Family Pic 2017

Family Pic 2017

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Track talk

Last Wednesday at Kami's track meet, Isabelle sat beside us and listened to the adults as the events took place.  At one point we were noticing some of the runners "hit the wall" during the 400 meter run.

I am not going to pretend that  I was any good during the two times in my life that  I went out for track, but  I do know what "hitting the wall" feels and looks like. For those of you unfamiliar with this term, it is a quick description of when a runner very suddenly gets really tired and you immediately notice a difference in their speed and form.

After hearing people say "hit the wall" several times, Isabelle leaned over and quietly asked me what it meant.  I explained it to her. It wasn't long before she was begging to get down on the track and run, track meet and all.

Yesterday, she and Nolan came and asked me if  I would take them to the track so that they could go for a run.  It was a warmer-than-usual day around here and I had a half an hour before I had to go pick up Maddie, so I agreed.  This is the conversation that  I heard as they elatedly ran off to get their "running shoes" on:

I:  Oh, Nolan!  I am soooo excited!!!

     I'm so scared that I'm going to "hit the wall!"

N: (Taking the term very literally) "I never hit the wall."

Then as we drove to the track there was continual conversation about running as I heard the words "hitting the wall" over and over, like:

I: "If someone is there, it will be like a real track meet and I'll really have to try not to "hit the wall!!"

Unfortunately the track was already in use when we arrived, so the kids had to content themselves with running around a near-by field.

 I think she may have "hit the wall" right here, her form looks a little strange :)

As a side-note, Kami is having a really great experience with track and has been consistently improving her times.  This week her 800 time was 2:55, and her mile time was 6:44!  She wants to get her mile down into the 6:30's next week.  I'm hoping that we will have some good weather at one of these meets - so far they've all been very cold, and very windy, and usually rainy as well.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Our Easter

We do a lot of our Easter things on Saturday around here, but it was hard to focus on any of it because, as I have said, my singing assignment ( next blog down) was weighing heavily on my mind.

We colored eggs.

Kami and Caden hid the eggs on the other side of our pond where there is actually some grass and the kids had the egg hunt.  I didn't actively participate in that one, but sent the camera with Kami and looked out the window once in awhile.

For the last few years we have made "resurrection cookies" the night before Easter.  These cookies have ingredients that have scriptures that go with them and tell the Easter story.  You put them into the oven, seal the oven closed with a few pieces of tape, representing the sealed tomb, turn the oven off, and don't look at them again until morning.  The next day when you bite into them, they are hollow, representing the empty tomb, and you read some more scriptures to go with it.

For some reason they didn't turn out this year. This morning they looked like they had risen and then fallen and were hardly even hollow.  These are cookies that don't taste that great and usually end up in the garbage can anyway, so that activity was a flop. I guess it's good that we at least got the Easter story read in the process!

After I fell into bed exhausted last night,  I remembered that I hadn't done the Easter baskets.  I decided that I'd get up really early the next morning before the kids.  Well, during the night I woke up (at 3:45) and  I was starving to death!  I guess I hadn't eaten much the day before because  I was feeling so miserable.  I couldn't sleep, so I decided to get up and eat and take care of the baskets then.

I ended up surprising Shawn and the kids.  Shawn because he hadn't noticed that  I had left and when I got back into bed I stuck my freezing cold feet on him to warm up.  I'm sure that his favorite job is being my foot warmer!

A miracle

When we moved into our new ward, one of the first things that we noticed was that the ward choir was very small, so we started attending. I've never been much of a singer, but I do like to sing. I can carry a tune, but I've never thought that my voice had a good tone to it, I can't hold my breath for very long,  and have always seen myself as more of a "choir voice". But I think because I went to ward choir, the ward percieved that I was a singer, because suddenly I'm asked to sing at things!  It is the strangest thing.

It is also rather out of my comfort zone because while I used to sing soprano growing up, I can't anymore, so I have been learning alto. When I sing I feel like I have to studiously study the notes the whole time, and it takes a few more times to catch on to a piece than it does for everyone else.

 A couple of weeks ago, a woman from the stake called and asked Kami and I to sing in a stake Relief Society meeting with a choir of mothers and daughters.  I was O.K. with that.

