Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Another Catch Up

We finished November with our "Be Grateful" month and the boys did really well with it.  It was a fun activity and I think we'll try and made that a tradition during the month of November, it just fits so nice with the holiday.  :)

The holidays have really come up fast.  Luckily I've been working on Christmas stuff for the past couple months so that it hasn't been as big of a stress this year trying to figure out what to get the boys.

 Jaron is growing up so fast.  He's almost walking and only 10 months!  He loves to crawl around on my floor and find stuff to eat...I know sounds gross.
 The boys still love to make forts.  We had some friends over a while back and they really wanted to make a fort.
 It lasted about 20 minutes too before they destroyed it.  Long enough for me to get some pictures at least.
 They love taking all the cushion off the upstairs couches and making things or ramps or rocks in the hot lava...etc.

 I've been trying to get into the holiday traditions a little more now that the boys are getting really excited about things.  For one of our FHE activities we made a gingerbread house.
 The kit came with the really cement like frosting and the pieces of the house.  It was a lot more difficult than it looks.  I think next year we'll just do good ol fashioned graham cracker houses.
 They sure enjoyed decorating it the next day, and that part was much easier.  Unfortunately, the gingerbread house was caught up in tornado Damon and launched off the table...on purpose...because it was Diesel 10's fault (a character from Thomas and Friends).  I let them get it down to pick off some of the treats while I was busy making something and next thing I know Logan and Damon are just demolishing the poor thing and breaking the walls, it finally passed away when Damon lifted it above his head, while standing on the table and dropped it....that was the end of fun.  They whined and complained for about 20 minutes while they were sweeping and picking up all the pieces.  It was fun while it lasted though.  :)
 We had a pretty good snow a few days ago.  Morgan woke up and took Logan sledding, none of the other boys wanted to go.  After they came home, I wanted to build a snowman with the boys, so we did!
 It turned out pretty good I think.  Even had a carrot nose, black rock eyes, and a radish mouth and buttons. I think the boys had fun with it too.  By the end of the day however, it was leaning back so far, it looked like the snowman got stuck looking up.

 For December our FHE theme is: Be Still and we're highlighting Joseph Smith.  It's been a good one.  They "earn" the stars or get to put stars on the tree if they "Be Still" when we say it.  I just need to remember to say before I get frustrated with all the choas.  :)  I try to do it at least once a day so they get some good practice and I'm hoping that if we just keep it up that we can use that for a key phrase at church, or just whenever I need a moment to think and they're all talking at once.
 I was trying out my new camera phone with the rest of the pictures.
 Tragon playing peek a boo.
 Jaron loves to "read" the books with his brothers.
 But he really likes to get to mommy when he sees a shiny phone.
 And yes, I let my kids eat off the kitchen floor.  Usually only after it's been recently cleaned.
 Jaron just really loves to hang out under the table.
 Especially if he's already had his meal and we're all eating ours, he'll walk around under the table from chair to chair playing with all the boys.
I sure love my family and I'm so grateful that I have them in my life.  I can't imagine not having any of my boys.  I love this holiday season and the goodness that it tends to bring out in people.  Until next time....Merry Christmas!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Halloween Thanksgiving Catch Up

 Wow, big catch up time.  This month has flown by way too fast, in a good way too though, we've just been really busy.  Halloween was fun this year, Morgan and I actually dressed up, the bummer though was that I didn't take any pictures of us.  The only picture I got was of Damon before he went to a Nursery Party in the morning.

 Just picture the same thing in green with Logan's initials and that is what Logan was during the trick or treating in the evening.  Logan was actually a bat again like last year for school because they couldn't have any masks.
 The blockheads were a good idea in theory (that and it's what they really wanted to be...it's from Gumby...long story).  The problem was when you get all squished together at the doorsteps, the huge heads get in the way and get knocked off, etc.

So, by about the third or fourth house we just took them off and had to explain the costume...next year we'll simplify.  After Halloween I also bought a few decorations and decided it's time to start getting that sort of stuff for the holidays.  The boys are starting to get more into it.  I found a few things that were worth buying from the after Halloween sale, so I'm actually looking forward more to next year.

I sure love all my boys and I am so grateful for them.  They each bring a special love and personality to our home.  Logan is doing really well in school and really liking it now.  Damon loves playing with his friends and loves to ride his scooter and be outside.  Tragon just loves to be doing anything...or watching Thomas and Friends.  Bear is going up the stairs like a champ and scooting on everything, he'll be walking shortly I'm sure.  And Morgan, what can a say about the best husband and father ever.  I'm so grateful to have him by my side.

