move on. Time doesn't seem to notice one little family. But they mean everything to me. So goodbye Summer, hello Fall. Seasons...keep going. I will keep taking pictures and watching my children grow.

Monday, September 19, 2011


The kids are learning Praise to the Man in primary to sing for the Primary Program. Ivory was singing it one morning at the dining room table. Her lyrics are original and I wish I had gotten them all down, but my favorite part by far was the line—Hail to the Prophet, ascended to heaven—changed to:

"Hail to the Prophet, I sent him to heaven."

Friday, September 16, 2011


Photos of the week: (Interspersed throughout the post)

My kitchen is one of my favorite rooms in the house. It is a good thing too since I spend a LOT of time there. This led me to pondering on how we are made and why things are the way they are. It seems like eating three meals a day, or continual snacking (whatever works for you) is not very efficient. I feel that sometimes I finish cleaning up after one meal just in time to start another. Why is so much of life dedicated to food? Wouldn't it serve us better to be sustained on one meal and be able to spend extra time in more productive matters? Then again, perhaps that would leave us more time to spend in UNproductive matters.

I've been contemplating balance. With my new calling, I keep thinking that it should come with a pause button so I have time to get everything done. And then I could visit all the sisters in the ward. But then no one would grow and serve, because they would know that the Relief Society President probably was taking care of everything with her pause button. And I would not know when to stop because I would feel like I could do it all. Nope, I am pretty sure that one of the key things we have to learn while we are here in this mortal sojourn is balance. We need to prioritize and  make mistakes and reprioritize and find out what really matters to us. Heavenly Father wants to see if we will chose the right things. I know that I don't always put the right thing first. (This is blatantly obvious because I stayed up past midnight two nights in a row to read The Goose Girl—perhaps not the best prioritizing.)

This all returned to my mind this morning, because I was looking at my kitchen.

Yep, that is my kitchen and that is how it looks often. Entropy is probably strongest in the kitchen. I was sitting there thinking about how hard it is to keep the kitchen clean and that led to that pondering about too many meals a day. (Pearl only seems content these days with something in her hand. She thinks that we are eating. All. The. Time. Arg. I need to have scheduled snack times and not bend to the incessant whining and reaching in the pantry.) So, since I still lack the pause button, I just got to work and found my kitchen again.

(contented sigh) I sure love it when it is clean. And I love it most in the morning when the sun comes in and lights everything.

It feels cozy and fresh. It starts a new day. A day of choosing how I will balance. And I won't lie. It always feels easier to balance a day if you start it in a clean kitchen.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Robyn Chalae Won't Put Things Away

Okay, kind of a lame rhyme, but the truth nonetheless. I love Robyn, but I am surprised at finding her stuff all over the house. Socks under the dining room table. Her shoes strewn carelessly by the door. Her little fan (purchased at the fair) found everywhere and replaced (by me) in her room each time. (I usually wouldn't bother supervising her trinkets, but if Pearl laid hands on it for one minute, there wouldn't be much fan left.) This doesn't have much to do with anything, except this post is mainly about Robyn, so I thought I would mention some things about her, even if they aren't the stellar things she will want to be remembered for. After all, my parents still call me "Little Messy" even though I have changed my ways.

Robyn has many excellent qualities as well. She is quite the little reader and I find it amusing that her favorite books are geared toward boys. Not that girls (or adults) don't enjoy them. She started off reading Diary of a Wimpy Kid, and now she is into Captain Underpants. I think she enjoys the humor in them. Speaking of favorites, I have not been faithful about capturing another 'school' photo, so I took one of her in bed tonight. Close enough, right?

Robyn has been on my mind because she has said some funny things lately. I wish I could remember all the faux pas my kids utter, but I will be content with the ones that make it here:

(I asked Robyn if she knew where her cup was.)

Robyn: Yeah, it's over by the cauldron.

Me: ?? (pause)

Me: You mean crockpot?

Robyn: Yeah, I was just about to say that.

(Today, June was discussing why she was going to give her Incan treasures to children in Kindergarten. Robyn argued that they would make their own when they got to 3rd grade.)

