Monday, December 31, 2007

Fountains are for greedy people...

We recently spent a few days in California visiting Disneyland. The fourth day we were there we went shopping in Downtown Disney. There were a lot of fountains there. #3 loves water, and he loves looking at fountains and ponds...anything having to do with water. Heck, he even likes puddles.
Downtown Disney had a lot of fountains. He stopped at every one of them. They all had money in them from people tossing in loose change. Who knew every fountain was actually a wishing well? Seeing all the money in the fountains as well as a previous discussion about the high prices of things like water and snacks in Disneyland led #3 to comment that Disneyland has so many fountains because they are greedy and want everyone to give them all their money.
Hmm...who can argue with logic like that?

Friday, December 28, 2007

A 5-yr-old's Worries @ Disneyland

Today was day two of our kids' first-ever trip to Disneyland. That gave them one day of experience under their belt to see the nature of a wide variety of rides and the anticipation, anxiety, fun, fear, and surprises they bring. Learning quickly the unpredictability of some rides, #4 (age 5) was trying to prepare himself to deal with his fear of the unknown as we waited in line for the new Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage.

After fifteen minutes of curiously watching submarine after submarine 'swim' past us through the colorful, bubbling water...and realizing that riders sit below the water level, he finally asked with sincere, honest concern in his voice, "Will they open the windows?!"

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Germs are cool...

A conversation from today...

#5: I wish I was a germ.

Me: Why?

#5: So I could see inside my underwear.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

PDA...again.

As D was about to leave for work after lunch we were standing in the kitchen talking. I guess I was standing too close to him or something because #4 came in, looked at us and said, "Are you doing the looooove thing?"
I said, "What do you mean? This?" and I kissed D on the cheek. #4 said "Yes!" then ran into the living room which is divided from the kitchen by a blanket that we hung there to keep all the heat from escaping the living room. We heard him yell to the other boys that we were doing the loooove thing...which of course caused the other boys to shout out their disgust. Then, interestingly enough one by one they started to peek around the blanket into the kitchen. I think they secretly like knowing that we looooooove each other.
As I walked D to the door I kissed him goodbye and since #1 was standing there I made sure to kiss D loudly. #1 screamed. Then as I walked back through the kitchen #4 came in and said, "I heard #1 scream, I know you were smooching."
That's right Bub, get used to it.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Battlefront: Church

Sunday is our sabbath-day. The sabbath day is supposed to be a Holy, spiritual day of rest...and for the most part it is except for the weekly four-hour-war: Church and getting ready for church.

I imagine everyone understands the challenge of getting young balls of kinetic energy motivated enough to get dressed in uncomfortable clothes in anticipation of sitting through long meetings of people talking about abstract things that are hard to understand. For that matter, maybe that's exactly how you feel getting up every morning to go to work or school.

Unfortunately my wife has to fight that battle alone because I'm at church early preparing for the next battle.The next battle, for me, starts out calm and sweet and peaceful as I see five bright, shiny boys in white shirts, smiling wide as they open the glass doors of the Church to greet me. This is part of their strategy...start off disguised as sweet and reverent so the gullible parents will be thrown off guard later. (As a parent, I sadly confess, it works every time--'surely they will behave this time.')

As a precaution, we usually start out in one of the sound-wired side rooms apart from the main chapel to minimize disruption. With difficulty, they maintain their reverent disguise through the sacrament ordinance/ceremony, but once the talks start, they unleash their attack.

Its not so much an attack against us as parents, but against each other and the social laws of public places. My two oldest usually start touching each other for no apparent reason and start giggling louder and louder until one of us parents fires a counter attack, "Shhhhh!," to quiet them down. Meanwhile, another trooper quietly starts doing loops around the rows of chairs until another one starts pressing keys on the piano. This technique successfully lures at least one of us parents away from the front lines so two more kids can fight over which crayons or books to use. The kids are brilliant, there's a new battle strategy, planned or unplanned, each week.

The well-trained sniper among them is my seven year-old, middle son. Today, my wife ran into one of our friends coming out of the men's bathroom with a mop. He explained there was a river of hand soap streaming across the floor of the bathroom. My wife wondered to herself who would do such a thing, only to realize the answer before she finished the question: #3! Fortunately, our boys are generally very honest. When ask about it, #3 was stunned and speechless that such detailed knowledge came from one who wasn't there and wasn't told. The wide eyes of shock and the guilty complexion revealed the truth and #3 succumbed to the only logical response--he confessed to the crime.

So we engaged in a unique father-son activity of cleaning the bathroom during the chapel meeting...or was it playing in the water, I'm confused about which event it was.After the main chapel meeting, the boys have the opportunity to go to a class designed for their age level. Most of the troopers behave relatively well during this part of church...I'm not sure if they tired themselves out from the first hour's battle or if they have adapted to the culture of sitting through their classes and trying to follow along. In any case, I'm hopeful that they get something out of their classes and, on a more serious note, their teachers do a great job working with them.