We started a new FHE tradition, at least for the next 9 months.  We're going to focus on one "be" each month and of course "Be Grateful" was perfect for the month of November.  I'll have to post when it's done, but our tree is almost completely filled up of things we are thankful for from Construction Workers and puzzles to our Savior and the Scriptures.

The boys have really latched on to the idea so I'm hoping we can make it stick.  Our biggest goal for the next year is to really imprint FHE on our family and make it a habit that is not so easy to break anymore.  I feel like the rest will come if we are at least doing that.  Each month we'll also have a picture of a different prophet up so we can talk about him too.  So far, so good.  :)

I'm sure there was a lot more that went on this month...we each had a birthday, the election, school breaks, etc and more, but I think I've highlighted the biggest things, so we'll just move on from here and try to get in a post a week again.  Until next time...

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Life Without TV and randomness

I just got done mopping part of my floor...with a toothbrush...for real.  I didn't realize how bad our floor had gotten until Jaron started crawling all over it.  He spends most of his time in the kitchen with me, so I was down there mopping and was appalled at what I discovered due to my negligence. (I hate sweeping and mopping...no reason, just do)  Enough was enough though and this week I have taken one section at a time that I do on my hands and knees with the toothbrush to get all the nooks and crannies in the vinyl.  I just pick a section a day and that task hasn't been too daunting.  Morgan is also teaching tonight and won't be home until really really late, so it was nice to just listen to music while I cleaned and all the kids were in bed.
 On another totally random subject, I've been trying to come up with fun ways to do a ponytail.  My hair is getting super long and when it's down the kids are always grabbing at it, and when I do it in a bun or have it all up when it's a wet-do, it's so heavy that halfway through the day I have a headache, so, this was my latest and Morgan said it was probably his favorite that I've done so far.
 I just need to have the patience to grow my hair about another 4 inches and then it will be long enough to donate without going super short again.  I've really liked having long hair again, but I also like the variety, so I'll probably just keep going back and forth.
 Morgan had a Halloween party with his Young Men this week and they had to dress up or wear a costume that the girls brought (his teachers combined with the mia maids).  He searched and searched and searched and finally found a decent one that could get here in time.  Good ol' Robin Hood.  I decided to join the holiday spirit too now that are kids have more fun with holidays and I got me a "maid marian" costume although it can double as a lot of things over the years.
 We had some gold chocolate coins left over, so he put them in his pouch and if anybody asked who he was he said he stole from the rich and gave to the poor and handed them a coin.  :)  I think they youth had fun with that, I know our kids did.
 Oddly, the whole costume thing has actually got me looking forward to Halloween.  Logan has been counting down the days that he can finally wear his Blockhead costume.  His excitement has spilled over to me too and I love it.
Morgan had some rockin' boots to go with the costume too, it made it complete.

And jumping to another random subject...the TV.  I haven't ever really had any major issues with the TV, the kids generally don't fight about what to watch and it's not like they really just sit there in front of the TV like zombies either, maybe for a show or a movie, but then they are up playing again. 

Well, earlier this week, I think on Monday we had our first major battle with the TV.  I generally let Tragon watch TV while I'm helping Logan and Damon get chores and school stuff done as well as getting ready for the day.  For some reason Curious George was more important than getting dressed or getting the dishwasher unloaded...etc even though we've seen that episode a million times.  So, I said okay, we'll just turn off the TV until the chores are done and you're dressed.  WOW major fit from both Damon and Logan.  It just kept going on and on, so I said okay, no more TV before school, ever!  Then they both blew another gasket, so in the heat of the moment I said no more TV until after Halloween.

Looking back I'm not sure if I was punishing them or myself, but after two days I'm actually glad that I did it.  It has forced me to pay more attention to them and play with them, I can't just say, go down and watch a show while I finish this.  I've actually been going down, get them started with something, say build a train track, or build a few towers with blocks and then I have some time to get things down until they get bored or start fighting.  And I've noticed too that a lot of my "projects" can be done with them around.

They have actually been playing together better with one another and I feel like I'm getting to know my boys a little better.  I've been struggling with what to get them for Christmas and in just the last couple days I have a lot of ideas of things they might really like or be ready for vs just random shopping.

