Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Crazy weather

Finally last week we've had real some monsoon rains.  Raining and hailing simultaneously.  So hard you can't hear each other in the house unless you shout.  So hard the roads washed out and became like white water rapids.  If you get caught out in it (which we did once) it is impossible to drive, and you have to pull over and wait.  It's torn down barns and made tons of people's roofs leak- including ours.  And we saw the formation of three lakes (okay ponds) along our road.  Two of my friends got pictures of this funnel cloud over our town.  Is it called a tornado once it touches down?  Thank heavens it never did!  Crazy weather. 

A bit of stuff

Last night we had some excitement here.  The Haslers came over to help us butcher three bunnies.  And there was a 5 foot long bull snake on my porch!

All went smoothly and well with the rabbits, except for Dallas who fell apart.  He had told me before that when we did it, he wanted us to send him to a friends house and not tell him why.  As they started I found him on the back porch crying.  I guess I should have sent him away.  He went inside and watched a show and that distracted him okay, until I found him crying in bed later.

Pat learned how to do it well, so that's a skill we now have.  I didn't actually do it, but I watched and I'm pretty sure if I were starving, I'd figure it out.  Now I have to cook something with rabbit meat today or tomorrow.  Eww!!!  All I remember from the Little House on the Praire books is the rabbit stew they'd always eat.

We had Pat's coworker show up with 3 of his 4 foster kids from Albuquerque to watch the proceedings also.  They are all very nice boys who were grossed out and fascinated simultaneously.  One of them used to live up here and his mom was killed in a car accident nearby.  Isn't that so sad.  Now he's in foster care.

My Sam had an accident got his leg caught in a golf cart and got hurt pretty badly.  Lost a lot of skin and his leg was really crushed, but miraculously didn't break.  We've been to the doctor and he says it will be fine so we're just doing a lot of wound care.  It is a really yucky wound.

Late last night as we were preparing to get into bed the funniest thing happened.  Dallas came out from his bed laughing and said Sam had just peed.  Sam always gets up in the night and goes to the bathroom- no big deal right?  But we all laughed when Dallas showed us the spot in the closet that Sam had just peed in.  He was sleep walking!  We all looked at Sam, but he was back asleep in bed, seeming annoyed that we'd turned the light on.  Pat remembers his brothers sleep walking and doing the same thing.   I really need my own carpet cleaner.  Like 10 years ago!

Sunday, August 12, 2012


In Stake Conference today I was sustained and set apart to be in the new Stake Young Women's presidency.  I am sad to leave the girls in the ward since I have activities planned throughout the rest of the year that I was looking forward to, and they are sweethearts who put up with me and all my flaws, but I am so excited about who I get to work with, and for a new challenge.  The new president was the leader of girls camp so we worked together a lot at girls camp and had a lot of fun together and I love her super organized, happy way of being.  In the blessing they gave me they said to put my family first, and that I would have good health, which just happened to be the two things I have been most worried about- how to handle everything, you know.  And to share my ideas with the president, to stay on the right path, and just impressed upon me beautifully the great importance of the work we will do with the young women. 
Oh!  And I just finished the program that all the young women do called 'Personal Progress'.  It is a program designed to help young women to have experiences to gain and faith in Jesus Christ, to feel the Spirit of God, and to develop their talents and find out about themselves and who they are.  It has only taken me slightly over 20 years to complete since I never did it when I was supposed to, so I finally did it!!!  And I have the beautiful necklace to prove it!  I'm being kind of silly, but now that I've done it, and learned some new skills like song writing and sewing, I feel sad that I didn't do it when I was young since I'm only now, as a 36 year old, discovering some of these talents and interests.  I could have had so much more direction in my college years and been quite talented at some of these by now rather than just be barely starting. Hindsight.  Better late than never I guess!  When they called me up to the front of the congregation to present it to me the member of the bishopric pointed out that it hadn't been signed by my parent and everyone laughed.

I have been going through tons of school stuff to get ready for school and we start tomorrow!!!  I'm mostly ready, but aaagghh!!!  I guess I just feel like we didn't even have a vacation this year, so we never got away from the house and now were going to get right back at it without any break whatsoever.  But pssst!!  I have a secret!!!  Grandma Stanger is majorly helping us to go to Disneyland soon, and the boys don't even know!!!  Do you know how exciting a secret that is to keep!!  I'm not telling them until like two days before.  Dallas has overheard a lot of stuff and guessed it, but I told him it was for next year because you really have to plan ahead.  Hopefully (and I'm pretty sure) he bought it.

Also one last thing I'm behind on mentioning is that the kids and I were in a car accident.   A young guy pulled out in front of me and I had no choice and hit him.  Thankfully, we were all okay, besides some seatbelt burns and bruises.  It was terrifying and I immediately fell apart and sobbed and sobbed while I pulled the kids out of the smashed and undrivable van.  Luckily the guy knew he was at fault and he was hugging me and really worried about us.  Unfortunately he didn't have insurance or somehow his insurance (Progressive) found a way to get out of paying.  So my insurance covered it except for our deductible, and they are going after they guy for all the money.  Sad.  They did think my car was fixable, and we just got it back and it cost almost as much to fix it as what we just bought it for, but it looks perfect again and I was glad to have it back since we love this van. 

The miracle was that immediatly when the accident happened one stranger, and one friend from church just happened to be there and they stopped and took care of all the exchanging of information and took my kids away from the accident since I had to be there for quite a while.  I wouldn't have been able to function on my own and the fact that it could have been so much worse, I think it is truly a miracle.