Last week, a woman in the ward called and asked me to sing with her and one other woman at our adult meeting of stake conference.  Just the three of us.  I wasn't so comfortable with that, but agreed to do it.

We practiced on Tuesday and right after that I caught a cold and lost my voice.  Well, I could talk, but only quietly and my vocal cords felt so strained!  I wasn't too worried, because I figured that I had all week to get over it.  I haven't had a cold in the longest time, and what a time to catch one!  Instead of getting better I  seemed worse and more miserable every day.

I still felt pretty miserable Saturday, and could barely sing when we practiced in the morning.  I tried not to talk as much as possible for the rest of the day. I did send up a lot of prayers - Who could take my place when it was supposed to be a musical number from our ward?

It was the neatest thing, though, because I got up last night to sing and felt just fine the whole time and have been over my cold ever since!  Isn't that amazing?  I was so thrilled about not having my voice crack or something that I didn't even care about the numerous other woman in the stake that can sing 100% better than I can.  Too bad they didn't hear what  I was sounding like before so that they could truly appreciate the musical number!

l-r: Heather, our pianist, Tiffany, me and Shandell
These are the women that I sang with.  I absolutely love them. Heather is my neighbor just across the road, and also our R.S. president.  She and her family are wonderful and they are so good at putting together social get-togethers.  For instance, right after conference she had everyone over for chocolate chimichangas - delicious! (You deep- fry tortillas with hershey's chocolate inside them and then serve them with vanilla ice cream and whipped topping.)

Tiffany is my visiting teaching companion and has one of the best laughs around.

Shandell really took me under her wing when we moved in and caught me up on everyone and who was related to who, etc. She is one of the sweetest people!

All of these women have become very good friends. Boy do I LOVE our ward!!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Our Resident Decorator

Isabelle has apparently taken it upon herself to decorate the house!  I find her master-pieces all over the place, but her current bulletin board seems to be Shawn's and my bedroom door.  One side of it looks like this right now:

The other side has her continued evaluations of Shawn and I.  I am now on my third paper and Shawn is on his second.  She says that whoever gets finished with their third paper the first, wins - the suspense is killing me -I hope I win, I hope I win!!:) It's so funny that she persists at this and writes something up nearly every day!
2nd evaluation
 (Good at reading scriptures, good at being nice, good at making lunch, she cleans up, good at teaching, she puts the kids to bed, doing the laundry, good at reading, she snuggles with us.)

third- and hopefully the winning- evaluation!!

 (Good at watching Josh, Putting Abram to sleep, busy, temple, going to track meets)

 (Good at making breakfast, you wrestle with the kids, you watch Abram, Good at making dinner, good at setting the table, meetings, busy.)

She also keeps our dining room doors decorated, and this is a decoration that got us laughing.  It is an Easter Bunny surrounded by eggs and underneath it it says, "I like to jump on you."

We shorten the name Isabelle to "Belle" a lot around the house.  A few days ago I overheard her talking to a friend and she said, "Sometimes my family wants to get my attention and they say, "Hey, Belle!"  And it sounds like they're saying hay bale.  And sometimes my mom says, "Close the door, Belle."  And it sounds like she's saying doorbell!"

Unusual snack

I was working on a sewing project yesterday when Isabelle came in wondering what she could have for a snack.  I didn't want to stop working , so I told her that there were oranges and apples in the fruit basket. She turned up her nose about that because she is not a fruit- lover.  She left for a little bit and examined the fruit basket and then the basket below that, where she found some corn on the cob.

She came back into my sewing room and jokingly said, "Can I have some corn on the cob?"  I told her that she could try it and she looked really surprised and said, "Raw?!?"  I could tell that she really wasn't interested.

As an after-thought I told her that Jesus' apostles were really hungry one day (which happened to be the Sabbath) and they were walking through a cornfield, so they began eating some corn as they went, and I was pretty sure they ate it raw. I told her about how the Pharisees were angry about it because they thought the apostles were breaking the Sabbath.  Isabelle's smarter than the Pharisees because she said, "What?  People still need to eat even if it's Sunday!"

