Sunday, November 30, 2008

Ian's Reflections Entry

Ian entered the school's Reflections contest this year under the category of "Dance". The theme was "Wow"! The kids just had to do something that fell under the theme. Now, you have to admit, after watching Ian's performance, you do feel like saying, "Wow"! He did not get 1st, 2nd, or 3rd place, or even an Honorable Mention, but he sure won a place in my heart for being brave enough to show off his truly original talent!!

Thanksgiving Pictures

The whole clan feeling sick after Thanksgiving dinner. Consuming 8,000 calories a piece never felt so good!

Dad took on dish duty with Nyah. You go,Dad!

Cali and Ian tried their hand at making stuffed mushrooms. Fabulous!!

Aaron and Cali made some kind of yellow looking mustard. I don't remember serving that at our Thanksgiving feast!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


There is nothing "hotter" than a piano playing, guitar playing, beautiful singing, dancing, flipping around the stage, sweaty Chris Martin -- and Aaron agrees! We went to the Coldplay concert Saturday night at the Delta Center. I can honestly say it was the most well-rounded crowd I've ever seen at a concert. Ages ranged from 7-year-olds to 80-year-olds. There was a 70-year-old, white haired Chinese Man sitting in front of us waving his arms and dancing with the best of them. Everybody loved the show. At one point, the stage went black and we thought the band was taking an intermission, but they were really running up the stairs to stand in the middle of the audience where they sang 3 more songs. I got chills! Viva la vida!!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Carson's New Phrase

Carson came home from preschool today, opened his backpack, pulled a receipt out of his bag, and said, "What in the Hally Hack is that?"

I said, "Who did you hear that from Carson? Who says that?"

"No one!"

"Come on, Carson. Did you hear that from a movie or someone at preschool? Who says that?"

"I say it. How about that?!"

Wow!! And all that from a 5-year-old Pilgrim!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Wacky Wednesday (alias for Freaky Friday)

Nyah and I got to switch places today for Activity Days. She was me and I was her. She was horrified when Cali and I were working on her hair. We had to curl it, rat it, and curl it some more. She kept yelling, “It’s too big!” Now she knows how I feel everyday! She loved wearing my high heels and makeup. I did not love my pigtails and bows. I looked like an overgrown child.
We had a blast writing each other love letters, doing relay races, playing music trivia (I got one right about the Jonas Brothers!), and playing the Newlywed Game. We had to see how much we knew about each other. Somehow, Nyah knew how old I was (26) when I gave birth to her, but I couldn’t figure out what her favorite color is (blue). I chose pink! I’m pretty sure that pink was her favorite color at one time – maybe when she was 2.
At the end of the activity, Nyah had to serve us both dessert (dirt pudding). It was interesting how her serving of pudding came up to the top of her cup, and the one she chose to hand to me was only half full! I got her back though. She asked me for my gummy worms, and I licked the pudding off before I gave them to her. I’m so mature!!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

My Daughter's A Magician!

Yesterday, Cali and I went on our annual shopping adventure to Park City to begin our Christmas Madness! Each November we head up the canyon with our neighbor to SHOP, SHOP, SHOP. This year, our neighbor decided to bring along her 9 year-old daughter, so I invited Nyah along to keep her daughter company. Nyah was thrilled to be invited along, until she remembered that she gets carsick every time we drive 2 miles to the grocery store. She requested Dramamine, but then changed her mind when I reminded her that she acts “loopy” all day when she takes it. She decided to try the trip without any drugs. As we turned the corner to pick up our friends (we’d gone about ½ mile), Nyah smiled and said, “Mom, guess what?! I’m not carsick!” Wow! Nyah is one of a kind!
After about 3 1/2 hours of perfect behavior, the girls started getting hungry and a little antsy. They wanted to go play at the park that is located in the middle of the Outlets. I didn’t see any harm in that. Nyah is a good listener and usually stays put. I reminded her and her friend not to talk to strangers, not to leave the park, and to be nice to all the “little” kids. I went shopping for another ½ hour and then went back to check on them. The girls were so excited when I walked up. “We have to show you a magic trick!” I followed them towards a little Merry-Go-Round, the kind that costs 50 cents and goes around in a circle for about 1 ½ minutes. “Watch this!” The girls hopped on the horses and started rocking their horses back and forth with the force of their bodies. After about 20 seconds of violent rocking, the carousel started up! Each time the ride ended, the girls would rock back and forth again, until the ride started back up. I watched a couple of rounds of this, told the girls “Congratulations” on being so inventive, and told them to come back to the stores with me. “But we want to keep playing on the Merry-Go-Round! We love it!”

“What about other kids that want to ride it?”

