Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The New Year

Today is the last day of the year. I can't believe all the blessings that have come our way. So many things have happened.
Now we are getting ready for this new year and some new adventures.
Of course we have goals to set and goals to continue working on. Some of these are the basics. Be more charitable. Learn and live the gospel principles. Have a home filled with the love and spirit of God.Take better care of ourselves. Organize ourselves. Be more dedicated. Pin It

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Click to play pre-Christmas hullabaloo
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Saturday, December 27, 2008

Winter Wonderland Picts

Click to play Snow Play with Cousins
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Monday, December 22, 2008

Winter Wonderland

I have loved the snow. There are always cons that go with it (wet floors, clothes, boots, cold fingers, icy roads), but the pros beat them out. First of all, the kids (Jayden and Katia) play out side more now than they did in the fall. I have tried to get Delta and Emma to play out with them, but they haven't figured out the snow suits yet. Today we invited Kaylee and Autumn over to play. they went out after lunch and I don't expect them in until nap time. Even with this wet snow that is falling, they are having a blast. They made a slide, then turned it into a snowman. Then they went into the back yard to play "house". Jayden loves to shovel the walks and drive. He also loves to make snow angels. Katia will go out when he does and she'll make paths in the snow or jump on the trampoline. (No, we haven't taken it down yet.) They will even play in the sand box or fort.
So I am praying for the snow to continue. Thankfully it looks like it will continue until after the Christmas break.
I will hopefully add some picts later. Pin It

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Just For Fun: Gingerbread Men

I think this is a fun idea to keep the kids busy over the holiday break.

Just For Fun: Gingerbread Men Pin It

Kaysville Momma: Funny Visiting Teaching Video

Kaysville Momma: Funny Visiting Teaching Video

Here is one of my New Years Resolutions. I really need to be better at getting my visiting teaching done. Sometimes when their schedule doesn't fit in my schedule, I think that it can't get done. I need to make more of an effort to make it fit. Pin It

Friday, December 12, 2008

Check this out!! Super giveaway!

Look at this awesome giveaway! Jump over to Ravings of a Mad Housewife & see this great giveaway she has going on! Scoot right over there to check it out!!

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Monday, December 8, 2008


When we first started recycling,. I was so overwhelmed. I now had to wash my trash. What else could be added to my overflowing list of to-dos?! We have lots of recycling, as I'm sure you can imagine. This means that we end up with lots of containers in need of rinsing out. Well, I have found an easy way to accomplish this daunting task. Get the kids involved.
Our children love to play in the water, especially the bath. So when I have an empty shampoo, soap, lotion, or body wash bottle, I give it to them in the tub to rinse out. It keeps them busy with a new 'toy" and does a chore at the same time. Pin It

Monday, December 1, 2008

FHE using Nursery Manual

With the new nursery manual out, FHE for little kids is a snap. All you do is hand it to an older sibling who can read and tell them to pick a lesson. Here is where you can find it online. Just click on the chapter you would like to focus on for the week. And the nice thing is that the manual has the pictures in it for each lesson. So simple, so easy, so perfectly perfect. Pin It

Muffin Tin Monday

For this week we did an easy thing with some quick favorites. We alsoo decided that for Christmas we would use our jello molds for the tins. So easy and right in our cupboard.
We had carrots, ranch, noodles, and snack crackers. Pin It

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Saturday Chores

Saturdays are busy and seem to mainly be filled with chores. Well this past Saturday I decided to try something new. I divided the chores up into 2 equal lists and then I had everyone draw names and split into 2 teams. It just happened to be girls against boys. We then set to work to see who could get done first. The girls just happened to win. I don't know if I will do this every week, but it sure worked last time.
Another thing that has worked for us is for each person to draw a chore. I place all the chores in a bowl and add in some fun things like playing a video game or building a
snowman. Then we all choose a chore to do and go on our way.
I have also done a treasure hunt or an egg hunt at Easter. The clues or egg could have a treat in it or a chore that will then lead to a treat. Pin It

Monday, November 17, 2008

Muffin Tin Monday

Okay, things have been a bit hectic since the end of October. So I did a little searching yesterday to find some great things the kids and I could do together besides the usual ones of puzzles, reading, movies, coloring, or cleaning.
I first came across a website talking about MTM and decided that this would solve one of my other problems: Mac N Cheese for lunch everyday. K is addicted to the stuff. She wants it for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The theme for this week is: Dippin'. So here is what we came up with: carrots, crackers, peppers, broccoli, apples (though they didn't like the idea of the yogurt dip), cheese, and chicken nuggets.

K ate pretty well, but J didn't want to eat until his fun was threatened. Then he gobbled it up.
Next week theme is: Food My Kids Like

For our activities, we made toilet paper roll turkeys
1. color a piece of paper with fall colors

2. fold it like a fan
3. fold it in half

4. cut out and color a face, wings, legs, whatever
5. glue on to toilet paper roll
6. place fan into top of roll
We baked some cookies (this weeks theme is going to be Little Red Hen with baking), also did a puzzle, and set the tent up for rest time.
Today didn't go perfectly. I still didn't get dressed until 10am, only one load of laundry is being washed, and K still wants to be held a lot, but it made me feel like I was doing a better job of handling things. I let you know how the rest of the week goes. Pin It

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Chores Made Easy

Today we found the easy way of mopping the kitchen floor. let me share it with you.

