Friday, December 18, 2009

Musings from the children

As I mentioned before we did lots of cookie plates (usually Jeremy reigns me in to about 10). I made all the treats in the previous post. I got the plates out and the kids helped me make sure all the treats were put on all the plates, while I cut up the bars and handed it to them. Then they helped put the wrap over the top. Jeremy got home after that was all done. I was feeding Jackson while the kids taped the tags that I printed, cut up and put adhesive on the back. Logan than says:

"Mom didn't do anything, we did it all while she was sitting there being lazy!"

I am glad I have a sense of humor or I would almost be offended by that.

Today as I was doing stuff I was listening in on Haylie and Hannah who were playing with the Nativity set.

I was torn between finding it funny and wondering if it was inappropriate play. I hear the girls talking about Mary. Then I hear them yelling at Mary to run and take baby Jesus before the monsters get him. The next little play situation was talking about packing their clothes so they could spend the night at Mary's house. Later Joseph made an appearance but it wasn't funny enough to remember. This is probably a silly memory but I can't wait to tell them about this years from now!

Remember that mess...

We made 25 yes that is right 25 cookie plates. They consisted of Sugar cookies (below), brownies (as in out of the box), Oreo truffles, Supreme Rice Cereal Bars and Crispy Butterscotch Fudge bars (with out the peanuts).
My nephew turned 4 on wednesday and I tried my hand at making a cake for him. It is kind of wacky but cute. He even licked the frosting which was cool for me to see. He had ate part of a cupcake at school so he had reached his sugar limit. Take my word for it though it tasted good!
Lastly my sewing project, as mentioned in the previous post.
In my expert opinion I think it was worth all the mess. Fortunately Jeremy is running on borrowed steam so I am not sure he recognized the mess!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Why am I more.

I am surrounded by a great group of ladies who are typically willing and available to succumb to my latest whim or party planning idea. The latest and greatest was a Secret Santa on Speed (like fast forward not the drug, that are BAD!) Instead of spreading it out the whole month, it was in one week. Each lady received three tasks. The first was to drop off a note, the second a homemade gift (craft or treat) and the last was a $5.00 gift limit or ornament to be exchanged at the party.
I was late getting the card in the mail (postmarked by the due date though). The next was a cute Black Apple Doll and a frame. My secret victim is a huge Disney fan, by marriage or nature I am not sure but none the less she is. So I made the doll and put a Mickey hat on it. The frame was decoupaged with Disney embellishments. We dropped it off on the due date Tuesday night. When I got home Wednesday I checked my email and there was a message saying that my "victim" didn't receive anything. I knew I delivered it! I assumed someone stole it. My hope was that there would be a little girl who needed a doll that would get it. It wasn't is a secure place but they were home so I knocked and ran. That was frustrating to work so hard on something then it be stolen or even worse to have some one think you are a flake, but not being able to defend yourself for fear of ruining the surprise.
So today I made a second doll and bought stuff to replace the frame. When she showed up tonight she told me that she got it this morning. I told her that I really did knock, what I thought was, really loud and ran. She said usually it is the screen door that they hear more than the knocking. I said screen door, you don't have a screen door. Turns out I knocked on the wrong door and apparently their neighbors are not Disney fans and amazingly enough she got it back (or actually for the first time). So now she has twin dolls. As always the first doll was, well the first. So the second had some good improvements.

