May Highlights

June 5th, 2013
You regularly eat breakfast close to 8:30 or 9 am, no matter what time you wake up. Of course the morning we have to wake you up and get out of the house at 7:15, you’re starving and won’t be able to wait till  8 to eat, once we’re back. I made you wait.
Being excited for the “courtesy shuttle” to get our car. It was in for a recall and the dealership will pick or drop you off. You had never ridden in a minivan before.

Passing off book one for Suzuki 0n your cello. You went through the book in less than one year. Way to go!

Making confetti to throw on Daddy for his arrival home on his birthday. You had to sweep it up, and we had to agree on a place that was easily cleanable.

Calling Origami,  A-rig-ah-me. You were taught at Achievement Days.
Eating and enjoying craw-fish.
Catching a grasshopper and making him your pet.
Auditioning for a youth orchestra and being OK when you didn’t make it. I think you felt somewhat relieved. It was  good experience, and next year you’ll be even more prepared.
Being disappointed  you couldn’t come to my 30th birthday party. It was just for grown-up women.


For some reason you started doing a mindless thing, which is having some negative affects. I’m hoping we can stop this bad habit you’ve created. (It stopped after discussing the consequences and threatening to cut off your hair.)

Avoiding craw-fish.
Reading the Harry Potter books as fast as we get them.
Deciding to watch Return of the King, when you couldn’t find  the book to read.
Telling me you’ll be too big to cuddle and sit on my lap once you’re eight.  (I doubt you’ll stop though.)
The closing of Cool Valley! Fortunately that short sale went much quicker than the one we purchased. So happy to close that chapter of our life, though a little sad.

April Highlights

May 1st, 2013

Being excited to go to Legoland with the girl scout troop. You’re so oblivious to time and dates though.
You: “We leave on Tuesday right?”
Me:” No you leave on Friday.”
You were wondering why you couldn’t leave in the middle of the week.

I was needing to finish some a forms for your Legoland trip, and decided to use rush hour traffic to my advantage.
Me: Girls tell me when the light turns green.
Them: It’s green!
Eden: Good thing you have kids. We are good for something.
Lilah: If she didn’t have kids she wouldn’t need to fill out paperwork.

You would not want your mom to go on the next girl scout trip.

You left a note for us to find while you were on your Legoland trip. It mentioned what you were doing  and looking at that very moment, and it reminded us to to “NOT sit on the couch naked.”

We had to restart a cross-stitch you began in achievement days. You did not believe me when I said you needed two threads, and not just one, because you’re leader had you start with one. Once started correctly, we worked well together. I bossed you around, and you had to listen.

You enjoyed pointing the needle so it would annoy my eyes.

You are advancing in cello so wonderfully. I need to compliment you, as well as give constructive criticism. I feel like all you want are compliments though.


You switched my frosted mini wheats with the regular mini wheats for April Fools. (Switching cereal seems to be the thing to do here.) I ate Life cereal instead.

You accidentally left the portion of money you were in charge of at the hotel, in your regular backpack. You were fine, and didn’t worry at all. (Autumn had the other half of your money for you.) Autumn thought you were the ideal girl to have “lost” her money because most of the others would have been a little more difficult.

You volunteered to have your mom go on the next girl scout trip.

You have been extra  cuddly lately. Like 3-6 times a day you stand next to me wanting to cuddle. You said you got your desire to cuddle from me, since I cuddled with my mom a lot. Many a times I have to give you a hug for a little bit, then send you off, because you’re a little too cuddly for me.

You leave messes all around you after you do something, like eat graham crackers, or open all the gum you just bought. I think you somewhat get this from me. It drives me bonkers.


Making me change my flat tire, so I would know what to do if I was unable to call you or AAA. It made me really wish I had just called AAA. I still needed your help, so chances are I’d be in trouble anyways.

Pointing out there was a national sport championship going on, but we’re so not into sports we didn’t watch, or know anything about it.

Enjoying a “Call the Midwife” marathon with me the Sunday the girls were due back form Legoland. I wasn’t feeling well. We watched all six episodes of the first season, saw the first episode of the second season on-line, and caught the third episode of season two on TV. I feel a little ashamed that we watched so much in one day, but I wasn’t feeling well.

