Playing Catch Up: Summer Edition 5

Everyone,

Every year during the summer our bishop (the leader of our congregation) opens his summer camp to us for the day and we have a huge pool party. We go every year, shimmering heat or rain. Of course we always have fun swimming with our ward family. This year was no exception!

Pirate was obsessed with going under the water. Obsessed. It was all he did.

Pirate under water July 2012

Professor was content to float around on his 5 pool noodles. He can push himself around the pool by kicking and watch everyone play.

Professor floating July 2012

I didn’t get any pictures of Butterfly or Juice in the pool because I was tied to the stairs saving Pirate’s life every third dive or so. My BFF Lolli took pity on me and hung out talking. She also took our annual picture on the pool alligator.

Alligator!

Whoops, not that one!

Family in Pool July 2012

Juice played water ball with all the guys, and then street hockey. Every year, someone gets hurt in that street hockey game. He said the threat of danger makes it fun. Okay.

After all that playing, a good dinner of grilled stuffs and salads, we went home tired. I think all the kids fell asleep in the car and cried when we put pjs on them. Note for next year: bring pjs to change into!

Safire

Busy All Day Long

Everyone,

This morning we went to the church so I could have a meeting with my primary presidency and so we could go through the closet at church.  It’s always nice to know exactly where everything is in that closet!  And boy did we have a lot of stuff.

Also, a mouse.

Yuck!

I spent 4 hours at the church cleaning that closet out (with my fellow primary presidency people) and got home around 3pm.  After a quick lunch and a quick glance at my email, friends came to play.  We broke out our blow up pool and the kids had a ball.

Friends in the Pool

I love summer that you can do this kind of stuff with the kids!  I also love that my kids are old enough to enjoy these kinds of things.  And they are still young enough to enjoy these kinds of things.  I’m really liking this stage.

After a fun dinner with our friends (hot dogs outside so they could play as long as possible), I went BACK to the church.  I made smoothies with the 8-11 year old girls and we had a great time.  We talked a lot about nutrition as well.  I’m going to miss those girls.  This was my last “official” meeting with them.

And now, I’m exhausted.  Time for bed!

Safire

We’re Crabby Here

Everyone,

And no, this is not a Maryland crab joke. I tried one of those on Juice this afternoon and he kind of looked at me funny.

The day started out okay. Juice got up early to go to some sort of skeet shooting thing with the church. He should have checked his email before he left because it got cancelled. He came home crabby because no one was at the church. From there, he hustled us out the door, which made ME crabby. I had big plans this morning. Like resting my aching legs and desperately trying to find some time to do something on line that I want to do.

No go with him. Out the door to the grocery store and to get the boys’ hair cut. This is their second professional cut of their lives. The first one was around their first birthday. And this one only because I’ve trimmed it badly several times in a row and it looked all lopsided.

Half an hour later and three suckers (Butterfly was lucky enough to get one even though she did not get her hair cut) and we were done. They look so old! There was no screaming this time. What a difference a year makes.

Then from there we rushed home for lunch and naps before our church’s big general meeting. We have them 2 times a year (always the first weekend in April and October). This year Easter and Conference landed together. We’re able to watch Conference through the Internet. Sadly, I slept through most of the morning session.

In between sessions (5 sessions total, 3 on Saturday, 2 on Sunday, each 2 hours long) we ran to REI to pick out a big girl bike for Butterfly for her birthday. I am a member and I get cash back for everything I purchase there. And last year I bought A LOT of stuff from them. So I got a lot of cash back. We did not come home with a bike today. But we did come home with a size for her bike. She looks enormous on a 16 inch bike but okay on a 20 inch bike. Seriously, she is amazingly tall! Sadly, this also means we’re going to have to buy special training wheels for her that will fit her bike. And they didn’t have the color she wanted in stock so back home to order it online.

The whole time we’re out everyone is cranky. Professor REFUSES to be put down by me or touched by Daddy lately. He spent the day strapped to my back. Butterfly is whining that she doesn’t WANT a bike (but perked up when I told her she could have a bell on it) and Pirate desperately wanted to be where Professor was.

Several times today I had to count to 10 to keep my temper. Everyone needs to just do as their told! And if I tell you to stop whining, DO IT.

I didn’t buy a one of a kind necklace that I wanted to. I saw it about a week ago and thought I would wait a week to see if I REALLY wanted it before I bought it. That whole, trying to keep impulse buying down to a minimum. I REALLY did want it but as of a few days ago, it was sold. I am super sad about it and am now researching how I can make one of my own.