However, our little church sniper stays active during this time. Usually, he just does his covert wiggly nervous body technique sliding back and forth across empty chairs in his row, or crawling on the floor underneath the chairs. Today, after a 15 minute attempt to get him to go to class, I saw him scoot backwards on his bum across the bench until he bumped into his class mate, then playfully pretended to bop him on the head repeatedly. This action triggered a teacher to come sit by him to minimize the damage.

He remained calm for the next half-hour or so, until the last ten minutes of church when he executed his last strategy for the Sabbath Day War. He got impatient and fled the building. You always know there is something up when a teacher from the children's classes pulls you out of your class. I've learned to expect it--I even know who its about most of the time. As I quietly walked out of my class, the teacher explained to me that #3 ran outside. I walked down the hall to see another adult staring out the glass doors, quickly glancing my direction and said somewhat passively, 'He's long gone.'

Unsurprised, I walked outside watching and listening for any signs of him. I've learned that chasing him, makes him run away faster, so my strategy is to take advantage of his tendency not wander too far from places he knows are safe. Knowing he likes to check back to verify someone is watching out for him, I applied some stealth of my own cloaking myself from his vision.

In the end we walked back to the church together and he sat the last few minutes with me in my class.

"How long 'till it's over?" he asked.

"About thirty seconds." I responded.

A few seconds later, and frustrated that the instructor was still talking, "I counted to thirty!"

"Keep counting," I said.

"Its been a minute!..."

The instructor ended, and in the middle of the closing prayer: [frustratingly] "It's been two and a half minutes!"

I quietly hold my composure while battling the urge to laugh.

"Amen."

Wheew! The war is over...

...for now

Friday, December 14, 2007

The Challenge



Three Targets!

10 seconds!

The Challenge: Hit each target in sequence as many times as possible within the time limit!

The Prize: The pride of knowing you did it!

--------------------

The Downside: The principal has your dad bring you back after school to clean the three bathroom urinals and the walls in between them.

The Determination: #3 (age 7) says next time he will do it without hitting the walls. Oy Vey!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Shrinky Dink Ornaments

I was doing this post for my other blog as part of Scribbit's Winter Bazaar. When I got finished I realized I had published it in the wrong blog, but decided not to delete it since it was such a fun activity for our family. Its not our usual Daily Dose fare, but here you go anyhow.
Do you remember shrinky dinks? Those fun plastic sheets you could color on and shrink in the oven? This last summer, my older sister told me a method for making your own shrinky dinks at home without having to spend a lot of money. Its also a great way to recycle...

First you will need a plastic take-out food box. The key is to get one that has a number 6 in the recycling symbol. Many restaurants give these boxes out for leftover food. You can wash it, dry it, and reuse it for making shrinky dinks. We have gotten boxes like this at Shari's restaurants and they also use them at many grocery stores for salads and etc. After my sister told me about this method of making shrinky dinks I went to our local United Grocers/Cash and Carry and found a set of 100 (large size) of those takeout boxes for $20.00. Since you can use the top and the bottom of each box for shrinky dinks that gave me 200 shrinky dink sheets. It comes out to about ten cents each, whereas when I priced shrinky dinks online, even giving a generous two projects from each 8x10 sheet, it would be at least 25 cents for each project.

Now, down to business. A couple of weeks ago our family spent an evening making Shrinky Dink Christmas ornaments. Here is a list of supplies you will need for this project.
#6 recycle plastic
sand paper
permanent markers
colored pencils
tape
scissors
an oven (preheat to around 350...if your oven bakes hot set it a little lower)
a hole punch
coloring pages to trace (optional...you can draw designs by hand if you are so inclined)

First you need to sand the plastic. We sanded it in all directions (only on one side) so as to minimize the appearance of scratches in the surface. You don't have to sand your plastic if you are only using permanent markers to color your project. Since we have young kids we had them use colored pencils, and you will have to sand if you want to use them as they won't color smoothly on unsanded plastic. For some of our ornaments we cut the plastic into the shape of a circle using a bowl to trace around. You have to make sure to get your plastic to the shape you want before you bake it.

We searched the internet for good Christmas coloring pages and printed them out to a size that would fit the size of our plastic sheets. I recommend taping your plastic to the paper with a couple of pieces of scotch tape so that tracing the pattern will be easier. We used sharpie markers to outline our coloring pages and then colored them in with colored pencils. Higher quality colored pencils are supposed to work better, but the crayola ones we used did fine.


After you are done coloring your image, remove the tape and use a hole punch to punch a hole at the top. (Because there is a significant amount of shrinkage, make sure not to punch your hole too close to the edge or it will break easily after baking.)

Now its time to bake your project. You can set your ornaments to bake on a foil lined pan. As they bake the plastic will become very distorted and will crinkle up. The first time I did this I thought it wasn't working and took my project out of the oven. It looked like a bowl. However, I later returned it to the oven and it finished flattening out as it baked. So don't be alarmed if your projects become misshapen. If the corners roll over too much you can use a chopstick to help flatten them somewhat. I you take it out of the oven it will harden within a few seconds. Once the projects flatten out give them about ten more seconds in the oven, and remove them.

