Monday, April 30, 2012

Hero Shot

It's Saturday morning April 21st and we were on our way to California, when we remembered that last summer it was brought to our attention that the air conditioner wasn't working.  Too bad we didn't remember in time to get that looked at when the car went in for it's pre-vacation check up.  Doh - so we were already on our way, what to do.  It was supposed to be nice weather in Newport, but we hadn't checked the territory in between, although I guess we should have assumed that Death Valley would be deadly.  It was.
 

 97 degrees and the kids were cooking, plus Mr. Top Complainer (aka Ethan) was in our car for this leg of the journey and was making sure we knew what was obvious - "it's hot".  (He had been with Corey's parents on the SLC to Vegas leg, then it was Wes and Mel's turn for the Vegas to Newport leg) So Ethan took off his shirt, we tried to keep the window open for breeze but it wasn't that much relief.  Then Corey came to the rescue!  
With a trick MacGyver would have been proud of, Corey used his pajama pants, an empty plastic jar, a pocket knife and water to make a swamp cooler that saved our lives.


"All those summers helping my Grandma fix her swamp cooler are paying off!  Of course the car's air conditioning system is slightly more complicated than this..."  
"There, perfect - that's our hero shot" (Name that movie!)

After enduring well the kids were rewarded with frosty shakes at Wendy's in Eastvale.  And then we made them humor us with a "so what can we learn from this" conversation - There must needs be opposition in all things ~ It's good for us to really know what "hot" is so we can appreciate ice cold frostys.  We're just trying to create memories for you guys, years from now you'll all fondly reminisce ~ "Remember that time we were burning up as we crossed Death Valley..." and "aren't you glad that we are crusin' through this forsaken place in a car rather than in a wagon or on a bike like that guy..." as we zoomed past a man with a very tan bare back biking with a little trailer in tow on the side of the road.  Yes, we are lucky!  And we enjoyed the beautiful weather in Newport, when we pulled into the city that night it was a cool and wonderfully sweet 70 degrees, heaven!

(and if there are any freejinger ladies here, sorry that you have to see a photo of my kid still using an expired carseat, I'm getting to it...It's on my list, I promise!)

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Begin Vacation Report...

We are back from fun in the California sun.  We started off with 8 kids and they are all still alive and accounted for, so I guess that means it was a success!

We left on Friday around 3 and were in St. George around 7:30 where we stopped for food and to let the kids run around a playplace for 30 minutes.  Then back on the road on our way to Las Vegas for the night.  At 9:47 as we approached Moapa Indiana Reservation, around Nevada mile marker 100, we came to a full and complete stop.  We were there for over an hour.  We and all the other cars around us turned off our head lights and got out of our cars to see if we could see what was ahead.  When we could tell we weren't going anywhere anytime soon, we let the kids out of the car for a breather.  We kept them close as they threw gravel into the bushes of the desert median.  I didn't feel mad that we were stopped but was aware of the feeling that for someone who had been on the road up in front of us, their life was now permanently changed.
 

We could see the flashing of police lights, but in the night and on the straight road, I couldn't tell how close or far it was.  I did soak up the chance I had to look up at the desert sky, I even saw a shooting star.  We said hello to some of the neighboring car's drivers, the kids played with a laser pointer and we all had some yogurt.  After an hour and 20 minutes all the cars suddenly came alive and headed forward.  We hopped back in the car and followed suit.  After 40 minutes of slow stop and go, we passed the scene of a terrible rollover accident.  I remember seeing a pink fleece blanket in a heap on the street.  I couldn't help thinking that there might have been a family just like us on their way, heading off on a fun trip, when suddenly the vacation wasn't what was on their mind and instead it was their kids or spouse, wondering if they'd be okay.



When we were first stopped we called ahead to Corey's parents to tell them there had been an accident.  Wayne watched the news and told us what the news anchors reported.  We found out more about it by searching the news during the week, they were from Utah from Spanish Fork.  There were 7 people in the car, and one of them died, a 16 year old girl.  So sad, all we could do was pray for them.  So we were the fortunate ones that just got to drive by it and helplessly look, letting the officers do their work.  2 hours later and life continued the same as before for us.