Shaving your beard.  I’m torn because I think it makes you look even more handsome, but I can’t stand to kiss you when you have one.

Buying a hammer for Eden, Lilah already had one, and safety glasses for both to practice hammering nails. They’re going to help build the club house.


March Highlights

March 31st, 2013
Thinking you should have your own comedy show to record all the interesting things you say.

I had just ended a long lecture about life not being fair to the girls, then I called perdiddle. In our family that means that person gets a kiss.
Eden: I’ll give you a kiss.
Lilah made some slurping sound.
Me: Lilah are you eating your boogers?
Lilah: No, I just gave you an air kiss.
Eden: That’s not fair, I get to give Mommy her kiss.
Lilah: Life’s not fair.

Not wearing green on St. Patrick’s Day and getting pinched repeatedly by a girl on your church class. It was rough.

Packing some treats for our walk around the temple while Eden had speech.

Doing the dishes. Love, love, love.

A friend was being dropped off and the mom complimented us on our nice house and said how it smelled clean. You told her it’s not always this way. I think over all we are able to keep the place clean, but we did do a big cleaning to get ready for your friends.

You started a load of laundry, but it wasn’t till it was complete that we realized no detergent had been added.

I noticed you were not participating in PE, so we borrowed a basketball from the teacher to let you practice dribbling at home. You practiced everyday, as soon as you woke up. It helped and you did get better. I noticed you still sitting out during class, so I made you participate, just in time for a game of Horse. We need to now practice shooting the ball, which one of the teachers did help you with a little at the end of class.

You did not get pinched, even though you wore no green on St. Patrick’s Day.

Telling me you’re about the height of a hobbit.

Losing your new Sunday shoe into the neighbors pool at Granpa Harvey’s house while playing power rangers. They weren’t home, so we’re hoping it holds up and isn’t ruined.
Trying to figure out the bug and pest situation. You don’t want pesticides, but I do. Finding cockroaches, black widows,  and scorpions in the house is not fun.

Hauling the exercise bike upstairs while I went shopping. You told the girls to call 911 if you became unconscious.

I told you how I found a wolf spider in the living room that I released outside, because it was mostly friendly. You asked me if I was sure it wasn’t a fiddle back, or brown recluse.
I looked up brown recluse, and yeah, that’s what it was. Dangit.

Killing a huge black widow that was living in an irrigation box with lots of cockroaches.
Eating lots of sugar on Easter. You’ve decided to not eat white flour and processed sugars, except for holidays. You’re not very good at moderation. It’s all or nothing.
I started playing Words With Friends with a stranger, and she was really good, so I decided to cheat. We ended our first game, and she invited me to a second. Not wanting to be rude I accepted. Around the second word she complimented me on my playing. I couldn’t lie, and told her I had been cheating, but was learning about the game. She decided she liked the challenge, and wanted to continue playing. (I told her I’d understand if she wanted to stop playing.)

New Calling

March 19th, 2013

We’ve been adjusting to our new ward nicely. Overall, the girls like their teachers and classmates, and are excited to meet new friends. We’ve had one girl Lilah’s age over, and they all got along great, and they were invited to the house of a girl Eden’s age, which they also loved.

I knew several people in the ward already, and have met many. Since my friend Heidi Spencer had moved in earlier in the year, many people knew I was coming, and about me. I’m trying to balance the whole, being new, letting them know  our situation, and trying to not let it completely define me. It’s hard, and I’m not sure I’m doing well, but I am meeting people and being open.

A couple Sundays ago I was called in to meet with the bishop, and they gave me a calling. I’ll be teaching the 12-13 year old Sunday School class.  EEK!
They sustained me on the 10th, but I was at a mission farewell, and unable to get information on the lesson materials, so I asked the old teacher to teach one more week for me, also because his explanation of the new material kinda scared me, and I was not ready to jump in and teach just yet.
I sat in on his lesson this past Sunday, and saw his teaching methods. He’s a little lax on rules, and so I’m trying to decide how to nicely state my expectations, without being totally mean sounding. (Eating and talking during class, not sitting with all four chair legs on the floor. I am such a mean teacher.) The kids did talk, and answer questions.