Step 1- Assign your preschooler the job of rinsing the lotion bottles out for recycling. (they love water so will jump on it)
Step 2- Leave the kitchen to go feed and change the baby(ies) and get them down for a nap.
Step 3- Have the older sibling come and join in the rinsing process.
Step 4- The children need to plug the sink and fill it all the way up.
Step 5- Now the children place their feet in the sink.
Step 6- While the water is still running, keep rinsing out the bottles and dump them either in the other sink or on the floor. Either way, with the running water and the feet in the sink, the floor will become thoroughly wet.
Step 7- After you have the baby(ies) down for a nap, go check on the progress. If the floor is not wet enough, turn around and don't let them know you saw them. If it is wet enough, have them shut off the water and get out off their wet clothes while you go grab all the available towels.
Step 8- Dry the floor with the towels (you may need to move the fridge for part of this process).
Step 9- hang clothes and towels to dry some before placing them in the laundry, or simply put them in the washer immediately.

Now, doesn't this sound like a speedy and easy way to mop the floor. Pin It

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Going Berserk

Well, the last few weeks have been crazy. We had Halloween which is filled with activities. Now we are getting ready for Thanksgiving and Christmas all at the same time. Also school activities have been mixed in there. And with the time change, I am definitely going berserk.
Yesterday the only thing I got done is laundry and fixing Alice's skirt. Today I had book club, and Conan had preschool. Now I have to try and finish the days laundry and scrub the bathrooms. Hopefully Things 1 & 2 will take a good nap. Pin It

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Happy Halloween

Here are the pictures for you all to enjoy.

Click to play Happy Haunting 2008
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Saturday, October 25, 2008

Parent Teacher Conferences

This month all the kids had P/T conferences. This means having lots of days off school, visiting with teachers, and eating out. The reason we started taking the kids out to lunch is because we don't pay kids for their grades like some people do. But we do want to reward their efforts. School is so much more intense these days. So we decided that we could take the kids out to lunch as a way to show that we appreciate the hard work they do.
This time the girls (Elyse and Julia) picked going to Arby's and Ari chose IHOP. We took all the little kids with us this time so that we could spend some time with everyone. We have been more busy lately, and decided this would be a great way to see everyone.
I do like P/T conf for the meeting with the teachers. We have some great teachers and great kids. It is good to hear how well they are doing, and for THEM to hear how well they are doing. (Julia was probably the most surprised.) It keeps them motivated to keep working hard and doing their best. It's also good to see what the teachers expect from them and things that we can do as parents to help them succeed. Pin It

Friday, October 24, 2008

What my kids think of me.

I saw this on a friends blog, so after reading this I would like to hear what your kids think of you. I started with the boys, then I will ask the girls what they think.

First Jayden:
1. What is something mom always says to you? Clean up. Do chores.
2. What makes mom happy? Cleaning. Leaving blankets on the shelf.
3. What makes mom sad? When I don't do anything she says.
4. How does your mom make you laugh? Telling funny jokes.
5. What was your mom like as a child? A kid.
6. How old is your mom? 91
7. How tall is your mom? 43 feet
8.What is her favorite thing to do? Cook.
9.What does your mom do when you're not around? Clean.
10. If your mom becomes famous, what will it be for? Being a rock star?
11.What is your mom really good at? Drawing.
12.What is your mom not very good at? Breaking a door down.
13.What does your mom do for her job? Clean.
14.What is your mom's favorite food? Chicken.
15.What makes you proud of your mom? Doing her chores.
16. If your mom were a cartoon character, who would she be? Senator Amidala.
17. What do you and your mom do together? Go to the beach.
18. How are you and your mom the same? We were born the same.
19. How are you and your mom different? I'm a boy and she's a girl.
20. How do you know your mom loves you? By hugging me!

Now Ari:
1. What is something mom always says to you? I love you.
2. What makes mom happy? Chocolate.
3. What makes mom sad? When we don't listen.
4. How does your mom make you laugh? Being silly.
5. What was your mom like as a child? Full of energy.
6. How old is your mom? 36
7. How tall is your mom? 6 feet
8.What is her favorite thing to do? Eat chocolate.
9.What does your mom do when you're not around? clean.
10. If your mom becomes famous, what will it be for? Best Mom Ever
11.What is your mom really good at? Taking care of the twins.
12.What is your mom not very good at? Being mean...sometimes.
13.What does your mom do for her job? Being a mom.
14.What is your mom's favorite food? Chocolate.
15.What makes you proud of your mom? She's a good mom.
16. If your mom were a cartoon character, who would she be? Animated Yoda.
17. What do you and your mom do together? Clean.
18. How are you and your mom the same? Our hair.
19. How are you and your mom different? she's a mom and I'm a kid.
20. How do you know your mom loves you? Because she takes care of me.

I'll do the girls later when everyone is home. Pin It

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Pumpkin carving

This week we did the fun Halloween FHE. We carved pumpkins. We have been trying to fit it into our schedule since the beginning of the month. But here it is almost the end and we are just now getting to it. While at the store picking them out, I had the four little ones with me and 6 pumpkins in the cart. The bagger asked how many kids I had, and was glad that i had 7 and the other 3 were older so I wouldn't spend the whole week trying to carve jack-o-lanterns.
Well, one good thing is that the two carved ones got done in one night (it usually takes 2-3). and Zena was totally happy to paint hers pink and stick foamy shapes on it (no parent involvement needed, just supervision) . Ari thought that we should carve one for Emma and Delta (but I was happy to just assist the other kids and not HAVE to do one alone.
Elyse did an excellent job on hers. She wanted Jack Skellington and you cant just print a template for it because of licensing. So she just created her own. So awesome.
Ari wanted the Grim Reaper, and found something that was scary and easy.
Jayden cleaned his out and painted it and will carve it today sometime.
Julia read (the last book in the Twilight series) to finish up her pages for the trimester due the end of the month. She will work on hers after she is done (can't put the book down except to eat and sleep). Delta and Emma sat in their high chairs and watched for awhile, then I fed them and they went to sleep. Pin It

Friday, October 17, 2008

Good News to Share

As some of you know, Elyse is on the Debate team. They had their first tournament this past week and she won both rounds. The judges said that the only thing she had to work on was speaking louder. I was so excited for her! She was so EXCITED!