I felt sad yet also thankful.  We didn't get into Vegas until 1 a.m., but I'm sure they would love to trade us places, how fortunate we are to be exhausted waking up in a hotel rather than in a hospital room.  So that was the first day of our trip and what I learned that day as I gave each of my kids an extra kiss on the head as we put them in their beds. 

Friday, April 20, 2012

California

We're heading out to Califor-nigh-a in a little bit, kids are pretty much packed, Corey and I - not much packed.  La-de-da, so I thought I'd come blog for a sec since I have lots of other things I need to do.  I will probably have internet access while we're gone, but don't know if I'll get a chance to blog anything, so probably won't log in here again for 10 days. 

Last time we went to California was in 2010.  Mel had short hair then.  I'm taking the scissors cause she wants it short now, but I like it with the layers we just gave her.  We'll see who wins.  She's got short hari in that pic below from 2 years ago if you can see it.  It is cute short.  We're going with a pretty large group, and with said large group I plan on doing what we did last time: using everyone's tickets to get a ton of fast passes for California screaming, and then going on that over and over and over and over and over again, oh yeah!  The start of that ride always gives such a thrill, I love it!


Lily and Abi sleeping at California Adventure 2 years ago



 Excited to go to the beach, plus I'm sure there will be alot of this goin' on...


When we get back I plan on taking up this 31 day challenge here, and get a family menu schedule set and then put all the fun ideas and recipes in this way cute recipe binder I got at Costco!  Love the little spatula and whisk, I couldn't resist.


Have a great rest of April!  Be back in 10 ~

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Easter Prank

Just in case you haven't seen this yet -



(hilarious!)

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Grant-ferd

Thought I'd just give a shout out to my baby brother and his wife. They are expecting their first baby next month, we're having a little Hibbert women baby shower for Steph in 2 weeks. I'm so excited for them, there's something magical about that first baby and the first experience with parenthood that they are about to experience! It's wonderful.

Grant is a great kid (I still call him a kid and baby brother cause he's the youngest of us Hibberts). Here he is holding my Sophie at our post-General Conference gathering earlier this month.

Grant holding Soph, Soph holding her toes. Grant, your eyes could compete with Sophie's for being large and gorgeous. Mine don't hold a candle, I occasionally feel sheepish when I'm squeezing her cheek next to mine and look at us in the mirror - she puts my eyes to shame! Her irises are seriously bigger than mine. But I'm glad for her, she's got her father's beautiful eyes and lashes. Corey's gorgeous blue eyes were one of the first things that made him a hottie in my book when I caught a glimpse of him in Ms. Aagard's 7th grade English class when we first met o-so many years ago. I keep telling Joe, who is about to enter 7th grade... "Next year buddy! You could be meeting your future wife next year! Keep an eye out for a short girl in soccer shorts." Especially since he just got a phone call telling him he was accepted to be placed in the algebra class, cause Corey was in algebra in 7th grade, and that was probably the 2nd thing that caught my eye about him, I was just so amazed at how brilliant this kid's gotta be when I saw him walking down the hall in 7th grade carrying that blue algebra book.

Ok, so there's my ramble for today, and also, after seeing that pic of Grant and Sophia, I'd like to again say there is something so lovely about a man holding a baby. It's beautiful (and hot).

:)

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Haircuts and Hair Extensions

Gave Joe a hair cut the other day. Was just going to be a trim around the ears, but then I messed up on one side so we had to do the whole thing. Sorry Joe. He's nice though, doesn't get mad at me, just was a little disappointed that it was going to take longer than he wanted. Afterward he said the haircut looked good. Phew!

