Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Did I Mention More Performances?

Friday was a crazy day of running to and fro to see children perform. It gets a little tricky when they don't all go to the same school, but we made it work.

June was in this fabulous dance festival in the morning, but because of some misinformation and construction, I didn't arrive on the scene until moments before June's grade danced. I found her in the crowd and lifted both my babies so they could see her and we watched and cheered and then it was all over with no camera involved. There's the excuse on that one. But I did take a picture of her later doing a rather dramatic recreation of the Captain Feathersword dance.

Then we zipped over to Ivory's school to see her Kindergarten graduation performance. The teacher had them learn a whole bunch of patriotic songs and I'll be darned if they weren't as good as the second graders. Once again I surfed through a whole bunch of pictures since Tyler took 113. (That is NOT an exaggeration, I counted again. He really has a happy camera finger.) Ivory is the farthest to the right.

The room was pretty crowded with parents and family. Daisy and Pearl were fairly good, all things considered. See, Pearl is digging it.

Eventually they all sat down and put on their graduation hats, except Ivory of course. I think hers was a little too big.

They all received a special certificate from Miss Phair.

At the end we got a picture of Ivory with some of her friends from the neighborhood.

And then amazingly Tyler managed to get this picture where all the kids are sitting so cute and wearing their hats. This is amazing because I never saw Ivory wear her hat (except right when they handed them out) and I certainly didn't think Ivory was over with all those kids on the stage. In fact I remember thinking, 'Oh well, she won't be in those pictures, but that is not the end of the world.' And then I go looking through the 113 (sheesh) pictures and low and behold, there was Ivory, smack dab in the middle.

Just goes to show that I am not the most attentive parent, or maybe I was watching Pearl at the time. Yes, let's go with that story.

I took one more photo when we got home. Her face is not exactly in focus (sorry Tyler) but this is her sweet Ivory smile. I probably don't have long before this baby tooth smile will be gone for good, and I sure love it.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Conclusion to Clogging

This last week was full of final performances. Some we caught on camera and others we did not. But all excuses will be given in good time.

The first show to come along was June's final clogging performance. Little did we know that it really would be the 'final' performance. We showed up and it was held at an outdoor stage. It was such a gorgeous evening, despite a chilled Daisy who voiced her discomfort every 2.3 minutes. There are quite a few teams involved in Extreme Rhythm's studio. It was really fun to see all the cool costumes and sharp footwork.

When June finally performed, she didn't seem as confident as usual. I'm not sure why, but she spent most of her time watching the feet of the girls next to her. Luckily Tyler took 90 photos (that is NOT an exaggeration, I counted) so I am able to include several here where she looks fabulous. I think she was still having a good time, even if she wasn't at the top of her game. (She is on the left in all the pictures.)

Somewhere in the middle they presented certificates to all the girls for their hard work through the year. Here is June receiving hers.

Then her group came on one more time later in the evening to perform their team dance. Oddly, June did not come on stage. That seemed a bit weird to us in the audience. June joined the studio halfway through the year, but I know she was working hard on the team dance. Afterward, I saw her walk off to the side all by herself, and so I went over to find out what was wrong. Tyler even caught a picture of me walking to join her.

It turns out that one of the girls told June it was a different dance, and so she didn't go on stage. She was a little heartbroken when all her hard work turned into nothing. I knew she was very disappointed. But she was consoled and we finished off the evening watching a few more, before it was clear that Daisy and Pearl had reached bedtime.

Here is June grabbing her shoes so we can go, but you can still see people performing in the background, and people off to the side.

It really was a fun performance by all the groups. Extreme Rhythm is quite amazing at what they do.

In the evening June mentioned that she didn't want to clog anymore. I asked her why and she said, "Mom, you know how clogging is supposed to be fun? Well, it isn't really anymore."

I couldn't argue with that. I want my girls to enjoy these extra activities, especially since we shell out money for them. I did tell her that I didn't want her to quit because of one bad experience and she assured me that she had been thinking about it for a while.

