Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Vacation- everyone should have one

We took a fun vacation last week.  I feel so sad that it took Disneyland to get me back on my blog, because I have been thinking I want to blog about things like good stuff to buy and ice cream flavors and other important sticky notes in my mind.  But my mind is where it all stays.  Anyone want me to talk about ice cream flavors?  Like how Dreyer's has a million varieties and that fact alone makes it hard to buy one kind, because you're afraid to buy the wrong one and have regrets?  Regrets are lame.
We took our longest trip, which was 6 nights in a place that wasn't my bed, with a bed-hog that wasn't my husband (no, this isn't going that direction, I don't think).  I got the privilege of sharing my bed from 1846 with my tossy-turny 18 month old. Now I have more of an appreciation for parents who go on vacations with their kids, because we all know: it ain't the same vacation for the kids as it is for the parents.  Parents are so awesome.  Next time I want someone to be feeding me endless snacks and and pushing me around in a stroller and making sure the waves don't swallow me whole.  
Huntington Beach.  We took most of our pictures at the beach and at the Wilderness Exploring Camp place in California Adventure.  Better photo ops.

Poinsettias!  Christmas music started playing the week we were there. Fun...and snow on the castle.  
The teacups weren't even bad, like I had thought from reading some Babysitters Club books.  The ride that made me even feel a little nauseous was Space Mountain, because you can't see anything.  What's the point of that?
Cars Land coming next summer- very exciting.  Olivia could have been in this picture too but she was in the stroller eating a can of Pringles.  I think we ate our whole food storage supply of snacks, but no one could get through the box of Cheez-Its, even when in extreme hunger.  Nastiness.
Dude from Star Wars or something. Must be really steamy in that mask.

Jungle Crusin' it.  You know when it's a really busy day at Disneyland when even the line for Jungle Cruise is long.  
Russell's dream came true- to see the Mickey man.  Dylan didn't much care for such things.

I think next vacation we need to offset the man-made, technological, surreal fantasy that is Disneyland and instead do a raw, rough, low-key, cheap, nature-appreciation style trip, but I already feel the pull back to California.  Maybe we can just watch a movie about a family camping, make some indoor s'mores, and call it good.  
Yay for fun family times...


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Summerlicious. Two posts in one.

click to enlarge

Here we go.  Another collage to portray the most pivotal moments of our summer.  We got our driveway re-done, lots of cousin-time, every parade at the south end of Utah County, our awesome family reunion filled with family-friendly fare.  During the talent portion Anika and Olivia shared some favorite jokes including the funny, "why did the toilet paper roll down the hill? To get to the bottom".  That was my fave. We enjoyed fireworks for the whole month of July-- from every neighbor in the city.  I was cursing these so-called neighbors as they kept lighting the lame loud fireworks at midnight.  Or honestly, any time past 10:30.  Why do people have to be so fun?  Why so much firework love?  I mean, I understand fireworks on the actual holidays, and the ones that are up in the sky are amazing and beautiful...but to waste your money on all the cheap-o ones you light in the road and are loud and lame, well- maybe it's time to spend money on something else?  

So back to summer events.  We haven't had the busiest summer (that's okay) but we did do things here and there.  My sister Diana came into town from NJ the first weeks of August and we did a whirlwind of activities.  We did the Sweet's Candy Factory I wish they'd have let us take pictures in our hairnets!  That was pretty fun.  I love cinnamon bears even more now after I saw them coming to pass in their cute little molds at the factory.  We did some rafting, some bbq-ing, some marshmallow shooting, some playing...good times.  

Russell celebrated his 35th bday on the 9th, and Anika had her 10th birthday on the 13th.  Her day was packed full and here are some pictures from that day, along with pictures of our new friend, Salem.  Wherever we  go, she is always ahead.  ha ha hahh haha!  The purpose of buying her was for Anika to be able to practice doing hair, but she has somehow become the head of household.  Sorry-- can't help it!  Come to our house for more funnies and perhaps you can even get a headshot with Salem.  

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Not enjoying those cloudy days anymore

(click on picture to enlarge)

But I did enjoy my cloudy (and a few sunny) days back East!  My parents are on a mission to Boston area, living in a quaint town a few hours away.  They showed my sister and me a great time.  Hiking in scenic woods, driving through the several colleges in the vicinity, going through Emily Dickinson's house, touring a chilly Boston, going out on a harbor cruise, eating gummies, enjoying my parents tilted floors in their antique home, driving some more...and do you know how driving can actually be a calming and enjoyable thing when kids aren't in the car (and when you're not the one stressing the city driving- thanks Dad).  Same with flying, of course, though that can never be totally calming when you're always a little bit afraid you're going to die.  But off track there. And what's with Southwest being the only airline offering us free snacks?  Not lovin' the peanuts and pita chips, but at least they didn't charge money!  Stinkin' Continental.  Plus they were charging 8 dollars to watch tv.  The nerve!