I wanted to cut Mel's hair too, so I gave her a little trim then we both couldn't decide if we like her hair better long or short - it's so cute short, but it's so fun to play with long hair, so we compromised and gave her some layers. Afterward she and her brothers enjoyed playing with her hair remnant -


making unibrows

and a mustache



:) Funny kids

And her hair looks so cute too! I like it. Each time I walk by her, I say "Wow! Nice haircut!!" It's about time for me to go in for a trim - it's my annual Mother's Day gift to myself. My long hair gets in the way a lot, but also makes it possible for me to play this game with Sophia -


The kids called her "Tarzan baby" :)

So there's how a baby would look with hair extensions! Funny

Monday, April 16, 2012

Pets


My kids want a pet. They really want a dog. I told them we can't do a dog. Although puppies are soooo cute and I love them (Melodie with our neighbor's new beagle pug puppy, she was sooo cute!!!) but we just can't do a dog kids, sorry. We tried in the happy summer of 2010, and that cute pup was lucky she got out of us as owners. We can't do dogs. We're maxed out with our human children, and even though they feign to be responsible pet owners and walk the dog and clean up after the dog and yup, we tried that and you kids did not pass. Thus, I shall say again, we just can't do dogs. If we are to get a pet, it must be waaaay low maintenance, make minimal messes in the house/yard, not destroy things, not bite kids, and not cause any allergic reactions in the head of our household. Those monarch butterflies we had last summer, those were just about perfect.

Well, yesterday the ideal pet was once again revealed to me and highly endorsed by a household of teenaged girls - the perfect pet is the rat.

I shall expound more on the virtues of the rat if I actually go and buy some today, which unbeknowst to my husband I might - (saw a great deal on ksl!)


We'll see how crazy I'm feeling, especially since we're leaving for a week vacation on Friday. Leaving town is the perfect time to buy a pet, don't you agree?

ps - those prunes I pureed really went the extra mile in cleaning Sophia out - she had 7 poopy diapers yesterday. So I think she's cured, and I'm going to make sure she gets enough fruits and veggies in her diet.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

My Poor Baby

Sophia in happier times, kicking/rubbing her little feet up and down on the carpet

Poor Sophia is constipated, it is totally breaking my heart to see her cry! She passed a really hard bowel last night and I was hoping that was it, but she's been crying more today. I've been googling it, anyone had problems with this and solutions that worked?

One thing I found googling said that Rice Cereal may contribute to constipation cause it is low in fiber. Now I am saying "Curse you Rice Cereal!" Into the trash, I'm never buying you again.

I just put a bunch of prunes and water in the blender and pureed it into a nice brown goop, hoping that helps her. Oh it's so sad! Definitely a different cry she's been making, and her little frowning lips as she wails is heartbreaking.

Here are some tips from momtastic that I've been trying today:

Tummy Massage - Gently massage and rub baby's tummy in a clockwise direction. Place your hands at baby's navel and massage in a circular motion, moving your hand(s) out and away from the center of baby's belly.

Bicycle Legs - Place your baby on her back and lightly hold her legs in a half-bent position. Gently begin to move your baby's legs as if she is riding a bicycle. Alternate "Bicycle Legs" with Tummy Massage. *"Bicycle Legs" also may help to relieve a baby who is gassy.

A Warm Bath - Some medical professionals suggest giving your constipated baby a warm bath. The thought is that this may help relax baby and "get things moving" again. Give a tummy massage as you are drying baby.

Don't worry Sophs, when you're older I'm positive no one will bring up this tmi I'm sharing here. Let's just get your little bowels working better, k? So again, if anyone has experience or suggestions, I'd love to hear them, thanks!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Funk

funk: Feeling down in the dumps, sort of lazy, edgy or irritable, but without justifiable cause.

(...might also be pms)

I'm almost ready to be done with this attitude I'm having. Ready to go do stuff. Saw this on pinterest yesterday, I like it.

So I got around to painting the other 4 barstools black. It feels good to do stuff.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Heaven Is Here

I'm not a Twi-mom, but I did read the first book. And I saw the first movie. Even with that limited exposure to Twilight, like most people I am well aware of Edward's reputation for being the most perfect man ever.

