Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Homemade Christmas Gifts

I have been meaning to post some of the things that we made this year for our Christmas gifts to each other. I had wanted to do homemade gifts this year instead of store bought with the hope that Christmas and gift-giving would become more personal and less commercial. This is new to my kids and I was really happy with how excited they were to participate and they really did put more thought and effort into what they did for each other. This has encouraged them to learn other skills for birthdays and future Christmas ideas.
Here are a few things that we came up with for this year.

Kaylee made this for Addison out of some of the scraps leftover from making her quilt and window coverings. Addy loved it and can now pin up a few of her "special" things.

Addison made these two pillows. The heart is for Kaylee and the round planet is for Andrew. Kaylee LOVES hers. She sleeps on it every night. It is the perfect shape for propping up to read a good book and is so wonderfully soft and cuddly.
Kaylee made these clothes tags for Addy. She has not mastered the pick-out-your-clothes-for-school-on-your-own thing yet. Although she has DEFINITE ideas about what she does and does not want to wear. This has caused some serious issues in the morning. However--since she recieved these, it has been a breeze. She and I pick out her outfits usually on Sunday night. I give her a bunch of choices and she picks from those. We hang them all up. Tag them with a day and then she just grabs the appropriate outfit each morning and I don't have to spend time dealing with that. It's great! (She thinks they are pretty cool too.)
Andrew made bookmarks for the girls and for grandma's. He cut some ribbon into strips and then glued cute buttons and butterflies and ladybugs to the ends. Easy, simple, yet way cute and he really did do it all himself. (Sorry no picture)
Hopefully this will be the start of learning to look beyond the actual gift to the love that is behind it. These are simple, I know, but it is in the simple things that we often find the most joy.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Thoughts on the "Stimulus"

I feel like it is my civic responsibility to post a couple little bits that to me are just plain common sense. I am having a really hard time understanding how so many people out there are really believing the BS that is being used to gain support for passing this stimulus package. We need to solve the root of the problem--which, in a nutshell, is government interference--not just throw more money down the same proverbial drain. My own opinion is that if we don't fix the ROOT of the problem then we are destined to make the problem worse thereby prolonging our own agony and hardships. The article does a good job of helping to understand in what way the govt. is interefering and how damaging it is. The video is a good little blurb on the stimulus package itself. I hope that you will take the time to check them out. I wouldn't put them on here if I didn't think they were worthwhile.



Thursday, February 12, 2009

So you WERE paying attention!

OK OK OK, I promise that I did not intend to leave you hanging for quite so long. But the truth is...

I AM pregnant...

and frankly, I haven't felt very much like blogging (or anything else) lately. It was all I could do to get the basics done--feed, clothe, chauffer my children etc.

We are pretty excited but I have never enjoyed actually being pregnant.

Jeff and I sort of made a deal with H.F. We gave him one more year to get things done--if at the end of the year we were still not pregnant, then we were accepting the fact that this was our complete family. --Well, our year was a matter of days to being UP. I was just getting used to the idea of 3 amazing kids and finally being able to get rid of all our baby stuff. But, I guess H.F. was allowing us to work on the principles of patience and trust because he distracted the goaly just as time was expiring.

It is still pretty early so I hadn't anticipated telling everyone yet--but once we told the parents and kids--it became increasingly harder to keep the secret.
By my calculations we are looking at mid-September.
So, there you have it...

...You can all go laugh now and say a little prayer thanking H.F. that it's us and not you.

:) :) :)

Thursday, February 5, 2009

New Years Interviews

I wanted to interview the family at the beginning of the year so that I could document some of the things that we love. I know that our interests change so rapidly that I decided the only way to get a real snapshot of us growing up was to be real organized and regular about it. So every new year (or new February--as the case might be) I'll give a new interview to see where we are "at", what has changed, and what has stayed the same. On a recent trip up to Spokane was my chance. They were all cornered and couldn't get away. (It also turned out to be the perfect anti-quarrelling-in-the-backseat remedy.)


*Cereal---Honey Nut Cheerios
*Vegetable---Eggs n Toast :)
*Drink---Chocolate Milk
*Toy---Spiderman Toy
*TV Show---JoJo's Circus (although, I have no idea why he said this because he NEVER watches it--go figure)
*Book---"Katie and the Big Snow" (This is VERY true--I have literally read it to him hundreds of times and it has fallen to pieces.)
*Movie---"Peter Pan"
*Clothes---My spiderman shirt

If you could change your name, what would you choose? Prince Caspian or Raja

Where would you like to go on vacation this year? Bike rides and picnics and go on walks and find treasures.

