Monday, March 30, 2009

New Addiction!

Aaron bought himself an Amazon Kindle a couple of weeks ago. I was a teensy bit annoyed at how much time he was spending with Kindle, so I made fun of him every chance I could get. . . "Oh, look at you with your new little gadget." "How are you enjoying your new mini computer?" "What are you reading now? A Harlequin Romance?" I figured, if I bugged him enough about it, he'd eventually put it down so I could secretly check it out!

While Aaron was at work one day, I picked up his new toy and haven't put it down since. We even fight over who's going to read it in the evenings. Here are a few of the things I love about it:

1) It only weighes 10.2 ounces so you don't get shoulder cramps holding it up when you read in bed.

2) It is just over 1/3 of an inch thick, as thin as most magazines.

3) It holds over 1500 books -- I can get rid of my bookshelves.

4) It downloads your books in less than 60 seconds! No more trips to Orem to Barnes & Noble.

5) It comes in a nice plain leather bound cover so that no one knows you're not really reading "A Tale of Two Cities" by Charles Dickens.

Thanks, Aaron, for buying yourself such a nice present. I'm sure enjoying it!!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Sniffle . . . Sniffle . . . Sniffle . . .

At approximately 9:36 p.m., our doorbell rang. The gong sounded more ominous than usual. Aaron answered the door. "We heard you have our bird!" a deep voice said.

The man followed Aaron into the study to identify our feathered friend. "Yes. That's him," he said gruffly.

"Him? Her name is Hannah!" I shouted in my head, already envisioning how I was going to break this sad news to the kids in the morning.

Goodbye, Hannah. Goodbye bird poop. Goodbye happy children.

The bird done flew the coop!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

A Parakeet in the Maple Tree?!

The kids were all happily playing out front yesterday while I was making dinner, when the door swung open and I heard Nyah yell, "Mom, come quick! You've got to see this!"

I ran outside, and saw our neighbor girl standing by our maple tree holding a parakeet that she'd found perched on a branch. "We found this bird in your tree!" she shouted. Why, oh why did the bird have to be in our tree? Couldn't it have flown one or two houses down the block? It was my lucky day! Must've been the luck of the Irish!

Suddenly, all the kids started screaming as the parakeet flew onto the unsuspecting neighbor girls' head. She stood there screaming bloody murder as the bird calmly perched there in her hair. It was the perfect picture taking moment so I said, "Don't move. I'm going to get my camera!"

After I got my pictures and untangled the bird from her hair, the kids walked around the entire neighborhood stopping at every house to report the missing bird. No one claimed it. Big surprise there!

It was time for dinner, so we put the bird under a strainer so it wouldn't fly around the house while we ate. Needless to say, after dinner, Aaron went to the store with the kids to buy a bird cage. After all, I need my strainer for cooking! He also promised them (without my consent), that if the owner of the bird was eventually found, he'd buy them another bird.

The moral of the story is, if your kids ever run in the house to tell you that there is a parakeet in the maple tree, just look them straight in the eye and say, "Kids, that is no parakeet. That is a baby crow. If you touch it, you may catch rabies from it, get deathly ill, and need to be hospitalized." I just wish I would've thought of this solution yesterday!

Larry the Leprechaun 2009

I told the kids Wednesday night that Larry the Leprechaun would not be coming to visit this year for St. Patrick's Day. With the downturn in the economy, Larry just didn't think it was feasible to fill the kids' St. Paddy's day bags with green Pringles, green juice boxes, and green packs of gum.

At 4 a.m. I went into Carson's room to check on him. His face had swollen up on Monday night from an allergy of some sort (we think it was sun poisoning from St. George!). He looked like a chipmunk when he went to bed, so I wanted to make sure he was breathing all right. I woke him up to give him some Benadryl. "Carson, sit up. I've got to give you your medicine!"

"Did Larry come yet? Did he leave us treats?" he asked through his puffy cheeks.

"No, Larry didn't come yet, Carson."

"He'll be here soon though, right?"

It was heartbreaking, seeing the look of hope in his squinty, half-swollen shut eyes.

So, Larry the Leprechaun ended up coming after all. He left a note on the counter that said he'd found some green $5 bills at the end of the rainbow. Carson was thrilled!

This is a Larry the Leprechaun impersonator that came to visit later that morning!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Let the Sunshine!

If you live in Spanish Fork, Utah, and start to get the winter blahs, you should . . . head to St. George!! What a pick-me-up!

When we arrived, the 8 of us snuck through the lobby into our 4-person room. Our arms were loaded with Hefty bags full of clothes, blow-up beds, and food for 2 days! We were quite the sight!

Grandma Sue and Grandpa David had brought gifts for all! She made me a fabulous apron and a homemade cookbook with all of Grandma LaRue's recipes!! Yeah!