I never will know if things would have been different had the evening gone better for her, but I am fine with her decision. She has other talents she can explore and this was fun for her to try. And I really enjoyed watching the dances she participated in.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Bloggity Blog

Summer is right around the corner. Like, three and a half days of school away. I have been planning my little heart out. Have you seen those calendars on Pinterest where they have something planned for each day? Well, I was planning that before I even saw those things. I am going to be ultra scheduled. Which probably means it will last for a week and then I will be exhausted and I will throw fruit snacks into the yard and lock the door behind the kids. Well, that is a little dramatic. I will probably let them in to go potty once in a while.
I do feel like I have been a lame summer mom for so many years. I would really like to make it up to them. And only planning one activity a day is doable. I don't have fancy names for them, but here is how it will run down. (Hopefully)

Monday: Deep cleaning Day: I have extra troops on board, so we better get something useful done each week.
Tuesday: Treat Day: We will be making a new treat we haven't tried. (Read: I am going to figure out if any of the things I've pinned are worth it.)
Wednesday: Field Trip Day: We are going to explore and see if I can handle Pearl in crowds. I will definitely be getting out the harness again.
Thursday: Movie Day: Gotta love cheap movies in a air-conditioned theater. Sadly, I will probably drop the kids off and take Pearl grocery shopping to save on time. At least someone will enjoy that hour and a half. (Not me.)
Friday: Craft Day: This will be the hardest for me. I hate making a mess. But the kids really enjoy making a mess creating, so I will try my best to make it happen. We shall see...

So? What do you think? I can hear some of you laughing already. That is good. I need some teasing to make me stick to my guns.

Naturally, I plan to blog about all these little adventures (no, really, stop laughing) which is why I have been taking a blogging hiatus here. I haven't even touched the camera in days. I thought about dusting it off a few days ago, but Tyler borrowed it for work and that was enough excuse for me.

But behold, I got off my kiester today and took some pictures. It felt good.

Let's start with mini-me.

No, she may not look like me, but she is just as stubborn. We clash wills every day and I am pretty sure we are about even if you are keeping score. Well, I might be down a few points since I am often reduced to brute force or blatant bribery. There is a battle over most decisions. Who gets to open the car door. Where are we changing her. (Usually the closet).

Which shoes to wear. How the blankets are positioned. Which clothes to put on. Don't even think about putting that on her plate. The list goes on and on.

Many of you may have one of these yourself. Some call it exaggerated independence. Others might call it being 2. I know it is a phase. That is what I chant to myself daily to make it through sometimes.

Along with warmer weather, the dog likes to be outside more often.

But then she gets hot and wants to come in. But then she remembers how nice it is outside and she wants to go out. Do you see the pattern? The good news is that Pearl has figured out how to open the screen door and she dotes on Moxy, so she willingly lets her in and out. The bad news is that I am pretty sure I saw Moxy biting on Pearl's arm today. Not vicious biting, but certainly more of a gnaw than a lick. I can't entirely blame her since Pearl's affection can be overwhelming, but she should know that when it comes down to Pearl or the dog, the offspring always wins. Sorry dog. It isn't a problem yet, but I am certainly going to keep my eye on those two.

Usually I have the three main monkeys running around. They keep each other busy.

I think I am looking forward to all five taking up permanent residence again. At least most days I am optimistic about it. (Hence the overzealous summer schedule.) The older two are genuinely helpful (most days) so I think it will be good. Well, they are all sweet. Check out Daisy pushing the P.

And then Ivory pretending to be knocked over by her feet.

I play that game all the time. The littles get such a kick out of thinking they are getting you. So, I if my child ever kicks your child while swinging and then smiles about it, it is totally my fault.

Oh, and while you are all thinking what a great mom I am, hows about I brag it up for a minute?? They do testing at school on the computer and for the first time this year, they awarded a certificate to the children who got the highest score in math and reading for each grade. Behold, Miss Ives got the highest score for reading in Kindergarten.

(Yes, I blocked out her name even though it is other places on the just seemed like the right thing to do. As well as blocking out the school. That is probably more important.)

