Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Don't grow up all at once!

Yesterday morning when Jenna woke up, she came in to my room and said that her tooth was bothering her. I asked her why, does it feel like something is stuck in it? She said "No, it's wiggly!" And sure enough when I stuck my finger in her mouth to check, it was a little wiggly. So then she says, "Should I pull it out?" I told her that it was only a little wiggly and it would probably take another week or so to come out. So then last night when I was checking my email when the kids were going to bed, I was surprised to see this:
Jenna: "Mom! It came out!" And upon further inspection:
Yep their was a hole. She had just yanked it out herself. She said it was bothering her and she couldn't sleep, cause she just kept wanting to wiggle it, so she just yanked it out. Just like that! If only all kids could be as easy as she is... or maybe I should say that I hope she stays so easy. {I'll keep my fingers crossed.}
So there you have it! She goes off to Kindergarten and loses a tooth all in the same day! What next?

Monday, August 24, 2009

Back to School

It's back to school time in our house, and I have to admit I have mixed emotions about the whole thing. I am excited for the kids to not be so bored. I am excited for the fact that there will be less fighting in our house (during the day at least). And I am excited for a reason to be more strick on bedtime, practicing their piano and stuff like that. I am NOT excited however that I am sending one more kid off (Jenna) to school, to learn all the stuff that well, you would rather they not learn. Like those obnoxious games like jinxing each other, the what game (I'll have to explain another time), and what it means to be chicken trapped (yeah, that one I'll have to explain at another time too). They learn to be obnoxious themselves and mean, but I guess that is the trade-off to learning all the good stuff too. Like how to share, what it means to be a friend, how to respect someone of authority, following the rules, and all the educational stuff too. I am also sad 'cause it will just be Jayden at home. It's nothing new, he was home by himself when Jenna was in preschool last year, but the sad part is he's got 3 more years til kindergarten and I think he will be sad.Here's the three off to school! Do they look excited?And now, the first day shots I get of each one. I did the normal close-up and then full outfit shot, but this year I added in the shoe shot. It was such an ordeal finding them all shoes, that I figured, they needed their own picture.

First Melissa! She is starting the 6th grade this year. Scarey if you ask me. Jr. High is only a year away and THAT makes me sad. And feel a little old. Then Spencer! He will be in second grade this year. I am just hoping that we have a better year this year for him. First grade was a tough one in regards to his teacher, we {OK, mostly me} took issue with a lot of the ways that she taught, how she disciplined and her lack of organization.

And now, Jenna! The Kindergartner. She is SO excited! And yes, she will be doing morning kindergarten and so far, she was able to get up on time, but she didn't eat breakfast. Which was OK today because they only went for an hour and then she came home and ate.

And Jayden! He's not doing any sort of school, but he wanted to be included in the picture taking. No shoe shot for him though cause he was in feet.

And there you have it!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

All Day, Everyday!

Jayden's Grandma had two of these bikes that the kids used to be able to ride around in her unfinished basement during the winter. Although, now that her basement is being finished, she was getting rid of them and we snagged one up for Jayden. And he is on that bike all the time. He will go out and ride around on the back patio for quite a while and then come in for a bit and go right back out.Here he is putting "gas" in his bike like the big kids pretend to do...

And all he does is go around and around in a circle. I don't know how on earth he doesn't wind up completely dizzy.

Here he is on a seperate day {Just ignore that whiney/nasaly voice in the background, Of course he's having a good time!}

Like I said, All Day, Everyday!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

While Michelle was here...

Michelle (my older sister) and here family came for a visit in July {yes, I am behind in my posting - but you try to blog while fighting with your kids for the computer during the day and your husband at night}. They came one day and then Michelle and her husband Brett left the next day for a much needed and WAY overdue trip to Washington DC. While they were gone, I was lucky enough (for reals) to get to watch their kids. There are only three of them at the moment, she is pregnant with number 4, and they are ALL potty trained and VERY well behaved (at least for me). I even took advantage of the extra help!
Not really, I am not that mean of an aunt. They all thought that it was fun. They stayed with us for three days and then they stayed with a friend one night and then my little sister Lisa for a couple nights before Michelle and Brett got back. After that, we went up to Lisa's house and celebrated the 24th of July (it's actually a holiday here in Utah). We started out with some pizza. After that we had some s'mores! And I use the term "we" in the same way I use it when when I ask Steve if "we" took out the trash. I didn't have one, and don't know why, that was some serious oversight on my part, I LOVE s'mores.

