Monday, March 25, 2013

How To Eat Fried Worms

While tucking Chloe into bed tonight she asked me if I thought her worm would be okay.  Today while doing some yard work Birch found Chloe a gargantuan earthworm which she has cared for all day long.  She bathed it with a squirt bottle, made it do exercises (which included swinging the worm around by one end), and watching it poop so as to determine which end was it's bum. 

"Yes, I'm sure your worm is fine," I responded to Chloe. 

Then she giggled and replied, "I kissed it [the worm] on it's skin."

BARF!!!!!  It took all my motherly awesomeness to let her smother me with kisses before saying goodnight. 

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Take Me Out To The Ballgame

Every once in a while when I stop and think about how old Alex is getting it just blows my mind.  It's hard to believe that I have a high school Freshman.  It honestly doesn't feel like that long ago that I was a Freshman and was going to Stake Dances and seminary.  Alex is really a stellar kid -- he has had nothing but a 4.0 point for like his whole life, he gets up on his own for seminary each day at 5:30 am, he does his homework without being asked, has great taste in music (we share a love for good music), loves to dance, and is spiritually inclined.  Alex is passionate about baseball and was thrilled to make it on the high school "C" team this year.

Alex is a lefty which has proven to be lucky in both batting and pitching.  They have played three games so far this season and he has had some great hits.

 Alex's real love is pitching and this year he has been able to pitch part of each game so far.


 Birch was commenting when looking at these pictures how "violent" the pitching motion is.  I sure hope that his shoulder survives baseball.

 So far they have had an awesome season.  My favorite was the last game that they won 12-0 and with the ten home run rule the game only lasted five innings.
I've really appreciated Alex's coach as he keeps telling his team that he wants them to be "classy" ball players.  In the past foul language has been a nasty part of baseball (both the coaches and teammates).  It is so hard as a parent to want your kids to pursue their passion but also not wanting them to be around all the garbage that is sometimes apart of it.  

So bring on the sun, take away the wind, and let's get ready for some peanuts and cracker jacks!  

Sunday, March 17, 2013

The Rightside On Steriods

This past month I've noticed that the Dittos seem to be rockin' their creative side of their brains.
 Tyler made these super cute cookie pops to sell at our recent Scout Benefit Dinner.
 I thought he did a great job...though I have to admit that we ended up buying half of them because the kids were so anxious to try them out themselves.

 Alysee wrapped up a huge project at school on Rattlesnakes.  She loved every minute of making her tri-folded poster and diorama.  She also gave a five minute presentation.
 A closer look at her rattlesnake diorama.
 Then the dreaded leprechaun traps.  This is Nate's trap; and while he generally had a good time putting it together it was not without some drama.
 Cooper decided that he didn't want to miss out on the fun and with Alysee's help he put together a trap as well.  

From my facebook post:
Not feelin' love toward the person that created the idea that kids every year have to make leprechaun traps. I know to be a cool mom I should relish in the inner creativeness...right now though, I am cleaning up yellow permanent marker off my countertops, little bits of tape and tons of cut up straws, and tears that their trap isn't as cool as they had mentally envisioned. And I certainly am not going to trash my house to show all the little messes that the leprechauns make...can't we just skip this holiday?? love, the St. Patties Day Grinch
 I do lots of graphic design work on a regular basis but rarely is it for our family.  I recently got the bug to bring a little sunshine to my kitchen/dining room so I got busy making some new curtains and artwork.
 The frames on over my sink window are a favorite of mine.  A super talented and dear friend of mine, Kim Greenfield does amazing photography.  Every couple of months I change out the pictures in these frames with something new for the season. 
 I mooched some fun ideas from online and made up some new artwork for the walls too.
 Birch often gets the organizing bug...and this time it was also creative.  The many skateboards and scooters are always a problem in our garage making it messy and hard to get around to the bikes. 
 Using some hooks Birch attached them to the wall to hang the scooters.
 Then I found this tool organizer from Home Depot and it works great to hang up all the skateboards on the wall as well.  I am IN LOVE with this project!
 Coop has always been a terrific artist and recently brought home his creative story that goes with this snowmobiling picture.
 I can't believe the progress Coop has made this year in his reading and writing abilities.  First Grade has really been a year of accomplishments for him.
 Coop just brought home his journal from school and Birch and I were totally impressed with his entries.  The following pictures are from Coop's daily journal.  One of the things that surprised us most is that Cooper has never seen the movie Star Wars.  He loves the lego sets and eagerly looks forward to watching the little Star Wars episodes that are on Saturday afternoon on TV.  His pictures of the characters and descriptions are incredible!