Needless to say I was a schmuck but it turned out good in the end and the frustration was all my fault.
On another note, my secret Santa rocks! I got a new Scentsy Holiday Collection, Plug-in Warmer. As well as two scent melts. There is a funny story about this. She called me to ask what I like better "Snowman" or "Holly". Tough question...and random. I answered her with "Snowman." She said OK so when I opened it up and saw the two scents I realized she said cinnamon or holly, and she was asking which scent I like better. See why I don't like the phone? I usually don't confuse words I see, but often confuse words I hear! She was probably as confused by my random Snowman answer.
So thank you Catherine for spoiling me. You were a perfect "Secret" Santa. And to my victim, I usually am more on top of things, I am sorry for the confusion but am grateful that you got your gift.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

This is why

Jeremy takes deep breaths as he walks in from work. We've been making cookies...
...and other stuff...
...decorating a birthday cake...
...sewing crafts...
...putting together a book order...
...meanwhile Jackson was crying.
If I did one thing at a time it wouldn't be so bad but our house has imploded on itself. You may wonder why or how I have time to blog. I am nursing and typing one handed. One nice thing with having so many kids is that there is always someone to kiss it all better. Truth be told I wouldn't have it any other way.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Mary's Lullaby

We had the rare opportunity today that all the sisters in our ward got to attend Relief Society. It was nice to be surrounded by spectacular, all-around fabulous women. That in and of itself is blog worthy! While I was sitting there listening I noticed a young mom in front of me with her 6 1/2 month old baby girl. The love that she had for her little girl just radiated from her. When she would kiss her forehead, or when she would sing the songs softly into her ear. I couldn't help but have a pang of jealousy. Not that I don't have my own children to love like that because I do, but because I am past that stage. There is a slim chance that I will hold a newborn of my own and hug them and pretend that I can sing to him. It is sort of like a loss (I know woe is me, if this is my biggest problem I have nothing to worry about right?).

Then tonight before the kids went to bed we were singing Christmas songs. There is one song that I love, but means more especially since my sister-in-law had her first baby. Jeremy's mom and sisters sing this song every Christmas eve and it is beautiful (it helps that they harmonize beautifully as well!). It brought her to tears for different reasons than me, but it finally touched me and I understood what the song meant. It is called Mary's Lullaby. Here are the words:

All Mine in your loveliness, baby all mine;
All mine in your holiness, baby divine,
Sing on herald angel in chorus sublime;
Sing on and adore, for tonight you are mine.

The wise men are coming to worship their king,
The shepards are kneeling their homage to bring.
Out yonder the star over Judah will keep;
No harm can befall thee, then sleep, baby sleep.

Oh let me enfold thee, my baby, tonight;
While legions are singing in joyous delight.
A new star has risen to hail thee divine,
For you are a king, but tonight you are mine.

A way spectered future of sorrow and plight.
A way to the years that must follow tonight.
The pangs of Gethsemane let them be dim;
The red drops on Calvary, not Lord, for him!


All mine in your loveliness, baby all mine;
All mine in your holiness, baby divine,
Sing on herald angel in chorus sublime;
Sing on and adore, for tonight you are mine.

Both my boys are Christmas babies, one 7 days before and the other 14 days after. It has made me appreciate the love that Mary had for her son, and feel her pain in the sacrifice she gave so he could be all that he needed to be for ALL mankind. It is unfathomable, but now knowing how much I love my children I can not imagine knowing that he was only mine for a short time. All of my children are truly mine for only a little while, then they grow, and be independent and I have to hope that I taught them well enough that they can be all they were destined to be, of course not the same as the Savior, but still. I don't want to let them go I want to protect them, and I want to be able to smell the sweet baby scent, hear the new baby coos, etc. I know I still have about 3 1/2 weeks until Jackson is one, but I have truly appreciated this first year with him. It hasn't been perfect and there have been sleepless nights, nursing has been a struggle, and he is getting more mobile too early (especially compared to the girls!). I have purposefully not complained because I am going to miss this stage. With any of the things that I would have said were hard, I couldn't help but appreciate him being mine and being healthy, all the "hardships" were so trivial. I would take those hard things and be grateful for what I wasn't struggling with. I have many friends who are still at the beginning stages of growing their families and I am so happy for them, but I am sad that it isn't me anymore. I feel that our family is complete, which is comforting. I just need to come to grips with saying good-bye to this stage and be anxiously excited for the next stage. Good-byes are always hard but I also love change.