This is a blurry picture, but will give you an idea of the amount of shrinkage that goes on.

Some of the boys' ornaments

A finished ornament on the tree

D decided to do one using only sharpie markers to color it, and without sanding. It turned out so beautifully that I am using it for my Wordless Wednesday post. I hope you enjoy trying this project with your family! Our kids loved it and have asked many times about doing it again.

Monday, December 10, 2007

A new contributor...

Since I have another blog aside from this one, and this blog is dedicated to the escapades of our five boys and the future escapades of #6 (we don't know if its a boy or a girl) who is due to make an appearance in June, I thought I would add my wonderful husband as a contributor to this blog. He also has a blog of his own, and has had many experiences with the mischief of our boys. I hope you will give my husband dmo a warm welcome!

I am sorry we haven't had a post up in about a week. We were hit by some big storms and were without power for a few days. We are all doing well and getting back to normal everyday life. The boys enjoyed a week off from school, and today was their first day back to their usual routine.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Considerate Children

Last week a friend brought our family some very delicious cookies. By the end of the night only six cookies remained.



During the getting-ready-for-bed commotion, we heard him counting the cookies. When he realized there were seven of us and only six cookies, we overheard him selflessly exclaim, "Oh! I guess one of the adults doesn't get another cookie."

The winning picture...


When I posted about #4 aka K winning the coloring contest last week, we didn't have his winning picture. Yesterday he brought it home from school, so I scanned it to share with you! A picture is worth a thousand words as they say...pretty good for a five year old.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Real Men...

The other day at dinner #2 was asking us if the boys' shortness is inherited (a couple of the boys are a little shorter than average, but they aren't really that short). I told him that since none of the men in our family have reached six feet tall, it probably would be the same for the boys. Then I mentioned that you have to be over six feet tall to be considered tall for a man.
#4 piped up with: "So Dad's not really a man!"
I think he misunderstood what I said...

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Our little artist...

#4 won a coloring contest at school that was sponsored by the fire department. His picture was chosen as the best in his class and as a prize he got to ride a firetruck to school today! He was pretty excited about the whole thing. Here are a couple of pictures...

D got to ride along too! A perk of parenthood!

Here is #4 all buckled in!

Friday, November 09, 2007

How to get your brother to stop being annoying...

The other day #3 and #4 were washing dishes together and #4 was singing a song from Blues Clues. #3 threw water on him to get him to stop singing the song. #4 cried. D asked them what was going on and #3 said he threw water on #4 to get him to stop singing that baby song.
D: Thats not how you get him to stop.
#3: Yes it is, he isn't singing it anymore. He's crying instead.

Logic my friends...

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Snail Update...EDUCATIONAL!

I have written a couple of times in the past about having pet snails. In fact we even asked for suggestions on what to name the two snails we found and adopted a couple of months ago. I apologize for not getting back about the name decision...there were just so many good choices that we never really narrowed it down. However, recent events in the lives of our snails have made me realize that they needed names...so we decided to go with John's suggestion of Esc and Argot...even though we have no intentions of eating them.

A week or so ago I went in to feed the snails and noticed that one of them had been digging way down into the dirt in their fishbowl. Right on the outside corner I could see something through the glass. I realized that it was a clutch of small white eggs. Esc and Argot were parents! As the days progressed we noticed more holes and more clutches of eggs. There are three sets for sure, and we are fairly certain there is another set that we had not been able to see from the sides. Today I found lots of tiny snails crawling up the sides of the fishbowl. We took some pictures so you could share in the wonder!
This is a picture of Esc in the process of laying some eggs. The part that looks like tree bark in the center of the picture is actually her neck, and the white blob is eggs in the process of being extruded from the snail. Sorry there isn't a better shot. With the reflective nature of the glass and the white color of the eggs we had a hard time.




This is a seperate set of eggs that Esc laid previous to the above shot. We are still waiting for these to hatch.



The first set I noticed, already hatched into baby snails. We are still waiting for these ones to dig their way out of the soil. I counted 18 in just this set, and there are two other clutches of eggs, plus a bunch of baby snails that were probably hatched from a clutch we can't see from the side.



A hungry snail having a meal after all that hard work...(I would like to think it is Esc, although I have a hard time telling them apart).



One of the baby snails that has emerged. There were at least a dozen around the sides of the fish bowl.

The baby snails are smaller than my pinky fingernail.

My favorite shot. I love the transparency of the snail. As it gets older it will turn brown like its parents.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

I am so far behind!

I just realized I haven't blogged on this blog for over ten days...the horror!

Actually I have just been very sick and mostly in bed for the last week. Because I was in bed I didn't hear the boys say as many cute things as I normally would.


Update on #4...the mole biopsy came back clean...so yay! And he will have that lovely curved scar to show for it the rest of his life!


