Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Oh, that child of mine!

Mike had some church meetings tonight and I had to go to work.  TJ was going to watch Alex but she got sick so I asked our neighbor to watch him. 

It was only an hour and a half!  What could go wrong, right?  Wrong!!

While going to the bathroom at their house, he found some matches (to light a candle).  Well, my pyro lit some and threw them in the garbage can.  They thought they smelled smoke;

 "Al are you ok in there?"


"Did you light matches?" 


"Is it still hot?"


Time to go into the bathroom and see what's up.  Good thing, too because the garbage can was up in flames and starting to melt.  Paul grabbed the can and ran it outside and hosed it down. 

"Paul.  One minute.  One minute.  I have a deal.... roast marshmallows?"

I don't think so buddy.  I don't think so.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Al's first day of school - high school!!

 No, this isn't a mug shot, but I couldn't get him to smile.  He's a big sophmore in high school now.  No time for fun and games, I guess.
 He looks so small in such a big school!  I love the fact that his backpack is a Transformers one. 
And here he is with some of his friends and some peer tutors.  Mike and I take him to school because the bus drops kids off an hour before school starts and then the kids get breakfast there at school.  That would mess up his sugars in a serious way, so we just get him there with about 20 mins before school starts so he can still shmooze but not be there too early.
His teacher is Miss Heather, and so far so good!  They are doing well with his sugars - well, as well as can be expected.  He's a tough one when it comes to his sugars, and even though the docs would disagree with me, I know his sugars do wild swings with the change of seasons.  So they are having to learn real quick what to do for him.  And since his thyroid has been so wacky he isn't as able to tell you when he's low or high like he used to.  I think he just generally isn't quite himself, so it's hard for him to tell.  AND I've always said he doesn't regulate his temperature well (he gets cold so easlily and doesn't do well in heat) and their classroom hasn't been above 60 degrees this whole time.  Needless to say, he's been wearing lots of layers to school.
When we drop Al off (he's called Al at school because there is already an Alex and an Alec) we just call the classroom and a teacher comes and gets him at a certain door.  I walked him in the first day of school, and Mike took him the second day and the class phone wasn't working so Mike had to take him in.  First of all, Mike was appalled at how skimpy girls dress nowadays!  He said he had wished he had blinders on.  But he followed Al up to the classroom, hoping Al knew where he was going, but Mike said all the way in Al had groups of girls saying, "Hi Al!"  "Hey, Alex!"  "Good to see you Al!"  Second day of school and EVERYONE already knows his name. 
I had emailed the wrestling coach to see if Al could 'earn' going to wrestling practice once in a while.  That way he had something to look forward to AND it would hopefully cut down on his wrestling everyone he comes in contact with because I can say, "Nope. It's not wrestling practice."  Surprise, surprise!  The coach wants him on the team!  When I told the coach I didn't know if that was such a good idea because he didn't know anything about wrestling or the rules, moves, etc.  Coach said, "That's what practice is for!"  What a nice guy!!  Wrestling starts in November.  We will have to see how that goes. 
So Alex is a sophmore in high school!  I'm very proud of him and how he is trying to be a big kid.  I miss him around the house all day, but it is so good for him to be with other people other than just mom and a bunch of 3 year olds!
When he gets home from school - if he has earned it - he always wants to go next door and play their video games for 20 minutes.  Kelsey, his friend next door, is a sophmore, too and is becoming a busy high school kid so she's not home for his beck and call as much anymore.  So I texted her the other day to see if she was home and if Al could come over.  She wasn't and then I had to laugh; How many sophmore in high school get a text from their friend's mom asking if they can play?  I think these 2 are it!  Sure glad he has good friends!  One of the boys in our ward (Nash) is in Al's basketball class, and he is so excited to play against / with Nash because Nash is "real good!" 
Just for info sake, Al's classes that are integrated are basketball, art (drawing which he calls coloring), choir (he hasn't sang a note, yet), and ballroom dance!  His vote isn't in yet on dance class.  At first he loved it, but now that they are actually dancing - and much faster than his little body can move - it's a bit overwhelming!
Good luck Al!  Class of 2015!

N's accomplishments

N is now not only a kiddo I babysit, but an un-official grandchild!  She is so loved in this house, and not just by me, but everyone that comes here!  TJ has been known to come over JUST to see her and the 'official' granddaughters think of her as family, too.  Her picture is even up on my piano with the other grand children's. 

So I have to shout my praise for her! She has accomplished so much since her heart surgery in December (2011). She rolls around EVERYWHERE! I have had to put the gate up by the stairs because she is fast, too. She's starting to get on all fours and is getting stronger and stronger everyday. She is still G-tube fed, but she is getting more and more nutrients by mouth! She is trying so many new foods and is being a real trooper about different tastes and textures. And I think she is enjoying it, too. Take a look at these pics and tell me what you think?

I have licorice!
 Don't even think about taking my licorice away!