Well, I just finished reading Stephanie Nielson's book and let me just say, Edward doesn't hold a candle to Mr. Nielson.


You want a perfect gentleman, husband, father, just an amazing salt of the earth guy who knows what life is about and lives his life as evidence that he knows it, read this book. He is inspiring. Page 276-77 made me cry ~ Stephanie is amazing, and Christian is right there with her, a match made in heaven. (I also know all about matches made in heaven cause I'm blessed to be in one myself~) They are amazing.

"We're doing great, you're doing great. We're going to be OK. ~ We have each other. We were both hurt in this accident, you know what I've been through and I know what you've been through. We can do this as long as we are one. Christian, if you're next to me, I can do anything."


Yup, Bella and Edward's romance doesn't have anything on this TRUE LOVE STORY - with emphasis on that word true. It is a true story!!! These are real people and this really happened! I just have such a hard time caring about fiction books or make believe sitcoms when there are so many amazing TRUE STORIES out there to lift and inspire us, and it's real.

So, I stayed up late Tuesday night and have avoided the majority of my homemaker duties the past two days and just finished reading "Heaven Is Here" and let me just say ~ wow. I have several competing thoughts, I shall now attempt to communicate one of them.

One thought I have that I've had to fight out of my heart as I read this is some envy. Maybe it's not envy, more likely I'm just a little frustrated with myself. (btw, here's an amazing talk about jealousy from General Conference - read, watch, or listen to it HERE - Yes, Stephanie is another amazing person, go down another quart of pickle juice!) So, I've got a natural man tendency that needs to be put down cause I'm a little jealous that Stephanie just seems to know how to do it ("it" meaning being a mother and homemaker), and I don't. Even AC (after crash) she's probably doing it better than me, and I don't have all the challenges she does.

I know how to be a wife pretty well, and I can be a mother to babies - babies are easy, just kiss 'em and change their diapers, and they come with their own food supply - piece of cake. (I'm so happy Stephanie and Christian just had another baby) But besides that, or attempting to do that with all the other 7 kids and a house of messes on top of it, sometimes I just don't know how to do it.

I maybe do it one day now and then, but I usually feel like I just can't find my rhythm and don't have a "motherhood 101" book to help me know the steps and keep on target, I feel like I just ad-hock it all the time. I need and want to love cooking for my family. I guess I do it cause everyone here is fed and alive, but I wish I could thrive at it. I do love art and decorating, I want to know how to make/find the time for it, wish I had about a thousand bucks in the bank to just go and buy everything and anything I want. Patience, you can have it all, you just have to have it one at a time.

So the other thought that comes along when that frustration/envy rears it's head is that I am doing okay and I'm figuring it out, and Heavenly Father will keep helping me. Sure, I don't have a lot of beautiful cake platters and I still don't seem to know for sure what traditions our family has, I don't have an organized laundry room and my desk is a wreck, I could go on... but then I remember that I might be comparing my rotten apples to Stephanie's freshly squeezed orange juice, right? Also, my story is different from hers. Your story is different from mine. We all have different stories, different plans of things that we want to do, and different things that God needs us to do, we all have different gifts, desires, talents, sympathies, etc. We've got to stay focused on what we have, not what we lack. If we focus on what we lack, we'll probably keep lacking and drawing negative energy to us, but if we are grateful we draw blessings and abundance to us. Little bit of philosophies of men there, but I think there is some truth in that Secret stuff.

We still have not bought a home in our 13+ years of marriage... "and that's... okay!" (cue Stewart Smalley or Khalil from Jonah: A VeggieTales Movie - watch 1:11-1:21 "I am a caterpillar! Well, that's only half true. My mother was a caterpillar, my father was a worm. But I'm okay with that now.") lol :)

Yes, I'm okay now with being a renter, it's actually worked out great for us, unless I let myself think that for some reason it's just not right to rent and then I attract negativity to myself and our home. If we had just bought a place and settled down, I would have had a chance to accumulate lots of cute homely things and I wouldn't have had to start over again so many times. But no, I've got to get my story straight. We haven't bought a home, and I've had to pack up our life several times and start over, but how lucky we have been to live in Virginia, Brazil, Costa Rica, and Chile!

