Friday, September 30, 2011

I Love My Roomies

I love the fall weather. I've been cracking open the windows at night. Well, sometimes cracking, other nights all the way open. Poor Corey's catching a cold from it, sorry sweetie. I'm not a very good roommate for him I guess, cause I just love waking up to a nice cool room and being warm under the covers, especially since I have a heated teddy bear, she keeps me so warm and toasty!

Abi holding my Teddy Bear - cute expression on her below

Sophi is so cute! And did I tell you that Lily calls her Fifi? Not sure how to spell that, it's like Phebe but Phefee - Fee-fee? Fifi? When Lily first said "Baby Fifi!" we all laughed and thought it was so cute, so that's the nickname that is currently sticking. When we were still getting used to Sophia, Corey would ask "How's Penelope?" or "Is Ezmerelda okay?" and he'd just throw out any random name, but lately he's been consistent with asking "Is Fifi okay?" So Fifi might stick.

Lily getting nervous she won't get a turn holding baby Fifi. Love you Lillers!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Homelife Routines

Shirley Klein's mentioned in her talk how American Homelife is on the decline, and followed with this quote by author Cheryl Mendelson:

Homes today often seem to operate on an ad hoc basis. Washday is any time anyone throws a load into the machine. . . . Meals occur any time or all the time or . . . never. . . .

. . . Many people lead deprived lives in houses filled with material luxury. . . .

. . . As people turn more and more to outside institutions to have their [everyday] needs met . . . , [our] skills and expectations . . . diminish, in turn decreasing the chance that people’s homes can satisfy their needs. The result is far too many people who long for home even though they seem to have one.

I like that "long for home" imagery. I long for a feeling of home, and am always working and thinking of ways to make it how I want it to be, how I picture it in my mind. One thing that I think will help me get our family there is having schedules and routines. Two that I've started are mealtimes. Like I said, I've gotten dinner on the table consistently the past few weeks, and the miracle that has made that happen is having A PLAN instead of winging it! Here is our family dinner plan that we've been following the past month, not sure if I'll always keep all these dinner themes or if I'll change them around every month or so:

Sunday - Soup
Monday - Curry
Tuesday - Pasta
Wednesday - Breakfast
Thursday - Latino
Friday - Pizza
Saturday - BBQ

And leftovers will substitute occasionally when the fridge is full of them. Another thing I'm working on but haven't figured out is the kids' housework routine for during school, but first I better get mom's figured out, so I like this "Ultimate House Cleaning Schedule" that my BFF Nicole sent me and I plan on pondering over that and modifying it to fit our home.

And as for capturing that "feeling" of a beautiful family culture, we had a few of those moments the past few days - Sunday night after I let myself vent, I felt better and actually cleaned up the kids rooms a little bit around bedtime. At 8:00 I let the brush and floss routine slide cause they reminded me there was no school the next day, it was a teacher work day. So they got involved in a game of Kick the Can (gallon of milk) outside in our awesome back yard and Corey went out to join them. It was so fun to have the windows open and listen to them playing, I loved it. On Monday night they wanted to do a repeat of their fun and so they all got ready for bed quickly so they could have their reward of playtime with Dad. We had to finish up the game earlier this time cause they did have to get up in the morning for school this time. And they took their game up a notch with black clothing:

Abi and Lily's face painting inspired Corey to watercolor his face with a little camo...

Abi, upon seeing Corey's outfit, ran upstairs and shuffled through the costume box grabbing random items and throwing them upon her little self - pink cape, rainbow hat, blue wedding scarf, purse, etc... I totally laughed when I saw her -

Even a monkey doll holding tightly to her neck with it's velcro hands. Love it.

Love feeling like they're making some fun childhood memories. My job is family historian, recording these delightful moments for them to enjoy when they are older. :)

Having A Plan - vs - Wingin' It

I had an epiphany on Monday morning. Monday morning is my weigh in day for myself. And the epiphany I had is one I've had before but have not mastered, so I guess that's why I had it again (and will probably have again next year too)... Because I learned yet again that in regards to weight loss (and probably most things in life) you can't just wing it, you gotta HAVE A PLAN, and being steady and consistent in following that plan is the key to success.

