Family Pic 2017

Family Pic 2017

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

What's a bored little boy to do?

Poor little Abram spends many looooong, and lonely days.  Luckily he doesn't really know it.  I notice that when the kids go back to school after a long weekend, all he can really think about is food.  Then, as the long monotonous days go by until the weekend comes once again, he starts to find ways to entertain himself. He spends many hours with his great imagination playing with his "guys" (action figures).  He follows me from room to room with them, getting interested in and even helping with jobs that he would never do if there were anything else going on.

One of his very favorite things to do is to grab my phone and take pictures of his world. I found three pictures of me sewing a skirt for Isabelle out of left-overs from Kami's Christmas formal:
Shawn and I took the little boys along with us to Twin Falls on Friday, and Abram was having a hard time seeing out the windows.  He took pictures by holding his arm over his head and then looked at the pictures to see what there was to see outside:)  And he took a few of the inside of Shawn's car:
He ended up getting pretty car-sick so we tried to make the trip as interesting as possible for him.  We went out to eat at a restaurant, bought him some toys on clearance at Target to keep him entertained on the way home- because while we came prepared for plenty to keep Pace entertained, we failed to think of Abram- and we stopped and looked down into the huge gorge that we had to drive over to get into the town:
Shawn trying to take a picture himself and Abram and get the river behind...
There he got it!

He spends an awful lot of time enjoying and playing with this new little brother of his, and they are getting pretty cute together.  Abram does his best to get him to laugh, and Pace doesn't disappoint.  I manage to get a few things done as they laugh away at Abram's silliness.

I have noticed that Abram usually isn't very far from Pace, and seems to be in most of his pictures:
And then, when Pace gets tired and cranky and needs a nap, Abram is a little disappointed until he remembers that he just might be able to wheedle his way into getting to watch an episode of "The Krat Brothers" on PBS kids because I will want the house as quiet as possible in hopes that maybe Pace will nap for a little while. Usually he likes to watch it in his dad's office.  And he makes a pretty cute executive:

Thursday, January 23, 2014

The things they say volume 2

*Abram has been experimenting with the power of prayer but so far he hasn't been very impressed.  Recently I taught him that Heavenly Father always answers our prayers, but sometimes He says 'no', sometimes He says 'yes', and sometimes He says 'not yet'.  The other day he came to me and told me that Heavenly Father always says 'no' to HIS prayers.  I asked him what he had been praying for.  He said once he prayed that all of the trees would disappear, but when he opened his eyes they were still there.  Another time he prayed that he could have more than one vitamin a day. Another time he prayed that all of the beans would disappear from his burrito because he hates beans.  Hmmmmmm.....

*Maddie (frantically rushing to get out to the bus):  "OH NO!!!  I don't have time to get my hand sanitizer!!"
Me:  "Why do you need hand sanitizer?"
Maddie: "Because we have square dancing in P.E. today!!"
Maddie:  "That was the WORST day of my life!"
Me: "Why?"
Maddie: "SQUAREDANCING!  It is so disgusting to have to touch some of those boy's hands!  And one boy completely refused to even hold hands with me."
Me: "Did that make you feel bad?"
Maddie: "NO!! Last year I used to see that boy pick his nose.  So I was really relieved.  And the boys bathrooms are set up at school so that the sinks are kind-of outside the bathroom, and a lot of the girls say that they have noticed that lots of the boys DON'T EVEN WASH THEIR HANDS!!"

She and I are only left to hope that these boys will develop some sort of hygiene somewhere along the line....(sigh!);)

*Pace is sick ....again.  All I can say is that he must be developing a great immune system!
Abram: "Mom, get the snot-taker for Pace!"
(I've never called it this, but knew exactly what he was talking about - that bulb syringe thingy that the hospital sends home with you, you know?)
Abram ( as Pace lays screaming): " Here I come you poor little fella!!!"

