seen and heard

life is full to the brim of summer around here. soggy swimsuits draped over the shower rod, damp towels drying in the laundry room. swimmer's ear drops on the counter and mac n' cheese for lunch every darn day. we watch too much tv, and try to sleep in (rodney isn't getting the memo). we haven't TOUCHED the piano in weeks and i'm perfectly fine with the break from everything.

ty is gearing up for scout camp and trying to recover every night from working in the heat all day. speaking of heat, auggie the doggie will do anything to nap on the tile inside the back door after it reaches over 101*. ha, lightweight. but his sad eyes work most afternoons: bonus, he eats all the crumbs there and in the laundry room!

phoebe is a little too adventurous in the pool 
the girls love finding and monitoring nests around the property
most mornings around here look like this if you are a 3 year old
my favorite quote: "wook! separatists!"  
'dumb dog', that's what i call him all day. ty prefers "augustus"
(he likes me most of all, go figure)
i've caught several moments of lucy voluntarily playing with rodney, 
makes all the hard moments worth it
i've had a few opportunities to love and mug on little babies lately. 
guess what? baby fever CURED for now. haha, more on that later.



i took a big step today. i am giving away (or tossing) my pajamas.

don't feel badly, i haven't bought pajamas in four years. i currently have been sleeping in, whatever tshirt i pull off a hanger, with a pair of pajama pants. my pj tops and pants are always! mismatched, and after a quarterly organizing spree of folding them all together it only lasts a week before they separate from each other. seriously, my clothes just don't get along or something.

one of my goals this year is simplifying my life. aint nobody got time to organize their 7 pairs of pajamas.

on a side note, rodney is starting to laugh and point when i don't have my pajamas on and just my whitey tighty templeroos. if he were older, i would sit him down and lecture him about the laws of gravity and what nursing four babies does to the chesticular region. but as he isn't, something's got to give. get it? hahaha

not the nightgown i ordered

in order to solve the problems i ordered two nightgowns and a nice kimono for unexpected morning visitors. like, the bug man or water man. yikes.

i'm pretty sure i can keep track of two nightgowns and one robe. heaven help me,  because if not i've got more issues than pajamas if i can't pull this off.

i think my granny would be proud.


summer days recap

i rolled out of bed at 6:30 to Rodney calling me to "get hims out!", as i walked to his room i noticed sore, wobbly legs from yesterday's workout and decided to grab my pillow and blanket too. he and i plopped down onto the couch and watched transformer cartoons while i snoozed in and out of comments and questions "whads that? who's dat? are you sleeping?". the girls woke up at 7:00 on the dot and all decided that since the last time i made cracked wheat, they decidedly do not like it anymore. thank goodness the boy still does, he ate two bowlfulls.

then the whining and complaining and fighting began. over what to watch on tv, to clothes and hair do's. no one wanted to go swim or work out today. please can we stay home? two kids had to be reminded FOUR times to put their shoes on. everyone wanted to stay home. being the awesome mom that i am i bribed them with frozen yogurt from the gas station if they all "played" nice for my workout.

it didn't work. rodney was crying 4 minutes into my warm up. we had forgotten his star wars toys and he wanted to go home. phoebe and abby were fighting over the rope, and then the rowing machine and then just who knows what else. lucy won't stop talking, won't stop talking, won't stop talking.

"what am i doing wrong?" i think. we have crayons and coloring books, white board and dry erase markers, bikes, trikes, snacks and work out equipment they love to "play" on and they are all whining to go home. it hasn't even been two weeks of summer and they've cracked. we came home and the boy didn't want to nap, i still made him, but it was an extremely short hour and a half for my serenity. the girls zoned out on studio c episodes and i read my new book club book. makayla came over and entertained phoebe during the down time which was wonderful, despite my plans to have her nap as it has been almost a week since she had one and was due. i got a headache and cranky by 5. we ate dinner and then no one was listening to me. i finally got some kids thrown in a cold bathtub and rinsed off and the others brushing their teeth and in pajamas. phoebe got her first bloody nose during scripture study and the girls (again) weren't listening at bedtime.

so i'm writing about it. but yesterday! yesterday was a completely different story.

because they all miraculously slept in until 7:30 i got up and ready before the kids,  ( rodney even went to bed at 6:30 the night before). everyone happily ate their cheerios and, AND cleaned up without complaining. they all ran to get their swimsuits on and i only had to remind 2 kids to get their shoes on once! i packed the snacks, and my swim suit into my mary poppins' swim bag and we took off. ah, a fresh monday for a new week! they swam happily with the sitter (cousin ari) while i trudged away at my workout. i'm so lucky to have babysitters. we all happily swam together after i finished, visited with the messers and came home hungry and tired. the house stayed relatively clean and the kids were pleasant.

despite my preparation today (cracked wheat in the crock pot) and plans, the kids were just grumpy. yesterday they were fine. and that's just how it is, good days follow bad ones and vice versa. even when i'm prepared we have poop days and on thrown together days they are happy as little clams. sometimes there are reasons, sometimes it's a crap shoot.

yesterday i woke up refreshed and happy. today i woke up like a zombie. and then the kids' all followed my lead. i'm a work in progress if anything.

they didn't get frozen yogurt in case you were wondering.

fathers and families

i've been teaching a 6-7 year old class in church every sunday for a year and a half now, my favorite part, aside from watching them try to sit still and not wiggle for 2 hours, is singing the primary songs with them.  even though i'm not so talented in the vocal department, i love singing these simple verses that always help me think more about motherhood, families, and our relationship with God.

here are some lyrics we sang on sunday:

God gave us families
to help us to be what he wants us to be.
this is how he shares his love,
for the family is of God.