Two weeks ago when I had a plan AND FOLLOWED IT, I lost 4 pounds. Last week I had a plan but let things slide and was eating treats then doing extreme exercises to try and lessen the negative effects, which let me up to Monday morning where I was just hoping that the scale would show a loss, but I lost 0 pounds. Lucky I didn't have a gain. But here's the epiphany - It doesn't have to be luck! I don't have to hope I will lose weight, it doesn't have to be up to chance. I KNOW I will lose weight when I stick to my plan! It's a guarantee! I can get there, so the real question is, am I willing to follow the plan?

Here's some details of the above epiphany:

So on Sophia's birthday on Sept 6th I weighed 175 before I went in to deliver. She weighed 6 lbs. 10 oz. I ate lots of cookies at the hospital. I weighed myself the night of Sept 7th when I came home and I was 172. That week I stayed pretty focused on diet and enjoyed being able to move and touch my toes again and weighed myself every day (morning and night) just to see what my body was doing and getting ready to start on Monday. My official "get this baby weight off" campaign began Monday Sept 12th and I weighed in that morning at 162. I was totally focused with diet and exercise that first week and lost 4 more pounds, 158 on Sept 19th. I think I felt a little too much like "hey that was pretty easy!" cause the 2nd week I nibbled on cookies, chips, and other things I bought for the kids' school lunches. Tuesday the 20th, I knew I had reached my calorie allotment for that day around 6:00 pm, so instead of sitting with my family for dinner I went for a 5 mile jog around the mouth of the canyon. My first run of the year, and it felt good to move, and the fall weather was BEAUTIFUL, but I totally hammered my knees and was kicking myself on Wednesday for not doing 2 mile runs for a while to warm them up for the stress of it. I literally had to use my arms lift up my legs a few times, but was glad that they seemed to have recovered by Thursday. So I thought to myself, I ate the cookies on Tuesday but fixed it with the run, the rest of this week no more falling off the wagon! But I did again. Ate lots of Sunchips (I've vowed I can't buy those anymore for the kids, cause seriously I eat them all!), ate a delicious dinner on date night (should have saved half of it for the next day), and ate too many desserts at the Relief Society Broadcast dinner. (Bad thing about having a big family: the ladies insisted I take a plate home for everyone, so I brought home 9 more gooey chocolate caramel bars, and one by one I rationalized my actions until I had eaten them all!!!), I've need to keep supportive food around, and really be prepared to be strong if I know I'm going to face temptation. STAY FOCUSED ON MY GOALS! I'm doing good with staying away from the Michoacana paletas - luckily the store is far enough away that it really take a conscious effort to fall for that temptation right now.

Anyway, I'm on the wagon this week, I'm going slow and steady like the tortoise, not going on extreme swings with over eating then over exercising. Extreme doesn't work, being consistent and steady does. From my past experiences, I know that if I follow the Kristi Approved way of eating, I know I can lose 2 pounds a week, so I can be at my goal #1 by Christmas (130 pounds) and I can reach my six pack goal by our wedding anniversary in February. Stay focused and steady and I will get there!

Here is a link to the Kristi Approved Free 7 day Trial - I'm using parts of this for my diet and exercise this week. Try it out and you too can know that you are going to lose weight! It doesn't have to be a guessing game. Actually, even the word we use of "weight LOSS" makes it seem like it's an accident -hey, I "lost 2 pounds!" (or "found" 2 pounds?) If we're following a plan, we could say more appropriately that we've "removed" that unwanted weight.

And for fun, here is something a friend shared with me yesterday on her latest weight loss plan - haha ;)

I always used my shampoo to wash the rest of my body while in the shower. It was just easier to lather up my hair and use the extra suds on my body instead of soap. Then I saw the words printed on my shampoo bottle “for extra body and fullness”.

No wonder I can’t lose weight!
Now I’m using my dishsoap in the shower. It’s guaranteed to remove fat and other unwanted deposits that other soaps leave behind!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

When There's Love At Home...

And here I always thought our last name was WRIDE. The kids keep changing it to this...