I always knew Ivory was a good reader. She reads everything. She loves it. I find her with a book all the time. But it was great that she got some recognition for her fabulosity in reading. (Yep, made up word. She gets her reading skilz from her Mom, obviously.)

Not much else to report. Here is a couple more pictures of Daisy. I like the light in this one (and the fact that her hair is done—doesn't happen much.)

And she is just cute here.

Please to notice that the older two were not featured. That's just how it goes when you get home later and mom has put down the camera. Don't worry, remember...lot's of pictures and posts this summer. We have the system DOWN.

(I can still hear you chuckling.)

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Patriotic 2nd Graders

At Xxxxxxx Xxxxxxxx* they do a Christmas Program with the first graders every year. Remember the doll, and the reindeer? Well, the second graders do a Patriotic program. It is really cool. I may not have documented it very well last year when June was in it. But this year when Robyn was singing, I did a much better job.

See, here she is singing.

There sure were a lot of kids.

After, she got together with one her best friends and we snapped a couple shots. These two are super cute together.

Pearl was wandering around, so we put her in the spotlight for a moment.

I really enjoy these programs. I know the teachers must spend endless hours getting these kids to memorize songs, but in the end, there is usually a room full of proud parents, and some satisfied kids.

Stay tuned for a few more performances this year. Ivory has some kind of K graduation and June has a dance festival? She has been pretty vague on the details. I have gathered that both these performances may happen at the same time. Too bad my cloning machine hasn't come in the mail yet.

* I have been reading too much The Name of This Book is Secret. Fun story though.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Note To Self

Dear Maleen,

When you think of something that would be important to it NOW!!

If you have that Mother's intuition that something might happen, it probably will. And if you think that you might remember to fix it most definitely won't. Not because you don't have good intentions, (Honey, you are the QUEEN of good intentions) but simply because you will forget. I do pity your poor memory...after all, I have it too. But just do yourself (and me) a favor and just do it right away. PLEASE!!

See, you could have avoided this if you had just picked up that pen as you walked out instead of leaving it on Pearl's dresser.

Remember, you even thought to yourself that you shouldn't leave that pen there. How right you were.

You have only yourself to blame.



Monday, May 14, 2012

The Long Awaited Gallery

Phew! It always feels good to get something checked off your list. I really didn't mean to fall behind with Pearl's pictures. There were just other things on my mind, and honestly, I always worry about taking pictures of the younger girls. There is no guarantee that things will go well.

But unlike many circumstances, Pearl was very easy going. She stood where I asked and smiled and played. She was a great subject. We went to the garden behind the Noni building. So beautiful. It would have been a great place to visit and explore even if we weren't taking pictures. So, here you go:

Pearl has definitely been a strong spirit in our home. She knows what she wants and she lets you hear about it. She doesn't talk much still, and yet she says so much with her actions and noises. She gives great snuggles and kisses. She loves Moxy to a fault. She wants to be big like all her sisters. She is such a precious Pearl. Love you, P.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Blessed Times Five

Today was a very heartfelt day. I loved it all...from breakfast in bed, to amazing talks about women and motherhood at church to dinner I made for myself. (Don't worry, I don't mind making dinner as long as I don't have to clean up.)

The girls got me up bright and early. Even though it was 6:51!!, I was happy to see all these shining faces meet me with pancakes and presents.

I love how the older girls are at such a great age and they make things for me from the hearts. I got sweet cards, and lovely drawings. They even made me large homemade dice. (They really love me.)

My main goal was to get a picture of all my lovelies today. I gave Tyler the task while I was making dinner. He did an okay interesting job. There was not ONE picture in the bunch that had all eyes open and everyone smiling, but such is life.

And it doesn't really matter. I take these five however they come. That is my job as their mother. And I sure do love it.

Friday, May 11, 2012

And Now For Something Completely Different

Yep, even Dads can't escape sometimes when the girls want to do hair. And actually Tyler is more patient than many of the other clients we have around here.