We went to my sister's house yesterday for her annual pumpkin carving party. The kids dress up in their costumes, and we all carve pumpkins and eat good food. Its great fun for all. We actually don't really take the kids Trick or Treating...we just have a family movie night and eat junk food and have fun together. The pumpkin party is like their Halloween so the dressing up is there. Being sick, I had a hard time getting their costumes together but we made do.

Here are a few pics.

Jango Fett vs the Jedi...

#1 being the good sport he is decided to go as a black hole at the last minute...

What was going to be a Yoda costume was adapted to become a regular Jedi since the boys lost part of Yoda's ears...

Luke...use the force Luke...

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

#4 is a brave kid

#4 had a mole removed from the side of his head today. It was a relatively small mole, but somewhat new, and had a few things about it that were flags to the Doctor, so they wanted us to have it removed just to be safe.
We had to be at the hospital at 7:30 this morning. This involved getting everyone up early and dropping the three older boys off at a friend's house so they could ride the bus to school. Then we were off to the hospital with #4 and #5 in tow.
Once we got there, they checked us in right away, took us down to weigh #4 and take his blood pressure (#5 kind of freaked out about that because for some reason he thought they were trying to electrocute #4 with the blood pressure machine). Then it was a waiting game. I had brought some paper, pens and stickers and #4 drew some ninja turtles, while he and #5 watched an episode of Clifford. Finally the doctor showed up, and it was time for the surgery. D took #5 to the foyer (D doesn't like blood) and I stayed with #4 for the surgery. At first the anesthesia didn't work and it took three tries with it to get that area numb. I was really proud of him for not flinching or screaming, he just squinted up his gorgeous green eyes and cried a little. I held his hand the whole time, and occasionally peeked over to see how things looked (I don't mind blood as much as D does). After what seemed like forever they were finally through and sewed him up. Can you believe a relatively small mole took 9 stitches?! When we had first gotten there the nurse thought the mole was so small that he wouldn't need any stitches at all for it. 9 stitches and a small bald spot later, our boy is doing fine. He even went to Kindergarten this afternoon and had a great day. Now its just waiting to find out what the lab says about the mole, and waiting for the bill for our 20% of the cost. For #4 the painful part is hopefully all over, but for us its not even close to over ;o)

Monday, October 15, 2007

A scary story by #4

Once upon a time there was a glowing green house, and there was this guy with black hair, and a stick, and glasses, and his name was Harry Potter.
So Harry Potter went into the glowing green house, and he looked up, and didn't see anything, and then a big oreo smashed him and he was NEVER SEEN AGAIN...

Quality Time...

My kids seem to need a lot of attention. Most kids are that way, but it seems like my kids really want the attention right when I am feeling too busy to give it to them. Notice I said the word "feeling".
Often this feeling comes when I am trying to make dinner and they are all clustered around me begging for food, dying of boredom, or just bugging me.
Last week I was making Cheeseburger Soup (which is VERY good by the way). The boys were restless so I put some of them to work. We have four potato peelers (because if they think something is fun and you never tell them its actually work, they will enjoy it more!) so some of them started peeling potatoes, and some of them started peeling carrots. My four year old is pretty good at peeling carrots (except for the few inches he misses on one end). Their least favorite part is picking up all the peelings that missed the garbage can.
I have a small hand cranked food processor. I have seen them at the store advertised as salsa makers, but in this case I got this one back when I was a Tupperware lady...(yes, I will pause while you adjust your image of me from cool to frumpy). I like it because I don't have to cry while chopping onions. I just cut it into a couple of large pieces and process away. I also don't grate carrots as my little chopper will mince them right up. That food processor is like a ride at Disneyland to my boys (because they haven't been to Disneyland yet and don't know any better) so they are always asking to help me chop things up with it. So not only did I get help peeling potatoes and carrots, but also chopping onions, carrots and celery for the soup. They did most of the hard work for me.
At first it felt like dinner took longer to cook, but I don't think it really did. I think time just slowed down for a while because we were spending it together. Typically on most evenings I am shoving them all out of the kitchen so they won't be in my way, but that night has changed my thinking. If I let them help me, I am getting two things done at once...dinner, and quality time together, and not only that but as a bonus they are learning all about how to be good cooks! Something I am sure their future mission companions, roomates and my future daughters in law will thank me for later.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Towels and tissues...

#3 came to me today and said, casually, but in all seriousness, "Mom, did you know our towels, the towels we use to dry off after we take a bath or a shower?...are like tissues for Heavenly Father and Jesus..."
I said, "Why is that?"
#3 answered, looking at me like I was weird, "Because they are bigger than us..."

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Overheard...

#3: Technically, everyone is allergic to being burned up.

So true...

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Sometimes Thank You is Enough

Today after I gave the boys their afternoon snack #1 said, "Thank you for clogging up our innards with sodium and sugar."
I think that just a plain old thank you should have been enough.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Where does he put all that food?!?!