I also have Julia's and Ari's school picts. Here is your preview: Pin It

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Delta's ready for pork chops

Here is a book that we should read to Delta tonight for bed.

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Wonderful Weekend

Well, conference was so awesome this time, not that it was horrible other times. But I was able to listen, and the kids listened. Even DS Jayden listened. I was amazed.

To start the day off, we had our traditional Saturday meal of crepes.

When we started this tradition we did the most simple recipe:
1/2 cup flour, 1/2 cup milk, and 1 egg for each person who is eating. Add a bit of water and mix.
Heat a fry pan up on med-hi. Pour mix in pan, swirl it around until the whole bottom is covered. Turn when the bottom has started to brown. Put on a plate after the other side has started to brown.
For toppings we have a major smorgasbord. strawberries, syrup, chocolate pudding, chocolate chips, sugar, sprinkles, whipped cream, and anything else you can think of.

The recipe we use now is a bit more intense:
1 cup flour
1 cup milk
1/2 cup water
4 eggs
3 tablespoons sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons melted butter
Mix all the ingredients except the butter with a whisk. Add the butter slowly. Let it sit for about half an hour. Cook just like the easy crepes. (While the batter sits I start poached eggs for my Lova Tone.)

Lunch was kinda free for all.
Sunday breakfast is always muffins (except fast Sundays which is cereal for those who don't fast). Always lemon poppy seed and one other.
Lunch was free for all again.
Dinner was Navajo tacos. (One way I've found to make this easier is, first of all, the kids help, and second of all, I let the bread machine do the dough. Then a can of chili for the topping.)

We really didn't have any chores as the kids were out Friday and we got them all done then. It was rainy, so we just wanted to stay in and enjoy the sounds.
The one tradition that we weren't able to do this time is start on Halloween costumes. JoAnns is having a sale next weekend so we will get Elyse's pattern then, and also the fabric. She is off today and is starting on part of it with fabric we already had on hand. Her's is the only one I'm "making" this year. The others are just being thrown together. I love that!
Today I decided to organize my craft area so sewing will not be too trying of a task. Well, while I was straightening, I left Emma to play where Jayden and Katia were. This is where I found her fast asleep a few minutes later.

I knew she could move, but was amazed at how well and how quickly. Pin It

Friday, October 3, 2008

Flashback Fridays

You know, they just don’t make cartoons like they used to. This week let’s flashback to a few of our favorite childhood cartoons.What did you watch?

The cartoon I remember the most is Smurfs. I also loved Battle of the Planets and Super Friends. Chipmunks, shirt Tales, Snorks, Care Bears, of course the Disney cartoons. Captain Caveman, Scooby Doo....
but the one thing that is different today than it used to be, cartoons don't start until 7:00 instead of 5:00am. Before that, the news is on. But there are also a lot of cartoon channels. (By the way, we only have basic cable. Who has time for more than 20 channels anyway. Not our family. We do watch a lot of movies.)

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Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Gerneral Conference Prep

Okay, so having a large family, I have to get ready for the little things (well, big things) like conference. I have come up with a list of things we need to accomplish as far as chores ans projects. I also printed out packets for the kids to color and do while listening. (Go to this link for some for your kids.) I also like to have fun food to eat, so the menu has to be done as I go shopping on Thursday and don't like going back too many times during the week. I also de-cluttered the front room so that it will be comfy for us to hang out in. Hurray! I have flat surfaces again! Now the only thing we can do is pray for the spirit to be there and hope we hear something that will help our family progress. Pin It

Friday, September 26, 2008

Getting to know Ari

Last night was Pack Meeting for our ward. The activity part of the evening was getting to know the leaders and the boys as there have been major changes in the past few months. They sent home a questionnaire to be filled out. We decided to fill it out as a family. Here is what can be learned about him:

My cub scout's name is: Ari S.
He has 7 siblings (6 sisters and 1 brother)
He was born July 4th
His special talents and qualities I admire are: he's a great speller, he sews, draws, and is an excellent reader.
One of his favorite things to do is: read.
One of the funniest things that ever happened when he was involved was: Well yesterday he put on his Care Bear costume that he wore in 1st grade. He says that lunch recess is always funny. And when he was 5 we went tubing and he went down the hill on the disk, hit a bump, and did a flip. It scared me, but he thought it was great.
His goals for the future are: to go on a mission, go to college and become a teacher, and to invent a transportation device. This is to cut down on driving time going to visit family (he gets car sick sometimes) and to cut down on costs.
He is special to our family because: he loves the little kids and is always willing to help take care of them.

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Thursday, September 25, 2008

72 hour kits

As General Conference is approching, we are getting ready to go through our stuff for 72 hour kits. As I was looking for a few lists to make sure we are on the right track, I discovered a web site with some interesting information. I also got some feed back from some others out there that I hope will help us all out. Thanks to all for sharing these ideas and things with us.