“Oh, every time someone else wants to ride, we let them get on and we magically start the ride up for them!”
What a dilemma! Should I explain to the girls that they should really be depositing money for these fun rides? Should I tell them that the carousel would never be the same after the beatings it was taking from the violent start-up action, or should I let them continue believing they were “magicians” so that I could keep shopping? Being the great mom that I am, I chose . . .
Shopping with children has never been so easy!!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Conversation of the Day

Carson: Mom, when I get married will you still know me?
Me: Of course! I’ll still love you just like now! Will you still love me, Carson?
Carson: Yes, but I’ll have to love the other girl too!
Me: Yes, you will love your wife with all your heart!
Pause . . .
Carson: But, I’ll still love you too, Mom!
Me: Yes, you’ll still love me too.
Carson: But if I love her with my whole heart . . . ? I don’t have two hearts!
Me: You can love both of us with all your heart, Carson. That just means you love someone a lot.
Carson: But I don’t want to cut my heart in half!

Friday, November 7, 2008

Reasons for not Tuning your Piano

Our piano hasn't been tuned for 2 years. It costs over $100 to get it tuned each time, and it hasn't been high on my list of things to spend a C-note on. Cali was giving Nyah a piano lesson the other day, and finally broke down and said, "Mom, there are some keys that don't even play anymore! It makes it kind of difficult to practice!" So, I called the piano tuner and scheduled an appointment.

Today's the day for the tuning. I woke up thinking about all the things I was going to get accomplished today. After all, Friday is my cleaning day. But . . .

What do you do for 2 hours while the piano tuner is tuning your piano?

A. Clean the house (Can't really do that cuz I might make too much noise and he won't be able to hear to tune it properly.

B. Sew on Ian's Cub Scout patches (That only took 2 minutes; I've got 118 minutes left).

C. Make lunch (I don't have any food in the house, but I can't leave to get any cuz the piano man is here).

D. Take a shower (Can't cuz the piano man is here).

E. Play the piano (Obviously not!)

F. Plan my YW lesson (Can't concentrate with that constant banging on the piano keys).

G. Give Biscuit a bath (Can't, cuz Biscuit hates the piano man and barks ferociously).

H. Call someone on the phone (Can't hear the other person talking cuz of the piano playing).

I. Get out some old bubble wrap and pop it really loud outside in the backyard to get over the frustration I feel about the 2 hour piano tuning and let Carson join in and eventually take a nap on the bubble wrap since he can't sleep inside because the piano tuning is still going on and it has now been 2:14:32.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Today's Weather Forecast Is . . .

I got home from the gym this morning (ouch), and my 3 youngest kids had done the most marvelous thing! They'd cleaned off the driveway! You might be wondering what they had to clean off the driveway; was it mulch, stones, maybe grass from the last lawn trimming? None of the above! It was SNOW!!
Friday, for Halloween, we didn't even have to wear coats. It was like California weather (only in Utah)! Then, today, only 5 days later, we got our first sticking snowfall. We had almost enough snow in our yard to make a snowman. Almost. Instead of making Frosty, Carson spent his time filling up our emergency "poo" bucket with snow for hours on end. (The bucket is for when we have disasters and our toilet doesn't work. The plan is, we will go potty in this bucket called the Lugabaloo; for now, however, we just use it to make iceblocks when building igloos in the snow. I sure hope that our bucket isn't buried in the snow when we actually need it for something other than igloo building.) I couldn't believe Carson didn't get cold and want to come inside sooner! I guess the snow is good for something -- entertaining children!!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Best French Baguettes

I am a sucker for buying things because of a great sample! I went to a craft show a month ago with some friends. While we were there, we got to sample the most fabulous french baguettes! I, of course, ended up buying the cookbook. An added plus: I got a hug and a kiss on the cheek from the author. She must've been really excited about selling those cookbooks! I haven't had time to make the bread until today. Unfortunately, I didn't have a baguette pan, and I made one loaf a lot chubbier than the other, but it tastes fabulous, so I thought I'd pass the recipe along!

French Baguettes (makes 2 loaves)

1 1/2 c. warm water, divided
1 1/2 T. (or 2 packets) active dry yeast
2 t. sugar, divided
3 1/4 c. all purpose unbleached flour
2 t. salt
Melted butter, for brushing on loaves

1. In a small bowl, combine 1/2 c. water, the yeast, and 1 t. of the sugar. Stir just to combine and cover with plastic wrap. Let the mixture stand about 5 minutes or until bubbly or foamy (mine actually bubbled over the 1 c. measuring cup I put it in!)
2. In a large mixing bowl blend the flour, salt, the remaining 1 t. of sugar, and the yeast mixture. Gradually add water, up to the remaining 1 cup (I had 1/4 c. that I never added), and mix until the dough forms a smooth ball that is not too sticky to handle. (If the dough ends up too sticky, add a little more flour.) Turn the dough onto a floured surface and knead briefly, until the dough is smooth and elastic.