This conversation must have sparked her interest, because she left, and the next thing I knew she was back with a husked corn on the cob, trying it out.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

A blog without pictures

Last weekend Shawn flew over to Seattle to meet with a couple of doctors on Saturday.  He planned to fly into Boise on his way home, but because he would get there so late at night, he told me that he would be driving home early Sunday morning. Luckily that's the first time that he's ever been gone on a weekend, because frankly I didn't enjoy it much.

So there I was not enjoying it much on Friday night, while he was enjoying an evening with my brother Nathan and his family, when suddenly I got a telephone call.  It was the stake executive secretary wondering if he could meet with Shawn and I at 9:00 on Sunday morning.  I explained that I wasn't expecting Shawn until 10:00, so he said he'd have to talk with the stake presidency and get back to us.

 I called Shawn because by that time he was heading back to his hotel, and we speculated about what they could possibly want. Shawn told me everything that the Stake Presidency is over, and we decided that it wouldn't be any of those things.  Then we remembered that Stake Conference was going to be this coming Sunday, and decided that they must want us to speak at it!

 Sunday morning, Shawn made it home in time for his Young Men's presidency meeting, and he said that he began to feel a little bit uneasy because the members of the bishopric were there and they were all grinning at him.  I met him there right after his meeting, and we went in to meet with the Stake Presidency.  There was just one member there at first, and he made a big deal about getting the other men together.  When he took off to do that, I asked Shawn why it was so important to have all of them there, and he told me that he was getting some different ideas about what this meeting was all about!

Anyways, he was called to be in the bishopric, because one of the members of the bishopric has been battling cancer and isn't doing too well.  We learned about this calling about fifteen minutes before church started, they announced it in sacrament meeting,  (we hadn't had time to tell the kids and their faces were classic!) and then wanted Shawn to be ordained and set apart right after church.  Shawn wanted his dad to ordain him, and after calling him between every meeting was finally able to get a hold of him just in the nick of time.

I think that Shawn is really going to love this calling - he will be over the Young Men and scouting and really enjoys both.  I am excited for him and anxious for myself.  (I hope I can handle sacrament meeting and more time parenting - on my own.)

I recently saw this quote: "Welcome the task that makes you go beyond yourself and you will grow."

 I think that I'm in for some serious growth myself from his calling!  I already thought that I was going far beyond myself with all of his traveling and being on my own so much. Now, on some of the days that he was normally "home for sure", he will be gone with his calling. Luckily, a bishop's counselor doesn't have nearly the demanding job that a bishop has.  I'm sure that we will all be just fine.

One of my favorite memories of the day was talking about the surprise of it all as we all drove home from church.  I brought up that we would have to sit more strategically during sacrament meeting with an older child beside each younger one for the inevitable time when I would be leaving the meeting with Abe. I looked into the back and saw Kami in tears.  At first I thought she was upset about something that I'd said, but when I asked her what was wrong she said, "I'm just so proud of dad!"

Friday, April 15, 2011

To fix, or not to fix?

This is Priscilla, our cat.  Last year when we knew that we would be moving out here, we got her for Isabelle for her birthday.

This is pumpkin, (male)

and this is Guido (female).

We got Pumpkin and Guido because the kids decided that Priscilla was lonely - she WAS running off all the time when the kids were gone to school.  We saw a free kittens sign just down the road, and when we stopped to pick up ONE we ended up picking up THREE.  I can be one of those sucker parents at times, and they were all so pretty that it was hard to choose! There was a white kitten, also, that has already met his demise.:(

Anyway, here is the thing. We live in a mice-infested area, and I would much rather have cats to take care of that, than to spend money feeding mice (de-con).  We do feed our cats cat food as well, but the cost comes out to the same, or even better, than what it would take to feed all of these mice, plus the cats are catching all the mice.
absolutely thrilled

But here is the other thing:  Priscilla just had kittens this week.  SIX of them.  This was a very exciting event for the kids, and I remember feeling so excited to find new baby kittens around the place when I was growing up. I'm glad that the kids got to experience that...but I'm beginning to have future visions of not being able to take a step outdoors without stepping on a cat because the ground will be swarming with them.  Imaginings that someone will ask how to find our house and people will say, "You know.  It's the cat house.  The one that has a gazillion cats all over the place.  And of the person saying, "Oh yeah!  I know exactly which one you're talking about!!"  So... we need to make a decision.  Do we take them in to get them fixed?

