Sunday, November 24, 2013

Airbender Birthday

We thought we'd try to have D's birthday party before it got too cold.  He never gets one because it's always too cold!  But as you can see, our plan backfired!  Last weekend it was perfectly sunny! 
Luckily we decided to have the party at the church since we wanted to play some games in the dark.  Here we are on our way!  (The next day, which is today, Sunday, they cancelled church because we got almost another foot of snow!)
D (smiling like a dork) and his friends (minus Larry who couldn't make it). They played games in the dark with glow in the dark bracelets like capture the flag, and zombie tag.
Trevor-friend from scouts, Micah-friend from church and D's class at school, Derek- friend from soccer for 6 years or so!
We had pizza and make your own sundaes with lots of toppings! 

And lots of other games with the lights on.

It was an Airbender party.  Here they are playing a game with their staffs.  We made each of them an airbender shirt which was so easy and inexpensive I wish I had figured that out before!  I decided to do the four elements for the next four years.  So this year was air, next water, then earth, then fire.  I already have ideas for all of them, but I'll tell you air was the hardest!!  What can you do with air?!  We know that a private hot air balloon trip would be hundreds of dollars, and we didn't want to ask our friend to take us up in his plane at this time of year, so I called the airport and asked the air traffic controllers if we could have a tour of their tower.  They're supposed to be calling me back, so maybe that will work out.  If not, this party was super fun for Dallas.  His first birthday party with friends and not just family!
Good thing we did it early to avoid the bad weather!!!

School pictures/2013 - We didn't like them enough to buy them.  We always do our own pictures.  They never smile for real when they're forced to.

Evan learned recently about simple machines like the inclined plane, lever, wheel and axle, pulley, wedge, and a screw.  Then he had to make his own simple machine using at least two of those.  Here it is below!

More Evan work.  He gets new spelling words each night and then has a test each day.  The red pen are the marks he makes.  They all mean something and he can tell you the rule for all of them.  I can't!  Sometimes I pick him up and spin him around after he does a column since it wears him out and that helps him get his homework done.
A recent history test.  It's kind of cool that they're learning this since we did last year and it reinforces it.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

The weather outside is frightful!!!  But this kid is so delightful!!!!

I went to seminary this last week just to observe because we have an awesome seminary class! (All youth in our church are supposed to attend seminary during the four years of high school.  Unless you live in Utah, it is early in the morning!)  Since they do breakfast every Friday, I volunteered to be the one to bring it in since I had been there the whole week. 
I did berry scones with an orange glaze (above) and a sausage and egg breakfast casserole (below).
Then it snowed so much that they cancelled seminary and the morning hours of school that day!  Which was great, except that I had way too much food for just my family!  Somehow though, we managed to get it all eaten :)
And the kids loved having the morning to play in the snow!!!
And to warm up by the fire!
Unfortunately that wasn't the only thing that got cancelled on Friday.  We had a camp kick-off for the youth camp leaders (even though camp isn't until June), and I went to Costco and bought 5 chickens and de-boned and prepared them for burritos, and then that got cancelled too!  The meeting has been rescheduled, but it was decided to just do dessert next time so now I have tons of chicken meat for my family to eat.  I guess I'll freeze it.  Not a big deal, except that I did all that cooking Friday for nothing and I was trying to get ready for D's birthday party that we had today!!!   Talk about exhausting.  I am looking forward to relaxing tonight if Charlie ever decides to sleep.

I just have to say thank you to our neighbor Mike who gave us the movie Evan Almighty and said to watch it.  We loved it! It was so fun at the end when the song 'Everybody Dance Now' came on and Pat and I just jumped up and danced and everyone else in the family followed suit.  We danced ourselves silly!  I love fun, wholesome movies and I love Steve Carell!

And I have to say thank you to our other neighbor Warren who Dallas invited to the school for veterans day.  They did a special ceremony for the veterans and Warren even provided us with a picture and all his stats and info so we could post it on the wall at school.  He is such an awesome neighbor and I loved having him at school with me.  I introduced him to some of the other veterans there that I know from church and they had a lot of things in common- like being in Vietnam at the same time and place.  Bless their hearts for what they've been through.  Seeing the death and suffering of so many during the war, and being now retired but still suffering from the effects of agent orange and PTSD.  Warren said he became a 10th degree black belt just because it gave him something to do with the ptsd.  He is truly amazing.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Been makin' some jam for our neighbors.  I wish I could think of something to do for everyone at church.  There's just so many of them!  They all deserve something nice too for being such a great church family!  But I am happy that I am doing at least something early this year!!  We had a lot of fun doing this for family night.  And I was surprised at how helpful all those extra hands were!  It was really nice.
One person to fill the jar with hot jam and wipe rim (me), one person to hold the funnel, one person to put the sealing lid on, one person to screw the ring on, one person to put them all in the boiling water (Pat), and one person to take a nap (Charles).  And not one mess or burn.  I'd say we're growing up!
Raspberry jam is my favorite!  Recipe used:
They're so pretty!  Like jewels!

Charlie had a hard few weeks lately.  Teething and croup at the same time.  He used to be all smiley and now he seems so serious.  He's a thinking man I guess.  Thinking about the hard times he went through...  Oh and I love thrift stores.  I just got that entertainment center (real wood) for $65!  And I got D's new scout uniform (since he's about to be 11 and move up) for .25cents rather than $25!  Such a blessing!

And he has to be close to mom or else this face will emerge.  Dad is pretty okay too.

But we do get some smiles!

Mostly it's these two together while the big kids are at school.
Sister be smotherin' all the time.
I love, love, love them!
"I'm helping Charlie!", she says.
-at least that's what she thinks.  He's always annoyed at her.  They're really cute.  My mom says that's how me and Jeremy were.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Los Banderilleros-Happy Halloween

Mariachi Band

We took one picture because it was freezing and Evan was sick (we were all a bit sick) so it isn't great!  You know I've wanted to be a Mariachi band for forever, and we didn't even have to buy anything for this costume since we had the clothes and hats and red material.  I had two instruments, and Dallas made the rest out of cardboard. He can make anything out of cardboard!  Sam has the violin D made.  Pat is holding Charles so he couldn't hold the accordion D made him.  Evan was supposed to make a horn, but he was sick (can you tell?), so he just carried his recorder.  We also taught them two songs: Quizas, and Ay Amor (ya no me quieres tanto), which I have to say, was hilarious. They didn't learn them very well, but it was so funny trying.

Little mariachita.
 This was our dress rehearsal (below).  One person (Sam) did NOT want to be a Mariachi Band for Halloween.  Can you tell? 

So he agreed to pose for the picture at the top, and then dressed up in some random stuff for trick or treating.  All are happy.
My other costume- again- I own all this stuff already.  Don't ask my why, but when I saw this really beautiful Hawaiian dress (I wish you could see the bottom!) at the thrift store, it had to belong to me.  I hung out with Susan and Claudia (who is from Chile) at the youth dance, and had a great time.

I went to a class at Education week at BYU once where this mom taught us how to be fun moms.  At the time I had two tiny babies and none of it applied, but I remembered a lot of her suggestions for parties and traditions and silliness.  One of the best things she said was to give yourself a day to plan (usually Monday morning since you're planning for family night anyway) and think of things that are coming up in the next couple months, and plan for them.  Life happens, everything can't be awesome, but I really enjoy it.  I love planning parties, having parties, themes, etc.  It lets me use my creativity and sense of humor.