Saturday, May 30, 2009

I'm doing a Give-Away!!!

*Update* We have a winner! Congratulations Susan!

Hey there! If you haven't already, click on over to my craft blog and enter the give away I am doing. It's a pretty neat prize, if I do say so myself. Hey, I told you I am not above bribing people for comments...

Who knew Star Trek was a tear jerker....

Brian and I got a real treat last night, we got to go to dinner and movie. This is never an easy thing to arrange when you have young children, especially one under one year old. So a huge thank you to Josh and Elena for taking all of our crazy kids on for the night. (Talk about the coolest babysitters in the world! Not only did they babysit them, they took them all to Chucky Cheese! Jake and Evie were in seventh heaven!) And Brian and I actually got to see a huge summer blockbuster before it went to video. We went to see the new Star Trek. I thought it was a great show. But I knew from the first that I was in trouble. (Hmmmm.... OK.... I will try to explain without spoiling the plot for anyone who hasn't seen it yet.) There were several plot twist that tugged at my heartstrings. But every time the music would swell or there was a panoramic shot of space or an epic battle scene I would get misty eyed and choked up. I was getting some funny looks from people all around me. (So yeah, Tiffany, I know how you felt watching Paul Blart: Mall Cop.) I really want to lean over the seat and tell the person, "Look, my mom was a HUGE Trekkie! She died in February and I can't help sitting here thinking about how much she would have loved this movie." But it wasn't just missing her. Part of my emotional reaction was because we made a special effort to have one last girl's day out with my mom, Aunt Kamra, Caitlin, Elena and I took her to see Twilight when it came out last November. It was so fun, Mom even managed to eat a few pieces of popcorn and drink a little bit of coke and said she felt like she got a real movie experience. But as we were wheeling her to the theater we passed a movie poster for the new Star Trek. Mom looked at it and said, a little sadly, "Ohhhh." But then she smiled at me and said, "You had better think of me when you go see that!" So thanks a lot Mom. I thought about you the whole time. And at the end of the movie when the strains of the original theme song started and then Spock's voice gently intoned, "Space, the final frontier..." I lost it. I just hadn't counted on needing kleenex to see an action flick.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Happy 6th Birthday Jake!

We kept things pretty low-key this year for Jake's birthday. He didn't have school because of Kindergarten end of level testing (which he passed, in case you were worried...) so we met up with Pa Dave, Caite and Patrick, and Josh and Huck and caught a matinee of Monsters Vs. Aliens. I loved it! Jake has been quoting it non-stop, and Evie... well, Evie really liked the popcorn. The movie was in 3-D and the glasses wouldn't stay on her head very well, so after awhile she just gave up on the movie and concentrated on the treats. We then went and hung out at Pa Dave's, we were going to go swimming, but the weather just wouldn't quite cooperate. When everyone else got done with work, we went to dinner at the Old Spaghetti Factory. Or as Jake keeps calling it, the Old Ba-scetteri Facty. (If you think that is funny you should hear my kids try to say aluminum linoleum.) And, horrible mother that I am, I completely forgot the camera. Fortunately Uncle Patrick saved the day and took pictures for us on his new camera. Jake got some great presents, books, hot wheels and even a Smart Cycle! (Ever since he got to play with his cousin Beckham's, he has been dying for one.)

This is an awesome skate park for his Tech Deck skate boards from Josh and Elena

And we couldn't have a birthday without Hot Wheels, this is a water play set for the color shifter cars that are his current favorites!

Then we had cake and ice cream. Jake picked chocolate cake with chocolate fudge frosting. (Yup, he is definitely my kid.) And on Sunday we did it again with Brian's side of the family. Including the chocolate cake with chocolate fudge frosting... at least he is consistent. Grandma and Grandpa T gave him some summer clothes, a cool Rubik cube game, and a Tech Deck. And because it is Grandma T, both the girls got some new jammies. We really love our families. They always go above and beyond to take care of us and make us feel loved.

And because I forgot to do this on the day:
"6 Reasons I Have a GREAT 6 Year Old!"

1. Jake is a smarty-pants! But what I love most is his thirst for knowledge. Just recently for a school questionnaire we were filling out it asked what his favorite thing about school was. His answer, "Just learning as much as I can about everything!"

2. He is the best big brother any girl could ask for. He is sweet and protective and always ready to do anything he can to help either one of his sisters. He is laid back and easy going with Evie when she gets bossy to him, and he loves to make Lila laugh and smile.

3. He is a great helper and a lot of the time will look for ways to go that extra mile without being asked. Just the other night, I asked him to pick up the living room so Brian could walk through without tripping over things. After he had picked it all up he came and asked if he could vacuum it for me!

4. He is a great friend and gets along great with everyone. Jake just has a truly caring nature and (so far, at least) doesn't get caught up with teasing or leaving other kids out. Whenever we go to a park or playground he will find someone to play with and make a least one new friend.

5. He is hilarious! He has a dry and witty sense of humor far beyond his years and he just makes me laugh every day. Just today as I picked him up from school he told me he needed to make a schedule. When I asked him why, he replied, "Oh, I'm just the kind of guy that likes to schedule out his day."