My brother and I have both had problems with mice getting into 72 hour kits in the last year. I found out that mice have no trouble chewing through juice boxes, in spite of the tinfoil layer. Couldn't figure out where all that liquid dripping down my shelves came from! They also like trail mix quite a bit. We revamped our 72 hour kits, putting everything not in cans into plastic gladware type containers to keep the vermin out. We are having to plan for new allergies also, so most of our old 72 hours kits (and much of our year supply - sigh - all that wheat) is now useless to us, except for barter. My brother's experience with mice was far more amusing. They got into the m&m's in his 72 hour kit in the garage, and painstakingly carried them all into a stash in the oil pan of his car. Next time he took his car in for an oil change, they paged him and made him come back so that he could see the oil pan full of m&m's!

We use the pop-top fruit cans and have never had a problem. I don't think those cans of fruit are supposed to be stored that long (more than 2.5 years), and it's possible that they were stored in some extreme temperatures. I have had candy melt before and not just Jolley Ranchers. I think any hard candy that is a bit translucent will melt. I've learned to just stick to hard peppermint candies. We rotate our 72 hour kits (they are in 2.5 gallon paint buckets) every General Conference, though sometimes we leave some things untouched (i.e. MREs and water bottles) if they haven't been stored very long. I do recommend replacing tuna fish, or similar every 6 months at the longest! And always store something in the original packaging. Trying to buy a big bag of pretzels and separating them into smaller packages (even with vacuum-sealed bags) is asking for a yucky snack later! We learned that the hard way.


I put my 72 hour kit into a large heavy duty plastic container with cover and handles. I keep in in our closet under the stairs, so we can grab it quickly. No bugs have ever gotten into it (but then again we do have pest control). Every so often I open it up to update the items and take out things my kids no longer would find "fun" to do or eat. I usually put food items that will last a year into it. I check the dates on the cans at the supermarket to make sure items will last. I have spent a lot of time in and out of the hospital lately and haven't been able to check my kit which makes one feel uneasy during hurricane season here. Luckily my Mom (non-member) came to help and checked things for me. I do have friends that keep their kit in the same plastic containers in their garage with no problems. Of course since we live in Florida we don't put things likc chocolate or items that will melt in the garage. You can keep a goody storage container inside the house but make sure it is out of sight. :) In Florida we don't have basements either so we have to make good use of space. We have to get pretty creative. Like putting plastic containers with food storage under the bed. One can even decorate boxes or baskets with storage items inside and place a little plant by it. I also keep all important papers in a zip lock plastic bag. All family photos are stored in my closet in a ready to go plastic container.
P.S. I also keep dog food and toy in our 72 hour kit for our dog

Something that was told to me a long time ago about 72 hour kits is that you want to put them in some type of backpack.
The reasoning behind that is if you have to walk because roads are blocked and you can't drive anywhere, carrying something
in your hands can be very tiresome. I don't know if you have gone hiking holding on to something and about 30 minutes in
you wish you had put it into a backpack, but I have and frankly, I don't know if I would want to carry a big plastic bucket full
of cans. We use MREs, which I must admit aren't the most tasty, but they are nurtritious and store very very well.

Just an idea,


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Kids Say III

Ok, so last night we were discussing about the medical field being sued for all kinds of malpractice stuff, including people who are diagnosed with cancer and given 6 months to live and then end up not dying at all (well, until it's their time to go of course). The reason someone would sue medical personnel for this type of misdiagnosis is because they have given away all their stuff to friends and family, and now are left with out some things they need.
Julia's comment on this was the best.
This person would be in the kitchen wanting a great snack and would say, "Hey, I think I'll make a ...smoothie....Oh, yeah, gave my blender away to Bronson."
When I asked her if I could share this comment, she said I could if I would share Jayden's new phrase.
This past summer, Jayden (being the boy he is) was making the ppfffttt sound and saying, "That came out of my butt." One day when we told him for the millionth time to not use that word, he said, "It's not that kind of butt, it's the other kind." We told him that other word was used like however. So a few minutes later he made the pfffttt sound again and said, "That came out of my however." Pin It

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

We Be Jammin' (plums, apples, and babies, Oh My!)

It is fall as of yesterday, so of course this means harvest time. Now I love to can, so of course I had to make jam, ..... and apple butter, ..... and dehydrated apples (but no salsa this year).
Last week I did one batch of jam and one of apple butter. Yesterday my mom came and we were able to get through 5 batches of jam and one of apple butter. We also dehydrated 2 batches of apples.
The thing I learned about canning is that helping hands make light work. I had the kids pick apples and plums last week. My mom arrived Sunday night and we started working Monday morning after getting everyone off to school. Jayden and Katia were in charge of keeping Emma and Delta happy. I also let Jayden help with some other things. He ran the food processor (while wearing earmuffs), laid apples on the dehydrator, and helped run things here and there.
It was a tiring day, but I kept telling myself, "Clay loves my jam." "My jam is Clay's favorite." (Clay is my nephew who loves the plum jam.) This made the fruity hands, hours standing, and sticky floor worth it.
The plums were the hardest to process. They don't release their pit as easily as cherries and apricots. You have to either cut around it and lose some of the fruit, or squish the meat off the stone. This means that your hands are stained for a few days. I figured that someone would have found an easy way to do this process, but after doing a search online, everyone was just complaining about the same thing I was. Oh well.
I am glad to say that I have only 3 more batches of jam to do.

Katia was very good at playing with the babies. She got so tired that she fell asleep in the baby swing. Don't ask me how she climbed into it.
Emma was feeling abandoned by the end of the day. She finally fell asleep about 10:00 after I held and played with her for about 2 hours straight. Pin It

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Kids say II

Okay, so Katia is on a roll. Tonight she has a sore bum and after a diaper change said, "I want a pink band-aid on my bum."

We also got Elyse's school picts today. Here is a preview. Watch for a copy around Christmas.

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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Kids say the darnedest things.