Aaron got some new shirts so he could color coordinate with my fancy new apron!

The kids got rich!

The next day we walked along the Virgin River, found an old water pump station and went down in a manhole. The boys were in heaven!

We also searched for lizards, rockchucks, spiders, and anthills in the rocks along the river. What did we find instead? Golfballs!!

The trip ended with some time by the OUTDOOR pool! Unbelievable that we could swim outside during March, and ENJOY it!


New Discovery

We discovered a new invention on our drive to St. George this weekend. GIANT CHEETOS!! Who knew? I thought the Cheeto would fill up the whole package, but it turns out, they are just the size and shape of a donut hole. The package is very deceiving! Also, Ian smelled one of the giant cheetos and said, "they stink" and then the giant Cheetos made Carson feel like throwing up! Not worth the 59 cents!

Draper Temple Open House

Last week, our family went to the Draper Temple Open House. There were lots of "oohs" and "aahs" from the kids. It was absolutely beautiful!

The man that spoke to us in the Sealing Room at the end of the tour made a teensy mistake when he mentioned that after we left him, we'd "head into a reception area in the Stake Center for a cookie, or maybe a couple of cookies," he said with a wink. My children took his statement to heart.

So, what is everyone's definition of a couple of cookies?

Nyah defines a "couple" cookies as five!

My definition is only four! (I really should've set a better example, but it WAS dinnertime!)

Ian didn't care about the cookies. The only choices of cookie flavors were: chocolate, oatmeal raisin, and something that looked like sugar (they were trying to trick him) but had a hint of lemon flavoring in the recipe. Ian promptly discarded the sugar cookie look alike!!

Grandma Joannie CLAIMS she stuck to only 3 cookies, but no one checked her purse!

Where is Carson for the family picture?

Yes, Carson was missing in action for the family pix, because he was busy sneaking his 9th cookie!! Where were his manners?!

Luckily, I overhead a woman at the reception telling someone that they had ordered 3 million cookies for the Draper Open House and that they had plenty left over! So, really, our family was just helping them out. We didn't want them to throw away any of those fabulous cookies!!

(Those not pictured were too embarrassed to admit how many cookies they'd eaten -- Aaron and Cali!!)

I Got the Strangest Compliment!

Let me set the scene . . .

We stayed in St. George this weekend for a couple of nights with Aaron's parents. On Sunday morning we woke up late, and didn't have time to shower before church. We threw on our clothes, shoveled some food in our mouths, went to Sacrament meeting, scurried back to the the hotel room, ate some lunch, cleaned up the hotel room, packed up the car, and then headed out into the sun to catch some rays by the pool before heading back to our cold homefront.

Before we got onto the freeway, we stopped at the local Chevron to gas up. Aaron and I both stood at the counter in front of the cashier, waiting to pay for our gasoline.

"MMMMMMMM. Do you mind if I ask you what scent you are wearing?" the cashier asked.

I looked around the gas station to see who she was talking to. Her eyes were staring straight at me. I was flabbergasted.

"Yes, what are you wearing? she asked again. "You smell so good."

Always socially backward, I replied, "Perhaps it is burnt skin . . . or maybe, maybe it is my gum?" I was grasping at straws here.

She kept staring at me, trying to figure out where my fabulous odor was coming from. I explained to here that we'd been laying out by the pool, and that I hadn't even showered.

She spoke again. "You must just have a really great natural scent. Some people do you know. Yum!"

I was flabbergasted. You never know when you are going to find out something new about yourself. Who knew that I "smelled" good? Maybe I'll head over to the local mall and try to market my "scent" to the perfume people. I could at least sell one bottle of myself to that nice girl at the gas station.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Grandpa Time

For those of you that don't know, the Jonas Brothers is a boy band popular with the teeny bopper girls around the country -- and by teeny boppers, I mean TEENY boppers; 8-13 year old girls that scream their head off to songs like "Lovebug." I admit the tunes are catchy, but I will never admit that I have some of their songs on my Ipod.

Well, I found out last night that someone else in my family is a secret Jonas Brothers fan -- my dad!! He took Cali and Nyah out on a Grandpa/Grandaughter date to see the Jonas Brothers 3D movie and then out for dinner to their favorite -- The Spaghetti Factory! The 3 of them were the only ones in the theater. I'm sure there are more Jonas Brothers fans out there -- they were just busy last night! As an extra special treat for the girls, Dad wore a red shirt to the movie. Some of you non-Jonas Brothers fans may wonder why. Well, at the very end of the show, one of the Jonas Brothers says something like, "Hey, you. Yeah, you the guy in the front row, the guy in the red shirt. Can I have some of your popcorn?" Now, how would Dad know to sit in the front row with the girls and wear the red shirt, unless, HE'D ALREADY SEEN THE SHOW BEFOREHAND! Caught you, Dad!!!!

