Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Pearl's 3 Year Gallery

It may have taken me a little extra time to get this gallery. I could tell you the dozens of reasons why I am behind on my life right now, but they are tedious and I am sure many of you are dealing with the same things. Just know that I am doing my best to keep up. In fact, at some point after scheduling a couple times to take her out and not having weather cooperate, I decided that we weren't going to get fancy. I would take pictures anywhere....even my backyard if I had to. A friend invited me to a park and that was good enough for me. I did Pearl's hair and not knowing at all what the scenery was like, we headed out to take pictures.

It was a gorgeous day (a little too much sun for my liking) and I think we got some excellent shots. After all, Pearl is just adorable. I could have taken pictures in my backyard and she would have been just as cute. Hope you like them.

Pearl is growing up fast. I can't believe she is my baby. My blonde, beautiful, stubborn, baby.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Five Reasons I Love Being a Mother

I had a great Mother's Day today. I wish this holiday didn't bring sadness to some people. It makes me want to hold back on my own joy, but that seems pointless. This doesn't mean that I don't feel for those who have lost mothers, not been mothers themselves, or have feelings of loss associated with this day. It just means that I really love my children (as I should) and I want to express my gratitude.

This morning I got lots of letters of love from each of the children. I should really post some on here, but I didn't get as far as taking pictures of each of the cards. (And Ivory had four different letters. Either her class at school went overboard or she was overachieving at home. Or a mix of both. You can never tell with that one.)

Tyler got me a new phone a few days ago as an early present.

Shhh....it is my favorite gift, but only because it is so useful. But right behind it, I love the gifts the girls got me. June got a lavendar bush from school, and Ivory got me a pansy. (Yes, I will probably kill both of these plants in less than a week. Should we take bets? I even declined a flower at church today, figuring I will have enough guilt with two plants dying slowly.) The girls also got me a neat scarf and an awesome belt. I didn't take a picture of the scarf, but here is the belt.

This really is a good gift, because I only have one belt that I ever wear. Oh, and Tyler bought me new jeans because my others finally got holes in them. I live in jeans. Every. Day. It is not creative, but I don't really care. Tyler snapped this picture because there's an 'M' on the back pockets.

Okay, that is not why he snapped the picture, but we try to keep it clean here on the blog. :)

The best part of the day was NO meetings. It was a FREE Sunday. Sorry, we did go to church...I mean no extra meetings. Huzzah! I got to play with the my kids all day. We watched a movie. (Not technically allowed on Sunday, but when do I ever have time like this?)

We played games, and went for a fun walk down by the river. (Pictures for another post.) I almost took a nap. Tyler made all the meals. I was seriously spoiled. I even received some impromptu tattoos.

Oh, but I need to give you those five reasons. I'm sure you already guessed them. (It isn't a very clever title.) I picked up the camera and walked around the house and took a picture of each of my loves.

What a great Mother's Day. And, of course, a shout out to my own mother. She is awesome. I only wish she lived closer so I could give her a gift on time instead of mailing them late. (Again.) I know I put her through some doozies while I was growing up. I'm hoping I am a bit easier to handle now that I live hundreds of miles away and technically Tyler has to deal with all my foibles. Love you Mom.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Still Knows How to Work the System

Tyler was busy today and asked me to run and get him something from downstairs.

Me: Say Pretty Please.

Tyler: Pretty Maleen.

Ahh, what wouldn't I get him after that? He still is quite the charmer.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Dargans Among Us

We love having my family come visit. Even as I was editing photos for this post, Pearl was pointing at people and saying, "Grandpa and Grandma." I really hope all my kids will have great memories of when my family comes to visit.

We did a lot of stuff while they were here, some of which I already blogged about, but we'll add a few more tidbits.

We had FHE while they were here and did a lesson about honesty. For great details on the lesson, check it out here. The basic idea is that you scoop out some ice cream into a bowl. Then you talk about how sometimes we make bad choices, and you sprinkle a good amount of salt on top of the ice cream. Then perhaps we realize it wasn't a good decision, or we are embarrassed or worried about getting into trouble, so we try to cover the mistake with a lie. This is where you pour a hefty amount of chocolate syrup over the ice cream, covering up the salt. But the lie doesn't take away the original mistake. I let each of the children take a bite of the ice cream. I don't think it tasted very good.

We poured salt into an empty bowl and talked about how if you fixed a lie right away it is easier to take care of, and we wiped the salt right out. Then, I took a bowl with crusted salt and talked about how if you keep covering a lie and let it sit, it becomes even harder to fix.

(Of course, I didn't do a very good job of drying the salt, so it wiped out fairly easily. Oops. But they got the idea.)

It was a good lesson overall, and I hope the kids will remember it for a time.

The Dinosaur Museum at Thanksgiving point is usually a must when my fam visits. This time, Mom and Dad went to Cabelas, and I just took Tim and the littles. I have mentioned before that I have never really had a chance to walk through on my own and read stuff. And frankly by now, I don't really care. I have skimmed through that museum many a time. However, there is usually a hands-on room before the dinosaur part and I like playing in there more than anywhere else. This time the theme involved sound. There were many different things to experiment with. The girls liked these funny headphones that made you think sounds were coming from a different place than they were.

Tim tested how deer hear the world. (Or was it a donkey?)

Daisy...well, maybe she hasn't figured it out yet.

There was also this cool tunnel room you could walk through. In the middle there was a gravel patch and speakers.

You were supposed to walk through as quietly as you could and it would pick up the sound and give you a score at the end. The first time I walked through, my score was 2.5, but I never got it that quiet again. Here is my next best score.