I am still nervous with the new lesson materials, and trying to get to know the needs of the students in my class, which also kinda big, at 12 kids! (I know this is small compared to some wards, but this is large for me.)
They all seem very nice, and I have connections to a couple of the kids and their families already.
I taught Gospel Principles for 4 1/2 years in my old ward, so this is a change. I’m hoping I can do this calling well, and with the Spirit.

February Highlights

February 28th, 2013


We walked by a gazebo at Costco. You said, “We should get this so I can be kissy, kissy with my boyfriend.” You told me you got this idea from the movies. Hmmmm.

You made a scavenger hunt for us to find our Valentine’s. You really love Valentine’s Day.

Being excited that in two years you get to stay home by yourself, because you’ll be twelve. Telling me that Eden will have to still wait till she’s twelve to stay home because, “It’s not fair that she’ll get to stay home sooner than me because I’m older.” Too bad kid. You’re gonna be babysitting your sister. You’ll also get to drive, date, and move out sooner.

Being excited to make new friends in our ward. Calling Britta your “gold friend”, and your new friends “silver.” Telling me they may become gold someday. (Make new friends by keep the old. One is silver and the other gold.)

We had a talk about food etiquette at dinner one night. Not only about not making a mess, or putting too much food in your mouth, but how to hold your fork, and the polite way to cut food. You now hold your fork a more correct way. We’re still working on not making a mess.


You got a stiff neck from camping out on your floor. We had co-op that day, so you stayed with me during History, and PE, felt well enough to go to duct-tape, but stayed with me during Nature, since they hike around.

Running from picture to picture for Lilah’s scavenger hunt. You had lots of fun finding all the clues.

Adding cuddles to your list of things “to do.” I joked you only had it on there once, so you added it a lot more times.

You like to go outside and just run from side to side of the yard. What I find even funnier is you’ll come home, take off your shoes, put on sandals and, then go outside and run from side to side.

While you’re still my baby, I’m trying to have you use me less as a chair when we go out. You don’t particularly like this all the time, and give me your play mad face. I still let you cuddle, but you can’t always sit on my lap when you want to. (I still let you sit on my lap, just not every time.)


You took Lilah to see Itzhak Perlman. You had classical music on for the car ride home, and Lilah said she was, “Classical music-ed out”, so you then put on Classic Rock.

Trying to get us organized and to keep an orderly house. Maybe I should change that to “encouraging us.”

Getting me a smartphone for our anniversary. Telling me if it works out, you may get one.

We took the girls to our anniversary dinner this year. Mostly, because we’ve had a lot of dates, and didn’t want to burden our free babysitters, but it was fun to celebrate as a family, and the girls loved getting cheesecake.

Continuing to buy me lavender roses for our anniversary. I love getting them, and this years roses were lovely.


January Highlights

February 6th, 2013

You make believe to The Hobbit story line.

Being happy to give our old mail woman a hug.  I was sad to see her for one, last time.

Going to the dump with Daddy and Grandpa. You both enjoyed seeing the big pit and telling me it smelled like trash.

Being so excited to sleep on the top bunk.

Wanting to take a picture of the Canadian geese we were seeing fly over our house. “We don’t see those every day.” I found out later it was for National Geographic, and wanting to win a photo contest and go to Hawaii.

Eden: Mom, I agree with Daddy, we need more books.
Me: We can always go to a library.
Eden: We should buy at least two more books.

I can tell when you put the dishes away because there is a pattern to them.

I told Lilah that’s the cutest grumpy face ever, then you looked over at me with your grumpy face. I said,  “No, that’s the cutest grumpy face ever,” and you were pleased as pie.

Forgetting the bottom bunk is now yours.

Not wanting to unpack.

Using the phone to call me from your room to mine. You could have walked and talked to me. They’re suppose to be used for communicating from downstairs to up, or vis versa.

Showing me the fashion show walk, and wiggling your shoulders as you walked.

Being nervous and wanting to talk about auditioning for a youth orchestra. We’ll see if you’re ready come May.

Eating breakfast with a serving spoon because we were out of regular spoons.

Trying to entice me to spend the night at the new house, before the big move,  by having the internet turned off at the hold house then turned on at the new house a couple days before. I think you just wanted a big camp-out for some reason.