I am a little behind these last few days. Earlier this week, I kinda fell into a book. Not the stubbed-my-toe-on-a-book variety, but the all-I-do-is-read-and-ignore-my-house-and-children variety. The book was good, although I probably would have taken it at a more leisurely pace had I not needed to read it quickly and pass it on to someone before book group next week. But it has been a long time since I focused so hard on one book. There were multiple nights that I got to bed very late and some days I would clean between chapters. It was a little crazy, but sometimes it feels so good to get lost in a book.

June worked on a biography of Tyler for her class. We haven't seen the finished product yet, but I found these pictures we took of Tyler pretending to trip, and I thought I would put a couple on here. They make me laugh.

After I took the photos, June really wanted to try too. Why not?

And that's all for now. Don't worry, I have more stuff right around the corner. Did I mention that I finally took Pearl's 2-year pictures?? I KNOW!! Bout time. So those will be coming shortly. Yay!!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

An Overview of the Baptism in 50 Pictures or Less

Actually, I have a little over 30 pictures, but now it doesn't seem like too many, right? How it really went, was that I didn't have the camera most of the time, so imagine to yourself a wedding with all those Kodak Cameras sitting around waiting for mischievous people to pick them up and take random photos. Well, there was only one camera, but in the hands of Kolby, you get the same effect. And because a lot of random photos of people I love are better than no photos (which often happens when I am in charge) I will go ahead and put a lot of them on here. Now he can be famous and see what a fabulous photographer he would make. Most of these were taken as we waited for the baptism to start. Amazingly, we were on time. :)

Oh, I did snap this first one before everyone started arriving. I do love a daddy and daughter both dressed in white.

And now, in no particular order:

Robyn had a great baptismal service. Her Grandma Dargan and Grandpa Cazier spoke and both gave amazing talks. No one else in our ward was being baptized the same day, so Robyn got to choose the whole program. She even had all the Cazier men sing at the end. (They did a really good job.)

Then we came back to our house and feasted. Well, snacked might be a better term, since I am not sure you can say feast unless there is some kind of large bird involved. There wasn't much time between set up and arrival of guests. Actually, some guests beat us home. So I didn't get the perfect shot of everything set up so beautifully, like something you would see on Pinterest. (Okay, I don't actually aspire to be on Pinterest, but I do like to take nice pictures.) Anyway, my favorite thing was the donuts on a stick. I originally wanted to make those cool sugar cookies that Melissa made last time. But I was scared they wouldn't stay on a stick. So, plan B was to do cake pops and I was going to put two on a stick, so it looked somewhat like an '8'. I was having mini nightmares about getting all these cake pops done and then I saw a donut on a stick on Pinterest (speak of the devil.) I am smart enough to decide that TWO donuts on a stick looks kinda like an '8' as well. And all my stress went out the window in one click. I like me some cake pops, but probably more if someone else makes them. Phew.

Once again I didn't have the camera much. I think Tyler took the majority of these. Again, in no particular order.

 We managed to catch Jack and Rozz this time, but I noticed a startling lack of a picture of Robyn and Grandma Dargan (which I specifically asked for) and Pearl didn't really show up anywhere. Trust me, Pearl was there doing her thing; she just doesn't sit still long.

By the time people were filtering out, Robyn had had her fill. She was still chilled from her dip earlier, so she grabbed a blanket and snuggled up next to Kolby. Moments later, she was sawing logs.

The adults sat around gabbing and the topic turned to shoes. Tyler was bemoaning that the people at work make fun of him for wearing old man shoes. He said that he always denied the fact until he looked under his shoe one time and the name brand was safeTstep. (That kind of screams old man shoes.) Kolby, intrigued, looked under his own shoes. Look, twinners.

Even more bizarre is that we noticed later that Tyler and JR sport the same athletic shoes...just different colors.

Apparently none of the apples fell far from each other. But I don't mind. Those brothers are some of the best men I know.

And so the day closed with another baptism under our belt. Two down, three to go. We sure are proud of these beautiful girls we have.