Still I was very worried and sick about it and cried all day, and felt awful, but somehow we ended up having a family night right before the kids went to bed.  We could tell they were unsettled about the accident, and just reading scriptures, playing some games and being together really helped to calm us all down.

Now completely off topic I just want to say that Pat's hair is so long he's wearing one of my hairbands and he looks kind of pretty.  Also my roof is leaking and it's running down the inside of the wall and ruining it.  I cannot take it, so I'm not going to think about it.  Pat's up in the attic right now trying to find the leak. 

Happy Birthday!

Here's how the barbarian party went down.  First we got barbarian hats and faces painted.  Then because of some issues we ended up waiting an hour for the other three boys who said they were coming to show up.  Unfortunately one of them called and said they couldn't come after all.  We were so sad!!!  But while they were waiting, the one boy who was there on time and Sam went and cut up old soccer shirts to wear over their clothes and look even more barbarous (if that's a word) and played video games.

Finally we had enough boys and they got to attack Pat with eggs.  He thought he could block most of them with his shield...

...but his quote after the game was over and he was covered was, "Eggs hurt".  Yep he took one for the team.  And luckily wore all really old clothes so that we could just throw them away. 

Then we played this game over the mud pit.  I would have used pool noodles, but the stores have already gotten rid of them!!  So we found these squishy sticks to use.  The boys had a lot of fun falling in the mud.

Then they all got hosed off and I put a new plastic tablecloth down and plopped a pile of spaghetti down in front of each barbarian with some roasted drumsticks.  It was hilarious to watch them grunt while they ate with their hands, and throw their chicken bones over their shoulder when they were done.  They were good barbarians.  If there is such a thing.

Then since barbarians need to destroy things, we destroyed the piñata we had made.  Out spilled hay and one gold coin per boy. 

Then we made some giant banana splits and everyone got to eat their hearts out.
The party turned out great and super fun, and I was exhausted at the end.   I had arranged to go to the temple a couple hours after the party ended, thanks to a retired couple at church who were willing to watch all our kids for us.  So Pat and I went to the temple and since we needed dinner we first went to the cafeteria and ate and the temple (soon to be) president joined us.  He's from El Paso like Pat's family and he's so sweet.  Then I just felt this day like the ladies helping me were true angels.  I was overwhelmed with emotion and joy as they spoke to me and thanks to my father in heaven. I am so thankful for the several people at church who watch my kids so I can go and worship there.  The kids had a great time and like the Ettin's house more than ours.  Could be because they have a riding lawn mower and Brother Ettin took them around the neighborhood, letting them drive.  Dal is now BEGGING us for one.  Ha!

Now we skip to today for our family party.  Sam and Dallas are soaking wet because we had a huge downpour and they had to go save the animals.

It was our Stake Conference today and I got to snuggle with Sam for the whole meeting which made me really happy.  He's been grumpy a lot lately and fighting with his brothers, and so it was nice to have a happy Sam today!  Sam has always had this personality where he's the most sensitive and loving deep down, but he has anger issues that can take over him and he can be the meanest too.  I like to say he woke up on the wrong side of life.  Even when he was a baby, he got so upset twice that he stopped breathing and passed out.  It broke my heart.  I think it has to do with the horrible experiences we had nursing in the first 3-4 months of his life.  But maybe not.  Either way, I hope he will grow out of it.  I'm sure he will.   I love him so much.  And I'm so proud of all the amazing things he does.

Mom and Dad got him his scout stuff for his birthday.

Dallas spent lots of his own money to make Sam's birthday special.  He got Sam three gifts totaling $30 and when I said that was too much and not to do that, he said he really wanted to, so I let him.  And he made up a scavenger hunt with clues for Sam to follow to find his present.  He's a great brother, and it was a great birthday!  And a baptism still to come! I can't believe Sam is 8!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Concerning Sam's party

We are making a piñata for Sam's barbarian party.  The kids wanted to know what I was going to fill it with.
Candy?  No.  We're already having sweets- we don't need more.  Then Dallas talked about a $7 party pack at Wal-mart with little plastic toys, and I said, "No, that doesn't really fit with a barbarian party.  The piñata is kind of something that they destroy while their pillaging and plundering the village.  We need something more realistic in it."
Suddenly a light went on and Sam said, "I know!  A dead body!"

After laughing I said, yes that would be realistic, but I don't have any dead bodies, and by the way, that would be horrifying.

I'm pretty sure I'm just going to fill it with hay, and maybe put some gold coins in it.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Sam's having a party!

Sam helped me burn these invitations first in the oven and then around the edges.  Doesn't it sound fun!?
I can't believe Sam is turning 8!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Leia and My Sister

Karisa borrowed my my Spanish Bible this morning and found a picture of my sister Beth when she was Leia's age nestled among the pages.  Our first thought was how much Leia looks like her.  I think that's a good thing because my sister is one of the prettiest girls I know.  After church we tried to get Leia to pose just like Beth so we could show off how similar they were.  I don't know what those substitute nursery teachers did today but Leia came home completely crazy.  I think we were lucky to just get a few pictures with her standing still....

Beth, February 1998

Our best attempt, I kept telling her to lift her chin and put her head up
but she would keep raising her hands in the air and laughing.

Yeah, no idea what's going on here either.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

And since I can't resist...'s another funny picture of Pat.  Apparently he had gone to rescue our nephew Dean and tripped and fell in the ocean himself.   I think everyone will be laughing about this probably forever.  I know I will.


Leia had a potty emergency and ran with dad to the bathroom.  After 20 minutes they were still in there.  I went to investigate and found the Daddy sound asleep.  Leia was just hanging out on the potty.