June: But what if they move? It would be nice for them to have those things.

Robyn: Yeah, as a remembery.

(For the record, I think that should be a word now.)

Robyn is great. She watches Pearl for me for quarters. Cheapest baby-sitter yet.

There are two Hispanic girls that come play in the garage with our girls and Robyn has taken it upon herself to teach the older one more English. (I actually don't know if Callista needs help, but she seems to enjoy playing 'school' regardless.) Robyn told me that she taught her sentences today. Sweet girl.

Robyn is very concerned with right and wrong and doing things correctly. When she does something wrong, she always says, "I don't want to tell you this..." and then proceeds to tell me anyway. I sure hope that never changes.

Actually I hope that a lot of things don't change about Robyn. Sure, she will grow and learn, but I hope her heart stays pure and good.

Monday, September 12, 2011


I did have good intentions of taking a photo of something that had to do with cooking spices. I love me some cinnamon, dill, oregano, or lemon pepper (not necessarily together). But I won't lie to you. I am busy. Like, I-can-see-the-white-hairs-growing busy. My cup runneth over. And so, instead of searching for pictures, I need to search the pictures I have already taken.

Photos of the week:

After all, Sugar and Spice and Everything Nice...That is what Little Girls are Made of.

Oddly, this one is the spiciest of all.

Don't let that cute face and bear holding sweetness fool you. Pearl runs hot and cold. I think it must be the twos lurking around the corner, and possibly some fifth child syndrome throw in for good luck.

But my days would be empty without Robyn's smiles, Daisy's hugs, Ivory's giggles, June's wit, and Pearl's Loves. They truly are the spice of my life.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Piglets, and Funnelcake, and Prizes...Oh MY!!

Yes, it is time to do the Puyallup. Or, it would be that time if we were in Washington. But since we're not, we'll have to settle for the Utah State Fair. Most of you probably know my secret strategy of putting stuff in the fair so the kids will be enticed to come see the displays and not worry so much about the rides. Well this year was no different. In fact, I told the kids straight up that we wouldn't go on any rides. Amazingly, they were pretty cool about it, and even the little ones enjoyed looking at all the arts and crafts. There really is some fun stuff. I can't tell you how many times I heard a gasp, followed by, "Mom, look at the ______." (fill in the blank with something...anything...I think we saw it all.)

I entered another crosstitch which I finished this Spring. I kept forgetting to take a picture and put it on the blog, so now you get to see it; with a first place ribbon. This pattern is one I have loved since I was a kid. It is not as fancy as some as it has no beads, but I still love it.

The other thing I entered this year was a photo. I have never entered photography before. I was excited to go see all the pictures and it probably was my favorite exhibit. Now that I am more interested in photography, I am super impressed by the pictures people take. Oh, and I got an Honorable Mention.

I was super excited by this, because I heard there is a lot of photography entered and I wasn't expecting any kind of ribbon. Yep, so now I feel just a tiny bit famous. It is just the perfect amount of notoriety.

Afterwards, we had to go see the animals. I think Tyler might enjoy them more than the creative arts, so we compromise and drag the kids to both. Okay, the kids might like the animals more too...Good thing I am in charge around here.

As always the baby pigs are my favorites. And looking at the mom, I am glad I only have one baby at a time.

I was so proud of this photo because I couldn't get close enough so I stuck my camera over the edge and clicked the button.

That is always dangerous because who knows if it will even be in focus. But I got baby pigs and my kids' hands. I can tell that is Robyn's hand because she has no nails. (Evil habit).

One of the experiences of the fair is the people watching. I told Tyler, an hour into our adventure, that it wasn't right that I had already seen five butt-cracks.  People really need to buy clothes that fit. Tyler was amazed at one guy who wore a shirt labeled 'Idiot'. He told me to take a picture, but I wasn't brave enough. So he got one for me. Later, I told him that we needed to put the picture of the lady in the 'Idiot' shirt on the blog and he was startled because he was sure it was a man. See for yourself... what do you think?

