Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Something Sweet

We had a terrible time trying to get Dallas to bed the other day. He was just too tired to get it done. We had an argument. He eventually ended up in bed and all was well, so I thought. Yesterday, out of the blue, he said to me, "Mommy, I'm sorry I wouldn't get my pajama pants on when you asked me to." I thought, oh, how sweet. Before I could respond he said, "And I'm sorry I didn't apologize last night." Say it with me now, Aaaw! I told him it was okay. A few seconds later, while I was still thinking what a sweet adorable kid he is, he says to me," Well, aren't you going to apologize for yelling at me?" Put me in my place! Of course I did. There is nothing like having kids to make you a better person!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Successful Christmas defined

Today was a successful Christmas. The kids liked their gifts, not one of them mentioned a thing about not getting something else they had asked for, although, the dolls will go back into the re-gift pile once again. These include the one that Lily got for her first Christmas, which I left in the box thinking, "What will she do with a Cabbage Patch doll this year?" This same doll was given to her for her birthday when she turned two years old. They boys got puzzles though, and they are much more fun. So, back into storage it went. Christmas last year, not a hint of interest.

This year we have noticed a major shift in her "girly-ness" When we walk down the aisle at Wal-mart where there are pink things Lily thinks they all need to be hers. She even wrote a letter to Santa with my sister's help asking for a doll. She brought me the paper and announced "DOLL!" So, I bought her another doll this year, making two for her to have. Lily looked around at the gifts under the tree. (We had about three for each that were not wrapped – towels, pillows and pillowcases that I actually finished with mom's help…) Her dolls were not wrapped. One of the boys brought it to her. She completely ignored him. I took it and tried to hand it to her. She yelled, "NO!" and ran away from me! I tried later after the wow of everything had worn off a bit, same response. Two dolls into the re-gift pile. She was very excited to get a car trailer with cars on it like the boys have though, just as excited as they were. At least she likes pink, pretty hair (though she seldom lets me fix it), and being called a princess in her dresses.

Less really is more! Christmas was scaled back a lot this year, as I am sure many were. The kids each got a scooter and helmet, not wrapped, except for Stephen because he got a scooter for his Birthday last August. He got a racecar track for hot wheels. Super cool, especially when Daddy will let the kids touch it. (He really enjoyed it too.) This kept everyone busy for an hour or two.

This year we had planned to open a new playroom in the basement where some of our toys have been taking a vacation. We were going to put up shelves and paint the walls; we got some maps and letters for decorating. Really all we needed to do was unlock the door. Alas, this was not to come to pass. During our dinner last night Evan got sick, multiple times, and though the night too. We decided we had enough stuff and put the play room off until maybe Valentine's Day. This was very good. We had just enough, not too much. In years past, we have felt as though we were forcing the kids to open more gifts when they just wanted to play with what they had already opened. We finished opening in record time- well, a lot faster than we have in recent years. We began around 8AM (another little miracle – the kids waited for us to get out of bed) and finished around 10:30AM. Steve was reminding me how long it took us in 2005.

The first year the kids were home Christmas 2005, we took the kids to church for the first time, just for sacrament. We came home to relish in the first day as a family, with no help from anyone. (Like the word "relish"? Ha, ha, ha, ha. We didn't want to impose on anyone's holiday plans.) Anyway, church was at 9AM, after which we came home, ate and fed, started opening presents. We had so many interruptions with feeding, diaper changing we were still working on opening our gifts, which were mostly boxes of diapers, at dinnertime. It took us close to 6-7 hours that year. Ahh, sweet memories. We had the diapers and sick kid interruptions this year, but wow, so much faster!!! I do think it was louder this year….. can't imagine why….. maybe because Brenden has decided he can make siren sounds for his fire trucks…. The possible reasons are near endless.

Last thought for today: The kids got these "Mack" trailers from the Cars Disney movie that have cars ride in his trailer. The three younger boys got them a few weeks ago from Steve's work party Santa. The older boys "needed" them and they all had to have Lightning McQueen ride inside. We only had one McQueen. This is the first time they have ever had an ongoing disagreement. They usually figure out how to take turns or something. So, we went and found a few more of these, including the one for Lily. We also got 11 more McQueen cars hoping it would end the arguing. Low and behold, Marek comes walking in the room some time later with ALL the McQueens in his trailer. It is only built for three! However, no one else complained. They have such unique talents.