Because here is yet another thing.  I have a very strong superstition that you are setting up your pet for imminent death the second that you pay for something to be done for them at the veterinarians.  That's what happened to white kitty "Casper", and a cat before that and a cat before that.  We live not too far from a very busy road, and our cats are out-door cats. You get the picture. I just don't want to pay out the money for nothing.

My veterinarian brother says, "bring them up the next time you come and I'll fix them all for you!"  But who wants to travel for 7 -8 hours with a car full of cats?

"Can't we just keep ALL of them? Please??" we just let nature run it's course and hope that there will always be people out there that want some free kittens? Or is it really worth it to take them all in and get them "fixed"?

I'll take names now.  Anyone interested?  Suzette? These cats are better than the one in your video!!:)

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Dog food, anyone?

I was awakened last night by the sounds of a crying child.  Initially, I thought it was Nolan, but as I reached the top of the stairs I realized that it was Isabelle crying.  When I got to her, she was sitting up in bed sobbing with her hands up to her face.  I asked her if she was feeling sick, to which she said no.  I then asked her if she had had a bad dream, and she nodded and continued sobbing as she said, "but I think it was real!!"

I snuggled up to her in her bed and told her to tell me all about it.  She said, "well, I dreamed that you told us that we had to eat dog food."  I said, "was I being a mean mommy in your dream?" , to which she said "no, but I think it's real that you want us to eat dog food."

So I reminded her that I like us to eat foods that are good for our bodies and I didn't think that dog food would be good for humans.  Plus, we don't even have a dog;  thus no dog food for me to give to her.  She settled right back into a contented sleep.

This morning I asked her more about her dream and she said that I had been making home-made dog food and mixing it into my bread dough before I baked it.  She said that when I took it out of the oven, Caden had said, "Yum! My favorite!!"

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

First track meet

Kami just experienced her first track meet and she did such a super job!  I was running to pick up Caden and Maddie from piano lessons and got to the track meet right after she finished the 800 meter run. (sigh)  I had Shawn grab a few pictures; she got first place with a time of 3:13.

There she is leading the pack half way through the first lap

Then we had to wait for awhile for her next event and try to keep her, and ourselves, from freezing to death.  These spring sports are brutal!  It was cold and rainy and the little girls spent their time fighting over who got the umbrella, while Abram and Nolan ran up and down the ramp that led to the stadium seating, and Caden was nice enough to keep an eye on them.
running the mile - (she is the third runner back)

Kami's final event, the 1600 meter run, ended up being the final event of the meet. She was the only girl who signed up for this one, so she got to run with the boys. At least that's an automatic first place!:)  She held her own with the boys, though, and finished with a time of 6:54.  Not a personal best, but close.  We were proud of her, and she is excited for the next meet.

The needs of a growing family

Shawn and I put the little kids to bed last night and then went grocery shopping. I couldn't help noticing that all of the things we needed to purchase were things that I had just purchased last week!  In the past, we could go about one month on what it takes a week to get through now.  I guess we're not the only adult appetites in the family anymore!  We got home and I realized, as I went to put the chicken away, that I didn't need to divide it into smaller portions anymore before I stuck it into the freezer - the carton it comes in is just the right size for us now.  I guess that's a plus!

This morning, as we ate our favorite breakfast of pancakes with pear/blueberry puree on top, Shawn announced that we were down to our last jars of pears.  When did that happen?  I was just down in the storage room a couple of weeks ago and we still had quite a few... I had to go take a look a little while ago just to make sure. Yep, sure enough, and the salsa is pretty low, too. I thought I had amounts, etc. all figured out and suddenly they all changed!!

All of those empty jars had something in them just six months ago!

I really quite enjoy canning for the first day, or maybe for the first few batches.  The kids usually like it for about that long, too, and it is fun to have little helpers sharing the burden and talking my ear off - until the novelty wears off.  The older kids are usually in school by the time peaches and pears are ready, so they can't help much. Sadly, by the end it is just me, the endless fruit and the jars.  (But when I really run out of steam, I must admit that Shawn has been a fabulous life-saver helper.)