Their new favorite activity lately has been the giant whiteboard.  We put it on the floor and it's a good 3'X3' board, so there is plenty of room for everyone.   Logan has been doing his "homework" on it practicing writing and numbers and such.  We'll draw roads and drive the cars until the giant monster Jaron crawls on top and erases everything as he scoots around, the boys have learned a lot of patience through that.  Their favorite pictures to draw are motor homes with all these crazy bells and whistles.  One of Logan's teacher's suggestions at Parent Teacher conference was to help Logan with his creativity and provide opportunities for him to create.  We've tried in the past and he hasn't really like to draw or color, but lately he has loved the whiteboard.  Yay for mom.

There are definitely times during the day where I want to just give in and say go watch TV (like today when I know I probably won't see Morgan until I wake up in the morning).  Most days when I know that I'll have the kids all to myself and be putting them to bed they'll get to watch something before bed so I can handle them one at a time, but tonight it was actually really nice to read stories and play.  They were all patient as I had to get one fussy baby in bed, then a very tired toddler.  It's really nice that Logan can read because he can either read by himself and not tease his brothers or he can read to his brothers.

I love my boys and I love the moments we've had lately and I really felt like I needed to write it down so on those days when I do get a little crazy and frustrated with everything I can remember more how awesome it really is to have four great little boys full of fun and personality.  Until next time...

Friday, October 19, 2012

Mud Pies

Whew, I think this is the 5th post today, so scroll down to see more fun.  Yesterday the boys were playing outside and decided to get into some mud.  I didn't realize it until it was too late, so I just let them play.  They had a blast.  We did have to call it quits when they were starting to smear the mud in each other's faces.  :)

I shuffled them all into the garage and into the bathroom to shower and get all the mud off.  Luckily I had dinner in the crockpot that night and they were in jammies early, so it wasn't a big deal to hook the hose up and rinse everything out, it was a bit cold though.  I love my boys!

*Side note: I made some strawberry jam..mmm...and canned pears for the first-and last-time.  Pears are a pain, they were free so it was worth it, but I probably wouldn't do them again.  Now I've got to get going on some more meats.  :)

Until next time....which hopefully will be sooner than a month...


Finally, the post about Cornbelly's.  So, as I said in the earlier post about the Barnyard, Logan saw Cornbelly's and I accidentally said maybe we could go with grandma and papa this past weekend.  And he latched onto this idea and would not stop talking about it for two whole days.  Doesn't sound like very long, but it was a really really long time for him.
 So, on Saturday afternoon we braved Cornbelly's and I'm so glad we did.  The kids have not stopped talking about it since.  Even Tragon remembers and now when we get in the car, "Mom, are we going to Cornbelly's?"
 Morgan got to watch most of the BYU game and me, my parents and the boys went a little early while he stayed home with Jaron until he had to eat and then came over.
 I didn't get a whole lot of pictures because I forgot the camera and Morgan brought it with him, but these are some of the giant jumping pillow.
 It wasn't their favorite thing to do, but that had fun.
 Really, their most favorite thing to do was to climb all over these really cool wooden "things."  They were built like fire trucks, big rigs, a castle, boats, trains, tractors, pretty much every vehicle.  They were in heaven and kept running from one to the other.  Logan finally got it that if he told me where he was going before he took off, that he had a lot more freedom.
 We got a wagon once the baby came along and that proved to be very wise.  He loved riding in the wagon and we had a place to put all our jackets and diaper bag.
 The boys loved the big castle and we put a bug in my dad's ear that it wouldn't be too hard to build one at their house.  :)  We'll see.
 Tragon loves slides.  I took him on the giant slide with me and he had a blast, I bounced him extra high on the bumps so he wasn't quite ready for another round, but regular slides he could go on them all day.  That and the wheel of the ship, he bullied his way to that every time.
 And you can't go to Cornbelly's without going through the corn maze, however we opted for the 5-minute Kiddie corn maze, which was a good thing, the boys weren't really super excited about it, they just wanted to play on the wooden toys.
 The maze was almost one of the last things we did, so they were getting a little tired.
 Grandma couldn't resist a Cornbelly's pictures, Logan was happy to oblige.  :)
 And then back to the train/fire engine/everywhere else.
 They had some pretty fun tricycle races too
 Logan had fun on those.  Tragon tried, but was too small for the trikes.
And I have at least one boy that likes to swing!  Yeah!  He held on pretty good too and wanted to keep going again and again.  Overall, it was crazy crazy and super overwhelming for me at first, but we were able to find a good rhythm and I had my parents there to help and that made all the difference.  We'll have to make Cornbelly's a yearly tradition from now on.  Until next time....