I love this season and the many opportunities we are given to ponder and appreciate the many blessings we have, the push to serve and always be kind. I am thankful for a Savior that chose to come to this earth not as a warrior but the humblest form possible, a helpless, sweet and innocent baby, who could do nothing for himself, yet had the knowledge and power to do anything. If there was ever and example of humility, read about Jesus!

And just some eye candy so you can get a little understanding why I am so sad to see this little face grow up:

Isn't he just the cutest thing ever!!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Date night...

Jeremy told me I could go see New Moon with my girlfriends, and he would see it with me later. I am glad I got to see it with the girls first. I got to pretend like I was a teeney bopper and whoot silently at the nice looking werewolves. So we had made plans to see it last week but the times didn't quite match up with our schedule. We were able to secure babysitting for tonight. Jeremy's mom, who just got back from Disneyland (totally jealous) and thrown into parent/teacher conferences this week, was willing. I know if that wasn't blessing enough!

We went shopping and finished up everything...I think!...for our kids. Then off to the movie. As we were waiting I kissed Jeremy on the cheek, it was very respectful! ; ) It reminded me of Jeremy and I's first date, the second time. He walked me to the door of my apartment after going to Scandia with some other high school friends. I am not sure if it was actually a date or just a bunch of friends getting together, but those small details don't matter (12/4/98). We got to the door and he of course told me he had a great time (well I am sure he did say that!?), and before walking away he kissed me on the cheek. This may sound cheesy but it thrilled me. Here was this great guy who I knew was a dream come true. What was so awesome about this kiss was that it made me realize what it felt like to be respected by some one. It was sweet, yet told me he cared, but didn't want things to move too fast. Mind you we had known each other for almost 10 years. I am sure if during the next month we hadn't spent every available minute together I would have thought that to be the lamest thing ever, even the kiss of mortification!

So tonight when I leaned over and kissed his cheek. I was reminded that I married a man, who to this day, still respects me and loves me. He even loves me enough to see a movie that he wouldn't be caught dead watching with out me. I love him so much and am proud to be married to him ALWAYS!

I hope my children can see the respect that we have for each other and have a strong desire to duplicate it in 50+ years when I allow them to date. More importantly I hope that each of them has enough respect for them selves to demand to be treated that way. I am so very blessed to know this and know that my kids will benefit from the relationship between Jeremy and I. I know that the celebration of Thanksgiving is over but boy am I grateful for this reminder!

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

My Black Friday Bargain!

Jeremy is the crazy one in our house that goes out early. We discovered that a few of our favorite stores opened at midnight, so Jeremy went out and finally came home around 6:00am. I can tell you I was very ecstatic that it wasn't me, especially when the kids woke up promptly at 7:00am. I tried to let him sleep in a little but it is nigh on impossible with the kidlets!

After my nice long, comfortable night I awoke almost refreshed (just trying to rub it in for Jeremy) I lounged around and decided that I really wanted a pair of knee high black boots regularly $50 on sale for $24.99. I was also in great need of new running shoes (so I can at least look sporty). They were on sale for $30 regularly $65 and up. I got to Sears at around 9:00am not really expecting to find anything in my size, especially since what I wanted was pictured in the add. Sure enough I found a nice pair of Asics in size 7.5! perfect. They weren't the cutest but hey it's not always about fashion! It took me a couple of days to try them on, but when I did, I looked at them, they were huge compared to my old, hole in the big toe, petite shoe! I checked the size and it was the correct size. I looked over the box and it said the right size. Then upon further inspection I noticed underneath a sticker it said MEN'S. I found them in the women's section. How was I supposed to know the were men's other than they were not cute. So my good deal became an alright deal...until I went back today. I was able to find a cute pair of girls Asics. So it worked out better than I thought, because there were no other options on Black Friday. So I got the same great price with more of a selection. Perfect.
And strictly for eye candy (haha) these are the boots. Jeremy thinks I will probably kill myself walking in them, he is probably right, but at least I will look good doing it!