Daisy and Pearl didn't do too badly.

Tim's score would climb too high and then he would give up and make a lot of noise until the reader said, "Too loud. Go back and try again."

Of course we zoomed through the rest of the museum with some important stops. Like the sand area. Pearl liked it right up until her hands got dirty. She is a bit of a princess.

Daisy didn't mind a bit and played as long as I would let her.

We stopped at the scale. (Hold the enthusiasm, Tim.)

And at the huge shark of course.

I skipped the sand at the end. I just wasn't in the mood to fill my van with dirt. Instead I took the kids to the gift shop and bought them dragons instead. (Only because they get the short end of the deal often being the youngest, and the dragons actually weren't too overpriced. Shocker.)

What else??

Oh, we can't forget the new addition to the family. My parents got a puppy, April, and they brought her with them. She was such a sweetie. I haven't seen too many dogs that come with such a great disposition. And she was soft and snuggly and would cuddle with anyone. But she clearly had her favorite.

Earlier in the week, we stopped by the BYU bookstore, and it was a strange coincidence that my folks ran into a young man from their home ward. They hadn't seen him for a while since he came to Utah. So he stopped in one evening (after his finals were done) to play games. We had a lot of fun. Here is our gang.

I can't believe how fast the time went. We were squished while they were here, but it didn't matter. We sure love these people.

Come visit again soon!!

Friday, May 3, 2013

Time is Winging It

Whew...almost the end of a great week. Nothing spectacular about this last few days, unless you count that my house is officially clean from top to bottom. That will last about 18 seconds around here. (And naturally, I'm not counting the garage.)

I thought that I might check off some things on my every growing blog list, especially since some of these items are from back in March.

We had some good friends leave in March, but before they left, we had a huge fondue party. Best. Ever. Cheese fondue, Broth fondue for meat, and of course, chocolate fondue to finish the course. Although, everything was eaten at the same time, so I would bounce back and forth between the cheese and chocolate. Extravagant deliciousness, I declare. Everyone brought something, and I was in charge of the chocolate fondue, so I didn't feel bad taking home the leftovers. (There were leftovers you say? I know, amazing...but I made sure to bring plenty to begin with and we finally ran out of things to dip, really.)

I wasn't sure what I was going to do with the extra chocolate, but when I came home from church, it seemed natural to just gather the kids and have a frenzy.

I found anything available to dip. I think we had bananas, apples, and pretzels. (Maybe our fingers? NO, that is gross. Shh, I never do that.)

We made short work of it, and Ivory was happy to stick around and help with the clean-up.

Also back in March, June's class did a project where they each took a county in Utah and researched it. They had a huge county fair where they displayed their boards and answered questions about their county. (Luckily, June's friend's basement flooded the day of the fair. I say this is lucky because her mom called me a half hour before it started and asked if I could drive her daughter. This was the first I had heard of the fair that evening. June may not be the best message bringer. But, we all made it there, if not a few minutes late.) After all was said and done, there was a huge project wandering around the house. What are you supposed to do with these things? The answer is simple; photograph it and then chuck it. Although I still feel guilty throwing something away that June spent so much time on. Blat.

Here is her county board.

Here are some details about Summit County. I especially like her picture of a mink.

And I like her little key for the map. She did a good job on her project.

Robyn also brought home a large school made item. Her class made Gallon men to illustrate proportions of liquid. What I loved most is that Robyn's was very unique. She made, instead, a Gallon WOman and then had her doing the splits.

I think I mentioned somewhere that there were some teeth lost recently. I remember Ivory lost her tooth at church because she folded it up in a paper and gave it to me after class. June lost some of her bigger teeth. She now has quite a hole in the side of her mouth. The tooth fairy stays busy around here.

Lastly, we made Italian Creme Sodas the other evening. They were slated for one of the summer treats, but Dad requested them early. It took me a while to find the syrup, but they were worth it. Yum, and double yum. Robyn took this picture. Not bad.

So, I took a picture of her. Delicious.

Life just continues on its way. It is hard to keep up, but the good times keep on rolling...

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Color Me Happy

When my mom was in town a while ago, one of the top things on her list was to go to Color Me Mine. And I was happy to come along for the ride. Color Me Mine is probably one of my happy places. (Not that everything I do is fantastic, but there is always potential for greatness.) Once painting was mentioned, there was a whole slew of little ones that demanded a session of their own. I allowed the oldest three to come, simply because I know they can paint on their own with little adult supervision.

Only Tim and Ivory finished that evening. I had to take the older girls back later, and my mom....well, she picked the hardest piece in the store, and spent over 12 hours making it amazing!! (She went back twice more.)

In fact, let's start with pictures of her piece, because it seriously is great. So much detail, and she made sure to do three coats on almost everything so it would be bright and vibrant. Just looking at it, I bet you can imagine why it took so long.

Here are some detail shots.

I didn't see Tim's piece, so I'm sorry it won't make the blog.

Here is Ivory's candy dish.

Robyn made a napkin holder. (Actually, I told the girls they could only come with me if I could choose what they painted. I have wanted a napkin holder for some time.) It looks nice on this side with the flowers.

And innocent enough on the other side with the cookies.

But really, it is a napkin starved creature. Watch out.

June was commissioned to make a plate which we could later use to display eggs. I think she did a fabulous job.

These are her favorite eggs.

And I did a dessert plate. I think I want to do a whole set of dessert plates eventually. And what better place to start...than with cake.

So ends another venture in painting. Certainly not the last for us. Daisy is already begging to go since she missed out this last time. Well, twist my arm Daisy...we can probably go again soon.