Being organized for the move. Everyone loved our color coded boxes, and most things got put where they needed to be. Why we found the spices in the master bathroom,  under the sink, I’m not sure.

Enjoying your short commute to work.

Being my “Mr. Fly Lady,” and cleaning house.

I told you I wasn’t a plant person. It was a revelation to me, but you told me you already knew that. I like flowers, I just don’t like plants. They’re suppose to live, but they always die.

Thinking about getting me a smart phone as an anniversary present. Debating which one we should get.

“We have a coat closet. We can use it for coats!” Then Jon brought his old mission coat down to put in it, and I wasn’t happy. It’s suppose to be for current coats, not old coats.

House Tour!

January 11th, 2013

I just realized I’ve yet to post anything of Christmas or our holidays, but people have been wondering about my house. I only have “before” pictures and then a video of the after, but after our move with all our boxes. I’ll have to take some after pictures once we settle in. I was only going to post the video, but I think to appreciate the video fully, you have to see all the work we did to change this place. This post is dedicated to Shauntae, because she’s the only one who comments, and I know she’ll see and enjoy it. 🙂


Living room


A view of our stairs from the living room.


The view from the living room looking into the dining room.


The view from the dining room looking into the kitchen.


The kitchen, and an Eden who was running around.


Wall in family room. (Our desk is on this wall in the video.)


The fireplace.


The back door in the family room. Only half the blinds are there. That’s not us, not closing the window.


The “bar” and hallway.


The downstairs bathroom.


The parrot window above the front door. We felt like we were taking down their like family flag or symbol when we removed it.

A better picture of the parrot window. At night, this thing shined so bright when the entry light was on.


A view looking upstairs from the front door.


Hallway to the sewing and library.




Library closet and door to hallway.


Sewing room


Girls’ room. It was OK for a kids room, but not what they wanted.


Girls’ room


Hallway leading to master bedroom.

We haven’t done anything to the master bedroom. I’m waiting to paint and change it till we get some sort of style going for it. I’m not much of a decorator, or I haven’t had much space to decorate, so we didn’t spend lots of money on furniture in the old house. We were kinda poor for a while, while we were having to buy our furniture.

Here’s the video tour of the house and it’s many changes. We re-floored the entire house, and have painted most of it. It was lots of work, but transformed it and was totally worth it.

I have been making my bed each day, and am trying to close all the shelves and drawers. 🙂

December Highlights

January 2nd, 2013


Antiperspirant shopping. Deodorant did not work for you, so we gave up on it and have been using daily showers and apple cider vinegar to help with underarm smell. It helped, but if you sweat, you smell. We were avoiding antiperspirant because of the aluminum, but it became inevitable and seems to be helping. You’re going through this a little earlier, and stronger, than other girls, but I hope we’re able to find solutions to help so you can feel comfortable. You had fun choosing a scent.

Performing with the orchestra for your first time. You were squished on stage, but did well. The cello is so big compared to my little, but big, Lilah.

Saying we’ll need to get some good Christmas lights for next year because our new neighborhood has some nice light displays.

After watching a two year old all morning so I could paint with the assistance of a friend: “I am not ready to be a mother. It’s a hard job chasing a little kid around for three or eight hours a day. Maybe in nine years I’ll be ready to have a kid.” I asked that you wait longer than nine years.

Telling me you can be as bad as you want from December 26 till the new year because it’s after Christmas, but it counts for this year.

Painting your room. You were finally happy to be at the house, at least for that small period of time.

I’ve decided your new nickname should be “Grumpy Bum”

Letting everyone else play the Nintendo 3DS on Christmas day, you were very thoughtful and kind.

You screamed when a small spider was crawling on you while we were packing, which caused me to scream.


Performing with only one other recorder student again. You did wonderfully.

Enjoying all my quick fixing meals that I don’t buy because they contain MSG and white flour. You tried to tell me we should eat them like once a week, that’s eating them in moderation.

Not doing your school work while at the house because you were just too distracted by entertaining yourself.

You tell me you love me more than I love you. I don’t think so.

The first thing out of your mouth after you opened the Nintendo 3DS, “Britta is going to be so jealous.”

Being my cuddle bug.