So, enough but not too many gifts, at least one project gift completed, kids letting us get out of bed too, not too much vomit or arguing, only one ornament broke, and a good start on next years Christmas gifts. (who knows, maybe she will want a doll next year) A successful Christmas!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Singing Bananas

We had a great day at church singing in the choir on Sunday. Almost all the pieces turned out better than the practices. There really is just nothing quite like singing to feel the spirit! I am finally starting to feel in the spirit of the holiday. Steve also sang a piece as a double quartet. Very good! I was able to see the kids from a distance – a chance to look at the forest and not be too close to the trees so to speak. I thought they were good. They were not near as loud as I thought they were. They only went between the row in front of and behind where they were supposed to be. One of my friends said she was watching them and they were little "angels" (Yeah, she is a grandma herself) When I got back to the family (thanks to Mom, Shelly, her kids, and Lacey!!!) Lacey said, "Your kids are out of control!" That goes to say a lot about perspective.

Now, here comes the Monday. Kids out of school – yes. I am out of school – yes. Laundry to clean – yes. Dishes piled high – yes. Paper plates to cover the gap – yes. Parties to attend- yes. Sick kids - Yes, yes, yes. Gifts to take – yes. Wrapped? No. Projects being attacked? No. Christmas cards mailed – now, really where did this month go?

The kids have learned how to open the bananas all by themselves while I am not looking! Yes! Feel free to use your imagination here, but it wasn't that bad really. Lily was the only one that felt like painting the boys ate most of them. Runny diapers? HOPE NOT! (Our attempts at potty training were less than fun for me and we will try again in several months. Lily, sweet Lily is not at all interested, although she was very excited to get her new "socks", it will be a while before she gets the idea.)


Tuesday, December 16, 2008

what will Santa do?

I think Santa will have to decorate our tree for us. What few decorations we have that are not broken or in safe keeping have migrated up to the top and off of the tree. At least we have colored lights on this one so it kind of looks decorated. I can't believe it's almost here already!!! The boys have started the official countdown and I am out of time! AAAUURAUGFH!!! (that's a scream of anxiety/frustration/fear/exhaustion/etc....) It will be a miracle if Dallas doesn't firgure out who really gets the gifts this year. He is so observant! Stephen is too but he doesn't tell me about it and ask more questions. UGH.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Sunbeams, here we come!

For anyone wondering what to do for the nursery kids as they approach the age of three and prepare to join the older kids as sunbeams in the primary, it is not waiting until two weeks before the end of the year to talk to them about it! It is probably much better to talk to them about it in October, and then have them join just for the singing part, and then come for the entire time.

There are two weeks until our kids join the big kids in real classes at church. Their class will be called "Sunbeams" I have heard the nursery leaders mention before that the kids in there just have a really short attention span and the lessons need to be kept short. I have seen several children that fit that description, but I believe we should be teaching them what will be expected of them, not catering to their current level. By this, I mean trying to get them to sit in the chair a little longer each week instead of saying, "Oh, they can only handle it for about 5 minutes so if we have a lesson that is four minutes long it will be good enough." I am not saying this is what the teachers in their nursery class have been doing, I really do not know. I am also guilty of not teaching them better at home myself. This is a mistake!

They were introduced to primary today. I have been asking for a month or two now when this will occur. I learned it was today when I heard Evan's screaming protest from the other side of the building. He did NOT want to be there! The other kids were okay for a few minutes, but it was a very few. When I heard Evan, I went in to help and sit with him. Didn't help much. Steve came too. I left to teach the R.S. class. I heard Evan more. I eventually left and brought him to class with me. I have not had a kid in class with me since they were about 19 months old! My friend eventually took him out and stayed in the hallway with him until it was time to go home. Someone in the primary asked what was wrong with my kids. They were all a bit rowdy today.

Earlier in sacrament meeting, I leaned over to Steve and said, "I think we have a few ADD kids today." As they were all climbing over each other and bouncing off the chairs (Lily and Marek), singing ABC's repeatedly (Dallas), blowing raspberries in the air (Brenden and Lily), trying to escape and run out of the chapel (Evan and Marek)... The good part here is that we have learned not to take anything hard that could hurt a neighbor when thrown. Steve said to me, "Ya think?!?!" Evan did manage to escape, made a new friend who flagged him down. I ended up taking Dallas out, with Lily. This does not happen often since it causes more work than it is usually worth.

While we were out having our "time out", Dallas managed to trip me. I twisted my ankle, landed on his head, which pushed him into the wall. And since I was holding Lily, I banged her head against mine. Dallas laughed of course. We were really on one today! Maybe it was all the parties over the weekend full of sugar. Maybe it was lack of sleep. Maybe it was the stress of their mother rubbing off on them. (Finals this week!) Maybe it was just our turn to be crazy. All I can say is I hope those teachers are ready for the new sunbeams class!!!