 Pretty amazing, huh!
 Lastly, Birch and I have done a couple of newborn photoshoots in the past month for friends.  We are not trying to expand our "business" but have really enjoyed sharing this learned talent with our friends and family.
Birch does the photography...I assist...I do the editing...together we ooh and ahh at the special moments we have captured!

Stay tuned for a creative project that Alex is working on for school creating something from recycled materials.  He is working on making a coat rack out of a donated old ski.  It's gonna be cool!

I have to admit that pulling out the old sewing machine wasn't as painful of an experience as I thought it might be.   My mom spent so many hours teaching her kids how to sew and I just haven't found the joy in it for the past decade.  Getting that right-side brain a little workout felt good, though!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Nate turns 9!

Seems like this past year for Nate has just flown by.  Nate was super excited to celebrate his ninth birthday and convinced us all that celebrating a day early would be best so he could have extra time with dad (Birch has Mondays off).  We picked up Nate from school Monday at lunchtime and we got to hang out, just the three of us for the rest of the afternoon. 
Nate is a real sweet kid.  He internalizes much of his emotions so sometimes it is hard to read him.  Nate chose to go to Sonic's for lunch and then we headed to Toys R Us to use his birthday money from Geoffrey, the giraffe and his own money.  Nate is a great at saving and earning money.  Nathan is a great student and always does his homework without complaining!  He is passionate about his competitive soccer team, being loyal to his friends, and is a homebody (he loves just hanging out with his family).

 Nate LOVES lasagna and requested a green salad, fruit, and bread to go with it.  
 One of the other things we did with Nate that afternoon together was go to Costco.  He got to pick out a special birthday dessert and choose Skinny Cow ice cream sandwiches.
Pretty sweet presents!  Nate was elated when he opened up Grannie's gift and saw $10 tucked in the letter.  He yelled out, "Now I'm not poor anymore."  Earlier in the day, Nate had spent ALL his money at Toys R Us and certainly appreciated not being in the poor house any longer.


Friday, March 1, 2013

Dr. Suess's Apprentice

I have a four year old that is obsessed with glue guns, being like her older siblings, and being goofy.

 Chloe has been hard at work on her diorama for the past couple of days.  Alysee was making one about rattlesnakes for a school project and Chloe decided that she needed to make one for preschool.  She found the box at church and then came home and started cutting, hot gluing, and crafting away.  Her original creation was a bit simpler and had a drawing of Dr. Suess's know since he died.  When Alysee got home from school she started assisting Chloe and waalaa...
...the "Cat in the Hat Next to Dr. Suess's Grave" was crafted.  This morning Chloe added Thing One and Thing Two.  She has only burned herself with the hot glue gun like three times.  By the time she is five years old she should be a pro!  On the back of the diorama she taped a paper plate that one side has a happy face and one side as a sad face.  Her plan is to ask her fellow preschool mates if they think Dr. Suess is sad he died or if he is happy.  Where does she come up with these things?

Birch and I were talking about the hurried pace that is often felt in our house..."hurry and buckle-up so we're not late,"  "hurry and get your shoes on," "hurry and brush your teeth," "hurry and get in bed," etc...This girl helps us slow down every once in a while and reminds us what is really important...F.A.M.I.L.Y!

I am often put in my place by this young lady. Yesterday Chloe and I were running some errands and she asked if I would take her home so she could get some of her own money and then she wanted me to take her to The Dollar Store.

I told her, "No, that wasn't in the plan for the day."

Chloe replied, "You'd be the BEST MOM EVER if you took me."

"I already am," I replied.

Chloe responded with much gusto, "No, Jane's mom [Aunt Julia] is the BEST MOM EVER."

Good thing I think Aunt Julia is pretty awesome too!