I was sending Lilah to bed early, because she has been complaining about not getting enough sleep. I was going to send you to bed at the same time, to be fair, but then you argued that you get up early on your own, or do not complain, so you should be able to stay up to the normal bedtime. I agreed.


Once we officially closed on our second home, you were like, “What the crap are we doing?” other quotes of the night. “We now have a vacation home on the North East side of town. I’d rather it be in the woods.”

Making me laugh late at night, then when I tell you it’s easy to make me laugh late at night, you tell me you’re actually funny and I’m really a hard audience.

Dealing with my mental breakdown with the water not being turned on and then the valve being broken.

Playing the Lord of the Rings Lego game on the girls’ gift.

Meeting our new neighbors and getting to know them before me. Telling me it must be your beard that makes you more approachable.

Not feeling your best over the break, but still working hard on the house.

House stuff.

December 11th, 2012

I’m keeping a short journal of the work we do each day on the house for the final product. So far each day is pretty short, but today was eventful.

Monday 12-10: Got to house and water had been turned on, but back off because their was a leak. Piping from the sprinkler in the front yard had been broken off, and thus created a geyser when water is on. Jon figured out how to keep sprinklers off while having the water to the house turned on, only we then noticed another geyser from the spigot attached to the house in the back, because the valve had been broken off. We had to call the home warranty company to send plumbers to fix it. Big hole in the back of the house to properly attach and extend a pipe for the new spigot. Not sure of vandals or if someone purposely broke and took the evidence, or accidentally broke and took the evidence. There were no broken pipes or valves around either area. Keeping water turned off while we’re not at the house just in case.

Today was my first mental breakdown of the move and new house. This water problem has delayed my plans for painting and has caused an annoyance while at the house. (No toilets or ability to wash hands.) I really want to fix the house and move in but having no water meant not being able to clean properly and prep for painting. People also keep asking why I can’t paint with out water, and I want to yell at them. How they heck can I clean my rollers, any spills, or even my own self if I have no running water at the site!?! I also don’t like cleaning with cleaners if I have no place to wash my hands. Ick.

I’ll admit I am now a little scared to be there working alone, because if it was vandals or someone purposefully causing damage, I fear they’ll come back while I’m there alone. It stinks. I’ll be happy to do work when my floor guy is there with me next week.

I am grateful the front sprinkler was broken, because who knows if the water guy would have been able to observe and tell there was a broken valve in the back yard. It sucks that they’re broken, but I guess I should be happy they were both broken, and not just the back yard one.

We also put some paint samples on our walls, and did not like them. We have to choose fast because we are having someone paint the entry, and it has to be a color we’re happy with because, we’ll we’re paying someone to paint the entry. I’m also worried the color won’t go with the carpet, since we choose our carpet based on the color sample.

So excited, but so stressed.

The house on Chipotle

December 10th, 2012

(Disclaimer, the house is really not on a street called Chipotle, but that’s the nickname Jon gave the street it is on when we first looked at it. This was also written in January, when we first put our offer in. I didn’t want to post this until I knew we were getting the house. I’ve tried to fix it to past tense, but we’ll see if I caught everything. )

Jon and I have been saving for a second house for a long time. It seems like forever, though I’m sure it’s only been closer to 3-4 years, which is still forever when you’ve only been married for 10.

Last year we went an amazing family vacation and and afterwards decided we wanted to go on an Alaskan Cruise in June 2012 to celebrate our 10 year anniversary. We would continue to save for a home, but we’d also have fun traveling because once we got a home, it might be a while before we could do any expensive vacations and I wanted to really celebrate our 10th year married, which was this past February. (We can now not afford any expensive vacations.)

So we had been discussing and talking about going on an Alaskan cruise since around July of 2011. It would be the honeymoon we didn’t get to have, because we had a honeymoon, but it only last two days, in Mesquite, NV. What can I say, we were poor college students and the money we would have spent on a honeymoon, we actually saved and it’s what got us through some unemployment just 5 months after getting married.

Jon and I were both looking forward to the Alaskan cruise, but he wasn’t so sure about leaving the girls behind. So while he wanted to go on it, he also had his reservations.