Juice (happily…too happily in my opinion) went off to the meeting for the men tonight and left me to get everyone in bed. Which happened soon after we had a snack. And during the snack, both boys started signing every sign I know. More, milk, hurt, various animals, sorry, sad, happy, thank you, cracker, cereal, etc. They were having a ball and asking each other for more milk and then passing cups around. Butterfly caught on to what they were signing before I did.

After they were in bed, I spent the evening eating Easter candy, putting some in their baskets, and watching a very girly movie. It wasn’t great but my popcorn was good.

Now if I can get to bed and get some sleep, maybe we’ll all be in better moods tomorrow.

Safire

Five Strands of Embroidery Floss Makes Girls Happy

Everyone,

Tonight was the night I go to my church and help run the bi-monthly activities for the 8-11 year old girls. I’ve been doing a little over 2 years now, and it is so much fun! I’ve come to know all these girls and watch them mature into beautiful young women.

Our activity tonight was all about making friendship bracelets. We also talked about what makes a good friend. Here is the list they came up with.

A good friend is

I think this is a great list. It’s something you could apply to any of your relationships, not just your friends. Because I’m sure Juice would pick up my homework for me if I was sick. (I think he did that once in high school. I know he helped me with my homework several times. There’s a reason I know the 16th president to this day.)

These girls were so excited to talk about the good things their friends had done or things that they had done to be good friends. Then we got down to the fun part. Braiding! Check out this video of someone else doing what we did tonight.

Did I ever mention that I was a camp councilor for a year? No? Well, it was one of the most fun jobs I’ve ever had. And these friendship bracelets were HOT. Everyone had them. I taught horseback riding lessons for the summer and we would always pull out the hair in the horses tails to make these bracelets. I still have that bracelet and it’s one of my treasured souvenir of camp. I also made one out of the horse’s tail that I owned at college. But at camp, these bracelets were our currency. I never did get very many, but I had enough that I was happy with them. This is the easiest way to make a fun and interesting braid. Everyone made at least one and everyone went home with someone else’s.

I imagine we’ll be seeing these around church for awhile. At least I hope we will! (Especially since this was supposed to be an hour long activity and after 2 hours, we had to kick everyone out. They had a ball!)

Safire

Twitch Twitch

Everyone,

I am tired. Not, tired of doing everything, just really really tired. How do I know this? My eye lids twitch when I get really tired. Not only are my lids twitching, my cheeks and my eyebrows are too. I’m that tired.

Why so tired you ask? Today I took the kids to the PRC after a few short hours of sleep. Pirate has a cold and can’t seem to lay down and suck his thumb. He does fine sucking it sitting up so I spent half the night propped up in my bed snuggled up to him. He was very happy in the morning to find himself in bed with me. It was also VERY early…about 6am. I kind of muddled through the morning and got to the PRC in time for some play. Of course, Pirate fell asleep before we got there and then only really wanted to be held. Or eat play dough. Still, we had a nice time and they all had great naps.

I did not nap (I should have) but I watched a movie.

After naps, I loaded everyone in the car to run some errands before my evening at the church. We stopped and got dinner (Butterfly’s choice…chicken nuggets!) and made it too the church on time. Tonight my girls that I’m in charge of (8-11 year olds) had to pass of some memorization that we’d been doing all year. Depending on what they knew, they got to build a big ice cream sundae. They had a great time and so did I. Butterfly helped with the sprinkles. The boys cried every single time I even got close to leaving them. I don’t think they are enjoying nursery. Poor guys.

Everyone was finally in bed by 9:30pm tonight and I should be there too. Good night!

Safire

Super Star!

Everyone,

Today was Butterfly’s talk in church.  She did so good!  She got nervous right before and started crying.  A few minutes out in the hall, a promise of an ice cream sandwich at home, and she walked right up there like a champ.  I think she was expecting to say her talk right away.  When she didn’t, she kind of broke down again on stage.  Poor thing.  Stage fright is real!  But she calmed down, was able to sing with all the other kids and then did her talk.  Because I’ve had several people ask me, I’ll write it down here.

My Daddy fixes things that break.  Sometimes he uses glue to stick two things together.  After he uses the glue, things stay together.  Going to the temple is like glue for familes.  This temple glue helps keep our families together forever.  The Bible says, “Whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven (Matthew 16:19).  Being bound means sticking together like glue.  When my parents were married in the temple, they were stuck together by being sealed.  That special sealing means that my brothers and I are sealed to them too.  I am so glad I am sealed to my family.