I sold and gave away lots of stuff that I didn't want to, but it's what we needed to do, that's how we've moved forward in the story of our family. Graduate school with 5 kids living in a 700 square foot apartment is part of our story. Going to Brazil for 4 months. Our story also included living in a huge 4000+ square foot rambler where, ironically, I feel like I was the most upset and unhappy and ungrateful as I'd ever been. Then we went to Costa Rica and Chile for 9 months so I could try to learn again what I should have learned in Brazil. ( I'm hoping I got it down this time!)

We all have our own stories and things we need to learn, people that we need to meet and let bless us, people that we can influence and bless. It's exciting to think of what is ahead and what is in store. We're all in this together, so be kind, do good, love one another ~Life is Beautiful.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

My Lily Pillow


I love Lily. Toddlers are just cute bundles of exploration and trouble trapped in an irresistible little cheesy grin. Lily left me a present the other day on my pillow.

I had left my pen on my bed with my books and magazines so I can write and underline. Lily was watching tv while I read and nursed Sophia, then I fell asleep and awoke to find this mural on my pillowcase. My Egyptian Cotton pillowcases that I bought in Virginia that remind me of our lovely days in Centreville, I loved it there. We'll go back someday. But I love Lily more than Virginia and more than my pillowcase. Childhood comes with an expiration date. Got to enjoy these kids while they're here.

And I love these little people scribbles she draws.

When I saw the drawing I scolded her, cause we don't want to make a habit out of this, but then I just turned over the pillowcase as if to tuck her toddlerhood away safe under my blanket. I'm sure it will come out when I wash it, but I'm going to put that off for a while. I love these little drawings. And I'm glad for Magic Erasers too, that have cleaned up these little scribble people from walls and tables and window sills.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Easter Costumes

So you already saw Sophia's first Easter costume as the Easter Bunny.


Here's the side view with the cotton-tail in view.


And here's her other outfit - Melodie made a paper mache easter egg at school - and after Mel cracked it open and got all her treats out, we learned that her egg fit just perfectly on Sophi's little head, so now she's a little Easter chick freshly hatched from her egg -


Sophi is starting to be such a character, her personality is starting to shine through, she's a funny little bunny/chick.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Good Lookin'

Here's our pretty girls all ready for Church

Even Sophia was smiling! Great photo girls!

And here are our handsome boys...
Ethan, you're looking a little shaggy on top. And who agrees that Hyrum is a Ralphie look-alike?


I think they make a pretty good looking group.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Happy Easter

Two Easter videos - first one from VeggieTales - cute little movie that the kids like, but I must say that Hope's song here is really my favorite, the music is so pretty and it makes me cry.

"He was born to be King, he was Rabbi and Priest, the best that he had he gave to the least~




His friends soon believed that truly he was the One, the Savior, Messiah, God's One and Only Son~"

and this next video is pretty too - my neighbor shared it with us - her daughter is the one that sings at the beginning and end. Very pretty song.


Saturday, April 7, 2012

Staying Calm

I've really been doing good this week at keeping calm. I don't think I've freaked out even once since Conference. I am remembering to say "Try again" and it's good!

I'm very proud to say that this morning when Hyrum came in and told me he broke his glasses I was totally calm. It's interesting, it seems that the bigger the deal it is, the easier it is for me to be calm. When Corey got laid off in 2002 - I smiled and we began to quote the pill bugs on Bug's Life "You Fire!" Car accident? It's okay. Get a $100 speeding ticket, oh well. Kids wear slightly muddy shoes on the carpet? Death to everyone. So glad it seems that I'm getting that under control and am learning to not sweat the little stuff. That being said, let me also calmly state that I hate it when they try to adjust their own glasses.