We spent Friday and Saturday visiting family in Vancouver. It was nice to have a little time away from home and to visit with extended family.
Saturday morning we were eating breakfast at Grandpa L's house, and #4 just kept eating and eating. He had some omelet, some toast with jelly, juice, and two bowls of cereal. He kept on asking for more. Somebody commented about where he was putting all that food and he said, with a HUGE grin, "Its okay! I have lots of empty space, up HERE!" and he tapped his head. We all burst out laughing. He tried to change the empty space to his arm, but it was already too late.
That kid isn't doing much to change the stereotype of blonds.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

School Picture Time...

We stopped ordering school pictures a couple of years ago. This was mostly because school pictures just plain SUCK. They rush the kids through there like cattle and as long as their eyes are open, the rest of the picture doesn't matter.

The first year we moved here the photographer that does the school pictures forgot to clean his camera lens and every kid had this thing on their face that looked like a mole or dirt...EVERY kid. We sent our kids for retakes, but due to a miscommunication #1 didn't get to do the retake and we were stuck. I think we returned the pictures, but I am not sure. Aside from dirt encrusted lenses, there are the lovely vacant expressions, weird smiles and yes, even a snarl once that was deemed worthy by the photographer to be printed into school pictures. I haven't even gotten to the cost yet.

The package we would normally purchase costs about $24.00 I can print the same number of pictures (minus the 8 useless mini pictures that are about the size of my thumbnail) for less than $10.00 at the local 1 hour photo. Now, if I was going to be frugal and order the fewest pictures that would meet our needs as far as Grandparents go it would cost me $21 at the school. To do them myself would be about $6.00. The average cost of the school pictures is about $1.29 per picture which is a good deal for the 8x10, but NOT for the thumbnail ones. If I wanted an 8x10 by itself (an option only available after ordering a full package) it would cost me $6.00 vs $1.99 to get one printed. PLUS...It takes weeks to get the school pictures back, and this way I can pick them up in ONE HOUR.

At the school they get ONE shot at the picture, unless their eyes are closed, then its two. We take the boys out ourselves and take maybe 100 pictures all together and pick two poses for each of them to print. For about $30.00 to $40.00 I can get all the pictures I need of ALL FIVE boys. I would be spending $120 if I got school pictures for five boys. If that isn't convincing, then a picture is worth a thousand words...

A few school pics from over the years. Not all of them are awful, but compare...

These are last year's pictures we took ourselves and printed to give to Grandparents and other friends and family. Which ones do you think look better?

Saturday, September 22, 2007

What could be better than a free pet?

Two of them!
A while back I wrote about our snail Claireford going the way of all the earth (i.e. he/she croaked). I also mentioned that after Claireford's untimely demise there was a mysterious tiny little slug-like creature in the tank. Thinking it may have been a baby snail with an undeveloped shell, I kept it for several weeks, but eventually I gave up on it being a snail and set it free. I know that snails and slugs are pretty much the same thing, but I just can't stomach the thought of feeding slugs for some reason. Snails, I can handle.
Near the start of the school year I was walking home from the school with #3 and #4 and I chanced upon a snail crossing the sidewalk. I stopped the boys and had them come and look at it. My intention was to look at it, and then let it go on its slow but merry way. Then I saw a second snail just off of the sidewalk, and I couldn't resist. #1 was pretty sad when Claireford died (Claireford is named after Cliff and Claire Huxtible of the Cosby show and #1 got him/her as part of a third grade science course). I thought that two snails would make him feel better. So home they came. We have had them for about a week and a half now. Yet, they are still unnamed. I jokingly suggested Sondra and Elvin to go with the Cosby theme, or Mucous and Snot...just because.
Now is your chance...what are your suggestions for names for our new snails? Be creative!

Friday, September 21, 2007

When I grow up...

The other day #4 and #5 were talking about what they want their job to be when they grow up.

#4 said he would like to drive a car for a job, so I asked him what kind of a driving job he wanted. He decided that he really just wants to drive and was thrilled when I told him that most grown ups can drive and he doesn't have to get a job driving to do it. He then decided that he would really like to be "The one that cooks dinner" for his job as a grown up.

#5 piped up at that point and said, "I want to be the one that plays with all the Thomas (the tank engine) toys when I grow up."

I think its good to know what you want and what makes you really happy. I am sure cooking dinner and playing with trains will probably lose some of their allure as the boys get older, but for now I think they are both great aspirations.

Monday, September 17, 2007

When we die...

A couple of weeks ago #3 asked me about who will get D's PDA when he is gone.
I asked him what he meant, and he clarified that after D and I are really old and die, someone would get the PDA, and he wanted it to be him. Here I thought people didn't start fighting over their parent's estate until AFTER they were dead.
I mentioned the PDA/death conversation at dinner that night, and it turned into a full blown claiming of our items by each of the kids. I will tell you that none of the items that we would have thought of putting in our will (the grandfather clock D's dad built for us, my Grandmother's painting, the piano, etc) were mentioned. There was a brief struggle over who would get my cake mix doctor cookbook though and #4 decided he wanted our van when we are gone. #5 was content to say that he wanted all of the Thomas the Tank Engine Toys (which technically, are already his). Hopefully D and I will be around for a little longer, at least until #5 outgrows Thomas...
What are you going to leave to your children?

