Tuesday, April 27, 2010

AA B AA B AA B AA B

Remember back to your kindergarten days (actually it was probably more like first grade for us ol' timers) when you learning about patterns? Red, Yellow, Red, Yellow -- that was called an ABAB pattern. Then as you got really smart and you started grasping the concent of patterns your teacher threw in -- circle, circle, square, circle, circle, square or the AA B AA B pattern.
Well, the other day Nate exclaimed to Tyler, "Your teeth are kind of like a pattern." Teeth, teeth, no teeth, teeth, teeth, no teeth.
Mr. AA B AA B Man

I had a little talk with Tyler about Nate's comment not being an insult just a stage in life. We all go through "AA B AA B" times. I then pulled out my scrapbook to prove to him my awkward teeth years...guess I didn't keep any of those pictures. Tyler does have some strange teeth issues. He just had two teeth pulled in hopes that it would help some funky adult teeth issues (like coming in sideways or twisted). Then to top that off he had two other teeth that naturally fell out. He told me that he tried to keep them in as long as possible but they just couldn't stay in any longer. I laughed when he told me that when he took his one tooth into the school secretary/nurse he told her that he would probably be in later that day with another tooth. Ah...the pre-teen years.

Tyler trying to look tough! He's such a sensitive big-hearted kid!


Alysee also lost her second bottom tooth. It's strange how you wait sooooo long to have your teeth start coming out and then you are so scared to pull them out.
We tried one night to bribe Alysee with a dollar if she would just pull the dang tooth out. Daddy tried his best to "help" get it out but in the end the dollar was put back in the family piggy bank and Alysee held out for another day until it practically fell out.
Alysee commented several times that she just wished Ami lived closer so she could pull her tooth out. My mom, Ami, was always the teeth-puller-outer-woman at my house growing up. She pulled out Alysee's first tooth last November.

Teeth...can't live with them. Can't live without them!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Good, Better, Best...what's been sucking my time

A few years ago Elder Dallin H. Oaks, an apostle from our church, gave a wonderful talk on this very thing--"Good, Better, Best." He said, "We have to forego some good things in order to choose others that are better or best because they develop faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and strengthen our families." That line really hit me--was I choosing the "best" to fill my time? I remember my mom once telling me that she is "96% productive with all her time." I've never claimed to be 96% productive and honestly I don't really desire to be that awesome. For example, I recently indulged myself in the WHOLE season 2 of "ER." Yes, I have been an "ER" junkie for the past nine years since I had fussy children at the 10 pm hour. I felt guilty watching the 22 episodes and tried my best to have a good excuse like folding laundry or deciding I just deserved it after a long day.

Anyway, my point is I often feel like I am just not doing enough. Not enough quality time spent with the kids, too much time on the computer, not enough yummy dinners, too much time being grouchy, not enough time doing thoughtful things for my sweet husband, etc... The past month or so has been so FULL--full of good things, but so full. I have found myself going to bed past midnight on a regular basis, therefore missing out on the quiet time with my husband yet needing to use the quiet hours when the kids are in bed in order to get projects done.

I thought I would share some of the Good, Better, Best in my life this past month.

GOOD...

Without really meaning to, a wonderful friend and I started a little hair accessory business in mid February. It all started with having a fun morning creating hair things for ourselves and then thinking that others might also like our creations. Soon we found ourselves investing quite a bit of time into creating darling hair accessories. We've done this all with the "help" of our children during the day. They have helped by playing with each other while we worked away.
One morning I was trying to crank out some more burned edge flowers and this is how Chloe kept herself occupied. By the time I looked up and realized what she was doing I decided to just let her continue to have fun. (side note: Just so you don't think she was totally neglected--I had given her a bath and put a new diaper on that morning. I just hadn't gotten her dressed or done her hair yet.)
What I was making while Chloe was creating her own creation.
This was taken when we initially started our little business...since then we have some really cute professionally-printed cards that I designed. I'm totally not into the sales part but my friend is a sales queen and totes this basket around with her just about every where she goes.

Also GOOD...

Birch and I have had several opportunities in the past couple of months to do some little photoshoots. We are total "wanna-be" photographers but between Birch's photography and my photoshop skills we have really created some wonderful keepsakes. I have realized though, that this hobby takes A LOT of time.




BETTER...

I have also spent many hours having fun creating some fun photoshop projects.

For several years now I have been able to share my self-learned (and phone tutorials from my sister) photoshop skills with doing the publicity for many church functions.
This was a fun first-time project that I did for a friend's daughter's baptism.
This month has also been very consumed in being part of our elementary school's jog-a-thon committee. I learned how to write a press release, designed water bottles, put together the fundraiser packets, did the publicity, and some other random stuff. This is the first time our school has done this type of a fundraiser so we've have all learned a lot. I think the whole committee will be very grateful when this Thursday is over.

BEST...

But what is the best thing that I have done this past month??...be a mom to six terrific kids. Sure they have tested my patience on a daily basis, messed up the house, complained about dinner, and bugged each other--but in the end I love them. I am blessed to be their mother. I am blessed to be surrounded by people I love and love me.
The crazy litter - April 2010
And how could I not love this guy? He is an awesome daddy, car mechanic, provider for our family (I've heard he is pretty darn good at what he does), loving husband, and spiritual hero to me.
What a hunk!!!

As my church leaders have reminded me, "however worthy and appropriate other demands or activities may be, they must not be permitted to displace the divinely-appointed duties that only parents and families can adequately perform." I am surrounded my Good, Better, and definitely THE BEST.

I pray that I can do a better job at juggling the good, better, and best and never let the BEST fall down.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Spring Hits

The flowers are blooming and the sun is out--YES, spring is here. I have quite a few less tulips in my front yard due to Coop's "project" where he cut off over a dozen blooming tulips. Luckily he did leave a little stem on each of them so we have been able to enjoy them in the house.

Spring Break has come and gone. Alex and Tyler each did a sports camp for the first three days. Besides the weather being quite chilly, Alex did enjoy having three days to focus on brushing up his baseball skills. We are now full swing into the majors Little League season.

Tyler enjoyed another year at Track Camp. The high school track team does a great job putting together several packed mornings of trying out all the different events. On the last day Tyler competed in the 200, 100, hurdles, and a relay team.
Look at Tyler fly over that hurdle!!
Tyler wrapped up the last leg of the relay race.

The rest of the week the kids enjoyed long play dates with friends, a case of the throw up flu, and even one episode of strep throat. The highlight of the week though was a visit from my sister-in-law, Annie and her three little kids. Annie and I spent a day and half cranking out these cute fabric flowers while the kids over took the house, played outside, and ate pizza. It was a great way to celebrate the week!
Alysee totally looks like a little Russian grandma to me in this picture with her scarf wrapped around her head.


Easter weekend was spent enjoying listening to General Conference on the internet, an afternoon Easter egg hunt, and sharing dinner with our wonderful neighbors.
Coop loved the competition and the opportunity to load up on Easter candy. Several months ago I found all the Halloween candy I had bought and then couldn't remember where I had hidden it. So I planned on using that to fill the eggs but in the end once again I couldn't remember where I hid it. Do I have dementia? So most of the candy that I could gather up Sunday morning didn't actually fit in the eggs. Tyler made little notes to put in the eggs for everyone to redeem candies and coins after the hunt.
Chloe was in candy heaven opening and attempting to chew the four year old Starburst that I did find to fill the eggs with.
I didn't let the kids down though in the bread department. I whipped out our cute bunny bread (I just made homemade dough and then used this link to know how to shape it) and we gobbled it up with Zesty Italian Chicken, rice, and a strawberry fruit salad.

Stick around spring...