Hooray for the 2 for 1 sale. 3 months into it and one pair down, one to go for Hyrum. Ethan got down to one pair after 1 month. Mel and Abi still both have two. Hyrum really liked these glasses tho - they are his Harry Potter glasses, and he got to play the lead role of Harry Potter during school recess. Hopefully I can find the frame for cheap online. If not, it's not a big deal, right? :)

Thursday, April 5, 2012

My First DIY!!!!

I planned on doing this when I bought this table 9 months ago, and I finally did it! I put on the last coat of polyurethane last night and let it dry, brought it all up from the basement while the kids were still in bed, the house was cleaned and ready to present to Corey when he got home, we picked him up at 11 - glad he's back to enjoy a little bit of spring break with us.

And now, presenting ~ what I consider my first official DIY!

Before above, After below


Our old table has a new look. I should have done this earlier, cause the original finish was already so worn off when we bought it that our months of spills and use have caused additional bubbly water damage on the top veneer finish. Oh well. Still looks better, it was pretty fun. Would have been better to have a pro coach me through this. Ron was helpful, but I know my technique wasn't great. My Polyurethane coating leaves much to be desired. Still, not bad for my first job. :)

Plus I did these stools too. Was going to buy some online - a pair for $50, instead bought 4 used stools for $25, going to go pick up 4 more tomorrow, we'll have varied heights for little kids and big kids. They are all shiny and glossy right now, I think I'll rough them up a bit with sandpaper sometime next year after they get broken in, the table too.

The benches turned out the best. :) They are two benches that were my parents' that I borrowed in 2005 and have kept by default. Thanks Mom & Dad - I love benches. Just makes the room look tidier and less cluttered to not have lots of chair legs and chair backs. Easier to sweep, super easy to quickly wipe clean, I give benches two thumbs up.

As for decorating the rest of the home, I read this again today - creating child friendly spaces throughout your home - the kids go in every room anyway, I think that's a good idea to let them know they're welcome in each room. I'll add that to my list of projects. :)

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Sophi the Bunny

Melodie wants a pet.

Until then, Sophi will have to do.


"Mel! Take that thing outside! I don't want your pet stinkin' up the house!!!"


That's a pretty good "What's Up Doc?" face, no?

Everybody ready for Easter? Any fun plans? We're having a neighborhood hunt on Friday, but the forecast calls for chances of scattered rain and snow. Maybe we'll have to have a neighborhood "Trick or EasterTreat" I hear last year the poor kids were freezing and digging through snow to find eggs buried in snow. (I'm kinda glad we missed last years' bad winter) I'm sure all my girls will be putting on their Easter best, which means bunny ears. (atleast for Easter Saturday. Easter Sunday they'll put on dresses.)

Corey's in the air right now on his way back from Chile. I know he can't surprise me every time, but I tried to not press too much to know what day he was returning. First he said Monday April 9th, then he said Saturday, Friday, then today he called and said he was at the airport and about to board the plane, so Thursday at 11 a.m it is. And so we all stayed up cleaning and now the house is ready! Yay! I'm going to go put another coat of Polyurethane on the table then head to bed. Hope it turns out okay. It's my first DIY ya know.

GOP Legos

Proof that my kids have parents that are political junkies (the kids were really excited to show me these)

~ Introducing ~

The first every Republican Debate Lego Set!
Set comes with candidates, podiums and debate moderators. (Next time I'll tell my kids to make some debate-ish looking red and blue lego background for the candidates.)

Ron Paul, Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, and Newt Gingrich

And the moderators. (The moderator on the right doubles as Barack Obama.)

Mitt Romney - Hmm, pretty good, but he looks a little angry

Looking good Ron, he looks quite young I think!

Rick Santorum in his as close as we could come sweater vest

And Newt. (Hoping some of these minifigures drop out of the race soon!)
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