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Its all about tools...

The other day D asked #2 if he would bring him a Philips screwdriver. #2, always eager to help out said "Sure" and went off on his quest to find the needed tool.
A little while later #2 came back and said, "Sorry Dad, I couldn't find a Philips, all I could find was a Stanley screwdriver."

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

He changed his mind...

Just the other day #4 was noticing how grown-ups (Mommies to be specific) get to do "Whatever they want." We recently had this conversation.
#4: I like being a kid better.
Me: Better than what?
#4: Being a grown-up.
Me: Why?
#4: Because I get to go to school.

I guess I can stop worrying about whether he likes school or not.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Blue jeans go with everything...

#1 wanted to wear an orange T-shirt today but already had put some jeans on. He asked me if orange and blue went together and I said, "Blue jeans go with everything." To which he replied, "Even barf?"

Yes...what a sweet kid.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Let them be little

video


I made this video/slideshow about three years ago when I was first learning how to use video editing software. Its not award winning, but it makes me feel good, and it has all five of the boys in it. I hope you enjoy it!

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

What Mom's eat...

#4 drew some pictures today and was showing them to #5, explaining what they were. Basically it was a series of babies (shaped like upside down hearts with eyes and a smile) and each one had a certain food they ate, and they only ate that food. I was at the computer when I heard him explaining it to #5
#4: And this baby only eats graham crackers, this baby only eats fruit snacks, this baby only eats icecream, and THIS baby only eats bananas.
Then he pointed to the much larger upside down heart on the page and said...
#4: This is the Mommy. Mommies eat all the cookies.
I asked him why he said Mommies eat all the cookies and his answer was that "Mommies get to do whatever they want..."

In other news, today was #4's first day of school. He is in Kindergarten this year!


I can't believe he is already in Kindergarten!

Excited for School

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Slug Day

Today was the first day of school here...for the big boys at least. Kindergarten starts tomorrow. #4, #5 and I walked the three older boys to school today. It was damp outside and the slugs were out in droves. Slugs can become a household pest here if your home isn't virtually airtight. (Its very disconcerting to be walking barefoot in your own home and accidentally step on a slug. Trust me...I know.)
On the way to school we walk along a gravel road with grass growing between the tire ruts. There were slugs everywhere. In spite of our best efforts to not squish any of them, I am afraid that some of them met an untimely doom. #5 was fascinated by the slugs and would often pause to watch them. When we got home he proclaimed it slug day. How did you celebrate slug day?

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Boys and Battles...

We had the opportunity to go and see a civil war reenactment at Fort Stevens today thanks to a generous friend. She thought the boys would enjoy watching a battle reenactment and seeing the camps set up to show how life during the civil war was. There were cannons, guns, horses and battle, what more could a boy want? (Other than for his Mom to buy him a wooden sword afterwards.) Here are a few pictures from the battle. The boys seemed to enjoy it other than the noise from the cannon fire. All in all it was a great day and we had a lot of fun.
Confederate Cavalry


Confederate Camp

Union Army

Our friend who invited us (center) along with her daughter and a friend.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Our little poser...


I mean that in a good way of course. #4 loves having his picture taken. If we lived in a bigger town he would probably be snatched up to star in a catalog photo shoot for some department store or another. He is that rare kid that likes to sit still for photos. He eats it up.

We always take our camera when we go on walks or hikes, and #4 sees pretty much every large rock or fallen tree as a photo opportunity. He is constantly asking us to take his picture.

Last Sunday my parents were in town and went for a walk with us. #4 kept asking for his picture to be taken, and my Dad would quietly creep into the background of the pics and make silly faces behind #4 who was trying to look his best. Here are a couple of those shots for your enjoyment.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Happy Birthday #2

It has been wonderful to watch...
you grow from a baby

your personality emerge.


you get into mischief


your laughter and smile


you start school

you grow into a big boy

you enjoy the outdoors

your sense of humor

you just being you.

We love you S! Happy Birthday!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Sometimes they just grow up so fast...

I had a bit of a shock this week when I was buying socks for my oldest son for school. I had usually only paid attention to the smaller number on the package of socks...the one that says fits shoe size 3 to... This time I paid attention to the second number. Fits shoe size 3 to 9. No, my son does not wear a size 9 shoe. He is only in a 3 1/2, but the point is that the socks will fit size 3 to size 9 (9 in men's shoes). I wear a 10 in women's, an 8 in men's.

My son and I can wear the same size of socks. The tiny baby feet that made the little footprint on his hospital birth certificate are now big enough to fit comfortably into my socks. When did my baby get so big?!

Monday, August 20, 2007

Sometimes Moms just need some time alone...

Its true...we all know it. Whether that time is five minutes of uninterrupted peace in the bathroom (haha, that never happens here), a trip to the grocery store sans children, or any other kind of escape, we all have times when we need to be alone, or at least without the kids.