So I'm going a little crazy lately. Trying to figure things out. So far I've figured out:

How to take care of the baby (she's an angel)
How to get dinner on the table (thank you Food Nanny - 3 weeks of dinner on the table EVERY NIGHT, thank you!! So far so good...)
How to get in my exercise (Go

I have NOT figured out:

How to clean the house
How to get the kids to help me clean the house.
How to get the kids to put away their socks and shoes and backpacks and toys and paper airplanes and... well, I guess that all falls under cleaning.
How to get the kids to be nice to each other

Those things that I haven't figured out are making our home feel very chaotic. Fighting Kids + lots-o-messes everywhere = CHAOS (Can't Have Anyone Over Syndrome) I'm trying to figure out how to have Love At Home ~ cue angelic voices ~ but am at a bit of a loss. But I've been watching lots of BYUtv lately - I nurse Sophia on our bed and usually grab the remote as I go to lay down and I watch tv until she's done and then try to sneak off, or stay and have a nap with her. So today I watched a BYU Idaho devotional by Shirley Klein called "Every Good Gift" given September 28 2010 - Here is an older talk that she gave in 2005 that has a lot of the same things she talked about in the 2010 address - it is EXCELLENT. I've printed it up and am hoping it will help me make a plan of attack.

So, here's a story, as I was listening to this talk by Sister Klein about how to make our homes sacred, I hear Hyrum totally screaming like a banshee, gnashing his teeth and wailing how he hates Ethan and he's the worst brother ever, I try to tune that out and listen to Sister Klein's encouraging words about home and heaven, then my ears tune back into the noise downstairs where I hear Corey leading the children in chanting "FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT!" and I just shake my head in amused disbelief.

I thought Corey probably would appreciate my help managing the kids, but I had to keep listening to the talk cause I didn't catch her name at the beginning of the address and had to get her name cause I knew I needed to get her talk and reference it again. So I was able to listen to the rest of the talk and got her name, then came down stairs where I was glad to hear things had calmed down. I told Corey what I had been listening to and we both had a good laugh at the irony of the "fight-fight" chanting I was hearing as I listened to her sermon on how to make a happy home. Funny situation, and Corey told me it was Abi and Wes that were having a disagreement when Corey lead that chant. And he wasn't really encouraging violence, it was just his survival instincts of how to handle kids that were out of control. Gotta embrace it sometimes, the only way out is through!
Lily and Abi painted their faces again today. Corey came to inform me what they were doing, and I gave the thumbs up - right now as long as they're being nice and playing quietly, I don't care.

Poor Corey - all he wants is a little peace and quiet, is that too much to ask for?

So is there a handbook out there on "Parenthood Survival 101" or anything like that? Feel free to pass along any tricks of the trade that you've discovered in your journey. :)

"In your wildest dreams you could not imagine the marvelous SURPRISES that await YOU!"

Also Elder Uchtdorf's talk from last night's Relief Society Broadcast was wonderful, I especially needed to here the advice he gave about being happy NOW. He talked about Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and how in that story the chance of winning the golden ticket made the people forget what once brought them joy - the candy bar itself, and how finding only a candy bar became a disappointment. My golden ticket is a happy and smoothly running home, but I need to remember to enjoy the candy bar - the delightful moments that occur everyday.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

I've Got Another Match

Someday I'm going to make a Memory game with pictures of my kids - different kids from different years doing the same thing. Here is one of the sets:

4 year old Wesley asleep holding newborn Lily July 2009

4 year old Abi asleep holding newborn Sophia September 2011
I've got all sorts of matching pictures, it's gonna be fun. :)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Queen of the House

Melodie is so cute with Sophia. She is very tender and nurturing.

She's got all the motherly instincts, she can even work around the kitchen one handed!

But Mel goes above and beyond even that... I took this picture when Sophia was 4 days old - I caught Mel carrying around Sophia and laughed when I saw a little crown on her head that Mel had made for her.

Yes, Sophia's got us all wrapped around her finger and running to attend her every wish and cry.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Face Painting

It was nice the other day when I was taking care of the baby and didn't have any interruptions from Abi or Lily. When I decided to go check on them, I laughed out loud - I was glad to see they had come up with an activity to entertain themselves. :)

Lily held sweetly still while Abi worked on her. It was really cute. I had left them with paper and watercolors, but don't mind at all that they got creative with how to use them. I was just glad to have been left alone for a little while and that all of their mess was totally cleanable and wasn't permanent. I left them alone to continue with their project. Here is their finished work.