Today Katia is sick. When she got up this morning after coughing all night, I asked her how she felt. This is what she said, "My ears are turned off."
Poor thing.
At the doctor, he said that is the first time he's put that symptom in his computer. She also had an eye glued shut and her nose hurts. But the pink medicine should help. Pin It

Monday, September 15, 2008

Practicing the MOVES

This past week was such fun. Many things happened. But the one thing that was quite a blast, was watching Delta get up on her knees and try to go forward.

Emma is rolling everywhere, but her major milestone is being the eating pro. She will eat twice what Delta does. She also is more patient.

Yes, with all these things going on, life is a lot busier than before. I have to always keep the house picked up, and meals are more consuming. The thing that helps me keep on top of it, is getting up and moving early so that things are done when the kids get up. If dishes are put away, laundry started, me dressed, and breakfast done, then when they get up I can focus on them.
After Elyse and Julia leave, Jayden and Ari usually get up first, then Delta and Emma Beth, then Katia. This trickle is easy to deal with. Pin It

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Preschool Co-op

Last school year I started a co-op for preschool. It consisted of 6 families. We chose a curriculum to follow (The Complete Daily Curriculum for Early Childhood and the letter books from and then traded off the home to have it at each week. We met twice a week and a helper mom would stay to help with crowd control.
This year we are doing somewhat the same thing. We are integrating a workbook and phonics and using the activities not used last year in the lesson plans. We are also not having the helper mom stay at the home, but she will help with the younger children. Yes, this is mainly for me. Today I taught for one of the sick moms and my helper mom took all three of the little girls to her house. This was quite nice of her. She has one little girl at home who is 1 yo. Her and Katia played together while Emma and Delta were bounced.
My main reason for starting a co-op was to help Jayden get out of his comfort zone and go to other places without me. I was quite worried this year as Jeanette won't be there any of the times. But he did great the first day and even let another mom help him get to the house so I didn't have to take him the whole way. I was excited.
The other reason was the cost. Other than supplies needed, it is free. It costs time and art supplies. This is a great deal compared to $60-$85 a month.
I have enjoyed this and it has helped me not miss teaching school the last 2 start of school seasons. Maybe it's because I get to use the new crayons. Pin It

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Breakfast Dinners

Breakfast is my favorite meal. I love pancakes, french toast, waffles, and, especially, EGGS! I love it so much that once a week we have breakfast for dinner.
But sometimes the sweetness can get to me. So there are a few things that I like to make to switch things around.

Egg Burritos
I scramble up some eggs and add some meat (sausage or such), tomatoes, green chillies, and some spices (salt, pepper, chili powder, ans sometimes garlic salt). Then I cook them in the pan until cooked to the desired consistency. Then I warm up some tortillas, get out the salsa, sour cream, onions, and cheese. Then I let everyone put their burritos together, and we chow down.

A new recipe we have tried special for Julia, the German fan, is German Pancakes. They are quite simple.

German Pancakes

I use a 9x13 glass baking pan. Put 3 TBLS of butter in the pan and put the pan in the oven. Preheat to 450. In the mixer ---- 6 eggs, 1 cup of flour, a handful of sugar, 1 cup of milk and 1/2 tsp. salt. Mix until well mixed and fluffy. Pour into the preheated pan and bake for 20 minutes. This will puff up around the edges. Serve with fruit or your favorite syrup.

And the other great favorite, but a longer prep dish, is Country Brunch Skillet. It is a one dish meal with all the jazz.

Country Brunch Skillet

1 lb bacon
6 plus cups frozen hash browns ( I like the one with all the peppers and stuff, other wise I add green pepper and onion).
salt and pepper
6 plus eggs
1/2 plus cheese

In a large skillet over med heat, cook the bacon. remove and crumble, then set aside. Drain all but a bit of the grease. Add the hash browns and salt and pepper. Cook for a few minutes, the cover and cook stirring occasionally until the hash browns are browned. (about 15 minutes) Make wells in the hash browns for the eggs. Break an egg in each well. Cover and cook on low heat for about 8 minutes, until the eggs are done. Sprinkle with cheese and bacon.

Not all of the kids like this meal, but it adds variety.

Happy Cooking!

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Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Manners FHE

Last night we had a fun Family Home Evening. I recently purchased a book for Katia titled Polite as a Princess.

While reading it I noticed that there are a few things that our family doesn't do very well. So I decided that we should have a FHE on the subject.
I started by reading the book to them. Then we did a quiz I found in the New Era called How to Pass the Pass the Potatoes Test.

Then we did a crossword puzzle.

Here are some other links that I used for this lesson.