I must verbalize my wishes for alone time too often.

There is a house for sale right next door to our church, and as we walked past it today #3 said that we should buy that house. "Then when you need to be by yourself Dad can bring all of us here."

Now I feel like a bad Mom. My alone time usually consists of going to the grocery store once or twice a week. I did make an overnight escape to hang out with my Mom and Sisters a few weeks ago, and I have to say that doing that once a year just doesn't seem like enough! I hope my kids don't think that alone time is all I think about.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Awkward moments...

We went to a Birthday Party for my Mom yesterday. HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM!!! It was a milestone one (I won't tell you which, she might not like that, but I will say she is not 100 yet) so we had a party at my sister's house and the kids had a great time with a water balloon toss, a beanbag toss, and fishing over the fence for prizes.
At one point during the party my sister Tara who was hosting the party was nursing her baby. #4 and #5 came in and asked her what the baby was doing. She told them he was eating. They asked what he was eating and she said milk. Then one of them said "You must have his bottle in your pocket!"
I guess it has been a little while since they have seen someone breast feeding.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Summer is winding down...

and the time for school to begin is rapidly approaching. In preparation I have been shopping for school supplies.
I remember when #1 started Kindergarten. It was so exciting going out and shopping for just the right things for school. I made sure the scissors, pencils, etc. were his favorite colors; paid the higher price to get crayola crayons and markers and lovingly wrote his name in permanent marker on each of his school supplies. I loved how excited he was to see the brand new crayons, markers and other supplies that were just for him.
A few days before school was supposed to start, we gathered up all the school supplies and went down to meet the teacher and drop off the supplies. Imagine my dismay when we were greeted by the sight of a long table with plastic bins on it. We were told to sort our supplies into the various bins. That's right, Kindergarten is essentially communism. Everything was going to be shared. I had wasted my time writing #1's name on the supplies, and I had wasted money buying the nicer supplies that would most likely be distributed to someone else's child. It was a huge disappointment. I suppose that the kids that have parents who can't afford school supplies or don't care enough to buy them won't have to feel bad under this system.
At the end of that school year none of the school supplies were returned. I can't help but wonder why they have to ask the kids to each bring a pair of scissors every year. What are they doing with them at the end of the year?!
Since then we have moved and live in a small town. Unfortunately communism at school rules here for the first couple of years also. I suppose I should take some comfort in getting a Ziploc baggie at the end of the year with various unmatched half dry markers, a bottle of glue, stubs of crayons and a pair of scissors that someone else's mother paid for. I thought you might be interested in the list of what we needed to get for Kindergarten this year for #4. I included their underlines where applicable.

2 boxes of Crayola crayons (16 ct.)
8 white glue sticks
1 box Prang or Crayola Water Color Paints
6 plain yellow wooden pencils #2
2 dry erase fine tip makers (black)
Washable Markers (2 boxes of 8)
2 2" three-ring binder (for memory book and alphabet book)
1 box of tissues
1 disposable camera
Baby Wipes (2 Box)
Waterless Hand Sanitizer (2 Bottles)
Graham, Goldfish or Soda Crackers, or Pretzels
I wonder how upset they are going to be when I shake things up by bringing 11 ct washable markers. Maybe I should take some markers out so that there are only 16 total. I wouldn't want to upset any delicate balance.
I actually find the disposable camera to be a weird request. I know they will probably use them all to get pictures for the memory books, but in my experience those disposables don't generally take great pictures. That one being on the list was a first for us this year. I wonder why a camera is more important to have as a school supply than a pair of scissors...(maybe they kept last year's scissors and are doing their part to keep them out of the landfill.)
So, what is the weirdest thing you have seen on a school supply list?



Sunday, August 12, 2007

Shopping for underthings...

Yesterday we did some shopping for school clothes and supplies. #3 was making a pretty big deal about how much he wanted transformer briefs this year, and #2 who is so much more mature at 19 months older asked me what the big deal was. The way he figures it, no one else will be seeing your bum, so it shouldn't matter. I quite agree.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Men, Women and Equality

I took #2 with me to the store tonight, on a quest for Ice Cream. On the way there he started talking about boys and girls and who is taller at what stages of life. I started talking explaining how girls stop growing at an earlier age than boys do, and he came up with boys being better at basketball because they are taller. This became a discussion about men's sports vs women's sports, and why there are more professional men's sports. I explained to him how it used to be that women were not allowed to do a lot of things that men were allowed to do. I talked a little bit about women's pro baseball during WWII and how once the war was over, interest in women's ball dwindled and they were expected to go back to their everyday lives.
This was his response...(I am paraphrasing...I wish I could remember his exact words...I really need to tape record every single conversation I have with the boys)
#2: I think that boys are better at some things because they are allowed to do more things than girls are, and I think girls are better at some other things because we are too busy doing the things we are allowed to do to learn how to do those other things. So in the end I think it all ends up being equal.

Wrap your brain around that one...

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Dinner conversation...