3. Cut the dough in half and shape the halves into baguettes (I don't know how to shape baguettes, but I rolled mine up like a super skinny cinnamon roll and tucked the edges under.) Grease a baguette pan (I didn't have these either so I just put both beside each other on a greased cookie sheet). Score the loaves down the middle (make a long, shallow cut), cover with a dish towel, and let rise in a warm place about 30 minutes or till doubled in bulk.

4. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 450 and place a shallow pan of water in the bottom of the oven to create steam. Bake the baguettes for 15 minutes or until they have a hollow sound when tapped with a knife. If desired, brush the tops of the loaves with butter halfway through baking. For a softer crust, brush with butter when they have finished baking.

**It's a LONG recipe, but was actually a cinch to throw together. We're having it tonight with spaghetti (IF there is any left by the time everyone gets home. I've already eaten 5 slices!)

Sunday, November 2, 2008

At Long Last . . .

A huge miracle occurred in our family today. During church Carson was acting really agitated. He was twiddling with my hair, rolling around on the pew, pacing back and forth, all signs that he needs to go #2! I don't know why he doesn't enjoy going to the bathroom. In fact, he won't even admit that he needs to go. He just suffers for days on end, and then finally, is forced to run to the restroom!

Well, he was driving me bonkers with all of his pacing, so I held his hand and we marched out of the chapel headed towards the infamous restroom. He kept insisting that he didn't need to go, but finally sat down when I threatened him with "Dad!"

He was in the bathroom stall for a couple minutes, when I finally heard him say: "Hey, Mom. Can McKenzie wipe herself?" McKenzie is his 4-year-old friend.

"Yes!" I responded.

It was quiet for another minute. I think he was thinking about the fact that all of his 3 and 4-year-old friends wipe themselves. The next thing I heard was, "Mom, I did it! I wiped myself!"

I was overjoyed. At that exact moment, a woman walked into the restroom. I prayed that Carson was done talking. But, no! "Hey, mom! Can you believe it? I finally wiped a #2! Now I can go to kindergarten."

"Carson, open the door so I can come in and make sure you're clean," I whispered through the door.

"No, Mom. I wiped over and over again until all the poo was gone. All by myself. Aren't you excited?!"

Unfortunately, the woman came out of her stall before I was able to excape with my talented son. I apologized for the poo conversation she'd had to endure. She smiled and simply said, "I enjoyed it!" I know I am going to enjoy every day from now on. No more wiping!!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

The "Happy" Pumpkin

We went to Mom’s Chili Cook Off last night before trick-or-treating. Mom’s friend gave her a pumpkin costume to wear to the party, which Mom didn’t want to wear. Mom wanted to be something pretty, so she decided to dress up like Jackie Onassis instead. She realized at the last minute that her friend’s feelings would be hurt because she wasn’t wearing the gorgeous pumpkin outfit, so she guilted me into slipping it on. I felt absolutely ridiculous being introduced to all of Mom’s friends for the first time, as a round pumpkin.
As you can see, Mom looks happy as a clam in her costume. I on the other hand . ..
The kids rated all of the kinds of chili they tried. 5 fingers being the best . . . The winner was . . . something that looked like macaroni goulash.
Ian, the scary clown, ate too many bowls of chili. Luckily, we went outside to trick-or-treat.

The whole clan. Cali finally decided to be a "babydoll" even though she didn't go trick-or-treating. I remember I wasn't allowed to go trick-or-treating when I turned 13. I dressed up as a nurse and stayed home to pass out candy. I was not a happy camper! What is Halloween without a bucket of candy? This year I tried to collect candy along with the kids, but just got a lot of dirty looks. I wonder why? Mommy pumpkins deserve Snickers and Twix too, right?!

Mom is so pleased with her costume choice!

I didn't notice before, but I think I may have had a large booger in my left nostril. Hopefully Mom's friends will just think it was pumpkin pulp and that I was trying really hard to get into the spirit of the costume!

Ian is actually really happy about the chili!

Nyah gave this chili 4 out of 5 stars!

Josh, tried some “chili” that had chunks of chicken in it. This is him before he removed the chicken from his front tooth.
You asked for it, Natalie! Here is the full view of my gorgeous 1 piece costume. Cali calls it my "Pumpkin Turtleneck!" I didn't plan on wearing the costume ahead of time, or I would've made myself a green headdress and painted my face orange. At least then, no one would've recognized me later!