6. Despite being a big 6 year old, he is still (and will always be) my first born, sweet baby boy. His hair isn't golden curls any more, but he still has those great big blue eyes and a wonderful smile with dimples! So Happy Birthday Jakers! I am so proud that you are my son and I love you to pieces!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Evie's Entourage

One day, a couple of weeks ago, I overheard Evie playing in the bathroom. Since unsupervised bathroom time can only lead to water damage I went to check on her. She was standing next to the tub pretending to lift something in and out of the bath. I asked what she was doing and was informed that she was giving her "people" a bath. That is right, my daughter, miniature diva that she is, has people. Not just an imaginary friend, an entire imaginary entourage. And they are with us all the time. She talks to them, brings them in the car when we run errands (although occasionally they are left home by accident and that causes her a bit of trauma until we can convince her that they will be fine playing with her toys until we get home...), and their preferences are consulted when I ask what to make for dinner. They can be helpful though. Once Brian was home sick from work and I had been up and down with the baby all night, so we just wanted to sleep in for a little bit. Jake was at school, so there was no one around to entertain Evie. After the 5th time she had come in our room looking for someone to play with, Brian had a brilliant idea and said, "Hey Evie, why don't you take your people down stairs and cook them some food in your (play) kitchen?" She thought that sounded like great fun and the last we heard from her for an hour was her little voice trailing down the stairs, "Come on people, let's go play." So now you know, if Evie ever tells you to have your people call her people... she is quite serious.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Peanut, Peanut Butter, and Jelly!

First you take the peanuts and you smash them...

Then you take the peanuts and you spread them...

Peanut! Peanut Butter! and jelly... Peanut! Peanut Butter! and jelly!

(It really does help if you hold your tongue this way.)

"Yook Mom! I do it all by myself!"

Friday, May 15, 2009

My funny kids...

We've had a pretty busy week around here. Got a lot accomplished in the yard thanks to family on both sides. I've had meetings, groups, appointments and parties almost everyday it seems. I am really grateful that my children have taken the disruption to our schedules pretty much in stride. Even being their usually happy and occasionally hilarious self's.

Evie has been even more of a cheerleader lately. Today when I asked her to please go throw something in the garbage for me, her response was, "Mom! That was a way very good job of you to say please! That is using good manners!" I don't know whether to be happy that she is recognizing good manners, or chagrined that I apparently don't say please enough...

She is also really getting into music and singing, (and dancing, refer to previous post if you missed her tap routine)! Tonight a commercial was on singing a jingle with the line "it's a brand new day", and from down the hall I hear Evie start to sing, "Is a brand new day, is a brand new day." She then paused for a moment and then yelled to me, "Hey mom! They say is a brand new day. And IT IS a brand new day! Tha's so 'citing!" I guess we really do like brand new days around here.

Jake has kept us laughing too. On Mother's Day we were on our way back home from a round of visiting, and Jake was talking non-stop about the pocketful of gummy bears he got from Pa Dave. "...and I got a green one, and a yellow one, two white ones, and even a wed one!" "A wed one," I asked, "what's a wed one?" He swallowed and then said in a tone of utter disdain, "A rrr-red one, I had food in my mouth, thank you very much!" Brian and I then had a debate about who he gets his attitude from.

When I came home from my knitting group on Thursday I asked how the night had gone, and if Jake had done his homework. Brian started to laugh and said that he had forgotten until he was already in his pj's and ready for bed. He went into the kitchen to do it, and when Bri checked on him a few minutes later he found Jake squinting over his worksheet. Brian said, "Hey, Buddy, where are your glasses?" To which Jake replied, "Ummm, I decided I wanted a challenge."

And not to forget Lila, her latest accomplishment is scooting herself forward in the walker. So there you have it, my 5 month old says, "Mama" and "Ba!" and can walk in the walker, but she will NOT even try to roll over. Babies are weird.

Monday, May 11, 2009

An explanation...

For those of you who read the comments after the previous post, and thought it weird that someone would leave a bowl of cereal on my mom's grave, I wanted to share the reason behind it. When I was about 5 and Josh was 3, we woke up early on Mother's Day to surprise our mom with breakfast in bed. Since our culinary skills weren't that great yet, we fixed the one thing we were capable of. Cold cereal. With no milk. (Because I don't eat milk on my cereal and didn't think that others might like it.) It was a bowl of Lucky Charms. And after each couple of stairs we would set the tray down to rest our arms, and sneak a few of the marshmallows. By the time we got to the top we had eaten all but one which was arranged prominently on top of the bowl to draw the eye and disguise the fact that all the rest were gone. That was one of my mom's favorite stories from when we were little and over the years it became a tradition to give her breakfast in bed, which was a bowl of dry cereal with all but one of the marshmallows picked out. But then she could come downstairs for a real breakfast, that wasn't half bad the older we got. I don't know if it was Josh or Caitlin who left the cereal, but it made me smile. I've got some pretty neat siblings.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Happy Mother's Day