Saturday was the day I was in four states.  MA, CT, NY, and staying in NJ with my sister and her enthusiastic husband and irresistible kids.  It sometimes is hard being their favorite aunt when Megan is around feeling a little left out of all the fun.  We got to go to the Jersey Shore, though no one could call that day a beach day.  It was pretty though!  It is a fascinating culture out in the East. So many people want to live out there, not because of the people themselves, but because everyone else wants to?  I don't know, but they just can't leave.  They can't see what's out west.  They are captive to the draws of the Big City....and I totally get that, but it is still amazing that people want to pay all the expenses to live there.  It is costly!  

Anyway, I had prayed that everyone would stay well so I could go on the trip and it all went smoothly, until BAM, Isabelle came home an hour before I had to leave.  She had a high fever at school.  I was sad to leave Isabelle, but she was in good hands.  Her father's.  Olivia fell sick a few hours later, then the two boys on Saturday night-Sunday.  Russell's grand plans of bike training and bike-buying and family fun were thwarted somewhat, but they still had a great time.  Thanks Russell- couldn't have had this good trip without you taking a "vacation" from work.  So yeah..those prayers worked in a different way, but worked nonetheless because the trip happened, and I had a great time with my parents and sisters.  Now back to the rain...

Saturday, April 9, 2011

When you can't find your blog

It's true.  I couldn't find my little blog!  How very sad!  My computer got a big re-wash because "it was making too much noise" and going "sooo slow" (according to computer dr. hubby).  Because of these life-threatening ailments, the whole computer was wiped clean and reborn.  And as I tried to remember what my blog was called - it has been a couple months you know--my computer had no memory of the address either!  I am completely dependent on my computer's brain more than my own.  Thankfully I was able to google "the most happenin' blog of 2011", and my blog showed up first on the list. We're now starting fresh again, just like the season now upon us.  

Here is what has happened the last few months:  
Home improvements.  We had a window seat put in our kitchen for more seats and more space. We can now fit about 10 kids around the table...wahoo!

minor irritations upon youngest child:
Dylan has had a rough go of things here in 2011.  He has had an ear infection going on about 3 months now that antibiotics just don't treat!  It retreats, only to come back and give us all pain.  To add to that already constant pain in his life, he grabbed my curling iron, held on to it longer than instincts would tell you, and as a consequence had to have his hand wrapped for 3 weeks because of a burn on four of his fingers.  The poor kid!  Not to mention the guilt I felt.  But I paid for my sin by having to wrap his hand sometimes 4 times a day (with 2 layers!  and ointment!) because the darn thing kept coming off his squirmy and curious little hands.  Not easy, I tell you.  Not easy a'tall.  

Loo successes:
This is a bonus picture of Sam for cousin Sydney.  Well, I guess Sam should make the blog anyway because of his toilet skills he's recently acquired.  We also now have about 20 more hot wheels cars as a result of his new inclinations, including an ice cream truck and the less popular daycare bus.  

Oh, Dyls.  How cute is a little almost 1-year old who wants to climb into the dishwasher?  

Next post I'll throw some pictures of the rest of us in the family. We've got a week of Spring Break now- weather looks awesome for it- so I'll have to take some pictures of us doing some crafts and making a snowman, maybe even sipping some hot cocoa.  Anyone have any fun suggestions for some inside fun?  

Monday, February 14, 2011


Happy Valentine's Day!  Valentine's candy sure has come a long way.  I didn't even buy one bag of those gross Necco conversation hearts.  We upgraded to SweetTart hearts.  Dejavu.  Did I talk about this last year?  I swear I only have gone off on Easter candy before.  

Nerds are the perfect candy for 10 month olds!  Sorry guys, just had to do it.  Sometimes you need a few minutes to do your own thing, and this buys me the time I need.  For any of you disgusted at my early introduction to sweets in baby Dylan's diet, take comfort in knowing that most of those little nerdies get stuck forever in between his fingers.  And the cookies and cake that he gets bites of here and there?  Nothing compared to how many jars of baby food he partakes of in one day.  He's definitely the healthiest eater in the house.  

Sam turned 3 a few weeks ago.  He had an ear infection on his birthday that made him downright miserable so we celebrated the next day as well.  Sam is a mother's dream.  He likes to cuddle, he tells me I'm his best friend and that he misses me all the time.  