i've said it more than once on here, parenting is hard! motherhood is exhausting and being the dad is stressful. but i can look at the trials ty and i have passed through as parents and wouldn't trade them for anything. we both are better people, parents, and spouses because of each and every one of them.

ty loves things clean and orderly. he is willing to sacrifice having the house perfect for a few decades to endure a house full of growing mess makers. (it still needs to be clean(ish) just not perfect)

ty loves having things work just the way they are supposed to and look nice. because we have a large family he spends 1/2 of his time fixing our hand me down tools and older cars before he can get the work done. we laugh that in our house every time you fix something, two other things will break.

he would love to spend his time on his dream truck, but he knows the kids will grow and be gone and there will be plenty of time for things like of that nature later (i help him remember this too).

but i think i love him most because he gives me beautiful children, and in the first place he knows everything about me and still agreed to have a family with me. win/win

 ty and baby wodney 2011
ty and baby phoebe 2010

 do you think they realize how lucky they are? 


The high hair

I found a high chair at a yard sale when Rodney was one; not just any high chair, the high chair I had always wanted. Small, simple, wooden, classic. Rodney ate in for the next 18 months. 

A few weeks ago I sat reading during "quiet time", I glanced up and noticed it quietly sitting in the dining room corner. We only eat in there for parties or when we feed the missionaries, so I hardly even see it anymore, and when I do I just glance and then move on.

 I looked at it silently and wondered, is it waiting for someone ? Oh how this question has infested my mind and encompassed my heart. I wish there was an easy answer, an easy way to say "yes! We should have another baby!" Without looking around afterwards and laughing. Why would a baby want to come to our family? We already have four kids, FOUR. Today that's the equivalent of 20. The toy room has had micro beads strewn across the carpet for three days. We ate cereal last night for dinner.

Even without the myriad of parenting mistakes I make on a daily, sometimes hourly basis, I have the awesome facts that my dr politely informed me about what the babies did to my body (not awesome). And even despite all of that, we just had an ectopic pregnancy this Christmas and surgery in March because of it to boot. Bonus fact! I had an IUD in for birth control, so nope, not planned. 

Obviously I could list hundreds of reasons why it would not be a smart move for me to have another baby. But oh, the heartache of looking at that empty high chair. It's almost unbearable, and I imagine it will be that way for a long time.

you've had a birthday

carol 1943 panama
happy birthday to my most favorite mother in the world! isn't she the best?  a lot of my friends agree and laugh because my mom gives the best and most memorable advice, that we use and say over and over. it's true. my all time favorites:

"pick your battles", this is pretty universal, but i use it especially in our marriage and with my kids. as the knight says in Indiana Jones, "choose wisely." haha
"bananas"- "mom, where are you going?"
"fruit loops"- "Mom, what's for dinner?"
"they probably have problems at home", we would hear this whenever we would come home and lament about friend or peer problems.  and guess what? it's always true!
"they're probably on drugs"- anytime would see someone doing something especially outlandish, and guess what? true again mom
"when you potty train, you only train yourself"- i totally refused to listen to this one the first time around. lesson learned!
"oh my stars and garters!"- an exclamation of surprise, i love it
"are you reading your scriptures?" or "did you pray about it?", this was an easy way to cut off any moaning and gnashing of teeth over our silly personal problems. i can't imagine everything she has listen to us all complain about!

my favorite memories of my mom from growing up was hot breakfast waiting for us every weekday. her smiley face she drew on our notes. reading to us. all those stops at historical markers that i loathed as a kid, i totally do that now!! camping trips, and long road trips to see family, and her remarkable patience. my mom was almost 40 when she had me and i never remember her freaking out about anything i did...ever. bad grades, late curfew, wrecking their car(s), even my freshman year of college i forgot to take a final (I KNOW) and she didn't even complain, we just hopped into the car, drove up there, took my test, ate a yummy lunch and drove home.  luckily all my other siblings had wore her down by the time i came around, nothing surprised her and i think she essentially knew by then what was important to wig out about and what wasn't.  in college i would probably call home once a month complaining about how hard it was and how i wanted to move closer to home, to which she would reply, "just keep trying and working hard, or you could just come and live at home for forever." ha! that one always nipped my grievances in the bud.

my mom was 24 and in the middle of getting her master's degree from BYU when she married my dad and moved to Chicago. she helped put my dad through Northwestern for 4 years while teaching elementary school (a few years in the inner-inner city too). she then raised 7 children from 1968 till forever (does it ever stop?). she finally finished her master's degree at UNR in the early 90's and never stops working and moving from project to project at church, home or with my dad. their next big project (together!) is a mission for our church. we are all eagerly awaiting their call!

happy birthday mi madre, muwah!



three years ago we were blessed with a baby boy.

and as difficult as those last three years have been, they have been absolutely glorious.

you are my favorite baby boy rodney, we are extremely grateful every day that you are ours.


when you're baby isn't a baby: rodney turns 3

well, it's here. the birthday week where i will mourn every nap time and bedtime with my baby.

my baby wears diapers and sleeps in a crib
my baby talks to strangers, and they understand him
my baby feeds himself with a fork and spoon and drinks from a "Non" zippy cup
my baby has gone #1 in the potty 7 times all on his own volition
my baby loves star wars legos, ninja turtles, pirates and robots
my baby loves to dress up (we only have dresses and skirts) and says "WOOK! i'm a pirate!"
my baby snuggles and hugs me every day
my baby lets me sing lullabies to him
my baby still holds my hand and tells me he "Wuvs me"
my baby can count to ten and sing the alphabet
my baby has his favorite books memorized
my baby knows the differences and names of all heavy equipment on construction sites
my baby knows every Jedi
name (seriously)

my baby isn't a baby, but i want him to stay a baby forever.

this morning i told him he could live in our house and play nintendo the rest of his life (but not really)

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