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Got Cake?

I have been wanting to take a cake decorating class for some time. I was able to convince a friend to take it with me. It was lots of fun and I have learned a lot. Here is the progression of my skillz! This first cake was about a year ago to celebrate Jeremy finishing a class.
This next one was my first day in class. It was learning to use the star tip, and transferring images. It is not perfect but I am pretty impressed. This is fairly simple to do.

This was probably my least favorite, I really wasn't motivated as you can tell by at all the blank space. Come to think of it dots would have probably been perfect, or maybe confetti.
And the grand finally, the Wilton Rose. Although I have many techniques to perfect, I learned a lot and am excited since I practically get to do a cake a month in my family alone.
It kind of looks wedding-ish so I put "Muah" on it. Since it is not for a purpose I can be a little goofy that way. The people in my class don't get me. Half the people were unaware of who Transformers are, the second well, look at the picture, and the third they said Muah, as in more? I had to clarify by puckering up and making a kissing sound. It was a kiss for Jeremy who has done the "single dad" thing for the last 4 of five Friday nights. So thanks for letting me take the class. I look forward to making lots of fun and beautiful cakes in the future.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Thanksgiving Break

Life changes, and that means traditions some times do as well. One of the things that I love about Jeremy's family is their love of games. During the holidays we would get together with his family and most of his cousins and eat and play games. It was always fun...then marriages happened which made the games more fun...then children happened which, well, made games impossible. Then more family moved, families got bigger (OK our family got bigger, just kidding it's not just us) and some got more busy and adding in-laws to the schedule we just don't get that time anymore. I thought it was time to get the cousins together, the ones that were local anyway.

It only worked out for three of us, but that equaled 11 kids. Jocelyn welcomed us into her home (it is beautiful and yes I do covet her kitchen!) It was amazing to see the kids hit it off and really enjoy each other. We tried to get a cute group shot on the slide but after about 7 cousins it got too heavy and gravity won.

So we opted for this shot instead. Isn't that the cutest group of kids. I think Jocelyn got one with Lauren mid fall, but she was a trooper and sat back up there for a few more shots. When asked what does mom look like when she is telling you to get ready for church we got this picture:

Then they all got to make a funny face:
It is amazing how you can't get them all to look at the camera at the same time but 9 out of 11 can stick their tongues out at the same time! It was a lot of fun. I can't wait until next time when more cousins can get together.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

A couple funnies

There is always a funny or two to report. The first one is by my dear sweet Haylie. We had just watched something about Christmas then sat down for dinner where she was asked to say our dinner prayer. Amongst other things she said in her little sometimes still difficult to understand voice "We are thankful for Jesus" proud mommy moment followed promptly by "that he can come down the chimney and leave presents under the tree." At that I snickered as well as Miranda and Hannah, which resulted in a very upset and tearful Haylie. Poor girl, I apologized and gave her big hugs, then made her laugh through the alligator tears. I guess we are not doing as well in the whole separating Jesus and Santa area.

And going sort of along those lines...As kids we loved going through catalogs and finding the things that we wanted. In order to prepare for Black Friday, I had to get the list ready for Jeremy who planned on leaving at 11:30pm on Thursday, I let the kids look through the Thanksgiving day ads. I encouraged them to circle things they liked or were interested in. There were some good ideas, some that were laughable. Such as Hannah wanted some sort of Pokemon tube thing. The funniest I found was flipping through the Macy's ad. I was looking for good ideas and looked down and saw on the women's page an item that was circled. It was a nice fuzzy pair of green slippers, they did indeed look warm and comfortable. When I looked to see which of my girls circled it, I was entertainingly surprised to see it was Logan! If that wasn't funny enough I continued to flip and came to the jewelry page where to big circles appeared.

Clear as day it had Haylie's name in the circles. I showed Jeremy as I continued to chuckle, to which he responded "Boy, I sure hope she's not disappointed!" These kids!