#4: Do flies sting you?
Me: No.
#1: Horseflies bite sometimes.
#3: What happens if they bite you?
Me: You turn into a fly.
#3: MOM!
#1: She is just kidding.
#4: Do you know what eats bugs?
Me: Spiders?
#4: Yeah, thats why I don't want to be a bug.
Me: You could be a spider. But sometimes girl spiders eat boy spiders, so if you want to be safe you had better be a girl spider.
All: EEEeeeeeeewwwwwwwwww!

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Why you should not kiss before you are married...

I was talking with #2 in the kitchen the other day and somehow we got on the subject of kissing (I think it was because he complained about it being gross again). I told him that someday he would like kissing, but that maybe he should wait until he is engaged to kiss anyone. I told him that would make me feel better. And he said, "Yeah, I wouldn't want anyone else's DNA getting mixed up in my kids."

Monday, August 06, 2007

I have been NAB'D for doing nothing...



I have been given a non award...I'm all choked up!

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Boys on Vacation...

#1, #3, #2, #5 and #4 outside the Johnston Ridge Visitors Center

Crouching room only at the end of the Lower Ape Cave.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Good news depends on your point of view...

The following is a conversation I had with the boys after I found out that my little sister Heidi is engaged.
Me: Boys guess what? Heidi and Scott are engaged!
#2: Eeeeeeeewwwwwwwwww!
Me: What do you mean ewww?
#2: That's DISGUSTING!
Me: Do you even know what engaged means?
#2: Yeah, it means they like to kiss a lot.
Me: It means they are getting married.
#2: EEEEWWWW! That's even worse! Well, I'm not going!
Me: Yes you are! Not to the wedding because they are getting married in the temple, but to the reception.
At this point #5 started to cry (very hard) and wailed I don't WANNA go!

I thought it was good news anyway!

Monday, July 30, 2007

#4 aka K vs the Drinking Fountain

This is a video D made of #4 trying to get a drink of water all by himself. The background sound is a recording we made of #2 laughing when he was a baby along with some cheesy music.





We are heading out of town tomorrow for our date with doom (aka the dreaded Volcano). I won't be posting for a few days. Enjoy the video while I am gone!

Sunday, July 29, 2007

I have been tagged!

...for a meme. I am going to answer the meme on my other blog though because I try to reserve this blog to be about my family, especially my five boys. Thanks to Michelle at A Happy Heart for the meme.

Impending DOOM...

We are planning a camping trip soon to visit Mt. St. Helens. I love the great outdoors, but I will admit a certain aversion to sleeping on the ground. Our compromise was to reserve a yurt for our camping experience. Call me a wuss if you want, I can take it, as long as I get to sleep on a futon instead of the cold, hard ground.
Yurting will give us the benefits of camping (cooking our food over a fire or in a dutch oven, a nice outdoorsy environment, and time together as a family) without some of the things I dislike about camping (setting up the tent-which isn't nearly as bad as taking it down, and the aforementioned sleeping on the ground). The yurt also has one outlet and a lamp. The boys have already asked to take a TV/VCR along, and I already vetoed the idea. We will take a small CD player so that we can listen to Harry Potter 7 on CD before bed. Other than that all technology is out (and if you have been reading this blog for long you will know that my boys have a big addiction to the computer and to most things technology related. This vacation is going to be great for family bonding.)
D (my husband for those of you new to reading this blog) has a tendency to get excited about things, and he likes to share that excitement with others. He is very excited to go and see the North side of Mt. St. Helens (which he has never seen before-at least not up close) and to take the boys to see the Ape Caves on the south side as well. In his excitement he borrowed a DVD about Mt. St Helens from a co-worker and we spent an evening last week watching it together as a family. Of course the DVD was mostly about Mt. St. Helens as a volcano and showed a lot of footage of the big eruptions that took place in 1980. I knew right away that watching this was going to be a mistake. Now I have to live with constant questions about whether or not we will survive our vacation. At the grocery store yesterday #5 (who just turned four) told me that he doesn't want to go to a volcano because of the lava. Hopefully we will all survive the trip!


On another note, I was very surprised to be tagged by Scribbit for a Creative/Thoughtful Blogger Award. I can't say that I totally agree with her description of me, but I am flattered just the same. Accepting an award is the easy part, its choosing from so many great blogs to pass it on to that is hard.

I will start out with Kim over at Temporary? Insanity. She is a wonderful person who is kind, compassionate and just an all around great friend to have.
Carrot over at Carrot Jello is responsible for bringing many family members into blogging, resulting in an even higher number of quality blogs to read.
Millie over at What On Earth Is That Smell is great at answering comments and is known to have a playlist that can keep people on her blog listening for hours.
Emma Sometimes over at Fueled by Coffee is great at helping her blogging buddies with their templates. Her blog always makes me laugh, think, or both.
Sarah over at Hollywood Flakes always has a story to tell and she always tells it in a fun way.
I would love to award something to every blog I read, they are all certainly deserving. Unfortunately I think my limit is five.