Last year I thought I was keeping up a pretty good pace, but then I called my younger sister, Heidi.  Among other things, we compared canning notes.  I had been getting five batches done per day and was feeling like I had really accomplished a lot with that amount.  Heidi, however, who also by the way has more children than I do, had managed seven batches per day and was pregnant and cheerful!  My sisters are amazing. 

I guess I am writing this because I am already filled with dread for this coming September, because I can't stand the thought of doing more than I already did.  But I love to have the fruit all year and  I am disappointed when we have to forgo our  favorite breakfast.  What to do?  I am turning into a cannery.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Spring Break

We had some big plans for our two whole days of spring break.  First of all, we were going to get the yard completely ready for grass! (Boy am I ready to get rid of the muddy mess around here!) This would entail, among other things, getting a tractor to level and contour everything.  Second of all, we intended to take the kids swimming one day and bowling the next so that their vacation wouldn't be all work and no play.

Well, let me tell you, circumstances beyond our control popped up-

See the snow on the other side of the pond? It was sticking to the grass, but making our muddy mud muddier around the house.

(or fell down as was the case with the snow and rain that we woke up to the first morning of spring break.) Our ideas of yard work were then dashed. Nolan, looking dismally out the window, stated matter-of-factly, "It's a soggy day."  I didn't think I heard right, so I asked him to repeat himself.  He said, "Soggy days means that the clouds are down around us." I think he was thinking of foggy days.

Meanwhile, our suburban began to make some strange noises, so we took it to the mechanic.
As we waited for the extended warranty people to ante up, (they're just like an insurance company, trying to find ways they don't have to pay) Shawn's dad was nice enough to let us drive his pick-up with an extended cab around. (Shawn's little red commuter car was just too small for all of us.) You may be thinking that a pick-up would also be too small for all of us, and you would be right.  But it wasn't as small as Shawn's car. There must be a little bit of red- neck in the two of us, because when we really needed to go somewhere all together, like to take Kami and Caden to their group piano recital, we threw a couple of kids in the back.  So it wasn't big enough for us to feel good about driving a long distance to a fun swimming pool, but it was big enough to drive, say, ten minutes from where we live. 

I had to laugh when we pulled up to the piano teacher's house and Caden and Maddie came tumbling out of the shell on the  back of the pick-up.  I walked around to close it, and Caden, with his head lowered and looking rather abashed mumbled, "How embarrassing can it get?!!!" - as he imagined all the piano students watching from the windows as the Gees unloaded their sardine tin.

So there we were, our plans dashed and unable to REALLY go anywhere.  But do you know, we had such a wonderful time!  Shawn took the days off of work and we were forced to relax and we got to hang out and enjoy each others company.

Just so you know, Shawn is NOT going to thank me for posting this picture of him -not a good picture-  But just look at that cute little head leaning on him.  This little guy insists on being right beside his dad everywhere he goes.

In our family, one of our favorite things is to find a really great book and have Shawn read it out loud to us.  He is a really great read-alouder, we have gone through so many good books!! Shawn's traveling schedule hasn't been really conductive to this activity, however, because when we're into a really suspenseful part of a book, who wants to wait anywhere from two days to one week before you get to see what happens? So,we did some reading while we could.

Abram's new play-place until we got the shelves put in.

We inherited an old entertainment center from Shawn's parents and loaded it up and watched movies several evenings and then had family slumber parties both nights in the bonus room. Well, to be more exact, Shawn and I participated in every part of the family party EXCEPT for the slumber parties in the bonus room.

Then on Saturday the weather got a little nicer, so the kids helped Shawn set up the trampoline, which never got set up last year because we were so busy with finishing our house.  So let me tell you, this was a very happy, exciting day for the kids.  And let me also tell you that today was a very happy, exciting day for ME because those kids jumped on the trampoline for about two hours straight!  Do you know how much you can get done in two straight hours?!

Shawn also decided to attack our jungle of trees.

I wasn't exaggerating about Shawn ATTACKING our jungle of trees.

Here are some after pictures  of some of the trees after they were all spruced up. Still a little more work to go.

And some cute pictures of Isabelle and Nolan as Shawn was working.:

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Reminiscing about Gertie

After almost fifteen years of marriage and I don't even know how many burnt up vacuum cleaner belts, Shawn and I decided to spend a little more money and buy a vacuum cleaner that actually does the job and lasts longer than the many "Walmart specials" that we have purchased-and wasted money on- in the past. 