*Abram: "Mom can I have some gum?"
Me: "Yes, but just half a stick"
Abram: "Mom, don't look while I get it, Okay?"
Riiiiiggght! Kids are so funny. They really don't think adults are bright enough to see through a trick like that!:)

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Sunday Afternoon

A few little things from a (very restful!!!) day:

First of all, this is the solution for getting your picky eaters to eat their vegetables when their reason for being picky is the look of the food. "I don't like the green ones!"  "EW!!!!"  Well, now he doesn't see which ones are green, (or yellow, or whatever) and can thus enjoy:)

This is what my well-rested (five-month-old TODAY) baby is looking like today (he slept until 3 am without waking up!!):
Today I am thinking that maybe he would be a really easy baby if he could keep from getting sick for awhile?!
It was SO great to get to go to church again for the first time in weeks!! Everyone was healthy - and by golly I think my sanity is intact once again!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Confessions of a desperate house wife (but not the kind of desperate housewife that may come to mind)

* I am desperate for un-interrupted sleep. Sleep that lasts longer than 30 minutes night or day.  Nolan and Pace have had influenza - with Pace running a fever over 103.9 degrees. (yikes!) Pace is never a good sleeper. On his best nights he is up at least four times, but usually he is up over seven.  When he is sick I start counting the times I get into my bed instead of counting the times that he wakes up. Pace has had some sickness or other for the last four weeks and counting.

*I feel old and worn-out and frequently consider why one of my very hardest babies was sent as #7? Why not more towards the beginning of the family like my other hard babies when I was younger and more resilient and had a husband home to help?

* In the last two weeks I have missed family scriptures 4 or 5 times and let the kids take care of it because it was my only chance to sleep.  Yep - they have no parent there for "family" scripture time.

* I am desperate to be able to talk with adults because I have been cooped up in this house without a husband for so many weeks.  Most of my friends are finished having babies, however, so that poses a little problem.  When I get a chance to escape to the gym on Friday mornings and they ask what I've been up to, I have fascinating things to contribute, like "sick kids...!!??"  They can't relate anymore-and who really wants to talk about that anyway? Not me! - they quickly move on to more interesting topics of conversation  and I become a background listener.

*Sometimes I get teary just thinking about my mom and wishing that I could talk to her...

*I rarely- or briefly- get to talk to my husband on the telephone while he's gone because holding a 16 or 17 pound baby in one arm and a phone in the other hand while I bounce up and down to keep the baby quiet  tends to break my over-taxed back. We DO text back and forth all day long though...

*I get so excited when my husband arrives home that my kids start laughing at me and tell me that my voice "got super high-pitched" in my excitement!

* I blog more than usual when Shawn is gone, hoping  - and grateful -for any single comment that I get because it makes me feel like maybe I am not all alone in the universe!!!! (I know - p-a-t-h-e-t-i-c.)

*Sometimes (last week) my oldest daughter voluntarily skipped school because she could tell that I was in over my head.

*My oldest son voluntarily (I have great kids!) helps get the kids out the door every single morning for school.  Except for Friday mornings when Shawn is usually here to help me.  Caden and I have it down to an art because we get the kids out the door together four days a week.  I am so grateful that his bus comes 45 minutes after everyone else has to be on the bus.  We have exactly 30 minutes to get everyone else out the door every morning.  So Caden cooks breakfast, usually eggs and toast or oatmeal, while I put together five sack lunches.  Then he holds a screaming Pace while I get several heads of hair all presentable.  (The kids never miss the bus except for Friday mornings - HA!)

I'm not one of these women that keeps having kids because I can't get enough of the baby age.  Love my babies; don't love the stage. It's definitely a sacrifice during that first year or so (and the whole pregnancy leading up to it). But I love being a mother- especially from one year on:) I love making a difference.  This is the life I have chosen and I would choose it again, hands down, desperate feelings that it brings, and all:) I'm grateful for the outstanding training that I received for motherhood in the home that I grew up in. It was incomparable and it's a no-brainer that I should have a lot of children to share that blessing with now. "Because I have been given much, I too must give." I love to watch my children grow and become.  I hope that along the way I am growing too.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Fried bananas anyone?

Around 3:00 this afternoon I started thinking about what to make for dinner.  Each month I make a list of meals to make, and buy all of the groceries for all of the meals in one quick swoop through the grocery store, because I detest grocery shopping. Yes, I still have to run in (or send a child or husband) for more of the perishable items, but all-in-all, I have everything I need right at home.

 I looked through my list of meals and decided to make a Thai dish that I had never made before.

