Friday, June 4, 2010

A Reason to Celebrate

My parents have been married for 50 years today, and it is truly a reason to celebrate. They are a model for me to follow of determination, friendship, and forgiveness. As I have personally experienced, and observed, all marriages are hard. Although I cannot know what marriage has really been like for them, I lived with them for 21 years of my life, and have talked about them with my older siblings and I know that times were hard. I mention this because I want to say thanks for sticking through it, thanks for showing me that when it comes to the ones you love, you never give up. I remember asking my dad once if they ever thought about getting a divorce, and he told me that word was a bad word in our house in that it was something nobody was going to discuss. Thanks dad for showing me what marriage meant to you. My mother takes fabulous care of my father. She washes his clothes, cooks his meals, and always supported him in his job and callings without complaint. She taught me what it meant to be a support, and to care about another person more than you care about yourself. Thanks mom for showing me how to be a wife. Thank you both for making your marriage last and for allowing me to grow up in a home with a mother and father who honor their temple covenants. I love you. Happy 50th!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

The Zoo and the Recital

On Monday we went to the Topeka Zoo becuase it is free on my zoo membership that expires this week. I figured it was time to go check it out. Our friends the Tilley's went too.
Mary Emma checking out the tiger.
It was a beautiful day with everything in bloom, however, my allergies were so bad one eye almost swelled shut.
Although I was miserable, the kids still had a good time, and that's what counts.
Wednesday was the rehearsal for the recital, as well as overpriced pictures. This is Camilla and Hyrum's dance dynamos class. (Notice Camilla's sleeves, I used old knee highs and sewed them in.)
Thursday evening was the performance. In this picture Camilla is the tallest girl, next to the boy on the right, and Hyrum is on the far left.
Chimney sweeps with face paint.
Both kids did really well. Camilla seems to have real dancing talent in that she hardly missed a step. She told me later " I love being on the stage!" I guess she takes after her old mom. I was also impressed with how well Hyrum knew the dances. He hasn't liked dance that much, and so I was surprised by how happy he was on stage, and how much he seemed to enjoy the performance. By the end of the recital (their 3rd number was the very last one) Hyrum was getting a little bored and started making up his own dance; I was laughing out loud by the end. So, the recital is over, and both kids seemed to have a good time, and Mary Emma even had some booty wagging going on in the aisle. I cancelled them for the rest of the summer, but by next fall, who knows?

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Super Heroes and Chimney Sweeps

The other day Hyrum told me he wants to be a superhero when he grows up and not a missionary. So I told him that missionaries have more power than any superhero could hope to have because they have the priesthood of God. "But," he said, "can missionaries fly?" "Well," I responded, "I flew all the way from Utah to Puerto Rico when I was a missionary." "No mom, not in a plane, I mean really fly." Oh well he had me there.

Camilla and Hyrum's dance recital is this week and one of their numbers is "Chim Chim Cheree." I had fabulous intentions of making Camilla a plaid dress and Hyrum a matching vest, but with Jacob gone, ideas like that never materialize. So, everyone else in the class is wearing cut offs, and a tie around the neck or something. Yesterday I got my sewing machine out for a few minutes and this is what I came up with. I think they look cute, and Hyrum gets to wear the hat my brother brought me from England after his mission.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Eight is Great!

It's been 8 fabulous years. Here's to us:
I Love You!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

A Few New PIctures

A few weeks ago after finishing up Camilla's geology unit I took her and Hyrum and two of the Tilley girls up to the Atomic Cannon near post to look for fossils. The hill was once underwater and it's pretty easy to find fossilized shells. We had a good time, although the wind was about to blow us off the hill.
Mary Emma's a big girl now, well partly a big girl. A couple weeks ago I decided she wouldn't sleep in the crib anymore. She loves her bed and her freedom, and I love that I don't have to climb out of bed as much anymore because she just comes to me.

Camilla is now continuing her tradition of carting around younger siblings in the toy grocery cart.
Hyrum was able to make gingerbread men for his preschool this week.
However I'm not sure, but I think I saw one jump off the pan when I turned my head and run away.

The dress. About twenty years ago my sister bought this dress for her girl at the thrift store. Since then her other girl wore the dress and then she passed it on to my other sister. Her two girls then wore the dress and then she passed it on to me. Camilla wore the dress.
And now Mary wears the dress.
Watch out Aubrey, once she grows out of the dress it's coming full circle :).

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Doing What I Love Best

Happy Mother's Day! Mine started at 12 am with a baby who still wasn't asleep, and a little boy coughing and crying in his bed with a fever of 100. I was really tired last night and I thought to myself, "great, here it goes." When I woke up this morning to find everyone well, I thought "maybe it won't be so bad." Then we couldn't find church clothes, and when they were finally found wadded up under the bed and filthy, I thought, "alright then, let's just get to church." When we got to church, late of course, because the same little boy who hadn't put his clothes in the hamper threw a fit about wearing his suit coat that was a little short to cover up his filthy white shirt, I thought, "at least we're here." And then while eating her piece of Sacrament bread Mary Emma threw up all over herself. I got Mary Emma cleaned up as best as possible, and then practically had to tackle the deacons in order to get the water, I sent Camilla up to sit with another family, grabbed Hyrum and Mary and set off for home before she could throw up again. I went back after church to pick up Camilla and she wasn't there. She had told the family she sat with that they needed to take her home with them. However, I didn't know that. Although I figured something like that had happened, and I felt calm and comforted by the spirit, still I was looking for her for half an hour before it finally got back to me that is what had happened. They decided to keep for the rest of the day to give me a break, and Mary Emma slept all day and so Hyrum and I spent a lot of time together.