Mind Your manners

Idea List Pin It

Monday, September 1, 2008

Laundry Chaos

There are a few home management items that have to be done on a regular basis. One of these is laundry. It can be all consuming. It can pile up. It can make us crazy. The one thing I hate is to want to wear something, only to have it missing. Where could it be? Under the bed? In a drawer? On the chair? In the laundry?
As our family has grown and I have gone from working mom to stay at home mom, the way to deal with laundry has changed.
When I was working and there were only 3 children, I would do a load of laundry in the morning, change it at lunch, and fold it at night. I would do this three days a week and was able to keep up.
Then when I was at home taking care of the family, I had a wash day. I would gather all the laundry and sort, wash, dry, and fold it all in one day. It would be done and not worried about until the next week.
This worked until we had Katia. Then I was doing laundry until until 9:00 one night and decided that we needed 2 wash days. While I was pregnant with Emma and Delta I only had until about 2pm until I couldn't do anymore. I switched to doing the wash every day. This has worked out great and doesn't overwhelm me any more.
What I do is every morning I sort the laundry until I have a full load. I purchased the spring laundry baskets and sort them in red, blues, towels, and lights. The little girls things go in one load along with gentle cycle items. These clothes get put in a hamper in their bedroom. I also purchased a laundry hamper to go in each bedroom and in the bathroom down stairs. Then I wash it and see if there is another load that is full enough to be washed that day.
Now laundry is one of the first things I do each day. While it is washing, I will do my other morning routine items and then it is ready to be switched. One thing I have decided is that I will not start a load after 12:00 noon. If I do then laundry takes to much of the afternoon. I like this time to read to Jayden and Katia, or watch a movie or play a game with them.
Folding the clothes is one thing that has been a trial. I like to watch movies. So I would bring the basket of clothes up stairs and fold them in front of the TV. This worked well with 4 kids and I was rewarded for my efforts by a fun movie (like Pride and Prejudice). Now that there are 3 more, the couches and floor would be covered and it would take forever to put away. I now fold the laundry in the laundry room. I have a place that I hang everyones clothes and piles for each person's items. Then they are in charge of putting their own things away. I do put away Tony's and my things, along with the little girls things and whatever Jayden can't put away him self.
If I still have laundry needing folded after the kids come home, then I have them help to fold them.
I also have the kids help keep the laundry moving along. Before Delta and Emma were born, everyone learned to do laundry so that they could help our family in this way. Pin It

Monday, August 25, 2008

And the Chaos that shall reside in thy home shall be great.
For it shall last all the days of thy life.
Not less than thou livest. For that is not the entirety of thy life.
For the chaos in thy home shall last your entire life.
No more. No less.
And that chaos shalt be great...

The past 5 days have fit right in with this. Katia had a cough last week. Not a bad one. But on Thursday Emma started not feeling well, followed Friday by Delta. Emma ran a fever for half a day, and Delta ran one for 2 days. They are all doing much better now. Delta is a bit congested and miserable, but not as bad as yesterday. Of course now Tony is getting sick, so...Here we go 'round the family. I do think that that it is better to have both Delta and Emma sick at once and get it over and done with, though there is no rest. But now that they are on the mend, I can get some things done.
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Fun scrap page

Here is a page I was playing with. I think it shows Julia's personality pretty well. Pin It

Thursday, August 21, 2008

The first day of School

So I sent my oldest off to 10th grade. It was exciting and kinda sad. Three more years until she graduates. Yes, I am happy for her. She is taking early morning seminary. It starts at 6:25am. She had to get up at 5:15 and leave an hour later. We are carpooling with another family in our ward. This way we won't have to make the 7 minute drive every day.
I was quite surprised that she wanted to take early morning, but she wanted to be able to take more classes during the day. They only have 5 class periods a day. Kinda few, but what do you do? I guess take early morning seminary. I told her it would be great. When you are choosing to have it in the morning, I think you get more out of it. Plus it's a great way to start the day. I took early morning while we lived in California. It started at 6:00am and was at the church about 10 minutes from the school. For the most part I loved it. It was the only thing. I was sometimes way tired, but I do feel I learned a lot. Pin It

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Starting School Again

Twas the night before school,
While eating a cookie,
The family was happy,
Just sitting there lazily.

The back packs were hung
by the door filled stuff
This will make morning easier
and not cause a huff.

The shopping went well.
There are pencils and paper,
Pants and jackets, too.
Plus new shoes and a binder.

Now if we can just get up
And not have to rush.
The babies are sleeping.
Please remember to HUSH!

We'll make pancakes with chips.
Julia likes Semi-sweet.
Elyse likes milk-chocolate
In the pancakes she'll eat.

Now it's out the door.
Ari hasn't far to walk to.
Jayden and Zena are sad
for they've no one to talk to.

I'd like to sit and rest.
I've been up for hours.
But the little ones are calling.
And also the chores.

So, here we are at the beginning of another school year. I do love school especially shopping for school supplies. It is so much fun. I took the girls to buy clothes on Monday and it was fun to see what they liked. Elyse is definitely into pants. She didn't have a hard time at all picking any out. Julia found 2 jackets that she liked. Katia is so easy. Anything with pink on it is a hit. Of course I get to choose all of Delta's and Emma Beth's. Emma is the purple baby, and I found a cute jumper dress for her. Then I found some twinner dresses for them both. I had so much fun!!. Jayden and Ari don't like to shop (hmmm... Are they boys, or what). Ari finally found a back pack that he likes. Now just to get one for Julia and we are set. ShopKo here we come.
Today for the last day of "freedom", Elyse and Julia are going to the mall, and Ari is playing with friends. Katia has fallen asleep in her bed (a rarity). Jayden is watching Star Wars (what else). Emma is watching me type, and Delta is asleep. Tonight we are going out to eat.

So, this past weekend I switched out the cradle for a pack and play. We aren't quite ready for them to be in Katia's room, so this will work for now. Delta started rolling about 2 1/2 weeks ago and last week I was woken up by Emma kicking her in the head. Poor thing. So I decided that it was time. They probably should have been switched out about a month ago, but oh well. Since giving them more room, they are quite a bit more wiggly on the floor. Delta and Emma moved all the way across the floor. The mystery moving is in full swing now. This means that I have to vacuum everyday.