Then I thought how fun it would be to make a cultural evening around the dinner since it was Family Home Evening night.  So I got dinner going and then got online and pulled up a bunch of tabs about different aspects of Thailand's culture.  Then I let the kids know that they could each pick one of the categories and teach the rest of us all about it.  We ended up having such an enjoyable evening!!

Isabelle taught us a lot about etiquette and Buddhism:
Kami ran to the library and checked out some books on Thailand and then shared some things that she found to be interesting from a travel guide that was chuck full of interesting pictures. The kids couldn't help running over to see what she was talking about:
Maddie is being impressed by the women who put bracelets around their necks to make their necks as long as possible

Maddie taught us about their traditional clothing - you can see what Nolan thought about that:
Nolan taught us about houses in Thailand.
Some of the reports got a bit too long-winded for two of my boys to sit patiently through. Abram buried Caden in the girl's "Thai clothing" and then started jumping on him:

 Caden ended the night by making fried bananas and homemade ice cream.  Those of us who like bananas thought it was surprisingly delicious! (We already knew the ice cream would be!)

This was so much fun and so educational that we just might make learning about other cultures a weekly tradition for awhile!

Sunday, January 12, 2014


* Some kids (Belle) have to make New Year's Resolutions "to read less books this year". Isabelle reads everything she can get her hands on, and for the most part, is reading in all of her spare time.

*Teenage boys will ALWAYS smile when you comment on how tall they're getting.

*Naps with my little boys are such an anticipated, cozy time!  Sadly, I don't need them as much anymore.

*Four- year-olds sometimes crash during the afternoons without naps with their mothers.  And their solo naps don't look as comfortable.

*Perfect angel little boys can often turn into perfect rascals during sacrament meetings.

*There's always some wise mother after a wild meeting that is sure to put in her two bits about what you should do, say, or how much you should "enjoy this stage" and relax during said meetings.

*Abram has a sense of church fashion that is unparalleled.  We have a record of four weeks straight that I have thought I have had everyone squared away and ready to walk out the door only to find upon arriving that evidently I need to do the final inspection in the car! Abram is the master of finding a way to make his feet more exciting for church:) The first week, he arrived at church with his bare feet shoved into his Sunday shoes. We noticed once we sat down at church, and it looked so funny to us for some reason that we all got the giggles.  That must have encouraged him. The second week he had his every-day tennis shoes on.  The third week he had only one sock on, and the fourth week he had one ankle-length black sock and one long black sock.... he tried to once again go with only one sock and I caught it and told him that he needed to get another sock on.

*I don't know how it works, but babies have a built-in wiring that lets them know when you are particularly exhausted.  That is when their eyes look this way:
....And they seem to stay that alert for an amazingly long time

*My last observation of all is:  Isn't he the cutest baby EVER?!!!

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Girl's Choice

Having a teenager that is dating is so much fun!!  Our whole family has been enjoying it, in fact.

One of Kami's good friends, Annie, who is the youngest of seven children, and has therefore watched a lot of siblings recently go through it all, keeps Kami abreast of everything they need to be doing dating-wise. Before the Christmas formal had even come and gone, she informed Kami that it had occurred to her that they would need to ask someone to the Valentine's Formal (girl's choice dance) just as soon as they got back from Christmas break in order to have their choice of boys:)

So Saturday night Kami got down to business:

Or should I say that we all did?  Because all of us brainstormed ideas until we felt like we had come up with a suitable one, made a quick trip to Walmart, grabbed some goodies and we helped put things together:

We ended up compiling addresses to businesses that started with the first letters of her name.  She gave him a list of the addresses along with an explanation. The idea was that this boy would have to drive around and figure it out, (he could just get on google earth or something, really.)  But either way, he would have some figuring out to do.

When it came time to drop it off, we were all so invested in the project that everyone wanted to go along with her.  I thought that I ought to drive so that she could run up to the door, knock and make a quick get-away.  But then Caden or Maddie would have to stay home with the sleeping little boys.  So then I realized that Kami could drive and Caden could run it up to the door for her.  They were both keen on that idea!  In fact, Caden quickly came up with the idea to wear a cape I made for Maddie, when she was Syndrome for Halloween one year (here), and a gross mask.  He was being hilarious in that ensemble and we were all getting a kick out of it:
pictures just don't do justice to it all:( 

Caden ended up knocking and then backing up a few steps.  The boy Kami was asking answered the door and didn't see Caden at first so Caden said, in a crazy creepy voice, "I'LL BET YOU WEREN'T EXPECTING THIS!!!"  Then he danced/hopped around the kid's yard for awhile being all crazy/weird before running and getting into the car.