Last Thursday I went to my chiropractor for an adjustment and while I was waiting for my turn I happened to be sitting across from a chalk board advertising 15% off massages for Mother's Day. I completely broke down, and the harder I tried to stop crying the faster the tears seemed to come. Now, I understand that this is part of the grief process and normally when this happens I am at home and the wave hits, I cry, it passes and I go on with my day. Of course being out in public with red eyes and quiet sniffles, caring people ask the fatal question, "Are you ok?" which always makes me cry harder for some reason. I was able to reassure everyone that I really was ok, just an unexpected reaction to the advertisement. I was thinking, "What is the deal, it's not like I didn't know this day was coming?" But the more I think about it the more I realize that I wasn't dealing with the fact that this is the first Mother's Day without my mother. I knew it would be emotional, but I couldn't have guessed how much. Part of this emotion though is gratitude for all the other mothers in my life and I wanted to take a moment to thank them.

My mother-in-law, Terrie, who does so much for my little family and is always quick with a kind and loving word of encouragement and support.

My grandma LuDean, who just about bursts with pride and love for me and my babies.

Grandma Sharon, who has always been unfailing kind and loving to my family and I love that she has a greeting card for any occasion you could possible think of.

My aunts on both side of the family, but especially my mom's sisters (which include in-laws and steps!) who stepped in and stepped up to take care of her and our family while she was sick and have made great efforts to keep our extended family close and in touch.

Susan, Sandra, Paula and other friends of my mom who also gave us so much of their time and energy. You will never know how much you have blessed our lives. Whenever I hear the hymn that sings about "the errands of angels are given to women" it makes me think of all of you and how true that statement is.

And last but not least are my friends and cousins, Diane, Haylee, Tami, Emilie, Sarah, Catherine, Elena, Mandy, Kris. All of these awesome women who are there to share the joys, humor, heartbreaks, and frustrations of having young children and becoming mothers ourselves. I have to laugh at the thought that we used to play dolls together and now we get our children together for playdates. (The nice thing about dolls is that it is ok to forget them at your friend's house and leave them there overnight...)

Thank you to all of you, you are amazing mothers and I am so glad that there are women I can call on now that I can't ask my mom for her advice or to vent about motherhood. I will be hugging my babies extra tight tomorrow and remembering how lucky I am to be a mom. And I hope that if you are lucky enough to be able to give your mom a hug tomorrow that you'll give her an extra squeeze from me. But make sure that you take the time to let her know how much she means to you and know that you can never say "I love you" too much.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Summer is Officially Here!

Look at that gorgeous, cool, blue water! It was the first time swimming for both babies. Huck loved it, Lila was content to be held in the water and observe the crazy antics of others.

Prepare to be boarded! Jake is so stoked, he can reach the bottom this year so he doesn't have to wear a life vest or water wings. (It's really hard to be a fearsome pirate while you are wearing water wings...)

We are ready to party like pirates! If you can't find us when the weather is warm, then you just aren't looking hard enough.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Is there a tap dancing gene?

Because if you can inherit a skill then Evie got these mad tappin' skills from her Mima Kim!

Friday, May 1, 2009

She's just not that girl...

This is public apology on behalf of Caitlin to all family and friends who wonder what is up with her. She simply cannot keep up with any form of electronic communication. As I was jokingly chastising her about it she said, "You know me, I'm just not that girl!" She figures if you really need or want to talk to her you can call her on the house phone, but don't bother with the cell because she can't find it and if she does find it she can't find the cord to charge it with. (I think it is a great loss to us all that she won't blog, because she is an amazing and hilarious writer. Read her 2nd and last post about her adventures in cooking if you haven't already.) The other problem she has is that she cannot remember the passwords and/or names of her blogs, email addresses, and Facebook pages. You may have noted that those were all plural, because she has multiple blogs, email addresses, and Facebook pages. When she couldn't remember the one she had already started or how to access it, she would simply start over again. I have decided that that is the reason there are never names available when I join a website. There aren't really 167 different Christianes out there that have joined the same website, but one Christiane who has rejoined 127 times because she can't remember her password. So, this is also an apology to all the Caitlins out there who have to be Caitlin_273 because that is the first available number. Oh, and if you do happen to call her cell phone don't bother leaving a message. She never checks them because she can't remember the code to get into her voice mail.

Cutest baby in Utah!

I entered Lila into a baby photo contest and am hoping to win a photo session. They are having a poll for the People's Choice so click here and vote for #14! Pretty please!

Lila won 2nd place! I am really excited, because I haven't had any pictures done of her yet and she is almost 6 months.
Poor last born child. The way it ended up, the People's Choice poll didn't work the way the photographer wanted. Some people figured out how to rig the system and vote multiple time instead of just once. The Cutest Baby was voted on by 50 professional photographers and the first place won with 22 votes. Lila was the runner up with 10 votes. So instead of a people's choice she was runner-up voted by the professionals. But still a heart-felt thanks to everyone who voted for my baby! What she won was a 30 minute photo session and a 11x14 wall portrait. Now I have to knit like the wind to finish the outfit I want her photographed in....