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Thursday, July 17, 2008

Infant Reflux or GERD

As most of you know, Delta and Emma have acid reflux. This is where the acid in the stomach comes up and gives heartburn type symptoms. They both have to burp really well, and get tummy aches easily. The other thing that we were dealing with is Delta's reaction to milk products. Well, I wasn't drinking any milk or eating milk products. This helped her to be able to digest the breast milk better. The end of June I started drinking milk again and Delta did okay with it. Until now.
About two weeks ago Emma started having a hoarse voice and coughing. I thought it was a cold. When it didn't go away, I took her to the doctor to see if it was the reflux irritating the esophagus. We believe it is. We increased her dose of zantac to see if this would help. Tuesday Delta started having the same thing, so we increased her dose as well.
Wednesday came and they seemed to be getting worse. I called a friend whose sons both had reflux to ask her for tips. She shared some tips with me that we are trying. Making sure to burp them really well after feedings. Give them Mylicon Drops right after they eat. Swaddle them tightly. We did have some tricks that we are sticking with. We sit Emma up in the corner of the couch or in the swing to sleep. When I feed them. they both sit up on my lap facing each other. When I play with them lying on the floor, I will kick their legs and kind of squish their tummies with their knees. This seems to help get the gas out.

Wednesday evening I decided to call the pharmacist to see how long the zantac takes to kick in. He said it should have started to improve their symptoms already. So I went on line looking for things to try to help. I came across a website that said dairy products are typically the cause for acid reflux in breastfed babies. Well, Hmmm, I just started drinking milk the end of June. And that is when the trouble started to escalate. So, No more milk I guess. I will miss ice cream, pudding, and cheese, but if I can have my happy girls back, I will sacrifice these things. The website said that after 2 weeks you should see an improvement if this is the cause, so the end of July they should be enjoying life again.
Hurray!! Pin It

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Morning and Bedtime Routines Down!!

I've been trying to find a way to help Jayden and Katia with the daily routines when I'm in the middle of something that can't be paused. Like while feeding Emma and Delta Tae. I've seen some of you use this technique that was found in the Ensign. It is called "They Can See What to Do".

I didn't want something with many pieces (which I had been using for a year), but I did want something that would go through all the steps. Then I remembered something I did with the older kids to help them get ready for school. I had a game sort of path that they would move a marker through all the steps to getting ready. Here is the bedtime path.

I let Jayden help with choosing picts to use. Then I laminated them and found an orange star button to glue on the magnet which he can use to mark his place. Now he just has to look at the chart to see what to do next.
For those of you who need to change the chores, go to
and click on chores to see some great ideas. Pin It

Monday, July 7, 2008

4th of July: a new HIT

The past few years the parade has been more of a headache than we like. We get there an hour early and find a spot, only to be told that the space was already chosen by a family, so we would have to move. This wouldn't have been so bad, except that usually by then all spots were taken. Last year we had to move 3 times. Well, with two infants, we didn't really want to go and try to find a good place and end of moving. Well, we did the end of the parade thing, and it was a hit. (Thanks Jeanette for thinking of it.) The floats have to slow down and wait for each other. We were able to interact with them and there was no fighting for a spot. The kids were able to gather candy without too much fear of being hit. We used the portable shade to protect us from the sun. One-third of the babies slept the whole time. It was nice and peaceful. We all had a great time and are definitely going again next year to the same place. Such nice people to let us use their front yard to enjoy the 4th. Pin It

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Ari's News

Here is some exciting news.

Click to play Greenville News
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Saturday, March 29, 2008

3 1/2 days old

Delta Tae

Emma Beth
The last few days have been hectic. As most of you know, Delta Tae and Emma Beth are now in the NICU. It has been up and down for them. They were both put in the tanning bed for jaundice.

Emma Beth tanning with ski goggles

Tae in the tanning bed (bilirueben light)

Today they are both out. They are both on oxygen.

Emma 2 days old
Emma started out not eating on her own, and we use a technique called SNS. This is where she is given her binkie and then you place a tube beside it in her mouth, and slowly put milk in her mouth for her to swallow. She is now eating on her own and doing very well at it. Her oxygen levels will sometimes go down when she eats. We've found that if we let her set the pace, then she will do better. She currently weighs 4lbs12oz, which is not bad, and it continues to rise now. Last night she stayed awake for about 90 minutes and I just enjoyed her as long as I could before putting her in the tanning bed. I hated having to put her ski goggles on while she was still awake, but she has been out for 45 min and should have gone back in after just 30.

Delta Tae has an IV in for her nutrients as well as a tube in her stomach. She is starting to improve. She has a long road ahead of her. She has not eaten for longer than a day. She had suction to remove anything in her stomach. This has been turned off. She is going to start trying Pedialyte this after noon. She will then try a formula which is already digested to see how she does with that. Then I can start feeding her again. Her last weight was 4lbs13oz. I finally got to hold her again today for a while. This was so good!! She stayed awake for just a few minutes. Then I just held her for as long as I could before going home.
It has been good to sleep in my own bed. I feel that I may catch up on my sleep. I also am glad to be with my family more. I am going to the hospital every 6 hours to feed Emma Beth and to pump. Then I just pump every three hours between that and take it to the hospital with me.
Well I will let everyone know how things are going. Don't forget to watch the YW General Broadcast tonight on KBYU at 8:00. I am so excited for Elyse, and for Julia who gets to go. Elyse looked so great. And for those of you who want to try and watch out for her, she has on a salmon colored shirt and is singing first soprano.

Love you all and I'll update soon. Pin It

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Final Stretch!

Well, here we go. Tuesday is the day. If the babies haven't come by then, then we will do an induction. I have a few things I have delegated which is helping me so much. I still have a bunch I wanted done before the babies come home, but oh well. They can wait.
This past week was quite busy. Tuesday I went for the non-stress test. That night was Julia's spring concert. Wednesday I did Visiting Teaching. Thursday was Ari's science fair. Friday I had my last pre-babies doctor visit, and Elyse and Julia did friend things. Today Elyse had practice in Salt Lake for the YW Broadcast next Saturday (had to leave at 6:30am). Tony and I are going to celebrate my birthday tonight since we won't be available Wednesday. Now tomorrow we have Easter, which will be the last relaxing day for a while. Monday we'll get everything ready, then Tuesday go to have the babies.