What are some of your wishes for this year? Candy!! and that I'm Prince Derek--A handsome prince.

What do you love about each person in our family? Dad gives me high fives. Mom cuddles and kisses and hugs me all the time. Kaylee kisses me and hugs me. She gives me "Sossy" (His "Softy"). I like to play toys with Addy and princes and princesses with her.



*Cereal---Cookie Crisp
*Vegetable---Broccoli and candied carrots
*Drink---Orange Soda
*Toy---My dolls and doll clothes
*TV show---Mickey Mouse Clubhouse
*Book---Chronicles of Narnia
*Restaurant---San Miguels

If you could change your name, what would you choose? Kendra

Where would you like to go on vacation this year? Disneyland/Orlando (Universal)

What are some of your wishes for this year? To see the mountains and learn to drive and have a car of my own all the time. (Beautiful Dreamer!) and also to live in that BIG house.

What do you love about each person in our family? Dad tickles us--He makes me laugh all the time. Mom cuddles me. Drew acts silly and makes me laugh. I love that Kaylee likes the scriptures and we like the same stories and stuff--like Lilly's Big Day.



*Cereal---Cookie Crisp (I think we've only had that once--when we went camping--it must have made a really good impression)
*Drink---Henry Weinhardts Root Beer (The apple doesn't fall far from the tree)
*Toy---the Boat
*TV show---The Brady Bunch
*Game---Disney's Scene-It
*Book---"Little Women"
*Restaurant---Fazios in Bozeman, MT (Evidently that is where she and Jeff ate on their way home from picking up the truck in Kansas. I knew it would be a bonding experience!)
*Animal---Maya (what can we say, we all love that darn dog)
*Movie---Princess Diaries

If you could change your name, what would you choose? Zoe
Where would you like to go on vacation this year? Orlando

What are some of your wishes for this year? I want to see Mt. Rushmore as a family and see the White House. I also want to see the Rome, Italy temple dedicated.

What do you love about each person in our family? Dad always gives me a hug when he walks in the door after work. Mom cuddles me when I'm sad (what is it with the cuddling--Is that ALL I do???) Drew loves on me when I'm sad. I love that Addy likes to play soccer and is athletic.



*Cereal---Cookie Crisp (which might explain why it's the girls favorite too.)
*Vegetable---Mimi's Green Beans
*Drink---Ice cold Henry Weinhardts root beer (Like I said--the apple...)
*TV show---Burn Notice
*Game---Spin the Bottle (To which Kaylee replied, "I never knew you knew how to play that!")
*Book---The Saturdays

*Restaurant---Cajuns Warf in L.R.

If you could change your name, what would you choose? "Dave"

Where would you like to go on vacation this year? Europe

What are some of your wishes for this year? Recoup some losses. Happy/Obedient/Grateful children and to make it down to 240#.

What do you love about each person in our family? Mom is my best friend (notice: He didn't mention cuddling. :) ). Kaylee is Daddies little travel buddy. Addy likes to eat adventurous things like artichoke hearts and olives with me. Andrew always wants to, "smell like a man" just like his daddy.
*Cereal---Granola (I know, how lame is that?)
*Vegetable---Does a potato count as a vegetable? No--well then I guess candied carrots
*Drink---Dr. Pepper (caffeine-free)
*Toy---the Boat
*TV show---"24"
*Book---after all these years, I still love the Belgariad series by David Eddings
*Restaurant---Hacienda Del Sol in Tucson
*Animal---I'm going with good 'ol Maya-dog
*Movie---My current favorite is Pride and Prejudice
If you could change your name, what would you choose? Mackenzie (I have no idea why!)
Where would you like to go on vacation this year? Why...to China and Switzerland of course.
What are some of your wishes for this year? (We'll see who's paying attention) I would love to have a HEALTHY baby. And I'd love to sell this house and find a different one that would fit our family a little better--for half the price (we are wishing after all).
What do you love about each person in our family? Daddy is patient and good and kind to us. He always knows when and how to bolster the rest of us up. Kaylee is very forgiving. She accepts my shortcomings and doesn't hold them against me. Addy is such a wonderful entertainer. She is always amusing us with a new story or song. Andrew is simply my joy! He keeps me young--amusing me with the funny things he says and the games that he likes to play.
I Love my family--there couldn't possibly be anything better than this!