For V-day we got upgraded cell phones.  They were used from Russell's co-workers and it took a lot of trading/buying/reselling/under-the-table deal-making until we had two phones that would work with our plan, but we are now good to go!  The kids got their book and candy.  
See below: 
Anika's book and plate sans a bit of candy, Russell's book- I believe in giving clear messages to people in my life if they want to remain so- (actually this was on his amazon wish list so go check it out), and my phone.  What's for dinner?  Spinach artichoke dip for me, I'm not thinkin' the kids are going to be that hungry from their candy binge, and Russell is working late.  Next coloring pages we'll be printing out starting tomorrow for the next 2 1/2 months: Easter!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Winter wonders

December was a great month. It was filled with parties, family, meaning, good health, and contentment. My birthday was in the middle of the month as well. Can I admit that I like to get presents I want for my birthday and Christmas? Is that greedy and self-indulgent?  Maybe a little, but I don't claim to be a selfless saint.  If I'm going to be getting presents, then let's make sure the ones I've been pining for all year make the cut!  I not only enjoy shopping, but I have a little insight on what are the best presents for myself.  Surprises are fine, if you know me well enough.  Thoughtful gifts have their place, but it's usually in a Nicholas Sparks or Anita Stansfield book and therefore might be a little gag-inducing. Don't over-think it. Just give me some cold, hard cash or a gift card- I'm happy!  Hedonist?  Perhaps. 

I am simple, though.  I did tell Russell a few months before my birthday that "a purse filled with candy" would always be a good gift.  See?  I'm not about cartier watches or prada jumpsuits or diamond rings.  I have a budget.  And he did get that as a surprise, which I was happy about!  Along with that, was his win at his work party.  He won an iPad, which he gave to me!  How awesome is that?  I've never pictured myself with an iPad, because of its trendy nature and novelty.  However, it is pretty fun to have.  I like to pretend that it won't be a huge time-waster because I can email on it, and I can read the Bible on there, just haven't yet, and I can brush up my French with it- and I also can use it as a book reader.  I don't think I've done much with it but play with it yet though.  I feel like such a modern woman.  It makes me forget that my shoulder is always covered with food from cute faces and that my auto-van needs a huge deep-cleaning to remove honey-mustard drips and chewed-up and spit-out apple peel pieces (Sam!) from its insides (who wants to clean the car in the cold of winter??). So with all of those capabilities, it's really wonderful!  

Some misc. pics from the month:

Dance concert
Sam was the happiest boy Christmas morning with his garbage trucks

Great snow makes for a perfect December.  The girls made this patriotic snowman with their Dad.

New Year's Goals:
  • enjoy even more guilty pleasures- live each day to the fullest, right!
  • read more brainy books
  • use less close to cuss cuss words or make up more creative ones
  • write that bestseller that is going to make me some big bucks
  • eat more veggies
  • eat more cadbury mini-eggs
  • find something to fill the LOST hole that's inside of me
I'll let you know how that goes by the end of this year.  Happy 2011!  

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Back with a festive vengeance

Wow, I didn't even recognize my blog it has been so long!  Did I mention we had a baby in April?  I guess I covered that one.  It just seems like right when I have the urge to write in my blog, someone calls me to wipe or I decide I want to make cookies instead or look on for know I am doing the amazon prime free trial for the 3rd time in a year now?  You'd think they'd stop offering me free trials but as long as that's an option, I'm not committing to a full membership!  Plus I spend a lot of money on amazon so I should almost have that free 2-day shipping automatically anyway!  I do like them.

Well- the kids are back in school, of course, a couple of birthdays have been had- Anika is 9, Olivia now 5.  They were as fun as ever.  August is a pretty good month to have a birthday. Outdoor parties rock. Halloween was a rainy-snowy blast but we still got treats so all was well.  Sam went as Sam, which still got him treats so why would he do it any other way?

All my kids want pillow pets for Christmas, but Sam already knows how to use his woofy as his pillow.  Nothing like sleeping on a nice hard floor with the warm sun beating down on you.  Anybody got a sing-a-ma-jig?  I didn't know I wanted one until they all sold out and are supposedly the hot toy of the season.  I want the hot toy!  I think!

Dyl reaching out to grab our beautiful tree.  Isn't it awesome?  We got it after Christmas last year and it is a tall beauty!  We decorate the day after Thanksgiving.  I wouldn't mind decorating as soon as the first snow hits, though, as long it's after Halloween.  The longer the Christmas feeling is here, the better, right?  I felt bad that as we were getting out all the Christmas stuff I was thinking about how soon we would have to put it away and how that stinks big-time.  One of the best days of the year: putting up Christmas.  One of the worst: taking it down.  We got to make December last longer, or put up the tree in September.
My good parents are on a mission in Boston, MA.  We miss them and hope they are adopting that Boston accent.  I'd love that!
Thanksgiving was fun. The best foods are: stuffing, cranberry sauce, and sweet potatoes, all on your fork at once.  Every year we do a thankful jar where we all write what we're thankful for.  Like Megz mentioned in her blog yesterday, the kids can come up with awesome spellings for stuff.  Like Isabelle (6) wrote above, she is thankful for "lecktrisity".
Isabelle wants to document her smile void of many teeth. There it is!  Her birthday is coming up and maybe considering how often I blog now I should just write how much fun we had Christmas and that Santa brought the best toys. Sam turned 3 on Groundhog Day and successfully potty-trained himself with his McQueen potty. Everyone loved the green pancakes on St. Patty's..but don't worry about all that- go enjoy some John Denver Christmas music and some fudge!