We have actually been looking into what we think would be the best vacuum cleaner for a couple of years, and recently settled on a Riccar.  I am so thrilled with it!  As I read up about them and as we went together and tested one out and looked it over, we couldn't help recalling our experience trying out a Kirby about 1 1/2 years ago.

This is an experience that we still get the giggles about when talking or thinking about it. I have a sister that I happened to mention this to the other day, and she hadn't heard about it, so this is for her (and my family history, since I didn't put pictures with what I wrote).  I realize that many of you who read this blog have already heard the story. Anyways, here is an excerpt from my family journal, and I will include the pictures:

"We worked really hard on the yard and garden for quite some time today and pretty soon the girls decided to make some Crystal Light and some snacks for the workers.  They thought that they could set up the umbrella down on the patio we've made, and make a sort of restaurant and be the waitresses.  Shawn had gone for a load of dirt out at our land, and while he was gone a Kirby Vacuum salesman came walking into the back yard.  Without looking up, Maddie excitedly said, "Do you want some, dad?" She was mortified when she saw that it wasn't Shawn and went running into the house.  She spent some time crying from embarrassment, but was finally consoled when Caden offered to give her one of his water-expandable bugs.

The salesman said that he would shampoo the front room for us while he demonstrated the vacuum cleaner.  This was something that needed done, so I told him that we would watch his demonstration.  He said that he'd be back in half an hour.  I went back to work in the garden.  Pretty soon Maddie came out with a black wig on and a large Gerbera daisy in her hair.  She wanted to know if Kami could draw black eyebrows on her.  She said that if that salesman was coming back, she was going to be in disguise.  After the eyebrows were on, Maddie noticed that she still didn't look quite right.  She came out wondering if she could wear some mascara.  When she was finished, she looked hysterical!

I love remembering her missing two front teeth, too!

I told her that if it were me, I'd be more embarrassed to wear the wig ensemble than to have someone know that I had called them dad. She said, "Not me!!" She next insisted that we were all to call her Gertrude or Gertie while he was there. (A fitting name for how she looked.)  I thought that perhaps she'd be embarrassed to be seen in her outrageous disguise, but when three Kirby salesmen came back she stepped into the room and smiled confidently.  Then the main salesman said, "Didn't all of your kids have blond hair ? Weren't you blond the last time I was here?"  Maddie looked at him with fake shocked-suprise and shook her head.  The whole family got the giggles and we couldn't stop laughing.  The salesmen were looking like they were a little left out of a joke and I was trying to say something but was laughing too hard.  Finally I was able to laugh out, "One of my kids called you dad last time you were here, so she's not going to be here for the presentation.  She's too embarrassed."  We all started laughing harder.

Turns out, we sat through a four hour presentation and he never did get to shampoo the whole carpet.  Sigh.  But we sure got a good laugh the whole time.  At one point the salesman pulled me aside and asked if that was "Gertie's" real hair color.  O.K. He must have been pretty gullible - I thought that he had maybe caught on to the joke.  Maybe she looked like a Chemo patient.

The salesman, who apparently thought we were laughing the whole time because he was so entertaining

At any rate, during his presentation, he tried to include the kids and let them try various things with the vacuum cleaner.  At one point, he took the hose of the vacuum cleaner and vacuumed his own head just to show us how many dead skin cells it would suck up from his scalp.  Kami slyly asked, "Gertrude, do you want to help him demonstrate that?"  "Gertie" vigorously shook her head in the negative.  We all laughed hard again.  I don't know when we've had such a good family laugh."

Zany and quirky are definitely two words to describe our Maddie, and we love it!  She keeps us guessing with the way she thinks, and laughing with the things she comes up with. Anyways, every time I use my new vacuum cleaner I can't help but think of that experience.