We finally decided on woman. If you zoom in, her arms do not seem that hairy, she has a bracelet/watch, her fingernails are longer and she is wearing toe-nail polish. Granted, that evidence is not conclusive, but we will give her the benefit of the doubt. Although the shirt is still questionable.

I eventually slowed us all down for a group shot.

And then I asked June to take a picture for us. Not bad.

Then we decided to get a picture kissing, because we are all sappy like that. We sat, posed perfectly for what seemed like an eternity. And then naturally when we go to ask what she is doing, she takes the picture. And then we laughed about it.

We also took a picture at the classic cut-out.

Oh, and at the Lego Shark too. (The Lego shark is not a regular, but he was pretty cool.)

We ended the fair with a treat. We bought ourselves some funnel cakes and chowed down. Pearl really liked them, but I think she was just happy to be out of the stroller.

 Daisy has the perfect face here that says, "Yep, if I eat one more bite, I am going to be sick."

And then Robyn was sick later that evening, close to midnight. I guess that funnel cake didn't agree with her. I don't blame her. Fair food is not that great. We decided that next year we'll skip the food, and do a couple rides instead. I guess that still leaves a 50/50 chance of someone puking.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Block Party

Labor Day was a calm one around here. I finally got out to see The Help. It was so good. The book was amazing and I thought they did a fabulous job with the movie. All the characters were believable and evoked emotion, whether good or bad.

In the evening, we had no plans, but the neighborhood put together a huge block party, compliments of the Marty Sutton Band. Here they are playing.

It was loud, but awesome.

We just lined up across the street, ate food, and enjoyed a day off.

We kicked up our feet; literally.

The kids played, the band jammed, and we relaxed. It was a great way to close the day. I love that we celebrate Labor Day by trying to do the least amount of work possible. Okay, that isn't exactly true for all of us, but it certainly is a good day to be thankful that we can work...other days.

p.s. I bought those flip-flops on my honeymoon. They are a little worn on the bottom, but still very comfortable. Most shoes don't last 12 years.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011


Once again I am cheating. I had looked ahead and worried about this theme, because what if there wasn't a fantastic sunset the week I needed it. So, I took this picture a while ago, but in the end, it is still my photography, so I don't see why I can't break rules that aren't really there in the first place.

Photo of the week:

It was a beautiful night, but I don't feel that my camera always captures what I see, so I bumped up the purple and pink hues because that is my favorite type of sunset.

And then I did a color burn because it looks cool and I would love to see a sunset that looks like this.

Of course, it could mean the second coming is close at hand, so let's hold off on that.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Criss-Cross'll Make you Jump, Jump

I took the older two girls to Seven Peaks the other day to use their free passes they earned from school. Tyler didn't want the littler munchkins to feel left out, so he set up the small pool for them. They seemed to have a good time. Eventually Ivory decided that she needed to jazz it up a bit and she started running and jumping into the pool. Tyler caught some fun shots.

Pearl spent most of her time in the buff.

Daisy made herself a helmet that shielded her from the splash zone that Ivory created.

They sure are cute little ducks. I find it highly unfair though that Tyler lets Pearl run around naked for an hour with no problems and I leave her diaper off for three minutes after a bath and she poops on the floor. I tell you folks, some times it just doesn't go your way.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Another One on the Road to Edjukashun

Ivory started Kindergarten this week and she is ecstatic to be in the 'big' school finally. I am a bit bummed that all three aren't at the same school watching out for each other, but June loves her A.L.L. school so much, and Robyn still runs into Ivory sometimes, that I can be okay with the whole thing. Ivory rides the bus by herself (since Robyn leaves earlier), and she doesn't mind a bit. There are plenty of people she knows. Apparently, she is getting too attached to the bus because when I picked her up today, she broke down into tears because she wanted to ride with her friends. Note to self: Don't pick up Ivory.

I managed to grab a shot of her on her first day, but I had seen this, and I had to try it. What a fun way to keep memories. (Now I have to go back and do the other girls.)

I'm glad she is only gone half the day. It seems that just when they get to a super useful age, the school gets them. Although, Daisy is better with Pearl than any of the other kids, so I probably have the best matched set at home right now.