Grandpa Markie and Carson have also been bonding recently, playing with Carson's new action army figures. I heard Dad cracking up the other night while they were playing. He was shocked to find an amputee in the army set. "Boy, they sure are making these army guys more realistic these days!" Dad exclaimed. I didn't have the heart to tell him that earlier that day, our dog, Biscuit, had gotten ahold of what had once been a two-legged man!

Friday, March 6, 2009

The Fast and the Furious

Aaron and Ian spent hours perfecting the sleek arrow shaped car for the big Pinewood Derby on Wednesday night. They chiseled, sanded, buffed, painted, sculpted, weighed and reweighed (to make sure it did not exceed the 5 oz. maximum weight). They even superglued the wheels on!

At the final weigh-in, Ian's car weighed in at exactly 5 oz. He was ready to go.

When his number was called (#4), he proudly walked up to the raceway. We all watched with bated breath as the cars were lined up. "Go!" The four cars raced down the track. Unfortunately, Ian's car did NOT shoot like an arrow down the hill. However, it did look like an arrow. An arrow that took its time getting to its destination. Car #4 came in last.

Before Ian made it back to where we were seated, lots of conversation went on.

Cali said to Aaron, "I really think you should've made the front end heavier."

Aaron said to Cali, "Well, it's too late now isn't it?!"

Cali said to no one in particular, "Oh, poor Ian. Last place."

Aaron said to Cali, "Stop saying things like that!"

When Ian got back to us there was lots of, "Good job, Ian. Your car looked so cool. We love the shape of your car. We'll just have to try another shape next year."

Ian's response was, "There won't be a next year! I'm turning 11."


Carson Got Married!

Yes, it was a proud moment. My youngest child got married yesterday.

There was snow on the ground, but the bride and groom still had seashells sprinkled under their feet. The bride wore Cali's old baptism dress -- a white lace gown (stained yellow from age) and a beautiful lace belt that she turned into a headress.

Carson wore his Sunday best. He forgot to tuck his shirt in, but it was buttoned all the way up.

The happy couple is going to wait at least 15 years to celebrate their honeymoon. It will take them that long to get jobs and save up. Until then, they will spend their time together playing Betty Spaghetti and Polly Pockets.

In order to pass himself off as "legally old enough to wed", the groom carried a cane.

The bride's only requirements for her bridesmaids were to 1)look cute and 2)be able to stand on one leg.

The parents of both the bride and the groom were both pleasantly surprised that the whole ceremony cost next to nothing. The only expense was the reception which was held at the local Carl's Jr.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

I'm a Stalker!

Aaron and I were invited to go to a Jazz Basketball game last night. We got to sit in one of the box seats and feel super special. I'm always excited when we get box tickets because free food is always provided. We had a taco bar and the best homemade guacamole. They also brought in an ice cream sundae bar at halftime. Loved it -- but had to unbottom my pants!!

The coolest part of the game wasn't the basketball or the food though. During the second quarter, Aaron leaned over and whispered, "There's President Monson and President Eyring!" They were sitting about 6 boxes over from us. They looked like they were ready to give talks at General Conference -- all suited up. I was mesmerized. It was better than a Hollywood stars sighting!

The rest of the game was spent staring at President Monson. Everything he did was fascinating to me. He clapped. He cheered. He ate dessert. All of the things that regular people do!! Aaron and I walked down to the room he was sitting in to see if we could get a closer peek. He was standing in the room just visiting with everyone. There was also a guard stationed at his door, so Aaron and I pretended to just be innocent bystanders meandering slowly past each of the rooms, instead of the scary stalkers we really were! I'd have loved to have walked in and said, "President Monson, it's me, Vanessa Heber! I'm a huge fan!" However, I controlled myself and limited myself to a second walkby and lots of staring throughout the game. The lady sitting in front of me had binoculars. I noticed that her binoculars kept turning away from the game and towards President Monson's box. I also caught another lady in our box videotaping and taking pictures of President Monson. I guess I wasn't the only stalker there!

During the 3rd quarter, the scantily clad NuSkin dancers went up to President Monson's box to shake his hand and give him some Jazz T-shirts. Boy, I wish I was a NuSkin dancer. Too bad I can't dance and I'm about 20 years over the age limit! Wait a second!! Maybe I can be the Jazz Mascot! I can leap around like a crazy man hidden in a bear costume. I've been trying to decide on an occupation. Maybe this is it!

Anyways, it was great to find out that President Monson gets to enjoy himself once in a while. Though I wasn't a huge Jazz fan before, I think I am going to get Season tickets from now on!!