While the take itself is very basic and easy (she’s 4, it had to be!) her inflection was so good.  The primary president told me that she was the crowning jewel in their program and she seriously was.  She had it all memorized and only needed help with the bible verse.  She was clear, easy to understand, and had cute little ups and downs in her voice that really caught everyone’s attention.  Seriously, everyone was quiet through her talk.  (Except for the boys…they could care less!  They were only mad that Juice left to go help her and wanted to go up there too!)

Everyone told her she did such a good job and talked about it in the other classes.  We had a visiting leader of our church there and she mentioned how wonderful her talk was and how special the little children are.  And they are.  Of course, it’s hard to remember that when she’s throwing a tantrum on the way home because she didn’t want to go to church in the first place, but still.  She is wonderful.

Since she turned 4 and a half the other day, I thought I’d do a small update on her.  Like last year, it’s in letter form.

Dear Butterfly,

You are changing so fast!  I love it and hate it at the same time.  I love that you are becoming a great little kid.  I love that you can climb all over the playground equipment at the park and I never worry about you.  I love that you recognize our street, Vinny’s house, and a few other places by sight.  I love that you tell me that I have to go the speed limit in the car “Because it’s good for you!”  But I hate leaving that baby behind.  Oh you still ask to be rocked in the rocking chair sometimes and you still are a great crier for every little tiny bump.  I just remember the first time you really smiled and I was so thrilled to see your deep dimples.  I’m so glad they have stayed since they will remind me of that moment every day.

You are so interested in friends these days.  Today at church, you sat in the hall with a friend from church who had an old cell phone to play with.  You sat next to him on the couch as close as you could, and laid your head on his shoulder to get a better look.  The two of you were giggling up a storm.  You turned and looked at me and told me he was your friend.  I’m so glad you have friends and that you want to have friends!

Your imagination has not slowed down.  In fact, I think it’s picked up speed.  A few weeks ago, I showed you how I used to make a horse out of my hand to play with.  I remember riding in the car with the window down and my hand out pretending I had a pegasus on my hand.  I see you playing with the hand horse now whenever you are bored.  You play by yourself great but still can’t stand to play with your brothers sometimes.  I think it’s because they want to be independent right now.

I can’t wait for you to start school.  I think you are going to have a ball being with friends all day and learning all sorts of cool stuff.  I’m sad that it is all day kindergarten here and that you will be away from me for 6 whole hours every day.  But I’m excited for you to do it!  You’ve loved being able to do your “homework” for our little preschool and are starting to get the concept of math.  You are doing great in your dance class and your teacher tells me you are always good to have around.

You love your daddy so so much that sometimes I feel a little left out of your secret circle.  But when I was gone for a few nights last month, you were very happy to see me.  You told me, “I had no one to talk to but Daddy, and he doesn’t talk that much.”  At least I know that you do love me for somethings!  You like your brothers sometimes but ask me several times a day if it’s time for their naps.  It’s hard to share all the time with them, I know.  They don’t play how you want them to and tend to knock things over that you have made.  But be patient with them and you guys will be great friends in the future I hope.

Today in church, you gave your first talk in scarament meeting, in front of everyone!  I am so proud of you for doing that.  What a brave girl you are.  You even had your talk memorized and wowed everyone.  You looked so sure of yourself up on that stage.  I hope you always remember who you are.  You are a child of God, loved and adored by your family, and have a bright future ahead of you.  You can do anything you want and you will do great at it.

Thanks for being such a great daughter.  I love you tons.

Your Mommy 

Almost Nursery Time!

Everyone,

In our church, the babies aren’t allowed to be in the nursery until they are 18 months old. The boys turned 17 months on Friday (can you believe that?!) so they are basically a month away from nursery. We have been in the hall for weeks now because trying to keep these two boys out of trouble during class is impossible. They still come to sunday school with me (since I have 2-3 teenage girls and that’s it…they love these boys!) and then I walk the halls with them for the 3rd hour. Mostly because my classroom has curtains (so. much. fun.) and Juice’s class is on the stage. That’s a sure fire way to make sure no kids go into his class…make it a safety hazard.

In any case, we have basically 2 more weeks of walking the halls with them. (Next week, the first Sunday in October we have a big general meeting where we don’t go to the church building but watch it on tv or the internet, and the second Sunday in October.) They turn 18 months old on the 3rd Sunday of October this year so I am excited to see them off on their next step and actually be in class.