Then, we camped in Lisa's backyard. And again, this is the "we" as in not me, I slept in a bed, in the house. And from what I've been told, it rained. All. Night. Long. But the kids were still excited and happy to have slept in a tent. Since, I don't camp. I know, sometime in my life I will have to remedy that, but I am still in the process of getting myself psyched up for that it so far, it just hasn't happened.

You can see there in the pictures a hammock between two of the tents. My brother David was going to sleep under the stars. But seeing as how there weren't any stars, only raindrops, that didn't last too long.

The following week, Brett flew back home and left Michelle and the kids here to play for the week while he worked. So play we did. Only I didn't get pictures of it all. We took the kids to a park and fed the ducks, had a picnic and played.

Melissa is the only missing in the picture below, because she was the one actually taking the picture. Actually now that I look at it again, Lisa's youngest isn't in the picture either. In the bottom row, there is BJ (Lisa's), Jayden (mine), Brandon (Lisa's), Spencer (mine), Meagan (Michelle's), Jenna (mine), and Brittany (Lisa's). And in the top row Rebecca and Tyler (both Michelle's).

Another thing we did was took all our kids to Old Navy for some back to school shopping. We took up 6 dressing rooms and it was total chaos! The kids loved it though, and so did I. We walked through the store grabbing a bunch of clothes, a putting them in the shopping cart. Then went to the dressing rooms and the kids grabbed their stack and started trying on clothes. They would go in and come out with something new on, we'd (the mom's) decide whether they worked or not, and then by the end, had a stack to purchase and left. And other than needing some shoes and Melissa needs another pair of long pants, I got everything I needed. I think we permanently scarred the dressing room workers for life, I think that it will take them a long time before they decide to have any kids, like I said, it was pure chaos to anyone watching. For me, it was totally under control. All except for Jayden finding it funny to hurry and shut the kids dressing room door so that it would lock on them and we had to get the worker to unlock it who knows how many times!

All in all, fun times! Can't wait for the NEXT time Michelle comes for a visit!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

A little bit of culture (OK, it ended up being a little too much culture)

In an attempt to get our kids exposed to some "culture" {read - something other than watching TV, playing video games, swimming, etc.} during the summer, we took them to a local outdoor theater, where they were putting on the show "High School Musical 2". A co-worker of Steve's went the night before and said that there were two casts, an older group and a younger group. They saw the younger one, and thought that the older group would probably do a better job, but it was still decent. We went last year with some of our neighbors and had a really good time. We showed up an hour early with a little picnic dinner and ate before the show. And the show last year ("The Music Man") was fairly decent and fun to watch, so we went with pretty good expectations. {Can you see where I am going with this?}

Yeah, it was horrible. H.O.R.R.I.B.L.E. - and that is being nice. Jayden sums it up nicely:

Don't believe me? Watch for yourself...

Excruciating I know. Now hit replay over and over again for the next hour and a half and you would just about have our experience. The guy that played Troy, was totally monotone. Not just when he was talking, but when he was singing as well. I wish I got video of the "Bet on it" number. And you thought Zac Effron did a poor job of it in the movie, well this guy did 10 times worse. My kids are still talking about it and we actually went and saw this almost a month ago. So even though we fell short in giving our kids some culture, we sure made some great memories! And you can bet we will probably do it again next year!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Kids say the darndest things...

Jenna has kind of been on a funny kick as of late. Here are some things she has said lately:

When asked "Jenna, where do you live?"

Her reply? - "The Milky-Way!"