Thursday, November 26, 2009


So this is the story of my life. I get these really great ideas and start out strong then get too distracted to follow through. Notice I said distracted not busy. So I should be on like "Gratitude 20" or something but I fell off the wagon...I have so much to be grateful for. The things I have chosen are probably the minor things but I am equally grateful for those as the big three, the Gospel, my family and my friends.

I am grateful for the Gospel in my life. It has brought me such peace and happiness. I have a more positive look on life. It may be because I can say with success or failures I know the my savior, Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father, love me unconditionally. This isn't to say that I am perfect at reading my scriptures daily or saying my prayers on any sort of consistent basis because I am pretty lousy in both areas. None the less they both love me and care for me a great deal. I can tell by the little things that pop into my head that will either keep me and my family safe or maybe make my life a little easier. I am grateful for the atoning sacrifice of my Savior. Through him it is possible to be forgiven of all my mistakes...ALL of them! What a great time of year to focus on gratitude!

The next is my family. I am thankful for my beautiful children. I still love to stare at them in awe wondering what I did to deserve them. The put a smile on my face and make me laugh at least once a day. They, like me, are not perfect, but I would not even dream of trading them. I am grateful for my husband. He is a man that makes me want to be a better person even when I am feeling rebellious and don't want to progress towards goodness. Not that I want to be bad, just stagnant. He is a great example of one who follows what he is taught. He is willing to serve at the drop of a hat and he is willing to do so in such a way that sometimes allows little sleep for himself. He is still in school so he gets up while we all still sleep, then he exercises, followed by studying, then goes to work. He chooses this so he doesn't take time away from me or the kids. I love him so much. I could not think of a better example for our children!

Lastly, this seems kind of cliche but I am grateful for friends (family can fall into this category as well!). I have this group of amazing girlfriends that are always willing to hang out or do something fun. They typically are willing to go along with whatever crazy scheme I am up to (and Jeremy is usually willing to help me clean up the house and take the kids so I can do them!). They make me feel like I am doing an OK job at being a mom and wife by saying nice things. As the years have passed some have moved away and I miss having them close but know our friendship is still there.

And truly last! I am grateful to be alive! I know times are hard and you see people loosing so much, their jobs, their homes, their family...I know that there are trials that seem like they are too much to bear but I am grateful for them, they make one's testimony stronger! (Not that I am asking for one of those!) It is through those hard times that you can see the love of the Savior as well as those around you so much more clearer.

I hope you all have a fabulous day of gratitude and tell those that you love how much you appreciate them! Thanks for reading!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Gratitude 8

This morning my alarm went off at 5:15 just like it does every Monday and Thursday. Since Jeremy is on vacation, I totally contemplated turning off, but I didn't. I got up and went to exercise. A friend from church does a class on those mornings, warming up with aerobics for about 15 minutes then moving onto weights for about 40 minutes. I have not missed a class in a while and that was my motivation. It isn't as hard to get up as it was before. Today I am grateful for a healthy body that can get up and do a relatively hard work-out. I am grateful for a woman who is there no matter what to get us all motivated and encourage us the whole time to be fit. But mostly I am grateful to see the numbers on the scale go down! I am officially at pre-Jackson-Pregnancy weight, now just the 7-8lbs from each of the preceding pregnancies to go!
P.S. I don't use weights as heavy as those pictured! I don't want to give you a false idea of my capabilities. ; P

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Gratitude 7

I am grateful for vacations. Jeremy is taking a week off starting today. Today was a holiday so technically it actually starts tomorrow. It was so wonderful to sleep in and not wake up to Jeremy already being gone, whether it is work running or serving. All the kids slept in and then we had a relaxing morning. Jeremy played some video games with the kids while I got to stay in bed and read. I got to go shopping and spent $2.00 for $25 worth of stuff AND get $4.00 in rewards back! He got to go to lunch with a friend. Then after two years of owning it, he got to play Battleground: Crossbows and Catapults with Logan. To top it off we had dinner and I get to go to book club. What a fabulous day!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Gratitude 6

Today Logan and Miranda were fighting at the computer. Logan went to immediate hysterics because he lost some of his game time and Miranda was playing his game time. Instead of yelling I told them to get their jammies on and get in bed. I sent them to bed and let them stay there as long as possible to make them think they were missing dinner. I went in and talked to them, left again and finally allowed them to come and eat dinner with the rest of us.