Our leaders gave us two sheets to fill out for them and I thought it would be fun to copy them down here.

Pirate (next to his name I wrote “has brown eyes”)

  1. Does your child have food allergies? no
  2. Does your child have a favorite toy? his thumb (please make sure it’s clean if possible!). He also likes music and books.
  3. What is your child’s favorite food? string cheese and meat
  4. What food do they really NOT like? bread
  5. Please tell us anything else or any concerns you have: He’s still not very steady on his feet. He can climb onto chairs but can’t get down. He will destroy his snack when he’s done so watch out. He steals toys and can push or hit when frustrated. (welcome to twins!) A firm “stop” will get him to stop, though. He’s quick to smile and has a sweet laugh. He does not say much but understands a lot. Thanks!

Professor (has blue eyes)

  1. Does your child have any food allergies? no
  2. Does your child have a favorite toy? His pacifier. He also likes balls and cars.
  3. What is your child’s favorite food? cheese, cherrios, crackers
  4. What food do they really NOT like? meat
  5. Please tell us anything else or concerns you have: He likes to climb and can get on top of tables if you leave a chair near it. He is sensitive and will get his feelings hurt easily. He will put his head into the floor and cry if that happens. He can be pushy and grabby with toys (welcome to twins!). Trading toys works well for him if he gets too pushy. Please come and get me if he won’t stop crying. He does not say much but understands a lot. Thanks!

It’s so fun to see the differences in the boys. I am excited for them to go into nursery because I think they will have a lot more fun playing with toys than wandering the halls with me and taking screaming turns at the drinking fountain. The poor nursery leaders get a little wild in the eyes when I talk to them about the boys coming into their class, though. It’s hard to add two to anything!

Safire

Hate Is Such a Strong Word

Everyone,

I’m not going to say it, but I strongly dislike Sundays around here.  Oh church is fine.  I enjoy our ward and I enjoy the talks and lessons that I make it to.  I think that may be the key right there…I make it to very little of church lately.

We are late every day to sacrament meeting (the first hour of the 3 hour block).  9am is seriously killing me.  It didn’t help that Professor is getting a cold and couldn’t breathe and suck on his binky at the same time.  I spent from 2-5:45am last night sitting up with him.  And I didn’t get to bed until midnight because Juice and I went out dancing.  At 6am, my alarm went off to get up.  I did not get up until about 7:30am, but that means I got 3 hours of sleep, maybe.  I’m beat.

I spend most of my sacrament meeting in the mother’s lounge nursing the boys.  9am is their normal nap time and they are cross and clingy in church.  Today, they even cried when Juice picked them up.  Yes, they pipe in the talks to the room but no one listens in there.  It’s like a big talk fest.  Which I enjoy, to a point.

The second hour I teach Sunday School to the 14-15 year olds.  It’s 3 girls so I bring the boys with me.  We all sit on the floor and talk about life and babies more than our lessons.  But I think I must be doing something right because my last batch of teenagers often join us.  We have some good talks and I like being the one they ask questions to.  Today was movie day and we watched an old BYU film about a grandma and a mail box.  Sad movie.  Her kids didn’t write and she was alone.  I hope my kids don’t do that!

The 3rd hour is the adult women’s meeting called Relief Society.  I often sit with Lala and Mimi because then the kids play together on the floor.  We call it baby corner.  But of course, we are so busy with keeping them quiet, entertained, and off of each other (mainly my two, Mimi doesn’t like them crawling on her and they barrel over anything in their way).  Most of the time I end up sitting in the mother’s lounge again either nursing or holding screaming children.  They have totally missed their first nap and it shows.  Juice teaches the 12 year old boys at this time or I’d have him take them.

I remember with Butterfly that I seriously wondered why I even came to church.  All I did was walk the halls while she explored until she hit 18 months old when the kids are welcome in nursery.  I imagine this summer I will be doing a lot of walking.  At least Lala will be out there too and we like hanging out together.

By the time we get home, everyone is exhausted and hungry and crabby.  We always have a fight with Butterfly to get out of the car after church.  This time, the boys joined in her screaming.  They went right to bed, and Butterfly screamed through her lunch.  I was so tired I fell asleep on the couch today for about 10 minutes.  Juice was great and got Butterfly into bed.  The boys woke up screaming and hungry as he was shutting her door.  So much for my nap.

Still, it was a good day.  We enjoyed the really nice weather and went for a walk to the park.  Butterfly dumped a few handfuls of dirt on her head and Professor ate a few leaves before we thought we should take them home.  Butterfly got another bath (that makes 2 today, one this morning for church) and the boys had cut up meatballs for the first time.