It was a good day because I was doing what I love best. My dear husband who always feels so helpless over there in Iraq tries to instill in the children the idea that presents don't have to come from the store, but can be nice things that you do to help. My Mother's Day gifts didn't come from a store this year (although I did pick up my flower after church while hunting for my daughter). It's rare that I get to spend quality one on one time with Hyrum. He's the middle child and for the last two years I've been homeschooling one sister while trying to keep the other sister from destroying my house. What a gift to just spend some time with him where he didn't have to share my lap with anyone else. What a gift to have Camilla come home from a day of playing with friends, and give me a big hug and tell me how much she missed me. It's good to be missed. What a gift it was when Mary Emma was finally able to keep down a piece of toast and I was the one who got her first smile of the entire day. And now to go in their room and see three of the most important people in my life, safe in their beds, well taken care of, and loved, I think to myself, "It's been a good day because I have done what I love the best, and that is being your mother."

Sunday, May 2, 2010

The Best Two Weeks (sorry it's two weeks late)

We sure had fun with Jacob home.
We went to the temple in Nebraska, and saw all of the lovely spring bulbs.

And we went to St Louis; stopping at this park in a little town on the way. We didn't know there was anywhere that still had a merry-go-round.
We visited the St Louis Zoo

and saw the beautiful flowers there too.
Then we took a riverboat cruise on the Mississippi River.
We rode up the Arch and looked down on the city.
Then we hiked up to the mouth of a cave (the entrance is gated or we would have gone in).
That day Camilla, also finally learned how to swim.
Finally we came home and played in the backyard.
Camilla finally learned how to ride a bike,
and so did Hyrum.
On the day Jacob was supposed to leave, he missed his 7:30am flight (if you are not at the ariport 30 minutes early you don't fly, who knew) and they couldn't get him on a flight until 4:00pm. So, we went hiking again, except the kids rode their bikes, for 6 miles.
He returned safely to Iraq, and now we have the count down to him really coming home.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

He's Home!

Jacob arrived safely at 3:05 pm yesterday. We are having a wonderful time with him, and Mary Emma acts like he never left. In anticipation of him coming home though, the kids were driving me crazy, and so we headed to the zoo to pass the time. They were having an Easter celebration, and so we really had fun.
I tried to get Mary Emma to sit on the Easter Bunny's lap, but it just wasn't going to happen.
I did however get her in front of the daffodils.
We have had an enjoyable Easter. It was great having Jacob here for conference.
The girl's Easter dresses. I actually didn't buy them one this year seeing as how they both had perfectly nice ones that still fit. I like cheap.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

It's Been Awhile

Wow, life has been crazy for me ever since December. We have had straight sickness at my house all winter; nothing serious just keep catching stuff going around. The same has been true for the rest my ward, however, so I really can't complain too loudly. Anyway, here's my update.
This gymnastics place in Manhattan has open gym every Friday. To beat the winter stir crazies, we went one Friday in February and checked it out.
The kids had so much fun they are still talking about it.
Camilla started taking bowling lessons with the Ft. Riley Homeschool Group. I thought it would be good exposure to the sport for her, but she actually got pretty good for a six year old.
Lately homeschool has meant practicing the culinary arts along with curriculum. Camilla loved making peanut butter to help her learn about halves and doubles. (2 peanuts in a shell, halve the cracker and spread pb on it)
Hyrum made muffins just like the muffin man.
Kids N Power Field Trip:
Camilla and Hyrum went on a field trip with the Homeschool Group to a Judo studio for a Kids N Power presentation. They learned basic self defense and rules for keeping safe.

Jacob has been doing well. At the begining of the month he participated in the Red Cross 5K run with his platoon.
Hyrum made jam as part of his curriculum this month. As you can tell he really enjoyed this activity.
We went on another field trip with the Homeschool Group, this time to the Cosmosphere in Hutchinson (2 hours away). We were able to see an IMAX presentation, a live presentation on rockets (exploding things was a big hit with Hyrum), and a planetarium presentation. We also toured the museum. It was great to see Camilla get as excited about space as I do.

St. Patty's Day:
On Wednesday we had a Saint Patrick's Day party with our friends. Here is our fruit rainbow.
Master's Degree:
Exciting news this week. Jacob finally finished his Master's Degree in International Peace and Conflict Resolution. He couldn't be happier to finally be done.
On Thursday we went to the zoo with our friends.

Welcome Spring:
On Saturday morning we awoke to winter rearing his ugly head one last time (I hope).

And so we are happy to be done with winter and ready for spring. We are also looking forward to Jacob coming home for R & R in just a couple of weeks.