Thursday, November 26, 2015


On this Thanksgiving day, I am reminded how thankful I am for my wonderful husband and my truly amazing kids.  I don't get all gushy all over facebook about them, but I sometimes watch them in perfect awe and gratitude.

Charles the Conquerer!
I am really hating school right now, but only because it's stupid :)  So eloquent, aren't I?  I am going for a nursing degree, but heaven forbid I do that without learning about the Byzantine empire first, or how to use the MLA style of formatting a paper.  Mostly, I can't stand how I have to sit, sit, sit.  There's always a million things to write and before I know it, I've spent half the day sitting in the same spot writing a stupid essay about how Christian saints compare with Greek and Roman Gods.  Bleh.  At least I have studied everything we're learning in home school before.  I love learning and we have books galore here at home, but rarely does school inspire me.  It seems to suck the life out of learning. You have to have an exceptional teacher for it to feel worthwhile, or wait to get to those classes you're more interested in.  Colleges are great for some things, but I have just as much respect for the blacksmith, the policeman, the businessperson, the person who can build a house, or fix a car even if they never went to college.  But I am thankful that I have the opportunity to do it, even if I sometimes hate it.  Many people don't have that as a possibility at all.  I hope I can do with it what God wants. At the beginning of our school year, we watched that movie on Netflicks called On the way to School, or something like that.  It was about school kids all over the world and the great sacrifices they make to go to school and the great difficulty of even getting there.  It was fascinating.

Had our first snow a couple weeks ago.

It gets dark so early now, and I've been getting really cranky because I don't get to walk outside with Pat anymore!

Happy Turkey Day!
Anyway, long rant long, I wrote this to pay tribute to my wonderful husband, who loves that I am doing school and helps me every step of the way.  I know for a fact I couldn't do it without him.  I don't have the patience for all the nonsense and he talks me down and tells me how proud he is of me.  He helps me with the computer, and doesn't get discouraged when I do.  Sometimes my days are so long and then to have to sit and do more...  He is just full of patience with me.

Enough pies?

New topic:
Since we were one of the few families staying home for Thanksgiving in our ward, we ended up watching several pets for people.  One home of a friend who moved has a renter who left for 9 days with the owner's dog locked in the house.  No food, no exit.  The owners found out, called us, and by the time we got there the dog had peed and pooped all over.  You almost can't pay me enough to clean up messes like that, and we were just doing a favor anyway, so I wasn't going to clean it up.  I called the owners in Utah and said we were bringing the dog to our house since he was ruining theirs.  They thanked us and said not to worry about the mess; they would get it cleaned.  The next day when we went over to feed the turtle, I noticed Dallas had cleaning supplies with him.  I told him we weren't cleaning the carpet.  He said, "I want to.  No one wants to come home to a stinky, messy, house.  It's the right thing to do."   He cleaned it up on his own.  I still have flashbacks of cleaning up dog mess while pregnant so I stayed away.  He did this for people we don't even know, or will never see again.

 Charlie's cards we made at the library.

Dallas also made a friend when we went to the retirement/assisted living center this week to volunteer.  Sam and Evan ran a BINGO game, and we all played BINGO for a while with the residents, but then Dallas wandered off and made friends with several people in their rooms.  Phillip was his favorite.  A well known professor in his time with a room full of books he had written who likes to play chess and also killed Hitler.  We're pretty sure the last one isn't true, though he repeated it many times.  This is a perfect match for Dallas, who plays chess (or used to), and checks out a stack of books from the library at least half his height weekly.  They'll have lots to talk about.

He thinks he owns my bed.
Sam and Evan have been doing so well in piano that I am having a hard time thinking of putting them back in school next year.  Decisions, decisions.  School makes us too busy for piano since everything here is a long drive and there just isn't time after school.  Since school started, Sam has gone through two sets of books, or two levels, and Evan has gone through three!  So as soon as Sam finishes a song, it seems Evan has it.  They really are twins!  Sam is doing well in math and we are impressed that even though he is two years younger than Dallas, he is only one year behind him in math.

Leia's card
Pat has just started doing math with Leia too, and that girl never ceases to surprise me.  I have been teaching her to read and she is doing wonderful!  I thought it would take much longer with her, but once she got it, she got it.  That is really A LOT to be thankful for.  I love being the one to teach my kids how to read.  She is always reading books now and puzzling out the words on her own.  Today, Thanksgiving day, she decided she'd had enough of not knowing how to tie her shoes, so she kept practicing and finally got it too!  She woke up super early today, before anyone else, and went straight to the kitchen, put away all the clean dishes, set the table nicely (her favorite thing to do right now), swept and cleaned the entryway, got dressed, did her hair, and just did all sorts of good stuff without even being asked to at all!  She has already made gifts for her friends and can't wait until Christmas to give them out.

Organizing the drawers.
Sam has some issues but last week he proved to me, yet again, what a very caring person he is. 

We should have just had this turkey for dinner.

He was grumpy, but we all read scriptures and Pat had everyone do "Popcorn", where you read as much as you want and then say someone's name and they have to read starting from that point.  Every time someone picked Sam he'd read two words and give it back right away.  It got really funny though because he'd go, "And now, I say unto you EVAN...", or "...It came to DALLAS..", or "he killed DAD".  We were all laughing a lot.  When we were done I had a weird dizzy spell, and it didn't go away quickly (like when you stand up), so Pat walked me to the bed and I knelt down on the floor and leaned on the bed waiting for it to pass.  It lasted about 20 minutes and that whole time, Sam scratched my back without a word.  He really is such a neat and interesting person.  He has a lot of challenges and a lot of blessings.  Perhaps we all do.

Pat and the boys wrestling.

Evan is just the sweetest most non-complaining person there ever was, and he is best friend to Sam.  Those two are always together and really do act like twins.  He's a great friend to Leia too as are all her brothers.  They always pretend she's super powerful and fight with her in such a way that any slight push or punch sends them flying.  She comes at them screaming like a banshee and within seconds she knocks them all down like bowling pins yelling, "Super Sister Punch!"

Yesterday morning, I had Zumba dancing for workout group with my friends and since so many were going to be out of town, Julie said we should bring our kids.  It was a wonderful idea.  There were about 5 moms there and the gym was full of kids- mostly teenagers and then my smaller ones.  My boys didn't really want to do it, but they did and I think they really enjoyed it.  All the teenagers were maintaining a calm, cool, and collected approach to the Zumba dancing, while Dallas danced around like a wild lunatic (if you could call it dancing).  It was really quite embarrassing if it hadn't been so funny.  It was so fun, because he didn't care how he looked.  He made a name for himself, by exerting more energy than anyone ever has during a workout.  I had to keep him confined to one space as he was crowding other people unawares.  My goodness, he has a youth dance next week.  Saints preserve us...

Other Thanksgiving weekend fun... we went to the Nuclear Museum thanks to a library program that lets you check out a free family pass.  We also cleaned out the chimney, ate way too much, caught up on school work, watched movies, and played games.  Oh, and Evan has a fever of over 103 degrees, poor guy.  Maybe he's getting the sickness Sam had last week.  It involved throw up.  I try to forget.

New York City puzzle.  Dal and Dad trying to get through math.
 The boys on the roof "helping" Pat clean the chimney. 

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