And now, I’m exhausted.  Off to bed and hopefully we’ll have a better night!

Safire

Saturday is a Special Day

Everyone,

Since Juice had yesterday off, I had a pretty nice day.  We got all of our errands done yesterday and so we basically had the whole day free today. 

Butterfly and I went to her very first primary activity.  I had to go early and help with the 8-11 year old girls who were setting up.  The other twin mom in my ward was there so we chatted about twins and the boys and the disaster I had the other day.  Her twins are 14 now and I love talking with another mom who has been there.  Espically with twins. 

Butterfly was very good for the most part at the party.  She made some new friends (which she can’t remember the names of them so I have to) and she payed attention to her teacher well.  I got some cute pictures of her class together (which I don’t think her teacher was very happy to do but oh well).  It was a good morning.

Both the boys are getting colds so when we got home, they were pretty cranky.  We all had lunch (in which Professor managed to flip the spoon every time I tried to give him something but ate great from Daddy…sigh) and naps for everyone.  I ran to the store to get something I forgot yesterday and went to explore the used book store near by.  I’ve never been there.  It was confusing.  But I managed to come home with the book I wanted (after asking the employee to find it because I couldn’t) and 4 other books.  I have a major soft spot for books.  I almost bought a book that mentions my grandmother (Dad’s mom) but didn’t.  Maybe I should go back and get it.

Anyway, I came home with books to read and tried to get the boys to play with their toys so I could read!  But no dice.  They wanted to nurse but then they were distracted by my book or something their brother did or whatever. 

Juice and I made dinner together.  All 3 kids joined us in the kitchen and cried.  Professor probably the loudest.  He did not have his second nap and was cross and cranky!  We were able to feed them little bits of ham to keep them entertained to at least get the meat loaf in the oven.

Bath night tonight.  Butterfly was so anxious to get in the bath that I just plunked Professor in there too.  They had such a good time together splashing!  Juice brought Pirate in to watch and you could tell he wanted to get in too.  Tomorrow buddy! 

Wow, I just realized that he has not had a bath in over a month.  Ew. 

Everyone sing, “Tomorrow!  You’re only a day away!”

Safire

Don’t Touch Me!

Everyone,

I have felt this building. I know what this is. Periodically when Butterfly was a baby, I went through phases when I have been touched out. The fact that she was attached to me pretty much 24/7 made me not want to have any other living person or thing (talking about the dog here) touching me or near me at all. I remember during my mom’s class at the hospital when Butterfly was a baby we talked about this. Our nurse/instructor said that it was perfectly normal. That day I told Juice all about it and we laughed a little bit. Normal? Pwhsss… It will never happen to us!

Well it did. And today, it did again. I was really surprised that it didn’t happen sooner with the boys with all the holding and toddler climbing I do during the day. And I don’t know why today was the day that I don’t want anyone touching me. But it is.

Luckily, today is a Saturday and Juice is home! We went grocery shopping…where I wore a sleeping baby the whole time. Wow Professor is heavier when asleep. And I saved about 30 dollars because the store was tripling coupons. Yay!

Juice took a nap. I took a small nap. I made pizza all by myself. I picked up my food from the share program and got 2 huge green cabbages. Any ideas what to do with these things?!

It was a good day. Other than the fact that I didn’t want anyone near me.

Poor Pirate is sick again. He has two very bright cheeks and a snotty nose. He has a hard time nursing. It’s more of a nurse-pant-through-mouth-nurse-pant-through-mouth thing. Poor boy. I don’t know why but he always seems to get the worst of any cold we have. Pirate is awfully snuffily, but no snot yet. And Butterfly sounds congested and throaty when she talks.

I hope I have planned for 9am church a little better today. The boys are sleeping in their church clothes so all I have to do is change their diapers and go. I noticed the other day that they are spitting up MUCH less. Hopefully they won’t have a huge diaper blow out or leak. But if they did, it would make me late anyway. I’m going to lay out Butterfly’s clothes tonight and actually get up when my alarm goes off at 6:30am. (Ugh…unfair to have to get up so early! Earlier than the boys!) Because if I want a shower, I need to get up earlier.

I am looking forward to an evening watching a movie with Juice and no snuggling involved. Hard to imagine, I know. But really, I just need a little space. And about 2 extra hours in the morning. (Oh wait, that would make it 11am church…I’ll get that next year.)

Safire

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