...then we all went and took a bath.

Friday, September 9, 2011

The Name Is...

Corey's at the gym, so here's my chance to use the computer. (We gotta get my AC adapter cord fixed... not a hard task, just requires running an errand to do it, which should be doable, but hasn't been done yet.) Anyway, I did run out with the baby to the hospital today to get a follow up test done for her bilirubin - she was barely in the low risk when they tested her on Wednesday. After letting them poke her heel, I went down to the medical records to tell them what name to put on her birth certificate application papers.

Corey and the kids staring at the new baby, Corey said to them "I'm the baby whisperer"

Corey and I talked about it last night a little, then when he was ready for bed and I was pressuring him to commit to a name, he said "Her name will be revealed to me at 8:37 tomorrow morning." The kids got off to school around 8:30, I went to get dressed and waited for 8:37 so I could play along and go hold him to his word to commit, and I caught him at 8:39, he joked that he was on the computer and must have missed the transmission. "Doh! I missed it!" Then he took the baby and sat on the bed and said "Ok, kid, speak up!" as he stared at her.

About an hour later I needed to get her in for her lab test, and we decided on

~ Sophia Morgan Wride ~

(Corey also always jokes that I'm pretty good that I was able to get him to propose to me, seeing how anti-committal he is) As I buckled her into her carseat, I asked Corey "You sure? I'm not taking my cell phone with me, so you gotta stop me at the door if you've got second thoughts..." but I made it to the hospital without any contact, and now the papers have been signed, so I guess that's it! Only 3 days after she was born too, I think that's a record for us!

There already is a Sophie on my side of the family and a Sophia on Corey's side, so apologies to all little cousins and relatives if we've made things confusing for all of you at future family reunions. :)

Here is a link to some pictures that they took at the hospital. Go to and select pictures taken from September 1, password is 0906babygirlwride.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Welcome Baby!

Well, finally time to change the title of our blog: 7 kids +1 new spankin' bundle o joy!

Yes, Baby #8 arrived yesterday, and man was that the easiest delivery ever. With Monday as a holiday I was able to get everything ready and the house clean, woke up and got myself ready and made lunches for the kids so they'd be all ready to get off to school, then I called the hospital at 7. They said come on in, was there by 7:30, started the pitocin by 8:30, broke my water at 10, got the epidural around 11:00 (I was debating whether to get it or not, but once those contractions started really kicking in Corey said "You better get it now or you're going to miss your window of opportunity, he was right), and she was born at 12:30.  She weighed 6 pounds 10 ounces.  The delivery was super fast and easy and everything was taken care of at home too, like clockwork! Lucky! I took one pain pill yesterday cause they gave it to me, but have had like no pain at all, maybe cause it was so fast? Maybe cause I've done planks this pregnancy? My Dad said it's cause "Practice make perfect" :) I think I'm just lucky/blessed. Anyway, I feel very grateful.

When I first saw her, I though "troll" and "toad". She is just an adorable & funny looking little thing like all newborns are, all scrunched up and wrinkled like a mini Rumpelstiltskin. Here are a few pictures of our little smurf.

Before her bath above, and after below - we were hearing repeats of what everyone said with Abigail, "Look at all that hair!"

Corey asking the question they never want to answer... "Hey kid, what is your name?! You better speak up now or we're just going to have to decide for you, and we might mess it up, so speak!"

We have two molds of kids - Mold #1 is the Joe/Hyrum mold, and Mold #2 is the mold of all the other kids, so we've got boy and girl of mold 2, but this is our first girl of the Joe/Hyrum mold - with the "proud nose" as Corey calls it, and little furrowed eyebrows.

A little head with a proud nose and furrowed brow

Here's what Lily looks like when you tell her it's someone else's turn to hold the baby

Joe with his little twin sister (he's such a good brother)

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Checking In

As I said in the last post, we have deer who frequent our yard. I did catch a picture of them on Thursday. Pretty cool. And last night Corey and I were outside and saw a skunk scurry along the fence and toward our back yard. I hope none of us ever accidentally stumble upon him and scare him. Then this morning I was surprised that I finally saw the fox! Almost all the kids have seen him/her and the fox family - there are like 4 of them. Pretty fun. I haven't seen our ground squirrels for a while - I wonder if they've moved on or if the fox has gotten them.