 First try of spaghetti...


...and she likes it!!  (She actually loved it!)
You may notice how messy she is.  That's my doing and I wouldn't change a thing.  I am a firm believer in letting kids be messy, gooey, sloppy and dirty.  In fact, I've been known to make them messy, gooey, sloppy and dirty if they won't do it to themselves.  I think that getting dirty - especially around the mouth, helps a child be more aware of their bodies.  When a child licks their lips or wipes their lips to try to get the mess off, they feel - and realize - they have lips and teeth and a mouth just like mom and dad.  It just gives them more of an opportunity to discover.... life!!
So, go let your kids be messy today.  And if that's a hard thing for you to do, let them play with pudding in the tub.  Then all you have to do is turn on the water and squirt everything down!
Great job, N!!

A little more summer fun...

One of the last things we did before school started was go visit Josh at his job site; it's Alder construction and they are re-vamping the water towers there.  The old ones are old, old and so they are building new ones.  We really didn't care about the water tanks, but the tractors were soooo awesome!
 All Alex wanted to do was rub the dirt off of the tractors.  He could have been there for hours doing that!

 We took Reggie and her 2 boys - Mc and Ev.  Mc is a HUGE tractor fan!  He knew the proper name for all of the tractors.  To me they were just scoopers and dumpers.  Shows how much I know.
 More rubbing off the you think he could get a job at your work site Josh?  You would have the cleanest tractors in town!!
 The 3 boys in one of the scoops; yes, Alex is rubbing the dirt off o it!
 Al posed for me in front of some of the tractors.  You can see he's thrilled to be walking instead of rubbing dirt off the tractors or throwing rocks.
One more shot in a scoop; this time with Oak, Mc and Ev.  Thanks Josh for the adventure!

And this pic was taken the day before Lou died; that's how things are rated now.  Before and after she died.  I know it kinda sounds morbid, especially since she's still alive, but that was a big chunk of time in all of our lives and it just seems fitting to have it be a timepiece.  Besides if you don't laugh about things, you will go crazy!!  Anyway, Mike and I went for a little bike ride to see the cabin where girl's camp was for the summer.  It was so nice to spend a few hours with him.  Besides, he looks so hot in his motorcycle gea!!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Summer Fun 2012

Seven Peaks Family Fun...
 Al enjoying the surf

Trying his best to go across the floating tubes by rope bridge...

...AND   ......
 ...still trying...
Our favorite; the lazy river.  I think we were there for a couple of hours while the boys rode some slides.  Here's me and N enjoying the ride....

...Cali and Oak....
...Oak and N enjoying each other's company...
N HATED that bridge that's behind us in this pic.  If people were walking across it while we were under it it was very loud.  She did not like that so would get all worried right before we would go under it.
 Lookin comfy...
...and stylin'...
 ...and dorky!!  We took this picture hoping you could see the man boobs.  Not so well, but you get the jest!

 This was at an Owlz game the other night during The National Anthem.  I know I should have my hand on my heart instead of taking this picture, but it was too cute to resist.  And they were both trying to sing along even though they didn't know the words.  I have the best kids!!!!

 And here's more proof that I have the best kids;  this is Alex at his high school (yes, he's in high school this year!) on his way to get his yearbook picture taken.  Notice the guy in his front pocket!  How high school-ish is that?!  I love that kid!!!  But, no he did not keep the guy there for the yearbook picture.  I kinda wish he had. 

Taylor and Brandon are expecting!!

I guess it's ok to blog about this now since she's 18 weeks along! She found out she was pregnant the week after Cali lost Quincy and just found out Friday what she is going to have....'s a girl!  (The pink frosting on the inside is the clue!!)

Alex had to show up the big announcement by rolling down the hill of a retention pond and ending up being covered head to toe in mud.  Here's a geeky picture of Uncle Al enjoying the pink frosting - with his shirt off because of the mud!
Congrats Taylor and Brandon... and Baby Girl!  Can't wait to meet you in February!

September 11, 2012 - 11 years later and we will NEVER forget!


I will never forget where I was, what I was doing and the feelings that rolled around inside of me when I first found out what was happening in New York City, and eventually around the country on that fall morning 11 years ago.  We are lucky to live in an area where we have a Healing Field of flags to commemorate those who died in those disasters.  It's actually the very first Healing Field which was inspiration for many more around the nation. Unfortunately this year the field was scaled down considerably; there used to be a flag representing each of the nearly 3,000 lives that were lost that day.  Today they only displayed 400.  Yet it was still inspiring. 

May we never forget the meaning of the flag; how our country was based on a trust in God.  May we always remember those who died in that senseless tragedy as well as those who have died saving our freedoms which we take for granted.  And may that same God who helped our forefathers create this bounty that we call America bless and protect those that still sacrifice for our freedoms, as well as their families. 

Thank you to all who have served our country! We can't thank you enough, but know that we wish we could try!!