As Logan left his bedroom he looked at Miranda and said "I am sorry for getting us in trouble Miranda" to which Miranda responded, "No it was my fault that we got in trouble." "I forgive you Miranda" is how Logan responded. I could not have been more proud at how they handled that.

I am grateful for repentance. We are all imperfect, we all make mistakes and we all learn from them...eventually. I am grateful for the fact that if we own up to our mistakes, Heavenly Father will always say "I forgive you!" He loves us that much and it is unconditional. Isn't that something to be grateful for?


I was desperately searching for for something I misplaced ( I only wish this was a rare occurrence). I was looking in Logan's room and saw the back of a check. I turned it over and saw this:I tried so hard to be stern with him but I couldn't help but be in awe that he thought it all out. And seriously doesn't everything cost $xx.99! He definitely was trying to get lunch money for a year.

Monday, November 09, 2009

Gratitude 5

Today we had Family Home Evening, we traveled out to Jeremy's sister's house, where we got to chat, laugh, eat, learn and more importantly enjoy the family relationships that we have. It is so much fun to watch the kids interact and see the fun new things that the kids do. I enjoy having a day set aside each week where we can have relaxing family time, not of the world. There are no pressures to be some where and full fill more responsibilities. Yes we do a small lesson and we travel a little bit, but it is a time dedicated to strengthening these bonds that we have. The cutest thing was watching Hunter not only want to sit with the kids while they ate but him and Lauren sat down and he stayed for a bit. A year ago there was no way he would even be that interested in food, now he couldn't wait to see his cousins and wanted to do everything they were doing. It was fun. My favorite quote was when Hunter was talking about being frustrated, kind of mimicking Grandma, then he finally said "I not frustrated, I happy" This conversation later turned into talking about his big picture day at school tomorrow and he will have to give a big smile. Now that was a face I hope gets on film, for Tamra's sake I hope not on picture day, but if it does it will be pretty dang cute! I am grateful for Family Home Evening and being able to get together with extended family and creating fabulous memories together.

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Gratitude 4

Today at church it started out with a shock. A young husband and father passed away the night before. It is a heartbreaking situation. It tore at my heart. I wish there was a way to ease the pain and grief that fills their home right now. I am grateful for being married in the temple. It has been almost 10 years since my best friend and I were sealed together in the Oakland temple. When we were sealed, I made a promise to Jeremy and my Heavenly Father, He in turn made a promise that we would be together forever, even after we left this earth. With that promise came the continuation of our family. Our children will get to be there with us. There is so much comfort in knowing that forever families are a possibility. I love this family that Jeremy and I have created, the children that Heavenly Father has entrusted us with, to raise and teach them His principles so that we can all return to Him as his children. So my gratitude for today is the temple and the blessings and peace it can bring to our lives.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Gratitude 3

Today I was driving home from a church activity. I was able to drive Jeremy's car (that is me trying to count that as a blessing?!). One cool thing about it is the sun roof. The car was a little stuffy from sitting in the parking lot, so I opened the sunroof. As I was driving down the road I noticed a weird crinkling sound and amazingly enough it happened every time I passed a tree. It was the sound of the wind through the dried leaves. So today I am thankful for the leaves and the wind. What a fresh sound and feeling not to mention the color variation. Here in sunny California we have two seasons and colors, hot and brown and mildly cold and brown with a month of green. This is the rare time of year where we get some muted reds and oranges mixed in with the brown. Nature is fabulous. And I am thankful that Jeremy's car has a sunroof so I got to experience that blessing today!

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