Some interesting facts: my belly button is starting to disappear, and my stomach measures 43 1/4 inches, I can still eat a pretty full meal, and this week at choir practice I was able to breath better (hmmmmm). Well, we will keep everyone posted through Mimi and Jeanette until we can take over again. Pin It

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

One Week to Go!!

We are now in the time crunch period. Whatever we don't get done now, will have to either not get done, or wait for awhile.

On Monday I set up the cradle. Jayden and Katia keep going and looking at it and talking about how the babies will sleep in there. The only other thing I have to get done now is to do is finish packing my suitcase. Some of the things have to wait until THE day, but I at least have a list of things just in case Tony has to do the packing. Then the phone list of who to call. And then we'll be set.
Tuesday I went to have another non-stress test and the babies are both doing very well. Friday I will go to the doctor and make the final plans for getting these little ones here. I think that he is as anxious to get them here as we are. My last appointment the gal who sets up the next appt asked if we still didn't know what we were having. We said that we didn't, but the the Dr. did. He happened to walk by and so I told him he could tell her after we left what we were having. He then said that he didn't remember, so she would have to wait until we found out. Kinda funny.
This whole thing has been quite an adventure, and it's kinda crazy that we have made it this long and not found out what we're having. This is going to be an awesome surprise.
I will post again on Friday so that you know what is going on. Pin It

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Week 35

Hurray! We have made it to week 35. The babies are doing great. They obviously can't move much anymore, so I get anxious sometimes. We have a few more things to do before they come. For example, get the cradle down. A very important thing.
This week we went for another major ultrasound to check the babies sizes. Thing 1 weighs 5lbs6oz, and Thing 2 weighs 5lbs4oz. They have stayed real close the whole time, which is a great thing. We are estimating that they will weigh about 6 lbs in week 37. That's a great weight for twins.

Thursday was a fun day. I took Katia to play group. Then Jeanette watched the kids while we took Ari out lunch, something we do for parent/teacher conference. Then she said she would watch them while I went to get my hair cut, something I had been trying to do for about a month. I was so happy that she offered, since I wanted it cut before the babies are here.
Then that night we went up to the tri-ward ski night. Ari was the only one who skied. Jayden went sledding for over an hour. Elyse, Julia, and I hung out in the lodge drinking hot cocoa. It snowed while we were up there, which was a wonderful sight. It made for a slow drive home, but with everyone coming home at the same time, so I wasn't too worried.
Yesterday I took Julia for her hair cut. It turned out so cute. The gal that cut it did a wonderful job.

Then last night we just chilled. Something we haven't done for a while. I even got to sit by Tony on the couch. sigh.... I hope that this will not be the last time for a long time.
I also wanted to make sure you all know about Elyse singing in the General Young Women Broadcast on March 29th. For those of you who can get the BYU Channel, it will be rebroadcast that night at 8:00pm MDT. I, of course, will be recording it, so...
Today we woke up to a couple of inches of snow on the ground. This was so awesome. I know that some of you are done with winter, but as soon as spring is here, then the babies are here. As soon as my list is checked of, then they can come. Also, I want them to come home, so after Easter, the snow can be gone and the babies can come.
Well, hopefully I can keep up more with the blog. I will be having Jeanette and Mimi keep everyone informed after they come. This way I can take care of everyone, and not have to worry about keeping you all up to date. Pin It

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

An Inside Adventure

Today was a fun day. I started going through Katia's and Jayden's closet to make room for the babies things. In there is the single stroller and carseat. I pulled them out and the kids decided to pretend we were going on a walk, as I haven't been able to walk with this pregnancy. We made a snack of apples and goldfish, which we would regularly take on our walks, and they took turns getting into and out of the stroller. Katia was amazed that she had figured out how to do this on her own. It was fun to watch them. This also gave me time to clean the carseat parts and do the dishes while I listened to there fun time. Pin It

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Happy Valentines Day!

I hope you are all having a great Valentine's Day. We sure are. The sun is shining, and the temperature is fairly mild. I love the snow, and seeing it come down sideways yesterday was awesome, but I also like to see the sun every once in a while. Tonight we will have our family candle light dinner. This has been a family tradition for 7 or more years, and we all love it. Especially the little kids.

Today we went for an ultrasound. The ultrasound tech was really patient to try and get a good picture. Of course they are so squished that only one of the babies was able to be seen really well. Thing 1 is head down and had the umbilical cord in front of their face the whole time. Thing 2 had their hands in front of their face so that it took a while to get a good look. They are growing well. Thing 1 weighs 4 lbs and Thing 2 weighs 3lb14oz. They also have plenty of fluid, so they are healthy.

I love to look at Thing 2's chubby cheeks. It seems that the 3-D ultrasound pictures worked this time, where as last time we couldn't get anything to work. But we only have 6 more weeks until we get to see them outside. That's when we can hold them, but the real work begins. Still, when I think of the work involved, I am still more excited to get to see them, that the work seems minimal. We'll see if this stays.

I also have these two pictures taken February 2 and today for you all to compare.

I can feel the difference just in the past few days. I can also tell that they have grown because they feel heavy. The doctor said I also have to take sleep aids to ensure that I get enough sleep. This will help out my mood, I hope. I might even have enough energy to keep up with the kids, house, and other stuff. Pin It


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