Well, sorry to anyone out there who is sad that I haven't been blogging. Being in the last trimester has something to do with it. Also, the computer that I use has been out of commission for a few weeks, so I don't have a computer to use, except for the minutes here and there that I sneak in and get on Corey's computer when I see him go use the bathroom or take a break for lunch.

I do plan on posting pictures of our new baby girl who is scheduled to arrive next week. I'm going in to be induced on Tuesday. I kinda feel like it's cheating. I've been induced with 4 of my pregnancies though, and it's really nice to have a light at the end of the tunnel. With Joe, my first, I was 9 days overdue and that about killed me (frustration wise), plus there was muconium in the water and almost did an emergency c-section, it was a little scary, so I don't like going overdue. With Wesley and Abi I just waited it out, I was 2 days over with Wes and right on time with Abi. Anyway, September 6th is the day, I'm glad. Wesley and Lily are two days apart with their June birthdays, and Abi and this baby will be 3 days apart - today is Abi's birthday. She opened some presents this morning, freshly wrapped with plastic bags. Her first present was a coloring book. She was very excited when she opened the second one and said "A ...TOY!!!!"

We've had 4 happy years of little Abi, who's not so little anymore. We don't experience the "Terrible Twos" at our house, but have had several cases of the "Feisty Fours".

Abi is well on her way to being our feistiest yet. Joe, Mel, and Ethan went with my mom and 3 of their favorite cousins to go camping last night, so we lost our babysitter Joe, so we took the kids along for date night. We went to McDonald's for happy meals, where the kids would be entertained and we were able to sit and visit. Lily and Abi were cute holding hands in the car.

Abi was very excited when she saw the slide and told her yes, we can go there!

Very excited, she was jumping up and down in the pic above. We don't go to McD's often. It was fun. Here's a story in pictures - look at Wesley's face as he sees that Hyrum has a boy toy in his happy meal and Wes sadly holds his girl toy - look at that expression, great eyebrows.

Two seconds later, we switch the toys so he gets the boy toy that was in Lily's meal and the problem is solved.

Kids sure do live in the moment.

Corey put Lily's stickers on her face. Abi was really mad when we said it was time to leave, and proceeded to hurl insults at us "My Mom and Dad are such a jerk!!!" Corey and I look at each other, he says "You know a little girl has older brothers when you hear stuff like that coming out of her mouth." We're trying to eliminate "jerk" and "stupid" from the family vocabulary without much success.

One last thing, I went to Walmart early this morning to buy Abi's presents. At the checkout, my cashier was a man, maybe 50 or 60 with a really bad comb over. We did some small talk as he scanned my items, he started the conversation by asking "So when are you due?"

"Next week!"

"Is it a girl?"

"Yes." (I was wearing a maroon/pink shirt, maybe that's why he asked if it was a girl)

"Is this your first?"

"...Acutally, it's my 8th." I continue to unload the cart, he continues to scan...

"Did you marry and he had some of the kids or are they all from you?"

"They're all mine."

"Are you done?" scan, scan...

"I don't know, we kinda take one kid at a time. ...But we might be done."

"Are you going to be sterilized? Cause that's the best way to guarantee that you don't have any more." I wasn't sure how to respond to that, but I was laughing to myself at where this conversation was going.

"...I probably won't be sterilized" (He probably hadn't heard that I had said "maybe" we're done, which means I don't know, which means I don't need a guarantee to prevent pregnancy, cause we might not be...)

"Are all the rest boys?"

"No, there are 4 boys and this will make it 4 girls, so going to even up the score!" I said with a smile.

He says "...cause some people keep having kids cause they have all boys and are trying to get a girl. Or all girls and want a boy."

"Yeah." Almost done bagging, I pay with debit, and we say goodbye. And I was chuckling to myself all the way home cause I thought it would make a good facebook post:

"Small talk with the 50 year old-ish male cashier during checkout at Walmart this morning included him asking me if I was going to be sterilized after this pregnancy (after finding out this is my 8th). ...that's getting kinda personal, isn't it? Totally made me laugh though".

So that's what's going on here. I'll check back in after the new addition has arrived. :)
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