As I wrote this, Maddie came and looked over my shoulder and said, "Man! I look so dorky!!"  But, about five minutes ago, she asked me if she should go check on something that our neighbors asked us to check up on.  I told her that would be a good idea.  The next thing I knew, there she was all decked out with a sun bonnet on of all things!  I asked her what she was doing wearing a sun bonnet over to the neighbors and she said, "I haven't done my hair yet and it's kind-of frizzy.  I don't want anyone to see it." (She's a little self-conscious about her naturally curly hair when it isn't fixed) I don't think she quite catches on to the fact that sometimes she is actually drawing more attention to herself  by donning these disguises! What a fun and funny girl!!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Birth Day and kindergarten car-pooling woes

The last few years, my birthday has been on a weekend day and boy have we lived it up!  Three years ago, we spontaneously picked the kids up after school on a Friday and went up to Jackson Hole and went to a really fun swimming place there.  The next year we also went to Jackson Hole and stayed in a really great hotel, were real tourists, and went swimming, but this time in the hotel's pool.  O.K.  I guess last year's birthday wasn't as exciting for the kids come to think of it;  Abram was still a relatively new baby which always motivates me to stick closer to home, and my birthday fell on Sunday, so I don't remember what we did for sure. At any rate,  I was having fun inviting the kids to my birthday parties and having my birthday be a day that they anticipated.

This year, I was wanting to make some really great plans once again, when I suddenly realized that the kids had school.  What a kill-joy!! Shawn and I decided that we would take the kids bowling that evening for the party.

opening presents- glad to see that I can pull off a surprised face when  I already know exactly what I'm getting!!

Sunday evening, the car started making funny noises, so we took it to the mechanic the next morning, which left us with Shawn's five-passenger commuter car. By evening we still didn't have our car back, so our plans changed again and it ended up that Shawn made me two fabulous pies and then we watched Tangled - a movie that the kids got for me.  We ended up having a nice evening, and later, for Spring break this weekend (spring break here is pretty short - Thursday and Friday plus the weekend) we will play out our original plans.

Shawn wanted me to do what he termed a Tosca Reno pose with his pies. She is a woman that he thinks is very annoying because she has pictures of herself posing -just like this-throughout her entire cook book.

And now for the car-pooling woes.  Three weeks ago, a new woman moved into our ward who happened to have a kindergartner.  I have been taking turns driving with one other woman, and so we asked this new woman if she would be interested in car-pooling.  I drove the first week, and the mother was outside her garage waiting for us when we pulled up to the house, so I pulled into their driveway.  As I backed up to turn and drive out, I heard my car hit something.  The something was some short pipes (for their well) right on the edge of their driveway, that I would have had no way of seeing from my rear view mirror.  This was horrible planning on the part of whoever built the house, and we are left with a nice little dent on the back of our suburban. That was the first woe.

See the little pipes to the left of the picture?

The second woe happened yesterday.  My car-pooling partner and I had driven for the first two weeks and it was now this new woman's turn to drive.  I was happily enjoying my birthday and had been gone for most of the morning, then got home and was talking on the phone to my sister Ivy. It was high time that Isabelle should arrive home and so I was watching for her and talking when suddenly my cell phone started ringing again and again.  So, I hung up from talking to Ivy and called whoever had been calling me, and it turns out that it was the school and that no one had picked up Isabelle or my car-pooling partner's son.

Luckily Shawn was home, having taken the day off, and he jumped in his car and went to get them.  Meanwhile I noticed that I had a couple of messages on my phone.  Well, to make a long story short, (I know, I know, it's too late!) this new woman had left me a message that she had decided that because of all of her "commitments" the car-pooling thing wasn't going to work out for her so she wouldn't be picking our kids up today!!!!!!!!!??!!!!!!! Then she had left one more message during the time that I was talking to Ivy that said, "Well, I'm at the school. Why aren't you getting your kids?"

I will just tell you now that  I was pretty steamed! And incredulous, astounded and amazed! Here she had happily let us drive for the last two weeks and then when it was her turn it suddenly wasn't convenient, and never did she make personal contact about it. That is what bothers me the most - that she just assumed that I would get her message last-minute. So, she picked up her own daughter, and left ours kids there.  I'm trying to see from her perspective how that could be a friendly, reliable, responsible thing to do. I must admit that I'm having a hard time. Who does something like that?!?

Have you ever noticed that it's usually right after conference that something like this happens?  I guess because you watch and listen and think about how you're going to try so hard to be more charitable, forgiving and the host of other things that the church leaders talk about, and then you have to have something happen to help you practice.  I guess that's why?

Just a random picture of Kami for 80's day today