As we looked over finances one day we realized we were really close to being able to buy a house and have the down payment we needed. So close that Jon was a little upset that we had paid tithing, because it meant we’d have to wait around a year to start looking.

I was OK with paying tithing, but then I started thinking, “What if we don’t go to Alaska, and just bought a house?” Now, Jon and I had made a decision way back in July and knew that going on big trips meant we would not get our house as soon, but it was a sacrifice we were willing to make….

Then one night I decided to look over I found a 4 bedroom house, in the neighborhood I wanted to live. It was close to our price range, with no pool. This no pool thing was big. Jon and I did not want a pool, and he had threatened that if we did buy a house with a pool, he’d make it into a fish pond and catch fish from it to eat. I fully believe he would try to do such a thing. I did not want a fish pond in my back yard. As strange as it sounds, finding a house with no pool and in our price range was huge. Everything was too expensive, like we’d have to wait another 2-3 years to have enough money for the down payment, or things were too small, or too icky, or not in a good area at all, or they have the dreaded pool. It seemed like 75% of the houses in our ideal area had pools.

So here I had found a house that might work for us, but we were planning a big trip to Alaska. Jon and I had chosen the dates, were checking out costs for flights, beginning to look at what activities we wanted to do in our ports, such as whale watching and riding a historic train. We had done everything but book the cruise, because we hadn’t decided if we wanted to use a travel agent or not.

Then my brain started going crazy.

I would look at Alaska stuff, but then I’d also think about this house on Chipotle.

I’d looked at our finances to see if we could buy the house, but I’d also be looking at the prices for whale watching.

My brain was confused and I was unsettled about everything.

So while sitting in Sacrament meeting one Sunday I prayed.
I was a little vague in my first prayer. “Heavenly Father let me know if I should go on the cruise or if we should try to buy this house on Chipotle?”
Nothing but more confusion and the Holy Ghost telling me I knew what I needed to ask and I needed to be specific.
I didn’t want to be specific.
I wanted to go on a cruise.
“Heavenly Father, I’ve decided we should go on the cruise, I mean, buy the house on Chipotle is that what we should do?”
Wait, did I just ask to go on the cruise or buy a house?
My brain was still flipping back and forth, and I was still getting a sense that I knew what I needed to ask.
“Heavenly Father, I’ve decided we should try to buy this house on Chipotle, is that what we should do?”
Then my brain went calm.
It was silent.
I felt peace.
We were suppose to try to buy this house on Chipotle.

I had already e-mailed my sister Carolyn about the Chipotle house and we had decided to look at it for fun. (She was my realtor, and she is awesome. Read awesome in a singing voice to get the full affect.)
I set up an appointment and we checked it out.

The house had much to be desired aesthetically. The paint was terrible, the floors wrre hideous, the bathroom and kitchens were not what I would choose, but it had what I needed. Four rooms, a formal living, a dining room, and a family room. The formal living could be our regular living room, we could have a dining room and the back family room would be our homeschooling room. Jon could have his library/office and I could have my sewing/guest room because of the 4 rooms. (We’d continue to have the girls share a room because we are evil, selfish parents.)
It also had a nice sized yard and no pool!

So I decided Jon should go see it and we made an appointment.

Between me seeing the home and Jon seeing it, something miraculous happened. They lowered their price. This was huge, because their asking price was a bit much, but also because it was lowered to exactly what we needed. I had looked over the finances and realized with some other expenses we’d probably not be able to buy the house at the higher costs, but with the price being lowered, it was doable, and it was exactly what we needed.

So we took Jon to see the house. He didn’t mind the tile, the paint was a little too much, and the yard wasn’t as large as he hoped, but still big enough.

We talked it over and debated. It was the only house we’d looked at. It had kinda an odd floor plan, but it still worked and was very functional for our needs. If it closed soon, we’d have to move in as is, and that would stink, but we could make it work.

We put an offer in January of 2012, and then we closed 10 1/2 months later. Closing later stunk, but in the end it was the best for our finances. We are now fixing the house on Chipotle and will move in the beginning of the new year. We are really excited. Over this whole time there has only been one other house that we’ve wanted to buy, and that helped my realtor feel a little better about us putting an offer in on the first and only house we had seen. I really feel we are suppose to have this house and am so excited for the many years ahead.