Then, the other night, she was explaining to me that Grown-ups aren't allowed to lie, because they are old enough to know better, but kids can lie because they are still learning!" {That was right after I substituted her Primary Class and we learned about 8 being the age of accountability. hmmmm.}
This was just a cute picture of Jenna with her cousin Brittany (Lisa's daughter - they were born a week apart)

Then, the other day, Melissa was starting to boss Spencer around and I said to her: "Melissa, are you Spencer's Mother?"

Her reply? - "No, but I sure like acting like it!"

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Swim Lessons

This summer Spencer, Jenna and Melissa have all done swimming lessons. When I was first looking to sign the kids up for swimming lessons, I was told about a place here in town that did private lessons, but I was also told they fill up fast so by the time I was calling, I was probably out of luck. At the same time, I knew my Mom's neighbor did private swim lessons and was REALLY good at it. Most kids learn to swim quick. However, my Mom lives 30 min. away, and I worried about driving back and forth every day for two weeks (you know, gas ain't cheap!) I called the first place, and they actually had two openings, however, they were only 20 min. lessons, for just one week. And I was pretty sure that Spencer and Jenna were going to need the full two weeks that my mom's neighbor was offering. So I went ahead, and signed Melissa up at the first place for just one week since she already knows how to swim, but just wanted a little help on getting her strokes better. And then signed Spencer and Jenna up with my Mom's neighbor. I figured that then I would know for future reference if the place close by would have been just fine.

Well, let me tell you, the driving 30 min. there and then 30 min. back, everyday for two weeks, was well worth it! After having watched the beginning swimmers where Melissa had lessons and then watching Jenna and Spencer's lessons, there was no contest. My Mom's neighbor was incredible and well worth every penny!

To begin with, Jenna hasn't really ever been afraid of the water. She doesn't mind her face getting wet and loves splashing around. Spencer on the other hand was terrified of the water. And when he got to where he could tolerate being IN the water, he would freak out if anyone splashed near him. So when we went to the first lesson and before they even got started. The teacher (Tracy) took him on a little "tour" of the pool (they walked around the pool, she showed him where the deep end starts, showed him the diving board, the stairs, and then where the bathroom was in her house {I told you she was a genius!}) before even getting in the water, and I could tell he was already starting to fight the tears. I thought "Oh man, here we go, two weeks of taking him to swimming kicking and screaming."

However, the first thing she does is tell them to get in the water, walk back and forth and then she tosses some rings and says "Go get em!" {She is British, so has this fabulous accent} and I'll be damned! He did it! I don't know if it was the accent, or what, but I tell you, if she told him to jump off the diving board, and swim to the side he'd do it. In fact he did! That's right on the first day. Here he was by the end of just 30 min. with Tracy:

You could tell that he was a little nervous to jump off, but then he just makes up his mind and goes for it. I was so shocked and excited for him, I cried, for reals. Of course within that 30 min. she knew that he was able to it safely. I think that he has had his dang life jacket on for so long, he knew how to swim, but just didn't realize that he could do it if he actually tried. Funny thing was I don't think he could sink if he tried. He really had a hard time doing the swim on the bottom of the pool thing because he just can't get down very far in the water.

Here he is backstroking it...

And then even diving off of the diving board by the end! By the end of the two weeks, Spencer had almost completed through level three of the Red Cross certification. Like I said, Tracy was a miracle worker!

Now on to Jenna! Jenna like I said hasn't ever been afraid of water. Here she is just enjoying the kickboard during lesson #1.

And by the end, here she is jumping off the diving board and swimming the length of the pool on her back. I didn't video it, but she also can swim 2/3 of the way across the pool underwater holding her breath!

While we watched the swimming lessons, Jayden enjoyed her trampoline!

Really I don't think I could say enough great things about Tracy. She was so patient with the kids, and also so no-nonsence, but in the nicest way. The first time Spencer jumped off the side of the pool, he kind of tried to hold onto the edge, and she simply said, "Cheater, Cheater, Pumpkin eater! We call that a cheater jump, Come on Spencer, let's try that again." She was also very encouraging, and positive. When Jenna would get tired of trying to float on her back, she would stop and stand up, and Tracy would just tell her to just catch her breath for a sec and keep trying. The kids both COULD NOT WAIT for lessons each day and were so sad when the two weeks were over.