The kids came home laughing and delighted with the whole escapade.

I wonder if the boy will think it was Kami in the mask? Hahaha

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

The first formal dance

This kid was so much fun - Kami had a blast! They went with a group of about ten couples.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Christmas caroling

I know, I know!  I'm still catching up from Christmas!! But these are on the camera, and it would be nicer to have them here.  Pictures from the annual extended Gee family Christmas caroling:

Every Christmas Eve all of the Gees get together and load up on trailors and carol up and down the streets of Sugar City.  It's one of the kid's very favorite parts of Christmas.  Afterwards we ALL go cram into someone's house for eats.

Fun times.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

The things they say

Abram: "Dad, can I have some hanitizer?" (meaning hand sanitizer)

Nolan: (laughing uproariously) "It's not hanitizer!!!  It's hantanicizer!!"

One morning, while driving home after dropping Caden off for school, a song came on the radio.  It started with the words "I've been waiting for my dreams to turn into something".  Abram immediately piped up with, "I've been waiting for my dreams to turn into something..........but they can't!............Can they mom?"  Then a little worriedly as he thought about it more,  "Dreams CAN't turn into something right mom?"  I guess that would be plenty scary from a kids point of view.  All from a child's perspective...

Abram likes all of the characters from "The Avengers".  Especially Hulk.  But Hulk also really scares him, and perhaps this is why he is so fascinated by him.  He mentions regularly how the other characters and Hulk  have "anger issues."  Today he said, "sometimes dad has anger issues too.  Like one night you were gone and he told me to go get my pajamas on, and later he came upstairs and I still didn't have them on, and he said, "Get your pajamas on for Pete's sake!!!" For some reason, the fact that his dad just might have anger issues like the Avengers seemed an admirable trait in his eyes. Grreeeaaaat.

I was told today that it would be a great day to take down Christmas "directions".

"Games" with Abram are always entertaining.  Today we sat down on the couch with some goldfish crackers to have a little snack.  We started pretending that we were on a boat stranded in the middle of the ocean.  We had been there for weeks with no land in sight, and were only able to survive because every once in awhile we were able to catch a fish.  One day, when we were literally on the point of extinction, fish started "jumping out of the water straight into our mouths"!  (We were gorging ourselves on crackers) Then we noticed that the ottoman was a fairly close island!  Abram said, "I know!  I brought a trampoline!!" (everyone brings that on a boat trip...just in least they ought to! They really come in handy.  Boy do adults need to be more resourceful like this!!)  Later, we were wary because sharks were following our boat. Abram chimed in that "there was also a crocodile following the boat!"

DVD's are "diva-d's"

Isabelle, ever the teacher:  "Abram, what do you believe in?"
Abram: "Heavenly Father"
Isabelle: "And?"
Abram: "Jesus"
Isabelle: "And?"
Abram: "The Holy Ghost"
Isabelle ready to move on: "GOOD!!!"
Abram: "And Santa Claus"

Thursday, January 2, 2014

The Sealing

On the 28th, Shawn, Maddie, Pace and I made a quick trip over to Boise to go to my sister Katie's temple sealing.  Shawn and I to attend, and Maddie to watch Pace while we did so.

(below)l-r: Ivy, Danny SIL Sarah, Matt, SIL Kelly, Heidi, BIL Steve, Katie, SIL Leslie, Nathan, Adam, me, Pace and Shawn.  Only two of my siblings are missing from this picture: Aaron, and Eli who is on a mission in Chile.  Lots of siblings make for lots of nieces and nephews! Mom and dad have 43 grandchildren with four on the way.  Ivy is due in April, Sarah is due in August? , Heidi is due (with her ninth) in March, and Ori couldn't make it because she is due this month!

I'm so glad that we went - it was a really special and neat time!  I am so glad that Steve is a part of our family.  He has been like a real parent to Katie's kids and a perfect husband for Katie. He is great - a kind and genuinely nice person.

Katie, Steve, Danny and Sarah and us at a restaurant afterwards. Danny and Sarah:

There's nothing quite like family.