After church, we went to choir practice. While we were there, the kids gave Grandma a run for her money! They have new toys from Santa that cause many problems, more on that another day. They got paint out and painted a few things, washable, some bubbles took over the kitchen thanks to Stephen. Marek broke a baby Jesus Dallas was painting. Stephen decided to disassemble my bulletin board and make one of his own…. Luckily, the exploding diaper happened when I was home this morning!

And Sunday is supposed to be the day of rest. We had a great choir practice followed by a sing a long. I thought this was just when everyone went and sang along, but it is when each ward choir in the stake performs a piece and the rest of the people there sing a verse in between while the choirs trade places. It was nice – we were the best, in my opinion. Other people had their kids there. I was glad ours were not today! A boy in Stephen's class gave us some chocolate fudge as a gift. His mom said he was excited about it. It was nice. Thanks for tending for us Grandma! Now that I have that out of my system, I will attempt to study for a final or two.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Where is everyone?

Hi again. Here we are watching the snow falling, possibly turning into a nice "blizzard". It was difficult to get everyone back in the house today after taking the older boys to school. The snow is too much fun!!! Even though yesterday we stayed home from church with illness,we are rearing to go today! My neighbor drove by this morning while we were out and asked if we were okay. She looked in the nursery yesterday and asked the nursery leaders, "Where is everybody?" It seemed kind of empty there. The Taggart's were missing. Yup, we fill a room.

Here is a funny for the day: Friday we went to the Festival of Trees, fund raiser for the children's hospital. We stopped by the little office where they can tell you how much the tree you built sold for. (We were pleased with ours. There were still quite a few that hadn't sold yet and they were not selling for as much as they have in the past because of the economy.) And the lady there said, "Five boys and one girl? Did I count that right? Five boys and one girl?" I said yes. Then she asked, "So how long did it take you to get your girl?" I thought this was pretty funny. I thought it looked a little obvious. I said, "she's third, but there was only three pregnancies." She looked for a second then said,"oh, did you have two sets of twins or something?" When we explained they were quads the shock factor set in. It was so funny! I haven't had that question before. There's a first time for everything!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Sweet memories

I have been reminded of something I wanted to post when it happened but I didn't get around to it yet.

A while ago when we were all sick we lined the kids up around the tub instead of the toilet to aim their vomit. I know it sounds gross, but it was so much easier and now it's sort of funny. Then a few weeks ago Marek said he didn't feel well. I said, "Oh, okay." Steve asked him if he felt like he was going to barf. Marek gave no response so I thought nothing of it. Some minutes pass and I don't see him anymore, so I start looking for him. I find him up in the bathroom just standing there. I wonder, is he trying to go potty without me? Is he trying to take a bath? What's he doing? I get there and ask him, "Marek, what are you doing?" He leans closer to the tub then looks up at me with these terribly sad puppy eyes, like he has a huge concern. He pouts his lower lip out and says with a little whimper, "My barf's broken."

Apparently Lily didn't remember that you are supposed to go to the tub for those kinds of things, or that I have finals soon. She emerges from her room tonight saying, "Oh no! A mess! A mess!" and she is covered from head to toe in her "dinner". We have gone through all her clean jammies. She chose to wear her Sunday tights with flowers on them and a t- shirt, but now we are moving into regular day clothes. I am grateful that we have a brand new 4 pound box of baking soda that "eliminates odors on contact" and I am very glad we had rice for dinner instead of the spaghetti I was considering! I to wonder though, why didn't I get that plastic cover for her mattress yet, and why did it take me three times to decide that she was sick enough to have her hair up in a pony tail for bed time???

happy everything

Well, Thanksgiving came and went and Christmas is on the way!!! Happy everything to everyone! We had Thanksgiving dinner here at our house. The boys were excited that grandparents were coming. When I told them MY grandparents would be coming Stephen gave a delighted squeal. Dallas was concerned. He was worried because they are old. He said, "but Grandma Bell can't leave her house! She's too old. We're supposed to visit her! How will she get here? She can't drive!" Funny, cute. When my mom was telling me they were coming there was a similar conversation between Grandma Bell and my mom. "How will we get there?" "I guess you could walk." "Oh, we're pretty slow." "well, you better get started now!" My mom went and got them and drove them here.

The next couple weeks will be spent trying to prepare for my finals! Therefore, I may or may not get a chance to update for a while. Here is some good new though: My sister Lacey passed her state licensing exam for massage therapy! HOORAY!!!

More later, make it a great day!